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had been too severe to warrant their commencing an active course of annoyance with any prospect of success; and accordingly they advanced no farther than the field of battle, where they threw up additional works for their security. The Provincial Forces halted on ProspectHill, occupying an entrenched position in their front, both parties carefully guarding against an attack, which each well knew they were but badly prepared to oppose.
With rest and refreshment, O'Hara's strength was wonderfully recruited; and now free from any apprehensions for his lady's or his own safety, he felt anxiously for that of his companions. Edwards principally engrossed his attention; and, as several hours had elapsed since the engagement terminated, and no tidings of his friend, although repeatedly sought for, had yet arrived, he determined, with the assistance of his servant, to proceed to his former residence, whither he had ordered Mahony to be carried as soon as the wounded were brought in. On the way, he found the fears he entertained for Edward's safety confirmed, as he was informed he had been severely wounded, and
agreeably to his particular directions, carried to the house of O'Hara. On arriving at the door, he entered with so much silence, that for some moments he was an unobserved spectator of what was passing in the room. Pat Mahony, stretched on a mattress in a corner, was observing with apparent solicitude, the striking group which occupied the centre of the apartment. The light was sad and sombre-the windows were blinded, with the exception of that before which Edwards, lying on a couch, was supported by a soldier seated behind him; the Regimental Surgeon, examining a wound in his breast on one side, and a grave, heart-broken looking man kneeling on the other, with one of the patient's hands clasped between his own; his face was deadly pale, and the blood, which a bandage could not staunch, was trickling from a sabre cut in his forehead. O'Hara came forward, and Edwards instantly recognised him with an exclamation of joy, and placing his arm around his friend's neck, kissed him with fervent affection. The Surgeon, raising his head, glanced his eye at O'Hara, and fatally that glance told that Edwards's fate in
this world was decided. Tears falling down the rugged cheeks of the supporting soldier, and Mahony's frequent sobs, indicated that they too had remarked that ominous look.
None but the sufferer himself was unmoved, and with a voice of amazing steadiness, he smilingly, but feebly, addressed O'Hara:
“ From my heart I congratulate you. What was my pride when lying on the field, I heard the shout of Ireland for ever!-O'Hara and victory!' And your wife and the little stranger, too-I have heard all, but have neither strength nor words to say how happy I wish them. Hold-do not close that window-it was my only prayer to be carried here, and I can now die without a wish ungratified.”
A sun-beam fell partially on the green, and rested for a moment on Rachel's grave. The dying soldier remarked it, and exclaimed with wild enthusiasm— Yes, blessed beam, if you light upon that spot to-morrow, I shall be there also !"
His extremities were now cold, and he complained that he felt chilly, and carelessly asked how long he might still linger? The Surgeon,
to whom the question was addressed, turned his head hastily aside to conceal excessive agitation. “I read my answer,” said Edwards, coolly, “ and my last route is come-but my peace is made--with Rachel I sleep to-night, and none can sever the union of the dead; though not in life, yet in death I shall be thine, Rachel !"
The old man burst into a flood of tears, as he said mournfully, “ Thou mayest go to her, but she shall never come to thee;" and stooping down, affectionately kissed him.
Edwards asked for wine, and having with difficulty-swallowed a glass-full, he continued
-" I feel I have not many minutes to live ; hear ine, Frederic-you have a son, will you, in remembrance of your deceased kinsman, call him Henry Edwards ?” O'Hara pressed his hand in token of the compliance to which his lips could not give utterance.
66 What I esteem most valuable, I leave him-my swordit was my father's-stainless it descended to me, and the son of O'Hara will never disgrace a gallant weapon. When I am breathless, place me in the earth as I now lie, coffinless.. His uniform should ever be a soldier's winding-sheet.
Lay me close to Rachel-let not even a turf fall between me and my bride. I wish the remnant of my own company to carry me to the grave, and if they think I merited them, let them pay me the last honours of a soldier. I am dying: tell your wife I sent her my last love; and when your son asks who was Henry Edwards, tell him he was born a soldier, and that he died one. Can you see Bunker's-Hill, O'Hara? Bring me closer to the window-but no, it is useless. It was a noble battle for America ; and those who can fight so well for freedom, deserve it. Who closed that window? 'Tis only a mist shading my sight. I am going fast. God bless"
The contest was over, the sufferer at restan internal hæmorrhage had stopped the play of the lungs suddenly, and with his glassy eye still strained on the grave of his beloved Rachel, Edwards, with scarcely a struggle, expired.
The old man fell across the body, the soldier lowered the corse on the couch, and Mahony raising himself on his knees, exclaimed with unsophisticated piety, May the gates of Heaven open to your soul, sweet Edwards !”