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bad, but at some idea which crossed his own mind." I have been in an error," he said, “ of a surety I should have tarried for the babe.” So saying, he snatched his cane and hat, and hurried away towards Warroch-wood, faster than he was ever known to walk before, or after.
The Laird lingered some time, debating the point with the lady. At length, he saw the sloop of war again make her appearance; but, without approaching the shore, she stood away to the westward with all her sails set, and was soon out of sight. The lady's state of timorous and fretful apprehension was so habitual, that her fears went for nothing with her lord and master; but an appearance of disturbance and anxiety among the servants now excited his alarm, especially when he was called out of the room, and told in private, that Mr Kennedy's horse had come to the stable door alone, with the saddle turned round below its belly, and the reins of the bridle broken; and that a farmer had ina formed them in passing, that there was a smuggling lugger burning like a furnace on the other side of the Point of Warroch, and that, though he had come through the wood, he had seen or heard nothing of Kennedy and the young Laird, “ only there was Dominie Sampson, gaun rampaging about, like mad, seeking for them.”- All was now bustle at Ellangowan. The Laird and his servants, male and female, hastened to the wood of Warroch. The tenants and cottagers in the neighbourhood lent their assistance, partly out of zeal, partly from curiosity. Boats were manned to search the sea-shore, which, on the other side of the Point, rose into high and indented rocks. A vague suspicion was entertained, though too horrible to be expressed, that the child might have fallen from one of these cliffs. · The evening had begun to close when the parties entered the wood, and dispersed different ways in quest of the boy and his companion. The darkening of the atmosphere, and the hoarse sighs of the November wind through the naked trees, the rustling of the withered leaves which strewed the glades, the repeated halloos of the different parties, which often drew them together in expectation of meeting the objects of their search, gave a cast of dismal sublimity to the scene.
At length, after a minute and fruitless investigation through the wood, the searchers began to draw together into one body and to compare notes. The agony of the father grew beyond concealment, yet it scarcely equalled the anguish of the tutor. “Would to God I had died for him !" the affectionate.creature repeated in notes of the deepest distress. Those who were less interested, rushed into a tumultuary discussion of chances and possibilities. Each gave his opinion, and each was alternateJy swayed by that of the others. Some thought the object of their search had gone aboard the sloop; some that they had gone to a village three miles distance; some whispered they might have been on board the lugger, a few planks and beams of Which the tide 'now drifted asliore.
At this instant, a shout was heard from the beach, so loud, so shrill, so piercing, so different from every sound which the woods had that day rung to; that nobody hesitated a moment to believe that it conveyed tidings, and tidings of dreadful import. All hurried to the place, and, venturing without scruple upon paths, which, at another time, they would have shuddered to look at, descended towards a cleft of the rock, where one boat's crew was already landed. “Here, sirs !-Here! this way, for God's sake !-this way! this way!" was the reiterated cry. Ellangowan broke through the throng which had already assembled at the fatał spot, and be. held the object of their terror. It was the dead body of Kennedy. At first sight he seemed to have perished by a fall from the rocks, which there rose in a precipice of a hundred feet above the beach. The
corpse was lying half in, half out of the water; the advancing tide, raising the arm and stirring the clothes, had given it at some distance the appearance of motion, so that those who first discovered the body thought that life remained. But every spark had been long extinguished. ;
“My bairn! my bairn!” cried the distracted father, “ where, can he be?"-A dozen mouths were opened to communi. cate hopes which no one felt. Some one at length mentioned the gypsies! In a moment Ellangoyan had reascended the cliffs, flung himself upon the first horse he met, and rode furiously to the huts at Derncleugh. All was there dark and desolate; and, as he dismounted to make more minute search, he stumbled over fragments of furniture which had been thrown out of the cottages, and the broken wood and thatch which had been pulled down by his orders. At that moment the prophecy, or anathema, of Meg Merrilies fell heavy on his mind. “ You