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fired, and they were afterwards overtaken, they would meet with no mercy from the Indians. He accordingly refrained, and plied his paddle till the sweat rolled in big drops down his forehead. All would not do ; they were overtaken within a hundred yards of the shore, and carried back with shouts and yells of triumph.
When they came on shore the Indians set fire to Stacy's house, and dragged himself, his wife and children, to their village. Here the principal old men, and Naoman among them, assembled to deliberate on the affair.
The chief man of the council stated that some of the tribe had undoubtedly been guilty of treason, in apprising Stacy and his family of the designs of the tribe, whereby they had taken the alarm and well nigh escaped. He proposed to examine the prisoners, to learn who gave the information.
The old men assented to this, and Naoman among the rest. Stacy was first interrogated by one of the old men who spoke English, and interpreted to the others. Stacy refused to betray his informant.
His wife was then questioned, while, at the same moment, two Indians stood threatening the two children with tomahawks, in case she did not confess. She attempted to evade the truth by declaring she had a dream the night before which alarmed her, and that she had persuaded her husband to fly.
“ The Great Spirit never deigns to talk in dreams to a white face,” said the old Indian. “Woman, thou hast two tongues and two faces. Speak the truth, or thy children shall surely die." The little boy and girl were then brought close to her, and the two savages stood over them ready to execute their bloody orders.
"Wilt thou name," said the old Indian, “the red man who betrayed his tribe ? I will ask thee three times.” The mother answered not. “ Wilt thou name the traitor ? This is the second time.” The poor mother looked at her husband, and then at her children, and stole a glance at Naoman, who sat smoking his pipe with invincible gravity.
She wrung her hands and wept, but remained silent. thou name the traitor ? 'Tis the third and last time.” The agony of the mother waxed more bitter; again sought the eye of Naoman, but it was cold and motionless.
A pause of a moment awaited her reply, and the tomahawks were raised over the heads of the children, who besought their mother not to let them be murdered.
Stop,” cried Naoman. All eyes were turned upon him. ‘Stop," repeated he in a tone of authority. “White woman, thou hast kept thy word with me to the last moment. I am the traitor. I have eaten of the salt, warmed myself at the fire, shared the kindness of these Christian white people, and it was I that told them of their danger.
“I am a withered, leafless, branchless trunk; cut me down if you will ; I am ready." A yell of indignation sounded on all sides. Naoman descended from the little bank where he sat, shrouded his face with his mantle of skins, and submitted to his fate. He fell dead at the feet of the white woman, by a blow of the tomahawk.
But the sacrifice of Naoman, and the firmness of the Christian white woman, did not suffice to save the lives of the other victims. They perished; how, it is needless to say; and the memory of their fate has been preserved in the name of the pleasant stream on whose banks they lived and died, which to this day is called “Murderer's Creek.”
The nights were cold and long, and the sun no longer shone into my room and woke me early in the morning as heretofore. One morning, however, I was awoke by a ray of light .which shone through my door and fell upon my eyes. It was impossible to escape it, so I got up and dressed myself, murmuring not a little at my new neighbour's working while I wanted to sleep; for men don't consider that others have a right to study their own convenience, even if it differs a little from that of their neighbours.
This little fit of ill-temper soon passed away, and I owned to myself that though my new neighbour was a much earlier riser than I cared to be, he was nevertheless an honest fellow, and bore his poverty, as very few are able to bear good fortune-with gaiety and moderation.
Nevertheless, fate had sorely tried him. Père Chaufour was
merely the ruin of a man. In place of one of his arms hung an empty sleeve fastened up to the shoulder ; his left leg came from the turner's shop, and he dragged his right leg after him with difficulty; but above these relics arose a visage joyous and calın. In seeing his face radiant with a serene energy, in hearing his voice, the steadiness of which was accented, so to speak, with kindness, one felt that the soul rested entire in its half-destroyed envelope; or, as he expressed it, “The fortress was somewhat damaged, but the garrison was well.”
It occurred to me when I had dressed, that I owed him a kind of reparation for the secret ill-will I had felt against him on first waking, consequently I determined on being the first to pay him a friendly visit.
He was quietly humming a tune as I entered his room, seated before a table on which a smoking lamp was placed, and which, though it was very cold, was the only fire in the room. busily engaged in fabricating coarse pasteboard, and received me with a joyous exclamation.
“Come in, neighbour, come in! I didn't know you were such an early riser, so I had put a mute on my voice for fear of waking you."
I felt this little mark of attention, and replied to him in a tone which opened his heart.
“My faith! you appear to me to have the air of a good Christian,” said he, with soldierly cordiality, shaking me by the hand; “I don't like those men who look upon the passage before their door as a frontier, and treat their neighbours like Cossacks. When people swallow the same air, and speak the same jargon, they are not made to turn their backs on each other. ... Sit down on that seat, neighbour,
. . only take care! for it has got but three legs, and goodwill must stand as a substitute for the fourth.”
“That is a valuable article, which does not appear to be wanting here," I observed.
“ Goodwill!” repeated Chaufour; "that is all I inherited from my mother, and I estimate that no son has received a better heritage. Also in the battery they termed me Mr. Content.”
“ You have served ?” “In the Third Artillery during the Republic; and later in the Guard, during all the commotion. I was at Jemappes and Waterloo ; or, as one might say, at the baptism and interment of our glory!
I looked at him with astonishment.
?" "Well, not exactly—that is, I didn't think of it. I was working then at toy-making, without thinking that France could ask anything else of me than kites, cup and ball, and draughtsmen, But I had at Vincennes an old uncle whom I used to go and see from time to time; an old Fontenoy man, in temperament something like myself, but a learned man, who was fit to be a marshal. Unfortunately, in his day, it appears that men without interest were not promoted by steam. My uncle, who had served in such a way that he was entitled to promotion to the highest honors, was at this time pensioned as a simple sub-lieutenant. But you should have seen him with his uniform, his cross of St. Louis, his wooden leg, lis white moustaches, and his handsome old face! You would have said he was one of those old heroes in powdered hair who hang at Versailles. Each time I visited him lie told me something which remained in my mind. But one day I found him unusually serious.”
“« Jerome,' he said to me, do you know what is passing on the frontier ?”
No, lieutenant,' I answered. “"Well,” replied he, the country is in danger !'
“ I didn't understand what he meant very clearly; nevertheless, it made an impression upon me.
"Perhaps you have never thought what the word country means,' he continued, laying his hand on my shoulder ; 'it is all that which surrounds you, that which has fed and brought you up ; in short, everything you have loved.'
“I trembled with emotion, and large tears filled my eyes.
“Ah! I understand,' I cried; it is that corner of the world to which it has pleased God to attach our bodies and souls.' * Exactly, Jerome ; therefore you understand, don't you,
what we owe it?'
"No doubt to it we owe what we are and what we possess.'
“ This conversation worked so on my mind that I returned to him a day or two afterwards to tell him that I had enlisted, and that I was on the point of starting for the frontier. My brave uncle pressed me to his bosom, and I departed as proud as au ambassador on a mission.
“Now you know, my neighbour, how it was that I became a volunteer under the Republic before cutting my wisdom teeth.”
This was said without emphasis, with the deliberate freedom of men who consider the accomplishment of a duty neither a merit nor a burden. When he became animated in speaking, it was on account of the deeds he narrated, not because he had been a sharer in them. This absence of self-assertion affected me very much, so much so that I prolonged my visit considerably, and, to obtain his entire confidence, Il confided to him so much of my position and habits as made me an old acquaintance.
I confessed to him how ill-tempered I had felt on being awoke by the light of his lamp. He received my confession with the benevolent gaiety of a heart which looks at everything from the most favorable point of view. He did not say a word of the poverty which compelled him to work while I was still disposea to sleep, but struck his forehead and accused himself of stupidity, promising to stop up the crevices of the door to prevent it occurring again.
From this time an intimacy gradually sprang up between us, and I took the opportunity of asking him one day if he had lost both his limbs in the same battle.
“No, no,” he replied ; "the cannon took only my leg; it was the quarries at Clamart that devoured my arm.”
And as I asked him for details, he continued
“It is as easy as good-day. After the great break-up at Waterloo, I remained for three months in the hospital waiting for
my wooden leg to grow. Once in a condition to get about, I came to Paris in the hope of finding some relative or friend; but I was disappointed; all were dead or had gone away. I should have been less a stranger at Vienna, Madrid, or Berlin. Nevertheless, my circumstances were none the more easy because I