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CHAP. LV.

it's really worth your while. I've brought your boots up

that you may tread heavy, and he may CAPTURED.

take

you for the doctor. It's quite dark by the

door.' It was two hours past midnight. In the “He's too sharp for that, and has heard my tower, where Helen lay, perfect quiet reigned. step too often,” said Dr. Macartlıy. “I'll tell She had fainted while Dr. Macarthy, the surgeon you what, I'll come with you. Wake up, Mrs. of the police force, liad pursued his investigation Mulligan ; there, you need not move, for the into the state of her arm; but he had pronounced lady's sleeping beautiful, and I'll only be gone favourably concerning it; and now, in compara- ten minutes ; just keep awake till then. I'll tive ease from pain, she was taking the first make row enough when we get near the kitchen; peaceful rest she had enjoyed since the time of he'll not hear your shocless feet hehind me, I her abduction.

; The doctor occupied a chair in the room; a and observe him when I have left.” decent woman he had brought with him to render The doctor certainly made his approach unassistance lay on the sofa in the one adjoining mistakable; for he was not yet within the space and, satisfied that all had been done for Helen lit by the dim turf fire when Witham spoke to that could, Arden had thrown himself down ou hin. the carpet, and resting his head on the bedside, “Doctor, how is the young lady? She'll get was sleeping away some of the fatigues of the over it soon I hope. It can't be serious.” previous days.

“She'll do ; but its a bad sort of business. Vigilance, bowever, had been so habitual to him What did you mean by it ?" during that anxious pursuit, that when the sound “Why, what should I mean when I saw of a light active step broke the stillness, he was fellow breaking in at my window by night? the first to be aroused by it. The doctor had Wouldn't you have done the same,

Dr. been reading, and was probably in a dozy statc. Macarthy ? Shooting her was pure accident.” It surprised him to see Mr. Mainwaring spring “You meant to shoot the gentleman ?” up so suddenly and pass into the other room. “Of course I did. Why should not I? He followed.

Gentleman indeed ! it was like a gentleman to "What is it, Collins ?" Arden inquired.

come in that Can't say, sir," was the reply; "but I “But I say, Witham, were you behaving rather think

you had better come down to us. like a gentleman at the time?” I have had a short nap, but something fidgets me "I give you my honour, doctor, I was treatabout that fellow. He's on the alert. It's a little ing the lady with the most profound respect. Is strange the men have not returned from boarding it like me to do otherwise? I never hurt a the Chaffinch. We bave only one man now be woman in my life, and would as soon have shot low."

myself as her; sooner. All I have done bas “Are there any arms in the place ?"

been to save her from a mad young feilow who “Yes; and it looks strong enough to stand an was desperate cnough for anything. I have assault from without till daylight if need be. My saved her; and if, maybe I had a little inclinaonly fear in a place of this sort is lest there tion for her myself, and played a bit of a farce, should be other ways in than we know of.”. there was no liarm in it I give you my word.”

" The men are both handcuffed securely ?" “Well, you will bave to convince others of “Yes, sir, I've seen to that; no danger of that. Here, Denpis, boy; give me a little out of slipping. But do, sir, come and have a look at the kettle. The water Mrs. Mulligan brought our man. See him before he sees you if possible; up was half cold.” and tell me if you do not think he is expecting Dr. Macarthy again ascended to the tower. help, and soon.

His face is quite a study, sir; Collins took a chair close to the door so as to

way!

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cover any movement of Mr. Mainwaring's the Feeling very uncertain of the security of hisquick ears of Witham might else perceive. Each hastily-placed fastening. Arden drew near to in silence directed his attention to where the ascertain if more could be done. light of a police lantern shone on the figures of At the same moment more welcome sounds Witham and his servant.

from the court-yard, sounds of familiar English Some ten minutes went by, and nothing very voices, announced the coming of friends. He notable had appeared in the conduct of the unbarred the door and gave ingress to the gentleprisoners. One indeed bore every appearance of men from the Olive-Frank Devonshire, Mr. having fallen asleep ; but Witham, though he Boradaile, and Alfred Merrivale. kept silence and assumed as easy an attitude on the chest whereon he lay as his handcuffed con- “Come along, Mr. Mainwaring, you're all dition would admit of, was evidently restless. right I hope ? I'm wanted downstairs, and your

Mr. Mainwaring had some difficulty in sustain- wife wants you. She's ready to get out of bed ing the perfect stillness he felt to be requisite. I to look for you, and we shall have her in a fever." He was indeed suffering a good deal from the “All right, doctor; go down, and take the fatigues he had undergone and felt almost as if nurse too, there's work for you both. Helen, sleep were creeping on him as he stood. Yet my darling, were you frightened ?" he kept attention sufliciently alive to be aware of '“Where have you been? What have you been a changed expression coming over the face of doing ? The doctor will not tell me, but I am Witham; as, under the supposition that he was sure from the sounds I have heard something no longer observed, feelings within revealed them- dreadful has been going on." selves with some freedom.

"Lay your head on your pillow, my Helen, Serious anxieties were there, but hope too. and—no, I will not ask for a kiss, for I am not He was listening intently, and under the idea fit to touch you. It's all right now, but we have that his efforts at hearing were in some special had what Collins calls a scrimmage, and I direction, Mr. Mainwaring as a test allowed him- have been cuffing the head of a great dirty self a change of position. No notice appeared to fellow, a Portuguese, for full five minutes. May be taken of the slight sound accompanying it. I wash my hands ?” He was listening for something else ; and now “Of course you may.". he heard ; the colour rose in his cheek, and he “ You see, dear, he did not understand our gave a sharp glance into the shadow of the room English customs, and began fighting after he had as if to ascertain whether attention were awake. surrendered. There were nothing like handcuffs Now they heard too, a sound from beneath as of enough, and we had each to stand over our a distant door opening; a sound of rushing foot- man till he was rendered harmless. Frank steps coming nearer, nearer ; but from what Devonshire has a cut in the leg from one of quarter to expect the comers ?

their knives, and your friend Mr. Boradaile Witham gave a shrill and peculiar whistle, and narrowly escaped being shot, and has an ugly Collins sprung forwards. “The tower !” he bump on the forehead, which I gave bim in cried, we can hold that best. Up with you striking up the pistol levelled at his head. But both!"

are all right now, and I hope I'm not The last words were addressed to the prison exciting you ; how does your arm feel ?". ers; but, though incapable of active resistance to “I think it must be going on well, for I had the mandate, they were very ready with the such a good sleep. Arden, you are sure it is all passive sort that remained to them. Witham struggled desperately to keep his position on the “Yes, dear; the police are with us in force; chest; and then, the sounds having become more all danger is over,” discernible, a suspicion, before entertained by “Tell me about it a little. Who is Frank Arden, became a conviction. The chest itself | Devonshire, and who is Mr. Boradaile ?" was the "way in” Collins had apprehended. A “I fancied you knew them both. You must moment's observation showed that there were know Mr. Boradaile ? a gentleman who danced staples upon it as for a padlock, though lock with you at the fête at Cardington, and sent there was none. Arden took from the wall a you those pretty flowers you

told me of.” strong riding-whip and thrust it in as some hindrance to the lid being raised, and then tham said this evening they came from him !"

“He sent them? Why, that horrid Mr. Wiassisted Collins in dragging Witham towards the staircase.

“ I'm not surprised; he told you other stories Dennis, the policeman, meanwhile, by force of you know. Do you think, dear, it would disturb rather strong arguments applied with his you very much if I were to ask the gentlemen

into the next room ? truncheon, bad driven the other prisoner up the

There's young Alfred

know him?"

Merrivale, you rough staircase, and calling Dr. Macarthy, delivered him to his charge.

“Oh, yes; but I should never have thought of Witham was shouting vehemently in Irish to his being here." those now striking from beneath against the lid “Yes, he is downstairs, and has been fighting of the chest; and the policeman, Dennis, who like a Trojan. Now he has his sketch book out, alone understand the purport ofl words, and is making studies in the kitchen." thought himself justified in taking strong “I should like them to come; I should like measures to silence him,

to hear their voices; but you need not go

down

we

over p»s

again—I mean, to stay away long. I supposes I have now made you smile, which is more I know I cannot help it, but I am very nervous.". than he has yet succeeded in. However, my

“No, darling, I will not leave you. Give me darling, I will be a constitutional monarch, and your hand; the well one. The other poor thing having appointed Dr. Macarthy my prime is not to be touched, I suppose. How it is minister, allow him to be a better judge of what swelled with the tightness of the bandage.”. is good for you than myself. I want to have

“Yes, I wished to have my ring on, but it my Helen well again now above all things." won't do. Dr. Macarthy says it may be some “ You do? Arden, I had such a wicked time before it will fit.

thought just after you went down with the “Do you know, dear, after your wound was doctor.” dressed, I carried you by the doctor's orders to “We fancied you slept. Well, what was this the window in the next room that the air might wicked thought ?” revive you; and what do you think he said when “I thought that if I were not to recover, you I kissed you? Come, none of that, my boy.' would be my heir." Quite disrespectful, was it not ? But the fact “ Helen, you should not-" was he had not been informed of my rightful “Oh, that was not wicked. I was hoping that claims ; and, moreover, was under the impression it would be so, and that you never could be from

my dress that I was of an inferior class to troubled in that way as you have been. The next bis own. He quite abused me, I assure you; thought was the really wicked one. It came incalled me stupid for not knowing my way in the to my mind that being rich you could marry dark down a staircase I never came up; and somebody, you know who I mean ; and I could when I suggested that he should take the light not bear the thought. I positively cried; I and go down himself, he wrathfully asked if I suppose it was from spite." were steward of a channel steamer that I was Helen, you are cruel to me. I could bear so ready in taking charge of a lady's bedside." reproach of the sort better from any than from “But you soon told him ?”

you. Helen, how shall I convince you? You “Yes, and he pointed to your ringless finger. have been letting this cruel thought come while However, I did convince him by referring to I have been vainly flattering myself that even the Collins, and he is as civil as possible since. In- cold world would know now I loved you. That deed I am sure he is a good fellow, as well as a if it were believed I sought your wealth, it good doctor; though more accustomed to deal would also be known I could earnestly seek for ing with rough Irishmen than patients such as my yourself, for your safety, your welfare. Helen, Helen.”

do you hold me as only another sort of Witham ?" “Indeed, if he is a little rough he is kind, • Would I not have died rather than belong to very kind.

But tell me this, Arden, is Mr. Wit- bim? And indeed I am quite content to live ham in the tower ?"

now, although I am tied to a good-for-nothing “He was, dear, a while ago. His men were man, who could believe me capable of eloping coming, and we had to bring him up, just to the with Grant Wainwright ; a husband who, when head of the stairs."

the doctor orders him to be very quiet, goes on “I heard such a horrid groan, and it frightened in the most exciting way!" me so. I could not help thinking, too, I heard “I begin to suspect that there is altogethehis voice. Was he hurt ?

more wickedness about my Helen than I had

any " He was shouting to his friends, and the idea of. You have been sending me such goodpolice-constable treated him to a broken head. little-girl letters since we were married, that I It is not anything very serious, my love. Now I expected the perfection of docility from

you;

but am tiring you. I remember Dr. Macarthy said it seems I shall have something to do.” I was not to excite you with talk, but only sit “Mr. Mainwaring, I won't be talked to. Go and hold your hand if you liked it.

and ask your friends upstairs. You may take "Only tell me this ; have you sent word to the candle, as I understand there is not another Darliston that I am safe?”

in the place." “Yes, my darling. They know it before this. “ There are the police lanterns ; we need not I remembered your injunction, and wrote line, take this and leave you in the dark.” which I gave to the man who went for Dr. “I do not want it. As long as I hear your Macarthy. He promised to proceed with it to voices I shall not fear." the next telegraph office. I was puzzled what to “ Nor have wicked thoughts? You will not write,' for I could not say all was well when you again so coolly hand me over ?” were suffering so. I began with our united love; “Mr. Mainwaring, please do not dazzle me and as I could not get on, I thought that must with that candle.” do, for it proved we were united; as we are, thank “ It shall be but for a moment; I want it to Heaven ! Helen, I hope you know you are

read the truth by. Helen, tell me, can you under my charge and government now, now and really think I have feigned affection for you? always. No one can or shall dispute that hence- Open, honest eyes, and answer.” forth."

A quivering of the lids, a glitter on the lashes, “Not Dr. Macarthy ?”

and the eyes were revealed; not saucy as the “ I will tell Dr. Macarthy I am as good a

tongue had been; tearful and timid. She doctor as he is, for you revived after my kiss, and spoke earnestly now.

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“No, Arden, you do not feigo. Forgive me, What a wonderful thing a sound and healthy I am weak and foolish. I did not think you sleep is! Some people indeed, when they so could take my nonsense so much to heart," sleep, do not dream; but, to my thinking, that is

“It went deeper than you intended, I think, about the best of it! How refreshing to be carried my weary, worn-out darling. If you had read completely away from thoughts and anxieties aright my love for you, you could bardly have that have weighed on the mind, it seems perhaps said what

you
did."

at times for an age, and to be shown new “ Indeed I do not doubt your love for me ; scenes, to feel fresh feelings—to dip into a new how could I after this night's deliverance?.. lt, being almost! So it was that, before waking, I was only thinking of bere I am sure she does had been some time at sea; ranging books on not love you as I do, Arden but, she is so 6, the shelves in my cabin, and cotning

across very beautiful." ***2 il fhili like Very

odd things with the books, arguing with • There is more beauty in your eyes, Helen, Jephson the steward about the right way of than in her whole array of loveliness.

serving up bread-sauce; we were to have par“Now that is loving me with a blind love, so tridges for dinner, rather a rare treat at sea, I must be satisfied; you inay go to your friends certainly, so I had a right to be particular. now.”

Then I was walking the deck with baby in my I you

. I see such lovely, lovely things in your eyes: nams turned into a little white'mouereand I, You may close them, but I do not forget what having a consciousness that it was baby all the even before this night I have seen look upon me same, could not entirely approve of his patting from under those dark lashes, i Favourcom- it in his waistcoat-pocket : then it was not a passion, trustfulness; gentle humility and mouse, but his watch, and it was ticking, tick. obedience-beautiful things in a wile, and which ing slowly, it was like somebody sewing, and she you speak of, has no charm to compare there were green-striped curtains aboat me, and with. She is a very handsome, very graceful where who was in the room · Alice. woman. Nature gave her intellect, and her safe. mind is as a bighly-cultivated plant; but it is Alice, dear, you know she is safe?" a plant that brings forth fruit to itself. Such “Yes, I heard directly; Nanny told me. fair things may be pleasing to look at, life and Oh how glad I was !" love demand a better nourishment. Before I "And Grant, do you know how he is ?" was old enough to know the nature of either, my Mr. Brown says Dr. Crutchley hopes well imagination was her captive; but, Helen, in for him, but will not yet admit that he is quite truth my beart clings to you for what you have out of danger." shown yourself, for what yoo have been to me.

And how is the old man?" You may please to call me blind when I say

" He had a very good night.' your loveliness is greater; but in your eyes 1 "What are you doing, my dear girl?” can read your soul. Rest, darling, there is a “ The flounce of your dress was torn; I saw ripple of light already over the sea, and sleep is it yesterday, so I thought I would just put a what you most need. Let no wicked thought stitch in it." come again across your mind. You are my own “Good little Alice." love; if I am to have a happy home on earth it must be of your making."". 136 IJ,

" Whichever you please, Miss Alice Ainslie; DE LIT Mix *

there is nothing to pay, and you may take your TJES, 22'u risiis

choice.”. Prvi Winistri i nov 91.!!

What a cheery voice it was to hear on coming CHAP, LY911 0111'

down in the morning. "Why, Mr. Browo," I

could not help but say, " you do not look as if GRANT'S FRIEND AND GRANT'S LNEMY. you had been up all night

Ah, but I have had my dip in the sea since. From the time intimation came of Helen's I took advantage of Dr. Crutchley's being here safety, revived consciousness did not bring to to run down to Dingleton'; spoke to Mr. Grant Wainwright the same exhausting struggle George Wainwright, and gave the poor man of the mind. The fire of passion, burnt out, great relief : told Mr. Gray, and his pleasant he lay like a suffering child, every muscle re- little sister would give me these two splendid laxed in still exhaustion. It seemed he heard dahlias ; pray accept this crimson one; Miss Merton's exhortation to me to go to bed, and Alice came first this morning and has chosen my answer" not yet,” for his eyes opened, and the straw-coloured. I left the villagers diswith a look and tone of kindness which came puting as to whetlier the bells should be rung; like a surprise to me--for though I knew of in. there was a strong party in favour of the stances where he had been practically kind, I motion, but the clerk' objected, because you never heard a gentle word of kindness froin him see, though all knew there was good news, nobefore-he bade me go to rest ; said I need not body could tell what that news was. I advised be anxious for him now. So I went to my them to settle it with Mr. Gray. I think I hear room, and, merely exchanging my dress for a them now, listen; yes, there they go, the yeas' wrapper, lay down and slept a sound and have it !" pleasan: sleep.

“Did you look in at Fairclough?"

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“Yes, in order to attain my present perfection | allowing him this newspaper. It comes out it was necessary; you see, that I should go twice a week, and whereas the previous number, through a process you ladies can happily com. published the day after Helen's disappearance, plete your toilets without. Perhaps, though, I had been full of denunciation of her supposed am mistaken in supposing that process neces- condoct; this, with better foundation, bore sary: Miss Alice, should I have been any, the heavily on his

. Seeing how it was, I, laid my

hands on it at once: "Not allowed," I said ; No ;. I do not think it would suit you.

"wait until you are stronger.", “But a moustache may

be

very becoming " Have you read it ?” he asked. may it not? A dark one, at least ?'"

“No; but I have heard there is some stuff Álice coloured a little, and said " It all de- about your journey into Scotland.” pends,” and then broke off the subject by re- There's a grain of wheat and a bushel of marking "How delightful it is to hear those chaff in what it says of me. They have laid it bells !"

on pretty thick, I can tell you, and hint as much "Sounds just like a wedding,” Mr. Brown ob- as that I have been connected with the Black served, and Alice turned abruptly into the Band ever since I came to the Rood Farm; parlour and began putting sugar into the break- have had a share of the spoil in every robbery fast-cups.

within twenty miles, and sent the money so "Mr. Brown," I said, and passed through obtained"Aying on the turf. I did once lose a the open hall.door into the garden. He fol- bet of twenty pounds, Mrs. Gainsborough, but lowed.

that was the utmost I ever risked: as for my “Well?” he said.

dealings with the Black Band, they have fleeced “You are teasing her."

me of twice that surn, that's all I've gained “What did I say, Mrs. Gainsborough ? My from them." To think I could have been such remark was a very innocent une; the bells are

a confounded foolringing as for a wedding, and very appro- | + "You must not excite yourself by thinking priately, for they peal in honour of Mr. and about these matters. You are getting better Mrs. Mainwaring. If I have thrown up a cap and I must not have you thrown back.” and Miss Alice thinks it fits, why there is no Why don't they speak out what they mean doubt she would look a ivondertul little matron instead of insiouating their lies in that sneakin it: only look at her now, is there anything ing way I can pretty well guess who wrote wanting but a cap to make her a perfect picture the article.''I should like him to know Dr. of English domesticity ?”

Crutchley says

g my arm may be as strong as " She looks what she is, a very sweet girl, ever in six months, so I may live to handle a and I do not think her pretty hair wants a cap. horse-whip yet!" Seriously, Mr. Brown, I wish you would'nt ; As a nurse, this flashi of spirit pleased me, it's a sensitive little heart, and we really know though otherwise I could not entirely approve of nothing about the matter."

it. 1:16 Soon came further particulars from Treland ** Grant,?? I said, "be quiet : I wish you in a letter from Arden to myself, and from could find something to amuse you in one of other sources it became generally known that these books."

There was a short silence, Witham was foiled and captured, a number of then Grant said, fordi det men, his confederates in guilt, in the hands of "Mrs.Gainsborough, had you been laughing the police, and a large amount of property in or crying when you came into the room?" plate and jewellery recovered.

“Well, I don't know that I had been posi. Grant's progress continued to be satisfactory, tively doing either !" and soon he was able to sit up for some hours " Have you heard anything fresh ?” together in Nanny's little blue room. There “ From Ireland ? No; I expect to hear in one evening I found him with a candle on the the course of to-morrow.”

here when they come, him. I had found it needful to provide Mrs. Gainsborough. You must cart me off to him with something to read, for I feared the Rood before that, remember.”; that during my absence his mind sunk *I do not know when they are to be exinto gloom. The presence of Nanny, it was pected; but, if

, as I hope, it is soon, I have a plain, depressed him, with others he shewed better plati than that. I have spoken to Dr. do inclination to converse. He tolerated Dr. Crutchley and he has seen your father about it. Crutchley's gossip, the relationship of doctor They both agree it is best for you to board with and patient tending in a great measure to me at Fairclough until you are convalescent.” obscure other questions that might have been "You take me in at Fairclough ?” between them. The society of myself and "“Yes; it would be alike inconvenient to Dr. Merton Brown, I believe, alone was really Crutchley and myself for you to go to the Rood welcome to him; because we, knowing all, still Farm." manifested interest in his recovery aud welfare. "I should have thought after all that has With all others in the world his conduct had been said of me that no respectable person dare yet to be accounted for: he could not see his take me into her house. Mrs. Gainsborough, way to reconciliation with any. However, tell me the truth : when all is known, when the though I wished him to read, I had no idea of facts are separated from the lies, shall I be

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