But, straining their eyes to the utmost, the three boys could see nothing on the sea. It swayed gently like a vast mass of molten silver in the starshine, and lapped softly against the shore. The report of a third heavy gun came, and then the reports of several more. After that the silence was complete. It had seemed to Harry, his brain surcharged with excitement, like the tolling of great bells.

I do not recall hearing him sing on pitch black nights. Starshine is enough for him, but I am convinced that he is only half nocturnal and that he watches for signs of moonlight as eagerly as I do. Last night I saw the glint of it in the upper sky an hour before the moon rose, a silvery shine which did not touch the lower atmosphere, but shot athwart the higher stars like a ghost of aurora.

Better the dull room at Marot's ordinary, or better still to order Mirza, and ride off at the planter's pace, through the starshine, to Fair View. On the river bank before the store MacLean might be lying, dreaming of a mighty wind and a fierce death. He would dismount, and sit beside that Highland gentleman, Jacobite and strong man, and their moods would chime as they had chimed before.

Think of the change, and you will no more wonder that there should be something awful about the very look of a mountain: from the darkness for where the light has nothing to shine upon, much the same as darkness from the heat, from the endless tumult of boiling unrest up, with a sudden heavenward shoot, into the wind, and the cold, and the starshine, and a cloak of snow that lies like ermine above the blue-green mail of the glaciers; and the great sun, their grandfather, up there in the sky; and their little old cold aunt, the moon, that comes wandering about the house at night; and everlasting stillness, except for the wind that turns the rocks and caverns into a roaring organ for the young archangels that are studying how to let out the pent-up praises of their hearts, and the molten music of the streams, rushing ever from the bosoms of the glaciers fresh born.

Harry worked far into the night carrying orders here and there. The moon came out and clothed the strange and weird battlefield in a robe of silver. The heavens were sown with starshine, but it all seemed mystic and unreal to the excited nerves of the boy. The mountains rose to two, three times their real height, and the valley in which the Northern fires burned became a mighty chasm.

No more magic nights of starshine, breathing fire and dew; no more lifted moments of exaltation stinging him to a pulsating wonder at life's wild delight. He was again the inexorable driver of men, with no pity for their weaknesses any more than for his own.

Therefore the schooner must lie somewhere between the three lights and the Lancaster. He gazed long and steadily, and there, very dim and low, but at the point he expected, burned a single light the anchor-light of the Annie Mine. And it was a fine swim under the starshine. The air was warm as the water, and the water as warm as tepid milk.

Miss Theodosia slipped out this time into the soft darkness. "Let us hope Aunt Sarah will 'knit fast," she was thinking, with whimsical eyes. "But if she doesn't Theodosia Baxter, dear, if Aunt Sarah is a slow knitter, you are in for it! I've no idea of letting you off. Baxters that begin, end." It was dim starshine out-of-doors.

All about me were nobleness of purpose and heroism of effort, and my days and nights were sunshine and starshine, all fire and dew, with before my eyes, ever burning and blazing, the Holy Grail, Christ's own Grail, the warm human, long-suffering and maltreated, but to be rescued and saved at the last.

He lifted it and, hesitating to open it, sat trying to recall that picture in the lower case. He wondered how, once having seen it, even in firelight and starshine, he could have forgotten it.