Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Chapter Four: In the Gilded Age >> Page 123

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 123

Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription IN THE GILDED CAGE 123
"Look! There he rides! See! you ought to remember him; that large
man!""I think it is Mr. Baynam, ma'am.""Mr. Baynam, indeed! and who is the other?" she pointed to Sam
Fuller.
"That is one Sam Fuller. He is a hunter, and married to a sister of"
she was about to say "Mr. Baynam" but remembering the loathing
expressed by Mrs. Fairleigh at the use, in his case, of the complimentary
prefix, she prudently dropt it.
"I shall have to put a stop," said the great lady, "to these hunters tres-
passing upon my lands. Give them an inch, they take an ell. Before long,
I shall find them penetrating my very park, and killing the deer in my
presence, before my own eyes! Look here, my man!"
This last sentence was addressed to Sam Fuller, who by this time had
emerged from the gorge, and was about to cross the road in the rear of
the carriage, following in the steps of Mike Baynam.
Sam heard the uncourteous call, and touching his hat civilly, rode up
to the side of the carriage on which Mrs. Fairleigh sat. Rose crouched in
the rear, and the head and shoulders of Mrs. Fairleigh so completely filled
up the carriage window that she fancied herself unseen; but the keen eyes
of the hunter were not to be baffled, and a single moment, a passing
glimpse, had sufficed to tell him who was the great lady's companion.
"Look here, my good man!" quoth Mrs. Fairleigh, "I will have no
hunters trespassing upon my grounds, let me tell you! I know what
hunters are, and what their dogs are, and I'm not satisfied to suffer them
in my hog and cattle ranges! Do you hear me, sir? Then, mark! I give you
and your comrade warning, from this moment, if I find you trespassing,
mark me, I'll prosecute you with all the rigours of the law!""What! all of them, good ma'am? That'll be hard upon a poor hunter,
who gits his meat out of the wild beasts only! I reckon, ma'am, if we
hunters, and our dogs, didn't hunt among these hills, the varmints would
git so bad, there'd be no living for 'em! They'd eat your hogs and cattle
clear up in no time, and would make no bones of eating up the owners
too, I kin tell you, my good ma'am! An old painter, with a sharp stom-
ach, wouldn't stop to ax of the woman was a fine rich woman, or a poor
hunter's wife! He'd make the teeth meet in the flesh; and his only axing
about the matter would be whether 'twas a tough old lady, dry in the
sinews, or a tinder young woman, that hadn't yit been run down! All
the riggers of the law, you say, ma'am? all on 'em?"