The Days of Bruce Vol 1 eBook

Grace Aguilar
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 523 pages of information about The Days of Bruce Vol 1.
Once more his dark eye flashed, his proud lip curled with its wonted smiles; his warrior form, erect and firm as in former days, now spurned the couch of disease, and rode his war-horse with all the grace and ease of former years.  A gallant army, under the command of Aymer de Valence, Earl of Pembroke, had already been dispatched towards Scotland, bearing with it the messengers of the Earl of Buchan, armed both with their lord’s commands and Edward’s warrant for the detention of the young heir of Buchan, and to bring him with all honor to the head-quarters of the king.  The name of Isabella of Buchan was subjoined to that of the Bruce, and together with all those concerned in his rising proclaimed as traitors and a price set upon their heads.  This done, the king had been enabled to wait with greater tranquillity the assembling of his larger army, and after the ceremonials of Westminster, orders were issued for every earl and baron to proceed with their followers to Carlisle, which was named the head-quarters of the army, there to join their sovereign with his own immediate troops.  The Scottish nobles Edward’s usual policy retained in honorable posts about his person, not choosing to trust their fidelity beyond the reach of his own eye.

Obedient to these commands, all England speedily appeared in motion, the troops of every county moving as by one impulse to Carlisle.  Yet there were some of England’s noblest barons in whose breasts a species of admiration, even affection, was at work towards the very man they were now marching to destroy, and this was frequently the case in the ages of chivalry.  Fickle as the character of Robert Bruce had appeared to be, there was that in it which had ever attracted, riveted the regard of many of the noble spirits in King Edward’s court.  The rash daring of his enterprise, the dangers which encircled him, were such as dazzled and fascinated the imagination of those knights in whom the true spirit of chivalry found rest.  Pre-eminent amongst these was the noble Earl of Gloucester.  His duty to his sovereign urged him to take the field; his attachment for the Bruce would have held him neuter, for the ties that bound brothers in arms were of no common or wavering nature.  Brothers in blood had frequently found themselves opposed horse to horse, and lance to lance, on the same field, and no scruples of conscience, no pleadings of affection, had power to avert the unnatural strife; but not such was it with brothers in arms—­a link strong as adamant, pure as their own sword-steel, bound their hearts as one; and rather, much rather would Gloucester have laid down his own life, than expose himself to the fearful risk of staining his sword with the blood of his friend.  The deepest dejection took possession of his soul, which not all the confidence of his sovereign, the gentle, affectionate pleadings of his wife, could in any way assuage.


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The Days of Bruce Vol 1 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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