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MONTEZUMA'S DAUGHTER. By H. fJrler Haggard, [COPYRIGHT 1893.] Author of "She," "Allan Quarternuln," Jfcc. SYNOPSIS. CHAPTER 1. tells why Thomas Wingfield, at the XHBinand of Queen Elizabeth, writes an account st his experiences against the Spaniards, and Mteir rule and conquest in Mexico. CHAPTER II.âThe parentage of Thomas Wing- field is dealt with. He tells with pardonable pride thai he sprang from the Wingfields of Wingfield Castle, in Suffolk, which passed into th* hands of the De la Poles through a efotumacy of his father. He shut him- NOf in a monastery at Seville in Spsia and sent his son away to mortify his leah." The father escapes and tinds his son, whom be addresses Hark you, my son Thomas: there is a country called Spain, where your mother was born, and there these devils abide 'ttho torture men and women, aye, and burn them living in the name of Christ. I was betrayed into their hands by him whom I name fibs chief of the devils, though he is younger than ;¡:am by three years, and their pincers and hot irons left these marks upon me. Aye, and they 40mld have burnt me also, only I escaped, thanks to your mother- but such tales are not for a little lid's hearing and see you never speak of them, Thomas, for the Holy Office has a long arm. You are half a Spaniard, Thomas your skin âbd eyes tell their own tale but whatever skin aftd ,.yes may tell, let your heart give them the Keep your heart English, Thomas; let UD foreign devilments enter there. Hate all iarM, except your mother, and be watchful feist her blood should master mice within you." be chapter concludes by an allusion to a dark ikadow which hangs over his father and mother's Ume at Ditchingham. CHAJPTHB III. tells of Thomas Wingfield's love at the Squire's daughter. Lily, and of his strange meeting with a strange Spaniard, who cuts at him with bis sword upon learning Wingfield's name. Thomas, however, though only armed with a I short cudgel, succeeds in administering a severe thrashing to the stranger, and leaves him bruised and sore in the roadway whilst he goes on his ormnd to see his fair neighbour, but feeling ail (foe while that this is the strange man who has toilsed hJ8 mother so much fear and his father a jjoarney to Yarmouth. CHAPTJBB IV.âHaving tied to a tree the %aniard, Thomas Wingfield hies to the meadow, there he meets Lily. The meeting is rudely dis- %Irbed by the father of Lily Bozard, and Thomas IfliM away sadâhaving won the father's anger ad the lady's love. Returning to the spot where toe leftt-thè Spaniard, he found instead the village. 1impleton, from whom he learned that he had set fte Spaniard free, who had galloped away. He laticed the footsteps of alady and a white mantilla Ving on the ground, which he reoognised as Mledging to his mother. His suspicions were sroused, and despairingly, as one who dreams- tor now I guessed all and grew mad with fearâI looked this way and that, till at length I found more footstepsâthose of the Spaniard. These were ileep-inarked, as of a man who carried some 4eavy burden. I followed them. First they went down the hill towards the river, then iurned aside to a spot where the brushwood was thick. In the deepest of the clump the boughs, flow bursting into leaf, were bent downwards, as though to hide something beneath. I wrenched them aside, and there, gleaming whitely in the fathering twilight, was the dead face of my â¢other." CHAPTER V. Thomas Swears an Oath. For a while I stood amazed with horror, staring Sown at the dead face of my beloved mother. Then I stooped to hft her. and saw that she had ften stabbed, and through the heartâstabbed th the sword which I carried in my hand. Now I understood. This was the work of that Spanish stranger whom I had met as he hurried Hotn the place of murder, who, because of the Wickedness of his heart, or for some secret iftix,n, had striven to slay me also when lie mwned tht I was my mother's son. And I had eld this devil in my power, and that I might inoot my May I had suffered him to escape my Tengeauce, who, had I known the truth, would liave dealt with him as the priests of Anahuac ieal with the victims of their gods. I under- I 1tood. and shad tears of pity, rage, and shame. Then I turned and fled homewards like one mad. At the doorway I met my father and my brother Geoffrey riding up from Bungay market, And there was that written on my face which lAUftd them to ask as with one voice: â What evil thing has happened ?" 1 Thrice I looked at my father before I could Weak, for I feared last the blow should kill him. Sut speak I must at last, though I chose that it ihould be to Geoffrey, my brother. Our feather lies murdered yonder on the Vineyard Sill. A Spanish man has done the deed, Juan I ie Garcia by name." When my father heard these words his face became livid as though with ;-in of the heart, his jaw fell, and a low moan sroed from his open igotitli. Presently he rested his hand updri the j&inmel of the saddle, and, ijfting his ghastly face, said "Where is this Spaniard ? Have you killed \hn tot â ââ" "No, father. He chanced upon me in Grubs- well, and when he learned my name he would have murdered me. But I played quarterstaff with him and beat him to a pulp, taking his urlNfd. Aye, and then "And then I let him go, knowing nothing of roe deed he had already wrought upon our mother. Afterwards I will tell you all." "You let him go, son You let Juan de Clucis go Then may the curse of God rest upon you till you find him and finish that which yott began to-day." "Spare to curse me* father, who am accused by my own conscience. Turn your horses rather, and rida for Yarmouth, for there his ship lies, and thither lie has gone with two hours' start. Perhaps you may still trap him before he sets fail." Without another word my father and brother wheeled their horses round, and departed at full galop into the gloom of the gathering night. They rode so fiercely that, their horses being ,.eod, they came to the gates of Yarmouth in little mo.'e than an hour and a half, and that is fa4t riding. But the bird was flown. They tracked him to the quay, and found that he bad febipped a while before in a boat which was in waiting for him, and passed to his vessel that lay in the roads at anchor, but with her canvas set. Instantly she sailed, and now was lost in the night. Then my father caused notice to be given t be would pay reward of two hundred pieces gold to any ship that should capture the Spaniard, and two started on the quest; but they did not find her that before morning was far on far way across the sea. J So soon as they had galloped away I called iogether the grooms and other serving-men, and told them what had chanced. Then we went with lanterns, for by now it was dark, And came to the thick brushwood where lay the body of my mother. I drew near the 4refe, for the men were afraid, and so, indeed, was t, though why I should fear her lying dead who living had loved me tenderly I do not know. Yet I know this, that when I came to the spot and saw two eyes glowering at me, and heard the brash of bushes as something broke them, I could almost have fallen with fear, although I knew well that it was but a fox or wandering hound haunting the place of death. calling tha Q&fcant to fiaUoWt and the end of it was that we laid my mothers body upon a door which bad been lifted from its hinges, and bore her home for the last time. Ana to me path is still » haunted 'Xi& seventy years afld more since my mother died' by the hand of Juan de Garcia, her cousin; yet, ora as I am, and hardened to such sad scenes, I do not love to walk that path alone at night. Doubtless it was fancy, which plays ns strange tricks still, but a year ago, having gone to set a spring for a woodcock, I chanced to pass by yonder big oak upon a November eve, and I could have sworn that I saw it all again. I saw myself a lad, my wounded aim still bound with Lily's kerchief, climbing slowly down the hill- side, while behind me, groaning beneath theit burden, were the forms of the four serving-men. I heard the riurmitir of the river and the wind that seventy years ago whispered in the reeds. I saw the clouded sky flawed here and there with blue, and the broken light that gleamed on the white burden stretched upon the door, and the red stain at its breast. Aye, I heard myself talk as I went forward with the lantern, bidding the men pass to the right of some steep and rotten ground* and it was strange to me to listen to my own voice as it had been in youth. Well, well, it was but a dream, yet such slaves are we to the fears of fancy, and because of the dead, and I, who am almost of their number, do not love to pass that path at night. At length we came home with our burden, and the women took it6 weeping, and set about their task with it. And now I must not only fight my own sorrows, but must strive to soothe those of my sister Mary, who, as I feared, would go mad with grief and honor. At last she sobbed herself into a torpor, and I went and questioned the men who sat round the fire in the kitchen, for none sought the fire that night. From them I learned that an hour or more before I mes the Spaniard, a richly-dressed stranger had been seen walking cjoBg the church path, and that he had tied his aorse among some gorse and furae on the top of 9be bill, where he stodl as though in doubt, till my mother came out, when he descended and followed her. Also I learned that one of the men ftt work in the garden, which is not more than 300 paces from where the deed was done, heard cries, but had taken no note of them, thinking, forsooth, that it was but the play of some lover from Bungay and his lads chasing each other through the woods, as to this hour it is their fashion to do. Truly it seemed to me that day as though this parish of Ditchingham were the very nursery of fools, of whom I was the first and biggest, and, indeed, this same thought has struck me since concerning other matters. At length the morning came, and with it my father and brother, who returned from Yarmouth on hired horses, for their own were spent. In the afternoon also news followed them that the ships which had put to sea on the track of the Spaniard had been driven back by bad weather, having seen nothiug of him,t Now also I told all the story of my dealings with the murderer of my mother, keeping nothing back, and I must bear my father's bitter anger because, knowing that my mother was in dread of a Spaniard, I had suffered my reason to be led astray by my desire to win speech wiah my love. Nor did I meet with any comfort from my brother Geoffrey, who was fierce against me because he learned that I bad not pleaded in vain with the maid whom he de- sired for himself. But he said nothing of this reason. Also that no drop might be lacking in my cup, Squire Bozard, who came with many other neighbours to view the corpse and offer sympathy with my father in his loss, told him at the same time that lie took it ill that I should woo his daughter agaInst his wish, and that if I continued in this coarse it would strain their ancient friendship. Thus I was hit on every side hy sorrow for my poor mother whom I had loved tenderly; by longing foriny dear whom I might not see by self-reproach because I had let the Spaniard go when I held him fast; and by the anger of my father and my brother. Indeed those days were so dark and bitter, for I was at the age when shamo and sorrow sting their sharpest, that I wished that I were dead beside my mother. One comfort reoched me indeed a message from Lily, sent by a servant girl whom she trusted, giving me her dear love, and bidding roe so be of good cheer. At length came the day of burial, and my poor mother, wrapped in fair white robes, was laid to her rest in the chancel of the church at Ditching- ham, where my father has long been set beside her, hard by the brass effigies that mark the burying-place of Lily's forefather, his wife, and many of their children. This burying was the saddest of sights, for the bitterness of my father's grief broke from him in sobs, and my sister Mary swooned away in my arms. Indeed, there were few dry eyes in that church, for my mother, notwithstanding her foreign birth, was much loved because of her gentle ways and the good- ness of her heart. But it came to an end, and the noble Spanish lady and English wife was left to her long sleep in the ancient church, where she shall rest on when her tragic story and her very name are forgotten among men. Indeed, this is likely to be soon, for I am the last of the Wing- fields alive in these parts, though my sister Mary has left descendants of another name to whom my lands and fortune go, except for certain gifts to the poor of Bungay and of Ditchingham. When it was over I went back home. My father was sitting in the front room well-nigh beside himself with grief, and by him was my brother. Presently he began to assail me with bitter words because I had let the murderer go when God gave him into my hand. "You forget, father," sneered Geoffrey, Thomas woos a maid, and it was more to him to clip her in his arms than to keep bis mother's murderer safely. But by this it seems he has killed two birds with one stone; be has suffered the Spanish devil to escape when he knew that our mother feared the coming of a Spaniard, and he has made enmity between us and Squire Bozard, our good neighbour, who, strangely enough, does not favour his wooing." "It is so," said my father. "Thomas, your mother's blood is on your hands." I listened and could bear this goading injustice no longer. It is false," I said. I say it even to my father. The man had killed my mother before I met him riding back to seek his ship at Yar- mouth, and having lost his way how, then, is her blood upon my hands ? As,fot;^uy wooing of Lily Bozard, that is my" matter, brother, not yours; though, perhaps, you wish that it was yours and not mine. Why, father, did you Dot tell me what' youfearea of this Spaniard ? I heard some loose talk only, and gave little thought to it, my mind being full of other things. And now I will say something. You called down God's curse upon ine, father, till such timo as I should find this murderer and tinish what I had begun. So be it. Let God's curse rest upon me till I do find him. I am young, bub I am quick and- strong, and so soon as may be I start for Spain, to hunt him there till I shall run him down or know him to be dead. If yov will give me money to help me on my quest, so be it-if not I go without. I swear before God and by my mother's spirit that I will neither rest nor stay till, with the very sword thal slew her, I have avenged her blood upon the murderer to know him dead, and if I suffer myself to be led astray from the purpose of this oath by aught that is, then may a worse end than hers overtake me, may my soul be re- jected in heaven, and my name be shameful for ever upon the earth l" Thus I swore in my rage and anguish, holding up my hand to heaven that I called upon to witness the oath. My father looked at me keenly. If that is in your mind, son Thomas, you shall not lack for money. I would go myself, for blood must be wiped out with blood, but I am too broken in my health also I am known in Spain and the Holy Office would claim me there. Go, and my blessing go with you. It its right that you should go, for it is through your folly that our enemy has escaped us." Yes, it is right that he should go," said Geoffrey. You say that because you wish to be rid of me, Geoffrey," I answered hotly, "and you would be rid of me because you desire to take my place at the side of a certain maid. Follow your nature, and do as you will, but if you would out- wit an absent man no good shall come to you of it." The girl is to him who can win her," he said. The girl's heart is won already, Geoffrey. You may buy her from her father, but you can nqver win her heart; and, without her heart, she will be but a poor prize." Peace This is no time for such talk of love and maids," said my father, and listen. This is the tale of the Spanish murderer and your mother. I have said nothing of it heretofore, but now it must out. When I was a lad it hap- pened that I also went to Spain because my father willed it, I went to a monastery at Seville, but I had no liking for monies and their ways, and I broke out from the monastery. For a year or more I made my living as I best might, for I feared to return to England as a runaway. Still, I made a living, and not a bad oneânow in this way, and now in that-but, though I am ashamed to say it, mostly by gaing, at which I bad great luck. One night I met this man Juan de Garciaâfor in his hate he gave you his true name when he would have stabbed you-at play. Even then be bad an evil fame, though he was scarcely more than a lad but he was handsome in person, set high in birth, and of a pleading manner. It chanced that he won of me at the dice, and, being-in a good humour, he took me to visit at the house of his aunt, his uncle's widow, a lady of Seville. This aunt had one child, a daughter, and that daughter was your mother. Now your mother, Luisa de Garcia, was affianced to her cousin Juan de Garcia, not with her own will, indeed, for the contract had been signed when she was only eight years old. Still, it was binding, more binding, indeed, than in this country. being a marriage in all ex- cept in fact. But those women who are thus b.o4 for the mpst part tto wife's love in their hearts, and so M WM trim your mother. Indeed, she both hated and feared her cousin tfiian, though I think that he loved her more than earth, and by onepretext and another snS crintrived to bring him 16 ib agreement tJhal no marriage should be celebrated till she was full twenty years of age. But the colder she was to him, the more was he inflamed with desire to win her and also her possessions, which were not small, for, like all Spaniards, he was passionate, and, like most gamesters and men of evil life, much in want of money. Now to be brief, from the first moment that your mother and I set eyes on each other we loved one auother, and it was our one desire to meet as often as might be and in this we had no great difficulty, for her mother also feared and hated Juan de Garcia, her nephew by marriage, and would have seen her daughter clear of him if possible. The end of it was that I told my love, and a plot was made between us that we should fly to England, But all this had not escaped the ears of Juan, who had spies in the household, and was jealous and revengeful as only a Spaniard can be. First he tried to be rid of me by challenging me to a due), but we were parted hefor4 we could draw swords. Then he hired bravos to murder me as I walked the streets at night, but I wore a chain-shirb beneath my doublet and their daggers broke upon it, and in place of being slain I slew one of them. Twice baffled, De Garcia was not defeated. Fight and murder had failed, but another and surer means remained. I know not how, but be had won some clue to the history of my life, and how I had broken out from the monastery. It was left to him, therefore, to denounce me to the Holy Office as a renegade and an infidel, and this he did one night; it was the night before the day when we should have taken ship. I was sitting with your mother and her mother in tbelihouae at Seville, when six cowled men entered and seized me without a word. When I prayed to know their purpose thev gave me no other answer than to hold a crucifix before my eyes. Then I »knew why I was taken, and the women ceased clinping to me and fell back sobbing. Secretly and silently I was hurried away to the dungeons of the Holy Office, but all of that befel me there I will not stop to tell. "Twice I was racked, once I was seared with hot irons, thrice I was flogged with wire whips, and all this while I was fed on food such as we would scarcely offer to a dog here in England. At length my offence of having escaped from a monastery and sundry blasphemies, so called, being proved against me, I was condemned to death by fire. Then at last, when after a long year of torment and horror, I had abandoned hope and resigned myself to die, help came. On the eve of the day upon which I was to be consumed by flame, the chief of my tormentors entered the dun- geon where I lay on straw, and, embracing me, bade me be of good cheer, for the Church bad taken pity on me and given me my freedom. At first I laughed wildly, for I thought that this was but another torment, and not till I was freed of my fetters, clothed in decent garments, and set at midnight without the prison gates, would I be- lieve that so good a thing had befallen me through the hand of God. I stood, weak and wondering, outside the gates, not knowing where to fly, and as I stood a woman glided up to me wrapped in a dark cloak, who whispered 'Come.' That woman was your mother. She had learned of my fate from the boasting of De Garcia, and set herself to save me. Thrice her plans failed, but at length, through the help of some cunning agent, gold won what was denied to justice and to mercy, and-my life and liberty were bought with a very great sum. That same night we were married, and fled for Cadiz, your mother and I, but not her mother, who was bedridden with a sickness. For my sake your beloved mother abandoned her people, what remained to her of her fortune after paying the price of my life, and her country, so strong is the love of Woman. All had been made rsady, for at Cadiz lay an English ship, the Mary, of Bristol, in which passage was taken for us. But the Mary was delayed in port by a contrary wind, which blew so strongly that, notwithstanding his desire to save us, her master dared not take the sea. Two days and a night we lay in the bar, boar, fearing all things not without cause, and yet most happy in each other's love. Now those who had charge of me in the dungeon had given out'that I had escaped by the help of my master, the Devil, and I was searched for throughout the countryside. De Garcia, also, finding that his cousin and affianced wife was missing, guessed that we two were not far apart. It was his cunning, sharpened by jealousy and hate, that dogged us down step by step till at length he found us. "On the morning of the third day, the gale having abated, the anchor of the Mary was got home, and she swung out into the tideway. As she came round and while the seamen were making ready to hoist the sails, a boat carrying some twenty soldiers, and followed by two others, shot alongside and summoned the captain to heave to, that his ship might be boarded and searched under warrant from the Holy Office. It chanced that I was on deck at the time, and suddenly, as I prepared to hide myself below, a man, in whom I knew De Garcia himself, stood up and called out that I was the escaped heretic whom they sought. Fearing lest his ship should be boarded and he himself thrown into prison with the rest of his crew, the captain would then have surrendered me. But 1, desper- ate with fear, tore my clothes from my body and showed the cruel sears that marked it. 'You are Englishmen,' I cried to the sailors, 'and will you deliver me to these foreign devils, who am of your blood ? Look at their handi- work,' and I pointed to the half-healed scars left by the red-hot pincers, If you give me up, you send me back to more of this torment and to death by burning. Pity my wife if you will not pity mN or. if you will pity neither, then lend me a sword that by death I may save myself from torture.' Then one of the seamen, a Southwold man who had known my father, called out: By God I for one will stand by you, Thomas Wingfield. If they want you and your sweet lady they must kill me first,' and seizing a bow from the rack he drew it out ot its case and strung it, and setting an arrow on the string he pointed it at the Spaniards in the boat. Then tha others broke into shouts of If you want any man from among us, tome aboard and take him, you torturing devils, and the like. Seeing where the heart of the crew lay, the captain found courage in his turn. He made no answer to the Spaniards, but made half of the men hoist the sails with all speed, and the rest make ready to keep off the soldiers should they seek to board us. By now the other two boats had come up and fastened on to us with their hooks. One man climbed into the chains and thence to the deck, and I knew him for a priest of the Holy Office, cne of those who had stood by while I was tor. mented. Then I grew mad at the thought of all that I had suffered, while that devil watched, bidding them lay on for the love cf God. Snatch- ing the bow from ths hand of the Southwold sea. man, I drew the arrow to its head and loosed. It did not miss its mark, for like you, Thomas, I was skilled with the bow, and he dived back into the sea with an English yard shaft in his heart. After that they tried to board us no more, though they shot at us with arrows, wounding one man. The captain called to us to lav down our bows and take cover behind the bulwarks, for by now the sails began to draw. Then De Garcia stood up in the tost and cursed me and my wife. ( 'I will find you yeV he scfrtetried,' with many Spanish oath and foul words. 'If I must wait I for twenty years I will be avenged upon you and all you love. Be assured of. this, Luisa de Garcia, hide where you will, I shall find you and when we meet you shall come with me for so long as I will keep you, or that shall be the hour of your death.' "Then we sailed away for England, and the boats fell astern, My sons, this is the story of my youth and of how I came to wed your mother whom I have bulled to-day. Juan de Garcia bas kept his word. "Yet il seems strange," said my brother, that after all these years he should have murdered her thus, whom you say he loved. Surely even the evilesb of men had shrunk from such a deed 1" "There is little that is strange about it," answered my father. How can we know what words were spoken between them before he stabbed her ? Doubtless he told of some of them when he cried to Thomas that now they would see what truth there was in prophecies. What did De Garcia swear years since ?âthat she should come with him or he would kill her. Your mother was still beautiful, Geoffrey, and be may have given her choice between flight and death. Seek to know no more, son "-and suddenly my father hid his face in his handa and broke into sobs that were dreadful to bear. Would that you had told us this tale before, father," I said so soon as I could speak. "Then there would have lived a devil the less in the world to-day, and I should have been spared a long journey." Little did I know how long that journey would be! CHAPTER VI. Good-bye, Sweetheart. Within twelve days ot the burial of my mother and the telling of the story of his matriage to her by my father, I was ready to start upon my search. As it chanced a vessel was about to sail from Yarmouth to Cadiz. She was named the Adventuress, of one hundred tons burden, and carried wool and other goods outwards, proposing to return with a cargo of wine and yeW-staves for bows. In this vessel my father bought me a passage. Moreover, he gave me fifty pounds in gold, which was as much as I would risk upon my person, and obtained letters from the Yar- mouth firm of merchants to their agents in Cadiz, in which they were advised to advance me such sums as I might need up to a total of one hundred and fifty English pounds, and further to assist me in any way that was possible. Now the ship Adventuress was to sail on the third day of June. Already it was the first of that month, and that evening I must ride to Yar- mouth, whither my baggage had gone already. Exoept one, my farewells were made. and yet that was the one I most wished to make. Since the day when we had sworn our troth I had gained no sight of Lily, except once at my mother's burial, and then we had not spoken. Now it I seemed that I must go without any. parting words, for her father had sent me notice that if I came near the Hall his serving-men had commandment to thrust ms from the door, and this was a shame that I would not risk. Yet it was hard that I must go upon so long a journey, whence it well might chance I should not return, and bid her no good-bye. In my grief and perplexity I spoke to my father, telling him how the matter stood and asking hia help. "I go hence, I said, to avenge oar common loss, and if need be to give my life for the honour of our name. Aid me, then, in this." My neighbpur Bozard means his daughter for your brother Geoffrey, 1fh9H8fc"for yohV he answered and a man may do what he wills with his own. Still, I will help you if I can at thi least he cannot drive me from his door. Bid them WihJir'KolSSs, and we will ride to the Hall. Within the half of an hour we were there, dud' my father asked for speech with its master. The serving-man looked at me askance, remembering his orders still, be ushered us into the justice- room, where the squire sat drinking ale. "Good morrow to you, neighbour, said the Squire "you are welcome here but you bring one with you who is not welcome, though he be your son. I bring him for the last time, friend Bozard. Listed to bis request, then grant it or refuse it as you will but it you refuse it. it will not bind us doser. The lad rides to-night to take ship for Spain to seek that man w;ho murdered his mother. He goes on his own free will because, after the doing of the deed, it was he who unwittingly suffered the murderer to escape, and it is well that he should go." He is a young hound, to run such a quarry to earth, and in a strange country said the Squire. Still, I like his spirit and wish him well. What would he of IDe u II Leave to bid farewell to your daughter. I know that his suit does not please you and cannot wonder at it, and for my own part I think it too early for him to set his fancy in the way of mar- riage. But if he would see the maid it can do no harm, for such harm as there is has been done already. Now for your answer." Squire Bozard thought awhile, then said ;â The lad is a brave lad, though he shall be no son-in-law ot mine. He ú going far, and maybap will return no more, and I do not wish that he should think unkindly of me when I am dead. Go without, Thomas Wingfield, and stand under yonder beechâLily shall join you there and you may speak with her for the half of an hour-no more. See to it that you keep within sight of the window. Nay, no thanks; go before IohaJlle my tautd." So I went and waited under the beech with a beating heart, and presently Lily glided up to me, a more welcome sight to my eyes than any angel out of heaven. And, indeed, I doubt if an angel could have been more fair than she, or more good and gentle. "Oh, Thomas," she whispered, when I greeted her, is this true that you sail oversea to seek the Spaniard ? Of I sail to seek the Spaniard, and to find him, and to kill him when he is found. It was to come to you, Lily, that I let him go; now I must let you go to come to him. Nay, do not weep I have sworn to do it, and were I to break my oath I should be dishonoured." "And because of this oath of yours I must be widowed, Thomas, before I am a wife ? You go and I shall never see you more." "Who can say, my sweet? My father- went overseas and came back safe, having passed through many perils." Yes, he came back, andânot alone> You are young, Thomas, and in far countries there are ladies great and fair, and how shall I hold my own in your heart against them, I baing so far away ?" I swear to you, Lily-" "Nay, Thomas, swear no oaths lest you should add to your sins by breaking them. Yet, love, forget me not, who shall forget you never. Perhapsâoh it wrings my heart to say itâthis is our last meeting on the earth. If so, then we must hope to meet in heaven. At the least be sure of this while I live I will be true to you, and, father or no father, I will die before I break my troth. I am young to speak so largely, but it shall be as I say. Oh this parting is more cruel than death. Would that we were asleep and forgotten among men. Yet it is best that you should go, for if you stayed what could we be to each other while my father lives, and may he live long." Sleep and forgetfulness will come soon enough, Lily none must await them for very long. Meanwhile we have our lives to live. Let us pray that we may live them to each other. I go to seek fortune as well as foes, and I will win it for your sake that we may marry." She shook her head sadly. It were too much happiness, Thomas. Men and women may seldom wed their true loves, or, if they do, it is but to lose them. At the least we love, and let us be thankful that we have learned what love can be for, having loved here, perchance at the worst we may love otherwhere when there are none to say us nay." Then we talked on awhile, babbling broken words of love and hope aud sorrow, as young folks so placed are wont to do, till at length Lily looked up with a sad sweet smile, and saidâ It is time to go, sweetheart. My father beckons me from the lattice. All is finished." Let us go, then," I answered huskily, and drew her behind the trunk of the old beech. And there I caught her in my arms and kissed her again and yet again, nor wasshe ashamed to kiss me back. After this I remember little of what happened, except that as we rode away I saw her beloved face, wan and wistful, watching me departing out of her life. For twenty years that sad and beautiful face haunted me, and it haunts me yet athwart life and death. Other women have loved me and I have known other partings, some of them more terrible, but the memory of this woman as she was then, and of her farewell look, overruns them all. Whenever I gaze down the past I see that picture framed in it and I know that it is one which cannct fade. Are there any sorrows like these sorrows of our youth ? Can any bitterness equal the bitterness of such good- byes? I know but one of which I was fated to taste in after years, and that shall be told of in its place. It is a common jest to mock at early love but if it be real, if it be something more than the mere arising of the passions, early love is late love also: it is love for ever, the best and worst event which can befal a man or woman. I say it who am old and who have done with everything, and it is true. One thing I have forgotten. As we kissed and clung in our despair behind the Lj,e of the great beech, Lily drew a ring from her finger and pressed it into my hand, saying, Look on this each morning when you wake, and think of me." It had been her mother's and to-day it still is set upon my withered hand, gleaming in the winter sunlight as I trace these words. Through the long years of wild adyenture, through all the time of after peace, in love and war, in the shine of the camp-fire, in the glare of the sacrificial flame, in the light of lonely stars illumining the lonely wilderness, that ring has shone upon my hand, reminding me alwaysot her who gave it. and on this hand it shall go down into the grave. It is a plain circlet of thick gold, somewhat worn now, a posy-ring, and ori its inner surface is cub this quaint couplet :-»⢠Heart to heart, Though far apart. âa fitting motto for us indeed and one that has its meaning to this hour. That same day of our farewell I rode with my father to Yarmouth. My brother Geoffrey did not come with us; but we parted with kindly words, and of this I am glad, for we never saw each other ngain. No more was said between us as to Lily Bozard and our wooing of her, though I knew well enough that so soon as my back was turned he would try to take my place at her side, as indeed happened. I forgive it to him; in truth I cannot blame him much, for who is there that would not have desired to wed Lily who knew her ? Oner we were dear friends, Geoffrey and I; but when we ripened towards manhood, our love of Lily came between us, and we grew more and more apart. It is a common case enough. Well, as it chanced, he failed so why should I think unkindly of him ? Let me rather remember the affection of our childhood and for- get the rest. God rest bis soul! Mary, my sister* who, after Lily Bozard, was now the fairest maiden in the countryside, wept much at my going. There was but a year between us, and we loved each other dearly, for no such shadow of jealousy had fallen on our affection. I comforted her as well as t was able, and, telling her all that had passed between me and Lily, prayed her to stand my friend and Lily's should it ever be in her power to do so. This Mary promised to do readily enough, and. though she did not give the reason, I could see that she thought it possible that she might be able to help us. As I have said, Lily had a brother, a young man of some promise, who at this time was away at college, and he and my sister Mary had a strong fancy for each other, that might or might not ripen into something closer. So we kissed and bade farewell .with tears. And after that my father and I rode away. But when we had passed down Parnow-street, and mounted the little hill beyond Waingford Mills, to the left of Bungay town, I halted my horse, and looked back upon the pleasant valley of the Waveuey where I was born, and my heart grew full to bursting. Had I known all that must befal me, before my eyes beheld that scene again, I think indeed that it would have burst. Bub God, who in His wisdom has laid many a burden upon the backs of men, has saved them from this, for bad we foreknowledge of the future, I think that of our own will few of us would live to¿see it. So I cast one long last look toward the distant mass of oaks that marked the spot where Lily lived, and rode on. On the following day I embarked on board the Adventuress and we sailed. Before I left my father's heart softened much towards me, for he remembered that I was my mother's best beloved, and feared also lesl; we should meet no more. So much did it soften, indeed, that at the last hour he changed his mind and wished to hold me back from going. But having put my hand to the plough, and suffered all the bitterness of fare- Well, I would not return to bo mocked by my brother and my neighbours. You apeak too late father," I said. You desired me to go to work this vengeance, and stirred me to it with many bitter words, and now I would go if I knew that I must die within a week, for such oaths cannot be lightly broken, and till mine is fulfilled the curse rests on me. So be it, son," he answered with a sigh. Your mother's cruel death maddened me, and I said what I may live to be sorry for, though at the best I shall not live long, for my heart is broken. Perhaps I should have remembered that vengeance is in the hand of the Lord, who wreaks it at His own time and without our help. Do not think unkindly of me, my boy, if we should chance to meet no more; for I love you, and it was but the deeper love that I bore to your mother which made me deal harshly with you." I know it, father, and bear no grudge. But if you think that you owe me anything, pay it by holding back my brother from working wrong to me and Lily Bozard while I am absent." "I will do my best, son, though, were it not that you and she had grown ?0 dear to each other, the match would have pleased me well. But, as I have said, I shall not be long here to watch your welfare in this ot any other matter, and when I am gone things must follow their own fate. Do not forget you?- God or your home wherever you chance to wander, Thomas keep yourself from brawling; beware or women, that are the snare of youth and set a watch upon your tongue and temper, which is not of the best. Moreover, wherever you may be, do not speak ill of the religion of the land, or make a mock of it by your way of life, lest you should learn how oiuel men can be whei> they think that it is pleasing to their gods, a% I have learnt already." I Bald that I would bfear his counsel in mind, and indeed it saved toe from many a sorrow. Then he embraced me, and called on the Almighty to take me in His care, and we parted. I never saw him more, for, though he was but middle-aged, within 5, year of my going my father died suddenly of a distemper of the heart, in the nave of Ditchingham Church, as he stood there near the rood-screen, musing by my mother's grave one Sunday after mass, and my brother took his lands aDI place. God rest him also He was a true-hearted man, but more wrapped up in his love for my mother than it is well for any man to be who would look at life, largely and do righb by all. For suoh love, though natural to women, is apt to turn to something that partakes of selfishness, and to cause him Who bears it to think all else of small account. His children were nothing to my father when compared to my mother, and he would have been content to lose them every one if thereby he might have purchased back her life. But after all it was a noble infirmity, for he thought little of him- self and had gone through much to win her. Of my voyage to Cadiz, to which port I had learned that De Gavcia's ship was bound, there is little to be told. We met with contrary winds in the Bay of Biscay and wore driven into the port of Lisbon, where we refitted. But at last we came safely to Cadiz, having been forty days at sea. r To be tontinued.)