‘But if your honour wad consider the case of Tobit—’
‘Tobit!’ exclaimed Gilffflan, with great heat; ’Tobit and his dog baith are altogether heathenish and apocryphal, and none but a prelatist or a papist would draw them into question. I doubt I hae been mista’en in you, friend.’
‘Very likely,’ answered the pedlar, with great composure; ’but ne’ertheless, I shall take leave to whistle again upon puir Bawty.’
This last signal was answered in an unexpected manner; for six or eight stout Highlanders, who lurked among the copse and brushwood, sprung into the hollow way and began to lay about them with their claymores. Gilfillan, unappalled at this undesirable apparition, cried out manfully, ‘The sword of the Lord and of Gideon!’ and, drawing his broadsword, would probably have done as much credit to the good old cause as any of its doughty champions at Drumclog, when, behold! the pedlar, snatching a musket from the person who was next him bestowed the butt of it with such emphasis on the head of his late instructor in the Cameronian creed that he was forthwith levelled to the ground. In the confusion which ensued the horse which bore our hero was shot by one of Gilfillan’s party, as he discharged his firelock at random. Waverley fell with, and indeed under, the animal, and sustained some severe contusions. But he was almost instantly extricated from the fallen steed by two Highlanders, who, each seizing him by the arm, hurried him away from the scuffle and from the highroad. They ran with great speed, half supporting and half dragging our hero, who could, however, distinguish a few dropping shots fired about the spot which he had left. This, as he afterwards learned, proceeded from Gilfillan’s party, who had now assembled, the stragglers in front and rear having joined the others. At their approach the Highlanders drew off, but not before they had rifled Gilfillan and two of his people, who remained on the spot grievously wounded. A few shots were exchanged betwixt them and the Westlanders; but the latter, now without a commander, and apprehensive of a second ambush, did not make any serious effort to recover their prisoner, judging it more wise to proceed on their journey to Stirling, carrying with them their wounded captain and comrades.
WAVERLEY IS STILL IN DISTRESS
The velocity, and indeed violence, with which Waverley was hurried along nearly deprived him of sensation; for the injury he had received from his fall prevented him from aiding himself so effectually as he might otherwise have done. When this was observed by his conductors, they called to their aid two or three others of the party, and, swathing our hero’s body in one of their plaids, divided his weight by that means among them, and transported him at the same rapid rate as before, without any exertion of his own. They spoke little, and that in Gaelic; and did not slacken their pace till they had run nearly two miles, when they abated their extreme rapidity, but continued still to walk very fast, relieving each other occasionally.