“Pooh! pooh! nonsense;” interrupted Captain Granville, “Never mind, Gerald,” he pursued good humouredly “she is a splendid girl, and one that you need not be ashamed to own as a conquest. By heaven, she has a bust and hips to warm the bosom of an anchorite, and depend upon it, all that Cranstoun has said arises only from pique that he is not the object preferred. These black eyes of hers have set his ice blood on the boil, and he would willingly exchange places with you, at I honestly confess I should.”
Vexed as Gerald certainly felt at the familiar tone the conversation was now assuming in regard to Miss Montgomerie, and although satisfied that mere pleasantry was intended, it was not without a sensation of relief he found it interrupted by the entrance of the several non-commissioned officers with their order books. Soon after the party broke up.
Before noon on the following day, the boat that was to convey Major Montgomerie and his niece to the American shore, pulled up to the landing place in front of the fort. The weather, as on the preceding day, was fine, and the river exhibited the same placidity of surface. Numerous bodies of Indians were collected on the banks, pointing to, and remarking on the singularity of the white flag which hung drooping at the stern of the boat. Presently the prisoners were seen advancing to the bank, accompanied by General Brock, Commodore Barclay, and the principal officers of the garrison. Major Montgomerie appeared pleased at the prospect of the liberty that awaited him, while the countenance of his niece, on the contrary, presented an expression of deep thought, although it was afterwards remarked by Granville and Villiers— both close observers of her demeanour that as her eye occasionally glanced in the direction of Detroit, it lighted up with an animation strongly in contrast with the general calm and abstractedness of her manner. All being now ready, Gerald Grantham, who had received his final instructions from the General, offered his arm to Miss Montgomerie, who, to all outward appearance, took it mechanically and unconsciously, although, in the animated look which the young sailor turned upon her in the next instant, there was evidence the contact had thrilled electrically to his heart. After exchanging a cordial pressure of the hand with his gallant entertainers, and reiterating to the General his thanks for the especial favor conferred upon him, the venerable Major followed them to the boat. His departure was the signal for much commotion among the Indians. Hitherto they had had no idea of what was in contemplation; but when they saw them enter and take their seats in the boat, they raised one of those terrific shouts which have so often struck terror and dismay, and brandishing their weapons seemed ready to testify their disapprobation by something more than words. It was however momentary—a