Slowly the afternoon edged into evening. The Indians were late in coming, and often Sam cast anxious glances along the shore of the lake. Several times he made short journeys into the forest, lest the enemy should come upon them unawares. Jean, too, was greatly agitated. Suppose the slashers should arrive, what could Sam do alone? What would become of her? She recalled Dane’s words that night at Portland Point when he had saved her from Seth Lupin. “Do you know how beautiful you are?” he had asked. “If you don’t, then you are not aware of your danger. That villain, Lupin, knows of your beauty, so he followed you here. The slashers and others will soon know, too, and I might not always be on hand.” That was months ago, but she remembered every word. She thought then that Dane had spoken rather plainly, and had told him so. But she knew now how well he understood the risks she would run, and that he was speaking for her welfare. Oh, if Dane and the rangers were with her in the forest how soon they would put the slashers to rout, and take her home. But they were far off, so her only hope lay in the arrival of the Indians, from where she did not know.
Darkness came, and with it the long-expected Indians. They were a score in all, and they glided like spectres along the shore and up to the lodge in the thicket. It was a joyous greeting they received as they gathered around the fire, and for a few minutes there was a regular babel of tongues, although Jean did not understand a word that was being said. At length the visitors ceased talking and listened to Sam, who spoke with great earnestness, and motioned at times eastward. That he was speaking about the slashers, and why he had sent for assistance, Jean was certain.
These newcomers were a sturdy and formidable band of hunters. They were of powerful physique, in the prime of life, and their faces inspired Jean with hope and confidence. They were clad in buckskins, and armed with muskets, hatchets, and hunting-knives. They were warriors now, ready for the fray with the slashers, their enemies of years. They were King George’s men, as well, true and loyal. Several of them had the proud distinction of kneeling at Fort Howe five years before and taking the oath of fidelity to the King. They never wearied of telling about that event, and of the grand pow-wow which followed the signing of the treaty. It had been a notable time for them. After they had taken the oath of allegiance, they delivered to Colonel Francklin a string of Wampum as a solemn confirmation of their deed. Following this there was great mirth when they had drunk the King’s health, and received a liberal supply of presents. The next day they had been taken on board the man-of-war lying in the harbour, when they again drank the King’s health, and were presented with a pound of gunpowder