“You will have many hours to rally me in,” said I, “and I think besides you do yourself injustice, I think it was Catriona turned your heart in my direction, she is too simple to perceive as you do the stiffness of her friend.”
“I would not like to wager upon that, Mr. David,” said she. “The lasses have clear eyes. But at least she is your friend entirely, as I was to see. I carried her in to his lordship my papa; and his Advocacy, being in a favourable stage of claret, was so good as to receive the pair of us. Here is Grey Eyes that you have been deaved with these days past, said I, she is come to prove that we spoke true, and I lay the prettiest lass in the three Lothians at your feet—making a papistical reservation of myself. She suited her action to my words; down she went upon her knees to him—I would not like to swear but he saw two of her, which doubtless made her appeal the more irresistible, for you are all a pack of Mahomedans—told him what had passed that night, and how she had withheld her father’s man from following of you, and what a case she was in about her father, and what a flutter for yourself; and begged with weeping for the lives of both of you (neither of which was in the slightest danger) till I vow I was proud of my sex because it was done so pretty, and ashamed for it because of the smallness of the occasion. She had not gone far, I assure you, before the Advocate was wholly sober, to see his inmost politics ravelled out by a young lass and discovered to the most unruly of his daughters. But we took him in hand, the pair of us, and brought that matter straight. Properly managed—and that means managed by me—there is no one to compare with my papa.”
“He has been a good man to me,” said I.
“Well, he was a good man to Katrine, and I was there to see to it,” said she.
“And she pled for me!” said I.
“She did that, and very movingly,” said Miss Grant. “I would not like to tell you what she said, I find you vain enough already.”
“God reward her for it!” cried I.
“With Mr. David Balfour, I suppose?” says she.
“You do me too much injustice at the last!” I cried. “I would tremble to think of her in such hard hands. Do you think I would presume, because she begged my life? She would do that for a new whelped puppy! I have had more than that to set me up, if you but ken’d. She kissed that hand of mine. Ay, but she did. And why? because she thought I was playing a brave part and might be going to my death. It was not for my sake, but I need not be telling that to you that cannot look at me without laughter. It was for the love of what she thought was bravery. I believe there is none but me and poor Prince Charlie had that honour done them. Was this not to make a god of me? and do you not think my heart would quake when I remember it?”
“I do laugh at you a good deal, and a good deal more than is quite civil,” said she; “but I will tell you one thing: if you speak to her like that, you have some glimmerings of a chance.”