And with a look of hatred and fury that seemed indeed to have something positively devilish in it, Sanghurst turned and strode away, leaving Raymond to make what he could of the vindictive threats launched at him. Had this man, in truth, some occult power of which none else had the secret; or was it but an idle boast, uttered with the view of terrifying one who was but a boy in years?
Raymond knew not, could not form a guess; but his was a nature not prone to coward fears. He resolved to go home and take counsel with his good cousin John.
CHAPTER XV. THE DOUBLE SURRENDER.
On a burning day in July, nearly a year from the time of their parting, the twin brothers met once more in the camp before Calais, where they had parted the previous autumn. Raymond had been long in throwing off the effect of the severe injuries which had nearly cost him his life after the Battle of Crecy; but thanks to the rest and care that had been his in his uncle’s house, he had entirely recovered. Though not quite so tall nor so broad-shouldered and muscular as Gaston, who was in truth a very prince amongst men, he was in his own way quite as striking, being very tall, and as upright as a dart, slight and graceful, though no longer attenuated, and above all retaining that peculiar depth and purity of expression which had long seemed to mark him out somewhat from his fellow men, and which had only intensified during the year that had banished him from the stirring life of the camp.
“Why, Brother,” said Gaston, as he held the slim white hands in his vise-like clasp, and gazed hungrily into the face he had last seen so wan and white, “I had scarce dared to hope to see thee again in the camp of the King after the evil hap that befell thee here before; but right glad am I to welcome thee hither before the final act of this great drama, for methinks the city cannot long hold out against the famine within and our bold soldiers without the walls. Thou hast done well to come hither to take thy part in the final triumph, and reap thy share of the spoil, albeit thou lookest more like a youthful St. George upon a church window than a veritable knight of flesh and blood, despite the grip of thy fingers, which is well-nigh as strong as my own.”
“I will gladly take my share in any valorous feat of arms that may be undertaken for the honour of England and of England’s King. But I would sooner fight with warriors who are not half starved to start with. Say not men that scarce a dog or a cat remains alive in the city, and that unless the citizens prey one upon the other, all must shortly perish?”