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When the King said, Be friends! It is not credible. But I have said my tidings best and worst.
Were I King James, I never would believe it ; None but yourself can know what course the time
I'd rather think the story all a dream,

And peril may demand. To list your banner
And that there was no friendship, feud, nor journey, If I might be a judge, were desperate game :
No halt, no ambush, and no Earl of Cassilis,

Ireland and Galloway offer you convenience Than dream anointed Majesty has wrong!

For flight, if slight be thought the better remedy ; Gis. Speak within door, coz.

To face the court requires the consciousness Auch. 0, trueaside)-I shall betray myself And confidence of innocence. You alone Even to this half-bred fool.-I must have room, Can judge if you possess these attributes. Room for an instant, or I suffocate.

(A noise behind the scenes. Cousin, I prithee call our Philip hither

Auch. Philip, I think, has broken up his revels;
Forgive me ; 'twere more meet I summon'd him His ragged regiment are dispersing them,
Myself; but then the sight of yonder revel

Well liquor'd, doubtless. They're disbanded soldiers, Would chafe my blood, and I have need of coolness. Or some such vagabonds.-Here comes the gallant. Gif. I understand thee~I will bring him straight. (Enter PHILIP. He has a buff-coat and head-piece,

(Exit.

wears a sword and dagger, with pistols at his girdle. Auch. And if thou dost, he's lost his ancient trick He appears to be affected by liquor, but to be by no To fathom, as he wont, his five-pint fagons.

means intoricated. This space is mine—0 for the power to fill it,

Auch. You scarce have been made known to one Instead of senseless rage and empty curses,

another, With the dark spell which witches learn from fiends, Although you sate together at the boardThat smites the object of their hate afar,

Son Philip, know and prize our cousin Gifford. Nor leaves a token of its mystic action,

Phil.(lastes the wine on the table.) If you had prized . Stealing the soul from out the unscathed body,

bim, sir, you had been loath As lightning melts the blade, nor harms the scabbard !

To have welcomed him in bastard Alicant : -"Tis vain to wish for it-Each curse of mine

I'll make amends, by pledging his good journey
Falls to the ground as harmless as the arrow's

In glorious Burgundy.—The stirrup-cup, ho!
Which children shoot at stars! The time for thought, And bring my cousin's horses to the court.
If thought could aught avail me, melts away,

Auch. (draws him aside.) The stirrup-cup! He Like to a snowball in a schoolboy's hand,

doth not ride to-nightThat melts the faster the more close he grasps it!

Shame on such churlish conduct to a kinsman ! If I had time, the Scottish Solomon,

Phil. (aside to his father.) I've news of pressing

import. Whom some call son of David the Musician,Might find it perilous work to march to Carrick.

Send the fool off.—Stay, I will start him for you. There's many a feud still slumbering in its ashes,

(To Gif.) Yes, my kind cousin, Burgundy is better, Whose embers are yet red. Nobles we have,

On a night-ride, to those who tread our moors, Stout as old Gray steel, and as hot as Bothwell;

And we may deal it freely to our friends, Here too are castles look from crags as high

For we came freely by it. Yonder ocean

Rolls many a purple cask upon our shore,
On seas as wide as Logan's. So the King-
Pshaw! He is here again-

Rough with embossed shells and shagged sea-weed,

When the good skipper and his careful crew
Enter GIFFORD.

Have had their latest earthly draught of brine,

And gone to quench, or to endure their thirst, Gif.

I heard you name Where nectar's plenty, or even water's scarce, The King, my kinsman ; know, he comes not hither. And filter'd to the parched crew by dropsfull. Auch. (affecting indifference.) Nay, then we need

Auch. Thou’rt mad, son Philip !–Gifford's no not broach our barrels, cousin,

intruder, Nor purchase us new jerkins.—Comes not Philip? That we should rid him hence by such wild rants :

Gis. Yes, sir. He tarries but to drink a service My kinsman hither rode at his own danger, To his good friends at parting.

To tell us that Dunbar is hasting to us, Auch. Friends for the beadle or the sheriff-officer. With a strong force, and with the King's commission, Well, let it pass. Who comes, and how attended,

To enforce against our house a hateful charge, Since James designs not westward ?

With every measure of extremity.
Gif. O you shall have, instead, his fiery functionary, Phil. And is this all that our good cousin tells us?
George Home that was, but now Dunbar's great Earl; I can say more, thanks to the ragged regiment,
He leads a royal host, and comes to show you With whose good company you bave upbraided me,
How he distributes justice on the Border,

On whose authority, I tell thee, cousin,
Where judge and hangman oft reverse their office, Dunbar is here already.
And the noose does its work before the sentence.

Gif.

Already?

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[ The calunnious tale wbich ascribed the birth of Jimes VI. to an intrigue of Queen Mary with Rizzio. ]

Phil. Yes, gentle coz. And you, my sire, be hasty | Till they review the cards which fate has dealt them, In what you think to do.

Computing thus the chances of the game; Auch. I think thou darest not jest on such a sub- And wofully they seem to weigh against us. ject.

Auch. Exile's a passing ill, and may be borne; Where hadst thou these fell tidings?

And when Dunbar and all his myrmidons Phil. Where you, too, might have heard them, Are eastward turn’d, we'll seize our own again. noble father,

Phil. Would that were all the risk we had to stand Save that your ears, nail'd to our kinsman's lips,

to! Would list no coarser accents. O, my soldiers, But more and worse,-a doom of treason, forfeiture, My merry crew of vagabonds, for ever!

Death to ourselves, dishonour to our house,
Scum of the Netherlands, and wash'd ashore Is what the stern Justiciary menaces ;
Upon this coast like unregarded sea-weed,

And, fatally for us, he hath the means;
They had not been two hours on Scottish land,

To make his threatenings good. When, lo! they met a military friend,

Auch. It cannot be. I tell thee, there's no force An ancient fourier, known to them of old,

In Scottish law to raze a house like mine, Who, warm’d by certain stoups of searching wine,

Coeval with the time the Lords of Galloway Inform’d his old companions that Dunbar

Submitted them unto the Scottish sceptre, Left Glasgow yesterday, comes here to-morrow;

Renouncing rights of Tanistry and Brehon. Himself, he said, was sent a spy before,

Some dreams they have of evidence; some suspicion. To view what preparations we were making.

But old Montgomery knows my purpose well, Auch. (10 Gif.) If this be sooth, good kinsman, | And long before their mandate reach the camp thou must claim

To crave the presence of this mighty witness, To take a part with us for life and death,

He will be fitted with an answer to it. Or speed from hence, and leave us to our fortune. Phil. Father, what we call great, is often ruin'd Gif. In such dilemma,

By means so ludicrously disproportion'd; Believe me, friend, I'd choose upon the instant They make me think upon the gunner's linstock, But I lack harness, and a steed to charge on,

Which, yielding forth a light about the size For mine is overtired, and, save my page,

And semblance of the glowworm, yet applied There's not a man to back me. But I'll hie

To powder, blew a palace into atoms, To Kyle, and raise my vassals to your aid.

Sent a young King-a young Queen's mate at leastPhil. 'Twill be when the rats,

Into the air, as high as e'er flew night-hawk, That on these tidings fly this house of ours,

And made such wild work in the realm of Scotland, Come back to pay their rents.—(Apart).

As they can tell who heard,--and you were one Auch. Courage, cousin

Who saw, perhaps, the night-light which began it. Thou goest not hence ill mounted for thy need : Auch. If thou hast nought to speak but drunken Full forty coursers feed in my wide stalls,

folly, The best of them is yours to speed your journey.

I cannot listen longer. Phil. Stand not on ceremony, good our cousin,

Phil. I will speak brief and sudden.-- There is one When safety signs, to shorten courtesy.

Whose tongue to us has the same perilous force Gis. (to Auch.) Farewell, then, cousin, for my Which Bothwell's powder had to Kirk of Field; tarrying here

One whose least tone, and those but peasant accents, Were ruin to myself, small aid to you;

Could rend the roof from off our fathers' castle, Yet loving well your name and family,

Level its tallest turret with its base; I'd fain

And he that doth possess this wondrous power Phil. Be gone?--that is our object, too,

Sleeps this same night not five miles distant from us. Kinsman, adieu.

Auch. (who had looked on PHILIP with much ap[Exit GIFFORD. PHILIP calls after him.

pearance of astonishment and doubt, exYou yeoman of the stable,

claims,) Then thou art mad indeed!-Ha! Give Master Gifford there my fleetest steed,

ha! I'm glad on't. Yon cut-tail'd roan that trembles at a spear.

I'd purchase an escape from what I dread, [Trampling of the horse heard going off.

Even by the frenzy of my only son! Hark! he departs. How swift the dastard rides,

Phil. I thank you, but agree not to the bargain. To shun the neighbourhood of jeopardy!

You rest on what yon civet cat has said : (He lays aside the appearance of levity which he Yon silken doublet, stuff?d with rotten straw, has hitherto worn, and says very seriously, Told you but half the truth, and knew no more.

And now, my father – But my good vagrants had a perfect tale : Auch. And now, my son-thou'st taken a perilous They told me, little judging the importance, game

That Quentin Blane had been discharged with them. Into thine hands, rejecting elder couusel,

They told me, that a quarrel happ'd at landing, How dost thou mean to play it ?

And that the youngster and an ancient sergeant Phil. Sir, good gamesters play not

Had left their company, and taken refuge

In Chapeldonan, where our ranger dwells;' In strength and force compulsive. No one saw me
They saw him scale the cliff on which it stands, Exchange my reputation for my pleasure,
Ere they were out of sight ; the old man with him. Or do the Devil's work without his wages.
And therefore laugh no more at me as mad;

I practised prudence, and paid tax to virtue,
But laugh, if thou hast list for merriment,

By following her behests, save where strong reason To think he stands on the same land with us, Compell’d a deviation. Then, if preachers Whose absence thou wouldst deem were cheaply At times look'd sour, or elders shook their heads, purchased

They could not term my walk irregular; With thy soul's ransom and thy body's danger. For I stood up still for the worthy cause,

Auch. 'Tis then a fatal truth! Thou art no yelper, A pillar, though a flaw'd one, of the altar, To open rashly on so wild a scent;

Kept a strict walk, and led three hundred horse. Thou’rt the young bloodhound, which careers and Phil. Ah, these three hundred horse in such rough Frolics and fawns, as if the friend of man, (springs, were better commendation to a party [times But seizes on his victim like a tiger.

Than all your efforts at hypocrisy, Phil. No matter what I am—I'm as you bred me; Betray'd so oft by avarice and ambition, So let that pass till there be time to mend me, And dragg'd to open shame. But, righteous father, And let us speak like men, and to the purpose. When sire and son unite in mutual crime, This object of our fear and of our dread,

And join their efforts to the same enormity, Since such our pride must own him, sleeps to-night It is no time to measure other's faults, Within our power :-to-morrow in Dunbar's, Or fix the amount of each. Most moral father, And we are then his victims. :

Think if it be a moment now to weigh
Auch. He is in ours to night. 3

The vices of the Heir of Auchindrane,
Phil. He is. I'll answer that MacLellan's trusty. Or take precaution that the ancient house
Auch. Yet he replied to you to-day full rudely. Shall have another heir than the sly courtier

Phil. Yes! The poor knave has got a handsome That's gaping for the forfeiture.
And is gone mad with jealousy.

[wife, Auch. We'll disappoint him, Philip,-
Auch. Fool !—Wben we need the utmost faith, alle- | We'll disappoint him yet. It is a folly,
Obedience, and attachment in our vassals, [giance, A wilful cheat, to cast our eyes behind,
Thy wild intrigues pour gall into their hearts, When time, and the fast flitting opportunity,
And turn their love to hatred !

Call loudly, nay, compel us to look forward :
Phil. Most reverend sire, you talk of ancient morals, Why are we not already at MacLellan's,
Preach'd on by Knox, and practised by Glencairn ;* Since there the victim sleeps ?
Respectable, indeed, but somewhat musty

Phil.

Nay, soft, I pray thee;, In these our 'inodern nostrils. In our days,

I had not made your piety my confessor, If a young baron chance to leave his vassal

Nor enter'd in debate on these sage councils, The sole possessor of a handsome wife,

Which you're more like to give than I to profit by, 'Tis sign he loves bis follower; and if not,

Could I have used the time more usefully; He loves his follower's wife, which often proves But first an interval must pass between The surer bond of patronage. Take either case ; The fate of Quentin and the little artifice Favour flows in of course, and vassals rise.

That shall detach him from his comrade, Auch. Philip, this is infamous,

The stout old soldier that I told you of. And, what is worse, impolitic. Take example: Auch. How work a point so difficult-sodangerous ? Break not God's laws or man's for each temptation Phil. 'Tis cared for. Mark, my father, the conveThat youth and blood suggest. I am a man

Arising from mean company. My agents [nience A weak and erring man ;—full well thou know'st Are at my hand, like a good workman's tools, That I may hardly term myself a pattern

And if I mean a mischief, ten to one Even to my son ;-yet thus far will I say,

That they anticipate the deed and guilt. I never swerved from my integrity,

Well knowing this, when first the vagrants' tattle Save at the voice of strong necessity,

Gave me the hint that Quentin was so near us, Or such o'erpowering view of high advantage Instant I sent MacLellan, with strong charges As wise men liken to necessity,

To stop him for the night, and bring me word,

.

2

3

[ MS.-“lo tbe old tower wbere Niel MacLellan dwells.

subjects, they would consider themselves as absolved from their And therefore laugb no more," etc.)

allegiance to her." He was author of a satirical poem against the [MS.-"And we are then in his power."|

Roman Catholics, entitled " The Hermit of Allareit," (Loretto.) [ MS." He's in our power to-bigbt."]

-See SIBBALD'S chronicle of Scottish Poetry. He assisted the « [Alexander, fifth Earl of Glencairn, for distinction called Reformers with his sword, when they took arms at Perth, in 1559; “ The Good Earl," was among the first ofithe peers of Scotland had a principal command in the army embodied against Queen who concurred in the Reformation, in aid of which he acted a Mary, in June 1567; and demolished the altar, broke the images, conspicuous part, in the employment both of his sword and pen. tore down the pictures, etc., in the Chapel-royal of HolyrooilIn a remonstrance with the Queen Regent, he lold her, thal“ ir house, after the Queen was conducted to Lochleven. lle died sho violated the engagements which she had come under to her | in 1574. ]

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Like an accomplish'd spy, how all things stood, Of conscience, and of pity, and forgiveness;
Lulling the enemy into security.

Fine words to-morrow, out of place to-night.
Auch. There was a prudent general !

Take counsel tben, leave all this work to me;
Phil. MacLellan went and came within the hour. Call up your household, make fit preparation,
The jealous bee, which buzzes in his nightcap, In love and peace, to welcome this Earl Justiciar,
Had humm'd to him, this fellow, Quentin Blane, As one that's free of guilt. Go, deck the castle
Had been in schoolboy days an humble lover As for an honour'd guest. Hallow the chapel
Of his own pretty wife-

(If they have power to hallow it) with thy prayers.
Auch.
Most fortunate!

Let me ride forth alone, and ere the sun
The knave will be more prompt to serve our purpose. Comes o'er the eastern bill, thou shalt accost him :

Phil. No doubt on't. 'Mid the tidings he brought “Now do thy worst, thou oft-returning spy,
Was one of some importance. The old man

[back Here's nought thou canst discover.” Is flush of dollars: this I caused him tell

Auch. Yet goest thou not alone with that MacLellan!
Among his comrades, who became as eager

He deems thou bearest will to injure him,
To have him in their company, as e'er [space, And seek'st occasion suiting to such will.
They had been wild to part with him. And in brief Philip, thou art irreverent, fierce, ill-nurtured,
A letter's framed by an old hand amongst them, Stain’d with low vices, which disgust a father;
Familiar with such feats. It bore the name

Yet ridest thou not alone with yonder man,-
And character of old Montgomery,

Come weal, come woe, myself will go with thee. Whom he might well suppose at no great distance,

(Exit, and calls to horse behind the Scene. Commanding his old Sergeant Hildebrand,

Phil. (alone.) Now would I give my fleetest horse By all the ties of late authority,

to know Conjuring him by ancient soldiership,

What sudden thought roused this paternal care, To hasten to his mansion instantly,

And if 'tis on his own account or mine : On business of high import, with a charge

'Tis true, he hath the deepest share in all To come

[lows? That's likely now to hap, or which has happen'd. Auch. Well, he sets out, I doubt it not, what fol Yet strong through Nature's universal reign,

Phil. I am not curious into others' practices, The link which binds the parent to the offspring : So far I'm an economist in guilt,

The she-wolf knows it, and the tigress owns it.
As you, my sire, advise. But on the road

So that dark man, who, shunning what is vicious,
To old Montgomery's he meets his comrades, Ne'er turn'd aside from an atrocity,
They nourish grudge against him and his dollars, Hath still some care left for his hapless offspring.
And things may hap, which counsel learn'd in law Therefore 'tis meet, though wayward, light, and stub-
Call Robbery and Murder. Should he live,

That I should do for him all that a son [born,
He has seen nought that we would hide from him. Can do for sire—and bis dark wisdom join'd

Auch. Who carries the forged letter to the veteran? To insluence my bold courses, 't will be hard

Phil. Why, Niel MacLellan, who return'd again To break our inutual purpose.- Horses there! To his own tower, as if to pass the night there.

(Exit.
They passid on him, or tried to pass, a story,
As if they wish’d the sergeant's company,

АСТ II.
Without the comptroller's—that is Quentin's,
And be became an agent of their plot,
That he might better carry on our own.

It is moonlight. The scene is the Beach beneath the Tower
Auch. There's life in it-yes, there is life in't; which was exhibited in the first scene,-the Vessel is gone
And we will have a mounted party ready

from her unchorage. To sçour the moors in quest of the banditti

AUCHINDRANE and Philip, as if dismounted from their That kill'd the poor old man--they shall die instantly.

horses, come forward cautiously. Dunbar shall see us use sharp justice here, As well as he in Teviotdale. You are sure

Phil. The nags are safely stow’d. Their noise You gave no hint nor impulse to their purpose ?

might scare him;
Phil. It needed not. The whole pack oped at once Let them be safe, and ready when we need them,
Upon the scent of dollars.-But time comes

The business is but short. We'll call MacLellan,
When I must seek the tower, and act with Niel To wake him, and in quiet bring him forth,
What farther's to be done.

If he be so disposed, for here are waters
Auch. Alone with him thou goest not. He bears Enough to drown, and sand enough to cover him.
Thou art my only son, and on a night (grudge But if he hesitate, or fear to meet us,
When such wild passions are so free abroad,

By beaven I'll deal oa him in Chapeldonan
· When such wild deeds are doing, 'tis but natural With my own hand !-
I guarantee thy safety.-I'll ride with thee.

Auch. Too furious boy !-alarm or noise undoes us,
Phil. E'en as you will, my lord. But pardon me Our practice must be silent as 'tis sudden.
If you will come, let us not have a word

Bethink thee that conviction of this slaughter

SCENE I.

Confirms the very worst of accusations

A moonlight waker, and a noontide dreamerOur foes can bring against us. Wherefore should we, | A torturer of phrases into sonnets, Who by our birth and fortune mate with nobles, Whom all might lead that chose to praise his rhymes. And are allied with them, take this lad's life,

Phil. I marvel that your memory has room His peasant life, unless to quash his evidence, To hold so much on such a worthless subject. Taking such pains to rid him from the world,

Auch. Base in himself, and yet so strangely link'd Who would, if spared, have fix'd a crime upon us ? With me and with my fortunes, that I've studied

Phil. Well, I do own me one of those wise folks, To read him through, as I would read
Who think that when a deed of fate is plannid, Some paltry rhyme of vulgar prophecy,
The execution cannot be too rapid.

Said to contain the fortunes of my house;
But do we still keep purpose? Is't determin’d And, let me speak him truly-He is grateful,
He sails for Ireland -and without a wherry ? Kind, tractable, obedient-a child
Salt water is his passport-is it not so!

Might lead him by a thread-He shall not die!
Auch. I would it could be otherwise.

Phil. Indeed !—then have we had our midnight ride Might he not go there while in life and limb, To wondrous little purpose. And breathe his span out in another air ?

Auch.

By the blue heaven, Many seek Ulster never to return

Thou shalt not murder him, cold selfish sensualist ! Why might this wretched youth not harbour there? Yon pure vault speaks it-yonder summer moon,

Phil. With all my heart. It is small honour to me With its ten million sparklers, cries, Forbear! To be the agent in a work like this.

The deep earth sighs it forth—Thou shalt not murYet this poor caitiff, having thrust himselt

Thou shalt not mar the image of thy Maker! [der!Into the secrets of a noble house,

Thou shalt not from thy brother take the life, And twined himself so closely with our safety, The precious gift which God alone can give!That we must perish, or that he must die,

Phil. Here is a worthy guerdon now, for stuffing I'll hesitate as little on the action,

His memory with old saws and holy sayings! As I would do to slay the animal

They come upon him in the very crisis, Whose flesh supplies my dinner. 'Tis as harmless, And when bis resolution should be firinest, That deer or steer, as is this Quentin Blane,

They shake it like a palsy-Let it be, And not more necessary is its death

He'll end at last by yielding to temptation, To our accommodation-so we slay it

Consenting to the thing which must be done, Without a moment's pause or hesitation.

With more remorse the more he hesitates.Auch. 'Tis not, my son, the feeling call'd remorse,

[To his Father, who has stood fixed That now lies tugging at this heart of mine,

after his last speech. Engendering thoughts that stop the lifted hand. Well, sir, 'tis fitting you resolve at last, Have I not heard John Knox pour forth bis thunders How the young clerk shall be disposed upon ; Against the oppressor and the man of blood,

Unless you would ride home to Auchindrane, In accents of a minister of vengeance?

And bid them rear the Maiden in the court-yard, Were not his fiery eyeballs turn’d on me,

That when Dunbar comes, he have nought to do As if he said expressly, “Thou’rt the man? "

But bid us kiss the cushion and the headsman. Yet did my solid purpose, as I listen'd,

Auch. It is too true-There is no safety for us, Remain unshaken as that massive rock.

Consistent with the unhappy wretch's life! Phil. Well, then, I'll understand 'tis not remorse, - In Ireland he is sure to find my enemies. As 'tis a foible little known to thee,

Arran I've proved—the Netherlands I've tried, That interrupts thy purpose. Wbat, then, is it? But wilds and wars return him on my hands. Is’t scorn, or is’t compassion? One thing's certain, Phil. Yet fear not, father, we'll make surer work; Either the feeling must have free indulgence, The land has caves, the sea has whirlpools, Or fully be subjected to your reason

Where that which they suck in returns no more. There is no room for these same treacherous courses, Auch. I will know nought of it, hard-hearted boy! Which men call moderate measures.

Phil. Hard-hearted! Why--my heart is soft as yours; We must confide in Quentin, or must slay him. But then they must not feel remorse at once,

Auch. In Ireland he might live afar from us. We can't afford such wasteful tenderness :

Phil. Among Queen Mary's faithful partisans, I can mouth forth remorse as well as you. Your ancient enemies, the haughty Hamiltons, Be executioner, and I'll be chaplain, The stern MacDonnells, and resentful Græmes And say as mild and moving things as you can; With these around him, and with Cassilis' death But one of us must keep his steely temper. Exasperating them against you, think, my father, Auch. Do thou the deed-I cannot look on it. What chance of Quentin's silence.

Phil. So be it—walk with me—MacLellan brings Auch. Too true-too true. He is a silly youth, too, The boat lies moor'd within that reach of rock, [him. Who had not wit to shift for his own living And 'twill require our greatest strength combined A bashful lover, whom his rivals laugh'd at

To launch it from the beach. Meantime, MacLellan Of pliant temper, which companions play'd en Brings our man hither.-See the twinkling light

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