Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Chapter Eight: Hope Deferred >> Page 86

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Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription 86 THE CUB OF THE PANTHER
"Then it was Rose in the carriage?""Ondoubtedly. You seed her, then?""Yes, I saw her."
And the strong man turned aside. He did not tell the old maid that
Rose skulked from him, as if unwilling to acknowledge his acquain-
tance. But the shrewd aunt conjectured it, and began:
"And didn't Rose—"
Here she stopped, afraid to finish the question. Her masculine
instincts readily conceived the situation.
"And Rose is to be at home tomorrow, Miss Betsy," was the quietly
spoken question.
"Yes, to-morrow morning, Mike.""Miss Betsy," said Mike, rather curtly, "I will ride over to see Rose
the day after to-morrow."
So speaking, after a hearty squeeze of Miss Betsy's hands, our
melancholy hunter rode away.
Another day followed of anxiety and doubt.
Mike Baynam was not exactly a fatalist; but it did seem to him, as
he rode, that the fates were adverse to his prospects. His instincts,
already well informed of the weaknesses of Rose, could readily conceive
what effect would be had upon her mind, by the condescensions of the
great lady at Fairleigh Lodge. He rode home in no more cheerful humor
than he left it.
Good Aunt Betsy's profoundest remark, that night, was the relish
shown by Mrs. Jane Carter for the venison steaks which she had pre-
pared for supper; her vanity, which resented the idea of obligation to
the hunter; never operating to the diminution of her appetite. Like a
judicious student in the schools, at once of Epicurus and economy, she
gave herself no farther concern as to the payment for the meat. It was
wholly the affair of Miss Betsy Moore, whom she quietly assumed to
have found the money, and squared off the obligation. She found it easy
to transfer the sense of obligation to the more obtuse conscience of her
rude, uncultivated, unrefined and unfashionable maiden sister, whose
dialect was so irritating to her nervous system.