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stood in a state of anxious preparation., No sooner had the herd come within shot, than they gave fire, and two of the fattest bucks fell. The
or Highlanders who were with them immediately shouted, and then showed themselves from behind the rocks. Confounded by the shots, and by this sudden noise, the whole body of deer halted suddenly in mid career, and two more shots were fired at them by each of the sportsmen, in rapid succession, and with unerring aim. The whole herd turned round in extreme alarm. Some of them were thrown down by the shocks they received by rushing against each other, in the confusion that ensued ; and some of them, dashing through the river, darted off individually in different directions, bounding up the slopes of the hills, each attempting to force a passage for t itself as it best could. 01. Now the scene became animated beyond conception. , Amherst and Lochandhu ran forward as they were making off, and began to use the re1mainder of their loaded fire-arms, promptly sup plied to them by the men who were with them, - One was killed in the act of crossing the water, , and was pulled out by a sturdy Highlander, who caught it just as the stream was carrying it away.
Another was wounded as he was climbing the op posite bank, and was soon taken by the large greyhounds which were slipped at him. A third was shot taking to the hills close to where they were. But a noble hart of superb head, who was apparently the father of the herd, gave rise to an incident that excited much greater interest than any thing that occurred. He had hitherto escaped by some good fortune, and had retrograded with his head down, and his horns prepared for battle, covering the retreat of his more timorous' progeny from the assaults of the terriers, now rushing after them from the ambuscade. Before either of the sportsmen were reloaded, he darted off to a narrow point of rock, jutting out and overhanging the river, with the intention of leaping into it, not aware that the immense height of the precipice rendered his purpose impracticable, and before he could return to make his way
in another direction, the dogs had barred the passage, and he was brought to bay.
Several of the yelping curs had already suffered from the fury of his defence, when one of the Highlanders gallantly ran forward, and, with his dirk unsheathed, made an attempt to get round him, with the intention of dispatching him. The
animal kept his eye upon him, and, turning round, made a furious bound at him. The spectators thought he was gone. But the lad had the good sense and coolness to throw himself, very adroitly, at full length flat upon the ground, before the creature could reach him. The stag stood over him, occupied in defending himself from the dogs, but every now and then attempting to gore the man.
Amherst ran to his assistance, hastily chose a position whence he could shoot without the risk of injuring the prostrate Highlander, and calling to him to be still, fired. The ball hit the hart right between the horns, and the distance being short, it penetrated to the brain. He sprang high into the air, and fell with a tremendous plunge into the pool far below. A shout of applause followed, and some of the men ran down a bank to intercept the floating body. The poor fellow, whose rashness had so nearly proved fatal to him, came up to Amherst, and, embracing his knees, broke forth in a torrent of thankful acknowledgments, which, however, being in Gaelic, would have been lost upon his preserver, had not his eyes and his expressive actions alone been suffi. ciently intelligible.
And now the shots from the Highlanders, scattered on the sides of the hills, burst on the ear like the independent firing of riflemen, awakening a thousand echoes; and several deer were brought down, as they attempted to pass between the men. The clamour of the people and of the dogs was excessive and continued, until the last of the animals was seen scouring over the brow of the mountain.
A large fire was now kindled near the huge stones where Amherst and Lochandhu had first stationed themselves ;--the Highlanders came in from all quarters, and the dead game was collect ed. The deer were quickly paunched, and one of them was selected for immediate use. With this the stoutest youths began to make trials of their strength, vying with each other who should most adroitly and expeditiously wrench out the animal's joints. The cooking was equally speedy and inartificial. The flesh was cut up into steaks, broiled upon the fire, and greedily swallowed by the hungry fellows around, in the black and smoking state in which it came from the embers,--and: then washed down with large potations of aquavitae
Amongst those who appeared, when the whole party assembled; was Alexander Macgillivray, with whom Amherst had not met since the night of his arrival at Lochandhu. He was accompanied by the same attendants who formed his party upon that occasion. Amherst and he coldly recognised each other, by distant salutation. The rest of the Highlanders were young men, who, at Lochandhu's request, had very willingly come to assist him in the sport. To these he behaved liberally in the division of the spoil.
Lochandhu, with his usual politeness, addressed Amherst, expressing a hope that he had been pleased with the sport of the day. Amherst declared himself highly gratified; but at the same time added, that he should have more pleasure in shooting a single deer by his own individual exertions, than in the murder they had committed by thus surrounding the whole herd, and slaying them like sheep; and he signified his intention of making such an attempt before leaving the country,
The legs of the deer being tied together with twisted birch-twigs, and hoisted on poles, each carried by two men, the whole party returned down' the glen. When they reached the bothy