“You don’t hold Lambert, and he is the dangerous one.”
“Only dangerous if Agnes consents to run away with him, and she won’t do that,” replied Pine coolly.
“Well, she certainly doesn’t care for money.”
“She cares for the credit of her family, and gave herself to me, so that the same might be saved.”
Silver shrugged his narrow shoulders. “What fools these aristocrats are,” he observed pleasantly. “Even if Garvington were sold up he would still have his title and enough to live on in a quiet way.”
“Probably. But it was not entirely to save his estates that he agreed to my marriage with his sister,” said Pine pointedly and quietly.
“Eh! What?” The little man’s foxy face became alive with eager inquiry.
“Nothing,” said Pine roughly, and rose heavily to his feet. “Mind your own infernal business, and mine also. Go back and show that letter to Garvington. I want my tribe to stay here.”
“My tribe,” laughed Silver, scrambling to his feet; and when he took his departure he was still laughing. He wondered what Garvington would say did he know that his sister was married to a full-blooded Romany.
Pine, in the character of a horse-coper, saw him out of the camp, and was staring after him when Chaldea, on the watch, touched his shoulder.
“I come to your tent, brother,” she said with very bright eyes.
“Eh? Yes!” Pine aroused himself out of a brown study. “Avali, miri pen. You have things to say to me?”
“Golden things, which have to do with your happiness and mine, brother.”
“Hai? A wedding-ring, sister.”
“Truly, brother, if you be a true Romany and not the Gentile you call yourself.”
Silver’s delivery of his employer’s orders to Lord Garvington were apparently carried out, for no further intimation was given to the gypsies that they were to vacate Abbot’s Wood. The master of The Manor grumbled a good deal at the high tone taken by his brother-in-law, as, having the instincts of a landlord, he strongly objected to the presence of such riff-raff on his estates. However, as Pine had the whip-hand of him, he was obliged to yield, although he could not understand why the man should favor the Romany in this way.
“Some of his infernal philanthropy, I suppose,” said Garvington, in a tone of disgust, to the secretary. “Pine’s always doing this sort of thing, and people ain’t a bit grateful.”
“Well,” said Silver dryly, “I suppose that’s his look-out.”
“If it is, let him keep to his own side of the road,” retorted the other. “Since I don’t interfere with his business, let him not meddle with mine.”
“As he holds the mortgage and can foreclose at any moment, it is his business,” insisted Silver tartly. “And, after all, the gypsies are doing no very great harm.”