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The thought pressed heavily on Bryan's spirit as the front of war expanded before his gaze : but his reveries were quickly interrupted by the ascent of many eager footsteps, while the citizens crowded to partake the commanding view. One of these presently pointed out to Bryan a party of cavalry, exultingly announcing them as belonging to Colonel Murray, a faithful and gallant ally, who, at the head of his troop, galloped up to the ship-quay gates, demanding entrance.
“See, see !” exclaimed Bryant's informant, if the villanous governor has not refused them admittance, after fighting their way thus far!”
A rope was now brought to that part of the walls, and an offer evidently made to admit Murray singly by such unmilitary conveyance; while a messenger from the Council directed the transaction. Colonel Murray wheeled his horse, in marked disdain, and addressed a few words to his followers; but ere he could conclude, the gate was fung wide by the officer in command; and greeted with the loudest acclamations, Murray led his men into the town, where he was presently hemmed in by the agitated populace imploring his assistance against their betrayers. The party on the cathedral rapidly descended to join their voices with the rest.
The tumult occasioned by Murray's reception had now subsided ; and its origin had been explained by a passing friend, who described it as a most auspi
cious event. Another half hour elapsed, and with increasing anxiety the coming of Bryan was expected; when suddenly a thundering peal of artillery burst forth, the roar of cannon drowning the fainter report of musquetry, while every building seemed to rock, and every roof to respond the dreadful salutation. For a moment it paused; and then the shrieks of terror might be heard, resounding from streets and neighbouring houses ; but again the batteries renewed their fierce explosion, and clouds of smoke rolled by, impregnating every breath with their sulphureous effluvia.
What words may suffice to pourtray the agony of those bewildered females ? The dreadful reality was at length arrived ; the substance of those troubled visions which had frequently haunted their pillow, and even in the brightest hour of day overclouded their minds with foreboding apprehension.-It was come ; and terrible indeed was that hour. desire to flee from the surrounding peril, was immediately succeeded by a deep consciousness that no possible way
escape existed for them. Enclosed on every side, they must await the issue ; and await it they did, in meek and holy resignation. No scream escaped them, no violent contortion appeared : they gazed on each other, and on Basil, and simultaneously kneeled down, but to articulate was as impossible as it would have been vain, amid that deafening uproar : Magrath wrung his hands, and struck
repeatedly upon bis breast-now he hurried towards the door, then lingered and went back, when some imploring eye turned towards him. Poor Ellen was soon seized with a violent cough, as the tainted air assailed her tender lungs, and he hastened to procure a cup of water ; then looked to the entrance of the house, as resolved to issue forth ; but she grasped his arm, and uttered a cry.
“ In the name of all the saints, Miss Ellen dear, do, do let me go see for the master,” he said, when an interval of the firing allowed of it. His arm was immediately liberated; but before he could reach the door, his egress was impeded.
“ Your handkerchiefs, girls, your handkerchiefs !” shouted Bryan, as he dashed into the room, followed by two or three more ; and he snatched them from the astonished females, rending them in two, and tossing the divided portions to his companions : who, as well as himself, proceeded most busily to fasten each of them a fragment round his right arm.
Again the cannon thundered, and again ceased, with a longer pause than before: and Bryan was able to reply to the broken sentences of mingled joy and terror.
“ Oh, such a deliverance ! Murray, gallant Murray, has it all his own way. No SURREN DER! James is retreating the Council stole off-"
“ And Lundy?” asked Magrath.
“ Gone to the bottomless pit, for aught we can make out,” replied some of the young men.
“ And this,” continued Bryan, striking his left hand forcibly on the linen that encircled his right
“ this is the badge of No SURRENDER. We who wear it are sworn to perish to a man, rather than hear of capitulation."
“ Good luck to you, then,” exclaimed Magrath, triumphant delight blazing in his countenance, while the guns drowning the remainder of his speech, he tore his neck-kerchief in two, and threw the half of it to Basil, twisting the other round his own arm.
“ And now, Mr. Bryan, sir,”—for Magrath never called him M‘Alister ;—" when the cat's away, the mice will play, as uncle says. And I'm after your honour to the last drop,”—again the cannon could alone be heard.
Old Shane now bustled in, as the young men bastened out; and seeing Magrath with the badge, bestowed on him a cordial embrace-then, throwing himself into his chair, answered the queries that flowed in upon him, with a confirmation of the tidings that the besiegers were cast into great panic.
“ And will they not come here, then ?” asked Ellen, eagerly.
“Here ! Och bless your simple heart : why it is'nt in them to look at the walls ! Out and out frightened they were, from the minute the boys let loose the gunpowder. There's a gay chap killed, they
say, as close to King James as the pratee to the stalk ; and himself's off at a band gallop, out of reach clane and entirely, to complain to Pope Joan,
“ Oh, brother,” said Basil, “ do not insult over a fallen king! Unhappy as guilty, he is betrayed by others; and even here he came to look for homage, and dreamed not of resistance.”
" True, for you, sir; may be he did'nt know that we have but few Jacobites here,” replied the old man, rather bitterly.
“ He is no Jacobite, Shane," said the Lady ; “but he feels that a head once anointed is no meet object for mockery. Let us rather pray that his present sufferings may lead to repentance.”
“ Your ladyship can, sure," answered Shane, sulkily ; adding, in a lower tone, “ it's myself that'll fight for King William, let who will pray for old James.”
The assurance of no attack from without being contemplated, somewhat reconciled the household to the discharges which at intervals still shook their abode: and in the evening they were gladdened by a visit from Malcolm and Ross, who brought a promise of Bryan's appearance : a temporary couch was formed for poor Ellen, whose disorder was greatly aggravated by the impregnation of the air with gunpowder. Magrath, who had returned with Ross,