But his former friend interposed his sturdy bulk, and opposed his leaving the house; and when Robin Oig attempted to make his way by force, he hit him down on the floor, with as much ease as a boy bowls down a nine-pin.
“A ring, a ring!” was now shouted, until the dark rafters, and the hams that hung on them, trembled again, and the very platters on the bink clattered against each other. “Well done, Harry.”—“Give it him home, Harry.”—“Take care of him now—he sees his own blood!”
Such were the exclamations, while the Highlander, starting from the ground, all his coldness and caution lost in frantic rage, sprung at his antagonist with the fury, the activity, and the vindictive purpose of an incensed tiger-cat. But when could rage encounter science and temper? Robin Oig again went down in the unequal contest; and as the blow was necessarily a severe one, he lay motionless on the floor of the kitchen. The landlady ran to offer some aid, but Mr. Fleecebumpkin would not permit her to approach.
“Let him alone,” he said, “he will come to within time, and come up to the scratch again. He has not got half his broth yet.”
“He has got all I mean to give him though,” said his antagonist, whose heart began to relent towards his old associate; “and I would rather by half give the rest to yourself, Mr. Fleecebumpkin, for you pretend to know a thing or two, and Robin had not art enough even to peel before setting to, but fought with his plaid dangling about him.—Stand up, Robin, my man! all friends now; and let me hear the man that will speak a word against you, or your country, for your sake.”
Robin Oig was still under the dominion of his passion, and eager to renew the onset; but being withheld on the one side by the peace-making Dame Heskett, and on the other, aware that Wakefield no longer meant to renew the combat, his fury sunk into gloomy sullenness.
“Come, come, never grudge so much at it, man,” said the brave-spirited Englishman, with the placability of his country; “shake hands, and we will be better friends than ever.”
“Friends!” exclaimed Robin Oig with strong emphasis—“friends!—Never. Look to yourself, Harry Waakfelt.”
“Then the curse of Cromwell on your proud Scots stomach, as the man says in the play, and you may do your worst and be d——; for one man can say nothing more to another after a tussel, than that he is sorry for it.”
On these terms the friends parted; Robin Oig drew out, in silence, a piece of money, threw it on the table, and then left the alehouse. But turning at the door, he shook his hand at Wakefield, pointing with his fore-finger upwards, in a manner which might imply either a threat or a caution. He then disappeared in the moonlight.
(To be concluded in our next.)
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