in the particular line he had chosen was unequalled,
and who laughed at difficulties, speedily cut out
a panel by means of a centre-bit and knife, took the
key from the other side, and unlocked the door.
Covering his face with a crape mask, and taking the
candle from his associate, Jack entered the room;
and, pistol in hand, stepped up to the bed, and approached
the light to the eyes of the sleepers. The loud
noise proceeding from the couch proved that their
slumbers were deep and real; and unconscious of the
danger in which she stood, Mrs. Wood turned over to
obtain a more comfortable position. During this
movement, Jack grasped the barrel of his pistol, held
in his breath, and motioned to Blueskin, who bared
a long knife, to keep still. The momentary alarm
over, he threw a piece of-wash leather over a bureau,
so as to deaden the sound, and instantly broke it
open with a small crow-bar. While he was filling
his pockets with golden coin from this store, Blueskin
had pulled the plate-chest from under the bed, and
having forced it open, began filling a canvass bag
with its contents,—silver coffee-pots,
chocolate-dishes, waiters trays, tankards, goblets,
and candlesticks. It might be supposed that these
articles, when thrust together into the bag, would
have jingled; but these skilful practitioners managed
matters so well that no noise was made. After
rifling the room of everything portable, including
some of Mrs. Wood’s ornaments and wearing apparel,
they prepared to depart. Jack then intimated his
intention of visiting Winifred’s chamber, in
which several articles of value were known to be kept;
but as, notwithstanding his reckless character, he
still retained a feeling of respect for the object
of his boyish affections, he would not suffer Blueskin
to accompany him, so he commanded him to keep watch
over the sleepers—strictly enjoining him,
however, to do them no injury. Again having recourse
to the centre-bit,—for Winifred’s
door was locked,—Jack had nearly cut out
a panel, when a sudden outcry was raised in the carpenter’s
chamber. The next moment, a struggle was heard,
and Blueskin appeared at the door, followed by Mrs.
Jack instandly extinguished the light, and called
to his comrade to come after him.
But Blueskin found it impossible to make off,—at
least with the spoil,—Mrs. Wood having
laid hold of the canvass-bag.
“Give back the things!” cried the, lady.
“Help!—help, Mr. Wood!”
“Leave go!” thundered Blueskin—“leave
he held the sack as firmly as he could with one hand,
while with the other he searched for his knife.
“No, I won’t leave go!” screamed
Mrs. Wood. “Fire!—murder—thieves!—I’ve
got one of ’em!”
“Come along,” cried Jack.
“I can’t,” answered Blueskin.
“This she-devil has got hold of the sack.
Leave go, I tell you!” and he forced open the
knife with his teeth.
screamed Mrs. Wood;—“Owen—Owen!—Thames,