The King's Achievement eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 426 pages of information about The King's Achievement.

BOOK III.

The King’s gratitude.

   I. A scheme
  II.  A duel
 III.  A peace-Maker
  IV.  The elder son
   V. The mummers
  VI.  A catastrophe
 VII.  A question of loyalty
VIII.  To Charing
  IX.  A relief-party
   X. Placentia
  XI.  The King’s highness
 XII.  The tidings at the tower
XIII.  The release

BENEFICO—­IGNOTO
HVNC—­LIBRVM
D.

THE KING’S ACHIEVEMENT

CHAPTER I

A DECISION

Overfield Court lay basking in warm June sunshine.  The western side of the great house with its new timber and plaster faced the evening sun across the square lawns and high terrace; and the woods a couple of hundred yards away cast long shadows over the gardens that lay beyond the moat.  The lawns, in their broad plateaux on the eastern side descended by steps, in cool shadow to the lake that formed a quarter-circle below the south-eastern angle of the house; and the mirrored trees and reeds on the other side were broken, circle after circle, by the great trout that were rising for their evening meal.  The tall front of the house on the north, formed by the hall in the centre with the kitchen at its eastern end and the master’s chamber on the western, was faced by a square-towered gatehouse through which the straight drive leading into the main road approached the house under a lime-avenue; and on the south side the ground fell away again rapidly below the chapel and the morning-room, in copse and garden and wild meadow bright with buttercups and ox-eye daisies, down to the lake again and the moat that ran out of it round the entire domain.

The cobbled courtyard in the centre of the house, where the tall leaded pump stood, was full of movement.  Half a dozen trunks lay there that had just been carried in from the luggage-horses that were now being led away with patient hanging heads towards the stables that stood outside the gatehouse on the right, and three or four dusty men in livery were talking to the house-servants who had come out of their quarters on the left.  From the kitchen corner came a clamour of tongues and dishes, and smoke was rising steadily from the huge outside chimney that rose beyond the roofs.

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The King's Achievement from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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