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heart; but to say that it is always so, is a libel upon nature.".. . · They were now upon the return home, and soon rejoined Mary and lady Anne Milsome, with whom the baron de S had still continued. : Charles could now meet him with feelings of unmixed pleasure, and the beginning of a strong friend. ship had already commenced between them. To lord Burton the society of the baron was particularly agreeable, from habits of old intimacy, and the kind of melancholy that hung upon each of them produced a sympathy of feeling, and a similarity of ideas, that drew them more strongly together than ever. The elegance of the baron's manners, and the extensive information he possessed, made him a pleasant companion to the ladies of the party; and all, in short, looked forward to his accompanying them to Naples as a great addition to the pleasure they expected. · Accordingly, on the day proposed, they
countess not being there, Charles found himself in rather an awkward situation, knowing, as he did, the intentions of his friend: he however made an excuse to walk forward into a little colonnade before the house, which was divided from the garden by a slight trellis-work, covered with a variety of shrubs and plants; and here he contrived to amuse himself with the flowers which were arranged between the pillars, remaining out of hearing of whatever passed in the saloon. He had not, however, remained here long, when he beheld count Mori and colonel Pat a short distance in the grounds; the latter, by his quick gesticulation and ve. hement speech, seemed much heated, while the count appeared to regard him with a cool, pitying smile. At length the young officer paused, and folding his arms on his breast, remained for a moment with his eyes fixed on the ground, and then starting, he struck his clenched hand violently against his forehead, and darted
into the road which led from the villa, while the count turned upon his heel, and reentered the house.
Almost immediately after, Charles was joined by sir Philip Mason, who did not appear near so much disturbed as his friend had expected. He proposed to return to Naples; and Charles assenting, they passed through the saloon, in which was count Mori alone, who, with his usual attention, conducted them to the door, and mounting their horses, they proceeded on their route.
With the frankness natural to his character, sir Philip scarcely had passed the villa, before he informed Mr. Melville, that signora Mori had cut short the communication he intended to have made, by telling him that she had written to him, from which the young baronet drew a favourable presage. Charles was not con-. cerned, and he judged more correctly.
About a mile from the city the road divides; the right hand branch, which is
the open road, was Charles's nearest way --the left was shorter for sir Philip Mason. It had hitherto so happened, that in their rides they had always gone by the left hand road, and Charles two or three times, when he had returned to the city by himself, had also gone that way, though it was somewhat longer; but now he thought that Mary must have long done the letter she was writing, and he was anxious to get home; and the baronet being equally desirous of seeing what was the purport of signora Mori's communication, they parted at the divarication of the roads, just as it was beginning to grow dark.
Charles had scarcely proceeded twenty yards, when he heard a noise, seemingly on the road he had just quitted, and riding back, he perceived his friend dismounted, and contending with a man, who endeavoured to point a pistol at his breast. Before Charles could come up to his assist ance, the baronet, by an exertion of his VOL. II. м
great muscular power, succeeded in wrenching the weapon from the hand of his assailant, and throwing him violently from him, sir Philip pointed the pistol, and fired, on which the other immediately pressed his hand to his side, reeled for a moment, and fell.. · Charles instantly dismounted, and helped sir Philip to raise the wounded man; but in so doing, what was his surprise to behold the countenance of one who had often before caused him uneasiness-that of the man who had attacked Mary at Ilfracombe, whom he had seen afterwards in Paris at Pere la Chaise, whom he had beheld with the robbers in the Apennines, and who had endeavoured to detain his cousin in a lonely village in Piedmont, in all probability for the purpose of murdering her! All power of injuring others seemed now.gone; the ball had entered his side, and lodged somewhere in the chest; and though not dead, he had scarce. ly strength to answer the questions which
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