The Baldwin Library
f 11n ;3 flo.'
7 L. 'I' .'i
_ __ i __I_
" Thou shalt see and touch the long-lost treasure Thou shalt learn
the secret ere thou diest!"
CHERRY AND HER DELIVERER
T. NELSON &- SONS
LONDO. lDtYNflUPR.J I NYEW tORlr
A Story of the Days of the Gunpowder Plot
Author of n he Day of Chivalry," Tihe Church and he King,"
The Lord of Dynevor."
T. NELSON AND SONS
London, Edinburgh, and New York
I. THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE,
II. THE INMATES OF TREVLYN C)
III. THE LOST TREASURE, ...
IV. A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HE
V. THE HOUSE ON THE BRIDGE,
VI. MARTIN HOLT'S SUPPER-PART
VII. THE LIFE OF A GREAT CITY,
VIII. CUTHBERT AND CHERRY GO
IX. THE WISE WOMAN,
X. THE HUNTED PRIEST,...
XI. THE LONE HOUSE ON THE RI
XII. MAY-DAY IN THE FOREST,
XIIL THE GIPSY'S TRYST,
XIV. LONG ROBIN, ...
XV. PETRONELLA, ...
XVI. THE PIXIES' DELL,
XVII. BROTHER AND SISTER,
XVIII.. SAUCY KATE,"
XIX. THE CROSS-WAY HOUSE,
HASE, ... ... ... 30
... ... ... ... 51
ATH, ... ... ... 73
... ... ... 95
Y, ... ... ... 118
.. ... ... 140
VISITING, ... ... 162
...... ... 184
... ... ... ... 208
VER, ... ... ... 229
... ... ... ... 251
...... ... 271
... ... ... ... 291
.. ... ... 311
...... ... 331
... ... ... ... 352
... ... 371
... ... ... ... 391
... ... 9
HOW IT FARED WITH CHERRY, ...
THE GIPSY'S WARNING, ...
WHISPERS ABROAD, ... ...
PERIL FOR TREVLYN, ... ...
KATE'S COURAGE, ... ...
"ON THE DARK-FLOWING RIVER," ...
JACOB'S DEVOTION, ... ...
YULE-TIDE AT THE CROSS-WAY HOUSE,
... ... 409
... ... 430
... ... 452
... ... 472
... ... 496
.. ... 517
... ... 534
... ... 548
LOST TREASURE OF TREVLYN.
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
" OST defy me to my face, sirrah ?"
I have no desire to defy you, father, but-"
"But me no butss,' and father me no' fathers,'" stormed
the angry old man, probably quite unconscious of the
Shakespearian smack of his phrase; "I am no father to
heretic spawn-a plague and a curse be on all such! Go
to, thou wicked and deceitful boy; thou wilt one day
bitterly rue thy evil practices. Thinkest thou that I will
harbour beneath my roof one who sets me at open defiance;
one who is a traitor to his house and to his faith ?"
A dark flush had risen in the face of the tall, slight
youth, with the thoughtful brow and resolute mouth, as
his father's first words -fell upon his ears, and throwing
back his head with a haughty gesture, he said,-
"I am not deceitful. You have no call to taunt me
with that vice which I despise above all others. I have
Io THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
never used deceit towards you. How could you have
known I had this day attended the service of the Estab-
lished Church had I not told you so myself ?"
The veins on the old man's forehead stood out with
anger; he brought his fist heavily down on the table, with
a bang that caused every vessel thereon to ring. A dark-
eyed girl, who was listening in mute terror to the stormy
scene, shrank yet more into herself at this, and cast an
imploring look upon the tall stripling whose face her own
so much resembled; but his fiery eyes were on his father's
face, and he neither saw nor heeded the look.
And have I not forbid-ay, and that under the heaviest
penalties-any child of mine from so much as putting the
head inside one of those vile heretic buildings ? Would
God they were every one of them destroyed! Heaven
send some speedy judgment upon those who-build and
those who dare to worship therein! What wonder that a
son turns in defiance upon his father, when he stuffs his
ears with the pestilent heresies with which the wicked are
making vile this earth !"
Nicholas Trevlyn's anger became so great at this point
as well-nigh to choke him. He paused, not from lack of
words, but from inability to utter them; and his son, boldly
taking advantage of the pause, struck in once more in his
"Father, you talk of pestilent heresies, but what know
you of the doctrines taught within walls you never enter ?
Is it a pestilent heresy that Christ died to save the world;
that He rose again for our justification; that He sent the
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. I
Holy Spirit into the world to sanctify and gather together
a Church called after His name ? That is the doctrine I
heard preached to-day, and methinks it were hard to fall
foul of it. If you had heard it yourself from one of our
priests, sure you would have found it nothing amiss."
Silence, boy thundered the old man, his fury sud-
denly changing to a white-heat of passion, which was more
terrible than the bluster that had gone before-" silence,
lest I strike thee to the ground where thou standest, and
plunge this dagger in thine heart sooner than hear thee
blaspheme the Holy Church in which thou wast reared!
How darest thou talk thus to me ?-as though yon accursed
heretic of a Protestant was a member of the Church of
Christ. Thou knowest that there is but one fold under
one shepherd, and he the Pope of Rome. A plague upon
those accursed ones who have perverted the true faith and
led a whole nation astray! But they shall not lead my
son after them; Nicholas Trevlyn will look well to that!"
Father and son stood with the table between them,
gazing fixedly at one another like combatants who, having
tested somewhat the strength each of the other, feel a
certain doubt as to the termination of the contest, but are
both ready and almost eager for the final struggle which
shall leave the victory unequivocally on one side or the
"I had thought that the Shepherd was Christ," said
Cuthbert, in a low, firm tone, "and that the fold was wide
enough to embrace all those baptized into His name."
"Then thou only thinkest what is one more of those
12 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
damnable heresies which are ruining this land and cor-
rupting the whole world," cried Nicholas between his
shut teeth. "Thou hast learned none such vile doctrine
I have learned no doctrine from you save that the Pope
is lord of all-of things temporal and things spiritual-and
that all who deny this are in peril of hell-fire," answered
the young man, with no small bitterness and scorn. "And
here, in this realm, those who hold this to be so are in
danger of prison and death. Truly this is a happy state
of things for one such as I. At home a father who rails
upon me night and day for a heretic-albeit I vow I hold
not one single doctrine which I cannot stand to and prove
from the Word of God."
"Which thou hast no call to have in thine hands!"
shouted his father; "a book which, if given to the people,
stirs up everywhere the vilest heresies and most loathsome
errors. The Bible is God's gift to the Church. It is not
of private interpretation. It is for the priests to give of
its treasures to the people as they are able to bear them."
"Ay, verily, and what are the people to do when the
priests deny them their rightful food ?" cried Cuthbert, as
hotly as his father. "Listen to me, sir. Yes, this once I
will speak! In years gone by, when, however quietly,
secretly, and privately, we were visited by a priest and
heard the mass, and received at his hands the Blessed
Sacrament, did I revolt against your wish in matters
spiritual ? Was I not ever willing to please you ? Did I
not love the Church ? Was not I approved of the Father,
THE INMA TES OF THE OLD GA TE-HO USE. 13
and taught many things by him, including those arts of
reading and penmanship which many in my condition of
life never attain unto ? Did I ever anger you by dis-
obedience or revolt?"
What of that, since you are doing so now?" questioned
Nicholas in a quieter tone, yet one full of suspicion and
resentment. What use to talk of what is past and gone ?
Thou knowest well of late years how thou hast been hank-
ering after every vile and villanous heresy that has come
in thy way. It is thy mother's blood within thee belike.
I did grievous wrong ever to wed with one reared a Prot-
estant, however she might abjure the errors in which she
was brought up. False son of a false mother-"
Hold, sir You shall not miscall my mother No son
will stand by and hear that !"
"I will say what I will in mine own house, thou evil,
malapert boy !" roared the old man. "I tell thee that thy
mother was a false woman-that she deceived me bitterly.
After solemnly abjuring the errors in which she had been
reared, and being received into the true fold, she, as years
went by, lapsed more and more into her foul heretical ways
of thought and speech; and though she went to her last
reckoning (unshriven and unassoiled, for she would have
no priest at her dying bed) before ye twain were old
enough to have been corrupted by her precept and example,
ye must have sucked in heresy with your mother's milk,
else how could son of mine act in the vile fashion that thou
art acting ?"
"I am acting in no vile fashion. I am no heretic. I
14 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
am a true son of the true Church." Cuthbert spoke with
a forced calmness which gave his words weight, and for a
moment even the angry man paused to listen to them,
eying the youth keenly all the while, as though measur-
ing his own strength against him. Physically he was far
more than a match for the slightly-built stripling of one-
and-twenty, being a man of great height and muscular
power-power that had in no wise diminished with ad-
vancing years, though time had turned his black locks to
iron gray, and seamed his face with a multitude of wrinkles.
Pride, passion, gloomy defiance, and bitter hatred of his
kind seemed written on that face, which in its youth must
have been handsome enough. Nicholas Trevlyn was a
disappointed, imbittered man, who added to all other faults
of temperament that of a hopeless bigot of the worst kind.
He was the sort of man of whom Inquisitors must surely
have been made-without pity, without remorse, without
any kind of natural feeling when once their religious con-
victions were at stake.
As a young man he had watched heretics burning in
Smithfield with a fierce joy and delight; and when with
the accession of Elizabeth the tide had turned, he had
submitted without a murmur to the fines which had ruined
him and driven him, a poverty-stricken dependent, to the
old Gate-House. He would have died a martyr with the
grim constancy that he had seen in others, and never
lamented what he suffered for conscience' sake. But he
had grown to be a thoroughly soured and imbittered man,
and had spent the past twenty or more years of his life in
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 15
a ceaseless savage brooding which- had made his abode
anything but a happy place for his two children, the
offspring of a late and rather peculiar marriage with a
woman by birth considerably his inferior.
The firmness without the bitterness of his father's face
was reflected in that of the son as Cuthbert fearlessly
finished his speech.
"I am a true son of the Church. I am no outcast-no
heretic. But I will not suffer my soul to be starved. It
is the law of this land that whatever creed men hold in
their hearts-whether the tenets of Rome or those of the
Puritans of Scotland-that they shall outwardly conform
themselves to the forms prescribed by the Establishment,
and shall attend the churches of the land; and you know
as well as I do that there be many priests of our faith who
bid their flocks obey this law, and submit themselves to the
powers that be. And yet even with all this I would have
restrained myself from such attendance, knowing that it is
an abhorrence unto you, had there been any other way
open to me of hearing the Word of God or receiving the
Blessed Sacrament. But since King James has come to
the throne, the penal laws have been more stringently
enforced against our priests than in the latter days of the
Queen. What has been the result for us? Verily that
the priest who did from time to time minister to us is fled.
We are left without help, without guidance, without teach-
ing, and this when the clouds of peril and trouble are like
to darken more and more about our path."
"And what of that, rash boy? Would you think to
16 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
lessen the peril by tampering with the things of the Evil
One; by casting aside those rules and doctrines in which
you both have been reared, and consorting with the sub-
verters of the true faith ?"
But I cannot see that they are subverters of the faith,"
answered the youth hotly. "That is where the kernel of
the matter lies. I have heard their preachings. I have
talked with my cousins at the Chase, who know what their
But at these words the old man fairly gnashed his teeth
in fury; he made a rush at his son and took him by the
collar of his doublet, shaking him in a frenzy of rage.
"Soh," he cried, "soh Now we get at the whole heart
of the matter. You have been learning heresy from those
false Trevlyns at the Chase-those renegade, treacherous,
time-serving Trevlyns, who are a disgrace to their name
and their station! Wretched boy! have I not warned you
times and again to have no dealings with those evil relatives?
Kinsmen they may be, but kinsmen who have disgraced
the name they bear. I would I had Richard Trevlyn here
beneath my hand now, that I might stuff his false doctrine
down his false throat to choke him withal! And to think
that he has corrupted my son! as if the rearing of his own
heretic brood was not enough !"
Cuthbert was unable to speak; his father's hand pressed
too tightly on his throat. He did not struggle or resist.
Those were days when sons-ay, and daughters too-were
used to receiving severe chastisement from the parental hand
without murmur; and Nicholas Trevlyn had not been one
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 17
to spare the rod where his son had been concerned. His
wrath seemed to rise as he felt the slight form of the lad
sway beneath his strong grasp. Surely that slim stripling
could be reduced to obedience; but the lesson must be a
sharp one, for plainly the poison was working, and had
already produced disastrous results.
Miserable boy !" cried Nicholas, his eyes blazing in their
cavernous hollows, the time has come when this matter
must be settled betwixt us twain. Swear that thou wilt
go no more to the churches of the Protestant faction, be
the laws what they may; swear that thou wilt hold no
more converse on matters of religion with thy cousins at
the Chase;-swear these things with a solemn and binding
oath, and all may yet be well. Refuse, and thou shalt yet
learn, as thou hast not learned before, what the wrath of a
wronged and outraged father can be !"
Petronella, the dark-eyed girl, who had all this while
been crouching back in her high-backed chair in an atti-
tude of shrinking terror, now sprang suddenly towards
her brother, crying,-
O Cuthbert, Cuthbert! prithee do not anger him
more !-Father, O dear sir, let but him go this once He
does not willingly anger you; he does but-"
Peace, foolish girl, and begone! This is no time for
woman's whining. Thy brother and I can settle this
business betwixt us twain. But stay, go thou to my room
and fetch thence the strong whip wherewith I chastise the
unruly hounds. Those who disobey like dogs must be
beaten like dogs.-But, an thou wilt swear to do my bidding
18 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
in the future, and avoid all pestilent controversy with those
false scions of thy house, thy chastisement shall be light.
Defy me, and thou shalt feel the full weight of my arm as
thou hast never felt it before."
Petronella had never seen her father so angry in all her
life before. True, he had always been a harsh, stern man,
an unloving father, a captious tyrant in his own house.
But there had been limits to his anger. It had taken more
generally the form of sullen brooding than of wild wrath,
and the irritation and passion which had lately been in-
creasing visibly in him was something comparatively new.
Of late,'however, there had been growing friction between
Cuthbert and his father. The youth, who had remained
longer a boy in his secluded life than he would have done
had his lot been cast in a wider sphere, was awakening at
last to the stirring of manhood within him, and was chafing
against the fetters, both physical and spiritual, laid upon
him by the life he was forced to lead through the tyrannical
will of his father. He was beginning, in a semi-conscious
fashion, to pant for freedom, and to rebel against the harsh
When a struggle of wills commences, the friction con-
tinues a long while before the spark is produced; but when
some unwonted contest has ignited this, the flame often
bursts out in wonderful fury, and the whole scene is -thence-
If the old man's blood was up to-day, Cuthbert's was no
less so. He shook himself free for a moment from his
father's grasp and stood before him, tall, upright, indignant,
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 19
no fear in his face, but a deep anger and pain; and his
words were spoken with great emphasis and deliberation.
I will swear nothing of all that. I claim for myself
the right of a man to judge for myself and act for myself.
I am a boy no longer; I have reached man's estate. I will
be threatened and intimidated no longer by any man, even
though he be my father. I am ready and willing to leave
your house this very day. I am weary of the life here.
I would fain carve out fortune for myself. It is plain
that we cannot be agreed; wherefore it plainly behoves us
to part. Let me then go, but let me go in peace. It may
be when I return to these doors you may have learned to
think more kindly of me."
But the very calmness of these words only stung Nicholas
to greater fury. He had in full force that inherent belief,
so deeply rooted in the minds of many of the sons of Rome,
that conviction as well as submission could be compelled-
could be driven into the minds and consciences of recal-
citrant sons and daughters by sheer force and might.
Gnashing his teeth in fury, he sprang once more upon his
son, winding his strong arms about him, and fairly lifting
him from the ground in his paroxysm of fury.
"Go! ay, we will see about that. Go, and carry your
false stories and falser thoughts out into the world, and
pollute others as you yourself have been polluted! we
will think of that anon. Here thou art safe in thy father's
care,- and it will be well to think further ere we let so
rabid a heretic stray from these walls. Wretched boy!
the devil himself must sure have entered into thee. But
20 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
fiends have been exorcised before now. It shall not be the
fault of Nicholas Trevlyn if this one be not quickly forced
to take flight."
All this while the infuriated man had been partly
dragging, partly carrying his son to a dreary empty room
in the rear of the dilapidated old house inhabited by
Nicholas and his children. It was a vault-like apartment,
and the roof was upheld in the centre by a stout pillar
such as one sees in the crypts of churches, and suspended
round this pillar were a pair of manacles and a leather belt.
Cuthbert had many times been tied up to this pillar before,
his hands secured above his head in the manacles, and his
body firmly fastened to the pillar by the leather thong.
Sometimes he had been left many hours thus secured, till
he had been ready to drop with exhaustion. Sometimes
he had been cruelly beaten by his stern sire in punishment
for some boyish prank or act of disobedience. Even the
gentle and timid Petronella had more than once been
fastened to the pillar for a time of penance, though the
manacles and the whip had been spared to her. The place
was even now full of terrors for her-a gruesome spot,
always dim and dark, always full of lurking horrors. Her
eyes dilated with agony and fear as she beheld her brother
fastened up-not before his stout doublet had been re-
moved-and her knees almost gave way beneath her as
her father turned sharply upon her and said,-
"Where is the whip, girl ? "
It was seldom that the maiden had the courage to resist
her stern father; but to-day, love for her brother overcoming
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 21
every other feeling, she suddenly sank on her knees before
him, clasping her hands in piteous supplication, as she cried,
with tears streaming down her face,-
0 father, sweet father, spare him this time! for the
love of heaven visit not his misdoings upon him Let me
but talk to him; let me but persuade him! Oh, do not
treat him so harshly! Indeed he may better be won by
love than driven by blows!"
But Nicholas roughly repulsed the girl, so that she almost
fell as he brushed past her.
"Tush, girl! thou knowest not what thou sayest. Dis-
obedience must be flogged out of the heretic spawn. I will
have no son of mine sell himself to the devil unchecked.
A truce to such tears and vain words I will none of them.
And take heed that thine own turn comes not next. I will
spare neither son nor daughter that I find tampering with
the pestilent doctrines of heretics!"
So saying, the angry man strode away himself in search
of the weapon of chastisement, and whilst Petronella sobbed
aloud in her agony of pity, Cuthbert looked round with
a strange smile to say,-
"Do not weep so bitterly, my sister; it will soon be
over, and it is the last beating I will ever receive at his
hands. This settles it-this decides me. I leave this
house this very night, and I return no more until I have
won my right to be treated no longer as a slave and a
Alas, my brother wilt thou really go ? "
"Ay, that will I, and this very night to boot."
22 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
This night! But I fear me he will lock thee in this
I trust he may; so may I the better effect my pur-
pose. Listen, sister, for he will return right soon, and I
must be brief. I have been shut up here before, and
dreaming of some such day as this, I have worked my
way through one of yon stout bars to the window; and
it will fall out now with a touch. Night falls early in
these dark November days. When the great clock in the
tower of the Chase tolls eight strokes, then steal thou
from the house bearing some victuals in a wallet, and my
good sword and dagger and belt. Meet me by the ruined
chantry where we have sat so oft. I will then tell thee
all that is in my heart-for which time lacks me to speak
now. Hist! there is his returning step. Leave me now,
and weep not. I care naught for hard blows; I have
received too many in my time. But these shall be the
Petronella, trembling in every limb, shrank silently away
in the shadows as her father approached, the sight of his
grim, stern face and the cruel-looking weapon in his hands
bringing quick thrills of pain and pity to her gentle heart.
Petronella was a very tender floweret to have been reared
amidst so much hardness and sorrow. It was wonderful
that she had lived through the helpless years of infancy
(her mother had died ere she had completed her second
year) with such a father over her, or that having so
lived she had preserved the sweetness and clinging softness
of temperament which gave to her such a strange charm-
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 23
at.least in the opinion of one. Doubtless she owed much
of her well-being to the kindly care of an old deaf-and-
dumb woman, the only servant in that lonely old house,
who had entered it to nurse the children's mother through
her last illness, and had stayed on almost as a matter of
course, receiving no wage for her untiring service, but
only the coarse victuals that all shared alike, and such
scanty clothing as was absolutely indispensable.
To this old crone Petronella fled with white face and
tearful eyes, as the sound of those terrible blows smote
upon her ears with the whistling noise that well betrayed
the force with which they were dealt. She quickly made
the faithful old creature aware of what was going on, and
her sympathy was readily aroused on behalf of the sufferer.
The dumb request for food was also understood and
complied with. No doubt there had been times before
when the girl had crept with bread and meat in her apron
to the solitary captive, who was shut up alone without
food till he should come to a better mind. Of Cuthbert's
intended flight she made no attempted revelation. She
must act now, and explain later, if she could ever make
the old woman understand, that her brother had fled,
and had not been done to death by his hard-hearted
Supper was over. It had been at the close of that
meal that the explosion had taken place. She would not
be called upon to meet her father again that day. Fleeing
up the broken stone staircase just as his feet were heard
returning from the vaulted room, she heard him bang to
24 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
the door of the living-room before she dared to steal into
the little bare chamber where her brother slept, and where
all his worldly possessions were stored.
The old Gate-House was a strange habitation. Formerly
merely the gateway to the Castle, which had once reared
its proud head upon the crest of the hill to the westward,
it had but scant accommodation for a family-one living-
room below, flanked on one side by the kitchen, and on
the other by the vaulted chamber, once possibly a guard-
room, but so bitterly cold and damp now that it was never
used save for such purposes as had been witnessed there
that evening. A winding, broken stone stairway led up-
wards to a few very narrow chambers above of irregular
shape, and all lighted by loophole windows deeply splayed.
The lowest of these was the place where Nicholas slept,
and there was a slight attempt at furniture and comfort;
but the upper chambers, where Petronella and Cuthbert
retired out of the way of their father's sullen and morose
temper, were bare of all but actual necessities, and lacked
many things which would be numbered amongst essentials
in later days. The stone floors had not even a carpeting
of rushes, the pallet beds lay on the hard stone floor, and
only the girl possessed a basin and ewer for washing.
Cuthbert was supposed to perform his ablutions in the
water of the moat without, or at the pump in the yard.
But Petronella had small notion of the hardness of her
life. She had known no other, and only of late had she
begun to realize that other girls were more gently reared
and tended. Since the family had come to live at the
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 25
Chase-which had only happened within the past year-
her ideas had begun to enlarge; but so far this had not
taught her discontent with her surroundings.
She knew that her father had fled to the Gate-House as a
place of retirement in the hour of his danger and need, and
that nobody had denied his right to remain there, though
the whole property was in the possession of Sir Richard
Trevlyn, the nephew of her morose parent. Nicholas,
however, as may have been already gathered, bore no
good-will towards his nephew, and would fain have hin-
dered his children from so much as exchanging a word
with their kinsfolks. But blood is thicker than water,
and the young naturally consort together. Nicholas had
married so late in life that his children were much about
the same age as those of his nephew-indeed the Trevlyns
of the Chase were all older than Petronella. Sir Richard
had striven to establish friendly relations with his uncle
when he had first brought his family to the Chase, and
had only given pp the attempt after many rebuffs. He
encouraged his children to show kindness to their cousins,
as they called each other, and since that day a ray of
sunshine had stolen into Petronella's life, though she was
almost afraid to cherish it, lest it should only be with-
As she hurried to the tryst that evening, this fear was
only second to the bitter thought of parting with Cuthbert.
Yet she did not wish him to stay. Her father's wrath
and suspicion once fully aroused, no peace could be hoped
for or looked for. Terribly as she would miss him, any-
26 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
thing was better than such scenes as the one of to-day.
Cuthbert was no longer a child; he was beginning to
think and reason and act for himself. It was better he
should fly before worse had happened; only the girl could
not but wonder what her own life would be like if, after
his departing, her stern father should absolutely forbid her
seeing or speaking to her cousins again.
She knew he would gladly do it-knew that he hated
and grudged the few meetings and greetings that did pass
between them from time to time. Any excuse would
gladly be caught at as a pretext for an absolute pro-
hibition of such small overtures; and what would life be
like, she wondered with a little sob, if she were to lose
Cuthbert, and never to see Philip ?
Her brother was at the trysting-place first. She could
not see his face, but could distinguish the slight figure
seated upon the crumbling fragment of the wall. He was
very still and quiet, and she paused as she drew near,
wondering if he had not heard her light footfall upon the
"Is that thou, my sister?" asked a familiar voice,
though feeble and hollow in its tones. The girl sprang
quickly to his side.
Yes, Cuthbert, it is I; and I have brought all thou
biddest me, and as much beside as I could make shift to
carry. Alack, Cuthbert are you sorely hurt ? I heard
that cruel whip "
Think no more of that! I will think no more myself
once the smart be past. Think of the freedom thy brother
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE. 27
will enjoy; would that thou couldst share it, sweet sister !
I like not faring thus forth and leaving thee, but for the
nonce there be no other way. Petronella, I know thou
wouldst ask whither I go and what I do. And that I
scarce know myself as yet. But sitting here in the dark
there has come a new purpose, a new thought to my mind.
What if I were to set myself to the discovery of the lost
treasure of Trevlyn Chase ? "
The girl started in the darkness, and laid her hand on
her brother's arm. Ah, Cuthbert, that lost treasure!
Would that thou couldst find it! But how canst thou
hope to do so when so many besides have failed ?"
"That is not the fashion in which men think when
they mean to triumph, my sister," said Cuthbert, and she
knew by his voice that he was smiling. How this thing
may be done I know not. Where the long-lost treasure be
hid I know not; nor that I may ever be the one to light
on it. But this I do know, that it is somewhere; that
some hand buried it; that even now some living soul may
know the secret of the hiding-place. Petronella, hast thou
ever thought of it? Hast thou ever wondered if our
father may know aught of it ? "
Our father! nay, Cuthbert; but he would be the first
to show the place and claim his share of spoil."
"I know not that. He hates Sir Richard. Methinks
he loved not his own brother, the good knight's father.
He was in the house what time the treasure vanished.
Might he not have had some hand in the mystery ?"
The girl shook her head again doubtfully.
28 THE INMATES OF THE OLD GATE-HOUSE.
Nay, how can I say ? Yet methinks our father, who
sorely laments his poverty and dependence for a home
upon Sir Richard's kindness, would no longer live at the
old Gate-House had he riches hidden away upon which he
might lay his hand. Nay, Cuthbert, methinks thou art
not on the right track in thinking of him. But I do not
rightly know the story of that lost treasure."
Marry, nor I neither. I have heard our father rave
of it. I have heard a word here, a whisper there, but
never a full account of the matter. But that there is
some great treasure lost or made away with all men who
know aught of the Trevlyns know well. And if, as all
affirm, this same treasure is but buried in some hiding-
place, the clue to which none possesses, why should not I
find it ? Why should not I be the man at last to track
and to discover it? "
Why not indeed ? Petronella, full of ardent youthful
imaginings, fired instantly with the thought. Why should
not her brother do this thing ? Why not indeed ? She
looked at him with eyes that shone in the gloom like
Yes, Cuthbert, be it thine to do what none else has been
able. Be it thine to discover this lost treasure. Would
that I could help thee in that quest! But I can give thee
just this one. morsel of counsel. Start not till thou hast
been to the Chase and heard all the story from our cousins
there. They will tell thee what there is to know, and he
is twice armed who has this knowledge."
I will follow thy good counsel, my sister, and commend
THE INMATES OF THE OLD GA TE-HOUSE. 29
thee to their kindly care. And now, let us say farewell,
and be brief; for such moments do but wring the heart
and take the manliness from one. Farewell, and farewell,
my sweetest sister. Heaven be thy guide and protector;
and be sure of one thing, that if I live I will see thee soon
again, and that if I have success in my search thou and I
will rejoice in it together."
THE INMATES OF TRE VLYN CHASE.
T REVLYN CHASE was a fine Tudor structure, stand-
ing on the site of the more ancient castle that had
been destroyed during the tumultuous days of the Wars of
the Roses. Instead of the grim pile of gray masonry that
had once adorned the crest of the wooded hill, its narrow
loopholes and castellated battlements telling of matters
offensive and defensive, a fair and home-like mansion of
red brick overlooked the peaceful landscape, adorned with
innumerable oriel windows, whose latticed casements shone
brilliantly in the south sunlight as it fell upon the hand-
some frontage of the stately house. Great timbers deeply
carved adorned the outer walls, and the whole building
was rich in those embellishments which grace the buildings
of that period. A fine terrace ran the whole length of the
south front, and was bounded at either side by a thick
hedge of yew. Stone steps led down into a terraced gar-
den upon which much care had been bestowed and which
in summer was bright with all the flowers then known
and cultivated in this country. Even in gloomy winter
there was more of order and trimness than was often
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
found in such places, and the pleasaunces and shrubberies
and gardens of Trevlyn Chase, with the wide fish-ponds
and terraced paths, formed a pleasant place of resort
almost at any season, and were greatly delighted in by
the children of the present owner, who had only recently
made acquaintance with their ancient family home.
The setting sun was shining brightly now upon the
windows of the house which faced the south, with half a
point of west, so that in winter the sunlight shone to the
very time of its setting into the lofty and decorated cham-
bers. The glow from blazing fires within likewise shone
and twinkled hospitably through the clear glass, and one
long window of one of the rooms stood open to the still
evening air, and a little group was gathered together just
A tall young man of some five-and-twenty summers,
with the regular Trevlyn features and a pair of honest gray
eyes, was standing out on the terrace with his face towards
the red sky, a couple of sporting dogs frisking joyously
about him, as if hoping he was bent upon a stroll in the
woods. By his side stood a tall slim maiden, bright-faced
and laughing-eyed, straight as a dart, alert and graceful in
her movements, with an expression of courage and resolu-
tion on her fair face that stamped it at once with a strong
individuality of its own. She was dressed simply, though
in soft and erich textures, as became her station, and she
held her hood in her hands, leaving her ruffled curly hair
to be the sport of the light night breeze. She had very
delicate features and an oval face, and from the likeness
32 THE INMA TES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
that existed between them the pair were plainly brother
Just within the open window were two more girls,
dressed in the same fashion as the first, and plainly her
sisters, though they were more blonde in type, and whilst
very pretty, lacked the piquant originality that was the
great characteristic of the dark girl's beauty. They were
not quite so tall, and the elder of the blonde pair was not
nearly so slim, but had something of womanly deliberation
and dignity about her. She was plainly the eldest of the
three sisters, as the little maid beside her was the youn-
gest. All three were engrossed in some sort of talk that
appeared full of interest for them.
"I wish he would not do it," said Philip, turning his
eyes in an easterly direction, towards a hollow in the fall-
ing ground, where the ruins of the ancient wall could still
be dimly traced. The old Gate-House itself could not be
seen from this side of the house, but it was plain that the
thoughts of all had turned in that direction. "It is brave
of him to obey his conscience rather than his father; but
yon man is such a veritable tiger, that I fear me there
will be dark work there betwixt them if the lad provoke
him too far. Nicholas Trevlyn is not one to be defied
with impunity. I would that Cuthbert had as much pru-
dence as he has courage."
"So do not I," answered Kate quickly, turning her
flashing eyes full upon her brother. I hate prudence-the
prudence of cowardice! I am right glad that Cuthbert
thinks first of his conscience and second of his father's
THE INMATES OF TRE VLYN CHASE.
wrath. What man who ever lived to do good in the
world was deterred from the right by craven fears? I
honour him for his single-mindedness. He is a bold youth,
and I would fain help him an I could see the way."
"We would all gladly do that," answered Philip; "the
hard thing being to find the way."
"We shall find it anon, I doubt not," answered Kate.
"Things cannot go on ever as they are now."
"No; methinks one day we may chance to hear that
the old Papist has done his son to death in a fit of blind
fury. Then perhaps, my sister, thou wilt join with me in
wishing that the lad had shown more regard for his stern
"Nay, Philip, sure thou fearest too much," spoke Cecilia
from her station beside the window. "Nicholas Trevlyn
may be a dark and sour man, but he scarce would lift a
hand against his own flesh and blood! I cannot believe
it bf any father."
"Fathers of his type have done as bad ere now," an-
swered Philip, with -gravity, and there is no bigot like
the Papist bigot, who is soured and imbittered by persecu-
tion himself. Cuthbert has told me things ere this which
show what an iron soul his father's is. He believes that he
would wring the neck of little Petronella sooner than see
her turn out of the path of unreaoning Papistry in which
he has brought her up," and Philip's' face darkened sud-
denly as he turned it towards his sister
"But sure the King would protect them if he knew,"
said Bessie, the youngest of the sisters. Why, the law bids
34 THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
all loyal subjects go to church, and punishes those who
stay away. The King would be sorely angry, would he
not, were he to hear that any man dared use force to
hinder his children from going."
Kate's delicate lips curved into a smile of derision, and
Philip shrugged his broad shoulders.
"The King, my dear Bessie, is naught but a miserable
pedant, who loves nothing so well as hearing himself
talk, and prating by the hour together on matters of law
and religion, and on the divine right of kings. He is not
the King such as England has been wont to know-a
King to whom his subjects might gain access to plead his
protection and ask his aid. I trow none but a fool would
strive to win a smile from the Scottish James. He is
scarce a man, by all we hear, let alone a King. I some-
times think scorn of us as a nation that we so gladly and
peaceably put our necks beneath the sceptre of such an
'atomy. Sure had the Lady Arabella but been a man, we
should scarce have welcomed so gladly this son of Mary
Stuart as our monarch."
Have a care, my children, and talk not rank treason
in such open fashion," said a deep voice behind them, and
the daughters started to see the tall form of their father
in the room behind them. "We Trevlyns are none too
safe from suspicion that we need endanger ourselves wil-
fully. Whatever else James Stuart may be, he has shown
that he means to be a monarch as absolute as any who
have gone before him. Wherefore it behoves us to be
cautious even in the sanctuary of this peaceful home.-
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
What. is the matter, Kate, that thou art thus scornful
towards his majesty ? In what has he offended thee, my
saucy princess ?"
As Kate stepped within the room, followed by her
brother, it was plain from the lighting of her father's eyes
that she was the favourite daughter with him. He laid
his hand lightly on her shoulder, and she stood up close
beside him, her bright face upraised, a saucy gleam in her
eyes, and both her attitude and bearing bespoke an affec-
tionate confidence between father and child less common
in those ceremonious days than it has since become.
"Father, we were talking of Cuthbert. Did you see
him at church to-day? He was there both in the morning
and the afternoon."
"I thought I saw him. I was not sure. I am glad his
father has had the sense to relent thus far with him."
"But he has not relented," answered Kate quickly.
"Cuthbert comes in defiance of his commands; and Philip
says he misdoubts if his father may not do him some griev-
ous bodily harm in his rage and fury.,; Bessie did ask if the
King would not interfere to save him;" and then Kate
broke off with her rippling, saucy laugh. "I was just an-
swering that question when you came. But sure, father,
something might be done for him. It is a cruel thing for
a boy to be treated as he is treated, and all for.:striving to
obey the law of the land."
Sir Richard Trevlyn stood in silent thought awhile.
He was a fine-looking man, with a thoughtful, benevolent
countenance, and eyes that Kate had inherited. He had
36 THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
known something of peril and trouble himself in his day,
and could feel for the troubles of others. But he also
knew the difficulties of dealing with such a man as his kins-
man Nicholas; and without bringing him to the notice of
the authorities as a concealed Papist-an idea repugnant
to him where one of his own name and blood was con-
cerned-it was difficult to see what could be done for
the protection of the hapless Cuthbert and his sister. Sir
Richard Trevlyn did not wish to draw public attention
upon himself. It was his desire to live as quietly and
privately as possible. The Trevlyns had been for many
generations a family stanch to the doctrines and traditions
of the Church of Rome, and they had won for themselves
that kind of reputation which clings tenaciously to certain
families even when it has ceased to be a fact. The present
Sir Richard's father had broken through the traditions of
his race in marrying a lady of the Reformed faith. It
was a love-match, and all other considerations went to the
winds. The lady was no theologian, and though believing
all she had been taught, had no horror of Popery or of
her husband's creed. They had lived happily together in
spite of their respective opinions; but either through the
influence of his wife, or through other causes less well
understood, Sir Richard the elder in his later life became
gradually weaned from the old faith, and embraced that
of his wife. Some said this was done from motives of
policy, since Elizabeth was -on the throne, and the edicts
against Papists, though only rigidly enforced by fits and
starts, were always in existence, and had been the ruin of
THE INMATES OF TRE VL YN CHASE.
many ancient families. However that may have been, the
only son of this union had b6en trained up a Protestant,
and had brought up his own children as members of the
Established Church of the land.
But still the old tradition remained that all Trevlyns
must of necessity be rank Papists, and Nicholas had cer-
tainly done all he could to encourage this idea, and had
ruined himself by his contumacious resistance to the laws.
Both his brother and his nephew had suffered through
their close relationship to such an unruly subject, and
there had been dark days enough for the family during
the Armada scare, when every Papist became a mark for
popular hatred, and professions of loyalty and good faith
were regarded with distrust.
Now, however, the family seemed to have lived through
its darkest days. Peace had been made with men in high
places. Sir Richard had done good service to the State on
more than one occasion; and latterly he had felt sufficiently
safe to retire from the neighbourhood of the Court, where
he had been holding some small office, and settle down
with his wife and family in his ancestral home. His
marriage with Lady Frances de Grey, the daughter of
the Earl of Andover, had given him excellent connections;
for the Andovers were stanch supporters of the Reformed
faith, and had been for several generations, so that they
were high in favour, and able to further the fortunes of
their less lucky kinsman. It had taken many years to
work matters to a safe and happy conclusion, but at the
present moment there seemed to be no clouds in the sky.
38 THE INMATES OF TRE VLYN CHASE.
The new King had been as gracious as it was in his nature
to be to Sir Richard, and did not appear to regard him
with any suspicion. The knight breathed freely again
after a long period of anxiety, for the tenacious memory
and uncertain temper of the late Queen had kept him in a
It had been a kindly and courageous thing for Sir
Richard to permit his contumacious and inimical kins-
man to retain the possession of the old Gate-House.
Nicholas had no manner of right to it, though he was
fond of putting forward a pretended claim; and the close
proximity of a rank and bitter Papist of his own name
and race was anything but a pleasant thing. But the
sense of family feeling, so strongly implanted in the
English race, had proved stronger than prudential scruple,
and Nicholas had not been ejected, his nephew even striv-
ing at the first to establish some kind of friendly relations
with the old man, hoping perhaps to draw him out of his
morose ways, and lead him to conformity and obedience
to the existing law.
Nicholas had refused all overtures; but his lonely son
and daughter had been only too thankful for notice, and
the whole family at the Chase became keenly interested
in them. It was plain from the first that their father's
bitterness and rigid rule had done anything but endear
his own views to his children. Petronella accepted the
creeds and dogmas instilled into her mind with a childlike
faith, and dreamed her own devotional dreams over her
breviary and her book of saints-the only two volumes
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
she possessed. She was content, in the same fashion that
a little child is content, with just so much as was given
her. But Cuthbert's mind was of a different stamp, and
he had long been panting to break the bonds that held
both body and soul in thrall, and find out for himself the
meaning of those questions' and controversies that were
convulsing the nation and the world.
Intercourse with his kinsfolk had given him his first
real insight into the burning questions of the hour, and
his attendance from time to time at-the parish church had
caused him fresh access of wonder at what his father could
object to in the doctrines there set forth. They might
not embody everything a popish priest would bid him
believe, but at least they appeared to the boy to contain
all the integral truths of Christianity. He began dimly
to understand that the Papists were not half so much con-
cerned in the matter of cardinal doctrines of the faith as in
asserting and upholding the temporal as well as the spirit-
ual power of the Pope; and that this should be made the
matter of the chiefest moment filled the boy's soul with a
loathing and disgust which were strong enough to make
him half a Protestant at once.
Sir Richard had seen almost as much, and was greatly
interested in the lad; but it was difficult to know how to
help him in days when parental authority was so absolute
and so rigidly exercised.
"We must do what we can," said Sir Richard, waking
from his reverie and shaking his head. But we must have
patience too; and it will not be well for the boy to irritate
40 THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
his father too greatly. To-morrow I will go to the Gate-
House and see my uncle, and speak for the boy. He ought
to have the liberty of the law, and the law bids all men
attend the services of the Established Church. But it is
ill work reasoning with a Papist of his type; and short
of reporting the case to the authorities, meaning more
persecution for my unlucky kinsman, I know not what
may be done."
We must strive so to win upon him by gentle means
that he permits his children free intercourse with ours,"
said gentle Lady Frances from her seat by the glowing
hearth. "It seems to me that that is all we may hope to
achieve in the present. Perchance as days and weeks pass
by we may find a way to that hard and flinty heart."
"And whilst we wait it may well be that Cuthbert will
be goaded to desperation, or be done to death by his
remorseless sire," answered impetuous Kate, who loved not
counsels of prudence. "Methinks that waiting is an ill
game. I would never wait were I a man. I would al-
ways act-ay, even in the teeth of deadly peril. Sure the
greatest deeds have been achieved by men of action, not
by men of counsel and prudence."
Sir Richard smiled, as he stroked her hair, and told her
she should have lived a hundred or so years back, when it
was the fashion to do and dare regardless of consequences.
And gradually the talk drifted away from the inmates of
the old Gate-House, though Philip was quite resolved to
pay an early visit there on the morrow, and learn how it
had fared with his cousin.
THE INMA TES OF TRE VL YN CHASE.
Supper followed in due course, and was a somewhat
lengthy meal. Then the ladies retired to the stately
apartment they had been in before, and the mother read a
homily to her daughters, which was listened to with dutiful
attention. But Kate's bright eyes were often bent upon
the casement of one window, the curtain of which she had
drawn back with her own hand before sitting down; and
as the moon rose brighter and brighter in the sky and
bathed the world without in its clear white beams, she
seemed to grow a little restless, and tapped the floor with
the point of her dainty shoe.
Kate Trevlyn was a veritable sprite for her love of the
open air, by night as well as day, in winter cold as well as
summer heat. "The night-bird was one of her father's
playful names for her, and if ever she was able to slip
away on a fine night, nothing delighted her more than to
wander about in the park and the woods, listening to the
cries of the owls and night-jars, watching the erratic flight
of the bats, and admiring the grand beauty of the sleeping
world as it lay beneath the rays of the peaceful moon.
As the reading ceased, a step on the terrace without told
Kate that Philip was out for an evening stroll. Gliding
from the room with her swift undulating motion, and quickly
donning cloak and clogs, she slipped after him and joined
him before he had got many yards from the house.
"Take me with thee, Philip," she said. "It is a lovely
night for a stroll. I should love to visit the chantry;
it looks most witching at this hour of the night."
They took the path that led thither. The great clock
42 THE INMATES OF TRE VL YN CHASE.
in the tower had boomed the hour of eight some time since.
The moon had shaken itself free from the veil of cloud,
and was sailing majestically in the sky. As they descended
the path, Kate suddenly laid her hand on her brother's
arm, and whispered,-
"Hist Methinks I hear the sound of steps. Surely
there is some one approaching us from below!"
Philip paused and listened. Yes, Kate's quick ears had
not deceived her. There was the sound of a footstep
advancing towards them along the lonely tangled path.
Philip instinctively felt for the pistol he always carried in
his belt, for there were often doubtful and sometimes
desperate men in hiding in woods and lonely places; but
before he had time to do more than feel if the weapon
were safe, Kate had darted suddenly from his side, and was
speeding down the path.
"Marry but it is Cuthbert!" she called back to him as
he bid her stop, and Philip himself started forward to meet
and greet the new-comer.
We have been talking of you and wondering how it
fared with you," he said, as they reached the side of the
youth "I am right glad to see you here to-night."
Cuthbert did not answer for a moment. He seemed to
pant for breath. A ray of moonlight striking down upon
his face showed it to be deadly white. His attitude be-
spoke the extreme of fatigue and weakness.
Why, there is something amiss with you !" cried Philip,
taking his cousin by the arm. "Some evil hap has befallen
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
"His father has half killed him, I trow!" cried Kate,
with sudden energy. He could not else have received
injury in these few hours.-Speak, Cuthbert; tell us! is
it not so ?"
"I have been something rough handled," answered the
lad in a low voice; "but I did not feel it greatly till I
began to climb the hill.-I thank you, good Philip. I will
be glad of your arm. But I am better already."
"You look like a veritable ghost," said Kate, still brim-
ming over with pity and indignation. "What did that
miserable man do to you ?"
"Why, naught that he has not done a score of times
before-tied me to the pillar and flogged me like a dog.
Only he laid his blows on something more fiercely than is
his wont, and doubled the number of them. Perchance he
had some sort of inkling that it was his last chance, and
used it accordingly."
The bare trees did not screen the beams of the moon,
and both Philip and Kate could see the expression on
Cuthbert's face. What they read there caused Kate to
ask suddenly and eagerly,-
"What meanest thou by that, Cuthbert? What plan
hast thou in thine head ?"
"Why, a mighty simple one-so simple that I marvel
I have not carried it out before. I could not live worse
were I to beg my bread from door to door, and I should at
least have my liberty; and if whipped for a vagabond,
should scarce be so badly used as my father uses me.
Moreover, I have a pair of strong arms and some book-
44 THE INMATES OF TREVL YN CHASE.
learning; and I trow I need never sink to beggary. I
mind not what I do. I will dig the fields sooner than be
worse treated than a dog. My mind is made up. I have
left my father's house never to return. I am going forth
into the world to see what may befall me there, certain
that nothing can be worse than what I have left behind."
"Thou hast run away from thy cruel father ? Marry,
that is good hearing!" cried Kate, with sparkling eyes.
"I marvel we had none of us thought of that plan our-
selves; it is excellent."
"It seemed the one thing left-the only thing possible.
I could not endure such thraldom longer," answered Cuth-
bert, speaking wearily, for he was in truth well-nigh worn
out with the tumult of his own feelings and the savage
treatment he had received. "But I know not if I shall
accomplish it even now. My father may discover my
flight, pursue and bring me back. This very day I asked
to leave his house, and he refused to let me go. If he
overtakes me I shall be shut up in strait confinement; I
shall be punished sorely for this night's work. I must
make shift to put as many miles as may be betwixt my-
self and the Gate-House to-night."
"Nay, thou shalt do no such thing!" answered Kate,
quickly and warmly. "I have a better plan than that.
Thou shalt come home with us. My good father will
gladly give thee shelter and protection. Thou shalt remain
in hiding with us till the hue and cry (if there be any)
shall be overpast, and till thy wounds be healed and. thou
hast regained thy strength and spirit; and theni thou shalt
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
start forth reasonably equipped to seek thy fortune in the
world; and if thou wilt go to merry London, as I would
were I a man with mine own fortune to carve out, methinks
I can give thee a letter to one there that will secure thee
all that thou needest in the present, and may lead to
advancement and good luck."
Kate's thoughts always worked like magic. No sooner
was an idea formed in her busy brain than she saw the
whole story unwinding itself in glowing colours; and to
hear her bright chatter as the three pursued their way
to the house, one would have thought her cousin's fortune
already made. A soft red glow had stolen into her cheeks
as she had spoken of the missive she could furnish, and
Philip gave her a quick glance, a smile crossing his face.
Cuthbert was too faint and bewildered to take in all the
sense of Kate's words, but he understood that for the
moment he was to be cared for and concealed, and that
was enough. Philip echoed his sister's invitation to his
father's house as his first stage on his journey, and all
that the lad remembered of the next few hours was the
dancing of lights before his dazzled eyes, the sound of
friendly voices in his ears, and the gentle ministrations of
kindly hands, as he was helped to bed and cosseted up,
and speedily made so comfortable that he fell off almost
immediately into a calm refreshing sleep that was like to
be the best medicine he could have.
When Sir Richard rejoined his family, it was with a
stern expression on his face.
"The boy has been grossly maltreated," he said. "It
46 THE INMfA TES OF TRE VL YN CHASE.
is no mere paternal chastisement he has received this day,
but such a flogging as none but the lowest vagabond would
receive at the hands of the law. The very bone is in one
place laid bare, and there be many traces of savage handling
before this. Were he not mine own uncle, bearing mine
own name, I would not let so gross an outrage pass. But
at least we can do this much-shelter the lad and send him
forth, when he is fit for the saddle, in such sort that he
may reach London in easy fashion, as becomes one of his
race. The lad has brains and many excellent qualities.
There is no reason why he should not make his way in life."
"If he can be cured of his Papist beliefs," said Lady
Frances; but no man holding them gets on in these days,
and Cuthbert has been bred up in the very worst of such
"So bad that he is half disgusted with them before he
can rightly say why," answered Sir Richard with a smile.
" There is too much hatred and bitterness in Nicholas
Trevlyn's religion to endear it to his children. The boy
has had the wit to see that the Established Church of the
land uses the same creeds and holds the same cardinal
doctrines as he has been bred up in. For the Pope he
cares no whit; his British blood causes him to think scorn
of any foreign potentate, temporal or spiritual. He has
the making of a good churchman in him. He only wants
training and teaching. Methinks it were no bad thing to
send him to his mother's kindred for that. They are as
stanch to the one party as old Nicholas to the other. The
lad will learn all he needs there of argument and con-
THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
troversy, and will be able to weigh the new notions against
the old. Verily, the more I think of it the better I like
the plan. He is scarce fit for a battle with the world
on his own account. Food and shelter and a home of some
sort will be welcome to him whilst he tries the strength of
his wings and fits them for a wider flight."
His mother's kindred," repeated Kate quickly, and with
a shade of hauteur in her manner. Why, father, I have
ever thought that on their mother's side our cousins had
little cause to be proud of their parentage. Was not their
The daughter of a wool-stapler, one Martin Holt, foster-
brother to my venerated father, the third Earl of Andover,"
said Lady Frances, quietly. "Truly, my daughter, these
good folks are not in birth our equal, and would be the
first to say so; nevertheless they are worthy and honest
people, and I can remember that Bridget, my mother's
maid, who astonished us and deeply offended her relations
by a sudden and ill-judged marriage with Nicholas Trevlyn,
was a wonderfully well-looking woman. How and why
such a marriage was made none may rightly know now.
I can remember that the dark-browed Nicholas, who was
but little loved at our house, took some heed to this girl,
greatly younger than himself, though herself of ripening
age when she let herself be persuaded into that loveless
wedlock. It was whispered that he had made a convert
of her; the Jesuits and seminary priests were hard at work,
striving to win back their lost power by increasing the
number of their flock and recruiting from all classes of the
48 THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
people. Nicholas was then a blind tool in the hands of
these men, and I always suspected that this was one of his
chief motives for so ill-judged a step. At any rate, Bridget
pronounced herself a Romanist, and was married by a priest
of that Church according to its laws. Her family cast her
off, and Nicholas would let us have no dealings with her.
Poor Bridget! I trow she lived to rue the day; and the
change of her faith was but a passing thing, for I know
she returned to her old beliefs when time had allowed her
to see things more clearly. But to return to the beginning.
If Bridget's brother, Martin Holt, yet lives and carries on
his father's business, as is most like, on London Bridge, his
house would be no bad shelter for this poor lad, who will
scarce have means or breeding as yet to take his place with
those of higher quality."
That is very true," said Sir Richard. "The lad is a
right honest lad, and his gentle blood shows in a thousand
little ways; but his upbringing has not fitted him for
mingling with the high ones of the world, and it would be
well for him to rub off something of his rustic shyness and
awkwardness ere he tries to cut a fine figure. I doubt not
that Martin Holt would receive his sister's son."
"A wool-stapler !" muttered Kate, with a slight pout of
her pretty lips. I was going to have sent him to Culver-
house with a letter, to see what he would do for my cousin."
"Lord Culverhouse could not do much," answered her
father, with a smile. "He is but a stripling himself, and
has his own way yet to make. And remember too, dear
Lady Disdain, that in these times of change and upheaval
THE INMATES OF TRE VL Y CHASE.
it boots not to speak thus scornfully of honest city folks,
be they wool-staplers or what you will, who gain their
wealth by trading on the high seas and with foreign lands.
Bethink you that even the King himself, despite his fine
phrases on divine right, has to sue something humbly to
his good citizens of London and his lowlier subjects for
those very supplies that insure his kingly pomp. So,
saucy girl, put not into young Cuthbert's head notions that
ill befit one who has naught to call his own save the
clothes upon his back. If he goes to these kinsfolk, as I
believe it will be well for him to do, it will behove him to
go right humbly and reverently. Remember this in talk-
ing with him. It were an ill thing to do to teach him to
despise the home where his mother first saw light, and the
kinsfolks who are called by her name."
Kate's sound sense and good feeling showed her the truth
of her father's words, and she dutifully promised not to
transgress; but she did not altogether relish the thought
of the prospect in store for her cousin, and as she went
upstairs with Bessie to the comfortable bed-chamber they
shared together, she whispered, with a mischievous light
dancing in her eyes,-
Ah, it is one thing for the grave and reverend elders to
plan, but it is another for the young to obey. Methinks
Cuthbert will need no hint from me to despise the home
of the honest wool-stapler. He has been bred in woods
and forests. He has the blood of the Trevlyns in his
veins. I trow the shop on London Bridge will have small
charms for him. Were it me, I would sooner-tenfold
50 THE INMATES OF TREVLYN CHASE.
sooner-join myself to one of those bands of freebooters
who ravage the roads, and fatten upon sleek and well-fed
travellers, than content myself with the pottering life of a
trader! Ah, we shall see, we shall see! I will keep my
word to my father. But for all that I scarce think that
when Cuthbert starts forth again it will be for London
Bridge that he will be bound!"
THE LOST TREASURE.
" ND so it is to London thou wilt go-to the worthy
A wool-stapler on the Bridge ?" and Kate, mindful of
her promise to her parents, strove to suppress the little
grimace with which she was disposed to accompany her
words-" at least so my father saith."
Yes: he has been giving me good counsel, and methinks
that were a good beginning. I would gladly see London.
M1en talk of its wonders, and I can but sit and gape. I am
aweary of the life of the forest-the dreary life of the
Gate-House. In London I shall see men-books-all the
things my heart yearns after. And my mother's kindred
will scarce deny me a home with them till I can find some-
what to do; albeit I barely knew so much as their name,
and my father has held no manner of communication with
them these many years."
"Perchance they will not receive thee," suggested Kate,
with a laughing look in her eyes. "Then, good Cuthbert,
thou wilt be forced to trust to thine own mother-wit for
a livelihood. Then perchance thou wilt not despise my
poor little letter to my good cousin Lord Culverhouse."
THE LOST TREASURE.
Despise aught of yours, sweet Kate Who has dared to
say such a thing ?" asked Cuthbert hotly. "Any missive
delivered to my keeping by your hands shall be doubly
precious. I will deliver it without fail, be it to mine own
advancement or no."
Belike I shall claim your good offices yet, Master Letter-
carrier," answered Kate, with a laugh and a blush; "and I
trow my cousin will like you none the less for being bearer
of my epistle. But I am not to commend you to his good
graces, as once I meant. It is to your relatives you are
first to look for help. It is like rubbing the bloom off a
ripe peach-all the romance is gone in a moment! I had
hoped that a career of adventure and glory lay before you,
and behold the goal is a home beneath a wool-stapler's
roof!" But there Kate caught herself up and blushed,
bethinking what her parents would say could they hear
But Cuthbert did not read the underlying scorn in merry
Kate's tones. He was a very simple-minded youth, and
his life and training had not been such as to teach him
much about the various grades in the world, or how greatly
these grades differed one from the other. He was looking
at his cousin's bright face with thoughtful, questioning eyes,
-so much so that the girl asked him of what he was
Marry of thee, Mistress Kate," he answered; for though
encouraged to speak on terms of equality with his kinsfolk,
he found some difficulty in remembering to do so, and they
certainly appeared to him in the light of beings from
THE LOST TREASURE.
another and a higher sphere than his own. "I was longing
to ask of thee a question."
"Ask on, good Master Cuthbert," was the ready reply;
"I will answer to the best of my humble ability."
"I have heard of this Lord Culverhouse from many
beneath this roof since I have been here. I would fain
know who he is."
"That is easy told. He is the eldest son of mine
uncle, my mother's brother, the fourth Earl of Andover.
His eldest son bears the title of Viscount Culverhouse,
and he is, of course, our cousin. When we were in
London we saw much of these relatives of ours, and were
grieved to part from them when we left. Now, is it
"Yes, verily. And tell me this one thing more, fair
cousin, if it be not a malapert question. Is it not true that
thou art to wed with this Lord Culverhouse one day?"
Kate's face was dyed by a most becoming blush. Her
eyes sparkled in a charming fashion. Her expression, half
arch, half grave, was bewitching to see, but she laid her
fingers on her lips as she whispered,-
"Hush, hush! who told thee that, good Cuthbert?
Methinks thou hast over-sharp eyes and ears."
"I prithee pardon me if I have seen and heard too
much," answered Cuthbert; "but I had a fancy-"
He stopped, stammering, blushing, and Kate took pity
on his confusion.
I am not vexed," she said, smiling; and in very sooth
thou hast divined what is in part the truth. But we do
THE LOST TREASURE.
not dare talk of it yet. There be so many weighty matters
Cuthbert looked keenly interested. He was very fond
of this sprightly cousin of his, who was so amusing, so
kindly, and so sisterly in her ways. She had more ease of
manner, as well as brightness of temperament, than her
sisters, and her company had been a source of great pleasure
to him. The girl saw the look of sympathetic curiosity
upon his face, and she drew her chair a little nearer to that
which he occupied, stirring up the logs upon the glowing
hearth into a brighter blaze.
I' faith, Cuthbert, I will gladly tell thee all there is to
know, it is not much; and I like thee well, and trust thee
to boot. Nor is it such a mighty secret that Culverhouse
would fain make me his bride, and that I would give myself
to him to-morrow an I might. I am not ashamed of loving
him," cried the girl, her dark eyes flashing as she threw
back her dainty head with a gesture of pride and womanly
dignity, "for he is a right noble gentleman, and worthy of
any maiden's love; but whether we shall ever be united in
wedlock-ah, that is a vastly different matter!" and she
heaved a quick little sigh.
"But wherefore not ?" asked Cuthbert quickly. "Where
could he find a more beauteous or worthy wife ? "
Kate gave him a little bow of acknowledgment for his
compliment, but her face was slightly more grave as she
It is not, alack! a question of dislike to me. Were
that all, I might hope to win the favour of stern hearts,
THE LOST TREASURE.
and bring the matter to a happy conclusion. But no;
mine uncle of Andover likes me well. He openly says as
much, and he has been a kind friend to us. And yet I
may not wed his son; and his kindness makes it the
harder for Culverhouse to do aught to vex or defy him."
"But why may you not ?" asked Cuthbert quickly.
"There be more reasons than one, but I will tell you
all in brief. My own father mislikes the thought of the
match, for that we are cousins of the first degree; and
though we Trevlyns of the older branch no longer call our-
selves the servants and followers of Rome, yet old traditions
linger long in the blood, and my father has always set his
face against a marriage betwixt cousins nearest akin."
Cuthbert looked thoughtful. That certainly was a diffi-
culty hard to be got over. He made no comment, but
"And my Lord of Andover--is that the objection with
"Not near so much. He would easily overlook that.
There are no such strict rules with Protestants, and his
family have been for many generations of the Reformed
faith. But there is just as weighty an argument on his
side-namely, that my father can give me but a scahty
dower, and it is a very needful thing for Culverhouse to
wed with one who will fill his coffers with broad gold
pieces. The Trevlyns, as thou doubtless knowest, have
been sorely impoverished ever since the loss of the treasure.
My father can give no rich dower with his daughters;
wherefore they be no match for the nobles of the land. Oh,
THE LOST TREASURE.
why was that treasure lost? Why could no man be wise
enough to trace and find it, when sure there must have been
many in the secret ? Now that a generation has gone
by, what hope is there left ? But for that loss my Lord of
Andover would have welcomed me gladly. The lost treas-
ure of Trevlyn has much to answer for."
Kate spoke half laughingly, half impatiently, and tapped
the rush-strewn floor with the point of her shoe. Into
Cuthbert's eyes a sudden light had sprung, and leaning for-
ward in the firelight, he laid his hand upon his cousin's.
Kate," he said, in a low voice, "I have said naught of
it before-I feared it would sound but an idle boast, an
idle dream; but I am pledged to the search after the lost
treasure. If it yet lies hid, as men say it does, Cuthbert
Trevlyn will find it."
Kate gazed at him with wide-open eyes; but there was
no trace of mockery in them, rather an eager delight and
excitement that was in itself encouragement and stimulus.
Cuthbert, what meanest thou ?"
Verily no more and no less than I say. Listen, Kate.
I too am a like sufferer with others of the race of Trevlyn.
I have nor wealth, nor hope, nor future, save what I may
carve out for myself; and my heritage, as well as yours,
lies buried somewhere in these great woods, no man may
say where. It came upon me as I sat in pain and darkness,
the last hour I passed beneath my father's roof, that this
might be the work given to me to do-to restore to the
house of Trevlyn the treasure whose loss has been so sore
a blow. I said as much to my sister when we bid each
THE LOST TREASURE.
other adieu in the moonlit chantry; and she bid me, ere I
started on the quest, come hither to you and ask the story
of that loss. We know but little ourselves; our father
tells us naught, and it is but a word here and a word there
we have gathered. But you know-"
"Ay, we know well. We have been told the story by
our mother from the days of our childhood. I trow we
know all there is to know. Why hast thou not asked
before, Cuthbert ?"
The lad blushed a little at the question.
Methought it would sound but folly in your ears," he
said. It was easier to speak to Petronella in the dark
chantry. Kate, wilt thou tell me all thou knowest of this
lost treasure ? How and wherefore was it lost, and why
has no man since been able to find it ?"
"Ay, wherefore? that is what we all ask," answered
Kate, with eyes that flashed and glowed. When we were
children and stayed once a few months here, we spent days
together scouring the woods and digging after it. We
were sure we should succeed where others had failed; but
the forest yet keeps its secret, and the treasure has never
seen the light. Again and yet again have I said to Philip
that were I a man I would never rest till it was found.
But he shakes his wise head and says that our grandfather
and father and many another have wasted time and ex-
pended large sums of money on the work of discovery, and
without success. All of our name begin to give credence to
the story that the concealed treasure was found and spirited
away by the gipsy folks, who hated our house, and that it
THE LOST TREASURE.
has long since been carried beyond the seas and melted
into coin there. Father and Philip alike believe that the
Trevlyns will see it again no more."
"Dost thou believe that too ?"
"Nay, not I. I believe it will yet come back to us,
albeit not without due search and travail and labour. O
Cuthbert, thy words rejoice me. Would I were a man,
to fare forth with thee on the quest What wilt thou do?
How wilt thou begin? And how canst thou search for the
lost treasure an thou goest to thine uncle's house in London?"
"I must fain do that for a while," answered Cuthbert;
"I dare not linger so close to my father's home at this
time. Moreover, the winter is fast coming upon us, when
the ground will be deep in snow, and no man not bred to
it could make shift to live in the forest. To London must
I go first. I trow the time will not be wasted; for I will
earn money in honest fashion, that I may have the where-
withal to live when I go to seek this lost treasure. And
now, my cousin, tell me all the tale. I know not rightly
how the treasure was lost, and I have never heard of the
gipsy folks or their hatred to our house. It behoves me
to know all ere I embark on the quest."
"Yea, verily; and I will tell thee all I know. Thou
knowest well that of old the Trevlyns were stanch sons to
the Church of Rome, and that in the days of Bloody Mary,
as men call her now (and well she merits the name), the
Trevlyns helped might and main in hunting down wretched
Protestants and sending them to prison and the stake ?"
"I have heard my father speak of these things," an-
THE LOST TREASURE.
swered Cuthbert, with a light shudder, calling to mind his
father's fierce and terrible descriptions of the scenes he had
witnessed and taken part in during those short but fearful
years of Mary's reign, "but I knew not it had aught to do
with the loss of the treasure."
"It had this much to do," answered Kate, "that my
grandfather and your father, who of course were brothers,
were so vehemently hated by the Protestant families, many
of whose members had been betrayed to death by their
means-your father in particular was relentless in his
efforts to hunt down and spy out miserable victims-that
when the Queen was known to be dead, and her successor
and Protestant sister had been proclaimed in London, the
Trevlyns felt that they had cause to tremble for their own
safety. They had stirred up relentless enmity by their
own relentless conduct, and the sudden turn in fortune's
wheel had given these enemies the upper hand."
"Ah !" breathed Cuthbert, "I begin to see."
The Trevlyns had not served the Bloody Queen and
her minions without reward," continued Kate, with flashing
eyes; "they had heaped together no small treasure whilst
this traffic in treachery had been going on, and in many
cases the valuables of the victims they had betrayed to
death had passed into the keeping of the betrayer. Oh,
it is a detestable thing to think of!" cried the girl, stamp-
ing her foot. No wonder the judgment of God fell upon
that unhallowed treasure, and that it was taken from its
possessors No wonder it was doomed to lie hidden away
till those who had gotten it had passed to their last account,
THE LOST TREASURE.
and could never enjoy the ill-gotten gain. And they were
punished too-ay, they were well punished. They were
fined terrible sums; they had to give back sums equal to
the spoil they had filched from others. Thy father, as
thou knowest, was ruined; and we still feel that pinch of
poverty that will be slow to depart altogether from our
house. Yet it serves us right-it serves us right! It is
meet that the children should suffer for the sins of their
parents. I have not complained, and I will not complain;"
and Kate threw back her head, whilst her eyes flashed with
the stress of her feeling.
"But the treasure?" questioned Cuthbert, eager to
know more; "I have not yet heard how it was lost."
Thus recalled to her subject, Kate took up her narrative
"You doubtless know that Queen Mary died in Novem-
ber of the year of grace fifteen hundred and fifty-eight.
In that year, some months earlier, my father was born, and
at the time of the proclamation of the new Queen he was
a tender infant. My grandfather was in London about the
Court, and his wife and child were here in this house-the
sumptuous mansion he and his father had built-not dream-
ing of harm or ill. They had not heard of the death of
one Queen or the proclamation of the other till one dark
winter's night, when, just as the household were about to
retire to bed, my grandfather and your father, Cuthbert,
arrived at the house, their faces pale with anxiety and
apprehension, their clothes stained with travel; the state
of both riders and horses showing the speed with which
THE LOST TREASURE.
they had travelled, and betraying plainly that something
urgent had happened. The news was quickly told. Queen
Mary was dead. Bonfires in London streets were blazing
in honour of Elizabeth. The Protestants were everywhere
in a transport of joy and triumph. The Papists were
trembling for their lives and for their fortunes. No one
knew the policy of the new Queen. All felt that it was
like enough she would inflict bloody chastisement on those
who had been the enemies of herself and of her Protestant
subjects. Even as the Trevlyn brothers had passed through
the streets of the city on their way out, they had been
hissed and hooted and even pelted by the crowd, some
amongst which knew well the part they had played in the
recent persecutions. They had been not a little alarmed
by threats and menaces hurled at them even in the pre-
cincts of St. James's, and it had become very plain to them
that they would speedily become the objects of private if
not of public vengeance. That being so, my grandfather
was eager and anxious to return to the Chase, to place his
wife and child in some place of safety; whilst your father's
fear was all for the treasure in gold and plate and valu-
ables stored up in the house, which might well fall an easy
prey to the rapacious hands of spoilers, should such (as was
but too likely) swoop down upon the house to strive to
recover the jewels and gold taken from them when they
were helpless to oppose or resent such spoliation."
"Then it was all laid by at the Chase-all the money
and precious things taken from others ?"
"Yes, and a vast quantity of silver and gold plate
THE LOST TREASURE.
which had come into the possession of former Trevlyns
ever since the. rise of the family in the early days of the
Tudors. The seventh Henry and the eighth alike enriched
our forefathers, and I know not what wealth was stored
up in the treasure-room of this house now so drearily void.
But I mind well the story our grandam told us when we
were little children, standing at her knee in the ruddy fire-
light, of that night when all this treasure was packed up
in great chests and boxes, and carried at dead of night by
trusty servants into the heart of the forest, and buried
beneath a certain giant oak many times pointed out to us,
and well-nigh killed in after years by the diggings around
it in search of the missing hoard. To secure this treasure,
and bury it out of the reach of rapacious and covetous
hands, was the aim and object of that hurried journey
taken on the evening of the Queen's decease. None were
in the secret save three old servants, whose faithful loyalty
to the family had been tested in a thousand different ways.
Those three, together with my grandfather and your father,
packed and transported with their own hands this great
treasure into the wood, and there entombed it. None else
knew of that night's work. No other eye saw what was
done. They worked the whole night through, and by the
tardy dawn all was done, and even the soil of the forest so
cleverly arranged that none could guess at the existence of
that deep grave. And who would guess the secret of that
tangled forest ? Even were it thought that the gold and
silver had been hid, who would have such skill as to guess
the spot, and go and filch it thence ? And yet it must have
THE LOST TREASURE.
been carried away full soon. For Nicholas Trevlyn, in his
anxious greed, visited the spot not many weeks later-
visited it by stealth, for he and his brother were alike in
hiding, waiting for the first burst of vengeful fury to be
over-and he found it gone! He thought on the first
survey that all was well; but on more closely examining
the ground his heart misgave him, for it appeared to him
as if the soil had been moved. With anxious haste he
began to dig, and soon his spade struck the lid of one of
the chests. For a moment he breathed again; but he was
impelled to carry his search farther. He uncovered the
chest and raised the lid-it was empty I In a wild fear
and fury he dug again and again, and with the same result.
Every chest or box was in its place, but every one was
empty! The treasure had been spirited away by some
spoiler's hand; the treasure of Trevlyn was lost from that
night forward !"
Cuthbert was leaning forward drinking all in with eager
My father discovered the loss-my father ?"
Kate nodded her head, and seemed to divine the thought
in his mind, for she answered as if he had spoken it aloud.
"We have all thought of that. I know it is sometimes
in my father's mind as he looks at his kinsman's grim face;
but our grandsire never suspected him for a moment-nay,
he vowed he was certain he had had no part nor lot in the
matter. For there was nothing but accord between the
brothers-they shared good and evil hap alike. It was
with his son, my father, who abjured the old faith and
THE LOST TREASURE.
became a Protestant, that your father picked a quarrel.
He hated his brother's wife, it is true; but he never ap-
peared to hate his brother. And he suffered more than
any in the years that followed. He lost his all, and has
been a ruined man since. If he had a secret hoard, sure
he would scarce live the life he does now."
"I know not. It seems scarce like; and yet I can
never answer for my father's moods, they are so wild and
strange. But there is yet one thing more I would ask.
You spoke awhile ago of gipsies-of a hatred they bore to
our house. Tell me of that, I pray. Might it have some-
what to do with the stealing of the treasure ?"
"That is what some have thought, though with what
truth none can say. The story of that is soon told. Many
long years agone now, the Trevlyn whose portrait hangs
below in the hall-our great-grandfather-gave sentence
upon an old gipsy woman that she should be burnt as a
witch. Men said of her that she had overlooked their
children and their cattle: that the former had become sick
or silly, and that the latter had incontinently died of
diseases none had heard of before. There was such a hue
and cry about her, and so many witnesses to testify the
harm she had done, that all men held the case proven, and
she was burnt in the sight of all the village out upon the
common yonder by order of our forefather, whose office it
was to see the law enforced. There were then many of
these gipsy folk scattered about the common and forest,
and this old witch belonged to them. They mustered
strong upon the heath, and it was said that if the villagers
THE LOST TREASURE.
had not been too strong for them they would have rescued
the witch as she was led out to die. But the Trevlyns,
when a thing has to be done, are wont to carry it through;
and your grandfather, Cuthbert, was prepared against any
such attempt, and the thing was done as had been decreed.
The old woman went bravely to her death, but she turned
as she passed Sir Richard and cursed him with a terrible
curse. Later on some rude verses were found fastened to
the wall of the church, and it was said by those who had
heard the curse that these verses contained the same words.
The paper was burnt by the haughty knight; but my
grandam remembered some of the lines-she had got a
sight of the paper-and used to tell them to us. I cannot
recall them to memory now, but there was something about
loss of gold and coming woe, years of strife and vengeful
foe. And when years after the Trevlyn treasure was lost,
there were many who vowed that it had been the work of
the gipsy tribe, who had never forgotten or forgiven, and
who had been waiting their turn to take vengeance upon
the descendants of their old enemy."
It seems not unlike," said Cuthbert, thoughtfully; and
if that be so, the treasure will most like be dissipated to
the four winds by now. It would be divided amongst the
tribe, and never be seen within the walls of Trevlyn again."
"That I know not," answered Kate, and she drew a
little nearer to her cousin. Cuthbert, dost thou believe
in old saws ? Dost thou believe those predictions which
run in old families, and which men say work themselves
out sometimes in after generations ?"
THE LOST TREASURE.
"I scarce know," answered Cuthbert, I hear so little
and see so little. I know not why they should not be
true. Men of old used to look into the future, and why
not now ? But why speakest thou thus, sweet cousin ?"
"Marry that will I tell thee, Cuthbert; but my mother
chides me for such talk, and says it befits not a discreet
and godly maiden. Yet I had it from mine own grandam,
my father's mother, and she was a godly woman too."
"And what did she tell thee ?"
"My grandam was a Wyvern," said Kate, "as perchance
thou knowest, since the match pleased not thy father.
And she was not the first Wyvern who had married a
Trevlyn. It was Isabel Wyvern, her aunt, who had wedded
with the redoubtable Sir Richard who had burnt the old
witch, and I trow had he been married when the old
beldam was brought before him he would have dealt more
mercifully with her; for the Wyverns ever protected and
helped the gipsy folk, and thought better of them than the
rest of the world. Well, be that as it may, my grandam
had many stories about them and their strange ways, their
fashion of fortune-telling and divining, and the wonderful
things they could foretell. Many a time had a Wyvern
been saved from danger and perhaps from death by a
timely warning from one of the gipsy folk; and from a
child she went fearlessly amongst them, though all men
else shunned and hated them."
But the prediction-the prediction ?" demanded Cuth-
"I am coming to that," answered Kate. "It is a pre-
THE LOST TREASURE.
diction about the descendants of the Wyverns. My
grandam knew it by heart-she had a wondrous memory
-but my mother would never let me write down such
things. She loved them not, and said they had better
be forgotten. But though I cannot recall the words, the
meaning stays still with me. It was that though death
might thin the ranks of the Wyverns, and their name even
die out amongst men, yet in the future they should bring
good hap to those who wed with them, and that some great
treasure-trove should come to the descendants in another
generation. Now, Cuthbert, though the name of Wyvern
has died out-for the sons went to the Spanish main, and
were killed fighting for the honour of England and the
Queen in the days of Elizabeth; and the daughters are
married, and have lost their title to the old name-yet thou
and I have their blood in our veins. Your grandam and
mine were alike of the house of Wyvern. Wherefore it
seems to me that if this treasure is to be the treasure-
trove of the old saw, it behoves some of us to find it, and
why not thou as well as another? Philip is like to our
mother, who loves not and believes not such saws. Our
father says that if stolen the treasure must long since
have been scattered and lost. Of all our house methinks I
am the only one who believes it will yet be found, as I
know my grandam did. And so I say to thee, 'Go forth,
and good hap attend thee.' Thou art as much a Wyvern
as I, and we will have faith that all will be yet restored."
Cuthbert rose to his feet and shook back his hair. His
dark eyes flashed with the fixity of his purpose.
THE LOST TREASURE.
I will never despair till the treasure is found. Prithee,
good cousin, show me the spot where it was buried first."
Cuthbert never stirred outside the house till after dark.
He was still in hiding from his father, who knew not his
whereabouts, and was still on the watch for the truant,
believing him to be lurking about in the forest around his
home. Philip had once contrived to see Petronella and
soothe her fears, telling her that her brother was safe, and
would be sent forth to their kinsfolk in London so soon as
he was fit for the long ride. But many evening rambles
had been taken by the youth, who panted for the freedom
of the forest, to which he was so well used; and Kate
delighted in any excuse for a moonlight stroll.
The place was soon found. Kate had visited it so often
that the tangled path which led thither was as familiar to
her as if it had been a well-beaten road. It lay right
away in the very heart of the forest, and save for the
majestic size of the oak beneath which the chests had been
buried, had nothing to mark the spot. Now there were
traces of much digging. The ground all around had been
disturbed again and yet again by eager searchers, each
hopeful to come upon some clue missed by all the rest.
But nothing, save the remains of a few iron-bound chests,
served to show that anything had once been secreted there;
and the moonlight shone steadily and peacefully down upon
the scene of so many heart-burnings and grievous disap-
pointments, as though such things did not and could not
exist in such a still and lovely place.
"Ah, if she would but tell us all she has seen said
THE LOST TREASURE
Kate, looking up towards the silver Queen of Night. But
the moon kept her own secret, and presently the pair
"Shall we go back by the chantry ?" asked Cuthbert,
with some hesitation; "I should like to see it once
"Let us," answered Kate; "we are not like to meet thy
father. He has given up by now his watch around the
house. Moreover, I have eyes and ears like a wild-cat.
None can approach unawares upon us. I can feel a human
presence ere I see it."
Cuthbert did not lack courage, and was quite willing to
chance the small risk there was of an encounter with his
father. He felt that he could slip away unseen were that
stern man to be on the watch. Each day that had passed
beneath his uncle's roof had helped him to realize more of
the freedom of the subject; and very soon he would be
beyond the reach of pursuit, and on his way to London.
As they approached the chantry Kate laid a hand upon
"Hist!" she said softly. "Pause a moment; I hear
He stopped instantly; and making a sign of caution to
him, Kate glided a few steps onward. Then she paused
again, and made a sign to him to come.
"It is all well-there is no fear. It is Philip and
Petronella, my sister! Nay, but this is a happy
chance!" cried Cuthbert, springing eagerly forward; and
THE LOST TREASURE.
the next moment Petronella, with a little cry of mingled
joy and fear, had flung herself into her brother's arms.
Cuthbert, dear Cuthbert! How I have longed to see
thee once again Hast thou come to say farewell ?"
"In truth, methinks it must be farewell," answered
Cuthbert, holding her tenderly to him, whilst he caressed
her hair and her soft cheek with his hand. "I may not
linger too long in my kind uncle's house, lest the matter
should come to my father's ears, and a worse breach be
made that might cause thee to suffer more, sweet sister.
And now, since I may be faring forth to-morrow, tell me
of thyself. How go matters at the Gate-House? What
said our father to my flight ? "
"He is right furious threat, and raged for two days
like a madman, so that I durst not venture near him."
He laid no hand on thee ?" asked Cuthbert quickly,
clinching his hand in the darkness.
Nay, he did but threaten; but as I told him all I knew,
he could do no more. I said that thou hadst fled-that
thou couldst brook such a life no longer, and had told him
so many times thyself. I did not know myself where
thou hadst gone when first he spoke, and he has asked me
no question since. Tell me not too much, lest I have to
tell it to him."
"Nay, once in London and I fear him not," answered
Cuthbert. "There the law would protect me, since my
father's only complaint against me is that I conform to
that. I go first to our mother's relatives, sweet sister.
They will give me food and shelter and a home, I trow,
THE LOST TREASURE.
during the inclement months of the winter now before us.
Later on "-he bent his head and whispered in her ear-
" later on, if kind fortune befriend me, I shall return to
these parts and commence that search of which we have
spoken before now. My sister, if thou canst glean any-
thing from our father anent the treasure, when his less
gloomy moods be upon him, store up in thine heart every
word, for some think even yet that he knows more than
others. I am sad at heart to leave thee in such a home;
I would fain take thee with me."
Nay, that may not be. I should be but a stay and a
burden; and I can help thee better here at home by my
prayers. I will pray each hour of the day that the Holy
Virgin will watch over thee and bless thee, and give us a
happy meeting in the days to come."
"And I will charge myself to watch over Petronella,"
said Philip, stepping forward out of the shadow. "I will
be a protector-a brother-to her whilst thou art away.
She shall not feel too heavily her harsh father's rule.
Amongst us we will find a way to ease her of a part of
The glance turned upon Philip by those big shadowy
eyes told a tale of trustful confidence that set the young
man's heart beating in glad response. He took in his
the little hand trustingly held out, and drew Petronella
"You will trust her to me, good Cuthbert ?"
"Gladly, thankfully, confidently!" answered the lad,
with great earnestness; and he thought within himself that
THE LOST TREASURE.
if he had the whole of the Trevlyn treasure to lay at the
feet of these kinsmen, it could hardly be enough to express
his gratitude to them for their timely and generous help in
his hour of sore need.
"I will win it back-I will, I will!" he said in his
heart, as he walked up the hill with Kate tripping lightly
beside him, Philip having lingered to watch Petronella
safely within the shelter of the gloomy walls of the Gate-
House. "She shall have her dower, that she may wed this
gay Lord Culverhouse. My sweet sister shall be dowered
too, and in no danger of spending all her youth and sweet-
ness shut up between those gloomy walls. Fortune will
smile once more upon all those who have the blood of the
Trevlyns and Wyverns in their veins. I believe in the old
prediction. I believe that the treasure-trove will come,
and that it will prove to be the lost treasure of the house
of Trevlyn !"
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
AREWELL, Cuthbert, farewell, farewell! Heaven
speed you on your way! We shall look for
tidings of you some day. And when the long summer
days come upon the green world, perchance you may even
make shift to ride or walk the twenty miles that separates
us from London to tell of your own well-being and ask
These and many like words were showered on Cuthbert
as he sat his steed at the door of Trevlyn Chase, as the
dusk was beginning to gather, and his uncle and cousins
stood clustered together on the steps to see him ride forth
to seek his fortune, as Kate insisted on calling it, though
her father spoke of it rather as a visit to his mother's
Cuthbert had been very loath to go. He had found
himself happier beneath his uncle's roof than ever he had
been before (Sir Richard was in point of fact his cousin,
but the lad had given him the title of uncle out of respect,
and now never thought of him as anything else), but he
knew that to linger long would be neither safe nor possible.
74 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
Only his strange and savage life had prevented the news
of his son's present quarters from coming to the knowledge
of the angry Nicholas, and all were feeling it better for the
young man to take his departure. Now the moment of
parting had really come, and already the hope of a flying
visit to the Chase in the summer next to follow was the
brightest thought to lighten the regrets of the present.
"Ay, that will I gladly do cried the lad, with kindling
eyes. "Why, twenty miles is naught of a journey when
one can rise with the midsummer sun. I trow I shall pine
after the forest-tracks again. I shall have had enough
and to spare of houses and cities by the time the summer
solstice is upon us."
"We shall look for you, we shall wait for you!" cried
Kate, waving her hand; and as it was fast growing dark,
Sir Richard made a sign of dismissal and farewell, and
Cuthbert moved slowly along the dark avenue, Philip
walking beside his bridle-rein for a few last words.
Cuthbert would have liked his sister to have seen him
go forth, but that was not thought advisable. He wore
an old riding-suit of Philip's, which had fitted the latter
before his shoulders had grown so broad and his figure
assumed its present manly proportions. It suited Cuthbert
well, and in spite of its having seen some service from its
former owner, was a far better and handsomer dress than
anything he had ever worn before. His own meagre
wardrobe and few possessions were packed in the saddle-
bag across the saddle. His uncle had made no attempt to
send him out equipped as a relative of the house of Trevlyn,
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
and Cuthbert was glad that there should be no false seem-
ing as to his condition when he appeared at Martin Holt's
door. Sir Richard had given him at parting a small purse
containing a couple of gold pieces and a few silver crowns,
and had told him that he might in London sell the nag
he bestrode and keep the price himself. He was not an
animal of any value, and had already seen his best days,
but he would carry Cuthbert soberly and safely to London
town; and as the lad was still somewhat weak from his
father's savage treatment, he was not sorry to be spared the
long tramp over the deep mud of winter roads.
"I would not have you travel far to-night," said Philip,
as he paced beside the sure-footed beast, who leisurely
picked his way along the familiar road. The moon will
be up, to be sure, ere long; but it is ill travelling in the
night. It is well to get clear of this neighbourhood in the
dark, for fear your father might chance to espy you and
make your going difficult. But I would have you ask
shelter for your steed and yourself to-night at the little
hostelry you will find just this side Hammerton Heath.
The heath is an ill place for travellers, as you doubtless
know. If you should. lose the road, as is like enough, it
being as evil and rough a track as well may be, you will
like enough plunge into some bog or morass from which
you may think yourself lucky to escape with life. And
if you do contrive to keep to the track, the light-heeled
gentlemen of the road may swoop down upon you like
birds of prey, and rob you of the little worldly wealth that
you possess. Wherefore I counsel you to pause ere you
76 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
reach that ill-omened waste, and pass the night at the
hostel there. The beds may be something poor, but they
will be better than the wet bog, and you will be less like
to be robbed there than on the road."
"I will take your good counsel, cousin," said Cuthbert.
"I have not much to lose, but that little is my all. I will
stop at the place you bid me, and only journey forth across
the heath when the morrow's sun be up."
You will do well. And now farewell, for I must return.
I will do all that in me lies to watch over and guard
Petronella. She shall be to me as a sister, and I will act
a brother's part by her, until I may have won a right to
call her something more. Have no fears for her. I will
die sooner than she shall suffer. Her father shall not
visit on her his wrath at your escape."
The cousins parted on excellent terms, and Cuthbert
turned, with a strange smile on his brave young face, for
a last look at the old Gate-House, the gray masonry of
which gleamed out between the dark masses of the leafless
trees, a single light flickering faintly in an upper casement.
"Petronella's light!" murmured Cuthbert to himself.
"I trow well she is thinking of me and praying for me
before the little shrine in the turret. May the Holy Saints
and Blessed Virgin watch over and protect her! I trust
the day may come ere long when I may have power to
rescue her from that evil home, and give to her a dower
that shall make her not unworthy of being Philip's wife."
By which it may be seen that Cuthbert's thoughts were
still running on the lost treasure, and that he had by no
A NIGHT ON HAMMERtTON HEATH.
means relinquished his dream of discovery through hearing
how others had sought and failed.
"If I may but win a little gold in these winter days
when the forest is too inhospitable to be scoured and
searched, I can give the whole of the summer to the quest.
I will find these gipsies or their descendants and live
amongst them as one of them. I will learn their ways,
win their trust, and gradually discover all that they them-
selves know. Who dare say that I may not yet be the
one to bring back the lost luck to the house of Trevlyn ?
Has it always been the prosperous and rich that have won
the greatest prize ? A humble youth such as I may do
far more in the wild forest than those who have been bred
to ease and luxury, and have to keep state and dignity."
Thus musing, Cuthbert rode slowly along in the light of
the rising moon, his thoughts less occupied with the things
he was leaving behind than with thoughts of the future
and what it was to bring forth. The lad had all the pride
of his house latent within him, and it delighted him to
picture the day when he might return all Sir Richard's
benefits a thousandfold by coming to him with the news
of the lost treasure, and bidding him take the elder
brother's share before ever his own father even knew that
it had been found at last. His heart beat high as he
pictured that day, and thought how he should watch the
light coming into Kate's bright eyes, as the obstacle to her
nuptials should be thus removed. Sure she could coax
her father to remove his veto and overlook the cousinship
if she had dower to satisfy Lord Andover. And if the
78 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
Trevlyn treasure were but half what men believed, there
would be ample to dower all three daughters and fill the
family coffers too.
"In truth it is a thing well worth living for!" cried the
eager lad, as he pushed his way out of the wood and upon
the highroad, where for a time travelling was somewhat
better. "And why should I not succeed even though
others have failed ? My proud kinsmen have never lived
in the forest themselves, learning its every secret winding
track, making friends of its wild sons and daughters,
learning the strange lore that only the children of the
forest gather. What chance had they of learning secrets
which but few may know ? I trow none. I will not
believe that great treasure has been cast away to the four
winds. I verily believe it is still hidden away beneath the
earth in some strange resting-place known but to a few
living souls. What do these wild gipsy folks want with
gold and silver and jewels? They have all they need
with the heavens above them and the earth beneath.
They may love to have a buried hoard; they may love
to feel that they have treasure at command if they desire
it; but I can better believe they would keep it safe
hidden in their forest or moorland home than that they
would scatter it abroad by dividing it amongst their tribe.
Moreover, any such sudden wealth would draw upon them
suspicion and contumely. They would be hunted down
and persecuted like the Jews in old days. No: they may
well have stolen it out of revenge, but I believe they
have hidden it away as they took it. It shall be my part
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
to learn where it lies; and may the Holy Saints aid and
bless me in the search !"
Outhbert crossed himself as he invoked the Saints, for
at heart he was a Romanist still, albeit he had had the
wit to see that the same cardinal doctrines were taught by
the Established Church of the land, whose services he had
several times attended. And even as he made the gesture
he became suddenly aware that he was not alone on the
road. A solitary traveller mounted on a strong horse was
standing beneath the shadow of a tree hard by, and regard-
ing his approach with some curiosity, though the lad had
not been aware of his close proximity until his horse
paused and snorted.
Good-even, young man," said this traveller, in a pleasant
voice that bespoke gentle birth. I was waiting to see if I
had an enemy to deal with in the shape of one of those
rogues of the road, cutpurses or highwaymen, of whom
one hears so many a long tale. But these travel in
companies, and it behoves wise travellers to do likewise.
How comes it that a stripling like you are out alone in
this lone place ? Is it a hardy courage or stern neces-
"I know not that it is one or the other," answered
Cuthbert. "But I have not far to go this night, and I
have not much to lose, though as that little is my all I
shall make a fight ere I part with it. But by what I hear
there is little danger of molestation till one reaches
Hammerton Heath. And I propose to halt on the edge of
that place, and sleep at the hostelry there."
8o A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH.
"If you follow my counsel, my young friend," said the
stranger as he paced along beside Cuthbert, "you will not
adventure yourself in that den of thieves. Not long ago
it was a safe place for a traveller, but now it is more
perilous to enter those doors than to spend the darkest
night upon the road. The new landlord is in league with
the worst of the rogues and foot-pads who frequent the
heath, and no traveller who dares to ask a night's shelter
there is allowed to depart without suffering injury either
in person or pocket. Whither are you bound, my young
friend, if I may ask the question ?"
"For London, sir. I have an uncle there whom I am
about to seek. But the way is something strange to me
when the heath be passed, and I know not if I can find it
in the dark."
I also am bound for London," answered the stranger,
"and in these days it is better to travel two than one, and
four than two. But being no more than two, we must
e'en hope for the best if we fall not in with other belated
travellers. My business brooked not delay; wherefore I
came alone. I mislike the fetter of a retinue of serv-
ants, and I have had wonderful good hap on the roads;
but there be others who tell a different tale, and I often
join company when I find a traveller to my liking going
Cuthbert was glad enough to have a companion. This
man was many years his senior, so that he was somewhat
flattered by the proposition of riding in his company;
moreover, he was plainly a gentleman of some condition,
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
whose fancy it was (not his necessity) to travel thus
unattended. Also he was speedily conscious of a strange
sense of fascination which this stranger exercised upon
him, for which he could not in the least account; and he
quickly found himself answering the questions carelessly
addressed to him with a freedom that surprised himself;
for why should there be such pleasure in talking of him-
self and his prospects to one whose name he did not even
When first he had pronounced his name, he observed
that the stranger gave him a quick, keen glance; and after
they had been some time in conversation, he spoke with
a sudden gravity and earnestness that was decidedly im-
"Young man, I trust that you are loyal and true to the
faith of those forefathers of yours who have been one of
England's brightest ornaments. In these latter days there
has been a falling away. Men have let slip the ancient
truths. Love of the world has been stronger within them
than love of the truth. They have let themselves be cor-
rupted by heresy; they have lost their first love. I trust
it is not so with you. I trust you are one of the faith-
ful who are yet looking for brighter days for England,
when she shall be gathered again to the arms of the true
Church. But a few minutes ago I saw you make the
holy sign, and my heart went out to you as to a brother.
These Protestants deny and contemn that symbol, as they
despise and contemn in their wantonness the ordinances of
God and the authority of His Vicar. I trust you have
82 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
not fallen into like error; I trust that you are a true son
of the old stock of Trevlyn ?"
"I know little of such disputed matters," answered
Cuthbert, made a little nervous by the ardent glance bent
upon him from the bright eyes of the speaker. He had a
dark, narrow face, pale and eager, a small, pointed beard,
trimmed after the fashion of the times, and the wide-
brimmed sugar-loaf hat drawn down upon his brows cast
a deep shadow over his features. But his voice was
peculiarly melodious and persuasive, and there was a
nameless attraction about him that Cuthbert was quick to
feel. Others in the days to follow felt it to their own un-
doing, but of that the lad knew nothing. He only wished
to retain the good opinion this stranger seemed to.have
formed of him. "I have led but a hermit's life, as I have
told you. I have been bred up in the faith of my fore-
fathers, and that faith I believe. What perplexes me is
that those who hold the Established or Reformed faith, as
men term it, have the same creeds, the same doctrines as
we ourselves. I have from time to time conformed to the
law, and gone to the services, and I have not heard aught
spoken within their walls that our good priest in old days
used not to tell me was sound doctrine. There be things he
taught me that these men say naught about; but no man
may in one discourse touch upon every point of doctrine.
I freely own that I have been sorely perplexed to know
whence comes all this strife, all these heart-burnings."
"Thou wilt know and understand full soon, when once
thou hast seen the life of the great city and the strife of
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
faction there," answered his companion, lapsing into the
familiar "thou" as he spoke with increased earnestness.
"In thy hermit's life thou hast had no knowledge of the
robbery, the desecration, the pollution which our Holy
Mother Church has undergone from these pestilent her-
etics, who have thought to denude her of her beauty and
her glory, whilst striving to retain such things as jump
with their crabbed humours, and may be pared down to
please their poisoned and vicious minds. Ah! it makes
the blood boil in the veins of the true sons of the Church,
as thou wilt find, my youthful friend, when thou gettest
amongst them. But it will ndt always last. The day
of reckoning will come-nay, is already coming-when
men shall find that the Blessed and Holy Church may not
be defiled and downtrodden with impunity for ever. Ah
yes! the day will come-it is even at the door-when
God shall arise and his enemies be scattered. Scattered
-scattered verily that is the word. And the sons of
the true faith throughout the length and breadth of the
land shall arise and rejoice, and the heretics shall stand
amazed and confounded!"
As he spoke these words his figure seemed to expand,
and he raised his right hand to heaven with a peculiar
gesture of mingled menace and appeal. Cuthbert was
silent and amazed. He did not understand in the least
the tenor of these wild words, but he was awed and im-
pressed, and felt at once that the strife and stress of the
great world into which he was faring was something very
different from anything he had conceived of before.
84 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
By this time the travellers had reached the dreary waste
called by the inhabitants Hammerton Heath. At some
seasons of the year it was golden with gorse or purple
with ling, but in this drear winter season it, was bare and
colourless, and utterly desolate. The outline of dark forests
could be seen all around on the horizon; but the road led
over the exposed ground, where not a tree broke the mono-
tony of the way. Cuthbert was glad enough to have a
companion to ride by his side over the lonely waste, which
looked its loneliest in the cold radiance of the moon. He
did not reply to the strange words he had just heard, and
his companion, after a brief pause, resumed his discourse in
a different tone, telling the lad more about London and
the life there than ever he had heard in his life before.
But the moral of his discourse was always the sufferings,
the wrongs, the troubles of the Roman Catholics, who had
looked for better times under Mary Stuart's son; and
gradually raising within the breast of the youth a feeling
of warm sympathy with those of his own faith, and a dis-
trust and abhorrence of the laws that made life well-nigh
impossible for the true sons of the Church.
"Ruined in estate, too often injured in body, hated,
despised, hunted to death like beasts of the earth, what
is left for us but some great struggle after our lives and
liberties ?" concluded the speaker, in his, half-melancholy,
half-ardent way. Verily, when things be so bad that they
cannot well be worse, then truly men begin to think that
the hour of action is at hand. -Be the night never so long,
the dawn comes at last. And so will our day dawn for
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
us-though it may dawn in clouds of smoke and vapour,
and with a terrible sound of destruction."
But these last words were hardly heard by Cuthbert,
whose attention had been attracted by the regular beat of
horse-hoofs upon the road behind. Although the track
was but a sandy path full of ruts and holes, the sound
travelled clearly through the still night air. Whoever
these new travellers were, they were coming along at a
brisk pace, and Cuthbert drew rein to look behind him.
"There be horsemen coming this way !" he said.
"Ay, verily there be; and moreover I mislike their
looks. Honest folks do not gallop over these bad roads
in yon headlong fashion. I doubt not they be robbers,
eager to overtake and despoil us. We must make shift
to press on at the top of our speed. This is an ill place
to be overtaken. We have no chance against such num-
bers. Luckily our steeds are not way-worn; they have
but jogged comfortably along these many miles. Push
your beast to a gallop, my lad; there is no time to
Cuthbert essayed to do this; but honest old Dobbin had
no notion of a pace faster than a leisurely amble. Most
of his work had been done in the plough, and he had no
liking for the rapid gallop demanded by his rider.
The lad soon saw how it stood with him, and called out
to his well-mounted companion not to tarry for him, but
to leave him to chance and kind fortune.
"I have so little to lose that they may not think me
worth the robbing, belike. But you, sir, must not linger.
86 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH.
Your good steed is equal to theirs, I doubt not, and will
carry you safe across the heath."
"Ay, verily he will. I purchased him for that same
speed, and it has never failed me yet. I fear not pursuit.
My only peril lies in the chance of meeting a second band
watching the road farther on. I like not thus to leave
you, boy; but I have no choice. I may not risk being
robbed of my papers. There be more in them than must
be suffered to be scanned by any eyes for which they were
not meant. My gold might go, and welcome, but I must
save my papers. And if thou hast any small valuables
about thee, I will charge myself with the care of them,
and thou canst call at my lodging in London when thou
gettest there to claim thine own again. 'Twill be the
better chance than leaving yon gentlemen to irid thee of
The smile with which the stranger uttered these words
was so winning and frank, that Cuthbert placed his purse
in the outstretched hand without a qualm.
When thou wantest thine own again, go to the Cat and
Fiddle in the thoroughfare of Holborn, and ask news there
of Master Robert Catesby. It is an eating-house and
tavern where I am constantly to be met with. If I be
not lodging there at that very time, thou wilt have news
of me there. Farewell; and keep up a brave heart.
These fellows are less harsh with poor travellers than rich.
Let them see you have small fear, and it will be the better
These last words were faintly borne back to Cuthbert
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
on the wings of the wind, as his companion galloped with
long easy strides across the heath. A little dip in the
ground hid for a moment their pursuers from sight, and
before they emerged upon the crest of the undulation,
Master Robert Catesby was practically out of sight; for a
cloud had obscured the brightness of the moon, and only a
short distance off objects became invisible.
Cuthbert rode slowly on his way, trying to compose
himself to the state of coolness and courage that he would
like to show in the hour of danger. He felt the beatings
of his heart, but they were due as much to excitement as
to fear. In truth he was more excited than afraid; for he
had absolutely nothing to lose save a suit of old clothes
and his horse, and both of these were in sorry enough
plight to be little tempting to those hardy ruffians, who
were accustomed to have travellers to rob of a far superior
Nearer and nearer came the galloping horse-hoofs, and
a loud, rough voice ordered him to stop.
Cuthbert obeyed, and wheeled round on his placid steed,
who showed no sign of disquietude or excitement, but at
once commenced to nibble the short grass that grew beside
the sandy track.
"And what do you want of me, gentlemen?" asked
Cuthbert, as he found himself confronted by half-a-dozen
stalwart fellows, with swarthy faces and vigorous frames.
They were all armed and well mounted, and would have
been formidable enough to a wealthy traveller with his
stuff or valuables about him.
88 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
"Your money-or your life!" was the concise reply;
and Cuthbert was able to smile as he replied,-
"Marry then, it must be my life, for money I have
none. I have naught but an old suit of clothes and a
breviary in yon bag. You are welcome to both an ye will
condescend to wear such habiliments; but I trow ye would
find them sorry garments after those ye now display."
Tut, tut! we will see to that. There be many cunning
fashions of hiding money, and we are used to such tales
as yours. Where is your companion, young man ?"
"Nay, I have no companion," answered Cuthbert, who
was sufficiently imbued with the spirit of his father's creed
not to hesitate for a moment to utter an untruth in a good
cause, and think no shame of it; "I am journeying forth
to London alone, to seek a relative there, who methinks
will help me to earn an honest livelihood. I would I were
the rich man you take me for. But even the dress I wear
is mine through the charity of a kinsman, as is also the
nag I ride. And I misdoubt me if you would find him of
much use to you in your occupation."
One or two of the men laughed. They looked at Dob-
bin and then at his rider, and seemed to give credence to
this tale. Cuthbert's boyish face and fearless manner
seemed to work in his favour, and one of the band re-
marked that he was a bold young blade, and if in search of
a fortune, might do worse than cast in his lot with them.
"Yet I vdrily thought there had been two," grumbled
another of the band; "I wonder if he speaks sooth."
"I warrant me he does, else where should the other be ?
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
It was a trick of the moonlight: it often deceives us so.
-Come now, my young cockerel; you can crow lustily,
it seems, and keep a bold face where others shrink and
tremble and flee. How say you ? will you follow us to our
lodging-place for the night? And if we find no money
concealed about you, and if your story of your poverty be
true, you can think well whether you will choose to cast
in your lot with us. Many a poor man has done so and
become rich, and the life is a better one than many."
All this was spoken in a careless, mocking way, and
Cuthbert did not know if the proposal were made in good
faith or no. But it was plain that no harm was meant to
his life or person, and as he was in no fear from any
search of his clothes and bag, he was ready and willing to
accept the invitation offered, and by no means sorry to
think he should be relieved from spending the night in the
"I will gladly go with you," he answered. I have
spoken naught but sooth, and I have no fear. My person
and my goods are in your hands. Do as you will with
them; I have too little to lose to make a moan were you
to rob me of all."
"We rob not the poor; we only rob the rich-those
arrogant, purse-proud rogues who batten and fatten on
what they wring from the poor," answered, in quick, scorn-
ful accents, the man who appeared to be the leader of this
little band. "On them we have scant pity. They have
but stolen, in cunning though lawful fashion, what we wrest
from them, lawlessly it may be, yet with as good a right
90 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH.
in the sight of the free heavens as any they practise. But
we filch not gold nor goods from the poor, the thrifty, the
sons of toil; nay, there be times when we restore to
these what has been drained from them by injustice and
tyranny. We be not the common freebooters of the road,
who set on all alike, and take human life for pure love of
killing. We have our own laws, our own ways, our own
code of right and wrong; and we recruit our ranks from
bold lads like you, upon whom fortune has not smiled, and
who come to us to see if we can help them to better
Cuthbert was greatly interested in this adventure. He
looked into the dark, handsome face of the man who rode
beside him, and wondered if some gipsy blood might not
run in his veins. The gipsy people of whom Kate had
spoken were well known in all this region, and despite the
roving life they led, appeared to be rooted to a certain
extent to this wild and wooded tract. He had seen dark
faces like this before in the woods; he had often heard
stories of the doings of the gipsies around. Before, he had
not thought much of this.; but now, his interest was keenly
excited, and he was delighted to have this opportunity of
studying them at close quarters.
"Where are we going, Tyrrel ?" asked one of the
followers. It is a bitter cold night, now the wind has
shifted, and we are far enough away from Dead .Man's
"I am not bound for Dead Man's Hole. We will to
the ruined mill, and ask Miriam to give us shelter for the
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH.
night. We have ridden far, and our steeds are weary. I
trow she will give us a welcome."
This proposition seemed to give general satisfaction.
The men plodded on after their leader, who kept Cuthbert
close beside him, and they all moved across the heath in
an irregular fashion, following some path known only to
themselves, until they reached the wooded track to the
left, and plunged into the brushwood again, picking their
way carefully as they went,-and all the while descending
lower and lower into the hollow, till the rush of water
became more and more distinctly audible, and Cuthbert
knew by the sound that they must be approaching a
waterfall of some kind.
One of the men had ridden forward to give notice of
their approach, and soon in the flickering moonlight the
gray walls of an ancient mill, now greatly fallen to decay,
became visible to the travellers' eyes. From the open
door streamed out a flood of ruddy light, cheering indeed
to cold and weary men; whilst framed in this ruddy glow
was a tall and picturesque figure-the figure of an old
woman, a scarlet kerchief tied over her white hair, whilst
her dress displayed that picturesque medley of colours that
has always been the prevailing characteristic of the gipsy
You are welcome, son Tyrrel," quoth the mistress of
this lone dwelling, as the little cavalcade drew up at the
door. It is long since you favoured old Miriam with
a visit. Yet you come at no ill time, since Red Ronald
brought us in a fat buck but yesternight, and I have made
92 A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH
oaten cakes to-day, and pies of the best. But who is that
with you? I like not new faces in my dwelling-place.
It were well you should remember this ere you bring a
stranger with you."
The old woman's face suddenly darkened as she spoke
these last words, and her wonderful eyes, so large and
dark as to resemble rather those of a deer than a human
being, flashed fiercely, whilst she seemed about to close the
door in Tyrrel's face. But he pushed in with a light laugh,
leading Cuthbert with him, and saying as he did so,-
Nay, nay, mother, be not so fierce. He is an honest
lad enough, I trow; if not, 'twill be the worse for him
anon. We have brought him hither to search him if he
carries gold concealed. If not, and he proves to have
spoken sooth, he may go his way or join with us, which-
ever likes him best. We could do with a few more bold
lads, since death has been something busy of late; and he
seems to have the grit in him one looks for in those who
join with us. Moreover, he has the dark eyes, and would
soon have the swarth skin, that distinguish our merry
men all. How now, mother ? Thou hast eyes for none
but the lad Why lookst thou at him so ? "
Cuthbert, too, gazed wonderingly at the handsome old
gipsy, who continued to keep her eyes fixed upon him, as
if by a species of fascination. He could no more withdraw
his gaze than can the bird whom the snake is luring to
Boy, what is thy name ?" she asked, in a quick, harsh
A NIGHT ON HAMMERTON HEATH.
Cuthbert Trevlyn," he answered, without hesitation,
and at the name a wild laugh rang out through the vaulted
room, illumined by the glow of a huge fire of logs, whilst
all present started and looked at one another.
"I knew it-I knew it!" cried the old woman, with
a wild gesture of her withered arms, which were bare to
the elbow, as though she had been engaged in culinary
tasks. I knew it-I knew it I knew it the moment
the light fell upon his face. Trevlyn-Trevlyn! one of
that accursed brood! Heaven be praised, the hour of
vengeance has come! We will do unto one of them even
as they did unto us;" and she waved her arms again in
the air, and glanced towards the glowing fire on the hearth
with a look in her wild eyes that for a moment caused
Cuthbert's heart to stand still. For he remembered the
story of the witch burned by his grandsire's mandate, and
he felt he was not mistaken in the interpretation he had
put upon the old woman's words.
But Tyrrel roughly interposed.
No more of that, mother," he said. We have wiped
out that old score long ago. The lad is a bold lad, Trevlyn
or no. Let us to supper now, and forget those accursed
beldam's tales. Where is Long Robin, and what is he
doing ? and where is Joanna to-night ? "
Here," answered a clear, full voice from the shadows
of the ingle-nook, and forth there stepped a very queenly-
looking woman, in the prime of life, when youth's bloom
has not been altogether left behind, and yet all the grace of
womanhood, with its dignity and ease, has come to give an
94 A NIGHT O2V HAMMERTON HEATH.
added charm. One glance from the old woman's face to
that of the young one showed them to be mother and
daughter, and it did not take a sharp eye to see that
Tyrrel, as he was always called, was deeply enamoured of
the beautiful Joanna, though treated by her with scant
notice, and as though he were yet a boy, scarce worthy of
being looked at or spoken to.
She stood in the glow of the fire, a tall, graceful
presence, to the full as picturesque as her gipsy mother,
and far more attractive. Cuthbert's eyes turned upon her
with an unconscious appeal in them; for it suddenly
dawned upon him that for a Trevlyn to adventure himself
amongst these wild gipsy folks was like putting the head
into a lion's mouth.
It almost seemed as though Joanna read this doubt and
this fear; for a flashing smile crossed her dark face, and
she held out a shapely hand to lead the guest to the table.
Thou art welcome to our board, Cuthbert Trevlyn,"
she said, as is any hapless stranger in these wilds, be
he Trevlyn or no. Thou shalt eat our salt this night,
and then woe betide the man who dares to lay hand on
thee;" and such a glance was flashed around from her
magnificent dark eyes as caused each one that met it to
resolve to take good heed to his ways. Thou shalt come
and go unmolested; Joanna the Gipsy Queen has so
Every one present, the old woman included, bent the
head at these words, and Cuthbert felt by some instinct
that his life was now safe.
THE HOUSE ON THE BRIDGE.
" T" EREN-HAPPUCH !"
S "Yes, aunt."
The reply came only after a brief pause, as though the
rosy-cheeked maiden at the casement would fain have de-
clined to answer to that abhorred name had she dared,-
which was indeed pretty much the case; for though it was
undeniably her own, and she could not gainsay the un-
palatable fact, nobody in the world but Aunt Susan ever
aggrieved her by using it. Even her grave father had
adopted the "Cherry" that was universal alike with rela-
tives and friends, and the girl never heard the clumsy and
odious appellation without a natural longing to box the
What art doing, child ?" questioned the voice from
Now Cherry was undeniably idling away the morning
hours by looking out of her window at the lively scene
below; and perhaps it was scarce wonderful that the sights
and sounds without attracted her. It was a sunny Novem-
ber morning, and the sun was shining quite hotly; for the
96 THE HOUSE ON THE BRIDGE.
soft wind from the south was blowing-it had suddenly
veered round in the night-and all nature seemed to be re-
joicing in the change. The river ran sparkling on its way
to the sea; the barges and wherries, and larger craft that
anchored in the stream or plied their way up and down,
gave animation and brightness to the great water-way;
whilst the old bridge, with its quaint-timbered houses with
their projecting upper stories, its shops with their swinging
signs, and noisy apprentices crying their masters' wares or
playing or quarrelling in the open street, and its throngs
of passers-by, from the blind beggar to the gay court gallant,
provided a shifting and endless panorama of entertainment
to the onlooker, which pretty Mistress Cherry certainly
appreciated, if no one else in that grave Puritan house-
hold did the like. But possibly she thought that her aunt's
question must not be too literally answered, for she hastily
skipped across the panelled chamber, seized her distaff, and
"I am about to spin, aunt."
"Humph!"-the answer sounded more like a grunt than
anything else, and warned Cherry that Mistress Susan, her
father's sister, who had ruled his household for the past ten
years, since the death of his wife, was in no very amiable
temper-" I know what that means. Thy spinning is a
fine excuse for idling away thy time in the parlour, when
thou mightest be learning housewifery below. Much flax
thou spinnest when I am not by to watch I It is a pity
thou wert not a fine lady born!"
Cherry certainly was decidedly of this opinion herself,
THE HOUSE ON THE BRIDGE.
albeit she would not have dared to say as much. She
liked soft raiment, bright colours, dainty ways, and pretty
speeches. Looking down from her window upon the
passers-by, it was her favourite pastime to fancy herself
one of the hooped and powdered and gorgeously-apparelled
ladies, with their monstrous farthingales, their stiff petti-
coats, their fans, their patches, and their saucy, coquettish
ways to the gentlemen in their train. All this bedizen-
ment, which had by no means died out with the death of
a Queen who had loved and encouraged it, was dear to the
eyes of the little maiden, whose own sad-coloured garments
and severe simplicity of attire was a constant source of
annoyance to her. Not that she wished to ape the fine
dames in her small person. She knew her place better than
that. She was a tradesman's daughter, and it would ill
have beseemed her to attire herself in silk and velvet, even
though the sumptuary laws had been repealed. But she
did not see why she might not have a scarlet under-petti-
coat like Rachel Dyson, her own cousin, or a gay bird's
wing to adorn her hat on holiday occasions. The utmost
she had ever achieved for herself was a fine soft coverchief
for her head, instead of the close unyielding coif which all
her relatives wore, which quite concealed their hair, and
gave a quaint severity to their square and homely faces.
Cherry's face was not square, but a little pointed, piquant
countenance, from which a pair of long-lashed gray eyes
looked forth with saucy, mischievous brightness. Her skin
was very fair, with a peach-like bloom upon it, and her
pretty hair hung round it in a mass of red gold curls.
98 THE HOUSE ON THE BRIDGE.
Cherry, it must be confessed, would have liked to leave her
hair:uncovered, but this was altogether against the tradi-
tions of her family. But she had contrived to assume the
softly-flowing coverchief, more like a veil than a cap, which
was infinitely becoming to the sweet childish face, and
allowed the pretty curls to be seen flowing down on either
side till they reached the shoulders. For the rest, her
dress was severely plain in its simplicity: the snow-white
kerchief, crossed in front and made fast behind; the under-
petticoat of gray homespun, just showing the black hose
and buckled shoes beneath; and the over-dress of sombre
black or dark brown, puffed out a little over the hips in
the pannier fashion, but without any pretence at follow-
ing the extravagances of the day. The sleeves buttoned
tightly to the lower arm, though wider at the cuff; and rose
high upon the shoulder with something of a puff It
was a simple and by no means an unbecoming style of
costume; but Cherry secretly repined at the monotony of
always dressing in precisely the same fashion. Other
friends of her own standing had plenty of pretty things
suited to their station, and why not she ? If she asked
the question of any, the answer she always got was that
her father followed the Puritan fashions of dressing and
thinking and speaking, and that he held fine clothes in ab-
horrence. Cherry would pout a little, and think it a hard
thing that she had been born a Puritan's daughter; but on
the whole she\was happy and contented enough, only she
did reckon the rule of Aunt Susan in her father's house as
something of a hardship.