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The old man's florid cheeks became pale with rage, and he felt an impulse to kick the puppy out; but a terrible necessity tied his tongue and hands, and Charles Cabell went on laughing and talking to this effect: "Now, then, having a fancy to marry and tame a shrew-a real live, vicious, beautiful vixen-I did not want the spiciest part of the sport taken out of my hands by fathers and mothers, and pastors and masters. I shouldn't have thanked any of you for presenting me with a model wife, already smoothed down and polished to my hand. D-n your pretty pieces of perfection! I'll none of them-flat, insipid nonentities! formed and reformed, and modelled and remodelled, and rubbed down and polished until they all look as much alike as beads on a string. No, none of your polished gems for Charles Cabell-the bright, pure, rough, sharp ore! Now, of Zuleime, I thought her far too much educated, too good-humoured, too polite, too docile, too much of the young lady,' too little of the wild young animal, and flat and insipid in consequence; so I cared very little about her. But, ha ha! ha! I never was more mistaken in my life. She's a prize, I tell you! A prize of the first class, look you! I coveted a shrew, I've found a virago! full of blood and fire, strong and vicious, I tell you! Ha! ha ha! Think of her dashing her little hand in my face when I went to kiss her, and, before I recovered my eyesight and senses, throwing me off as if I had been a child, and escaping! Ha, ha, ha! I under-estimated her strength! Never mind! let the little tigress look out for the next time I get her in my arms!"

The old man's bosom was filled to bursting with suppressed passion, but he answered calmly, "Oh! she's young, she's young-a spoiled child, a spoiled child; be patient with hershe means well. Give her time--be patient with her."

"Patient with her! Why, uncle, I wouldn't have her a bit different from what she is! She's charming, delightful, piquant, spicy Patient with her! Why, gov., I shall end in falling desperately in love with her! But I say, nunc! make the little virago fix our marriage-day, will you? I have got to go out now and have Spitfire saddled; those fellows never draw the girth tight enough, or fix the bit firm enough, and I have to pull her head off to stop her sometimes, for she is the foul fiend incarnate when she gets to

running. I'll make Zule ride her some time, to see which will get the better of the other. Say, gov., let me have my answer when I get back-do you hear?" And, seizing up his riding-whip and cracking it against his boots, he went out.

The old man boiled over, he clenched his teeth, and shook his fist-nay, shook his whole person, as he turned livid with rage; then his arms fell helplessly by his side, he sank into a chair, dropped his face upon his hands, and groaned aloud. He felt a pair of arms encircling his neck, and a sweet voice murmuring in his ear, and he raised his head to see Zuleime, and to hear her ask in loving tones, Father, what is it?"

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He put his hand tenderly around her waist, and drew her gently to his knee, and said, while he gazed remorsefully into her face, "I am a villain, Zuleime! A hoaryheaded villain !"

Zuleime placed her hand upon his mouth to stop the dreadful words, and pressed her lips to his brow, with a look and manner of the profoundest love and veneration.

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"Yes, a hardened, persevering sinner, Zuleime! For I intend to persevere ! I intend to give you to Charley Cabell, my child," he said, gently removing her hand, and still gazing on her. He continued, "I love you so much, Zuleime! I love you so much! But, dear child-he's coming!

-dear child, tell me when you will marry Charley-Tuesday three weeks or four weeks? Don't let it be longer than four weeks, my girl !"

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Father, will you tell me why you wish me to marry cousin Charles ?"

It is for

"I cannot ! I cannot! My child, I cannot ! Some day I will, perhaps.

Tell me,

your good, I hope! now, that's a good girl. What day will you give this little hand to cousin Charley ?"

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'Father, I can't possibly give an answer for a week yet ; indeed, father, I cannot !"

"Come, now, nonsense, my child; why can't you? Here is Charley now! Come !"

"I cannot, father!"

The old gentleman kissed, and coaxed, and almost wept ; a manner of attack so hard to be resisted that, had Zuleime been really free, she would have sacrificed her own and

Frank's hopes, and yielded; but Zuleime was not free, and therefore was as firmly proof against persuasion as she would have been against force. Two powerful motives operated in prevented her from confessing her marriage-first her promise to keep it secret, and then the fear of precipitating some violent scene between her father and cousin, or some fatal catastrophe to the household. To end the conflict, and to gain time to consult Frank by writing, was what she most wished now. Finally, she promised to give Major Cabell his answer in a week, and to marry him, if she should ever marry anybody.

With this promise, Major Cabell seemed satisfied, and, with his mother and sisters, took leave of Clifton. And Zuleime retired to her own room, full of self-reproach for her own deception.

CHAPTER XII.

SUSPENSE.

A WEARY week passed away. Zuleime had written to Frank; and Carolyn, we already know, had despatched a letter to Archer. But the week had passed away, and no answer to either had come from Winchester. Had the sisters confided in each other, such mutual confidence might have soothed the soul-sickening anxiety of one at least. Carolyn would have known that some accident must have prevented Frank Fairfax from receiving or answering the inomentous letter of his youthful wife, and she would have felt that the same cause had probably operated in the case of Archer Clifton. But the sisters did not intrust their secrets to each other. Zuleime was withheld by her sacred promise. Carolyn by her pride. But the wife bore the pain of suspense far better than the maiden. The wife had perfect faith in her young husband, and knew that some adverse chance had hindered his getting or replying to her letter. The maiden knew that she had unjustly banished her lover; and she had no faith in the love that endureth all things. Carolyn had never suspected the depth of that calm, secure, habitual affection, which had from childhood grown, until now. While life, and love, and hope had flowed smoothly

on, her emotions were serene and moderate; but now that the quiet stream had been stemmed by rocks and breakers, it was lashed into fury and roared in whirlpools. The calm sentiment rose to turbulent, maddening passion. Her days were restless, her nights sleepless, until, as the week wore away, her nerves were wrought to such severity of tension that you might know that at the end of uncertainty, whether that were joy or sorrow, they must alike suddenly give way. Towards the last of the week, she had privately besought her father to ride to Winchester, and see the detachment off, and bring her the last news of it. The request had been confidential; yet do you feel all that it had cost her haughty heart? During the absence of Mr. Clifton, suspense was wrought up to agony. Her days and nights were feverish, delirious, and so confused with each other that she scarcely knew the fitful, disturbed visions of the night from the wild and anxious broodings of the day. The day upon which her father was expected back was the acme, the crisis of her suffering. Oblivious of pride and caution, careless of exposing herself to the malign sneers of Georgia, or the rude comments of the servants, she sat in the piazza, watching the road by which the carriage should come-one wild, anxious, despairing hope possessing her. "The drowning catch at straws;" and she, in her despair, had clutched one mad possibility, and clung to it, until to her weakened, confused, insaned soul it seemed a probability, and then almost a certainty. It was the hope that Clifton might return with her father- oh, yes!—that Clifton might resign his commission and come back to her. Oh! if indeed he loved her, as he had a thousand times sworn, if he sorrowed over their estrangement only half as much as she did, no hope of glory. no fear of disgrace would keep him back. The more she brooded over this, the more likely, the more certain it appeared to be; and she sat and gazed up the dim forest road.

The sun sank to the edge of the horizon, and lit up all the mountain-tops with fire, and then went down. And when she could no longer see, she still sat and strained her ear to catch the distant sound of wheels.

The moon arose, and flooded all the mountain scenery with silver light, and flashed upon that distant bend of the river, until it seemed a silver lake, lying among the dark hills,

and pointed the peaks of White Cliffs, until they stood up and glittered, like an enormous row of spears, against the deep blue sky.

At last, at last the very distant sound of wheels came faintly like a doubt to her ear, and faded away again; then it came more distinctly, nearer, and a moving object appeared upon the road; and she knew indeed it was her father's carriage-she saw and recognised it in the moonlight. It turned into the lawn-gate, rolled rapidly around the circular drive, and swept swiftly up to the entrance, where it stopped. The steps were let down, the door opened, and old Mr. Clifton got out, followed by-no one.

Carolyn had bent eagerly, unconsciously forward; now she started up and caught her father's hand, and gazed silently, imploringly into his face for the news she could not ask for.

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'The detachment has marched, my dear child—marched the morning of the day upon which I reached Winchester, and two days before it was expected to have gone so, you see, I could not get a sight of either Frank or Archer; they were thirty miles on their road before I reached the city. Can't think what could have been the reason of the new order, to anticipate their departure by two days. However, cheer up; no use fretting, my dear-no use fretting! The family have supped long ago, of course; have they kept my supper hot for me? I am as hungry as an old wolf," said the old man.

Carolyn did not hear him; her hold relaxed upon his arm, her hands flew up to her head, and she turned, as one struck with sudden blindness, and tottered into the house. It was so dark in the shady piazza, screened from the moonbeams by interlacing cypress-vines, that the old man did not see her state. He hastened into the house, where another awaited him with equal anxiety.

Zuleime's private hope had been that Frank would seize the opportunity of Mr. Clifton's visit and confess his marriage, and invent some way of delivering her father from the toils of Major Cabell.

"What news, father?" she asked, meeting him in the hall.

But, my

"What news? Why, I am as hungry as a bear, my pet! That's the news! I stopped to supper at Llife! They like to have poisoned me with fried beefsteaks, and heavy biscuits, and green coffee. Couldn't touch a

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