" Believe it not. ' The Dauntless ' left yesterday
morning : Katherine at seven o'clock last night was
"Ah, he must have returned for her! Well he
knew that if he did not steal her away, I had taken
her from him. Yes, and I feared him. When I heard
that ' The Dauntless ' was to take him to the West
Indies, I watched the ship. After I kissed Kath-
erine yesterday morning, I went straight to the pier,
and waited until she was on her way." Then he told
her all Mrs. Gordon had said, and showed her the
fragments of Katherine's letter. The mother kissed
them, and put them in her bosom ; and, as she did
so, she said softly, " It was a great strait, Joris."
"Well, well, we also must pass through it. The
Dominie Yan Linden has gone to examine the rec-
ords; and then, if she his lawful wife be, in the
newspapers I must advertise the marriage. Much
talk and many questions I shall have to bear."
" ' If,' ' if she his lawful wife be ! ' Say not ' if ' in
my hearing; say not 'if ' of my Katherine."
" When a girl runs away from her home "
" With her husband she went; keep that in mind
when people speak to thee."
" What kind of a husband will he be to her? "
" Well, then, I think not bad of him. Nearer home
there are worse men. Now, if sensible thou be, thou
wilt make the best of what is beyond thy power. '
Every bird its own nest builds in its own way. Nay,
152 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
but blind birds are we all, and God builds for us.
This marriage of God's ordering may be, though
not of thy ordering; and against it I would no
longer fight. I think my Katherine is happy ; and
happy with her I will be, though the child in her joy
I see not."
" So much talk as there will be. In the store and
the streets, a man must listen. And some with me
will condole, and some with congratulations will
come ; and both to me will be vinegar and gall."
"To all friends and unfriends say this : ' Every
one chooses for themselves. Capt. Hyde loved my
daughter, and for her love nearly he died ; and my
daughter loved him ; and what has been from the crea-
tion, will be.' Say also, * Worse might have come ;
for he hath a good heart, and in the army he is much
loved, and of a very high family is he.' Joris, let
me see thee pluck up thy courage, like a man. Bet-
ter may come of this than has come of things better
looking. Much we thought of Batavius "
" On that subject wilt thou be quiet ? "
"And, if at poor little Katherine thou be angry,
speak out thy mind to me; to others, say nothing
but well of the dear one. Now, then, I will get thee
thy dinner; for in sorrow a good meal is a good
While they were eating this early dinner, Joanna
came in, sad and tearful; and with loud lamentings
she threw herself upon her mother's neck. " What,
then, is the matter with thee ? " asked Lysbet, with
" O mother, my Katherine! my sister Katherine! "
" I thought perhaps thou had bad news of Bata-
vius. Thy sister Katherine hath married a very fine
gentleman, and she is happy. For thou must re-
member that all the good men do not come from
" I am glad that so you take it. I thought in very
great sorrow you would be."
"See that you do not say such words to any one,
Joanna. Very angry will I be if I hear them. Bata-
vius, also; he must be quiet on this matter."
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 153
" Oh, then, Batavius has many things of greater
moment to think about ! Of Katherine he never ap-
proved ; and the talk there will be, he will not like
it. Before from Boston he comes back, I shall be
glad to have it over."
" None of his affair it is," said Joris. " Of my
own house and my own daughter, I can take the
care. And if he like the talk, or if he like not the
talk, there it will be. Who will stop talking because
Batavius comes home ? "
"When Joris spoke in this tone on any subject, no
one wished to continue it; and it was not until her
father had left the house, that Joanna asked her
mother particularly about Katherine's marriage.
" Was she sure of it ? Had they proofs ? Would it
be legal ? More than a dozen people stopped me as
I came over here," she said, " and asked me about
" I know not how more than a dozen people knew
of any thing, Joanna. But many ill-natured words
will be spoken, doubtless. Even Janet Semple came
here yesterday, thinking over Katherine to exult a
little. But Katherine is a great deal beyond her to-
day. And perhaps a countess she may yet be. That
is what her husband said to thy father."
" I knew not that he spoke to my father about
"Thou knows not all things. Before thou wert
married to Batavius, before Neil Semple nearly mur-
dered him, he asked of thy father her hand. Thou
wast born on thy wedding-day, I think. All things
that happened 'before it have from thy memory
" Well, I am a good wife, I know that. That also
is what Batavius says. Just before I got to the
gate, I met Madam Semple and Gertrude Van Gaas-
beeck; they had been shopping together."
" Did they speak of Katherine ? "
" Indeed they did."
" Or did you speak first, Joanna ? It is an evil
bird that pulls to pieces its own nest."
" O mother, scolded I cannot be for Katherine's
154 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
folly! My Batavius always said, 'The favorite is
Katherine.' Always he thought that of me too
much was expected. And Madam Semple said and
always she liked Katherine that very badly had
she behaved for a whole year, and that the end was
what everybody had looked for. It is on me very
hard, I who have always been modest, and taken
care of my good name. Nobody in the whole city
will have one kind word to say for Katherine. You
will see that is so, mother."
" You will see something very different, Joanna.
Many will praise Katherine, for she to herself has
done well. And, when back she comes, at the gov-
ernor's she will visit, and with all the great ladies;
and not one among them will be so lovely as Kath-
And, if Joanna had been in Madam Semple's par-
lor a few hours later, she would have had a most de-
cided illustration of Lysbet's faith in the popular
verdict. Madam was sitting at her tea-table talk-
ing to the elder, who had brought home w r ith him
the full supplement to Joanna's story. Both were
really sorry for their old friends, although there is
something in the best kind of human nature that
indorses the punishment of those things in which
old friends differ from us.
Neil had heard nothing. He had been shut up in
his office all day over an important, suit ; and, when
he took the street again, he was weary, and far from
being inclined to join any acquaintances in conver-
sation. In fact, the absorbing topic was one which
no one cared to introduce in Neil's presence; and
he himself was too full of professional matters to
notice that he attracted more than usual attention
from the young men standing around the store-
doors, and the officers lounging in front of the
King's Arms Tavern.
He was irritable, too, with exhaustion, though he
was doing his best to keep himself in control; and
when madam his mother said pointedly, " I'm fear-
ing, Neil, that the bad news has made you ill ; you
arena at a' like yoursel'," he asked without much
interest, " What bad news ? "
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 155
" The news anent Katherine Van Heemskirk."
He had supposed it was some political disappoint-
ment, and at Katherine's name his pale face grew
" What of her ? " he asked.
" Didna you hear? She ran awa' last night wi'
Capt. Hyde ; stole awa' wi' him on ' The Daunt-
" She would have the right to go with him, I have
no doubt," said Neil with guarded calmness.
" Do you really think she was his wife ? "
" If she went with him, / am sure she was." He
dropped the words with an emphatic precision, and
looked with gloomy eyes out of the window ; gloomy,
but steadfast, as if He were trying to face a future
in which there was no hope. His mother did not
observe him. She went on prattling as she filled
the elder's cup, "If there had been any wedding
worth the name o' the thing, we would hae been
bidden to it. I diuna believe she is married."
" Are you sure that she sailed w r ith Capt. Hyde in
' The Dauntless,' or is it a pack of women's tales ? "
"The news cam' wi' your fayther the elder," an-
swered madam, much offended. "You can mak'
your inquiries there if you think he's mair reliable
than I am."
Neil looked at his father, and the elder said
quietly, "I wouldna be positive aneut any woman :
the bad are whiles good, and the good are whiles
bad. But there is nae doubt that Katherine has
gone with Hyde ; and I heard that the military at
the King's Arms have been drinking bumpers to
Capt. Hyde arid his bricfe ; and I know that Mrs.
Gordon has said they were married lang syne, when
Hyde couldna raise himseP or put a foot to the
ground. But Joanna told her mother she had
neither seen nor heard tell o' book, ring, or minister;
and, as I say, for mysel' I'll no venture a positive
opinion, but I think the lassie is married to the man
she's off an' awa' wi'.' 1
" But if she isna ? " persisted madam.
In a moment Neil let slip the rein in which he had
156 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
been holding himself, and in a slow, intense voice
answered, " I shall make it my business to find out.
If Katherine is married, God bless her! If she is
not, I will follow Hyde around and around the world
until I cleave his false heart in two." His passion
gathered with its utterance. He pushed away his
chair, and put down his cup so indifferently that it
missed the table and fell with a crash to the floor.
"Oh, my cheeny, my cheeny! Oh, my bonnie
cups that I hae used for forty years, and no' a piece
broken afore! "
"Ah, weel, Janet," said the elder, "you shouldoa
badger an angry man when he's drinking from your
"I canna mend nor match it in the whole Prov-
ince, elder. Oh, my bonnie cup! "
"I was thinking, Janet, o' Katherine's good
name. If it is gane, it is neither to mend nor to
match in the whole wide world. I'll awa' and see
Joris and Lysbet. And put every cross thought
where you'll never find them again, Janet; and tak'
your good-will in your hands, and come wi' me.
Lysbet will want to see you."
" Not her, indeed ! I can tell you, elder, that Lys-
bet was vera cool and queer wi' me yesterday."
"Come, Janet, dinna keep your good-nature in
remnants. Let's hae enough to make a cloak big
enough to cover a' bygone faults."
"I think, then, I ought to stay'wi' Neil."
" Neil doesna want anybody near him. Leave him
alane. Neil's a' right. Forty years syne I would
hae broke my mother's cheeny, and drawn steel as
quick as Neil did, if I heard a word against bonnie
Janet Gordon." An4 the old man made his wife a
bow; and madam blushed with pleasure, and v/ent
up-stairs to put on her bonnet and India shawl.
"Woman, woman," meditated the smiling elder;
" she is never too angry to be won wi' a mouthful o*
sweet words, special if you add a bow or a kiss to
them. My certie ! when a husband can get his ain
way at sic a sma' price, it's just wonderfu' ho
doesna buy it in perpetuity."
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 157
Joris was somewhat comforted by his old friend's
sympathy ; for the elder, in the hour of trial, knew
how to be magnanimous. But the father's wound
lay deeper than human love could reach. He was
suffering from what all suffer who are wounded in
their affections; for alas, alas, how poorly do we
love even those whom we love most! We are not
only bruised by the limitations of their love for us,
but also by the limitations of pur own love for them.
And those who know what it is to be strong enough
to wrestle, and yet not strong enough to overcome,
will understand how the grief, the anger, the jeal-
ousy, the resentment, from which he suffered,,
amazed Joris ; he had not realized before the depth?
and strength of his feelings.
He tried to put the memory of Katherine away, but
he could not accomplish a miracle. The girl's face
was ever before him. He felt her caressing fingers-
linked in his own ; and, as he walked in his house
and his garden, her small feet pattered beside him.
For as there are in creation invisible bonds that da
not break like mortal bonds, so also there are cor-
respondences subsisting between souls, despite the
separation of distance.
" I would forget Katherine if I could," he said to-
Dominie Van Linden; and the good man, bravely
putting aside his private grief, took the hands of
Joris in his own, and bending toward him, answered,
" That would be a great pity. Why forget ? Trust
rather, that out of sorrow God will bring to you joy."
" Not natural is that, dominie. How can it be ?
I do not understand how it can be."
"You do not understand! Well, then, och mijn
jongen, what matters comprehension, if you have
faith ? Trust, now, that it is well with the child."
But Joris believed it was ill with her; and he
blamed not only himself, but every one in connec-
tion with Katherine, for results which he was cer-
tain might have been foreseen and prevented. Did
he not foresee them ? Had he not spoken plainly
enough to Hyde and to Lysbet and to the child her-
self ? He should have sent her to Albany, to her
158 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
sister Cornelia. For he believed now that Lysbet
had not cordially disapproved of Hyde ; and as for
Joanna, she had been far too much occupied with
Batavius and her own marriage to care for any other
thing. And one of his great fears was that Kather-
ine also would forget her father and mother and
home, and become a willing alien from her own
He was so wrapped up in his grief, that he did not
notice Bram was suffering also. Bram got the
brunt of the world's wouderings and inquiries.
People who did not like to ask Joris questions, felt
no such delicacy with Bram. And Bram not only
tenderly loved his sister: he hated with the unrea-
soning passion of youth the entire English soldiery.
He made no exception now. They were the visible
marks of a subjection which he was sworn, heart and
soul, to oppose. It humiliated him among his
fellows, that his sister should have fled with one of
them. It gave those who envied and disliked him
an opportunity of inflicting covert and cruel wounds.
Joris could, in some degree, control himself; he
could speak of the marriage with regret, but without
passion; he had even alluded, in some cases, to
Hyde's family and expectations. The majority be-
lieved that he was secretly a little proud of the alli-
ance. But Bram was aflame with indignation ; first,
if the marriage were at all dourtoted ; second, if it
were supposed to be a satisfactory one to any mem-
ber of the Van Heemskirk family.
As to the doubters, they were 'completely silenced
when the next issue of the "New-York Gazette"
appeared; for among its most conspicuous adver-
tisements was the following:
Married, Oct. 19, 1765. by the Rev. Mr. Somers. chaplain to his
Excellency the Governor. Richard Drake Hyde of Hyde Manor,
Norfolk, son of the late Richard Drake Hyde, and brother of
William Drake 'Hyde, Earle of Dorset and Hyde, to Katherine. the
youngest daughter of Joris and Lysbet Van Heemskirk, of the
<5ity and province of New York.
Witnesses : NIGEL GORDON. H. M. Nineteenth Light Cavalry.
GEORGE EAKKE, H. M. Nineteenth Light Cavalry.
ADELAIDE GORDON, wife of Nigel Gordon.
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 159
This announcement took every one a little by sur-
prise. A few were really gratified; the majority
perceived that it silenced gossip of a very enthrall-
ing kind. No one could now deplore or insinuate,
or express sorrow or astonishment. And, as rejoic-
ing with one's friends and neighbors soon becomes
a very monotonous thing, Katherine Van Heems-
kirk's fine marriage was tacitly dropped. Only for
that one day on which it was publicly declared, was
it an absorbing topic. The whole issue of the " Ga-
zette " was quickly bought ; and then people, having
seen the fact with their own eyes, felt a sudden
satiety of the whole affair.
On some few it had a more particular influence,.
Hyde's brother officers held high festival to their
comrade's success. To every bumper they read the
notice aloud, as a toast, and gave a kind of national
triumph to what was a purely personal affair. Joris
read it with dim eyes, and then lit his long Gouda .
pipe and sat smoking with an air of inexpressible
loneliness. Lysbet read it, and then put the paper
carefully away among the silks and satins in her
bottom drawer. Joanna read it, and then immedi-
diately bought a dozen copies and sent them to the
relatives of Batavius, in Dordrecht, Holland. Neil
Semple read and re-read it. It seemed to have a,
fascination for him; and for more than an hour he-
sat musing, with his eyes fixed upon the fateful
words. Then he rose and wer^t to the hearth. There
were a few sticks of wood burning upon it, but they
had fallen apart. He put them together, and, tear-
ing out the notice, he laid it upon them. It meant
much more to Neil than the destruction of a scrap
of paper, and he stood watching it, long after it had
become a film of grayish ash.
Bram would not read it at all. He was too full of
shame and trouble at the event; and the moments
went as if they moved on lead. But the unhappy
day wore away to its evening; and after tea he-
gathered a great nosegay of narcissus, and went to
Isaac Cohen's. He did not " hang about the steps,'*
as Joris in his temper had said. Miriam was not one
160 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
of those girls who sit in the door to be gazed at by
every passing man. He went into the store, and
she seemed to know his footstep. He had no need
to speak : she came at once from the mystery behind
the crowded place into the clearer light. -Plain and
dark were her garments, and Bram would have been
unable to describe her dress ; but it was as fitting to
her as are the green leaves of the rose-tree to the
Their acquaintance had evidently advanced since
that anxious evening when she had urged upon
Bram the intelligence of the duel between Hyde and
Neil Semple ; for Bram gave her the flowers without
.embarrassment, and she buried her sweet face in
their sweet petals, and then lifted it with a smile at
once grateful and confidential. Then they began to
talk of Katherine. " She was so beautiful and so
kind," said Miriam: "just a week since she passed
here, with some violets in her hand ; and, when she
saw me, she ran up the steps, and said, 'I have
brought them for you ; ' and she clasped my fingers,
-and looked so pleasantly in my face. If I had a
sister, Bram, I think she would smile at me in the
" Very grateful to you was Katherine. All you
did about the duel, I told her. She knows her hus-
band had not been alive to-day, but for you. O
Miriam, if you had not spoken ! >r
" I should have had.the stain of blood on my con-
science. I did right to speak. My grandfather
said to me, 'You did quite right, my dear.' "
Then Bram told her all the little things that had
grieved him, and they talked as dear companions
might talk; only, beneath all the common words of
daily life, there was some subtle sweetness that
made their voices low, and their glances shy and
It was not more than an hour ere Cohen came
home. He looked quickly at the young people, and
then stood by Bram, and began to talk courteously
of passing events. Miriam leaned, listening, against
a magnificent " apostle's cabinet " in black oak,
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 161
one of those famous ones made in Nuremburg in
the fifteenth century, with locks and hinges of ham-
mered-steel work, and finely chased handles of the
,same material. Against its carved and pillared
background, her dark drapery fell in almost unno-
ticed grace ; but her fair face and small hands, with
the mass- of white narcissus in them, had a singular
and alluring beauty. She affected Bram as some-
thing sweetly supernatural might have done. It
was an effort for him to answer Cohen : he felt as if
it would be impossible for him to go away.
But the clock struck the hour, and the shop-boy
began to put up the shutters; and the old man
walked to the door, taking Bram with him. Then
Miriam, smiling her farewell, passed like a shadow
into the darker shadows beyond ; and Bram went
home, wondering to find that she had cast out of his
heart, hatred, malice, fretful worry, and all unchar-
itableness. How could he blend them with thoughts
of her ? and how could he forget the slim, dark-
robed figure, or the lovely face against the old black
has, crowned with its twelve sombre figures, or the
white slender hands holding the white fragrant
AT HYDE MANOR, AND BEAM AND MIRIAM.
*' Each man's homestead is his golden milestone,
Is the central point from which he measures
Through the gateways of the world around him."
"And if we will one Guide obey,
The dreariest path, the darkest way,
Shall issue out in heavenly day."
THERE are certain months in every life which seem
to be full of fate, good or evil, for that life ; and
May was Katherine Hyde's luck month. It was on
a May afternoon that Hyde had asked her love ; it
162 THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON.
was on a May night she fled with him through the
gray shadows of the misty river. Since then a year
had gone by, and it was May once more, an English
May, full of the magic of the month ; clear skies
and young foliage, and birds' songs, the cool, woody
smell of wall-flowers, and the ethereal perfume of
In Hyde Manor House, there was that stir of prep-
aration which indicates a departure. The house was
before time; it had the air of early rising; the at-
mosphere of yesterday had not been dismissed, but
lingered around, and gave the idea of haste and
change, and departure from regular custom. It was,
indeed, an hour before the usual breakfast-time ; but
Hyde and Katherine were taking a hasty meal to-
gether. Hyde was in full uniform, his sword at his
side, his cavalry cap and cloak on a chair near him ;
and up and down the gravelled walk before the main
entrance, a groom was leading his horse.
"I must see what is the matter with Mephisto,"
said Hyde. "How he is snorting and pawing! And
if Park loses control of him, I shall be greatly in-
convenienced for both horse and time."
The remark was partially the excuse of a man who
feels that he must go, and who tries to say the hard
words in less ominous form. They both rose to-
gether, Katherine bravely smiling away tears, and
looking exceedingly lovely in hsr-. blue morning-
gown trimmed with frillings of thread lace; and
Hyde, gallant and tender, but still with the air of a
man not averse to go back to life's real duty. He
took Katherine in his arms, kissed away her tears,
made her many a loving promise, and then, lifting
his cap and cloak, left the room. The servants were
lingering around to get his last word, and to wish
him " God-speed; " and for a few minutes he stood
talking to his groom, and soothing Mephisto. Evi-
dently he had quite recovered his health and
strength ; for he sprang very easily into the saddle,
and, gathering the reins in his hand, kept the restive
animal in perfect control.
A moment he stood thus, the very ideal of a fear-
THE BOW OF ORANGE RIBBON. 163
less, chivalrous, handsome soldier; the next, his
face softened to almost womanly tenderness : for he
saw Katherine coming hastily through the dim hall,
and into the clear sunshine, and in her arms was his
little son. She came fearlessly to his side, and lifted
the sleeping child to him. He stooped and kissed it,
and then kissed again the beautiful mother; and
calling happily backward, "Good-by, my love; God
keep you, love ; good-by," he gave Mephisto his own
wild will, and was soon lost to sight among the trees
of the park.
Katherine stood with her child in her arms, listen-
ing to the ever fainter beat of Mephisto's hoofs.
Her husband had gone back to duty, his furlough had
expired, their long, leisurely honeymoon was over.
But she was neither fearful nor unhappy. Hyde's
friends had procured his exchange into a court regi-
ment. He was only going to London, and he was
still her lover. She looked forward with clear eyes
as she said gratefully to herself, "So happy am I!
So good is my husband ! So dear is my child ! So
fair and sweet is my home ! "
And though to many minds Hyde Manor might
seem neither fair or sweet, Katherine really liked it.