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received a temporary animation from the hope that gladdened them, darted through the intervening group, filled with all the tenderness with which they usually met those of his beloved niece. But they instantly recoiled from her who now ap peared before him, and he betrayed symptoms of the most cruel disappointment.
" Good Heavens !” exclaimed he, with extreme agitation, “ where is Eliza Malcolm ? can it be? can we have been deceived ?"
« Is not this Miss Malcolm, my Lord?” inquired Cleaver, greatly surprised.
“ Miss Malcolm!" repeated Lord Eaglesholme in a tone of bitter mortification. your pardon, Captain Cleaver, you never saw her. But,” said he with great keenness, 'as if still flattered by a lingering hope, “ though you have been misled as to this person, she may still be confined somewhere within these walls. Let me go,” said he, making an effort to rise, « I feel myself quite strong now-let me go to search for her myself.”
But his strength was only in idea, for so great was his weakness, that he had nearly fainted from the unavailing exertion he made.
“ But I beg
" I see," said he u I see I have lover-estimated my physical powers. But you, perhaps, Captain Cleaver
My Lord,” said Cleaver, interrupting him“I will search every crevice within these walls -nay, every inch within the circuit of the moat, as if I were looking for a lost diamond: rest assured, that if the Castle of Moatmallard contains Miss Malcolm, I will find her."
So calling Handy to him, and one or two others with lights, he proceeded up the broken stair to the top of the building, and beginning there, he examined every part of it, story by story, regularly downwards, peeping even into impossible places, and rummaging every nook and cranny; then diving into the subterraneous vaults, he sought the whole of their labyrinth, nay, even the ruins surrounding the court-yard did not escape him ; but all without effect.
With a heavy foot, that, even from a distance, sounded ominously in Lord Eaglesholme's ear, Cleaver returned to the apartment where he had left him.
“ Alas! you need not speak,” said his Lordship, surveying his countenance with a look of
despair; “ I already see in your face that you have been unsuccessful. Good Heavens! what am I bound to suffer !"
“ I am indeed sorry to say, my Lord, that Miss Malcolm has not been conveyed hither, or, if she was brought here at all, she must have been removed before we reached the place.”
“ But,” added he, “ let us inquire of this young woman what she knows. Pray, Ma'am, may I ask who you are ? and how did you come into such odd company ?"
The unfortunate girl, whose style of dress was too splendid and gaudy for the ordinary attire of a lady, and whose beauty would not have disa graced the highest birth, had not her manners, and broad Scotch accent, betrayed her to be of low origin, had retired into a dark corner, and having wrapt herself up in the folds of her mantle, had hitherto remained absorbed in a sorrow of her own, and giving way to her grief without restraint. On being thus addressed, she slowa. ly raised her head, and with her eyes streaming, and her hair hanging loosely dishevelled over her bosom
“ Dinna ask me wha I am !-I was an honest
woman's honest bairn aince !-But noo," added she, after a pause, and shuddering as she spoke, “ what am I? Oh, I canna bear the thought !"
With these words, she hurriedly buried her face in her lap. And then again lifting it after a pause
“ While he was wi' me and kind, while we rode the waves thegither in his bonny bark, my guilt was hidden beneath the silken fauld of the love I bore him. Even when his words fell sair upon my heart, they were his words, and though unkind, they were dearer to me than the saft breeze that blew us on our voyage. Oh, then, I thought na o' my faut! But noo that he's ganenoo that a' is gane-noo that I am left like the widowed moor-hen on the hill, thoughts will come ower me—sad and stinging thoughts. The cup o' joy was sweet; but 'twas a poisoned draught, and now its bitter dregs are workin' in my breast. Aince I sang lightly as the morning lark; but that was when I was as innocent as her. Noo !-Oh to think on what I am noo, is mair than this poor head can stand !"
She pressed her hands forcibly to her forehead, as if her brain were bursting, and again sinking her head between her knees, she drew her mantle over it, and gave way to the violence of her emotions.
The whole party were affected by her grief, and desirous to know who she was. One of Captain Macauley's sailors came forward, and told them in an under voice, that although, from the change in her dress and appearance, he had not at first recognised her, he now knew her to be the daughter of Mrs M-Claver, who had left her mother's house, inveigled away, as was supposed, by Brandywyn the smuggler.
The object now demanding their most immediate attention was the care of Lord Eaglesholme. Cleaver fortunately thought of a boat, kept by an honest farmer, whose house stood on the margin of the lake, about a quarter of a mile off. He had often borrowed it for his duckshooting expeditions. He instantly dispatched Handy to get it ready. With some of the materials of the bales in the vault below, and with a ladder they found there; he managed in a few minutes to construct a tolerably easy litter, on which his Lordship was carried to the boat. He saw him put carefully and easily into it, and pro