Man's love is of man 1 s life a thing apart,
' Tis woman's whole existence . . . ." />.
THREE GREAT MEN RUINED IN
ONE YEAR A KING, A CAD AND
HALLIE ERMINIE RIVES
Author of Hearts Courageous, A Furnace of Earth, etc., etc.
HOWARD CHANDLER CHRISTY
THE BOBBS-MERRILL COMPANY
THK BOBBS-MERRILL COMPANY
The price of this book at retail is One Dollar net.
No dealer is licensed to sell it at a less price, and a
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THE BOBBS-MERBILL COMPANY.
BRAUNWORTH A. CO.
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POST WHEELER, LITT. D.
My history will furnish materials for a pretty
little Romance which shall be entitled and de-
nominated the loves of Lord B. Byron, 1804
I hate things all fiction ; and therefore the
Merchant and Othello have no great associa-
tions to me ; but Pierre has. There should
always be some foundation of fact for the
most airy fabric, and pure invention is but
the talent of a liar. Byron, 1817
I THE FEAST OF RAMAZAN 1
II " MAD, BAD AND DANGEROUS TO KNOW " 9
III THE BOOMERANG 18
IV THE LITTLE BOY IN ABERDEEN 26
V AN ANTTHINGARIAN 34
VI WHAT THE DEAD MAY KNOW 41
VII THE YOUTH IN FLEET PRISON 49
VIII A SAVAGE SPUR 58
IX GORDON WAKES AND FINDS HIMSELF FAMOUS 66
X THE PRICE OF THE BAUBLE 75
XI THE BEATEN PATH 86
XII " MAN'S LOVE Is OF MAN'S LIFE A THING
XIII THE SMIRCHED IMAGE 96
XIV WHAT CAME OF THE TREACLE-MOON 100
XV THE PITFALL 112
XVI THE DESPOILING 120
XVII THE BURSTING OF THE STORM 128
XVIII GORDON STANDS AT BAY 135
XIX THE BURNING OF AN EFFIGY 142
XX THE EXILE 152
XXI GORDON SWIMS FOR A LIFE 156
XXII THE FACE ON THE IVORY 162
XXIII THE DEVIL'S DEAL 167
XXIV THE MARK OF THE BEAST 173
XXV TERESA MEETS A STRANGER 180
XXVI A WOMAN OF FIRE AND DREAMS 189
XXVII THE EVIL EYE 197
XXVIII THE HAUNTED MAN 204
XXIX TERESA'S AWAKENING 208
XXX THE PEACE OF PADRE SOMALIAN 218
XXXI AT THE FEET OF OUR LADY OF SORROWS 223
XXXII THE RESTRAINING HAND 235
XXXIII THE PASSING OF JANE CLERMONT 246
XXXIV TITA INTERVENES 252
XXXV IN THE CASA GARDEN 256
XXXVI THE FACE AT THE WINDOW 263
XXXVII TREVANION FINDS AN ALLY 269
XXXVIII THE HEART OF A WOMAN 276
XXXIX BARRIERS BURNED AWAY 283
XL THE OATH ON THE KRISS 290
XLI ASHES OF DENIAL 298
XLII GORDON TELLS A STORY 303
XLIII ONE GOLDEN HOUR 309
XLIV BY ORDER OP THE POPE 316
XLV THE SUMMONS 321
XLVI THE POTION 325
XL VII THE COMPLICITY OF THE GODS 329
XLVIII THE ALL OF LOVE 337
XLIX " You ARE AIMING AT MY HEART! " 344
L CASSIDY FINDS A LOST SCENT 348
LI DR. NOTT'S SERMON 352
LII TREVANION IN THE TOILS 359
LII I THE COMING OF DALLAS 363
LIV THE PYRE 372
LV THE CALL 378
LVI THE FAREWELL 386
LVII THE MAN IN THE RED UNIFORM 395
LVIII THE ARCHISTRATEGOS 401
LIX IN WHICH TERESA MAKES A JOURNEY 410
LX TRIED As BY FIRE 416
LXI THE RENUNCIATION 423
LXII GORDON GOES UPON A PILGRIMAGE 427
LXIII THE GREAT SILENCE 434
LXIV " OF HIM WHOM SHE DENIED A HOME,
THE GRAVE " 437
THE FEAST OF RAMAZAN
A cool breeze slipped ahead of the dawn. It blew dim
the calm Greek stars, stirred the intricate branches of
olive-trees inlaid in the rose-pearl fagade of sky, bowed
the tall, coral-lipped oleanders lining the rivulets, and
crisped the soft wash of the gulf-tide. It lifted the
strong bronze curls on the brow of a sleeping man who
lay on the sea-beach covered with a goatskin.
George Gordon woke and looked about him: at the
pallid, ripple-ridged dunes, the murmuring clusters of
reeds; at the dead fire on which a kid had roasted the
night before ; at the forms stretched in slumber around
it Suliotes in woolen kirtles and with shawl girdles
stuck with silver-handled pistols, an uncouth and sav-
age body-guard; at his only English companion, John
Hobhouse, who had travelled with him through Albania
2 THE CASTAWAY
and to-morrow was to start back to London, asleep now
with a saddle for a pillow. While he gazed, day broke
effulgent, like light at the first hour, and the sun rose,
pouring its crimson wine into the goblet of the sea's
For a full year Gordon had roughed it in the wilder-
ness, sleeping one night in a pasha's palace, the next
in a cow-shed a strange choice, it seemed, for a peer
of twenty-two, who had taken his seat in the House
of Lords and published a book that had become the
talk of London. Yet now, as he rose to his feet and
threw back his square-set shoulders, his colorless face
and deep gray-blue eyes whetted with keen zest.
"This is better than England," he muttered. "How
the deuce could anybody make such a world as that, I
wonder ? For what purpose were there ordained dandies
and kings and fellows of colleges and women of a
certain age and peers and myself, most of all ?" His
thought held an instant's thin edge of bitterness as his
look fell : his right boot had a thicker sole than the left,
and he wore an inner shoe that laced tightly under the
Stepping gingerly lest he waken his comrade he
threaded the prostrate forms to the shambling rock-
path that led, through white rushes and clumps of
cochineal cactus, to the town. A little way along, it
crossed a ledge jutting from the heel of the hill. Under
this shelf the water had washed a deep pool of limpid
emerald. He threw off his clothing and plunged into
the tingling surf. He swam far out into the sea, under
the sky's lightening amethyst, every vein beating with
THE CASTAWAY 3
Before he came from the water, the sunrise had
gilded the tops of the mountains; while he dressed on
the rock it was kindling golden half-moons on the
minarets of Missolonghi, a mile away.
As his eyes wandered over the scene the strange
stern crags, the nearer fields hroidered with currant-
bushes, the girdling coast steeped in the wild poignant
beauty of an Ionian October they turned with a
darker meaning to the town, quiet enough now, though
at sunset it had blazed with Mussulman festivity, while
its Greek citizens huddled in shops and houses behind
barred doors. It was the feast of Ramazan a time for
the Turks of daily abstinence and nightly carousal, a
long fast for lovers, whose infractions were punished
rigorously with bastinado and with the fatal sack. Till
the midnight tolled from the mosques the shouts and
muskets of the faithful had blasted the solitude. And
this land was the genius-mother of .the world, in the
grip of her Turkish conqueror, who defiled her cities
with his Moslem feasts and her waters with the bodies
of his drowned victims !
Would it always be so? Gordon thought of a roll
of manuscript in his saddle-bag verses written on the
slopes of those mountains and in the fiery shade of
these shores. Into the pages he had woven all that old
love for this shackled nation which had been one of
.the pure enthusiasms of his youth and had grown and
deepened with his present sojourn. Would the old spirit
of Marathon ever rearise ?
He went back to the sandy beach, sat down, and
drawing paper from his pocket, began to write, using
4 THE CASTAWAY
his knee for a desk. The spell of the place and hour
was upon him. Lines flowed from his pencil:
"The isles of Greece, the isles of Greece!
Where burning Sappho loved and sung,
Where grew the arts of war and peace,
Where Delos rose, and Phoebus sprung!
Eternal summer gilds them yet,
But all, except their sun, is set.
The mountains look on Marathon
And Marathon looks on the sea;
And musing there an hour alone,
I dreamed that Greece might still be free;
For, standing on the Persians' grave,
I could not deem myself a slave."
His gaze fell on the figures ahout the dead fire,
wrapped in rough capotes rugged descendants of a
once free race, hardier than their great forefathers,
but with ancient courage overlaid, cringing now from
the wands of Turkish pashas. A somber look came to
his face as he wrote :
" 'Tis something, in the death of fame,
Though linked among a fettered race,
To feel at least a patriot's shame,
Even as I sing, suffuse my face;
For what is left the poet here?
For Greeks a blush for Greece a tear.
Must we but weep o'er days more blessed?
Must we but blush? Our fathers bled.
Earth! Render back from out thy breast
A remnant of the Spartan dead!
Of the three hundred grant but three
To make a new Thermopylffi!"
THE CASTAWAY 5
He looked up. The crescents on the spires of the
town were dazzling points of light in the gold-blue air,
the morning full-blown, clean and fragrant with scents
of sun and sea. In the midst of its warmth and beauty
he shivered. An odd prescient sensation had come to
him like a gelid breath from the upper ether. He
started at a voice behind him :
"More poetry, I'll lay a guinea I"
Gordon did not smile. The chill was still creeping
in his veins. He thrust the paper into his pocket as
Hobhouse threw himself down by his side.
The latter noticed his expression. "What is it?" he
"Only one of my moods, I fancy. But just before you
spoke I had a curious feeling; it was as though this
spot that town yonder were tangled in my destiny."
The barbaric servants had roused now and a fire was
"There's a simple remedy for that," the other said.
"Come back to London with me. I swear I hate to
start to-morrow without you."
Gordon shook his head. He replied more lightly, for
the eerie depression had vanished as swiftly as it had
"Not I ! You'll find it the same hedge-and-ditch
old harridan of a city wine, women, wax-works and
weather-cocks the coaches in Hyde Park, and man
milliners promenading of a Sunday. I prefer a clear
sky with windy mare's-tails, and a fine savage race of
two-legged leopards like this," he pointed to the fire
with its picturesque figures. "I'll have another year of
it, Hobhouse, before I go back."
6 THE CASTAWAY
"You'll have spawned your whole quarto by then, no
"Perhaps. I am like the tiger; if I miss the first
spring I go growling back to my jungle. I must take
the fit as it offers. Composition comes over me in a
kind of frenzy, and if I don't write to empty my mind,
I go mad. Poetry is the lava of the imagination, whose
eruption prevents an earthquake. Much the little en-
vious knot of parson-poets who rule the reviews know
about it!" he continued half satirically.
Hobhouse smiled quizzically. The man beside him
had had a short and sharp acquaintance with England's
self-constituted authorities in poetic criticism. Two
years before, fresh from college, he had published a
slender volume of verses. In quality these had been in-
different enough, but the fact that their author was a
peer offered an attractive text for the gibes of the re-
viewers. Their ridicule pierced him. His answer had
been immediate and stunning a poetical Satire, keen
as a rapier, polished as a mirror, pitiless as the Inqui-
sition, which flayed his detractors one by one for the
laughter of London. The book had been the talk of
the year, but while at the very acme of popularity, the
youthful author had withdrawn it, and, still smarting
from the sneers which had been its inspiration, had
sailed for the Levant. A thought of this sensitiveness
was in Hobhouse's mind as Gordon continued:
"When I get home I'll decide whether to put it into
the fire or to publish. If it doesn't make fuel for me
it will for the critics."
"You gave them cause enough. You'll admit that."
"They should have let me alone." Gordon's voice
THE CASTAWAY 7
under its lightness hid a note of unaffected feeling, and
his eyes gathered spots of fire and brown. "It wasn't
much that first poor little college book of mine ! But
no! I was a noble upstart a young fool of a peer
that needed taking down ! So they loosed their literary
mountebanks to snap at me! Is it any wonder I hit
back? Who wouldn't?"
"At least," averred Hobhouse, "very few would have
done it so well. There was no quill-whittler left in the
British Isles when you finished that Satire of yours.
None of the precious penny-a-liners will ever forgive
The other laughed. "I was mad, I tell you mad !"
he said with humorous ferocity. "I wrote in a passion
and a sirocco, with three bottles of claret in my head
and tears in my eyes. Besides, I was two years younger
then. Before I sailed I suppressed it. I bought up
the plates and every loose volume in London. Ah well,"
he added, "one's youthful indiscretions will pass. When
I come back, I'll give the rascals something better."
He paused, his eyes on the stony bridle-path that led
from the town. "What do you make of that?" he
Hobhouse looked. Along the rugged way was ap-
proaching a strange procession. In advance walked an
officer in a purple coat, carrying the long wand of his
rank. Following came a file of Turkish soldiers. Then
a group of servants, wearing the uniform of the Way-
wode the town's chief magistrate and leading an ass,
across whose withers was strapped a bulky brown sack.
After flocked a rabble of all degrees, Turks and Greeks.
"Queer!" speculated Hobhouse. "It's neither a fu-
S THE CASTAWAY
neral nor a wedding. What other of their hanged cere-
monials can it be?"
The procession halted on the rock-shelf over the deep
pool. The soldiers began to unstrap the ass's brown
burden. A quick flash of horrified incredulity had
darted into Gordon's eyes. The ass balked, and one
of the men pounded it with his sword-scabbard. While
it flinched and scrambled, a miserable muffled wail came
from somewhere seemingly from the air.
Gordon stiffened. His hand flew to the pistol in his
belt. He leaped to his feet and dashed up the scraggy
path toward the rock, shouting in a voice of strained,
"By God, Hobhouse, there's a woman in that sack!"
"MAD, BAD AND DANGEROUS TO KNOW."
At Lady Jersey's town house, in Portman Square, the
final course had been served and the gentlemen's glasses
were being replenished. Lady Jersey gave the signal.
The gentlemen rose and bowed, the three ladies withdrew
to the drawing-room ; then the host, the earl, said, crack-
ing a walnut :
"I heard the other day that George Gordon is on his
way back to London. You were with him in the East
some time, weren't you, Hobhouse ?"
There were but three besides the host : Sheridan, the
playwright, looking the beau and wit combined, of a
clarety, elderly, red complexion, brisk and bulbous
William Lamb, heir of the Melbourne title, a personi-
fied "career" whose voice was worn on the edges by pub-
lic speaking and Hobhouse, whom the earl addressed.
The young man bowed. "I left him in Greece just a
"Is it true," asked Lamb, sipping his Moe't with finical
deliberation, "that he drinks nothing but barley-water
and dines on two soda biscuits ?"
"He eats very little," assented Hobhouse; "dry toast,
10 THE CASTAWAY
water-cress, a glass of claret that was usually his regi-
"What an infernal pose!" Lamb exclaimed, rousing.
"A ghoul eating rice with a needle ! He does it to be
eccentric. Why, at Cambridge they say he used to keep
a tame bear ! His appetite is all apiece with his other
fopperies abroad that the papers reprint here. One week
he's mopish. Another, he's for being jocular with every-
body. Then again he's a sort of limping Don Quixote,
rowing with the police for a woman of the town like
that Greek demirep of his he rescued from the sack, that
Petersham tells about."
"Nobody believes Petersham's yarns !" growled Sheri-
"I was on the ground when that incident occurred.
I'm sorry the clubs got hold of it. It's a confounded
Hobhouse spoke explosively. Lord Jersey's shrewd
deep-set eyes gathered interest, and Sheridan paused
with a pinch of snuff in transit.
"It happened one sunrise, when we were camped on
the sea-beach just outside Missolonghi. That is a Greek
town held by the Turks, who keep its Christian citizens
in terror of their lives. The girl in the case was a Greek
by birth, but her father was a renegado, so she came un-
der Moslem law."
"I presume she was handsome," drawled Lamb caus-
tically. "I credit Gordon with good taste in femininity,
Hobhouse flushed, but kept his temper.
"It's nonsense/' he went on, "the story that it was
any affair of his own. There was a young Arab-looking
THE CASTAWAY 11
ensign who had fallen in with us, named Trevanion
he had deserted from an English sloop-of-the-line at
Bombay. He had disappeared the night before, and we
had concluded then it was for some petticoat deviltry
he'd been into. I didn't like the fellow from the start,
but Gordon wouldn't give an unlucky footpad the cold
Sheridan chuckled. "That's Gordon ! I remember he
had an old hag of a fire-lighter at his rooms here Mrs.
Muhl. I asked him once why he ever brought her from
Newstead. 'Well/ says he, 'no one else will have the
poor old devil/ "
"Come, come," put in Lamb, waspishly. "Let's hear
the new version ; we've had Petersham's."
"We had seen Trevanion talking to the girl," Hob-
house continued, "in her father's shop in the bazaar.
We didn't know, of course, when we saw the procession,
whom the Turkish scoundrels were going to drown. I
didn't even guess what it was all about till Gordon
shouted to me. His pistol was out before you could
wink, and in another minute he had the fat leader by the
"With Mr. Hobhouse close behind him," suggested
"I hadn't a firearm, so I was of small assistance. We
had some Suliote ragamuffins for body-guard, but they
are so cowed they will run from a Turkish uniform.
They promptly disappeared till it was all over. Well,
there was a terrible hullabaloo for a while. I made sure
they would butcher us out and out, but Gordon kept his
pistol clapped on the purple coat and faced the whole
12 THE CASTAWAY
"Wish he had shot him/' rumbled Sheridan, "and
appealed to the resident ! In the year of Grace 1810 it's
time England took a hand and blew the Turk out of
Greece, anyway !"
"I presume there was no doubt about the offense?"
asked the earl.
"It seemed not. Trevanion was a good-looking,
swarthy rogue, and had been too bold. Though he got
away himself, he left the girl to her fate. It was the
feast of Eamazan, and he must have known what that
fate would be. The time made interference harder for
Gordon, since both law and religion were against him.
He had learned some of their palaver. He told them he
was a pasha-of-three-tails himself in his own country,
and at last made the head butcher cut open the sack.
The girl was a pitiful thing to see, with great almond
eyes sunk with fright fifteen years old, perhaps,
though she looked no more than twelve and her chalk-
white cheeks and the nasty way they had her hands and
feet tied made my blood boil. There was more talk,
and Gordon flourished the firman Ali Pasha had given
him when we were in Albania. The officer couldn't
read, but he pretended he could and at last agreed to
go back and submit the matter to the Waywode. So
back we all paraded to Missolonghi. It cost Gordon a
plenty there, but he won his point."
"That's where Petersham's account ends, isn't it?"
The earl's tone was dry.
"It's not all of it," Hobhouse answered with some
heat. "Gordon was afraid the rascally primate might
repent of his promise (the Mussulman religion is strenu-
ous) so he took the girl that day to a convent and as soon
THE CASTAWAY 13
as possible sent her to Argos to her brother. She died,
poor creature, two months afterward, of fever."
Lamb sniffed audibly.
"Very pretty ! He ought to turn it into a poem. I
dare say he will. If you hadn't been there to applaud,
Hobhouse, I wager the original program wouldn't have
been altered. Pshaw! He always was a sentimental
harlequin," he went on contemptuously, "strutting about
in a neck-cloth and delicate health, and starving himself
into a consumption so the women will say, 'Poor Gor-
don how interesting he looks !' Everything he does
is a hectic of vanity, and all he has written is glittering
nonsense snow and sophistry."
Sheridan's magnificent iron-gray head, roughly
hacked as if from granite, turned sharply. "He's no
sheer seraph nor saint," he retorted; "none of us is,
but curse catch me ! there's no sense in remonstering
him ! He'll do great things one of these days. He was
born with a rosebud in his mouth and a nightingale
singing in his ear !"
The other shrugged his shoulders, but at that mo-
ment the protestant face of the hostess appeared.
"How interesting men are to each other !" Lady Jer-
sey exclaimed. "We women have actually been driven to
the evening papers."
The four men followed into the drawing-room, fur-
nished in ruby and dull gold a room perfect in its
appointments, for its mistress added to her innate kind-
ness of heart and tact a rare taste and selection. It
showed in the Sevres-topped tables, the tawny fire-
screens, the candelabra of jasper and filigree gold, and
in the splendid Gainsborough opposite the door.
14 THE CASTAWAY
The whole effect was a perfect setting for Lady Jer-
sey. In it Lady Caroline Lamb appeared too exotic, too
highly colored, too flamboyant like a purple orchid in
a dish of tea-roses ; on the other hand, it was too warmly
drawn for the absent stateliness of Annabel Milbanke,
Lady Melbourne's niece and guest for the season. The
latter's very posture, coldly fair like a sword on salute,
seemed to chide the sparkle and glitter and color that
radiated, a latent impetuosity, from Lady Caroline.
"I see by the Courier," observed Lady Jersey, "that
George Gordon is in London."
"Speak of the devil " sneered Lamb ; and Sheridan
"That's curious; we were just discussing him."
Miss Milbanke's even voice entered the conversation.
"One hears everywhere of his famous Satire. You
think well of it, don't you, Mr. Sheridan?"
"My dear madam, for the honor of having written it,
I would have welcomed all the enemies it has made its
"What dreadful things the papers are always saying
about him!" cried Lady Jersey, with a little shudder.
"I hope his mother hasn't seen them. I hear she lives
almost a recluse at Newstead Abbey."
"With due respect to the conventions," Lamb inter-
posed ironically, "there's small love lost between them.
His guardian used to say they quarrelled like cat and
"He never liked the boy," disputed the hostess,
warmly. "Why, he wouldn't stand with him when he
took his seat in the Lords. I am right, am I not, Mr.
THE CASTAWAY 15
"Yes, your ladyship. Lord Carlisle refused to intro-
duce him. The Chancellor, even, haggled absurdly over
his certificate of birth. Gordon came to Parliament
with only one friend an old tutor of his entered
alone, took the peer's oath and left. He has never
crossed the threshold since."
"What a shame," cried Lady Caroline, "that neither
Annabel nor I have ever seen your paragon, Lady
Jersey! Mr. Hobhouse, you or Mr. Sheridan must
bring him to dinner to Melbourne House."
"If he'll come!" said Lamb, sotto voce, to the earl.
"They say he hates to see women eat, because it destroys
Lady Jersey shrugged. "It is vastly in his favor
that he still has any," she retorted, rising. "Come, Caro,
give us some music. We are growing too serious."
Lady Caroline went to the piano, and let her hands
wander over the keys. Wild, impatient of restraint,
she was a perpetual kaleidoscope of changes. Now an
unaccountably serious mood had captured her. The
melody that fell from her fingers was a minor strain,
and she began singing in a voice low, soft and caressing
with a feeling that Annabel Milbanke had never
guessed lay within that agreeable, absurd, perplexing,
mad-cap little being :
"Maid of Athens, ere we part,
Give, oh, give me back my heart!
Or since that has left my breast,
Keep it now and take the rest!
Hear my vow before I go,
Zoe mou, sas agapo !
16 THE CASTAWAY
By thy tresses unoonfined,
Wooed by each JEgea,n wind!
By those lids whose jetty fringe,
Kiss thy soft cheeks' blooming tinge!
By those wild eyes like the roe,
Zoe mou, sas agapo!
By those lips I may not taste!
By that zone-encircled waist!
By all token-flow'rs that tell
(Word can never speak so well!)
By love's changing joy and woe,