'I dinna suppose she wud ha'e treated ye excep' she had mair money nor brains. 'She wud pairt wi' her last farden for ma sake! 'Ach, awa' an' eat grass! It's weel seen that men are scarce the noo. 'Mind wha ye're insultin'! 'I'm gaun up to the billet. Macgregor said, shortly, and walked off. Presently, Willie, a new idea in his busy brain, overtook him.
Naturally, such men as Joseph Mair now grew shy of the assemblies they had helped to originate, and withdrew at least into the background; the reins slipped from the hands of the first leaders, and such windbags as Ladle got up to drive the chariot of the gospel with the results that could not fail to follow.
But to Nan, as the bony arms went round her and the Scottish voice, harsh no longer but tender as an old song, murmured in her ears, she seemed the embodiment of beautiful, consoling motherhood, and her flat chest a resting-place where weary heads might gladly lie and sorrowful hearts pour out their grief in tears. "Dinna greet, ma bairnie," crooned Eliza. "Ma wee bairnie, greet nae mair."
"And sae ye'll speer nae mair questions anent my ain preevit affair; but just keep ye to the point, and it please ye! I am here to tell all I ken anent the murther and robbery at Castle Lone! Ay! and I will tell a' hang wha' it may!" she added, with a most vindictive glare at the Duke of Hereward. "The witness is right so far. We have nothing whatever to do with her domestic status.
"But I maun awa' to my bairn up the stair; an' may it please the Lord to lift her or lang, for they maun be luikin for her yont the burn by this time. Whan she wauks i' the mornin', the' 'ill be nae mair scornin'!" This was Grizzie's last against her mistress.
The books are worth mair siller than you ever counted; and I wouldna let ony-body unless it was the minister an orra time stay in it." "What's the matter wi' the lassie? Maggie, you are no to be bided! I'll hae this room for mysel', and that's the end o' the controversy."
'But it's against rule, sir; ye have committed nae malefaction. 'I'll break your head, said the sturdy Liddesdale man, 'if ye say ony mair about it, and that will be malefaction eneugh to entitle me to ae night's lodging wi' you, ony way. 'But I tell ye, Mr. Dinmont, reiterated the keeper, 'it's against rule, and I behoved to lose my post.
No that I need care a bodee about it, for the sun's on our side o' the hedge now. I wish my master were living to get a blink o't." "And what became of him?" said the rider. "He was lost in the vessel gaun to that weary Holland, clean lost; and a' body perished, and my poor master amang them. Neither man nor mouse was ever heard o' mair." Then Cuddie uttered a groan.
"But first ye'll promise to haud yer tongues for half a day?" said Malcolm. "Ay, ay; we'll no clype." "We s' haud ower tongues," cried one and another and another, and all seemed to assent. "Weel," said Malcolm, "My name 's no Ma'colm MacPhail, but " "We a' ken that," said Girnel. "An' what mair du ye ken?" asked Blue Peter, with some anger at his interruption. "Ow, naething."
"How much money dost thou require?" asked the lady, with a tremulous voice. "Twunty pund, my leddy, twenty pund at the present time," answered Geordie, with the same simple look; "ye ken the folk haud me for a natural, and ower fu' a cup is no easy carried, even by the wise. Sae, I wadna like to trust mysel' wi' mair than twenty pund at a time."