Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Cub of the Panther: A Hunter Legend of the ''Old North State'' >> Chapter Eight: Lost! Gone! >> Page 148

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Page 148

Novel (Romance) | The University of Arkansas Press | 1997
Transcription 148 THE CUB OF THE PANTHER
The young girl's eyes flashed with fires of indignation. She rose to her
fullest height as she replied:
"You shall judge for yourself, madam, whether your family can pro-
duce fool or knave.
And while the stately lady stood aghast at this burst of honest indig-
nation, the girl darted to the dressing-table, where lay a pair of scissors,
and ripping open the skirt of her dress, which had concealed that paper
which she had preserved thus from all the prying curiosity of lady and
housekeeper, she exclaimed triumphantly:
"There, madam, read for yourselfl There is the certificate of marriage,
by a Pastor of an Episcopal Church of New York, between Edward
Fairleigh and Rose Carter. I am your son's lawfully wedded wife."
Then, as Mrs. Fairleigh read, she exclaimed:
"Oh! fool! oh! liar! This is a poor story. It is all a fraud. There is no
Pastor of the Episcopal Church in all New York of the name of Hazen!
You are a ! You shall not remain another day in my house. My son
is now in Germany, and secure against all your cunning contrivances!"
and she tore the paper into a hundred pieces.
The poor girl sank senseless to the floor, crying:
"Don't! don't! Oh, God, don't!""Take her away!" cried the cruel woman to the miserable creature,
Sweetzer.
"Recover her if you can. Do for her what you will; but let me see her
no more. Better she were dead a thousand times than live to claim to be
daughter of mine. Away with her!"
Rose was put to bed insensible.
Sweetzer, possibly feeling some remorse, was at pains to restore her.
She was successful. A vigorous constitution, and a strong will, came to
Rose's aid, and, by nightfall, she had come to consciousness.
But that consciousness! It was akin to madness.
She moaned, and finally seemed to sleep. Then Sweetzer left her, and
made due report to her mistress.
"To-morrow," said the latter, "you will order the carriage, and take her
home to her mother. Pick up and carry every thing which she may call
her own. Leave nothing behind. You need say no words to Mrs. Carter,
save that `you have brought her daughter home.' Would to God I had
never seen her! If we had time for it, Sweetzer, I would pack her back
to-night.""It's too late, ma'am, to-night, and besides that, the snow's set in and
will be too cold for the horses. It's dreadful dark already."