The Lances of Lynwood eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 170 pages of information about The Lances of Lynwood.
of kin who was of full age.  Again was his demand refused, and shortly after Lady Lynwood’s alarms were brought to a height by an attempt on his part to waylay her son and carry him off by force, whilst riding in the neighbourhood of the Castle.  The plot had failed, by the fidelity of the villagers of Lynwood, but the shock to the lady had increased the progress of the decay of her health, already undermined by grief.  She never again trusted her son beyond the Castle walls; she trembled whenever he was out of her sight, and many an hour did she spend kneeling before the altar in the chapel.  On her brother-in-law, Sir Eustace, her chief hope was fixed; on him she depended for bringing Arthur’s case before the King, and, above all, for protecting him from the attacks of the enemy of his family, rendered so much more dangerous by his relationship.  She did not believe that actual violence to Arthur’s person was intended, but Fulk’s house had of late become such an abode of misrule, that his mother and sister had been obliged to leave it for a Convent, and the tales of the lawlessness which there prevailed were such that she would have dreaded nothing more for her son than a residence there, even if Fulk had no interest in oppressing him.

That Eustace should return to take charge of his nephew before her death was her chief earthly wish, and when she found herself rapidly sinking, and the hope of its fulfilment lessening, she obtained a promise from Father Cyril that he would conduct the boy to the Abbey of Glastonbury, and there obtain from the Abbot protection for him until his uncle should return, or the machinations of Fulk be defeated by an appeal to the King.

This was accordingly Father Cyril’s intention.  It was unavoidable that Fulk, the near kinsman of the deceased, should be present at the funeral, but Father Cyril had intended to keep Arthur within the sanctuary of the chapel until he could depart under the care of twelve monks of Glastonbury, who were coming in the stead of the Abbot—­he being, unfortunately, indisposed.  Sir Philip Ashton had likewise been invited, in the hope that his presence might prove a check upon Clarenham.

CHAPTER IX

With the first dawn of morning, the chapel bell began to toll, and was replied to by the deeper sound of the bell of the parish church.  Soon the court began to be filled with the neighbouring villagers, with beggars, palmers, mendicant friars of all orders, pressing to the buttery-hatch, where they received the dole of bread, meat, and ale, from the hands of the pantler, under the direction of the almoner of Glastonbury, who requested their prayers for the soul of the noble Sir Reginald Lynwood, and Dame Eleanor of Clarenham, his wife.  The peasantry of Lynwood, and the beggars, whose rounds brought them regularly to the Keep of Lynwood, and who had often experienced the bounty of the departed lady, replied with tears and blessings.  There were not wanting the usual though incongruous accompaniments of such a scene—­the jugglers and mountebanks, who were playing their tricks in one corner.

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The Lances of Lynwood from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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