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which Roland experienced, nor did the remedy succeed for some time. At length, after some hasty turns made through the garden, exhausting his passion in vain vows of vengeance, Roland Graeme began to be sensible that his situation ought rather to be held as a matter of laughter than of serious resentment. To one bred a sportsman, a night spent in the open air had in it little of hardship, and the poor malice of the steward seemed more worthy of his contempt than his anger. “I would to God," he said, " that the grim old man may always have contented himself with such sportive revenge. He often looks as he were capable of doing us a darker turn." Returning, therefore, to the turf seat which he had formerly occupied, and which was partially sheltered by a trim fence of green holly, he drew his mantle around him, stretched himself at length on the verdant settle, and endeavored to resume that sleep which the castle bell had interrupted to so little purpose.

Sleep, like other earthly blessings, is niggard of its favors when most courted. The more Roland invoked her aid, the farther she fled from his eyelids. He had been completely awakened, first, by the sounds of the bell, and then by his own aroused vivacity of temper, and he found it difficult again to compose himself to slumber. At length, when his mind was wearied out with a maze of unpleasing meditation, he succeeded in coaxing himself into a broken slumber. This was again dispelled by the voices of two persons who were walking in the garden, the sound of whose conversation, after mingling for some time in the page's dreams, at length succeeded in awaking him thoroughly. He raised himself from his reclining posture in the utmost astonishment, which the circumstance of hearing two persons at that late hour conversing on the outside of the watchfully guarded Castle of Lochleven was so well calculated to excite. His first thought was of supernatural beings; his next, upon some attempt on the part of Queen Mary's friends and followers; his last was, that George of Douglas, possessed of the keys, and having the means of ingress and egress at pleasure, was availing himself of his office to hold a rendezvous with Catherine Seyton in the castle garden. He was confirmed in this opinion by the tone of the voice, which asked in a low whisper, “whether all was ready?

Roland Graeme, availing himself of a breach in the holly screen, and of the assistance of the full moon, which was now


arisen, had a perfect opportunity, himself unobserved, to recon. noiter the persons and the motions of those by whom his rest had been thus unexpectedly disturbed ; and his observations confirmed his jealous apprehensions. They stood together in close and earnest conversation within four yards of the place of his retreat, and he could easily recognize the tall form and deep voice of Douglas, and the no less remarkable dress and tone of the page at the hostelry of Saint Michael's.

“I have been at the door of the page's apartment,” said Douglas, “ but he is not there, or he will not answer.

It is fast bolted on the inside, as is the custom, and we cannot pass through it - and what his silence may bode I know not."

“ You have trusted him too far," said the other; a featherheaded coxcomb, upon whose changeable mind and hot brain there is no making an abiding impression.”

“ It was not I who was willing to trust him," said Douglas ; " but I was assured he would prove friendly when called uponfor

Here he spoke so low that Roland lost the tenor of his words, which was the more provoking, as he was fully aware that he was himself the subject of their conversation.

“ Nay,” replied the stranger, more aloud, “I have on my side put him off with fair words, which make fools fain — but now, if you distrust him at the push, deal with him with your dagger, and so make open passage.”

“ That were too rash,” said Douglas ; "and besides, as I told

you, the door of his apartment is shut and bolted. I will essay again to waken him."

Graeme instantly comprehended that the ladies, having been somehow made aware of his being in the garden, had secured the door of the outer room in which he usually slept, as a sort of sentinel upon that only access to the Queen's apartments. But then, how came Catherine Seyton to be abroad, if the Queen and the other lady were still within their chambers, and the access to them locked and bolted?—"I will be instantly at the bottom of these mysteries,” he said, " and then thank Mistress Catherine, if this be really she, for the kind use which she exhorted Douglas to make of his dagger - they seek me, as I comprehend, and they shall not seek me in vain."

Douglas had by this time reëntered the castle by the wicket, which was now open. The stranger stood alone in the garden walk, his arms folded on his breast, and his eyes cast impatiently up to the moon, as if accusing her of betraying

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him by the magnificence of her luster. In a moment Roland Graeme stood before him. — “A goodly night,” he said, “ Mis

, tress Catherine, for a young lady to stray forth in disguise, and to meet with men in an orchard !”

“Hush !” said the stranger page, “ hush, thou foolish patch, and tell us in a word if thou art friend or foe."

“ How should I be friend to one who deceives me by fair words, and who would have Douglas deal with me with his poniard?” replied Roland.

“ The fiend receive George of Douglas, and thee too, thou born madcap, and sworn marplot !” said the other ; "we shall be discovered, and then death is the word.”

“Catherine," said the page, "you have dealt falsely and cruelly with me, and the moment of explanation is now come - neither it nor you shall escape me.' ”

“ Madman!” said the stranger, “I am neither Kate nor Catherine — the moon shines bright enough surely to know the hart from the hind."

“ That shift shall not serve you, fair mistress,” said the page, laying hold on the lap of the stranger's cloak ; “this time, at least, I will know with whom I deal.”

“Unhand me," said she, endeavoring to extricate herself from his grasp ; and in a tone where anger seemed to contend with a desire to laugh, “Use you so little discretion toward a daughter of Seyton ?”

But as Roland, encouraged perhaps by her risibility to suppose his violence was not unpardonably offensive, kept hold on her mantle, she said, in a sterner tone of unmixed resentment, “ Madman, let me go! there is life and death in this moment - I would not willingly hurt thee, and yet beware!”

As she spoke, she made a sudden effort to escape, and in doing so, a pistol, which she carried in her hand or about her person, went off.

The warlike sound instantly awakened the well-warded castle. The warder blew his horn, and began to toll the castle bell, crying out at the same time, “ Fie, treason! treason! cry all ! cry all !”

The apparition of Catherine Seyton, which the page had let loose in the first moment of astonishment, vanished in darkness, but the plash of oars was heard, and in a second or two five or six arquebuses and a falconet were fired from the battlements of the castle successively, as if leveled at some object on the water. Confounded with these incidents, no way for Catherine's protection (supposing her to be in the boat which he had heard put from the shore) occurred to Roland, save to have recourse to George of Douglas. He hastened for this purpose toward the apartment of the Queen, whence he heard loud voices and much trampling of feet. When he entered, he found himself added to a confused and astonished group, which, assembled in that apartment, stood gazing upon each other. At the upper end of the room stood the Queen, equipped as for a journey, and attended not only by the Lady Fleming, but by the omnipresent Catherine Seyton, dressed in the habit of her own sex, and bearing in her hand the casket in which Mary kept such jewels as she had been permitted to retain. At the other end of the hall was the Lady of Lochleven, hastily dressed, as one startled from slumber by the sudden alarm, and surrounded by domestics, some bearing torches, others holding naked swords, partisans, pistols, or such other weapons as they had caught up in the hurry of a night alarm. Betwixt these two parties stood George of Douglas, his arms folded on his breast, his eyes bent on the ground, like a criminal who knows not how to deny, yet continues unwilling to avow, the guilt in which he has been detected.

“Speak, George of Douglas,” said the Lady of Lochleven ; “speak, and clear the horrid suspicion which rests on thy name. Say · A Douglas was never faithless to his trust, and I am a Douglas.' Say this, my dearest son, and it is all I ask thee to say to clear thy name, even under such a foul charge. Say it was but the wile of these unhappy women, and this false boy, which plotted an escape so fatal to Scotland

—so destructive to thy father's house."

Madam,” said old Dryfesdale, the steward, “ this much do I say for this silly page, that he could not be accessory to unlocking the doors, since I myself this night bolted him out of the castle. Whoever limned this night piece, the lad's share in it seems to have been small.”

“Thou liest, Dryfesdale,” said the Lady, “and wouldst throw the blame on thy master's house, to save the worthless life of a gypsy boy.”

“ His death were more desirable to me than his life," answered the steward, sullenly; " but the truth is the truth.”

At these words Douglas raised his head, drew up his figure to its full height, and spoke boldly and sedately, as one whose


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resolution was taken. “ Let no life be endangered for me. 1 alone

Douglas,” said the Queen, interrupting him, “ art thou mad ? Speak not, I charge you."

“ Madam,” he replied, bowing with the deepest respect, 'gladly would I obey your commands, but they must have a victim, and let it be the true one. Yes, madam,” he continued, addressing the Lady of Lochleven, “I alone am guilty in this matter. If the word of a Douglas has yet any weight with

. you, believe me that this boy is innocent; and on your conscience I charge you do him no wrong; nor let the Queen suffer hardship for embracing the opportunity of freedom which sincere loyalty — which a sentiment yet deeper — offered to her acceptance. Yes! I had planned the escape of the most beautiful, the most persecuted, of women; and far from regretting that I, for a while, deceived the malice of her enemies, I glory in it, and am most willing to yield up life itself in her cause.

“Now may God have compassion on my age,” said the Lady of Lochleven, "and enable me to bear this load of affliction ! O Princess, born in a luckiess hour, when will you cease to be the instrument of seduction and of ruin to all who approach you? O ancient house of Lochleven, famed so long for birth and honor, evil was the hour which brought the deceiver under thy roof!”

"Say not so, madam,” replied her grandson; "the old honors of the Douglas line will be outshone, when one of its descendants dies for the most injured of Queens — for the most lovely of women." “Douglas," said the Queen, “must I at this moment - ay,

ау even at this moment, when I may lose a faithful subject forever, chide thee for forgetting what is due to me as thy Queen?"

Wretched boy,” said the distracted Lady of Lochleven, “hast thou fallen even thus far into the snare of this Moabitish woman? — hast thou bartered thy name, thy allegiance, thy knightly oath, thy duty to thy parents, thy country, and thy God, for a feigned tear, or a sickly smile, from lips which flattered the infirm Francis — lured to death the idiot Darnley

read luscious poetry with the minion Chastelar — mingled in the lays of love which were sung by the beggar Rizzio — and which were joined in rapture to those of the foul and licentious Bothwell !

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