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Full text of "The black angel : a tale of the American Civil War"

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I • , • ■ ■ : 

i H i i i w i wunr i ii i TT-i' il I II ■ 1 1 1 III I 1 1 IIIII T TTT 



THE UNIVERSITY OF 

NORTH CAROLINA 

LIBRARY 




THE WILMER COLLECTION 

OF CIVIL WAR NOVELS 

PRESENTED BY 

RICHARD H. WILMER, JR. 






/ ^ 



THE 



BLACK ANGEL: 



A TALE OP 

THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR. 



BY THE AUTHOE OE " HUNTED TO DEATH" ETC. 




[Front. 



THE 



BLACK ANGEL: 



THE AMEEICAN CIVIL WAR 



BY THE AUTHOR OF 



"THE STAR OF THE SOUTH," "THE FIERY CROSS," ETC., ETC. 



LONDON: 
CHARLES H. CLARKE, 

PATERNOSTER ROW. 



CONTENTS. 



IIEUTENANT DARCY LEIGH • • a 

STELLA GAYLE AND LUPUS ROCK m m 

THE FETE ON BOARD THE COLUMBIA . „ 

TREASON IN THE CAMP 

AN AUDACIOUS REBEL AND A DESPERATE ATTEMPT 
THE PLANS OF THE MUTINEERS . . 

THE CONSPIRATORS SEIZE THE SHIP . » 

RUNNING THE GAUNTLET . . • , 

PLAN OF THE MUTINEERS • . , 

A TERRIBLE PREDICAMENT . » . . 

A FEARFUL STRUGGLE .... 
WHAT THEY THOUGHT OF THE FIGHT ON BOARD 

WABASH ... . 

ALL IS LOST . 

DEEP DESIGNS » . . , # 

A PAIR OF VILLAINS — THE PLOT THICKENS • 
A NICE PLOT .:.-.. 

LEROUX AND HIS ENEMY . , , 

BALTIMORE — THE STREET RIOT 6 . . 

CAPTAIN GERALD LEIGH " • • 

THE LADIES FIND A CHAMPION . . g 

GERALD LEIGH TO THE RESCUE . , 

GERALD LEIGH IS INFORMED OF HIS BROTHER'S FATB 
GERALD LEIGH STARTS FOR KENHANA , 

RECRUITING FOR REBELS . 

THE STOLEN PAPERS , 

WASHINGTON 



$APTAJH SEORGB 



FAQB 
. 1 

6 

. 12 

17 

s 21 
25 

. 32 
37 

. 45 
52 

. 56 

69 
. 80 

88 
. 96 
100 
107 
110 
115 
120 
125 
137 
143 
149 
161 
171 
175 



eo^ysi 



IV 



ooxti:\ts'. 



gerald leigh's last night in Washington 
defeated, wounded, captured . • 

forebodings and terrors . • 

the wounded prisoners • « , 

wife or mistress . • • 

fortune favours the brave . . , 

target practice . . • • 

a mad adventure • • . • « 

charleston harbour . . . 

coralie andree st. casse 
a terrible battle in charleston harbour 
darby kelly's opinion of things in general 
the black angel fires the first shot 
the first gun from the battery . « 

sinking of the wabash, etc. 
reception of darcy leigh in charleston • 
darcy leigh and theblack angel • 

how coralie overcame the difficulty 
now darby furnished the barrack room . 
news from washington 
across the potomac 
who goes there ? 
an inquisitive corpse 

UP A TREE 

CONDEMNED TO DEATH . 

THE SCHEME MATURED 

THE GAME AT CARDS • 

ANXIOUS MOMENTS 

CROSS-EXAMINED 

A CRITICAL SITUATION 

ESCAPE AND RECAPTURE 

A TERRIBLE FATE 

LOVE, DEATH, AND HOPE 

TAKE THIS HOUND TO HIS KENNEL 

WATCHING FOR THE ROCKET . 

A SLIGHT MISTAKE . . 



The 

BLACK ANGEL. 

A ROMANCE OP THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR. 



CHAPTEll I. 



LIEUTENANT DAECY LEIGH. 



At last the long threatened storm had burst — the thun- 
der-cloud so long visible in the horizon had reached the 
zenith, and had belched forth an instalment of its 
contents. " Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war." 
Eebellion — stern, bitter, savage — had raised its head; 
a war of brother against brother, father against son*, 
friend against friend ; a disastrous, desolating civil war 
is about to commence with our story. South Carolina 
ha3, in a daring, defiant tone, declared itself independent 
of the Union — of that glorious Union made sacred by 
the names of Washington, of Franklin, of Jefferson. 
State after State hastens to follow the example, of South 
Carolina j angry meetings — defiances — the evacuation of 

B 



2 THE BLA.CZ A>~GEI.. 

Fort Moultrie ; then the culminating act which precipi- 
tated into a fratricidal war eight million Southerners - 
against twenty million of their fellow-countrymen is 
consummated -we allude to the bombardment of Fort 
Sumter. As the echoes of the big guns on Ciiarleston 
batteries boom iorth in the distance, thinking men turn 
sadly away, and we hear in the hoarse thunder the knell 
of the United States as well. 



The scene opens in a richly-furnished New York 
drawing-room. The costly hangings, immense mirrors, 
velvety carpets, the rich service of plate on the side- 
board, the elegant dresses of the inmates, bespeak it as 
the abode of a wealthy man. It is the town house of 
"Webster Grayle, senator for the State of Pennsylvania. 
The firm of G-ayle, Grayle, and Co., of New York and 
Philadelphia, was reckoned one of the wealthiest in the 
States. The senior partner, "Webster K. Gayle, was 
looked upon as endowed with great wealth, great shrewd- 
ness, and though a man of rectitude and probity, still one 
with whom the " almighty dollar " was of paramount 
importance. 

This was the man at whose house was now assemble 
a large party of friends. Tiie rooms were blazing wi 
a hundred lights ; the most costly wines and liqueufbf ■ 
were as plentiful as water ; while a baud of excelleili C( 
musicians, stationed in the conservatory, played now 
martial and inspiring, now soothing, melting airs. But 
in all that company one event was the absorbing topis 
of conversation t that event was the terrible rebellion 

NcH 



LIEUTENANT DABCY LEIGH. 3 

which already shook the Union to its foundation. The 
news of the bombardment of Fort Sumter had arrived 
but the day before, and every one was speculating on the 
turn which events would take.. * Some prognosticated a 
speedy and prompt crushing out of the so-called rebel- 
lion; others thought it could not be effected without a 
long and desperate struggle; while yet another party 
shook their heads, and declared it as their belief that 
the proud and fiery Southerners could never be brought 
back to their allegiance. 

See those two fair girls, the centre of a group of 
admirers. They are the daughters of the host — Stella 
and Angela Gayle. Notice the flashing eyes of Stella 
Gayle, the colour mantling on her cheek, the delicate 
nostril dilating, and the lip curling, as she speaks con- 
temptuously of this Ci wicked and paltry rebellion." 

Notice, too, the soft blue eyes of Angela Gayle, how 
sorrowful they seem, almost brimming over with tears. 
She is in earnest conversation with a young man in the 
uniform of a lieutenant in the United States' navy. 
This young man is Darcy Leigh. 

" Good heavens ! Lieutenant Leigh," the fair girl 
says, " what will be the end of this dreadful rebellion ? 
Tour sister, my sweet friend Laura — what will she do ? 
Surely your father will hasten to bring her North, and 
place her in safety." 

" My father, Miss Gayle, will, I know, do what he 
considers his duty, as will his sons, myself and brother." 

" What he thinks his duty ? Surely there can be no 
doubt of that. Surely Washington Leigh can never be 
a rebel. Surely Lieutenant Darcy Leigh can never be 
a traitor to his country ?" 

"A traitor! — no," replied the young man; "should 
I consider it inconsistent with my duty, with my order, 
with my native State, the ' Old Dominion,' any more to 
wear a sword in the service of the United States, I 
should at once throw up my commission. There could 
be no treachery in that. Freely I entered the service, 
faithfully I have done my duty, and therefore I consider 
myself free to retire at any moment." 

b2 



4 THE BLACK A?TGEL. 

" "Who speaks of retiring from the service of his 
country ? " said Stella Gayle, overhearing his last words 
to her sister ; then turning her flashing eyes full on 
the young officer, " Is it you, Lieutenant Leigh ? 
Shame on you to talk of retiring at such a time — at a 
time when your country requires the strong arms and 
brave hearts of all her sons ! Eetiring, indeed ! I pray 
you gjve it its right name; desertion — a base, cowardly 
desertion; for no other name would rightly describe 
such an act." 

Darcy Leigh turned very pale as the young lady spoko 
the^e bitter words. 

"Am I to understand," he said," that Miss Stella 
Gayle insinuates that I— I Darcy Leigh, could ever be 
a coward ? " 

" Am I to understand that you, Lieutenant Darcy 
Leigh, spoke in sober seriousness of retiring from your 
country's service at the present time ? " 

" I spoke of the possibility of such a thing, should I 
consider it essential to my honour or my dut; 

" Then if it be possibie for Lieutenant Darcy Leigh 
so to act, it is possible for him to act as a traitor and a 
coward ! " 

"With these words the young lady rose, and casting a 
scornful glance on Darcy Leigh, crossed to the other side 
of the room. 

He followed her retreating figure with his eyes as she 
moved gracefully away. He was as pale as death, and his 
Voice trembled as he said to Angela Gayle, who kept her 
seat, — 

" Your sister uses hard words. A traitor and a coward! 
— -I, Darcy Leigh, a coward ! " 

" My sister is heart and soul for the Union," said the 
blue-eyed Angela, " and in her excitement has said more 
than she should. She will be sorry ere long, and will 
express her sorrow for the injustice she has done you ; 
for I feel confident that whatever happens, you, Darcy 
Leigh, can never prove a coward." 

" Angela, I thank you," said the young officer, press- 
ing her hand j "whatever may happen, and I confess 



LIEUTENANT DARCY LEIGH. 5 

that the future is dark and gloomy enough, be assured I 
will never disgrace the name I bear. As for your sister, 
let her keep her opinion. The day will come when she 
will acknowledge that, at least, I am not a coward." 

So saying, the young officer wished Angela good night, 
bowed coldly to Stella as he passed her, and left the 
saloon. 

" A coward ! " he muttered to himself, as he walked 
down Broadway to the quay, where the gig of his ship — 
the United States' sloop-of-war Spitfire — was awaiting 
him; " a coward — she said I was a coward! I, Darcy 
Leigh, a coward! Ha! ha! the proud beauty! But 
she shall yet know that at least I am no coward. A 
coward ! — I, Darcy Leigh, a Southern gentleman — a 
coward ! " 

Thus muttering and fuming to himself, he reached the 
gig ; ordering the crew, who were lounging about, into 
the boat, he seated himself in the stern-sheets, and gave 
the word. 

The boat shot out on the calm waters, and in five 
minutes more he was pacing the quarter-deck of the 
Spitfire. 

Some other young officers joined him. They spoke in 
low muttered tones, in tones of doubt and distrust ; but 
among many there prevailed a feeling that the tie be- 
tween themselves and the service in which they had been 
bred was virtually severed for ever. The word " seces- 
sion" was more than once uttered, much oftener thought 
of; for be it known that a great majority of the officers 
both in the army and navy were the sons of Southern 
gentlemen and planters, and, of course, with all a 
Southerner's sympathies and tendencies. 
/" Lieutenant Darcy Leigh was the second son of Colonel 
C "Washington Leigh, of Virginia. The Colonel himself 
had, from the very beginning of the movement, thrown 
himself heart aud soul in with the Secessionists. His 
eldest son, Gerald Leigh, was a captain in the United 
States' army; his second son, Darcy Leigh, a lieutenant 
in the United States' navy. The sympathies of both 
were, of course, with their father and their father's 



TITE ELiCKT ATs T GEL. 

cause; wno then could wonder that the young; lieutenant 
should be gloomy and full of distrust at the assembly of 
"Webster Gayle, the merchant? 

For hours after the other officers had turned into 
their hammocks, Darcy Leigh paced the deck alone. 
Let us glance at him in his solitary vigil. 

Dark, slender, and pale, rather beneath the middle 
height than otherwise, he seemed even younger than he 
really was. His age was two-and-twenty, and he looked 
scarcely eighteen ; dark brown hair, piercing grey eyes, 
a thin Grecian nose, and a beautifully cut mouth ; such 
were the features which first struck a stranger. He had 
no whiskers, and but a very small moustache, which 
latter, indeed, was scarcely too strong or rough for a 
woman. His complexion was naturally dark, and ex- 
posure to the sun had so embrowned it that he might 
well have passed for a Creole, were it not that his hair had 
not that betraying curl, and that his hands and feet were 
email and delicate. 

There was in his manner a quick, nervous restlessness, 
which bespoke a daring, wild spirit, and in the clear 
outlines of the mouth and the thin lips, a physiognomist 
would have predicated a resolution as undaunted as the 
spirit was daring. 

Such was Darcy Leigh. "With his brother officers and 
the men beneath him, his dare-devil spirit made him a 
favourite ; with the ladies his unmistakable good looks, 
and a certain charm of manner, had a like effect, and 
until this fatal rebellion broke out he was considered a 
brave, dashing young fellow, and as promising an officer 
as any in the United States' navy. 



CHAPTER II. 

STELLA GAYLE AND LUPUS EOCE\ 

Let us return to the mansion of Senator Gayle. 
Immediately after the abrupt departure of Darcy 
Leigh, Angela arose, and approaching her sister, who, 



STELLA GATLE A> T D LTJPTJS HOCK". 7 

sooth to say, now felt some remorse for the hard words 
she had used, said, — 

"Oh, Stella, how could you have said what you did to 
Darcy Leigh — the brother of our dearest friend ? He 
is deeply offended; did you see how pale he turned 
when you said coward ? " 

"Indeed, Angela, I care nothing for Lieutenant Leigh's 
turning red or pale. I said what I meant, that this is no 
time for a true American to desert his colours. "What 
say you, Mr. Book ? " 

' : Miss Grayle," said the person addressed, bowing 
obsequiously and showing bis white teeth, "you are in 
this, as on all other occasions, perfectly in the right ; 
your devotion to the Union does honour to your head 
and heart, and I am sure all friends of the Union must 
feel honoured at having an advocate at once so loyal and 
lovely." 

The colour mantled slightly on Stella's beautiful cheek 
as she listened to this speech, in which the flattery was 
so direct and fulsome ; but it was not the flush of pleasure. 

Slightly bowing acknowledgment of the speech she 
arose, and taking her sister's arm, crossed over to where 
her father was standing. 

"Angela," said Stella, "how I do detest flattery; do 
not you?" 

" Indeed I do, and in the present case I not only detest 
the flattery, but also the flatterer. I know not why, but, 
cousin though he is to us, I never did and never can like 
Lupus Rock. There is something at once sneering and 
obsequious in his manner, as if he knew all the while he 
was uttering his soft speeches that they were as hollow 
and false as I believe he is himself." 

" Nonsense ! " cried Stella ; " don't talk so. I know 
he has a habit of flattering which is detestable, but other- 
wise I am sure he is most agreeable ; indeed, he has 
always been most kind and considerate to us. There is 
nothing he thinks too much. "Witness, the other day, the 
pains he took to get us tickets for Mr. Davis's private 
theatricals ; witness the manner in which he is always 
glad to wait on us." 



3 TTTE BLACK A^GEL. 

* Yes," interrupted Angela, "and witness how lie was 
proved to have had a halt" share in the slaver which was 
captured and brought into New York but a month ngo, 
and condemned with two hundred poor wretches on 
board, the survivors of three hundred and eighty kid- 
napped from their homes; he who pretends to be a 
Northerner, and attends abolition meetings, and goes to 
church. Shame on him, I say. Da rev Leigh would 
never act so, although you did call him a coward." 

As she spoke, the soft blue eyes of the gentle Angela 
sparkled, and her voice trembled with excitement. 

" Darcy Leigh ! " exclaimed her sister passionately ; 
" Darcy Leigh, nothing but Darcy Leigh ! Every one is 
trying to persuade me what a fine, brave, gallant fellow 
he is, though, for the life of me. I never could discover it. 
Darcy Leigh ! since you are so infatuated with him, for 
Heaven's Bake, take him, for me." 

"Nay, I fear that is impossible," sa'dher sister, smiling, 
" for, by all accounts, this dark young French Creole at 
Charleston, whom all the Southerners coming North so 
rave about, reigns paramount at present. I know he 
has her portrait, for he showed it to me, and a very 
beautiful girl she appears." 

"A French Creole," replied Stella, colouring, evidently 
not well pleased ; " I have heard of her, and doubt not 
she is no better than she should be, or Darcy Leigh 
would not have her portrait." 

" Nay, sister," said Angela, noticing her vexation, but 
ill-concealed, " do not be jealous or unjust." 

"Jealous!" exclaimed Stella, "jealous of a boy like 
this young Leigh ! really, that is too absurd," and she 
burst into a peal of laughter, real or forced. "Now, 
if I ever could possibly care for a traitor to the L'nion, 
certainly Gerald Leigh, this boy's brother, would com- 
mand my preference— there is a nobility and grandeur 
about him to which this slight, dark Darcy can never 
pretend." 

" I have not one word against Gerald ; I believe that 
he, like his brother, is a brave, noble fellow — both may 
be mistaken in the side they take of this wretched rebel- 



STELLA QAYLE ASD LUPUS ROCE. 

lion, but I value the little finger of either one of them 
more than the whole body of Lupus Hock." 

" What is that you are saying about your cousin Lupus, 
Angela ? " said her father, who had approached unseen. 

Angela coloured, but answered at once, " Well, papa, 
if you must know, I said I did not like him." 

" That is wrong of you, Angela, for your cousin is a 
most estimable young man — a thorough man of business 
— in fact, my right hand. I do not know what I should 
do without him. I am sure Stella has no such foolish pre- 
judice. Is it not so, daughter r " 

But Stella was perverse this evening, and would not 
acknowledge, any more than her sister, to liking her 
cousin, and while they were yet discussing the point 
Lupus Rock himself approached them. 

Let us take a survey of this person about whom the 
two sisters were almost about to quarrel. 

A tall, well-formed young man of about thirty years 
of age, aquiline features and beautiful white teeth, 
small piercing black eyes, surmounted by rather heavy 
eyebrows ; curling, dark-brown, almost black hair, and a 
well-cut but somewhat large mouth ; such was the tout 
ensemble of Lupus Rock. The most characteristic fea- 
tures in his face were the eyes and mouth ; the former 
small, piercing, and with an ever changing, restless 
glance ; the latter somewhat large, slightly drawn down 
at the corners, giving the whole face a sneering, sardonic, 
cruel expression. 

Nevertheless, Lupus Rock was universally acknow- 
ledged to be an exceedingly handsome man. 

" Fair cousin Stella, may I have the honour of con- 
ducting you to supper," he said, when he approached the 
two young ladies and their father 

" Dark cousin Lupus, you may," said Stella, forcing 
herself to seem pleasant, " on one condition." 

" JName it." 

" That you pester me with no more of your unmean- 
ing compliments and flattery." 

" Flattery! " said the gent'eman ; "that is impossible 
— the highest terms of praise, when addressed to Miss 



10 TITE -BLACK ANGEL." 

Stella G-ayle, fall so far short of the truth ag to render 
the homage the words express " 

u Thank you, Mr. Hock, that will do," interrupted 
Stella, hastily ; " 1 have heard quite enough. Tou can 
conduct some other lady to supper." 

Then turning to a tall, gaunt-looking Yankee, standing 
near her she said, — 

" Captain Hiram Squails, will yon take me down to 
supper? " 

" AVith all my heart," said the rough sailor, bluntly; 
"I did think of going aboard my ship now, but I'll take 
you down anyhow, if I leave before supper 's over." 

'• Thank you," said the young lady; "you at least will 
not sicken me with flattery." 

" Flattery ! " said the gallant captain. " Well, I 
reckon you 're a tarnation nice gal, and that's all the 
flattery you'll get from Captain Hiram Squails, of the 
United States' sloop Spitfire. Thunder! if you gals 
want soft sawder and pretty speeches, you must look out 
one of these dancing jackanapes, with their kid gloves 
and scented handkerchiefs. Hot 'em, I've got more than 
one aboard the Spitfire." 

' ; Like Darcy Leigh, for instance?" asked the young 
lady, probably wishing to hear his opinion; "he's one of 
your junior officers, isn't he ? " 

" Second Lieutenant Leigh ? Yes, — you're right, and 
you 're wrong — you're right, for he's aboard my ship; 
and you 're wrong when you say he's like these here 
namby-pamby fellows that can't stand water, let alone 
fire. Xo, miss, that ain't Darcy Leigh ; he's a good 
officer, a good sailor, good at anything, as a true, brave 
American should be — a rough and tumble, or a breeze of 
wind ; but, miss, is he a friend of yours ? " 

" Well, we are slightly acquainted." 

" Then I hope you won't be offended ; but as sure as 
there's snakes in Ole Virginny, he's a rebel in his heart 
— bythuuder! I know it, and there ain't a man in the 
United States' navy more sorry than Captain Squails of 
the Spitfire. The lad's been with me tor years, and I 
always liked him; but he's got these here cursed 



STELLA GAYLE ATTC) LTTPrS KOCK. 11 

Southern notions in his head, and I expect the up- 
shot will be, that Uncle Sam will lose as gallaut an 
officer as ever buckled on a sword — I do, by thunder! 
miss ; he's a rebel at heart/' 

" A traitor ? " 

" "Well, I won't say nothing about that, because I 
don't believe he'd do anything shabby or cowardly; but 
this is what he'll do if these rebels down South are in 
earnest — he'll just throw up his commission and go and 
join 'em. No, miss, the lad's a rank rebel, by thunder! 
but he's no traitor and no coward." 

As she heard these words of the young officer's own 
captain, Stella Gayle remembered her own, and her heart 
smote her. 

^Meanwhile, it may be well imagined that Lupus Bock 
smarted considerably under the rebuff his sycophantic 
tongue had caused him. 

He turned pale with fury, as Stella so coolly turned 
her back on him and took the Yankee captain's arm. 

" Curse her !" he muttered between his clenched 
teeth ; " I'll break her proud spirit yet — to turn and 
leave me for that unlicked cub of a Yankee ! No matter, 
my day shall come yet, my proud beauty, or my name is 
not Lupus Rock." 

Then he turned, and, with a smiling face, said to 
Angela, — 

" Since your sister has sent me to the right-about in 
so cavalier a manner, may I be permitted to take you 
down to supper, cousin Angela? " 

Angela, who, as the reader knows, liked him even less 
than her sister, gave him her arm in silence, and allowed 
him to conduct her from the saloon, 

Frequently during the repast his eyes would rest on 
the beautiful form of Stella, with a cold, vindictive, 
basilisk glance, which boded ill to her, should she ever be 
in his power. Truly, they were both beautiful girls — 
Stella, the elder one, especially ; although many admired 
the gentle, blue-eyed Angela more than her splendid, 
dashing sister, with her luxuriant hair and flashing grey 
eyes. Tall and exquisitely proportioned was Stella. 



12 THE BLACK ANGEL* 

There was an easy grace in every movement peculiar to 
herself. Her features were faultless — the nose thin and 
straight. Some hypercritical people, it is true, objected 
that the mouth was a shade too large ; but the contour 
of the 'lips was perfect — they were rich red, and just 
sufficiently full — tempting, without bordering on the 
coarse or voluptuous. But it was when this mouth was 
wreathed in smiles that it was seen to the best ad- 
vantage. The flashing eyes, the beautiful white teeth, 
and the faint glow visible on the beautiful face, at these 
times made up a picture as ravishing as was eve! 
imagined in a poet's or a painter's dream. An abundance 
of beautiful brown hair clustering about the oval face, 
and falling over her neck and graceful shoulder,!— a 
figure well developed, yet slender, small hands and feet, 
and a singularly graceful though somewhat proud car- 
riage ; such were the attractions of Stella Grade. 

It may well be imagined that so much beauty procured 
her plenty of admirers. None, however, had, as yet, 
even succeeded in storming the outworks of the citadel, 
for Stella G-ayle was at once beautiful as Venus and 
haughty as Juno. 

CHAPTER III. 

THE FETE OX EOA.RD THE COimrBIA: 

Titere is a fancy dress fete on board the commodore's 
ship of the Atlantic squadron of the United States' navy. 
The Columbia is gaily decked with flags, while the white 
awnings spread fure and aft protect the guests from the 
glare of the sun. The fete is a Union demonstration 
agninst the rebellion ; conspicuous alike among the gay 
decorations of the quarter-deck and the gay and varied 
dresses of the ladies are the Stars and Stripes. 

The capstan is covered b} r the national ensign, as are, 
also, the gloomy great guns on the quarter- deck. Tha 
Stars and Stripes are displayed as the centre piece of 
glittering trophies formed of ship's cutlasses and rifles, 
Each fair lady contrives to display the national embleij. 



TIIE PETE 0¥ BOATtD THE COLUMBIA. 13 

in some part of her dress. The Stars and Stripes wave 
proudly from the deck and masts of the Columbia ; while 
all around — starboard, larboard, a head, and astern — %e 
old flag may be seen flying from the peaks of men-of-war 
aud the crowd of merchantmen in New York harbour. 

The fete on board the commodore's ship is a most 
brilliant one. All the ladies are in fancy or ball dress, 
while all the gentlemen are in the uniforms of the army 
or navy, or in a fancy costume of some kind. Fair 
bosoms pant and heave, and manly breasts beat high, as 
the grand strains of "Hail Columbia!" or the quick, 
inspiriting air "Yankee Doodle" is played by the bands 
in attendance. All is excitement and enthusiasm. Stella 
Gayle, with her sister and father, is there, as also is 
Darcy Leigh — for the last time in the uniform of the 
United States' navy. Stella is in a graceful fancy cos- 
tume, while Angela is in plain ball dress. 

But, be it understood, notwithstanding all this enthu- 
siasm for the Union and the national flag, there was an 
under-current of discontent and distrust among some of 
the company. This stare of affairs existed, sad to relate, 
principally among the young naval and military officers. 

For be it known that a large majority of those were 
Southerners by birth and education; and, as a consequence, 
their sympathies were divided between the service they 
had been brought up in, and the cause of Secession, 
which the fathers, brothers, and friends of some had 
already embraced; in which course it was more than 
probable they would be followed by the greater portion 
Df Southern gentlemen and planters. No wonder, then, 
that many of them stood aloof and conversed together in 
low tones. 

Nor was this Southern sentiment entirely wanting 
among the ladies ; for although, carried away by the 
enthusiasm of the moment, the booming of the guns, the 
inspiring strains of the patriotic music, and the enchant- 
ment of the brilliant scene, few, if any, gave way to 
serious thought or to those gloomy forebodings which 
pervaded some of the other sex ; still there was among 
nearly all of them a pitying feeling for the embarrassing 



14 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

position of the naval and military officers of Southern 
extraction. 

^Whether deservedly so or not, these had always been 
highly favoured by the ladies of the Northern cities. In 
fact, anions the fair sex a Southerner was the type of 
chivalry, of liberality, of gallantry. They assumed to 
themselves the right to be considered the aristocracy 
of the Union ; nor was this right disputed even by the 
Northern manufacturers and merchants, who, for that very 
reason, looked on them with no very favourable eyes. 

Not so, however, with their wives and daughters. A 
girl who had secured to herself a Southern gentleman — ■ 
planter or officer — looked with pitying contempt on her 
less fortunate sister, who was obliged to content herself 
with a Northern merchant or Yankee manufacturer. 

Many, then, were the pitying glances bestowed upon 
Buch of the young officers who, although nominally pre- 
sent for a Union demonstration, held themselves aloof 
from the festivities. 

Many an attempt was made by fascinating fairies in 
the most charming of fancy dresses to win these sullen, 
moody, distrustful men to rejoice and make merry with 
them. 

Commodore Foote, the flag officer of the fleet, was a 
veteran of sixty-five, enthusiastically devoted to his pro- 
fession and the Union. 

The secession movement was to him the blackest of 
treasons, the originators and all the participators in 
which should be doomed to the gallows. 

A passionate, headstrong, obstinate, but brave and 
determined old man, was the Commodore. 

The suns of sixty-five summers, so far from impairing 
his youthful ardour, had left him more anxious than 
ever to strike a blow for the old Union and the old flag. 

Himself true to the backbone to his country and the 
Union, he could scarcely believe that men could exist 
wearing the United States' uniform who did not also 
participate in his sentiments. 

True, he had been informed by more than one post* 
captain that a strong feeling, if not of absolute disail'ec* 



THE FETE ON EOAED THE COLUMBIA. 15 

tioii, at all events of distrust and dissatisfaction, existed 
among the officers and even the men of the squadron. 
But he could not, would not, believe the sad truth. The 
young officers in question, he argued, mourned for the 
folly and wickedness of their relations and friends in the 
South ; they pitied and blamed, but did not sympathize ; 
besides, did they not wear the United States' uniform? 
were they not brought up in the service of Uncle Sam ? 

So the old Commodore laughed at the idea of disaffec- 
tion, and only praying for orders from Government to 
proceed to Charleston, and blow the rebels — town, forto, 
and all— to blazes, he hugged his delusion, and was 
happy. 

This day, the day of the great Union fete on board his 
own vessel, he was doomed to learn the truth — doomed 
to learn the bitter fact, that treason stalked in the very 
midst of them, that half those who now wore their 
swords in the United States' service, would ere long 
draw them in that of the despised and detested rebels. 

The young Lieutenant, Darcy Leigh, leaned smoking 
over one of the guns in the waist of ship. The gun was 
covered with the ensign, the Stars and Stripes. 

As he played with the folds of bunting with his hand, 
he thought of the many happy years he had spent under 
that nag, and was sad. 

Then came the thought — would it ever float over hi3 
head again? He held in his hand that day's paper. 
News had just arrived of the secession of several other 
States. The news of yet more was hourly expected. 

He read of meetings, enthusiastic and unanimous, in 
which nothing but defiance and determination to defend 
themselves to the last were breathed. He recognised 
again and again the names of dear friends and acquaint- 
ances and relatives. No wonder he looked sad and 
gloomy. A brother officer, also a Southerner, leaned 
with him over the gun. 

" George," said Leigh, to him, " what will be the end 
of this?" 

" The end ! " said his friend, rising and taking a fold 
of the ensign in his hand — " this will be the end," 



1(5 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

Darcy looked up. 

His friend made a motion, as if to tear the flag in two. 

" So will the Union be torn." 

i: I fear so," said Darcy Leigh. " There is but little 
hope; I know too well the stuff such men as my father 
and hundreds of other Secessionists are made of, ever to 
hope they will go back to the Union after once com- 
mitting themselves." 

" And what, then, shall we do — what course is open 
to us ? Suppose we are ordered to-morrow to proceed 
to Charleston and bombard the town ; we all the while 
having friends, relations, sisters, some of us wives there 
— what in such a case should we do ? " 

" I can tell you what I would do," said Darcy. 

" What ? " 

" I would throw my sword overboard, and follow it 
myself, ere I would draw it on my countrymen and kin." 

" You are right, Darcy, and so would I." 

" Gentlemen, said a nigger, approaching, "Commodore 
Bay cold collation ready — send me tell all de officers." 

" Compliments to Commodore Foote, Sambo, and I do 
not require any." 

" Same iroin me," said the other officer. 

The messenger received the same answer from many 
other officers, to whom the jingling of glasses the 
laughter of the ladies, and the applause at the Union 
toasts, were painful in the extreme. 

And now the collation is concluded, and the toast of 
the day is about to be proposed by the brave old Com- 
modore himself. The long extempore table, ranged 
on the quarter-deck, at which the guests are seated, is 
cleared. 

The attendance of every officer is requested. This 
they do not refuse, as there were none even among the 
most disaffected who would not have been glad to see 
the Union peaceably restored. 

The toast is to be " the Glorious Union." 

The old Commodore rises, glass in hand, and in a voico 
which falters from emotion, addresses the company: — 

"Ladies, gentlemen, and brother ojjlcers, — I rise to 



THE FETE ON BOARD THE COLUMBIA. 17 

propose a toast wliich I am sure will he enthusiastically 
drunk by you all. I am a man of few words and an 
old man. Fifty years have I spent under our glorious 
fldg; and had I fifty lives, I ivould lose them all to 
maintain that which I am about to propose — ' OUR 

GLORIOUS UNION.' " 

The toast was drunk with great uproar and enthu- 
siasm by the greater part of those present. But there 
were some who drank it in silence and sorrow. Among 
these were Darcy Leigh and inauy of his brother 
officers. 

However, in the general uproar, it passed unnoticed. 



CHAPTEE IV. 

TREASON IN THE CAMP. 

And now, under the influence of the wine, which 
flowed in profusion, the assembly commenced a round of 
speech-making and toast- drinking, in which bounce and 
bravado prevailed over sense. 

Darcy Leigh remained at the table, as did his brother 
officers. 

At last a rabid New England Yankee got on his legs, 
and commenced a furious tirade against the rebellion, 
the rebels, and their sympathizers. Had he marked the 
gloomy, sullen looks of many of his hearers, he might 
have moderated his language. 

Still he roared on, getting more violent every mo- 
ment. 

He wound up his speech by consigning in anticipa- 
tion every Secessionist to the gallows, and expressed a 
hope that should they not make immediate submission, 
the Government would take means to stir up a servile 
rebellion in their midst. 

" Then, with an army and navy pressing on them from 
without, and a furious horde of slaves murdering, burn- 
ing, and pillaging in their midst, the traitors will be 
swept from off the face of the land. Ladies and gentle- 
men," concluded the speaker, "I propose 'Our Army 





18 TIIE BLACK A^GEL. 

and Navy, and may every Secessionist swing on tho 
gallows tree.' " 

The glasses were filled. 

But among many of the officers and even others a 
dead silence prevailed. Then might be heard dull, 
gloomy mutterings of discontent. 

Darcy Leigh started to his feet. 

(l Recall the latter part of the toast, sir," he said, 
" and I will drink it." 

" Aye, recall the latter part," cried a dozen other voices. 

" AVhat's all this ? " exclaimed the bewildered Com- 
modore, rising ; " who are those who refuse to drink a 
loyal toast ? " 

'Captain Hiram Squails, who was seated on his left 
hand, touched the veteran on the shoulder. 

" Commodore," he said, in a low tone, " for God's 
sake, for the sake of the Union we both love, make the 
proposer recall the latter part of the toast. Do you 
not know that many among our officers have fathers 
and brothers among those men whose disgraceful death 
they are called on to toast ? Can a son drink to his 
father's death on the scaffold, a brother to a brothers ? 
I am a Union man, Commodore — but had I a brother or 
a friend South, I wouldn't drink that toast — I wouldn't, 
bo help me Heaven ! " 

And as he spoke, tears stood in the eyes of the brave 
rough sailor, the Cape Cod Fisherman, as he was called 
jocosely by his men, in allusion to the fact that, at one 
time when rusticating on half-pay, he had commanded 
a fishing smack. 

" Commodore, make him recall the toast," said the 
rough uncouth Yankee yet more earnestly, as he 
noticed that the mutterings of discontent grew- louder 
and more marked. 

Once again he entreated the obstinate old man. 
In vain. 

" And so they ought to hang ! " cried the veteran, 
maddened with rage : " and so they shall hang — aye, 
hang as high as Hainan. "Who refuses to drink a loyal 
toast ?" 



TBEASON IN TIIE CAMP. 19 

* I do," shouted Darcy Leigh, starting to his feet, 
pale and determined ; " I do ; and may I perish body 
and soul, ere I drink it ! " 

Thus saying, he raised the full glass on high and 
dashed it to atoms on the table before him. 

A dozen shouts re-echoed his, and the crash of a dozen 
and more glasses followed. 

"Treason!" shouted the Commodore, "treason in 
our camp, by the living God !" 

For a moment, the old man seemed horror-stricken, 
paralyzed at the fact which at last was forced upon 
him. 

The crew now nocked in crowds to the very verge of 
the quarter deck. Darcy Leigh addressed them. 

" Men," he said, " I and many other Southern gentle- 
men have served with you, and I trust we have done our 
duty. I am known to many of you, and trust, though 
we can no longer serve together under the same nag, that 
I and those of my brother officers as think fit to follow 
my example may bear away with us the kindly feelings 
of your brave sailor hearts." 

" Aye, aye, sir, that you do. Hurrah for Lieutenant 
Leigh!" and other encouraging cries interrupted him ; 
for Darcy was a general favourite. 

Ere he could resume his address, the Commodore 
started to his feet and shouted at the top of his voice, 
almost blind with fury, — 

" Silence, sir — silence ! — your name, sir ? " 

" My name is Darcy Leigh, and till now I have borne 
a lieutenant's commission on board the Spitfire." 

" Then, Lieutenant Leigh, I place you under arrest 
for insubordinate conduct and mutiny. Tou shall be 
tried by a court-martial." 

Darcy Leigh left his seat and went round to the 
Commodore ; Captain Hiram Squails was on his left 
hand ; on his right was Stella (rayle, who gazed horror- 
stricken at the scene. 

" Commodore Foote," said Darcy, " I honour and re- 
spect you as a brave and good officer, and regret I can 
no longer serve under you; I hereby tender you my 

c 2 



20 THE BLACK AS GEL. 

resignation. I no longer bear a commission in the 
United States' Navy." 

" I refuse to accept it, traitor, rebel !" roared the Com- 
modore. " I place you under arrest. Surrender your 
eword, and go on board your ship at once." 

" Commodore Foote," said the young man, calmly, un- 
buckling his sword-belt and looking at Stella Gayle, 
" yesterday I was told I was a coward — to-day that 1 am 
a traitor. I am neither. The fact that I refuse longer 
to bear a commission under a Government I can no 
longer serve with honour and honesty proves that at 
least I am no traitor. It is for me to prove hereafter 
that I am no coward." 

Then drawing his sword from its scabbard while 
every one gazed in blank amazement, he deliberately 
broke it across his knee, and flinging the broken 
pieces on the deck close to the feet of Stella Gayle, he 
said, — 

" Tnrs I srnEES-DEii my commission ajstd my swoed 

TOGETHEB." 

« * * # * • * # 

Utter and blank was the consternation as the young 
lieutenant left the quarter-deck, followed by fully a 
score of other young officers. Commodore Foote was 
thunder-struck. lie could not, would not, believe in 
the terrible fact of the wide-spread disaffection among 
the officers of his squadron till it was thus forcibly im- 
pressed on his notice. Looking around him he observed 
that scarcely a dozen remained around the table, fully 
two-thirds having left the quarter-deck with Darcy Leigh, 
and, alas! ominous sign! they had left their swords he- 
hind them. 

" Alas ! for the poor old XTnion !" said Captain Hiram 
Squails, the tears trickling down his rugged cheeks, 
" when the best and bravest of her sons thus desert in 
the hour of trial. Commodore, 'twas a pity we were not 
more gentle and easy with these young fellows. Hot- 
headed and hot-blooded, they have committed them- 
selves ; and it will be hard indeed to bring them back to 
their allegiance." 



TBKASCN IN TnE CAUP. 21 

Stella Gayle, scarcely kDowiug what she did, picked 
up the broken sword which lay at her feet. 

" Ah, Miss," said Captain Squails, " if ever that young 
chap buckles on a sword in place of that bit of broken 
steel, I reckon it won't be in Uncle Sam's service. You 
may take my word for it, it will be under the cursed 
Secession flag — the Stars and Bars." 

Stella gazed sadly on the broken weapon, and almost 
fancied it a presage of the disruption of that Union for 
which she had so great an affection. 

" Well, Captain Squails," said the Commodore, who had 
now recovered from his fit of passion, " what's to be done? 
I suppose I must bring 'em to a court-martial?" 

" I suppose so — there's no help for it if they stop — 
but it's tarnation queer to me if they do — strikes me, 
they'll be kinder off South, right off, them boys will. 
Anyhow, an empty house is better than a bad tenant, 
and an honourable foe is better than a false friend." 

And with this wise saw the conversation terminated ; 
but all the mirth and gaiety of the fete had fled. The 
Commodore leaned his grey head on his hand, and seemed 
buried in his own thoughts. Captain Squails gazed 
moodily at the groups of sailors forward on the main- 
mast, while Stella, pale, sad, and silent, sat with the 
broken blade in her hand, like a marble statue of melan- 
choly in gala dress. 



CHAPTER V. 

AN AUDACIOUS EEBEL AND A DESPEEATE ATTEMPT. 

Daecy Leigh, on leaving the quarter-deck, did not 
immediately go on board his own vessel, as ordered by 
the Commodore. 

An audacious design took possession of his head. 

No sooner had he matured it than he resolved to put 
it in instant execution. 

He started forward among the men; seeing an 
enormous negro, he approached him. 

" Well, Jupiter," he said. 



£3 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Golly! massa Darcy, that you? Lor! — what for you 
break him sword? By golly! they have court-martial, 
and Massa Darcy get hung up to yardarm ! " and Jujuter 
shook his woolly head ominously at the pleasant prospect. 

" Well, Jupiter, it may be so ; but when they do so, 

I'll take care they shall have a better reason. Now 

sten. I want to speak to you. You 're head-stoker, 

I't you, aboard the Spitfire?"" 

" Yes, massa." 

" How many of you niggers are there ?" 

" Eight, massa, and two white fellows, but dey 're dem 
d d Spaniards ! " 

" Ah, they 're no use ! Are all the niggers with you ? " 

" Wid me ? in course dey is, when we's all down de 
stoke-hole togeder !" 

" I mean will they all go with you — will they all do as 
you do ? " 

" Well, massa, dat depends ; but I reckon dis child 
can lead 'em a few, and when he can't he thumps 'em 
into it. I're foreman over dem niggers, anyhow !" 

" Well, now, listen ! Your fires are banked up, are 
they not ? " 

" Yes, massa, dem's de orders from de engineer." 

" Oh, confound the engineer ! we'll do without him ; 
he's a Yankee." 

"Well, where are the firemen?" continued Darcy 
Leigh. 

" Where is dey ? — why on board." 

" And how many of them ?" 

" Let's see, massa, dere's Darby Kelly and dem oder 

two d d Irishmen ; den dere's tree niggers and two 

Yankees — re'glar down-easters." 

" How long would it take to get the steam up ?" 

" How long ? — why de water 's hot an' de fire 's banked 
up — may be it might take close on an hour." 

" Couldn't you get steam enough in half an hour to 
steam out of the harbour?" 

" Maybe we might, massa ; but we isn't agoing out 
dis afternoon." 

" Isn't we ? — perhaps we is though. Kow, pay atten- 



Atf AUDACIOUS EEBEL. 23 

tion to what I am going to say. You were born on my 
father's plantation, and in return for your faithful ser- 
vices, my father made you a present of your freedom. 
I know you always were a true and faithful nigger. You 
have often said, that for my father, my brother or my- 
self, you would do anything." 

" By golly ! an' so I would, too ; cut dis here hand off, 
so help me neber, Massa Darcy ! " 

<l Well, now, I am going to put you to the proof. Go 
o^Uoard the Spitfire, get such of the stokers and fire- 
men together as you can depend on, and await my 
coming on board. In the meantime, take the ashes off 
the fires, and shovel on a little coke — only a little — just 
enough to get the water hot without making much 
smoke. Then look out for me. When I come on board, 
and all is ready, I will look down the stoke-hole. Keep 
your eyes open; I will make you a sign with my hand. 
The moment I have done so, fire up like blazes ; shovel 
the coals on like fury, and make a fire fit to split her 
boilers, as quick as you can. Work like devils for just 
one hour, and then, Jupiter, we'll laugh at the whole 
squadron." 

" Laff at de squadron?" said the nigger, in utter 
amazement. " What you mean, massa? Oh, by golly, I 
can't make head nor tail of dis here business !" 

Darcy Leigh glanced cautiously around to see there 
was no one listening. 

Then he said a few words, in a low voice to the nigger, 
which produced a marvellous effect. He opened his 
great eyes till the whites were visible all round. He 
gazed for some time in speechless horror at the young 
lieutenant. At last he gasped, — 

" Oh, my Lor a God 'mighty, Massa Leigh ! nebber 
hear such a ting in my life. Why, dey'll hang you, 
shoot you, sartin sure. Why, dere'd be a court-martial 
and ebery tink. Oh, my Lor a God O'mighty, aint dis 
orful?" 

" Never you mind, Jupiter, let them do their worst 
when they catch me. Now, you just go straight on 
board, and do as I told you. Will you ? " 



21 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

"^Vell, massa, Jupiter Dever cry a go. As do song 
say, ' de hole bog or none.' I'll do it, massa ; but, Oh my 
Lor a God O'mighty, ain't it orful>" 

" Well, go on board, and tell Darby Kelly and the 
other two Irishmen to wait for me. Say it's of import- 
ance ; I'll be there in half an hour ; and mind you, not a 
word to a soul till all is ready." 

Jupiter got into a boat, and went aboard the Spitfire, 
muttering occasionally, " Oh my Lor a God O'mighiv, 
ain't it orful ? " 

Darcy Leigh now hastened up to a group of young 
officers, and drawing them aside one by one, remained for 
a short time in earnest conversation with each. 

If they did not express their surprise in quite so 
original a manner as Jupiter, it was quite as great. 

" Great Heavens, Darcy! are you serious ?" said one. 

" Never more so." 

lt Is there a chance of success ?" 

" A chance ? — success is a certainty. I will succeed — 
I will succeed — fortune favours the brave." 

As he said these words, the young officer's eyes 
glittered, and a flush came to his cheek. His lips were 
firmly set, and there was an expression on his face which 
betokened a desperate determination. 

The young officer he was speaking to was silent for 
some time ; he gazed with astonishment on the slight, 
slender frame and beardless face of the almost boy be- 
fore him. At last he spoke. 

" Darcy Leigh," he said, " you 're a devil — here's my 
hand — I 'm with you, heart and soul." 

"With a like result, Darcy Leigh confided his project 
to other young officers, whom he could depend on. 

All were at first aghast at the audacity of the attempt 
he proposed ; but all, influenced by his quiet, determined 
manner, gave in their adhesion, and cast their lot in with 
him. 

" Now, gentlemen," said Darcy, " go all of you on 
board, and await me ; I will be with you in half an hour. 
I have business to attend to here first." 

One by one the young officers, to the number of 



THE PLATS S or THE MUTI»EEES. 25 

eleven, quietly left the Columbia; and proceeded oh 
board the Spitfire. 

Little did the Commodore think, as he still sat 
moodiiy leaning his head on his hand, of the desperate 
treason about to be attempted. 

Darcy Leigh disappeared among the crew, and spoke 
to several. 

These men invariably left, and followed the officers 
who were in the plot on board the Spitfire. 

Now Darcy Leigh may be seen sauntering carelessly 
about the deck, pausing every now and then, and leaning 
over first one and then another of the great guns. 

See how cautiously he looks around him ! 

For a second he raises the flag which covers each, and 
passes his hand beneath. 

"What is he doing ? 



CHAPTER VI. 

THE PLANS OP THE MUTINEERS. 

In half an hour the young lieutenant had completed 
his task, and prepared to leave the Columbia. She 
carried on the quarter-deck, ,in addition to the big 
guns on the main-deck and in the waist, eight brass 
carronades. 

Darcy Leigh gazed wistfully at these, and muttered — 

"It won't do — it's too dangerous. Hiram Squails 
has got an eye like a hawk. However, I'll see." 

He then strolled, apparently carelessly, towards the 
quarter-deck. 

Captain Squails and Commodore Foote still remained 
in deep conversation. Stella Gayle, her father, and 
some of the visitors were grouped about the quarter- 
deck, some seated on hen-coops, some leaning over the 
bulwarks, gazing over the blue waters of New York 
Harbour. 

Darcy Leigh was right in his opinion as to the hawk- 
eye of the Yankee captain. He had barely passed on to 
the quarter-deck, and was cautiously looking around 



23 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

him, and watching an opportunity to carry his d 
into execution, when the harsh, loud voice of Captain 
Squails was heard, — 

11 Lieutenant L igh !" 

" Sir," answered Darcy, with habitual promptitude. 

"I thought you were under orders to go on hoard 
your ship ? Commodore Foote has placed you under 
arrest. "What are you doing here ? Obey at once, and 
go on board the Spitfire, and there remain till you have 
further orders." 

"Aye, aye, sir," was the reply, as the lieutenant 
walked to the gangway, and prepared to obey. 

Before leaving, he turned and cast one look around 
him. Up and down the white flush deck his gaze wan- 
dered. For a moment his eyes rested on each of the 
frowning guns, whose muzzles protruded from the port- 
holes. 

" Aye, aye, my beauties," he muttered, " my fierce, 
black bull-dog3, I reckon I've drawn your teeth for 
you !" 

A mocking smile played for a moment over his face 
as he descended the ladder, and stepped into a boat 
alongside. 

Hiram Squails had watched the young lieutenant ; he 
had seen his glance around the deck, and the smile aa 
he descended into the boat. 

The Yankee captain had known the young man for 
many years, and duly appreciated his determination 
and daring. 

" I think I had better go on board my ship, com- 
modore," he said. 

" Go on board ? Nonsense, man ! — stay here. I 
want the company of some one whom I know to be 
loyal and true. Besides, there's a mail just in from 
Washington. I expect despatches on board every 
moment, and you may as well be here to receive my 
orders in case the Government have decided to send 
us South to strike a blow. So stay with me, Captain 
Squails — your ship will not run away." 

" I didn't like the look of that iad as he went ovec 



TI1E PEAKS OP THE MUTINEERS. 27 

the gangway- didn't, by thunder ! He's got something 
hatching in' that head of his as sure as eggs are eggs. 
I never saw Darcy Leigh look or smile like that but 
there was something in the wind. Anyhow, I don't 
suppose he can do any harm in the middle oi the 
squadron. But I don't like it— I don't, and that's the 

truth." 

* * * * 

Meanwhile, we will follow Darcy Leigh on hoard the 
Spitfire. . , 

As he stepped on board, he set his lips firmly, and 
said to himself, « Now then— neck or nothing— death 
or glory ! I'll let them know that I am no coward, at 
all events." 

He was immediately joined by several of the young 
officers to whom he bad spoken on board the Columbia. 
They spoke in whispers, and at Darcy's suggestion, 
descended into the gun-room, where the junior officer 
messed. 

Pens, ink, paper, and a chart were produced. 

None were present but such as were in the secret, 
and the door was at once barred. 

" Now, gentlemen," said Darcy, with quiet determina- 
tion, " we are about to engage in a desperate enterprise. 
If we fail, we shall be shot like dogs without fail; 
there is no mistake about that— at least, shot or hanged ; 
but, for my part, they shall never take me alive. _ If any 
one of you think better of this scheme— that it is too 
dangerous — let him retire." 

There was a silence. Darcy glanced round the mess- 
table, but he saw there were none but pale, determined 
faces — not an eye quailed. 

" Good," he said, " now to business. We have three 
distinct operations to carry out simultaneously. We 
must obtain possession of the engine-room and stoke- 
hole, and also secure such of the crew as are against us. 
This last is the more difficult— two-thirds of the seamen 
are Yankees. No matter ; all the more glory to us if 
we succeed. The engine-room is easily enough 
managed ; I understand the machinery, and will start 



23 TIIE BLACK A^GEL. 

the engines. The majority of the stokers and firemen I 
can also depend on ; so that the only remaining diffi- 
culty Ave have to apprehend is with the crew. We 
must get as many as possible down the fore-hold, and 
then batten, down the hatches. Those who remain on 
deck must be suddenly attacked and overpowered." 

" Bloodshed ?" asked a young officer. 

" Xot if it can be avoided," was the reply ; " but if 
the resistance is such as to endanger our success, we 
must pour out blood like water. All of you have re- 
volvers. Should they not be at once overpowered, 
shoot them down like dogs — it is no time for child's 
play. And now to business. Each of you go on deck ; 
tfouud such of the crew as you think can be brought 
round to us. If you can trust them, let them into the 
secret, and give them their instructions and the signal 
for the attack." 

" What shall the signal be ?" 

" It wants now two hours to sunset. The signal shall 
be the firing of the sundown-gun on the battery. In 
half an hour we meet here again and report progress." 

The Spitfire was a screw steam-sloop of eighteen guns 
— four of which were eleven-inch Dahlgren shell guns, 
equal, if not superior in power, especially at short 
ranges, to our own Armstrong's. 

She was manned by a crew of one hundred and eighty 
men, and thirty firemen and stokers. She was built, 
fitted out, and commissioned in Boston, Massachusetts. 
The great majority of her crew were thorough Yankees, 
most of them from Massachusetts or one of the Xew 
England States. 

Of the whole hundred and eighty, not more than fifty, 
at the outside, could be counted on by the conspirators, 
to aid in their projected enterprise. 

Of these there were some who, though favourably 
disposed, did not care to run the risk of so desperate an 
attempt, well knowing that the yard-arm would be their 
fate in case of failure and capture. 

At the expiration of the half-hour the twelve officers 
met again in the gun-room. 



THE PLANS OP THE MUTI> T EEKS. 29 

Darcy Leigh assumed the command unquestioned. 
j All felt and knew that the audacious project was en- 
tirely due to him, and none felt inclined to dispute his 
claim to the command. 

" Xow, my boys," said Darcy, as soon as they were all 
assembled, " there is no time to be lost — we have barely 
an hour and a quarter. Let us arrange our programme, 
and assign to each man his post. Which of you are the 
best up in engineering and the management of the 
machinery >" 

" Grey and Wharncliffe," said one of the young men, 
" know more about it than any of us." 

"Grey and Wharncliffe? Well, they, then, shall 
have the charge of the engine-room. At the gunfire 
they will hasten down with five men, all armed ; if the 
first or second engineers make the least resistance, thev 
will seize and gag them ; if their resistance, or that of 
any of their men, should seem to threaten the success of 
the enterprise, they are, without hesitation, to blow 
their brains out. Lieutenants Grey and Wharncliffe, 
you understand clearly what is to be done ?" 

" Yes," replied Grey ; " we first overpower the engi- 
neers, and then get the machinery ready for a start." 

" Eight. When I call down into the engine-room, 
turn the steam full on, tie down the safety-valve, and 
leave the rest to us on deck." 

The young officers signified that they fully understood 
the part they were to play. 

" We now come to the stoke-hole," continued Darcy ; 
"with that we shall have little trouble. Jupiter, the 
big nigger, is with me, heart and soul, among the 
stokers ; and I believe Darby Kelly, the fireman, would 
go through fire and water for me, since I saved him 
from that three dozen the captain ordered him. Bur- 
leigh, will you and a couple of men take the stoke-hole 
and see that all is right in that quarter ? Keep the 
niggers at work at the furnaces as soon as you get the 
word. I'll send down all that half hundred hams old 
Squails bought at Boston. I reckon they'll make the 
fires blaze a bit." 



gO THE BIACK ANGEL. 

Tn spite of the desperate nature of the enterprise 
they were about to embark in, there was a general 
laugh at the thought of the sacrifice of poor Hiram 
Squails's hams. 

"And now," said Darcy, "we come to the most 
serious part of the business. The engine-room and 
stoke-hole will not give us much trouble ; but the crew 
— that's a different affair. They're Yankees, but, by 
Jove, they'll make a fight of it. I have sent a keg of 
rum down the fore-hold; that, I hope, will get some 
half of them in such a state that they shall not know 
how to fight even if they feel inclined. Then we can 
reckon on some forty or five-and-forty men. Even 
these, however, would not care about risking their necks 
with us, did they not see a good chance of success At least, 
I gather that the majority of them, although they sym- 
pathize with us, and like the audacity of the attempt, 
still feel inclined to hang back until something decisive 
is done — in short, till we strike the first decisive and 
successful blow. This, then, is the state of affairs : — 
There are twelve of us; two are told off to the engine- 
room, one to the stoke-hole ; that leaves us nine oflicers. 
Then, as to the men, five for the engine-room and two 
for the stoke-hole is seven. We certainly cannot count 
on more than a score at the most. That would leave 
us, say twelve men to spare for the deck work. Nine 
officers and twelve men — that is the material we have 
to work with. ^Yith that few we must clear the decks, 
batten the hatches down, slip the cable, and, if neces- 
sary, man the guns. I suppose we have on board at 
present about a hundred and fifty men. Then there is 
the boatswain, the boatswain's mates, four quarter- 
masters, the first and third lieutenants, and the sailing- 
master, all Yankees, and all dead against us. The first 
lieutenant and the sailing-master are the most dan- 
gerous ; they are brave men, and must be put liors de 
combat at once. I will see to that. Then I propose 
that each of you take one or two men, and distribute 
yourselves about the decks among the groups of men. 
Many of them, although they will not actively assist at 



THE PLANS OF THE MUTINEERS. 31 

first, will look on approvingly. Be very cautions 
not to attack or offend these neutrals. Others, again, 
must be secured at once. At the sound of the 
gun from the battery, four or five of you, "who must be 
already prepared, will at once clap on the fore-hatche3, 
and place* the bar across. This will put fully two- 
thirds of the crew safe. If any attempt is made by the 
remainder of the Yankees on deck to take off the 
hatches again, use your revolvers — pistol them right 
and left. In the meantime, I will train a couple of the 
carronades to command the fore part of the deck, and 
will load with grape. Do not stop to secure all who 
resist, but drag such us you can off, and we will put 
them in irons. Then, if the remainder resist or attempt 
to take the hatches off, the grape and canister of the 
carronades will give a good account of them. In the 
meantime, while some of you are securing the unruly of 
the crew, two, assisted by the carpenter's mate, who is all 
ours, will unshackle the cable. The instant that is done, 
give a shout. I will then give the signal down the engine- 
room, Grey will turn the steam full on, and I will take 
the helm ; in twenty minutes we shall be clear of 
the squadron, and in an hour at sea. Then we must 
place in irons such of the crew who do not choose to 
join us, and consult as to what is to be done next. 
Gentlemen, do you approve of my plan r " 

" Yes— yes !" is heard on all hands—not a single 
voice being raised in opposition. 

" Xow then, gentlemen, to work. Each man to his 
post. In little more than half an hour we shall hear 
the boom of the sundown gun. Death or glory ! Let 
us shake hands all round. Some of us may be sent to 
our long account ere dark." 

Then in silence the conspirators — rebels — traitors — 
call them what you will— exchanged a friendly grip all 
round, and separated. 



82 THE BLACK A>'GEL. 

CHAPTER VII. 

THE CO>-SPIBATORS SEIZE TUE SHIP. 

Tiie setting sun casts a soft, mellow light over the 
beautiful waters of New York Harbour.. The Atlantic 
squadron of the United States' Navy is at anchor aboul 
a mile above the Narrows, in such a position ay 
effectually to command the channel. 

Outside of all is the flag-ship — the stately Columbia — 
one of the finest frigates in the American navy. Next 
to her is the steam-corvette Manhattan, and next to her 
again, the steam-sloop Spitfire. Beyond her are two 
other corvettes, four sloops, and two gunboats — making 
up Commodore Foote's squadron. 

All is noise and revelry on board the Spitfire. The 
keg of rum, so thoughtfully provided by the young lieu- 
tenant, Darcy Leigh, has had its effect. The sounds of 
songs, shouting, and fiddling, from the forehatch suffi- 
ciently attest the fact. 

Some thirty or forty of the crew, however — preferring 
the cooling breeze on deck to the noise, shouting, and 
Btifling heat of the fore-hold — are lounging about thedecks. 

Three of the young officers who took a part in the 
gun-room conference are leaning listlessly against the 
fore- mast, looking down the fore-hold, apparently amused 
by the noise and riot going on. Two others are leaning 
against the bulwarks, at a distance of only a few yards. 
AH five are so placed that they can, at a moment's 
notice, make a dash at the hatches, which are stacked 
one above another between the fore-hatch and the mast. 

Darcy Leigh is seated on a hencoop on the starboard 
side of the quarter-deck. His seat commands a view of 
the companion-way down into the captain's cabin. The 
first and third lieutenants and sailing-master are down 
there, sitting at the table and drinking to the glorious 
Union in tumblers of whisky toddy. N"o mice were 
ever watched more closely by a vigilant cat than are 
these three officers by Darcy Leigh. Opposite him on 
the larboard side, is Lieutenant George Frewin and two 



THE COXSPIRATOES SEIZE THE SHIP. 33 

of the most determined fore-mast bauds ; while Darby 
Kelly, the big Irish fireman, is leaning against the mizzen- 
mast in ill-disguised impatience for the fray to begin. 

" Masther Darcy," he says, in a gentle whisper, which 
might be heard half the length of the ship, " when's the 
foight going to begin ? Sure, let's have it over, for, be 
jabers, I want me tay." 

" Silence, you maniac !" is the reply, " or, ' be jabers,' 
you '11 be having your 'tay' in kingdom come if they 
hear you." 

The sun is on the verge of the low land, on the 
western horizon. Now the lurid disc of the glowing 
orb is hidden by the land. In another five minutes it 
will have set, and the gun from the fort will boom forth 
the news. The merry sound of the fiddles, and the 
roaring chorus of the songs ascending from the lore- 
hatch, are alone audible. All else is quiet. On board 
the Manhattan all is still. The sentry, pacing slowly up 
and clown at the gangway, and the officer of the watch 
sauntering lazily up and down the quarter-deck, are 
almost the only moving objects visible. The crew are 
all either on shore, in their Irammocks, or on board some 
of the other ships. On board the flag-ship, too, all is 
equally still. Of the gay party but lately assembled 
on her decks, there only remained now some five or six 
ladies, and twice as many gentlemen, exclusive of the 
officers. 

These are assembled on the quarter-deck, admiring the 
glorious sight which the setting sun presents. Scarcely 
a word is spoken. The old Commodore is gloomy and 
morose ; Captain Hiram Squails, who is still by his side, 
snappish and ill-tempered ; Stella Gayle is leaning over 
the starboard bulwarks, gazing sadly up the bay, towards 
where the Manhattan, the Spitfire, and the rest of the 
equadro" ^e ac anchor. 

Jt i3 almost a dead calm ; there is not sufficient wind 
to blow out the light folds of bunting composing the 
ensign, which droops languidly from the mizzen-peak as 
if sharing the general feeling of depression. 

Flash ! an interval, and then boom went the big gun, 

D 



34 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

which announced the fact that another day was ended, 
another night begun. 

Instantly, according to custom, down comes every 
flag from every war-ship of the squadron. No, not every 
one, for the Stars and Stripes still float from the mizzen- 
pcak of the Spitfire. Those on board had other things 
to do than to haul down flags. 

Instantly that the flash of the gun was seen, and ere 
the report had yet reached them, Darcy Leigh bounded 
to his feet, and hastened down into the cabin, followed 
closely by Darby Kelly, Lieutenant Frewin, and the two 
fore-mast hands. 

The first and third lieutenants, and the sailing-master, 
were still seated at the table- 

Without a moment's hesitation, Darcy strode up to 
the first lieutenant, and placing a revolver to hi3 head, 
Baid, quietly, — 

" Sir, you are my prisoner !" 

" "What is the meaning of this, Lieutenant Leigh ; 
are you mad or drunk ?" said the officer, starting to his 
feet. " Allow me to pass if you please." 

" Silence ! or I'll blow your brains out," was the 
amiable reply. 

The lieutenant was a brave man, and seeing the forc- 
irast hands and Darby Kelly follow Darcy down into the 
cabin, he at once guessed it was an arranged mutiny. 

" Treason — mutiny !" he shouted at the top of his voice, 
making a dash for the companion-way ; " sentry" 

He never finished the sentence, for Darby Kelly hit 
him a crack over the head at the last word with an iron 
belaying pin, that effectually quieted him. 

With a heavy groan, the brave officer fell back, and 
lay senseless under the table. 

" You great bull-headed beggar!" said Darcy, angrily, 
to the Irishman ; " what did you hit him like that for ? 
Surely you could have secured him without hitting him a 
blow "like the kick of a horse. I hope to Gr — you have 
not killed him." 

So saying, Darcy stooped down and raised the head of 
the wounded man, from which the blood flowed copiously. 



*HE CONSPIRATORS SEIZE THE SKIP. oJ 

Taking advantage of this opportunity, the sailing- 
master leaped over the cabin-table, and rushed up the 
companion-way before he could be stopped. 

"Treason!— treason!" he shouted, at the top of hia 
voice ; " beat to quarters— fire an alarm gun " 

The words were hardly out of his mouth, and he had 
but just reached the deck, when he was felled to the 
ground bv a blow from a handspike. 

Then Darcy and Darby Kelly, who had hurried up 
after him, seized him and dragged him down into the 
cabiu. The third lieutenant was secured without diffi- 
culty and bound. 

" Shove them down the lazaretto— off with the hatch, 
quick !" said Darcy. 

No sooner said than done. The hatch was taken 
off, and the insensible form of the first lieutenant 
bundled down—then the sailing-master, who was only 
Blightly hurt, followed, and the third lieutenant last. 
then the hatch was placed on again, and securely 
fastened. 

Scarcely had they finished this part of their work than 
they were apprised by loud shouts and pistol shots that 
a fight in earnest was going on on deck. 

'•Come on, boys— there are five of us, and we five 
will win the day." 

Darby Kelly was first up, and shouting, "Be jabers, 
I'm into them," dashed forward. 

" Come back, you fool— come back," shouted Darcy ; 
li I want you here." 

Darby obeyed, and following the lieutenant's direc- 
tions, he assisted to run back one of the brass carrona les. 
Pre win did the like on the other side, and in five minutes 
the whole length of the deck was commanded by a gun 
on each side loaded to the muzzle with grape and 
canister. Then Darcy snatched up a bugle which was 
lying near, and blew the retreat. 

It was a preconcerted signal. 

No sooner was the sound heard than all who were 
in the secret retreated aft, dragging as many of their 
opponents with them as they could. 



3G THE ELACK ANGEL. 

Step by step they retreated till they were fairly on tho 
quarter-deck, and behind the carronades. 

They had dragged with them about fifteen of tho 
crew, most of whom were wounded more or less. 

These they hastened to secure. 

Meanwhile three officers and two men, who had 
remained to guard the fore-hatch, in order that their 
opponents might not take it off and liberate their ship- 
mates below, were sorely assailed. 

" Come on, boys, forward," shouted Darcy, revolver in 
Land, dashing ahead, followed by the others — " down 
with the Yankees !" 

This decided the fate of the day. The party defending 
the fore-hatch were enabled to make good their position, 
while the remainder of the crew were driven forward 
right into the bows of the sloop. 

" Quick, unshackle the chains !" shouted Darcy. 

In less than two minutes this was done. 

Then he hurried to the engine-room hatch, and yelled 
down, " Go ahead — full steam — all's right above." 

His words were hailed with a shout of joy from below, 
which was followed by the clanking and groaning of the 
engine. The next instant the screw revolved, and the 
Spitfire plunged ahead. 

The ensign, the Stars and Stripes, still flew at the 
inizzen-peak. 

" Load the larboard guns with blank cartridge, Mr. 
"Whnrnclifle," said Darcy, who was at the helm, "and 
the starboard with round shot." 

Lieutenant AVharnclitfe hastened to obey, and one by 
one the guns were loaded and run out. 

The Spitfire was now dashing down the channel under 
a full head of steam. 

She was abreast of the Manhattan, and had passed her 
ere the officers of the latter recovered from their asto- 
nishment at the extraordinary proceedings of the sloop. 

Once past her broadside all danger ceased from her, 
as being at anchor, it would take some time to slip her 
cable and bring it to bear again. 

Row the Spitfire is dashing down the narrow channel, 



UVSrSTKG THE GAUNTLET. 37 

straight for the flag-ship, about a quarter of a mile ahead 
of her. 

She will be obliged to pass within a hundred yards of 
her guns. 

" Are the larboard guns loaded with blank cartridge ?" 
asked Darcy. 

Being answered in the affirmative, he said, — 

" Stand by to fire a royal salute when I hoist our flag." 

Then Darcy gave the helm to one of the seamen, and 
casting off the signal-halliards, hauled down the United 
States' ensign. 

He then bent on another flag. 

" Now, boys, give her a cheer," ho said. " Are you 
ready with the guns ?" 

"All ready, sir." 

Then up went the flag. 

The Stars — yes — surely it must be the Stars and 
Stripes ! ! Yet — no— there are the Stars, surely enough ; 
but they are too few for the national ensign— and the 
Stripes — where are they ? Those broad horizontal bands 
cannot be meant for them ? No — it is not the Stars and 
Stripes which sways aloft saluted by a deafening cheer 
and the roar of cannon ; it is the Secession flag — the 
Stars and Bars ! ! ! 

Cheer after cheer rang out in daring defiance. Grun 
after gun boomed forth its hoarse salute to the full 
number of twenty-one, and the Spitfire tore ahead 
through the water with the audacious flag of the rebeP 
South flying from her peak. 



CHAPTER VIII. 

SUNNING THE GAUNTLET. 

Return we to the Columbia. 

Commodore Foote is still busied in his thoughts, ap- 
parently not of a pleasant nature. 

"Webster Gayle, after an ineffectual attempt to engage 
in conversation with Captain Squails, rose, and lighting 
a cigar, strolled away, saying to his daughter,— 



83 TIIE ELACK ATs'GEt.. 

u Stella, when you and your sister are ready to return 
home, let me know. I expected your cousin' Lupus 
would have been on board ere now, but I suppose some- 
thing has detained him." 

lla Gayle made no answer. Her eyes were fixed 
on the Spitfire. 

'• Captain Squails," she said, "'look at your ship. Is 
she going to sea? See the smoke coming from her 
funii 

"Going to sea!" said Squails, arousing himself — 
"thunder! not that I know of." 

He looked attentively and with some surprise for a 
moment at the smoke pouring from the Spitfire's funnel. 

" Oh, I suppose it's some of those cursed black stokers 
and Irish firemen — all drunk together, no doubt. I left 
orders to keep the fires well banked up with ashes, 
and I suppose they've been shovelling small coal on 
as well." 

I'ive minutes more passed. 

The sun was now on the point of disappearing. 

"Look, Captain Squails,'' cried Stella again, " look 
now ! " 

Captain Squails started to his feet. 

" Thunder and furies ! " he cried, "what the blazes is 
the meaning of this ? Why they must be getting the 
Bteam up." 

" Eh ! what ? " said the Commodore, waking up ; 
"getting the steam up on board your vessel, Captain 
Squails? Who gave ordeis. r---it must be a mistake. 
Here, steward, bring me my glass." 

iVhile the steward was abseni* on his errand the sun 
disappeared — flash, boom, went the sundown gun. 

Then all was silent for a time. The flags of all the 
other vessels were hauled down ; but the ensign at the 
peak of the Spitfire was still kept flying. 

The Commodore placed the glass to his eye. 

" Why, who the devil's in command on board, Captain 
Squails?" Here's gunfire, and they haven't hauled the 
flag down. What lubber of an officer is in charge of 
her?" 



mryyiNG the cattstlet. 89 

" My first lieutenant ; but he's no lubber, out a good 
active officer." 

" What on earth's the meaning of this ? " cried the 
old man, starting to his feet ; " there's a fight on board 
of some kind!" 

Surely enough the sharp reports of firearms might 
now be heard. Then a shout, and another, followed by 
another discharge of pistols. 

Every one hastened to the starboard side, and gazed 
over the bulwarks at the strange scene being enacted on 
board the Spitfire. 

They could just make out that a desperate struggle was 
going on. The swaying forms of the combatants were 
distinctly visible, although they could not identify any. 

" Another glass, steward, quick ! " shouted Captain 
Squails, trembling with excitement. 

The glass was brought. 

" By the thunder of heaven, there's Darcy Leigh! " 
exclaimed Squails ; " he's running back one of the car- 
ronades, and turning it forward. By G- d, Commo- 
dore, they 're taking possession of the ship." 

" Where's my boat's crew?" he shouted, running to 
the side ; " bring my gig up to the gangway — jump in 
there, and fire away." 

Easier said than done, for Captain Oquails's gig was 
nowhere to be seen. Darcy Leigh had exchanged a few 
words with the coxswain left in charge of her, and the 
result was the disappearance of the boat. Not that it 
would have availed anything, for by this time the Spit- 
fire was adrift, and had swung round with her head 
pointing right for the Columbia. 

" Why your ship 's adrift, Captain Squails," said the 
Commodore, in utter amazement. 

" They've slipped her cable ! " groaned Squails. 
" Thunder and fury ! " he continued, " they 're steaming 
right down for us." 

" Surely they ain't going to run into us?" said the 
Commodore. 

" Run into us, no," replied Captain Squails j " but 
they 're going to run away with her." 



40 TIIE BLACK AXGEL. 

u 'Beat to quarters — man the starboard pins- load 
■with round shot, and sink her if she attempts to pass 
us." 

At the sound of the drums and fifes the men came 
tumbling up in amazement at the sudden summons. In 
an inconceivably short time every man is at his station. 

The flags are hastily torn from the guns, ammunition 
handed up, and the battle lanterns are lighted and hung 
around. 

On comes the Spitfire right down towards them. 

" See," cried Stella Gavle, who was gaziug with fear 
and surprise at the scene ; " see, they have hauled down 
the flag." 

" Yes, and yonder goes another one in its place," said 
Captain Squalls. 

She was now barely two hundred yards from the flag 
ship. 

Stella Gayle recognised the figure of the man who was 
hoisting the flag. 

" Darcy Leigh — see, Captain Squails, there is Lieu- 
tenant Leigh hoisting that flag." 

" What flag is it ? " asked the Commodore, whose sight 
was none of the best. " I can see the stars ; is it the 
Stars and Stripes ? " 

At that moment a cheer rung out from the deck of 
the Spitfire. This was succeeded by the boom of a gun ; 
again and again flash succeeded flash, cheer cheer. 

" AVhat flag is it, Commodore ? " shouted Hiram 
Squails, at the top of his voice. 

" The Eebel flag — the Stars and Bars, by the living 
God." 

'/.* V.* *P -/." V V? 

And now the Spitfire is right abreast of the Columbia, 
distant about a hundred yards. They can plainly dis- 
tinguish everything on her decks. The starboard guns 
of the Spitfire are run out and manned. The men wait 
but the word to fire. 

The shouting and hammering of the imprisoned crew, 
In their efforts to release themselves, are plainly heard. 
These efforts, however, are futile, for water- casks, piles of 



RUNNING THE GAUNTLET. 41 

ringing, spars, and lumber of every description, nave been 
piled on top. In addition to this, the carronades have 
been dragged forward, and their muzzles pointed right 
down the hatch, so that should the prisoners succeed in 
their efforts to force a passage, they will be blown to 
pieces ere they could reach the deck. 

Suddenly the spectators observe a gigantic negro run 
up from the stoke-hole, and seat himself coolly on the 
capstan. 

It is Jupiter. He has in his hand a fiddle. Showing 
his white teeth, and chuckling audibly, he deliberately 
commences playing " Yankee Doodle." 

" Tire!" shouted the Commodore, hoarse with rage. 
u Fire ! blow her out of the water." 

" Fire ! " he again shouted, after a moment's pause. 
* Pour a broadside into her." 

Still the great guns were silent. The gunners re- 
mained aghast with dismay. 

'• Fire ! " again roared the Commodore. " Hell and 
furies, why don't you fire ? " 

Still the guns did not send forth their iron storm. 

An officer ran aft and said to the commodore, — 

" The guns are all spiked, Commodore ! " 

" Darcy Leigh, by thunder!" groaned Squails. "I 
knew there was something up when he went over the 
gangway. I knew he did not stop on board for nothing.'* 

" The carronades ! " cried the Commodore, running 
up to one, and examining the breech ; " they are not 
spiked ! " 

It was true, and in half a minute the four brass guns 
poured their contents of grape and canister into the Spit- 
fire. 

There was a terrible crashing of woodwork; the 
splinters flew in all directions, showing that the dis- 
charge had taken effect. A shot struck the tiller, not, 
however, carrying it away, but causing the wheel to spin 
round violently. This had the effect of throwing Darcy 
Leigh over, who was steering, and dashing him violently 
against the bulwarks. 

Instantly the Spitfire yawned from her course, and 



42 tut: black avqei. 

came close under the stern of the Columbia. ITad the 
rebels chosen to take advantage of it, this was a most 
favourable position, as not a single gun could be brought 
to bear upon them ; they could rake the Columbia from 
stem to stern. 

" Stand by your guns, men ! " shouted Lieutenant 
Wharncliffe, who was wounded by the discharge of grape 
from the Columbia ; u stand to your guns, and fire one 
by one as you come abreast of the cabin windows." 

It was a moment of terrible suspense on board the 
Columbia. If the Spitfire raked her, her big guns loaded 
with grape, the slaughter must be fearful. 

Stella Gayle clung to her father's arm, and waited in 
breathless suspense for the expected terrible discharge 
from the rebel's guns. 

" Commence with the bow gun," shouted Lieutenant 
"Wharncliffe, who was exasperated by the pain of his 
wound, " and fire in rotation. Keady with the bow gun 
—Fire ! " 

The gunners were in the very act of obeying, when 
Darcy Leigh, running forward, shouted, " No — no ! Let 
not a man dare to fire a gun. There are ladies on board. 
"Wharncliffe, you ought to be ashamed of yourself ! " 

Darcy Leigh had seen Stella Gayle and her sister. lie 
then ran back to the wheel, and commenced heaving it 
to starboard, in order to pay her off on to her course a 

The Spitfire glided by the stern of the Columbia with- 
out firing a shot. One would have thought such for- 
bearance deserved a return. 

Commodore Foote shouted, " Lay aft here, marines 
and small arms men. Fire at the man at the helm — it 
is that accursed rebel, Lieutenant Leigh ! " 

The last gun on the starboard quarter of the Spitfire 
was now just clear of the Columbia. The two vessels were 
Btern to stern at right angles to each other ; scarcely 
ttty yards separated them. 

The marines and small arms men hurried aft, aud ranged 
themselves on the starboard quarter of the Columbia. 

Now may be heard the rattling of the steel ramrods 
as the Minnie bullets are driven home. 



mmmmta the ©attsttlet. 43 

Every moment increases the distance between the two 
ships. Still, however, the Spitfire is well in the range of 
the marines' rifles — certainly not more than sixty or 
seventy yards off. 

"Fire ! " shouted Commodore Foote. 

They heard on board the Spitfire the voice of Darcy 
Leigh. 

" Lie down, every one of you," he shouted ; " let not a 
man show his head above the bulwarks." 

Instantly every man disappeared as if by magic, ex- 
cept the man at the helm. Darcy Leigh himself, who 
still kept his post, gazed in calm defiance at the levelled 
barrels of the Columbia's marines. 

Jupiter had disappeared from the capstan, but not to 
be beateu, his fiddle still kept squeaking out " Yankee 
Doodle " in insolent mockery. 

Stella Gayle gazes towards the Spitfire with clasped 
hands and pale face, 

The form of Darcy Leigh can still be plainly distin- 
guished at the helm. He waves his cap in defiance. 

Crash — Rattle ! 

The marines poured in their volley. The leaden shower 
tore up and splintered the planking of the Spitfire. 

Stella Grayle gazes earnestly through the smoke. 

Darcy Leigh is seen no more at the helm. 

He is lvino- on the deck weltering in his blood. 

They can still see everything that passes. Several 
men run aft, and while one takes the helm the others 
raise the motionless form before them. 

They can see on board the Columbia the pale face of 
Darcy Leigh, marked by streams of blood, which pour 
from a bullet wound in the temple. 

Hiram Squails, who is looking through his glass, sud- 
denly shuts it up with a bang. 

u Shot right through the head, by heavens ! " he says. 

Stella Gayle gives a little scream, and sinks half faint- 
ing into a seat. 

'• The pestilent rebel! " exclaims the eld Commodore, 

A tear streams down the rugged face of Captain 
Hiram S quails. 



4^ TEE ELACK ANGEL. 

"A pestilent rebel, as you say, Commodore, but a 
brave and gallant man. There's not another officer in 
the fleet could have done this thing. I loved the boy 
like my own son. He has run away with my ship — I 
forgive him. He has gone to his last account,*and 1 say 
God rest his soul." 

****** 

The black hull of the Spitfire faded gradually away in 
the gloom of the evening, and in the course of twenty 
minutes she could barely be distinguished, as she shot 
through the Narrows and out to sea. 

Of course some of the squadron gave chase, but in 
vain, for the runaway was one of the fastest vessels of 
the United States' navy, and having the advantage of 
half an-hour's start, and in the darkness of the night, she 
made good her escape for the time at least. 

The Columbia remained at her moorings, Commodore 
Foote not considering her fast enough to have any 
chance of overhauling the sloop. 

" What will they do with her ? " asked the latter of 
Captain Squails, who was now without a ship. 

" What will they do with her ? why, I fancy they'll 
try to run her into Charleston." 

" How much coal has she on board ? " 

"Less than three days." 

" That won't take her there. She'll have to depend 
on her sails for part of the distance. I will telegraph to 
"Washington to-night. Xow — for instructions." 

Accordingly Commodore Foote, calling for paper and 
ink, wrote the following : — 

"To the Secretary at War, Washington, from Commodore 
Foote, North Atlantic Squadron. 

"A mutiny on board the United States' sloop of war Spit- 
fire. Crew and some Southern officers have run away with 
her. Ringleader, Lieutenant Darcy Leigh. Probably made 
for Charleston. Spitfire has only two days' coal on board. 
Shall I follow and endeavour to intercept ? " 

" Captain Squails, you will take this up to the tele- 



PLAN OF THE MUTINEERS. 45 

graph office, have it verified, and wait for a telegram in 
reply." G 

Captain Squails took the missive and went on shore. 
In two hours he returned, bearing a telegraphic de- 
spatch addressed to Commodore Foote. 
It ran as follows : — 

"From the Secretary at War to Commodore Foote, &c. 

" Commodore Foote will immediately weigh anchor and 
steam to a point off Charleston Harbour, where it is likely 
the Spitfire may be intercepted. If captured, hano- the ring- 
leader, Lieutenant Leigh, without trial, bring the oth?r 
omcers to drum-head court-martial, and shoot immediately." 

" Poor Darcy Leigh!" muttered Squails, whose Ag- 
nation could not overpower his affection for his protege. 
"He has gone before another tribunal than earthly 
court-martial. Bullets and halters have now no terrors 
for him. He has to answer for his treason to his country 
at the judgment seat of God. May he find mercy." 

In a couple of h)urs' time the Columbia, the Manhattan, 
and the sloop Miranda steamed out of the harbour for 
Charleston. 

Captain Squails having now no ship remained onboard 
with Commodore Foote. 

CHAPTEE IX. 

PLAN OE THE MUTINEERS. 

The daring attempt of the mutineers had been re- 
warded with perfect success. The discharge of grape 
from the carronades had wounded some four or five only, 
while the fire of the Columbia's marines had hurt no one 
with the exception of Darcy Leigh. 

Immediately that he was seen to fall, several of his 
brother officers ran to him, and raising his lifeless form 
bore it below. 

All thought he was dead— the blood streamed from a 
Wound in the left temple. 



40 THE BLACK ASGEL, 

"Dead!" said Wharncliffe sadly, who was himself 
"wounded, " right through the head." 

There was a surgeon on board. He approached, and 
proceeded to examine the wound. 

" This is no bullet wound," he said at once; "it is 
too ragged and uneven." 

A closer examination proved that he was right. "What 
at first sight appeared to be the orifice where a bullet 
had crashed through the skull, turned out to be on! , 
jagged incised wound caused by a splinter of the \ 
which had struck and glanced off. 

The shock had stunned him without doing any serious 
injury. In the course of a few minutes he returned to 
and his he.sd having been dressed waa 
enabled to return to the deck. 

A deep gloom had fallen on the mutineers when it 
became known that their young commander had fallen. 
His re-appearance was hailed with a loud shout of 

Although his cut head was still painful, he neverthe- 
less at once proceeded to give the necessary orders for 
working the ship. 

" East-south-east is her course for the present," he 
said to AYharnclifie ; "we must make a good offing, and 
then lay her to till we decide on what is best to be 
done." 

" "What is best to be done ?" said "Wnarncliffe, "surely 
we are going to run right for Charleston ? " 

" Xo," said Darcy, " you forget — we have not sufficient 
coal on board. Here, Jupiter, lay down that fiddle, and 
come here." 

The nigger, who, when it was discovered that Darcy 
Leigh was not dead, had again started furious tunes on 
the fiddle, obeyed, and approached the group of officers. 

" How much coal and coke have you below ? " 

"'Bout 'nufffor tree days, massa." 

"Three days," said Darcy thoughtfully, "three days — 
in that time we can't do half the distance to Charleston. 
If we attempt to run there direct, we shall be overhauled 
before we get oil' Cape Hatteras. \Ye shall be pursued 



PLAN OF THE MUTINEERS. 47 

at once; they will guess we shall run straight for 
Charleston, and some of the squadron with plenty of 
coal will run down before us, and lay off the harbour in 
waiting." 

" True," said Wharncliffe gravely, " I had not thought 
of that. What do you propose, Darcy ? " 

The youug officer was silent for some time. He re- 
mained buried in. thought nearly a minute before he 
spoke, 

" Eun right out to sea ; keep a full head of steam up 
all night to get well clear of pursuit. Then let the fires 
down, and bank them up. Then when we have made 
some five or six hundred miles under sail, heave to and 
wait for a week, keeping meanwhile a bright look out. 
Thus v\e shall have two days' coal in reserve. We can 
then take our time, run down to a point off Charleston 
Harbour, and watch for a chance of eluding the squadron 
and getting in." 

This plan was so obviously feasible and prudent, that 
not a voice was raised against it. 

" We now come to our internal arrangements," con- 
tinued Darcy. " We will commence with the officers— 
there are fourteen of us altogether. It is necessary that 
each has his appointed rank and place. How shall we 
arrange it ? shall we ballot for the command, or shall wo 
let it go by seniority ? " 

" Neither," said Wharncliffe; "at least as to the com- 
mand. You, Darcy Leigh, were the originator of the at. 
tempt. It is to your foresight in spiking the guns of the 
Columbia that its success is due. It is but right that 
on you should devolve the command. Gentlemen, am 1 
right ? do you not agree with me ? " 

" Yes, yes !" cried several, — "Darcy Leigh for captain." 

Darcy signified his willingness to accept the command, 
and they proceeded to elect the officers. 

u Now shall we choose by seniority or by ballot ? M 
Baid Wharncliffe. . 

The ballot was ultimately determined on. The post 
of first lieutenant fell on a young officer named Edward 
"Wilton, while Wharncliffe was second. Third, fourth, 



49 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

and fifth were also disposed of, and the remaining officers 
ranking nominally as midshipmen. 

" And now for tl: said Darcy. " Muster them 

all on the quarter-deck, Mr. Wharncliffe ; at least, all 
except a sufficient guard over the fore hatch." 

The crew were mustered accordingly; exclusive of 
stokers and firemen, Darcy found that he had only 
twenty-five men on whom he could rely — meanwhile 
there were a hundred and fifty confined down the fore- 
hold. Darcy feared justly that they could not long re- 
main quiet without an attempt to break forth; and, 
although ere they could succeed there would be great 
slaughter, he feared that the force of numbers would 
prevail. 

Fourteen officers and twenty-five men to keep in sub- 
jection a hundred and fifty. It seemed a task fraught 
with difficulty and danger. 

" AYharncliffe," said the captain to the second lieu- 
tenant, " don't you think a score of those fellows might 
be brought over to our side ? It would be worth trying, 
for we have not enough to work the ship as it is." 

" Dangerous, very dangerous," was the reply, " still, if 
you think the attempt should be made, by all means let 
it be done." 

"Drag two more of the carronades forward," Darcy 
shouted. 

In obedience to this order the brass guns were run 
bark and hauled forward to the fore hatch. 

Loaded to the very muzzle with grape, the breeches 
were cleared, and they were pointed right at the after- 
most hatch. It was now commanded by lour guns, all 
loaded with grape. If, on taking the hatch off, the 
prisoners attempted to make a rush, the slaughter caused 
by the discharge of the four carronades into their dense 
masses must be fearful. In addition, Darcy Leigh 
stationed his forces on each side of the hatch with drawn 
cutlasses. 

" Now stand by, two of you, to unbar the hatch and 
take it off. Gunners, ready with the guns, and if I give 
the word, fire." 



PLAN OP THE MUTINEERS. 49 

These latter were stationed with the string for dis- 
charging the cannon in their hands. 

" Now, met>, ready." 

" All ready." 

" Off with the hatch." 

The hatch was immediately unbarred and removed. 

Instantly a slight rush was made by the prisoners for 
the ladder, 

" Back, every one of you, back! " shouted Darcy, " or 
I'll blow you into eternity. Another step and I give 
the word to fire. Are you mad ? Do you see the carro- 
nades ?" 

The prisoners fell back at these words, and on observ- 
ing the muzzles of the cannon ominously frowning clown 
on them. 

" Let not a man move," continued Darcy, " for if he 
do, it is at his peril." 

The men remained massed together like sheep ; low 
mutterings of discontent were heard, but not a man at- 
tempted to advance. 

" Xow come up the hatch one by one," said Darcy. 
° Here, you sir in front, come up first." 

These words were addressed to a big sailor, named Bob 
Flinders. The man came up. 

' ; Xow, my lad," said Darcy, " and men, all listen to 
me. You know that we have seized the ship, and are 
running her out to sea. "We have men enough to 
manage her, and to spare ; but still we do not wish to 
keep you imprisoned if we can help it. You know me, 
some of you; we have served Uncle Sam together, 
and there is no reason why we should not still serve 
together, although the Stars and Stripes do not float 
over us. Who will serve the Confederate States? 
You, Bob Flinders," he said to the big sailor, "are 
you wiliing to serve with me in an honourable 
cause? " 

The man hesitated ; a conflict was going on in his 
mind between his duty and inclination. For twenty 
years he had served in the United States' navy, and he 
could not at once overcome old associations and old 



50 



HE BLACK ANGEL. 



feelings ; on the other hand, he saw around him many of 
his shipmates and many of the most popular officers in 
the fleet, and at their head Darcy Leigh, sometimes 
called by the crew the ■ friend." 

►me, Bob— say yes, and pass < n afl for your gi 

" AVell, sir, here goes," Baid Bob ; " shiver my timbers 
if I don't go in along with you, though you might have 
paid a IV- 1 ompliment of asking him instead of 

bundling him below, and battening the hatches do\ui on 
him. Here's my hand, Captain, and there's my heart 
With it. I suppose it's treason and mutiny; but if it's 
murder, I'm into it now." 

Baying, Boh Hinders passed on aft. 

His example went a great way; others of the men with 
whom Darcy was popular followed his example, and in 
half an hour they had secured forty more men. 

This brought their whole crew up to sixty-five men 
and thirteen officers, making seventy-eight ; then there 
fifteen or sixteen stokers and firemen, which 
brought up their total to nearly a hundred; and the 
disaffected who still refused to join them did not number 
more than a hundred and ten; so that in case of an 
attempted re-capture they would fight with nearly equal 
numbers, and with all the advantages of arms, position, 
and discipline. 

Nevertheless, Darcy determined to make assurance 
doubly sure. He had noticed among the men imprisoned 
in the fore-hold several who, though they did not show- 
in front, yet were endeavouring to incite the others to 
make a rush on deck. 

Darcy determined to secure these men. He accord- 
ingly ordered all who were below to ascend the ladder 
one by one, and come on deck. He had arranged his 
men in a double line, forming a kind of avenue round 
the foremast. Thus each man ascended, passed between 
the double row of men with drawn cutlasses, and then 
round the foremast back to the hatch, and again de- 
scending. 

As they passed in procession before him, Darcy closely 
:h ma a. 



PLAN OP lriE MUTINEERS. 51 

Now and then, when he thought he had discovered one 
who seemed as if he might be dangerous by acting as 
ringleader and inciting the rest, he stopped him, and in 
an instant the man was handcuffed, and sent off under a 
guard. 

He had secured some ten or a dozen in this way, thus 
further reducing their strength. 

" Now, my lads," he said, when they had all passed 
in review before him, " I have no wish to be harsh or 
severe with you; nevertheless we have undertaken an 
enterprise, and it must —it shall be carried out. I should 
be sorry to have recourse to violence — sorry to injure 
any of you ; nevertheless, if the slightest attempt is made 
at resistance or re-capture, the decks shall swim in 
blood — you shall be mown down ruthlessly by grape and 
canister ! So now you know what you have to expect. I 
do not wish to confine you more than is necessary, but 
must provide for our own safety. There are somewhere 
about a hundred of you below there ; five of you can 
be constantly on deck to cook, fetch provisions, water. 
&c, for the others," 

The prisoners seemed pleased at the clemency and con* 
gideration of the mutineer captain ; one stepped forward 
as spokesman: " Lieuterant Leigh," he said, " for my 
shipmates and myself down here, I thank you. You 
know your own business best. You've got up a mutiny 
and run away with the smartest steam sloop in the 
United States' Navy. If you 're captured you will swing 
at the yardarm for it, as you know well enough. Well, 
in my idea, no man is to be blamed for what he does 
when his neck's in danger. You 've put your foot in it. 
and to get out of the mess you must go the whole hog. 
I don't like your treatment to the old flag. I don't like 
your cause — but I like youi pluck, and thank you tor 
your kindness. If you're a rebel you're a gentleman, and 
have always behaved as such, as tor us (I speak for 
myself, and think I can answer for tn^ others) we shall 
not make any attempt without a fair chance. We know 
you're a man of your word, and don't believe that with 
; guns staring down at us, and us mostly unarmed, tha? 

e 2 



52 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

we should Lave any chance. We know that you'd have 
no mercy on us, because you and all with you would be 
fighting with halters round your necks, and I know how 
desperate men can fight, but I speak for myself. II* we 
are overhauled by one of Uncle Sam's cruisers, and there's 
a fight for it, then 1 tell you honestly, I for one will go 
in and strike a blow for the old flag." 

Murmurs of assent greeted this speech. 

" Very well, my lads, I'll take care that as long as you 
behave yourselves you shall be well treated ; and as for 
any attempt you make it shall be my fault if you succeed. 
As tor what you say to our being captured by one of 
Uncle Sam's cruisers, that will never happen, for I'll 
put a match to the magazine myself and blow ship and 
all to eternity ere I'll be captured. Now, Mr. Wharn- 
clifte, set the watch, and make all snug for the night. 
See that there are not less than forty men and live 
officers on deck at the same time. Let them be armed 
with cutlasses and pistols ; place a guard over the fore- 
hatch under a trustworthy officer, and at the least dis- 
turbance or attempt, shoot them down like dogs. Mean- 
while I will go and take some rest, for my head pains me 
much. E.S.E. is our course. Keep a full head of steam 
up till morning, then let the fires down a little, ior we 
must economize our coal." 

With these words Darey went below, leaving the deck- 
in charge of Wharncliffe. 



CHAPTER X. 

A TERRIBLE PREDICAMENT. 

All through the night the Spitfire dashed along 
through the water at full speed. The firemen had built 
a tremendous fire. The salety valve was loaded, and 
she could not have been going less than sixteen knots. 

The night was dark and foggy, so they could not see 
whether or not they were pursued. Nevertheless Darcy 
Leigh felt no alarm, as he knew they had at least three 
quarters of an hour's start in the first place. This 



A TE&EIBLE PREDICAMENT. 53 

would place them ten miles ahead of pursuit. In the 
second place, there was not a vessel in the squadron 
could sail within two knots as fast as the Spitfire, so 
that at the pace at which they were going every hour 
increased their distance. 

There was yet another reason why he should feel no 
immediate alarm. He felt sure that the Commodore 
would imagine they would make straight for Charleston 
— the head quarters of the rebellion. This they had not 
done, but were steaming right out into the Atlantic. 

At three o'clock in the morning the Spitfire had 
made by the log, a hundred and fifty miles on an E.S.E. 
course. 

Lieutenant "Wharncliffe accordingly gave orders that 
the fires should be allowed to go down. The effect of 
this was now apparent, for the sloop no longer tore 
through the water at such a tremendous pace, but 
glided easily on at some nine knots. 

This was a very necessary arrangement, as the firemen 
through the night had been' making great inroads into 
their scanty stock of coal, and the engines were straining 
and working a good deal, the bearings having become 
too hot to be safe. 

A drizzling rain had been falling nearly all night, and 
bo thick and dirty was the weather that nothing was 
visible beyond fifty or sixty yards. 

Lanterns were arranged around the decks, and the 
watch were kept constantly on the alert by the officers, 
who constantly went round among them. Down the 
fore hatch all was quiet. Doubtless the sight of the 
four carronades with the gunners standing ready by the 
side, and the guard of a dozen men and two officers 
armed with cutlasses and pistols, had its effect. 

The morning broke dirtily, gloomily. 

Darcy Leigh, who had thrown himself on a couch 
in the cabin, slept a feverish and uneasy sleep. Several 
times at the slightest noise he leaped to his feet, and 
snatching up his pistols, which were beside him on 
the table, prepared to rush on deck. Each time, how- 
ever, there was no occasion for alarm, and he again com- 



04 THE BLACK AJTQ] 

posed himself to rest. The wound ou his head was now 
very painful, and lie was altogether hot and feverish. 

As the morning advanced, the mist got thicker and 
more gloomy. Lieutenant Wharncliffe had stationed 
a man at the mast-head on the look-out. This, however, 
was almost useless, as he could hardly see further than 
the end of the bow-sprit. 

Accordingly he also ordered that the fog-bell should 
be constantly rung, lest they should in the general 
gloom, come into sudden collision with some vessel. 

Towards five o'clock the wind, which had been light 
and baiiling all night, began to ri 

It was well on the starboard-beam, so Lieutenant 
Wharnclifle gave orders to set the courses, topsails, jib 
and spanker. 

The topsails had been sheeted home, the jib set, and 
the watch were boarding the main tack, when the man 
on the look-out shouted " Sail ho ! " 

" Where away ? " 

" Starboard bow." 

" What is she ? Can you make her out ? H 

" Ko, only her top-gallant sails — her hull is hid in the 
mist ; but by the squareness of their cut she's a large 
ship, and an American." 

l)arcy Leigh now came hurrying on deck, and taking 
a telescope, ran aloft to the mast-head. The look-out 
was on the topsail-yard, but Darcy ascended, and did 
not stop till he was seated on the royal-yard. 

Then steadying himself by the halyards, he gazed in 
the direction indicated. 

He could distinguish a large ship looming through 
the fog. 

She appeared to be making right for them. 

"Jure up," he shouted to Wharnclifle, "get the stenm 
up, fat on the fires; bear a hand," he shouted — "the 
Strange sail sees us, and is bearing right down." 

By degrees the rising wind dispersed the mist, and he 
could make out the rig of the stranger. 

A large square-rigged steam vessel coming right down 
on them. 



A TEREIBLE PBEDICA1EEKT. OJ 

By the smoke which poured from her funnel, it was 
plain she had her steam well up. 

And now, from his elevation he can see her hull, and 
even her guns ; for he saw at once that she was a ship 
of war. 

Eighteen guns he counted on each side. 

It was evidently a large first-class frigate, and a 
Yankee . 

Yes ! there could be no doubt of it, for although no 
flag was flying to denote her nation, Darcy's prac- 
tised eye recognised at oi:ce one of the United States' 
cruisers. 

He cursed his folly for having ordered the fires to be 
let down. 

There was no help for it now, however, and they must 
make the best of it. 

Slinging the telescope round his neck, he came down 
a back- stay, hand over hand. 

Reaching the deck, he ran to the stoke-hole and 
shouted down, — 

" Jupiter, Darby Kelly, fire up there like thunder — 
get the steam up, for here's Uncle Sam coming right 
down on us." 

The men worked with a will, and dense volumes of 
smoke poured forth from the Spitfire's funnel. 

"Oh, for twenty minutes," said Darcy, " or even a 
quarter of an hour, and we would show her our heels; 
but she'll be down on us before we can get a full head 
of steam up." 

" What is she, Darcy ? " asked WharnclhTe, approach- 
ing. " Can you make her out ? M 

" Make her out, yes, confound her ; I make her out 
plainly enough. She's a United States' frigate, and will 
overhaul us in five minutes more." 

" "Where is she from ? " 

* I can't say — either from Baltimore or Charleston. 
If she's from Charleston, we can deceive her, as she 
must have started some days ago ; but if she's from 
Baltimore, she may have heard by telegraph from l\tw 
York last night, and run out to cut us oif. Beat to 



56 TIIE BLACK ANGEL, 

quarters; we. must be prepared for the worst and fight 
like tigers." 

The crew came tumbling up in -wild excitement at the 
inspiring sound of the drums. 

" Place a double guard over the prisoners, Mr. "Wharn- 
cliffe — don't hesitate a moment to lire into them if they 
raise any disturbance." 

All was excitement and confusion down the fore- 
hold. It almost seemed that the captives were about 
to make a rush and endeavour to retake the ship. 
Had they done so, whatever might have been the 
ultimate result, the attempt would have been most 
disastrous to themselves, for the four carronades 
would have made fearful havoc among their crowded 
ranks. 

" Place the fore-hatch on," shouted Darcy Leigh, as 
he saw the frigate looming out of the mist, which had 
not yet quite dispersed. 

It was done amid loud cries of dissatisfaction and rage 
from below. Still, however, no open resistance was 
made, although the noise, shouting, and confusion were 
great. 

The stranger was now barely a quarter of a mile 
distant, and in five or six minutes would be alongside. 

" Load with round shot and run out the guns," said 
Darcy. 



CHAPTEE XI. 

A FEAEFUL STRUGGLE. 

It was done, and the starboard battery manned. 

"Now, my lads," said Darcy, addressing them, "we 
will get away, if we can — if we can't we must light like 
tigers, for, if taken, every man of us will go to the yard- 
arm. Oh ! for ten minutes more," added he, " and we 
should be safe." 

By this time the Spitfire began to tear ahead through 
the water at increased speed. Darcy knew, however, 
that to attempt flight before the steam was fully up would 



A FEARFUL STEUGGLB. 57 

"be sheer folly. They were going now about eleven knot3, 
while the frigate, with full steam, was making thirteen or 
fourteen. 

" How long before the steam 's well up ?" again shouted 
Darcy, down into the engine-room. 

" Ten or fifteen minutes more will do it." 
" How many pounds to the inch now ?" 
" Twenty-eight." 

" Thirty-live will do it — the valve opens at thirty-eight 
— but with thirty-five or six we can show any ship in the 
navy pur heels." 

" Wharncliffe," he said to the second lieutenant, " if 
they know us, and what we are, we must fight ; if they 
do not, we must gain time till the steam is up. It would 
be madness to attempt to escape at present." 

"Ease her," shouted Darcy to the officer who had 
charge of the engines. 

The stranger was now only a few hundred yards dis- 
tant. 

The frigate fired a blank gun, and hoisted the Stars 
and Stripes. 

" Stop her," shouted Darcy, at the same time running 
to the signal halyards and hoisting the United States' 
flag in reply. 

" What ship is that ? " roared the captain of the fri- 
gate through a speaking trumpet. 

" The United States' sloop-of-war Spitfire, Captain 
Hiram Squails. "What ship is that ?" 

" The United States' steam-frigate Wabash, Captain 
Seth Peabody." 

" Where are you from ?" 

" From Charleston to New York, with sealed des- 
patches for Commodore Foote, of the North Atlantic 
squadron. Where are you from and bound to ?" 

" Prom New York, bound South, on a secret service." 

The captain of the frigate made no reply for a minute, 
but consulted with one of his officers. 

"Send a boat on board," shouted the captain of the 
frigate, again, through the trumpet j " I have despatches 
for Captain Hiram Squails." 



58 THE BLACK Ay GEL. 

"Ay, ay, sir," replied Darcy, as he leaped down from 
the mizzen-rigging. 

" What will you do, Darcy ?" asked one of the officers, 

" Clear away the long boat -bear a hand." 

" The long boat," said Wha'rncliffe, in s urprise, " are 
you going to send a boat, then r" 

" Yes— the long boat — bear a hand, and we will play 
them a trick, and make them a present of our prisoners. 
They are a desperate danger and encumbrance to us ; 
while, I dare say, Captain Seth, of the Wabash, will be 
glad of them." 

The long boat was quickly got out, and brought round 
to the starboard quarter. 

Meanwhile the stokers and firemen had laboured assi- 
duously at their work, and the result was a roaring fire 
and a full head of steam. 

Steam was already wasting by the safety valve, and 
orders were given by the officer in charge of the engine- 
room, to weight it down. 

The Wabash was now lying to, broadside to broadside 
with the Spitfire, her head, however, being turned in an 
opposite direction. 

While the boat was being got out, Darcy Leigh called 
some of the officers around him, and explained to them 
his plan. It was very simple, and if successfully carried 
out would at once rid. them of a considerable embarrass- 
ment, and enable the Spitfire to escape. He proposed 
that the prisoners down the fore-hold should be offered 
the opportunity of embarking in the long boat. Then, 
when the last was in, the boat should be cast adrift, and 
the Spitfire should steam away at full speed. 

Darcy calculated that it would be some minutes before 
the boat with her load could reach the Wabash to explain 
the true state of the case, while the captain and officers 
of the latter would be utterly confounded by the extra- 
ordinary and unaccountable manoeuvre of the Spitfire. 
Ere they could recover from their astonishment, and 
learn the true state of the case, he calculated, with rea- 
son, that the sloop would be nearly a mile distant, and 
as under full steam she was faster than the Wabash by 



A FEATirUL STIirCCLE. OJ 

at least two knots an hour, they might laugli at all 
attempts to overtake them. 

All agreed that this plan was both feasible and expe- 
dient. jSow there remained but its execution. 

No time was to be lost, as the Wabash was lying to, 
in expectation of a boat being sent on board. Darcy 
Leigh, having given all the necessary orders and sta 
tioned every man at his post, hurried forward to the fore 
hatch. 

To the astonishment of the officers on guard, he, with- 
out a moment's hesitation, jumped on the ladder and was 
descending. 

" Darcy, are you mad ?" cried "Whamcliffe, calling to 
him ; " surely ycu are not going down among those fel- 
lows. Tou will be murdered, to a certainty." 

"Lieutenant Wharncliffe," said Darcy, coolly, " I be- 
lieve I am the captain of this ship ; at all events, for the 
time. I know what I am doing. You attend to your 
duty on deck ; rest assured I shall risk nothing without 
a sufficient motive." 

So saying, the young officer coolly descended the lad- 
der, and fearlessly walked right into the midst of the 
turbulent assembly of prisoners. The excitement among 
them was intense, as they knew that the United States' 
frigate was alongside, and they were waiting in ex- 
pectation of hearing every moment the thunder of her 
guns. 

"It is certain," thought Darcy, "that if an action 
once commenced, they would burst loose and endeavour 
to re-take the sloop." 

A momentary lull ensued, when Darcy so boldly came 
in their midst. 

They were struck with astonishment ; they could not 
understand it. That the leader of the mutiny, who had 
seized the command of the sloop, and now kept the loyal 
part of the crew in subjection only by means of the car- 
ronades pointed down on them, that he, Lieutenant Leigh, 
should thus venture into the midst of them alone and 
almost unarmed, seemed so wonderful that they were lost 
in wonder. 



GO TIIE BLACK A^GEL. 

A bold deed always finds sympathy, and even the 
oldest and most staunch Union tars could not but feel 
admiration at the cool effrontery with which the young 
officer stepped in their midst. Darcy gazed around him 
deliberately before he addressed them. 

A murmur of discontent and anger succeeded the first 
lull. 

" Give up the sloop," cried several. " Surrender her 
to the frigate ; yes, yes, surrender her," shouted a dozen 
voices. 

" Hurrah for the Union, and down with all traitors," 
sahl another. 

This was succeeded by a suppressed shout. 

Darcy raised his hand. " Silence, men," he cried, 
u and hear me." Instantly there was a dead silence ; the 
most ardent among them were willing to hear what he 
had to say. 

"Men," he commenced, "yon know doubtless as well 
as I do what has happened. The United States' frigate 
Wabash is alongside of us, at scarcely fifty yards' dis- 
tance." 

" Yes, yes, we know it ; surrender, and let us come on 
deck quietly," cried several. 

A contemptuous smile played on the young officer's 
pale features. 

" Surrender," he cried scornfully c , " I swear to you 
men by all my hopes of Heaven, that sooner than sur- 
render, the Spitfire shall be blown into a thousand frag- 
ments, for I will fire the magazine. Do not imagine, 
however, that I should do this except in the last extre- 
mitv, for I value my life as highly as any man, although 
I value my honour higher." 

" Pretty honour, to turn traitor to the flag you were 
bred and born under." 

"Traitor — no — never. I never was, never could be 
a traitor," cried Darcy, passionately ; "rebel I may be, 
I am, and I will be, until the Confederate States have 
achieved their independence, but not a traitor. That, 
however, men, is not the point in question. What I 
wish you to understand is this. We intend to fight the 



i. feaefttl struggle. 61 

sloop to the very last gasp, and the very last man if we 
must. But I would willingly spare the carnage which 
must ensue. Consider the havoc that will be made among 
you down here, penned up like sheep for slaughter, for 
you must remember that the round shot and grape of the 
W abash will do as fearful execution and more among you 
than among us, for we are not so closely crowded to- 
gether. I wish to avoid this, and now offer you a fair 
chauce. The long boat has been got out, and is now 
round at the port-gangway. It will take you all. AYe 
will allow you to go in peace ; once in the boat all of 
you, we will cast off the painter and take our chance; 
you can then go on board the Wabash and report, if you 
please, that the Spitfire has been seized by the rebels, 
and is now a rebel steamer. Then the Wabash can give 
chase if her captain chooses. He, no doubt, in these 
stormy times, will be only too glad of having some hun- 
dred good seamen on his books, and you will exchange a 
prison under the Stars and Bars for comfort under the 
Stars and Stripes. Now, my men, what say you ? there 
is no time to be lost, but bear these, my last words, in 
mind— when I leave here I go to lay a train to the 
powder magazine, and if we fight and are worsted, I 
will blow the sloop, you, and ourselves all to eternity 
together." 

AVith these words Darcy turned, and made his way 
back to the fore-hatch. He had his foot on the ladder 
and was about ascending, when a tall Yankee behind, 
who had heard his last words, shouted, — 

" Then you shall never leave here till you go on board 
the AVabash as a prisoner." 

At the same moment he dashed away the ladder, and 
made a blow at Darcy with a handspike. The blow took 
effect on the young officer's shoulder, and felled him to 
the ground. 

Not much hurt, however, he was up in an instant. 

'• Quick, Darcy, quick," shouted his friends above, who 

had gathered around the hatch in fear for his safety, and 

had heard and seen all, <: jump for the combings of the 

.1 ue time a dozen pair of hands were 



62 TIIE BLACK ANGEL. 

extended down the fore-hold to assist him, could he but 
jump high enough to reach them. 

Darcy, collecting all his strength, gave a leap, which 
fortunately enabled him to get a hold on the combings 
of the hatch. 

The man who had knocked him down with the hand- 
spike now raised it to repeat the blow; had he done so 
it must have proved fatal, as. at the very least, if it did 
not descend on his head and kill him outright, it would 
him to relinquish his hold and fall back. Before, 
ver f the blow could be. delivered, one of Darcy's 
friends, levelling a pistol, fired, and the ball, striking the 
Yankee lull in the chest, passed right through his body, 
wounding the man behind him. A dozen pair of hands 
grasped the young captain, and the next instant he was 
safe on deck. 

This first pistol shot, however, was the signal for a 
general rising among the captives down the fore-hold. 

On seeing the big Yankee sailor fall weltering in his 
blood, a general rush was made for the hatch. The 
ladder was raised and replaced, and arming themselves 
with whatever came to hand, they began pouring up with 
loud and threatening shouts. The first half-dozen or so 
were knocked on the head, and sent tumbling down by 
the defenders of the hatch ; but regardless of this, others, 
urged on from behind, kept filling their places. 

" Stand to the guns ! " shouted the captain ; " ready 
with the carronades, and fire when I give the word." 

A desperate resistance was made by Darcy and his 
friends to the passage of the Yankees on deck. Laying 
about right and left with their cutlasses, many a brave 
fellow was tumbled down the hatch almost as soon as he 
reached the deck. Still, pressed on by those behind, and 
encouraged by their wild shouts, a constant succession 
kept mounting the ladder, till at last a footing was 
gained on the deck. Some eight or ten had made good 
their passage, and stood together defending themselves 
as best they could against Darcv and his friends, win 
all their efforts ara:'n to force them down the 
hold. 



A FEARFUL STEUGCLE. 63 

This would have been accomplished easily enough, 
had it not been for the numbers who still kept forcing 
their way up, and blocking the way. 

These latter kept our friends' hands full ; nor could they, 
with all their efforts, prevent a part of them from gain- 
ing the deck, and joiniug their friends. 

The situation had now become critical. Hitherto, by 
Darcy's orders, neither the carronades nor, iudeed, with 
the one exception, pistols were used. Now each moment 
added to the strength of the Yankees who had gamed 
the deck. Some of them had found arms below, while 
others had snatched cutlasses from their opponents. 
Already they were in possession of the fore-part of the 
hatch, and, still keeping their communication open with 
the ladder, so that their friends below might join them, 
they began to range themselves in a body about the 
foremast. 

There were now quite twenty on deck, and every mo- 
ment added to their number. As the Yankees swarmed 
up from below, cutlasses and handspikes descended on 
their heads aiid bodies, in some instances causing them 
to fall back. But in the great majority of cases, even 
when wounded, they were forced onwards by the pres- 
sure from below, and gained the deck wounded and 
bleeding, but burning with rage. 

The critical moment had come. 

Darcy Leigh had hitherto forbore to use the car- 
ronades. Now, however, it must be done, or they 
would inevitably fall into the enemy's hands, who 
had made good their footing on the deck. Some of 
them, too, jumped on the bulwarks and in the rig» 
ging, and commenced shouting and signalling to the 
"Wabash. 

"We have already stated that the carronades were 
placed on each side of the hatch, with their muzzles 
pointing down. But the Yankees had already posses- 
sion of all the fore part of the hatch, and encouraged by 
success, now attacked the men in charge of the guns 
with cutlasses, of which they had found a plentiful 
supply in the fore part of the chip. 



64 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

JSTo time was to be lost. Nearly forty men Lad now 
gained the deck ; the other sixty would soon follow, 
if* they were not decisively checked. The carronades 
were in danger, several of their defenders having been 
wounded. 

Darcy jumped on a gun and surveyed the scene. 

Pale, stern, and determined, he shouted, " Heady with 
the carronades ? " 

"All ready, sir," answered one of the gunners, ward- 
ing oif a cutlass cut from one of the Yankees. 

For one moment the young captain paused ; he 
thought of the horrid carnage that must ensue, and 
hated to give the order. He remembered that the men 
who, if he said the Avords, would the next moment have 
the horrid grapeshot tearing through their crowded 
ranks, were his countrymen, his shipmates ; they had 
served under the same nag for years, and many of them 
were personally known to him. 

He thought of this, and hesitated. 

But then, he thought again of the brave men who had 
cast in their lot with him. He remembered that were 
they captured, they as well as he would be certainly shot 
or hanged. 

The next moment he saw a dear friend and brother 
officer, Lieutenant Hamblin, struck down by a blow 
from a cutlass. 

He lay where he fell, so Darcy knew that he was 
either dead or desperately wounded. 

" On their heads be it," muttered Darcy, pale as 
death, with the perspiration breaking forth on his fore- 
head. " Eeady with the carronades ! " 

" All ready, sir." 

One more second he hesitated. 

" "Why don't you send your boat on board ? " shouted 
a voice from the Wabash impatiently ; " what's the 
matter on board you ? " 

" Fire ! " shouted Darcy, without replying. 

Bang ! rush ! crash ! Bang ! rush ! crash ! The car- 
ronades were fired in rapid succession. 

First came the roar of the discharge, then the hurtling 



A FEARFUL STRUGGLE. 



65 



rush of the iron hail, and the crashing and splintering of 
timber. 

Then succeeded the most dreadful sound of all — the 
shrieks and cries of the dying and wounded wretches 
below. 

Once again was heard the loud report, followed by the 
rush cf the grape, the splintering of timber, and the 
terrible groans and cries of the wounded. 

The carnage below was fearful— some fifty or sixty 
men were massed together right under the muzzles of 
the pieces. At the first discharge a great number were 
mown down, for the most part horribly mutilated by the 
grapeshot. At the second, as many more shared the 
fate of their comrades ; and of all the sixty men who a 
few seconds before were alive and well in the forehold, 
there remained scarcely twenty — the rest were killed or 
wounded by the murderous discharge of grape. 

" Lay aft, every man of you," shouted Darcy ; " lay 
aft there— leave the guns— never mind them." 

He himself set the example, and hastened aft behind 
a barricade of water-barrels, hen-coops, &c, which he 
had caused to be erected across the deck abreast of the 
mainmast. The men at the word of command hastily 
left the forehold and the now useless carronacles, and 
hastened to place themselves behind the barricade. 

Then they armed themselves with ship's rifles, and 
commenced firing into the Yankees forward; for their 
blood was now up, and they thought no more regret- 
fully of old days, or of their shipmates, whom they were 
now slaughtering. 

Meanwhile, immediately after the terrible discharges 
of grape among them, the survivors down the forehold 
rushed on deck, horrified at the dreadful scene below 
and most of tbem spattered with the blood and brains 
of their companions. 

It was indeed a horrible sight. 

Below, in the forehold, lay some forty dead, wounded, 
end mangled men. Their cries and groans filled the 
place, and issued with horrid distinctness up the fore- 
Id. The deck below was slippery with blood — the 

v 



60 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

very beams and bulkheads were spattered with gore; 
torn and splintered in every direction by the rushing 
grapcshot. 

Horribly grotesque, too, were the survivors of that 
slaughter; their white "jumpers," or jackets, and 
trousers were all smeared with the blood which had 
spattered around, while in many cases their features 
were utterly unrecognisable, by reason of the crimson 
splashes which covered them. 

There were still between sixty and seventy — the sur- 
vivors of those below when the carronades were fired and 
those who had previously gained the upper deck. Al- 
though they had no firearms, and but for the presence of 
the frigate could easily have been overpowered, yet, aa 
circumstances were, they were extremely dangerous, for 
it would be impossible to fight the guns with some sixty 
or seventy enemies at large on the deck. 

Some of the Yankees now jumped into the rigging,- 
and commenced signalling and shouting to the "Wabash. 
" ]?ire into her aft ! " shouted one who seemed to take 
the lead, " the sloop's been seized by rebels — fire into 
her!" 

But the "Wabash was just at such a distance that the 
unaided voice could not be heard. 

Darcy Leigh smiled scornfully, and seizing a speaking- 
trumpet, he jumped on a gun and hailed the "Wabash. 

""Wabash, ahoy!" 

"Hillo." 

u My men are in a state of mutiny. Fire into the- 
fore part of the sloop with grape or musketry ! " 

No answer. 

Darcy was in doubt for some moments whether his 
move was successful, and the officers of the "Wabash still 
in ignorance of their real character, or whether they were 
discovered. 

Soon, however, his doubts were dispelled, for a party 
of marines appeared on the forecastle of the "Wabash, 
and commenced a rapid irregular fire on the Yankees 
who were grouped forward on board the Spitfire. At 
the same time a brisk fire was kept up from behind tho 



L TEARFUL STHTTGQLE. 67 

barricade, so that between the two, the Yankees were 
being helplessly slaughtered. 

The bullets whistled among them, and they kept tail- 
ing one by one as man after man was hit. 

" Surrender L" shouted Darcy, "every man of you, or 
I'll fire into you again with grape." 

So saying, he pointed to two more carronades, whoso 
muzzles protruded from the barricades, completely com- 
manding all the fore-part of the deck, _ 

The Yankees who had jumped in the rigging in the 
vain hope of giving the alarm to the frigate, had now all 
got down, and were crouching under the bulwarks or 
behind anything they could discover for shelter from the 
bullets of both friends and foes. 

The Wabash and the Spitfire had now drifted by the 
force of wind or current, so as to be at a considerable 
distance apart. 

The captain of the Wabash shouted through his speak- 
ing-trumpet. 

" Steam up alongside of us, and I'll send a boarding 
party on board." 

" Aye, aye, sir," answered Darcy readily ; then turn- 
ing to his first lieutenant, he said, " They have not the 
least suspicion yet ; if we could only get the rest of these 
fellows in the longboat. Cease firing," he said to the 
men behind the barricade, who still kept blazing away 
wherever they saw an enemy's head or body. " Cease 
firing ; we will give them another chance. If they 
refuse it, their blood be on their own heads." 

" Stand by the carronades again ; fire when I give the 
word, and then all of you charge forward and drive them 
overboard with cutlass and pistol.*' 
Darcy leaped on top of the barricade. 
" Forward there," he shouted. 

The firing had now ceased, and one of the Yankees 
came out on the deck as spokesman. 

" You see, my lads, what you have brought on your- 
selves, by refusing the offer I made you. One half of 
your number are weltering in their blood— they have 
perished miserably and uselessly— I now renew the offer 



GS THE EE.VCK A>"GEL. 

I made you before. The longboat is at the port gang- 
way—all who choose can get in it, and go on board the 
frigate, or wherever you please. Or, if you don't choose 
to do that, you can go down the forehold again, leaving all 
your arms on deck. If you do not accept either of these 
alternatives, I shall fire into you again, and kill or drive 
you all overboard with sword, pistol, and cutlass.'* 

The man who had come forward retired to consult his 
comrades. 

Meanwhile, Darcy gave the order down the engine- 
room. 

" Easy ahead," for he feared they might suspect some- 
thing on board the Wabash, did he take no notice of 
her captain's order to come alongside. 

The screw slowly revolved, and the Spitfire forged 
ahead. Several of the Yankees now came forward, and 
declared their willingness to go in the longboat. Darcy 
at once gave them permission to do so, and cast her off 
whenever they chose. The men took the message to 
the rest, who were still hiding from the bullets which 
they expected every moment to hear whistling about 
their ears. Sullenly and gloomily they came forth, and 
passing round to the port side got into the longboat. 

Resistance, or any attempt at treachery, was hopeless, 
for the whole length oi the deck on each side was com- 
manded by the carronades aft, and at least twenty rifles 
protruded from the barricade, in case of an attempt. 

As soon as the last man was in the boat, Darcy gave 
the woi d, — 

" Cast off the painter." 

This done, the longboat was adrift, and they were 
freed from their dangerous prisoners. 

" Go ahead, full speed," was the next order. 

The great engines groaned and crashed. The screw 
tore through the water, making the water boil and foam 
furiously at her stern, and the Spitfire dashed ahead. 

The moment that the longboat was clear of the ship 
they got the oars out and pulled for the "Wabash, giving 
a loud shout, and pointing to the Spitfire in order to call 
the attention of the officers of the former. 



C9 



CHAPTER XII. 

WIIAT TIIET THOUGHT OF TUE TIGHT OS BOARD TUB 
WABASH. 

On first hailing the Spitfire, aud receiving the reply 
neither the captain nor officers had the least suspicion 
that there was anything wrong. 

They waited, accordingly, until a boat should be sent 
on board. 

M They're rather slow about it, Mr. Toralins," said 
Captain Peabody to his lieutenant ; " I heard, too, that 
the Spitfire had the smartest men and the smartest 
officers of any sloop in the service." 

" Yes," replied the lieutenant, " I sailed with Captain 
Squails some five years ago, and certainly then there was 
nothing to find fault with in smartness on board of his 
ship. AVe were on the Cuba station then, and I re- 
member when in Havannah that we used to send top- 
gallant and top-sail yards down in some five or six 
minutes' less time than either the English or French men 
of war in the harbour." 

" She's a fast boat, the Spitfire, ain't she ?" asked the 
captain. 

" Past i they say ^h? steams a knot an hour more than 
any other in the navy." 

•' By Jove ! " said the captain, laughing, " she'd be 
just the thing for the rebels. If they only had her or 
any like her, couldn't they play the deuce with our com- 
merce ? " 

" Well, there's not much likelihood, that's one conso- 
lation ; for they have only about half-a-dozen vessels 
afloat, and those very old tubs, and not at all likely to 
overhaul yon clipper-sloop." 

" Why what's going on on board her?" said the 
captain, taking up his telescope, and looking through it 
at the sloop. " There seems a great deal of confusion 
and bother, and her upper deck is quite crowded." 

He handed the glass to the lieutenant. 

The latter took a Ion:? look. 

o 



70 THE EEACK A^GEL. 

*' Why, as I live," he said, " they've got two of the ear- 
ronades forward, and an armed party guarding the fore- 
hatch. There's been a mutiny, a drunken row, or some- 
thing, I suppose, and Captain Squails thought it better 
to make all safe." 

" Tes," said the captain, taking another look at the 
glass, " there's been something unusual going on, that's 
certain. The officers seem to have formed a sort of 
barricade across the deck, so I suppose it was for the 
time something rather serious. By Jove! too, there's 
two of the carronades pointed forward from the barri- 
cade, and arms and ammunition lying all about the 
quarter-deck. There must have been a serious mutiny, 
but I suppose Captain Squails's prompt measures havo 
put it down." 

" Yes, if it had not been so," replied the lieutenant, 
"they would have asked for aid when we hailed them. 
Doubtless the mutineers are prisoners down the forehold, 
and the carronades and guard are to keep them in awe." 

" Do you think I had better ^ni a score or so of 
marines, and some blue-jackets oi DJird, and offer them 
to Captain Squails in case he needs assistance ? " 

"' No, I think not ; Captain Squails is a good officer ; 
he knows what he is doing, and would not like to be in- 
terfered with. Depend upon it, if he wanted assistance 
he'd ask for it." 

" I think you are right , . * . ; "We shall have their 
boat on board directly, and learn all about it." 

" Hallo, what's that ? " suddenly cried the captain. 
tl It's a pistol shot, by jingo ! '' 

This was the shot which killed the big sailor, who 
was about again to strike Darcy with the handspike. 

Doth the captain and lieutenant of the Wabash leaped 
to their feet, and gazed anxiously at the Spitfire. 

They saw the rush of the supposed mutineers up the 
fore-hatch — the efforts ot the other party to keep them 
down — tliey could distinctly hear the shouts of the com- 
batants, and the clash of the cutlasses. 

The captain of the Yv abash was in a great state of 
excitement. 



FIGIIT ON BOAED THE WABASII. 71 

u G-et the marines under arms on the main-deck," ne 
said, l: and load and run out the big guns." 

" We can't fire, sir," said the lieutenant, " we should 
knock the sloop to pieces, and kill friends as well as the 
mutineers. We had better wait a few minutes and see 
the result. I feel sure that Captain Squails has taken 
sufficient precautions to discomfit them, otherwise ho 
would have asked for aid." 

" Well, perhaps you are right," said the captain. "At 
all events, get the marines under arms, and boarding 
parties in readiness. If the worst comes to the worst, 
we can run the frigate alongside, and rescue her from 
the mutineers by boarding her." 

The lieutenant left to execute the orders, and Captain 
Peabody remained, anxiously watching the result of the 
fierce conflict going on. 

" By Jove ! " he cried to the lieutenant, who had 
now returned, "the mutineers seem to be getting the 
best of it. They are forcing their way up in num- 
bers. The officers and the loyal crew seem to be driven 
back." 

Snatching up the speaking trumpet, he hailed the Spit- 
fire. 

" Why don't you send your boat on board ? What's 
the matter on board you ? " 

Scarcely were the words out of his mouth than ho 
heard the report of the carronades in quick succession. 
There was a moment's silence, and then there swelled 
upon the air the fearful shrieks and groans of the 
wounded and dying. 

" G-ood God ! " exclaimed the captain, " there must be 
an awful slaughter going on. That discharge must have 
taken terrible effect, to judge by the cries of the wounded 
men." 

" I thought I was right," said the lieutenant, some- 
what exultingly. " I thought Captain Squails had made 
his preparations, and that he had a pill in store for 
these mutineers. He's spared them as long as he could ; 
but lie's a man who once roused will show no mercy." 

Then the crew of the Wabash saw tbe officers and 



72 THE BIACK ANGEL. 

those of tlie men whom they supposed to be loyal run 
alt, and intrench themselves behind the barricade. Next 
they saw the survivors rush up from the fore-hatch 
covered witli blood, and join their comrades. 

" It must have been quite a serious mutiny," said the 
captain. " Why there must be fifty or sixty mutineers 
forward, and God knows how many perished from the 
fire of the guns just now." 

Then they saw some of the mutineers leap in the 
rigging, and heard voices shouting something, the sense 
of which they could not catch. 

Next moment they heard Darcy Leigh through the 
speaking trumpet, requesting them to fire into the fore 
part of the Spitfire. 

The marines were all under arms. The captain gave 
orders for them to station themselves on the fore-castle 
and open fire. Their fire was followed by a spattering 
discharge from behind the barricade on board the sloop, 
and soon not a man was to be seen forward. 

The supposed mutineers had fled for shelter from the 
bullets of friends and foes. JN"ext, the firing on the sloop 
having ceased, they saw an officer leap up on the barri- 
cade, and knew by his gestures, although they could not 
hear him, that he was addressing the men forward. They 
saw one of the number come forward as spokesman, listen 
to what the officer said, and then return, as if to consult 
his companions. 

A few moments later a strange commotion was ob- 
served on board the sloop, and the mutineers seemed to 
be crowding round to the larboard side, where they dis- 
appeared one by one. 

" I wonder what's up now," said the captain. 

The next moment they see the sloop move slowly 
ahead, and the longboat appears under her stern. In a 
very short space of time the Spitfire is dashing through 
the waves under a full head of steam. The group of 
officers on her quarter deck watch for the moment when 
the longboat should reach the AVabash, and the true 
nature of the vessel become known. 

" I say, Darcy," said one to the young captain, " won't 



5TTGTTT OS BOARD ^HE WABAS3. ?3 

they be taken aback, when they hear on board the "Wa- 
bash what a prize they have let slip ?" 
Darcy Leigh smiled triumphantly. 
" Stand by the signal halyards, one of yon, and be 
ready to haul down the Yankee flag and hoist the Stars 
and Bars." A seaman hastened to obey, and all again 
turned their attention to the Wabash. They saw the 
boat pass under her stern and disappear. 

They knew that she was alongside, and next moment 
they heard a shout on board the frigate and saw a hurry- 
ing to and fro on her decks, which told them that the 
real character of the Spitfire was now known. 

"Down with the Stars and Stripes," cried Darcy 
Leigh, " and up with the other." 

Is T cxt moment the Union flag came down, and tj;e 
audacious ensign of treason aud rebellion floated in its 
place. A shout of rage from the crew of the baffled 
"Wabash, was answered by a shout of defiance from the 
Spitfire, Darcy himself waving his cap and leading the 
cheer. 

The Wabash was at this time with her stern towards 
them, so that, until she was brought round, she could 
neither fire at them nor give chase. But they perceived 
that she was now under full steam, and was hastening to 
wear round. This, however, was an operation which 
took several minutes, and by the time she had her broad- 
side to bear they were more than a mile apart. 

jSo sooner was the W r abash fairly broadside than she 
delivered her fire at the flying sloop. The roar of the 
guns was succeeded by the rush and howl of the shot 
as it tore through the rigging overhead, doing sore 
damage. 

" Too high," cried Darcy Leigh, joyfully, "and we shall 
be pretty well out of range before she can bring her other 
broadside to bear on us." 

However, the Wabash did not attempt it, but as scon 
as her head was brought to bear on the Spitfire, she gave 
chase under full steam, firing at the same time her bow 
gun. This latter was a large Dahlgren gun, throwing a 
hollow shell of great weight. 



74 TIIE BLACK A^OEL. 

The first shot from this roared through the air high 
over head. Then after a minute or so came another. 
This last struck the sea about a quarter of a mile astern 
of the Spitfire, aud after splashing and ricochetting seve- 
ral times, it plunged into the water, about twenty yards 
on the starboard quarter. 

This was getting serious. It was evident that they 
would soon get the correct range, and if not by that time 
at a safe distance, the big Dahlgren shells would create 
fearful havoc. 

" Fire up, down the stoke hole," shouted one of the 
rebel officers ; " fat on the fire, and fasten the valve down 
if she wastes steam." This was done, and the Spitfire 
tore ahead at increased speed. 

The next shot from the "Wabash plunged into the water 
Billy a few feet from her stern, sending the spray over 
the group of officers on the quarter deck. It was evident 
that they had got the range, and although in another 
quarter of an hour they would be in comparative safety, 
still in that time a chance shot might cripple them. 

Again the big bow gun sounded forth from the pur- 
suing frigate ; this time, however, the shell fell further 
astern. 

"Bravo!" cried Darcy, joyfully, "we are getting out 
of range." 

The next moment, however, another shell came howling 
through the air, and plunged into the fore part of the 
vessel, killing several men, and bursting close to the 
foremast. 

The terrible explosion of this big shell was followed 
by dense volumes of smoke, and sheets of flame. " Fire !" 
was now the cry. The sloop was on fire. 

Fortunately the hose was attached in readiness to the 
auxiliary engine, and steam being turned on, a torrent of 
water was poured down the fore-hatch tc the scat of the 
fire. 

Meantime, while the crew are combating with this 
dreadful enemy,- shot after shot came roaring through 
the air, now plunging into the water astern, now tearing 
through the rijrqins: overhead.. 



FIU3IT OS BOAItl) THE WABAStl. ?5 

Darcy Leigh looted anxious. Another successful slmt 
wouiu m tainiy be most disastrous-might be fata L Wg 
nil their exertions it waa with the greates ^^nlty 
they could keep the fire under. In spite of the tor- 
rents o " wate/ thrown by the hose, the flames stall 
roared and crackled, and the smoke ascended in dense 

V °Ten e minutes' hard work, however, produced some 
effect, and the flames decreased. One more shot i*m* 
the fugitive ship, but fortunately, instead of bursting , on 
deck, ft passed right through the bows, exploding harm- 

leS Se h by S minnte the distance between the two ves- 
sels incrLe'd, and the firing from the Wabash beca me 
less and less accurate, the shots , sometimes Ming ne^y 
a quarter of a mile astern, and others plunging haim- 
kX into the sea, on the starboard or larboard side. 
In &-e minutes more they ceased to fear the shells from 
[he frigate, as every one" fired fell further and further 

" The' fire, too, thanks to the unflagging exertions of 
the officers and crew, was finally got under and tic 
Spitfire dashed ahead in a fair way to make good her 

° S TheVabash was now more than two miles astern, and 
was rapidly losing ground. Still, "a stern chase is a 
long chase!" andVwould be many hours before they 
could distance their pursuer. 

Unfortunately, too, the bottom of the Spitfire was 
very foul; had it been clean, she would have steamed 
at least a knot an hour faster. It was now nearly nine 
o'clock in the forenoon, and they could not hope to get 
out of sight of their pursuer before four or five in toe 

Tut g now that they were fairly out of range, Darey 
Leigh called a council of war to decide on their course of 



Oid'ers were riven to attend to the wounded and dying, 
of whom nSn/ were still in the forehold, and to wash 
down the decks, which were horribly slippery with blood, 



76 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

also to sew up the dead in sailcloth and commit them to 
the deep. 

The Spitfire was now steering S.E., a course which 
would take her clear out into the Atlantic. The wind, 
which at first blew a moderate breeze from the NX.E., 
was rapidly freshening; the sea, too, was rising, while 
the fall of the mercury in the barometer, and the heavy 
threatening banks of clouds to windward, betokened an 
approaching gale. 

In anticipation of the approaching storm, the royal 
and top-gallant yards were sent down on deck, the big 
guns were securely lashed, the ballast examined to see 
there was no danger of its shifting, and all was made 
snug. 

One of the younger officers remained on deck for this 
purpose, while Darcy Leigh, Wharncliffe, and the others 
descended into the ei'.bin to hold a council. 

A chart was spread out on the table before them, and 
her present position was pricked off according to the 
dead reckoning. Darcy Leigh was at the head of the 
table, on his right was Lieut. Wharncliffe, and the others 
stood or sat about as they pleased. 

Alter consulting the chart for some time, and calcu- 
lating by the aid of the entries in the log-book the course 
and distance made, Darcy Leigh spoke — 

" It now becomes a question, gentlemen, as to our im- 
mediate course of action. At present we are steaming 
S.E., which will take us clear out to sea. "We are, 
I calculate, in lat. 39 deg. N., long, about 71 deg. 10 
miu. W By continuing our present course we shall run 
right out into the Atlantic, crossing the gulf-stream." 

" The question is, whether that course is advisable r" 

" Why not run right for Charleston harbour and 
make a dash in ?" suggested Wharncliffe. 

" Yes/' said another ; " we have been so far successful, 
why should we not make a dash for it r" 

"Why?" said Darcy, "because they will be on the 
look out for us ; the offing will swarm with cruisers, and 
we should, to a certainty, be captured did we attempt it 
now. JN"o, gentlemen, I am as willing as any ot'you for 



FIC1IT ON EOAED THE WAEASII. 77 

a bold stroke when it is necessary, and there 13 a fair 
chance of success ; but in this case I see only certain 
failure, and I strongly protest against it." 

"What then do you propose?" asked one; "let us 
hear your plan ; we must all acknowledge that hitherto 
your arrangements have been admirable." 

Darcy mused for a minute in silence before he an- 
Bwered. 

" vVe are now, as I said before, steering S.E. I pro- 
pose that we keep on that course till evening, and then 
alter it to S. by E. "We are short of coal, and must re- 
serve some to run in ; therefore I propose that, as by the 
evening we shall, if all goes well, have run out of sight 
of the frigate, we let the tires down, hoist up the screw 
and set sail, steering S. to E., or SS.E. for five, six, or 
seven days. If the wind holds in its present quarter, by 
the fourth day from this we shall be in about lat. 33 deg. 
N., nearly the latitude of Charleston, and in loug. 70 
deg. W., or thereabouts. Charleston is in west long. 80 
deg. This would give us a course and distance a little 
over 500 miles due west. 

" All being in readiness, we might run down these 500 
miles of lougitude in two days and a half. By that time 
it is probable that the vigilance of the United States' 
cruisers will have somewhat relaxed, as it will be imagined, 
from our non-appearance, that we have made for some 
other port. "We must so arrange as to make the light 
during the night, and watch an opportunity to run in. 
If we pass through the blockading squadron unseen, well 
and good. If, however, we are discovered, and cannot 
succeed in again deceiving them, we must make a run- 
ning fight of it, and get in as best we can. The Spitfire 
ic very fast, and as we shall have a full head of steam, 
we shall probably succeed, although we may be roughly 
handled in running the gauntlet. That is my plan x gen- 
tlemen, unless the chapter of accidents supplies us' with 
a better." 

Darcy Leigh then resumed his seat, and waited for the 
opinions of the other officers. After some discussion 
an& deliberation, his plan was unanimously adopted. 



78 THE BLACK AN GEL. 

Then definite appointments were made of lieutenants, 
mates, and subordinate officers. 

Darcy Leigh was unanimously confirmed as captain, 
"Wharnclifie was first lieutenant, George and Saxon Gain- 
ford, brothers, respectively second and third lieutenants, 
Julien de Brissa, a New Orleans French Creole, sailing 
master, and Edward Carew, captain of marines ; this last 
post was somewhat of a sinecure, for there was not a 
marine on board. It was not conferred without a rea- 
son, however ; for Darcy Leigh at once decided on train- 
ing some of the sailor3 to act in concert and with disci- 
pline till such time as they could obtain substitutes. 
Carew had been educated at West Point Academy, and 
had also been in command of marines, so that he was 
well fitted for the post. The other officers were all 
ranked as supernumerary lieutenants with equal rank. 

The captain and officers then went on deck. The order 
was given to beat to quarters, and the men were sum- 
moned aft on the quarter-deck. 

A list of their names was taken, and then the muster 
roll was called over. It showed a crew of eighty seamen, 
all of whom could be depended on. Besides these, there 
were about twenty firemen and stokers, and about twenty 
others whose good faith in the rebel cause could not be 
depended upon. 

As each man's name was called, he was asked if lie 
were willing to take the oath of allegiance to the 
Government of the Confederate States. With few ex- 
ceptions all assented to this without hesitation. 

" And now, my lads," said the captain, addressing 
them, " I have to inform you of the terms on which you 
will serve, subject to the approval of the Confederate 
Government, of which I think there can be no doubt. 
All prize money, or the money proceeding from the sale 
of prizes, will be distributed in the following propor- 
tions : — one-third will go to the officers, the other two- 
thirds will be divided among the crew in equal portions. 
The articles of war will be the same as those of the 
United States' navy, with which you are all familiar. In 
case oi mutiny, insubordination, or refusal to obey orders, 



FIGHT CN BOAED THE WABASH. 79 

the penalty will be strictly, unmercifully enforced — that 
penalty will be death. Should any man leave the vessel 
for the purpose of deserting, he will, on re-capture, be 
condemned to death, which sentence will be immediately 
carried into execution. There will be few if any minor 
punishments, except such as disrating, pay stopping, &c. 
Flogging shall be unknown ; if a man commits an offence 
worthy of the lash, he is worthy of death : and under no 
circumstances shall flogging be resorted to while I am 
in command. Although this code may seem somewhat 
severe, it is necessary, for the safety of all, that the 
slightest attempt at mutiny or treachery be at once 
crushed. As you are aware, we are fighting with ropes 
round our necks ; therefore it is the more necessary that 
we, at the first attempt of the kind, purge ourselves at 
once and for ever of traitors." 

As the young captain spoke these last words, he fixed 
his eyes on those among the men whom he suspected of 
discontent and lukewarmness. All of these quailed be - 
fore that calm, cold glance, and saw that, should they 
be tempted to rebel, they might expect no mercy. 

" Then," said he, " as to petty officers, boatswain, 
boatswain's mates, quarter-masters, gunners, captains of 
the top, &c, I leave to yourselves the election, subject 
to the approval of myself and officers. And now, my 
lads, I have no more to say, so let us give three cheers 
for our new flag and our new country." 

A loud cheer broke from the sturdy sailors. " One 
cheer more for Captain Darcy Leigh," shouted one of 
them. And a hearty cheer rang out on board the Spitfire. 

Then all dispersed, the watches were set, and the 
watch below retired to their hammocks, while the 
watch on deck were employed in various ways about the 
hull and rigging. It was now past noon, and the 
Spitfire had so far distanced her pursuer that the latter 
was almost hull down. 

The wind now hauled a little more aft, so the top- 
sails, courses, jib, and spanker, were bent and set, and 
the vessel heeled over to the breeze, and dashed through 
the foaming waves with increased speed. 



80 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

A full head of steam was still kept on, and with the 
assistance of the sails, she was going a good fourteen 
knots. At this pace a very few hours would suffice to 
place her beyond danger of capture, and officers and 
crew congratulated themselves on the successful issue of 
the enterprise. 



CHAPTER XIII. 

" ALL IS LOST ! " 

Daucy Leigh is seated with his first lieutenant on a 
hencoop near the binnacle. He has a glass in his hand, 
with which he occasionally takes a look at the Wabash, 
whose white topsails and top-gallant sails are now dis- 
cernible astern. 

Occasionally he looked anxiously to windward, where 
heavy banks of clouds are still gathering. The scud flies 
rapidly overhead, and the mercury keeps still falling. 
It is evident there is to be a severe gale ; minute by 
minute the wind increases in violence ; gust after gust 
breaks on the vessel, causing her masts and yards to 
crack and groan, and heeling her over till her bulwarks 
are almost under water. 

The sky overhead gets blacker and more gloomy 
every minute, and the rising waves are tipped with 
foam, which give them, in the distance, the appearance 
of a cast sheet of snow. 

" How are the sails, Mr. Wharncliffe? It's the best 
suit that we have bent, is it not ?" 

" Yes, the sails will stand the hardest blow we are 
likely to have ; but the maintopmast is not to be de- 
pended on. It would be awkward for it to go by the 
board ; some of the rigging might foul the screw, and 
then, with the Wabash behind us, we should be in a 
pretty fix." 

Darcy Leigh, who was attentively watching the frigate 
astern, suddenly exclaimed, — " There goes her foretop- 
gallantmast, by Jove ! I thought she was carrying oil 
sail pretty stiffly for this breeze." 



"all is lost !" 81 

He handed the glass to "Wharncliffe. 

" No," said the latter, " the mast is safe enough ; it's 
the yards that have gone in the stays." 

" Take a reef in the topsails, Mr. Wharncliffe," said 
the captain, decisively ; " let them carry on sail, if they 
Vke. We can't afford to strain the sloop, and risk 
losing our masts." 

Before giving the order, Wharncliffe took another 
look at the frigate. " Why, may we never see Charles- 
ton," he said, t4 if they haven't sent another top-gallant 
yard aloft, and are setting the sail." 

" They are determined to crack on canvas, it seems. 
No matter ; let them take the sticks out of her if they 
choose, we'll have a reef in, and make all snug. Wharn- 
cliffe, send forward, and give the order." 

This being done, the ship's head was brought round 
more to windward. In the gloom of twilight the Wabash 
could just be distinguished astern. In half an hour's 
time darkness hid her from their sight, and the Spitfire 
laboured ahead in her new course. 

As night wore on, the wind rose, blowing sometimes 
in sudden and furious gusts, so as almost to lay her on 
her beam-ends. The barometer was steadily falling, 
and the sky gave every appearance of a hard and pro- 
longed gale. The wind howled, moaned, and shrieked 
among the cordage; the waves rushed and roared, as 
driven by the wind, they rose in vast mounds, and 
rolling on with great white crests, swept by in ceaseless 
array. 

At the first dawn of day Darcy came on deck, and 
surveyed the scene. It was, indeed, one of grandeur 
ind awe — one which the sailor often sees, but which 
never loses ought of its grandeur from familiarity. 

Although the young commander could not but be 
struck by the wild and terrific beauty of the storm, he 
did not waste time in idle gazing. He saw in a very 
few seconds that the worst had not yet come — that a 
terrible gale was pending. 

Accordingly he gave orders for the top gallant-masts 
to be sent down on deck, and the top-sails close-reefed. 



82 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

Tins was soon done, and the Spitfire now plunged on 
her way under three close-reefed topsails, reefed fore 
Bail, and fore topmast staysail. 

The wind howled and roared with increasing fury, 
and the great seas, which were rapidly rising, began to 
dash themselves over her and flood her decks. 

Darcy Leigh gave orders that everything on deck 
should be well secured — water casks, boats, and all other 
objects which might, by the violent pitching and rolling 
of the ship get adrift. The great guns, too, were se- 
cured by double lashings, and the state of the ballast in 
the hold inspected. 

Darcy gazed with some misgiving on the big guns on 
the main deck. The Spitfire was hardly sufficiently 
ballasted, and showed a slight tendency to be top-heavy. 

" Shouldn't wonder if we are obliged to throw some 
of the guns overboard before another day breaks," he 
muttered to himself; " the vessel strains and rolls fear- 
fully even now." 

And so in truth she did, her masts groaning and 
cracking, and the lee-bulwarks being quite submerged 
as she rolled over after the passage of each big sea. Still 
the gale kept increasing in fury. 

Presently, with a loud report, the foresail splits right 
across. For a minute there is heard the thrashing and 
flogging of the torn canvas, and then there remains 
nothing of the sail but the bolt-rope. 

The foretopmast-staysail quickly follows suit, and 
now the Spitfire is under her three close-reefed top- 
sails only. The sailors gaze over the weather bulwarks 
in face of the blinding spray, with serious and gloomy 
countenances. 

There is nothing encouraging in what they see ; the 
sky — the sea — all looks dark and threatening. The vessel, 
too, is labouring and rolling so fearfully, that it is with 
difficulty they can keep their feet. 

Darcy Leigh and "Wharnclifie are standing together, 
holding on by the mizzen-rigging. 

Darcy gazes anxiously at the canvas aloft, now 
strained to the utmost pitch. 



"all is lost!" 83 

" Something must go presently," he says to his lieu- 
tenant, " rope, canvas, or mast." 

" The rope and canvas are both new, and the masts 
are good. They'll stand a deal before they go yet." 

" Well, they must stand it," replied Darey, "for it 
would be ridiculous to attempt taking in sail while it 
blows such a hurricane. The men could not get aloft, 
let alone handle the sails." 

As Darcy expected, the gale increased in fury hour by 
hour, till it blew so tremendously hard as almost to lay 
the ship on her beam ends. "With her heavy top weight 
of guns this was most perilous ; a sudden gust might at 
any moment heel her right over beyond the power of 
recovery. The noise of the wind and waves was such 
that it was now impossible to hear one another's voices 
unless shouted in the ear. 

Suddenly a furious gust struck the vessel; with a 
terrible groaning and creaking she lurched over — over — 
over still she went, as if she were going to capsize. A 
cry of horror arose from the crew. 

Over she hesled under the tremendous pressure of the 
wind, till her lee bulwarks were right under water ; for 
a moment the wind lulled, and she righted slightly. 
Darcy hoped that the fury of the squall had passed ; 
he was mistaken, for once again it burst on the un- 
happy bark with increased rage, and again she heeled 
over, her timbers and masts groaning and creaking fear- 
fully. 

This time she went over till her lee yard-arms were 
in the water, and she lay right on her beam ends. 

To Darcy's dismay, too, ho discovered that the ballast, 
which was of gravel, had shifted. Their situation was 
now most critical; if she did not right, all would soon 
be over with them, for the water was pouring into her 
from a dozen different places. 

Presently the fury of the squall passed, and every- 
body looked anxiously for the ship to right herself. 
But no, she still lay helplessly on her beam ends. Each 
moment made her position "worse, for the water was 
pouring iu fast. Darcy gazed first at tho mizcn-mast, 

c2 



Si THE BLA.CE ANGEL. 

with all its belongings of yards, rigging, and sails, and 
then at the lee yard-arm buried in the water. 

"Standby to cut away the mizzen-mast!" And two 
men with axes jumped into the weather main chains. 

Darcy hesitated to give the word which" would send 
the beautiful tapering spar crashing into the sea ; but, 
glancing to windward, he there saw that another squall 
had gathered, and was coming down upon them. There 
was no time to be lost. 

" Cut away the mizzen-mast." 

Crash ! The two axes descended simultaneously, each 
on one of the strained lanyards of the shrouds. 

No sooner was the first lanyard severed, than the 
others were carried away one after another of their own 
accord ; and the mast itself, without requiring a blow, 
broke short off to the deck, and fell, with all its yards, 
sails, and rigging, into the sea to leeward. 

It took a few minutes to clear the ship of the wreck, 
by cutting away all the ropes which connected it. 

Then all watched anxiously for the ship to right her- 
self. 13ut, alas ! she did not. And now another squall 
burst on her with even greater fury than the last, bring- 
ing her still deeper in the water. 

Alarmed at the dangerous and critical position of the 
ship, Darcy Leigh gives the word to cut away the main- 
mast also. 

He himself seized an axe, and jumped into the main 
chains. A very few blows succeeded in sending the 
mainmast over the side to keep company with the mizzen- 
mast already gone. "When tne squall passed over, the 
Spitfire, with only her foremast standing, slowly began 
to right herself. 

Scarcely, however, had she begun to do so, when 
another and still more furious gust burst on the devoted 
ship, and once again she is on her beam- ends, this time 
heeling over far more than before. 

"The foremast— AVe must cut away the foremast," 
shouted Wharncliffe, in Darcy's ear. 

"]N"o, no; we must keep tha foremast at all hazards. 
it would be ruin to lose it — we shou'd be a helpless 



"all is lost!'* 85 

wreck. Let some of the guns be thrown overboard in- 
stead." 

Eight of the lee guns were soon thrown overboard. 
This produced the required effect, and when the squall 
passed over, the Spitfire slowly righted herself. 

They found on sounding the well, however, that she 
had four feet of water in her hold. This spoke suffi- 
ciently as to their danger, and convinced all that nothing 
but Darcy's prompt measures had saved the ship, at all 
events, for the time. And now all hands are put to the ' 
pumps, in order to free her from water. 

The storm had not yet reached its climax, and as 
evening approached the gusts increased both in frequency 
and fury, so that it was impossible for the men to stand 
at the pumps, and thus the water gained on them. Each 
time that the well was sounded there was found to be a 
rise of two or three inches. 

Grog was freely served out. Darcy, himself, and his 
officers, took their turns at the pumps, exciting the 
men by their example. The men worked furiously, as 
desperate men only can work. 

They knew that if once they let the water get the 
upper hand that all was lost, for as the water rose in the 
hold, of course the vessel sank and fresh leaks were 
exposed. Night closed in upon tbem, still pumping for 
dear life. 

Darcy determined to set an example, and resolutely 
took his spell at the pumps, working till he was ready to 
drop with fatigue. Then and then only he would give 
up, and fall completely exhausted to the deck. He would 
lie for a few minutes, then, taking a copious draught of 
rum, he would again take to the pumps. 

The men could not but admire the determination and 
pluck with which the young officer — so slight, so delicate- 
looking — took his share, aye, and more than his share of 
the work. 

" By thunder ! he's a plucky one, and no mistake," 
was the often muttered remark, as he would spring to 
his feet, and with encouraging shouts, join them in their 
dreary work. 



SO THE EL ACE ANGEL. 

If Darcy had before a hold on their feelings, he had 
now a hold on their hearts, for each hardy rugged seaman 
eaw what he did and loved him for it. 

Still the gale howled and roared in its fury, and still, 
in spite of all their efforts, the water gained on them, 
and the Spitfire sank deeper and deeper. 

The strength of the men was fast failing, a few hours 
more of such work and nature must give in. 

Suddenly Darcy gave the word, " Cease pumping." 

The men stopped in surprise. 

" Throw the guns overboard, every one," said Darcy ; 
" it is our last chance." 

In a very few minutes this was done, and the vessel 
greatly lightened. The top-weight being removed she 
strained and laboured far less, and consequently leaked 
less. 

Then priming the men well with grog, Darcy set them 
the example, and for an hour they continued at the 
pumps with tremendous energy. At the expiration of 
that time the well was sounded; all waited in breath- 
less anxiety for the result. 

A shout of joy rang forth from the nearly exhausted 
men when they heard the carpenter's report. In that 
last hour they had gained six inches. 

"Hurrah! my lads," said Darcy, "thanks to your 
strong arms and stout hearts, we have beaten the enemy ; 
we have gained on the water, and the storm has spent its 
fury." 

" Xo, no," shouted several, " thanks to you, captain ; 
but for you we should have been at the bottom before 
now." Then one of the sailors gave the word, " Three 
cheers for Darcy Leigh." 

A fresh allowance of grog was served out, and then, 
with renewed spirits and hopes, the pumps were once 
again manned. 

By dark the water in the hold was so far reduced a3 
to place the vessel beyond immediate danger. The 
pumps were kept going, but it was no longer necessary 
for all hands to work at them ; the watch was sufficient 
to keep order and gain on the water. 



"all is lost!" 87 

The gale blew very hard all day, bat towards evening 
it became evident that its force was spent. The baro- 
meter, too, began to rise slowly, and the sky did not 
look so threatening as on the previous day. 

Altogether the officers were warranted in thinking tbat 
the worst of the danger was over. About midnight sail 
was made on the only remaining mast — the foremast— -but 
with the close-reefed topsail only, she made but little 
headway. 

The night was very dark, and the wind still blew 
violently in fitful gusts. 

Darcy Leigh, who had been on deck for nearly forty 
hours, retired to his berth at midnight to snatch a little 
repose, for he was completely worn out by fatigue. 
During the night the watch were engaged in rigging a 
jury-mainmast at such times as they could be spared 
from the pumps. 

Towards morning the wind again freshened up, and 
Lieutenant "Wharncliffe, the officer in command, feared 
that the gale was about to recommence. 

Fortunately, however, it was but the last gust of the 
expiring storm, and by four o'clock in the morning it 
blew only a moderate gale. 

The- sea still ran high, and the sky was dark and over- 
cast. The weather was very thick and muggy, and no- 
thing could be seen beyond a distance of a few yards. 

And now another day begins to break, slowly reveal- 
ing the cold grey sky, the heavy mist, and the broad 
expanse of sea tumbling and rolling unceasingly. 

Wharncliffe, who has the watch, leaves the poop for a 
few minutes, and goes forward to the galley, in order to 
obtain a cup of coffee. He returns leisurely, and again 
ascends the poop. With a lazy yawn he is about to seat 
himself on a hen-coop, when his attention is suddenly 
attracted by a slight noise — the creaking- of a spar. 

He casts his eyes to windward, and a sight meets them 
which makes his heart stand still. 

In the grey light of the morning he sees to windward 
— quite close — just emerging from the gloom of the 
mist, a large ship. 



TIIE BLACK A^CEL. 

One glance is sufficient. She is so close that he can 
Bee the muzzles of her guns — it is the Wabash ! 

Wharncliffe remained for a moment or two paralysed 
—aghast with dismay. 

He rushed down the companion ladder and hurried 
to the cahin of Darey Leigh. 

The young officer slept a sweet calm sleep, after tho 
exertions of the last few days. 

Lieutenant Wharncliffe laid his hand on his shoulder. 

Instantly, Darcy, always a light sleeper, started to 
his feet. 

" What is it ?" he asked. " Is anything the matter ?" 

"All is lost! the Wabash is alongside !" 



CHAPTEE XIV. 

DEEP DESIGNS, 

In order that our story may be properly developed 
and understood, it is now necessary that we return to 
New York. 

Lupus Rock and Webster K. Gayle are in earnest 
conversation at the mansion of the latter. 

"It must be so, Lupus — I see no other way -for it. 
I shall run a great risk of losing the plantations by con- 
fiscation if this rebellion is not crushed at once, and 
certainly every day seems to give less hope of that. 
Each da} r some new State joins the cause of Secession, 
and the rebels get bolder and more defiant. Yes, cer- 
tainly, that is the best, the only plan. You must get to 
the South some way or another, and nominally, at least, 
join their cause. I will give you documents assigning 
the estates and plantations to you absolutely. Let me 
see, though, to make it legal there must be some con- 
siderations." 

Webster Gayle paused for some time, and then 
said — 

" I tell you how I will arrange it, Lupus. I shall 
have a deed of sale prepared, in which you are the buyer 
for the sum of seven hundred and fifty thousand dollar i, 



DEEP DESIGNS. C9 

We shall both sign it, and I will give yon a receipt for 
the money. Of course, you know, it is merely a matter 
of form ; for I do not believe you have seven hundred 
and fifty dollars, to say nothing of seven hundred 
and fifty thousand. Then you, having espoused the 
(Southern cause, not necessarily actively, you know, 
the estates will be safe, and, at the same time, I shall 
not be compromised. Then, when the war is over, 
you can hand me back the deed, and things will be as 
before." 

" And my reward for the risk, the imminent risk I 
run in this affair ? " asked Lupus, fixing his cold grey 
eyes on his uncle's face. 

" Ah, well — well— we'll talk about that another time." 

"^o,"said Lupus, decidedly ; " let us cometo some 
definite arrangement now. What about my suit to my 
cousin Stella ? " 

Webster Gayle moved uneasily in his chair. 

" Don't you think we had better leave that in abey- 
ance for some time ? Stella is proud and haughty, and 
were I to endeavour to force any one on her she would 
take an immediate aversion." 

K I don't agree with you, sir ; girls don't know their 
own minds. The girl likes me well enough ; and you 
know when I consented to be the scapegoat in that 
slaver affair you promised her to me. I claim the fulfil- 
ment of that promise." 

" But I cannot do impossibilities. If my daughter 
refuses to give you her hand I cannot force her." 

" Force her — no ; but means can be used to bring her 
to her senses — pressure can be put on in many ways. 
The girl is free ; I never heard of her being entangled 
with any one else." 

" No. I fancied at one time that she had a liking for 
that young rebel, Darcy Leigh ; but he had a bullet 
through his head the other day, during that audacious 
affair of tks Spitfire. Do you know, Lupus— I don't 
know whether you have noticed it — but 1 certainly 
fancy she has not been herself since. Bhe never men- 
tions his name, it is true, but there is something in her 



00 THE ELACK A^GEl«r 

manner, a restlessness in her eye, which I never ob- 
served befi 

" Well, it matters not now — the whelp's dead aud 
overboard. Dead men tell no tales, and certainly dead 
men can't spoil sport by proving successful rivals to the 
living, more especially when, as in this case, the person 
in question has the father's sanction, is related by blood, 
and is, at least, passably good-looking." 

There was something, inexpressibly self-sufficient, 
almost amounting to insolence, in the young man's 
tone to his uncle. It almost seemed as if Lupus Hock 
thought that "Webster Gayle was either partially or 
wholly in his power. 

Tb e New York merchant noticedit, and, colouring, said — 

" Lupus, you will oblige me by not speaking with such 
levity of my daughter." 

"Indeed, I beg the fair lady's pardon," said Lupus, 
with a half sneer ; " I am sure I had no intention of so 
doing — but here the lady comes." 

Stella Gayle and her sister Angela entered the room. 

" Good morning, fair cousins," said Lupus, rising and 
bowing obsequiously. "I trust, fair Stella, that you 
have not passed a bad night, though, by your pale 
face, I almost fear so. Surely the beautiful, proud, 
and fascinating Stella has no secret grief preying on 
her mind." 

" If I had, Mr. Eock," said Stella, colouring angrily, 
"I should not select you as my confidant." 

Lupus bowed in mock humility, and Webster Gayle, 
addressing his daughters, said — 

"Stella, Angela, it is necessary that we remove at 
once to "Washington. I shall be detained here for some 
days. You will proceed there at once under the escort 
of your cousin Lupus, and I will follow you in the 
course of a week at the latest." 

" But cannot we wait until you go, papa r " asked 
Angela. " Is it necessary that we should go on first 1 " 

" If it were not I should not desire you so to do. I have 
weighty reasons for sending you before me, into which I 
need not enter at present. Lupus," he said, to his 



BEEP DESIGNS. 01 

nephew, r 'I will now go and have the necessary docu- 
ments prepared at the lawyer's. I will leave you with 
your cousins. I suppose you arc quite prepared to start 
to-morrow ? " 

"To-day, if you like," was the ready reply. 

Webster Gayle then went out, leaving Lupus alone 
with the young ladies. There was a silence of some 
minutes. 

Stella had seated herself on a couch, and was playing 
nervously with the tassels of the cushions, evidently ill 
at ease. 

Angela was seated at the table, bending over a book 
of drawings, in which she was, or appeared to be, pro- 
foundly interested. Neither took the slightest notice of 
the presence of their cousin. 

Lupus glanced frowningly from one to the other. 
Of late — especially since the affair of the Spitfire— this 
silent system of warfare, this continued but quiet system 
of slights, had vexed and annoyed him at times almost 
beyond bearing. 

On the present occasion the desire to please his cousin 
struggled long with the desire to annoy and show his 
power. At last the latter won the day. 

" And what may be the subject of Miss Stella Gayle's 
deep reverie?" he said, with a slight smile. "Is her 
mind busy wdth affairs of state — is it our glorious Union 
which engrosses my fair cousin's thoughts — or is it 
the colour of the ribbon for her next new bonnet ? I 
need scarcely ask. At such a time the thoughts of so 
zealous a patriot are with her country. Is it not so, 
Stella?" 

" It were well, Mr. Rock, if all daughters, and sons 
also, of our country were as devoted to her interests as 
myself, or "— - 

" Or as me, you would say." 

"I have yet to learn," said Stella, in affected surprise, 
u that Mr. Lupus Bock is devoted to any interests but 
his own, or indeed to anybody or anything, with the ex- 
ception of the ' almighty dollar.' " 

"And Miss Stella G-ayle," interrupted Livpus, bowing. 



92 T1IE ELACK ANGEL. 

Stella was about to make a scornful reply, but at 
this moment her father again entered the room, and 
drawing Lupus Eock on one side, was soon in earnest 
conversation. 

" The sooner the better," said Webster Gayle ; " every 
hour's delay only increases the difficulty." 

"And the papers — the double set of papers ? Have- 
you them ready ? " 

"Webster Gayle glanced cautiously round to see that 
none overheard, and then producing a packet of papers, 
handed them to Lupus. 

" These are the papers," he said. " One set accredits 
yon to the rebel Government and generals as a staunch 
►Secessionist; the other does the same to the Federal 
Government and officers. You must use the greatest 
caution, for should these double sets of papers fall into 
either Federal or Confederate hands they would involve 
both of us in disgrace and ruin." 

" I have thought of that," replied Lupus Eock, pro- 
ducing from his pocket two small cabinets not unlike 
sniuT-boxes in appearance. 

" "What have you there ? " asked Webster Gayle, re- 
garding the small boxes curiously. 

Each of these small boxes was fitted with a false 
bottom, which Lupus Eock removed, and inserted one 
set of papers in each. 

The interior of the boxes were fitted with wheels and 
springs, in appearance not unlike those of a musical- 
box. 

Lupus, taking a small key from his pocket, proceeded 
to wind up these works. This done, he inserted a small 
iron tube, closed at each end, and placing it in a small 
groove, connected it with the machinery. 

"There," he said, "now I think I have made all 
safe." 

" How made all safe ? " said Webster Gayle, in sur- 
prise. " I do not see what extra safety this manoeuvre 
has given you. Surely, if you were seized as a suspected 
person, you do not imagine that the false bottom which 
conceals the papers would escape detection ? Xo, i* 



DEEP DESIGNS. 93 

would be at once aiawtcrou, and then your very life 
would be in danger." 

"Trust me," replied Lupus Rock, owning confidently, 
u I do not intend to be taken, and if lam, only one set 
of papers will be found upon me, and those which arc 
favourable to the party in whose hands I may be ; for 
observe the mechanism these tubes contain— the wheels 
and springs ? " 

"Yes, assuredly; they seem to me to be musical 
boxes, either out of repair, or purposely left imperfect." 

" They are something far more dangerous and deadly. 
You see these little tubes ? " he continued, placing his 
finger on one ; " well, each of these contains about an 
ounce of fulminating mercury, an explosive compound of 
great power. Should I be arrested, I merely produce 
one of these boxes — the one I wish to get rid of— and 
touching a spring, throw it from me as far as possible. 
The spring will set the clock-work in motion, and 
after the space of about half a minute, a small hammer 
will be liberated, which will explode the fulminating 
mercury in the tubes, and blow the whole affair to 
pieces. The explosion will be sufficient to destroy 
every vestige of the papers ; and if any person, seeing 
me throw the box from me, is foolish enough to pick 
it up, it will, in exploding, inflict desperate if not fatal 
injuries." 

Webster Gayle recoiled in terror from the little 
engines his nephew held. 

" For Heaven's sake, be careful ! " he cried, in alarm. 
tl Don't play with them— they may explode, and blow us 
all up." 

" Oh, there is no fear. I have so arranged them that 
they cannot explode unless I first touch the spring. 
And now I am ready to start when you choose." 

_ It was finally decided that Lupus should start with 
his two cousins by the first train of cars in the morning 
They would arrive at Baltimore late that night, where 
they would remain, and proceed on their journey to 
Washington early on the following morning. 

As soon as he had made all necessary arrangeme^N, 



0£ 'THE BLACK ANQEL. 

and received the final instructions of his uncle, Lupus 
B.ck left the Louse, aud proceeded to the St. Nicholas 
Hotel, in Broadway. 

Finding his way to the smoking-room, he seated him- 
self by the side of a man who appeared to be expecting 
him. 

" Well, sir," said this latter, " how is it— all right ? " 

u Yes — right — everything goes well — could not be 
better. We start for Baltimore and Washington to- 
morrow morning. You had better start at once, as it 
will not do for you to be seen with me." 

" Well, I'm ready at a moment's notice. To-night or 
to-morrow is all alike to Malpas Thong ; only look you 
here, Master Bock, I don't want no nonsense this time, 
for you know I've never been paid for that last affair of 
the slaver ; and if it had not been for my hard swearing, 
it would have cost you pretty dear, as yon well know." 

" Well, well," said Lupus Bock, impatiently, "you 
know that you have not yet done all the work, and you 
cannot expect to be paid beforehand." 

" That's all right enough, I daresay, but let's have a 
clear understanding, How much am I to have if we get 
this affair settled satisfactorily ? " 

" How much ? Ten thousand dollars." 

" Ten thousand dollars for an estate worth half-a- 
million. No, no, Master Bock, you must behave a little 
more liberally." 

" Why how much, in Heaven's name, does the man 
want ? " asked Lupus, angrily. 

11 How much ? Well, I'll tell you," said the other ; 
i: I want twenty thousand dollars the day you get the 
estate ; I want ten thousand more the day I put proofs 
in your hands that a certain lady is a slave." 

"Look here, Thong," interrupted Lupus, "I have 
heard so much talk of this proof of yours, and seen you 
do so little, that I begin to doubt your power to prove 
what you say. Now let us have no more nonsense. 
Can you, or can you not, prove that by the law of the 
United States the girl I mean is a slave 1 " 

''Certainly j her grandmother, though nearly white, 



DEEP DESIGNS. 95 

was a slave ; and I can prove it. That is simple enough 
—is it not?" 

" Yes, simple enough if it is true ; but you aru 
such an incorrigible ruffian and villain that there's no 
believing what you say." 

" I think, then, we're well met," replied the man, with 
a sneer. "I may be bad enough, or may be good 
enough, but, at all events, I ain't going to make my 
fortune by betraying and ruining my relations. Webster 
G-ayle is nothing to me, though he is your uncle. An 
affectionate nephew he's got, on my word, and yet you 
talk about my being a villain and a ruffian ; you, who 
are going to have your mother's brother thrown ioto 
prison, and take his property. Ah! bah! don't talk 
to me in that way any more ; we know each other too 
well." 

" I know," replied Lupus, passionately, " that I could 
hang you if I chose." 
The man turned white with passion at these words. 
" Hang me, could you ? and what of your own neck ? 
Don't you think you'd keep me company, because if you 
don't I do; and I well know that on the day that 
Malpas Thong swings, Lupus Rock will swing with him." 
" I know nothing of the sort. You have no proof, 
nothing but your word, and it is not likely that that 
would be taken before mine." 

"No proof, haven't I?" said the other ; "just stoop 
your head a little till I whisper a word or two in your 
ear." 

Lupu3 did so, and his companion muttered a few 
words in a low tone. 

Then he looked him in the face, and, with a smile of 
triumph, watched the expression of rage and fear which 
came over his handsome features. 

" No proof, eh ! what say you now, Master Rock ? 
You did not think that I had that little bit of informa- 
tion in the background, did you r " 

Lupus Rock, calling for a glass of brandy, affected 
to laugh it off, but it was apparent that he was ill at 
ease, 



96 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Come, come, Malpas, we don't want to quarrel. 
We can both do each other too much injury to he 
enemies." 

" Well, I don't know but what you're right," replied 
the other. " I don't want to quarrel, but I thought I 
would show you that I know too much for you to try 
any of your tricks on me." 

" Well, well, you go on to Baltimore ; I will meet you 
at the George Hotel on Thursday morning ; this is 
Tuesday evening, and you can be there some time to- 
morrow." 

c< All right ; and now what about money ? " 

li Money ! why I gave you two hundred dollars biA. 
yesterday." 

After some further conversation, Lupus Eock arose, 
and said to his companion, — 

" You fully understand how you are to proceed, 
Thong, in case any of the eventualities I spoke of were 
to happen. It is not probable, but nevertheless we will 
be prepared for all eventualities. iS'ow, you will start 
at once for Baltimore — you know when and where to 
meet me." 

So saying he left the room, followed by his worthy 
associate. 



CHAPTER XV. 

A PAIR OE VILLAINS. — THE PLOT THICKENS. 

They passed down the steps of the hotel together, 
when Lupus giving a slight nod hurried away, casting 
at the same time a glance around to make sure that he 
had not been observed in such questionable company as 
that of Malpas Thong. 

But it so happened that, at the very moment he was 
descending the steps of the hotel, a carriage passed, in 
which was a fair lady, who, by the sudden start she 
gave, appeared to recognise one or both of the two men. 

" Could that have been that villain Malpas Thong, the 
slave agent ; slave driver, slave hunter ? " the asked her- 



THE PLOT THICKENS. 07 

self. " I could almost swear to his figure and deport- 
ment, although I was unable to see his face. And if so, 
what business could Lupus Eock have with him? " 

These questions which the young lady asked herself, 
could not apparently be answered to her satisfaction, for 
she looked troubled and anxious. 

The young lady was Stella Grayle, who had taken ad- 
vantage of the fine afternoon to go out for a drive. 

In the evening, when, according to his wont, Lupus 
Rock ascended to the drawing-room, and commenced de- 
voting himself to the ladies, Stella suddenly said to her 
cousin — 

Mr. Eock, did I not see you in Broadway this after- 
noon, near the St. Nicholas Hotel ? " 

" Very probably," said Lupus carelessly. 

Stella was silent for a moment, and then fixing her 
eyes on his face, she said, — 

" I wonder what has become of that man, that slave 
agent, or whatever he was, who was formerly in papa's 
service in some capacity or other ? " 

" What man ? " replied Lupus. 

li Thong, I think his name was." 

Lupus Eock had great command of countenance, and 
his glance never quailed for an instant before the search- 
ing eyes of his cousin. 

"Eeally, Stella," he said, with a mocking laugh, " do 
you suppose that it is part of my business to know the 
whereabouts and the history, past and present, of all my 
uncle's discharged servants ? " 

Stella knew her cousin well, and could read even his 
well-dissembled thoughts better than he imagined. Never- 
theless, he had some suspicion that the question was not 
put to him without a purpose. 

"Ah," he said, "I wonder whether my fair cousin 
saw me speaking to him on the steps of the St. Nicho- 
las?" 

He shot an inquiring glance at her from his keen eyes, 
but could discover nothing from the calm, beautiful fea- 
tures of the young lady. 

Stella Grayle turned carelessly away. 



98 the black angel. 

"Ah," die said to herself, "it was then this man 
Thong with whom I saw him talking. Some villany or 
other is afloat, doubtless. I wonder whether he was dis- 
charged from my father's service in reality, or whether 
it was merely a blind. If he were really dismissed in 
disgrace, what should Lupus Rock, in whom my father 
reposes complete confidence, be doing with him ? And 
if he were not, why should the pretence have been made? 
It is a tangled skein, and I have a foreboding of evil 
from this man." 

Leaving the young lady to her reflections, let us return 
for a brief space to the subject of them. 

On leaving the hotel, he passed up Broadway and 
turned down one of the bye-streets. 

" So, so, Mr. Bock," he muttered to himself, "it seems 
you thought to have it all your own way, but I reckon 
you've got your match this time. Malpas Thong is not 
the man to be made a cat's paw of, standing all the 
racket, and reaping but little of the reward. Yov every 
dollar you make by this business, my gentleman, I'll.havo 
another, or it shall go hard with you." 

Then he entered a small drinking-saloon, the bar of 
which was presided over by a dirty-looking man in his 
shirt sleeves. 

"Anybody in? " he asked. 

" Yes — Gargrave and Lerous, in the little room at the 
back." 

" Ah ! I expected one of them ; just let me through, 
will you, and send in some drink." 

The proprietor, coming round from behind the bar, 
opened a small side door, and Thong passed in. 

Two men were seated at a table, shuffling and dealing 
with a dirty pack of cards. Apparently they were play- 
ing at no game in particular, but seemed to be practising 
sleight-of-hand tricks. 

One of these men on the entrance of Thong immediately 
laid down the cards, and rising, took a seat at the far end 
of the table. Thong seated himself opposite him, and 
producing a pocket-book, they were soon buried in a 
whispered conversation. 



THE PLOT THICKENS. 99 

While they are thus engaged, we will take a briet 
glance at them. One of them at, least, has the stamp 
of an unmistakeable villain. 

The low forehead, hard, cruel-looking mouth, small 
grey eyes, shadowed by thick eyebrows, and the shape of 
the head, sufficiently indicated his disposition. But if 
there were any doubt on the subject, the brutal, ferocious 
expression of the man's features would at once remove 
it. Bold, unscrupulous ruffian was written in inefface- 
able characters. He wore neither moustache nor beard, 
with the exception of a small tuft on the chin. He ap- 
peared about forty years of age, and his frame was built 
more for strength than grace. 

This was Malpas Thong. 

He had passed many years of his life in the Southern 
States, and was originally one of the class known as 
"poor whites." He had been by turns overseer on a 
plantation, slave dealer, and slave hunter, Then for 
years he was prowling about the city of New Orleans— 
now runner to a sailors' boarding-house, and crimp, 
gambling, cheating, and robbing as occasion offered. In 
fact, the comprehensive word "rowdy" would best de- 
scribe this part of his life, 

Afterwards he got a situation as overseer on a plan- 
tation ia Virginia, owned by Webster K. Gayle. Lupus 
Eock managed everything, and finding in Thong a man 
utterly unscrupulous, who, if it suited him, would stand 
at no crime, would shirk no danger— thought he would 
serve his purpose, and got him removed to a situation of 
trust at New York, where he could at any moment put 
his hand on him. 

For some reason or other Malpas Thong was dismissed 
from this berth and disappeared. Why he was so dis- 
missed, and what had become of him, few knew. 

Lupus Rock gave out that he suspected him of dis- 
honesty ; but there were those who whispered that Thong 
had, for a consideration, consented to become the scapegoat, 
and bear the odium of a very questionable transaction, in 
which Lupus and Webster Gayle were engaged in tho 
pursuit of the " almighty dollar." 

u2 



100 TIIE SLACK ANOEL. 

The other man seated at the small table was not so 
coarse-looking, nor so utterly brutal. A glossy dark 
beard concealed the lower part of his face ; his features 
were good, almost handsome ; he was carefully, even 
elegantly attired ; his linen was of the finest, and his 
hands white and delicate, 

As to who or what he wa, no one knew. 

He called himself sometimes the Chevelier Leroux, 
sometimes Baron Leroux, asserting that he was a member 
of a French family in the State of Louisiana, and that he 
had a right to either of the above appellations. 

Be that as it may, no one either saw or heard any- 
thing of his family, nor was it kuown how he lived. 

Let us listen to the muttered conversation which the 
two men are currying on. 



CHAPTER XYI. 

A XICE PLOT. 

" You are sure you have got incontestable proof of 
both these facts ?" he said. 

" Perfectly sure." 

" Well, no half confidences. Tell me what are your 
proofs of the first fact, that this bill for ten thousand 
dollars, drawn by the firm of Grayle and Co. on a Paris 
house, and which was supposed to be lost, passed through 
the hands of Lupus Rock ?" 

The other hesitated, filled his glass, deliberately drank 
it off, and then setting it down, leaned both elbows on 
the table, and staring fixedly in the other's face, said, — 

" Look here, chevalier : I wouldn't trust you any more 
than I would him, only for one reason." 

" What reason r" 

""Why you dare not play me false. Now just you 
keep your ears open. I'm going to let you into a secret 
. — into two secrets — by which we can both make our for- 
tunes. If you act on the square, as a pal should, it will 
be all right ; if you attempt, with your accursed cunning, 
fc> throw me over, by Heaven, I'll have your life!" 



A NICE PLOT. 101 

u Then Thong clinched this fearful threat by thumping 
bis hand on the table till the glasses clattered and jingled 
again. 

" There," said the other, " don't make such a cursed 
row ; you needn't swear so, nobody is going to throw yon 
over ; and I am not afraid of your threats." 

" Oh, but you are, though ; if I thougbt you wasn't, 
you should never hear anything from my lips*!" 
" Well, no matter — go on." 
Thong filled another glass, and drained it off. 
" No, baron," he said, " I wouldn't, so help me Gr — d, 
if I didn't know you were afraid of me. I know you're 
a coward, though you will figbt sometimes when you're 
forced to it." 

" A coward ! — who says I'm a coward ?" 
" I do." 
" It's a lie !" 

" It ain't— it's true, and I'll prove it. There's a man 
'-and he's in INew York at this moment, though you 
little thiuk it— who'd like to see you, I know. Kow'l'll 
tell you the name of his botel, and I'll wager my life you 
won't go in the same street." 

Thong paused, and gazed mockingly in his face. 
" He's stopping at the Xew York Hotel. Are you 
game, if you ain't a coward, to go there ?" 

" Why not ? — who is he ?" asked Leroux, uneasily. 
" Who is he ? Well, you ain't seen him for pretty 
near two years, and I don't exactly know his name, but 
I'll make you understand. Do you remember, pretty 
nigh two years ago, you had a muss with an English chap 
at the St. Charles Hotel, in Xew Orleans ,• you tried to 
draw a revolver on him, and got all the worst of it. I 
daresay now, if you try, you can call to mind what hap- 
pened afterwards ; how you shot at him, and killed some 
one else— eh r" 

Leroux grew ghastly pale, and glanced around as if he 
expected some one to touch him on the shoulder. 

" It's a lie," 'he said, in a husky voice ; "the fellow's 
in Spain !*' 

" Is he ?" sneered the other j " I'll bet you a dollar or 



102 THE BLACK ASQLli. 

two on that. If you don't believe me, just walk up to 
the bar of the New York Hotel, and ask for the gentle- 
man in room number forty-nine. I was standing at the 
bar when he came to the hotel, and saw his luggage 
taken up." 

In spite of all his efforts at unconcern, Leroux could 
not conceal his terror. 

" Pooh — nonsense !" he said; "I'm not afraid of the 
fellow ; but why should I bother to go up to the New 
York Hotel ? If he want3 me he can hnd me." 

' ; He'd like to," said the other, who seemed to take 
delight in playing on his fears, " and so he will some day, 
as sure as fate. He's not the sort of chap, from what 
I've seen and heard of him, to give up a thing. He'll be 
down on you some of these days when you least expect 
it. Fact is, I don't know, if ever we fell out, that I 
shouldn't save myself all trouble, and put some dollars 
in my pocket, by just walking up to him, and saying — 
1 1 say, bos, wkatli you stand if I'll jest lead you slick off 
to where the Chevalier Leroux is ?' I'll be bound he'd 
come down handsome." 

Leroux's face became livid at these words. He filled 
a glass with brandy, and drained it off. 

" Come, come," he said, "no more of this nonsense. 
I've got no time to spare. Let's come to business. First, 
about this bill for ten thousand dollars." 

" Well, the bill was lost just sixteen days before it fell 
due ; on the day it was lost a steamer sailed for England. 
The bill went in that steamer, and a letter to Paris, stop- 
ping the payment, should have gone too, but it didn't. 
The bill passed througli the hands of Lupus Eock ; he 
wrote the letter, and gave it to me to take on board the 
mail-boat, and give specially to the captain, with a note, 
asking him to forward it to Paris immediately on his 
arrival. By this means it would reacli Paris two days 
earlier than if sent in the regular mail-bag. Lupus Eock 
gave ine the cue, and I lost the letter ! Before another 
one could be written the boat had sailed.* Of course, as 
Master Lupus gave me secret directions to lose the letter, 
I kne.v there was something up. Bat he didn't think I 



A KICJS PLOT. 103 

know so much, as I did. The bill was presented in Paris, 
and paid. By the next mail a letter went out stopping 
it ; but it was too late. The money had been paid, and 
the man to whom it was paid was on his way back to 
America. Lupus Bock gave the bill to that man, and 
received the ten thousand dollars when he returned. The 
man had two thousand for his trouble. I know him, and 
can produce him at any moment." 

" And would he say that Lupus gave him the bill, and 
sent him to Paris ?" 

" He would ; he is a pal of mine, and if he was unwill- 
ing even, we could make him. It could be easily proved 
that he presented the bill ; he would then have to ac 
count for possessing it, and would have to state that 
Lupus Hock gave it to him, and that he was ignorant 
that it was stolen from Webster Grayle, the merchant." 
" Then Lupus Bock is in our power ?" cried Leroux. 
" Entirely — utterly, although he himself does not yet 
know how completely he is at my mercy." 
" And what do you propose to do ?" 
" Listen. I know all the gentleman's little schemes. 
lie is as cunning as the serpent, but hitherto I have 
managed to keep pace with him. But I don't like him ; 
he is an ugly customer, and will kick desperately before 
we land him. By myself he might be too much for me ; 
with that accursed quiet manner of his, you never know 
what he is about. !N"ow if there are two of us in the 
secret, we can laugli at him — defy him. So I ought to 
be able to do now, but I know he's got something in hand 
working against me. "What that is I can't tell for the 
life of me. I know he is afraid to break with me openly, 
but that makes him all the more dangerous. Supposing 
he could get me put out of the way quietly, don't you 
think he'd be a deal easier in his mind ?" 
The other nodded assent. 

" Well, but don't you see if there's two of us, and we 
let him know it, he will see that it is useless. We might 
easily prove to him that both of us know it, and that, in 
the event of our being got out of the way, we might let 
him think therj were still others in the secret." 



301 THE CLACK AX GEL. 

'■ I sec," replied Leroux, musingly, " you think, then, 
that if he thought it would purchase his safety, he would 
murder us or have us murdered." 

" Think ! I don't think about it ; I am sure of it." 
" He's a dangerous man, then. Has he any particular 
animosity ogainsl you ?" 

" Ko, I think not more than he has to anything else 
which threatens his safety." 

" All the more dangerous for that. A man who acts 
not from temper, but from judgment, is indeed dan- 
gerous." 

Both men were silent for a few moments. Leroux 
appeared to be turning over in his mind what he had 
just heard. He did not appear half to like the situation. 
Both Thong and Bock were such desperately dangerous 
characters, each in their own way, that he felt a false step 
on either side would be fatal. 

(i Well, what do you think ?" asked Thong. 
fi Why, I think that if it is worth our while, we 
could, with caution, keep this Mr. Eock in our power, 
and use him as we like. But is it worth our while 
to run the risk, for with such a man there is great 
danger?" 

" Is it worth our while ! Is half a million dollars 
worth our while ?" 

" Half-a-million ! and is half-a-million to be made ?" 
" Certain. He'll clear a million by the plantation 
alone." 

" What plantation ?" 

" Why, Webster Gayle's plantation in Virginia — you 
know the merchant is, or ought to be, a Union man. He 
must, at all events, appear to be so, or he would have 
his property in New York and Philadelphia confiscated. 
But don't you see that the rebels, if they are successful, 
will, on their side, confiscate his plantation in Virginia* 
with all the slaves, worth a million of dollars. So you 
see, which ever w T ay he turns he must lose, unless he can 
get rid of it. Now, the scheme of Lupus Eock is cun- 
ning enough. Webster Gayle is to pretend to make over 
—to sell the estate in Virginia to Lupus, and give him 



A NICE PLOT. 105 

a receipt for the price. Then Lupus is to go South, 
declare for the rebels, and take possession until the war 
is over ; then he is to hand back the deed to his uncle. 
But he does not intend to do anything of the kind. Once 
in possession, he means to stick to it in spite of every- 
thing. Do you see ?" 

" Yes — a nice little plot, certainly. This is decidedly 
worth our attention. And now for the other piece of 
information : about that girl ?" 

" Ha ! ha ! Chevalier ! — that makes your mouth water. 
The French or Spanish Creole girl — the richest and the 
handsomest girl in all the South." 

" Well, you sav you can prove she is a slave ?" 

" I can !" 

Leroux's eyes gleamed with a strange fire. 

" Well, go on — tell me how ?'? 

" Ah !" replied the other, " that requires consideration. 
We must have a bargain first. If, with your assistance, 
I contrive that Lupus Rock gets possession of this girl, 
what share of the money do you expect ? You must re- 
member that the information is exclusively mine ?" 

" Lupus Bock get possession of her ! H 1 and fury 

—never if I can prevent it !" cried Leroux, leaping to 
his feet, his cheek flushing, and his eye glaring. 

Thong gazed on him with astonishment. 

" Phew !" he said, giving a long whistle, " that's the 
game, is it ? What, do you want her for yourself ? Do 
you expect ever to get her ? Are you spoony on her ?" 

" Spoony !" cried Leroux, passionately ; " I would sell 
my soul to possess her, and possess her I will." 

" Easier said than done. Do you think that she — rich, 
beautiful — will throw herself away on you ? — who are — 
well, no matter what you are." 

Leroux, now somewhat calmed down, continued, 

"And you say that Lupus Rock wants her ?" 

" Yes, certainly, and swears he'll have her too, by fair 
means or foul." 

" Well, but I thought he was after Webster Gayle's 
eldest daughter — his cousin ; he can't have both." 

" Can't he ? but he can, though ; don't you see, if he 



106 .TIIE BLACK ANGEL. 

can prove that the girl is a slave, lie would keep her for 
his mistress, and marry his cousin." 

" D — n !" cried Leroux ; " and this is what he means, 
then?" 

" Certainly, and a good judge, too. Now, women are 
not much in my line — one's as good as another to me ; 
but, by thunder, that Creole girl is enough to make any 
man's mouth water." 
j " You say you can prove that she's a slave ?" 
' " Yes, again I tell you." 

" Can vou prove whose property she is ?" 

" Yes." 

" And the estates — to whom do they belong ?" 

" A slave can own nothing ; they belong to her 
master." 

" And that master — he has not the most remote idea 
that she is legally his slave ?" 

" Not the least ; nor would he take advantage of the 
knowledge did he know it. He is a relation, and a great 
friend of the girl's." 

And whoever bought her from him would become the 
possessor of all her property." 

" Certainly." 

" But if you say the man whose slave she is would nob 
take advantage of the fact, how would he be induced to 
sell her ?" 

" "Why, Leroux," said Thong, "ain't you got no sense ? 
I thought you knew a thing or two. "Why, what reason 
is there he should know he sold her at all ? He ain't 
particularly well off, and would sell all his slaves for a 
good price. Five or six thousand dollars would buy the 
lot. Then, don't you see, that if he gave you a receipt 
for the purchase money of all his slaves, not mentioning 
any number, you could claim her too, if you could prove 
she was his lawful property." 

" Of course, of course. "Well, then, Thong, will this 
satisfy you ? — I'm content to go shares with you in this 
affair with Lupus Rock. And about the girl, if you'll 
manage it so that we can prove she is a slave, and pur- 
chase her, I'm willing to give you up all the profit — all 



IEEOUX AND HIS ENEMY. 107 

the estates — that is, if you can get thein, which I rather 
doubt." 

" But I don't doubt it. I know what I am talking 
about," interrupted Thong. 

" "Well, well, if you can do this, I'm content to take 
the girl for my share, and let you have all the rest : I 
think that's a fair offer." 

" Agreed," said the other, holding forth his hand ; " it's 

a bargain. D n the girl! I don't want her; take 

her, and welcome. The hard dollars are more in my 
line." 

Then the two men shook hands, and drank a glass 
together to bind the bargain. 

Thus was unceremoniously disposed of, in an obscure 
New York drinking-booth, the liberty and honour of the 
handsomest girl in all South Carolina, by a pair of as 
great ruffians as ever felt the hangman's noose. 



CHAPTER XVII. 

LEEOUX AND HIS ENEMY. 

Aftee Malpas Thong had left the room, his late com- 
panion remained for some time buried in deep thought. 
He was aroused from his abstraction by the man with 
whom he was engaged when the slave agent entered. 

" Well, Chevalier," said this man, " are you going to 
finish teaching me that eye-opener with the cards— 
reckon it's an out and out dodge ; wants some practice, 
though." 

" Oh, hang the cards !" said the chevalier ; " I have 
other things to attend to now. Look here — do you want 
to earn a dollar ?" 

" Not the least objection in the world, if it ain't by 
hard work." 

" Never fear ; it's neither by hard work nor honest 
tvork, else I wouldn't offer you the job," sneered Le- 
toux ; " I want you just to go round to the New York 
Hotel, and inquire about the visitor in room No. ." 

" Do you want me to see him ?" 

\ 



103 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Yes, if you can, and bring me word how lorg he has 
been there, and how long he is likely to stop. If you 
can't see him, get hold of some of the hotel porters, and 
lind out what he is like and all about him." 

" Eight you are, boss," said the man, going out on 
his errand. "I'll be back for my- dollar in halt* an 
hour." 

Leroux made no reply, but when he was left alone he 
called for a stiff glass of brandy, and seating himself in 
a corner, was soon buried in his thoughts, which, from 
the expression of his nice, were far from agreeable. 

" It's a difficult game," he thought to himself; " herc'a 
Lupus Eock and Thong, both as dangerous men as I 
know, and to gain my ends I must outwit them both. 
Lupus, cool, deliberate, and crafty, is perhaps the most 
dangerous in the long run ; but there is the other, with 
his wild-beast, savage ferocity — positively it is not safe 
to be in his company. I believe he'd cut my throat 
without a moment's hesitation, if he thought I was play- 
ing him false. I don't know but what it would be better 
to keep in with him — act on the square— and both of us 
put out all our strength against this Lupus Eock. Then 
there's that other — that cursed young bloodhound that 
has been following me about this many a month — shall 
I never be clear of him ? I thought this time I had 
given him the slip, and here he turns up again in New 
York." _ 

At this latter thought Leroux grew very pale, and his 
fingers mechanically grasped a revolver he wore in his 
girdle. 

" Curse him !" he hissed between his teeth ; " I shall 
have no rest till I put a bullet through his head. lie or 
I must die." 

Then he called for another glass of spirits and drained 
it off. 

It was evident that the thought of the man who Thong 
told him was staying at the New York Hotel caused him 
great uneasiness. 

Shortly the messenger whom he had despatched to re- 
connoitre returned. 



LEROUX AND HIS ENEMY. 109 

u AVell ?" asked the Chevalier, anxiously. 

"Gone!" 

" Gone — where ?" 

u Don't know. I got hold of one of the negro porters ; 
he told me that the gentleman in the room you spoke of 
left this morning. He put his luggage on a fly, and 
when he asked him where to tell the driver to take him, 
told him to mind his own business. He thought that 
he'd sailed for England, as the mail-boat went out this 
afternoon, and he drove in that direction." 

" Gone ! — to England, too !" exclaimed Leroux ; " what 
sort of a man was he — did you inquire ?" 

" I did so ; tall, rather dark, about seven-and-twenty 
years old, and an Englishman ; very good looking, and 
well built, with a small scar on the left cheek." 

"Ah!" muttered Leroux, "that's my man, and he's 
gone — you're quite sure he's gone ?" 

" Sure," said the other ; " leastways if all the porters 
I spoke to and the hotel clerk didn't tell lies." 

" Well, here's your dollar." So saying, he chucked 
ine coin to the man, who at once proceeded to lay it out 
in fiery compounds at the bar. 

" I say, boss," said Leroux to the landlord, " when do 
the cars start for Baltimore ?" 

"Eor Baltimore! why yer ain't going to leave us, 
Chevalier ?" 

" Ain't I ? I am, though, and to-night." 

" To-night ! you'll have to look sharp, then, for the 
cars startlit eight o'clock, and it's past seven now." 

" Past seven, is it ? and is the eight o'clock the last 
train ?" 

" It is so." 

" Then I reckon I'll wait till morning. Get me some- 
thing to eat, and keep my bed for me ; I'm going out 
about the town for half an hour ; have dinner ready by 
the time I return." 

So saying, the Chevalier strolled out, and walked care- 
lessly towards the Broadway. 

As he turned into this great thoroughfare from the 
by-street he suddenly stopped as if shot — he turned pal© 



110 THE BL1CK ANGEL. 

as death. His eyes were riveted on a hack fly which wag 
pulled up close to the pavement. 

The driver was repairing some mishap to the harness. 

The fare had his head out at window, and Leroux 
heard him say, — 

" Confound you, driver, make haste and tie that trace 
up. There's no time to lose. I'll give you an extra 
dollar if I'm in time, and break your head if you get me 
late." 

" All right, your honour," replied the driver, jumping 
on the box. " We '11 be in time for the cars, never fear." 

Then the fly drove hastily off. Leroux remained stand- 
ing as if spell-bound. 

" Did he see me ?" he muttered. " No — I think, I 
am sure he did not, or he would not have driven off. 
Going by rail somewhere. I heard the driver say some- 
thing about being in time for the cars. I wonder 
where ?" 

Leroux remained standing at the street corner for a 
few moments longer, and then retraced his steps, mut- 
tering as he did so — " Curse him ! am I never to be rid 
of him ? Is he like a phantom, to be constantly appear- 
ing before me when least expected ? There must be an 
end of this some day." 



CHAPTER XVIII. 

BALTIMORE — THE STEEET RIOT. 

Early on the following morning Stella and Angela 
Gayle left their father's mansion, and, under the escort 
of Lupus Rock, started for Baltimore en route to "Wash- 
ington. It is necessary, in order to develop our story, 
that we follow these two fair girls. 

Arrived at the railway station, Lupus left them for a 
few moments to see to the luggage. Two companies of 
a New York regiment were going to Baltimore by the 
same train, and thence to "Washington, which was 
thought in danger of attack from the Confederates. 

All was enthusiasm and excitement. Bands were 



THE STREET EIOT. Ill 

playing, banners waving, and the cheers of a large and 
noisy crowd assembled round the station bade the de- 
parting soldiers God speed. 

Stella Gayle stood gazing around, a flush on her fair 
cheek, and her large dark eyes glittering as the troops 
marched past and took their places in the train. 

"Thus ends the rebellion," said Stella to her sister. 
" A few mad-headed rebels will risk and lose their lives, 
and then it will be crushed out and utterly extinguished 
by the strong arms and brave hearts of our gallant sol- 
diers." 

" Is it not a pity that it cannot be put down with- 
out bloodshed ? Is it not a pity that even one mis- 
guided man should pay the price of his folly by his 
life ? " 

"A pity, no ! no pity ! death to all traitors, I say " — 
She suddenly checked herself. 

" So say I, Stella," said Lupus, who now approached, 
" death to all traitors. You witnessed the just fate of 
the first, may you see the last rebel also meet his 
doom." 

Stella Gayle turned first crimson, and then very — very 
pale; her hand which rested on her sister's arm trembled, 
and a tear in spite of herself glittered in her eye ; for, 
spite of her patriotic mania and violent language con- 
cerning rebels, Stella Gayle was really as kind-hearted 
a girl as her sister. 

The words of Lupus Kock recalled to her a terrible 
scene. She saw Darcy Leigh again at the helm of the 
Spitfire. She heard the command of Commodore Foote 
to the marines to fire. Then she saw him again with 
terrible distinctness stretched on the deck — lifeless, and 
heard the words of Captain Hiram Squalls, — * Shot 
through the head." 

Laura Leigh, his sister, had been the schoolfellow and 
intimate friend of the sisters, and until this rebellion 
Darcy and his brother Gerald had been great favourites 
with the two girls. 

Stella, thought of all this — of her own hard words in 
her father's drawing-room ; she thought of old times— 



•"" TIIE BUCK AXGEL. 

of the many happy hours she had passed in the society 
of Laura and her brothers— of visits to Colonel Leigh'g 
plantation iu Virginia — of many little acts of kindness 
which Darcy had done for her— she thought of all this, 

and remembering the terrible fate of the young lieu- 
tenant, the tear which glistened in her eye trickled 
slowly down her cheek. 

" What! " exclaimed Lupus, in real or affected aston- 
ishment, " the enthusiastic, the dashing Stella in tears? 
Is it the past or prospective fate of all rebels which I 
heard her but now so devoutly wish for that causes 
her emotion? " 

Stella made no reply, but angrily brushing the tear 
from her cheek, she turned away indignantly, and taking 
her sister's arm, hurried to their seat in the cars. 

She said little during the long, tedious journey ; and 
when Lupus strove to draw her into conversation she 
so unmistakeably snubbed him that he gave up the 
attempt, and leaving the sisters together, went out on 
the platform of the cars and lighted a cigar. 

"Curse her!" he muttered, "there is no managing 
her — no understanding her — one moment all fire and 
spirit, the next melting into tears. Ah ! those tears ! 
what could have been the meaning of them ? " 

" Angela," said Stella, when Lupus had left them, " do 
you know I bitterly regret that we ever left New York. 
I have a presentiment of coming evil. I believe that if 
ever there was a fiend in human shape it is our cousin 
Lupus Rock." 

Angela looked astonished ; for her sister generally 
tcok his part. She had never before heard such strong 
language from her. 

" Why, what on earth makes yon think so, Stella ? 
Yon know that I never liked Lupus Eock, but I do not 
think he is qnite so bad as that ; and as to a presenti- 
ment of coming evil, what evil can happen ? " 

"I know not," answered Stella abstractedly; "and 
yet — and yet " She paused. " Angela," she con- 
tinued suddenly, "do you remember yesterday I told 
you I saw that man Thong ? " 



THE STREET MOT. 113 

"Yes." 

" He was talking with Lupus Rock on the steps of 
one of the hotels in Broadway. "Well, he is with us in 
this very train ; I saw him get into the cars. Lupus 
Rock pretends to know nothing about him, but I am 
convinced he is going with his knowledge. I am sure 
they have some plot, some scheme afoot." 

"Do you think so?" answered Angela anxiously. 
" Let us write to papa when we arrive at Baltimore." 

"Of what use?" said Stella bitterly; "he is so 
wrapped up, so infatuated with our worthy cousin, that 
he would listen to nothing against him, and would only 
laugh at us for our pains. I really believe sometimes 
that Lupus has some mysterious influence — some hold 
on our father — that he holds him in a measure in his 
power." 

" Heaven forbid ! " said Angela. 

" Heaven forbid indeed ! but still I cannot help 
fancying I am right. In no other way can I account 
for many little things I have observed." 

Lupus Rock now returned, and the conversation 
dropped. They arrived safely at Baltimore, and went into 
the ladies' waiting-room, while Lupus attended to their 
luggage. ^ 

Par different was their reception at Baltimore to 
their departure from ]\ T ew York. At the JS T ew York 
railway station the Federal troops were cheered, and 
every demonstration made of good-will. 

At Baltimore, on the contrary, no sooner had the two 
companies emerged from the cars than they were as- 
sailed with groans and hisses on all sides. An angry, 
infuriated mob surrounded the railway station. 

Stella learned from the attendants in the waiting- 
room that the city was almost in a state of riot — that 
several Federal regiments passing through Baltimore 
had been attacked ; there had been blood shed, and it 
was feared there would be more. 

On all hands loud and defiant shouts rang forth. 
* Down with the Yankees ! " was the cry. 

Looking through the window Stella and her sister 

I 



114 THE BLACK AKGEL. 

could see the mob assembled in the street awaiting the 
appearance of the United States' troops, to assail them 
■with groans, hisses — perhaps even violence. 

Flags were flying among the crowd, and on many of 
the houses and liquor stores in the vicinity. 

But Stella looked in vam for the Stars and Stripes. 

It was the Stars and Bars which was hoisted on sticks 
and defiantly waved by the mob, and which fluttered in 
the breeze from flagstaff's, housetops, and balconies. 

It wa3 evident that Baltimore was rebel to the very 
core. Lupus now hurried to the two sister's. He 
looked pale and uneasy. 

" Come," he said, "let us make haste and get out of 
this before the troops attempt to move. They will most 
likely be attacked in the streets." 

" Is it so bad as that ? " said Stella ; " is all Baltimore 
gone mad ? are there no loyal citizens ? " 

"It seems very much like the fact," said Lupus. 
" Meanwhile this is no time for talking. I have a fly at 
the door, and have placed your luggage on it. Come, let 
us make our way to it, and get to our hotel as soon as 
possible." 

This was easier said than done. All was noise, shout- 
ing, and confusion. "With difficulty they made their 
way across the platform to the gates. 

The fly was so surrounded and hemmed in by the 
mob that it was with the greatest difficulty they readied 
it. Even when they did so they found it impossible to 
move, for the crowd caused a complete block. 

Several times the driver urged the horse forward, but 
each time the horse's head was rudely seized by one of 
the mob ; and with oaths and threats the driver was 
obliged to relinquish the attempt. 

They were thus kept in waiting, surrounded on all 
Bides by the rowdies of Baltimore, powerless to move 
either one way or the other. 

In vain Lupus shouted to the man to drive on. Shouts 
of derision arose from the crowd each time he put his 
head from the window. 

The Union troops were meanwhile being formed in 



CAPTAIN GEBALD LEIOH. 115 

line. The word was given, " Four deep ! " follower by 

" right face !— quick march ! " 

Then was heard the regular tramp of the troops as 
they marched along the platform and out at the gate. 

The head of the advancing column had no sooner 
appeared than it was greeted by yells and groans. Still, 
regardless of this, the men obeyed orders, and pressed 
steadily on. But now more serious demonstrations suc- 
ceeded. Stones were thrown, and even halves of bricks, 
while the fury of the mob increased every moment. 
Many of the soldiers were cut by these missiles, and 
blood flowed freely. 



CIIAPTEE XIX. 

CAPTAIN GERALD LEIGH, 

While this scene is being enacted in the streets of 
Baltimore, we will for a short time leave the mob and 
soldiers contending, and take a glance at the inmates of 
a small inn in the suburbs. 

Ten or a dozen young men are assembled at the bar— 
laughing, talking, and jesting. Most of them are smoking, 
and several are imbibing wonderful American drinks 
concocted by the skilful barman. 

Some are in the undress uniform of the United States' 
cavalry, while all have a more or less military appear- 
ance. They seem to be waiting for some one, for every 
now and then one of them walks to the door and looks 
out. 

Presently a horseman, coming from the direction of 
the city, gallops up, and dismounts at the door. Several 
of the young men hasten out to meet the new-comer. 

"Here you are at last, Gerald," said one; "we began 
to think you had forgotten us. What news ?" 

" If you will just wait a moment or so till I wash the 
dust out of my throat, I will tell you all about it. Here, 
barman, mix me a julep." 

While the drink was being compounded the speaker 

1% 



110 T1IE BLACK ANGEL. 

went out to see to his horse. Let us glance at him. 
He is a tall, fair, and very good-looking young man, of 
some six or seven and twenty years. !Six feet in height, 

and straight as a dart, the symmetry of his limbs and 
the breadth of his shoulders cause him to look far shorter 
than is the fact. 

His features are finely cut and unexceptionably good. 
A plentiful supply of slightly waving fair hair clusters 
around his face ; and whether from foppishness or fancy, 
is suffered to grow somewhat long, so as to tail over the 
neck. His complexion is clear and somewhat pale ; eyes 
blue and bright — ever changing in expression, and never 
remaining for even a moment fixed on one object. 

He wears a slight, fair moustache, but has not a ves- 
tige of beard or whisker. Altogether, in form and 
feature, he may fairly claim to be ranked as an extremely 
handsome young man. 

This is Gerald Leigh — the brother of Darcy, with 
whom the reader is already acquainted. 

Darcy is middle-sized, dark, and slight ; Gerald is tall, 
fair, with limbs like oak saplings, and blue eyes. Never- 
theless, the most casual observer cannot fail to notice a 
striking family resemblance. 

In both brothers the mouth is the same ; and there is 
one very noticeable peculiarity also common to both — • 
that is, the incessant restless movement of the eye. In 
Darcy Leigh this is more conspicuous than in Gerald, 
but even in the latter it is a feature which never fails 
to attract attention. 

Having seen to his horse, he re-entered the bar, took 
his julep, and seating himself, lighted a cigar. 

" Now then, you fellows, I'll satisfy your curiosity. 
As I told you, I this morning tendered the resignation 
of my commission." 

"Well?" 

" Well, the fact was notified to the Secretarv-at-War, 
who refused absolutely to accept it, and ordered that 
should any other officer tender his resignation he should 
be immediately brought to a court-martial on a charge 
of treason." 



CAPTAIN" GEEALD LEIGH. 



117 



Loud murmurs arose at this. 

" "Well," said one, "treason or no treason, I mean to 
send mine in to-day." 

"Do nothing of the kind, Murdock," said Gerald 
Leigh ; " wait till all is ready. Then, when we make our 
stampede South, you can send in your resignation on 
the same day, and be beyond their reach should they 
refuse to accept it. For my part, I intend to remain 
perfectly quiet for a week or two, and watch the course 
of events. I have written to my father, and also to my 
brother Darcy. He is even a hotter Southerner than I 
am ; so I do not for a moment doubt that he will at 
once throw up his commission, leave his ship, and join us 
at Washington." 

" How many can we count on to be with us when we 
start for Washington?" asked Lieutenant Trent, one of 
Gerald Leigh's brother officers in the cavalry regiment 
to which he belonged. 

" Well, I have written to every one on whom I thought 
I could depend, and whose heart is with us. Including 
ourselves, we can make sure of at least forty, nearly all 
cavalry men." 

" Ah, we shall be well up for officers ; but what about 
men and horses?" 

" As for horses, I think there will be no difficulty ; I 
myself will find twenty ; each of you can, at the very 
least, supply two. Then, as to men, both Baltimore 
and Washington swarm with fellows who will suit our 
purpose ; hunters from the West, men who have served 
in the army, and rowdies. So that I think we can 
depend on crossing over into Virginia with at least a 
hundred mounted men." 

"And all upon whom you depend are to meet in 
Washington?" 

" Tes— in about a fortnight's time. Meanwhile we 
had best remain quiet and watch events." 

A general conversation then commenced — each of the 
young men in turn making a suggestion or asking a 
question. It was evident that all looked up to Gerald 
as the head of the undertaking, and he appeared to take 



Ii8 THE ELACK ANGEL. 

the lead, precisely as Darcy had done in the affair of the 
Spitfire. 

Suddenly the conversation came to a dead stop. A 
stranger entered the bar, and as their talk was treason, 
it was, of course, instantly hushed. The new-comer 
was a young man, apparently about the same age as 
Gerald Leigh. He did. not appear to be an American 
at all ; in fact, he bore unmistakable traces of English 
blood. His attire was a strange mixture. 

It would be difficult to say by his appearance what ho 
was — to what class he belonged. He might have been a 
Californian gold-digger, a merchant officer, a prairio 
ranger, or even a rowdy adventurer. He might have 
been any of these, but he was neither. 

At the present time he is attired in a manner which, 
if picturesque, is decidedly bravo-ish. A blue shirt with 
worked breasts and pockets, black trousers tucked — 
American fashion — inside the boots, a Kossuth hat with 
small feather, and a loose cloak, complete his dress. His 
waist is bound round by a crimson sash, in which is 
inserted a silver-mounted revolver. 

He was of middle stature, dark, and decidedly good- 
looking. His manner was cool and self-possessed, and 
he seemed at all times perfectly at his ease. 

Slightly lifting his hat as he entered the room, in ac- 
cordance with the polite Continental fashion, he advanced 
to the bar and called for a drink. 

" Who is he r" asked some one of Gerald Leigh. " I 
have seen him at the hotel both to-day and yesterday. 
He is quite alone, and no one seems to know anything 
about him." 

" I don't know in the least — looks like an Englishman, 
and seems to know his way about without a nurse.'*' 

" He seems a decent sort of a fellow ; but we had best 
be on our guard. In these times it is hard to tell friends 
from foes, or thieves from honest men." 

The conversation was proceeding in a low tone, when 
distant shouts were heard, followed by the sound of a 
volley. This was succeeded by cries and fresh shouts ; 
and then followed the rapid crack, crack, of the spite- 



CAPTAIN GERALD LEIGH. 110 

ful little revolvers. Every one was at once on the qxd 
vive. 

The stranger who stood at the bar hastily swallowed 
his glass and went ontside. He remained for a minute 
looking towards the town, and then, after examining hit 
revolver, walked briskly away towards the scene of the 
fight. 

"Our friend, the stranger, seems determined to see 
the fun," said Gerald. " See, he is gone off quite at a 
pace. I wonder what it's all about. That first volley 
was evidently from regular troops." 

11 Yes, two regiments are expected from New York to- 
day. Shouldn't wonder if they have been attacked by 
the mob !" 

Gerald now went round to the stable, and getting his 
horse out, mounted. All the others did the same, and 
as Gerald rode off they were about to follow him. 

JNow, many of them were still in the undress uniform 
of the United States' army, and Gerald did not think it 
advisable for them to attract attention by going in a 
large body, for it was quite possible that if there were a 
serious affray, they would be obliged to take one side or 
the other. This he wished to avoid, as their tactic? 
were to remain quiet till the opportunity arrived for 
striking a blow. So Gerald, turning in his saddle, 
said, — 

" Look here, you fellows, don't let us all go together ; 
some of you ride different ways. Trent, "Winstone, and 
I will go together. You all get back to the hotel singly. 
"We will meet you there in an hour or so." 

The others, seeing the force of this, did so ; Gerald 
and his two companions trotting on towards the city. 
Meanwhile the noise of the affray and the shouts of tho 
combatants increased. As they "approached they could 
hear the oaths and shouts of the mob, and even the 
shrieks and groans of the wounded. 

"Why, the row is up by the railway station!" said 
Gerald, rising in his stirrups, and gazing in that direc- 
tion. " It is as I thought ; a New York regiment just 
arrived has been attacked." 



120 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" ~We shall have to pass quite close," said Winstone. 
" Forward, then • the sooner the better. Let us see what 
it is all about." 

Then urging their horses they approached the scene 
of strife at a rapid trot. Just as they turned the corner 
of a street giving them a view of the railway-station, the 
United States' troops had made good their retreat, and 
had closed the gates behind them. 

" Ah !" said Gerald, " it is pretty well all over. The 
troops have got into the railway-station again, and are 
safe enough from ten times the number of the mob. 
There are other regiments in town, and, doubtless, they 
will soon come to their assistance. AVhat infernal fools 
these fellows the Secessionists are to waste their blood 
in street rows. Even if they kill a few soldiers they do 
no good. Ear better for them to wait and be organized 
by competent leaders." 

They now took a turning which hid the tumultuous 
mob and the station from their sight. On again emerg- 
ing into the broad street, Gerald Leigh suddenly spurred 
on his horse. His quick eye had seen something which 
brought a flush of anger and shame to his cheek. 

" Come on, you fellows — come on !" he cried, half 
drawing his sabre. " By heavens ! those cowardly ruf- 
fians are attacking an open fly with ladies in it !" 

So saying, and followed by his friends, Gerald Leigh 
dashed down the street at a quick canter. 



CHAPTER XX. 

THE LADIES FIND A CHAMPION. 

Hemmed in and surrounded on all sides, the unfortu- 
nate soldiers were in a bad way. It was evident that 
something must be done, as they were rapidly becoming 
disorganized. Hitherto their rifles were unloaded. Now 
the officer in command gave the word, " Halt." 

This was followed by the order to load. The ring of 
the steel ramrods was heard above the shouting and 



TIIE LADIES FIKD A CHAMPION". 121 

yelling of the mob, who still kept up a fire of stones 
and bricks. 

The officers hoped that the demonstration made by the 
order to load might in some measure overawe the mob 
and procure a free passage for their soldiers. In this 
they were disappointed. It was but the signal for an in- 
creased burst of shouts, oaths, and execrations. 

Before the troops had finished loading, the sharp crack 
of revolvers was heard, and several of the soldiers fell 
wounded in the street. 

The order was given to fire, and, infuriated by the fall 
of their comrades, the troops poured a volley into the 
crowd. 

The shrieks and groans of those wounded by the dis- 
charge was succeeded by fresh cries of rage and fresh 
discharges of revolvers. The mob outnumbered the 
troops ten to one, and a large majority of them were pro- 
vided with fire-arms. On all sides the deadly six-shooters 
cracked and sent forth their whistling bullets, dealing 
death and dismay among the ranks of the soldiers. 

Those deadly weapons, in so close a conflict, were 
much more effective than the rifles of the soldiers, and it 
soon became evident that against such numbers even dis- 
cipline would avail little, and the order was given to 
charge with the bayonet. 

It was bravely carried out, but produced little effect, 
for the crowd scattered before them ; while, from behind, 
a most destructive fire of revolvers was kept up. The 
soldiers were rapidly falling into confusion. Many of 
their number were wounded — some killed — and the mob 
increased every moment in numbers and audacity. 

Then the word was given to retreat again to the 
station. This was effected in tolerable order, the men 
loading and firing as fast as they could, while those 
among the crowd who had revolvers pressed to the front, 
and discharged barrel after barrel; then retired to re- 
load and make way for others. 

By the time the troops regained the platform, they 
had lost some twenty men wounded, and five or six 
killed outright. Once safe inside, the gates were closed, 



122 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

and, drawn up in a line behind these, the soldiers were 
prepared for a desperate resistance. 

Baffled by this timely retreat, the mob were unable to 
effect any more harm. A few revolvers still kept up a 
sputtering fire, but it was ineffective. 

There were several Federal regiments in town, and the 
officers in command would, doubtless, soon hasten with 
their men to the assistance of those beleaguered in the 
railway station. 

Stella G-ayle and Angela had been spectators of all 
this terrible 'conflict. They had seen the effect of the first 
volley of the soldiers, sending some dozens of the mob to 
the earth ; and also the terrible havoc which the crack- 
ing revolvers made among the troops. 

The bullets hissed and whistled around them, whilo 
some even struck the fly. The driver, terrified, had left 
them, and they were at the mercy of the mob. 

Hitherto the attention of the mob had been too much 
taken up with the soldiers to bestow any on them. Now, 
however, they crowded round the fly, and demanded, 
with oaths and imprecations, whether the passengers 
were Federals. Maddened by excitement and the death 
of so many of their number, they were now capable of 
anything. 

Angela Gayle, pale and frightened, clung to her sister 
Stella, who, though no less alarmed at their situation, 
exhibited more presence of mind and self-control. 

" They 're Yankees," shouted one of the mob, who had 
been examining the directions on the boxes outside. 
" It's Webster Gayle, the Senator for " 

Now, Webster Gayle was very unpopular South. It 
is doubtful whether even Abraham Lincoln himself was 
more so among the rowdy portion of the Secessionists. 

" "Webster Gayle ! " shouted several ; " where is he ? 
—drag him out ! — upset the fly ! " 

" No, no," cried Lupus, "we 're not Yankees. Webster 
Gayle is not here ; we 're for the South, and are going 
South. Five dollars to the man that will drive us to the 
Fremont Hotel ; our driver has left us." 

Instantly attracted by the offer of five dollars, a rowdy 



TnE LADIES FISD A CHAMPION. 123 

jumped on the box, and commenced whipping the horse 
and shouting to the crowd to make way. 

Every moment, however, they were stopped, and rudely 
asked whether they were "Yankees. 

The man who was driving, anxious to earn his five 
dollars, handed into the fly a coarse piece of calico, made 
up into a Secession flag. 

" Here," he said, "just you keep waving that till we 
get to the hotel ; I reckon they'll let us go quiet when 
they see that flag." 

Lupus Kock took the flag, and was doing as directed, 
when, to his horror and astonishment, Stella Gayle 
snatched it from his hand, and tore it passionately to 
pieces. Then she commenced hurling the pieces away 
from her, with a look of ineffable scorn on her beautiful 
features. 

" Stella," shouted Lupus, u are you mad ? — we shall 
be torn to pieces." 

" Better that than purchase our safety by carrying 
that dastard flag." 

Shouts of rage broke from those of the crowd who had 
seen the emblem of Secession torn up and thrown con- 
temptuously away. A volley of stones was poured on 
the fly. The driver was knocked from his seat, which he 
did not again attempt to mount, while several stones 
struck the sisters. Angela screamed and crouched in the 
bottom of the fly. 

Lupus tried to open the door, in order to escape. As 
for Stella, she sat unmoved, pale as death, but on her 
beautiful features there sat that grand look of scorn for 
which she was so celebrated ;— scorn for the ruffianism 
of the mob who could thus attack women ; and scorn for 
Lupus, whose alarm and terror were unbounded. 

A stone struck the fair girl on the temple. She 
screamed faintly, and fell back— a crimson stream follow- 
ing the blow. 

At this moment, when the ladies were in the greatest 
danger, a champion appeared on the scene, determined 
to afford that protection of which their cousin Lupus 
was incapable. 



124 TIIE BLACK ANGEL, 

" Shame, shame ! " cried a voice in the crowd. 
u Do you call yourselves men, to stone ladies in the 
street'? " 

" They 're Yankees," ciied one, " down with them ! " 

Then another large stone was aimed at the fly, which 
narrowly missed striking: Stella. 

The man who had cried "shame" now dashed to the 
side of the fly, and placed himself before it. 

(i Are there any gentlemen among you ? " he cried. 
"If so, come forth and aid me in protecting these 
ladies." 

A stone, aimed at the fly, struck him on the shoulder, 
and sent him staggering back. Instantly drawing his 
revolver, he fired at the man who threw it, and he fell 
without a groan, shot through the head. 

A shout of rage from the mob. 

A shout of defiance from the defender of the ladies was 
answered by another shout from" the crowd, and two 
young men dashed forward and ranged themselves by his 
side. 

" I don't know who you are, sir," said one of these ; 
" but whoever you are, I glory in your pluck. I am a 
Secessionist myself, but I won't stand by and see ladies 
insulted and outraged, so I'm with you." 

" I'm neither a Secessionist nor a Federal," said the 
one who had first come to the rescue. " I'm au Euglish- 
man. In my country we don't make war on women. 
You can call me Captain George, if you like." 

" Hurrah for Old England ! " he shouted, " and down 
with the ruffians who attack ladies." 

" Hurrah for Ould Ireland ! " shouted a voice from 
the crowd. " Be jabers, I'm for the ladies, too. Sure 
the critters ain't done no harm ; and be jabers, if they 
they are Yankees, they can't help it." 

So saying, the speaker, an Irish labourer, left the 
ranks of the crowd, followed by two of his compatriots, 
who ranged themselves on the side of the defenders. 
There were now six ; three of them had revolvers, which 
they were [fully prepared to use, while the three Irish- 
men had sticks. x 



GEEALD LEIGH TO THE KESCUE. 125 

u Jump up, one of you fellows, and take the reins," 
eaid Captain George ; " we'll clear the road." 

One of the Irishmen mounted the box. 

" Make way there ; make way ; let the fly with these 
ladies pass." 

"No, no," shouted some one among the crowd; 
" down with them — they're all a cursed lot of Yankees 
together — after them, boys — don't let a man of them 
pass alive." 

This speech was followed by another volley of stones. 
The driver was nearly knocked from his seat, while all 
the others were more or less hurt. 



CHAPTEE XXI. 

* GEBALD LEIGH TO THE BESCHE." 

" To the rescue ! " shouted one of the young men who 
had followed Captain George in defending the ladies ; 
"to the rescue, Gerald Leigh, to the rescue ! " 

He had seen, on turning the corner of the street, 
three men on horseback ; one of these he had recognised. 
At the words " Gerald Leigh," Stella Gayle started and 
leaned forward. 

The three horsemen trotted quickly towards the be- 
leaguered fly. They were not in uniform, but wore 
swords and revolvers in their holsters. 

" Make way there, make way ! " shouted their leader, 
laying about him right and left with the flat of his 
sword; "make way there. "What's all this about? — who 
calls me?" 

The mob scattered before the clattering of the horses' 
hoofs. "What mob can or will stand cavalry, in however 
small force ? 

" Here, Gerald Leigh ; it was I, Lieutenant Murdoch ! " 
cried one of the youug men by the fly. 

" AVhat, Murdoch, is that you? "'said Gerald Leigh. 
" Why, what's the matter ? — your head is cut and bleeding, 
and your left arm hangs by your side —not broken "l 
hope?" 



12G THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" I fear so. As to what is the matter, I was in the 
crowd, and saw these ladies attacked by the mob. This 
gentleman came to their aid first," pointing to Captain 
George, "and I followed." 

His light blue eyes flashed with anger. 

l; What ! " he said, " this rabble have been stoning 
ladies, have they ? What the blazes do you mean bj 
it, you dastardly curs ? " he cried, rising in his stirrups 
and addressing the crowd. " Is this the way to win 
your freedom ? Is this the way to fight for your inde- 
pendence ? Back, you paltry curs ; back to your 
kennels! We don't want such men as you to fight 
for us. We will achieve our independence without 
such a cut-throat rowdy rabble as you. Back, I say, all 
of you, or I'll cut you to mincemeat." 

So saying, he drove the spurs into his horse's flanks, 
and dashed among the crowd, brandishing his sabre. 

All fell back before him. 

" It's Captain Leigh," cried several, as they retreated. 

" All right, Captain," said another, " we thought they 
were Yankees." 

" And what if they were, you hound ! I'll let you know 
that ladies, whether Yankees or not, shall be respected." 

So saying, he gave the fellow a baug on the side of the 
head with the flat of his sword. He then checked his 
horse, and, riding back to the fly, took up a position in 
front, and ordering the driver to follow, himself led the 
way to the hotel. 

His two friends, who were also mounted, rode one on 
each side, while the three who had first come to the 
rescue, and the two Irishmen, also marched alongside. 
Thus escorted, they passed through the streets without 
molestation. 

It was evident that Gerald Leigh was well known, 
for many hats were doffed as he passed. Under his 
escort no further attack was made on the fly, still it was 
followed by a considerable crowd of rowdies and others. 

These were mostly the friends of the man who had 
been shot through the head by Captain George. It was 
against him that their vengeance was particularly directed. 



GEBALD LEIGH TO THE EESCUE. 127 

Arrived at the Fremont Hotel, the fly drew up at the 
door; Gerald Leigh rode to the rear, in order to keep 
back the crowd, who still pressed on. 
*? h ? /^P^ated appearance of the vehicle sufficiently 
attested the fact that it had been attacked by the mob 
Ihe landlord of the hotel, perceiving this hastened out 
tollowed by some dozen or so of porters and neo-ro' 
waiters; then forming a line on each side, the door* of 
the fly was opened and the ladies hurried into the hotel 
trerald Leigh and his two companions, who were also 
mounted were engaged in keeping back the crowd, so 
that he did not see the ladies as they alighted 

When he learned that they were in safety he dis- 
mounted, and giving his horse in charge of a groom 
who appeared from the stables, he entered the hotel. 
His two friends also followed his example, as did the 
two young men who had first answered the appeal of 
Captain George. Xi 

This latter did not immediately enter the hotel He 
had observed something glittering at the bottom 'of the 
fly, and on looking closer, perceived a lady's bracelet 
It was broken into several fragments, and it took him 
some little time to collect them. While lie was thus 
engaged the fly moved on, for the driver, who had reap- 
peared, wished to get his damaged vehicle home ' 

Having collected all he could find of the "bracelet 
Captain George leaped out, with the intention of making 
his way back to the hotel. To his annoyance, however 
he found his passage barred. ' 

It was not more than fifty yards to the hotel steps 
but that space was held by a mob ofrowdi.es and roughs' 
who seemed determined to dispute his passage ° 

Shouts s and oaths greeted the Englishman as he turned 
towards the hotel. 

"Down with him! Lynch him! he's a d d 

Yankee!" shouted one. 

"Give him a slung-shot," shouted another ; "that's the 
iellow that shot poor Josh Terry." 

Then the crowd closed up to him in a menacing 
manner. Finding himself beset on all sides, the young 



128 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Englishman retreated towards the fly, which had again 
come to a standstill. 

He looked around for his friends. They had disap- 
peared, except the big Irishman and his two mates. 
Captain George shouted to these to come to his 
assistance, which they generously hastened to do. 

Having gained the fly, he hastened to make it available 
both as a means of attack and defence. 

In the preceding melee it had been well-nigh 
demolished ; both shafts had been broken, and were 
hanging loose only attached by the harness. He hastily 
possessed himself of parts of both these, and giving one 
to each of his Irish allies, he reserved another for him- 
self, and prepared for a desperate defence. 

Swinging ifc club-like round his head, he attacked the 
foremost of the mob, who were pressing on him with 
bowie knives, slung-shot, and such weapons as they had. 

Fortunately the great majority of them had not 
revolvers, and those who had were without ammunition. 

Captain George had five barrels left. These he de- 
termined to reserve to the last extremity. 

Dashing forward, followed by his Irish allies, he strove 
to drive the crowd back and make his way to the hotel. 
But, although two or three went down with bleeding 
heads before the broken shaft he wielded, others supplied 
their places, and he found it necessary to beat a retreat 
once more to the shelter of the fly. 

They now found themselves in a critical position. 
Surrounded on all sides by an infuriated mob, many half 
drunk, their chances of safety seemed but small. 

Stones again whistled through the air, and crashed and 
rattled against the vehicle. 

By repeated and furious onslaughts, the Englishman 
was enabled to prevent the crowd closing on him, which 
would have been fatal ; but after each of these attacks, 
although for the moment successful, he was more closely 
assailed than ever. 

At last he sought shelter inside the vehicle, and 
closing the door he drew his revolver, and cocking it, 
held it towards the foremost. 



GERALD LEIGH TO THE RESCUE. 129 

"Back, every one of you!" lie shouted; " the first 
tnat advances is a dead man !" 

Two of his three defenders had mounted on the 
driving box where they afforded a good aim for the 
missiles which came from every side. The third Irishman 
tow at the door of the fly, keeping back the mob with the 
piece of broken shaft. 

Each time that they endeavoured to make a rush bio- 
I at, swinging his weapon around, would bring some of 
them to earth. 

With such odds against them, however, it was im- 
possible to escape without injury; and already Captain 
Creorge saw blood flowing from various cuts in the head 
oi his generous defender. 

Crash! a stone came, striking him on the head, and 
knocking him backwards. At the same moment one of 
the Irishmen was knocked off the box, and fell on the 
other side among the crowd. With a yell of rage, the 
other also leaped down to the assistance of his fallen 
comrade. 

The case was desperate; so Captain George, suddenly 
throwing open the door of the fly, leaped forth revolver 
m one hand, the broken shaft in the other. He had 
determined to make one last desperate effort to reach the 
hotel; if that failed, it would be all up with him, he well 
knew. Setting his teeth firmly, he shouted to the three 
Ins linen to follow him, and dashed furiously at the very 
Snick oi the crowd. J 

The three men Mowed him, big Pat giving vent to a 
wild Irish yell, which, m itself, ought to hare cleared a 
way. So sudden and desperate was this attack by the 
four men that the mob fell back on aE sides. * 

Ihe broken shafts, wielded by desperate men, crashed 
ind smashed about their heads, making the blood flow 
freely, and in ess than half a minute some six or seven 
were sent to the ground, and the little band passed over 
their bodies, and made their way towards the hotel/ 

it almost seemed, for a moment, that they would make 
good their retreat by this sudden dash, for oX Tome 
twenty yards separated them from the haven of safety? 



130 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

At this moment one of the Irishmen receives a blow 
in the back of the head from a slimg-shot, and falls to the 
ground stunned and bleeding. The mob close around 
him, and the poor fellow's cries are dreadful. 

Captain George, scorning to leave one of his generous 
allies wounded on the field of battle, turns and furiously 
attacks the group who have closed around the fallen hero. 
The other two, with wild yells of rage, follow in his wake, 
and soon they drive back the enemy, and obtain pos- 
session of the body of their friend. The two Irishmen 
support the insensible man between them, and once again 
they endeavour to make their way to the hotel steps. 

" Clear the way, you ruffians ! " shouted the English- 
man, drawing his revolver, and pointing it at the fore- 
most of his antagonists. 

A stone, thrown from behind, struck him full in the 
chest, and knocked him backwards against the two men 
with their wounded friend. He is quickly on his feet 
again, and mad with pain and fury, discharges all five 
barrels of his pistol, and then throws himself, with the 
fury of desperation, right in the midst of his assailants. 

One man is killed by the discharge, and four others 
are desperately wounded. 

This for a moment clears him a way. Had he but 
another revolver, he might have made good his retreat ; 
as it was he had no time to reload, and was forced to de- 
pend entirely on the broken shaft. The two Irishmen, 
encumbered with their wounded friend, are unable to 
follow him, and he is left alone to contend against a 
mob of some hundreds. 

Desperately he fights against the tremendous odds. 

Pale, bleeding, his hat knocked off, he is seen the 
centre of a group of furious enemies. Then suddenly he 
disappears. Once again he rises to his feet, and again 
struggles desperately. Again he disappears, sent prone 
to earth by a treacherous slung-shot. 

]S~ow he is on one knee, gasping for breath, fainting 
from the terrible exertion and loss of blood. His eyes 
glare furiously around him on his cowardly assailants. 

Once again, with the courage of despair he rises, and 



GEEALD LEIGH TO THE EESCUE. 131 

with one last effort of strength, for a moment succeeds in 
keeping his feet ; then fighting desperately to the very- 
last, he is overwhelmed by numbers, and the pale, bleed- 
ing face is seen no more. 

At this instant the loud blast of a bugle is heard. It 
is a cavalry call — the charge. 

For a moment the crowd pause, and listen in astonish- 
ment. The next, the clatter of horses' hoofs is heard, 
and a troop of cavalry come thundering down the street. 

Again the bugle blast sounds forth. It comes from 
the balcony of the hotel, and is followed by a voice, — 

" Go into them, boys ! — Cut the vagabonds up ! — 
Show them no mercy !" 

Then may be heard the clang of sabres as they are 
drawn from their steel scabbards. 

At the same time a party of young men issue from the 
hotel, and charging down the steps, drive the mob before 
them. The horsemen on their flank, cutting, slashing, 
and shouting, complete their discomfiture, and the rabble 
fly in confusion, leaving behind some dozen or so of their 
number killed and wounded. 

"We have already said that, on arriving at the hotel 
all the men who had engaged in the defence of the ladies 
entered, with the exception of Captain George and the 
Irishmen. 

Gerald Leigh led the way, saying to his companions, — » 

" Come along, boys, let's come up into the smoking- 
room and have a weed." 

Then Gerald Leigh, Lieutenant Murdock, and the 
others entered, not noticing that Captain George did not 
accompany them. 

" How did this affair commence, Murdock ? " asked 
Gerald. 

" Well, really, I can hardly say. I was coming out of 
the billiard-rooms with Marley here, when I heard a 
disturbance ; then the young fellow you saw with us just 
now shouted if there were any gentlemen present to 
come to the assistance of the ladies. I saw that he was 
Overmatched, and as also I saw there were ladies in the fly. 

K 2 



132 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

1 and Marley went in with them. Then our ranks were 
reunited by three Irish labourers, and, lastly, just as we 
were being overpowered, I saw you and your friends at 
the street corner, and shouted to you for aid." 

" It's lucky we came when we did," said Gerald Leigh, 
lighting a cigar ; " for those roughs and rowdies would 
have given you a hard time of it. Wasn't one of them 
shot or something ? " 

" Yes, the young fellow, the Englishman, shot one 
through the head." 

" The devil ! how did it happen ?" 

" Oh, the rowdy threw a large paving-stone, which 
struck one of the young ladies, and cut her forehead. The 
Englishman seeing this, makes no more to do, but pulls 
out his revolver, and, taking a deliberate aim, fires at the 
fellow. The aim was true, for the ball struck him be- 
tween the eyes, and went, of course, crash through hia 
brain." 

" Serve him right, the ruffian ! I would have done the 
same myself." 

" Well, it seems that this fellow was a leader, and a 
favourite among the rowdies, and they determined to 
avenge his death. By the bye, I wonder where the 
young fellow is. I thought he came in with us." 

" Go down, one of you, and see if he's at the bar," said 
Gerald Leigh, " and ask him if he'll come up and have a 
brandy smash with us. He seems a gentleman, and I like 
the fellow's pluck." 

IMurdock went down to the bar, and returned report- 
ing that the stranger was not to be found. 

The smoking-room wa3 on the first floor, and the 
window opened on to a balcony looking out on the 
street. 

The shouting of the mob, as they attacked the English- 
man and his Irish friends, was now plainly heard. Still 
the party in the smoking-room paid but little attention 
to it, as* within the last week street fights had been ot 
daily and hourly occurrence. 

They went on talking and laughing and chaffing, as 
young* men will, when the sound of five pistol shots dis 



GEEALE LEIGH TO THE EESCTJE. 133 

charged in rapid succession aroused their attention. The 
shots were those fired by Captain George, immediately 
before his last desperate attempt to fight his way to a 
place of safety. 

G-erald Leigh, who was seated in Yankee fashion with 
his feet on the table, rose carelessly and sauntered to the 
window. He passed on to the balcony and looked out 
on to the street. 

Suddenly he gave an exclamation of surprise, — 

" Hullo ! Murdock," he said, " come here. Is not that 
your friend, the Englishman, yonder?" 

All the young men crowded out on the balcony. 

" By Heavens, it is ! " cried Murdock, " and fighting 
like a tiger-cat too. Thunder! he'll be murdered. 
Come on, boys, let's go to the rescue ; he's too brave a 
fellow to be slaughtered by these ruffians." 

It was at this moment that Captain George, desperately 
fighting, was beaten to the earth. 

" Come on, Gerald," repeated Murdock; " surely you 
won't stand by and see the young fellow killed before 
our eyes. See how he is fighting, and against such odds 
too." 

Gerald Leigh had gone out on to the balcony, and was 
leaning over looking out up k the street, tie made no 
direct reply to Murdock, but said, addressing one of the 
others, — 

" Marley, just hand me that bugle from the table." 

Marley handed him a cavalry bugle. 

Gerald Leigh placed it to his lips and blew a loud 
shrill blast. 

" There," he said, " that will bring more effective help 
than ours." 

" What do you mean? " asked Murdock. 
. " Only that I can see a troop of my horse at the 
corner of Union Street. They '11 be down fast enough 
when they hear the call, I warrant. Now then, you 
fellows, down you go, and lay about you like Trojans ; 
I'll follow directly." 

The four young men hurried down stairs; Gerald's two 
friends hastily buckling on their cavalry sabres, while 



131 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

the other two looked to their revolvers. The next 
moment the thunder of horses' hoofs was heard down 
the street, and a troop of cavalry dashed past at a 
gallop. 

Gerald Leigh gave another blast on the bugle, and 
shouting to the troopers to charge, himself hastened 
down to his friends, and drawing his sword, dashed dow x 
the steps and attacked the mob. The reader already 
knows the result of the combat. The rowdies were at 
once put to flight, leaving many dead and wounded be- 
hind them. 

Gerald Leigh and his friends hastened to the spot 
where they had last seen the young Englishman lighting. 
They found him lying senseless on the ground, with his 
discharged revolver tightly grasped in his hand. They 
raised him, and bore him into the hotel and up into the 
smoking-room. 

"While one of them ran for a surgeon, Murdock bathed 
the head of the wounded man with cold water, and poured 
some brandy down his throat. 

Blood flowed freely from several deep gashes in his 
bead, and there were also severe bruises on various parts 
of his body, caused by the stoues thrown by the mob. 

Before the surgeon came he showed signs of returning 
consciousness. Another draught of brandy revived him 
considerably, and he tried to rise. This, however, Mur- 
dock prevented by holding him down, and proceeded to 
examine the cuts on his head. 

"By Jove!"' said Gerald Leigh, stooping over him, 
" he's fearfully cut about. He must be a tough bit ot 
stuff to have stood it as long as he did." 

Murdock, who had some surgical skill, was engaged 
in cutting the hair off his head with a pair of se. 
so as to be able to get at the cuts. This was no 
matter, as his head was saturated with blood, which had 
commenced to coagulate. Probably the operation 
caused the wounded man some pain, for he suddenly 
started to his feet, in spite of all Murdoch's efforts U 
ke^p him down. 

Giddy, confused, and not in full possession of his 



GEEALD LEIGH TO THE RESCUE. 135 

faculties, he thought himself still in the hands of 
enemies, and with "blind fury proceeded to act on the • 
idea. Seizing a chair which was near him, he swung it 
around his head, shouting — 

" Ah ! you cowards— you cut-throats— you thieves- 
would you murder me ? Come on, you ruffians, I'm not 
half licked yet ! " 

Then suiting the action to the word, he furiously 
attacked his friends. Murdoch received a swinging 
blow from the heavy chair, which sent him staggering 
against the wall. 

Next he attacked Gerald's two friends, who wisely 
retreated behind the table. Blundering over this, how- 
ever, he blindly and furiously attacked them, shouting 
forth defiance. Gerald Leigh, who could not restrain 
his laughter, now, however, suddenly threw himself on 
him from behind, and pinioned his arms. 

The Englishman struggled desperately, shouting forth 
all the time words of defiance and hatred. 

"Ah! you cowards, you are ten to one— give me 
fair play ! " 

But 'despite his struggles, he could do nothing m 
Gerald's powerful grasp. Weakened by loss of blood, 
his strength was as that of a child in comparison with that 
of the stalwart and athletic Gerald. 

In half a minute he was thrown on his back, and 
Gerald Leigh and Murdoch were again kneeling beside 
him, this time fully prepared and determined he should 
not rise again. 

"Be quiet, can't you?" said Gerald; "we're your 
friends." 

"Friends!" muttered the wounded man, dreamily 
closing his eyes from exhaustion, " friends — friends ! " 
Then he again turned ashy pale, and lay quite still. 
"Bathe his face with cold water," said Gerald, "he 
has fainted again. By Jove, he is a rare plucked one," 
he continued, laughing ; " what a crack he fetched you 
with the chair, Murdock. I should think your head 
ached still." 

"Certainly," replied the other, feeling his head, " he 



130 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

has raised a lump as big as a lien's egg ; I suppose he- 
calls that gratitude." 

" Poor devil ! he didn't know what he was doing — ■ 
thought lie was in the hands of the mob still, I suppose. 
However, I glory in his pluck ; I have heard of Euglish 
bulldog courage, and certainly here was as good an 
instance of it as one would wisli to see — wounded, 
bleeding, fainting, he yet fought to the last gasp, and 
showed no signs of giving in even when I had his arms 
pinioned." 

Gerald Leigh gazed admiringly on the face of the 
prostrate hero, with his pale, bloodstained face. Had 
he been an enemy, even, instead of a stranger, Gerald 
Leigh could not have helped admiring his gallantry and 
determination. 

The surgeon now arrived, and after administering a 
powerful cordial, proceeded to dress his wounds. 

Fortunately, none of these were dangerous, and the 
flow of blood being stopped, he now began to come 
round. In half an hour's time he was quite sensible, 
and was enabled to sit up in an easy chair. 

Placing his hand to his wounded head, he withdrew 
it covered with blood, which had not yet quite ceased 
to flow. 

"I have been wounded," he said, faintly, looking at 
his hand; "how did it happen — and who are you 
gentlemen? " 

" How did it happen," said Gerald Leigh, smiling ; 
" well, that's too long a tale, and as to who we are — we 
are your friends — let that be sufficient for the present." 

At this moment a negro waiter entered the smoking- 
room, and said that the two ladies wished to see Captain 
Leigh. 

x\ow on entering the hotel Gerald Leigh had not 
noticed Stella and Angela Gayle, being otherwise 
occupied ; therefore he was considerably surprised to 
hear that they knew his name. 

"What !" he said to the man, "do the ladies know me?" 

" Oh yes, sir, quite well. Ladies been talking about 
you — call you Captain Gerald Leigh." 



GERALD INFORMED OF DAUCy's EATE. 1o7 

" By Jove, I wonder who they can be ? No matter — 
lead ine to their room." 

So saying he followed the waiter, leaving the wounded 
man in charge of Murdock and the surgeon. 



CHAPTEB XXII. 



Gerald Leigii was conducted to a private drawing- 
room on the same floor as the smoking-room, but in a 
different part of the house. The negro waiter threw 
open the door and announced, — 

" Captain Gerald Leigh." 

As he advanced into the room two ladies hastened to 
meet him. He gazed as it' in doubt for a moment, and 
then exclaimed — 

" What ! Stella and Angela— is it indeed you ? This 
is a surprise." 

A flush of pleasure came on his handsome face as he 
took a hand of each of the young ladies. 

" Why, how stupid I must have been not to have re- 
cognised you before. How fortunate, too, that I hap- 
pened to be in the street as you came by. I hope you 
are not hurt? " he asked, anxiously noticing the cut on 
Stella's fair brow. 

"No, only a very little hurt, but a good deal 
frightened." 

" And you, Angela," said Gerald Leigh, looking into 
her soft blue eyes — " were not you terribly frightened 
at the row ? " 

" Oh, dear ! pray do not talk about it ; I thought 1 
should have died from fright- But what has become of 
that gentleman who first came to our aid ? He said he 
was an Englishman, I think ; but be he what he may, 
he is a brave noble fellow. We must thank him." 

" He is rather badly hurt," was the reply, " so you 
must defer your thanks for the present. But tell me, 
Angela, how on earth did it happen that you were alone 
and unprotected in Baltimore at such a time ? "What 



133 TIIE BLACK AXGEL. 

could your father be thinking of to trust his daughters 
alone?" 

" We were not alone," Stella answered, her beautiful 
eyes flashing angrily, scornfully, " and we ought not to 
have been unprotected." 

" Not alone ? Who, then, was with you ? ■ 

" Our cousin, Lupus Rock." 

"Lupus Rock ! — and where, then, was he? "What 
was he doing when you were attacked, for I certainly 
did not see him? " 

"What was he doing? — why looking after his own 
safety, I imagine. He made his escape at the very 
commencement of the affray." 

" A pretty protector, certainly, this Mr. Eock ! Do 
you know, Stella, I never liked him, this cousin of yours, 
nor did my brother Darcy. You know, I suppose, that 
Darcy threatened to horsewhip him once." 

Stella turned ashy pale at these words. Gerald Leigh 
spoke of his brother in a light, careless tone. 

It was evident that he knew nothing. 

She remembered the terrible scene she had witnessed 
on board the Columbia, and remained before him with 
downcast eyes as pale as death. She could not meet his 
glance. She knew that he was gazing wonderingly and 
inquiringly at her, and yet she dared not raise her eyes 
and meet his. 

" Stella, what is the matter ? " he asked. 

]S"o answer. Then turning to Angela — 

" Angela, can yon tell me the meaning of this ? 
What ails Stella — what ails your" 

But Angela Gayle was in tears, and remained silent 
like her sister. 

Suddenly a light seemed to break on Gerald Leigh. 

" Stella," he said, seizing her hand, " answer me — is 
anything wrong with my brother Darcy ? " 

His voice faltered as he asked this question. 

Stella slowly raised her beautiful eyes to his face. 
They were suffused with tears. 

"Gerald, Gerald," she said, in a sad voice, " do not 
ask me." 



GERALD INFORMED OE DARCy's FATE. ISO 

Tears coursed 'rapidly down her cheeks, and she again 
lowered her eyes before the gaze of Gerald Leigh. 

" Stella," said the latter, with forced calmness, "tell 
me all — I insist upon it ! My brother — what of him ? 
Is he ill — is he hurt — or is he imprisoned or disgraced?" 

" No," murmured Stella, weeping bitterly. 

"No — and yet you weep. Is it then worse, Stella? 
Answer me — is my brother dead ? " 

No reply. 

" Stella Gayle, once again I implore you, do not keep 
me longer in suspense. "What of my brother— what of 
Darcy Leigh ? " 

At this moment the door opened, and Lupus Eock 
entered. 

He gave a black look upon the man who w T as there. 
He had heard the last words of Gerald Leigh. 

" "What of my brother — what of Darcy Leigh ? " re- 
peated Gerald. 

Stella Gayle, unable longer to restrain her feelings, 
burst into a passionate flood of tears. 

She could not find it in her heart to tell Gerald, so 
brave, so noble, so kind, that his brother had perished 
miserably. 

Gerald Leigh gazed in silent consternation from Stella 
to Angela. 

Both Avere in tears. 

" Stella," said Gerald, " let me know the worst. My 
brother is dead — is it so ? " 

She bowed her head silently in reply. 

" Speak ! tell me how it happened, and when.'* 

Neither of the girls replied to this, but Lupus Eock 
said, in a hard, indifferent voice — 

"Lieutenant Leigh was shot by the United States' 
marines. He turned traitor to his flag, and endeavoured 
to seize the ship. He was shot through the head at the 
first discharge." 

Gerald Leigh strode up to Lupus Eock, and placing 
his hand on his shoulder, he held him in a firm grasp. 

" Look here, Mr. Eock," he said, " you just now made 
use of an expression which, if you value your skin, you 



140 3?HE ELACK AXGEL. 

will not repeat. You said that Darcy Leigh turned 
traitor. I tell you you are a liar to your teeth ! Do 
you understand ': n 

And Gerald, exerting his great strength, shook and 
twisted Lupus like a child. 

" jS t ow if I ever hear you say a disrespectful word of 
my brother again, whether he be living or dead, I'll take 
you by the neck and heels, and just throw you out of 
the window. So now you know what to expect. And 
now you can clear out of this, for I waut to talk to thoso 
ladies alone." 

So saying he relinquished his grasp, and turned to- 
wards the two girls. 

Lupus grew pale with passion. 

" Those ladies have been placed under my protection 
by their father, Captain Leigh," he said, "and I cannot 
recognise your right to dictate to me. I am not accus- 
tomed to threats, and shall not leave the room." 

" L'nder your protection," said Gerald Leigh; ''pretty 
protection, truly ! What became of their protector when 
they were assailed by the mob in the streets ? " 

Stella smiled scornfully through her tears as she re- 
membered the ignominious flight of her cousin. Lupus 
looked furiously towards the two sisters. 

"Stella — Angela," he said, angrily, "your father placed 
you in my charge. I am the best judge of what is right. 
There is no necessity for any more of this foolery. 
Please to get yourselves ready ; we will go at once to 
the railway station, and proceed on our journey to Wash- 
ington." 

•'Xot so, cousin," replied Stella, calmly and firmly; 
" my sister and I are fatigued, and wish for some rest. 
If our father placed us, as you say, in your charge, he 
did not intend that we should be as servants at your 
beck and call. Besides, with such a valiant protector 
as yourself, I almost doubt whether it would be safe." 

"Do not be alarmed, Stella," said Gerald Leigh, "I 
will myself accompany you to Washington in the course 
of a couple of days." 

Lupus again grew white with passion. 



GERALD INFORMED OE DAECX'S TATE. 141 

"Beally, Captain Leigh," be said, sneeringly, "I am 
sure the ladies ought to be much obliged to you. On 
their part, however, I beg to decline the Honour. It is 
possible that the presence of Captain Leigh, the brother 
of the oiiicer who attempted to seize a United States' 
ship of war for the rebels, might be construed unfavour- 
ably to the loyalty of the party." 

"Lupus," said Stella hurriedly, "you Had better leave 
us. As you cannot refrain from insulting Captain Leigh, 
both he and we can dispense with your company." 

Lupus was on the point of angrily refusing, but 
glancing at the stalwart form of the young officer, he 
saw that in his eye which warned him to trifle no further. 
Accordingly, with a scowl around, He left the room, 
muttering between His teeth. 

" Curse them ! —these Leiglis are for ever in my path. 
First it is the younger one, and no sooner is he out of 
the way than this great bully must start up. No matter 
— my time will come : slow and sure ; that shall be my 
motto." 

" And now, Stella," said the young officer mournfully, 
and seating Himself beside Her, "tell me of this sad 
affair— tell me of Darcy — How did it Happen ? " 

" Gerald," said Stella earnestly, " your brother was 
rash, misled, and He paid the penalty. Perhaps it is as 
well as it is ; better, far better, than He should have been 
captured — as assuredly He and all the other mutineers 
will be — and executed." 

Gerald Leigh grew very pale at the word " executed." 

"Executed! — Darcy Leigh, a Southern gentleman, 
executed ! " 

Stella and her sister were silent, not wishing to Hurt 
His feelings. 

" Come, tell me all about it," He said, raising His Head, 
which He Had buried in His hands. 

Then Stella commenced a recital of all the events 
which Happened up to the supposed death of the rebel 
ringleader. 

She spoke in low, trembling accents, frequently paus- 
ing, overcome by Her emotion. 



142 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

"Tho accursed cowards — the dastards!" exclaimed 
Gerald Leigh when she came to that part of her recital 
where Darcy had forbidden his men to lire into tho 
Columbia, although the latter lay at her mi 

" Perhaps it was no more than their duty ; doubtless 
in giving the order to fire Commodore Eoote did no more 
than he was bound to do." 

" No more than his duty ! the accursed murdering old 
ruffian! It makes my blood boil to thiuk of it. But I 
swear by Heaven that for this foul murder many a 
Yankee shall bite the dust, many a New England mother 
and wife shall be childless and husbandless. Ah ! " he 
hissed between his teeth, and clenching his hands, "but 
we will have a terrible revenge for this ! " 

Stella looked up in astonishment. She respected his 
grief, but did not fully gather the meaning of his words. 

" Gerald, what do you mean?" she said. "Surely 
you too are not — I mean, surely you do not also forget 
the uniform you wear and the flag you serve under ? : ' 

" Forget— no, I don't forget," he replied, laughing 
scornfully ; " I know that 1 wear the uniform of an 
accursed lot of murderers and villains — that I serve, or 
rather have served, under a flag which for the future 
must be alien to every Southern gentleman. I do not 
forget — I know I wear a sword which, when it is next 
drawn, shall be in the service of the Confederate States 
of America — a sword which ere long shall be red with 
Yankee blood. Yes, Darcy, you shall be avenged — ter- 
fcibly avenged!" 

Stella Gayle listened aghast to these passionate words, 
Bhe had never dreamed for a moment that Gerald Leigh, 
the frank, bold, dashing Gerald, whom she had been in 
the habit of regarding almost as a brother, could ever 
desert the cause so dear to her heart, and enrol himself 
under the banner of traitors. 

" Gerald," she said, an angry flush mounting to her 
cheek, " do you know what you are saying ? Remember 
your duty, your allegiance — remember and pause." 

" Stella," he said, grasping her hand, "I do remember, 
and I will not pause. How can I forget, indeed ? The 



GEEALD LEIGH STARTS FOE KENHANA. 143 

scene you have described to me rises vividly before me. 
I see Darcy Leigh, my only brother, at the helm of the 
Spitfire as she passes under the stern of the Columbia. 
I see the big guns frowning from her port-holes, and 
ready to send forth their storm of iron death. I bear 
Darcy Leigh nobly forbidding their fire, and the next 
moment I see him stretched in death on the deck, as the 
reward for his forbearance. I remember, and I will not 
pause. From this day forth the Yankees have no more 
bitter enemy than Gerald Leigh. And now, Stella- 
Angela, I must, for the present, bid you adieu. You 
are too tired to proceed on your journey to-day. To- 
morrow it will not be safe, as there is to be a great rebel 
demonstration. The day after to-morrow I shall be back, 
and will see you safely to Washington." 

" You too, then, are going to Washington ? " asked 
Stella. 

" I, too, am going to Washington, on my road " 

" On your road whither ? " 

" On my road to join the armies of the Confederate 
States ! " 



CHAPTEE XXIII. 

GEEALD LEIGH STAET3 FOE KENHANA. 

Geeald Leigh hurried from the room, and ordered 
his horse to be brought round. 

He then hurriedly wrote a note at the hotel bar, and 
addressed it to Lieutenant Murdock. It ran thus : 

"Dear Murdock,— I have started for my father's place at 
Kenhana. I shall be back the day after to-morrow. I have 
had bad news— terrible news of poor Darcy. Keep all the 
fellows who are with us together. I shall bring horses, &c 
with me from the estate, enough to mount fifty men. I will 
explain fully when I see you. In haste,— Gerald Leigh." 

Sealing this note, he gave it to the waiter to take to 
Lieutenant Murdock, and mounted his horse, which had 
been brought round. Stella Gayle and Angela heard 



144 THE BLACK A!TGEL. 

the clattering of horses' hoofs in front of the hotel, and 
looking forth, saw Gerald Leigh clash off at a gallop. 

" The mad boy !" said Stella mournfully ; " I fear he 
has some desperate design in view, and trust to Heaven 
no harm may happen to him." 

Stella spoke sadly and feelingly. Her heart was very 
gad — it seemed that this dreadful rebellion was fated to 
ate from her all her old friends — old companions. 
She no longer even thought with that bitter contempt of 
the rebellion as before. The supposed tragical fate of 
poor Darcy Leigh, the desperate gallantry of his attempt, 
which, although blaming, she could not help admiring, 
and the stern determination evinced by Gerald Leigh, 
had forced the conviction on her mind that these rebels 
were terribly in earnest. Leaning her head on her 
hand, she gazed sadly out at the open window on to the 
crowded street. 

Again sad memories of the happy past crowded on 
her, and looking forward with misgiving to the future, 
she felt half inclined to weep. The reverie was inter- 
rupted by the entrance of Lupus Hock. 

" AVell," he said surlily, "and has that young popinjay 
taken his departure ? " 

" He is no popinjay, but a brave and gallant officer, 
which you will never be, Mr. Eoek." 

"A brave and gallant officer !" he sneered. " No 
doubt of it ; so was Darcy Leigh in your idea, and a 
treacherous rebel to boot." 

Stella started up, her eyes flashing and her cheek 
colouring with anger. 

" Lupus liock," she said .impetuously, " let me have 
no more of your taunts, nor speak disrespectfully of 
Darcy Leigh. He was my friend." 

" Friend ! " sneered Lupus, " was that all ? " 

"Yes, friend," continued Stella, passionately, "and 
though he is dead, and perished in a bad cause, I will 
not hear him spoken disrespectfully of; were he alive he 
would horsewhip you. If you further taunt me, or speak 
disrespectfully of him, I will request his brother Gerald 
to horsewhip you when he returns, although you are my 



GEEALD LEIGH BTABTS TOR KEXUANA. 143 

cousin. And as to going to Washington with you, I 
tell you plainly I would not do so alone. I would rather 
remain here in spite of you, and write or telegraph to 
my father. I shall certainly not think of leaving here 
until Gerald Leigh returns. He will accompany us to 
"Washington for your and my protection." 

The bitter scorn of these words almost drove Lupus 
beside himself with fury ; he gnashed his teeth in im- 
potent rage. 

But he knew Stella too well to venture further. She 
stood before him with her small hands tightly clenched, 
her beautiful eyes glittering, and with a light flush on 
her face, which made her great beauty absolutely daz- 
zling. She looked like an angry empress, and Lupus 
cowered before her. 

" Cousin Stella," he said, with forced composure, "you 
are too hasty. I have no wish to offend you, but since 
my presence seems to produce that effect," I will with- 
draw.'' 

He then left the room. 

As he walked down the corridor, an expression of 
fiendish malignity came over his face. 

" Were she only a man, how I could hate her," he 
muttered ; " as it is, I don't know whether I most ad- 
mire her beautiful person or hate the spirit which 
animates it. ]So matter, my day will come, Stella 
Gayle, and then you shall drink the bitter cup of humi- 
liation." 

Meanwhile Gerald Leigh tore across the country at a 
rapid gallop. His destination was a small estate of his 
father's, situated at Kenhana, about five and twenty 
miles from Baltimore ; and he never slackened rein till 
he arrived at the station, having accomplished the dis- 
tance in little more than two hours. 
_ The house was situated in the midst of the planta- 
tion^ and having never been used by Colonel Leigh or 
his family, was very plainly furnished. Dismounting 
from his horse at the door, he threw the reins to aneoro 
who hastened out, and asked . — 

" Where's the superintend en ';, darkie 1 " 

L 



14>Q THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Out on de plantation, massa." 

" Put my horse in the stable, and then go and tell him 
I'm here." 

" Bery good, massa." 

"While -waiting for the arrival of the superintendent, 
Gerald Leigh passed hurriedly up and down in front of 
the" house. He had not done so more than ten minutes, 
•when the superintendent hurried up and saluted him 
respectfully. 

" Glad to see you, Captain Leigh ; didn't expect you, 
though." 

" K r o, Gideon, somewhat a sudden visit, but my busi- 
ness is pressing — come inside." 

Gideon Geary, the superintendent, was a tall back- 
woodsman, from Vermont. He was not one of the pro- 
fessional overseers or slave-drivers, but had adopted the 
life by accident. 

Ten years previously he had saved the only daughter 
of Colonel Leigh from drowning, and the colonel, in gra- 
titude, determined to provide a berth for him. As, how- 
ever, all the property of the colonel consisted of slaves 
and plantation, he had nothing other to offer but a 
situation as overseer. Gideon, at first, with all his Free 
State prejudices on him, refused to become a " nigger- 
driver." But when it was explained to him that he 
would have the means of doing great good among the 
slaves, and of ameliorating their position, he consented 
to take the post on trial. 

He was a really kind-hearted man, and found it so 
diiferent from what he had expected, that he finally 
retained it, and had now been in Colonel Leigh's service 
for more than ten years. 

Gideon was a fine specimen of an American back- 
woodsman — six feet three without his shoes, with limbs 
like branches of trees. Large bony hands ; a great 
ungainly frame, with but little flesh, and rugged features 
had Gideon Geary. He was endowed with prodigious 
strength, and could shoulder and walk off with a 
log which two or three negroes could not even 
move. 



GEEALD LEIGH STAETS FOR KENUA^A. 



U7 



Seating himself at a table, G-erald Leigh invited the 
superintendent to follow his example. 

Glasses, wine, and fruit were placed on the table. 

G-erald filled himself a tumbler of wine, and drained it 
off at a draught. 

" Gideon," he said, putting the glass down, and look- 
ing in the rugged face of the backwoodsman, "I've 
heard bad news to-day." 

u Bad news, Master Gerald. Don't say so, now." 

* Yes, bad news of Darcy." 

"The Lord save us!" ejaculated Gideon, "I hope 
nothing ain't happened to Master Darcy. He's true 
grit, and I'd be tarnation sorry to hear he came to 
harm." 

" Gideon," said Gerald, slowly, "my brother is 
dead." 

"Dead!" 

" Dead ; and it is for me to avenge his death." 

There was a silence of some time. A tear coursed 
down the cheek of the rough Yermonter. 

"Master Gerald," he said, "this is the worst news 
I've had since my poor old mother died. To think that 
he's dead ; why it seems only but yesterday that I used 
to take him out in the woods, 'possum hunting." 

" Gideon," said Gerald, after another pause, "this is 
no time for vain regrets. He's gone. God rest his 
soul." 

" Amen ! " 

" How many hands have you on the plantation ? n 

" Five and twenty." 

" And what cattle ? " 

" Four bullocks and ten horses." 

" "We must make a stampede, Gideon; 

" Make a stampede, sir ? What, leave the old place ? " 

" Yes ; we must make tracks for the old place in Vir- 
ginia. I have not yet heard directly from my father — 
probably he has had no opportunity of writing — but I 
have heard of him. He has joined the South. This 
State will probably fall into the hands of the Federal 
troops, and all so-called 'rebel property' will be con- 
s' 2 



US THE BLACK AXGEL. 

fiscated. So, you see, we must move "the hands and 
cattle South ; at least, the horses, for I want them and a 
hundred or so more." 

" When do you think of making a move, Ear?" 

" To-morrow. It is useless delaying." 

" And the crops ? " 

" Must be left ; we cannot stay for them." 

" Very good, sir. "What must be, must be. I've 
served your father for ten years, and a noble gentleman 
I've always found him ; and I'm not going to leave him 
in the hour of trouble." 

It was now evening, and Gideon ordered supper to be 
prepared for his young master, while he went to make 
arrangements for an early move in the morning. 

The horses and cattle were all got in, and several drays 
loaded with the effects of the negroes and such portable 
property from the house as it was thought advisable to 
take. In the morning all was hurry and confusion. 

The negroes thought this sudden stampede capital fun, 
and laughed, chattered, and shouted with all that utter 
lightheadedness and carelessness for which the African 
race is so celebrated. 

Gerald Leigh himself superintended the arrangements, 
and when all were completed, drew Gideon Geary on 
one side to give him his final directions. 

" You will make the best of your way to Harper's Ferry, 
about ten miles higher up the Potomac than "Washing- 
ton. It will take you at least a week to track the dis- 
tance. I will join you there at the end of that time, and 
will cross with you over into Virginia, and make for my 
father's plantation. On the road pick up and bring all 
the horses you can — at least, all strong useful horses, 
suitable for cavalry purposes. I think that is all, and [ 
can make the best of my way back to Baltimore." 

At this moment an enormous dog, which had been let 
loose from the kennel, rushed up to Gerald, and com- 
menced bounding and capering around him, evincing its 
joy by every means in its power. 

" What, Lion, old boy, is that you?" said Gerald, 
caressing the brute's head with his hand. 



EECEUITIXG FOR TIIE EEEELS. 149 

" What shall we do with the dog, sir ? — take him with 
us ? " 

Gerald thought for a moment, and then replied, — 

" No ; he shall come with me. "What do you say, 
Lion?" 

Lion, as if he understood the question, commenced 
ugain bounding and leaping about. 

Then the cavalcade set out, and Gerald Leigh, mount- 
ing his horse, galloped off in the direction of Baltimore, 
followed by the big dog. It was evening when he again 
clattered through the streets of the city, and halted at 
the steps of the hotel. Giving his horse to a negro, who 
came round from the stables, he entered ; and going up 
to the hotel bar, asked for Lieutenant Murdock and his 
friends. 

• The clerk thought they were in the smoking room, but 
on making his way there he found they had left. One 
of the negro waiters said he thought that the gentlemen 
had gone to a liquor store in Union-square, where there 
was a bowline: saloon. 



CHAPTER XXIV. 

EECitriTrs'G eoe the eebels. 

Geeald Leigh hastened out, and proceeded to try 
the various bowling saloons and liquor bars in the square. 
As he passed out of one of these, his attention was sud- 
denly taken by two men who stood at the bar in earnest 
conversation. 

He felt certain that he knew one of these men, but 
could not at once call to mind when or where he had seen 
him. Suddenly it flashed across his mind he had seen 
him at New York. It was Thong, whom Webster Gayle 
had vl.^ '.^iirged from his service. 

Gerald Leigh thought no more of the matter, and 
passed in. At last he found his friends. They were in 
the back room of a liquor saloon, and he was directed to 
them by the sound of their voices, which were heard half 
across the square, shouting, laughing, and singing. 



150 TILE BLACK AX GEL. 

It appeared that they were enjoying themselves. 

Gerald Leigh looked gloomy and annoyed ; he felt in 
no humour for mirth, with his brother's death yet fresh 
in his mind. Passing through the bar, he entered the 
room at the back, and advanced up to the head of the 
tabic, at which was seated the Englishman whom they 
had rescued, flanked on each side by Trent and "Win- 
stone, two of his brother officers in the United Statea 1 
army. At the other end of the table were Murdoch and 
Irving, and next them were the three Irishmen who had 
also been engaged in the fight of the previous day. 

Captain George, the Englishman, had his head band- 
aged up, but otherwise seemed none the worse for the 
scrimmage he had been in. He appeared quite at home, 
and was on the best of terms with everybody. A shout 
of joy greeted the appearance of Gerald Leigh. 

" Here you are, Gerald, come over here by us," crieu 
"Winstone, on Captain George's right ; " plenty of 
room for you, and devilish good company, by thunder ! " 

Gerald Leigh looked around him, and saw evidence of 
a carouse in the flushed faces and glittering eyes of the 
company. A bowl of punch was on the table, and sundry 
bottles of wine and spirits. 

"Allow me to offer you some punch, sir," said Captain 
George, rising and offering him a glass ; " I can recom- 
mend the brew." 

"No, I thank you," replied Gerald, with a mournful 
smile ; "I am in no humour just now to join in your 
merriment ; nevertheless, I do not wish to interfere with 
you; enjoy yourself to the top of your bent — that is, if 
you think it wise with that cut head of yours." 

" Oh, that is nothing," was the laughing reply. " If 
I never fare worse in my journey through the world, I 
shall not complain." 

Gerald bowed politely, and turning to the other end 
of the table, said, — 

" Murdoch, I want a few words with you." 

Murdoch arose and came round to him. 

"Did you get a note from me ? " 

" By Jove, yes ; I was very sorry to hear you had bad 



RECRUITING FOR THE REBELS. 151 

news of Darcy, upon my soul I was ; but these fellows 
have been carrying on such a game that I declare they 
drove it clean out of my head." 

Gerald seated himself at a little table, and invited 
Murdock to follow his example. 

" Are you sober enough," he said, " to listen to what 
I have to say? " 

"Well, I am sober enough, as far as that goes, 

although I must own to having had a glass or two of 

punch." tii 

" Well, to commence," said Gerald, " I told you I had 

bad news of poor Darcy." 

" Yes ; what of him— has he got into any scrape i 
" He is dead," said Gerald, in a low voice. 
Murdock looked deeply grieved and shocked. 
"Dead! " 

" Yes, dead ; he attempted to seize the Spitfire, the 
sloop he was on board of, and was successful, for they 
ran her out to sea. Unfortunately he paid for the 
success with his life, for he was shot just as they were 
steaming by the commodore's ship ; he would not allow 
a gun to be fired, although they could have raked her 
fore and aft, and the Yankees showed their gratitude by 
killino- him. But it is of no use talking of the past, let 
us look to the future. You have long -since made up 
your mind to leave the service." 
" Yes." 

" And join the Confederate cause." 
" Yes, heart and soul." 

"The others, too— Irving, Winstone, and Trent— 
they will also do the same." 

" Yes, undoubtedly, and a dozen more who are now m 
Baltimore." 

" Well, then, I propose to raise an irregular cavalry 
regiment at once ; some of you have horses, and I snail 
have twenty horses to meet me on the Potomac in a 
week's time. We can get twenty others about Balti- 
more, and with what our friends already have, we snail 
be able to muster sixty or seventy sabres m less than a 
fortnight. We will then cross over into Virginia, above 



152 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Washington, when we can soon get onr strength np to 
five or six hundred. Go and speak to the others about 
it." 

Lieutenant Murdock went over to Winstone and 
Trent, while Gerald Leigh approached Irving, and was 
soon engaged in earnest conversation, 

"What is the matter, Murdock ? " said "Winstone, as 
the young o fhcer approached them ; " is Charl 
bombarded, or New Orleans captured ? You look 
serious enough for something of the kind." 

Murdock made no reply, but seating himself, com- 
menced to unfold the plans which Gerald Leigh pro- 
posed. 

"Raise a cavalry regiment right off; with all my 
heart," said one of the young officers; " I'm tired of the 
Stars and Stripes and the United States' uniform." 

"And I," said his friend. 

" That, then, is settled ; you have horses, so have I, 
and Gerald Leigh will provide some forty. By Jupiter, 
the Yankees will find out we 're in earnest before we 've 
done with them, I reckon." 

" "Do you think there will be anything of a war, sir ? " 
asked Captain George. 

"That depends," replied Murdock; "if the North- 
erners let us separate peaceably, there need be no war 
at all; but if they think to keep us in the Union by 
force, to conquer us back, they will find that we will 
fight to the last gasp ; aye, fight, and conquer too. The 
Yankees never could beat us, and never shall." 

"And do you think they will refuse you your inde- 
pendence ? " 

" I do ; they are so inflated with arrogance and self- 
esteem, and have, in addition, such strong pecuniary 
reasons for keeping us still bound to them, that they 
will never willingly let us leave the Union." 

"And you think that the Southerners are fully deter- 
mined to have their independence ? " 

" I am sure they are so determined, and that they will 
assert it ; and why should they not ? have we not as 
much and more right to secede from the United States as 



EECHTJITIXG FOE THE llEBELS. 153 

they bad to rebel a hundred years ago, and throw off t:o 
English yoke?" 

" I do not deny your right," was the reply ; " I simply 
question your power." 

" You shall see, sir ; before another twelvemonth has 
passed over, we will give them a specimen of our pluck 
and determination, which will convince them that we 
have both the will and the power to be independent." 

The young Englishman, whom they knew as Captain 
George, rose from his seat and went over to the three 
Irishmen. 

" Give his honour some drink," said one of them to 
the other, " don't you see his glass is empty ? Bad luck 
to ye, where's your manners ? " 

"No, I don't want any more just now, thank you, 
Pat. I wish to have a little talk with you." 

"Talk away, yer honour, but my name ain't Pat, at 
your service, it's Mick — Mickey Callaghan they call mc. 
This one here, sir, this one wid the shock head of red 
hair, is Pat — Patrick O'Brien's his name; but we call 
him ' Paddy the Soldier,' because, don't ye see, yer 
honour, he's been in the army." 

" "Well, and your other friend ? " 

" Oh, he's no good at all; his name 's Barney Quin ; 
the villain ! he's not worth a rap, your honour, barring 
for a free fight, or the likes of that ; he's got no edica- 
tion, your honour. Now, if yer wanted a smart active 
lad, as clerk, or mayhap, footman or page, it's Paddy 
O'Brien 's the boy for you." 

Captain George smiled at the idea of having Paddy, 
the soldier, with his red head and great hulking form, 
in page's livery. 

" Paddy," said the Englishman to this worthy, " can 
you ride — ride a horse, I mean ? " 

"Well, your honour, it would be strange if I couldn't. 
Sure I was in the cavalry for five years." 

" And you, Mickey ? " 

" Sure and I can ; I was a helper in Lord "Waterford's 
stables on the Curragh, when I was a boy, and inany's 
the bit of blood I've had my legs across. 



15J< SUE BLACK ANGEL. 

" And you, Barney Quin ? " 

" Is it me, yer honour, can I ride ? in eoorse I can." 

" Go along wid ye, don't ye believe him, sir; he can 
ride in the inside of a coach, or on the railway cars, 
that's all the riding he can do." 

" 'Deed, then, ye know jest nothing about it, and it's 
showing yer ignorance ye are, the both av ye, talking av 
what ye don't understand. Can't I ride, be jabers ? I'll 
let ye know I can ride. Sure now, didn't I ride over a 
man at the last Limerick races before I left the ould 
country ? " 

A burst of laughter from his compatriots greeted this 
speech. 

" Ah, you're a fine horseman, the devil doubt ye ! 
Eide over a man ! and is that the way to ride ? Is that 
what's wanted for a cavalry soldier ? " 

" Be jabers it is, then, and nothing else." 

" Ah, go on w r id ye, showing his honour yer igno- 
rance." 

" Ignorance! by St. Patrick, I call it sinse! I'll Live 
it to his honour, now, and I'll bet ye a York shilling, 
the pair av ye, I'm right." 

" That it's a token of good horsemanship to ride over 
a man ? I'll bet ye." 

" Av eoorse it is ; what better would ye want for a 
cavalry soldier than to ride over the inimy ? Ah, me 
boys, I had ye then." 

Captain George, on being appealed to, declared that 
Barney Quin had won his York shilling, which he 
pocketed with great glee. 

Meanwhile, Gerald Leigh, Murdock, Irving, Winstone, 
and Trent remained together in close conversation. 

Gerald Leigh had produced his pocket-book, and was 
taking down names. 

" Murdock, you say you know two officers who will 
join us, each bringing a horse and man ; you, Irving, can 
bring three friends whom you can count on ; and you, 
Trent, three, or perhaps four ; I can get seven or eight, 
at least by to-morrow. This, with ourselves, will make 
twenty-two. Once in Virginia, we can get as many men 



UECRUTTI^a TOR THE HEEEL3. Too 

as we can provide horses for, of that there is no fear. 
"We can, then, depend on starting to-morrow for the 
rendezvous, numbering twenty-two men and horses." 

" If you are inclined to accept the services of a few 
volunteers, you can count on more than that, sir," said a 
voice behind them. 

They looked up ; it was Captain George who spoke. 

"I will find four men and four horses equipped 
complete. As for the men, I am one, and i 
three Irishmen, who are accustomed to the saddle, 
are the others, and the horses are ready at half-an-hour's 
notice." 

" But I thought you were an Englishman." 

"And so I am, but that fact did not prevent me 
drawing my sword and fighting by the side of the great 
and glorious Garibaldi, nor do I see why it should pre- 
vent me fighting by your side3, gentlemen, so long as you 
fight for what is but your right — your independence." 

"jSobly spoken," said Gerald Leigh; "I don't know 
your name, sir." 

" They call me Captain George." 

" Then, Captain George, here's my hand." 

The young men now all rose and left the saloon to 
return to the hotel. Captain George gave the three 
Irishmen a couple of dollars, and told them to be round 
the first thing in the morning. 

He had arranged with them to accept service with him; 
he had so won their confidence that they cared little what 
the service was, and when they learned it was to join a 
volunteer regiment of cavalry for the Confederates, they 
at once assented. 

" Be jabers ! " said Paddy the Soldier, " if it was volun- 
teer cavalry for the divil himself, with all his imps to 
blow the bugles, I'd be one among them." 

Gerald Leigh left them on arriving at the hotel, and 
Bent his name up to the two young ladies. 

His friends as usual found their way to the smoking- 
room, where they commenced to discuss their plan3 and 
prospects. "When they discovered that their new friend, 
Captain George, besides having served with the great 



150 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Italian liberator, had also held a commission in the En- 
glish army, he rose greatly in their estimation. 

There was a quiet earnestness in all he did or said 
which did not fail to impress them. Notwithstanding 
his apparent recklessness, he went so quietly and sys- 
tematically to work at everything, that they began to 
discover there was much concealed beneath the dashing, 
careless exterior. As to who he was or what he was 
they knew not. 

lie appeared to have abundance of money, but what 
lie was doing in America, and why he chose to lead the 
Bohemian life which he had done for the last year or 
two by his own confession, they could not discover. 

No matter, they found him a very good fellow, good 
company, liberal, and ready for any enterprise, and he 
was soon as firmly installed in their good opinion as if 
they had known him for years. 

On his way to the ladies' apartment, Gerald Leigh 
encountered Lupus Rock in one of the corridors, lie 
was just issuing from a private room, which Gerald con- 
jectured was his own, and was in earnest conversation 
with a man whom at first the young officer did not recog- 
nise. He nodded carelessly to Lupus, who bowed coldly 
in return, and strode on towards the ladies' drawing-room. 

As he passed on, it flashed across his mind that the 
form and general appearance of the man was familiar to 
him. Then he recalled to mind having before seen Lupus 
in Baltimore, engaged in conversation with Malpas Thong, 
and he at once concluded that it was lie whom he had 
just now passed. 

Stella and Angela Gayle welcomed him heartily, but sadly. 

Angela was at all times too partial to the frank, bold- 
spirited young officer to act otherwise, and even the 
haughty spirit of Stella had received a shock which had 
somewhat 'tamed it3 enthusiasm. 

"With the memory of his brother's tragic end fresh in 
her memory, she could not find it in her heart to speak 
or even think the bitter thoughts with which she had 
met the treason of Darcy. She contented herself, then, 
with entreaties that he would think better of the matter. 



KECItUITIXG TOTt THE REBELS. 157 

# 

Seconded by Angela, who, with tearful eyes, looked im- 
ploringly in his face, she begged that he would not join 
those mad rebels, but would retain his commission in the 
United States' army. 

cl What ! " he cried, " and fight by the side of my 
brother's murderers, against friends, relations, even my 
father, for I know that he has joined the rebellion? 
Angela— Stella, can you realljPcounsel me to draw my 
sword against my own father— perhaps to lead my men 
to an attack in which he would perish ? " 

" Then, Gerald, why cannot you remain neutral? Why 
need you identify yourself with this rebellion, which will 
be speedily crushed out ? " 

Gerald Leigh laughed scornfully. 
" And so, my gentle little Angela, you think it will be 
soon crushed out ? " 

Angela was standing by his side, and in the earnest- 
ness of her entreaties, she had laid her hand on his arm. 
Gerald Leigh drew- her gently towards him, and bending 
down his head till his cheek brushed her soft hair, he 
said mournfully: — 

" Crushed out !— Angela, this rebellion will never be 
crushed out but .at the price of extermination. When 
my bones, and the bones of every one of the hundreds 
of thousands of Southern gentlemen who draw the 
sword shall bleach on the field of battle— when the land 
is a wilderness, deluged with blood — when the Southern 
people shall have been crushed out of existence, annihi- 
lated — then the rebellion will have been crushed out !— - 
then, and not till then! If you believe in the possi- 
bility of eight millions of free people, familiar with arms, 
and willing, nay, eager to fight desperately in self-defence, 
being subjugated, you may hope that the rebellion will 
be crushed out." 

Angela Gayle, scarcely conscious of what she did, 
leaned her head on Gerald's shoulder and wept. 

Stella looked on mournfully in silence. There was 
something so noble, so manly in Gerald Leigh, that rebel 
though he was, she felt no pang at seeing her only sister 
clinging to him like the honeysuckle to the oak. 



153 THE BLACK AKGEL. 

Gerald Leigh had been their friend, their companion 
from their earliest infancy. The visits of himself and 
his brother to New York, when they were at school to- 
gether, were always eagerly looked for by the sisters. 
And when they left school, and went to the military 
academy at West Point, twice a year at least tho 
brothers were looked foiyis a matter of course. 

After the obsequious politeness and saturnine manners 
of their cousin Lupus Rock, the boisterous gaiety and 
high spirits of Gerald, and the quiet, firm, and earnest 
manner of Darcy came like the sunshine after a gloomy 
With strangers Gerald was always at once a special 
favourite. He seemed to jump right into their affections, 
and it was no more possible to resist his frank, engaging 
manner, than it was to feel in time the deep influence which 
the powerful character and quiet energy of Darcy produced. 

Whatever might have been the feelings of Stella to- 
wards Darcy Leigh, it is certain that the shock of his 
sudden death had thrown her into a state of gloom and 
despondency which she would hardly admit to herself. 
Probably she felt remorse at the uugenerous words she 
had addressed to him in her father's drawing-room, the 
last he ever heard from her lips. Perhaps it was this 
memory which caused her to deal tenderly and gently 
with the dashing Gerald. Although in some respects bo 
different, there was a certain striking likeness between 
the two brothers, a likeness rather in expression than 
feature. Gerald was tall, broad-shouldered, and fair, 
while, on the other hand, Darcy was of middle stature, 
slight, and dark. Gerald looked the beau ideal of a sol- 
dier, handsome, with an upright, noble carriage, and 
limbs partaking of the grace of Apollo with the strength 
of Hercules. Darcy, on the other hand, although well 
built, seemed even slighter than he really was, and usually 
walked with head down. This gave him the appearance 
of a slight stoop. 

Darcy's features were finely cut, almost effeminate. 
The thin nose and clearly chiselled mouth, unshaded by 
moustache, gave him a singularly girlish cast of coun- 
tenance. Gerald's features, though good and regular, 



EECEUITING FOB THE EEBELS. 159 

were cast altogether in a larger, grander mould. Not- 
withstanding these great differences, there were times 
when the most casual observer could not fail to discover 
a great resemblance. "When Darcy Leigh would wake up 
from his usual quiet, listless manner, when excited from 
any cause— anger, pleasure, or otherwise — then the family 
likeness might be seen, and this so strikingly, that people 
would wonder they never noticed it before. 

As Gerald Leigh stood by the side of Angela Gayle, 
Stella, regarding him in rapt attention, saw on his 
handsome features the self-same look as that with which 
Darcy Leigh left her father's drawing-room for the last 
time. There was a silence of some time, during which 
the gentle Angela did not seek to restrain her tears. So 
far from the presence of Gerald being an embarrassment, 
she felt it rather as a relief. After a little time she dis- 
engaged herself, and trying to smile through her tears, 
took a seat, while he placed himself beside her. 

" And have you then quite decided on this mad, this 
hopeless enterprise ? " asked Stella, gazing on the 
ground. 

" Yes, quite," was the reply ; " to-morrow I go to 
"Washington. I will see you there safely installed in 
your new home, and then, at the head of some twenty or 
thirty brave fellows, I shall cross the Potomac, and join 
the Confederate army." 

" Are you then goiug to raise a regiment ? " 

" Yes, a cavalry regiment — irregular cavalry. I have 
sent on all the horses from the Kenhana plantation. "We 
shall pick up others on the road, and shall doubtless 
find men to mount them. Then in about a week from 
this date I trust to rendezvous at Harper's Ferry with 
about a hundred sabres." 

" But suppose you are discovered ? Harper's Ferry 
is so near Washington." 

" We shall take all necessary precautions ; shall leave 
"Washington late at night, and ford the river early in 
the morning. Once across we are safe." 

"It seems very terrible and very dangerous," &&k 
Angela mournfully. 



160 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Terrible — dangerous ! " exclaimed Stella ; " that 
does not express it. It is madness— madness— mad- 
ness ! " 

"Let the emit prove," said Gerald. 

"1 fear the proof will be a bitter one for you, Gerald," 
said Stella. " I pray Heaven I may be wrong, but 1 fore- 
Bee nothing but disaster to you and yours from this step." 

" So be it— disaster, death — 1 brave them all. Dis- 
grace can never come." 

" Gerald, will any of your brother officers accompany 
you ? " 

" Yes, several, besides that young Englishman who so 
gallantly came to your assistance. Then there is " 

Gerald Leigh suddenly interrupted himself, and glanced 
towards the door. This was concealed by a screen placed 
there in order to prevent draught. Both Gerald and the 
two girls heard a slight noise from this direction. 

" Some one is behind the screen," said Gerald, ad- 
vancing rapidly towards it. 

However, on inspection, he found no one. The door, 
however, was ajar, and he felt almost certain that he 
could hear footsteps hurrying away. He closed the door, 
and returning, said, — 

" Some one entered the room behind the screen, I am 
almost certain ; whether by mistake or for the purpose 
of eavesdropping, I cannot say. I trust not the latter, 
or, at all events, that our conversation was not heard." 

Stella and Angela gazed in alarm in each other's 
faces, and the former proceeded to urge Gerald to 
abandon the enterprise, lest he should have been over- 
heard, in which case he might be betrayed. Gerald, how- 
ever, stoutly refused. 

Then Stella and Angela both pressed him to alter his 
plans — at least to fix on a different rendezvous. He 
mused for some time in silence. 

" I fear it is impossible," he said ; " Harper's Ferry 
is the only practicable one for many miles, and the 
superintendent from the Maryland plantation is to meet us 
there with the horses. He 13 now on the road, and I do 
not know how to communicate with him." 



TUE STOLEN TAPERS. 1G1 

Shortly after this Gerald Leigh left the two sisters, 
promising to return in the morning. 

" You will accompany us to Washington, will you not, 
Gerald?" asked Stella, anxiously. "Do you know, I 
feel so much safer when you are with us." 

Had Stella Gayle striven to analyse her feelings, she 
would have found it difficult to do so. Gerald Leigh was, 
in her opinion, a rebel, a traitor to the Union for which 
she had so romantic a regard, and yet she acknowledged 
that she felt safer when with him. So true it is that the 
heart of woman clkigs instinctively to the brave and 
noble, no matter under what flag they fight, or how 
antagonistic their aims and desires. 



CHAPTER XXV. 

THE STOLEN PAPEES. 

It was, indeed, Malpas Thong whom Gerald Leigh met 
with Lupus. They had been closeted together for nearly 
two hours in the private room of the latter. The con- 
versation had evidently been important, for the table was 
strown with letters and papers ; and Malpas also carried 
out with him a roll of notes, which he had not when he 
entered. The two men passed out together, and strolled 
leisurely down the street. 

" Now I think we thoroughly understand each other," 
said Lupus to his tool ; " you know the part you are to 
play, and are prepared to carry it out at all hazards ? " 

" Eight you are," replied the man, gruffly. 

" By the way, who was that fellow I saw you talking 
with this morning ? " 

" That," said Thong, carelessly — "oh, he calls himself 
the Chevalier Leroux." 

" What and who is he ? " 

" As to who he is I don't know, and much question if 
he himself could give a clear account of his parentage. 
As to what he is, he is much the same as you, I, and a 
few thousand more in this go-ahead country." 

" And what is that ? " 



1G2 THE BLACK A>G£L. 

*' A thundering rogue ! " 

Lupus coloured with passion. 

" How dare you address me so, fellow ? " be exclaimed, 
with a savage look. 

" How dare I ? Now just you look here, Mister 
Bock," replied Thong, coolly picking his teeth; "as to 
how dare I, I dare do a deal more than that, as you may 
find if you play any of yer tricks. If you 're in the boat, 
by thunder! so am I; and it '11 take a better man than 
you to trick me out. No, sirree, this child means stick- 
ing to you till the last. "VVg began it together, and by 
Gi- — d, we '11 finish ! So now, old hoss, you know yer 
man. You just stick to yer bargain, and never mind 
about flying into tantrums, for this child don't care a 
cuss for all you can do." 

So saying, the slave-driver produced a plug of tobacco, 
and biting off a piece, commenced chewing it indifferently. 

Lupus Rock glared angrily at his worthy companion ; 
for a moment his hand sought the bosom of his shirt, 

Malpas saw the motion. 

" No you don't," he said, keeping his eye fixed on 
him. 

Lupus, with a muttered oath, thinking it useless and 
dangerous to defy his ruffian associate, answered, — 

" Well, well, there is no necessity for us to quarrel ; 
you perform your part, and I will not be wanting in 
mine." 

" Ah, that's something like talk ; and now, since 
you 're civil, I'll tell you all I know of this Leroux. 
Ever since I 've known him he 's been living by his wits. 
He 's a gambler and a blackleg, and a d — d clever one; 
he's game for any villany, but he is in his heart a rank 
coward. Now, he and I have got a little business to- 
gether, and if he dared, he would throw me over ; but in 
that respect he 's like you, Mr. Lupus — he 's got all the 
will, but he daren't do it." 

Again an expression of strong hate came over Eock's 
Matures. Malpas Thong seemed to take a morbid de- 
light in playing wivh his fear3, as he had before done 
Kith those of Leroux* 



THE STOLEN PAPEES. 163 

The two associates now separated, Laving appointed to 
meet again two days afterwards at Washington. 

We have been speaking of the worthy Chevalier 
Leroux ; let us, for a short space, return to him. 
Scarcely ten minutes had elapsed after Thong and Lupus 
had gone out together, than Leroux passed the open 
door of the latter's room. He was himself staying at 
the hotel, and his room being on a higher floor, it so 
happened that it was necessary for him to pass the door 
of the other's on his way down. 

The door was just ajar; Leroux pushed it open and 
glanced in. It almost seemed the work of instinct. He 
saw before him a table strewn with papers, law docu- 
ments, &c. 

" Who knows ?" he muttered to himself, " there may 
be a roll of notes among that lot." 

Then, cautiously glancing around him, he passed into 
the room. Advancing to the table, he comme ced turn- 
ing over the papers, &c. 

After some minutes of this work, he gave vemt to an 
exclamation of disappointment, and seemed almost in- 
clined to return. There stood before him a small escri- 
toire, open. It contained several drawers, which he pro- 
ceeded to examine one by one. In each of these drawers 
were bundles of papers and letters. 

Suddenly his eye was caught by the endorsement on 
one of these bundles, and he took it from the drawer, 
After a rapid glance at its nature, he turned to leave the 
room, muttering to himself in a tone of exultation, — 

" By Heavens ! this may prove of more service to me 
than dollars." 

He then passed out as silently as he entered, w r ith the 
packet still in his hand. He was walking down the cor- 
ridor when he perceived the figure of a man coming to- 
wards him. He himself was in comparative shadow, so 
as not to be plainly visible, but the other figure was 
right in the glare of lamps at the commencement of the 
corridor. 

Leroux gazed for one moment as if half in doubt. 
Then he staggered back as if shot. He grew white as 

M 2 



161 THE BLACK AS GEL. 

death, his knees knocked together from terror. The 
figure advanced carelessly towards hiin, humming an air. 

It was the form of a good-looking young man of about 
seven or eight and twenty. There was nothing in the 
appearance of this figure to cause such terrible alarm in 
the breast of the gallant Chevalier. 

He was decidedly prepossessing in appearance, with a 
light, well-built, sinewy frame ; good features, a sharp, 
bright eye, and wearing anjexpression half of recklessness, 
half of calm, deliberate determination. 

Certainly to a stranger, the Chevalier's alarm would 
appear most uncalled for. Suddenly the young man cast 
his eyes on the form of Leroux, as he remained huddled 
in a doorway. 

He gazed'through the obscurity for a second or so with 
careless curiosity. 

Then his eyes blazed, and with a terrible cry of rage, 
he dashed towards him. Instantly that Leroux saw 
he was recognised, he darted away with the energy of 
despair. He dashed through an open door further 
up. 

It led to a ladies' drawing-room, similar to that occu- 
pied by the two sisters. It was on the first floor, and 
opened on to a balcony. Leroux, without hesitating a 
moment or pausing to* unfasten and open the window, 
dashed himself through the glass, and. all cut and bleed- 
ing, leaped from the balcony into the garden below, 
where he fell heavily. He lay for a moment as if stunned, 
and then, gathering himself up, he crawled slowly and 
painfully into some shrubs, and disappeared. 

His pursuer arrived on the balcony immediately after 
him. He appeared, for a moment, as if about to follow 
him, but thought better of it. Drawing his revolver, he 
fired a shot at the spot in the shrubs where he had last 
seen him. 

A shriek of pain bore evidence thac he had, at all 
events, wounded his enemy. Then he hastily retraced 
his steps, and running down stairs, he shouted for some 
of the hotel porters and waiters to follow him. 

" A hundred dollars to the man who captures a villain. 



THE STOLEN PAPERS. 165 

who has just jumped from the first floor window. Follow 
me, my boys— he is a thief — a murderer!" 

He rushed out with a crowd of others into the small 
garden at the back of the hotel. They searched the 
shrubs carefully in every direction, but could discover no 
signs of the fugitive. At last they came across a splash 
of blood. 

From this a succession of spots led to a low part in the 
wooden palisades. These were smeared with blood ; so 
it was evident that the fugitive had by this means made 
his escape into the adjoining yard which communicated 
with a public thoroughfare. At a distance of not more 
than a hundred yards from this was the main street. 
That once gained, doubtless Leroux had called a passing 
fly, and was by this time far away. His wounded appear- 
ance would have excited no surprise in those turbulent 
times, and as they could find or hear nothing of him the 
pursuit was relinquished. 

The young man, the pursuer, was Gerald Leigh's new 
friend the Englishman, whom he knew as Captain George. 
The sisters G-ayle had requested Gerald to send him up 
to their room, in order to receive their thanks for the 
gallant way in which he had come to their assistance. It 
was on his way up the corridor towards their room that 
he had suddenly encountered Leroux. 

[Now that it was evident his enemy had escaped, he 
again ascended the stairs to find his way to the ladies. 
We have said that when Leroux left the room of Bock, 
he held in his hand the bundle of purloined papers. In 
his precipitate flight he dropped them. 

Captain George saw them fall from his hand, but did 
not at the time stop to pick them up. jNow, however, 
as he passed along the corridor again, he remembered to 
have seen something dropped, and searching as near as 
he could remember the spot, he succeeded in finding 
them, and placed them in his breast pocket without ex- 
amining them, thinking to do so at some future time. 

AVhen he entered the presence of the two sisters, he 
bore on his countenance but little trace of the exciting 
chase he had just been a party to. He was, perhaps, a 



^GG the black utgbl. 

shade paler, but that was all. He received the thanks 
of Stella and Angela in a light, easy maimer, declaring 
that what he had done was quite unworthy of notice. 
After remaining in conversation with them for some 
quarter of an hour, he politely took his leave. 

He then went to his own room, and proceeded to 
examine the packet of papers he had picked up. On his 
way to his room he passed Lupus Kock, who was coming 
towards the drawing-room of the ladies. One by one, 
and carefully, he opened each paper and letter, and read 
their contents. 

If he expected that any of them would throw any light 
or reveal anything concerning the man who had dropped 
them, he was mistaken. He could make nothing of 
them. They related to subjects and to persons of which 
he knew nothing, and of whom he had never heard. 

"With a look of disappointment he threw them away 
from him. But, on second thoughts, he carefully gathered 
them up again, and, unlocking a small desk on his table, 
placed them within it, and again locked it. 

" There is an old saying," he said to himself, " keep a 
thing for seven years, and you'll find a use for it. "Who 
knows that these papers, senseless and incomprehensible 
as they now seem to me, may not some day be of good 
service ? " 

Lupus Kock, after parting from Thong, returned 
leisurely to the hotel. Arrived there, he, instead of 
seeking his own apartments, made his way to that of his 
cousins. He found the door ajar, and could plainly dis- 
tinguish the voices of the two girls and of Gerald Leigh 
in earnest conversation. With a muttered curse, he 
was about to retire, when a few words uttered by Stella 
caught his attention. 

He pushed open the door and advanced noiselessly 
behind the screen, where he could hear all without being 
seen. It is probable he would have waited there until 
the conclusion of the conversation, but, unfortunately, a 
slight noise he made called the attention of Gerald, and 
the eavesdropper beat a hasty retreat. 

He again passed out of the hotel, and, walking up and 



THE STOLEN PAPERS. 1^7 



down in front of the steps, seemed m deep thought. 
There was an expression of vindictive joy mixed with a 
certain amount of uncertainty, on Ins handsome feature* 
"Yes, yes," he muttered, "he must he betrayed \9 
Government. But then there comes the question will 
it not compromise me with the rebels, with whom it is 
necessary for me, at present, to keep in r 

All at once an idea seemed to have struck him, for the 
expression of uncertainty disappeared, and was succeeded 
bv one of perfect gratification. . 

A smile of triumph played on his lips; the piercing 
eyes glittered with a vengeful light. T 

"Of course," he said to himself. "What a fool I 
must have been. He need not know, no one need know, 
the source from which the information proceeded. 1 can 
manage to get my fine bullying gentleman arrested, con- 
demned, and none be the wiser as to how it happened. 
It is as plain as day, and simple as possiole. 

He then returned to the hotel, and hastened to his 

own room. _ .. ., , .i. a 

During his absence the scene we have described— tlie 
flight and escape of Leroux— had taken place. 

Lupus, however, knew nothing of this, nor that nis 
room had been entered. 

He noticed, however, that the door was open. 
" Careless of me, very," bethought, " to leave my room 
door open, with all my papers lying about." 

He advanced to the table, and commenced assorting 
and arranging them, placing them in the small drawers 
of the escritoire. Opening one of these drawers, in 
order to insert a packet of papers, he observed with 
astonishment that it was empty. . 

"By Heavens!" he said, "there is something gone 
from here. I feel almost sure that I did not leave that 
packet in New Fork ; and yet it is not here." . 

He then commenced a strict search, but did not succeed 
in finding the missing packet. He leaned his head on 
his hand^and tried to think where he could possibly have 

P One thing was quite certain, and he was obliged, after 



1G8 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

diligent search, to acknowledge the fact — it was not 
there. It must either then be at ]S T ew York in his iron 
safe, or have been lost or stolen, lie hoped the former. 
As to its being lost, he did not see any possibility of 
that, for if it had been there at all, it would have been 
in its usual place. But then it might have been stolen. 
Who, however, could have stolen it, and for what pur- 
pose ? 

For a moment his thoughts turned to Thong, but he 
remembered he had been in his company all the time 
they were in the room together, that he had never left 
him alone even foran instant. When he left him too,Thong 
went in quite an opposite direction to that leading to 
the hotel; so he finally dismissed the thought of Thoug 
being the thief from his mind. Finally he came to the 
conclusion that he must have left them at New York. 

He placed all the papers in the escritoire, and care- 
fully locked it before leaving the room, determined for 
the future not to be guilty of such folly as leaviug his 
table covered with dangerous documents and the door 
open. 

"After all, even if it were stolen," he said to himself, 
u it would be quite useless to any one not acquainted 
with all the particulars. To a stranger the papers would 
be incomprehensible." 

And with this consoling thought he left the room, 
locking the door behind him, and sought his cousins' 
apartment. 

" I suppose their dear friend, Mr. Gerald Leigh, will 
have left by this time, unless he intends to take up his 
quarters with my cousins altogether." 

He met the young Englishman just coming from their 
apartments. He little thought that in the breast 
pocket of the latter was his lost packet. He recognised 
the Englishman as the man who had first come to their 
assistance in the street row. 

He bowed coldly, muttering, " More visitors — on my 
soul, these young ladies seem determined to have their 
own way and act exactly as they please in every re- 
spect." 



THE STOLEN PAPEBS. 1C ' 9 

TTp A\A not remain long with Stella and her sister. He 
J* fflhejwere ready to start for Washington on the 
following morning. . f p i ea se," 

•;\7:eTa r -CTeZ^'ea"-sfh y eUy tired 
S of ld tht US pt'e, wherTwa &ve neither friends nor ac- 
« U «" Vhought you were tolerably fortunate in that 

bravely come to our rescue." „«~„+ 01 q M re- 

"Bv the way," said Lupus Koch, with affected care 
lessneC-Glrald Leigh is going to accompany yon to 

consin. She was not deceived by the affected careless 

young ladies with luggage enough for : six. 

wfth these words Lupus rose and left the room. 

^Angda'Taid Stelli earnestly » Lupus has some 
design o°n foot-some treacherous design against Gerald 
Lei-h Did von mark the change in his manner ? He- 
fehe was Averse to our seeing him ; now £«*«*« 

••-SSSfflaJSU incur auy^ange, for 
that 1; so good, so kind/and noble, should suffer injury 



through us." 



170 THE BLACK AKGEL. 

Stella Gaylc mused for some time, tlien she taid with 
a sigh, — 

"The whole future seems dark, gloom}', aud impene- 
trable. At each moment fresh terrors, fresh complications, 
start up. This sudden journey to Washington, so in- 
explicable, so apparently causeless, but which our father 
declares absolutely necessary to our interests. Then 
the fact of our travelling alone with Lupus Rock, and 
his manner, at times almost insolent, as if with conscious 
power, either now or in prospect. All these things per- 
plex and alarm me. I see no solution, no way out of 
the labyrinth." 

" We must put our trust in Heaven, Stella, and in 
Gerald Leigh. I am sure he will never desert us ! " 

Stella could not help smiling at the naive manner with 
which Angela spoke of Heaven and Gerald Leigh. 

"Which do you mean will never desert you, Angela?" 
she asked ; " Heaven or Gerald Leigh? " 

" Neither, I hope. Heaven might, if unworthy ; but 
I feel sure that, right or wrong, whatever we might do, 
in Gerald Leigh we should find a champion." 

" I shall write to papa," said Stella, after a time, 
u and beg him to follow us to Washington as soon as 
possible, that we are very miserable, and have already 
been exposed to insult and outrage. Then, if he is not 
the most hard-hearted of parents, he will come to the 
rescue of his disconsolate daughters." 

Then Stella, seating herself at her writing-desk, pro- 
ceeded to indite a long, rambling letter to her father, 
setting forth how unhappy they were generally, and 
begging him to follow at once to Washington, or allow 
them to return to New York. 

Lupus Rock was at the same time engaged in writing 
a long letter to Webster Gayle. In this he went at 
full length into a number of topics, all relating to certain 
plans and schemes to make enormous profits out of the 
rebellion ; but the particulars of which it is not at pre- 
sent necessary the reader should know. He spoke of 
the great difficulty he had in controlling the two young 
ladies, and requested his uncle to write to his daughters, 



WASHINGTON. 171 

ordering them to observe greater obedience to himsell. 
" For,"°said Lupus iu his letter, " it is monstrous that 
the success of plans such as ours should be endangered 
by the waywardness of two headstrong girls." He men- 
tioned G-erald Leigh ; but added that, " after their 
arrival at Washington, he should so manage as not to 
be further troubled by him." He impressed on the 
mind of Webster G-ayle the absolute necessity of his re- 
maining for the present in New York. Lupus declared 
that as things were at present, the presence of his uncle 
in Washington, so far from doing good, would be highly 
imprudent, and would involve very heavy pecuniary 
losses. Chuckling over this last appeal to Webster 
G-ayle' s love of the almighty dollar, Lupus Eock con- 
cluded his letter. 

"There," he said to himself, as he sealed and ad- 
dressed it, " I'll warrant that will keep my worthy uncle 
quiet. The fear of pecuniary losses will effectually bar 
his coming on to Washington for a few weeks, and by 
the expiration of that time, I will so contrive as further 
to delay his arrival, and still farther get him in my power. 
Already I have letters and papers under his hand suffi- 
cient to obtain his arrest for treason in a short time ; by 
skilful management I shall have his life in my hands— 
and then, proud and beautiful Stella, my marble statue, 
I'll force you to come down from your pedestal, and 
prove you are but flesh and blood !" 

And this was his uncle, his benefactor, and daughter of 
whom he thus spoke. 

The two letters, that of Stella and that of Lupus Eock, 
were duly despatched by the same post, the former hoping 
that her appeal might not be in vain ; the latter confident 
that his would have the desired effect. 

CHAPTEE XXVI. 

WASHINGTON. 

On the following morning they all took their places in 
the cars for Washington. The streets were now quiet, 
as large reinforcements oi United States' troops had 



172 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

arrived, who succeeded in keeping in awe the secession 
mob. 

Gerald Leigh accompanied them as was arranged, but 
Stella was somewhat surprised to observe the large num- 
ber of his friends and acquaintances who were also going 
by the same train. 

There were with him Murdoch, Irving, "Winstone, 
Trent, and the Englishman, Captain George. 

All these Stella knew by sight, as they were, with the 
exception of the Englishman, "Gerald's brother officers. 

But in addition to these, there were many in the party 
who were strangers to her. Some of these, say six or 
seven, seemed gentlemen, while the others, to the number 
of twenty, apparently belonged to a lower class. 

Lupus Bock was also surprised at this large muster of 
men, who were evidently acting in concert. He pru- 
dently held his tongue, however, and resolved to be more 
than usually cautious. 

The two sisters saw in this gathering of Gerald's 
friends sad confirmation of his own words — that he was 
about to raise a regiment of irregular cavalry, and go 
over to the enemy. These men were the nucleus of the 
regiment ; and, surveying them, the sisters could not but 
see that, if they proved as good soldiers as they were fine 
men, it would, indeed, prove a formidable force. 

Lupus Bock, seated by their side, watched Gerald 
Leigh going from one group to the other, giving direc- 
tions, or merely passing casual remarks. Stella detected 
a bitter, mocking smile on the face of her cousin as his 
eye rested on Gerald Leigh ; she was gifted with more 
penetration than most girls of her age ; and coupling this 
with the singular manner she had observed in him on the 
previous day, she felt certain that the young officer was 
in great danger, and that Lupus Bock knew the nature 
of that danger — perhaps might be himself the cause. 

She at once determined to put Gerald on his guard ; 
bo catching his eye just as the cars were on the point of 
starting, she gave a slight sign for him to come into the 
carriage in which they were. Making room for him 
between herself and her sister, she resolved, on the first 



WASHINGTON. 173 

opportunity, to tell him of her suspicion — her conviction 
that there was danger impending. 

" Well, truly, fair ladies," said Gerald, laughingly, as 
' he seated himself between them, " you have made me 
break my word, for I promised to ride in the next car 
with all the rest of our fellows." 

" You are better here, Gerald," said Stella, in a low 
voice, and with emphasis. 

Gerald looked surprised, not so much at the words, but 
at the low, mournful tone in which they were spoken. 
" How so, Stella ?" he said. 

Lupus Rock, who, seated on the other side, had heard 
Stella's words, listened intently for what she would say- 
next, and darted a rapid glance at her. 

But Stella was too cautious to let him know that she 
suspected him. 

" Why so, Gerald ?" she replied ; " because we are so 
dreadfully dull ; and, surely you will not be so ungallant 
as to dispute the fact, that our company is preferable to 
that of your gentlemen friends." 

" Not for a moment, my dear young lady," replied 
: Gerald , " so for the remainder of the journey I am your 
humble servant, reserving the privilege of an occasional 
quarter of an hour on the platform for a cigar." 

Then they entered into general conversation; Stella 
determined not to do or say anything which could excite 
her cousin's suspicion. 

" He is as cunning as Satan," she thought ; " and, I 
fear, as bad. So it must be diamond cut diamond." 

" I can't make that girl Stella out," thought Lupus 
Hock. " Sometimes I almost fancy that she sees through 
me — suspects me. Now this minute I could almost have 
sworn, by the expression of her features when she spoke 
to Gerald Leigh, that she had some inkling of my design, 
or that I had some design against this dashing bully — 
but the next moment she appears as innocent as possible, 
and talks quite unconcernedly." 

Shortly afterwards Lupus rose, and went out on the 
platform of the cars. 
He well knew that if Stella wished to speak to Gerald 



174 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

in private, her woman's wit would devise a means, and he 
was aware of the folly of appearing suspicious of what he 
was powerless to prevent. 

No sooner was he out of earshot than Stella, laying her • 
hand on Gerald's arm, said earnestly, — 

" Gerald Leigh, you are in danger — in immediate, im- 
minent danger !" 

He started, and exclaimed in surprise, — 
11 In danger ! and from what quarter ?" 
*' From my cousin, Lupus Bock." 
Gerald laughed scornfully. 

" Lupus Kock ! If he is my most serious enemy, I 
care but little." 

" Do not speak so lightly of Lupus — you do not know 
him as well as I do. He is a dangerous, a very dan- 
gerous man. It is a hard thing to say of one's own 
cousin, Gerald ; but Lupus is, I fear, a bad, unscrupulous 
man. I know he is dangerous and vindictive ; you have 
offended his vanity ; that might be a sufficient reason for 
you to be on your guard." 

Angela Gayle now joined her entreaties to her sister's, 
begging of Gerald not to risk anything, but for the pre- 
sent 3 , at least, to forego his project. 

Gerald knew not what to say, with a fair girl on each 
eide imploring him to pause. 

He turned from the flashing eyes of Stella to the mild 

blue eyes of Angela, which already began to dim with tears. 

This latter appeared to produce an effect ; for, taking 

the young girl's hand, which she had laid on his arm to 

give emphasis to her prayers, he said, — 

'• Well, my sweet little Angela, I will promise you to 
be very careful and circumspect. At present, no one 
knows of my design, except three immediately engaged, 
and your two selves. I can depend on our fellows ; and 
as for you, Stella — Angela, I know you are heart and 
soul for the Union ; still, I scarcely suppose that you 
would betray a fellow." 

" Betray you ! " cried Stella, passionately ; " I would 
rather my tongue were torn forth than it should utter a 
word which could ever endanger you." 



CAPTAIN GEORGE. 175 

u Betray you!" said Angela; "Oh, Gerald!" 

That was all she said, but the look with which she 
tccompanied it was quite as eloquent as the passionate 
words of her sister. 

No incident worthy of notice occurred during the 
journey, and in the evening they safely arrived at "Wash- 
ington. G-erald Leigh busied himself in seeing to the 
ladies' luggage, and declared his intention of accompany- 
ing them to the house. To this Lupus Eock did not 
make the slightest opposition. Webster Gayle had a 
house in Washington, which he used when his senatorial 
duties required his presence in the capital. It was a 
large handsome building of white stone, situated on a 
rising ground in the suburbs of the city, and commanding 
a splendid prospect. 

From the upper windows the whole of the city lay 
spread, panorama-like, before the spectator. To the north 
might be seen the fertile plains of Maryland, while to the 
south the still, beautiful waters of the river Potomac 
divided them from the plantations of Old Virginia. 



CHAPTEE XXVTI. 

CAPTAIN GEOEGE. 

Stella and her sister, going out on a balcony from 
the first-floor, gazed with delight, at the scene before 
them. The rapidly increasing fury of the rebellion had 
caused the city to put on a warlike appearance. Soldiers, 
mounted and on foot, might be seen passing up and 
down the street, while already encampments of white 
tents began to appear in the suburbs. 

Gerald Leigh had accompanied them to the house, 
and after seeing them in safety, wished them adieu, and 
was about to take his leave when Stella stopped him, and 
said, — 

" Once again, Gerald, be careful how you act ; above 
all, be on your guard against Lupus Eock, or he will 
work you an injury." 

" Where is the worthy gentleman now?" 



176 THE BLACK AS GEL. 

" Heaven only knows ; lie went off with a stranger a3 
soon as we arrived, telling ns that we could find our way 
without difficulty to the house." 

;' Well, Stella— Angela," said Gerald Leigh, " I do not 
think you need alarm yourselves on my account. I will 
take all possible precautions for my safety ; so now, for 
the present, adieu, as I have much to attend to." 

Then, shaking each of the girls by the hand, he hurried off. 

He passed through the broad streets crowded with 
passengers, military and civilian, and made his way to a 
small inn on the outskirts of the town. On his road to 
this place he had passed Lupus Rock in earnest con- 
versation with a man whose back was towards him. Aa 
he passed briskly by, he caught a glimpse of the man's 
face, and recognised Malpas Thong, whom he had before 
seen with him in Baltimore. 

" Strange !" muttered Gerald ; " there must be some 
infernal deep game or other up. I should like to know 
what it is." 

However, he passed on his way without being seen by 
the two men, and entered the inn I have spoken of. The 
landlord appeared to be well known to him, for he shook 
him heartily by the hand, inquiring whether his friends 
had yet arrived. 

" All right, Master Gerald ; there 's three or four of 
them in the room up-stairs. I kept it for you when I 
got the message." 

" Plenty of room in the stables ?" 

" Boom for twenty horses in the stables, and a hundred 
more in the paddock behind." 

" That will do — keep it for us, for we shall want it all 
m a few days. And, by the way, I reckon we can fill your 
house for you. Don't take any strangers in." 

" All right, sir ; there was one came this morning be- 
fore your party, and ordered a room, and as I had plenty 
to spare then, I just gave him one ; but he'll be the only 
stranger in the house." 

" Who is he?" asked Gerald, suspiciously. 

" Don't know him from Adam, but if looks go for any* 
thing, they're most damnably against him." 



CArTAItf GEOEGE. 177 

" Humph ! I must have a look at this fellow— he may- 
be a spy. 

It would have been well if Gerald had remembered so 
to have done, for the man was no other than Lupus 
Kock's worthy friend, Malpas Thong. 

Gerald Leigh, ascending to a room on the first-floor, 
found several of his friends seated at a substantial tea. 
There was Murdock, Trent, Winstone, and the English- 
man, whom they knew as Captain George. 

This latter was doing justice to the good things on 
the table, and at the same time talking with great spirits 
and good humour, keeping all amused by his anecdotes 
and drollery. Already he had made himself a general 
favourite ; his off-hand, dashing manner — the mystery 
which enshrouded him, and his evident recklessness and 
daring, had been sure passports to the hearts of the 
others. 

Gerald Leigh was warmly greeted as he entered, and 
room was made for him at the table. 

After satisfying his hunger, he rose from the table, 
and, lighting a cigar, went out on the balcony. Several 
followed his example, and a general conversation began 
on the prospects of the war, &c. After a little time, 
Gerald Leigh said — knocking the ashes off his 
cigar,— 

" And now, gentlemen, it is time we came to a little 
business ; by this day week we ought to be all ready to 
cross over with our men and horses. By the way, we 
want a few more men; I propose that to-morrow be 
devoted to the purpose of looking a few up." 

" Gerald," said Winstone, who overheard him, " I tell 
you what it is, if you are not more careful, the aifair will 
end in our discovery and disgrace. You talk of recruit- 
ing men in Washington, as though it were a city in the 
heart of the Southern States. Already I fancy that there 
is some suspicion afloat as to our movements." 

" What suspicion? who can suspect, unless we have 
traitors among us ?" 

" jNo ; I do not think we have a traitor in our ranks ; 
but there is one man with whom you, Gerald, and some 

if 



178 THE BLACK A^GEL. 

of us are on terras of intimacy, who, I fear, is an enemy, 
and a dangerous one." 

" Who is he ?" asked Gerald ; " let us know who our 
enemies are ; then we can be on our guard." 

" I mean this Mr. Bock, the cousin of the Missea 
Gayle, with whom you are so intimate." 

" Lupus Bock," said Gerald, contemptuously, " I care 
nothing for him. I believe that he is my enemy per- 
sonally, and do not fear him. He may have the will to 
injure me, but he has not the power." 

Captain George here spoke. 

" Do not be too sure of that, Gerald. I don't like the 
man, and think that he is to be both distrusted and 
feared." 

" Have you any special reason for so speaking ?" said 
Gerald. 

" Yes, I have," replied the young Englishman. " Come 
and take a stroll up the town with me ; I have several 
things I wish to mention to you." 

Gerald accepted the invitation, and the two young men 
went out together arm-in-arm. Short as the time was 
since they had known each other, a close intimacy, 
almost friendship, had grown up between the two young 
men. Captain George — as he was called — liked and ad- 
mired Gerald Leigh's frank, bold manner, his unfailing 
good temper, and brave nature; while Gerald, on his 
part, was no less attracted by the quiet self-possession of 
the young Englishman. Of his unflinching pluck and 
resolution he had abundant proof ; and was irresistibly 
attracted towards him. There was a quiet, dry humour 
about him too, which never deserted him, even at times 
when he had reason for being very serious. Two natures 
more opposite than those of Gerald and the Englishman 
it would be difficult to find. One, bold, frank, rash, with 
a dashing genial manner, which won all hearts. The other 
reserved, with a quiet, unostentatious manner, which was 
not calculated to attract remark. 

However, when attention was once attracted to Cap- 
tain George, the observer found plenty to occupy his 
thoughts and speculations. His cpiiet, cool manner pro- 



CAPTAIN GEOEGE. I79 

duced in time a greater effect than even the dash and 
rattle of Gerald. People could not help seeing and 
acknowledging a strong mind— a determined will. °Even 
Gerald, who was not remarkable for penetration, did not 
fail to observe this. 

One day a young officer, who had joined them at 
\\ ashmgton, and who had heard nothing of the affray 
in Baltimore, observing Captain George, asked who he 



was. 



" Oh, he's an Englishman, and has joined us-^he has 
been m the English army ■ so his knowledge of European 
anil and discipline will be useful to us." 

"I have often remarked him," was the reply "and 
wondered who he was. He seems very slow and quiet. 
Vo you think there's anything in him— that is, any 
good P ' ' J 

" Do I think he's any good ?" said Gerald. * Slow 
and quiet, you said. Well, all I can say is this, that for 
jest or earnest, a spree or a fight, he should be the man 
of my choice. With a hundred such men as him— slow 
and quiet as you think him— I would engage to lead a 
forlorn hope and take the best armed battery in America 
les, sirree, Captain George is 'all there;' he's quiet 
enough now but, by thunder, he's a very devil when his 
blood is up." 

• T il e . y °, Ung ° fficer looked somewhat surprised at hear- 
ing this glowing panegyric on the Englishman, of whom 
he had previously thought but little ; and, of course 
Captain George rose at once in his estimation. 

Gerald Leigh and the young Englishman strolled 
leisurely up the broad streets of the capital, and pre- 
sently coming to a wine store, they entered and seated 
themselves at a small table divided by curtains from the 
rest of the room. It was, in fact, one of several boxes, 
such as are seen in old-fashioned hotels in England 
laid — Id Leigh called for wine and cigars, and then 

ibonf^pS^^ " thiS J0U "" *** ^ tell me 
" Well, it is not much, only suspicion j but' I deter- 

x 2 



ISO THE BLACK ANGEL. 

mined to mention it. Yesterday afternoon I went up 
to get my revolver put in order. As [ returned, feeling 
thirsty, I entered this very place, and seated myself at 
the table we now occupy. The room was empty at the 
time, and I lighted a cigar, determined to rest myself 
and do a julep or two. I had not been here long, 
when two men entered, and seating themselves at the 
next table but one, called for liquor. I saw them, 
although they did not observe me. One of these men 
was Lupus Rock, the other was a stranger to me. A 
dark, thick-set, villanous-looking fellow." 

Gerald interrupted him. 

" Had he a cut over the left eye ?" 

" Yes, a cut, or rather, an indentation, as if from a 
hammer, or some weapon of the kind." 

" Malpas Thong, by thunder !" exclaimed Grerald, dash- 
ing his fist on the table. "I saw him in Baltimore, but 
did not know he had come on to "Washington." 

" You know him, then?" 

" I know him to be one of the greatest ruffians unhung. 
If he is here with Lupus Rock, there is some villany 
afoot — not necessarily against us, but I would wager my 
life those two men are not laying their heads together for 
nothing." 

" Well, listen till I tell you the rest. They were soon 
deeply engaged in a low muttered conversation ; I con- 
tinued smoking my cigar and sipping my julep, not ta- 
king the slightest notice or attempting to listen. Xor 
should I have done so, for I am no eavesdropper, but 
suddenly my attention was attracted by your name. This 
then made me look up ; the next moment I heard 
the strange man say ' Stella Gayle.' Lupus indig- 
nantly told him to hold his tongue. The man laughed, 
as I thought, rather insolently, and said some words 
I did not catch, concluding with the name of another 
female." 

" What was the name r" asked Gerald, now thoroughly 
interested. 

" I can't think of it this moment, but it was a foreign 
name — I think Trench." 



CAPTAIN GEOKGE. 1S1 

He thought for a moment, and then suddenly, as if a 
thought had struck him, said, — 

" Stay, it was the same name as is often mentioned 
in the packet of papers I picked up in the hotel at Bal- 
timore." 

"What papers?" 

" Oh, did I not tell you ? You remember that I had 
a hunt after a fellow in the hotel, who jumped from the 
drawing-room window and so escaped me." 

" I was not present, but I heard of it." 

" "Well, this fellow, when I first saw him, was coming 
out of a room in the corridor. He had a packet of papers 
in his hand, which he dropped when he darted off to 
escape me. That packet of papers I kept, and have with 
me. I afterwards ascertained that the room from which 
I saw him come was that of Lupus Rock. I don't know 
that the papers are of any use, but as things have turned 
out, I am glad I have kept them." 

Captain G-eorge produced the papers, and handed them 
over to Gerald Leigh. The latter glanced at them in a 
casual manner, turning them over one by one. 

All at once, however, he made an exclamation of sur- 
prise as he unfolded one of the documents. It was a 
sort of genealogical chronicle, and went back some gene- 
rations, ending with the name of a lady. 

This was the name which Captain George had heard 
pronounced the day before. 

Gerald Leigh examined this paper with great care, and 
was evidently thunderstruck at its contents. 

Its purport seemed to be to trace back the descent of 
this lady to a certain point on the mother's side. 

The object seemed attained, when an ancestor, a great 
grandmother, was reached. Her name was Corra Coil, 
and she was described as a slave purchased by Colonel 
, in New Orleans. 

Gerald Leigh finished perusing the paper, and folding 
it, replaced it in the packet. 

Then he handed it back to Captain George, saying, — 

11 By Heavens, old fellow, these papers have utterly 
confounded me. They are of great importance, and re- 



182 TEE BLACK ANGEL. 

late to intimate friends of mine. The lady whose name 
is mentioned in them, and who yon say Lupus and Malpas 
Thong yesterday conversed about, is very well known to 
me, and is an intimate friend of my father's. I would not 
see harm happen to her for worlds. She is the jewel of 
the South. Her pre-eminence, both in beauty of person 
and charms of mind, is universally acknowledged. There 
is some deep, desperate plot on foot, which at present I 
cannot understand, as those papers, though clear enough, 
doubtless, to those who wrote them, are very vague and 
mysterious. Whatever you do, keep them. I have al- 
most a presentiment that some day they will be turned 
to terrible account." 

Captain George offered the papers to his friend. 

li Take them, G-erald ; they concern a friend of yours ; 
Bo they will be best in your custody." 

i; So, no, you keep them at present; they are yours. 
Perhaps some day they may be of incalculable value to 
you, and I feel sure you would never use them to injure 
a friend of mine, more especially as that friend is a young 
and beautiful girl." 

" I would rather have my right hand cut off," said 
Captain George, vehemently. 

" I believe you, my boy, thoroughly believe you ; now 
then, go on with your recital." 

" Well, as I was saying, I heard your name, Miss 
Gayle's, and that of this lady in the papers. 

" That roused my attention, and I listened. I could 
only catch a word here and there. Tour name was fre- 
quently repeated, and you seemed to be the chief subject 
of their conversation. Finally, Lupus Eock gave the 
other a paper or letter, and I fancy told him to take it 
to the office of the Secretary-at-War ; at least, I know 
the office of the Secretary-at-War was mentioned. 

" Then the other man rose, and saying, ' All right, 
boss, this will put the stuns on Mr. Leigh, I reckon/ 
went out. 

" That was all I heard, but coupled with other little 
things — the obvious dislike of the man to you — I thought 
it right to mention it." 



geeald leigh's list night in Washington. 1S3 

Gerald mused for a minute or two. 

" I don't quite like it," he said ; " I know Mr. Eock 
would like to play me a trick if he could. No matter — 
I don't fear him. If he attempts any treachery, it will 
be my place to defeat and punish the attempt." 

" You have definitely fixed the day for starting to join 
the others at the rendezvous ?" 

" Yes, we start in three days from this, three hours 
after daybreak." 

" Does any one know the time at which you leave, and 
the rendezvous ?" 

" No one, except ourselves." 

" Then all is right," said Captain George; "we have 
nothing to fear." 

Then they both rose, and paying for the wine, passed 
out into the street. Gerald Leigh was wrong. Some 
one did know both the time and place. 

That person was Lupus Eock. 



CHAPTEE XXVIII. 

GEEALD LEIGH'S LAST NIGHT IN WASHINGTON. 

The three days passed, and the eve of the eventful 
day had come. On the following morning, at an 
arranged time, some fifty young officers and sixty or 
seventy men were to start from Washington, and 
rendezvous at Harper's Eerry, on the Potomac. The 
most careful arrangements had been made to ensure 
secrecy and despatch. 

The appointed time at Harper's Eerry was three hours 
after daybreak, and all were ordered to start during the 
night, so as to avoid observation. In no case, either, 
were more than two mounted men, or more than four 
who had not horses, to go in company. 

Each was, as far as possible, to keep himself detached 
from the rest, and act as an independent unit till the 
arrival at the meeting-place. Thus Gerald Leigh and 
the other young officers in command of the undertaking 
hoped to elude observation, and pass quietly out of 



1S1 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

"Washington, and cross the Potomac. There was no 
reason why they should not succeed, for at that time 
there was no line of sentries, as no rebel army threatened 
the capital, as it did a few months later. 

Stella Gayle and her sister, though Unionists in heart, 
still hoped that Gerald and his friends might get clear 
away from "Washington. It was a strange conflict in 
their minds between feeling and principle. Gerald 
Leigh was a rebel, and as such, were they thoroughly 
consistent, they should hope for the defeat of his 
enterprise, and his own capture. 

But then, again, he was an old and clear friend ; they 
had always regarded him almost as a brother, and now 
that he was about to attempt a desperate treason, they 
could not help, in spite of patriotism, wishing him, if not 
success, at all events immunity from discovery. 

"We have already said that the appointed time for 
meeting was fixed at three hours after daybreak. 
Captain George, however, who almost shared with 
Gerald the command, so great an influence had he 
gained, earnestly advised that, if possible, all should be 
at the rendezvous at an earlier hour. Gerald yielded to 
the suggestion of his friend, and the word was passed 
among all the initiated to be at the meeting-place at 
daybreak, if possible. 

This alteration in the time was only made on the very 
evening before, so that none could know of it but their 
own party. All the afternoon and evening, Gerald and 
the Englishman were engaged in making their prepara- 
tions. 

Of course, Gerald's personal friends, brother-officers, 
and such as held a good social position, could be safely 
trusted. It was not so, however, with all their men ; 
many of whom, though devoted to the cause and to their 
leaders, were of that class most amenable to bad 
influences, such, for instance, as drink. The principal 
occupation, then, for the afternoon was in looking up 
these men, and keeping an eye on them till time to set 
out. 

Captain George had considerable difficulty with his 



GERALD LETGII'S LAST NIGHT IN •WASHINGTON. 1S5 

three recruits, the Irishmen. They had a great idea of 
having a jovial spree before they started, and it required 
all his persuasive powers and authority to wean them 
from the idea. 

The day passed and night came. All had gone well, 
and already many of their party had started for the 
rendezvous. Gerald Leigh and Captain George resolved 
to be the last to leave "Washington, in order to see that 
every man and horse had started. By ten o'clock all the 
men had left "Washington, to the number of about fifty. 
Some twenty of these were mounted, while the others 
were on foot, and would have to be subsequently provided 
with horses. There remained in "Washington Gerald 
Leigh and the other Southern officers and gentlemen, 
who, being all mounted and to be depended on, did not 
purpose starting till midnight. They were mostly 
occupied in taking farewell of their friends — a farewell 
which might be for ever • for who could foresee the issue 
of the coming struggle ? 

Towards ten o'clock, Gerald and Captain George 
wended their way, arm-in-arm, towards Holkar Hall, 
as the house of "Webster Gayle, the merchant, was 
called. 

They were going to bid farewell to the ladies. 
_ " George," said Gerald, as they mounted the hill, "this 
time to-morrow night we shall be in Old Virginia — the 
Old Dominion — the most glorious State of what was 
once the Union." 

"If all goes well, as you say." 

Gerald Leigh fancied his friend spoke somewhat 
doubtfully. 

"If all goes well?" he said; "have you then, any 
doubts or fears? All is quiet; no suspicion is excited, 
and already most of our party are on their way to the 
rendezvous." 

" Eear I have none ; doubts I must own to. Do you 
know, Gerald, I have never felt quite comfortable since 
I overheard that conversation in the liquor store, 
between Lupus and the man who you say was named 
Thong." 



136 TEE EL1CK AXGEL. 

" Lupus does not know, cannot know, either the place 
or time of our rendezvous." 
^ " It is to be hoped not ; but I have observed that in 
bis manner which has given rise to grave suspicions in 
JDy mind. I have frequently observed him dart towards 
you singular glances, when yon were not looking — 
glances of dislike and hate, accompanied by a singular 
smile, as though he thought he had you in his power." 

Gerald heard this with more auger than fear. 

" If I thought he had, by any means, got hold of tho 
information, and meant to betray us, I would have his 
life," he exclaimed, passionately. 

" Just so ; let us be on our guard, and if we discover 
any treachery, let us act, and make him feel our 
vengeance. I, for one, would shoot him down like a 
dog." 

By this time they had arrived at Holkar Hall. It 
stood by the side of the road, at a distance from it of 
some twenty yards. As they opened the wicket and 
passed in, they heard the clattering of horses' hoofs up 
the hill, and waited to see who it was. The next 
moment Grey and Winstone dashed by at a hard gallop. 

They did not rein in their horses as they approached 
Gerald and his friend. Winstone, who was nearest to 
them, took off his cap, and waving in salute, said, — 

" We shall see you at the Perry. Gerald, at daybreak, 
of course." 

Gerald waved his hand in reply, but Captain George, 
in a tone of annoyance, said, — 

" Confound that fellow Winstone ! I wish to heaven 
he would not bawl out our destination in that rich, 
ringing voice of his ; he could be heard a hundred yards 
off." 

" And what of it ? — who is there to hear ? " 

George pointed to the house, and said, — 

" Lupus Rock is here." 

"Ah!" said Gerald, "I see." Then they passed 
Across the garden, and entered together. They found 
Stella, Angela, and Lupus, seated at supper together. 
They accepted the invitation to join, and seated them- 



GERALD LEIGH'S LAST NIGHT IN WASHINGTON. 187 

selves at the table— Gerald by the side of Angela, 
Captain George near Stella. 

" Who were the horsemen who galloped by just now, 
Gerald?" asked Angela ; " we heard them speak to you." 

Captain George shot a rapid glance of warning towards 
Gerald, who replied, carelessly, — 

" Oh, Winstone and Trent ; I suppose they are going 
for a ride." 

Lupus Rock said quietly, with a singular smile,— ^ 

" Your friends choose curious times for their ' rides, 
Captain Leigh ; it is getting on for midnight." _ 

"I see nothing strange in it; certainly it is more 
pleasant than during the heat of the day." 

"Doubtless," replied Lupus, still smiling ; "but the 
evenings are long, and one would have thought they 
might °have chosen some time earlier than half-past 
eleven." 

" I suppose my friends have a right to choose their 
own time, without consulting you as to when they 
should mount their horses ? " 

"Oh, doubtless— doubtless," said Lupus, rising from 
the table ; "lam sure I do not wish to interfere with 
their horse exercise. I must now bid you good-night, 
ladies and gentlemen, as I have some writing to do ; so 
beg to be excused." 

So saying, he left the room. As soon as he was gone, 
Stella said to Captain George, who was by her 

"Sir my cousin heard your friend on horseback say, 
f the Perry, at daybreak.' He is quite clever enough to 
divine from those few words all he needs. He is your 
enemy, I know ; so be on your guard." 

"Ah!" said Captain George, "I knew that, but 
hoped the words were not heard or understood. ' 

" I know they were heard, as I noticed the ex- 
pression of his face. I do not know whether he clearly 
understood what ferry was meant, but I think it quite 
possible he may guess. He is as cunning as the ser- 

PG " Gerald," said George, " what do you say ?— shall we 



18S THE BLACK ANGEL. 

bid the ladie3 adieu, and start at once ? The sooner we 
are clear of Washington the better I shall like it ; for 1 
feel uneasy." 

But Gerald was engaged in a whispered conversation 
with the gentle Angela; and her soft words and blue, 
eyes were potent to detain him. 

" Nonsense, my dear fellow," he said, "you are an 
alarmist. All goes well, and it is yet early." 

Stella Gayle now proposed that they should go out on 
the balcony, while the supper was being removed. Ac- 
cordingly, chairs were placed outside, and the four went 
forth in the cool summer air. 

It was a splendid night— the stars spangled the 
heavens in every direction; while beneath them, the 
thousand lights of Washington flashed and sparkled, 
presenting a beautiful and striking appearance. 

Gerald Leigh gazed long and wistfully over the city. 
Ilolkar Hall being situated on an eminence, commanded 
a splendid view of the capital and surrounding country. 
Addressing no one in particular, he said, — 

" To-night we leave Washington — when and how shall 
we return ? Perhaps as enemies — as victorious enemies ; 
for Washington, and even all Maryland, must leave tho 
Union and join the Southern Confederacy ; or I may 
come back a prisoner — who knows ? — it is the fortune of 
war. And then, again, there is yet another contingency 
— I may never come back again! I may fall in the field 
of battle, gloriously fighting for our independence. If 
such is to be my fate, I shall not shun it ; for, assuredly, 
I might die less honourably than fighting sword in hand 
against the enemy." 

" Gerald," said Stella Gayle, earnestly, "there is yet 
another contingency which you have overlooked. In this 
mad, wicked, and rebellious contest, you may, as you 
say, be taken prisoner. As a loyal Unionist, I ought to 
pray that you might ; but, God help me, I cannot— old 
times, old memories arise, and drive back the wish, loyal 
though it be. Gerald, I am your friend, though the 
enemy of your desperate cause. There is yet time— 
pause, ere it is too late.'* 



GEEALD LEIGH'S LAST NIGHT IN "WASHINGTON. 189 

For a moment she stopped, for her voice faltered from 
emotion. 

" Gerald, once again, pause — rememoer your Irotlier's 
fate!" 

These words seemed wrung from her by a great effort. 
They were spoken mournfully, tremblingly, and a tear 
trickled clown her cheek. 

She was silent again for some time. By an effort she 
recovered her self-control. 

" Gerald, take warning by his dreadful fate, and re- 
member that if taken prisoner you may meet a worse — 
for you may die on the scaffold." 

Gerald arose impetuously, upsetting his chair as he 
did so. 

He strode up and down the balcony several times. 

" Stella, your words are far from deterring me, but 
give me fresh resolution. My brother's blood — the blood 
of Darcy Leigh — murdered — murdered, I repeat, by the 
Yankees — calls aloud for vengeance, and vengeance I 
will have. No, I turn not from my path — come chains 
— come death, even on the scaffold — I brave it, and defy 
the enemy to do their worst. I may fall, but before I 
do so many an accursed Yankee shall bite the dust." 

He paused, and, with folded arms, gazed forth on the 
city beneath. Stella and Angela looked on in silence, 
deeply affected by his words, which took away all hope 
that he would relinquish his purpose. The moon streamed 
full on his tall form as he stood before them. His cap 
was off, and the young soldier appeared, under the in- 
fluence of the excitement, to the best advantage. His 
blue eyes flashed and glittered; while, even by the light 
of the moon, they could see the flush on his cheek. 

They had been in the habit of seeing him so often, had 
been on such intimate terms with him, that they never 
thought of his personal appearance ; but now the same 
thought filled both their minds — they were struck by his 
great personal beauty. 

" Is he not handsome?" each thought to herself. 

How long he would have remained wrapt in reverie, it 
is impossible to say ; or how long the sisters would have 



190 THE ELACK A>*GEL. 

-azed in silence at hiin, as be stood statue-like befor 
them. 

Tbe Englishman, however, disturbed this slate of 
affairs, saying, — 

" Come, old fellow, don't be standing there like a 
statue. What say you — shall we think of starting r " 

" Going — so soon ? " said Angela, sadly, still gazing 
at her hero ; for in her eyes, despite his treason, Gerald 
Leigh was indeed a hero. 

" Yes, my little Angela," said Gerald, coming round 
to her and taking her hand, " we must leave you now. 
Duty and honour call us away ; but never fear, I will 
return again — not as a prisoner, but as a conqueror. 
This war cannot last for ever. Ere long we shall have 
wrung a peace from the Yankees at the sword's point. 
Then, Angela, I will come and lay my laurels at your 
feet." 

Angela could only reply by tears ; while a slight pres- 
sure of the hand told Gerald Leigh that, go where he 
would, the heart of a fair girl would go with him. Sho 
never knew till that moment how dear he was to her. 



Their horses were down in the town. As for baggage, 
they had and required none but what they carried at 
their saddle-bow in a small valise. Stella insisted on 
sending a servant for their horses from the hotel where 
they stayed. While waiting for them, they re-entered 
the room, Angela having volunteered to brew them a 
glass of punch — a stirrup-cup. 

Captain George left the balcony last ; as he was about 
doing so, he saw the form of a man enter at the little 
garden wicket, and enter the house. He had be!ore 
observed him, and noticed that he came from the direc- 
tion of Washington, and was much surprised when, on 
his approaching close enough, he recognised Lupus llock. 
He entered the room, and closing the window behind 
him, said to Stella, — 

" I thought, Miss Gayle, that your cousin said he had 
writing to do." 

lt Yes ; he said so, certainly." 



GEEALD LEIGH'S LIST NIGHT IN WASHINGTON. 191 

" Well, he lias just entered the house, and has come 
from the direction of Washington." 

" Washington ! what can he have been doing there ? 
It is very unlike him to go out so late." 

" What, indeed ! and why should he have told a false- 
hood ?" 

" Oh, it's a habit of our good cousin," said Angela, 
sarcastically ; " he never tells the truth when a falsehood 
will do as well." 

Captain George, though far from easy on the point, 
said no more ; in fact, he could have said no more, for 
he knew nothing, although he suspected much. 

The punch was brewed, and Angela, with her own fair 
hands, presented to each of the gentlemen a steaming 
glass. 

" There," she said, half laughing, half crying, as she 
gave Gerald his, " you desperate rebel, drink that ; if I 
were as loyal as Stella is, I should have poisoned the cup 
before giving it you — traitor as you are." 

" Well, Angela, traitor as I am, I drink health and 
happiness' to yourself and sister; and may you find in 
all Union men you meet as sincere a friend as Gerald 
Leigh." 

" Ladies, your very good health," said Captain George, 
" and success to the arms of the Confederate States." 

" Sir," said Stella, with dignity, " you pay me a poor 
compliment in drinking such a toast in my presence ; 
you know my feelings, and should refrain. I wish you 
well, and pray Heaven no harm may befall either of you. 
It is, methinks, a poor requital for good wishes to pro- 
pose a toast which you must knowis most repugnant to me. 

Captain George acknowledged and apologised for his 
error, and received pardon. 

At that moment the clattering of horses' feet was 
heard rapidly approaching. They galloped rapidly by 
the house. Gerald and George could hear the rattling 
of sabres as they passed. 

" By heavens ! it is quite a number," said Captain 
George ; " there cannot be less than a dozen by the 
sound of the hoofs. Can they be our fellows ? " 



192 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" They must be," said Gerald ; " who else would be 
riding in the direction of Harper's Ferry at this time of 
night ?" 

He opened the window and went out on the balcony 
to look ; but the horsemen were at too great a distance 
for him to recognise them. Captain George followed 
him. 

They could see the retreating body of horsemen 
ascending a little hill. They were quite a quarter of a 
mile distant, and could not be distinguished. The bright 
light of the moon, however, glistened on the bright steel 
scabbards of their sabres, showing that it was a military 
party. 

" Who can they be?" said Captain George, doubtingly. 
" Very few of our fellows have steel scabbards. And 
what on earth do they mean by going in such a body ? 
They must be mad or drunk. It is enough to attract 
attention, and ruin all." 

They heard the sound of the clattering hoofs for some 
half-minute longer ; then it suddenly stopped. 

" They have halted," said Gerald. 

" Or turned off the hard road on to the softer ground 
by the side," said Captain George. 

And now the time for leaving ha3 arrived — the horses 
are brought round, and stand, saddled and bridled, im- 
patiently pawing the ground at the gate. 

A few tears are shed by the girls, which Gerald tries 
to laugh away. Even Stella, so cold and haughty usually, 
was deeply affected. 

" Stella, good-bye, and may you be happy. I trust we 
shall meet again in happier times. What ! surely those 
are not tears I see in your eyes. 1^ thought that Stella 
Gayle, the stern patriot, would scorn such weakness." 

But, in spite of all her efforts, the tears still flowed. 
Her eye fell on a piece of blac*k crape which Gerald 
wore on his arm. It was mourning for his brother ; and 
as she looked on it, the image of poor Darcy rose before 
her. 

In fancy, she saw him pale, determined, reproachful, 
with the dreadful bullet wound in his forehead. 



193 

In spite of all her efforts, she with difficulty stopped 
her tears, and affected a composure she did not 
feel. 

One parting pressure of the hand, and they were gone. 
Angela was already weeping bitterly, and no sooner had 
the two young men left the room, than Stella Gayle, 
throwing herself on her sister's neck, gave way to a pas- 
sionate flood of tears. 

Her thoughts are of Darcy Leigh. 



CHAPTEE XXX. 

DEFEATED, WOUNDED, CAPTUEED. 

Let us now leave the two weeping girls, and follow 
the fortunes of Gerald and the Englishman. 

As soon as they were in the saddle, they gave rein to 
the impatient horses, and galloped up the road. 

The bright moonlight, the fresh breeze, and the ex- 
hilarating motion of the horses as they bounded along, 
all tended to raise their spirits. 

Gerald Leigh, who was mounted on a splendid charger, 
led the way at a spanking rate. 

" Come on, old boy," he shouted, turning in his saddle, 
" or I shall show you my heels." 

Captain George spurred his horse to increased speed, 
and with some difficulty joined and kept pace with his 
friend. 

The road before them was quite straight for half, a 
mile or rather more, and was up-hill ; it then took a 
sudden bend to the right, passing through a large clump 
of trees, or rather, a small wood. As they approached 
this bend, Gerald Leigh again spurred ahead ; the Eng- 
lishman, who was not so well mounted, being quite unable 
to keep pace. Einding this out, he pulled up and walked 
his horse. • 

" What a mad-brained fellow it is — tearing along as if 
charging an unseen enemy. No matter how rash and 
impetuous, his heart is in the right place, and a braver 
fellow than Gerald Leigh never stepped the earth. I 

o 



194 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

didn't think they reared the sort anywhere out of Old 
England." 

These were the thoughts of Captain George, as he 
walked his horse quietly on behind, knowing well that 
when Gerald found he was not following him in his mad 
career, he also would pull up. This latter had main- 
tained the lead, and he could hear the clattering of his 
horse's hoofs on the road beyond. 

Suddenly this sound ceased— so suddenly, in fact, that 
Captain George felt surprised, and spurred on to ascer- 
tain the cause. 

" Perhaps his horse has stumbled and thrown him — 
shouldn't be a bit surprised, at the break-neck pace he 
was going." 

Trotting quickly on, he also rounded the bend, and 
entered the little wood. 

As he did so, he heard the sound of loud and angry 
voices. 

Peering into the gloom, he could distinguish a group 
of horsemen. 

Quickening his pace still more, he rapidly approached. 

11 Surrender your sword, sir; surrender — I arrest you 
in the name of the United States' Government." 

Then he heard the voice of Gerald Leigh, — 

" Out of my path, or I'll cut you down." 

Then followed some words of command, apparently ad- 
dressed to a troop of horse. 

This was enough for Captain George. He knew that 
his friend had been stopped, and was about to be arrested. 
They were betrayed. 

He knew, also, that Gerald Leigh would never surren- 
der without a fight. 

He was now quite close, and could see all. 

Gerald Leigh's horse was stopped by a mounted officer, 
who barred the road before him. 

"Surrender!" cried the officer in command ; "resist- 
ance is useless." 

Behind the mounted officer there were some twenty 
troopers drawn up across the road, apparently rendering 
any attempt to pass hopeless, 



DEFEATED, WOUNDED, CAPTUEED. " 195 

Not so, however, thought Gerald Leigh. 

As soon as he heard the sound of his friend's horse's 
hoofs behind him, he turned in his saddle, and shouted, — ■ 

" G-eorge, my hoy, forward ! let us cut our way through 
these d d Yankees." 

Then, with a loud shout, he drew his sword, and spur- 
ring his horse, dashed right at the mounted officer. 

Their two sabres clashed for half a minute, and then 
the Yankee fell from his saddle, and his horse galloped 
riderless away. 

Gerald Leigh, with another shout, rode right at the 
troopers, barring the road. There was another officer 
in command, and, by his orders, they closed up, and 
awaited what they considered the insane charge of the 
rebels. 

" Onward ! " thundered Gerald, undaunted by the 
twenty gleaming sabres before him. 

Captain George drew his sword, and feeling in his belt 
for his revolver, spurred his horse, and dashed after his 
friend at full gallop. He passed the officer which Gerald 
Leigh had dismounted, and was now scarce twenty yards 
from the enemy. He set his teeth and grasped Jiis sword 
tightly. 

The next moment Gerald Leigh dashed right into the 
troopers. His horse was a large and powerful one, and 
at the first shock, the trooper at whom he rode went 
sprawling in the dust. Horse and man rolled over and 
over. 

The trooper immediately on his right aimed a terrible 
sabre cut at the young officer. At that moment his 
attention was drawn to another assailant on his left. 
This latter aimed a blow at his head, which, however, 
Gerald parried. Scarcely had he done so, however, than 
the man on his right delivered his cut. This took effect 
on Gerald's shoulder, and caused him to reel in his 
saddle. Another horseman now spurred up, and at- 
tacked him on the other side. 

The situation was critical. 

Gerald fought desperately, but could not parry the 
cuts of both his antagonists. He spurred his hofae 

02 



196 TUE EEACK AXGEL. 

violently, causing him to give a great bound forward ; 
but, at the same moment, the trooper whom he had dis- 
mounted scrambled to his feet, and caught the rein, and 
presented a pistol. 

" Surrender ! or I'll blow your brains out," he 
shouted. 

" Surrender!" said the horseman on his left. 

" Surrender !" said the one on his right. 

On all sides he heard shouts to " surrender." 

" Take him alive — don't kill him — our orders are to 
take him alive," he heard an officer cry out. 

Gerald's answer to the demand to surrender was 
prompt. Swaying on one side, so as to avoid the levelled 
pistol, he once ap?ain urged his horse forward, delivering 
a desperate cut at the man who held his reins. 

The cut wounded the man, -who fired his pistol, and 
still held on, in spite of all Gerald's spurring. 

Two other horsemen now rode up, one on each side, 
and endeavoured to grasp the rebel officer. Gerald laid 
about him desperately with his sword, causing the blood 
to flow from each of them. Still surrounded by numbers, 
he was at fearful disadvantage, and in another moment 
or two he must have been overpowered. 

Sabre cuts rained on him from all sides, and he was 
bleeding from half-a-dozen wounds. Fortunately, al- 
though his cap had been struck off, he had received no 
wounds on his head. 

"Now, however, one of the dragoons, furious from tho 
pain of a wound inflicted by Gerald, wheeled his horse 
round, and coming behind the young officer, aimed a 
blow at his bare head, which must have put an end to 
the fight and his life together. 

The blow was never delivered. 

Gerald heard a shout behind him, — 

" Forward ! Gerald — to the rescue !" 

Inspirited by the words and voice — for Gerald knew 
it was Captain George — he once more spurred on his 
horse ; with a violent plunge, the animal dashed for- 
ward, trampling underfoot the man who held the 
rein. 



DEFEATED, BOUNDED, CAETUEED. 197 

Then, with another shout, Captain George dashed at 
full gallop into the group surrounding his friend. 

Two horses and riders went to earth, and Captain 
George's charger fell on his knees, nearly throwing his 
rider over his head. 

He quickly recovered him, however, again dashed for- 
ward, and reached the dragoon behind Gerald just as he 
was about to cut at his head. 

Parrying a cut aimed at himself, he shortened his 
sabre in his hand, and thrust fiercely at Gerald's trea- 
cherous foe. His sword entered his back, and went 
hissing right through the flesh, passing out on the left 
side of the chest. 

George quickly withdrew his sword, and, with a terri- 
ble shriek, the dragoon fell back, and lay writhing on the 
ground in the agonies of death. 

Captain George, whose blood was now up, spurred his 
horse over the prostrate form of the poor wretch, and 
ranged himself alongside his friend. 

All this, which takes some time to narrate, passed 
in a very brief space of time. Certainly, not more 
than half a minute had elapsed from the time when 
Gerald Leigh first charged the dragoons. During that 
half-minute the two friends, by the suddenness and 
fury of their attacks, had cleared a way for them- 
selves. 

At least, there was now but one horseman in their 
path. Gerald, rising in his stirrups, drove in the spurs, 
and rode at him. 

< The dragoon stood his ground, and parried the cut 
aimed at him, but the superior weight and blood of 
Gerald's horse prevailed when the shock of collision 
came, and the trooper was sent, like his companions, to 
earth. 

Then, with a shout of triumph, the two friends spurred 
on their horses, and dashed ahead. 

The dragoons were encumbered with heavy cavalry 
saddles and accoutrements, while Gerald and Captain 
George were in the very lightest marching order. 

Their horses, too, especially Gerald's, were superior to 



193 THE BLACK ANGEL, 

any in tlic troop, and once clear of them, he felt no fear 
of capture. 

" Forward — forward !" cried Gerald ; " we will show 
these fellows our heels." 

The dragoons were so dismayed by the sudden charge 
of the two friends, that it was some time before they 
sufficiently collected their faculties to give chase. 

It was not till the wounded officer whom Gerald had 
first dismounted regained his saddle, that he gave the 
order to pursue the prey of whom they had made so 
certain. 

" Forward, my men ! — follow them ! — cut them down ! 
Fifty dollars to the man Mho captures Captain Leigh, 
the tall, fair one who unhorsed me ;" and, led by their 
officer, the troop put spurs to their horses, and thundered 
on in pursuit. 

The fugitives were now nearly a quarter of a mile 
ahead, and were gaining ground. 

' : Once clear of the wood," said Gerald, "and we 
are safe. I know the neighbourhood well ; when we 
get clear, we can leave the road, and take the open 
country. They can never follow us, and we can take a 
short cut for the ferry, and reach it in an hour and a 
half." 

Onwards they dashed, Gerald leading by several yards. 
Suddenly Captain George swerved from the road, giving 
a loud shout. 

Gerald turned in his saddle, and looked round with 
surprise. He saw that his friend, instead of foliowirg 
him, was riding straight into the wood at right angles to 
the road. 

" This way — this way ! "Where the devil are you 
going ? " he shouted at the top of his voice. 

But Captain George kept on his course, and he saw 
him draw his sword. Immediately afterwards Gerald 
made out the forms of two men, mounted and wrapped 
in large cloaks, standing beneath a tree by the roadside. 
It was these two men at whom Captain George was 
riding. 

The moon, which had been obscured for a moment, 



DEFEATED, WOUNDED, CAPTURED. 199 

burst forth from the clouds, and threw a bright light on 
the two figures. Gerald was further off than his friend, 
but he instantly recognised one of the men as Malpas 
Thong ; the other he did not know. The troop of dra- 
goons came dashing down the road in hot pursuit ; each 
moment was precious, and here was Captain George 
actually goingout of his road to attack two men who 
did not dispute their passage. 

"The man's mad — stark, staring mad!" muttered 
Gerald ; " he will ruin all. Great Heavens ! here come 
the dragoons ! " 

He reined in his horse, determined to see the result of 
what he thought his friend's insanity. 

" Confound it ! " he said to himself, with bitter feel- 
ings of anger at Captain George's rashness ; " I can't 
desert the fellow ; he came to my rescue like a warrior. 
It would be cowardly to leave him, and yet we run immi- 
nent risk of capture." 

The dragoons were now within three hundred yards. 
Captain George reached the two horsemen and attacked 
them furiously. One of them turned his horse's head, 
and took to flight. Captain George fired his revolver, 
and was spurring forward in pursuit, but the other man, 
whom Gerald recognised as Malpas Thong, barred the 
way. He was no craven, and stood unflinching, to face 
the furious onslaught of the Englishman. Still he was 
not accustomed to the use of the cavalry sabre, and at 
the third cut it was dashed from his hand, and he him- 
self hurled from the saddle. 

Captain George spurred on his horse in pursuit of the 
other man. 

"Stop — stop!" shouted Gerald, at the top of his 
voice ; " the dragoons are upon us ! Back for your 
life!" 

But Captain George's only reply was a shout of rage 
as he dashed in pursuit of the other. Scarcely had his 
horse bounded forward half-a-dozen- paces, than, catching 
his fore-foot in the root of" a tree, he fell heavily, throw- 
ing his rider far over his head. Horse and rider rolled 
together in the dust. 



200 TIIE BLACK AXGEL, 

' All is lost!' thought Gerald, as he saw his friend go 
down. 

The officer of dragoons saw the fate of the English- 
man, and not knowing which of the two it was, he struck 
from the road, and led his men at a gallop to where horse 
and rider lay. 

Captain George was so shaken by the fall, that it was 
some moments before he could recover his feet. He had 
barely done so, and was about again to mount his horse, 
which had also scrambled up, when the dragoons were 
■ftp on him. 

' ? 'Surrender ! " shouted the officer at their head. 

The Englishman, in reply, drew his revolver, and fired, 
shooting the horse of the speaker, who, for the second 
time that da} r , went sprawling. 

The next moment, and almost before he could draw 
his sword, the whole troop were upon him. He was 
alone and dismounted, and so, of course, stood a wretched 
chance against them. 

A few sabre cuts he parried, and then Gerald saw with 
grief and rage a big dragoon rise in his stirrup, and 
deliberately cut him down. 

Gerald could restrain himself no longer. 

" He is a madman, but he is my friend, and as brave 
a fellow as ever trod God's earth. So here goes ! " 

Then he dug in the spurs, and charged right towards 
the group of men who surrounded the prostrate body of 
his friend. 

Onwards he dashed, sword in hand, possessed with 
the demon of fury. He thought not of the odds, nor of 
the certainty of death or capture which awaited him. He 
only knew that his friend, who, when he himself was in 
a like predicament, had come to the rescue, was sur- 
rounded and overpowered. 

Generous but fatal rashness ! 

As before, he charged sword in hand, and sent the 
first man who opposed him flying from his saddle ; the 
second shared a like fate, and he had now made his way to 
the body of his friend, which two troopers were engaged 
in lifting. 



DEFEATED, WODNDED, CAPTURED. 201 

Hardly had lie done so, than he received a terrible 
cut in the shoulder, which staggered him. 

The next moment one of the dismounted dragoons 
made a cut at his horse's fore-legs, and the poor brute 
fell helplessly to the ground, precipitating Gerald right 
amongst his foes. He quickly scrambled to his feet, and, 
sword in hand, made a gallant resistance. 

"Take him alive! — take him alive!" shouted the 
officer in command. 

Gerald bounded towards him, overturning a soldier 
who stood in the way. 

" Xever ! " be shouted, and, at the same time, furiously 
slashed the officer across the face, who fell to the ground, 
the blood streaming from the wound. 

Then Gerald placed his back against a tree, and con- 
tinued desperately to defend himself. 

" George, man, where are you ? Up and fight ! Down 
with the Yankees ! " 

Eut the unfortunate Englishman was in a bad way. 
He had been wounded in several places, and was almost 
fainting from loss of blood and pain. 

He heard his friend's voice and the words, however. 
A faint light came to his eyes, which were fast dimming. 

Feebly he endeavoured to struggle to his feet ; he rose 
to his knees, and grasping his sword, endeavoured to 
-ghig^er to his feet, saying faintly, in reply, — 

" Here I am, Gerald ! — fight on ! — fight on !" 

He never gained his feet ; weak as a child, but with 
the heart of a lion, he was blundering up, when a 
dragoon, who saw the attempt, hit him a violent blow 
with the butt-end of a pistol full in the mouth. The 
unfortunate Englishman fell back, with a groan, and lay 
helpless on his back. 

" Too weak— too weak !" he murmured faintly ; " God 
help you, Gerald, for I cannot. Eight on! — fight ! fight ! " 

The words died away as the blood came gurgling to 
his throat ; the scene faded from his glazing eyes, the 
clang of the sabres and shouts of the combatants from 
hi3 ears, and in another second there lay extended on the 
ground only a lifeless body. 



202 THE BLACK A^GEL, 

Gerald heard the last words of his friend and saw the 
cowardly blow of the dragoon. 

With a cry of fury, with tears of mingled rage and 
sorrow starling to his eyes, he bounded from his tree, 
and hurling himself at the man who had done the deed, 
he grasped him by the throat, and shortening his sword, 
plunged it right through his body. 

A cry of agony came from the lips of the dragoon, and 
he fell heavily to the ground, a dying man. A cry of 
rage and pain also escaped from Gerald Leigh, for he was 
struck by a sabre between the shoulder blades. lie 
turned furiously, and as he did so, received another ter- 
rific cut full on his bare head. For a moment his sword 
whirled around his head, and then Gerald Leigh, the 
brave and gallant, fell lifeless on the body of Captain 
George. 

All was over. They had fought like tigers, and fallen 
like heroes. 

"Take him alive — take him alive!" again cried the 
officer in command. 

The dragoon who had administered the coup de grace 
laughed grimly. 

" Too late, Captain — too late ! I have sent him to his 
account. By G — d ! if I had not done so, there would 
soon have been few of us alive ! " 

The man's words were true enough, for three of the 
dragoons were killed outright, and five desperately 
wounded. 

Thus ended this desperate affair, unprecedented for 
the daring gallantry displayed by the two fallen heroes, 
who fought, tiger-like, against such terrible odds to the 
very last. 

" Take them alive, take them alive !" 

"What a horrid mockery the words seemed, as four 
dragoons raised the bodies of the fallen men, and making 
a litter of the horsemen's cloaks and some branches of 
trees, lifted them aloft, and bore them at a slow pace 
back towards "Washington. 

The dead and wounded troopers were also carried back 
in the same manner, and those of the troop not required 



DEFEATED, WOUNDED, CAPTUBED. 203 

m the melancholy task walked their horses slowly behind, 
leading those of their comrades who were carrying the 
ghastly burdens. 

Tramp, tramp, tramp, tramp, — the procession moved 
slowly on back towards the city. The sound of the 
horses' hoofs fell on the earth slowly and with a muffled 
sound, as they followed behind. 

But for that and the measured tread of the troopers 
carrying the dead and wounded, there was a silence as of 
the grave. 

One short hour before, Gerald Leigh and Captain 
George had ridden gaily forth from "Washington in high 
spirits, full of hope, and in all the pride of youth and 
strength ; now they were borne back with white, blood- 
stained faces, hacked and mutilated forms, and with 
glazing eyes staring blindly up at the sky. 

" Take him alive, take him alive!" 

The officer in command, who had undertaken the 
task, little knew the men he had to deal with. 

Gerald Leigh had before said that a Yankee or two 
should bite the dust ere he would be taken. Well, had 
he kept his words, as the five wounded and three dead 
testified. 

This was almost the first actual bloodshed, at least by 
land, in this terrible war. 

The affair, news of which spread far and wide, created 
great excitement in both North and South, steeling the 
resolution of the Confederates to fight to the last gasp, 
and adding fresh fuel to the flame of the passions of the 
Northern mob. 

They had advanced about a hundred yards only, when 
they were joined by a man on horseback. 

He was not a dragoon, nor, indeed, a cavalry-man of 
any sort, but was in plain civilian's dress. He rode up 
to the officer in command of the troop, and addressing 
him, said, — 

" Have you carried out your orders, sir ? Have you 
taken them alive? " 

" I have taken them, but not alive ; they resisted to 
the last, and were both cut down." 



204f THE BLACK A^QEL. 

"Dead?'* 

The officer pointed to the litters on which the bodies 
were borne. 

" It seems like it," he said, " and not wonderful, for 
they received wounds enough to kill a dozen men." 

The stranger gazed on the two 'foremost litters, on 
which were the senseless forms of Gerald Leigh and the 
young Englishman. Gerald was borne first. He lay on 
his back, with a hand drooping over each side of the 
litter. Down the fingers of the left hand trickled slowly 
a stream of blood, which flowed from a wound in his 
shoulder. His head had two desperate cuts ; his fair 
hair was dabbled and matted with gore, and a fearful 
gash across his forehead showed the sabre's deadly work. 

Streams of blood had flowed from this wound all over 
his face, so that it was difficult even to recognise the 
features. 

Altogether, he presented a dreadful and ghastly sight ; 
the deadly pallor of the face, contrasting with the bright 
crimson of the blood, enhanced the effect ; and yet the 
stranger gazed calmly and unmoved. An expression ot 
triumph, even, crossed his face, and a saturnine smile 
played about his mouth. 

Eor nearly a minute he gazed at the dead hero, and 
then turned away. He saluted the officer in command, 
who coldly returned it. Then he turned his horse's 
head, and galloped back towards "Washington. 

" So perish all who dare to cross my path," he mut- 
tered." 

At the same moment he felt a sudden and unaccount- 
able thrill or shudder pass through his frame. It was 
like one of those strange sensations which old women tell 
children is caused by " some one walking over your 
grave." In spite of himself, a gloomy foreboding of the 
future took possession of his soul. Visions of vengeance 
and disaster loomed before him. He gazed uneasily 
around, as if expecting to see a phantom in his path. 

" Pshaw! what a fool I am," he said, endeavouring to 
shake off the feeling. " I feared him not when living — 
assuredly I need not fear him dead." 



foeebodings and teeeoes. 205 

Then drawing Lis cloak around him, he galloped on. 

This man was Lupus Eock. 

As his form disappeared round the bend of the road, 
the' officer in command, addressing his lieutenant, who was 
by his side, said, pointing to the litters on which were 
Gerald and Captain George. 

" You see those two poor devils ? " 

" Yes." 

" "Well, they are desperate rebels, but brave men 
both. They have met their fate; and they met it as 
brave men should. You see, also, that horseman who 
has just galloped away, and who spoke to me ? '! 

" yes." 

" Well, I would rather be in the place of cither of 
those poor devils than in his." 

" How so ?" asked the lieutenant, in surprise. 

" Because he is a traitorous, treacherous Judas. It 
was he who betrayed Captain Leigh and the other, whom 
I do not know. He ate with them, drank with them, 
and with a smile on his lips, black treachery in his heart, 
lie betrayed them to this, their fate. His name is Lupus 
Eock, aud he is a Unionist ; but G — d help the Uuionif 
it depend on such men as he !" 



CHAPTEE XXXI. 

EOEEBODINGS AND TEEEOES. 

Aetee the departure of Gerald and Captain George, 
Stella Gayle and Angela, as soon as they had dried their 
tears, again went out on the balcony, Stella was restless 
and feverish. She declared she could not sleep and 
should not retire to rest. The fair girls had not been 
on the balcony gazing, in mournful silence, out on the 
broad expanse of country for more than a few minutes, 
when there was borne on the air the sound of shouting 
in the distance. 

It came from the direction of the road in which Gerald 
and his friend had gone. Both listened intently, with 
vague, undefined alarm, 



203 THE BLACK A^GEL. 

There wa3 the sound of a pistol-shob and shouting; 
afterwards the clash of steel could be plainly heard. 

" Good Heavens ! " said Angela, " what can be the 
matter ? Gerald has gone that road. Can it be that 
he has been waylaid by robbers ? " 

Then again the shouts and clashing of steel was heard 
louder than before. 

" It is not robbers, I fear," replied Stella. 

"What then?" 

" Treachery — I fear that he may have been betrayed, 
and fallen into an ambuscade." 

" Oh Heavens, dont say so ! " cried Angela, with pale 
facie — " an ambuscade — and of whom ? " 

" Of United States' troops, charged to arrest him," 
replied Stella, slowly and deliberately. " I fear lest his 
design — even the time and place — should have been 
revealed to the Government, and a party sent to waylay 
and arrest him " 

" But who could, who would, betray him 1 " 

"I know nothing, but I suspect and fear much. 
"Where is our worthy cousin Lupus? He has again 
gone out, and, the servant tells me, on horseback. 
What is the meaning of this ? " 

Angela could not answer, and they both again listened. 
But now the sounds had ceased. It was at this time 
that Gerald and the young Englishman had burst 
through their foes and galloped off. 

The two girls heard some shots in rapid succession, 
and then again all was silent. These shots were from 
the carbines of the dragoons, who fired after the fugi 
tives. 

After the lapse of a couple of minutes, however, the 
a^ain heard the sound of shouts. This time the cries 
although more distant, were more clearly defined an 
unmistakeable. 

Angela clung in terror to her sister.^ 

Although the combatants were quite half-a-mile off, 
the clang of the sabres ; the pistol-shots, and the cries of 
rage and defiance were plainly heard. The night was 
calm and still, and favoured the transmission of sound. 



FOEEBODINGS AND TEEEOES. 207 

The sounds continued for some minutes, and then again 
all was quiet. 

Gerald and Captain George had gone down beneath 
the terrible sabres of the dragoons. Once again a 
silence as of the grave reigned around. Breathlessly 
Stella and Angela listened, but in vain. The fight, if 
fight it was, was evidently over. 

Angela tried to reassure herself and her sister. 
" Oh, perhaps it is only some of Gerald's friends, 
whom they caught up on the road, and they have been 
firing and shouting for fun, as I have seen them do 
before. Don't you remember that a body of horsemen 
passed about half-an-hour before Gerald started, and he 
was quite angry at their going in such numbers. They 
were friends of course, and I daresay he and Captain 
George caught them up ; for they went at a terrible 
pace." 

" Perhaps they were friends," said Stella, seriously ; 
"but then, again, perhaps they were enemies." 

" Oh, Heavens ! if it should be so ! Surely Gerald 
and his friend would not be mad enough to resist." 
"Yes," said Stella, "he would to the death." 
" Oh, dreadful ! who knows but that he may share the 
fate of poor Darcy." 

Stella merely bowed her head, and a tear trickling 
down her fair cheek, fell on her sister's hand. 

Then there was a long silence, each of the sisters 
gazing out on the moonlit scene. 

The table was cleared of its glasses and bottles, from 
which Gerald and his friend had drank their farewell 
glass, and when the negro servant came out on the 
balcony to inquire whether anything more would be 
wanted, Stella merely shook her head in reply, and once 
again they were alone with their thoughts. 

Below them on their right lay the city of Washing- 
ton, with the Potomac winding around it. Lights 
flashed and glimmered from many a wine-shop and bar, 
for although it was nearly one o'clock these and places 
of the like description were not closed. 

The sound, too, of merriment, shouts, laughter, and 



203 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

singing, bore evidence to the fact that fear of the 
rebels did not prevent the Union soldiers from making 
merry. 

On the left could be seen the white line of the road 
traversed by Gerald and the Englishman; then the 
wooded country and the Potomac river again, and 
beyond all, the grand old mountains of Virginia. 

The moonlight streamed down upon the scene, bathing 
the landscape in its soft pale flood. 

It was a scene well calculated for contemplation, for 
silent thought ; and the sisters did not fail to feel the 
influence of its deadly calm. Stella, with her chin resting 
on her fair hand, gazed dreamily out over the city, with 
its flashing lights and white buildings. 

Her large lustrous eyes were fixed on vacancy ; — she 
saw not the scene of the present; but the past, with all 
its joys and sorrows, unfolded itself, panorama-like, before 
her, while the future arose before her troubled imagina- 
tion like a dark and gloomy cloud. 

Surely, could an artist or statuary have seen her, as 
she sat thus silently pensive, he would have fixed upon 
her for a design for Melancholy. Her classic features, 
small Grecian head, with the true Venus di Medici low 
brow (in woman so great a beauty), conjoined with the 
pure white drapery she wore, her perfect motionlessness, 
and the calm repose of the scene, might well excuse the 
fancy that it was not a lovely girl, but an exquisitely 
chiselled statue, which realised nature by its perfection. 

Suddenly Angela, who was gazing up the road where 
Gerald had last been seen, gave a slight exclamation. 
The next moment the sound of horses' hoofs could be 
heard approaching. Stella started, and awaking from 
her reverie, looked round. 

A horseman could be seen rapidly approaching them. 
He was muffled in a large cloak, and a hat drawn over 
the face concealed his features, so that even when he 
drew up at the gate the sisters could not distinguish 
him. 

" Here, you nigger, Tom — Sandy, come and take mj 
horse," he shouted impatiently. 



FOBEBODTNGS AND TEBBOBS. 209 

u Lupus Rock ! " said Stella, turning in astonishment 
to her sister. 

" Lupus Eock ! where can he have been at this time 
of night ? Not to Washington, certainly, for he came 
from the other direction." 

" Heaven only knows ; perhaps he knows something 
of the affray we heard or fancied we heard up the road." 

The next moment Lupus strode into the room and 
out on the balcony. 

"Here, Sandy/' he said to the negro attendant, who 
had followed him in anticipation of orders, " bring out a 
small table, cigars, wine, and glasses." 

" Well, fair cousins," he added, turning to the ladies, 
" not retired to rest yet ? Stella, you will spoil the 
flashing beauty of your eyes ff you thus keep midnight 
vigils ; and you, too, Angela, those blue eyes of yours 
will tell a tale in the morning." 

He spoke in a singular manner, a manner which, well 
as Stella knew him, was strange to her. She looked up 
and gazed calmly into his face with that searching, quiet 
glance for which she was so celebrated. 

A smile of triumph played on the lips of her amiable 
cousin. 

' He has been successful in something,' thought 
Stella ; ' he is pleased.' 

She did not remove her eyes from his face, determined 
to read there all she could. Lupus bowed in mockery 
before her steadfast gaze, as if to say, ' Well, how do you 
like me?' His white teeth glistened for a moment, 
and he gave a little laugh, at which Stella almost 
shuddered. 

1 He has succeeded in injuring some one whom he 
hates, and whom he fancies dear to us. — It is Gerald 
Leigh,' thought Stella again. 

Still she kept her gaze on her cousin's saturnine 
countenance. Quickly glancing from the mouth, with 
its mocking triumphant smile, to the eyes and brow, she 
still looked full and unfalteringly at him. 

Lupus Eock quailed before that glance, and turned his 
head away to address Angela. 

p 



210 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Stella saw enough in that scrutiny to satisfy her 

' He has betrayed Gerald Leigh/ she said to herself, 
and turned pale at the thought ; ' cunning as he is, I 
can read him like a book ; and if eve? fiendish triumph 
and gratified malignity sat on a man's countenance, they 
did just now on his.' 

The negro appeared with the small table ordered by 
Lupus, the wine, and a box of cigars. Taking a cigar, 
he struck a light, and lit it ; then pouring out a full 
tumbler of wine, he held it aloft. 

" Stella — Angela, will you drink a toast with me ? " 

Silence. 

"It is a loyal toast." 

Still the girls did not reply. 

" Here is confusion to all traitors to our glorious 
Union, and may they all swing on the gallows-tree/' 

He raised the glass to his lips and drank the toast alone. 
Then he set it down, somewhat violently, on the table. 

" What ? " he said, " Angela, and you too, Stella, not 
drink a loyal toast ? I thought you especially, fair cousin • 
— this was to Stella — "were red-hot for the L r nion." 

" I do not see any necessity to prove my loyalty by 
drinking toasts at your bidding, sir," replied Stella, 
colouring with indignation. 

" What," continued Lupus, for success and abundant 
draughts of wine — an unusual thing with him — had 
combined to take away all prudence, " what, have you, 
too, turned rebel ? Doubtless the effect of bad com- 
pany, infected by that coxcomb Gerald Leigh, who set 
out about an hour or so ago to join the rebel army. I 
wonder will he ever reach them ! ha ! ha ! ha ! " and 
Lupus laughed a loud discordant laugh, which brought 
the hot blood tingling to the fair cheek of Stella. 

How she hated him at that moment ! 

" How do you know that Gerald Leigh set out to join 
the rebels ? " she asked, with difficulty smothering her 
indignation, " are you, too, in their secrets ? " 

" How do I know ? " Lupus faltered for a moment 
at this home question. He was going South himself, 
ostensibly to join the rebels, and he well knew that if he 



F0EEB0DING3 AND TEEEOES. 211 

were ever suspected of betraying a man so influential and 
so well liked as Gerald Leigh, a fearful vengeance would 
be taken. 

He saw that he had gone too far. 

"How do I know?" he replied; "why everybody 
knew ; it was common talk — notorious." 

" If then, it were so notorious, I wonder steps were 
not taken to prevent it by the authorities." 

" Perhaps those steps have been taken," Lupus said. 

Stella made no answer for a moment or so, but 
remained with cast- down eyes buried in thought. 
Suddenly raising her head, she turned sharply towards 
Lupus, and looking him full in the face with her proud, 
flashing, dark eyes, she said sharply and decisively, — 

" Cousin Lupus, where have you been ? whence have 
you just now come, and what was the object of your 
night ride ? " 

Lupus was completely taken aback by the suddenness 
and vehemence of his cousin's questions. He faltered, and 
trying to pass it off with a laugh, turned away, and was 
about to address Angela. But Stella was not thus to be 
baffled. 

" Answer me, sir, if you can or dare ! " 

So saying, she touched him on the shoulder sharply 
with her hand. 

" Can ! — dare ! " he replied, in affected astonishment ; 
"I do not understand you." 

" Tou understood my question, I presume ? " 

Lupus had now recovered his self-possession. He saw 
that Stella was not to be trifled with. 

" Pool, dolt, that I am to show my cards," he 
muttered; "this girl is a match for me — a perfect 
tigress — I must beware." Then aloud — "Where was I 
going?" he said, laughing; "well, certainly, cousin, you 
seem inclined to cross-examine me pretty closely. JNa 
matter — "I heard a body of horsemen come by before 
your friends left." He could not help putting a sneering 
emphasis on the words. " I was not sleepy, so, ordering 
my horse to be saddled, I just rode on after them to see 
who they were." 

v2 



212 THE BLACK A.'SQ'ELl 

' : And did you ascertain ? " 

" Yes ; it was a troop of United States' cavalry, under 
the command of a lieutenant and subaltern. They had 
some information, the lieutenant told me, and expected 
to capture some prisoners before morning." 

Stella Gayle heard and understood the full import of 
the words. She turned deadly pale, and compressed her 
lips firmly. 

' Gerald is lost,' she thought. ' Oh, treacherous fiend 
that you are. But, Lupus, a day of retribution will 
come for this.' 

At this moment Angela, who had been keeping aloof, 
exclaimed, — 

" See, here come a body of men, some mounted and 
some on foot." 

Lupus and Stella both turned and looked in the 
direction indicated. They saw approaching at a distance 
of about a quarter of a mile a body of men, some 
mounted and some on foot. 

Lupus Rock clenched his hands and breathed hard. 

"Well he knew who they were, and the ghastly burdens 
borne by the dismounted dragoons. 

All three watched them approach in silence. 

Slowly they wended their way along the white road. 

As they did so, the thoughts of the sisters flew back 
an hour or so, and in fancy they saw Gerald and Captain 
George galloping away in high spirits and health. 

"How slowly they come," said Angela, innocently. 

Lupus Rock could not trust himself to speak ; he felt 
his voice would betray him. 

" I wonder who they are," continued Angela, still not 
thinking of evil. 

" The mounted men are United States' cavalry, I am 
sure," said Stella, " I know the uniform." 

" I wonder what the men are walking in front for ? " 
continued Angela ; " I can see some horses with no riders 
behind. What silly men to walk when they might ride." 

At a distance of about two hundred yards from 
Holkar Hall the road was sheltered on each side by 
trees. The cavalcade would have to pass through these 



THE WOTTODED PRISO^ERS^ 213 

and would not emerge from their shade till quite close 
to the house. 

As the foremost of them entered the shadow, Angela, 
who still continued to watch them narrowly, said, — 

u Why, I declare, the men in front are carrying some- 
thing on their shoulders." 

" Perhaps it is a foraging party," said Lupus. 

" Ah, yes, of course ; I did not think of that. Doubt- 
less they are trusses of hay and straw for the horses 
which they are carrying." 

Poor girl ! she forgot that it is only in an enemy's 
country that foraging parties go forth by night, and that 
the neighbourhood of Washington was yet free from any 
foe. 

And now horse and foot have disappeared within the 
shadow of the trees. 



CHAPTEE XXXII. 

THE W017NDED PEISO^EES. 

With a vague and terrible presentiment of evil, Stella 
Gayle darts a rapid glance at her cousin, who is standing 
in the background, and then again towards the opening 
in the trees, where, in a few minutes, -the cavalcade will 
reappear. 

What a subject for a painter ! The two girls in the 
foreground gazing out anxiously, fearful of they know 
not what, each in her own style the perfection of 
womanly beauty. 

The tall, haughty, and graceful Stella, with her pale 
face and large melancholy dark eyes, waits and watches 
in breathless suspense for the appearance of the troops. 
Naturally more acute and strong-minded than her 
sister, she has a vague fear that Gerald and his friend 
have been made prisoners, and are now being conducted 
as such back to Washington. Her luxuriaut dark hair 
has partially escaped from its confinement, and falling 
gracefully over her neck presents a striking contrast to 
her pale face and white dress. Xhe bright moonlight 



214 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

streams full upon her face as sue gazes with parted lips 
towards the gloomy shadow of the trees. 

Lupus Rock, standing in the background, looks on 
■with folded arms. 

His eye glanced over the form of his beautiful cousin, 
and an expression of fierce admiration flashed across his 
face. 

Prom the small slippered foot peeping forth from her 
robe, his glance rises to the tapering waist, swelling below 
in graceful lines into the well-developed hips ; above to 
the softly rounded bust, the gently sloping shoulders; 
and upwards to a neck and head of which the goddess of 
old — winner of Paris' s prize — might well be proud. 

Utterly unconscious of his gaze, at once admiring, 
triumphant, and libertine, she looked silently out on 
the night. 

'"What glorious beauty,' thought Lupus, 'and it is 
to be mine ; yes, mine, mine, mine. It is, it shall be — 
mistress or wife, it depends on yourself, my haughty 
beauty ; but, by Heavens, mine you must and shall be ! ' 

As he thus stood, with folded arms, glittering eyes, 
and compressed lips, he looked like Satan gazing from 
Pandemonium on the bright and distant plains of 
Heaven, ere yet the thunderbolts of the Almighty had 
crushed all hope and hurled him to his doom. 

" Ah ! " cried Angela, suddenly, " it is wounded men 
they are carrying yonder." 

Then, with a shudder, she hid her face in her hands. 

" Wounded men ! " said Lupus, in affected surprise. 

" One, two, three, four, five, six," said Stella, slowly 
and deliberately ; " I can count six borne on litters and 
two or three others, who also appear wounded, are 
walking with assistance by the side. Oh, it 's dreadful ! 
there has evidently been an affray somewhere." 

" So it seems," said Lupus, indifferently. 

Stella turned away her head as they approached. She 
knew not why, but she shrank with almost prophetic 
aversion from gazing on the sad procession, and yet an 
irresistible impulse urged her to look. 

Tramp, tramp, tramp, tramp ! 



THE WOUNDED PRTSO:SEES. 215 

The measured tread of the troopers, as they march 
beneath their ghastly burdens, falls on her ear. 

The clattering of the horses' hoofs is also heard 
bringing up the rear, and faint groans from one of the 
wounded increases the horror of the scene. 

Suddenly, as the head of the column arrives abreast of 
the house, the word is given. 

"Halt!'; 

And all is still. 

" Mr. ^Marley," the voice of the lieutenant is heard to 
Bay to his subaltern, "Take a couple of men and ask for 
water at that house. Our wounded are crying for it." 

"ISo," shouted Lupus from the balcony, and 
turning deadly pale ; " do not stop Lieutenant 
Edvrards; make haste and get your prisoners on to 
Washington; besides, there is another house a little 
further on." 

" Who are you," said the lieutenant, haughtily, " who 
know my name and wish me to countermand my 
orders ? " 

" I will come down, I will come down," said Lupus, 
hastily. 

He then hurried from the balcony and out into the 
road. He did not wish the troop to stop opposite the 
house, for he feared that Angela and Stella, whose kind 
dispositions he well knew, might themselves hasten 
down to succour the wounded men. 

Then he feared that one of the troopers, or perhaps 
the lieutenant himself, might betray the part he had 
taken in the business. Now, however sweet his triumph 
might be to him, he did not wish to endanger the future ; 
and knowing the character of Stella, he felt sure that 
had she certain proof that it was he who betrayed 
Gerald Leigh, his life would be surely forfeited if he 
ventured South, and in imminent danger even in the 
Xorth. 

Thus it was that he hurried down. 

"Lieutenant Edwards," he said, approaching that 
officer, " it were better that you pushed on further. I 
have strong reasons for not wishing you to remain here." 



216 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Water, water," feebly cried a wounded man behind 
the officer. 

" I don't care a tinker's curse for you or your reasons, 
sir," cried the lieutenant, angrily, who, by the way, 
himself a brave and honourable man, detested Lupus 
and his treachery; "I only know that some of my poor 
fellows are wounded and dying for water. So see to it 
at once, and refuse at your peril." 

Lupus turned pale with anger at these contemptuous 
words and turned away. 

Such is ever the traitor's fate — hated by one side, 
scorned by the other. 

The other officer and two men had meanwhile gone 
up to the door and knocked loudly. 

Two or three negro house servants hurried to answer 
the summons in their pants and shirts only. 

" What de matter, massa, what de matter ? " asked 
one sable functionary. 

Lupus pushed by them and again went upstairs. He 
turned on the first step. 

" Here, Sandy," he said, " go and get a bucket of 
water and take it out ; some of those soldiers are thirsty 
and kicking up a row for water." 

And this was how the cold-blooded villain spoke of 
countrymen wounded, perhaps dying and fainting for a 
drop of water ! 

He again passed through the saloon and out on to 
the balcony. 

At the very moment that he did so the moon, which 
had been obscured, broke forth in all its brightness 
from a cloud, and shone full upon the group at the door. 

Stella and Angela gazed together on the scene ; the 
mounted dragoons, the riderless horses, and the six 
bodies on the litters. 

Simultaneously a faint cry broke from Stella and a 
piercing shriek from Angela. 

Lupus folded his arms and gazed, with a bitter smilo 
on his mouth. 

They had seen and knew all. 

On the foremost litter they saw the body of a young 



THE WOTJXDED PEIS02TEES. 217 

man extended at length ; it was the form of a tall, 
stalwart young man, with light fair hair, and blue 
eyes. 

But the fair hair was dabbled with blood, the blue 
eyes gazed vacantly upwards, and saw not. 

One hand drooped helplessly over each side of the 
litter, and hung thus ; while from the fingers of the left 
the blood still slowly and sullenly trickled. 

Still, calm, pale, and motionless, it lay before them. 

Tor one moment, Angela gazed on the pale, hand- 
some features now dabbled with blood, and then she 
fell back fainting in her sister's arms. 

" Great God ! " cried Stella, "it is Gerald Leigh ! " 

Lupus, with the same demoniac smile, continued 
carelessly looking on the dead, the dying, and the living. 

" Thus perish all who dare to cross my path," he said. 

Stella gave him a look of hatred, horror, and disgust, 
and then proceeded to support Angela, who, though 
not absolutely insensible, was pale as death, and very 
nearly fainting with terror, to a couch in the saloon. 

Leaving her to the care of the female attendants, she 
herself followed Lupus Rock, who had descended and 
gone out to the gate, where the dragoons and the officers 
in command still remained waiting for the water they 
had asked for. 

Stella Gayle now evinced a courage and a self-possession 
which took Lupus by surprise. In clear, firm accents, 
she ordered the servants to bring out not only water, 
but also wine and brandy. 

The wounded dragoons were first given a draught of 
wine and water, and then Stella, who moved about among 
the litters noiselessly, rapidly, but quietly, turned her 
attention to those on which Gerald and George were 
extended, apparently in the last sleep of death. 

Addressing the officer in command of the dragoons^ 
she said, quietly, without a tremble in her voice, — 

" Your wounded have been attended to, sir, and are 
welcome to anything which my father's house can afford. 
You will not, I presume, object to my bestowing the same 
care on your prisoners j for such, I suppose, these two 



218 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

unfortunate friends of mine are ; if, indeed, they be nob 
past all human aid." 

The lieutenant bowed, and gazing with wonder and 
admiration on the calm and courageous behaviour ol the 
beautiful girl before him, replied, — 

"Assuredly, Mis3 Gayle, and believe me, no one 
regrets more than myself that friends of yours should 
have been captured, wounded, and, I fear, 'killed by my 
command. I had a duty to perform, and endeavoured 
to do so in the most gentle manner possible. My orders 
were to take these two gentlemen prisoners, but to take 
them alive and unwounded. The desperate resistance 
they made rendered this impossible. They were deter- 
mined not to be taken, and as a proof of the obstinacy 
of the resistance which brought their fate upon them, 
witness these poor wounded and killed dragoons." 

" Sir," said Stella, " I believe what you say, that you 
endeavoured to carry out a disagreeable aud painful 
duty in the most gentle manner. You have but done 
your duty, as a brave and honourable officer should ; 
you, at least, I believe to be true and loyal — not a 
black-hearted, treacherous scoundrel as one I can 
name." 

Stella's flashing eyes here rested on Lupus Rock 
with so evident a meaning that he turned away, mut- 
tering a curse. 

The young officer of dragoons, who also knew of this 
gentleman's treachery, regarded him with a scornful 
smile. 

At that moment a loud and dismal howling broke 
forth. 

" Curse you, hold your d d noise, you infernal 

cur," said Lupus, at the same time advancing to a large 
dog, whip in hand. 

It was the hound of Gerald Leigh, which he had 
brought with him from the Kenanha estate. Missing 
his master, who, in the hurry of departure, had forgotten 
the faithful animal, he had broken his chain, and escaping 
from the yard of the hotel, had made his way to Holkar 
IT: 11, where he had often before accompanied him, and 



1'HE WOUNDED PRISONERS. 219 

where now he, doubtless, in his faithful caniue mind, 
thought to find him. 

Lupus was about to strike the faithful animal, but 
the latter seeing him advance threateningly, so far from 
retreating, showed his white teeth, and, with a low 
growl, prepared to spring upon him ; whereupon, Lupus, 
thinking better of it, retreated, 

Lupus was standing on one side of the litter on which 
lay the body of Gerald, which the sagacious animal had 
discovered. 

Stella recognised the dog, and called him to her, — 
"Lion, Lion." 

The dog knowing her voice, passed under the litter, 
and still howling, moaning, and whimpering, commenced 
licking her hand and fawning upon her. 

Stella now proceeded to dash water in the face of 
Gerald ; while, at her bidding, a negro did the same for 
Captain George. 

The officer in command remained patiently on horse- 
back while these efforts were being made to revive the 
wounded men, if, indeed, they were not past all aid. 
Not so Lupus, however. He looked on moodily and 
angrily. It cut him to the quick to see his beautiful 
cousin ministering so tenderly to his enemy, for such he 
considered Gerald Leigh. 

" Come, sir," he said, impatiently, to the officer ; "is 
it not time that you proceeded on to "Washington with 
your prisoners? " 

"I know my duty, sir," was the cold reply, "and do 
not require any suggestions from you." 

" "What is the use of remaining here ? " continued 
Lupus ; " if they are alive, it is your duty to convey them 
at once to head-quarters ; if they are dead, as seems 
most likely, it is equally your duty. Dead, of course," 
continued the ruffian, carelessly, and contemptuously 
placing his hand on the breast of Gerald. 

Hardly had he done so than the latter, who was by no 
means dead, gave a faint groan. Lupus started back in 
dismay, as though he heard a noise from the grave — so 
deep, so hollow was the sound. 



220 THE ELACK AXGEL. 

At the same moment, the dog, who had been glaring 
at him from beneath the litter, bounded forward, and 
with a savage growl, flew at the throat of the man who 
had laid his hand on his master. 

So sudden and furious was the rush of the faithful 
dog, that Lupus Rock was dashed to the earth. The 
animal then made a dash at his throat, which he barely- 
missed, fastening his white sharp fangs, however, in his 
shoulder, which he bit through and through. Lupus 
cried out lustily from fear and pain, and some of the 
troopers, coming to his assistance, endeavoured to force 
the dog to let go his hold. Their efforts, however, were 
not successful, for the savage brute held on with a deadly 
grip, snarling furiously, and shaking his prey as though 
he would tear him to pieces. 

1 'Twould serve him but right to let him be killed by 
the dog of the man he has betrayed,' she thought ; never- 
theless she went round to the other side, and, calling the 
animal by name, placed her hand on his collar. The 
powerful brute, knowing the voice and touch, suffered 
her with but slight exertion to remove him, and let her 
lead him away, growling and showing his white fangs 
as if he did not half like being robbed of his prey. 

Lupus, furious with rage, rose from the ground, and 
running up to one of the troopers, attempted to take his 
carbine, intending to shoot the dog. The man, however, 
refused to give it to him, and the officer in command 
said, sternly, — 

" Not so, Mr. Eock. My soldiers' carbines are for a 
different purpose, neither shall you shoot the dog. It is 
the property of my prisoner, Mr. Gerald Leigh, and as 
such I am bound to deliver it with all his other effects 
into the hands of the authorities. So be pleased to leave 
it alone." 

Lupus, baffled and scorned on all sides, hastened into 
the house in order to have his wounded shoulder attended 
to. The whole incident did not occupy many seconds, 
and no sooner had Stella Gayle removed the dog, than 
she once again turned her attention to the wounded 
rebel, Gerald Leigh. A cry of joy escaped from her as she 



U'Hi] VVUUJNDEU PEIS0NEE9. 221 

perceived that he breathed and moved. Deep groans, 
forced from him by pain, escaped from his lips, which, 
with the rest of his face, was smeared with clotted gore. 
Stella, with the aid of a handkerchief and. plenty of 
water, removed this, and, with the quickness and skill of 
a practised nurse, raised his head and poured down his 
throat a copious draught of brandy, 

" He lives — he breathes ! " she cried, joyfully, as she 
noticed that, under the influence of the powerful stimu- 
lant, he each moment showed signs of returning con- 
sciousness. 

Then leaving the litter side, she approached the young 
lieutenant of dragoons, and said, — 

" Sir, it would be cruelty, murder, to take your 
prisoners on as they are. Let them be carried into the 
house, and a surgeon shall be sent for to dress their 
wounds. See," she exclaimed, pointing first to Gerald 
and then to the Englishman, " they are both alive, and 
may recover if they have prompt aid. Tour own wounded, 
too, shall be attended to." 

Having said her say, she remained standing before 
the young officer, looking anxiously in his face for his 
answer. 

His must have been a hard heart indeed to have refused 
such a request from such lips, 

Stella stood before him with clasped hands, and gazing 
anxiously in his face with those lustrous dark eyes of 
hers. Her beautiful dark hair had escaped from its fas- 
tenings, and flowed in rich luxuriousness down her back. 
She had on neither shawl nor mantle, and even the rough 
soldiers could not but feel the influence of so much beauty, 
gentleness, and spirit combined. 

The young man hesitated for a moment as if in doubt. 

" Surely you cannot be so cruel, so unfeeling as to 
refuse so reasonable a request," she said. " Surely I am 
not mistaken in thinking you to be both a brave and 
generous officer." 

"Enough," replied the young man, hastily; "Miss 
Gayle, I cannot refuse your request. My orders were 
to convey my prisoners to Washington at once, but when 



222 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

they were given it was not anticipated that they would 
resist so desperately and receive such wounds." 

Stella thanked him by a look, and quickly gave the 
word to the litter-bearers to carry all the wounded men 
into the house. 

A messenger was despatched on horseback for a sur- 
geon, who quickly arrived, and proceeded to attend to 
the wounded. 

On his arrival, Stella, leaving them in his hands, has- 
tened up stairs to her sister, whom she had left in a 
fainting condition. 

The first words of Angela, when she had sufficiently 
recovered from the shock to 'speak, were of Gerald 
Leigh. 

" Ah ! " she exclaimed, wildly, covering her face with 
her hands, " I remember all now. Dead — killed ! Gerald 
so brave and good — murdered ! " Then followed a pas- 
sionate burst of tears. 

" No, no, dear Angela," cried Stella, "not killed, only 
desperately wounded and a prisoner. But he will re- 
cover, I hope — I think he will, both he and his friend." 

Angela took her hands from her face. 

"Oh, Stella," she cried, "you are not deceiving me? 
—he is not killed ? " 

" JNo, no ; only wounded and captured." 

" Ah ! only wounded and captured," said Angela, to 
whose heart her sister's words had brought momentary 
relief; "only wounded and captured — what does that 
mean ? First, that he may die of his wounds ; and, 
secondly— Oh, Stella, what does that word 'captured' 
mean?" 

Here the poor girl shudderingly again hid her face. 

Stella could answer nothing; for, in the joy at finding 
that Gerald and his friend had not been killed outright, 
she forgot the terrible consequences of his capture. 

She knew what his conduct would be called — rebellion 
— treason — desertion ; for his resignation not having been 
accepted, he was legally a deserter, and she knew that 
for that crime there is but one punishment in the time of 
war. 



WIFE OE MISTEESB. 223 

She knew it ; and when Angela again raised her eyes 
to her face, she turned very pale. The deep pallor on 
Angela's fair face, to which the colour had for a mo- 
ment returned at the first joyful news, now bore witness 
to the fact that she knew the terrible penalty Gerald 
Leigh had incurred. 

That penalty teas Death. 



CHAPTER XXXIII. 

WIFE OE MISTEESS. 

ly the course of half-an-hour the wounds of Gerald 
Leigh, Captain George, and also those of the dragoons, 
were dressed and bound up. The surgeon declared, as 
the result of his examination, that all might recover, al- 
though the wounds of Gerald especially were very severe 
and dangerous. 

As soon as all was done which medical skill could do, 
the young dragoon officer ordered the troopers again to 
take up the litters, and the cortege resumed its march 
towards "Washington. 

Gerald, although faint from loss of blood, and sick 
with the intense pain he suffered, yet recognised the fair 
forms of Angela and her sister, as, like ministering angels, 
they flitted about the couch on which he was laid. Now 
it was Stella who moistened his parched lips with a cool- 
ing drink— now Angela who, with gentle care, placed a 
cushion under the weary head enveloped in surgical 
bandages. But he was not permitted long to profit by 
their delicate attentions, for, as we have before said, the 
word was given to resume the march, and notwithstand- 
ing the agony to which it put the poor fellows, they were 
lifted off the couches and again placed on the rough 
litters. 

Gerald, too weak to lift his head, followed the form of 
Angela with his eyes, and catching hers, he contrived to 
throw so much meaning in his giance that the young 
lady was qu ickly by his side. "With an effort he extended 
his right hand towards her, his lips moved, but in the 



224) TITD BLACK AtfGEL. 

effort to speak a rush of blood came to his throat, nearly 
choking him. The surgeon imperatively ordered him to 
he silent ; so, with a faint smile, when his lips were 
again cleared of the blood which had flowed from them, 
he resigned himself to his fate. Angela had taken his 
hand, which, after the vain effort to speak, had fallen 
helplessly by his side, and as he was borne forth from 
their hospitable roof, he pressed hers with what little 
remaining strength he had left, and casting a glance 
upon her full of love and devotion — a glance the memory 
of which she treasured up in her heart for many a long 
day — he was borne out into the moonlight ; and soon 
the measured tramp of the troopers told the weeping 
sisters that Gerald Leigh, their old friend — and to 
Angela something more — was being carried to what they 
both feared would be his grave, or a more terrible 
doom. 

Scarcely had the party left the house, than Lupus 
Rock, who had hitherto held aloof, appeared. His face 
was black as night, and there was an expression on 
his handsome though sinister features at which Angela 
shrunk with fear, Stella with hatred and scorn. 

(i So, so," he muttered, " it seems that it pleases my 
fair cousins to turn their father's house into a hospital 
for wounded rebels." 

Stella gazed at him for a moment with a glance of 
withering scorn. 

" Better that my father's house were, as you Bay, Mr. 
Eock, a hospital for wounded rebels than a home for a 
treacherous scoundrel." 

Stella's words were passionate, and he could not pre- 
tend to misunderstand either them or her manner as she 
turned away from him. For a moment he seemed about 
to give way to an outburst of fury. He ground his teeth 
together, and looked like the very demon of hate and 
malice. But, on second thoughts, he resolved to restrain 
his passion. He had sufficient cause to know that Stella 
did not fear him, and was too good a general to show 
his teeth when he could not bite. 

He was possessed of wonderful self-command, and on 



WIFE OR MISTRESS. 225 

this occasion resolved to use it ; so he replied, with a 
strange smile, — 

"I cannot affect to misunderstand your meaning, 
Stella ; some clay you will repent your language." 

This was said in such a manner as to leave it in doubt 
whether it was intended as a threat, or that she would 
some day find that she had done him injustice, and would 
for that reason repent. 

Stella, however, did not stay to inquire as to the mean- 
ing of his words ; but, with her sister, left the lower part 
of the house ; and carefully drawing aside the skirts of 
her dress in passing Lupus, as though his very touch 
were pollution, she ascended the staircase without deign- 
ing him a word. Indeed, words were not needed; for 
no words, no scorn she could express, would have con- 
veyed a more bitter and galling lesson to the proud, vin- 
dictive Lupus than her silence and the action. 

He saw neither Stella nor her sister the next day ; for 
they kept their own room, studiously and carefully avoid- 
ing him. He discovered that they had written to Web- 
ster G-ayle, and did not doubt that the purport of the 
letter was to complain of him, and beg their father either 
to join them, or to permit them to return. 

Neither of these two courses suited the purpose of 
Lupus Rock ; so he determined to administer an antidote 
to the poison which their letter would instil, by himself 
irating another. His conjecture as to the purport of 
Stella's letter was perfectly correct, with this exception, 
that she did not therein condescend to complain of him, 
or go into particulars, but merely begged her father most 
earnestly to join them at once, for that they were both 
alarmed and unhappy. Angela joined in a short post- 
script in her sister's entreaties, and neither doubted for 
a moment that the letter would have the desired effect. 

Alas ! they knew not what a letter their amiable cousin 
wrote on the following day, nor how urgent, and to the 
merchant how all-powerful, were the arguments he 
used. 

Lupus Eock dwelt strongly therein on the imprudence 



226 THE BLACK ANGEL, 

of his coming South at the present crisis, and asserted 
that a whisper was abroad in Washington circles that 
"Webster Gayle had dealings with the rebels, and had 
absolutely contracted to supply them with a large quan- 
tity of arms some time before the rebellion broke out, 
well knowing the use to which they were to be put. 

The fact that Webster Gayle had so done was true, 
and Lupus having a knowledge of the fact was the curse 
of his life ; and, with some other awkward secrets, of 
which this snake in the grass had possessed himself, 
almost placed Mr. Gayle in his power. 

He had lately noticed in the behaviour of the latter 
symptoms of a certain domineering manner, which he had 
not noticed before, but still he was in the most profound 
ignorance of the deep and systematic scheme of villany 
which Lupus contemplated. 

This, as doubtless the reader has already gathered, 
aimed at no less an object than to get the New York 
merchant completely in his power, to hold his liberty, 
his very life, in his hands, and then to demand, as the 
only condition of safety, the whole of the Virginia estates, 
which he had planned to be assigned to him (as he said, 
nominally only). But this was not all he contemplated 
— Stella Gayle was the one object of his desires, and at 
any price he determined to possess her. 

Thus he not only intended to work on the fears of hia 
uncle, and so force him to comply with his demands, but 
also, by means of the same treacherous weapons, to bend 
his proud and haughty cousin to his purpose. 

He knew that she was devotedly attached to him ; for, 
with all his faults — avarice and others — he was a kind 
and indulgent father. At one time he had thought to 
win his cousin, without working on her fears or affection 
for her father. He knew that he was good-looking, and 
believed himself to be agreeable ; and as for rivals, he 
had never cause to suspect that any existed, with the 
exception of Darcy Leigh, whom he feared instinctively 
— he knew not why ; for Stella's manner was not more 
warm to him than others, but rather the reverse. 

Great was his satisfaction, then, when Darcy WAS, aa 



WIEE OE MISTKESS. 



227 



all supposed, killed and for ever removed from his path. 
This event, however, so far from operating in his favour, 
seemed to have had the very reverse effect ; for whereas 
before Stella was always civil to him, and would some- 
times even vouchsafe a kind word, now she took but 
little pains to conceal the fact that she absolutely dis- 
liked him. 

Lupus Rock, with all the boasted skill and address of 
which he was so proud, and for which he was so cele- 
brated, had not the power to read the heart of woman. 
It seemed to him perfectly natural that if ever Stella 
had cared for this young Leigh, his death^ ought to 
operate in his favour; yet, strange to say, it had not 
done so ; and the more Lupus thought on the subject, 
the more he felt, he knew not why, that in the death of 
Parcy Leigh he had lost his most dangerous rival. Lupus 
Eock knew the world well, and also was gifted in a dan- 
gerous degree with the power of reading men's minds ; 
but with his cousin Stella he was all abroad. He knew 
no t — could not understand her pure proud nature. He 
never dreamed for an instant that many little civilities 
paid to himself while the young officer was present were 
dictated by that pride — a pride which had no arrogance 
in it, but was the result of deep and sensitive feelings. 

Stella G-ayle would rather have died than allow any 
man to imagine he had the least hold upon her heart, 
unless she were fully satisfied that she possessed his, 
and also that he was worthy of such a love as she could 
give. Now, in the first place, she hardly knew her own 
feelings towards Darcy Leigh ; in the second, she knew 
nothing of his feelings towards her ; his manner was 
constrained, and, what galled her greatly, he treated her 
with such rigid politeness and coolness that she some- 
times fancied he had an idea that she cared for him, but 
did not reciprocate. This last fancy, unfounded though 
it was, caused her bitter mortification. Lastly, she was 
by no means certain he w r as worthy of her ; she was, as 
the reader knows, a staunch patriot and Unionist, and 
hating the very name of Secession, until very lately, she 
aad also hated, or tried to hate, every rebel. 

Q2 



228 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

The letter -which Lupus addressed to his uncle wng 
one of his masterpieces. He contrived at the same time 
to hint at enormous losses and risks involved in certain 
modes of action, and also held forth hopes of enormous 
profits if his advice and his course were strictly acted 
upon. Lupus also dwelt not angrily, but regretfully, on 
the difficulty he had in controlling his cousins, and the 
great danger they caused to both himself and the mer- 
chant by receiving as their friends notorious rebels. 

" This conduct on their part is the more damaging and 
disastrous to our cause," he said, " from the fact that, 
when I carry out a certain part of our programme with 
regard to your Virginia estates — you, from your daugh- 
ters' great intimacy with such notorious rebels as Gerald 
Leigh (who, by the bye, has just been arrested, only an 
hour after leaving Holkar Hall), might be accused of 
complicity, and thus everything be lost. If, when you 
•write to your daughters, you would just mention this, 
and also beg of them to be more discreet and considerate, 
and to act strictly in all such matters as may seem best 
to me, who, being on the spot, am enabled to judge, it 
would perhaps tend to remove not only a great annoy- 
ance, but also a great, perhaps imminent, danger ; for 
remember, sir, the perilous times in which we live. Con- 
sider what would be the consequence if, owing to any 
indiscretion of theirs, I were to be arrested. Notwith- 
standing the fact that I have taken every imaginable 
precaution, I yet fear greatly that enough would be dis- 
covered to ensure the ruin of us both ; should all be dis- 
covered, it is quite certain that one or both of us ivould go 
to the gallon's. 

" Do not think I am an alarmist in writing as I do. I 
wish to provide for our safety, and, at the same time, 
make sure of the enormous profits we anticipate, and also 
to retain for you your large possessions in Virginia, 
whichever way the struggle goes. And now for the con- 
tract for the delivery of . (Here a blank was 

left.) You must send the original contract with your signa- 
ture attached as agreeing to it. But first cut it in half 



WIFE OR MISTRESS. 229 

down the middle. Send me one half only, retaining the 
other until you hear from me that I have safely received the 
first. By adopting this plan yon will be safe ; for sup- 
posing it* is intercepted on the road, either half will be 
unintelligible without the other. Do not fail in this, as 
if it is to be done, it must be done at once." 

This is merely an extract from the letter of Lupus 
Bock to his uncle ; but in the last few lines the real 
purpose of the long letter he wrote was contained. 

The contract of which he spoke was for supplying the 
rebels with arms and munitions of war to the value of 
five millions of dollars. 

Webster G-ayle calculated to clear a million by the 
transaction. 

The cunning device of sending the contract in two 
halves would remove all danger of detection by its falling 
into improper hands ; and as to the payment and delivery 
of the goods, Lupus, clever fellow as he was, had arranged 
all that. 

They were to be delivered within the boundaries of the 
loyal States, probably somewhere on the "Western Poto- 
mac, and the rebels would then take charge of them ; so 
that if they were captured on the road South, the loss 
would fall on them alone. As for the payment, that was 
to be made on delivery, partly in cash, partly in bonds ; 
and Lupus had convinced his uncle that they could not 
possibly fail to realise by the transaction an enormous 
profit. 

Still he did not conceal the fact that the discovery of 
so gigantic a treason would certainly lead to the arrest 
and condemnation of them both. This latter would be 
followed by confiscation of all property, and probably an 
execution for treason. 

The plans of Lupus Rock were laid with diabolical 
cunning. He had determined ultimately to join the 
Confederate cause, at least for a time — not because he 
sympathized with them, or cared one jot for a bravo 
people about to do battle for their independence, but 
because he saw that his interest lay in that direction. ^ 

Webster Gayle was to assign the Virginian plantation 



230 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

to him — as the merchant thought, merely nominally; 
but Lupus well knew better. 

To hold this he would be obliged to join the Confede- 
rates, at least if they held Southern Virginia, and he felt 
assured that, at least for a time, they would hold it. 
Then, if they won their independence ultimately, the 
estate would, of course, be confirmed to him ; while, if 
they failed, he would contrive, at the fall of their for- 
tunes, to furnish information to the Northern generals, 
and maintain that he was loyal all through, and only 
went South to act the spy on the rebels. 

But his last stroke of policy was the masterpiece of 
the whole deep-laid scheme. By it he felt assured he 
should gain, not an estate, not a million dollars, but 
something which he valued even more — something he 
now felt convinced he could never attain by other means. 
He would gain what he was determined to gain, what ho 
would peril his life— aye, sell his soul to obtain. 

And that was Stella Grayle. 

He knew that he could not gain her heart, but for that 
he cared little. He would, however, gain her hand, her 
person; and in his mad passion it was that which he 
coveted. 

"Webster Gayle would send the contract duly signed. 
It would be sent in two halves, but Lupus would join the 
two halves together, and from that day the liberty and 
life of the great New York merchant would be in his 
hands. 

He could so dispose of the paper that in an hour's 
time it should be in the hands of the Secretary of State ; 
and within an hour from that he well knew that the order 
for the arrest of Webster Grayle, the senator, and his 
committal to the gloomy dungeons of Fort Lafayette 
would follow ; thence to issue a ruined, penniless outcast, 
or on his way to the scaffold. 

"Webster Gayle received in due course the two letters, 
one from his- eldest daughter, the other from his nephew, 
Lupus Bock. He wrote to his daughters begging them 
to be patient, and on no account to have any communi- 
cation with any persons suspected of disaffection to the 



FORTUNE FAVOURS THE BRAVE. ti31 

United States' Government, and also to pay the greatest 
attention to the wishes and advice of their cousin Lupus, 
of whose wisdom, acuteness, and fidelity, he spoke in the 
highest terms. He more than hinted that it was abso- 
lutely essential that they should keep on the most 
friendly terms with him, and concluded by saying that 
he could not possibly join them for a few weeks, at 
least. 

Lupus also received his letter, with the half of the 
contract ; he cared little about the contents, but wrote 
by return to acknowledge the safe receipt, and asking for 
the other half to be forwarded. 

By the next mail he received it, and as he gummed the 
severed halves together, he said to himself, while a smile 
of triumph lighted up his face, — 

" Now, Stella Grayle, my proud, haughty beauty, I will 
bring you to my feet. Your heart I will win if I can ; if 
I cannot, you shall be my wife ; and if your proud spirit 
rebels at that, I will even humble you yet more, and 
make you my mistress ! My mistress, but not my only 
mistress. You shall feel the humiliation of having a rival 
near the throne. There is my Creole beauty — perhaps 
handsomer — certainly wealthier — than even the hand- 
some daughter of wealthy Webster Grayle. 

" Oh, but that will be a noble revenge for the scorn 
with which you have treated me. Your father's life in 
my hands shall, if I so choose, be only purchased at the 
price of his daughter's honour. Stella Grayle, I hardly 
know whether I hate or love you most. I love your 
beautiful body, but hate your haughty spirit. "Wife or 
mistress, it depends on yourself; but as one or the other, 
Stella Glayle, you shall be mine !" 



CHAPTER XXXIY. 

FORTUNE FAVOURS THE ERAVE. 

Gerald Leigh and his unfortunate friend, the young 
Englishman, were borne off, and, desperately wounded as 
they -were, consigned to the custody of "the provost* 



232 THE BLACK AKGEL. 

marshal, for Gerald's offence was a military, not a poli- 
tical one; he was considered as a deserter and mutineer, 
his resignation not having been accepted. 

Captain George shared his imprisonment, and would, 
in all probability, share his fate— and what that fate 
would be was already well known in Washington. 

They would be brought to a trial as soon as they were 
sufficiently recovered from their wounds. "What the 
verdict would be no one doubted, and the sentence would 
as certainly be death. 

It is true Captain George was an Englishman, and 
might claim the protection of the British ilag, but in all 
probability the Yankees would shoot him first, and deli- 
berate afterwards as to the legality of the act. 

Leaving, then, the two unfortunate young men to their 
wounds, their misery, and the appalling certainty of an 
ignominious death staring them in the face, we will return 
to actors in this our drama, whom we have already too 
long neglected. 

We allude to the audacious rebel, Darcy Leigh and his 
daring crew of corsairs. 

It will be remembered (and if the reader should have 
forgotten, he has but to refer back) that the Spitfire, 
commanded by the rebel, Darcy Leigh, had succeeded 
in escaping first from IS"ew York Harbour, and after- 
wards from the still greater peril of the "Wabash. 

jSor was this all, for scarcely had this been accom- 
plished, than she was overtaken by the terrible storm 
which so nearly overwhelmed her. At last, the elements 
had spent their fury, and the crew, worn out by the un- 
ceasing dangers and fatigues of the last twenty-four 
hours, congratulated themselves on having, for the time, 
at least, escaped. Darcy Leigh, suffering from the 
wound on his head, had at last sunk into a sleep, which, 
though fevered and unquiet, afforded some rest to his 
exhausted mind and body. 

When Lieutenant Wharncliffe, who was the officer in 
charge of the deck, suddenly turned his eyes to windward, 



TOETUNE FAYOUES THE BEAYE. 233 

and beheld, looming through the mist, the dark form of 
the Wabash, he was for the moment utterly confounded. 

Hurrying down the companion way, he laid his hand 
on the shoulder of the sleeping Darcy. 

Instantly the latter started to his feet, and in answer 
to his inquiry received the reply, — 

" All is lost ! the Wabash is alongside !" 

But if Wharncliffe thought all lost, Darcy was not one 
to agree with him, or give way to despair. 

Bare-headed, he rushed up on deck, and running to 
windward, he held on by the mizzen- shrouds and gazed 
around. 

A moment's glance was enough. There, to windward, 
at scarcely a cable's length, was their dreaded pursuer, the 
United States' frigate Wabash. 

Her great guns frowned gloomily from the port holes, 
for they were run out as if ready for action. 

As for the Spitfire, all her great guns had been thrown 
overboard, so that the case of the rebels seemed despe- 
rate. "What hope was there of successfully resisting such 
overwhelming force ? The rebel crew were wounded — 
all exhausted and worn out by fatigue ; while last and 
worst, their guns were gone, and they had nothing to 
rely on but the carronades and small arms. 

What hope, indeed ! 

Darcy Leigh, however, lost no time in gloomy antici- 
pations. He and Wharncliffe were the only men on 
board who knew of their terrible predicament ; even the 
man at the helm, intent on steering, had not yet observed 
the Yankee frigate. 

" Starboard your helm," said Darcy, walking up to the 
binnacle, " hard a starboard." 

" Starboard it is," said the seaman, heaving the wheel 
up, but looking somewhat surprised at the sudden order. 

" Turn the crew up, Wharncliiie, quietly and gently ; 
for, by Heavens, the Yankees have not yet discovered us." 

Wharncliffe hurried forward, and rousing the watch, 
who were lying about on the deck, ordered them to arm 
themselves, while he went below and called the rest. 

Slowly the Spitfire payed off in obedience to her helm. 



234? TIIE BLACK ANGEL. 

Darcy remained on the poop, earnestly watching tho 
enemy. 

The "Wabash appeared not to have a soul on her decks 
— at least, Darcy could not discover one. 

All her three masts were gone close to the deck, and, 
looking above, he discovered that, although smoke came 
from her funnel, she had no headway. 

"While he was gazing through the mist, which now 
again thickened, and threatened once again to hide tho 
vessels from each other, he perceived moving persons on 
her quarter-deck. The next instant he heard the sound 
of some one crying out in a loud voice. • 

" They have seen ns at last," he muttered. " Now we 
filial 1 have to fight with a vengeance." 

The crew now began tumbling up on deck, rubbing 
their eyes, and wondering what on earth was the matter. 

u All hands to quarters !" shouted Darcy ; " every man 
to his station — run in the guns — load with round shot." 
Suddenly he remembered that the guns had been thrown 
overboard. Dashing down the speaking trumpet he held 
in his hand, he ran down from the poop, and, mingling 
among the crew, gave his orders rapidly and deter- 
minedly, — 

" Lay aft, some of you," he said ; M load the carronades 
up to the muzzle — small-arms men in the waist, and 
boarding party on the forecastle. Bear a hand ! for, by 
Heavens, we must fight now !" 

" "What's the matter, captain ? where's the enemy ?" 
asked one of the sailors, leaping down from the bulwarks, 
where he had in vain endeavoured to discern anything ; 
for the mist had again closed around them. 

At the same moment, a gust of wind tore over the 
surface of the sea, scattering the mist on all sides, which 
rolled back slowly before it. 

" The matter ! — that — look for yourselves ; that is tho 
matter ;" and he pointed to the weather quarter, where, 
at a distance of only a few yards, might be discerned 
the Wabash, broadside on, and as if preparing to rake 
them. 

A cry of dismay broke from the sailors at the sight of 



FORTUNE FAVOURS THE EEAYE. 235 

the Yankee. At the same time, a shout was heard from 
the "Wabash ; it was not a shout of many voices, but 
appeared that of one man speaking through a trumpet. 
Meanwhile the sailors, who knew that soon they must fight, 
and who were prepared to do so, and sell their lives 
dearly, hastily armed themselves with muskets, pistols, 
cutlasses, and pikes. 

The carronades on the quarter-deck were quickly 
loaded ; and while they were being trained, Darcy Leigh 
ran to the signal halyards and hoisted the Confederate flag. 

As the bunting blew forth in the breeze, he raised his 
sword aloft, and shouted to his crew, — 

" Three cheers for the Stars and Bars, and death to the 
Yankees !" 

Then a cheer rang forth from stem to stern of the 
"Wabash, and Captain Darcy Leigh hurried to hi3 men 
who were training the carronades. 

" Luff — luff!" he cried to the man at the helm. 

" Luff, it is, sir." 

Slowly the Spitfire answered her helm, and came up 
to the wind. Wharncliffe had hurriedly given orders 
down the stoke-hole to fire up and go ahead full speed. 

Darcy intended to cross the bows of the Wabash, de- 
liver the fire of the carronades and small arms, and then 
make a running fight of it, trusting that the superior 
speed of the Spitfire might enable them once more to 
escape. 

Every man was now at his station, prepared to do 
battle to the last. The flag of the United States floated 
from the stump of the mizzen-mast of the frigate, remov- 
ing all doubt, if doubt there had been, as to her character. 
Still, however, very few men could be perceived on her 
decks, and Darcy concluded that they had been ordered 
to lie down and conceal themselves. He was at a loss to 
account for these tactics, for they must know that their 
characters could not be concealed. 

And now the Spitfire is crossing the bows of the 
"Wabash. Darcy gives the order to fire, and the carro- 
nades belch forth their contents of grape and canister. 
Next follows a rattling discharge of musketry. 



236 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Load again, boys ; fire them once more, and then we 
will show them our heels." 

Once again the small brass pieces were loaded, run 
out, and discharged, the rattle of musketry all the time 
being kept up. To the astonishment of Darcy Leigh not 
a shot is fired in return. But the "Wabash slowly comes 
up to the wind, so as once again to present her broad- 
side. 

Almost at the same moment there is a stoppage in the 
engines of the Spitfire, and the screw ceases to revolve. 
After a few minutes' interval the engines once again 
start, but after one or two revolutions came to a stand- 
still. Darcy is hurrying off the quarter-deck to learn 
the cause, when he is met by "Wharncliffe, who says a 
few words only to him, which words, however, seem to 
fill him with the utmost dismay. 

The engines have broken down, and the Spitfire is within 
a few hundred yards only of one of the finest and most 
heavily-armed frigates in the United States' navy. Their 
condition is now indeed desperate. "What hope can they 
have of successfully resisting the heavy guns of the 
"Wabash with the few small carronades ? But little, in- 
deed ; nevertheless the rebel commander, though almost 
hopeless of success, determines to fight to the last. 

Although very pale from loss of blood caused by his 
wound and the disastrous intelligence just received, not 
a trace of fear or irresolution can be discerned in his 
features. Hastening to the engine-room, he demands of 
the officer in charge what is the matter ? 

" Hopelessly broken down," is the gloomy answer. 

" Can you get a few turns more of the screw out of 
her ?" 

The officer, after a careful examination, replies, — 

" "We may just manage to keep her steering way on 
her for another quarter of an hour, that is all." 

Darcy remained for a moment as if in doubt, then, as if 
having formed a resolution, he regains the deck, and, 
taking the helm himself, gives his orders. 

" My lads, we have but one chance. We must take 
her by board. Arm, every one of you; and as we run 



FORTUNE EAYOTJES THE 33EAVE. 237 

into her, throw yourselves on board, and fight like 
devils !" 

At the same time he had the helm hard a-lee. 

The Spitfire, quickly answering to her helm, came 
round, describing a wide semicircle, until she was bow 
on to the Wabash. Then he steadied her, and steered 
right for the frigate. 

Kot a shot had been fired from the "Wabash, although 
she lay broadside, and with ten guns run out. 

All awaited the result in breathless suspense, expecting 
each moment that the frigate would deliver her terrible 
broadside. The Spitfire was now slowly steaming right 
down on her, so as to take her amid-ships. Doubtless 
the latter would deliver her broadside immediately before 
the moment of contact, and Darcy shuddered as he 
thought of the horrible carnage the raking discharge 
would effect. 

Nearer and nearer they approach the sloop, steaming 
down at the rate of about four miles an hour. Darcy 
hopes by the shock to disable and perhaps sink his 
opponent, or, failing that, to take her by board. Surely 
such an insane attempt was never made or thought of 
before — a sloop with some hundred and fifty men, de- 
liberately to attempt boarding a frigate with some four 
hundred. And now a distance of only a hundred yards 
separates the vessels. Onward goes the sloop slowly, 
determinedly, while the frigate still remains as if all on 
board were wrapt in slumber. Another half-minute, and 
crash they must come together. 

" Steady, boys, steady," cried Darcy from the helm, as 
his men, urged to desperation, crowd on the forecastle 
and in the fore shrouds. 

The next moment a shout is heard from the Wabash, 
as if hailing them ; but Darcy cannot distinguish what 
is said, for his own men are yelling forth cries of defiance 
and fury. 

Instantaneously those scattered cries are hushed, and 
for a moment there is a dead silence. The next, and a 
tremendous roar of triumph broke forth from the crew 
of the Spitfire — a prolonged shout of exultation and 
victory. 



233 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

What means it ? 

Darcy Leigh, -whose eyes have been for a moment re- 
moved from the enemy, again glances towards her. He 
can scarcely believe his eyes. Can it indeed be true ? 
Yes, by Heavens ! the Yankee flag is being slowly hauled 
down. 

TnE "Wabash has struck her colours to thb 

SriTEIBE ! 

CHAPTEE XXXV. 

TARGET PEACTICE. 

For a moment or so Darcy Leigh remained in utter 
and blank astonishment. He could scarcely believe in 
his good fortune. It is true he hoped ultimately to 
escape, because he was one of those spirits who might 
justly use the motto, " Dim spiro spero ;" but assuredly 
he never thought for a moment that the frigate would 
strike her colours without firing a shot. At first, when he 
realized the fact that she had really done so, he suspected 
that some treachery was intended, but they were soon so 
close to the frigate that he could perceive there were 
very few men on her decks. The guns even were not 
manned, nor were there any men prepared to resist 
his boarders. As soon as he perceived all this ho 
shouted, — 

" Stop her ! " and almost instantly the engines wcro 
stopped, and the Spitfire bore onwards merely from the 
former impetus. Still this was so great as to carry her 
on with considerable speed, and although by his orders 
the engines were reversed, the next moment the sloop 
ran into the Wabash. 

The shock was terrible, throwing nearly all off their feet 
The rebels, however, with loud shouts threw themselves 
on the deck of the enemy, of which they soon had undis- 
puted possession. 

They found on board only some twenty or thirty men, 
who at once threw dowu their arms, while the officers, 
who were assembled on the quarterdeck, offered no 
resistance. 



TARGET PKACT1CE. 239 

All this was incomprehensible to Darcy. As soon 
as grappling irons were fixed, he left the Spitfire, and 
leaping on board the frigate hastened to the quarter- 
deck. 

" Who is in command of this vessel? " 

"I, Captain Seth Peabody," said an officer comin* 
forward. ° 

"Surrender your sword, sir." 

Captain Peabody drew it, and, handing it to Darcy, 
said, — J ' 

" Eesistance is useless, I am aware ; we are in your 
power now, but the day will come when you will pay 
dearly for the treason and outrage. 

Darcy took the sword somewhat contemptuously and 
turniug to the other officers, he also demanded theirs' 
which they gave up without hesitation. 

"Captain Peabody and gentlemen," said Darcy, "if 
you choose to give your parole of honour not to attempt 
to escape, or recapture the ship, under any circumstances 
whatever, I shall not put you under any restraint " 

_ "May I be eternally confounded if I do anything of tho 
kind Mr. Eebel," said Captain Seth ; "and if I had had 
only but a hundred of my brave crew, I would have cap- 
tured you and hung every one of you to the yard-arm." 

Darcy gazed in surprise at the speaker. 

" Tour crew- where, then, are they ? I thought that 
when you intended to surrender you had ordered them 
below. 

"Ordered them below? ]S T o, sir," said the Yankee 
captain, bitterly. « A higher power than yours or mine 
has ordered them below. Know, sir rebel, under what 
circumstances Captain Seth Peabody surrendered his 
ship. Pour hundred and fifty brave seamen perished in 
yesterday s storm They have gone to their last account, 
and found a sailor s grave in the depths of the Atlantic 
Ocean, A part were lost when the masts went, as they 
were endeavouring to secure the sails; the remainder were 
swept overboard by a tremendous sea when she broached- 

« ri, e nct twent 7 uninjured men on board " 
•This, then, accounts for the surrender of the 



240 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

"Wabash," said Darcy. " Sir, I beg your pardon, I con- 
fess, till this moment, I thought the Wabash was com- 
manded by a coward ! " 

A crimson flush mounted to the cheek of the Yankee 
captain. 

"No, sir," he said, bitterly, "this does not account 
for it. Had that been all, I and my officers would have 
ourselves assisted the poor remnant of my brave crew to 
man the guns. "We would have done this, and fought 
you and your traitor men to the last. But there is 
another reason which made resistance impossible." 

"And that is?" 

" TJie Wabash is sinking ! " 



CHAPTEE XXXTI. 

A MAD VENTURE. 

A glance over the side convinced Darcy that the 
Yankee spoke the truth, for the muzzles of the guns 
were quite close to the water. 

" Man the pumps !" he shouted ; " all hands to the 
pumps !" 

Housed by the loud and angry tones of his voice, the 
sailors crowded around and commenced to work at the 
pumps. 

No water, however, followed their efforts. 

" The pumps are choked," said the Yankee captain, 
gloomily ; " we were engaged in cleaning them when we 
discovered you. "We might even have succeeded in keep- 
ing her afloat, but the fire of your carronades killed and 
wounded a dozen of my poor fellows, who were saved 
from their comrades' fate, and broke the pump-chain, so 
we were left at your mercy. I congratulate you on your 
exploit, sir. Yon have fired into and captured a sinking 
ship, manned by some twenty men, worn out by con- 
tinuous labour at the pumps." 

So saying, the Yankee captain turned away, with an 
expression of bitter regret on his features, and, followed 
by his officers, descended to the cabin. 



A MAD YENTUUE. 241 

It was only by the most strenuous exertions that the 
pumps could be repaired in time to save the ship from 
sinking. Indeed, had not another party of sailors, under 
the command of WharnclifFe, proceeded to throw over- 
board some of the guns and stores, it is probable that 
the Wabash would have sunk under the feet of the cap- 
tors. As it was, however, a couple of hours' hard work 
so much reduced the water in her hold, as to place them 
out of danger, unless they were overtaken by another 
storm. Fortunately, this was not the case, for the day 
turned out fine as could be wished, with a moderate 
breeze from the north-east. 

Before even the frigate was quite clear of water, a 
jury foremast had been rigged. The engines were not out 
of order, and by nightfall the fires were lighted and steam 
got up. 

Darcy determined himself to take charge of the "Wabash, 
handing over the command of the Spitfire to Wharncliffe, 
giviug him some fifty men. 

The decks having been cleared, and the wounded cared 
for, the Wabash took the Spitfire in tow. The course 
was altered to west-south-west ; and, with smooth water 
and fair wind, the two vessels proceeded on their way. 

Darcy had determined to run right for Charleston 'har- 
bour, and take his chance of getting safely in. 

The night passed without further adventure. The 
morning broke on a calm sea and cloudless sky, and, as 
far as the elements were concerned, nothing could be 
more favourable. During the night the damaged en- 
gines of the Spitfire were repaired, and, steam being got 
up, the sloop was enabled to dispense with the tow-rope 
from the Wabash. 

About noon, Darcy caused a boat to be lowered, and 
went on board the sloop with all the other officers, with 
the exception of one, whom he left in charge. He had 
no fear of treachery, for the remnant of the Wabash's 
crew were disarmed and outnumbered ten to one by his 
own men. Darcy's object in going on board the sloop 
was to explain his designs to his brother officers, who 
were at a loss to understand wha"t was meant by their 

R 



212 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

present course, which would bring them right to Charles- 
ton harbour, off which cruised the United States' 
fleet. 

The preceding events had occurred in rapid succession 
— danger had followed danger ; and even when all seemed 
to have been surmounted, the fury of the storm was such 
as well nigh to bring the career of the mutineers to an 
abrupt close. Scarcely had they escaped from this last 
imminent peril, than once again they found themselves 
in the jaws of the enemy — in other words, right under 
the guns of the Wabash. 

And now, owing to the crippled state of this latter, 
Darcy Leigh is once more enabled to congratulate his 
crew ard officers in having brought the enterprise — m&d, 
insane, as many at first deemed it — to the verge of a 
successful issue. 

There remained but one more peril to be met and sur- 
mounted ; this, though last, was by no means least. They 
had now either to elude or run the gauntlet through the 
blockading fleet, and make good their entry into Charles- 
ton harbour. 

Since the first brief consultation in the cabin, the 
young rebel commander had not discussed probabilities 
or unfolded his plans to any of his brother officers. 
Many of them were now exceedingly anxious to know 
what course they were about to pursue ; and several of 
those who remained on board the Wabash during the 
night, had sought to elicit from Darcy what was the 
nature of his plans, and how he hoped to escape the fleet 
off the harbour for which they were now running a direct 
course. 

To all these Darcy had quietly replied that he had 
decided on a plan which he thought was sure to succeed, 
and which he would unfold to them all in a general 
council on the morrow. 

Many were the surmises as to what was the nature of 
this unknown plan. Many thought that Darcy Leigh 
absolutely intended to give battle to the whole fleet, 
making a running fight of it until safe under the guns of 
the Charleston forts. Desperate as this attempt ap- 



A MAD VENTUEE. 24:3 

peared, still such was the confidence of all in Darcy's 
skill — bravery, and, above all, in his good fortune, that 
not a man would have hung back or have refused to fol- 
low him. 

But Darcy was fertile in expedients, and had devised 
a scheme by which he confidently expected to deceive 
the whole squadron, and anchor in Charleston harbour 
without the. necessity of firing a gun. His plan was 
remarkable, as well for its audacity as the elements of 
success it possessed ; and the more the young rebel 
thought on the point, the more confident he felt of its 
feasibility. 

When all the rebel officers were assembled in the 
cabin, Darcy himself, who had remained on deck till last, 
went below. Every one rose on his entry, and way was 
made for him to reach the head of the table, where was 
placed a vacant chair. He nodded familiarly around, and 
at once took his place, with as much quiet ease as if he 
had been an admiral all his life, and accustomed to lead 
fleets into action. 

He was still deadly pale, for he had lost a great quan- 
tity of blood from the wound in his head. The terrible 
excitement and fatigue of the last day or so might well 
cause exhaustion in the most robust, apart from a dan- 
gerous wound ; and it is not to be wondered that Darcy 
Leigh, always pale-faced, should be deadly white, and 
that his bright, fresh eye should blaze with a feverish 
light. 

Of all that assembly now grouped around the cabin 
table, Darcy Leigh was the youngest, except three mid- 
shipmen ; but so great an ascendancy had his daring, 
courage, and skill gained him, that all looked up and 
awaited his words a3 though he had been an old commo- 
dore. It was a rare instance of the force of mind and 
character. 

There was a plentiful supply of wine and spirits on the 
table ; and Darcy, on taking his seat, immediately filled 
a tumbler with wine, and then rising to his feet, said, — ■ 

" Gentlemen, I drink to the future prosperity of the 
Confederate States of America." 

r3 



244 THE black angel. 

Instantly each glass was filled, and the toast earnestly, 
though quietly, drunk. 

All having taken their seats, Darcy was about to com- 
mence, when AVharncliffe, who was on his right hand, 
touched him on the shoulder. 

" Half a minute, Darcy, please." 

Then addressing the others, he said, — 

" Gentlemen, we have just drunk success to the Con- 
federate States. I have yet another toast to propose — a 
toast which if any man refuses, he is that moment my 
mortal enemy." 

He filled his glass, and holding it aloft, said, — 

" Here is success to as brave, gallant, and skilful an 
officer as ever buckled on a sword ; whose head planned, 
and whose right arm has so far carried out, this enter- 
prise. "Without further words, I drink the health of our 
leader, Captain Darcy Leigh." 

Instantly every man arose and pledged their captain, 
many crowding around him and pressing his hand. 

"When the excitement which this toa3t of WharnclinVs 
produced had somewhat subsided, all again took their 
seats, and Darcy spoke in a low and somewhat tremulous 
voice, for he was faint, and his wound pained him much. 
Nothing, indeed, but his indomitable, unconquerable 
spirit could have sustained him. 

" I tha.ik you, gentlemen," he said, " for the honour 
you have done me, and, with your permission, we will at 
once proceed to business. Thus far our enterprise has 
been most successful. "We started from New York 
Harbour with one ship, we have now two, and in the 
"Wabash we have secured at once heavier guns than 
those we were compelled to throw overboard, an ample 
sufficiency of coal, besides abundance of ammunition. 
So far so good ; but we must not forget that all this will 
be useless to us unless we succeed in taking both the 
Spitfire and our prize safe into port. In order safely to 
accomplish this, the following is the plan I propose to 
adopt. "We are,, as you are probably aware, steering 
straight for Charleston Harbour. I propose that we 
keep in that course and run straight in," 



A MAD YENTTTBE. 245 

u And fight the fleet cruising outside ; or do you nope 
to elude their notice ?" asked Lieutenant Wilton. 

" Neither," replied Darcy. " I propose to steam right 
through the middle of the squadron without firing a shot, 
and, I trust, without being fired at." 

" Impossible !" cried a young officer at the other end 
of the table ; " they would blow us to eternity in no 
time !" 

" JNo, sir, it is not impossible, not even improbable, 
and if you will listen to me I will explain how I hope to 
accomplish this." 

All waited with breathless interest to hear the plan 
by which they were to pas3 with impunity through a 
hostile fleet. 

" Of course, by this time the seizure and escape of the 
Spitfire is well known to the Charleston squadron." 

" Undoubtedly." 

" My plan, then, is very simple. Probably not only 
the Charleston fleet, but all the United States' cruisers, 
have by this time heard of the affair ; what more natural 
than that one of them should retake the sloop from the 
rebels ?" 

Darcy paused and looked around the table. Doubt 
and uncertainty were on every face. He smiled, as if 
wondering at their dulness. Wharncliffe alone, who sat 
on his right hand, seemed to gather an inkling of what 
was coming. 

" Go on, captain, go on — I think 1 understand." 

" Well," said Darcy, u I propose that we steam right 
up to the fleet in the Wabash, with the Spitfire in tow, 
the United States' ensign floating from the peak, as if 
we had recaptured her from the rebels. The commodore 
and all the other officers will be completely thrown off 
their guard ; for, not knowing the circumstances, they 
will never dream for a moment of such a frigate as the 
Wabash being captured by the Spitfire and a rebel crew. 
They will, of course, imagine that the Wabash fell in 
with the sloop, discovered her character, and, after a 
sharp engagement, captured her. Both the frigate and 
the sloop have suffered in the late gale, one having lost 



2i6 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

all three masts, the other two. This will appear as if 
the effects of the battle. To favour this idea, we will 
presently remove all hands on board the Wabash, and 

commence a little target practice at the sloop, knocking 
a few ugly holes in her, but being careful not to hit her 
belovr the water-line. Thus she will present the appear- 
ance of having been riddled by shot in the desperate 
engagement. We will sail boldly up to the flag-ship, 
with our supposed prize in tow, nearly all her crew being 
below, while those on deck shall be carefully dressed in 
the United States' uniform, A few marines on guard 
over the hatches, as if the rebel prisoners were confined 
below, will also favour the delusion. I propose to steam 
right by the flag-ship, and pass on up the harbour at 
full speed until we are enabled to anchor under the 
batteries ; once within range of these latter, down come 
the Stars and Stripes and up go the Stars and Bars. 
Gentlemen, you hear my plan ; what do you think of it ?" 

A murmur of surprise and admiration went round the 
assembly. The project was at once so simple and so 
feasible, that every one wondered he had not himself 
thought of it. 

" JN r ow, gentlemen," continued Darcy, " I am willing 
to listen to any suggestions, or answer any questions any 
of you wish to put. Although you have elected me your 
leader for the time, I am by no means so vain-glorious 
as to despise your advice." 

The advantage of this course was soon apparent, for 
several suggestions were made and adopted. One young 
officer, addressing the meeting, said, — 

" There is one thing which seems to have been over- 
looked. Some of the ships in the fleet will certainly hail 
us as we pass, and an answer must be returned. JSow, 
in all probability, the officers of the "Wabash, at least 
some of them, are well known, and if any of us, who are, 
of course, by this time all denounced by name as traitors, 
should answer, there would be great risk of a discovery." 

" I had not forgotten that point," replied Darcy Leigh. 
" I thought over it, and it presented a serious difficulty. 
I came to the conclusion that the best mode to be adopted 



A MAD YENTUEE. 217 

would be for lie who answered to have his head and face 
bandaged, as if wounded ; then if asked as to any of the 
other officers of the Wabash, he could reply they were 
either killed or wounded in the engagement." 

"Yes," was the reply, "the face might be concealed, 
but how about the voice ? There may be an intimate 
friend of the man you personate on board the flag-ship ; 
in such a case the deceit would be discovered at 
once." 

" True," replied Darcy, gravely, " I had thought of 
that ; but unless you can suggest an alternative, we 
must, I fear, take our chance." 

" Well, Captain Leigh," replied the young officer, 
whose name was Hamlin, " I think I can suggest a 
remedy. There are very few vessels in Uncle Sam's ser- 
vice who do not number some Southerners among their 
officers. The Wabash is not one of those few. I myself 
know several of the officers who are Southerners by birth, 
and one in particular I feel convinced will join us, and 
reply to the hail from the flag-ship." 

" His name ?" 

" G-eorge Merton." 

" Grood ! — he must consent. If he chooses to join us, 
very good ; if not, he must perforce answer as he is 
ordered." 

"But suppose he should take the opportunity to betray 
us?" 

" He will not do so," replied Darcy, quietly ; " I shall 
stand close beside him with a revolver ; if he dares to 
say one word, I shall blow his brains out. Then we 
must do our best, and run the gauntlet as best we can. 
This is no time for half-measures. We are engaged in a 
desperate enterprise, and must at any sacrifice carry it 
through. But I have little fear of the result. I do not 
think there will be any difficulty in prevailing on this 
Mr. Merton to join us, if he be indeed a Southern gen- 
tleman." 

Darcy Leigh now rose, and all following his example, 
the conference terminated. 

In half-an-hour's time they were again all on board 



21S THE BLACK AXGEt; 

the "Wabash, even the crew of the sloop being ordered to 
leave her, and come on board the frigate. 

This measure created great astonishment and som3 
little dissatisfaction among the men, many of whom had, 
sailor-like, formed quite an attachment for the vessel ill 
which they had served. 

If their surprise was great, however, it was nothing to 
that of Captain Seth Peabody and his officers, when, half 
an hour later, the "Wabash was hove to at about a couple 
of hundred yards' distance from the sloop, and commenced 
pounding away at her with her big guns. The cannon- 
balls smashed and crashed through the bulwarks and 
rigging of the Spitfire, making the splinters fly in all 
directions, till in a very short time she presented the 
appearance of a vessel which had been engaged in a 
desperate battle. 

"When this was accomplished, the gunners were ordered 
to cease firing ; the crew were again sent on board ; and 
Ciiptain Seth Peabody, who, with his officers, was not 
placed under any restraint, remarked to his first lieu- 
tenant, — 

" Mad, sir, mad ! — stark staring mad, these rebels ! 
First they mutiny and run away with the smartest sloop 
in Uncle Sam's service, and then, by Gr — d, they make 
target practice at her ! Mad, by thunder ! every mother's 

son of them ; and that d d young traitor Leigh, the 

maddest of the lot." 

Little did the Yankee imagine they had so much 
method in their madness. 



CHAPTEE XXXVII. 

CIIAItLESTOX HAEEOTJE. 

Leaving the "Wabash and the Spitfire steaming ahead 
for Charleston Harbour, we will, with the reader's per- 
mission, anticipate them at that stronghold of secession; 

Some three or four days after the events described 
in our kst chapter, the inhabitants, both military and 
civilian, are thrown into a great state of excitement by 



CIIA-RLESTON HAKEOUE. 249 

the news of the arrival of two steam vessels of war off 
the port, in addition to the United States' squadron per- 
manently established there to watch the harbour. Of 
course the mutiny on board the Spitfire, the seizure and 
subsequent escape of the ship, are well known. Most 
of the officers, including Darcy Leigh, have friends in 
Charleston, and the anxiety as to their fate has been 
great ; many were the conjectures as to the course the 
daring mutineers would pursue. Some thought that they 
would run the vessel ashore on some quiet part of the 
coast, while others thought Darcy Leigh would endeavour 
to take her into a neutral port ; but none imagined that 
he would attempt to run her into Charleston, in face of 
the blockading squadron. 

Great fears were entertained, from the fact of no news 
having been received, that the Spitfire had been recap- 
tured°by one of the Yankee cruisers sent in pursuit. 

It was during this state of doubt as to the fate of the 
Spitfire and her rebel crew that, shortly after dawn 
one day, the signal went up from the flagstaff battery of 
" two steamers in the offing." 

The vessels composing the United States' blockading 
squadron, which lay off the harbour just beyond range 
of the shore batteries, also perceived the approaching 
strangers, for signals were rapidly being exchanged be- 
tween the flag-ship and the others. 

The two steamers continued to approach, and by ten 
o'clock in the forenoon were only some four or five miles 
distant, and were steadily kept on a course which would 
lead right through the Yankee fleet. 

Seeing this, the crowd of spectators, assembled on 
every point where ft view could be commanded, at once 
came to the conclusion that the new arrivals were United 
States' vessels. 

Such was the universal opinion among a group of 
young officers and others assembled on the flat roof of a 
large and handsome house, commanding a good view of 
the harbour and the sea beyond. Although all were not 
in a regular uniform, yet it was still apparent, by their 
carriage, manner, and the swords they wore, that they 



230 THE EEACK AtfGEL. 

W3re rebel officers, who were to command those armies 
r.hich a short time later did such desperate battle against 
the invaders of their country. Most of them were young 
— certainly under thirty— with two exceptions; one of 
these was a dark, handsome man, with beard and mous- 
tache, apparently about forty years of age ; was in plain 
uniform, with coat buttoned close up to his throat, and 
Kossuth hat with a plume of feathers— the head-dress 
now universally adopted by the Confederates. He said 
little, but gazed dreamily out on the sea; in fact, he 
seemed to be buried in thought. 

This was a man afterwards famous — no other than 
General Beauregard. The other was far more singular 
and striking in appearance — of the middle height, but 
gaunt and ungainly in build ; he sat on the edge of the 
parapet, looking out with keen interest from beneath 
his shaggy eyebrows on the fleet and the two strange 
steamers in the offing. He was not in uniform, though 
he wore a sword ; and from his stooping and awkward 
figure, a looker-on would never have imagined he was a 
soldier. His features were rugged and irregular, but the 
glance of his grey eye was keen and sharp as that of an 
eagle. But notwithstanding his uncouth, somewhat com- 
mon appearance, it was evident, by the deference which 
some of the younger men paid him, that he was a man 
of some mark. Even at that date, though only a colonel, 
there were many who recognised in this rough, unpolished 
man the germs of future greatness. Nor were such dis- 
appointed, for this man was no other than he who was 
afterwards the terror and bugbear of the Northern ar- 
mies and Northern generals. His name wa3 a host in 
itself, and many a Yankee trembled in his shoes when 
the telegraph flashed the news that he was in the neigh- 
bourhood, or was advancing. 

His name was Colonel Euggles, and he had greatly 
distinguished himself in the Mexican war. 

" What do you make of them, colonel ?" asked Gene- 
ral Beauregard, his superior in rank. 

" Yankees, I reckon, general," was the laconic reply. 

At this moment all who were seated rose, and those 



CHARLESTON HARBOUR. 251 

who were standing turned respectfully towards the stair- 
case which led up to the roof. 

" Be seated, gentlemen — pray do not let me disturb 
you." 

The voice was that of a female, exquisitely sweet and 
clear, and with a slight foreign accent. 

The next moment a tall and very beautiful girl stepped 
among them in a manner perfectly unembarrassed, yet 
without the least boldness or forwardness. Even the 
rough and uncouth Colonel Euggles could not help an 
involuntary bow at sight of such all-powerful beauty as 
that which now stood before him. 

" Allow me to introduce my friend Colonel Euggles to 
you," said General Beauregard to the young lady. 

She bowed acquiescence. 

" Colonel Euggles — Mademoiselle Coralie Andree St. 
Casse, whose guests we at present have the honour to 
be." 

The lady bowed gracefully and smiled sweetly, while 
the colonel, who was no ladies' man, stammered out a 
few words ; and she, seeing his embarrassment, moved 
gracefully away, with another bow, intended to put the 
general's friend at his ease. He remained for some mo- 
ments gazing as if spell-bound at the beautiful form and 
face before him. Nor, indeed, was it to be wondered at, 
for Coralie St. Casse seemed sent to adorn and brighten 
all around her. 

She had a profusion of dark-brown hair, of a rather 
brighter shade at the temples and near the neck ; black 
eyes, large, clear, with dilated pupils, which gave them a 
majestic look as that of an eagle. Notwithstanding this, 
they were at the same time mild and soft as those of a 
dove. Her small mouth, formed like Cupid's bow, was 
brilliant as coral, and wreathed in smiles. Her tapering 
hands were antique in form, as were her arms, and 
dazzlingly fair. Her figure, flexible, graceful, and firm, 
was like that of a statue of some goddess of old. Her 
feet were small, and all her limbs exquisitely moulded, 
while the pose of the head and neck on her rounded 
shoulders was such as might drive a statuary mad with 



252 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

vexation, for assuredly it could never be imitated. As 
for her face, it was perfection itself; in it were united 
all the beauties of womanhood, with the bright, graceful 
elegance of a girl. Her face was ravishingly beautiful ; 
but, perhaps, if not the greatest charm, certainly that 
which had the greatest effect upon the beholder, was the 
complexion, which was brilliant in the extreme. It was 
not a wax doll-like complexion of pink and white, but a 
gloriously rich one of red and brown. Indeed, were it 
not for its great purity and transparency, it might have 
been considered even swarthy. As it was, however, all 
agreed, as they gazed on the rich brown pellucid skin, 
through which, at each varying emotion, the red blood 
mantled and flushed, that to alter or to make it brighter 
by even a siDgle shade, would be to detract from its 
beauty, and spoil the effect of the whole. It was this 
complexion, at once dark and gloriously clear, which had 
procured for its beautiful owner a name by which, in her 
absence, she was always spoken of — a name by which all 
the young Southerners toasted her as the acknowledged 
beauty of the South — before whose splendour the feeble, 
pale charms of jNorthern belles paled as a star of the fifth 
magnitude in the brightness of the mid-day sun. That 
name was the Black Angel. 

Such was Coralie Andree St. Casse, and, having de- 
scribed imperfectly her person, we will devote a short 
space to her history. 



CHAPTER XLII. 

COEALIE ASDEEE ST. CASSE. 

The father of Coralie was Colonel George St. Casse, 
who inherited from his father — one of the original 
French planters, an exile, who, driven from his country by 
the terrors of the revolution, had adopted America as 
his country — large estates and plantations in the State 
of Louisiana. Colonel St. Casse, on the death of his 
father, found himself in possession of ample wealth, 
surrounded by none of the cares which sometimes ac- 



COEALIE ANDBEE ST. CASSE. 253 

company it ; and he did not fail to take advantage of the 
facilities it gave him to lead a life of reckless pleasure. 
It was in the city of New Orleans that he made *te 
acquaintance of Coralie Crevasse, the mother of our 
present heroine. She was the daughter of a wealthy 
merchant of New Orleans, one Louis Crevasse. He was 
himself a French Creole, that is to say, descended frojp a 
French stock, but born in Louisiana. The old gentleman 
took a prodigious liking to the dashing young St. Casse, 
and the latter, on his part, also took a prodigious liking 
to the only daughter, Coralie. In due time he married 
her. As for the mother of his bride, she had been dead 
for nearly twenty years, and her name was scarcely ever 
mentioned. On one occasion only the old merchant 
stated that his dead wife was French by her father's side, 
but her mother was a Spanish lady from Mexico. 

Colonel St. Casse was not a man to trouble himself 
about a mother-in-law who had been dead for Went/ 
years, but quite content with his beautiful bride, boTfi 
her off to his own plantation in Virginia. 

It was customary at that time for fathers to give 
dowries with their daughters, proportionate with t-b.e 
wealth of their husbands. 

Now, the old merchant was also a planter and slave- 
owner, being possessed of a valuable estate, well stocked 
with slaves in Louisiana, about twelve miles from 
New Orleans. This estate, called St. Hilaire, was, with 
the slaves thereon and all slaves whatever owned by 
Crevasse, made over to his daughter's husband im- 
mediately on their marriage. 

Colonel St. Casse shortly afterwards sold the planta- 
tion, and removed the slaves to another plantation he 
had purchased in Virginia. Two years after his mar- 
riage his young wife was attacked by yellow fever, 
and notwithstanding all that care and skill could do, died 
after a short illness, leaving the widower an only 
daughter, the present Coralie St. Casse. The young 
lady, as she grew up to girlhood, was furnished with the 
best masters, and received the very highest education the 
country could afford. Surrounded by every luxury — 



251 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

every wish gratified by her fond father — it is not to be 
wondered at that Coralie grew up a wayward, high- 
Bpirited girl. 

At an early age she gave promise of very great beauty, 
nor was the promise broken, for as the girl budded into 
the young woman, she seemed to grow each day more 
beautiful. Childish beauties and graces developed into 
woman's glorious beauty, and before she was fifteen 
Coralie St. Casse was considered on all hands as the 
handsomest girl in the Old Dominion. 

From the age of fifteen to seventeen her life was one 
round of pleasure and excitement. Her father, who 
could refuse her nothing, and who was as proud as he 
was fond of his lovely daughter, took her everywhere 
with him ; Charleston, New Orleans, New York, were 
all visited, and at each the glorious beauty of the young 
Creole created a perfect furore. 

It may be imagined that Coralie was beset on all 
sides by flatterers and admirers, but she paid but little 
heed to either, treating all alike with gay, sparkling good 
humour, and charming by her grace, innocence, and wit, 
while a certain in-born dignity effectually repelled all 
attempts at familiarity. 

As for love and marriage, when young men talked of 
them to her, or endeavoured to lead the conversation in 
that direction, she laughed in their faces. 

But, alas ! at the end of two years a dreadful shock 
awaited Coralie St. Casse. 

At a grand state ball in Washington, one night, she was 
so much annoyed by the persistent advances of a young 
man of whom she knew but little and disliked, that, to 
get rid of his importunities, she danced one dance with 
him. During the whole of the dance, the young fellow, 
who was the only son of an enormously rich Boston 
merchant, poured in her unwilling ear a long string of 
flatteries and fine speeches, some of which were so 
coarse as to bring the blood to her cheeks. 

The dance happened to be the last before supper, and 
so, to her inexpressible annoyance, she was compelled to 
accept the distasteful escort ot her partner. 



COBALIE AKDREE ST. CASSE. 255 

She lingered in the ball-room till every other couple 
had left, in hopes that her father would appear, or 
some friend to whom, with some excuse, she might 
escape. 

But it was not so to be, and she had to accept the 
arm of her partner, and they descended together. 

Unfortunately the staircase was quite deserted, and on 
one of the landings the young man, rendered audacious by 
the wine he had been drinking, attempted to kiss the 
girl beside him, and next proceeded to take grosser 
liberties. 

Imagine the indignation of Coralie, proud and pure as 
she was. She broke indignantly away, and with flashing 
eyes and flushing cheek, rushed with dishevelled hair to 
her father, and told him what had happened. 

Great aud ungovernable was the rage of the colonel. 
Pale as death, he immediately procured a cowhide, and 
sought out the insulter of his daughter. 

Then he proceeded to inflict a terrible chastisement. 
He lashed him till his arm ached, and the blood ran in 
streams from his body. Then he changed the whip to 
his other hand, and again commenced the furious castiga- 
tion, nor was it until his prisoner fainted away that he 
desisted. Then, throwing the inanimate body from him, 
and administering a parting kick, he turned away, and 
said in a loud, threatening voice, — 

"Thus I punish any man who dares to insult my 
daughter." 

He then strode from the room, and with Coralie, w r ho 
was alarmed at his terrible violence, which she had been 
far from expecting, he returned to his hotel. 

But, unfortunately, the affair did not end here. The 
fellow whom he had flogged had not the courage to seek 
redress. He had, however, a cousin, a captain in the 
militia. This cousin was poor, a bully, and a noted 
duellist. It was said, and universally believed, that this 
fire-eating captain had actually been hired, like the bra- 
voes of old, to kill the colonel. Be that as it may, they 
met, and the duellist sought occasion to pick a quarrel 
with Colonel St. Casse. The colonel — hot tempered — 



25G THE BLACK AXGEL. 

was not sparing in his language, and the result was an 
immediate challenge. 

Colonel St. Casse was advised not to go out by all his 
friends, as it was thought on all hands to be a plauned 
affair; but he would not listen to a word. 

They met the next day ; at the first fire Colonel St. 
Casse was shot through the head ; and Coralie was an 
orphan. 

He had made his will before he went out, bequeathing 
his whole fortune to his daughter, and thus at the age of 
seventeen Coralie found herself the richest young lady in 
the State. 

Profound was her despair and grief at her father's 
untimely end ; no wealth could atone to her for the loss 
of his loving care. 

From that moment she conceived a bitter and intense 
hatred for the Yankees, as all Northern Americans are 
called. She would never even willingly meet one, much 
less allow one to set foot within her house. 

It was about this time that the first notes of the 
coming terrific struggle were struck. Coralie went heart 
and soul for the cause of secession, and before she was 
eighteen years of age her house in Charleston, where she 
had resided since her father's death, was the resort of the 
most desperate, as well as the most gifted, of the intend- 
ing rebels. 

She herself possessed talents of no ordinary order, and 
was looked up to and worshiped by young men, while 
even greybeards and veterans could not help being in- 
fected with her enthusiasm for the Confederate cause, 
and admiring her manifold beauties both of person and 

Two years had elapsed since her father's death, and at 
the date of which Ave write Coralie was just nineteen 
years of age. The promises of her girlhood had been 
amply fulfilled; and at nineteen she was as perfect a spe- 
cimen of female loveliness as was ever imagined in pain- 
ter's, sculptor's, or poet's dreams. 

Even before secession was an accomplished fact, and 
while yet the Union hung in the balance, the house of 



COEALIE ANDEEE ST. CASSE. 257 

Coralie St. Casse was much frequented by such South- 
erners as had determined to throw off the Northern yoke. 
Her great wealth as sole heiress of the late Colonel St. 
Casse, her enthusiasm for the rebel cause, and, above all, 
her peerless beauty, caused her acquaintance to be much 
sought after. 

Many were the balls and parties which took place in 
her spacious saloons, and many and vain were the 
attempts by young officers of birth, wealth, and position, 
to gain the heart of the wealthy girl. All these attempts 
had been in vain, for she, although receiving with hos- 
pitality all such as were introduced to her, still showed 
no preference to any, and conducted herself with such 
dignity and propriety as to repel all attempts or advances 
from such of the young officers who were smitten with 
her beauty. 

And notwithstanding her position as an orphan, with- 
out near relations, and residing alone, still no envious 
voice even of a female rival had yet been raised against 
her character, for, like Caesar's wife, she was above sus- 
picion. No better evidence of this could be found than 
in the continual presence at her house of the best and 
most respected men of the South — not gay, dashing young 
officers only, but senators, generals, and such stern, 
rugged, plain men, full of earnest purpose, as Colonel 
Ruggles. 

This was the first visit of the latter to the hospitable 
mansion of the young beauty, whither he had been 
brought by his friend General Beauregard, and such 
being the case, Coralie thought it incumbent on her to 
pay some little attention to the rugged soldier ; so pass- 
ing through the group of young men, who fell back re- 
spectfully before her, she made her way to the future hero. 
He was seated on a corner of the parapet, at- a little dis- 
tance from the others, and appeared to be intently 
watching the approaching vessels. 

" Well, Colonel Ruggles," said Coralie, laying her hand 
lightly on his shoulder, " what do you make of them ?" 

The old man started as the sound of her gentle accents 
fell on his ear, and absolutely blushed. 





253 



THE BLACK ANGEL. 



Yes, the stern soldier, the future conqueror in many 
battles, was completely abashed before this dark beauty. 
Quickly recovering himself, however, he handed her the 
telescope he held, and replied, — 

" Indeed, I am at a loss to make them out ; there is 
no flag flying on either — one seems to be towing the 
other, which appears terribly disabled and shattered." 

Coralie took the glass, and after looking through it 
stedfastly for some time, said, — 

" Does not the smaller vessel — the one being towed — 
resemble the Spitfire, that was seized and run away with 
by Lieutenant Leigh and some other Southern officers r" 

Her voice was faltering, and handing back the glass, 
she looked anxiously in the other's face for an answer to 
her question. 

The colonel took it somewhat hastily from her hand, 
and again levelled it towards the two vessels. 

Scarcely had he done so, than a puff of smoke came 
from the flag-ship of the squadron, which was followed 
by the report of a cannon. 

" "We shall Jmow directly," said the colonel ; " the gun 
was a signal for the strangers to hoist their colours." 

Still the two vessels kept on, as if determined to take 
no notice of the signal gun. Suddenly, however, flags 
were run up to the peak of each. 

There is a moment's suspense, as all endeavour to make 
them out ; then the colonel, shutting up his glass violently, 
exclaims, — 

" You are right — it is the Spitfire, and she has been 
recaptured by the other vessel." 

" And what of Lieutenant Darcy Leigh and his brother 
officers ?" asked the young girl by his side. 

" What of them ? — why, they are doubtless prisoneis." 

" Prisoners ! — great Heavens ! and is there no help lor 
them ? — can we not give them aid — rescue them ?" she 
asked, distractedly. 

" Impossible ; it was an insane attempt, and must have 
ended disastrously. I foresaw this." 

The old colonel spoke gloomily and bitterly enough. 

" Hand me the glass a moment, colonel," said a young 



BUNXJNG THE BLOCKADE. 259 

officer, approaching them. " I cart soon tell you whether 
that sloop in tow is the Spitfire ; for I have sailed in her." 

So saying, he took the glass from the hands of the 
colonel, and looked attentively towards the two vessels. 

The blockading squadron lay, as we have said, just 
beyond the range of the shore batteries ; and the two 
steamers, which the reader doubtless recognises as the 
Wabash and Spitfire, were now within hailing distance. 

"Yes, that is the Spitfire, sure enough," said the 
young man who held the glass ; " I know every plank of 
her — terribly knocked about, too, she seems to be." 

" Can you make out the other vessel ?" asked Colonel 
Euggles. 

The young man turned his glass towards the "Wabash. 
Suddenly he gave an exclamation of astonishment. 

" What is it, sir ?" asked Coralie St. Casse. " What 
do you see ?" 

*' Darcy Leigh, by Jove ! and on the deck of the frigate." 

" Darcy Leigh !" exclaimed the young lady, in breath- 
less excitement ; " but if that is the Spitfire, he must be 
a prisoner." 

" By Heavens ! it is though," continued the young 
man, "and there is Wharnclifle by his side. I 'could 
swear to both of them. Darcy has his head bound up as 
if wounded." 

"Wounded," said Coralie, mournf Lilly, "and a pri- 
soner !" 

" Wounded, yes — but a prisoner, no— for, by thunder, 
he is giving orders !" 

" Giving orders ? impossible !" said Colonel Euggles. 
" If that is the Spitfire, she must have been captured by 
the other ; then, of course, Lieutenant Leigh is a pri- 
soner." 

''That is the Spitfire, and Lieutenant Leigh is not a 
prisoner nevertheless. Take the glass, colonel, and look 
tor yourself. That officer whose head and shoulders you 
can just see over the bulwarks is Darcy Leigh, and he at 
the lost of the mizzen-mast is Lieutenant Wharnclifle. 
Eoth are friends of mine, and I could swear to them 
were they double the distance." 

2 



260 THE BLACK A>~GEL. 

The colonel took the glass, and directing it on the 
"Wabash, looked intently through it. 

"Are you quite sure of what you say, sir?" 

" If you mean am I quite sure that I recognise Lieu- 
tenant Leigh and Wharncliffe — yes." 

"And he standing by the companion-way is Darcy 
Leigh ?" continued the colonel, still with his glass to his 
eye. 

" Yes." 

" And the other, by the mizzen-mast, Wharncliffe ?" 

"Yes." 

" Then they are no more prisoners than I am. I now 
see by their actions that they are giving orders and 
being obeyed." 

The two vessels were now right abreast of the fore- 
most one of the blockading squadron, and even without 
the aid of the telescope the numberless spectators could 
see all that passed. Indeed, the decks of the vessels 
were visible to those who were on lofty situations in the 
town, while of course they were hid by the bulwarks 
from the view of those on board the Yankee vessels. 

The deck of the Wabash, which had the Spitfire in 
tow, was crowded with men, but they were all lying 
down at their guns, or otherwise concealed. The decks 
of the Spitfire, on the contrary, were almost deserted. 
There was a man at the wheel, two or three on the main 
deck, and one officer in the United States' uniform, — • 
that was all. 

As the two vessels passed the first of the squadron, 
an officer of the last was observed to hail the strangers. 
The hail was ans*wered by an officer on board the 
"Wabash, and appeared satisfactory, for she steamed on 
without further challenge. 

Now the two vessels pass slowly and majestically 
through the squadron, seemingly steering right for the 
flag-ship, which lay nearest the harbour. A thousand 
eyes are on them, but few suspect their true character. 

As for the group on the housetop, they are in a state 
of utter confusion and uncertainty, for the news has 
flown like lightning that Darcy Leigh, Lieutenant 



RUNNING THE BLOCKADE. 261 

AVharncliffe, and some other of the officers "who seized 
the Spitfire, have been recognised on the deck of the 
"Wabash, and not as prisoners. 

Many conjectures are hazarded as to the meaning of 
this, but none guess at the solution. 

" They must have thought better of it, and taken the 
sloop back," said one. 

" Or surrendered her without firing a shot. This 
Lieutenant Leigh and Wharncliffe, perhaps, going over 
to the enemy, and by betraying their friends, purchasing 
immunity from punishment." 

"Never!" exclaimed Coralie St. Casse, passionately. 
" Tou, sir, who thus speak, do not know Darcy Leigh. 
He is incapable of such conduct.'* 

The officer who had spoken fell back abashed. 

The next instant a singular commotion was observed 
on board the Wabash. She had just steamed up abreast 
of the flag-ship of the squadron, and the commodore, as 
they judged, as well as they could tell at the distance, 
had hailed the frigate and received the reply. 

Then the commodore appeared again to hail, as if 
giving orders to the captain of the frigate, which latter 
immediately altered her course, as if to cross the bows 
of the former, and anchor just inside her. 

At this moment a figure was seen to run up from the 
cabin of the Wabash, and jumping on the bulwarks, 
hail the flag-ship. Darcy Leigh was seen to throw 
himself in the way,, but so sudden was the rush of the 
other that he was not able to stop him. 

Scarcely, however, had the latter jumped on the bul- 
warks and hailed the commodore's ship, than a general 
rush was made towards him from all sides. At least a 
dozen men threw themselves upon him and dragged him 
down. 

All this was utterly incomprehensible to the spectators 
on the housetop, until one of the officers, who had served 
on board the Wabash, exclaimed, as he who hailed the 
flag-ship was dragged away, — 

" Why, may I be if that wasn't Captain Seth 

Peabody, the captain of the Wabash." 



2G2 THE BLACK A3T0BL. 

Meanwhile the hail of Captain Peabody seemed to 
have produced a prodigious effect ou board the flag- 
ship. 

Officers could be seen running hither and thither, 
signals were run up, and the roll of the drums beating 
to quarters might plainly be heard. 

Soon the deck was covered with the crew assembling 
to quarters, and the guus were rapidly run in and loaded. 
And if the change from repose to action was great and 
sudden on board the commodore's ship, it was much more 
so on board the Wabash. 

A minute back, and but two or three men could bo 
seen on her deck ; now, as if by magic, her crew swarmed 
around her guns, the forecastle was crowded with small- 
arms men, and the big guns were run out. Loud 
shouts and cheers might be heard even at this distance. 

' ; What, in the name of all that's holy, is the meaning 
of this?" asked some one. 

" The meaning, sir, is this," replied Coralie St. Casse, 
slowly and deliberately: "instead of the AVabash having 
captured Darey Leigli and the Spitfire, the Spitfire, 
under the command of Darcy Leigh and his gallant 
officers, lias captured the "Wabash, and they sought, by 
hoisting the Yankee flag, to deceive the squadron and 
pass safely through their midst into the harbour. The 
man whom we saw jump on the bulwarks aud hail the 
flag-ship was doubtless the captain of the AVabash, who, 
watching his time, escaped from custody aud gave the 
alarm, i\ ow all is known, and God send them safe into 
harbour." 

" You're right, miss, you're right, as sure as my name 
is B-uggles," shouted the colonel, jumping to his feet. 
Then hurrying up to General Beauregard, who still 
appeared lost in astonishment, he spoke a few words to 
him. At first these were received with incredulity. 

" Yes, general, I tell you it is so ; send the order to 
the batteries." 

General Beauregard nodded in token of assent. 

The colonel hastily wrote a note on a slip of paper, 
and handing it to one of the junior officers, said- 



A TERRIBLE BATTLE OFF CHARLESTON EAY. 263 

" Take this first to the flagstaff battery, next by boat 
to Fort Sumter — lose not a moment. .Now, gentlemen 
all, to your posts. Haste, quick to the batteries. Those 
two steamers coming in are our friends, and the Yankees 
may seek to follow them ; if they do we will give them a 
hot reception." 

Scarcely were the words out of hi3 mouth than the 
roar of cannon was heard from the bay, and the excited 
spectators beheld the whole squadron enveloped in fire 
and smoke. 



CHAPTEE XLIII. 

A TERRIBLE BATTLE OEE CHARLESTON BAT. 

Elasii ! roar ! the great guns thundered, as ship after 
ship, slipping her cable (for since the affair of the Spit- 
fire in New York harbour this precaution had been in- 
variably taken at anchor), brought her broadside to bear 
on the frigate and sloop. 

These had now thrown off all disguise, and at the first 
broadside had hoisted the rebel flag, steaming at the 
same time towards the harbour. The nature of the 
channel necessitated both vessels to present nearly their 
broadside to the fleet, thus rendering their escape more 
slow, and keeping them longer within range, as they 
were compelled to advance in a diagonal direction. 

But this also enabled them — at least the Wabash — to 
pour most destructive broadsides into the nearest of the 
squadron ; indeed, at one time so close and well directed 
was her fire, that the crew of the flag-ship were thrown 
into some confusion, and for a few minutes fled from her 
guns. This was fortunate, or otherwise both vessels 
must have been soon sunk by the heavy guns at so short 
a range. In the course of a few minutes, the Spitfire and 
frigate —the former having passed ahead from her superior 
speed — had approached the narrowest part of the channel. 
Once through this, they alter their course, and run right 
in. This narrow passage, however, was commanded by 
the fire of the fleet, every vessel of which had now got into 



261< THE BLACK ANGEL. 

position, and was thundering away, might and main, at 
the audacious rebels. Some were steaming in pursuit, 
and should any accident happen to the engines, the fugi- 
tives would be overhauled and brought to bay before 
they could get well under shelter of the shore batteries. 
And now the roar of battle is terrific along the whole 
line. The round shot howls and crashes through the air, 
dashing into the water and throwing up the foam in all 
directions — ahead, astern, on all sides, nothing can be 
seen but the splashing of the cannon balls as they bound" 
and ricochet along the surface of the waves. It seems 
miraculous that the two vessels are not utterly destroyed 
amid the iron storm so constantly poured forth. Shot 
after shot comes roaring through the air, smashing into 
them, splintering the timbers and killing the men at 
their quarters. 

The damage done to the "Wabash is in a few minutes 
so terrible that the rebel officers almost despair of carrying 
her through the tempest of shot. She is especially sin- 
gled out by the enemy, both as being the larger and 
slower of the two vessels, and also because her decks are 
more crowded with men. After the first few minutes of 
the running fight she ceases to return the fire, so terrible 
and fierce is it. Her decks are strewn with killed and 
wounded men, while the air around is alive with the ter- 
rible rushing cannon balls and splinters of timber. In 
face of the terrible and imminent danger, Darcy Leigh 
stands on the quarter-deck, surrounded by a few officers, 
giving his orders as calmly as if at a naval review, instead 
of in the midst of as terrible a fire of shot and shell as 
ever was opened on a vessel. 

He looks anxiously at the Yankee war steamers, then 
at the harbour and batteries, as if measuring the distance. 

" Oh, for ten minutes' time, and we should be safe !" 
he exclaims. 

By this time nearly the whole squadron is in motion, 
following the same diagonal course in the pursuit as the 
two rebel vessels had taken. Several of the ships are 
gaining on them, still keeping up a most destructive fire. 
In order to do this, the foremost vessel yaws round, and 



A TEERIBLE BATTLE OFF CHARLESTON BAT. 265 

when broadside on, delivers her fire ; immediately after- 
wards resuming her course, another vessel having, m the 
meantime, taken her place, executing the same manoeuvre, 
and in turn falling back. 

Thns the Wabash and Spitfire sustain a constant fire , 
while the Wabash is alone able to reply, and that, as 
may be imagined, but imperfectly. < 
An officer hurries up to Darcy Leigh. 
« Captain/'' he says, in a hurried whisper, the ship is 
hit in several places between wind and water, and is 
fillino- fast. In twenty minutes the fires will be put out 

« Get all the boats ready for launching, was the 
prompt and undaunted reply, " and have a tow rope 
ready to carry. to the Spitfire. When our fires are out 
the sloop must tow us." 

" What ! under this fearful fire ? 
At that instant a shot struck the mizzen-mast, and a 
splinter knocked down both the speaker and Darcy Leigh. 
Instantly, however, he was on his feet, only bruised by 

"Ave "' he said to the officer, who also gathered him- 
self up slowly and painfully, " were the fire ten times as 
terrible, I am determined to take both ships in, or die in 
the attempt." . , . 

" Yery good, sir," said the young officer, with prompt 
naval obedience, moving off slowly and limping y. 

« Are you hurt, Osborne ?" said Darcy, kindly. 

" Not much, I hope ; it was a hard knock, however 

The young man was deadly pale, and staggermg to the 
bulwarks, was obliged to hold on for support. Darcy 
hastened to assist him, and perceived that his left arm 
was broken. . , ■■ „ 

« Come below— you are not fit to remain on deck, 
he said, endeavouring to lead the young man below. 

"No,no-thisis no time for skulking Every man 
must die at his post. I for one am ready, for 1 - 

Scarcely were these gallant words out of Osborne s 
mouth, and before he had concluded his speech, than 
the brave fellow's career was cut short for ever, lhe 
loud howl of a second shot was heard, then a dull sound, 



THE BLACK ANGEL. 



a crash , and the next moment the brave fellow was Ivinfi 
on the deck a horribly disfigured corpse. " 

A round shot had struck him on the shoulder, tearing 
off the hmb, and of course causing instant death. Darcy 
gazed for a second on the mutilated remains. He was 
a dear friend, and as he looked a tear stood in his eye. 

Hastily he brushed it away. 

"Starboard— starboard— liar d !" he cried to the helms- 
man. " Mr. Wharncliffe, get the boats ready to launch 
— we are sinking !" 

This order was quickly carried out, and the wounded 
men, who each moment increased in number were 
placed in them. The decks were now in a fearful state 
—torn, splintered, and running with blood. Still, how- 
ever, the frigate kept on her course, slowly, painfully, 
like a wounded stag pursued by the hounds.* • 
_ The Spitfire, those in charge having perceived the 
sinking state of the Wabash, had slackened speed, and 
was now only about one hundred yards ahead. Both 
vessels were well within range of the shore batteries— 
in fact, between them on one side and Fort Sumter with 
its hundred guns, on the other. 

Darcy Leigh calculated that if they could only keep 
on for ten minutes more, they would be safe, for the 
Yankees would be well within range of the batteries, if 
indeed they were not so already. Anxiously the youno- 
commander watched these, hoping and hoping in vain 
to see the flash and smoke of their guns. 

They were now nearer to the shore than the fort and 
it was from the batteries of the former he hoped for 
assistance, when suddenly a loud hissing and sputtering 
is heard in the engine-room, succeeded by dense volumes 
of steam. 

It needs not the words of the officer in charge of the 
engine-room, who hurries up, to inform Darcy that the 
fires are out, the water having flowed into the furnaces. 

" Out with the boats ; quick, as you value your lives. 
The launch first, with a hawser for the Spitfire." 

This is quickly done, and the boat's crew of the launch 
giving way, row with might and main for the sloop! 



A TEEEIBLE BATTLE OFF CHAELESTOtf EAT. 267 

Their progress is necessarily slow, having to drag the 
hawser, but half the distance is accomplished in 
safety. 

On board the Spitfire all wait and watch the progress 
of the boat and her gallant crew with breathless sus- 
pense. The Wabash is still steaming slowly ahead, for 
although the fires are out there is still sufficient steam 
to work the engines for some minutes. 

As soon as the boat is perceived by the pursuing vessels, 
a perfect storm of shot is rained around her. This, for the 
moment, is advantageous, for the terrible iron hail which 
had been flying incessantly on the Wabash ceases for a 
moment, giving time for her officers and men to launch 
the other boats without danger. The boat, too, in com- 
parison, was but a speck on the waves, and hitherto, 
although the shot flew around her in all directions, she 
had escaped being hit. 

She is within a'dozen yards of the sloop, and all on 
board both congratulate themselves on her having passed 
unscathed through the ordeal, when a huge shell from 
one of those terrible engines of warfare, a Dahlgren gun, 
comes, roaring, tearing, splashing over the waves, now 
leaping high in the air, now, as it were, burying in 
the sea. Onwards came the dreadful missile, and 
plunged into the water about a hundred yards from the 
boat. All on board the frigate breathed more freely, 
for they thought the danger over. Alas ! it was not 
so, for the enormous sheil again ricocheted from the sea 
and dashed, with a terrible crash, full on the boat ; 
and the next moment all that could be seen of her 
was a few struggling men and shattered planks. 

For a moment or two there was a dead silence on 
board the "Wabash ; even the noise of the engines had 
ceased, for they had stopped from want of steam. 

Then followed the roar of guns from their pursuers, 
and shot and shell once more rushed and howled in the 
air, splashed in the water, and crashed among the wood- 
work of the Wabash. The work of death had recom- 
menced. 

Darcv Leigh jumped into one of the quarter boats. 



268 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Who volunteers to come with me and take a hawser 
to the Spitfire?" 

A dozen voices answered his appeal, and the boat was 
soon crowded. 

" Lower away," cried Darcy. 

Scarcely, however, was the boat lowered a foot from the 
deck, and long before she touched the water, than she 
was struck by a cannon ball, one side being torn to 
pieces. 

Darcy quite coolly stepped back on the deck and 
went over to the boat on the other side. 

" Better luck next time," he said, with grim fun ; 
" since the enemy won't let us have the larboard boat 
we'll try the starboard." 

Then he stepped iuto the boat, and the volunteer 
crew having followed him, he seated himself in the stern 
sheets and again gave the order to "lower away" as 
coolly as if nothing had happened. This time the boat 
reached the water in safety, and the end of the hawser 
having been handed in, the seamen gave way with a will, 
and they started on their short but terribly dangerous 
cruise to the Spitfire. 

Once again the shot and shell splashed in the water 
around them, and roared in the air overhead. 

Those in charge of the sloop, seeing the disabled state 
of the Wabash, and also the attempt to send a hawser 
on board, slackened speed so as to allow the latter to 
come up with them. It thus happened that in this 
second attempt the boat would only have to row a dis- 
tance of some hundred yards or so. Still, from the fact 
of the enemy having obtained the exact range, their 
dauger was imminent. 

Before they had rowed a dozen yards two of the oara 
were broken by a shot, the men holding them seriously 
bruised, and all in the boat splashed with the water 
thrown on board; While this constant and terrible fire 
is kept up on the boat by a part of the squadron, others 
are still pounding away mercilessly at the W^abash ; 
and the shot every now and then plumping into her, bid 
fair soon to reduce her to a perfect wreck — if, indeed, 



A TERRIBLE BATTLE OFF CHARLESTON BAT. 269 

the waters do not swallow her up, which the alarming 
nature of the damage she has received, and her rapid 
settling down, render only too probable. 

Notwithstanding the state of wreck, confusion, and 
bloodshed in which her decks are, prompt measures are 
taken by Lieutenant TvTiarncliffe to get everything ready 
for a start in the boats, for all on board knew well enough 
that she could not float much longer, and would pro- 
bably sink long before they could get her safely into the 
harbour. 

Of course their object, and the intention of Darcy 
Leigh, was to take her in and run her aground, so that 
she could not sink ; but if, in spite of all they could do, 
she went down under their feet before that time, they 
would abandon her and make for the Spitfire. Every- 
thing, then, was got in perfect readiness, officers and 
men working rapidly, but quietly, notwithstanding the 
storm of shot flying about them. By the time the boat 
had arrived within a few yards of the sloop, the Wabash 
was completely riddled witli shot ; her decks were torn, 
and splintered in all directions ; while as for bulwarks, 
she might as well have been without any, so completely 
were they knocked away. Of the officers on board her, 
seven were severely wounded, eight others slightly, and 
one, poor Osborne, killed outright. 

With breathless anxiety all on board the unfortunate 
frigate watch the boat as she rows up to the Spitfire. 

IS"ow she is quite close, and a rope is thrown from 
the sloop to the boat, in order to bend on the hawser. 
Unfortunately it falls short and the suspense is prolonged, 
though for but a little time, for the next instant another 
is heaved, which reaches its mark. In an amazingly 
short space of time the hawser is bent on and cast adrift 
from the boat, which latter instantly returns to the 
Wabash, the men at the oars making her fly through 
the waters at a terrible pace, now they are no longer 
encumbered by the weight of the hawser. 



270 IHE BLACK ANGEL. 



CHAPTER XLIV. 

JDAllBY KELLY'S OPINIONS OP THINGS IN GENEUAL. — 
THE BATTLE CONTINUED. 

A loud shout of triumph breaks from the crew of the 
"Wabashas they see this result successfully achieved, and 
with a very few strokes of the oars the boat is pgaih 
alongside, and Darcy Leigh jumps on the deck, amid the 
congratulations of all who witnessed the daring feat. 

The cheer from the frigate was echoed by another from 
the shore batteries, for they were now sufficiently near 
to hear, and on looking closely, the gunners could be 
seen at the cannon waiting to open their fire on the 
Yankee fleet. 

" Confound them ! why don't they nre on these fellows 
behind us ? surely they are in range," muttered Darcy. 
" Do they mean to let them chase us right into the 
harbour ?" 

It really seemed almost as if such were the intention, 
for both the Spitfire and "Wabash had long passed the 
narrow passage, and were now steering a course which 
took them every moment further from the batteries, and 
nearer to the guns of Fort Sumter. This latter, how- 
ever, was far out of range, and they could expect but 
little assistance from that quarter. Neither Darcy nor 
any of his officers at that time had any idea of the 
designs of the Confederate officers, and both naturally 
chafed at being thus made targets of within range of t lie 
guns of their friends on shore. 

These designs aimed at no little matter, and there was 
every probability of their being carried out to the tre- 
mendous discomfiture of the enemy. 

" jS"ow then, my lads !" shouted the young commander, 
" out with the boats, and, at the word of command, pull 
like demons for the sloop." 

This order was promptly carried into effect, and soon 
the boats were all safely launched and towing alongside. 
The Spitfire having her in tow, they were once again 
progressing slowly. Darcy himself, who was well 



THE BATTLE CONTINUED. 271 

acquainted with the channel, directing the helmsman of 
the Wabash, and signalling to the Spitfire. 

Their progress, however, was necessarily slow, for the 
frigate was rapid]}' sinking in the water ; in fact, was 
almost water-logged. 

" G-o aud find out how high the water is in her, and 
tow much longer she will keep afloat," said the young 
captain to his lieutenant. 

Wliarncliffe left, and soon returned with the answer. 

" The water is up to her lower deck ; she may float a 
quarter of an hour, but she may sink in ten minutes or 
even less." 

" We will hang on to the last moment," said Darcy. 

w Are we not incurring a great risk ?" asked Wharn- 
cliffe. " She may heel over and go down at any moment." 

Darcy walked to the side, and looked over to observe 
how near they were to the water. It was almost level 
with the guns of the ma\n-deck. 

" Yes, yes," he said, hurriedly, and anxiously glancin^ 
again first at the land batteries, and then at the gunners. 
" I know we run a great risk, but I think we avoid a 
greater. Do you notice the course we are steering, and 
that steered by the Yankees ?" 

"Yes — nearly at right angles." 

" Exactly. They have not yet rounded the shoal at 
the narrows, and though they are going twc feet to our 
one at present, we are getting further from them every 
minute. Don't you notice that within the last few 
minutes, since they have been obliged to haul up to the 
southward, that most ot their shot have fallen rather 
short ?" 

"Yes, true, but that is more the result of bad aim 
than distance, for were we twice a3 far we should be in 
easy range." 

'• Yes, so we should, but observe, now — while we are 
every moment increasing our distance we are continually 
altering the range, and at present they seem to have lost 
it. Besides, we are not in such danger here as in the 
boats, for a few shot in the "Wabash more or less will 
Boon make little difference, while even one striking a 



272 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

boat would be very disastrous. All the boats must 
necessarily be very crowded, and if the pinnace or long 
boat should be sunk, it is doubtful whether we could pick 
up the men without so overcrowding the others as to sink 
thein. Eor this reason, then, I intend to stick to the 
ship, if she will float so long, until these cursed Yankees 
astern round the shoal, and again steer straight for us." 

"Darcy, old fellow, you ought to be Commodore of 
the Confederate navy. By Jove ! I never knew a fellow 
with such a head." 

" Commodore of the Confederate navy !" said Darcy, 
unable to restrain a smile, "truly the post would be 
almost a sinecure, for as far as I know, the Confederate 
navy at present consists of this battered wreck and our 
poor old Spitfire there, with all her teeth drawn — her 
guns overboard." 

" Ah ! but we will have a navy and an army too." 

u Yes," replied Darcy, seriously, almost solemnly, " the 
accursed Yankees may despise and talk of crushing us 
Southerners. Europe and the world may be incredulous ; 
but as surely as the sun now shines, we, the people of 
tlie Confederate States of America, ivill make an army, a 
navy, and ivliat is more, ive will make a nation /" 

The words and manner of Darcy Leigh seemed almost 
prophetic. His cheek flushed as he confidently pro- 
pounded as a certainty that which all, or nearly all, but 
the determined and desperate Southerners deemed im- 
possible. 

After a moment's silence, "W"harncliffe was about to 
speak again, when the sound of a big gun from the bat- 
tery on shore diverted their attention. 

Darcy and the lieutenant jumped on the bulwarks to 
watch the effect of the shot. 

To their great surprise, it fell far wide of the pursuing 
ships. It struck and threw up a column of water some 
hundred yards astern of the last of the Yankee vessels ; 
and what surprised Darcy Leigh still more, it was far 
short of the mark. 

He knew that they must be in easy range, and was at 
a loss how to account for such bad practice, for of course 



THE BATTLE CONTINUED. 273 

the engineers were, or ought to be, aware of the exact 
distance of so important a point as a narrow passage 
leading to the harbour. Still more to his surprise, the 
shot was not followed up — the artillery officers seemed 
to think that the enemy were out of range. 

Darcy jumped down from the bulwarks and stamped 
his foot with rage. 

11 This is too bad," he cried ; " the passage is in easy 
range, and so it would be were it half a mile further ; 
and they to let them pass safely in !" 

" I beg yer honour's pardon," said the big Irish fire- 
man, " for spaking, or for b.e,ing on deck at all at all ; 
but ye see, yer honour, thai/do all I could, I couldn't 
fire up no ways; for, by gory, what's the good of 
shovelling coals in when we're all under water, furnaces 
and all?" 

" "Well, my man, what is it you have to say ? " said 
Darcy, smiling. 

At this moment there was a comparative lull in the 
firing from the pursuing vessels, and the Wabash went 
ahead steadily enough, giving none of those heels and 
lurches which invariably presage the foundering of a 
ship, so that Darcy was not indisposed to listen to what 
he might have to say. 

" Well, my lad, speak on." 

" Well, sir, once again entreating your honour's par- 
don, I heard what yer said just now about the shore 
batteries and the inimy. I paid particular notice to it, 
for I meself was just thinking the very same thing as 
yer honour. Says I to meself — why, the blue blaze, 
don't them spalpeens on shore as is our friends shoot 
at the inimy, seeing as they are close enough ; hit 
them and hurt them too, be jabers ! for if them big 
cannon balls that I've seen many a time in the flag- 
staff gun-battery yonder wouldn't hurt 'em, I'd like to 
know what would. Well, says I to meself, ' Why don't 
they shoot ?' So I thinks and thinks on, at last I has 
it — I found 'em out, yer honour." 

" Found 'em out — found who out, the enemy ?" 

" Ko, no, yer honour, not the inimy, but them 



274 THE ELA.CK ANGEL. 

chaps ashore with the big popguns — the friends I may 
zay. Well, as I was saying, yer honour, I found 'em 
out." 

" Well, go on, make haste and tell us what you found 
out. Wharnclifte, keep an eye on the ship." 

At this time all was going on comparatively smoothly, 
for the Yankee ships were just rounding the shoal, 
where the navigation is very difficult, and the firing was 
by no means so heavy. 

""Well," continued Darby Kelly, "yer honour know3 
that the channel's mortal narrow where the inimy is 
now." ^ 

" Yes." 

" Well, there's another narrow place, a little further 
on." 

" Yes, quite right ; you ought to be a pilot, Darby." 

"True for you, yer honour, and I don't know but 
what I may take to it some day. I ain't 'xactly made 
up my mind yet, but I mean to be either a pilot or 
kernel." 

" A what ?" said Darcy. 

"A kernel, yer honour, a soger kernel. 

Neither Darcy nor "Wharncliffe could refrain from 
laughter at hearing the great Irishman, rough, shaggy, 
and black with smoke and coal dust, declare his intention 
of being a " soger kernel." 

" Ah, well, yer honour, ye may laugh, but it's throe 
as gospel ; it is, be jaber3 ! Well, I'll go on wi' my 
story, for time's short, I guess, I suppose yer honour's 
heard of the Duke?" 

" What duke ?" 

" An' would ye ask me what duke ? — sure the great 
Duke — the Irish Duke I mane." 

" The Irish Duke r" said Darcy, in amazement. 

"Av course, the Irish Duke — the great Irish Duke — 
the Duke of Wellington, as was, and as ought to have 
been the Duke of Ireland, which is his country." 

" What on earth has the Duke of Wellington got to 
do with Charleston harbour?" 

" Hist a bit, an' I'll tell ye. Did yer honour ever hear 



THE BATTLE CONTINUED. 275 

tell of the th regiment, the Fighting th, they 

called 'em. They fought in the Peninsula and in ivery 
battle as ever was in any part of the world since iver 
they was a regiment." 

"The devil they did!" said Darcy, again laughing; 
" they must have been worthy of their name then. But 
what on earth has the Irish regiment got to do with us 
and the Yankees?" 

" Ivery thing ; ye jist hould on a bit and I'll tell ye. " 

" It seems, then, that the Irish have a good deal to do 
with Charleston — first, the Irish Duke, as you call him, 
and then the Fighting — >#th/" 

"In course they have, yer honour — why shouldn't 
they? Sure yer honour knows that the country celongs 
to the Irish and Gineral Jackson.'"* 

" The deuce it does ! " said Darcy ; " I thought we had 
something to do with it." 

" Say, Massa Darby, if de country belong to Gineral 
Hickory Jackson and de Irish, who does we niggers 
belong to ? " 

This came from Jupiter, the black fireman, who, seeing 
his friend in conversation with the officers, crept up be- 
hind to hear what was going on/ 

" Is that you, ye black spalpeen ? " said Darby, rolling 
his eyes round ; " come out of that wid ye. What do 
you mane by listening when a gentleman's a talking to 
his honour here ? " 

" I 's a-going, Massa Darby," said Jupiter, grinning, 
" but jist tell a coon who we niggers belong to if all de 
country belongs to de General and de Irish." 

"Wno do ye belong to, ye black varmint? why ye 
belongs to the divil, and he's lint you to the Yankees." 

" O my lor' a gor' A'mighty ! " said Jupiter, rolling hii 
eyes and showing his white teeth. 

" Come out, will ye ? or I'll shoot ye," said Darby, 
taking up a cannon ball which lay on the deck. 

* This curious assertion is frequently to be heard iu the 
progress of street squabbles, &c., between the Irish and native 
Americans, 

T 2 



276 



THE BLACK ANGEL, 



Jupiter, not fancying the idea of being shot in so 
strange a fashion, promptly vanished. 

" Well, well, get on with what you have to say," said 
Darcy, impatiently. " We have no time to stand here all 
day gossiping, with death all round us." 

" Well, yer honour, I'll be quick. I was spaking of 

the Fighting th ; my father was a soger in it, an' at 

the battle of Talavera, after fighting like divils all day, 
and losing half their men, towards evening the regiment 
drawn up in square was charged by the French cavalry, 
and some of the dragoons broke the square and got 
inside. "Well, yer honour, after the fight was over, the 
Duke— he wasn't duke then, but only gineral or lord, or 
something— -sez to the kernel (he 'was an Irishman, 
and his name was O'Brien) the Duke sez, sez he, 
1 Well, colonel, so the inimy got into your square to- 
day.' 

p "'Yes, gineral,' says the colonel,' some of the vagabonds 
did get in, but, be Jasus, they niver got out agin.' Xor 
more they did, yer honour, for I mind my father tellin 
me he stabbed four of 'em himself with his bayonet." 

Darcy was silent for a moment or so. 

" Does yer honour see my maning? " 

" Yes, Darby, I do, and, by thunder, you're right, I do 
believe. Wharncliffe, I think I see now why the bat- 
teries have not yet opened fire. This brave fellow is 
tight in his conjecture, although he has a most tedious way 
of telling it. They mean to let them pass the second 
shoal, and then, like Colonel O'Brien, they will never let 
them out again." 

At this moment the Wabash gave a long and heav} 
roll to starboard — so heavy indeed that she was almost on 
her beam-ends, and thus remained for some time. 

" Quick, Wharncliffe, quick," said Darcy ; " man the 
boats, and pull away from the ship for your lives ; she'll 
be down in five minutes more." 

The ship righted herself, but so slowly, and, as it were, 
wearily, that all well knew the end was very close. 

" All hands to the boats," shouted Darcy, in a loud, 
clear yoice ; — "quickly and quietly — no rush, no hurry, 



THE WABASH tS ABANDONED 277 

Dut let every man take his place in the boat he is told 
off to." 

The deck sounded with the tramp of many feet as the 
crew hastened to obey this order, — without confusion, 
however, and with admirable discipline. 

Every boat was now manned, and awaiting the word, 
with the exception of the gig, which Darcy had reserved 
for himself and ten men, determined to be last to leave 
the ship. 

The deck was now quite clear ; the ten whom Darcy 
had told off for the gig jumping into it at a signal given ; 
the young captain standing alone at the helm. 

The ship was deserted, and he who had planned and so 
successfully carried out this desperate venture, stood 
calmly surveying the scene. 

He gazed around him, first at the town of Charleston : 
every housetop — every balcony — every available place, 
in fact, was crowded with eager spectators ; then at the 
frowning batteries on shore, and then at the Yankee 
steamers in pursuit, who still kept up an incessant fire. 
He had seen so much of this, however, during the last 
half-hour, that he no longer heeded the howl of the 
round shot overhead, or the more terrible crashing of 
timber which showed the ship was struck. 



CHAPTEE XLV. 

THE WABASH, A SHOT-TOBN HULK, IS ABANDONED. 

THE BLACK ANGEL EIBES THE FIEST SHOT EEOM 
THE BATTEET. 

Dabct Leigh, alone at the helm, gazed around him, 
and for the first time an expression of triumph and pride 
came over his pale, handsome features. The pallor made 
them appear almost feminine, while the light flush which 
for a moment illumined them quickly faded away, and he 
stood calm and pale as a marble statue. 

The Wabash gave another terrible lurch to starboard, 
this time going even further over than before, and being 
even longer in recovering herself. 



278 TIIE BLACK ANGEL. 

" The next lurch will be her last," muttered Darcy ; 
t( she will go down." 

Then he left the helm, and ran to the side. 

" Cast off and pull away," he shouted. rt Give way 
with a will, men, and in a minute you will be on board 
the Spitfire." 

Then all the boats, with the exception of the gig, 
cast off, and with a parting cheer, pulled for the sloop. 

Darcy Leigh coolly went up to the flag locker, and 
bending a flag on to the signal halyards, proceeded 
deliberately to hoist it to the jury-mast, so that it 
might be the last thing visible when the frigate went 
down. 

"When it reached the mast-head, the roll in which it 
was made up burst, and the rebel flag — the Stars and 
Bars — floated in the breeze. 

Another cheer broke from the boats' crews, which was 
answered from the Spitfire ; and all along the shore that 
cheer was taken up. From batteries, forts, windows, 
balconies, and housetops, the thousands of spectators at 
once saluted their flag, and yelled forth their defiance to 
ihe hated Yankees. 

For some time back the fire of the vessels giving chase 
had been less heavy, for the navigation of the channel was 
very difficult, and to bring their broadsides to bear they 
would have to change their course, which, for a minute 
even, would expose them to the dangers of running on to 
the rocks and shoals on either side ; but now the winding 
course of the channel again enabled the foremost vessels 
to open fire with all their guns ; and the instant the boats 
appeared in sight, a perfect storm of shot hailed around 
them, also the Wabash and Spitfire. 

Fortunately the distance to be pulled was short ; and 
the Spitfire at the same time slackening her speed, the 
boats all arrived without any damage of consequence. 

It was not till he saw them actually alongside that 
Darcy Leigh jumped into his boat, which was towing at 
the gangway. Then, with a last look around the shat- 
tered, blood-stained decks, which he had so well defended, 

he leaped into the boat and gave the word to pull olf. 



THE WAEASK IS ABANDONED. 279 

At this time the air seemed perfectly alive with shot ; 
nearly all the vessels of the squadrou were blazing away 
with their whole broadsides ; and the rushing in the air, 
combined with the splashing in the water all around, and 
the roar of a hundred guns, made up a fearful scene. 

It really seemed miraculous that any floating thing 
could live a moment in such a storm of shot and shell. 

The Spitfire was now suffering terribly, shot after shot 
striking her now in the rigging, now in the hull. A 
quarter of an hour's practice such as that would sink the 
finest ship afloat. 

The gig in which Darcy Leigh was seated, urging the 
men to their utmost, had barely moved half the distance, 
than a shot struck her on the bow, killing the bow oars- 
man, and wounding two others. The next instant, and 
she sank beneath them, and all were struggling in the 
water. The man who was killed by the shot, and one of 
the two wounded, sank immediately, and were seen no 
more. Most of the others could swim, and such as could 
not seized an oar or a plank, and all struck out for the 
sloop. • 

And now the enemy, in a most dastardly manner, 
ignoring all the laws of civilized warfare, commenced 
firing with grape and canister at the struggling men who 
were swimming for their lives. 

During the battle of Trafalgar, and ere yet victory 
had declared for the English fleet, boats were sent from 
an English ship to pick up the drowning men of a sunk 
Frenchman ; but the Yankees were as incapable of the 
generosity of an Englishman as they were of the daring 
courage of Xelson, and wreaked their spite and hate by 
firing at men swimming for their lives. 

Fortunately, notwithstanding the deadly intent, not a 
man was hurt, and a boat sent from the Spitfire picked 
them up without being struck by a shot. 

And now the whole fury of the Yankee fire i3 turned 
on the sloop, and she soon bids fair . to be as completely 
a shot-torn wreck as the Wabash. Two large Dahlgren 
shells struck her, one immediately following the other, 
and she also received a shot under water. Both the 



2 SO THE BLACK ANGEL. 

shells exploded on her lower deck, and the water 
rushed in through the hole made in her side at a fear- 
ful pace. 

Tire quickly followed the shell, and dense volumes 
of smoke ascended from her hatches, while, to make 
matters worse, another shot plunged into the machinery, 
rendering one engine completely useless, and damaging 
the other. 

Darcy at once saw the imminence of the danger. 

The instant, all wet and dripping, he leaped on deck, 
he said, — 

"Hoist a flag with the stars downwards, and com- 
mence firing blank guns towards the batteries as a 
signal of distress." 

This was instantly done, and a gun which had been 
saved when all the others had been thrown overboard 
was loaded with powder and fired several times. 

For a few moments Darcy gazed at the batteries in 
suspense — then the smoke of a heavy gun belched forth 
from an embrasure. The shot hurtled through the 
air, and without once ricocheting, it smashed right into 
the foremost of the pursuing ships. 

All who saw hailed the shot with a shout of joy, 
not so much for its sake alone, but because it demon- 
strated the fact that the Yankees were in range of the 
shore batteries with their terrible great guns, to which 
the ship guns were but playthings ; and that the Spitfire 
4D.is safe. 

Almost immediately after they saw the shot take 
eTect ; it was followed by an explosion, flames, and a 
dense body of smoke. 

The shot, or rather shell, had done good service. The 
ship it struck was on fire like the sloop, and Darcy 
threw up his hat with delight. 

It was a good and true shot. 
f G-eneral Beauregard himself pointed the gun, and the 
Black Angel fired it. 



281 



CHAPTER XLVI. 

T nr. tibst gun eeoh the batteby 

Twtense was the excitement among the numerous 
spectatol on Sore of this running fight of the Wabash 
Ta I Snitfire Fervent were the prayers breathed by 
many a ti mail and mother for the safety of the daring 
c ew who were attempting to make the harbonr 

The details of the seizure and escape of the Spitine 
from New York harbour had long since armed, and it 
Md been subject of serious fear lest she should have been 
captured a Vea by one of the cruisers sent in P^uit. 

C wonder then, that the excitement was tremen- 
dou^ when the news' rang through Charleston tha the 
mtle Snitfire had actually captured the United btates 

f^te Wabash, and was endeavouring to rnr l into , hj£ 
hour with her prize. Most were disposed at first to dis- 
belief the news, but the thunder of the cannon soon 

'TiTrst Aoutf oUofand exultation rent the air, as 
tlm Lou andVabash were seen to have passed through 
Se Sdron in safety: These shouts oftnnmp^ how- 
ever were soon hushed, wheu it was seen that the two 
vessels were being closely pursued, and also that both 
lere be n' fearfuhy knocked about by the enemy's fire 

Kow afi eyes are anxiously turned towards the bat- 
teries of the harbour, for the squadron apparently intend 
*n pursue their prey within their range. 
*°?V have said P tluat every eminence, every housetop * 

Lw wifli pifrer and anxious spectators, -blags are 

?oar of the dense° crowd on the quays bears witness to 
the intensity of the excitement. 

Immediately after the commencement of th .fight the 
nartv who were assembled on the housetop of Coralie St. 
E 7eft-officers, civilians, and the young lady herself 
Sfgoinit, the flagstaff battery, which was at once the 



282 THE BLACK A* GEL. 

• 

most heavily mounted of the harbour defences, and com. 
manded the channel most completely. 

Coralie was in a great state of excitement ; her 1 
eyes flashed and glittered, while a crimson flush mounted 
to her cheek as the loud boom of the cannon told how- 
fierce was the conflict. 

The whole Yankee fleet was now blazing away at t;ie 
two vessels, and the effect of this fire they could perceive 
even from the battery, to be fearful. 

" Are they in range, sir ? " asked Coralie of the artil- 
lery officer in command of the battery. 

He measured the distance with his eye and paused 
before he replied. Coralie waited in breathless suspense. 

(: Scarcely," said the officer; "in three minutes more, 
however, if they keep on their course, they will be so." 

The battery had that morning received an accession of 
the very heaviest guns in use. These had just been 
mounted, and the gunners proceeded to load and train 
them. 

All was ready, and after carefully sighting each piece, 
the officer mounted on the parapet and gazed forth on 
the enemy. 

An artilleryman stood with the string in his hand, 
which, at the appointed word, would discharge the tre- 
mendous ordnance. 

The big guns protruded from the embrasures and 
Beemed to glare threateningly on the Yankees ; but as 
yet their, iron throats were silent. Minute by minute 
rolled by, and still the cannonade from the Yankees con- 
tinued. They could see from the battery the water torn 
up in all directions by round shot, while occasion ally a 
cloud of splinters and smoke would show where one of 
the apparently doomed vessels was hit. 

These hits were now very frequent, and the Wabash 
soon began to look a perfect wreck. Large rents were 
torn in her bulwarks, and in one place two port-holea 
were knocked into one. 

General Beauregard and Colonel Ruggles stood aloof 
from the others, and occasionally muttered together aa 
they watched the unequal combat. 



THE FIRST GUN TPtOM TRE BATTERY.. 2S3 

" They'll sink them both," said the former to the old 
colonel. 

" I reckon they will," was the calm reply. 

Next moment a large Dablgren shell struck the 
Wabash between wind and ws.ter. This was instantly 
followed by smoke and fire ; it had exploded on her 
decks. 

Even at this distance the confusion it created could be 
observed. 

The crew could be seen hurrying backwards and for- 
wards, as they endeavoured to put out the fire. Scarcely, 
however, was this accomplished, than several other shot 
struck the unfortunate frigate, and it was soon apparent, 
from the slow pace at which she crawled along, that she 
was almost completely water-logged. Next there was a 
dense volume of steam issuing from her engine-room 
hatch. 

" The water has risen in her hold, and put the fires 
out," said a naval officer present. 

When the steam cleared away the Wabash was almost 
motionless on the waves, her fires were out, and he/ 
engines stopped. 

" She is sinking," said General Beauregard, mourn- 
fully, to his friend. 

" Not a doubt," was the quiet reply. 

" The Yankees are within range, general," said the 
artillery officer in command, addressing General Beaure- 
gard, whose rank was highest ; " shall I open fire ?" 

The general consulted for a Ooment with the colonel, 
and then replied quietly,— 

" No, sir, not yet." 

" Not yet ! " exclaimed the Black Angel, passionately. 
" They are within range, and yet we do not offer our 
friends aid. Surely, general, you are not about to let them 
perish at the hands of the Yankees without firing a shot ? 
Let our guns open fire ; then the enemy will be obliged 
to relinquish the pursuit." 

General Beauregard glanced at the Colonel, and the 
artillery officer anxiously watched his eye for the word to 
fire. 



2Si THE BLACK AJffGEL^ 

But the word came not. 

" Not yet, young lady," was the reply. 

Now a boat is seen putting off from the "Wabash, 
having the end of a hawser. 

" They are going to take her in tow of the sloop," said 
the same naval officer. 

This was the fact, and intense was the excitement as 
the little boat proceeded on its mission. The sea all 
around was in a perfect foam from the hail of shot poured 
forth by the pursuing vessels. 

" She will never reach the sloop," said some one, 
sadly. 

The next moment this gloomy prognostication was 
confirmed, for a round shot struck her amidships, and all 
that could be seen of her or crew was a few floating bits 
of wood and struggling forms. 

The Yankees still kept up their fire as the poor fellows 
struggled with the waves. General Beauregard's eyes 
glittered with anger, as did those of most others, who 
saw and understood. 

" The dastards, the ruffians ! to fire on drowning men," 
he said. 

" General! Colonel! " said the Black Angel, hastening 
up to them, with flashing eyes ; " do you really mean to 
let our friends perish before our eyes without firing a 
shot ? " 

Some one standing by exclaimed suddenly, — 

" Another boat, bv Jove ! and Darcy Leigh himself 
in it." 

It was true enough, for the second beat was launched ; 
and in the stern- sheets could be seen the form of the 
young commander. At this sight Coralie could no longer 
restrain herself. Tears of anger and grief started to her 
beautiful eyes. 

" In the name of Heaven, General Beauregard, do you 
intend them all to be murdered ? See poor Darcy Leigh, 
he is looking here as if demanding aid. See, too, yonder 
goes a signal of distress from the ship. Brave, noble 
fellow ! the danger must indeed be imminent when he 
asks for aid," 



THE TIEST GUN FEOM THE BATTEEY. 2S5 

" Do you know this Lieutenant Leigh ? " asked Colonel 
Ruggles. 

" Do I know him ? Yes, I know him well— and know 
him to be as gallant an officer and as honourable a gen- 
tleman as ever buckled on a sword." 

Then tears of vexation and grief coursed down the 
cheeks of the beautiful Coralie. This melted the rough 
heart of the old colonel. 

" Look here, } T oung lady," he said, in a somewhat 
softer tone than was usual with him, " they tell me you 
are heart and soul for our common country, the Confede- 
rate States, for which and our new flag we are about to 
do battle." 

" Those who know me know it is so," she said proudly. 

" As such, then, you must see the justice of any 
measures which conduce to our success." 

" Undoubtedly." 

" Do you think that the capture or destruction of the 
whole fleet off Charleston would be a great success to us, 
and a great blow to the enemy ? " 

" Certainly ; but why ask such a question ? A fleet is 
not to be destroyed by refusing to fire at it," replied 
Coralie, impatiently. 

" A fleet, in this case, is to be destroyed or captured 
by "withholding our fire until the proper moment." 

" And that is when " 

" AYhen they shall have pursued those two vessels so 
far that they cannot get back. They do not know, I 
imagine, what heavy guns we have mounted, or they 
would not venture. Were we to open fire, it would un- 
deceive them, and they would steam back in time. If we 
allow them to go on till past yon shoal, marked by the 
red buoy" — and the colonel pointed with his finger — • 
" they cannot get back in safety, for the channel is 
narrow, and two vessels can hardly thread it at one time. 
They will be fully within our range, and it will take at 
least half an hour for them to get out again. In the 
meantime we shall have knocked every ship to pieces, or 
compelled them to strike their colours. Now you see 
why we reserve our fire. 



2SG THE BLACK ANGEL. 

'J Alas ! and the price must be the sacrifice of Darcy 
Leigh and his brave crew ? ,; 

" Perhaps." 
_ " No — their fate is certain ; already one vessel ia 
sinking, and the other fearfully injured." 

" Let us hope. See — the boat has safely taken the 
hawser on board and returned ! " 

In tow of the Spitfire, the Wabash once again made 
some little progress through the water ; but it was very 
slow, and her frequent heels and lurches gave evidence 
of her desperate state. They saw the boats launched, 
and the whole crew safely conveyed on board the 
Spitfire, while Darcy Lei^h stood alone and undaunted 
on the deck of the sinking ship. They could see his 
face turned towards the battery as if looking for aid, and 
wondering why he did not receive it. Then the Wabash 
gave a terrible lurch, and Darcy entered the boat, and 
with shot and shell flying around, was rowed to the 
Spitfire. 

And now the whole fire of the pursuing squadron ia 
concentrated on this latter. The round shot and shell 
crash through her timbers, howl through the air, and 
dash into the sea around, throwing columns of water 
high aloft. 

A signal of distress is run up. 

"Lost — lost!" cried the Black Angel, despairingly; 
" General, give the order to fire, and save them from this 
terrible cannonade." 

Beauregard looked at the colonel, on whose opinion 
he appeared to set great store. The colonel looked 
doubtful. 

" Colonel," said Coralie, imploringly, * save them ! " 

"And lose the fleet," was the gloomy reply ; " no ! " 

" General Beauregard ! " she cried, clasping her hands, 
u in Darcy Leigh and his brave crew the Confederate 
States will lose what is more valuable than any fleet. 
Ships can be built, but such brave, daring spirits as that 
of yon boy hero are few and far between." 

Both Beauregard and the old colonel looked doubt- 
ful. 



THE FIRST SHOT FEOil THE BATTERY. 287 

"Are the guns trained on the Yankees ? " asked the 

former. 

" yes, sir," replied the artillery officer, 

Beauregard himself approached one of the great guns, 
and looking along the sight, slghthy depressed the muzzle. 
Then he returned to his post by the side of the colonel. 

'•'The guns command the fleet easily," he said, what 

00 Coi'alie y St. Casse, the Black Angel, still stood before 
them with clasped hands, in all the radiance of her young 

e Hard indeed must have been the heart which could 
have resisted such an appeal. 

"Let us leave it to this young lady," said Buggies, 
with a smile. ,, * - A1 , 

Beauregard nodded good-humouredly, and the next 
moment said to the artillery officer,— 

" Open flue and blaze away, sir ! Shot and shell-let 

them have it I " , j ,n 

The gunners crowded around their cannon, and all 

was bustle and hurry at the welcome order. 

Coralie, with a cry of joy, darted away, and running 

up to the gun which Beauregard had trained snatched 

the string from the gunner's hand, and, with a jerk, 

pulled the trigger, and fired the piece 

TV roar of the cannon was succeeded by the rush ot 

the shot through the air as it sped on its errand of 

e lll 'lumped on the ramparts to watch the effect. 
Onwards sped the huge mass of iron till it crashed full 

"A W Io S ui P of joy broke forth from all The shell 
exploded, setting the lankee on fire, and the next 
moment the iron throats of twenty great cannon belcned 
forth their fire, smoke, and shot, hurling death and 
destruction to the pursuing fleet. 



2S3 TEE BLACK ANGEL. 



CHAPTEE XL VII. 

BiaJUXO- OF THE WABASH AND SAFETY OP TUB 
SPITFIBE. 

The ships of the pursuing squadron now found them- 
selves in " considerable difficulties," as the Yankees say. 
The guns of all the batteries commanding the approaches 
to the harbour opened on them, and they, in turn, were 
exposed to as terrible a fire as that which the Spitfire 
and Wabash experienced. 

The commodore ran up the signal to retreat, and 
instantly all the engines were reversed, and the vessels 
made the best haste to veer round, and retrace their path. 
Not a ship of the squadron escaped the effects of the fire 
opened on them from the batteries— a fire which was the 
more terrible from the fact of its being from fixed batteries 
— while theirs in return was not nearly so effective, from 
the greater difficulty of aim. 

Not a shot was now directed towards the Spitfire or 
"Wabash, but all their efforts turned to replying to the 
batteries and making good their escape. 

This at last they effected and got safely out of range, 
but with so great a slaughter and damage as to give 
them little cause to congratulate themselves upon their 
abortive pursuit. 

Great was the chagrin of General Beauregard and 
Colonel Euggles at the escape of the fleet, for they felt 
sure, had the fire been delayed, they would have passed 
so far up the channel as to render return impossible. 

It was in vain that Coralie St. Casse was begged to 
retire from the battery, which is now a mark for the 
enemy's shot and shell ; she refused, and expressed her 
determination to remain, encouraging the gunners and 
fearlessly exposing herself. 

After'half-an-hour's fierce cannonading the fire ceased 
on both sides, for the fleet, terribly crippled and knocked 
about, was now out of range. The order was given to 
cease firing, and the thunder of the guns is hushed. 

"There, young lady," said Colonel Euggles, gazing 



SAFETY OF THE SPITFIItE. 289 

spitefully after the fleet, « see what we have done by 
listening to you. Those cursed ships have escaped." 
( "True, colonel ; in losing them we have saved what 
is of more value, the lives of loyal and brave men." 

" We shall never have such another chance ; they will 
never venture within range of our batteries again." 

" They 're fools if they do," said Beauregard, good 
numouredly, " after the lesson we have given them." 
" G-ot off scot free," muttered Ruggles. 
"No, not scot free, certainly," said the artillery 
officer; "my children here," pointing to the great black 
guns, " have knocked a few holes in them." 

" And, besides, we have saved Darcy Leigh, his brave 
brother officers, and crew," said Coralie. 

i " Young lady, you seem to take deep interest in this 
Lieutenant Leigh," said Ruggles, glancing at her from 
beneath his grey eyebrows ; " I am sure the youn^ man 
ought to thank you, and so ought the Yankees, f don't 
know which should be the more grateful, for, by thunder 
it was you who saved both ! " 

Coralie coloured up under the colonel's searching 
glance, and replied, — & 

" Well, colonel, I am content. Come, gentlemen, who 
will accompany me home ? I shall be happy of the 
company of all to lunch ; I hope also to be joined by 
those gallant officers who have carried to a successful 
conclusion this desperate enterprise, and will beg you, 
general, to send one of your orderlies to await°their 
landing on the quay, and invite them to join us." 

General Beauregard bowed and at once gave the 
necessary order, while Colonel Ruggles said, affly,— 
" Not forgetting Lieutenant Darcy Leigh." 
He glanced towards Coralie, but if he hoped to detect 
any sign of confusion he was disappointed. She met his 
look unflinchingly, and replied, proudly — 

"No, Colonel Euggles, not forgetting Darcy Lei^h, 
tor he is more welcome to me than any." 

The old colonel turned away somewhat suddenly 
"A noble girl, a splendid girl, beautiful as Yenus 
naughty as Juno." ' 



290 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Whatever else were his thoughts he did not suffer hia 
face further to express them, but rousing himself up he 
took the arm of General Beauregard and strolled off 
from the battery in the direction of Coralie's house. 
His talk was of military matters, of the approaching 
campaigns, and sieges ; but who can say that the thought 
of the bright beauty who but now stood before him did 
not obtrude and somewhat derange his mental plans of 
campaign ? 

As they left the bastions in a group, almost with one 
impulse they turned at an angle which would have hid 
the bay from their view, and looked back. The Spitfire, 
was still steaming slowly ahead, having cast off the 
Wabash, now rapidly settling down in the water. At 
last, with a heavy lurch, she lay on her beam ends, and 
with her torn and blood-stained deck turned towards 
them. Thus she remained for a brief space, slowly 
settling down, till suddenly she pitched heavily forward 
and plunged beneath the waves head first. 

The waters eddied and foamed about the place where 

she had been, but the jury-mast which had been rigged 

after the storm was still visible above the surface. She 
had gone down in shallow water, and still from the mast 

might be seen floating defiantly in the breeze the rebel 

flag — the Stars and Bars. 

The Yankees had sunk the ship, but they had not 

sunk the flag. All gazed in silence at the scene for a 

minute or so. Then Coralie St. Casse, who had lingered 

behind, said gravely and seriously, — 

" So shall it be throughout this approaching war ; our 

armies may be destroyed, they cannot be defeated ; they 

may shoot us down, but they cannot make us strike our 

flag. "What say you, gentlemen r " 

At the same moment the rattling of the Spitfire's 

chain is heard over the windlass as she is brought to 

anchor in Charleston harbour. 

In reply to the words of the Black Angel, one of the 

younger officers present, taking off his cap, waves it 

above his head and cries, " Three cheers for the Star$ 

and Bar- 



RECEPTION OP DARCY LEIGH IN CHARLESTON. 291 

The cheer is led by the group around Coralie, taken 
up by the soldiers and artillerymen, then again by the 
crowd in the streets, on the quays, till the loud shout of 
many thousand voices swells forth to welcome Darcy 
Leigh and his gallant crew. 



CHAPTEE XLVIII. 

RECEPTION OP DARCY LEIGH IN CHARLESTON. 

As soon as the Spitfire was brought to anchor, Darcy 
ordered all the boats to be lowered, and the prisoners to 
be brought on deck. These, to the number of some 
thirty, were ordered into the launch, while Darcy him- 
self, accompanied by "WharnclifFe and six other officers, 
stepped into the gig and pulled off from the sloop, leaving 
the other officers and crew in charge. His object was to 
report himself to the officers in command of the town, 
and also to procure surgical aid for his numerous 
wounded. 

They arrived at the quay amid the deafening cheers of 
the crowd assembled to receive them. First, Darcy him- 
self and officers leaped on shore, and awaited the arrival 
of the launch with the prisoners under guard. 

Captain Seth Peabody, of the Wabash, was the first of 
those who landed. Poor man! he looked gloomy and 
crestfallen enough. His attempt to attract the attention 
of the squadron, and so save his ship, had only ended in 
her being sunk — and that, too, under the rebel flag. 

Behind the prisoners came Darby Kelly, who had 
begged for permission to accompany Darcy. He carried 
in his hands all the swords which the Yankee officers had 
surrendered, and wore on his head one of their cocked 
hats, which he had appropriated as a trophy of war. 

His appearance was both grotesque and terrible. 

Imagine, good reader, an enormous figure, naked to 
the waist, black with coal-dust and smoke, and in places 
splashed with blood, which during the terrible ordeal the 
Spitfire had gone through, had been plentifully sprinkled 
about. 

V % 



292 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

The cocked hat on his head, and the bundle of sword3 
which he carried on his shoulder, completed his costume, 
with the addition of a pair of canvas trousers. 

Loud and deafeniug were the cheers, not unmingled 
with laughter, which greeted the extraordinary figure of 
Darby Kelly. 

" Bravo, cocked hat !" shouted some one in the crowd ; 
" you're the boy for blood and thunder !" 

" By jabers, you're right there, honey. It's meself 
can do a bit of foighting." 

Then to himself he muttered, complacently, — 

" By the powers ! now I believe they take me for the 
captain. "What a thing it is to have a commanding 
extarior !" 

If such, however, was the opinion of any among the 
mob, they were soon undeceived, for a mounted orderly 
rode up — 

" Make way, there ! make way !" And the crowd gave 
way on ail sides before the clattering hoofs of the horse. 

" "Which is Lieutenant Darcy Leigh?" said the horse- 
man, gazing around him. 

Darcy Leigh stepped forward. 

" That is my name." 

A murmur of surprise and admiration ran round the 
crowd, in which even the mounted messenger shared. 

That slight, pale boy, Darcy Leigh, who had planned 
and carried out such a daring enterprise ! (for the whole 
history of the affair from beginning to end was, by this 
time, well known all over Charleston). 

" My name is Darcy Leigh," again repeated our hero. 

" G-eneral Beauregard desires me to say that he will 
be glad to see you at the house of Mademoiselle St. 
Casse." 

A flush of pleasure illumined the face of Darcy. 

" Coralie St. Casse — she then is in Charleston ?" 

" Yes, sir ; she was on the flagstaff battery all the while 
the action lasted." 

" Good — I will attend. I presume my officers are to 
accompanv me ?" 

" Undoubtedly." 



BECEPTION OF DAKCY LEIGH TS CnAELESTO^". 293 

" And the prisoners ?" 

u I had no orders respecting them. I think yon can- 
not do better than march them np to the barracks 
under guard. Ton are wounded, I see ; if you will per- 
mit me, I will see to that, while you proceed at once to 
the town and have your hurts dressed. You will find a 
surgeon in the first street — afterwards, General Beau- 
regard and the officers in command of the town await 
you." 

" Thanks, sir. And now one" thing more — will you 
see that surgeons are at once sent on to aid the sloop, 
for many of my poor fellows are desperately wounded ?" 

" I will see to it, sir." 

Then the officer rode off, and in a few minutes a file of 
soldiers appeared, who marched the prisoners up to the 
barracks, while Darcy and his friends proceeded on their 
way to the house of the Black Angel. 

A gentleman among the crowd, who had his carriage 
at hand, now stepped forward, and insisted on Darcy and 
his comrades usmg it. He would take no denial, so they 
accepted his offer, and all seated themselves, Darby Kelly 
mounting the top by the coachman. 

Then they commenced their progress through the town. 
It was, indeed, a triumphal march ; the bells of the 
churches rang forth a joyous peal ; flags were displayed 
from every window, while cheers and shouts of welcome 
pealed forth on all sides. 

It was a proud moment for Darcy and his friends. As 
they were drawn through the thronged streets, a thou- 
sand fair faces appeared at windows, on balconies, and 
on housetops; handkerchiefs were waved, and many a 
bright glance was thrown towards the carriage which 
conveyed them. The crowd which accompanied them 
was so dense, that to approach the carriage wa3 impossi- 
ble ; but even now, one or other of the Spitfire's officers 
was recognised aud called by name from houses as they 
passed. 

Darcy Leigh's name was frequently heard above the 
din of the crowd, for he was well known and liked iu 
Charleston ; besides, the fame of the regime of the Spit- 



294 lEE ELACK AXGEL. 

fire had long preceded him, and lie was known as tlie 
leader and originator of the attempt. 

" Darcy — Darcy Leigh !" shouted a voice from a bal- 
cony. 

Darcy rose, and, looking in the direction whence it 
came, perceived a young man, an intimate friend of him- 
self and brother. 

He waved his hand towards our hero, who, standing 
up, returned the salute. 

" Hurrah for Captain Darcy Leigh !" shouted a voice 
in the crowd; "three cheers' for Darcy Leigh! — that's 
he standing in the carriage." 

Then a cheer pealed forth, which made the very walls 
of the houses tremble. 

" That Darcy Leigh !" said a man in the crowd, in 
surprise; "that the man who seized one ship, ran away 
with her ; then captured a frigate sent in pursuit, aid 
ran the gauntlet through the squadron? Why, mr~ f 
you must be dreaming ! That pale boy can't be ILj 
captain — more likely one of the midshipmen." 

But at that instant Darcy again arose in answer to 
loud and repeated calls, and" bowed to the crewd on all 
in acknowledgment of the honour they did him. It 
was not only the last speaker who could scarcely believe 
that the slight form and pale face before them were 
those of Darcy Leigh, the audacious rebel, who had ac- 
complished this most daring seizure, capture, and ulti- 
mately escaped. 

Those who were not formerly acquainted with him 
pictured to themselves a dashing looking officer, with 
commanding appearance and stentorian voice, and gazed 
with a feeling akin to disappointment on the slender 
figure and ince of almost girlish beauty before them. 



CHAPTER XL1X. 

DAECY LEIGH ABB TEE ELACK AXGEL. 

And so, amidst the shouts of the crowd, the waving of 
nags, and the fluttering of handkerchiefs, bells ringing, 



DABCY LEIGH AND THE BLACK ANGEL. 295 

and bands playing, Darcy Leigh and his officers were 
drawn to the house of Coralie St. Casse. 

At the moment when the carriage drew up at the door, 
the hostess and her guests were in the dining saloon. A 
sumptuous lunch was spread on the long table, and all 
only awaited the arrival of Darcy and his brother officers 
to commence the repast. 

When, therefore, a negro announced to his mistress 
that a carnage with sailor officers in it was at the door, 
Coralie, followed by several of her guests, hastened out 
to receive them. 

General Beauregard and old Colonel Ruggles, as be- 
fitted their rank and dignity, remained behind. 

Darcy Leigh had just alighted from the carriage and 
was then thanking the owner, wmen Coralie came forth 
from the house. His words of thanks were cut short, a 
hand is laid lightly on his shoulder, and a voice- a sweet 
tremulous voice, whose every accent he knows well, 
Bays,— 

" Darcy." 

He turned, and stood face to face with the Black 
Angel. His pale face was lit by a momentary flusb, his 
eyes glittered, and a glad smile came over him as he 
replied, taking the lady's hand, — 

" Coralie, is it indeed you ? " 

Still holding her hand, he gazed long and earnestly 
in her face, until, unable to bear it any longer, Coralie 
dropped her beautiful eyes to the ground, and blushed. 
"When she again raised them, Darcy was still regarding 
her with the same fond look of admiration. 

""Well, sir," said the young girl, laughing through 
her blushes, "you are having a good look at me ; pray 
what is your opinion ? do you think I am altere'd since 
last you saw me ? " 

" Altered ? No ; except in this, that you are hand- 
somer than ever." 

" A compliment ! and from Darcy Leigh ; wonders 
will never cease," cried Coralie. "However, a truce to 
your soft speeches. Come in with your friends, and let 
rue introduce you to mine. ,, 



20G THE BLACK AKGEL. 

So saying, Coralie turned, and leading Darcy by the 
hand, conducted him up the portico steps iuto the house. 

" Gentlemen," she said, to most of her guests, -who 
had accompanied her to the door, " allow me to present 
to you my very good friend, Darcy Leigh, late of the 
United States' JN"avy, but now and ever, let us hope, a 
soldier or sailor, as duty may require, of our common 
country, the Confederate States." 

Some among them were acquainted with Darcy Leigh, 
but all, strangers or not, hastened to grasp the hand of 
the young hero, and bid him welcome to Charleston. 
These greetings and congratulations over, Coralie again 
took his hand. 

" Come," she said, at the same time making a motion 
to the others to follow, " come with me ; I have yet other 
friends to introduce you to, and you need refreshment." 

Thus she led him across the hall into the saloon, where 
Beauregard, Euggles, and one or two old officers had 
remained. Many of the assembled guests gazed en- 
viously on Darcy Leigh, and thought how gladly would 
they accept his lot — bandaged head, wounds and all, to 
be thus led by the hand of Coralie. 

She, however, not heeding the glances of admiration 
cast upon herself — of envy and surprise on her charge, 
passed right on into the saloon and up to General Beau- 
regard. 

" General Beauregard," she said, proudly, while a 
bright flush came to her cheek, " allow me to introduce 
to you my friend Darcy Leigh." 

General Beauregard at once stepped forward and 
grasped his hand. 

" Sir," said he, " I am proud to know so brave a] (j 
skilful a man. Accept my congratulations in the nant 
of the Government for the eminent services you have 
rendered. It shall be my task to see they are duly 
acknowledged and rewarded." 

Darcy bowed in silence, and Colonel Buggies advanced. 
He gazed curiously, almost rudely, on Darcy Leigh, as 
he stood before him. 

His looks seemed to say, — "Can this effeminate-look- 



DARCY LEIGH AND TI1E BLACK AKGEL. 297 

mg, pale boy be indeed lie who has done this deed? — a 
deed with the renown of which the whole country, North 
and South, now rings." 

Then the old warrior, removing his piercing glance 
from Darcy, fixed it on Coralie, who stood beside him. 
He seemed by his keen look to be desirous of reading 
the inward thoughts of both. 

" And you, sir, are Darcy Leigh ? " he said at last, 
bluntly. 

" I am Darcy Leigh," replied our hero, smiling. 

" Then, Darcy Leigh, here is my hand ; it is a rough 
one, but it is the hand of an honest old soldier, who will 
strike, please Grod, many a hard blow for the Stars and 
Bars." 

Darcy gave his hand, whilst a flush of pleasure came 
over his face. The simple, blunt words of the old colonel 
gave him greater pleasure than a star from an emperor's 
hand would have done. 

He had never known Colonel Euggles personally, but 
had heard much of the fine old soldier. 

Colonel Euggles retained the yornig man's hand in his 
for a short space. He turned it over curiously as if it 
were a toy or a plaything. 

" Young man," he said, "your hand is as soft and 
white as a school-girl's." 

" Strange that such a delicate affair as this can give 
such hard knocks, eh, colonel ? " 

'* No matter, it ain't the hand, my lad, it's the heart 5 
and where that's in the right place a silken glove may do 
as desperate deeds as a mailed hand. You're a brave lad, 
and if I'm not mistaken, will be heard of yet." 

" I mean to be, colonel." 

"You have been heard of, Darcy," said Coralie, 
proudly ; " already your name rings forth North and 
South." 

" Aye 7 aye, it has rung forth so loud that more than 
one fair lady has heard it, and thought not unkindly of 
its owner, I'll be bound." 

Colonel Euggles glanced keenly at Coralie, who dropped 
her eyes in confusion. 



29S THE BLACK ANGEL, 

But only for a moment. 

" I for one have heard it," she said, proudly, "and am 
only too glad that Darey Leigh is my friend. Now, 
Darcy, see and get your wounded head attended to, then 
let ns to lunch. Tour companions, too, will doubtless 
be glad to wash and make themselves presentable, for at 
present you are all terribly begrimed with dirt and 
smoke." 

A surgeon who was among the company now stepped 
forward, and volunteered to attend to Darcy and those 
of his friends who were hurt ; and they were all shown 
to the upper part of the house, where every convenience 
awaited them. Some of the gentlemen present sent for 
changes of clothes and linen, Darcy and his friends having 
come quite unprovided for in that respect. 

In half-an-hour they all re-appeared, looking wonder- 
fully improved by the processes they had undergone, and 
the repast commenced. Coralie took the head of the 
table, while General Beauregard, at her request, seated 
himself opposite. She, by a look, brought Colonel Euggles 
to the seat on her left hand. 

The old soldier took his seat by the left of his beau- 
tiful hostess with awkward pride, and noticed that there 
was a vacant place on her right hand. 

" Who the d 1 is she going to put there ? " thought 

the old lion. 

He thought he knew, and yet almost hoped he might 
be wrong. 

Coralie gazed down the table till her eye rested on 
Darcy, who had taken his seat unobtrusively some dis- 
tance down. 

She caught his eye, and with a sweet smile, but im- 
perious look, she signified to him her command to take 
the post of honour. 

Darcy rose and seated himself by her side. 

Colonel Buggies, whose keen observation nothing 
escaped, saw this, and for an instant, he felt, he knew 
not why, angry and vexed. But he drove away the 
feeling. "• 

" Pshaw ! " he said ; " what an old fool I am ; I ought 



D2.HCY LEIGH AND THE BLACK ANGEL. 299 

to be ashamed of myself. He deserves all the bright 
glances and loving looks he gets, for his was a perilous 
venture, and its success glorious ; besides, is he not 
young and handsome ? " 

" And I — " he glanced down at his great rough hands 
and somewhat ungainly limbs, and continued, — 

" And I, a rough old log — a regular old alligator — and 
a d d old fool to boot." 

It was a merry time, indeed, that lunch ; wine in pro- 
fusion flashed and bubbled, and soon the talkative and the 
high-spirited got more talkative — the taciturn and the 
quiet brightened up, and even rugged old Buggies 
warmed up with the occasion. Indeed, so noisy and 
uproarious did the party become, that their lovely 
young hostess, not wishing on such an occasion to be a 
damper to their mirth, thought it best to withdraw. 
Accordingly she watched her opportunity, and bending 
low, whispered to her right hand neighbour, — 

"Darcy, I am about to leave the table; will you 
follow me in about half an hour ? I will wait in the 
drawing-room. I do so long to hear the history of your 
adventures." 

Darcy coloured with pleasure, and bowed assent. 

Then Coralie rose, and with a gesture requested silence. 

As soon as the company saw their hostess on her 
feet, every voice was hushed, and each also respectfully 
rose. 

" G-entlemeu," said Coralie, " pray do not let me dis- 
turb you ; I hope you will none of you think of leaving 
— to do so would be a poor compliment to those gentle- 
men whom we are assembled to welcome. I will see 
that you are supplied with abundance of wine. If you 
require anything else you have but to order, and my 
servants will obey. Pray keep your seats." 

Then, with a parting bow and a bright smile, Coralie 
St. Casse swept from the room, a murmur of admiration 
following her. 

No sooner was she gone than a perfect Babel of noise 
arose. Every one spoke at the same time, and on the 
same subject. 



300 TILS CLACK ANGEL. 

"By Jove! Leigh, you are a lucky felloe," sdd a 
younq; man down the table; "I really believe that our 
beautiful hostess is struck by your good looks and 
daring deeds." 

This and a dozen other remarks to the same purport 
followed. 

Darcy felt angry and annoyed. He rose and said, 
when silence was somewhat restored, — 

" Gentlemen, I must request and insist on one thing, 
that during her absence the name of our hostess be not 
thus lightly mentioned." 

'"'Well spoken, young man," said Colonel Buggies; 
11 and, gentlemen, I agree with what Mr. Darcy Leigh 
says, and must add the weight of my voice to his." 

This well-deserved rebuke kaa the desired result of 
silencing the somewhat inconsiderate tongues of the 
young men. 

The subject was dropped, and the conversation turned 
on the seizure and escape of the Spitfire. 

Darcy was requested to give the whole history of the 
affair, from the mutiny in New York harbour to tho 
running into Charleston. 

When he came to that part of his narrative where he 
described how he had deceived the Wabash on first fall- 
ing in with her, and continued also to get rid of the 
Yankee prisoners, Colonel Buggies exclaimed, — 

" By Jupiter ! young man, that was a stroke of genius 
— that was worthy of a JNapoleon. The rest was sheer 
hard fighting and pluck; but the way you fooled the 
Yankees, that was ' a caution to snakes.' " 

The next point which elicited the admiration of the 
colonel, was the ruse by which the Spitfire was towed 
through the fleet by the Wabash, as if she had been 
captured by the latter. 

Darcy explained, how, but for the sudden escape of 
Captain Seth Peabody from the cabin where he was con- 
fined, the two vessels would have steamed right under 
the guns of the batteries before the Yankees could have 
discovered their true character. Unfortunately, however, 
Captain Peabody succeeded in jumping on the bulwarks 



DAECY LEIGH AND THE BLACK ANGEL. 301 

and giving the alarm. This caused a terrible effusion of 
blood on both sides, and the Yankee captain himself was 
so desperately wounded, that it was not thought he would 
survive. 

"Well," said Buggies, "he's a Yankee, but he's a 
brave fellow, and ought not to be blamed for trying to 
save his ship." 

" Assuredly not," said Darcy, " and none regretted 
the fact of his being hurt more than myself; but in the 
struggle to secure him, he was struck in the chest by 
a cutlass, which passed right out at his back. He 
has had, however, every possible attention, and I gave 
especial directions that when the surgeons came on 
board to attend the wounded, he should be at once 
seen to." 

Darcy's narrative over, the conversation again turned 
on general subjects, and General Beauregard approached 
the end of the table at which he was. 

" Well, colonel," said the general, " the question now 
is what are we to do for this young man and his 
brave companions ? They are naval officers, and unfor- 
tunately, with the exception of the Wabash sunk, and 
the Spitfire, with difficulty kept from sinking, we have 
no navy. It would be a poor compliment to make our 
friend here captain of a sinking hulk, or commodore of a 
navy which does not exist. It is a pity you have no 
knowledge of military matters, sir." 

" Pardon me for my presumption, general," said 
Darcy, " but I think I may claim a fair knowledge of 
drill and military manoeuvres. The drill I learned when 
in command of marines ashore, to which, at my own 
request, I was temporarily consigned. And as to mili- 
tary manoeuvres, I have made them my study. I am well 
up in fortification and field evolutions in all but one 
respect, and that is practice." 

" I am glad to hear you say so, young man. "What do 
you say, colonel ? I think we can manage to find some- 
thing for Mr. Leigh." 

" What do I say!" replied the colonel, "why I say 
that this lad's word may be taken — I would take it. If 



302 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

lie said he was able to command a division in the field, I 
would believe him." 

Darcy felt a glow of pleasure at these words. 

" I am far from being capable of commanding a divi- 
sion, or even a regiment," he replied, "but I think a 
company." 

" Aye, a company ; there's the rub ! It is easy enough 
to make you a captain, but to give you a company is 
quite a different affair. We have very few troops in the 
field, and certainly we have not a regiment near Char- 
leston which is not fully officered. However, we will 
consider about it, and, in the meantime, I tvill at once 
confer on you the rank of captain, and place you on my 
staff." 

Then General Beauregard called his aide-de-camp, who 
was present, and ordered him to have prepared the neces- 
sary papers which should give Darcy Leigh the rank of 
captain in the Confederate army. 

He announced the fact to the officers present, — 

li Gentlemen, I have to inform you that I have con- 
ferred the rank of captain on Mr. Darcy Leigh, and he 
will henceforth rank as such." 

The General and Colonel then left, and Darcy duly re- 
ceived the congratulations of all, on his receiving his first 
commission in the service of the Confederate Govern- 
ment. 

It was some time ere he could tear himself away from 
fche friends who surrounded him, but on the first oppor- 
tunity he slipped out of the room, in order to join Coralie 
St. Casse, according to promise. 

When Darcy Leigh reached the drawing-room, he 
found that General Beauregard and his friend had pre- 
ceded him. 

" W r hat, young gentleman! " said the former, "tired 
already of the mirth and jollity of those hare-brained 
young men down stairs ?" 

" No, general ; but to tell the truth, my head ia 
rather painful, and I thought a cup of tea would be 
more likely to cool it than the wine, so plentifully pro- 
vided below, and which I could not avoid drinking, for 



DATICY LEIGH AND THE ELACK ANGEL. 303 

not a moment passed but one or another insisted on my 
pledging them." 

" See what it is to be a hero," said Beauregard. 

" Poor fellow," said Coralie, " come to the sofa, and I 
will make you a cup of tea. I do hope the wound in 
your head is not serious." 

" See what it is to be young and good-looking," said 
Colonel Ruggles. " Now, I'll be sworn if my ugly old 
head was knocked into a cocked hat, I shouldn't find 
fair lips to say poor fellow, nor fair hands to make me a 
cup of tea." 
. " Then you would be sworn to what is false, Colonel," 
said Coralie, warmly. " I do not know whether you 
speak seriously or in jest ; if the former, you are 

freatly mistaken, as you can prove, should you ever 
e wounded, or in want of a woman's aid. If you spoke 
in jest, you were wrong to jest on such a subject ; it is 
disagreeable to me." 

Poor Colonel Buggies subsided instantly" at this re- 
buke, and looked terribly chapfallen. 

Beauregard laughed at his friend's discomfiture. 

""Well, well," said the latter, "I didn't mean any 
offence, young lady ; it's only my cursed bearish way. I 
can't help it. I'm a rough old log, and not fit for ladies' 
company. I '11 go back to my regiment, and when the 
hour of battle comes, Colonel Buggies, rough and coarse 
as he may be, shall not be found wanting." 

There was a tear in the old man's eye as he spoke. 

He had not meant any offence, but he had acquired a 
habit of speaking cynically and bitterly at all times ; and 
though possessed of a rare generous heart, frequently 
gave offence where he least intended so to do. 

Coralie was instantly sorry for her words, provoked 
though they had been. 

She darted to the colonel's side, and seizing his ragged 
hand, said imploringly, — ■ 

" A thousand pardons, colonel. I am sorry I offended 
you. I am but a girl, and you must pardon me this 
time." 

He merely bowed ? and turning away, muttered, — » 



304 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Only a girl, only a girl ; it's all very well to say 
only a girl, but may 1 be hanged, only a girl as she is, if 
she don't make an old fool of me." 

General Beauregard now mentioned the fact of Darcy 
being a captain. 

" Unfortunately, Miss St. Casse," he said, " there is 
one difficulty we are in, with regard to your young 
friend. We can't find him a regiment at present, so 
that he is a captain without a company." 

" General," said Coralie, eagerly, " will you leave that 
to me ?" 

" Leave what to you — Captain Leigh ? Of course 
I '11 leave him to you if you wish it," he replied, smiling. 

" No, no, don't tease me ; you are as bad as Colonel 
Euggles. I mean leave the difficulty to me." 

" Assuredly, if you wish it. I hardly see how you can 
help us in this case." 

" Never mind, leave it to me. When may I see you 
again — to-morrow r" 

" No, not to-morrow, but the day after if you wish." 

" Very good ; by that time I shall be able to make a 
suggestion, which will, I think, solve the difficulty." 

" Let it be as you say, young lady. Now, Colonel, I 
think it is time we left. Miss St. Casse and Captain 
Leigh are old friends, and doubtless have much to say. 
Doubtless, Othello-like, he has many a tale of daring and 
adventure for her ear." 

" I hope, Othello-like, he will not smother me with a 
pillow," said Coralie, smiling. 

" And may no Iago, with accursed plots, step in," said 
Colonel Euggles, who was now himself again. 

" Come, colonel, you are making the lady blush. 
Good day, Miss St, Casse. Good day, Captain Leigh." 

Then, of course, Darcy Leigh was obliged to repeat the 
history of his adventures since he left New York; nor 
was he allowed to miss any particular, so close did the 
lady question hiin, and so deep an interest did she mani- 
fest. 

Having disposed of the past, they commenced to talk 
of the future, which looked black and gloomy enough. 



DAKCY LEIGH AND THE DLAOK ANGEL. 305 

Coralie, however, was full of enthusiasm and courage, and 
declared that she did not for one moment doubt the issue 
of the coming struggle, unequal as it appeared. 

" And what of your brother Gerald, your father, and 
your sister Laura ? " she asked. 

" I have not heard from Grerald for a long time. My 
father and sister are, I believe, at Eichmond, or the Vir- 
ginia plantation. When last I heard of Grerald he was in 
Baltimore with his regiment, but I do not doubt for a 
moment, that if he has not already resigned, he is only 
waiting for a fitting opportunity to do so and join us." 

" You are quite certain, then, that he will not remain 
in the Yankee service ? " 

" Quite ; but tell me, fair Coralie, if you please, how 
you design to solve this difficulty of which the general 
spoke. At present there are more colonels than regi- 
ments, captains than companies. Do you know of any 
fresh regiments about to arrive, or do you expect that 
some officer will resign in my favour ? " 

" Neither, sir ; but do not be curious — I will tell you 
the day after to-morrow." 

" Such being the case, I suppose I must wait patiently 
till then. And now I will take my leave, for I am quite 
tired out, and shall be glad of some rest." 

" Will you not take up your quarters here ?" 

" Why, what on earth are you thinking of, Coralie ? — 
what would people say ? No, believe me, I have too 
much regard for your fair fame to give a handle for the 
malicious." 

" Honi soit qui onal y pense," said Coralie ; " there can 
be no harm or discredit to my sheltering a brave officer 
and old friend." 

" No matter: I thank you deeply for your kindness* 
but in this case I think it best, even at the risk of being 
thought churlish, to decline. And now, for the present, 
adieu. I shall go to the nearest hotel." 

But Coralie would not permit him to leave thus ; she 
insisted on accompanying him to the- hotel in question. 

Many were the glances of envy and admiration cast on 
the pair, as they walked together from the house of the 

5 



30G THE BLACK AKGEL. 

heiress to the hotel. The bandaged head, somewhat 
unsteady gait, and deadly paleness of Darcy (for fatigue, 

Eain, and loss of blood had done their work), would alone 
ave attracted attention ; but the presence of the Black 
Angel, on whose arm he leaned, made them the observed 
of all observers. 

She bade him adieu at the hotel door, exacting from 
him a promise to visit her again on the day but one 
after. As for Darcy, he was only too glad to retire to 
rest, although it was yet early in the evening. A long 
and refreshing sleep went far to renovate exhausted 
nature, and when he awoke on the following day he felt 
greatly refreshed and invigorated. 



CHAPTEE L. 

nOW OOEALIE OVEBCAME THE DIFEICULTY. 

The reader already knows that the "Wabash went down 
in the very hour of victory, although in shoal water. 
Considering her terribly crippled state, it was hardly 
thought worth while to raise her, which, however, was 
done more for the sake of the guns and stores, than for 
the ship herself. 

The Spitfire was also terribly knocked about, and 
leaked so badly that a gang of men had to be sent from 
the shore to keep her from sinking. 

After some hours' unceasing pumping, she was freed 
from water, and hauled into dock to undergo repairs. 

Darcy Leigh was consulted as to what should be 
done with her, and he at once gave it as his opinion that 
she should be cut down and cased with iron, as com- 
pletely as circumstances would permit. He argued justly 
that to attempt to put to sea with a small wooden 
sloop, where the ocean swarmed with the enenry'a 
cruisers, would be madness ; while, by casing her with 
iron, she might be made available for many purposes. 
For instance, where no other iron vessel was present, 
she might defy and destroy a whole fleet of wooden 
ships with impunity. It was true that this iron casing 



HOW COKALIE OVERCAME THE DIFFICTJLTT. 307 

must of necessity be very imperfect, but it would be in- 
comparably more shot-proof thau wood ; and in time, as 
the resources and skill of the Confederates were 
developed, he doubted not that a regular iron-clad navy 
might be formed. 

The authorities not only took the advice of Darcy 
Leigh as to casing the Spitfire with iron, but also con- 
fided to him the direction of the processes and the mode 
of armament. 

Darcy at once entered heart and soul into the affair. 
He resolved, as soon as the Spitfire was transformed 
into an iron-clad gunboat, to ask for the command of 
her. He had little fear of being refused this, and 
imagined he saw before him a great career. 

Visions of numberless Yankee merchantmen, cap- 
tured and burned, floated before him ; and he pictured 
to himself the Spitfire under another name scouring 
the seas, and proving a perfect scourge to the Yankee 
commerce. 

The necessary alterations, however, would take at the 
very shortest computation four months, and even then 
she would not be ready to put to sea. 

( Darcy, accordingly, resolved in the interval to devote 
his whole time to military matters, and to accept the 
first command offered him in the field. The whole 
of this, his first day, was passed in superintending 
the docking of the Spitfire, and giving the necessary 
orders for the work of cutting down to be at once com- 
menced. 

All her stores, crew, wounded men, and prisoners had 
been landed, so that in the evening the sloop was hauled 
into dry dock ; and urged on by Darcy Leigh, vigorous 
preparations were made for commencing the work on 
the following morning. 

Darcy was so busy, that he absolutely had forgotten 
he had promised to visit the Elack Angel, and it was 
not till near evening that he left the ship-yard and made 
his way in the direction of her house. Lie found a con- 
siderable company there, as usual, among whom was 
General ^Beauregard. 

x2 



308 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Coralie warmly greeted him, and drawing him on one 
Bide, said, — 

" Now, sir, I will tell you what I promised you the 
day before yesterday." 

Darcy's head had been all day so full of the Spitfire, 
and the great deeds he meant to accomplish with her, 
that he had forgotten all about the promise. 

" What was that ? " he asked, absently. 

" You ask me what ? " said Coralie, reproachfully 
gazing full in his face with her large beautiful dark 
eyes. " Is it possible that you have forgotten ? Do 
you, then, treat me as a child — a loolish girl, whoso 
words are as light as her heart? Darcy Leigh, you 
wrong me ! " 

" A thousand pardons, lady," he said ; " I really was 
so buried in thought, that I did not at first hear what 
you said. Of course I had not forgotten your promise. 
You said you would this day solve the difficulty of my 
being a captain without a company." 

"And I will keep my word. I want your assistance, 
however. Do you promise it me beforehand ?" 

"Willingly." 

" Very well, then — the rest is easy." 

She motioned to General Beauregard, who quickly- 
joined her. 

" General," she said, "when you spoke the other day 
of the difficulty you were placed in of finding a command 
for our new captain here, I said I could solve it. I am 
now prepared to do so." 

General Beauregard smiled, and bowed for her to 
proceed. 

" A regiment is the thing wanted, I believe. There 
are, I understand, officers enough for several ; it is men 
you want." 

" Exactly— soldiers." 

" Well, general, you know I am wealthy. 1 do not 
see how I can better employ that wealth than in the 
service of the Confederate States. I will, at my own 
expense, raise, equip, and arm a regiment of at least 
eight hundred men. Thus, you see, I shall be able to 



HOW COEALTE OVERCAME THE DIIFICELTY. 309 

provide companies for ten captains, besides a colonel, 
major, lieutenants, and subalterns. JNow is not the 
difficulty surmounted ? " asked the Black Angel, tri- 
umphantly. 

Both General Beauregard and Darcy Leigh were taken 
by surprise at this munificent offer. 

" Lady," said the former, " the noble offer you have 
just now made is worthy of you. I should be no true 
soldier of my country were I to refuse it. Surely where 
our very women show such devotion, our cause must 
succeed." 

Darcy Leigh was profuse in his expressions of grati- 
tude ; but Coralie stopped him, saying, — 

" A truce to your compliments and fine speeches. Let 
us consult how we may best carry out my plans." 

" In the first place," said Darcy. " we must open an 
office and procure the men." 

" Will you undertake that ? " she asked. 
* Willingly." 

" Next," said the general, " I suppose your men must 
be armed." 

"I will do that at my own expense," she said, hastily. 

"Nevertheless you must procure the arms from 

government, for all private stores have long been bought 

up. However, I will see to that for you, also that you 

have the necessary authority from government." 

" A thousand thanks. Ail then is easy, and within a 
week or so, I hope to have a regiment of my own in the 
field. May they do good service." 

" They must indeed be cravens if they will not fight 
for such a mistress. What say you, Captain Leigh ? " 

" For myself I answer that I will lay down my life 
but too willingly, if only to show my devotion to the fair 
Coralie, of whom our country may justly be proud." 

" Thanks, Darcy Leigh," she replied, " a compliment 
from your lips is all the more welcome from its scarcity. 
And now haste and see what is to be done." 

G-eneral Beauregard took his leave, and after a few 
minutes' private consultation with Coralie, Darcy 
followed. He looked strangely flushed and excited aa 



310 THE BLACK AKGEL. 

he strode down the street. He must indeed have heen 
more than human had he been insensible to the glorious 
beauty and nattering preference bestowed on him by 
Coralie St. Casse. 

He proceeded to search out his friends, Lieutenant 
"Wharncliffe and the officers of marines who had served 
with him on board the Spitfire. Then they went into 
the principal street of the town and hired an office in a 
good situation. Their next errand was to a printing- 
office, and in the course of an hour a printed bill was 
affixed above the office door. It ran thus, — 

"VOLUNTEERS FOR A NEW REGIMENT. 



" Mademoiselle Coralie Andree St. Casse having 
patriotically and liberally offered to raise and equip a 
regiment at her own expense, the general commanding at 
Charleston has been pleased to accept the offer. 

" Authorized recruiting agent, Captain Darcy LEiGn. 
Men of the Confederate States who wish to join are invited 
to present themselves for approval at once. 

"Drill and organization will at once commence, and the 
regiment will take the field as soon as equipped." 

It was not long before a crowd collected round the 
office, and before it was closed for the night, the parch- 
ment muster roll of the new regiment bore the signatures 
of a hundred men. 

" Not so bad, old fellow," said Darcy to "Wharncliffe, 
as they left the office together; "a hundred in half 
a day. "We shall soon have our complement ; then 
hurrah for the Stars and Bars ! " 

They were strolling leisurely towards their hotel, 
when they heard a voice behind them. 

"Mister Darcy"— 

Turning, they perceived the big Irishman, Darby 
Kelly, with the nigger, Jupiter. 

" Well, Darby, what is it ? do you want to be made 
colonel of the new regiment ? " 

" Ah, now, yer honour, it was a bit of a mistake, I 
was after making. Sure it wasn't kernel I meant, at 



HOW COEALIE OVERCAME THE DTEPICULTT. 311 

all — at all — but corporal. I knew it began with a K — 
and it's to ask yer honour to make me a corporal that 1 
spake now. Sure Jupiter and me, as soon as we heard 
the talk, comes down to the office to list, but the office 
was shut ; so sez I to the nigger, here, I'll just make so 
bould as to ask his honour to make me a corporal." 

Darcy smiled, but hesitated to reply, 

" Do you know your drill ? " 

" Devil a bit ; but I can shoot like blazes ! " 

" That 's hardly sufficient qualification, I fear. How- 
ever, just cruise about the town to-night, and pick up as 
many of your countrymen as you can. Bring them with 
you to the office to-morrow, and then when you have 
learned your drill, we '11 see what can be done for you." 

"With this Darby Kelly went off in high glee, in all 
the pride of being appointed recruiting officer. Soon 
both he and Jupiter had adorned their heads with large 
streamers of ribbon, and, procuring a fiddler, they pro- 
ceeded on their mission, and in the course of the night, 
succeeded in hunting up and rallying to their standard 
half the Irish in the town, and getting themselves 
gloriously drunk. 

Darcy Leigh found the task of raising a regiment 
under the auspices of the Black Angel and himself an 
easy one. Coralie St. Casse was famous for her beauty, 
wealth, and devotion to the cause, and many young 
Southerners of good birth actually volunteered as 
privates in her regiment. 

The name of Darcy Leigh, too, was a tower of strength. 
His daring exploit with the Spitfire was the theme of 
every tongue, and his popularity in Charleston was 
immense. 

Darby Kelly had succeeded in rallying around his 
standard some thirty Irishmen, who came in a body one 
morning and registered their names. By the end of a 
week, over five hundred men were enrolled. Officers 
and non-commissioned officers were appointed, and they 
were being rapidly drilled and organised into a serviceable 
force. 

The full number of men reguired might have been 



Si2 THE BLACK ANGEL, 

long since made up ; but a strict selection was made, 
only picked men being allowed to join. 

Darcy and his brother officers justly considered that 
in the course of a few weeks, they would be able to oiler 
to the Government a regiment of picked men, which, for 
discipline, drill, and in pliysique, would be unapproach- 
able in the service. 

The lowest standard of height was five feet ten inches, 
except in the light company, which was judiciously com- 
posed of small and active men. 

As for the First or Grenadier Company, every man 
was abore six feet in height, and with great muscular 
strength. 

The task of officering the regiment was an easy one, 
as there were many officers of merit and experience 
only too glad to take service. Indeed this abundance of 
skilled officers on the Confederate side was one oi the 
most remarkable features in the war. 

As a rule, the cadets at West Point Academy, and 
most of the officers in the United States' army and navy, 
were of Southern birth, extraction, and sympathies, and 
as a consequence, on the breaking out of the rebellion, 
they deserted the Stars and Stripes and flocked around 
the Confederate standard. 



CHAPTER LI. 

THE BAEEACK-EOOM, AND HOW DAEBT 
FCTENTSHED IT. 

Day by day new regiments increased both in numbers 
and efficiency. 

Darby Kelly had attained the object of his ambition, 
and having sufficiently learned his drill was made 
corporal. His application, however, to Darcy Leigh to 
be made a colonel had got wind, and he was now 
universally called Colonel Kelly. Sooth to say, Darby, 
so far from being annoyed at it, seemed as pleased with 
his title as though he were indeed a colonel. 

" What a foine thing intellect is, cap Vain," he said on? 



HOW DARBY FURNISHED THE EARRACK-ROOAr. 313 

da/ to Darcy ; " ye see thim spalpeens call me colonel ; 
an' for way ? " 

"Why, indeed?" 

" Shure it's intellect — it's the power of a suparior 
mind." 

" "Well, just exercise your superior mind in cleaning 
my scabbard and sword-belt for evening parade, and 
don't botber me, for I'm busy." 

" Shure an' I will, captain, an' just ask one more 
question — don't I always clean yer bonner's 'coutre- 
ments well ? don't tbey always glitter like gould, silver, 
and mountain-dew, wid a sparkle or two of starlight, to 
Bay nothing of diamonds ? " 

" Well — yes, if you like," replied Darcy, abstractedly. 

" Thin, it proves what I said — it's the power of 
intellect." • 

Then, as Darcy made no answer, Darby Kelly set to 
work, and was soon deep in the mysteries of pipe-clay 
and polishing powder. 

The honest Irishman had taken an immense liking to 
Darcy Leigh, and had appointed himself as orderly and ser- 
vant. He had taken especial pride in arranging the 
furniture and fittings of the barrack-room, to which 
Darcy had removed from the hotel. 

As a military man, Darby thought that his master's 
quarters should present a military appearance. 

Imagine, then, Darcy's astonishment on moving into 
his new quarters, which, after four days' hard labour, 
Darby had at last declared ready. But we will briefly 
describe them as arranged by Darby. 

The whole of the furniture proper, consisted of a table 
and four chairs; but the lack of this was made up 
abundantly in other ways. The first thing which struck 
the beholder's eye was an enormous cartoon, painted on 
coarse paper in all the glories of red, white, blue, green, 
and yellow. It had been executed by one of Darby's 
companions, whose " intellect " had a turn that way. 

It professed to represent the " Irish Duke " at 
"Waterloo. 

.About- seven hundred horrible caricatures of soldiers 



314 TITE "BLACK ANGEL. 

in red coats and white trousers were running after an 
immense number of other soldiers in blue coats and red 
trousers. These latter, of course, were the French, and 
as nearly as could be guessed, they numbered several 
hundred thousand. 

Strange to say, although the red-coated soldiers 
were pursuing the flying enemy, they all had their heads 
twisted round over their shoulders, and were looking 
back either at the Duke or the spectators. Every one 
of these Darby declared was a portrait and a speaking 
likeness of all the soldiers in his father's regiment, the 
fighting th. 

The accuracy, however, of the portraits may well be 
doubted when it is known they were all painted not 
even from memory, but as the painter asserted, from an 
accurate description given him- by his father, who, like 
Darby Kelly's, had served in the regiment. 

However, that is immaterial. The great feature in the 
portrait was the Duke himself, who was seated on an 
enormous piebald war horse. The hero was of course 
gorgeously attired, with pistols both in his belt and 
holsters. He held a drawn sword in one hand and a 
trumpet in the other, which he was vigorously blowing. 
He wore a cocked hat with a large white feather, which 
stuck straight up in the air. His features were very 
terrible, ferocious, but did not at all correspond with the 
conventional idea of the " Iron Duke." He had in the 
painting a snub nose, an enormous grey moustache, and 
bushy red hair. Such was the Duke according to Darby 
Kelly's friend. The cavalry in the battle was repre- 
sented by four horsemen several miles away, and right 
in the midst of the enemy. 

As for artillery, there was only one piece. This was 
posted immediately behind the Duke, and kept up appa- 
rently a terrific fire between the legs of the piebald horse. 

The fury of this cannonade may be imagined when we 
state that no less than six enormous cannon-balls may be 
discerned in the air at the same time, all having issued 
from the same piece. 

The foremost of these is several miles away appa- 



HOW DARBY PUBLISHED THE BAEEACK-RCOM. 315 

rently, and the enemy can be seen even at that distance 
scattering in all directions to avoid the terrible missile. 
The last is just passing between the legs of the piebald 
horse, and is of such an enormous size, that it never 
could have come from the small field -piece, or, indeed, 
uny other cannon that was ever cast. 

All the rest of the picture is filled with fire and smoke, 
and a lurid glare in the sky over some mountains in the 
background Darby stated to be caused by the burning of 
Paris. 

When this latter fact was disputed on historical 
grounds, and especially because AVellington could not 
have been at Waterloo and setting fire to Paris at the 
same time, he got out of the difficulty by asserting that 
" Blooker " did it. 

Such was the Battle of Waterloo according to Darby 
Kelly. 

This splendid cartoon took up the whole of one side of 
the room. Immediately opposite it, on the other wall, 
was a military trophy composed of seven rifles and 
bayonets, with a dragoon's helmet for the centre-piece. 

Another of the walls was covered with swords, cut- 
lasses, pistols, and boarding pikes. There were about 
twenty swords of all sorts and sizes, from the fencing-foil 
to the dragoon's sabre. 

On the last of the four walls Darby had hung up two 
saddles, also bridles, spurs, curry-combs, and halters. 
Then, surrounding these, which formed the centre-piece, 
he had suspended all the uniform coats, trousers, accou- 
trements, &c, and even all the private clothes Darcy 
possessed, the whole being surmounted by a Kossuth 
hat with an enormous ostrich pluma 

We have said that there were but four chairs in the 
rooms ; but to atone for this scant allowance Darby had 
prepared a seat of honour at the head of the table. 
This appeared at first to be a sofa or couch covered with 
a large flag. 

" There, yer homier," he said, when, with great pride, 
he conducted Darcy to the room, " there's a seat for a 
Boldier " 



316 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

So saying he lifted the flag, and discovered a broad 
Blab of wood supported by two barrels. 

Darcy and "Wharncliffe, who accompanied him, burst 
into a loud fit of laughter. 

" Ah ! ye may laugh, yerhonner," said Darby, in high 
glee, " but jist look in the barrels, an' under the table." 

They did so, and discovered first under the table a 
small field cannon loaded to the muzzle, and uncovering 
the barrels, found one full of bullets, the other of powder. 

" Well, I'm !" said Wharncliffe ; " why it's enough 

to make one's blood run cold !" 

Darcy first looked grave, then angry, and finally 
burst out laughing at the utter absurdity of the whole 
scene. 

" Come, Darby,'' he said, " I can stand a good deal, 
but there is a limit to human endurance. Take that 
powder away and the bullets. Where on earth did you 
get them from? " 

" From the quarter-master." 

u Did he give them to you?" 

" Av coorse he did. I made a requisition for two 
barrels of powder, two kegs of bullets, two cannons, and 
a thousand cartridges, for Captain Leigh, an' I got them 
like a shot." 

" Two kegs of powder, two cannons, two kegs of 
bullets, and a thousand cartridges. "Why where are they 
all — they're not all here ?" 

" No, yer homier, there wasn't room for them, so I 
put 'em under the bed in the other room." 

"Angels and ministers of grace defend us!" cried 
Darcy ; " you don't think I'm going to sleep there, do 
you ? Do you imagine I want to be blown up ? " 

" Av coorse not, yer homier. I argufied that point 
over to meself. Sez I to meself, Darby, sez I, there's a 
deal of blow up in bullets and gunpowder — specially gun- 
powder. 'Spose the captain was to be blowed up ? Then 
sez I, in the first place, it's not likely he'll be blowed up; 
and, in the second, it's the duty of soldiers, officers, aa 
well as privates, to be blowed up." 

" The devil it is !" 



HOW DAEBY FHBNISHED THE BABBACK-EOOM. 317 

* Then, sez I, it ain't likely as he'll be blowed up, 
'cause tho' powder and bullets is very combustious, 
specially powder, yet they won't blow up if no one don't 
set light to them. So I sez to myself, if they won't blow 
up without some one doing it, it ain't likely they'll blow 
up at all, because it ain't likely any one would set light 
to them ; for if they did, don't you see, your honner, it's 
most likely they'd be blowed up too." 

" Confound your likely s and not likely s ! just set to 
work now, and clear all this ammunition out and return 
it to the quarter-master, for it isn't likely I am going to 
sleep in a powder magazine, — and look here, I shall be 
back in half-an-hour, and if by that time you have not 
taken it all away, it's extremely likely that I shall kick 
you down stairs." 

So saying, Darcy and his friend left 5> leaving Darby 
gaziu°- with rueful face on his ammunition and arrange- 
ments in general. 

Scarcely had they left than a thought struck him; he 
put his head out of the window, and. shouted to Darcy 
and Wharncliffe, who were crossing the barrack yard — 

" Captain ! by your leave, a minute." 

" Well, what is it ? " 

" It's all about the cannon ; may we keep the two 
beautiful little cannon— bekase, if we don't, I must ax 
yer honners to come up and help me down with them. 
It took six of us to get them up." . 

" Confound you ; keep them if you like." 

"I thought* that would do it," muttered Darby to 
himself; "his honuer's in a hurry, and I knew he 
wouldn't come back." 

Somewhat consoled at being allowed to keep the 
cannon, Darby set to work to clear away the kegs of 
powder and bullets. He could not, however, make up 
his mind to part with them altogether, so he took them 
down to the coal-cellar, and carefully covering them over 
with coal, there left them. 



318 THE BLiXK ANGEL. 

CHAPTER LIL 

NEWS FB0M WASHINGTON. 

It was, in this martially-decorated barrack-room that?, 
on the occasion of which we speak, Darby was exercis- 
ing his "intellect" in polishing up his master's accou- 
trements; while the latter was busily employed writing. 

The sharp words of command of the sergeant drilling 
the recruits in the barrack-yard, and the distant boom 
of artillery practising on the plain beyond the town, 
were the only sounds which fell on the ear. Darby wa3 
just giving the finishing touches to his work, and Darey 
Leigh had folded up his papers, and was about rising, 
when a sharp knock was heard at the door. 

" Get up, Darby, and see who is there." 

Darby arose and opened the large oak door. 

" Is Lieutenant Leigh in ?" 

" Captain Leigh, by your lave, sir." 

" Ah, to be sure ; I had forgotten. Is Captain Leigh 
in?" 

Darby, in reply, stood on one side, and motioned 
the new-comer to enter ; at the same time saying to his 
master, — 

" A gentleman, sir." 

The next moment a young man, in undress cavalry 
uniform, stood before him. 

Darcy at once recognised the uniform of his brother 
Gerald's regiment of horse, and after gazing in doubt 
for a moment, also remembered the wearer to be a 
brother officer of Gerald's, whom he had once or twico 
met. 

He rose, and perceiving that his visitor's dress was 
travel-stained, and that he seemed greatly fatigued, he 
politely motioned him to be seated ; and said, — 

"I think I remember you as being in the Second 
Cavalry with my brother. Have you any news of him ?" 

" It is on his account that I have now come, having 
travelled night and day from the Potomac, as soon as 
I escaped from the custody of the Yankees, by whom I 
was captured." 



WEWS FROM WASHINGTON 319 

u My brother Gerald ! — what of him ?" asked Darcy, 
anxiously ; for he observed a deep and mournful shade 
on his visitor's face. " Is he well, or has anything hap- 
pened to him? " 

" Sir, you are a man," was the reply, " and I may at 
once be frank with you." 

" Speak — let me know the worst." 

" The worst that could possibly have happened to your 
brother, short of death, has happened. He was captured 
by the Yankees while endeavouring to join a party of 
horse he had raised, and which had preceded him. They 
were bound across the Potomac at Harper's Ferry, and 
intended to join the Confederate army." 

" Captured ! and he is still a prisoner?" 

" He is still a prisoner, and with a friend, who was 
taken with him — a young fellow known as Captain 
George, an Englishman — is sentenced " 

He hesitated, and his voice faltered. 

" Go on," said Darcy, in a husky voice. 

" Is sentenced to be shot ! " 

There was a deep and solemn silence for some 
time. 

Then Darcy, who had leant his head on his hand, 
covering his eyes, as if in prayer or deep thought, said, — 

"And when was the sentence to be carried into 
effect?" 

" I left the Potomac more than a week back. Then a 
fortnight's delay had been granted, because the English 
minister had desired a full investigation before a British 
subject was executed. After the fortnight another 
short delay may be granted ; but that the sentence will 
be ultimately carried out on both there is not the slightest 
doubt. 1 ' 

" You left Washington, or rather its neighbourhood, a 
week back, you say ?" 

" Yes, but I was delayed on the road." 

u I can reach there in three days." 

This was said in a musing, reflective tone, and again 
there was a long silence. 

Darcy, by his troubled countenance, seemc-c! to be re- 



320 TlfE BLACK ANGEL. 

solving on a course of action. At last he seemed to 
have decided. 

" Yes," he said, rising, " it must be done ; he must be 
rescued at all hazards. Do you know where he is con- 
fined ? Not in one of the forts, I trust ? " 

"No, not in one of the forts, but where, I know not. 
It is known, however, that he is in the custody of the 
Provost Marshal." 

" Then he would be in the quarters or barracks of some 
of the troops — probably in one of the guard-rooms. 
Darby, pack up my valise— I shall leave this in an 
hour.'" 

" Surely you are not so mad as to go to "Washington? 
You will but involve yourself in his fate, without saving 
him." 

" Sir," said Darcy, with calm determination, " I have 
already succeeded in one desperate venture, as, perhaps, 
you may have heard. I will now save my brother or 
perish in the attempt. " 

" Madness !" 

" So be it ; were I to suffer him to perish it would be 
cowardice. I leave this in an hour's time. I shall re- 
turn with my brother, or share his fate. Now, sir, if 
you will relate to me something of this affair, I shall feel 
obliged." 

Then he listened patiently, while the other circum- 
stantially related all he knew of the attempt which ended 
so disastrously in the capture of Gerald Leigh and Cap- 
tain George. 

"And you say that when last you saw him you left 
him going to bid farewell to "Webster Gavle's daughters 
at HolkarHallr" 

"Yes." 

" And you think that by the treachery of some one who 
was in your secrets he was betrayed, and the party of 
dragoons sent on to capture him ? Have you any idea^ 
any suspicion, as to who was the traitor ? " 

The young officer hesitatingly replied, — 

" "Well, there was a rumour going about among us-» 
indeed, we had actual and distinct warning that treacherj 



NEWS FEOM "WASHINGTON. 321 

was intended by a persou who had obtained information 
of all our movements." 

"And who might that person be?" asked Darcy, 
while, for a moment, a fierce light blazed in his 
eyes. 

" I scarcely like to run the chance of accusing an inno- 
cent man ; but as it was such common talk, I may as 
well say that the cousin of the Misses Gayle was and is 
suspected." 

" Lupus Eock ! But he has promised to join our 
cause. It was but yesterday that one of our generals 
received important information of the enemy's plans 
from him." 

" Perhaps," was the reply, " he is a double traitor — a 
traitor to both. Who can say ? — for my part, I distrust 
him." 

" And so do I ; and if my suspicions are ever confirmed, 
God have mercy on him, for I will have none." 

Again there was a silence, which Darcy broke by ex- 
claiming, — 

" Darby, confound you, haven't you packed that valise 
yet?" 

" All right, yer honner." 

" Go saddle my horse, and bring him round." 

" Is yer honner going ? " 

" Yes." 

<{ Might I be so bould as to ask where to ?" 

" Washington." 

" And would yer honner be afther lavin' me behind 
yer?" 

" You could do no good, Darby, and would only risk 
your life," said Darcy, kindly. 

" As to risking my life, yer honner, it 's yerself that 
knows I don't care a jiffy for that. Maybe what yer 
honner says about my doing no good is true enough. I 
know I 'm but a poor ignorant haythen, an' I beg yer 
honner's pardon for makin' so bould as to think I could 
be of any sarvice to gintlemen like yerself." 

Darcy saw that the honest fellow's eyes were full of 
tears, and taking his hand, said, — 

X 



322 THE BLACK AtfGEL. 

" Darby, my boy, I beg your pardon for speaking 
unkindly. If you wish it, you can accompany me." 

Darby's delight at this was unbounded, and he dis- 
appeared after the horse. 

" You, sir," said Darcy to the cavalry officer, "do you 
remain in Charleston ? " 

" I shall remain for a month, and then join one of the 
Confederate cavalry regiments." 

" Even in this town of Charleston I fear there are 
some traitors, and were it known I had gone to "Wash- 
ington I might be betrayed. I can depend on you 
not to mention to any person whatever where I have 
gone." 

" Tou have my word, sir." 

Darcy pressed him to stay and partake of some re- 
freshment, but he declined and took his leave. 

Our hero then seated himself, and wrote two letters. 

One was to Wharnclifie, and ran as follows : — 

""Whabncliffe. — My dear fellow, — I dare say you will be 
surprised at my sudden disappearance ; but take my word for 
it, that it is an errand which, although fraught with danger, 
I cannot delay. If you do not hear from me or see me in a 
month's time, you may conclude that I have failed, and that 
our enemies have sent me to 'that bourne from which no 
traveller returns.' 

" Your Friend, 

"Darcy Leigh." 

This was the other letter : — 

" Ungrateful, unkind, and mysterious as my disappearance 
may seem to my friends, and to you especially, yet believe me 
when I say, on the word of a gentleman, that I cannot act 
otherwise ; and that if you knew my reasons and my object, 
you would hardly dissuade me, dangerous and even desperate 
as is my errand. You have ever been to me the kindest of 
friends ; no sister could have been more to me than your own 
fair self. Believe me that I shall never forget, but shall 
always treasure up your memory in my heart. Now, dear 
Coralie, farewell — perhaps for ever. If in one month you do 
not hear from me, you may conclude that all is over with 

"Darcy Leigh, 11 



NEWS FROM WASHINGTON. ' 323 

This letter lie addressed to Coralie St. Casse, and laid 
it with the other on the table. 

Scarcely had he done this, locked np all his private 
papers, loaded his revolvers, buckled on his sword, sup- 
plied himself with money from his desk, aud put on a 
large military cloak and foraging cap, when Darby Kelly 
reappeared,, accompanied by his friend Jupiter. 

" Plase yer honner, here's the nigger, an' he wants to 
come too." 

Jupiter, rolling his eyes and blubbering, here spoke. 

" O my lor a' mussy, Massa Darcy, let dis chile como 
too." 

" Oh, confound it!" said Darcy, impatiently; "what 
on earth's the good of your coming ? "What earthly good 
can you be to me ?" 

" I'se very strong, massa," said Jupiter, pointing to 
his big arm. 

" Strong ! that may be, but strength is not what I 
want." 

" An' I'se orful cunning, massa." 

" The deuce you are ! " replied Darcy, laughing. 
* Why what on earth could you do ? " 

li Work de oracle, massa." 

" Work the oracle ! but I don't want the oracle worked, 
nor the telegraph either." 

" I can play 'possum, Massa Darcy — do de contra- 
band." 

" Do the contraband ! what do you mean ? " 

" Why, massa, you 's agoing to Washington, dis 
Irish er say." 

" Who the blazes do you call a Irisher, you black 
scaramouch ? I '11 thump the sowl out of ye if ye call me 
a Irisher." 

" By golly ! " replied Jupiter, with a great grin; u I 
thought you was a Irisher, Massa Kernel Kelly ; but dis 
ehile don't care — Englisher, Yankee, nigger, all de same 
to me — which you like to be, if you ain't a Irisher ? " 

" By Jabers ! if you call me any of thim names, I '11 
give ye kibosh ; when a nigger like you spakes o' the likes 
q' me, I 'U thank ye to say an Irish gintleman," 



324 THE BLACK ANGEI. 

" Come, stop your wrangling," said Darcy, impatiently. 
■ What do you mean by doing the contraband? " 

" Why, massa, you know that all slaves that escape 
from rebel masters is took in at the North." 

" Yes." 

" Wall, den, by golly, I go in de lines and say Fee 
escaped from a orful rebel. Den, perhaps, dey put me 
to work all day ; anyhow, I go where I please at night — 
all round de houses — picks up all de knowledge I 
can, den slips down to the river, swims across, leta 
clis Irisher (Irish gintleman, I mane) know all about 
what 's goin' on — dat 's what I call doin' de contra- 
band." 

" Doing the contraband, you call it. I expect the 
Yankees would call it doing the spy." 

" I specs they would," said Jupiter, with a grin. 

" And do vou know what would be the fate of a spy r" 

"No." 

" They 'd hang you." 

" By golly ! would they though ? — an' me wid my free 
papers and certificates ?" 

Jupiter stood somewhat aghast at this idea ; but 
seeing that Darcy was about leaving with Darby Kelly, 
he suddenly made up his mind. 

" I sav, massa, dat dere's orful, ain't it ?" 

"Very." 

" Nebber mind ! — who's afraid ? — by golly, I'll chance 
it." 

And so it was settled that Jupiter should go along with 
them. 

Darcy then locked up the barrack-room, sent Darby 
Kelly to "Wharncliffe with all his keys and a message, 
saying a letter was on the table for him. 

In half-an-hour more Darcy Leigh, the Irishman, and 
the nigger, were leaving Charleston behind them on their 
way to the Xorth. 

"WharnclifTe received the message and the keys sent 
him by Darcy with some surprise. Kot being able to 
extract any information from Darby Kelly beyond the 
fact that a letter was awaiting him on the table, he 



NEWS FROM WASHINGTON. 325 

hastened from his quarters to those of his friend, and, 
unlocking the door, opened and read the letter. 
His astonishment and dismay were very great. 
" What mad scheme is he now engaged on ?" he mut- 
tered ; " it must indeed be desperate when he thinks fit 
to conceal it even from me, his most intimate friend.' , 

His eye fell on the other letter left on the table, and 
he saw that it was addressed to Mademoiselle St. Casse. 
" This, perhaps, may clear up the mystery," he said, 
taking it. " I will go now and give it to her." 

Accordingly he went out, relocked the door, and made 
the best of his way to the house of Coralie St. Casse. 

" A letter — for me, and frqm Darcy Leigh ?" said the 
young lady, in some surprise. " Surely he might have 
taken the trouble to have come in person if he had any- 
thing so important as not to keep till to-morrow, when I 
have an appointment with him." 

However, as the best means of arriving at the truth, 
Coralie broke the seal and commenced reading the letter. 

Wharncliffe watched her countenance as she did so, 
and was struck by the agitation it exhibited. 

Surprise — sorrow — anger — succeeded each other on 
her handsome and expressive features. 

" Does he tell you in the note whither and why he 
has gone ?" asked "Wharncliffe. 

" He tells me nothing but that he is compelled to 
leave," replied Coralie, with ill-concealed bitterness. 

She did not press Wharncliffe to stay, so he took his 
leave. 

The Black Angel remained standing with the letter 
in her hand. Her large dark eyes gazed vacantly straight 
before her, her bosom rose and fell rapidly, her lip 
quivered, and a tear trickled slowly down her cheek. It 
was evident that she was deeply hurt by Darcy's sudden 
departure, and the scanty information he thought proper 
to give her. 

Quickly recovering herself, however, she hastily brushed 
away the tear, as if ashamed of her weakness. Then she 
tore the letter up in small pieces and scattered them 
angrily around. 



826 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

"Why should I be angry?" she said to herself— 
" "What right have I to feel aggrieved ? None. And 
yet, were I indeed, as he says in his brief note, a 
tsister'" — she laid a mournful emphasis on the word — 
11 he would hardly leave me without so much as coming 
to bid me adieu. It is not thus that I would leave any 
friend, least of all Darcy Leigh." 

It was a bitter struggle, and pride had well nigh 
gained the day, bat, just at the critical moment, some 
broken memories of old days flashed across her mind, 
and, sinking into a chair, she buried her face in her 
hands, and wept bitterly. 

Darcy Leigh, could you have seen her then, and known 
that those tears were caused by your unkindness, surely 
you would have knelt at her feet and sought permission 
to kiss them away. 



CIIAPTEE LIH. 

ACROSS THE POTOMAC. 

It is night — dark night — the wind moans and soughs 
among the trees — the dark waters of the Potomac flow 
silently down to the sea, and, except the occasional chal- 
lenge of a distant sentinel, or the boom of a signal gun, 
all is still as death. Two figures are crouching down 
beside the stream, and appear to be anxiously watching 
the opposite bank. 

The forms are those of Darcy Leigh and Darby Kelly, 
the Irishman. 

The latter appears much the same as when we last saw 
him in Charleston ; but the former — can it, indeed, be 
Darcy Leigh ? He is no longer attired in the undress 
uniform of the Confederate States, which he had donned 
on receiving his rank as captain in the service. It is re- 
placed by a suit of striped cotton, such as worn by slaves 
on the plantations — a battered straw hat is on his head, 
the hair of which is cut quite close, and a gaudy-colourc d 
handkerchief is loosely knotted round his neck, and an- 
other round his waist, by way of scarf. In this latter is 



ACROSS THE POTOMAC. 327 

stuck a small revolver, his only weapon. But, if changed 
in dress, how much more so in person ! Darcy Leigh 
was always rather pale than dark in complexion, but now 
his skin is of a deep tawny brown, too deep for that of a 
quadroon, almost dark enough for that of a negro. 

Indeed, many negroes might be found with a fairer 
skin ; as for mulattoes, few could boast of so dusky a hue. 

Darcy Leigh had stained himself a deep brown, and 
might now well pass for a mulatto slave. 

_ His object in doing so was twofold — first, to disguise 
himself, and render it almost impossible for him to be 
recognised in case of capture — and secondly, that he 
might the more easily penetrate the enemy's lines in the 
character of a fugitive slave. 

Moored close to the bank, beneath the shadow of over- 
hanging brushwood, was a small boat, just capable of 
carrying two persons. 

Suddenly a bright streak of light is seen in the sky on 
the other side of the river — it is a rocket. 

Darcy Leigh, who had been anxiously watching, as if 
in expectation of this, made a sign to Darby Kelly, who 
placed himself in the canoe, followed by the young 
officer. 

Taking up a paddle, Darcy lost no time, but com- 
menced impelling the boat across the stream by long, 
slow, and silent strokes. 

As they emerged from the shade of the high bank 
and approached the centre of the river, they could dis- 
tinguish the distant lights of Washington, the watch- 
fires of the pickets, and even the dark forms of the 
Yankee sentries as they patrolled the bank of the river. 

Slowly, silently, Darcy paddled on, both he and Darby 
crouching low in the boat to escape the vigilant eyes of 
the enemy. 

They were being all the time carried rapidly down the 
stream, while their progress across was very slow, for 
often, when abreast of a sentry, whose form could be seen 
standing out against the sky, Darcy would cease paddling 
and allow the boat to drift further down. 

Then, when he judged they were at a safe distance, a 



328 THE BLACK AKOEL-. 

few vigorous strokc3 with the paddle would send the 
light boat many yards nearer the shore. 

The sky was clouded, and there being no moon it was 
very dark. Still, however, they could just distinguish the 
forms of the sentries on the high banks. 

Not a word, not a sound, not a breath, disturbed the 
utter stillness, broken only by the rippling of the stream 
and the gentle splash of the paddle. 

Suddenly the silence is broken by a dull crash. — the 
canoe just impelled onwards by a few vigorous strokes of 
the paddle, has run stern on to a " snag " or floating log. 
They are within twenty yards of the shore, and in ear- 
shot of the sentries. 

Darcy and Darby crouch down in breathless suspense, 
and hope that the alarm may not be given. 
"Who goes there?" 
It is the challenge of the sentry, 
~No answer. 

Darcy takes his revolver from his belt, and prepares to 
place it between his teeth. 

"Be ready, Darby," he says, in a low whisper; "we 
may have to swim for it." 

"Who goes there?" again cried the sentry, peering 
out on the river, and endeavouring to discern the cause 
of the sound he had heard. 

The situation was critical in the extreme, for lately a 
great many spies from the Confederates were known to 
have crossed over, and therefore the strictest watch was 
kept on the bank of the river. 

" Who goes there r" again challenged the soldier ; 
"answer ! or I fire." 
As before, all is silent. 

Then is heard the sharp click of the rifle, followed by 
the flash and report, as it is fired in the direction from 
which the sound came. 

The flash of the piece is but momentary, but that 
moment is sufficient to reveal the little boat with its two 
occupants. 

" A boat ! a boat !" shouts the sentry, hastily reload- 
ing his piece. 



"wno goes titeke ? " §29 

Now is heard the tramp of feet and the rattling of 
arms as the pickets hurry up to the soldier who has given 
the alarm. 

The loud voice of the officer in command is heard. 

"What is it, my lad?" 

"A boat, sir, making for the shore. I challenged 
twice, and received no reply ; then I fired, and saw it by 
the flash." 

" Eire again." 

Flash— bang ! 

A shout broke from the soldiers as the boat was again 
seen for an instant. 

" Fire !" shouted the officer in command. 

Instantly the flash and rattle of twenty rifles light up 
the river bank and awake the echoes. The bullets hiss 
through the air and sputter in the water. 



CHAPTEE LIV. 

"who goes there?" 

" Now for it, Darby," muttered Darcy. 

He then placed his revolver between his teeth, and 
lowered himself quietly into the water. Darby Kelly 
followed his example, the constant rattle of musketry 
covering the noise they made. Darcy gave the boat a 
violent shove, which sent it shooting down the stream, 
and struck out in an opposite direction. 

Darby Kelly followed him, and in a very brief space 
of time the boat was borne out of sight by the current. 
The alarm was now general along the whole line of sen- 
tries ; torches and fireballs were lit, and the boat was 
soon riddled with bullets. Fortunately, it was not dis- 
covered that it was empty, the soldiers imagining that 
its inmates were lying down to escape observation, or 
were wounded. 

Thus it happened that while the boat was being fol- 
lowed down the bank, and constantly fired at, Darcy and 
Darby, who were swimming vigorously against the stream, 
escaped observation. The current was so rapid, that 



330 



THE BLACK ANGEL. 



it was with great difficulty they could make head 
against it ; still, however, they did make some progress, 
and iu about ten minutes the shouts and cries of the 
enemy, mingled with the irregular fire still kept up, 
were at such a distance as to promise safety. 

Accordingly, Darcy Leigh, who was much exhausted 
from the violent exertion, and the facb of being obliged 
to keep his revolver dry, which he could only do by hold- 
ing it in his mouth, struck out for the shore, which was 
only some thirty yards distant. The place he had 
selected for landing was well suited; the banks were 
precipitous, and an abundant growth of brushwood right 
down to the brink rendered the darkness more intense. 

Darcy Leigh, on reaching the bank, crawled up and 
threw himself at full length on the ground to recover 
breath. Darby Kelly also scrambled ashore, and though 
not so much exhausted, was glad of a few minutes' rest. 

" Now, Darby, we must push on," said Darcy, when 
somewhat recovered ; * it will never do to remain here. It 
wants but a couple of hours of daylight, and before then 
we must be far from this." 

He then carefully examined his revolver, and satisfied 
himself that it was not rendered unserviceable. 

To make assurance doubly sure, he placed, a fresh cap 
on each nipple, and primed it with dry powder from his 
waterproof ilask. 

" Have you got your knife ? " he said, in a whisper, to 
the Irishman. 

Darby produced a large sheath-knife, which he wore 
in a belt round his waist. 

" Gro and cut two big sticks ; the report of my revolver 
may be fatal, and if attacked, I will only use it at the 
last extremity." 

" Is it a shillelagh you want ? " 

" Call it what you will, only make haste." 

While Darby was gone on his errand, Darcy went cau- 
tiously a little further down the stream to reconnoitre. He 
could discover, by the light of torches, that the boat from 
which they had escanedwas on the point of being drifted 
ashore. Of course, when it fell into the enemy's hands, 



"who goes theee?" 331 

they would perceive that its inmates had escaped, and 
would proceed to search the banks of the stream. 

A loud shout apprised him of the fact that the boat 
had drifted to land. He could see the forms of the sol- 
diers as they crowded down to the bank. 

The sputtering fire which had been kept up was silenced, 
as also were the shouts and cries. JN T ext he saw the 
dark group disperse, and then he knew that they would 
spread themselves in all directions in search of the 
escaped spies. 

No time waa to be lost ; should they be discovered, he 
knew full well that their fate would be sealed. It would 
only be a drum-head court-martial — a file of soldiers, and 
the death of a spy. 

It was now evident, by the flashing of torches and 
the voices of the enemy, that they were spreading both up 
and down the river in search of tne fugitives from the boat. 

Darcy hastily retraced his steps and rejoined Darby 
Kelly, who had cut two big cudgels, and was now await- 
ing him. 

The bank of the river was lined with thick brush- 
wood, with here and there a small tree ; but at a distance 
of about a hundred yards there was a wood of large old 
trees. 

Followed by Darby Kelly, Darcy Leigh advanced 
cautiously in this direction. At every tew paces he 
paused, and both listened intently, and gazed earnestly 
forth into the darkness to see that all was quiet, and 
that no enemy or sentry was before them. 

Once in the deep shadow of the wood, he trusted to 
be able to conceal themselves till such time as it would 
be safe, in his assumed character of a runaway slave, to 
venture into Washington. 

Before them, at a distance of only some twenty yards, 
stood a large and wide-spreading oak tree. The sounds 
from the river bank betokened the rapid approach of the 
pickets, so accordingly Darcy quickened his pace. 

'• Come on, Darby," he said, in a low tone, " we must 
make haste to conceal ourselves, for the blood-hounds are 
on our track " 



332 THE ELACK ANGEL. 

They now saw that the large tree in front of them was 
dead and withered, and that in one side there was a large 
hollow. 

The soldiers' voices could now be heard on the river 
bank immediately behind them, and they appeared to be 
about penetrating the brushwood. 

" Get into the hollow of the tree, Darby — I will mount 
into the branches — quick ! " 

This was said in a rapid whisper, for sounds issued 
from the brushwood behind them as if a considerable 
body of men were advancing. Darby Kelly advanced 
in front, and was just about to ensconce himself in the 
hollow, when suddenly there appeared a form from the 
other side of the tree. 

Darby stopped as if shot. 

" Who goes there ? " 

It was the hoarse challenge of a sentry who had been 
posted behind the tree. 

For a moment the heart of Darcy Leigh stood still. 
The suddenness of the shock might well for a moment 
paralyze the bravest. Darby Kelly, who also stood trans- 
fixed with astonishment at the sudden apparition of the 
soldier, was roused by the sharp clang of the rifle, as the 
sentry brought it to the ' : charge." 

" Who are you? " again asked tho sentry, at the same 
time cocking his piece. " Speak, or I'll blow you to 
etemity.' , 

Darby and the soldier were scarcely a yard apart, so 
that it would be easy to carry out the threat. 

w Arrah, honey ! " said Darby, in his richest brogue, 
" sure an' I's only an Irish gintleman out for a stroll ; so 
plaze to let me pass on." 

" Irish or no Irish, you don't pass here ! " was the 
gruff reply. " Just stand where you are while I call 
the guard. If you attempt to advance or retreat, I'll fire." 

During this'time Darcy Leigh, who was fully alive to 
the imminence of the danger, had stolen cautiously round 
to the right of and behind the soldier. 

Darcy well knew that an alarm would be fatal ; there- 
fore, at the very moment the man was about to shout for 



U WHO GOES THEEE ? " 333 

tlie guard, or perhaps attract notice by firing his rifle, 
he sprang forward, and with one desperate bound threw 
himself on the sentry, and before he could fire his piece 
or give the alarm, had him by the throat. Had it not 
been for the tree he would have been dashed to the 
ground— as it was, this saved him, for he was thrown 
forcibly against it and managed to keep his feet. He 
was a powerful man, and struggled desperately. 

Taken aback by the suddenness and fury of the assault, 
he was at first at a disadvantage. Darcy still held him 
by the throat with so firm a grasp that he could not cry 
out, but as the struggle proceeded he was enabled partly 
to free himself. 

The two forms swayed backwards and forwards, heaved 
and writhed in the fierce struggle for some time in almost 
perfect silence. 

Darby Kelly stood looking on, club in hand, afraid to 
strike lest he should injure Darcy, so closely were the 
two entwined. At last, with a tremendous effort, the 
soldier released his throat, and at the same time managed 
to draw a dagger he had at his belt. Darcy had no 
weapon but his revolver, which he dared not use even if 
he could. 

A slight cry of pain, followed by a quick gasp, and an 
oath from the soldier. 

"Darby, I am wounded — he has stabbed me ! " 

"Thunder and blazes ! " muttered the Irishman, in a 
tone so loud as to be hardly safe ; " look out for yourself, 
Master Darcy — keep your head on one side for jist half 
a minute, an' I'll scatter the vagabond's brains about." 

Another cry of pain was again followed by a fierce 
oath from the sentry, who had again succeeded in wound- 
ing his antagonist with his knife. 

It was the last he ever uttered. 

For a brief space of time the two struggling forms 
were slightly separated. Darcy had shrunk back invo- 
luntarily from the sharp pain of the wound. It was the 
opportunity for which Darby Kelly had been watching, 
and he did not fail to profit by it. 

The great club with wW<* he had provided himself 



334 THE BLACK AX GEL. 

swung in the air for a second ; then, wielded by his 
brawny arm, it descended full on the head of the sentry 
with the force of a sledge-hammer. In the struggle hia 
hat had fallen off, so that the terrible blow took full effect 
on his bare head. 

There was a dull crash, and then the body of the sol- 
dier slipped from the arms of Darcy, and lay huddled up 
at his feet. 

" By jabers !" said Darby, with a snort of relief. 

" By Heavens ! you have killed the man," said Darcy, 
looking on the prostrate body before him. 

"Killed him!— I l^ryther guess 1 have; an' if it had 
been six heads all made of cast-iron instead of one, such 
a bang as I gave him would have smashed 'em." 

Darcy Leigh stooped and examined the lifeless body. 
Darby's words were but too true, for the whole front of 
the skull was completely smashed in. The head and 
face presented a horrible spectacle, and Darcy at once 
knew that the man had been killed instantly. 

" Dead !" said Darcy, rising from his examination ; " I 
am sorry you hit so hard as to kill him, Darby." 

" An' what did the vagabone mean by knifing yer 
honner? See, now, how the blood's running from your 
shoulder. Besides, suppose I had only hurt him, an' 
he'd been able to call out, why we'd have had the whole 
brood of them on us." 

"True," said Darcy, staunching the wound in his 
shoulder as well as he could with a handkerchief. 

Fortunately, neither of the two stabs were deep or 
dangerous, and, with Darby's assistance, they were soon 
bound up. 

It now became a question as to what was to be done 
with the dead body, and next what course they them- 
selves should adopt. They had not an instant to lose, 
for at any moment a picket or guard might appear, and 
discover them. 

Now is heard from the brushwood the regular tramp 
of a body of men approaching. 

" Quick, Darby, place the body in the hollow tree, and 
clamber up." 



AN INQUISITIVE C0EP8E. 335 

Darby dragged the corpse, and huddled it into the 
hollow space as best he could, but when he came to 
examine the tree he found 1 hat for ten feet or so it was 
quite smooth, so that he could not climb it. 

" Up on my shoulder, Mister Darcy ; you can reach a 
branch." 

" But what will you do ? Can you climb up ? " 

" Not I, by jabers ! " was the cool reply ; " does yer 
honour think I'm a monkey ? " 

" What will you do ? " asked Darcy, still hesitating. 

"Do? stay down." 

"But you will be discovered." 

" Well, if I am, I am, and it can't be helped. I know 
well, it's life and death. Quick, yer honour, jump up — 
here they come — I've got a skame in my head to fool 
them." 

Somewhat reluctantly Darcy mounted on Darby's 
shoulders and swung himself up into the tree. 

" I wonder what his scheme is," he thought. 

He gained a secure footing on a branch, with another 
to lean his arms on, and so placed as to command a view 
around. 

He carefully examined the nipples of his revolver, 
cocked it, and leaning it on the branch of a tree which 
formed a rest, he muttered, — 

" One, two, three, four, five, six barrels. With so 
good an opportunity for aim as this, I can guarantee that 
each shall take effect. Before I am taken, if I am to be 
taken, six Yankees at least shall bite the dust." 



CHAPTER LV. 

AN INQUISITIVE COBPSE — THE " BOUNDS." 

Dabby Kelly, immediately that Darcy had mounted 
the tree, commenced to put his "skame" in operation. 
He stripped off the cross belt, ammunition pouch, and 
tunic of the dead soldier, and quickly put them on him- 
self. Then he searched for, and found his uniform cap. 
JJext he dragged the dead body into an upright position 



336 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

in the trunk of the tree, for as it lay at present it was in 
the way, and more easily discovered. 

Having propped the dead soldier up, he possessed him- 
self of his rifle, which lay on the ground at a little distance, 
and took up his post at the hollow tree, with his back 
against the dead body, so as effectually to conceal it from 
view. 

The situation was horrible in the extreme, and no one, 
without great nerve, could have gone through the ordeal. 

As Darby stood, rifle in hand, personating the sentry, 
the corpse was standing stiff, and stark behind him, 
absolutely touching him, with its ghastly and horrible 
face leaning over his left shoulder. 

Darcy, who had watched all his proceedings with 
breathless interest, now spoke in a low voice. 

" You are going to personate the sentry, Darby." 

" Yes, plaze goodness." 

" It's desperately dangerous." 

" Sogering generally is dangerous — at any rate, so I 
am tould." 

It was evident Darby wished to make light of the des- 
perate nature of his enterprise. 

" Suppose some of the enemy come up " 

" I'll challenge them, and get the countersign." 

Darcy was not generally slow, but on this occasion the 
incalculable advantage of getting the countersign had not 
struck him, until Darby mentioned it ; indeed, if the 
thought had ever entered his head, he certainly never 
dreamed of obtaining it in such a fashion. 

But could Darby obtain it ? The risk was fearful ! 

He might challenge a guard or picket, and demand the 
countersign ; but would they give it ? would they not 
probably at once detect the fact that it was a false sentry 
who challenged ? and then, what would be their fate with 
the dead body of the real sentry concealed in the trunk 
of the tree ? This by no means pleasant train of thought 
was abruptly brought to a conclusion. 

The tramp of armed men, advancing rapidly through the 
brushwood, warned them to be prepared for the worst. 

Darcy again carefully examined his nistol, and leaning 



AN INQUISITIVE COliPSE. 337 

over the branch, placed himself in such a position as 
command a view of the groundimmediately around the tree 

Tramp, tramp, tramp — on came the troops, with sIot; 
arid measured steps. 

" It's the relief," muttered Darcy ; u all is lost ! They 
are coming to relieve the man whom Darby killec, 
Darby, my boy," he said, in a loud whisper, "be pre 
pared for the worst ; it's the relief — let's sell our fives 
dearly, and die like men." 

Darby made no reply, but the sharp click of the rifle 
as he full-cocked it, and his hard breathing, showed that 
he was prepared to do his part. Onwards they came, 
and now the dark column may be discerned issuing from 
the brushwood and advancing across the open space. 

Darcy muttered a short prayer, then a long breath, set 
his teeth, and nervously clutching his revolver, made 
ready for what he felt was a desperate and hopeless con- 
flict. Suddenly, w r hen the agonizing suspense is wound 
up to the greatest pitch, the voice of the officer is heard, — 

" Halt !" Then, after a moment's consultation, — 

" Left wheel — quick — march !" 

They are saved, at all events for a time, and can again 
breathe freely. The picket or relief-guard, whichever it 
might be, had gone off in another direction. 

Now almost the only chance they had was that some 
straggler would pass, of whom Darby, personating a sen- 
try, would demand and obtain the countersign. Once 
furnished with this, they would at once boldly make their 
way through the lines, and trust to fortune for the rest. 
Minute after minute passed on while they waited in sus- 
pense for the expected straggler. 

" Hope deferred maketh the heart sick !" and assuredly 
the hearts of both Darcy and Darby Kelly began to faint 
within them at the dismal prospect. It wanted but an 
hour or so of daylight ; and then, beyond all doubt, the 
sentries would be relieved. 

Darcy turned over all imaginable projects, and once 
the idea flashed across his mind of creeping down to the 
bank and swimming back across the river ; but it was 
instantly dismissed. 



33S TIIE BLACK 1KGEL. 

" !No," said Darcy, " I will accomplish my errand, or 
perish. To-morrow, Gerald Leigh is to be shot! I will 
save him, and take him back with me, or I will never 
return at all." 

Now, once again, is heard the tramp of troops, but 
this time from a different direction. 

In the course of a couple of minutes they can distin- 
guish a light advancing towards them from the direction 
of Washington. As they approach yet nearer, they can 
make out that the light is borne in front by a boy, and 
that about half a company of soldiers, formed four deep, 
are marching behind. 

" It is the ' rounds,' " Darcy called to Darby from up 
the tree ; " I can see the drummer-boy with the lantern. 
Challenge them before they get close ; you will have a 
better chance." ' 

" All right, yer honner." 

Darcy shifted his position and peered through tho 
branches at Darby, to see if there was anything about 
him that would betray his real character. 

A shudder passed through his frame. " Ah," lie 
cried, sharply, " Darby, look out for the dead bodj r , 
its head is hanging over your shoulder and may be 
seen." 

This was the fact ; for the pale, ghastly head of the 
dead man was lying forward over the Irishman's left 
shoulder, and might possibly be seen by the enemy. 

" Stand straight, ye spalpeen," growled Darby, irre- 
verently, thus addressing the dead ; " what the blazes are 
ye so inquisitive about, peering over my shoulder widyer 
white banshee face ? Sure an' ain't I relieved ye of 
your sintry duty, and can't ye just keep quiet and mind 
yer own business r" 

But when Darby shifted the dead body from his left 
shoulder, instead of remaining erect, it dropped over on 
his right, the glassy eyes staring vacantly out into the 
night, and the jaw working hideously at every movement, 
as if it were gibbering and mocking. 

" Bad luck to ye, ye inquisitive haythen ; can't ye keep 
yer head straight? sure ye know ye' re kilt, and why 



UP A TEEE. 3^0 

can't ye keep quiet, and not interfere with gintlemeii's 
amusements and bizness?" 

But do all lie could, Darby could not succeed in making 
the corpse keep its head straight. 

First over the right shoulder, then over the left, it 
glared with its ghastly eyes, and gibbered with its hor- 
rible mouth, with dropped jaw and glistening teeth. 

Darby Kelly, in spite of his hardihood, could not but 
feel the horror of the situation. A horrible supernatural 
fancy possessed him, that when the party now approach- 
ing were challenged, the corpse would also speak out and 
betray his slayer. 

The perspiration streams down his face, a deadly icy 
terror is fast creeping over him, till no longer able to 
to bear it, he challenges. 

" "Wlio goes there ?" 

" Bounds." 

"What rounds?" 

" Grand rounds." 

" Halt, rounds, and give the countersign." 

"Will they give it ? Will he be discovered, or will the 
dreadful corpse, still glaring over his shoulder, proclaim 
in hollow, dreadful tones the deceit ? 

Such were Darby Kelly's thoughts as he waited in an 
agony of suspense for the reply. 



CHAPTEE LVI. 

UP A TEEE. 

By the dim light of the solitary lantern borne by the 
boy, Darcy, from his perch in the tree, and Darby, from 
his post, could plainly see the soldiers standing to their 
arms, and a group of some four or five officers at their 
head, who appeared to be consulting together. One of 
these latter they at once recognised by the uniform as a 
general officer. No reply was given to Darby's 
challenge, and the suspense became fearful. 

Were they discovered, or was there only a doubt in 
the minds of the officers ? 



3J.-0 THE BLACK ANGEL 

Darby Kelly was deadly pale — as pale almost as the 
ghastly face which peered over his shoulder. He was 
no coward, but now so horrible was the suspense that 
he felt his strength rapidly deserting him. His hair 
and beard were wet with a cold perspiration, and his 
knees trembled under him. 

Unable longer to bear this terrible uncertainty, he 
collected himself, and challenged as firmly as he could 
again. 

" Who goes there ? Give the countersign." 

There was a moment's silence, and a deep voice 
answered — " Baltimore ! " 

" Pass on, Baltimore — all's well." 

They had got the countersign. 

Darcy Leigh, in his perch in the tree, felt a thrill of 
joy, and imagined that all was well, and that the rounds 
would pass on. 

But he was grievously mistaken. 

After the countersign was given, the officers at the 
head of the party again consulted together. 

Then one, who, by his uniform, Darcy at once knew 
to be of superior rank, advanced straight towards the 
tree. 

Darby Kelly, who had congratulated himself on being 
out of danger, saw with dismay the officer striding 
towards him. 

He grasped his rifle tightly, and, with finger on the 
trigger, muttered — 

" May the Lord help you, my fine fellow, if you find 
me out ! " 

Darcy, too, up the tree, again took deliberate aim 
with his revolver at the breast of the officer. 

"A field officer— a general," he said to himself, as 
he noticed the uniform ; " good. If I am taken, the 
Confederate army will lose a captain, but the .Federals 
a general ; for if we are discovered, that fellow is a dead 
man ! " 

He was now within a dozen yards of the tree. 

"Do you know the orders of the night r " he said, in 
a severe voice, to the supposed sentry. 



UP A TEEE. 341 

It was a terrible moment ior Darby Kelly. 

"It's myself that does," was the bold reply. 

" Give them." 

This was a poser, but Darby, who knew something of 
military service, resolved to make a shot. 

"To keep a bright look out, and let no one pass 
without the countersign." 

" Come, sir, that is not all," said the officer, angrily. 
_ " By jabers, yer honour, that's thrue for you ; — but I 
niver had no mim'ry. I mind now, when I was a spal- 
peen at school, the thumpings I'd get bekase I niver 
could remimber." 

" Silence, sir ! What regiment do you belong to ?" 

"Ah, now, yer honour's afther poking fun at me. 
Shure yer honour knows what rijiment — ain't it yer 
honour's own rijiment ? " 

"I am a general, and not a regimental officer," was 
the angry reply ; then to himself he muttered, " I sup- 
pose this fellow is one of Colonel Quin's raw recruits — 
fellows who don't know one end of a rifle from the 
other, their front from their rear, and will take six 
months to lick into shape. You are of Colonel Quin's 
regiment, I suppose ? " 

" Faith* an' I am, gineral." 

" Very well, sir. I shall have you put on the list for 
extra drill and fatigue duty. ]S"ow listen to the orders 
of the night : — To let no one pass without the counter- 
sign, and at the sound of any one approaching, to 
challenge. If one man only endeavours to pass without 
the word, you are to fire, then charge with the bayonet, 
and make prisoner, if not killed ; if a party, you are to 
fire, then retreat to join supports, loading and firing as 
you do so. Keep a bright look out, and remember that 
the punishment tor sleeping at your post is death." 

AVith these words, the officer turned on his heel, and 
strode back to the others. They heard the sharp words 
of command, " Quick— march," and then the soldiers 
marched rapidly oft*, and for the time Darby Kelly and 
Darcy were safe. 

It was extremely fortunate for them that it was a 



oi2 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

general officer who was not personally acquainted with 
the men in Colonel Quin's regiment. Had a captain or 
subaltern advanced, he could not have failed to discover 
that the supposed sentry did not belong to his regiment 
at all. 

The armed party were soon out of sight, and at a dis- 
tance of a quarter of a mile or thereabouts the challenge 
of another sentry might be heard as they went on their 
round along the chain. 

Darcy, when satisfied that all was -safe, slipped down 
the tree, and Darby Kelly only too gladly shifted him- 
self from the unpleasant neighbourhood of the dead 
sentry, who fell forward on his face, and there lay. 

" TJgh ! " said the Irishman, wiping his streaming 
face, and drawing a long breath ; " by jabers, captain, I 
thought it was all up that time, and that we should 
have a short passage to kingdom come. What with the 
inimy in front and the corpus behind me, I niver felt in 
such a flurry since I was born. Bad luck to ye, ye 
haythen " — apostrophizing the dead man — " what do 
ye mane by frightening the sowl out of a gintleman's 
body ? " 

" Come, stop your noise — this is no time for talk." 

Darcy considered for a moment as to how Tie should 
dispose of the dead body. 

"Darby, drag the body down to the river." 

" An' throw him in ? " 

" Yes, throw him in ; but first see that you secure its 
sinking by placing stones within its clothing. It's a 
sorry burial for a soldier," he added, mournfully, "but 
necessity has no law. Our very lives are at stake ; and 
were that dead body to be found at his post, the deceit 
would be discovered, and it would be known that spies 
had done it, and, having got the Avord, penetrated the 
lines. So, Darby, drag him down, and give him a 
watery grave in the river." 

" Aye, aye, yer honour ; but as for dragging, I think 
I can carry him easier and quicker — anyhow here 
goes." 

So saying, Darby exerted hia great strength, and 



VP A TEEE. 343 

hoisteu the dead man on his bach ; he Inen marched off 
to the river bank, leaving Darcy standing beneath tha 
tree. 

Darby was not gone more than ten minutes, but when 
he returned a faint light in the east proclaimed the 
approach of day. During his absence, Darcy had been 
considering on their course of action, and decided to 
hasten on and rejoin Jupiter ; and then to lie concealed 
the whole day, while the negro went into the town and 
gathered all the information he could. 

Although possessed of the countersign, he knew it 
would be maduess to attempt to penetrate the liues 
during the day, and resolved to wait for the night. 

On the next night, then, he fully resolved to make tho 
attempt which would decide the fate both of himself and 
his brother Gerald. 

Should he fail and be captured, he did not doubt for 
a moment the fate that would await him. That he might 
be shot like a soldier, and not hung like a criminal, would 
in that case be the only favour he could ask or expect. 

And as for Gerald, he, Darcy, had already learned that 
he was to be shot on the very next day, with the other 
prisoner, Captain George, whose nationality would not 
save him. 

" Come on, Darby, let us haste ; the day is breaking, 
and before it is light we must be in a place of conceal- 
ment. 1 ' 

Then he strode rapidly on, followed by Darby. He 
made direct for a small hill with a clump of trees at 
the top. 

In a very few minutes they gained the summit, where 
they found Jupiter the negro, asleep at the foot of a 
tree. 

Darcy woke him, and he started to his feet. 

" Hi, ullo ! what de debbil's the matter ? Oh, it's you, 
massa Darcy — all right — bin asleep, I reckon." 

" I reckon you have. Well, what news ? " 

" I went in, and guv myself up as a slave nigger run 
away from the rebel plantation ; den dey guv me some- 
thing to eafc, which wor all right ; den dey put me to 



344 #THE BLACK A^GEL. 

rcark at de batteries, which wor all wrong — leastwise in 
d:s chile's estimation, -which orter go for some. Well 
dsn, when night comes, dis nigger jist takes a cruise 
toand the houses, and picks up what he can." 

"Well, what did you learn?" asked Darcy impa- 
tiently. 

M Well, in de fust place, de information about massa 
G-erald is * orl korrect ; ' dey's gwine to give him goss 
to-morrow morning at eight o'clock — him and t'other 
gentleman, Massa Captain George dey call him." 

" They are to be shot to-morrow, then ? " 

" 'Xactly — leastwise if nothing don't interfere." 

Darcy was silent for a moment or so on receiving this 
latal confirmation of his worst fears. 

" Where are they confined ? " 

" Somewhere in de lines, but where I couldn't find 
out," replied Jupiter, shaking his head. 

" And what about Webster Gayle, his daughters, and 
Lupus Eock ? Have you inquired, as I told you ? " 

"Yes, massa." 

" Well— the news." 

" Lupus Hock and de Misses Gayles are at Holkar Hall; 
Massa Webster Gayle, no one know where he is." 

" And that is all, then, you could discover ? " 

" Dat is all, massa." 

Darcy sighed. It was but meagre information on 
which to act, and yet act he must, and that promptly, or 
otherwise the day now breaking would be the last he 
would ever see. 

He promptly determined that while Jupiter again 
endeavoured to discover something of the whereabouts 
of the prisoners in the city, he would in the ensuing 
night make his way to Holkar Hall. 

He felt convinced that, could he succeed in seeing 
either Stella or Angela Gayle, they would give him all 
the information they could as to his brother Gerald. He 
knew, or thought he knew, the girls well enough to 
make certain of their sympathy and aid to rescue an old 
and dear friend tike Gerald from so terrible a fate, 
albeit he were a rebel and they Unionists. 



TJP A TEEE. 345 

"Well, Jupiter," he said, after a long pause, "make 
your way back to the town ; and during the day, and 
also the fore part of the night, discover all you can con- 
cerning my brother Gerald. Meet me here at midnight 
to-morrow, or rather to-dav, for it is fast becoming day- 
light." 

"All right, massa." 

" By the way, have you brought any provisions with 
you?" 

" Oh, my Lor A' mighty, if I hadn't near forgotten $ 
ain't it orful?" 

Darcy smiled faintly, for although he had not tasted 
food for nearly twenty-four hours, he felt no appetite, 
and only asked because he knew that in the perilous 
enterprise of the following night he would require all 
his strength. 

Jupiter produced from a bundle, biscuits, cheese, and 
two bottles of wine. 

" Thanks, good Jupiter ; and now off on your errand, 
and do not fail to be here to-morrow night." 

" All right, massa — I'll be here, as sure as God made 
little apples." 

Then Jupiter went off in the direction of "Washington, 
and Darcy, looking around him, selected a favourable 
tree. 

" Come, Darby," he said, " let us climb up here ; we 
must be squirrels till night, and live among the boughs." 

The tree was an easy one to climb, and they were soon 
among the topmost branches. 

Darcy selected a good resting-place, and motioning 
Darby to do the same, he brought out the biscuits, 
cheese, and wine, and partook of them, though sparingly. 
Then, having lashed themselves securely by pieces of 
cord they had with them, both officer and private — master 
and man — sank to sleep in this strange resting- 
place. 

Hoping that after the perils and fatigues of the night ■ 
they may enjoy sound sleep and refreshing dreams, we 
will for the present leave them. 



8-3 IJUE BLACK AXGEE. 

CHAPTER LVII. 

CONDEMNED TO DEATn. 

The condemnation of Gerald Leigh and Captain George 
followed quickly on their capture by the United States' 
dragoons. Desperately wounded as they were, they were 
brought and tried a week alter the night of their despe- 
rate attempt, and, as a matter of course, the verdict was 
guilty, aud the sentence death. 

Gerald Leigh, having belonged to the United States' 
army, was, in the formal wording of the indictment, 
cited as guilty of treason, mutiny, and rebellion, while 
Captain George was simply accused of murder, from the 
fact of having killed one of the Federal soldiers. 

His nationality procured him a brief respite from the 
execution of the terrible sentence— had it been other- 
wise both would have expiated their rashness long ere 
Darcy Leigh could have known of it. 

Gerald, be it remembered, thought his brother Darcy 
had been killed in the attempt to run the Spitfire out ot 
New York harbour ; so that he could hope for no aid 
from him, even if it were possible he could effectually 
render it. 

The fact of Captain George being an Englishman de- 
layed the execution of the sentence for three weeks, 
during which time every possible influence was used by 
the friends of Gerald to obtain a remission, or at all 
events a modification of the sentence. The prisoners 
were allowed no intercourse with any one whatsoever, 
and the most urgent entreaties of Stella and Angela 
Gayle could not obtain them leave to see the condemned 
men. The utmost their efforts could "obtain was permis- 
sion to communicate in writing, and one interview. 

Angela Gayle gave way to utter and blank despair at 
the fearful prospect before her friend Gerald ; but Stella, 
true to her nature, never slackened in her efforts to 
gave the condemned men. Even Lupus Eock, much as 
she hated and despised him, knowing also that he was 
the cause of the arrest — she bent to her purpose, and 



CONDEMNED TO DEATH. 347 

compelled to use unremitting endeavours to procure a 
reprieve. 

Lupus, who was now thoroughly cowed and afraid of tho 
fierce spirit he had raised in his cousin, consented, with 
as good a grace as possible, himself to head a petition 
in favour of the prisoners. But though compelled thus 
to act, he felt all but certain that it would be in vain, 
and that the authorities had determined to carry out the 
sentence. 

Thus the nearer the fatal day approached, and the 
further the hopes of mercy being extended, the more 
vigorously did Lupus strive, or appear to strive, to ob- 
tain a reprieve. 

Stella Gayle, although she suspected her cousin of the 
original treachery, had no positive proof, and so well did 
Lupus play his part that at times she almost doubted 
whether it were not possible she might have wronged 
him. 

Lupus had discovered the false step he had made by 
allowing Stella to think or imagine that he triumphed 
over the downfall of G-erald Leigh, and now did all in 
his power to correct the impression and reinstate him- 
self in her good graces. 

His skill and address, when he chose to curb his pas- 
sions, were consummate. He also coutrived that Web- 
ster Gayle in his letters to his daughters should always 
speak of him in the most affectionate manner, and should 
inculcate implicit obedience to and confidence in him. 

And now the fatal day is at hand. The last sun has 
risen which the condemned men will ever see set. 

During the whole of that day Stella Gayle exerted 
herself unceasingly to procure at least a respite — in vain. 
Lupus Eock now felt certain that nothing could save 
the prisoners, and accordingly appeared almost beside 
himself with anxiety. Stella exhausted all her arts, even 
calling in the aid of her great beauty, to soften the 
hearts of rugged and vulgar officials — but in vain — in 
vain the proud Northern belle bestowed her sweetest 
smiles, which anon changed to tears, on men whom in 
her heart she loathed. Night closed on the scene of her 



313 >XUE "CLACK AFGJSi*, 

labour of love, and the only answer she could get was the 
stern words, " They must die! " 

With the setting of the sun all hope faded out in tiie 
"bosoms of the two girls — with the setting of the sun, 
which they also witnessed, all hope died out in the 
breasts of the condemned, and they prepared to meet 
their fate like men. 

Angela G-ayle, giving way to the intensity of her 
despair, locked herself in her own room, while Stella, 
whose grief and terror were no less than her sister's, 
had her feelings more under command — she even par- 
took of supper alone with her cousin Lupus — and but 
for the deadly pallor of her face, and a certain wildness 
in the large dark eyes, it would have been hard to tell 
what a storm of passion reigned within that fair breast. 
The meal passed in almost complete silence, no word 
being spoken of the forthcoming terrible event which 
was uppermost in the mind of each. 

Stella arose, and bowing coldly to her cousin, for 
whom her old antipathy seemed suddenly to have revived, 
she went out on the balcony of the first floor. 

The night was dark and sultry, while but a light breath 
of air bore onwards the heavy masses of clouds that 
arose in the west and passed over Washington. 

The calm was deadly and oppressive, the darkness 
gloomy, and the air sultry and close. It was the calm 
which so often precedes a storm. Stella seated herself 
in a chair by the side of a small table, and bending 
forward her head she hid her face in her hands, and 
prayed long and fervently for aid from on high for the 
condemned men. 

"When her prayer was concluded she yet remained in 
the same attitude, and thought of the happy past. The 
form of Gerald Leigh, as she had seen him but a short 
time previously, rose in lancy before her eys. She 
remembered him in all the pride of youth, hope, and 
high aspirations, and thought of him now — a prisoner 
condemned to be shot. Then yet another image obtruded 
itself— that of another and once well-loved friend, whom 
she believed to have gone to his last account. Her 



CONDEMNED TO DEATH. 349 

thoughts were of Darcy Leigh. She remembered with 
bitter self-reproach, that the last words she had ever 
addressed to him were those of insult and scorn. 

Hot tears forced themselves through her fair fingers 
as she murmured, utterly spirit-broken, — 

" Oh, Darcy Leigh— Darcy Leigh ! could I but bring 
you back to life, how gladly would I sue for pardon! 
Darcy, if you can hear my prayer in another and a better 
world, I know I may count on your forgiveness ! " 

She was still murmuring to herself in an incoherent 
manner, when a slight rustling among the creepers 
trained around the balcony caught her ears. 

This was followed by a well-known voice, which, 
welcome under other circumstances, sent the warm 
blood back to her heart, leaving her face, to the very 
lips, of an ashy paleness. 

"Stella!" 

It was the voice of Darcy Leigh, and raising her eyes, 
his apparition stood before her on the balcony. _ He was 
dressed somewhat as when she had last seen him — that 
is to say, was stripped to the shirt and trousers. The 
face appeared to her to be of a dreadful leaden hue, while 
from a wound in the forehead blood trickled slowly down. 

Stella gazed but for a second, and then, with a choking 
gasp, exclaimed, " The spirit of Darcy Leigh ! " and 
fainted. 

When Stella recovered from her deep swoon, she 
found herself reclining in the arms of the supposed 
spirit— which said spirit, in a most unspiritual manner 
had more than once pressed his lips to hers. It was this 
latter fact which fully brought the young lady to, and 
caused her to open her eyes. 

Her first thought as* her eyes fell on Darcy was as 
before, that it was indeed a phantom, but by a process of 
reasoning of which none but a strong-minded young lady 
would have been capable, she decided that it was no 
spirit in whose arms she lay, but Darcy Leigh himself, 
who therefore was not dead. 

Terror being banished from her mind, pride and anger 
succeeded, and forcing herself from his grasp, she started 



350 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

to lier feet and confronted him with flashing eyes and 
the old haughty look. 

•' How now, sir ! how dare you thus intrude yourself 
on me?" 

' : I ask your pardon," replied Darcy, whom Stella's 
words and look had recalled to himself, and the object 
with which alone he had sought her, "for intruding 
myself, but the business on which I have come is that of 
life and death — my brother Gerald." 

Stella eagerly interrupted him — 

" Gerald ! Can you, then, hope to aid him— can you 
procure his pardon ? " 

" His pardon, no ; nevertheless, I hope to aid him ; in 
short, to procure his escape." 

" His escape— ah ! but you yourself, how is it I see 
you here ? Are you not dead ? " 

" Scarcely," replied Darcy, with a smile ; " did you 
then think me so ? " 

" Did I think you so ? " replied Stella, " assuredly I 
did, and so did all. Did I not see you shot down on 
the deck of the Spitfire, in Is~ew York harbour ? ; ' 

" Shot down, yes ; but the wound was only slight, and 
in a few minutes after being carried below, I returned 
to the deck." 

" How then did you escape ? Where is the ship, and 
whence did you come ? " 

" I Tvill answer your last question first. I came from 
Charleston." 

11 You succeeded in escaping with the vessel you 
stole ? " 

" I succeeded in escaping with the vessel I stole, as 
you are pleased to express it. Have you further 
questions to ask, or, as I am a thief, do you intend to 
give the alarm and have me apprehended ? Perhaps you 
miMit be soon enough to cause my execution with my 
brother to-morrow morning — who knows ? There would 
be a triumphant spectacle for your loyal eyes — Gerald 
and Darcy Leigh, whom you once called friends, shot 
side by side — the one betrayed by your cousin, the other 
by yourself" 



condemned to death. 351 

The colour had returned to Stella's face, but at these 
"bitter words, which her own had provoked, she again 
grew deadly white. 

" Darcy Leigh," she exclaimed passionately, her dark 
eyes flashing, and her voice trembling with passion, " you 
are a rebel, a traitor — and I hate you — and hate you all 
the more for your audacity a while back." 

" Pardon— I will not repeat the offence," replied 
Darcy, with a smile, which seemed, still further to ex- 
asperate Stella. 

" You dare not, sir, you dare not," and she stamped 
her small foot on the ground ; " but listen, and do not 
interrupt me — I repeat that I hate you — nevertheless in 
supposing that I could betray you, you wrong me 
bitterly." 

" And you once wronged me." 

" When — how ? " she asked, though she foresaw the 
answer. 

" You called me coward. I have proved I am not 
such. Confess it." 

" You have proved yourself a traitor ? " 

" No." 

" A rebel?" 

" Yes, and as such I am prepared to die. Our fathers 
of old, Stella, were rebels when they fought the great 
fight of Independence. "Washington himself was a 
rebel ; yet none have dared to throw dirt upon his 
memory. I also am a rebel, and dare both own it and 
risk all consequences. But enough of this. I per- 
ceive my mission here is vain. I was about to have 

asked you for information respecting no matter. 

Adieu." 

So saying, he sprang lightly over the balcony, and 
was about clambering down by the same way he had 
ascended, when she spoke. 

" Darcy Leigh, stay." 

He paused and turned fronting her, holding by the 
iron rail. 

" What is it you were about to ask ? " 

"What matters? You and yours would not assist 
mc." 



THE BLACK ANGLL 

" "Was it concerning Gerald ? " 

"It was." 

" Then I will tell all and everything I know, and God 
grant it may be of some assistance to him in this hour 
of terrible adversity." 

" But is not he also a rebel, a traitor — perhaps, also, 
in your estimation, a thief? " 

" Why seek to provoke me ? " she answered ; " let it 
suffice that I will answer you." 

" I wish to know where he is confined, and under what 
guard ; do you know ? " 

"I do, and will tell you." 

Then, in a very few words, she proceeded to inform 
him with great exactness the building in the guard-room 
of which he was imprisoned. She described the situation 
and the approaches to it with great minuteness. 

"And the guard — under what guard are they ? " 

" I do not know the number of the soldiers, but there 
is an officer in attendance night and day." 

" Good. Now listen to me. Gerald Leigh shall be 
freed from his bonds and safe across the Potomac before 
the sun rises, or " 

" Or what ? " 

" Or Darcy Leigh will share the fate in store for him." 

" You are then about to attempt a rescue ? " 

" I am, and shall succeed. You see yon dark clump of 
trees on the other side of the river, or at least, if you 
cannot distinguish them in the gloom, you know their 
position." 

" Yes." 

"When you see a rocket sent up from there, know 
that is a signal that Gerald Leigh is safe and across the 
river," 

" I shall look in vain for it." 

"You will not. Now adieu." 

Without another word he turned, and leaped lightly 
to the ground. 

Stella remained motionless, almost as pale as a statue. 

" Gone ! gone ! and with nought but the memory of 
bitter words to cheer him in his desperate undertaking. 



CONDEMNED TO DEATH. 353 

For the memory of old and happy times, for his brother's, 
his sister's sake, I might at least have pressed his hand, 
given one kind word, and let him know I am neither so 
cold nor so cruel as he deems me, and as I appear. Xow 
it is too late. Assuredly he will perish in this mad 
endeavour to save Gerald, and his last thoughts of me will 
be as of an enemy." • 

Her thoughts were interrupted by the sudden entrance 
of Lupus Bock, who rushed in white and scared. 

" A ghost ! a ghost ! I have seen a ghost, Stella." 

"What ghost?" 

" The ghost of Darcy Leigh. He passed me just now 
in the road, pale, horribly pale, with the blood still 
streaming from the wound in the shoulder." 

Lupus glanced around the room, and peered into the 
dark corners in ill-disguised alarm. 

Stella knew not how or whence it came, but all at 
once a thought took full possession of her mind. She 
would use the terror of Lupus Rock to aid the escape of 
the prisoners. She had no definite plan, but it seemed 
to her that even to see them and inform them a rescue 
was about to be attempted, might do good. Accordingly 
addressing Lupus, she said, — 

" I also have seen it, and have spoken to it." 

""What does it want?" asked Lupus, eagerly ; "we 
will do anythiug — anything to prevent it again." 

" Do not interrupt me," said Stella, without appearing 
to listen to him. " You must find means to communicate 
to Gerald Leigh this night — at once — in an hour's time." 

"Impossible." 

"Then on your head be it." Stella at this glanced 
jver her shoulder towards the balcony, and purposely 
gave a slight start or shudder. 

The face of Lupus Eock instantly again assumed its 
former look of abject terror, and he stammered out, — 

" What is it, Stella ? What do you see ? " 

" Nothing, no matter," she replied, at the same time 
removing nervously as far as possible from that end of the 
room. " Only I am rather alarmed — I cannot help it, 
Heaven knows I would if I could, but if it cannot be 

Al 



C5Jt THE BLACK AXGEL. 

done, it seems dreadful that the innocent should suffer 
these terrible visitations with the guilty." 

Her voice was apparently choked by sobs, and she 
stood with clasped hands glancing now and again timidly 
over her shoulder. Stella was an excellent actress, and 
her alarm seemed so genuine that it could not fail to add 
to the guilty*terrors of Lupus Rock. 

" Good Heavens ! Stella, do not talk in that dreadful 
way," he faltered, following the glances of sham terror, 
which she ever and anon threw towards the balcony. " I 
will do everything." 

" I must see Gerald Leigh." 

11 Impossible ; nothing but a written order from tho 
Commander-in-chief could procure permission." 

<k They are still confined in the same place ? " 

" Still in the guard-room of the 2 -1th New York Begi- 
ment, whence, to-morrow, they will be marched out on 
the plain and shot." 

Stella shuddered at the word, and asked hurriedly — 

" Who are the officers in command of the guard to- 
night?" 

" I do not know." 

" You can find out. Go, and return in half an hour 
with the news." 

" I think it is young Vavasour and Captain James." 

" Captain James, who has so often called here, and 
whom we met last spring at Saratoga ?" 

" The same." 

" Go at once, make certain that it is indeed he, and 
the affair is easy," said Stella, eagerly. 

" "Why so ? i)o you think that because he is an ad- 
mirer of yours, that he dare so far break the rules of 
military obedience, as deliberately to disobey an order so 
positive as that which forbids all intercourse with the 
prisoners? " 

" No matter, ascertain the fact — leave the rest to 
me. Come, sir, do not stand there, but do my bidding." 

Lupus, the effects of his fright having now somewhat 
worn off, regarded his cousin with some surprise. Strange 
to say, her terror, but a moment before so great, had 



CONDEMNED TO DEATH; 355 

also fled, and he was somewhat puzzled to account for 
the change in her manner. 

However she looked so beautiful as she impatiently 
stamped her foot for him to be gone, that he felt con- 
strained to obey. Indeed, he was not sorry to make his 
peace with her by any means in his power, for it was 
fatal to his plans to be at open enmity with her. How- 
ever base and dastardly his ultimate designs might be, 
he well knew that at present he was powerless against 
her. 

Casting one glance of irrepressible admiration on her 
queen-like form, and meeting for a moment those flashing 
eyes, which seemed to burn into his brain, Lupus went 
out on his errand. 

"By Heavens!" he muttered, " that girl's beauty is 
enough to drive one crazy. I must, indeed, beware lest, 
intending to be absolute master, and have her destiny 
in my hand, her fascinations do not overpower my 
reason, and bring me to her feet. No, no, fair Stella, 
I must guard against that. At present the day is yours ; 
yours is the triumph — mine the humiliation ! But my 
time will come — the time when, if you spurn my ad- 
dresses, I will command that which I failed to obtain 
by soliciting ; and you, in your turn, shall kneel to me 
and beg for mercy !" 

Thus musing and muttering, Lupus strode on to- 
wards the city. 

Stella Grayle well knew that there was no hope of 
obtaining an interview with the condemned men ; nor, 
indeed, did she wish one. Her designs lay in quite a 
different direction. 

She knew that Darey Leigh would certainly attempt 
to rescue his brother, and she judged that he would 
make the attempt by stratagem, and not by force. 

A fierce, wild desire had taken possession of her from 
the moment he uttered those words of bitter reproach, 
to show him how far her thoughts were of betraying 
him by actually aiding him. 

There was a slight struggle in her mind for a short 
time between patriotism and friendship, aided by 

4.A 2 



356 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

wounded pride, and a feeling that she had been wronged 
in thought. 

True — she had bitterly w T ronged Darcy Leigh, but it 
was in word only. When she used the word " coward " 
coupled with his name, she well knew how utterly false 
it was — that though a rebel, he was true and brave as 
steel. 

But his words to her were very different. 

She saw that he believed, or, at least, thought it 
possible, that she ivould betray him into the hands of 
his enemies, and however much this might have been 
owing to herself, the thought was unbearable. That 
Darcy Leigh should think her capable of betraying him 
and Gerald to an ignominious death ! 

1 What have I done,' she thought, the bitter tears of 
anger and vexation rising to her eyes, ' that he should 
think me thus base ? It is true I insulted him, but I 
meant not my words ; and even had I been mistaken in 
him, surely he never could have been mistaken in me. 
Surely he never could have thought that J— from very 
childhood the friend of himself, brother, and sister — 
could have betrayed him ? He never could have done 
so!' 

But, alas! the conviction forced itself on her mind 
that he did, and she instantly resolved to prove to him 
how unjust were his suspicions by, at least, endeavouring 
to aid him in this his desperate attempt. 

But how was it to be done ? How could she, a girl, 
give him the slightest help ? How, indeed ? — that was 
the question, and Stella, who was by nature somewhat 
logical, commenced to reason. 

First she asked herself how would the attempt be 
made ? It appeared certain to her that whatever means 
Darcy possessed, stratagem would be used. She felt 
certain of the impossibility of any considerable number 
of men crossing over with him from the rebel side, and 
penetrating the camp. 

Therefore, she argued, he has probably only two or 
three with him. She kuew also that, as the attempt 
must be made on the guard-room, where he was confined, 



THE SCHEME MATURED. 357 

the principal danger and obstacle would be the vigilance 
of the soldiers and officers on guard, and especially the 
officers. 

If, then, that vigilance could be impaired or caused to 
slacken, how much more hopeful would the venture be ? 
She arrived thus far by a clear process of reasoning, and 
now the real difficulty presented itself. How could she 
cause the guardians of the doomed men to relax in 
their vigilance ? 

Suddenly a thought strikes her, and she is at once 
certain she has hit on the only plan which could be of 
service. It came by no process of reasoning, by no 
chain of ideas, but presented itself unexpectedly to her 
as by inspiration. 

]No sooner had Lupus left, than she hastened to put 
her design into execution. She hurried up stairs to 
her own room, and unlocking a cabinet, she took from 
it a small object and then made her way to the under- 
ground ice-house, or cellar, where the wine, and, during 
the hot weather, provisions also were kept. 

In the course of ten minutes she issued from the 
cellar, carrying a small oil-lamp in her hand. Having 
replaced what she took from the cabinet, she again went 
out on the balcony to await the coming of Lupus Rock. 
Now, however, instead of leaning as before with her 
head on her hand in listless apathy — almost despair — 
she passed up and down impatiently, muttering to her- 
self every now and again, her dark eyes flashing, her 
cheek glowing, and her whole frame in a fever. 



CHAPTEE LVIII. 

THE SCHEME MATURED. 

Lupus Eock was barely gone half-an-hour, and yet 
to her excited mind it seemed as if half the night had 
passed. 

" Well ?" she asked, eagerly, as he entered the room. 

"It is as I thought," he replied; "Vavasour and 
James." 



358 THE BLACK A.THi&U 

" Then A r avasour or James must be bent to my 
Durpose." 

" I fear it is Hopeless— Vavasour is but a subaltern, and 
has no authority, and James, I know, dislikes me." 

" Does he dislike me ?" 

" You ! no, certainly not ; but surely, Stella, you 
would not wish to solicit from him ?" 

"This must be managed, Lupus, in some way, no 
matter what the sacrifice," She fixed her eyes on him, 
and after a moment's pause continued, — 

" If you do not succeed in this, Lupus, I return to New 
York to-morrow." 

These words filled Lupus Rock with the utmost 
alarm, as the return of Stella to New York — of course 
accompanied by her sister — would be fatal to his plans. 
It had only been by procuring a constant succession of 
letters from "Webster Gayle, urgently pressing them to 
remain, and to put themselves entirely under the guidance 
of their cousin, that he had been enabled to prevent the 
return of the girls to their father. Such a result would 
have been fatal to all his hopes and schemes, and Lupus 
had spared no trouble to guard against it. 

He well knew that if Stella once declared her del eli- 
mination to return, nothing short of actual force could 
stop her, and unfortunately for Lupus, that at present 
was out of the question. 

" I do not see how it can be managed, Stella," he said 
gloomily, "unless you choose, yourself, to make it a 
personal favour with Captain James." 

"That I could not do; but could you not, without 
exactly committing me, lead him to suppose such was 
the case ? Suppose you were to go round to the guard- 
room as the bearer of an invitation here. Supposing, 
also, you were to take with you a few flasks of that 
splendid old Burgundy my father prizes so much." 

ft The Burgundy he had presented to him by the 
Trench ambassador. Why there are not a dozen left, 
and it is worth twenty dollars a bottle." 
" Xo matter if a thousand." 
"I mipfot do so certainly. You know my uncle and 



THE SCHEME MATTTRED. 359 

your father as well as I, and you also know that he 
would be more furious at missing two bottles of this his 
favourite wine, than if he lost a ship load of mer- 
chandise." 

"No matter. I will undertake the responsibility. 
Here is the key. Get the wine, remain for half-an-hour 
and partake of one bottle ; then return here and I will 
give you a note, requesting a last interview with the 
prisoners." 

Lupus Rock hesitated. 

The terror of the ghost had almost worn off, and the 
determination and energy of his cousin aroused bis 
suspicions. 

" What was the meaning of this ?" he asked himself, 
and was unable to answer the question. 

" As you please, Lupus," said Stella, angrily. " If you 
don't choose to go I will go myself, and to-morrow sees 
me on the road to New York." 

" As you please, Stella," said Lupus, moodily, after 
a pause ; " I will go — give me the key." 

She gave it him and he left the room — but as he 
turned away from her there was a smile of triumphant 
cunning on his face. 

1 1 know not what is the reason of this deep anxiety on 
Stella's part to see the prisoners, nor what scheme she 
may have in her head, for if I am not greatly mistaken 
all this solicitude does not proceed from fear of the 
phantom — if phantom it were. Ha! what if it should 
not have been a spirit at all— but Darcy Leigh in per- 
son — not dead but alive — that would account for all her 
anxiety to see them, doubtless to aid the cursed young 
rebel in effecting their escape, for if it were he in per- 
son that is undoubtedly his object. Could it be — who can 
say — but then that ghastly livid face, with the blood 
streaming down from the bullet-wound in the forehead 
No — that could have been no deception.' 

He shuddered, and at the thought the old terror came 
over him. 

1 No matter, ghost or no ghost, I will do as she wishes 
vie, as far as her wishes do not absolutely clash with my 



3G0 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

plans. I will take the invitation and the wine. I will 
stay for half-an-hour and help to drink it, then will 
return and get the note, but I will never deliver it. 
Then if she has any plan in her head for the relief of the 
prisoners it will be utterly frustrated.' 

Lupus in his cunning, overreached himself. It never 
struck him for a moment that Stella Gayle did not wish 
the letter delivered, and, indeed, would never give it to 
him to deliver. He little thought that the first part— 
the delivery of the wine, — was all she wanted. 

"Wrapping himself in a large cloak, he procured the 
wine, and placing a bottle in each pocket, started on his 
errand. He did not go alone, however ; his superstitious 
fears after his fright Avould not allow him to do that, 
but took with him one of the negroes from the house. 

By this time it was near midnight, and by the time 
Lupus reached the guard-room, another day had com- 
menced — the last, in all probability, that Captain George 
and Gerald Leigh would ever see. 



CHAPTER LIX. 

THE GAME AT CARDS — WIN OR DIE. 

The guard-room in which the condemned men were 
confined was situated in the quarters of the — th New 
York Regiment. These consisted of a block of rough 
wooden buildings, forming three sides of a square. These 
confined a large open space, used as a drill and parade 
ground. On the fourth side of the square was the 
entrance. This, by day, was through large wooden gates, 
capable, when open, of admitting waggons and artillery; 
but, by night, these were closed, and a small wicket, con- 
stantly guarded by a sentry, alone gave ingress and egress. 

On the right of the gate was a dead wall : on the left 
the guard-room, at the back of which were the prisoners. 
They had been removed here as soon as their wounds 
were sufficiently healed for them to leave the hospital, 
and had remained ever since, awaiting the execution of 
the sentence which the court-martial had pronounced. 



THE GAME AT CABDS. 361 

Tins would long since have been carried into effect, had 
it not have been tor the fact of Captain George being an 
Englishman, and the questions it raised. He himself, 
on his trial, had not raised the point, but boldly acknow- 
ledged that he was about to join the Confederates when 
arrested, and asserted his right to do so. 

He declared that he had as much right to carry his 
Aword to the Confederates in the approaching struggle, 
as the Federals had to accept the services of Irish, Ger- 
mans, and other aliens. This plea availed him not ; it 
was treated with contempt, and, as the reader knows, he 
was found guilty of the charge against him, and con- 
demned to death. 

Gerald Leigh, in his defence, declared that he was not 
a Northerner, but a Southerner, a citizen of a State 
which had seceded from the Union, and so no longer held 
any allegiance to the Federal Government. He was not 
a deserter or a traitor, because he had resigned his com- 
mission in the Federal army, and was making his way 
south to his friends and countrymen, when attacked and 
cut down by the United States' dragoons. For these 
reasons he demanded to be treated as a prisoner of war. 

This defence fared no better than that of Captain 
George, and was scarcely listened to. The court deli- 
berated only five minutes, and then found both guilty ; 
and, as a consequence, both were sentenced to be shot. 

Strenuous exertions were made to save them, at least 
from the punishment of death, but in vain. 

Gerald Leigh had many and powerful friends, but 
although they exerted all their influence, they were unable 
to obtain even a commutation of the sentence ; and on 
the previous day, it was known in Washington that the 
last appeal had been rejected — that the dread fiat had 
gone forth, and that Gerald Leigh and his friend were 
to die. 

They, themselves, had been prepared for the worst 
from the very day of their capture. Gerald had re- 
peatedly cautioned his friend not to build any hopes on 
the fact of his being an Englishman, for that would not 
save him. Captain George, however, took it very coolly, 



302 TIIE BLACK AKGEL. 

and repeatedly declared his firm conviction that he was 
not to die this bout— that something would turn up at 
the last. 

Let us visit them in their gloomy prison-room. 

This was situated at the back of the guard-room, and 
was entered by a strong wooden door from the latter. 
There were neither windows nor chimney, and a small 
oil lamp was all the light they had night and day. Each 
had a mattress on the floor, and this, with a couple of 
horse-cloths and a campaign-blanket, was all they had in 
the way of bedding. They were, however, allowed all 
their private clothing, and as both were well supplied, 
they did not suffer in that respect. 

A table, two chairs, and a wash-stand completed the 
furniture of their prison. 

The outer room was occupied by the two officers, who 
were ordered to be constantly with the guard over 
them. 

By day the drill-ground was constantly filled by sol- 
diers passing and repassing, so that, with the exception 
of the two officers and the sentry at the gate, there was 
no special guard over them. 

Gerald Leigh is seated at the table, leaning his head 
on his hand, and looking gloomily straight before him, 
evidently buried in thoughts of no pleasant nature. 

Captain George, the Englishman, is pacing up and 
down the narrow space with impatient steps, casting an 
eye every now and again on his companion sunk in 
lethargy. 

After one of his short turns up and down, he suddenly 
halts at the table, and slapping Gerald on the back, 
addressed him in a voice which, even under these despe- 
rate circumstances, still has something cheerful, almost 
defiant, in, its tones. 

" Come Gerald, old boy, cheer up — all is not over yet, 
and even if it were, we can only die once ! " 

il Death ! " replied Gerald, moodily ; and raising his 
head, "it is not death I fear — it is the manner, the cir- 
cumstances attending it — to be led forth like a criminal, 
and shot down like a dog. Amid the hurling of shot, the 



THE GAME AT CARDS. 503 

hissing of bullets, the thunder of artillery, and the wild 
shouts of the combatants, it is easy, even glorious, to 
^ie ; but in the cold, grey, silent morning, to be led 
forth to die a disgraceful death, that is a very different 
matter! " 

" Bah ! " replied the other ; " if we must die, what 
gnifies the manner of our death ? For my part, I shall 
equest the firing party to aim at my head — there will be 
flash — I shall feel a sudden shock, a blaze of light — then 
utter darkness, and all will be over. Do you know, 
Gerald, I think there is little or no pain accompanying 
a sudden death. I once received a blow on the head 
from a slung shot. I felt nothing — absolutely nothing 
— not even the blow. It was as if I had been for a time 
utterly and painlessly annihilated. Doubtless it will be 
the same to-morrow, if we are to undergo the experi- 
ment. Eeady ! Present ! Fire ! and before we hear the 
report, we shall both be in kingdom come." 

" Don't speak of it in that light, careless manner, 
George. It jars on my feelings. I am no coward ; had I 
have been so I might have ridden off and left you when you 
so insanely turned and rode after that man in the brush. 
By the way, you never explained the meaning of that 
insane escapade which has consigned us both to this fate. 
I think you said you would." 

A shade came over the features of the other. He was 
silent for some time, and took a turn or so up <;he room 
before he answered. 

" Gerald," he said, stopping again before his chair, 
" it is a long story — too long to relate now. This much 
I will tell you, however : the man whom I rode after, and 
whom I should have cut down had not my horse fallen, 
is my most deadly enemy. I have sworn to take his 
life." 

" Then I fear much you are in danger of breaking 
your oath," replied Gerald with a bitter laugh. 

" Gerald," said Captain George, laying his hand on 
his shoulder, " I shall not break my oath. Do you believe 
in presentiments ? " 

"No, I don't," replied Gerald, bluntly. "I believe 



5Gii THE BLACK ANGEL. 

we shall both be shot an hour or so after day- 
light." 

" Do you think, Gerald," continued the other, " that 
on our road to the place of execution I could possibly 
have an opportunity of seizing a weapon and killing any 
one?" 

Gerald looked in surprise at his friend ; he almost 
thought he was taking leave of his senses. 
" Certainly not," he replied. 

" Ah, then, that is all right. "We shall not die to- 
morrow, at all events." 

" How do you mean ? — how is it all right ? — and what 
has the fact of your not beiug able to seize a weapon on 
the road got to do with our dying? " 

" Everything. If it is impossible for me to possess 
myself of a weapon, it is impossible for me to kill any one, 
and I shall not die until I have slain the man you saw me 
ride after the other night. I have a presentiment — you 
do not believe in it — very good — let the event prove." 

Captain George went to his valise and brought forth 
a small flask of Schiedam, also a pack of cards. Glasses 
were on the table, and after pouring out some for Gerald 
and himself, he took a chair. 

" Come," be said, " let us have a game at eukre." 
" And you mean to say you are going to play eukre an 
hour or two before you are to be shot ? " 

" My dear fellow, I don't believe I am going to be 
shot ; besides, I am a philosopher — what must be must 
be, and my playing eukre will make no difference one way 
or the other. Come, cut for deal." 

" I don't like eukre,'" replied Gerald, wearily ; "it was 
always my abomination." 
" Well, ecarte?" 
Gerald shook his head. 
" Cribbage?" 

" As you please," he replied ; and taking up tkepacV 
he wearily, absently shuffled them, and handed them 

" Cut for deal." 

They did so, and Gerald won. The first deal Gerald 



THE GAME AT CAEDS. 365 

held twelve in hand, gained four by play, and held fifteen 
in crib. 

Captain George only held five. 

It was now his deal. 

" Gerald," he said, looking up smilingly, " I have con- 
fidence m myself and in my star. I will bet you five 
hundred dollars I win the game." 

Gerald laughed aloud, not a mirthful, but a bitter 
laugh. 

" Five hundred dollars! What on earth should I do 
with them if I won ?— and how will you get them ? Am 
I to take them with me to 'kingdom come,' as vou 
call it?" ' J 

" Not a bit of it— take them down south with you, 
and spend them in Richmond or Charleston." 

" What nonsense you talk, man, as if we should ever 
see Richmond or Charleston. Do you forget this is our 
last night on earth ? " 

" I don't forget that we are sentenced to be shot, but 
I do not believe that the sentence will ever be carried 
into effect— no ! I would not believe it even were we on 
the fatal ground with the firing party drawn up in front." 

" George, you are mad ; the fever which followed your 
wounds cannot have left you yet." 

" I am not mad ; I know what I am saying, and I feel 
an inward conviction that we shall not be shot to- 
morrow. Let this game decide. See, you are twenty- 
six ahead. If I win we shall live. If I lose we shall 
die." 

" I accept the omen," replied Gerald, with a faint 
smile. 

George dealt the cards to himself and opponent. 

The latter scored between fifteen and twenty. George 
only eight in both hand and crib. 

" What do you say now, George ? The game is as 
hopeless as our own chance of life" 

" Ml desperandum ! It is my deal, I think." 

George dealt the cards. 

This time Gerald held nothing and made nothing by 
play. 



36(5 IRE BLACK ANGEL. 

Captain George held eight in hand, twelve in crib, ai| 
played four. 

Soon Gerald Leigh was within seven of the winning 
point, while the other still wanted twenty-six. 

Gerald played a six. George played another, two 
holes; Gerald a third, six holes ; and his opponent a 
fourth, twelve holes — in all fourteen. Thi3, with the 
last card and ten in hand, brought George -within one 
hole of winning. 

Gerald held nothing in hand but the six he had made 
by play, which also brought h'iin to the last hole but 
one. 

The situation was certainly exciting. Gerald, in spite 
of his incredulity, could not help being, in a measure, in- 
fected by what he considered the fatalism and supersti- 
tion of his friend. 

Captain George had declared his firm conviction that 
they should not die, and both had accepted this game as 
the gauge of the truth or falseness of his presentiment, if 
such it could be called. 

It was the Englishman's deal. Each wanted but a 
single point of the game. 

Captain George dealt the cards, and then cut for crib. 
Gerald did likewise. 

" Cut me a card," said the former. 

Gerald was about to do so. 

" Stay, Gerald. I will tell you the card you will cut 
me. It wiil win me the game. Tou will cut me a 
knave." 

" Pshaw ! nonsense ! " replied Gerald, reaching his 
hand over to the pack. 

Notwithstanding his incredulity, his hand trembled 
slightly, and he could not resist a feeling of mingled hope 
and anxiety which possessed him that the words of his 
friend might prove true. 

" What nonsense," he muttered, " to pay a moment's 
attention to such old women's tales. Here goes." 

He cut the cards. 

George turned up the top one. 

It ivas a knave, and lie won, 



ANXIOUS MOMENTS. 867 

At the same instant voices were heard in the next 
room, where the two officers were. 

G-erald, in spite of himself, almost trembled with ex- 
citement at this strange fulfilment of the prophecy, and a 
thrill of hope passed through his frame. 

11 Perhaps, after all, there is something in this fellow's 
presentiments," he thought. 

tl Hush !" he exclaimed in a low tone, and grasping 
Captain Greorge by the arm, " that is the voice of Lupus 
Bock." 

" Yes — and it is the beginning of the end ! " 



CHAPTER LIX. 

ANXIOUS MOMENTS. 

Both Gerald Leigh and the Englishman were silent, 
and listened intently to what was passing in the next 
room. 

" Any news, Mr. Eock — anything fresh ? " they heard 
Captain James say. 

" No — nothiDg. I heard at the Eremont, in Pennsyl- 
vania Avenue, that you and Vavasour were on guard, 
so I thought I would look round to hear what news you 
had. There has been a council of generals, has there 
not, this afternoon, Captain James, in which your uncle 
took part?" 

" Yes ; and a stormy debate the old general tells me 
it was." 

" By the way," interrupted Lupus, " I thought, as I 
was coming to visit soldiers on guard, I could not do 
better than bring something with me." 

Lupus produced the two bottles of wine. 

" Here are two bottles of the very finest Senator Gayle 
has in his cellar. In his eyes the few dozen left are be- 
yond price, and I had the greatest difficulty in prevailing 
on my cousin Stella to let me have them." 

" Oh, your cousins ! I forgot to ask for them. Are they 

'* Quite, thank you/ As I wa3 saving, I had soino 



363 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

difficulty in prevailing on ray fair cousin to give me tho 
wine, knowing how the senator prized it. Have you a 
corkscrew?" 

The corkscrew was produced, and the prisoners next 
heard the cork of the bottle drawn. 

This done, glasses were brought out, and Lupus 
seated himself at the table with the two officers. 

" Sour cousin, Miss Stella, then, knew you were 
coming here to-night ? " 

" Oh, yes— I told her so." 

Captain James looked proud and pleased, and raising 
the glass before him, said, — 

" Well, sir, I drink to the health of your charming 
cousins." 

He drained the glass, and continued, — 

" Perhaps it was her own fair hands which brought 
up these bottles of rare wine? if so we are doubly 
honoured." 

" No," replied Lupus carelessly ; " I asked her for the 
key and fetched them myself. But I was going to ask 
you the result of the council to-day. On what have 
the President and General decided ? Are our forces to 
advance at once into Virginia, and give battle to the 
enemy or Stay, can we be heard in the next room ?" 

" By the prisoners ? Yes ; but what matter ? Poor 
devils, in a few hours they will be shot," 

" Is there no hope of their lives being spared, of a 
reprieve, at the last moment ? " asked Lupus. 

" Not the least ; the subject was incidentally mentioned 
at the council, and the idea of pardon or commutation 
of sentence was utterly scouted. It is now midnight ; 
in eight hours they will go forth to their execution." 

A gleam of savage joy shot across the features of 
Lupus Bock, as he heard these words. 

Gerald Leigh and Captain George also heard, and 
although they needed not this confirmation, for they had 
long given up all hopes of clemency on the part of the 
authorities, still it sent a chill through them, in spite of 
their fortitude. 

Gerald Leigh was seated at the table, briefly employed 



ANXIOUS MOMENTS. oGO 

in writing. He had written and addressed a letter to 
his father, containing his last wishes and requests. 
Letters also to friends and relations he had written and 
sealed, and he was now engaged in writing one to his 
brother Darcy. 

Captain George had ceased pacing up and down the 
room, and was leaning with folded arms against the 
door, so as to hear all the conversation in the next 
room. He was naturally pale, but now, what from 
weakness caused by his wounds — the subsequent fever, 
and his desperate situation — a pallor as of death was 
on his handsome features. It was not, however, the 
pallor of fear, for the lips were tightly compressed, 
and his heart beat as calmly and regularly as if in 



A clock in the barrack-yard pealed forth the midnight 
hour. 

Immediately the clang of arms and the tramp of feet 
are heard outside. 

" Sergeant of the guard ! " Captain James calls out. 

The sergeant entered. 

At the same moment the voice of the sentry at the gate 
is heard challenging. 

" Who goes there?" 

" Jupiter, by Jingo ! " 

The men composing the sergeant's guara mugned at 
this reply to the challenge. 

" Halt ! and give the word " 

"Baltimore!" 

On this word being given, the sentry lowered his rifle, 
which he had brought to the charge, and permitted the 
stranger to approach. 

" Well, nigger, what do you want ? " 

" De officer of de guard." 

" In the guard-room to the left," said the sentry, 
allowing him to pass through the wicket. 

Jupiter marched boldly in, and stood in the presence 
of the two officers, Lupus Eock, and the sergeant, who 
was just receiving his orders from Captain James. 

" How far do the pickets of your regiment extend ? " 

B u 



370 the black: angel. 

" Our furthest commands a view of the river and the 
rebel forces on the other side." 

" Let the sentries be doubled everywhere in view of 
the river. There was an alarm last night — a spy at- 
tempted to cross in a boat." 

The sergeant saluted, and was turning away, when 
Captain James stopped him. 

" Sergeant, you have not got the new word for the 
night. It is past twelve." 

" I beg pardon, sir. I thought, perhaps, it was not 
to be changed." 

" The word is changed every twenty-four hours. For 
U-day, it is ' Bunker's Hill.' " 

The man again saluted and went out. 

" Fours, left, quick, march." 

Then the sergeant's guard tramped off on their rounds, 
Jupiter remaining standing be'fore the two. 



CHAPTEE LX. 

CEOSS-EXAMIKED. 

" "Well, nigger," said Captain James, " what ch you 
want ? who sent you here ? the devil, eh ? " 

" No, massa, de debil no send me. When de debil 
want you, massa, he come hisself an' fetch you." 

James laughed at this retort, and Jupiter grinned 
from ear to ear. 

" "Well, who sent you, and what do you want? " 

" General — general Oh, my lud a G-or a mighty, 

massa, I forget de name, but it was some general told me 
to come here." 

""What for?" 

" To gib myself up;" 

" To give yourself up ? " 

" Yes, massa, I's a contraband escaped from the house 
of bondage, and from the hands of the wicked." 

" Oh, you 're a runaway slave ? " 

" Dat's it, 'xactly, massa ; my boss, he's a orful rebel, 
Bo dis childe bein' a Unioner— a reg'lar screaming Star 



CfiOSS-EXAMINED. 37.1 

and Stripe coon — makes tracks for de glorious Union 
army ; and here lie is, and now de question come3, what 
de debil you's guine to do with him, eh, massa ? " 

Jupiter acted his part admirably, so that neither Cap- 
tain James nor Vavasour for a moment doubted him. 

" "Well, what did the general, whoever he was, send 
you here for ? How do you know he was a general ? " 

" Because he told me so, massa ; he sey, ' Jist you go 
to the nearest guard-room, nigger, and report yourself — 
say I sent you, General ' (I forget de name — * de pass- 
word 's Baltimore,') and wid dat he ride3 off, an' I come 
straight here." 

" Where did you meet this general ? " 

" Out on de road, about a mile towards the ferry." 

'• Oh, it's all right, one of the generals going to ride 
round the outposts to satisfy himself that a good look-out 
is kept — let the beggar go," said Vavasour. 

" Wait a minute, let us see if we can get any informa- 
tion from him." 

" You have just come from the rebel lines. "Where 
did you cross the river r" 

" At de ferry." 

"Harper's Perry?" 

"Yes, massa." 

"Are there any rebel troops near there ?" 

" Here's a regiment of cavalry twelve miles off, ari 1 
dey reconnoitres down by the ferry every day." 

" Is that all ?" asked Captain James, in surprise, " I 
thought they had a large force a short distance from the 
river." 

" Here's only two regiments of infantry and four of 
cavalry on dis side of Fredericksburg, except at Manassas, 
where dere's a horse artillery regiment, and two Caro- 
lina volunteer regiments." 

"Is that all? I thought they had at least forty 
thousand men near the river." 

Had Captain James said twice forty thousand, he 
would have been nearer the mark. 

"Forty thousand, massa," said Jupiter, rolling his 
3VC3 in affected astonishment ; " why, I don't believe as 

?b2 



372 TIIE BLACK ANGEL. 

dere's forty thousand in de ole army of de South, and 
what dere is, is all a lot of ragged skunks as would 
rather run a mile than fight a minit." 

" A hopeful chance for the rebellion, Vavasour," said 
Captain James, with a smile. 

"Bah!" said Vavasour, contemptuously; "if ever 
they stand up before our troops they will go down like 
chaff before the wind." 

" Not much doubt of that, I think," replied the other, 
in a half-satisfied tone. " What men they have are all 
rowdies, and as for their officers, the Southern planters, 
the climate has rendered them effete, and made them, 
physically and morally, of a lower type than a hardy 
Northern gentleman." 

How utterly absurd and unfounded their opinions 
were, the desperate resolve with which Southern soldiers, 
led by Southern officers, have fought against the vast 
hordes of the North, has sufficiently shown. 

At this time, however, such opinions were in vogue, 
and it was confidently predicted that the rebellion 
would be crushed out in three months at the latest, and 
the ringleaders hanged. 

It now became a question with Captain James what 
to do with the negro. He did not for a moment doubt 
the truth of the latter's story, but was at a loss to 
understand with what object the general, whoever he 
might be, had given him the pass-word and sent him in. 

"WTiile the officer was thus deliberating with himself, 
Jupiter was carefully scanning the guard-room, and 
noticing the position of doors and windows. 

The door which opened into the prison room was an 
object of close scrutiny. His eye rested for a moment 
on the iron bolts, then on the massive padlock which 
secured the door, and then wandering round the room, 
on a large key hanging above Captain James's head. 
This he conjectured was the key of the padlock. 

Gerald Leigh was still busily employed in writing, 
when Jupiter appeared before the two officers, while 
Captain George still stood with folded arms leaning 
against ti loor. 



CROSS-EXAMINED. 373 

i At the first sound of Jupiter's voice Gerald paused 
in his writing, and the next instant started to his feet, 
and reaching the door stood listening and almost trem- 
bling with excitement. 

Captain George, surprised at this sudden change from 
apathy to interest, even excitement, was about to speak, 
when Gerald grasped his arm and signified him to be 
silent. 

Gerald at once knew the voice of the negro, who had 
at one time been a slave on his father's plantation, 
having been presented with his freedom for eminent 
services rendered. He was well aware of the gratitude 
and affection Jupiter bore the family, and on hearing his 
voice a wild hope possessed him that the presence of the 
coloured man was in some way connected with himself. 

He listened intently to the whole conversation, and 
when Jupiter's examination was finished, and he was 
about being dismissed, he resolved to speak, in order to 
let him know, if he were not already aware of the fact, 
that he was there confined. 

Accordingly he knocked loudly at the door to call 
attention. 

Captain James rose, and coming to the door, asked— 
" What is it you want ? " 

" We have no water— I am thirsty," replied Gerald. 
The latter listened intently to catch any exclamation 
of surprise which might escape the negro at the well- 
known voice. 
But none came. 

'Ah!' thought Gerald, ' he is not surprised— he 
knows I am here. There must be something in this. 
Surely he would not come with such a tale, every word 
of which I know to be false, without some object? 
Perhaps a rescue is contemplated ? A rescue ?— impos- 
sible ! Nothing less than an army could rescue us by 
force from the midst of the Federal lines ! ' 

And the hopes which began to rise in the doomed 
man's mind were dashed aside when he thought of the 
many brigades and regiments around the outposts, the 
pickets, and the double chain of sentries. 



374 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" Tou shall have water immediately the guard returns/ 1 
Captain James said, " they have gone round on relief 
duty." 

Gerald did not reply, and Captain James, turning to 
Jupiter, said, — 

""Well, you fellow, I have not the least idea why you 
have been sent here ; but as you have the word, you cau 
pass on into Washington, and report yourself again in 
the moraing.' , 

Berry good, massa." 

So saying, Jupiter turned, and was about leaving, when 
Lupus Kock addressed him. 

" Ltfok here, nigger, I've seen you before, have I not?" 

k Lor-a-mussy only knows, massa," replied Jupiter, 
gazing innocently in the speaker's face ; " dis chile don't 
remember." 

Lupus was silent, and seemed trying to recollect. 
He had a confused memory of the negro in connection 
with a fiddle, but could not sufficiently arrange his 
thoughts to say when or where they had met. In good 
truth, he had seen Jupiter dozens of times in attendance 
on Darcy Leigh in New York, before the seizure of the 
Spitfire ; and the last he had seen of him was when he 
sat on the capstan of the sloop, and played defiantly and 
mockingly " Yankee Doodle " as she steamed past the 
admiral's ship. 

It was well for Jupiter that the memory of Lupus for 
this once failed him. Again and again he racked his 
brains to recall the circumstance to his mind, but in vain. 

" Look here, sir," he said, after puzzling himself for a 
minute or so, during which time the negro stood 
innocently and humbly before him, " you can play tho 
violin, can't you? Where did I hear you last ? " 

" No, massa," replied Jupiter, with well-feigned 
sorrow, " I ain't a musicianer — leastways, not on no 
musical implements ; but dis chile can sing. Would 
massa like a little melody ? " 

" No, no ! " said Captain James impatiently ; " we 
don't want your melody. Be off ! " 

Jupiter, nothing loth departed. 



CROSS-EXAMINED. 375 

" I would give something to remember where I have 
seen that fellow's face before," said Lupus Rock, 
suspiciously ; " for that I have seen him somewhere I am 
certain." 

" Oh, nonsense ! these niggers have all the same 
features and voices. I have often been deceived, myself. 
I suspect the fellow has never been north of the 
Potomac." 

"I doubt it much." 

Jupiter on getting outside the wicket, instead of 
making for "Washington, walked quickly in the opposite 
direction, and when out of sight of the sentry, turned oft 
from the road, and started oft' at a run. 

The two officers and Lupus Bock were now again 
alone ; and broaching the remaining bottle of Webster 
Gayle's choice old wine, resumed the conversation which 
the sergeant of the guard and Jupiter had interrupted. 

"What, then, was definitely decided at the council 
to-day ? " asked Lupus. 

" All the members were in favour of energetic action ; 
for fighting a great battle, and decisively defeating the 
rebels, driving them out of Virginia." 

" When is it proposed to march against them ? " 

" Some of the generals were for immediate action ; 
but the commander-in-chief, General Scott, pronounced 
emphatically against it. Ultimately, it was decided that 
in about a month's time the whole army should leisurely 
cross the Potomac at Harper's Perry; and about the 
middle of June — that is to say, in about six weeks' time 
— advance into Virginia, via Manassas Gap, defeating 
the rebels if they oppose, which is in itself an absurdity ; 
and driving them before them if they think discre- 
tion the better part of valour, which, doubtless, they 
will do." 

Captain George and Gerald Leigh, in the next room, 
heard every word of this conversation, and much which 
subsequently followed. The Pederal officer went on to 
relate to Lupus Rock all that he had gathered as to the 
result of the council of war, and Gerald and Captain 
George in the course of half-an-hour were thoroughly 



376 THE BLACK AXGEL. 

conversant with the projected movements of the army 
of the Potomac. 

After partaking of one glass from the second bottle 
of wine, Lupus Kock rose, and wishing the officers good 
night, left the guard-room. 

James and Vavasour continued talking and laughing 
for some minutes after his departure, and then there 
ensued a long silence. 

For a time Gerald and the Englishman believed that 
the two officers had left shortly after Lupus, but they 
were soon disabused of that idea. The silence was 
quickly succeeded by long slow breathing, which con- 
vinced the prisoners that their guardians slept. They 
could hear the measured tramp of the sentinel outside 
the gate, and the occasional rattle of his rifle as he halted 
in his patrol and grouuded it. 

Half an hour passed and the guards returned from 
their rounds. The sergeant entered the guard-room 
with the intention of reporting " all well," but finding 
his officers both asleep, retired without attempting to 
awake them. 

At two o'clock, according to orders, they were again 
to go on their rounds. At a few minutes before the 
time, the sergeant having marshalled his men in the 
yard, again entered the guard-room, and found the two 
officers still asleep. 

" Humph ! " he muttered, " asleep ; the wine seems to 
have told a tale. Shall I wake them ? " 

He appeared to deliberate for a minute, and then, 
having apparently made up his mind, marched his 
men off. 

Scarcely had he passed them through the gate, than 
the clock in the barrack yard pealed two. 

Then the footsteps of the soldiers faded away in the 
distance, and all was still. 

The deep breathing of the two officers in the guard- 
room alone broke the deadly silence. 

Suddenly the sentry at the gate challenged, — 

" Who goes there ? " 

" A friend ! " "" 



A CRITICAL SITUATION. 377 

u Halt ! and give the word " 

"Bunker's Hill." 

Gerald, who had again seated himself at the table, 
started to his feet, and gave vent to an exclamation ot 
astonishment and bewilderment. 

" What is it ? " asked Captain G-eorge. 

"That voice — my brother, Darcy Leigh! — by Heavens l" 



CHAPTEE LXI. 

A CRITICAL SITUATION. 

No sooner had the sergeant's party disappeared in tho 
distance, than three figures, who had been attentively 
watching them, advanced boldly towards the sentry at 
the gate. They did not come from the road, but from 
the direction of a clump of trees, a few hundred yards to 
the left. 

These three figures were, as the reader has doubtless 
guessed, those of Darcy Leigh, Darby Kelly, and tho 
negro Jupiter. 

Darcy at once replied to the sentry's challenge, and 
advanced boldly up to him, followed by the others. 

" What is it ? — what do you want ? " asked the sen- 
tinel, on receiving the password. 

" The officer of the guard," replied Darcy, approaching 
the soldier. 

" Pass on into the guard-room on the left," he replied, 
standing on one side so as to let them by. 

Darcy Leigh, having placed himself on the threshold 
of the wicket, stopped and turned round to the sentry. 

" Lend me your rifle," he said, quite coolly, reaching 
forth and laying his hand on the stock of the weapon, 
which the sentry had now shouldered. 

" Hands off! " said the astonished sentry, retreating a 
pace, and bringing it to the charge. 

Darby Kelly was close behind him, and seeing the time 
for action had come, threw himself upon him, and before 
he could utter a cry had dashed him to the earth. His 



379 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

iron baud was in a second on the sentry's throat, which 
lie compressed so tightly as nearly to choke hitn. 

They were quite close to the wicket leading to the bar- 
rack yard, and although the unfortunate sentry had no 
opportunity of giving an alarm, still the struggle, brief 
as it was, was not entirely unaccompanied by noise. 

Darcy and Jupiter stood for a moment, and listened 
in breathless anxiety. 

But all within was quiet. 

The sentry, on whose throat Darby still kept his iron 
grip, struggled once or twice to release himself, and then, 
with a choking gasp, lay still. 

Darcy Leigh deliberately produced and opened a clasp- 
knife, and kneeling down, felt for the man's throat, and 
pressed the sharp point against it. 

The man, who was not quite utterly insensible, gave 
vent to a gurgling groan as he felt the cold, sharp point 
of the knife. 

Horrible oust have been his sensation for those few 
moments. 

" Now listen, my man," said Darcy, pushing the knife 
Bo as to break the skin, and inflict a slight wound. 

The man, thinking his last hour had come, gave a 
desperate struggle. 

"Another motion and you are a dead man!" said 
Darcy, in a deep whisper. " Your life is in your own 
hands. If you attempt to resist or raise any outcry, I 
cut your throat. * Lie still, and you shall not be harmed. 
Darby, remove your hands." 

Darby hesitated for a moment before he complied with 
this order. 

"Take your hands away, Darby," repeated the other, 
li he will not resist." 

The Irishman did so, and though free from his grip, 
the sentry lay perfectly motionless. He still felt the 
cold sharp point of the knife, and knew that the moment 
in which he struggled would be his last. He was utterly 
ignorant of the cause or meaning of this attack, but fully 
realized the fact that the aggressors were terribly in 
earnest. 



A. Critical situation. S79 

* ; Jupiter, the gag ! Quick ! " 

The negro produced a piece of wood about six inches 
long, and forced it between the man's teeth, who suf- 
fered him to do so passively, He then bound a hand- 
kerchief around it so as to completely cover the mouth 
and tied it tightly on by a piece of string around the 
back of his head. This done, Darcy rose from his knee?, 
and removed the threatening knife from the prisoner's 
throat. 

" Jupiter, remain here and watch this fellow j if he 
attempts to move kill him." 

"All right, massa." 

" Darby, come, follow me ; no time is to be lost. The 
guard will be back in a few minutes." 

Then Darcy passed quickly through the wicket and 
towards the guard-room, followed by Darby Kelly. 

He fully expected a desperate struggle, for of course 
he knew from Jupiter that the two officers were there. 

Judge, then, of his astonishment when he dashed in, 
a knife in one hand, and a revolver in the other, when 
he found that the place was only tenanted by two sleep- 
ing men. 

Their flushed faces and heavy breathing at once caused 
him to surmise that they were'intoxicated. 

He cast a rapid glance around the room, until it 
rested upon the key hanging on the wall, as Jupiter had 
described to him. The Irishman stood sentry over the 
sleepers, while Darcy cautiously reached down the key. 

Darby Kelly had brought with him the rifle taken 
from the sentinel, and now stood over the two sleepers 
prepared to dash out the brains of the first who should 
be unfortunate enough to awake. 

Not a word was spoken, and not a sound to be heard, 
Dut the regular breathing of the two officers. 

Darcy having possessed himself of the key, advanced 
cautiously to the door and placed it in the padlock. It 
was impossible to turn it without making a slight noise, 
which, of course, was heard by the prisoners confined in 
the inner room. 

Darcy feared that, not knowing who was thus tamper- 



380 THE BLACK ASGEL. 

iug with the lock, one or other of them would call out to 
demand who was there. 

His fears were well founded, for the next instant he 
heard the deep voice of his brother Gerald, — 

' { Who is there ? It is not yet daylight. Surely, 
what few hours we have to live, may be left to us in 
peace " 

G-erald spoke loudly and angrily, for he had relin- 
quished the idea that it Was his brother's voice which 
had challenged the sentry as too improbable — almost 
impossible ; for, in the first place, was not his brother 
dead ? had he not had convincing and reliable testimony 
to that effect ? He heard nothing of the struggle 
with the sentry, and as the two officers still gave evidence 
by their deep breathing that they slept, he imagined 
that all was well. 

As soon as Darcy heard the voice of his brother angrily 
demanding who was there, he gave up all hopes of being 
able peaceably to effect their escape. The voice was 
both loud and deep, and he doubted not that it would 
certainly awaken the sleepers. Convinced of this, he 
withdrew the key from the padlock, and drawing his 
revolver, which he had again placed in his breast, he 
turned savagely round, prepared for a death-struggle. 

To his astonishment, however, the two officers still 
slept as calmly as if the enemy were not in their camp. 

" They must indeed have been drunk ! " he muttered, 
" and yet I see but two bottles of wine, one half full. 
Surely it cannot be raw spirits they have been drink- 
ing?'' 

He raised one of the bottles, and placing it to his lips, 
just tasted it. 

" Burgundy, by Jove ! good wine, but not sufficiently 
strong to account for this. A half-dozen bottles would 
scarcely suffice to make two men so helplessly drunk as 
these." 

All this passed through his mind in less than a tenth i 
of the time it has occupied in relating. Seeing that they 
still slept, he judged it advisable to bind and gag them i 
at once. 



ESCAPE AND BECAPTTJBE. 381 

They are" too drunk to resist now, but if they should 
suddenly wake, it might undoubtedly give the alarm and 
bring others to their assistance. 

The operation of binding and gagging was finally per- 
formed. To the utter bewilderment of Darcy Leigh, 
even this operation did not rouse them. An inarticulate 
grunt or so was the only result. Both were bound, 
gagged, and secured to the chairs on which they sat. 

Then Darcy quickly unlocked the padlock, removed it, 
threw open the door, and stood in the presence of his 
brother Gerald and Captain George. 

Gerald gazed for a moment in utter bewilderment. 
Could he believe his eyes? was it indeed his brother 
Darcy who stood before him ? His features certainly, 
but the complexion was that of a mulatto. The next 
moment Darcy spoke, and the voice dissipated any doubts 
he had in his mind. 

" Come," he said, " this is no time for explanations or 
questions. Escape— the way is open ; and in an hour's 
time you may both be *safely across the Potomac." 



CHAPTER LXII. 

ESCAPE AND BECAPTUEE. 

Gebald Leigh, when really convinced that it was 
his brother, wasted no time in talk, but passed into the 
other room and gazed around it. The two officers were 
still sound asleep, bound and gagged. With but one 
glance of surprise at the tableau, he passed out, followed 
by Captain George, Darcy, and Darby Kelly. 

Suddenly he paused at the wicket before passing 
through, and whispered in a low tone to his brother — 
" The sentry — what about him ? — must we kill him ? " 
" He is safe," was the reply ; " come, let us haste." 
And the next moment Gerald nearly fell over the 
prostrate body of the unfortunate soldier. Once clear 
of the barracks, they all started off at a good pace, Darby 
leading the way. He- led them straight to the shelter of 
the clump of trees. 



3S2 THE BLACK ASUEL. 

Scarcely liad they reached there, and the tramp of a 
considerable body of men was heard approaching. Darcy 
knew that it was the sergeant's guard returning from 
the rounds. 

" Quick— let us be on. The escape will be discovered 
in a few minutes." 

All started off again with the exception of Darby, who 
remained behind. Darcy Leigh did not immediately 
miss him ; when he did so, however, he halted. 

" Where is the Irishman ? " he asked in surprise of 
his brother, who was nearest to him. 

But he was not to be seen, and Darcy hurried back 
to the clump of trees where they had rested for a few 
seconds. He met the faithful feilow, to whose devotion 
and courage he owed the success of the escape, just 
about to follow them. He held in his hand a bottle, 
from which he was drinking as he walked. 

" Come on — are you mad ? " said Darcy, grasping his 
arm. 

" All right, yer honour ; I thought it would have been 
a murthering shame entirely to lave the wine, so I made 
so bowld as to bring it with me. And, be jabers, I have 
just finished the last gulp." 

With these words he threw the bottle away, and hur- 
ried on with Darcy. They had but just rejoined the 
other two, when they heard a loud outcry at the gate 
of the barracks. The sentry had been discovered bound 
and gagged, as also the two officers in the guard- 
room. They heard the shouts of the sergeant, the 
rattle of arms, and the discharge of several rifles at 
random. 

"Bugler, blow the assembly — turn out the guard! 
Scour the woods ! — the prisoners have escaped ! " 

Then the bugle pealed forth a loud blast — the as- 
sembly — and in half a minute the barrack-yard, before 
deserted, swarmed with some hundreds of soldiers, some 
in their shirts, others hastily arming, and getting their 
uniforms on. 

Darcy and his companions did not wait to listen to 
the confusion, but started off at a run in the direction of 



ESCAPE AND KECAPXUKJS. 883 

the river, which was about a mile ahead at the nearest 
point. 

The darkness of the night favoured them, and soon 
the sound of the shouts, cries, and words of command 
died away, and they halted, thoroughly out of breath, by 
the side of the road leading from Harper's Terry to 
Washington — the same road on which Captain George 
and Gerald had been captured, weeks previously, in 
their attempt to cross the river. 

By common consent they halted by the side of the 
road, and threw themselves flat on the ground with the 
double object of concealment and rest. 

After a repose of a couple of minutes Darcy rose. 

" Come," he said to the others, "let us get across the 
river — we are now close to it. All can swim, and in a 
few minutes more we shall be in safety.' ' 

Gerald, Captain George, and Jupiter followed his 
example, and prepared again to start. 

But Darby Kelly remained on the ground, and gave 
no signs of moving. 

" Come on," said Darcy, touching him with his foot. 

This produced no effect. 

" What is the meaning of this ? " muttered Darcy ; 
" poor fellow ! he must have been wounded in the 
struggle with the sentry, and has fainted. We can't 
leave him. What must be done ? " 

At that moment the sound of horses' hoofs was heard 
in the distance, coming from the direction of Harper's 
Ferry. 

" Hark ! — the mounted patrol !" cried Darcy. " Quick, 
Darby, my brave fellow, rouse yourself, or we shall bo 
discovered." 

At that instant the moon burst through a cloud and 
bathed the whole scene with light. 

They could see coming down the road a body of 
cavalry ; they were cantering on in loose order, some in 
the road, others among the trees on each side. In 
another moment the horsemen would be upon them, and 
they would be inevitably discovered. 

Darcy stooped, and beckoning Gerald to assist him ; 



3S4i THE BLACK ANGEL. 

frantically endeavoured to raise the prostrate form of 
Darby Kelly, but was unable to succeed, for the Irish- 
man was fully sixteen stone, and lay helpless and inert 
as a log. 

Then, to his utter disgust and despair, he discovered 
that lie was not wounded — not dead — but asleep, fast as 
a rock. 

"All is lost!" exclaimed Darcy ; "let us resist to the 
last, and die fighting." 

The next moment a shout from the foremost of the 
horsemen apprised them they were discovered, and the 
next they were upon them. 

" Cut them down if they do not surrender ! " they 
heard the voice of an officer say. 

Darcy fired his revolver at the foremost ; it missed, 
and with another shout to surrender, which passed 
unheeded, they were ridden down, and a dozen troopers, 
leaping from their saddles, hastened to secure them. 

So sudden and vigorous was the onslaught, that effec- 
tual resistance was out of the question ; and, to the 
bitter mortification of the four, they were secured with- 
out having been able to unhorse a man, and without 
themselves receiving a wound. And this on the very 
verge of success. 

Bound and guarded closely, they were compelled to 
march each between two troopers on the road towards 
"Washington. 

Darcy, till this, had been hopeful and sanguine of 
success. Now, however, despair took possession of his 
soul. 

" It is our fate," he muttered to himself ; " we must 
die!" 

Even Captain George now gave way to deep gloom. 

" My presentiment, then, was false," he thought ; "we 
must die!" 

As for Gerald Leigh, he resigned himself calmly to 
his fate ; and, without a word, they were marched on to 
their doom. 



385 



CHAPTEE LXI1I. 

A TEEEIBLE EATE. 

In the sudden confusion of the attack, and the dark- 
ness combined, the moon being again overclouded, Darby 
Kelly, who lay on the ground asleep, and on whom the 
noise and shouts produced no more effect than the pre- 
vious efforts of Darcy Leigh, remained unnoticed, and 
the other prisoners were marched off without him. Kor 
did any of the four miss him, each thinking that he too 
had been captured, and was being carried prisoner to 
"Washington. 

They walked on in silence for some distance, until, at 
a word of command, the troopers halted, when, after a 
moment's consultation between the officers, the word 
was given "left wheel," and they struck off from the 
road and in a direction away from the river, not towards 
Washington or the camp, but as if about to make a 
circuit so as to avoid both. 

Darcy Leigh, who knew more of the. state of affairs in 
general than the other two, was somewhat surprised at 
this. 

' Where can they be taking us ? ' he thought ; « strange 
that they should not at once conduct us to head-quarters 
in the camp/ 

As for Gerald and Captain George, they knew nothing 
of the Federal movements or position of the troops, and 
thought, naturally, that they were proceeding straight 
to a detachment of troops, or perhaps to the head- 
quarters of the army, which, for all they knew to the 
contrary, might be at Baltimore, in place of Washington. 
They had progressed but about a hundred yards from 
the road when once again the word " Halt " was suddenly 
and sharply given. On both these occasions both Gerald 
and Darcy Leigh fancied they had before heard the voice. 
" Bind each of your prisoners to a tree," the same 
officer said, sternly ; " quick, we have no time to lose." 
In an instant Gerald, Captain George, Darcy, and 

C c 



386 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

Jupiter were dragged to four trees close together, and 
securely bound. 

1 Great God ! ' thought Darcy Leigh, ' they are going 
to shoot us in cold blood in the dark, and without even 
the pretence of a trial.' 

" Cowards ! murderers ! ruffians ! " shouted Captain 
George, who also interpreted this movement in the same 
manner, " do your worst, I defy you. Shoot us — I don't 
fear death. I will show you bastard Yankees how an 
Englishman can die." 

The officer deigned no reply to this, but gave the 
terrible order to his troopers, — 

" Load your carbines, my men." 

The prisoners heard in the ring of the ramrods their 
death-knell, and resolved to meet death as brave men 
should. 

" George, my boy," said Gerald calmly, to his friend, 
who was nearest to him, " how much now for your 
presentiment ? " 

" I was a fool. I do not fear death, but it is a bitter 
thought that I must die while my mortal enemy, whom 
I have sworn to stay, still walks the earth." 

" Gerald, brother, adieu, our hour is come," said 
Darcy ; " I have done my best to save you, and in these, 
my last moments, am comforted by the thought that we 
die together." 

" Darcy, farewell. I could die happier were it not 
that you have lost your life through attempting to save 
mine." 

" Good by, Jupiter, my brave fellow," said Darcy, 
u these brutes will not spare you." 

" Oh, my Lor a God a'mussy, massa Darcy, I isn't 
afraid if you isn't. I know I'se goin' to glory. It won't 
take long, will it, massa Darcy?" 

" "What, going to glory, as you call it ? I hope not." 

At this moment a trooper advanced to each, carbine 
in hand. 

No help was near; there was no hope; they knew they 
must die. 

(t Farewell, brother, once more farewell," replied Darcy. 



LOVE, DEATH, AND HOPE. 387 

"Farewell, gentlemen both," said Captain George. 

J only know one of you, but I take the liberty of 

offering both a piece of advice. Ask these murderers to 

shoot you through the head. I have never tried it, but 

I am convinced it 's the easiest way." 

"Shoot me through the head, if you please," he added 
to the trooper in front of him, "I hate to have bulled 
holes bored in my clothes." 

The officer in command gave a signal of impatience, 
and the four troopers advanced each close to his victim, 
and presented their carbines. 

But we are bound, in gallantry, after so long an 
absence, to return to the sisters, Stella and Angela 
Gayle. & 



CHAPTER LXIY. 

LOVE, DEATH, AND HOPE. 

"While the events related in our last were in pro- 
gress, Stella G-ayle remained on the balcony, wrapped 
only m a shawl to protect her from the cold night air. 

She watched Lupus Eock go forth on his errand 
accompanied by a negro, his fears of the ghost not 
allowing him to go alone. 

She saw the latter return in about half an hour 
and sending for him, learned that her cousin had so far 
complied with her commands, and had entered the guard- 
room where the man had left him. 

A timepiece in the room chimed the midnight hour 
and soon afterwards her sister Angela came out on to 
the balcony. 

" Stella, are you not going to retire ? " she asked 

"And why ? " asked Stella, bitterly— ''to sleep ?' Do 
you think I can sleep, when to-morrow morn the earthly 
career of our friend, Gerald Leigh, is to be brought 
to a close ? " & 

" Stella, it is the will of God— willingly would I lay 
down my life to save his." 

The voice of Angela trembled; she hesitated for a 

cc 2 



388 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

moment, then threw herself on her knees, and buried 
her head in her sister's lap. 

" Oh, Stella, you know not, you never could know 
how deeply, passionately I have loved him — my brave, 
my noble Gerald — God give me strength to bear this 
trial." 

" My poor child," said Stella, raising Angela's head, 
and kissing her forehead with all an elder sister's 
motherly fondness, " is it indeed so ? But I perceived it 
long since." 

" Oh, Stella, forgive me. I could not help it. He is 
so brave, so kind ; and then do you know, I have thought 
sometimes that he loved me." 

"He did — he did — I am sure he did," said Stella. 
* I have seen it in his looks, his actions, a hundred times." 

Under any other circumstances how proudly happy 
would these words have made the gentle Angela; but 
now they only made the bitterness of the eternal parting 
the more bitter. 

"And he must die to-morrow," she cried with a 
burst of uncontrollable anguish ; " die, die ! Oh, God of 
Heaven ! God of the good ! Great God of battles ! wilt 
thou suffer this ? " 

Her voice rose almost to a shriek of agony as she gave 
yent to this appeal. 

Her sister, fearing from her sister's intense and 
unusual excitement, that her mind would give way, 
sought to soothe her. 

" Angela, do not give way thus. Listen to me. There 
is yet hope." 

Angela gazed wildly, incredulously in her face. 

" Hope ! hope ! it cannot be, Stella ; you are seeking 
to deceive me." 

" No— no ; I repeat there is hope." 

" "What hope ? are they not both to be shot to-morrow, 
he and the brave Englishman ? What hope can there 
be ? who can save them now ? " 

" There is no certainty," replied Stella ; " but there is 
a hope. They may be saved yet. There is one who is 
about to make an attempt, and who may save them." 



LOVE, DEATH, AND HOPE. 889 

"Who? who?" 

u Bar cy Leigh." 

" Darcy Leigh— Stella, you are seeking to deceive me, 
or are mad. Darcy Leigh is dead." 

" Darcy Leigh is not dead." 

"Not dead! Did we not see him shot down on the 
deck of the Spitfire ? " 

" Darcy Leigh is alive. I saw him this very night — 
not two hours since." 

Angela started to her feet and gazed in her sister's 
face. Had she taken leave of her senses ? Seen Darcy 
Leigh that night? It was impossible, for Angela knew 
her sister had not left the house that day. 

"I saw him to-night," continued Stella, calmly and 
deliberately; "he climbed up the balcony, and suddenly 
stood before me. At first I thought it was a spirit, and 
I believe I fainted, or nearly so. But it was no spirit- 
it was Darcy Leigh himself— disguised, and with his face 
stained like that of a mulatto. He came to endeavour 
to save his brother Gerald, and his object in climbing 
the balcony was to see you or me, and get all possible 
information as to where he was confined, the guard over 
him, and all other particulars." 

> " And you told him all, Stella ; you received him with 
kindness, with joy ? I need not ask— I know you did. 
Ah ! there is, indeed, then, some hope. Darcy Leigh is 
a brave, noble fellow. Next to his brother, I like and 
admire him more than any man on earth. There is hope 
— more than hope. Darcy Leigh will succeed— I feel, I 
know he will. And Stella," she suddenly said, fixing 
her eyes on her sister, " you once called him coward ! " 

Stella coloured with confusion and shame at her sister's 
words. She remembered how harshlv she had spoken 
and acted to Darcy, impelled by her pride, and her heart 
smote her. 

" Yes, Angela, there is hope. Darcy promised a signal 
if he succeeded. That signal was to be a rocket, sent up 
from yonder clump of trees, on the other side of the river." 
"Where ? Point it out to me, Stella." 
She did so, and continued, — 



390 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

" If we do not see that rocket shoot up to heaven be- 
fore daybreak, then, indeed, all is lost." 

" Let us remain here and watch for it, Stella." 

Stella proceeded to do so. 
. " Come, let us arrange ourselves, so that we can watch 
the little hill from which the signal of Gerald's safety is 
to ascend." 

Accordingly they placed a chair in the corner of the 
balcony, facing the Virginian hills, on the other side of 
the Potomac. 

Stella seated herself in the chair, and Angela at her 
feet. 

" We will take turns in watching, Stella," she said ; 
"you shall have the first half-hour." 

Stella consented, and wrapping a part of her shawl 
around her sister's head and shoulders, silently watched 
for the hoped-for rocket. 

She fixed her eyes on the little hill in the distance, as 
though momentarily expectiug to see the fiery messenger 
shoot up in the sky, although it was impossible that, 
even if Darcy Leigh succeeded in his desperate attempt, 
he could reach there for several hours at least. 

Angela, in whose gentle heart the fire of hope again 
burned, wearied out with grief and fatigue, soon sank 
into a gentle slumber — the sweet, calm sleep of inno- 
cence, 



CHAPTER LXV. 
"take this hound TO his kennel." 

At the close of the first half-hour Lupus Bock returned. 
Stella heard his footsteps pass through the courtyard and 
into the house, and heard him ascend the stairs into the 
room where a light burned. She heard him throw him- 
self on a couch, and in less than a minute. his deep, heavy 
breathing proclaimed that he slept. 

Stella aroused her sister. 

"Angela, awake! My half-hour's watch has long 
expired." 



"take this hound to his kennel." 391 

Angela gladly undertook her vigil, and Stella, rising, 
went into the room where lay her sleeping cousin, snoring 
like a pig. 

She gazed at him contemptuously, and said to her- 
self, — 

" Good ! — so far the scheme works well. He has drank 
of the wine, as have also the two officers on guard, Vava- 
sour and James. They, by this time, are as sound asleep 
as he." 

Then she touched a small hand-bell, and a negro ser- 
vant answered the summons — for, of course, the house- 
hold had not retired so long as their mistresses 
were up. 

" Go call Pompey," she said to the man, who quickly 
reappeared with that sable personage. 

" Eemove that hound to his kennel," she said, point- 
ing to Lupus Eock on the couch. 

The negroes proceeded to obey their mistress's com- 
mand, and raised the sleeping form of Lupus. 

They carried him down stairs, and, arrived at the 
bottom, paused with their burden, who still slept 
deeply. 

" I say, nigger," said Pompey, " dis here's a rum start; 
let's put him down an' consultate." 

They did so. 

11 Drunk, by golly ! " said Pompey. 

" Drunk, by golly ! " said the other. 

"What did Missa Stella say, nigger?" asked Pompey. 

" Take dis hound to his kennel." 

"Whar is de kennel?" 

"At de back, whar de dogs lib, ob course." 

" An' what is we to do, eh ? Answer me dat, nigger," 
asked Pompey, severely. 

" Why take dis hound to de kennel." 

And then both niggers set up a loud chuckle, and 
raising their burden, bore him off to the dog-kennel. 

" By golly, ain't he heavy ! " said nigger number one. 

" By golly, ain't he drunk ! " said nigger number 
two. 

Lupus Eock was duly deposited in the kennel, and tho 



392 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

two negroes returned to the house, delighted at having 
thus literally carried out their mistress's order. 

As for Lupus he slept there as soundly as he would 
have done in his own bed. 

First one hound, then another, came up and sniffed 
inquiringly around him, and then, apparently satisfied, 
went off and left him. 

It was fortunate that Gerald Leigh's big dog Lion 
was not of their number, or probably all that would have 
been found of Lupus in the morning would have been 
his boots and buttons. 



CHAPTEE LXVI. 

WATCHING- FOE THE EOCKET. 

Stella G-atle, after giving the order respecting her 
sleeping cousin, which the negroes so willingly and 
literally executed, again joined her sister on the balcony, 
who had taken her place and was gazing fixedly out 
towards the little hill in the distance, whence they 
both hoped to see shoot up to the sky the signal 
rocket. 

The wind howled and moaned among the trees, and 
whistled around the house, causing the sisters to draw 
their cachmere shawl yet closer around them. Tet 
still they kept to their posts. 

The only sounds borne on the breeze were the distant 
challenge of the watchful sentinels, and occasionally the 
voice of drunken revellers in the city, who even at that 
hour still strolled the streets or crowded the bar- 
rooms. 

The dreary ticking of the timepiece in the room and 
the beating of their own hearts were the only other 
sounds to break the deadly silence of the night. 

One o'clock — half-past — two — the clock kept ticking 
— the wind kept moanfully 4 sighing— the sisters wearily 
watching. 

And all was still, 



WATCHING FOE THE EOCKET. 393 

No rocket shot up from that hill on which such anxious 
eyes are bent. 

The clock chimed two. 

Shortly afterwards Angela, who was watching as only a 
man whose life, or a woman whose love depends on it, 
can watch ; and Stella, kneeling at her feet, gazing out 
on to the Virginian hills, were startled by a sudden alarm. 
They could plainly hear shouts, the report of firearms, 
and bugle calls. 

The sisters clung tightly to each other and listened. 
Stella gaziug earnestly out in the direction of the alarm ; 
while Angela, true to her vigil, kept her eyes fixed on 
the little hill. 

The alarm they heard was that following the discovery 
of the escape of the prisoners. 

Presently all again was still. 

They waited, watched, and listened, little knowing 
that those on whom their thoughts were fixed were free 
and flying for their lives towards the river. 

Another half-hour. 

The wind still howled and moaned among the trees, 
the clock still ticked dismally in the room, and the sisters 
still patiently watched. 

But they little knew that those on whom their thoughts 
were fixed had been free, had well-nigh made good their 
escape, and in the very height of their best hopes had 
been again captured, and were at that very moment 
being marched, gloomy and spirit-broken, back to their 
prisons — back to their doom. 

Another hour passed. Still no meteor light dashed 
up into the sky from that Virginian hill. 
' A dismal howling was then heard from the yard at 
the back of the house. 

A prolonged howl, half mournful, half savage. 

" Heavens ! Stella, what is that ? " 

" Gerald's dog Lion, whom I have kept, in spite of 
his having bitten our worthy cousin Lupus." 

"Is it an omen, Stella? Tou have beard the Irish 
legend of the Banshee's shriek, — is the faithful dog of 
our doomed friend the Banshee ? " 



394 



THE BLACK ANGEL. 



' : Hush, Angela, there is yet hope." 

She spoke of hope— she knew not that Gerald, Darcy, 
and Captain George were at that moment in the hands 
of the troopers — bound, unarmed, helpless, escape impos- 
sible. 

Another hour. No light shot up into the sky from 
that dark clump across the river. Still the wind howled 
and moaned among the trees— the clouds flew in dense 
dark masses orerhead, scarcely suffering the moon to 
show her cold face for a second — the timepiece ticked 
monotonously in the room ; while, ever and anon, Gerald's 
great dog in the yard set up its dismal howl. 

At that very moment the four prisoners were bound to 
trees, with a dragoon with loaded carbine in front of 
each, awaiting their fate. Suddenly the sharp report of 
fire-arms broke on the stillness of the night— a report as 
of several pieces discharged in rapid succession. 

Then, again, all was quiet, save the moaning of the 
wind, the ticking of the clock, and the howling of the 
dog. 

A shiver stole over Stella's whole frame — she knew not 
why. 

That single sharp discharge, followed by silence, jarred 
painfully on her feelings. Angela clung yet closer to her, 
and they waited, watched, and listened. 

But no other sound broke the quiet of the night. Even 
the wind, which had previously been high, now sank ; 
and whereas it howled and whistled before, now only 
moaned feebly. 

The dog, too, after one prolonged howl, was silent. 
The ticking clock, alone, and the beating of their own 
hearts, were the only sounds to break the dreadful calm. 

Half an hour passed, and Angela, raising her fair 
young face, looked sadly, beseechingly in the pale one of 
her sister, and asked, — 

" Stella, is there hope ? " 

" Hope on, and pray." 

Then all again was silent, Angela, a3 before, burying 
her face i% her sister's lap. 

Another half-hour, unbroken by a sound. 






WATCHING FOE THE TtOCKET. 395 

Stella Grayle, with compressed lips and fixed glassy- 
stare, gazes forth to that Virginian hill in the dis- 
tance. 

Alas ! all there is dark as the tomb. No light 
shoots up to the heavens, and as mimite after minute 
passes on, the blackness of despair begins to creep over 
her soul. 

"Stella, is there hope?" again Angela asks, again 
looking distractedly in her face. 

But Stella has no hope to give, nor can Angela see 
any, even the slightest gleam in those pale, calm, lovely 
features. 

Once again the younger sister buries her head in 
Stella's lap, who still watches on with desperate tenacity, 
even though the last spark be all but extinguished. 

When next Angela raises her head she does not speak, 
but only looks in the pale face of her sister. Then she 
hurriedly, shudderingly casts a glance around her — first 
to that Virginian hill whence they have so long looked 
in vain for comfort, then her eyes sweep the horizon 
round by the west, to the north, to the east. 

The blood freezes in her veins as she perceives a faint 
light in the clouds. 

The day is about to break, the last sun which the pri- 
soners will ever see, she thinks, is about to rise. 

Alas ! she saw them not, bound to trees more than two 
hours back, with those stern troopers facing them, loaded 
carbines in hand. 

Nor can she see them now. 

Again the gentle head is bowed down, and still Stella 
gazes fixedly out across the river. 

For two hours she has never once removed her eyes 
from that little hill with the dark clump of trees at the 
top. 

Minutes flit by, the solitary cock crows out its chal- 
lenge to the orb of day to appear ; soon others follow. 

Then is heard a distant bugle blast, then another, and 
another, as they sound the reveille. 

The faint gleam of light in the east deepens, lengthens, 
widens. 



396 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

The pale, feeble grey brightens, and soon red hues 
mingle with it. 

And now, not only in the east, but all around, the grey 
light of dawn steals on. The distant city of "Washington, 
which was but a few minutes before but a dark mass, 
now gradually emerges from the gloom. First the 
whitest and most prominent houses appear, then the 
whole city, with its noble buildings, aud wide, regular 
streets. 

A mist hangs over the river and a heavy morning dew 
is falling, which wets the thin dresses of the sisters, 
and spangles the rich luxuriant hair of Stella, falling 
dishevelled over her head and shoulders. 

"What a study for a painter ! Stella divested of her 
shawl, which she has wrapped closely round the head and 
shoulders of Angela, who kneels at her feet, clinging 
passionately, desperately to her, afraid to raise her face 
and learn that the last, the very last ray of hope has 
gone. 

Stella, in her close-fitting evening dress, bare-headed, 
bare-shouldered, yet feeling neither the cold dew nor 
the colder morning blast. Though a hurricane tore over 
her head, what matter ? Though the wind should blow, 
and the clouds pour down rain, sleet, hail, or snow, what 
matter to that fair girl with the large dark eyes, gazing 
fixedly, with desperate tenacity on that little Virginian 

She keeps her vigil bravely; nor till the sun shall 
have risen above the sky, driving before him the shadows 
of the night and the mists of the morning, will she relin- 
quish her post and her watch. 

Save for the rising and falling of her bosom, motion- 
less as a statue, she might well serve as the model for 
one. 

Observe the sloping fall of the shoulders, the graceful 
neck poising the small, antique head, with the true 
Grecian features and low forehead — in woman, so great a 
beauty. 

Look at the faultlessly moulded arms, hands, and bust, 
and then at the rich dark hair, falling loose around her, 



WATCHING FOE THE BOCKET. 397 

all spangled with the morning dew ; note the fixed, wrapt 
gaze of the large dark eye, and say, might she not be 
taken for the type of all that is lovely embodied in 
woman's form, and turned into marble ? 

Once again Angela raises her head, and with a feeling 
of desperate and utter despair, knows that all is lost— all 
hope gone. 

When last she hid her face it was night, black, gloomy 
dark. ' 

Now it is almost day, and in a few more minutes the 
sun will be above the horizon. 

One more long, last, lingering look towards that dark 
clump, which the dawning day reveals to be a number of 
tall pine trees, and Stella sadly, painfudy, and with 
desperate unwillingness turns away her eyes and bends 
them on her sister. 

Tor a moment they gaze in each other's faces. 

" Angela, all hope is gone ; let us pray to God to give 
rest to their souls." 

Then she rose and knelt by the side of her sister. 

" Great God of Heaven ! have mercy on the souls ot 
those for whom we have watched, and hoped, aud prayed 
in vain. Pardon their sins towards Thcx, their fellow- 
men, and their treason to their country." 

Angela's lips moved, but no sound came from them, as 
she repeated the short, simple prayer after her sister. ' 

For a few moments afterwards they remained, each 
putting up some little prayer, not even to be shared by a 
sister's confidence. 

Angela rose first— Stella followed her ; and they walked 
together towards the window, which opened on to the 
balcony, the scene of their sad and lonely vigil. 

Angela passed on with slow steps, almost* in a dream. 
Stella turns on the threshold, and gazes once more 
around. 

Suddenly a shriek— a shriek torn from the very heart 
by desperate emotion — breaks from her. 

She throws herself upon her knees, and, with clasped 
hands, gazes madly, with starting eyes, out across the 
Potomac. 



39S THE BLACK AFGEL. 

Angela, ghastly pale with terror, rushes out again on 
to the balcony, and falls on her knees by her sister's 
side. 

" Angela ! Angela ! " gasps Stella, " saved ! saved I— 
look ! look ! Can it be true — or is it a dream ? " 

It was no dream. From the dark chimp of fir trees on 
iliat Virginian hill a rochet had shot aloft. High tip above 
the trees it soared away into the sly — dark from the back- 
ground of black clouds. 

Up, up it icent, like a stream of fire, till it arrived at its 
extreme elevation. 

Then it burst, and myriads of little stars scattered in all 
directions, and slowly fell to earth. 

# # # :i 

The bright sun rose in all his glory. He shone on 
that balcony, and on the inanimate forms of two young 
fair girls. 

Weak nature had given way, and, locked in each 
other's arms, Stella and Angela lay in a deadly swoon. 



CHAPTEE LXVII. 

A SLIGHT MISTAKE. 

"Whe^ the dismounted troopers approached carbine 
in hand, each of the " four prisoners made up their minds 
that the moment for their death had come. Jupiter, the 
nigger, dried his eyes and ni'imbled a prayer such as 
his limited education could at the moment command. 
Gerald, Oeorge, and Darcy, however, calmly and de- 
fiantly looked the men in the face. 

One of the troopers then spoke : — 

" Our orders are to shoot you instantly should you 
attempt to give the alarm or raise an outcry." 

They were not, then, to be shot at once — eacli thought 
and wondered. 

And then what was the meaning of the words about 
giving an alarm ? What matter if they made the woods 
ring out with their shouts ? It would be utterly futile. 






A SLIGHT MISTAKE. 899 

Totally unable to understand this, they waited calmly 
in expectation of whatever fate might have in store for 
them. 

And now is heard the distant rumbling of wheels, and, 
after a little time, the regular tramp of infantry. 

At a word given in a low voice by the officer in com- 
mand, all the troopers il^ntly mounted and drew up in 
line. 

Each man examined his carbine and the pistols in his 
holsters, and drew his sabre. 

" Let not a man fire a shot without orders," said the 
deep voice of the officer, " let the cold steel do the work." 

Again both Darcy and Gerald started. Both could 
have sworn they knew the tones of that rich, clear voice. 
And now in the direction of Washington could be per- 
ceived a dark mass moving aloDg the road towards them. 

The dragoons were at a distance from this road of 
some hundred yards or so, and now, at a word, advanced 
closer, and again halting, drew up in line, as if preparing 
to charge. The momentary gleams of moonshine from 
between the clouds shone on the bright blades as each 
man held his sabre drawn in his hand. 

The dark mass in the distance approaches, the rumble 
of wheels grows more distinct, and the tramp of troops 
more marked. 

The prisoners can now perceive that the approaching 
force consists of about a company of infantry, convoying 
two field guns, two waggons, and two ammunition tum- 
brils. The waggons, the guns, and the tumbrils were 
allowed to pass unchallenged, but no sooner had the first 
of the small column of infantry arrived opposite the 
concealed dragoons, than a shout rent the air, and the 
thunder of horses' hoofs burst on the ears of the 
astonished soldiers. 

" Charge them, cut them down — Hurrah ! my brave 
boys ! " cried the dragoon officer, raising his sword aloft. 
The soldiers had not time to form square. They had 
but just time to give one irregular discharge, when the 
terrible cavalry were upon them — among them, cutting, 
slashing, shouting, and trampling them under their 



400 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

horses' feet. The soldiers threw down their arms and 
scattered in every direction to escape those gleaming 
sabres. Some few, scarcely a fourth their number, got 
away ; the rest, in the space of a minute, were stretched 
on the ground, killed or wounded. 

The drivers of the waggons and the artillerymen, 
seeing it was hopeless, made no resistance, and in the 
course of a couple of minutes the combat, fierce and 
short, was over. 

Captain George, Gerald, and Darcy heard and saw 
all tins with utter amazement. What could it mean ? 

Scarcely are they captured themselves than their 
captors frantically attack their own troops. Is it a 
troop of madmen into whose hands they have fallen ? 

Suddenly, as a flash of lightning illumines the darkness 
of the night, there shot over the mind of Darcy Leigh a 
solution of this mystery. 

Once, twice, three times he had fancied he recognised 
the voice of the officer in command. 

Yes, it must be so — it was so ; and they had been 
captured by a body of rebel cavalry, or one of those 
daring night reconnaissances or raids which have made 
that branch of the Confederate forces so famous. 

They had been captured by their friends, and of course 
so near Washington, had been taken for Yankees. 

No sooner had this conviction forced itself on his 
mind, than an exclamation of delight broke from Darcy 
Leigh. 

" My man," he said to the soldier on guard, " there is 
some mistake here ; you are Confederates." 

" I rather reckon we air, so jist hold your d d 

Yankee tongue." 

" But we also are Confederates, your friends." 

" Bunkum," said \he soldier, incredulously, " that 
won't do with this coon." 

" Call your officer ; this mistake will soon be cleared 
up." 

" Hyar he comes, so you can jist pitch him what tale 
you like ; but if he's such a darned fool as to believe it, 
may I be — " 



A SLIGHT MISTAKE. 401 

Gerald and Captain George had heard the words of 
Darcy, and the soldier's reply, and at once knew they 
were safe. 

Captain George, whose eye had never quailed, could 
hardly realize the fact; while Jupiter, who, notwith- 
standing his assertion that he was " going to glory," did 
not at all like the prospect of the journey. 

The next moment the officer in command rode up, 
his drawn sabre dripping with blood. 

" Unbind the prisoners and place them on the captured 
waggons, under secure guard, and prepare to march." 

" Sir," said Darcy Leigh, acting as spokesman, "there 
is some mistake here ; when you rode us down and cap- 
tured us, we thought you Yankees, and it appears you 
also thought us to be so. We are Southerners, at least 
two of us, and this negro, and the other an Englishman, 
a friend. My brother and he have just escaped from the 
Yankees, having been condemned to be shot for attempt- 
ing to join our forces. I am Captain Darcy Leigh — 
General Beauregard himself conferred that rank on me ; 
and this is my brother, a loyal Southeruer like myself." 

" "What is all this I hear ? — Southerners ! — Captain 
Darcy Leigh, whose daring exploit with the Spitfire has 
made such a noise — can this be true ? " 

" Quite true ; you can satisfy yourself. If I mistake 
not, your name is Irvin. I have met you in Richmond. 
I thought at first I recognised your voice, but could not 
remember where I had heard it." 

This carried conviction to the officer's mind.^ He 
sheathed his sabre, and leaping from his horse cried to 
the troopers, " Eelease these gentlemen ; it is a mistake, 
they are our friends. Captain Darcy Leigh, I ask your 
pardon for the rough treatment to which you have been 
subjected." 

The next moment the prisoners were free, and Cap- 
tain Irvin hastened to shake hands with them. 

" You will come with us across the river, I suppose ? 
"We received intelligence from some of our spies of this 
baggage, ammunition, and artillery, and dashed across 
the river by one of the fords to cut it off". Seeing you 

D D 



402 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

in the road before us, it became necessary, supposing 
you to be Northerners, that we should capture you; 
hence the mistake. You come with us ? " 

" Certainly," said Darcy, laughing. "We have passed 
through too many perils within the last few hours not 
to be glad to join so gallant a force as yours." 

" Three of the best mounted of you fellows give up 
your horses to these gentlemen, and ride on the waggons 
or walk as you choose. Now, gentlemen, to horse; we 
have no time to lose. Some of those who escaped have 
by this time, doubtless, given an alarm, and if we are not 
quick, we shall have a brigade of cavalry about our ears." 

Gerald, Darcy, and Captain George were quickly in 
the saddle ; Captain Irvin requesting them to ride at the 
head of the troop with him. The waggons and guns were 
driven off at a rapid pace, the troops following close 
behind. They had not gone many yards when Darcy 
suddenly remembered the faithful Irishman. 

"Stay, sir, one moment," he said to the officer, "you 
know the spot where you captured us ? " 

"Yes." 

" There were five of us." 

"Five?" 

" Yes, and in the confusion you passed over one who 
was lying on the ground." 

" Confusion ! then if you had indeed been Yankees, he 
could have started off and given the alarm." 

u Scarcely, for he was and I believe is still fast asleep." 

" Asleep ! what, all through the confusion and noise 
of your capture ? " 

"Yes; I myself for some time could not understand 
it ; but I now remember he partook of some wine, and 
from other circumstances I conclude it was drugged." 

" Ah ! well, we have no time to waste now in talk, but 
we will not leave your friend. Sergeant Kennedy, take 
four men and ride back to where we captured these 
gentlemen, If you see any one there asleep or awake 
hoist him up on one of your horses and hasten after us." 

The sergeant hurried off with the four soldiers, while 
the others proceeded on their way. They reached the 



A SLIGHT MISTAKE, 403 

river bank in safety, and were there joined by the ser- 
geant's party, one of whom had the still sleeping body 
of Darby Kelly slung over the saddle bow. 

"When Stella Grayle descended into the cellar it was for 
a good purpose. We have seen the effect of the wine on 
Lupus, on the officers in the guard-room, and on Darby 
Kelly. It must have been very strong, or drugged. 

The operation of crossing the river was tedious, but 
it was safely accomplished. The guns, jvaggons, and 
ammunition were dragged up the steep bank on the other 
sic 1 © \ and now, after all their perils and their imminent 
danger, Captain G-eorge's presentiment was right, and 
our adventurers are safe on the shores of Old Virginia. 
The dawn was yet breaking as they accomplished the 
passage of the river. 

Darcy asked for a couple of troopers to ride to a hill 
which he pointed out, about a mile distant. Captain Irvin 
readily granted them to him, and Darcy dashed off at a 
gallop for that little Virginian hill on which the eyes of 
Stella are so earnestly bent. 

A few minutes' ride brought him to the summit, and 
dismounting, he proceeded to search among the brush- 
wood. He quickly found what he looked for, having left 
it there before he crossed the Potomac on his perilous 
enterprise. It was a small valise, which he opened, and 
took therefrom a signal rocket. Having strapped the 
valise to his horse's saddle bow, he struck the fuse of 
the rocket, and instantly it shot high up in the air. 

He watched its blazing course, and then slowly re- 
mounted his horse. It was now dawn. 

'They will surely see- it,' he thought; 'the light is 
not yet strong enough to prevent that. At all events, I 
have performed my promise ; though a couple of hours 
ago I little thought that my hands would have ever sent 
it up.' 

" JSTow, lads, let's on." 

He struck spurs into his horse's flank, and in a few 
minutes had rejoined the troop of Confederate cavalry. 

•M* dfe dfc d& iJfe •& 

Shortly after the events just narrated, five travellers, 



404 THE BLACK ANGEL. 

weary, dusty, and dirty, entered the city of Charleston, 
over -which the " bonnie blue flag " triumphantly waved. 

These travellers were our old friends Gerald Leigh, 
Darcy Leigh, and Captain George, the negro, and Darby 
Kelly. 

And now north and south is heard the tramp of 
armed legions, the rumble of artillery, the clatter of 
horses' hoofs, as each prepare to plunge into the dread- 
ful struggle about to desolate the land. 

An army is being assembled at and around "Wash- 
ington, the famous Army of the Potomac, which is to 
overrun and conquer back the South ; while another 
army, less numerous and worse armed, is mustering in 
Northern Virginia, to do battle with the invaders for 
the soil of the " Old Dominion." As yet there have 
been only a few unimportant skirmishes ; the rival hosts 
have not met in the shock of battle. But this gloomy 
calm, presaging the coming storm, is doomed to be of 
short duration ; the sky will soon be lurid with fire and 
smoke and the light of burning towns ; the soil will be 
wet, and the rivers of this hitherto favoured land red 
with blood. 



*HE END, 



Printed by W. H, Smith <fc Son, 186, Strand, London, 



^ 



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