“And in my heart, ah, Major, can you trust me—to keep—it burning?” said Phoebe, thus making her avowal before them all with gallant voice and eyes of the dawn.
Moments later after Phoebe and Mrs. Buchanan had retired down the hall, and up the stairway, Caroline Darrah still knelt by the major’s chair. They were both silent and the major held her hand in his. They neither of them heard the latch key and in a moment Andrew Sevier stood across the firelight from them.
“I wanted to hear it, Major,” he entreated as he laid his hand on Caroline’s shoulder when she came to his side and held out his other to the major. “Say it, if you will, sir!”
“The Almighty bless you, boy, and make His sun to shine upon you. He is doing it in giving you Caroline to wife. Some women He holds as hostages until the greater men in us can rise to claim them and to-night His eyes have seen your fulfilment.” The major looked straight into the pain-ravaged but radiant face before him and his keen old eyes glowed through the mist that spread across them.
“Child,” he said after a moment’s silence as he laid his hand on Caroline’s other shoulder, “across the many waters that can not drown love you have brought back to my old age young Andrew the Glad.”