Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Chapter Eight: Hope Deferred >> Page 84

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Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription CHAPTER EIGHT
HOPE DEFERRED.
GOOD AUNT BETSY, in her encounter of wits with her sister, the ineffable Jane Carter, had totally forgotten that she was to provide Mike Baynam with a knife for cutting up the deer.
Mike, in waiting for her reappearance, had heard enough to make
him retire beyond hearing distance. Mike was by nature and necessity a
gentleman. A nice sense of honor prompted him to retire instantly, on
hearing that which might not be designed for his ears.
He remembered that he had his own couteau de chasse at his side;
and, taking the carcass of the buck to the rear of the cottage, where he
had cut up many before, he proceeded to divide it, with a quiet calm of
manner which was quite marvelous, considering what he had already
heard.
But Mike, a strong man by nature, lapsing from strength for a season,
lapsing into a weakness very natural and common with ardent and young
natures, was growing momently more and more strong and resolute.
"My game must be played out," he murmured to himself; "no mat-
ter who shall win! at all events, I shall bring it to an end and then "
The rest was left unsaid, and he went on, deliberately dissecting the
buck secundum artem, and as the practised hunter only knows how it
should be dissected.
The long discussion between Mrs. Carter and her sister enabled him
to finish his work, wash his hands, clean his knife, and wander off to the
little clump of trees in front of the cottage, where Aunt Betsy espied him.