Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXXIII: Summary Processes of Regulation >> Page 281

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Page 281

Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription JOSCELYN281
the mountain, and passed into the shelter of a sylvan tent of poles,
covered with green bushes.
Up started a couple of rangers, as they entered this tent, and
challenged them. The guide of Walter made his report, and the
Lieutenant who received it, very cordially invited our wayfarer to
the modest hospitalities of his command. Clym Carter, the Captain,
would not probably return till noonday.
Walter bore with the delay with what patience he could, having
no reason, in the meanwhile, to complain of the civilities of the
Lieutenant and of such parties as appeared occasionally. He had
shown the token of Mrs. Carter, and it commanded instant respect.
At noon, a bugle sounded among the hills, and very soon Walter
was told that Captain Carter had returned and would soon see him
in his tent.
Meanwhile, one of the rangers proceeded to spread a rude table
of planks on benches, covered finally with green leaves, upon which
he spread the simple but sufficient dinner for the party. There were
no plates; only a few tin cups and a bucket for water. The meals
were abundant and barbecued. The entire quarter of a mutton, huge
collops of beef, in strips, and hoecakes, finely browned before the
fire, constituted the fare, which was all spread upon the green bushes,
in readiness, some time before the Captain made his appearance, the
Lieutenant excusing him by suggesting that some examination of
prisoners was taking place; but it was not long after that before he
came. By this time, Walter Dunbar had instinctively become im-
pressed with the conviction that he was to see in Clym Carter no
ordinary man. The mother had impressed him. She was a coarse
woman, it is true, but how full of character ! and she had never
spoken of her son as the Captain of a formidable band of regulators,
as a vulgar vanity might have done. Then, the deference with which
the sentinel and the Lieutenant had severally spoken of him; all
these things had impressed him, and when the stalwart form of Clym
Carter entered, stooping, into the tent, rising within it to his full
height, erect, with great breadth of shoulders, admirable symmetry
of form, with lofty and commanding forehead and massive face,
whose jaws seemed to indicate a leonine capacity of gripe. These
impressions of Walter were confirmed and strengthened, when, over
all, he beheld the large, bright, blue eyes, lighting up a smooth face,