Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXVI: A L'outrance >> Page 236

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Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription 236JOSCELYN
"Yes!" And, with the reply, Martin Joscelyn approached him,
and with something of the look of his powerful, though crippled
brother, stooping, he hissed in his very ears :
"Yes, dog as you are, you shall hear from me, and by
you shall feel me, too, from the crown of your head to the sole of
your feet."
Alison now rose. He no longer held his calm of aspect. But,
before he could speak, Annie Dunbar passed between the parties.
"No, Walter; no, Martin. This man shall hear from me! You
have, sir," said she, turning to him, "abused my father's hospitality.
He shall know it. You have wantonly inflicted insult upon a woman.
Take with you, wherever you go, the consciousness of your baseness,
and the absence of character among all honorable men."
She turned from him, and deliberately walking up to Martin, she
laid her hands upon his shoulder, and to his own and the surprise of
all parties present, she kissed him upon his cheek.
The act was conclusive ! Alison's face paled again. What were his
emotions we cannot say. He had lost a point in his game. In his
malice of heart he had, for a moment, lost his head. He had not
thought that things had gone so far between Miss Dunbar and
Martin Joscelyn; and seeking, perhaps, to create a false impression
in the mind of the latter, he had forced the lady to the assertion of
her womanhood, in the revelation of her heart. He little knew the
fiery spirit, or the clear sense, or the exquisite sensibility, leading to
power, in that seemingly slight and trifling girl.
But the scene had reached its crisis its climax.
The impudence of Alison was not wholly to be rebuked. He rose,
and bowing right and left as he went, he said:
"A very courtly company of lords and ladies! I wish you a very
good evening."
Martin Joscelyn touched him on the shoulder as he left the room.
"And to you, sir, such good morrow as you shall deserve. We shall
become better acquainted, sir, before you get your full deserts."
"All in good time, sir." And, humming a song, Alison disappeared
from the entrance. It had been easy for him, hitherto, to come and
go, and he made his way directly to the leafy covert where his steed
was fastened. Here, after muttering some bitter curses, he mounted
his horse, and, in a few moments, disappeared from the precinct
whither, we need not now inquire.