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effort of the mind, at once gave herself up for lost, at the same time yielding to her doom with the prompt resignation of a prepared mind.
But it was the will of God that she should be preserved also in this alarming crisis; for when the horse reached the edge of the ravine it took a slanting course downwards and reached the bottom in safety. There Jane was thrown from the saddle into a clump of bushes, and received no injury greater than a slight bruise or two and a few scratches from the brambles, if her fright be excepted.
To all the alarms she had lately experienced, however, another still remained to be added. She had hardly disengaged herself from the priekly bushes as the bear presented himself before her, by thrusting his immense head and shoulders out from between some close-growing juniper shrubs on a projection within arms length; nevertheless, she was not long in escaping from the unwelcome presence of bruin, for just as she was about to fly a shot from the Indian hunters drove the huge animal back into the cover, and in another second she was hailed by the encouraging shouts of her father, her brother, and Mr. Lee, who with their servants had been riding in search of her when they became the innocent means of increasing her jeopardy, they having been the horsemen whom the steed had seen when it broke from the road.
The Pirate hastened to lead the way down into the ravine, and his daughter sank into his arms utterly overcome by the series of shocks her nerves had sustained.
She was then removed with every mark of tenderness that could be lavished on a beloved female back to her
home, where repose of body and of mind soon restored her shattered spirits. The horse she had been thrown from was never heard of afterwards; it was supposed it must have become a prey to its own reckless fury and was afterwards devoured by the wild beasts of the forest.
The house was now made secure against intruders such as it had lately held, by a band of tenants of the seigniory being lodged within it, plentifully provided with arms, and the proprietor and his children, with Mr. Lee, journied to Montreal, where they spent several weeks with Lady Hester in the enjoyment of the best society, amid the lively amusements peculiar to the season.
The romantic circumstances which had attended the rise of the present Marquis of Rougemont, though but imperfectly known, made him an object of great interest to the Canadian nobility, especially to those who had been acquainted with his father's melancholy history. As soon as they became aware that he was in Montreal, invitations poured in upon him, and calls at his rooms were far more numerous than was desirable, privacy being necessary to his safety.
Nevertheless it was not prudent to shun altogether the advances of those who courted bis acquaintance; the Pirate therefore adopted a middle course as the wisest, putting forward his children and their affianced ones as often as he could in his stead, and only appearing when politeness strictly required.
Walking, riding, carrioling on the ice-bound river, balls, pic-nics, and evening parties, succeeded to each other with breathless rapidity.
Lady Hester forgot her resolution to forsake society,
and was again the admiration and delight of all who were privileged to approach her.
Clinton was ten times as poetical and fascinating as ever; and with his fine sentiments, visionary theories, graceful person, easy manners, and ornamental knowledge, formed, in the estimation of all who saw them together, a fitting companion in every respect for his charming intended.
Arthur did but lend himself to these passing gaieties, in which his heart was not at home; he better loved the more homely pleasures of retired life, and longed exceedingly for the hour when he could remove Jane from heuce to them.
She, in the deep and placid happiness of her soul, saw only around her those in whom her affections were centred ; received no tinge of joy but what was reflected from their smiles; wished nothing but what they wished; and absolutely merged for the present her personal existence in theirs.
The Pirate looked on the blissful couples with a father's pride and pleasure ; but his happiness was dashed by vague fears of coming evil, he knew not what or why. When his eye caught the smiling bashfulness of his dearly-loved Jane while Arthur was whispering to her his future domestic plans, or when his ear distinguished the honied accents of his son poured out in lavish blandishment to the fair and elegant being his arm encircled, then would the heart of the parent beat thick with gloomy forebodings that these pictures of paradise would not be before him long, and he would seem to hear the hiss of the serpent among the flowers.
And even in the ordinary course of events felicity
cannot continue. Man is born to trouble ; the decree is the birthright of all the posterity of Adam. In sober truth the world is to the most fortunate a vale of tears. The seeds of sorrow, like the seeds of death, are within us; our deepest joys are nearly allied to pain ; tears are alike the expression of our acutest grief and bliss. All this the Pirate well knew, for he had outlived the period when fancy throws her illusive vapours over this terrestrial scene, and he beheld it in its true and sternest features. Well therefore might the sight of his children's felicity awaken sadder and profounder reflections in bis breast than they at present could understand.
But he did not only anticipate for them the ordinary sorrows of life—his own position was precarious in the extreme, and theirs was linked with his. As yet no public whisper of his having been connected with pirates had reached his car from any quarter. But how long could he depend upon the preservation of the important secret ? An hour might blast his character and ruin the prospects of those precious ones of whom he thought so anxiously. Visions of a prison and of a scaffold rose before him while their happy voices rang on bis ear; their smiles became transformed by his boding imagination into looks of agony, and their buoyant exclamations into cries of everlasting farewell. He could not endure the images he had conjured up—he shook them off—but they returned again and again, and on each and all there was the living stamp of reality, so that he could not avoid the conviction that such things must yet happen, and that he was a fated
“Oh! what was love made for, if 'tis not the same
Thro' joy and thro' torments, thro' glory and shame?”—Moore.
The sitting room of the attached party in the Hotel Dieu commanded from the windows a prospect of softer beauty than any they had seen elsewhere in Canada: winding streams, effulgent with waves of snow, added brightness to the lucid atmosphere and sparkled in the sun; between them and around them stretched woods perpetually green, with meadows and pleasure-grounds, the verdure of which could hardly be more lovely than their frosty coverings; and everywhere, the presence of churches, farms, cottages, and villas, gave anímation to nature, and cheered the eye and heart as signs of a prosperous and refined population.
Clinton and his betrothed were surveying this view and making remarks to each other upon its beauty, when they saw an elegant carriole stop in front of the hotel, and a lady put her head out of the window to give a card and some directions to her servant, who forth with entered the house.
“ That is Mrs. Markham!” cried Lady Hester, in a