St. George and St. Michael Volume II eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 213 pages of information about St. George and St. Michael Volume II.

‘Alack-a-day!’ cried goody Rees, holding up her hands in sore trouble for her friend.  ’But what then dreams thou of doing?  Not surely, before all the saints in heaven, will thou adventure thy body within Raglan walls?  But I speak like a fool.  Thou canst not.’

‘This good dog,’ said Richard, stroking Marquis, ’must, as thou thyself plainly seest, have found some way of leaving Raglan without the knowledge or will of its warders.  Where he gat him forth, will he not get him in again?  And where dog can go, man may at least endeavour to follow.—­Mayhap he hath for himself scratched a way, as many dogs will.’

’But, for the love of God, master Heywood, what would thou do inside that stone cage?  Thy mare, be she, as thou hast often vaunted her to me, the first for courage and wisdom and strength and fleetness of all mares created—­be her fore feet like a man’s hands and her heart like a woman’s heart, as thou sayest, yet cannot she overleap Raglan walls; and thinks thou they will raise portcullis and open gate and drop drawbridge to let thee and her ride forth in peace?  It were a fool’s errand, my young master, and nowise befitting thy young wisdom.’

’What I shall do, when I am length within the walls, I cannot tell thee, mother.  Nor have I ever yet known much good in forecasting.  To have to think, when the hour is come, of what thou didst before resolve, instead of setting thyself to understand what is around thee, and perchance the whole matter different from what thou had imagined, is to stand like Lazarus bound hand and foot in thine own graveclothes.  It will be given me to meet what comes; or if not, who will bar me from meeting what follows ?’

‘Master Heywood,’ cried goody Rees, drawing herself with rebuke, ’for a man that is born of a woman to talk so wisely and so foolishly both in a breath!—­But,’ she added, with a change of tone, ‘I know better than bar the path to a Heywood.  An’ he will, he will.  And thou hast been vilely used, my young master.  I will do what I can to help thee to thine own—­and no more—­no more than thine own.  Hark in thine ear now.  But first swear to me by the holy cross, puritan as thou art, that thou wilt make no other use of what I tell thee but to free thy stolen mare.  I know thou may be trusted even with the secret that would slay thine enemy.  But I must have thy oath notwithstanding thereto.’

’I will not swear by the cross, which was never holy, for thereby was the Holy slain.  I will not swear at all, mother Rees.  I will pledge thee the word of a man who fears God, that I will in no way dishonourable make use of that which thou tellest me.  An’ that suffice not, I will go without thy help, trusting in God, who never made that mare to carry the enemy of the truth into the battle.’

‘But what an’ thou should take the staff of strife to measure thy doings withal?  That may then seem honourable, done to an enemy, which thou would scorn to do to one of thine own part, even if he wronged thee.’

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St. George and St. Michael Volume II from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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