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not divine it?" He stretched out his arms:
The talk was scarce over when Beatrix entered the room: - What came she to seek there? She started and turned pale at the sight of her brother and kinsman, drawn swords, broken sword-blades, and papers yet smouldering in the brazier.
"Charming Beatrix," says the Prince, with a blush which became him very well, "these lords have come a-horseback from London, where my sister lies in a despaired state, and where her successor makes himself desired. Pardon me for my escapade of last evening. I had been so long a prisoner, that I seized the occasion of a promenade on horseback, and my horse naturally bore me towards you. I found you a Queen in your little court, where you deigned to entertain me. Present my homages to your maids of honour. I sighed as you slept, under the window of your chamber, and then retired to seek rest in my own. It was there that these gentlemen agreeably roused me. Yes, milords, for that is a happy day that makes a Prince acquainted, at whatever cost to his vanity, with such a noble heart as that of the Marquis of Esmond. Mademoiselle, may we take your coach to town? I saw it in the hangar, and this poor Marquis must be dropping with sleep."
"Will it please the King to breakfast before he goes?" was all Beatrix could say. The roses had shuddered out of her cheeks; her eyes were glaring; she looked quite old. She came up to Esmond and hissed out a word or two:-"If I did not love you
before, cousin," says she, "think how I love you now." If words could stab, no doubt she would have killed Esmond; she looked at him as if she could.
But her keen words gave no wound to Mr. Esmond; his heart was too hard. As he looked at her, he wondered that he could ever have loved her. His love of ten years was over: it fell down dead on the spot at the Kensington Tavern, where Frank brought him the note out of "Eikon Basiliké." The Prince blushed and bowed low, as she gazed at him, and quitted the chamber. I have never seen her from that day.
Horses were fetched and put to the chariot presently. My lord rode outside, and as for Esmond he was so tired that he was no sooner in the carriage than he fell asleep, and never woke till night, as the coach came into Alton.
As we drove to the "Bell" Inn comes a mitred coach with our old friend Lockwood beside the coachman. My Lady Castlewood and the Bishop were inside; she gave a little scream when she saw us. The two coaches entered the inn almost together; the landlord and people coming out with lights to welcome the visitors.
We in our coach sprang out of it, as soon as ever we saw the dear lady, and above all, the Doctor in his cassock. What was the news? Was there yet time? Was the Queen alive? These questions were put hurriedly, as Boniface stood waiting before his noble guests to bow them up the stair.
"Is she safe?" was what Lady Castlewood whispered in a flutter to Esmond.
"All's well, thank God," says he, as the fond lady took his hand and kissed it, and called him her preserver and her dear. She was n't thinking of Queens and crowns.
The Bishop's news was reassuring: at least all was not lost; the Queen yet breathed, or was alive when they left London, six hours since. ("It was Lady Castlewood who insisted on coming," the Doctor said.) Argyle had marched up regiments from Portsmouth, and sent abroad for more; the Whigs were on the alert, a pest on them (I am not sure but the Bishop swore as he spoke), and so too were our people. And all might be saved, if only the Prince could be at London in time. We called for horses, instantly to return to London. We never went up poor crestfallen Boniface's stairs, but into our coaches again. The Prince and his Prime Minister in one, Esmond in the other, with only his dear mistress as a companion.
Castlewood galloped forwards on horseback to gather the Prince's friends and warn them of his coming. We travelled through the night, Esmond discoursing to his mistress of the events of the last twentyfour hours; of Castlewood's ride and his; of the Prince's generous behaviour and their reconciliation. The night seemed short enough; and the starlit hours. passed away serenely in that fond company.
So we came along the road; the Bishop's coach heading ours; and with some delays in procuring horses, we got to Hammersmith about four o'clock on Sunday morning, the first of August, and half an
hour after, it being then bright day, we rode by my Lady Warwick's house, and so down the street of Kensington.
Early as the hour was, there was a bustle in the street, and many people moving to and fro. Round the gate leading to the Palace, where the guard is, there was especially a great crowd. And the coach. ahead of us stopped, and the Bishop's man got down to know what the concourse meant.
There presently came from out of the gate Horse Guards with their trumpets, and a company of heralds with their tabards. The trumpets blew, and the herald-at-arms came forward and proclaimed George, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith. And the people shouted "God save the King!"
R. L. STEVENSON: THE WOODS AND
From "Across the Plains," New York, 1895 (Thistle Edition), pp. 149–157.
Barring the occasional affectation of the vocabulary, this example from Stevenson is an admirable piece of description; as in Mr. Lafarge's description of Yokohama, so here you find no attempt to do what a photograph might do, to make you see the outlines and exact topography of the place. After a clever device which gives you the general lie of the land, Stevenson at once goes to his main task of making you know what kind of a place Monterey is to live in. The result is so vivid because he tells you how the life there would appeal to all your senses, what the air feels like, what the smells and the sounds are, and all the other things that make continuous and persistent impressions on you. In structure the description seems at first sight almost formless; but a real unity is gained by the insistence on and the return to the ever-present companionship of the ocean; that sets the keynote and gives the touch of composition that keeps the whole from straggling to its end.
THE Bay of Monterey has been compared by no less a person than General Sherman to a bent fishinghook; and the comparison, if less important than the march through Georgia, still shows the eye of a soldier for topography. Santa Cruz sits exposed at the shank; the mouth of the Salinas river is at the middle of the bend; and Monterey itself is cosily ensconced beside the barb. Thus the ancient capital of California faces across the bay, while the Pacific Ocean,