Charles James Lever.

Roland Cashel. (Volume 2) online

. (page 1 of 33)
Online LibraryCharles James LeverRoland Cashel. (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 33)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

f :^



Library of




Digitized by the Internet Archive

in 2009 with funding from

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign








Copyrir/ht, 1894.
By Little, Brown, and Company.

^ £ 3

I/, Z-


Chaptsb FAffll

I. An "Unlimited" Monarchy ,.,..,, 1

11. Lady Kilgoff at Bay 12

III. A Partial Recovery and a Relapse ... 22

IV. More Kennyfeck Intriguing 31

V. Linton's Mysterious Disappearance .... 41

VI. The Reason of Linton's Flitting 49

VII. Forgery 54

VIII. Roland Discovers that he has Overdrawn 63

IX. The Burnt Letter — " Great Expectations " 73

X. A Startling Intrusion 85


XII. Shylock Demands his Bond 107

XIII. Cigars, Ecarte, and Hazard 118

XIV. Mr. Kennyfeck among the Bulls 127

XV. Political Aspirations 138

XVL A Wet Day — The False Signal 149

XVII. The Shadow in the Mirror 161

XVIII. The Old Friends in Council 175

XIX. A Tete-1-Tete Interrupted 179

XX. Lord Kilgoff Determines to " ]^^ET " Roland 190

XXI. The Second Shock 201

XXII. IdNTON Instigates Keane to Murder . . . 211
XXIIL Linton is Baffled — His Rage at the Dis-
covery 221


CuAPTsa P^ei

XXIV. Giovanni Unmasked 233

XXV. TiEKNAY Intimidated — The Abstracted

Deeds , 245

XXVL An Understanding between the Dupe and

HIS Victim 262

XXVn. Murder of Mr. Kennyfeck — Cashel De-
tained ON Suspicion 273

XXVni. Scene of the Murder — The Coroner's

Verdict 285

XXIX. The Trial — The Prosecution 303

XXX. The Defence 323

XXXI. "Not Guilty" 334

XXXII. On the Track 343

XXXIII. La Ninetta 352

XXXIV. The Fate of Keane — His Deposition . . 362
XXXV. The "Bank of Rouge et Noir" .... 375

XXXVI. Arrest of Linton 384

XXXVII. All Mystery Ceases — Marriage and Gen-
eral Joy 398



AN ''unlimited" monarchy.

And at last they find out, to their greatest surprise,
That 't is easier far to be " merry than wise."

Bell: Images.

"Here is Mr. Cashel; here he is!" exclaimed a number
of voices, as Roland, with a heart full of indignant anger,
ascended the terrace upon which the great drawing-room
opened, and at every window of which stood groups of his
gay company. Cashel looked up, and beheld the crowd of
pleased faces wreathed into smiles of gracious welcome, and
then he suddenly remembered that it was he who had in^ited
all that brilliant assemblage; that, for him^ all those win-
ning graces were assumed; and that Ms gloomy thoughts,
and gloomier looks, were but a sorry reception to offer

With a bold effort, then, to shake off the load that
oppressed him, he approached one of the windows, where
Mrs. Kenny feck and her two daughters were standing,
with a considerable sprinkling of young dragoons around

'' We are not to let you in, Mr. Cashel," said Mrs. Kenny-
feck, from within. "There has been a vote of the House
against your admission."

"Not, surely, to condemn me unheard," said Roland;
" I might even say, unaccused."

" How so? " cried Mrs. Kennyfeck. " Is not your present
position your accusation? Why are you there, while we
are here ? "

VOL. II, — 1


*' I went out for a walk, and lost myself in the woods."

*'"VVhat does he say, my dear?" said Aunt Fanny, fear-
ful of losing a word of the dialogue.

" That he lost himself, ;madam," said one of the dragoons,

" So, indeed, we heard, sir," said the maiden lady, pite-
ously ; " but I may say I foresaw it all."

'' You are an old fool, and, worse still, every one sees
it," whispered Mrs. Kennyfeck, in an accent that there was
no mistaking, although only a whisper.

"We considered that you had abdicated, Mr. Cashel,"
said Mrs. White, who, having in vain waited for Roland to
approach the window she occupied, was fain at last to join
the others, " and we were debating on what form of Govern-
ment to adopt, — a Presidency, with Mr. Linton — "

" I see you are no legitimist," slyly remarked Miss Kenny-
feck. But the other went on, —

"Or an open Democracy."

"I'm for that," said a jolly-looking cavalry captain.
"Pray, Miss Olivia Kennyfeck, vote for it too. I should
like nothing so much as a little fraternizing."

"I have a better suggestion than either," said Roland,
gayly; "but you must admit me ere I make it."

"A device of the enemy," called out Mrs. White; "he
wants to secure his own return to power."

"Nay, on honor," said he, solemnly; "I shall descend
to the rank of the humblest citizen, if my advice be acceded
to, — to the humblest subject of the realm."

" Ye maunna open the window. Leddy Janet has the
rheumatics a' dandering aboot her back a' the morning,"
said Sir Andrew, approaching the group; and then, turning
to Cashel, said, "Glad to see ye, sir; very glad indeed;
though, like Prince Charlie, you 're on the wrang side o'
the wa'."

"Dear me!" sighed Meek, lifting his eyes from the
newspaper, and assuming that softly compassionate tone
in which he always delivered the most commonplace sen-
timents, "how shocking, to keep you out of your own
house, and the air quite damp! Do pray be careful, and
change your clothes before you come in here." Then he


finished in a whisper to Lady Janet, " One never gets through
a country visit without a cold."

"Upon my word, I'll let him in," said Aunt Fanny,
with a native richness of accent that made her fair nieces

"At last!" said Cashel, as he entered the room, and
proceeded to salute the company, with many of whom he
had but the very slightest acquaintance, — of some he did
not even remember the names.

The genial warmth of his character soon compelled him
to feel heartily what he had begun by feigning, and he
bade them welcome with a cordiality that spread its kindly
influence over all.

"I see," said he, after some minutes, "Lady Kilgoff
has not joined us ; but her fatigue has been very great."

" They say my Lord 's clean daft," said Sir Andrew.

"Oh, no. Sir Andrew," rejoined Roland; "our misfor-
tune has shaken his nerves a good deal, but a few days'
rest and quiet will restore him."

" He was na ower wise at the best, puir man," sighed the
veteran, as he moved away.

"Her Ladyship was quite a heroine, — isn't that so?"
said Lady Janet, tartly.

'' She held the rudder, or did something with the com-
pass, I heard," simpered a young lady in long flaxen

Cashel smiled, but made no answer.

"Oh, dear," sighed Meek, "and there was a dog that
swam — or was it you that swam ashore with a rope in
your mouth ? "

"I grieve to say, neither man nor dog performed the

"And it would appear that the hon-id wretch — what's
his name?" asked Mrs. White of her friend Howie.

" Whose name, madam? "

"The man — the dreadful man, who planned it all. Sick
— Sickamore — no, not Sickamore — "

" Sickleton, perhaps," said Cashel, strangely puzzled to
make out what was coming.

"Yes, Sickleton had actually done the very same thing


twice before, just to get possession of the rich plate and all
the things on board."

"This is too bad," cried Cashel, indignantly; "really,
madam, you must pardon my warmth, if it even verges on
rudeness ; but the gentleman whose name you have asso-
ciated with such iniquitous suspicions saved all our lives."

"That's what I like in him better than all," whispered
Aunt Fanny to Olivia; "he stands by his friends like a

"You have compelled me," resumed Cashel, "to speak
of what really I had much rather forget ; but I shall insist
upon your patience now for a few minutes, simply to rectify
any error which may prevail upon this affair."

With this brief prelude, Cashel commenced a narrative
of the voyage from the evening of the departure from
Kingstown to the moment of the vessel's sinking off the
south coast.

If most of his auditors only listened as to an interesting
anecdote, to others the story had a deeper meaning. The
Kennyfecks were longing to learn how the excursion origi-
nated, and whether Lady Kilgoff's presence had been a
pre-arranged plan, or a mere accidental occurrence.

"All's not lost yet, Livy," whispered Miss Kennyfeck
in her sister's ear. " I give you joy. " While a significant
nod from Aunt Fanny seemed to divine the sentiment and
agree with it.

"And I suppose ye had na the vessel insured?" said
Sir Andrew, at the close of the narrative; "what a sair
thing to think o' ! "

" Oh, dear, yes, to be sure ! " ejaculated Meek, piteously ;
"and the cold, and the wetting, and the rest of it! for of
course you must have met few comforts in that miserable

"How picturesque it must have been," interposed Mrs.
White; "and what a pity j^ou had no means of having a
drawing made of it. The scene at the moment of the yacht
striking ; the despair-struck seamen — "

" Pardon me, madam, for destroying even a particle of
so ingenious a fancy ; but the men evinced nothing of the
kind, — they behaved well, and with the calmest steadiness."


''It is scarcely too late yet," resumed the lady, una-
bashed ; "if you would just describe it all carefully to Mr.
Howie, he could made a sketch in oils one would swear was
taken on the spot."

"Quite impossible, — out of the question," said Howie,
who was always ashamed at the absurdities which com-
promised himself, although keenly alive to those which
involved his neighbors.

" We have heard much of Lady Kilgoff's courage and
presence of mind," said Mrs. Kennyfeck, returning to a
theme by which she calculated on exploring into Cashel's
sentiments towards that lady. "Were they indeed so
conspicuous ? "

"Can you doubt it, madam?" said Lady Janet, tartly;
" she gave the most unequivocal proof of both, — she remem-
bered her husband ! "

The tartness of this impertinent speech was infinitely
increased by the voice and manner of the speaker, and a
half -suppressed titter ran through the room, Cashel alone,
of all, feeling annoyed and angry. Aunt Fanny, always
less occupied with herself than her neighbors, quickly saw
his irritation, and resolved to change a topic which more
than once had verged on danger.

" And now, Mr. Cashel," said she, " let us not forget the
pledge on which we admitted you."

"Quite right," exclaimed Roland; "I promised a sug-
gestion : here it is — "

"Pardon me for interrupting," said Miss Kennyfeck;
' ' but in what capacity do you make this suggestion ? Are
you still king, or have you abdicated?"

"Abdicated in all form," replied Roland, bowing with
well-assumed humility; "as simple citizen, I propose that
we elect a ' Queen,' to rule despotically in all things, —
uncontrolled and irresponsible."

"Oh, delightful! admirable!" exclaimed a number of
voices, among which all the men and the younger ladies
might be heard; Lady Janet and Mrs. Kennyfeck, and a
few others "of the senior service," as Mr. Linton would
have called them, seeming to canvass the motion with more
cautious reserve.


** As it is to be an elective monarchy, sir," said Lady
Janet, with a shrewd glance over all the possible candidates,
" how do you propose the choice is to be made? "

'' That is to be for after consideration," replied Roland ;
" we may have universal suffrage and the ballot."

" No, no, by Jove ! " exclaimed Sir Harvey Upton ; *' we
must not enter upon our new reign by a rebellion. Let only
the men vote."

"How gallant! " said Miss Kennyfeck, sneeringly; while
a chorus of "How unfair!" "How ungenerous!" went
through the room.

"What say ye to the plan they hae wi' the Pope?" said
Sir Andrew, grinning maliciously: " tak' the auldest o' the

This suggestion caused a laugh, in which certain parties
did not join over-heartily. Just at this moment the door
opened, and Lord Kilgoff , leaning on the arm of two servants,
entered. He was deathly pale, and seemed several years
older; but his face had acquired something of its wonted
expression, and it was with a sad but courteous smile he
returned the salutations of the company.

" Glad to see you amongst us, my Lord," said Cashel, as
he placed an arm-chair, and assisted the old man to his seat.
"I have just been telling my friends that our country air
and quiet will speedily restore you."

"Thank you very much, sir," said he, taking Cashel's
hand. "We are both greatly indebted to your kindness,
nor can we indeed ever hope to repay it."

" Make him a receiver on the estate, then," whispered
Lady Janet in Miss Kenny feck's ear, " and he'll soon pay

' ' Tell my Lord about our newly intended government,
Mr. Cashel," said Mrs. Kennyfeck; "I'm sure it will
amuse him." And Cashel, more in obedience to the re-
quest than from any conviction of its prudence, proceeded
to obey. One word only, however, seemed to fix itself on
the old man's memory.

"Queen! queen !" repeated he several times to himself.
"Oh, indeed! You expect her Majesty will honor you
with a visit, sk?"


Cashel endeavored to correct the misconception, but to
no purpose ; the feeble intelligence could not relinquish
its grasp so easily, and he went on in a low muttering
tone, —

"Lady Kilgoff is the only peeress here, sir, remember
that; you should speak to her about it, Mr. Cashel."

" I hope we are soon to have the pleasure of seeing Lady
Kilgoff, my Lord,'* whispered Cashel, half to concur with,
half to turn the course of conversation.

" She will be here presently," said he, somewhat stiffly,
as if some unpleasant recollection was passing through
his mind ; and Cashel turned away to speak with the
others, who eagerly awaited to resume the interrupted

"Your plan, Mr. Cashel; we are dying to hear it," cried

" Oh, by all means ; how are we to elect the queen? " said

*'"What say you to a lottery," said he, "or something
equally the upshot of chance? For instance^ let the first
lady who enters the room be queen."

"Very good indeed," said Lady Janet, aloud; then
added, in a whisper, "I see that old Mrs. Malone with her
husband toddling up the avenue this instant."

"Olivia, my love," whispered Mrs. Kennyfeck to her
daughter, " fetch me my work here, and don't be a moment
away, child. He 's so amusing ! " And the young lady
glided unseen from the room at her mamma's bidding.
After a short but animated conversation, it was decided
that this mode of choice should be adopted ; and now all
stood in anxious expectancy to see who first should enter.
At last footsteps were heard approaching, and the interest
rose higher.

" Leddy Janet was right," said Sir Andrew, with a gi'in ;
"ye '11 hae Mrs. Malone for your sovereign, — I ken her
step weel."

"By Jove!" cried Upton, "I'll dispute the succession;
that would never do."

"That's a lighter tread and a faster," said Cashel,


** There are two coming," cried Mrs. White; *' I hear
voices: how are we then to decide?"

There was no time to canvass this knotty point, when a
hand was heard upon the door-handle ; it turned, and just
as the door moved, a sound of feet upon the terrace without,
— running at full speed, — turned every eye in that direction,
and the same instant Miss Meek sprang into the room
through the window, while Lord Charles and Linton hurried
after her, at the same moment that Lady Kilgoff, followed
by Olivia Kenny feck, entered by the door.

Miss Meek's appearance might have astonished the com-
pany, had even her entree been more ceremonious; for she
was without hat, her hair falling in long, dishevelled masses
about her shoulders, and her riding-habit, torn and ragged,
was carried over one arm, with a freedom much more in
accordance with speed than grace.

"Beat by two lengths, Charley," cried she, in a joyous,
merry laugh ; " beat in a canter, — Mr. Linton, nowhere."

"Oh, dear me, what is all this, Jemima love?" softly
sighed her bland papa ; ' ' you 've not been riding, I

"Schooling a bit with Charley, pa, and as we left the
nags at the stable, they challenged me to a race home ; I
don't think they'll do it again. Do look how they're

Some of the company laughed good- hum oredly at the
girlish gayety of the scene. Others, among whom, it is sad
to say, were many of the younger ladies, made significant
signs of being shocked by the indecorum, and gathered in
groups to canvass the papa's indifference and the daughter's
indelicacy. Meanwhile Cashel had been completely occu-
pied with Lady Kilgoff, making the usual inquiries regarding
fatigue and rest, but in a manner that bespoke all his interest
in a favored guest.

"Are you aware to what high destiny the Fates have
called you?" said he, laughing. "Some attain fortune by
being first to seek her, — you^ on the contrary, win by dally-
ing. We had decided, a few moments before 3^ou came in,
that the first lady who entered should be the Queen of our
party, — this lot is yours."



"I beg to correct you, Mr. Cashel," cried Lady Janet,
smartly ; " Miss Meek entered before her Ladyship."

"Oh, yes I" "Certainly!" "Without a doubt!" re-
sounded from the whole company, who were not sorry to
confer their suffrages on the madcap girl rather than the
fashionable beauty.

"How distressing!" sighed Mr. Meek. "Oh, dear! I
hope this is not so, — nay, I 'm sure, Jemima, it cannot be
the case."

"You're thinking of George Colman, Meek, — I see you
are," cried Linton.

"No, indeed; no, upon my honor. What was it about

" The story is everybody's story. The Prince insisted
once that George was his senior, and George only corrected
himself of his mistake by saying that ' he could not possibly
have had the rudeness to enter the world before his Royal
Highness.' "

"Ah! yes — very true — so it was," sighed Meek, who
affected not to perceive the covert sneer at his assumed

While, therefore, the party gathered around Cashel, with
eager assurance of Miss Meek's precedence. Lady Kilgoff,
rising, crossed the room to where that young lady was stand-


ing, and gracefully arranging her loose-flowing ringlets into
a knot at the back of the head, fastened them by a splendid
comb which she took from her own, and whose top was
fashioned into a handsome coronet of gold, saying, '' The
question of legitimacy is solved forever : the Pretender
yields her crown to the true Sovereign."

The gracefulness and tact of this sudden movement called
forth the warmest acknowledgments of all save Lady Janet,
who whispered to Miss Kenny feck, "It is pretty clear, I
fancy, who is to pay for the crown jewels ! "

" Am I really the Queen? " cried the young girl, half wild
with delight.

" Most assuredly, madam," said Linton, kissing her
hand in deep reverence. "I beg to be first to tender my

" That 's so like him ! " cried she, laughing ; " but you shall
be no oflScer of mine. Where's Charley? I want to make
him Master of the Buckhounds, if there be buckhounds."

"Will you not appoint your ladies first, madam? "said
Lady Janet ; "or, are your preferences for the other sex
to leave us quite forgotten ? "

" Be all of you everything you please," rejoined the
childish, merry voice, "with Charley Frobisher for Master
of the Horse."

" Linton for Master of the Revels," said some one.

" Agreed," said she.

"Mr. Cashel had better be First Lord of the Treasury,
I suspect," said Lady Janet, snappishly, "if the Adminis-
tration is to last."

"And if ye a'ways wear drapery o' this fashion," said
Sir Andrew, taking up the torn fragment of her riding-
habit as he spoke, ' ' I maun say that the Mistress of the
Robes will na be a sinecure."

" Will any one tell me what are my powers? " said she,
sitting down with an air of mock dignity.

" Will any one dare to say what they are not? " responded

" Have I unlimited command in everything?"

"In everything, madam; I and all mine ai'e at your


" That 's what the farce will end in," whispered Lady
Janet to Mrs. Kennyfeck.

"Well, then, to begin. The court will dine with us to-
day — to-morrow we will hunt in our royal forest; our
private band — Have we a private band, Mr. Linton?"

*' Certainly, your Majesty, — so private as to be almost

"Then our private band will perform in the evening;
perhaps, too, we shall dance. Remember, my Lords and
Ladies, we are a young sovereign who loves pleasure, and
that a sad face or a mournful one is treason to our person.
Come forward now, and let us name our household."

While the group gathered around the wild and high-
spirited girl, in whose merry mood even the least-disposed
were drawn to participate, Linton approached Lady Kilgoff,
who had seated herself near a window, and was affecting
to arrange a frame of embroidery, on which she rarely
bestowed a moment's labor.



1 11 make her brew the beverage herself,
With her own fingers stir the cup,
And know 't is poison as she drinks it.


Had Linton been about to renew an acquaintance with one
be had scarcely known before, and who might possibly have
ceased to remember him, his manner could not have been
more studiously diffident and respectful.

'' I rejoice to see your Ladyship here," said he, in a low,
deliberate voice, *' where, on the last time we spoke together,
you seemed uncertain of coming."

"Very true, Mr. Linton," said she, not looking up from
her work; "my Lord had not fully made up his mind."

" Say, rather, your Ladyship had changed yours," said
he, with a cold smile, — "a privilege you are not wont to
deny yourself."

" I might have exercised it oftener in life with advan-
tage," replied she, still holding her head bent over the
embroidery frame.

" Don't you think that your Ladyship and I are old
friends enough to speak without innuendo?"

"If we speak at all," said she, with a low but calm

" True, that is to be thought of," rejoined he, with an
unmoved quietude of voice. " Being in a manner pre-
pared for a change in your Ladyship's sentiments towards
me —

"Sir!" said she, interrupting, and as suddenly raising
her face, which was now covered with a deep blush.

" I trust I have said nothing to provoke reproof," said


Linton, coldly. " Your Ladyship is well aware if my words
be not true. I repeat it, then, — your sentiments are
changed towards me, or — the alteration is not of my choos-
ing — I was deceived in the expression of them when last
we met."

" It may suit your purpose, sh-, but it can scarcely con-
form to the generosity of a gentleman, to taunt me with
acceding to your request for a meeting. If any other weak-
ness can be alleged against me, pray let me hear it."

"When we last met," said Linton, in a voice of lower
and deeper meaning than before, " we did so that I might
speak, and yoic hear, the avowal of a passion which for
years has filled my heart — against which I have struggled
and fought in vain — to stifle which I have plunged into
dissipations that I detested, and followed ambitions I de-
spised — to obliterate all memory of which I would stoop
to crime itself, rather than suffer on in the hopeless misery
I must do."

"I will hear no more of this," said she, pushing back
the work-table, and preparing to rise.

"You must and you shall hear me, madam," said he,
replacing the table and affecting to arrange it for her. " I
conclude you do not wish this amiable company to arbitrate
between us."

"Oh, sir! is it thus you threaten me?"

"You should say compromise, madam. There can be no
threat where a common ruin impends on all concerned."

"To what end all this, Mr. Linton?" said she. "You
surely cannot expect from me any return to a feeling which,
if it once existed, you yourself were the means of uproot-
ing forever. Even you could scarcely be ungenerous enough
to persecute one for whose misery you have done already
too much."

' ' Will you accept my arm for half an hour ? " cried he,
interrupting. "I pledge myself it shall be the last time
I either make such a request, or even allude to this topic
between us. On the pretence of showing you the house,
I may be able — if not to justify myself — nay, I see how

Online LibraryCharles James LeverRoland Cashel. (Volume 2) → online text (page 1 of 33)