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the castle. After all, as far as she could her thoughts fled from her ; she shrank see, their position had changed little, if at back, and stood staring. But one thought all, for the better. The enemy would rally. now remained—the thought suggested by They would be attacked. No defense was that name, Sydney. Well she rememberpossible. They would soon be prisoners ed that name, and all the incidents of that or fugitives. And if they were to fly, how story which Harry had told her when they could they hope to escape in a country were first acquainted: the wreck of the swarming with roving bands of marauders ship; the maiden deserted and despairing; belonging to both parties? The problem her rescue by Harry; their escape in the was a difficult one, and one which was not boat; their love; their plighted faith; the to be solved very readily.

appointed marriage; the lost bride. At length Dolores thought of the wound- Sydney! It was she herself—the promed men, and as she had a very tender ised bride of Harry, whom he would, no heart, she proposed to go and help them. doubt, be required to wed at once. The two then returned and entered the Now she understood why Harry had castle.

been so preoccupied, They reached the hall at the very time when the other parties were coming into it-namely, Brooke and Talbot from the room, and Harry and Katie from the upper

CHAPTER LII. regions. Such coincidences are frequent in real life, and still more frequent in our


THEMSELVES IN A VERY EMBARRASSING As Brooke and Talbot came out, Ashby

SITUATION. and Dolores, advancing toward the room,

BROOKE and Dolores stood facing one met them face to face. Brooke and Do- another in silence. The embarrassment lores looked upon one another. There was most painful. Each felt it too much was the flash of mutual recognition in to be able to notice it in the other, and the faces of both. Brooke seemed struck each instinctively avoided the glance of dumb. Dolores was the first to speak. the other's eyes, casting only looks of a

“Raleigh!" she said, in tones of amaze- furtive kind at the other's face, and then ment and consternation.

hastily looking elsewhere. In fact, the “Dolores!" said Brooke, in a deep, hol- situation was truly horrible. low voice.

But Brooke felt it incumbent on him to Brooke was ghastly; but this may have say something; he also felt anxious to been the effect of the recent shock. As vindicate his honor, if such a thing were, for Dolores, every trace of color fled from indeed, in any way possible. But ardent her face, and she was as white as marble. words, excited, eager welcomes, and all

Talbot heard this and saw it. These those other circumstances that usually words, these familiar names, smote her to attend upon the meeting of long-divided the heart. She recollected the story which lovers were in this case clearly impossiBrooke had told her. She remembered ble. Brooke felt Talbot's presence-Talthe name of that Cuban maid. It was bot, who was worth to him ten thousand this-it was “Dolores!" Was this she? like Dolores; so he could only take refuge She looked around in despair.

in the most commonplace conventionalAt that moment, as her despairing eyes | ities. It is true, Talbot could not underwandered around, they fell full upon the stand Spanish, but Talbot could underface of Harry, for Harry and Katie, on stand those tones of voice which form the descending the stairs, had on this instant universal and natural language of man; reached the spot.

and if Brooke had felt ever so full of eager Harry saw her again.

delight, he would have hesitated to manThe priest's dress was removed. She ifest it under such very delicate circumstood in her own garb, her very self- stances. Talbot-with all her noble face revealed, At length Brooke cleared his throat. and all her exquisite grace of feature and “This," said he, in a solemn tone-"this of form.

is indeed an unexpected pleasure." “Sydney!” said he.

Dolores sighed. “Harry!" said Talbot.

“It is indeed, señor," she replied, "an Katie heard this. She turned pale. All unexpected, a most unexpected one."

“It is indeed,” said Brooke, in quite a Dolores was conscious-smitten by this helpless way.

proof of her former lover's fidelity. She Saying this, he held out his hand. Do- hastened to excuse herself somehow. lores held out hers. They shook hands. “I–I," she said, with an embarrassThen they cast hasty looks at one another. ment equal to that of Brooke—“I thought

“I hope you have been quite well ?" said you were in America." Brooke.

No; I was in Cuba." “Oh, quite,” said Dolores; "and you, “I thought I had lost you," said Doseñor ?"

lores: "you ceased to write." "Oh, very well," said Brooke, "very This sounded like the reproach of a well indeed.”

faithful lover. Brooke felt hurt. And now another pause succeeded. “Oh no,” said he; “I wrote, but you Both of them were horribly embarrassed. ceased to answer.” Each had the same feeling, but neither "I thought something had happened," one knew the feeling of the other. Each said Dolores. knew that a change had occurred, but "I thought so too," said Brooke. "I neither knew that the same change had never got your letters. Where did you been experienced by the other. Brooke go?" knew himself false, but thought Dolores Dolores jumped at this question as givtrue, while Dolores had a similar feeling. ing a chance of relief. So she began to Besides, this new love which each had give a long account of her life in Spain, conceived and cherished made the old one detailing minute incidents, and growing seem a mistake-made them regard each gradually calmer, more self-possessed, and other with aversion, and this meeting as more observant of Brooke. She saw with a calamity; yet each felt bound to con- satisfaction that Brooke made no demonceal these feelings, and exhibit toward the strations; yet her satisfaction was checkother an impossible cordiality. All this ed by the thought that perhaps he was decaused a wretched embarrassment and terred from exhibiting the raptures of a restraint, which each felt, and for which | lover by the presence of others-by the each took the blame, thinking the other fear that he had been only too true, and altogether true and innocent.

that those raptures would yet be exhibitThe deep feelings of the past were yet ed. She resolved that he should not have strong in their hearts-the immediate an opportunity. Yet how could she avoid past-and with these their hearts were him? And thus she thought, and still full. Yet these had to be concealed. she went on talking. Each felt bound to the other by a solemn The effect of her story was a crushing vow, and by every principle of duty and one. She made no mention of Ashby, honor. They had exchanged vows of and Brooke concluded that she had been love and eternal fidelity. From such true, while he had been false. And now vows who could release them? Yet the what was he? Clearly false. Could he vows were already broken by each, and come back to Dolores ? Could he be what of this each was conscious. Had Brooke he had been ? Could he give up Talbot ? met Dolores before this last scene with The thought was intolerable. Never had Talbot, he might have felt self-reproach, any one been to him so dear as Talbot. but he could not have felt such a sense of Never had Talbot been to him so dear as unworthiness. For before that he had, now. And yet was he not in honor at least, kept a watch upon his tongue, bound to Dolores? Honor! and did not and in words, at least, he had not told his honor bind him to Talbot ? love for another. But now his word had Such was the struggle within this ungone forth, and he had pledged himself to happy man. another.

Almost at the same time Harry and TalBut he had to say something. Dolores bot had recognized each other. was silent. He thought she was waiting Talbot, who had stood unmoved at the for him to explain.

presence of death, now felt herself quail "I–I,” he stammered—"I have hunt- and grow all unnerved at the presence of ed-hunted you-all through Spain." Harry. But then she had been strength

This was the truth, for Brooke had been ened by her new love for Brooke; now she faithful to Dolores until he had met with was weakened by the remembrance of her Talbot.

lost love for Harry. This was an ordeal for which there was no outside inspira- | him, and at last had turned about on her tion. The remembrance of her passion- lonely homeward road. And yet he was ate words to Brooke, so lately uttered, so blameless then. As far as that was conardently answered, was strong within her. cerned he could excuse himself; he could And yet here was one who held her prom- explain all. He felt so guilty in some ise, who could claim her as his own, things that he was anxious to show his inwho could take her away from Brooke; nocence in other things where he had not and what could she do?

been to blame; and so he hastened most Harry, on the other hand, had dared eagerly to give a long and an eloquent death for Katie; for her he had tried to vindication of himself by explaining all fling away his life. This had been done about his journey to England, and his rein the presence of his Sydney. Had she turn to Barcelona, and his search after understood that? She could not have un- her, which had led him to this. derstood it. Could he explain? Impos- And in all this Talbot found only proofs sible! Could he tell the story of his of Harry's unalterable fidelity. He had falsity to this noble lady, whom he had been true! She had been false! What professed to love, whom he had come now was there for her to do? To sacrifice also to revere? And this proud, this del- this man? What! after such love and icately nurtured girl had come from her loyalty ? Or, on the other hand, to give home for his sake, to suffer, to risk her up Brooke! Brooke!-give up Brooke! life, to become a miserable captive! Was Oh, heavens! How was that possible? there not in this a stronger reason than Would she not rather die than give up ever why he should be true to her? And Brooke? When her own words to him yet, if he loved another better, would it were fresh in her memory, and when his not be wrong to marry Sydney?

words of love to her were still ringing in All the tenderness of his heart rose her ears-at such a moment as this could up within him in one strong, yearning she think of giving up Brooke ? thought of-Oh, Katie! But all his hon- Such were the thoughts and feelings of or, his pride, his manliness, all his pity, these two. too, and his sympathy, made themselves Meanwhile Ashby, finding himself left felt in a deep under-tone of feeling-oh, alone by Dolores, stood for a while wonSydney! true and faithful!

dering who her friend might be; until at At last he was able to speak.

length, finding that she was beginning to “Oh, Sydney,” said he, “what bitter, give him a detailed history of her life, he bitter fortune has brought you here to looked around in despair. And he saw this horrible much misery?” Katie standing alone, where she had been

Talbot looked down. She could not left by Harry, near the foot of the stairlook in his face. She felt unworthy of way; and as all the others were engaged him. He seemed faithful still. She had in their own affairs, and, moreover, as seen the act of his in attacking Lopez, but his relations with Katie were of the most had not understood it. She thought him intimate kind, he saw no other course open faithful in spite of all.

to him than to approach her and converse “Bitter," said she, slowly. “Bitter; with her. And at that moment he reyes, bitter indeed—bitter was the fortune membered that Katie had in her possesthat brought me here!"

sion-perhaps in her pocket-a certain letShe could say no more. She was think-ter which he had written to her only a ing only of that bitter fortune which had few days before, full of protestations of brought her to a place where she might be love, in which he informed her that he forever torn from Brooke; where Brooke, was going to travel with her in the same too, had found one who might tear him train, in the hope of seeing her at Burgos from her.

or Bayonne; in which he urged her to But Harry understood this differently. come to him, to be his wife; to set at deHe detected in these words a reflection fiance her hostile guardian, and to unite upon himself. He thought she alluded herself with him. This seemed strange to her long journey to him, when she had to him now, when his mind was filled come so far, and had reached her destina- with thoughts of Dolores, and his heart tion only to find him absent; when she was full of the love of Dolores. Even had waited for days without finding any his resentment against her had passed trace of bim or hearing any word from away. She had allowed herself to in


dulge in a flirtation with his friend Riv- afraid that this excitement might have an

Was that a crime? He, on the oth-injurious effect." er hand, had lost all love for her, and had (Dolores was still giving an account of given all his heart to Dolores. Katie herself. It was unworthy of her!) seemed to him now not repugnant as a "Oh no," said Katie, “not at all.” false one, but merely pitiable as a weak, She heard Harry speak in an apologetic child - like character. The falsity now manner. It was very hard to bear. Would seemed rather on his part than on hers. he leave her for this lady? He believed that Harry had gone much There was now a pause. farther in treachery than Katie. Katie, Ashby and Katie were both listening he thought, was merely a weak-minded with all their might to hear what was said flirt, while Harry had become a traitor in by Dolores and by Harry respectively. allowing himself to fall in love with her. Ashby felt the necessity of saying someEven for Harry he could now make some thing. allowances; and since he had found out “Very fine weather,” said he. his own feelings, he had less jealousy, Oh, very fine," said Katie. and therefore less resentment against his

“ A fine moon. former friend. As for jealousy, if he now “Oh, very fine.” had that feeling, it was all directed else- At this mention of the moon each where, namely, toward that stranger thought of those moonbeams which had whose sudden appearance had so engross-streamed in through the narrow windows ed Dolores.

on those past few nights-nights so memIn such a state of mind as this Ashby orable to each; and each thought of them advanced toward Katie. Now Katie had with the same feelings. come down with the express purpose of Ashby tried to find something new to seeing him, and with her mind full of a say. He thought of the position in which very pretty speech which she intended to they all were—its danger-their liability make to him. But the sudden meeting to recapture-the necessity of flight, and of Harry with Talbot had raised other yet the difficulty of doing so-things thoughts and feelings, which had driven which he and Dolores had just been conher pretty speech altogether out of her sidering. mind. A bitter jealousy afflicted her ten- “This,” said he, “is a very embarrassder heart. This lady was the Sydney Tal- ing position." bot of whom he had told her, and who had Katie by this understood him to mean come all the way from England on this the relations which they bore to one anperilous journey to marry him. Would other, and which had become somewhat she now give him up? Impossible! And confused by her affair with Harry. She how could Harry escape her?

thought this was Ashby's way of putAs Ashby approached, Katie therefore ting it. had but little thought for him. Ashby She sighed. She looked at Harry and also thought less of her than of Dolores. Talbot. They seemed coming to an unWho was this stranger ? he thought. derstanding. Harry was certainly makWhy was he so familiar? Why did Do-ing an explanation which seemed unnelores leave him so abruptly? and why cessarily long. And here was Ashby was she telling to this stranger the whole hinting at an explanation with herself. story of her life?

She had forgotten all her fine speeches Thus Ashby and Katie met again. with which she had come down. She

Ashby had to say something, and so, as knew not what to say. She only felt a was natural, he took refuge in conven- jealous fear about Harry, and another tionalities.

fear about an explanation with Ashby. “I hope," said he, “that no ill effects Ashby meanwhile thought nothing have arisen from this recent excitement." about Katie, but was full of eagerness to

“Oh no," said Katie, in an abstracted learn what was going on between Dolores tone. She was trying to listen to Talbot's and Brooke. words. They did not sound pleasant. There were three couples involved in

Ashby also was trying to listen to Do- this awkward situation, and among them lores. She seemed to him to be altogeth- all it is difficult to say which was most er too familiar.

embarrassed. It was bad enough to meet "I'm very glad,” said Ashby. "I was with the old lover, but it was worse to feel that the eye of the new lover was there was serious danger of an immediate upon them. Moreover, each new lover attack by the enemy. felt jealous of the old one; and the mind At this Brooke said nothing, but merely of each had thus to be distracted between bowed, and followed Talbot to help her two discordant anxieties. In short, it was, with the wounded men. as Ashby had well said, a most embarrass- Dolores, upon this, cast a glance at Ashing situation.

by and went out. Ashby immediately folSuddenly, in the midst of all this, a fig- lowed her. ure entered the hall which attracted all Upon this Harry approached Katie. eyes. It was a figure of commanding Neither said a word, but, acting on one presence; a man rather elderly, in the common impulse, they went upstairs touniform of a general officer, all ablaze gether into the upper hall. As they thus with gold. There was a universal shock went up, Russell came out of the other at such an apparition. The first thought room, and seeing them ascending the of every one was that the castle had been stairs, he followed them. captured by some new enemy—that this On reaching the top of the stairs Harry was the leader, and that they all were and Katie stood, and Russell also stopped prisoners.

a little below. He wasn't proud. He was But one by one, to Ashby, Harry, anxious for information. So he stood and Brooke, to Katie, Talbot, and Dolores, listened to what they had to say. came the recognition of the fact that un- The two stood there in silence for some der this magnificent exterior lay conceal- time, until at length Katie spoke. ed the person of their companion and “Isn't this horrible ?” said she, with a friend, the venerable and the virtuous heavy sigh. Russell.

Harry gave another sigh responsive to "I want to look after something," said hers. he; and with these words he went into the “It's worse," said Katie, “than ever." room where he had first been confined- Harry, with another sigh, allowed that namely, the one opposite to that in which it was. the recent ceremony had taken place. “I can't stay here," said Katie, “in this

place, and what's more, I won't stay. I'm free now, and I've made up my mind to

go away. CHAPTER LIII.

“Will you ?" said Harry, in an eager


“Yes, I will," said Katie, decidedly; UATION, AND ASHBY TELLS DOLORES HER "and I'll go all alone. You needn't come; DUTY.

for of course you'll stay." The sudden appearance of Russell broke "Stay ?" said Harry-"stay ? and here? the spell which had rested upon all. when you've gone away?"

Talbot was the first to make a move- “Oh yes," said Katie, “of course you'll ment.

stay here with your dear Sydney!" “Excuse me for a few moments," said Harry sighed. she. “There are some wounded men in- “But I won't stay," continued Katie, side who are in my care. I came out to after another pause; “I'm going to leave; get some water for them. I must make and I'll walk back to the railway all alone." haste."

“I think that would be a capital idea," Saying these words, she left Harry, and said Harry, in a tone of great animation. went to the corner of the apartment where At this Katie burst into tears. there was a jar of water. Filling a vessel Harry was now quite distracted. He from this, she returned to the wounded. caught her in his arms and kissed her over Harry did not follow her.

and over again. Upon seeing this movement of Talbot, “You don't understand," said he. “I Katie withdrew from Ashby. Ashby did mean it would be a good idea to go; but, not seem to notice this, for he was still of course, you shall not go alone." watching Dolores.

Yes, I will go alone,” said Katie_"all Dolores now remarked to Brooke that alone. You don't care for me, now that she was just at that time engaged in look- you've got your Sydney. You don't care ing after the defenses of the castle, for I for me a bit!"

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