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A TIPPERARY SHOT.

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CHAPTER VII,

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BY THE AUTHOR OF “MYSELF AND MY RELATIVES,” “ LITTLE Flaggs," &c.
THE ASSASSIN'S SHOT.

did I spring into my saddle with a lighter heart I now found myself placed in a rather novel than I did that fresh summer morning, and position-about to accompany a man in a ride never before did I think the perfume of the of several miles through a lonely country, while breeze or the look of the country more charmimpressed with the cou viction that at any point ing, as we left the demesne and entered upon of the road he might fall a victim to the fero- the high road. Now and then, as we rode city of a lawless tenantry. He was going forth along, I thought of my mother's letter and the in defiance of a threat and a warning, fully advice it contained, against which I was diconvinced that he would risk as much by stay- rectly acting that day. Occasionally, too, I ing at home as by braving the danger abroad. dwelt upon the information Travers had sent Before we set out Barnett came to me with a me respecting the destiny of our regiment after paper, which he requested me to sign as a wit- its removal from Templemore. To-morrow I ness in company with Tom Nugent. It was a must be at Cashel again, in all the fuss of packcodicil to his will, made long since.

ing up and preparing for a move. As the day It is well to have one's affairs all settled,” advanced I grew somewhat dispirited again, he said pleasantly, when we had both placed and dwelt more deeply on the separation I must our names to the document. “Now, Staple- endure next day. I forgot all about Sir Denis ton, I shall be ready to go in a few moments,” and his danger, all about the grateful words and he left the room.

uttered to myself by his sister ; nothing was He's in for it now,” said Nugent, who uppermost in my mind but the terrible fact looked grave and anxious ; “but he never that I must leave Knockgriffin before twentycould have shirked going out this day after four hours had passed away!

We rode over getting that notice to intimidate him. If he mile after mile of quiet, pleasant country, comes back alive this evening he'll have gained sometimes chatting, sometimes plunged in a triumph that will be of service to him, per thought. I beheld the ruins of Athassel Priory; haps as long as he lives. There's nothing like but cannot say I admired them particularly, showing you don't care a snap o' your finger my mind was too perturbed to permit me for threats of that kind. Barnett is as brave a taking note of external things. When Sir fellow as ever I saw. See how his hand never Denis had transacted his business at Golden, shook as he wrote his signature before us there we turned our horses' heads towards home, a while ago.

God grant I may see him alive having still some hours of broad daylight be

I again. I think I'll stop at Knockgriffin till fore 113. As usual, there appeared very few you'll be likely to return. I never could rest wayfarers on the roads. It was a sultry, peaceeasy, thinking of that poor young fellow and ful evening. The sun, which had been shining his sister and all that, if I went home early, as warmly all the day, now lessened its power, I had fixed to go.”

though the effect of its previous brilliancy yet Now, Stapleton !” called out Barnett's hovered in the atmosphere. I thought it a fine ringing voice from the hall; and I hurried very melancholy evening—so still, so unruffled to join him.

His sister met me as I left the by breath of wind, almost ominous in its oproom, and I could perceive that she was much pressiveness. agitated, though not weeping.

“ Well, the day is nearly over, Stapleton, “God bless you, Captain Stapleton !she and a short time will bring us to Knockgrifin,' said, in some excitement. "I thank

you

from said Barnett, rousing me from a miserable my heart for going with Denis to-day. You reverie. “So far we have escaped the vigilmay serve to protect him in some measure. ance of an assassin, if any has been on the Very few would have liked to accompany him

watch for me.

We are almost within our own this morning ; but you are a brave man, and

boundaries now.” I honour you. Good-bye, and many, many “I am delighted for your sake that the day thanks."

has turned out so fortunate," replied I, enShe gave me her hand, and I received it with deavouring to appear glad at anything. an earnest pressure.

Without exaggeration, I “Such a charming evening as it is too ! may say I would have exposed myself to a far Let us pause here to watch the effect of the greater amount of danger than was then likely sunset upon those hills.” to incur, merely to receive the reward of such We checked our horses' pace, and lingered words as had just then greeted my ears. Never I to look at the red rays of the declining sun

me.

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CHAPTER VIII.

me,

burnishing some distant heights ; and while we overpowered me with kindness also ; and for paused, admiring the glow and changing hues the weeks that I was an invalid at Knockof the landscape, the report of a gun startled griffin I felt as happy as a king ; alas ! far

A shot had been fired close to where we happier than many kings, I trow ! stood.

My regiment, meanwhile, had left TempleI saw that Sir Denis was still, at least, able more and gone to Limerick. Fate had decreed to keep his saddle ; but some confusion of that I was to remain for some time longer in brain overpowered me ; and though I heard Tipperary; and though she certainly took somehim exclaim distinctly“ Good God, Stapleton!” | what rough measures to fulfil my destiny, I I had not strength to utter a word, my im- thanked her nevertheless devoutly. In a short pression being that he had received a wound, time I was an interesting-looking individualand might fall immediately. Then I grew more going about with an arm in a sling, with a bewildered, becoming at last incapable of hear- languid appearance, pale complexion, and sentiing or seeing or understanding.

mental eyes—a hero in the estimation of every

body, including, probably, the person who had CONCLUSION.

shot me, and adored by the servants, who were The next thing that I became conscious of nearly all attached to Sir Denis. Sir Percy was some one holding my hand in a light clasp, Stedmole quitted Knockgriffin on “ urgent and tears falling upon it, while stifled sobs fell business ” immediately after my mishap, and upon my confused hearing.

Nugent remained there only long enough to “How is Sir Denis ?I endeavoured to ascertain that I was not mortally wounded. utter faintly, dreading to hear the answer. Barnett and his sister put off going to Harrow

“Quite well ; but you must not speak,” gate for a month, and during the time I rewhispered a soft musical voice that thrilled mained with them both devoted themselves

entirely to me. The Cappamoyne lands were “But something peculiar has occurred,” I at length cleared of the objectionable tenantry continued, trying to shake off the confusion of without further attempt at opposition ; but brain that was overpowering my senses. “I Ryan, the sullen young man who seemed so have not been dreaming, surely? Where am annoyed at the idea of quitting his ancestral I? Who is standing near me ?

home, went to America almost immediately, “You have been wounded, Captain Staple- taking with him as his bride the beautiful ton, but not dangerously,” replied the same Mary Killery, and thus relieving Barnett prosweet voice, “ You are now at Knockgriffin. bably of a dangerous tenant. The surgeon has dressed your arm, and I have In those happy days of convalescence I perpromised to take care of you, and prevent your ceived that Miss Barnett was quite altered talking too much."

from what she had seemed during my first days “ Thank God it is nothing more !” I ex- at Knockgriffin. Her manner was altogether claimed gratefully, while rapidly returning different,-no longer cold, calm, and stately, consciousness revealed to me clearly that I was but full of tenderness and pity. Occasionally lying on a sofa in a sitting-room of Knock- she appeared subdued, tremulous, and easily griffin House, and that Miss Barnett herself agitated. I was gradually growing less and was watching over me. The pain of my arm,

less afraid of her. In proportion as she bethe feeling of faintness still oppressing me were trayed signs of weakness, so did I become more completely forgotten as I closed my eyes in a courageous, and at length ventured to breathe delirium of happiness impossible to describe. my tale of love. I owed her gratitude for her It would have been easy for me to have died kindness during my illness. What wonder, at that moment with one who was to me as a then, that this gratitude should take the deeper guardian angel standing thus near.

character of love? I was not ashamed of deBy degrees I comprehended the whole staie claring my fervent attachment to her now. of the case.

I had been shot in mistake for Even should she reject my suit, I felt that Sir Denis Barnett. At first it was feared that there could be no madness in speaking openly my unfortunate arm would have been obliged of my love. I did not presume to address her to be amputated ; but things turned out better brother upon this point before alluding to it to than was expected. The doctors suffered the herself. Louisa Barnett was just the sort of limb to hold its ground, and I was soon ou the proud-spirited girl who would resent such imway to recovery. I had many days and nights pertinence on the part of a lover. of feverish bodily suffering ; yet much mental bly, and without much hope of success, I told consolation. I knew th: I was an object of her one evening, as we walked before the tender care to the being who was to me the house among many-hued flower-plots, that from dearest of all others upon earth. Sir Denis | henceforth she must be all in all to me; that

Very humshe had won my heart irrevocably ; and that my ardent speech she uttered no word for many whether I was doomed to be the most miserable moments, There was a long pause of utter or the happiest of human beings, my love for stillness ; and then she spoke in a low voice, her could never change. While I spoke she clear, though tremulous. listened silently; and even when I had finished Captain Stapleton, I have long determined

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never to marry.” (How my heart sank.) “To from him ; and as my fortune, I am thankful live all my life with Denis has, since I grew up to say, is very ample, I have no such incentive and before it, been my fixed resolution. Sur- as most women unhappily have, to urge me to rounded as he is in Tipperary by hourly dangers, resign a single life, whether inclined to do so I could not bear the idea of being separated

Should Denis marry, I have always intended that I would reside within a short | her brother's account as time goes on; and as distance of Knockgriffin, at the place be there is a prospect of his marriage, I think she queathed to me by my grandfather, which will soon agree to our living more in England. adjoins my brother's property. You see, there- With all its drawbacks, and the failings of the fore, that my husband, should I ever accept people, I have learned to love my Tipperary one, must either be a thorough Tipperary man, home, and to deplore very bitterly the late or resigned to make himself one. You know outrages committed in other parts of the enough of our unhappy county, Captain county, praying sincerely that civilisation may Stapleton, to understand how little I could increase, that true Christianity be established, venture to urge anyone to reside within its and that landlord and tenant may learn to live boundaries-2"

or not.

together in peace and unity. “ Anywhere, anywhere with you !" I murmured, interrupting her energetically. “To

TWO SWISS LAKES. the end of the earth ; in a desert ; anywhere, so that I may call you mine!”

The lakes of Brienz and Thun, those twin “This is only the first ardour of passion, basins of the Aar, between which lies the lazy, Captain Stapleton. Reflect a little upon what loafing, picturesque lounge of Interlaken, I have said. It is usual for women to follow whose genius is, as it were, the Calypso of their husband's fortunes, and leave their own

Swiss tourists, bidding men stride and climb homes and countries for those that are strange to no longer, beckoning ladies to quit the rough them ; but I will never abandon Tipperary as saddle and rougher chaise à porteur, and a place of residence, and I can ask no man to betake themselves to croquet and gossip in live there with me.”

the shade—these two lakes are very charming “ Better and braver men than I am, God in their way, and form some of the very knows, are living in Tipperary!” I exclaimed, pleasantest Swiss memories in the minds of ardently Wherever you wish to reside, travellers who have neither been tied by there will be my home also. And, oh that i remorseless Time, nor bitten by the more had thousands upon thousands to purchase such intense furore of Alpine climbing. Brienz is an estate in this county as would be worthy of the lake of the Giessbach Falls ; Thun is the such a mistress !"

lake of the fine pyramidal height known as “I am quite satisfied with what I possess ;

the Niesen. The village of Brienz is barely and if you can really become reconciled to re- more than five minutes distant by the steamer maining among us here, then I will indeed be from the point where the great gush of the proud to be your wife-proud to know that I falls troubles the tranquil surface of the lake. have the bravest and most generous of men for

But before we go across to that famous my husband.

cataract, let us take a look at the delicious And so we were betrothed, reader. I had little hamlet itself. Here in four lines is an won my beautiful Tipperary bride easy enough, excellent miniature of the scene :Heaven knows, as far as sacrifice on my part Slope after slope the pastures dip went : and I rejoice to say that Sir Denis was

With ribbon'd waterfalls, and make perfectly satisfied with his sister's choice, though

Scant room for just a village strip, at the time I proposed and was accepted I had

The setting of a sapphire lake. but a small income beyond my military pay. So sings the accomplished author of Ionica, However, three years after we were married I who has caught and immortalised that plaincame in for the baronetcy which I had con- tive wistful way that strikes one so often in sidered myself cut out of by the marriage of the filles and garçons of remote inns, who look my elderly uncle, who died six months after

a gentle rebuke at English restlessness and his son and heir was carried off by scarlatina ; hurry, and seem ready to plead for some and then I had a fortune worthy of my wife. little sojourn at their quarters, were it not Yet I kept my promise of residing in Tipperary that experience has taught them to despair of for the greater part of every year; and added success in any such effort. At Brienz in to our property there, speedily gaining the particular hearty good-will of our tenants, with whom I

Travellers rest not, only dine, never had a disagreement ; nor was Sir Denis

Then driven by Furies, onward go. ever again fired at, at home or abroad, since For pilgrims of the pointed stick, the memorable evening that I received the shot

With passport case for scallop-shell,

Scramble for worshipped Alps too quick intended for him, and which I have often re

To care for vales where mortals dwell. turned thanks for as the most fortunate accident of my life.

We can easily imagine pilgrims, however, Louisa is becoming less and less alarmed on returning from “worshipped Alps" a little

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snow.

oppressed with the energetic service demanded | the south side of the lake between Giessbach by those serene but uncompromising deities, and Interlaken, a stone trough is crossed, and feeling only too happy to lay by the measuring some five feet deep by six feet in scallop-shell and to scrape acquaintance with width at the top of its slanting sides, which the pleasant mortals of Brienz. In the airy is doubtless used for the discharge of wood salle à manger of the White Cross, discussing along a comparatively short distance. The a dish of the Lotte-an excellent lake-fish- footpath to Interlaken should be explored by with the blue mirror full in view, a man may every one who is not deterred by a rather reasonably congratulate himself on having rough walk of eleven miles. Every turn of reached at least one refuge from the turmoil the route opens some new vision of lake, and and disquietude of life.

woods, and “upland grasses patched with In crossing to the Giessbach Falls you may be steaming above a depth of two Sleeping at Interlaken, and purposing to thousand feet of water. In its deepest part climb the Niesen next day, one ought to be the lake measures 2,100 feet ; immediately in

up betimes.

Interlaken is two miles distant front of the great cascade, only a quarter of from Neuhaus, its station on the lake of that depth.

It is only eight miles long, but Thun, and the steamer leaves Neuhaus by those eight miles make up a length of quite half-past five in the morning. As you start unbroken loveliness. Its surface is nearly up the lake towards Thun, three grand giants eighteen hundred feet above the sea level, of the Oberland tower high above all surand thirty feet higher than that of the neigh- rounding peaks on the left. These are the bour-lake of Thun.

Eigher, the Mönch (Monk), and the JungSeveral hours may, be passed at the falls frau ; and further on, the line of eternal snowwithout weariness, and without having fully empire extends itself left and right, embracing explored their vast proportions. They have the Wetterhorn and Schreckhorn in one been too often described to require much direction, and the Blümlis Alp in the other. further delineation, and the best word-picture The usual method of reaching the Niesen's would fail to pourtray them as they are. foot is to go on to Thun, and take from Their distinguishing feature is the surprising thence a carriage to Wimmis, a pretty village succession of cascade after cascade. About lying at nearly eight miles' distance below five minutes' walk from the landing-place the great pyramidical limestone mass. But, brings one to an abrupt precipice of a hundred by landing at the lovely little promontory of feet or more, over which a tumultuous rush Spietz, we believe that a path is gained, of water is tumbling with stupendous force, leading by a direct and much shorter route and forming a cataract that would be in itself to the point where the mule-track begins its well worth a pilgrimage to look upon. wiudings up the hill. Further up the pine-covered hill, as

The Niesen makes a considerably stiffer approaches the hotel (for where in Switzerland climb than the Righi. It is, to begin with, does not a hotel rear itself !) and the pretty two thousand feet higher, the measurements cottage of the schoolmaster, fall above fall being 7,500 and 5,500 feet. The path is becomes visible, the highest roaring among steeper and more rubbly, and the work is the woods at least eight hundred feet above more consecutively on the collar." A the level of the lake. Large logs of pine, capital plan of climbing these less ambitious, some four feet long, and a foot and a half in but still toilsome mountain ascents, in comthickness, come bouncing and tumbling down pany, is, to choose some steady-going member the cascades with a deep booming sound as of the party, and to allow him to set the pace they strike the rocks at each landing, among by walking first ; then to split up the way which they are ruthlessly driven by the over- into lengths of a quarter of an hour, trawhelming waters, in spite of what look like versing each length in silence, but interposing blind, insensate efforts to remain where they two or three minutes of rest and chat between

This mode of transmitting cut wood is to them. It is astonishing to find how much be distinguished from the slides, of which the relief is given to wind and limb by some such Slide of Alpnach was so famous an example. systematic plan as this, which also results in That gigantic structure, a trough composed of a considerable economising of time. 30,000 trunks fastened together lengthwise, Halfway up the Niesen extremely and which was capable of discharging a tree 100 primitive auberge is reached, principally feet long by four feet thick, eight English miles attractive from a shady seat commanding a of descent in six minutes, has now been re- very lovely view of the Lake of Thun, flanked moved for more than forty years. In walking, by the Stockhorn and other hills at the however, along the charming path that skirts entrance of tho Simmenthal. At this auberge

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