mise, or as an officer bent to save from needless hazard the
lives of the soldiers that followed him. To his relief he
found that Wogan, even as he had read him, was after all an
Wogan tried to veil capitulation with a jeer, but he did
finally concede : " Come ! For the sport of it, I'll hear the
terms you offer."
"I will surrender," Jock said in the same low voice, "on
two conditions: first, that neither you nor any of your men
TWO AND A BARGAIN 219
shall set foot in this hut, and second, that you shal} fetch
hither the old woman, Tamsine Hendie. When she comes
into the house, I will come forth," he gulped a little at
the words, but he got them out bravely, " and I will sur-
render myself unresisting into your hands to deal with as
shall please you."
There was an instant's pause. Wogan put back his hat
from his forehead and stared, and Jock, without knowing
what he did, picked at a sliver on the window-ledge, while his
eyes strove to read Wogan to the soul. Then said Wogan,
surprised past the point of being angry : " So that little wan-
ton is here with you ? I mean that young baggage, the Love-
well wench. She went astray upon the day of the storm.
Her kindred have sought her in vain. So she is here with
Obviously the man was glad, glad to the soul to find one
tale at least of Blanche Mallory's telling thus confirmed, and
of this satisfaction he quite unconsciously gave Jock the
benefit. " Ay, you may have the terms you ask," he con-
ceded almost cheerfully; and then bethought himself and
added, as in duty bound: "And you may be thankful that
you can be of service to my brother Heyroun, else I should
hang you to the nearest tree you cursed wencher!"
With an elation that showed through his semblance of vir-
tuous wrath, Wogan strode away. Jock waited till he had
seen him speak a word to the white-headed man, Phineas
Hendie, as he now judged his betrayer to be, waited till he
had seen Hendie push off and row upstream, and then he ven-
tured a little from the window and spoke softly, "Althea!"
She had been lying face down upon the pallet, but at the
sound of his voice she looked up, white and tremulous, and
he told her, speaking swiftly, how Wogan had been generous,
and Mother Hendie soon would be there to care for her, and
none save Wogan and himself would know of her presence
220 THE FAIR MAID OF GRAYSTONE8
on the islet. At that reprieve he saw her face that had been
so white flame to rose, and her tremulous lips smile, and he
told himself that after all no price was too great to pay for
that rapturous look of hers. So when she was fain to know
what was to be his fate, he found it possible to play his part
bravely, and laugh, and tell her that Wogan, who was thus
generous to a maid, surely would not be quite ungenerous to
a man, while all the time he watched out of the tail of his
eye lest this much-belauded Wogan should attempt, even
then, to circumvent him by some trick.
Wogan kept faith, however, and drew off his men from the
hut, so that presently Jock ventured to unbar the door, and
Althea, reassured by his calmness, lay down again on the
pallet. There she fell asleep, worn out with the anxiety of
the past hours, and Jock was half sorry that he must lose
these last minutes with her, and half was glad that they both
were spared the pain of parting. The most of that sunshiny
midday he spent by the window, handling the pistol that he
must so soon yield up, and watching the troopers lest they
attempt some treachery, but now and again he snatched a
moment to steal to Althea's side, and looking upon her, strove
to print upon his memory every curve and line and sweet,
subtle shadowing of her face.
He wondered whether he most hoped or feared that she
might wake before he went and say farewell, but the hope
was frustrate and the fear was set at rest, for she still was
sleeping, quite outworn, when Hendie's boat made land once
more and out of it bundled a brisk old woman, with a weather-
beaten face, who came up the steep path as nimbly as a goat.
Jock thrust the door half open and in the shadow waited for
her coming. At least he knew speedily that the woman was
Althea's friend, for from the threshold she cast one glance
toward the pallet, and then she cursed him swiftly and flu-
ently, in coastwise speech, for shaming a motherless child,
TWO AND A BARGAIN 221
yet throughout she cursed him in a whisper lest she wake the
He heard her to the end, and then he slipped into her hand
the money that he had taken from Philip Heyroun.
" I'll none of your chinks, you pestilent stringer !" said she.
"Go to with your folly!" he answered. "Pocket it up,
and do you look well to Mistress Lovewell."
One last glance he cast toward the pallet, and then he
squared his shoulders and stepped across the threshold. With-
out, a stone's cast from the hut, he saw that Wogan and a
couple of his troopers were waiting to receive him.
MERCY OF THE HEYROUNS
LATE that afternoon Jock passed for the third time in his
life through the shadow of the gatehouse at Graystones, and
though on those two former occasions he had come thither
unwillingly, he held that he had come in a mood of cheerful
anticipation, when compared to the mood that now was on
him. This time he was trudging afoot, with his left wrist
bound to Captain Wogan's saddlebow and Captain Wogan's
troopers guarding him on either hand. From the bank of
the Illey to the house of Graystones the march had been
made in silence, and to Jock's well-grounded apprehensions
silence was worse than any threat that Wogan could have
When the little squad drew rein at last in the court of the
Graystones stable, Jock was moved to fervent thanksgiving by
the sight of Lieutenant Phil Heyroun. Hitherto he had been
quite indifferent to the Lieutenant's presence, but now he saw
in him a more or less dispassionate outsider, and a man who
had in latter days treated him with grudging civility, and,
what was more important, a brother to Rafe Heyroun that
had befriended him. Hopefully, then, as a man catches at a
last straw of hope, he waited to see if the Lieutenant would
speak a word concerning him, and he had not long to wait.
Scarcely had Wogan reined in his tired horse and given a
command for his men to dismount, when Lieutenant Phil was
MERCY OF THE HEYEOUNS 223
out of the stable door where he had stood glooming, and
halted at his captain's stirrup.
"So you've taken him !" said Phil, with a nod toward Jock,
who perforce had halted when the horse had halted, and then,
across the horse's neck, he addressed Jock directly: "You
coney-catching rascal, if you'd had the gratitude of a mangy
dog, you'd 'a' laid the matter open to my brother. He used
you handsomely the more fool he 1 You might 'a' told
him of the will."
" Nay," said Wogan, with a grin, " in this matter Hether-
ington has run afore you, Phil. Already he has told me a
deal about wills and so on. Look you, here's a key to the
roof room which he swears he had of your cousin Philip Hey-
roun, but I judge that he had it from a kinder hand, though
still from one that was of Heyroun blood. And he tells me,
too, that your cousin Philip on my word, he drives poor
Philip hard in his inventions ! that Philip has concealed
in his possession one of your missing wills."
"That, at least, is no invention of this scoundrel's," Lieu-
tenant Phil interrupted. " This day, after you had ridden
forth to seize the rogue, my cousin Jarvis Philip's brother,
mark you, kinsman to the whole forging, lying, perjured ging
of them ! Jarvis found a will behind the wainscot in his
chamber. That's Jarvis's tale I would he were muzzled !
Let them believe it who list. In any case, 'tis mine uncle's
will, dated last February, and it gives all to my cousin Philip."
As he stood, Lieutenant Phil began to tug and twist at the
horse's mane. "I have looked upon the will. 'Tis a rank
forgery, Lambert, it must be a forgery, but even so it may
work a heap of mischief. And so you had knowledge of it !"
He wheeled again upon Jock. "You knew, and you did not
tell us, you damned graceless mongrel !"
Jock moistened his lips, on the point of saying that it was
only three days since he had wrung from the chestnut-haired
224 THE FAIR MAID OF GRAYSTONES
Philip his knowledge of this will, recovered by so miraculous
a coincidence, but he thought better of it and stood mute.
Where was the use of speaking? Whatever he said would
merely be turned to his disadvantage. Once that day he had
spoken, revealing the chestnut-haired Philip's share in his
escape and his confession touching the will, even as he had
sworn to do in the event of recapture. By such means he
had hoped to hurt Philip, perhaps even to help himself a little,
and he realized now that it was himself alone that had been
Wiser than Jock had reckoned him to be, the chestnut-
haired Philip had discounted his story by himself producing
the will in question, as soon as the recapture of the witness
against him had become inevitable. He had been forced to
discover the will in so crude a manner that he was burdened
with an ugly suspicion, but there he touched the limit of the
injury that it was in Jock's power to do him. If Philip
chose to brazen the matter out, indifferent to the suspicions
of his kinsmen, he was well beyond the reach of the law.
Meantime, for his sins, Jock realized that, by his own con-
fession, he was himself now suspected to have known from
the first about the hidden will, and to have kept silent until
he had found himself in extremity. It was a crazed suspi-
cion, quickly to be dissipated in the light of reason, but from
old experience Jock held that Wogan and Lieutenant Phil,
the one from hatred to him, the other from sheer addle-head-
edness, were alike incapable of shedding such a light on any
subject pertaining to himself. So, after all, he could not
feel much surprise or resentment when the Lieutenant cursed
him for playing double, but he did sense a kind of humor in
the fact that, thanks to the chestnut-haired Philip's skilful
move, the man on whose interposition he had builded should
prove as bitter against him as Wogan himself.
In silence, the only dignified course that was open to him,
MERCY OF THE HEYROUNS 225
Jock heard the Lieutenant to the end, and without a struggle
suffered Wogan's men to handcuff him. At Wogan's bidding
he followed then between two of the troopers, across the paved
quadrangle of the stable-court, through chill passages where
serving folk stood gaping in the doorways, and so into a dim
little room that in the old days had been the buttery to the
most ancient part of the house.
Before a stout door set in the wall Wogan bade halt, and
was sending one of his men to fetch the key, when the door
to the passage without was thrust open and the chestnut-
haired Philip sauntered in. The light was not so dim but
that Jock could observe, first, with unregenerate satisfaction,
that Philip still bore the marks of his handiwork in the shape
of a blackened eye and a cut lip, and second, with propor-
tionate dismay, that Philip, as he looked upon him, was
smiling never so slightly.
"So you've fetched back your promise-breaker, eh, Wo-
gan?" said Philip. In his voice, defiantly confident, and in
his carriage, wondrously erect for him, flaunted the outward
signs of the consciousness that was his, that, if he were to
rise victor from the desperate game that he had been forced
to play, he must throughout cast his dice masterfully. Like
a master he handed Wogan the key to the door. " In the
service of the Parliament," said he, "you are free of this
house at all times, Captain, even as you were when others,
nearer akin to you, had good hope to play the great sir
Wogan's reply, as he fitted the key to the lock, was but
half articulate, and the little that was audible rang ungra-
ciously to the effect that Philip could not well help himself,
if the loyal servants of the Parliament chose to seek their
quarters under the roof that he called his. In an evil temper,
manifestly, toward all the world, he ended his speech by
crashing open the door and revealing a steep flight of stone
226 THE FAIR MAID OF GRAYSTONES
stairs that descended into blackness. " Get you down, Heth-
erington!" he bade. "And if you don't find your quarters
to your liking, lay it to heart that you should not have tried
this second escape. Repetitions are wearisome, remember,
and ofttimes unadvisable."
At the words Philip snickered, with a hateful uptwist of
the lips, and for an instant Jock saw the walls and the floor
and the grinning faces of those about him sicklied over with
the hue of scarlet. Between Philip who had betrayed him,
and Wogan who had waited five weeks to taunt him with that
stale form of words, he had little choice. To set his hands
and his teeth to the throat of either man would have been
comfort, but it was comfort that he knew was not for him.
With dogged effort he blinked the mad scarlet from before
his eyes, and giving those that watched the gratification of
seeing him hesitate but a single minute, went at a good mar-
tial step toward the door of his prison.
As he crossed the threshold he felt the damp of the stair-
way grave-cold upon his face, and he caught the heavy,
earthy scent of a pent-up and sunless spot. Round him the
light faded as he went down the stairs, and with all his heart
he prayed that he might not stumble in the dimness while
those above, as he was conscious, stood and watched him
from the stairhead. Then he was freed of that fear, at least,
for he heard the door slammed, locked, and bolted behind
him, and in the pitchy dark he leaned against the wall of the
stairway and gave thanks for the poor boon of being left
After what seemed to him a long space in which he was
conscious only of darkness and harrowing cold, he took note
of a gray light, if lesser darkness may be so termed, that
gloomed at the foot of the stairs. Thither he stumbled,
groping his manacled hands along the oozy wall, until he
reached the cellar bottom, and then, as he grew accustomed
MERCY OF THE HEYROtJNS 227
to the almost total blackness, he made a survey of his
prison. It was the cellar beneath the oldest portion of
the house in which he found himself. The only light came
from a narrow, grated window that was set deep in masonry
at the joining of the wall with the roof, and through this win-
dow could be seen a few spears of grass. Evidently the
cellar was sunk a good ten feet below the level of the ground.
The walls were clammy to the touch, the floor was damp as
if with hidden springs, and for cold and darkness the place
would have vied with any dungeon.
When he had made this not too comforting survey, Jock
sat down on the lowest stair and with such philosophy as he
could muster reviewed his position. First of all, he gave
over the hope of quick release. Manacled as he was, he had
not the slightest chance of escape. There in the cellar he
would have to stay until Wogan chose to invite him out,
and of that he saw little prospect. He was doomed then,
in all likelihood, to endure for some hours, even for some
days, the torments of cold and of darkness, and thereto, it
might be, of hunger and thirst. Still, such punishment could
not last forever. Surely, the discovery of the will and the
resulting shift of affairs at Graystones would bring Rafe
Heyroun post-haste from London.
" And he will help me," Jock whipped up his flagging cour-
age. "He's a good fellow, and my life on't, he will stand
my friend !"
While Jock reasoned thus, what little light was in the cellar
faded, and in the thick darkness that closed round him
he found it harder than ever to play the philosopher. He
realized that he was shivering with cold, and when he rose and
paced up and down to warm himself, he discovered that he
was weary in every fibre, thanks to the hard march at Wogan's
saddlebow, and thereto faint with hunger, and half choked
with thirst. Moreover, now that he had leisure to brood
228 THE FAIR MAID OP GRAYSTONES
upon his own condition, he found that he had not done
wisely in living the last days in drenched garments. His
throat was sore, his head ached, and with the gloomiest
foreboding he admitted that he was more than likely to
complicate his already hazardous position by falling ill.
That night, or rather, a stretch of black hours that seemed
longer than many nights, Jock spent crouched upon the stone
stairs, as far as he could climb from the perishing chill of the
cellar bottom. In the dark below he could hear the scurry
and squeak of mice, and to such lullaby he slept by snatches,
and woke stiff with his cramped position, chilled to the mar-
row, hot with growing fever, and tried to swallow and each
time found that in the effort he suffered greater pain. Too
wretched to sleep, he gave over the attempt at last, and sat
staring into the dark, while he watched and prayed for the
first gleam of dawn.
In the fainter darkness that in the cellar passed for the light
of morning, came one of the troopers, Farrat, the Heronswood
man, with whom aforetime Jock had had some speech in the
Graystones stables. Lantern in hand, the trooper made his
way down the stairs and set upon the lowest step a jug of
water and a loaf of coarse bread. Moreover, after a pro-
longed stare at Jock, he cheered him with the gratuitous
information that he was going sick. With martial brevity
Jock assured him that he lied, but when he tried to drink the
water, after Farrat had gone, he almost groaned aloud with
the agony of swallowing, and as for the bread, he did not
pretend to eat it, but forthwith flung it to the scrambling
He found the day long and full of wretchedness, the more
so as, in proportion as he sickened, he slacked his hold on the
hope to which hitherto he had clung, his solitary hope of
Rafe Heyroun's interposition. With pitiless logic he told him-
self that now, when he was smirched with Blanche Mallory's
MEKCY OF THE HEYROUNS 229
false charge and with the ugly-seeming circumstance of his stay
with Althea upon Hendie's islet, he was surely cast out for
all time from the favor of that occasional Puritan, Rafe Hey-
roun. If he had alienated Rafe by that hour in the barley
field, he must inevitably by these later events, as they would
be set forth, have driven him into the ranks of his active
At last the light faded from the cellar, and the darkness
came and endured and gave place to light again, but Jock
had lost count of the time and lost sense of everything, save
of the pain that ploughed him from the root of his tongue to
the depth of his chest. On the instinct of a sick animal he
crept away from the stairs where men might come, and the
window where the pale light struck through, and lay down
in the farthest and darkest corner of the cellar. He must
have drifted into sleep, though even in sleep he was conscious
of cold and pain, and he woke startled as with nightmare by
a sudden flare of light in his face.
Instinctively he swung up his hands to his eyes, and then
he felt a grip on his wrist that forced his hands aside. Blink-
ing, he looked up at Wogan, who bent over him, lantern in
hand, and he found the sight tonic. In any other presence,
except, perhaps, that of the chestnut-haired Philip, he might
have collapsed and in his misery begged for succor. In this
presence he sat stiffly, with clenched teeth, and waited.
Wogan straightened himself from his scrutiny of Jock's
face. " I've no wish to be too hard on you," he said with
swelling magnanimity. "It may be you have been disci-
plined enough for your breach of parole. You shall return
to your old quarters, ay, and if you are not shamming, but
are sick as you seem, you shall have proper tendance. In
return I name but one condition: ere you come forth of this
place, you must crave Mistress Mallory's pardon for the insult
that you offered her."
230 THE FAIR MAID OF GRAYSTONES
Without strength to hold himself erect, Jock leaned against
the wall behind him and looked up at Wogan. " Ask Blanche
Mallory's pardon?" he repeated. " Confess to that of which
she charges me?" and then, being in most cruel distress,
added without thought of chivalry : " I'll see her in hell first !"
Wogan kept his temper so admirably that Jock realized
that he must indeed seem ill. "You'll quit this cellar on no
other condition," he patiently repeated his terms.
With the ghost of a laugh Jock answered, " If you hold me
here much longer, I'll quit it in spite of your teeth that is,
unless you purpose to bury me here when I am dead."
This grewsome suggestion seemed to disturb Wogan far
more than it disturbed Jock. " Come, come, you'd best hark
to reason," he fairly urged.
In the midst of his urging, Jock gave him his final answer.
"Tell Blanche Mallory," he said, "that I am her servant, Cap-
tain, in that, when you are wed to her, she will pay you all
I owe you, and I owe you no small sum. And you, unless I
misread you sorely, will pay her what I owe her. You have
my blessing, Captain, but my apologies for a wrong I never
meditated you will never have!"
He slid down again into his old position, where he lay with
closed eyes, and after what seemed to him a long moment, he
heard Wogan's footsteps recede and die away upon the stair-
After another lapse of sleep and fevered dreams Jock opened
his eyes again beneath the light of a lantern. It was Farrat
this time, and, as Jock realized, he would never have come
of his own initiative. He had fetched a blanket which he
put round Jock, and then he offered good advice, learned by
rote, anent the wisdom of Jock's doing whatever Captain
Wogan bade. Jock lay with an arm across his eyes, and
laughed light-headedly, as he read the meaning that lay
beneath the words.
MERCY OF THE HEYROUNS 231
"Heaven save your brave captain's dignity!" he said.
" Tell him from me he'll do no more by proxy than he did in
So Farrat went his way, and Jock lay, sweating and fever-
racked, in the blanket, and listened to the scurry of the mice.
By times he thought on the predicament of Wogan, who, in
obvious fear lest he do to death Rafe Heyroun's witness,
would fain have him safe out of the cellar, yet was too stub-
born to remove the condition which in his foolishness he had
made, and he found amusement in the thought. He was at
the point where he was ready to laugh aloud at the plight of
his arch-enemy, had he not been fearful lest, in laughing, he
should inflict a new torture on his throat, when he thought
to hear his name spoken aloud.
He could have sworn that he had heard the word, but, half
aware of the fever that was on him, he was ready to distrust
his senses, until he heard his name spoken again in a breath-
less voice of fright. This time he knew that it was no delusion.
Uncertainly he dragged himself to his feet, and groped his
way across the cellar to a point beneath the narrow window.
There, when he looked upward along the one pallid bar of
light, he could see the few spears of grass and the smutty
face of a little wench that he remembered to have met about
"It was you that called me?" he asked, with a sense of
disappointment that was the heavier because he scarcely
knew what it was that he had dared to hope.
"So please you !" the girl hurried out her words. " I come
from Mistress Althea. I am Dol, the scullery wench, sir.
And oh ! she is fain to know how it fares with you."
Blankly Jock stared up at the girl's smudged face. "Mis-
tress Althea?" he repeated. "How comes it that she sent
you? She is not here at Graystones?"
232 THE FAIR MAID OF GRAYSTONES
Dol, the scullery wench, nodded, catching her breath in a
sob, and then snuffled: "They fetched her home this morn.
Master Jarvis went unto her, and there was a great to-do, and
she is locked into her chamber, and oh, sir, she is fain to know
how it fares with you."
"Why," said Jock, "tell her not to fret herself for me.
Tell her you had speech with me, and that you saw me well
and merry I"
For a moment he leaned against the wall and listened till
he heard the little wench hurry away in the sunlight and free
air above. Then he trudged back to his chosen dark corner,
slowly but not stumbling so much as when he first had risen,
and he wrapped the blanket close about him and disposed
himself as comfortably as he could. Once again, to his sal-
vation, he felt the impulse to fight resurge in him. They
had broken faith with him; they had made captive his body