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decease the spirit of our house should keen and wring its hands, released thereafter from the loyalty of its immortal sorrow."

"Fables! my son-mere fables!" the priest answered, "which it is idle, and not idle only, but ruinous to the soul, to believe or hearken to!"

"Be it so, father," answered Gerald Desmond, "but, Irish I was born!Irish in all my thoughts, and hopes, and creed, and superstition, and Irish I shall die, be sure of it! It cannot but be harmless, my belief, if it be idle; for it detracts nothing from the power or majesty, or mercy of Him who rules the universe, nor does it rob me of one particle of my trust in Him who alone can save. But to our duty, father; let me join with you in the celebration of the last mass I shall hear in the land of my ancestors."

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The priest made no reply, but enter ing the chapel, instantly set himself to prepare for the performance of those sacred rites over the graves of his departed friends, which are so grateful to the surviving relatives in countries of the Romish faith. Sadly upon the damp turf kneeled the youthful soldier, beside the low green mounds which covered all the mortal part of a respected father, of a beloved-oh! how devotedly beloved and how long unforgotten-mother, and watered the rank grass with bitter tears, while the good priest solemnly performed the sacred service. Darkness had fallen on the lonely glen, and the pale moon had risen; although her light was stantly obstructed by the fast-driving clouds, through which she waded, as they swept blackly in from the horizon, over the stormy sea before the wild west wind. Yet they cared not for storm or darkness, those lone mourners; nor did they give one thought to the unseasonable hour, or to the coming tempest, until their holy duties were performed; then they rose, melancholy, yet in some sort consoled; and in the deep hush of overmastering feeling took their way down the valley, to the seaward. Before, however, they had reached the space beneath the castle crags, the urgency of circumstance had forced them to subdue the grief that was so busy at their breasts, and to converse one with the other on those important matters

which they might never more have the occasion to discuss.

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"And must you positively set sail," -asked the old man abrupily, following up the train of thought which had engaged his mind during their silent walk-"now-this very night?" This very hour-this very moment, if it be possible, my father," replied the young man anxiously. "I have but too much reason to believe that the direction of my flight was suspected; and that I have been tracked hitherward by some of the Dutch dragoons. I had much difficulty in escaping from them yesterday, and did so only by my unerring knowledge of the couutry. Dermody's lugger has been lying on and off these two days in the bay to take me up, and her boat, with Kavanagh and the two Joyces, and Shan More, is waiting for me even now, in the cove under the castle crag."

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And yet it is a fearful night even now, and promises as wild a tempest as was ever brewed in the west. Hark to the long dull roar of the flood-tidehark to the melancholy wailing howl of the fast rising gale."

"It rises from the northwest, father," Gerald answered, “and with that we can beat out of the bay in any weather. Besides what matters it?-Dermody's lugger is as stiff a sea-boat as swims the Channel, yet were she the most leaky tub that ever took in water, still would I go on board this night-this hour! Better to sink a freeman in the pure waters of the broad free ocean, than to fall a chained prisoner on the bloody scaffold, or swing like a dog on the base gallows. Therefore, I bless the very tempest that lashes the blue waves into whiteness-it promises a quick run to the gay shores of Normandy; or, if that may not be, a little moment's struggle, and a free grave in the dear seas that wash my country! Nor, sinner as I am, know I that any future time will find me fitter to go hence, than I stand now, without one tie to bind me down to earth! without one hope or aspiration, if it be not of heaven! Bless me, then, ere I go-bless me, good father-for here begins the path to the castle cove, where we must part, never to meet in this world more-and there goes Shan More's signal!"—and as he spoke, a

rocket shot up from behind the ruined castle, and ploughing its long, fiery furrow athwart the stormy sky, burst into a bright shower of sparks that flickered for a moment as they fell earthward, and then vanished.

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Bless thee, my son," exclaimed the old man, laying his wrinkled hand on the young soldier's brow, as he knelt bare-headed before him-" and may"- -but his prayer was cut short by a loud shout from the landward side of the ravine, followed almost immediately by the booming of a heavy gun from the lugger in the bay, and the appearance of another rocket launched into the air from the cove mouth. “Fly! fly! — Heaven be about you! fly!"-the priest shrieked wildly, as he heard the hoarse shout from the hill-" the heretics are on us!"-and Gerald Desmond sprang from his knee, and stood listening intently for a minute's space, with one hand on the hilt of his long rapier, and the other grasping the butt of a concealed pistol. He stood but for a moment; for scarce had that brief interval elapsed, before the wavering red glare of twenty or more torches, made from the unctuous wood of the bog-pine, flashed out above the brow of the landward hills, which, while they were reflected back in many a dazzling line from the cuirasses of the Dutch dragoons, cast a wide flood of dusky lustre into the bottom of the glen, and half revealed the figures of the priest and Gerald to his inveterate pursuers. He turned, he waved his hand, he leaped into the black and narrow chasm, through which the path wound shoreward, as one familiar even in the gloom of night with every turn and labyrinth of its course. But as he turned, the quick sharp flashes of halfa-dozen carabines lit up the grove and glen for a moment, and the full-ringing sounds of their reports drowned the hard clatter of his steel-shod boots upon the rocky soil. Fired at random, as it was, the volley availed nothing; and seeing now that he could effect nothing for the fugitive, the priest retreated silently into the covert of the shadowy trees, and made good his escape, unseen and unsuspected, to the yew grove beside the chapel, and thence to his own solitary habitation.

Not so with Gerald Desmond; for though the soldiers would have been utterly thrown out, and unable to fol

low him a step, after he darted into that darksome path, there were those with them who knew every rock and dingle for miles around that spot, themselves inhabitants of that wild moorland barony, and who, maddened by party zeal, and the yet fiercer fury of fanaticism, forgot that they were Irishmen, and played the shameful part of bloodhounds to the foreign soldiery,-bloodhounds indeed! to traffic in the gore of their own persecuted countrymen. Three of these, then, one clad in the equipments of an Orange trooper, the others in the rude garb of peasants, but all well armed with sword and pistol, rushed headlong down the steep hill-side, waving their torches, and calling with wild yells and imprecations, upon the heavier and more phlegmatic Dutchmen, to follow with all speed. So close did these three press upon his traces, that when he cleared the rocky cleft through which the path descended to the beach, they were not thirty yards behind him, and so much was he encumbered by his heavy horseman's boots, that they gained on him every moment, and must have overtaken him, had it been necessary for him to run far over the loose and clattering shingles. But Gerald had not now to traverse above ten yards, ere he should reach the little cove, sheltered by a projecting reef from the tremendous surf which was dashing in with a roar louder than the loudest thunder; and warned by the hubbub and the volley which had reached their ears, the crew had launched the boat, which lay with her head seaward, and sat to their oars, ready to dart at a moment's warning into the whirling billows, which foamed and raved as white as the driven snow, scarce one boat's length beyond the mouth of their little haven. The lugger with her foresail backed, was lying to in the bay at a short half mile's distance, seeming to disregard entirely the heavy gale and flood-tide which were setting her in momently toward the lee-shore; but the continual glare of the blue lights which she kept throwing up, rendering the whole wild scene as light as day, though with a lurid and unnatural lustre, and the occasional burst of flame and smoke which surged out from her bow-port with a dull heavy roar, denoted her anxiety to get her crew on board, and

quit a berth so undesirable, if not actually dangerous. And now the boat's crew, seeing Gerald close at hand, and as it seemed, quite safe, sent up a long wild cheer, and backed the boat a little shoreward to receive him-but as they did so, when the fugitive was scarce six paces from the boat, and his pursuers not twice as far behind him, his foot slipped on some wet sea-weed that piled the treacherous beach, and he fell headlong. Answering with a yell wherein malignity and joy were fiercely blended, the enemy leaped on to seize him. Had he attempted to resume his flight, he was undone, for, ere by any possibility he could have regained his foothold the foremost of the traitors must have grappled him; but he was calm and perfectly collected, as though no peril were at hand. Slowly he rose upon one knee, drawing with each hand a long horseman's pistol from his girdle-he took a quick but steady aim at the leading man, nor did he draw his trigger, until he could have almost reached him with his rapierthen came the keen flash, and the simultaneous shot-and the unerring bullet crashed through the traitor's scull, as though it had been paper; and he leaped up into the air, and fell, with his arms extended and the blood bubbling from his lips, close to the feet of his slayer. Then Gerald leaped up from his knee, and drew himself to his full height, and levelling his second pistol, fired deliberately as before, and with the like effect; the second man fell dead, close to the carcase of his leader. Yet still the third came bounding forward, waving his torch in his left hand, and brandishing his ready broadsword; while from the entrance of the secret path, a dozen of the Dutch dragoons might be seen hurrying to support or avenge the nimbler guides who led them. Two bounds brought Gerald to the very verge; one other would have placed him in the stern-sheets of the ready barge; but he took not that other-his quick eye saw that his pursuer was too close at his heels. Rapier in hand, he turned. Three quick home passes flashed in the torch light, and the weapon of the Orangeman went whirling through the air, leaving his wrist half dislocated by the force of the wrench which had disarmed him. A loud shout from the carsmen! and, in the midst of a harm

less volley from the Dutchmen, the bullets of which pattered on the water like large rain-drops, the boat shot seaward, bearing the rescued fugitive. Within five minutes the blue lights ceased to burn,-the lugger spread her canvass to the gale, and while it howled among her straining cordage, and stretched each sail almost to rending, danced on her way toward the safe shores of France, glad as the waves that laughed around her

prow.

Nearly a year had passed away, winter had come and gone, and the young promise of fair spring had been made good by the full flush of gorgeous summer, yet had no tidings of the fate of Gerald Desmond reached the old priest, who cherished still the memory of that departed race, feeling at every hour the truth of the Roman's exquisite complaint :-" Heu! quanto minus cum reliquis versari, quam horum meminisse." Whether he perished in the waves, however, on that wild night when he departed from the desolate home of his fathers, or reached in safety the gay shores for which he steered, was never known with any certainty in Ireland; never, at least, until the worthy Jesuit had laid down from his earthly toils in that low bed, from which there is no waking on this side of eternity-had changed this scene of weariness and woe for that bright world wherein the wicked cease from troubling and the weary are at rest. Rumors, of course, were rife, and contradictory as ever; one fact alone was certain, that Dermody's fleet lugger was never seen again on that black coast, and that for many a day the gentry missed the rich Bourdeaux wines and Mechlin laces, the poorer folks the genuine cognac or choice old Nantz which he was wont to dispense duty free, until the want created a supply, and a fresh set of welcome desperadoes filled up the places vacated by the two Joyces and Shan More. It was said, and most likely truly,-for many fragments of such a vessel with spars and sails resembling those of the free trader had been picked up by the fishermen along the coast after the gale subsided,-that beyond doubt the Nora Creina, for in so soft a name the smugglers' bark delighted, perished upon the very night in question; but there were men-seafaring men--who were as well known

at St. Malo, Honfleur, and Harfleur, and Dieppe, as on their native coast— who swore with many a stout and truthful asseveration_that they had several times seen Dermody and all his crew along the French shores, and that they knew right well where they could find them any day, were they so minded. Still nothing was known accurately, until, when more than half a century had elapsed, and the last hopes of the Stuarts had been extinguished at Culloden, Shan More himself returned to die at home, and narrated the wanderings and the woes, the exploits and the sufferings and the sorrows of Gerald Desmond, whom he professed to have followed to the last; -and not of Gerald only, but of the whole race, whom it would seem, by his wild story, fate had pursued with more than its accustomed sternness, hunting them, like the awful destiny of Edipus, to the accomplishment of the dark prophecy which, if the truth were known, probably tended in no small degree to bring about its own completion. He was an old, old man, having indeed outrun his hundredth year, yet were his senses perfect, and his rude peasant bearing had been completely overlaid by a half-jaunty, half-dignified military air, which did not, indeed, sit amiss on his erect and still unbended form, his limbs, which had been cast in a mould of Herculean strength, and the white venerable locks which curled about his scarred and weather-beaten forehead. His language, too, was no less improved than his manner, and, in short, there was something in the whole tone and character of the man which assured all his hearers of the truth of his narration. To it, however, it is not now my purpose to adhere, couched as it was in quaint half-French, half-Irish phraseology, but rather to follow him whom we have seen start on his course, an outcast and an exile, through all the phases of a strange chequered life to that far bourne from which no traveller returns, whether for good or evil.

Nearly a year, then, had elapsed between the flight of Gerald Desmond and the period at which I propose to resume the narrative; nor had the interval been unmarked by events of much importance, and such as operated with much weight on the proceedings and the fortunes of my hero. Having

escaped with the crew of the lugger in the boats, when she went ashore, Desmond had reached Dieppe in safety, and not without much toil and some suffering, had made his way to the metropolis, and thence to the court of the weak and unhappy James, at St. Germains. Once there, the gallantry which he had shown in the disastrous battle of the Boyne, added to the favor of the Duke of Berwick, and to the importance of his kindred and connexions in the British Isles, whom it was so necessary for the fallen king to conciliate, speedily procured him a majority in the French-English Guards, and further a small court appointment, the salary of which was provided by the munificence of Louis the Fourteenth, whose generous and disinterested kindness towards his brother king, when a discrowned and penniless exile, cannot be praised too highly. Still Gerald Desmond, although an honorable occupation was thus given to him, with such a competence as far more than sufficed for the arrangement of his soldier ménage, continued ill at ease, and restless and unhappy. On parade he was regular as clockwork; nor was there in the whole of that superb brigade, which was so long maintained in France as the body-guard of the exiled dynasty, with all the style and appointments, including uniform and colors, of the English Guards, one officer more diligent in the performance of his duties, more skilful in the tactics of the day, more reverenced by his men, or beloved by his comrades, than the young Irish major. It was, however, by his conduct in the field alone that he had gained this point of estimation; for, though he was a regular attendant at the regimental mess, he never mingled in the revels of the corps, nor displayed any touch of that wild, sparkling wit and reckless humor which had distinguished him of old, and which was still characteristic of his comrades; who, although exiles like himself, seemed to have lost no tittle of their native tendency to glee and frolic, in changing the green fields of Erin for the trim avenues of royal gardens and the grand etiquettes of the Parisian court; but verified by their light-hearted frankness and Irish turbulence of humor the ancient adage, "Cœlum, non animum, mutant qui trans mare currunt."

For many months this state of things continued, till it had at length become a matter of as much notoriety that Gerald Desmond was the victim of some incessant and deep-rooted sorrow, as that he was one of the best officers in the French brigade of English Guards. Many months, indeed, passed before any one presumed to intrude upon his secret griefs, so far as to inquire their cause even; but when in time the facts of the case were made known to the Duke of Berwick, that noble and kind-hearted prince called Desmond to his quarters after parade one morning, and dealt with him so unaffectedly, and with so manly and straightforward a courtesy, that he won from him easily the cause of his unwonted gravity and gloom, and soon so ordered matters as in some sort to relieve, if not remove them. Still ignorant of the fate of his two brothers and his sister, (who had been forced to fly from Ireland when their name was proscribed and their house ruined, before the fate of Gerald, who was supposed, in the first instance, to have fallen by the bloody Boyne, had been ascertained), the generous young man, now head of his high race, had never for one instant ceased to torment himself with vain imaginings, to ponder on the chances of their fortunes, to long with a vain and yearning eagerness to find them out, in what part of the world soever they had found refuge, and to collect them once more into one family, with himself as their guardian and protector.

It is a singular thing, but by no means of so rare occurrence as one would naturally suppose, that, after we may have been striving for days and months, or even years, in the hope of accomplishing some favorite object, and striving all in vain, when the first obstacle is suddenly and as it were accidentally removed, the other circumstances which have opposed our progress are similarly and as unexpectedly changed. No person who has seriously thought upon the changes and chances of human existence, can fail to have observed this fact; and to be aware that in the midst of the every-day routine of ordinary matter-of-fact life events are constantly occurring, wilder and stranger than the most fanciful imaginings of poetical romance. And thus it was now with Gerald Desmond.

For on the very day on which the Duke signified to him that one year's leave of absence had been granted him, and that he was authorized, by letters which he handed to him as he spoke, to draw his pay and the emoluments of his office from the Royal Treasury, he received certain and unquestionable advices that both his brothers were, with their sister, sojourning in Rome, under the Pope's protection, although in circumstances of extreme indigence, and almost of distress. It will be readily believed that Gerald made no tarrying at St. Germains, now that his utmost hopes appeared to be in the direct course of accomplishment; the rather as the Duke of Berwick-not weary of assisting those who had indeed lost their all, and sunk from rank and wealth and power, among the highest in their own native land, to outlawry and poverty and exile, by their uncompromising loyalty to his own family gave him a promise, unsolicited and equally unhoped for, that both his brothers should be enrolled instantly either as cadets in the guard or as officers in the line of the FrenchIrish army.

The route from Paris across the Alps to Rome was in those days a matter of far greater difficulty than it is now, when a far mightier than Hannibal not only has outrivalled him who

"Diduxit scopulos, et montes rupit aceto,"

but has left, clear to after generations, the giant footprints of his immortal march, in valleys bridged, and icy summits levelled, and a broad easy road athwart the howling regions of eternal winter. Yet it was practicable even then, although by journeys far less rapid and more toilsome than those by which the modern traveller is whirled in his easy britschka along a level turnpike where Alps on Alps arise; and Gerald Desmond, by dint of riding almost day and night, and paying the most extra ordinary prices for relays of horses contrived to reach the Everlasting City within three weeks from the day when he issued from the gates of the French capital.

It was an hour past midnight when by the light of a full moon-the broad, bright, glorious moon of southern climes -he pricked his jaded horse along the

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