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From a hill near by I had a full view I stood, and which was also occupied by of the field of battle. To my rear and al- the staff. most at my feet lay the town, with the As the masses of infantry began to show highway stretching back southward into themselves from behind the houses of the the country, while to my right were open town, a heavy distant boom, followed fields, crossed here and there by roads and quickly by another and another, showed dotted with clumps of trees and detached that they had been perceived by the enemy, farms. In front, and a little to my left, as his artillery opened on them. But our were the lines of the enemy and the large men were not long in replying, and the farm just mentioned, and which, I could earth shook as three six-gun batteries now see, was filled with troops, lining the came rushing up the hill. The drivers walls inside and lying in the ditches. cracking their whips as they leaned forWherever there was a gate or an open-ward, urging on their powerful horses, ing they had thrown up breastworks or dug straining and pulling as the heavy wheels rifle-pits to protect themselves, and I could sank in the soft earth, the officers waving see the white caps shining in the sunlight their sabres and shouting their commands, as the owners peered over the little mounds bugles sounding, the scarlet guidons flyof fresh earth.
ing in the midst of the clouds of dust, the The plain on my right was covered by glints of light on the shining tires of the our troops, infantry and artillery, all ad- wheels, the rush of air as these, the most vancing by different roads, and beginning terrible engines of modern warfare, went to extend their lines across the fields. I tearing past me, presented a most stirring saw our skirmishers moving forward rap- and exciting episode. They reached the idly, and already up to the hill on which top of the hill, unlimbered and went into battery, and quick as thought, almost be- sight, and in the excitement of the mofore the guns touched the ground, the ment one forgot that the stirring spectathunder of their answer burst forth. cle was but an imitation of the terrible Through the thick, steam - like powder realities of war. smoke that now enveloped the whole It was now nearly noon, and as the mass I could see the figures of the can- opposing lines approached one another noneers working like shadowy demons, the old general turned toward his aides, and now and then the silhouette of a and in another moment half a dozen of gun as it was run forward after the re- them were flying down the hill at the top coil, to again burst out in angry fire, of their horses' speed, and disappeared in blazing like lightning in the sulphurous the smoke in the fields below. Simulvapor.
taneously a hundred bugles sounded the Our skirmishers crossed the road and order to cease firing, and the din subsided directed their fire on the defenders of the as if by magic. farm. At first these replied slowly, but There was a short pause.
Slowly the the supporting lines of our troops coming smoke lifted and cleared away, the music up, a continuous discharge of small-arms of a dozen bands mingled in melodious was opened on them, and the walls and confusion, the soldiers gave cheer after ditches, the rifle-pits, seemed to be ablaze. cheer as the columns of friend and foe Heavier and heavier grew the fire from moved off the field, and the “Grand Maour side as line after line moved forward, nouvres" were over. increasing the number of the attacking force until the fields in front of the farm
A TOWN GARDEN. were alive with men. Kneeling to fire,
See Frontispiece. and taking advantage of every little
A PLOT of ground-the merest scrapbreak in the ground, every heap of earth,
Deep, like a dry, forgotten well, every tree and bush, they had finally A garden caught in a brick-built trap, pushed up close to the farm, when their Where men make money, buy and sell; bugles sounded a charge, and rushing And struggling through the stagnant haze, forward with a shout, they swarmed over Look up with something of the gaze
Dim flowers, with sapless leaf and stem, the ditches and walls and crowded into
That homesick eyes have cast on them. the inclosure, the enemy's soldiers as rap- There is a rose against the wall, idly retreating, but keeping up a sharp
With scanty, smoke-incrusted leaves; fire as they pursued their way toward Fair showers on happier roses falltheir main line.
On this, foul droppings from the eaves. Here, so far, all had been quiet, save
It pines, but you need hardly note; from the batteries on their left, and only shoots in the spring-time, as if by rote;
It dies by inches in the gloom; the white caps of their strong skirmish Long has forgotten to dream of bloom. line, dotting the rising ground in front of the poorest blossom, and it were classed the villages, were to be seen, their main
With color and name—but never a flower! body being hid by the houses and trees. It blooms with the roses whose bloom is past,
At this moment the artillery over on Of every hue, and place, and hour. their right opened fire, as our left wing, They live before me as I look
The damask buds that breathe and glow, that had been forming under cover of the Pink wild roses, down by a brook, town, showed itself on the plain. Sharp Lavish clusters of airy snow. skirmishing followed, increasing in vol. Could one transplant you—(far on high ume as it rolled toward our right, blazing
A murky sunset lights the tiles) out from the farm just taken, and flashing And set you ’neath the arching sky, all along the enemy's line, as our whole In the green country, many miles, force began to advance, preceded by lines Would you strike deep and suck up strength,
Washed with rain and hung with pearls, of skirmishers and bristling with a fringe cling to the trellis, a leafy length, of spouting flame and smoke. The roar Sweet with blossom for June and girls ? of musketry became deafening, and the Yet no! Who needs you in those bowers? fire of the enemy grew hotter and hotter, Who prizes gifts that all can give? as the masses of the attacking forces pour- Bestow your life instead of flowers, ed in volley after volley in heavy crash
And slowly die that dreams may live.
Prisoned and perishing, your dole es, until the dense clouds of smoke curled
Of lingering leaves shall not be vainup among the distant trees and almost hid Worthy to wreathe the hemlock bowl, the landscape from view. It was a grand Or twine about the cross of pain!
THE PRIEST WAS STANDING DIRECTLY IN FRONT OF BROOKE.”—[SEE PAGE 413.)
yet I have always escaped. More than
this, I have papers from the leading men IN WHICH BROOKE AND TALBOT EXCHANGE of both sides, which testify to my characCONFIDENCES.
ter. I am therefore in honor bound ner. FTER some time Brooke grew calmer. er, under any circumstances, to betray one
“And now," said Talbot, “tell me party to the other, and that, too, no matter all that took place between you and this what my own feelings may be. I came officer, for I have not understood." here as a neutral, a stranger, a correspondBrooke told her all.
ent, to get information for the distant “And why can't you do what he asks?” | American public. That is my business said Talbot, in surprise. “Why can't you here. But the moment I begin to betray take them to that castle? You were there, one of these parties to the other in any and when there you say you recognized shape or way, the moment I communicate the Carlist chief himself, the very man to others the information which I may who stopped the train. He must have the have gained in confidence, that moment I English prisoners there. Do you mean become an infernal scoundrel.” to say that you will not help those poor “True, Brooke, very true," said Talbot; captives?"
“but don't you see how different this "I can not,” said Brooke.
thing is? Here is a party of travellers “Can not ?"
captured by brigands, and held to ransom. “Look here, Talbot. I've thought it You are merely asked to show the way to all over and over, and I can not. Honor their prison, so that they may be set free forbids. Let me explain. You see, while by their friends. What betrayal of conwandering about here, I have frequently fidence is there in this ?" fallen into the hands of either party, and “I say that in any way in which I tell have often been in as great danger as now, one of these parties about the doings of the other, I betray the confidence which “No, Brooke," said Talbot; "and since has been placed in me.”
you feel in this way, I will say no more "And I say, Brooke, that if you leave about it.” these English ladies in the hands of mer- Silence now followed. Brooke seated ciless villains to languish in captivity, to himself on the floor with his back against suffer torment, and perhaps to die a cruel the wall, and Talbot stood looking at him death, you will be guilty of an unpardon as he thus sat. able sin-an offense so foul that it will This man, who led a life which required haunt your last hours."
some of the qualities of the hero, had no“No woman," said Brooke, "can under thing particularly heroic in his outward stand a man's sense of honor."
aspect. He was a man of medium size, “Sir," said Talbot, with indescribable and sinewy, well-knit frame. He had haughtiness, “you forget my name. Trust keen gray eyes, which noticed everything, me, sir, no Talbot ever lived who failed and could penetrate to the inner core of one jot or tittle in the extremest demand things; close-cropped hair, short serviceof honor. I, sir, am a Talbot, and have no able beard, of that style which is just now need to go to you for information on points most affected by men of restless energy; of honor."
a short straight nose, and a general air of "Forgive me, Talbot,” said Brooke, masterful self-restraint and self-possession. meekly. “I don't mean what you think. Not a handsome man, strictly speaking, When I spoke of a man's sense of honor, was our friend Brooke; not by any means I referred to his life of action, with all its a “lady's man"; but he was something conflict of duty and honor, and all those better, inasmuch as he was a manly man, complicated motives of which a woman in one who would be trusted thoroughly and her retirement can know nothing." followed blindly by other men, ay, and by
"Believe me, Brooke," said Talbot, ear- women too; for, after all, it is not the lady's nestly, women who are lookers-on are man who is appreciated by true women, often better and safer judges than men but the man's man. To such as these the who are in the midst of action. Trust me, best sort of women delight to do reverence. and take my advice in this matter. What! Add to this Brooke's abrupt manner, rather is it possible that you can have the heart harsh voice, inconsequential talk, habit of to leave these English ladies to a fate of saying one thing while thinking of somehorror among brigands ?"
thing totally different, love of drollery, "You put it strongly, Talbot, but that is and dry, short laugh, and then you have only a partial view. In brief, you ask me Brooke complete, who is here described to betray to the enemy a place which I simply because there has not been any may inform you happens to be one of the very convenient place for describing him cardinal points in the strategy of the Car- before. list generals. I do not know for certain Shortly after the examiration of the that the ladies are there; and if they are, prisoners the greater part of the band had I do not believe that they will be badly gone away with the captain, and only half treated. A ransom will perhaps be exact- a dozen men were left benind on guard. ed, but nothing more. On the whole, I After Brooke had grown tired of his own should far rather fall into the hands of meditations he wandered toward the winthe Carlists than the Republicans. The dow and looked out. Here he stood watchCarlists are generous mountaineers, the ing the men below, and studying their peasantry of the north; the Republicans faces until he had formed his own concluare the communist mobs of the southern sion as to the character of each one. cities. I have seen very much of both “I'm trying,” said he to Talbot, who sides, and think the Carlists better men came near, “ to find out which one of these every way-more chivalrous, more merci- fellows is the most susceptible of bribery ful, and more religious. I am not afraid and corruption. They're all a hard lot; about those prisoners. I feel convinced the trouble is that one watches the other that when the general hears of their cap- so closely that I can't get a fair chance." ture he will set them free himself. At “I wonder where the others have gone,” any rate, I can not interfere. To do so said Talbot. would be a hideous piece of treachery on “Oh, they've gone off to search for the my part. Would you wish me to save prisoners, of course," said Brooke. “I my life by a dishonorable action ?” don't believe they'll find anything about
Vol. LXVII.-No. 399.-26
them on this road; and as for the castle, "It is preposterous to talk in that way." they'll be unable to do anything there un- said Talbot, excitedly. “My danger? I less they take cannon."
deny that there is any danger for me. As At length the opportunity arrived for an English lady I shall be safe in any which Brooke had been waiting. The event. I'm sorry I ever took this disguise. guards had wandered off to a little dis- If you take it back you can go away now tance, and only one man was left. He was in safety. When they find that you have just below, at the door of the mill. Brooke gone, they may perhaps threaten a little, was glad to see that he was the ugliest of but that is all. They will have nothing the lot, and the very one whom he had against me, and will, no doubt, set me free. mentally decided upon as being the most This captain seems to be a gentleman, and corruptible. Upon this man he began to I should have no fear of him. I believe try his arts.
that after the first explosion he would 'Good-morning, señor," said he, insinu- treat me with respect, and let me go." atingly.
"And so you would really let me go?" The man looked up in a surly way, and said Brooke, after a long pause, in a very growled back something.
low voice. “Do you smoke?" asked Brooke.
“Gladly, gladly," said Talbot. The man grinned.
“And stay here alone, in a new characUpon this Brooke flung down a small ter, ignorant of the language, to face the piece of tobacco, and then began to ad- return of the mad and furious crowd ?" dress himself to further conversation. But
“Yes.” alas for his hopes! He had just begun to "They would tear you to pieces," cried ask where the others had gone and where Brooke. the man belonged, when a flash burst forth, “They would not." and a rifle-ball sang past him through the * They would.” window just above his head. It was one “Then let them; I can die," said Talof the other ruffians who had done this, bot, calmly. who at the same time advanced, and with “And die for me?" an oath ordered Brooke to hold no com- “Yes, rather than let you die for me." munication with the men.
“And you think I am capable of going "I may stand at the window and look away?" said Brooke, in a faltering voice. out, I suppose ?" said Brooke, coolly.
At this Talbot was utterly silent. Nei“We have orders to allow no commu- ther spoke a word for a long time. nication with the prisoners whatever. If "Talbot, lad," said Brooke at length, in you speak another word you'll get a bullet a gentle voice. through you."
Well, Brooke ?" Evening came at length, and the dark- “I am glad that I met with you." ness deepened. The band were still ab
you, Brooke ?" sent. The men below were perfectly “I should like to live,” he continued, quiet, and seemed to be asleep.
in a far-off tone, like one soliloquizing, “I have a proposal to make," said Tal- “after having met with you; but if I can bot, “which is worth something if you not live, I am glad to think that I have will only do it."
known you." " What is that?"
Talbot said nothing to this, and there “I have been thinking about it all day. was another long silence. It is this: take this priest's dress again, “By-the-bye,” said Brooke at last, "I and go. The priest, you know, is not a should like to tell you something, Talbot, prisoner. He stays voluntarily. He has in case you should ever happen to meet leave to go whenever he wishes. Now with a certain friend of mine-you might you are the real priest; I am not. I am mention how you met with me, and so on. wearing your dress. Take it back, and “Yes," said Talbot, in a low voice.
“This friend,” said Brooke, “is a girl." “Oh, Talbot! Talbot!" cried Brooke, He paused. “how can you have the heart to make “Yes," said Talbot, in the same voice. such a proposal to me? I have told you “It was in Cuba that I met with her. that the only thing that moves me is the Her name is Dolores.” thought of your danger. Death is nothing “Dolores-what?" to me: I've faced it hundreds of times." “Dolores Garcia.”