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mouth of a fool may become worse than the sword or poison.


OUR story advances now to a point of time three months later than that, with the event of which the last chapter concluded. The young unknown, (for he was still a mystery to the peasant girl, although probably not for a moment to the attentive reader), was with Catherine at the usual place of meeting; the sun had been long set, and the night was without a moon. Scarcely had he arrived at the spot, when Catherine drew close to him, not, however, as was her wont, to throw herself into his arms with passionate haste, but slowly, calmly, and with an air of gravity such as he never had known her assume before. Her first exclamation was uttered almost with solemnity:

"I have something to tell you tonight; but not here."

"Where then, Catherine !" "In my father's house."

"In your father's house, my dear child? And why must it be there? You are perfectly incomprehensible.'

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"There you will understand." A keen and hitherto unfelt emotion sprang up in the soul of the youth at this moment. It assuredly was not fear for his life, nor yet of being drawn into a snare; but it seemed to him that his presence within that humble abode would be adding insult to the wrong he had already inflicted upon its inhabitant; that every object within its walls would proclaim, "here is a name dishonoured, a trust betrayed, the gray head of an old man covered with sorrow and shame."

"Here, Catherine, here,” he exclaimed "we are alone; tell me what it is you would say to me, here."

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No," she replied, fimly, but sadly: "I can speak only there."

"Let us go then," he cried, "since it must be so; your wishes shall be obeyed."

She took him by the hand, and without a word they repaired to her father's house. They entered; a lamp was burning within, but no person awaited their coming. Catherine took up the lamp, and still holding his hand, ascended a narrow stair-case which led, as her companion supposed, to her own sleeping apartment. A single glance sufficed to correct his mistake. A rapier hanging against the wall, a musket and pistols over the foot of the bed, a sabre lying upon a small table, a few maps and books,

an uniform scarcely hidden within a recess, all proclaimed the room to be that of a man, that of the veteran father. The young man gazed around him in silence for several moments, and then fixing his eyes upon Catherine, seemed trying to read in her face the cause of her bringing him here. She, too, returned his gaze, until tears came to obstruct her view; then, with a deep sigh, but with the look and voice of one whose resolution is taken, she said:


Yes, look at them well, and then hear what I have to say. You see these arms, these pistols, that sword; they tell you that this is the resting-place of an old soldier; of one who has never feared to hazard his life in defence of his honour. My father is a Hungarian ; one of those proudest of all the people of Austria, with whom an unblemished name stands in the place of that wealth which fortune denies. Nay, speak not, nor cast down thine eyes; thou knowest him not; it was not to thee he confided his treasure, nor is it by thee he has been betrayed; but he must be known to thee now."

With these words she drew back the curtain behind which the partly-concealed uniform was suspended.


Look," she continued; this is not the dress of an obscure soldier of fortune; it is the garb of an officer and a gentleman; but not of one who has gained rank by courting the favour of princes. My father comes of a lofty race, his honours were gained in the battle-field, and this, the proudest of all, was bestowed by the hand of the great hero of France."

Thus speaking, she took from the wall, where it hung near the head of the bed, a decoration, and placed it within the hands of the youth, who, falling upon his knees, uttered a loud cry, and covered the ribbon with pas sionate kisses and tears.

"This cross of the legion of honour, my father received from the hand of Napoleon, on the field of Smolensko, where Austria fought, with Prussia, under his banners. It is a cross of the great emperor; now tell me, now that I have proved my father to be like yourself, an officer and a gentleman, tell me what name I must give to your child when it sees the light.'

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The young man rose from his knees; and there was a wildness both in his words and in his look, which filled Catherine's heart with terror.

"Thy child!" he exclaimed; "thy

father! mine too! Oh wretch, wretch than a service; it may be that I shall that I am!"

Then he burst into tears afresh-hot, bitter tears of remorse and anguish; he beat his head and his breast, and the agony of his emotion was so dreadful, that the poor girl, wild with terror and grief, fell at his feet, exclaiming, "Oh, pardon, pardon; forgive your unhappy Catherine."

In a moment the youth grew calm; but it was with the stern calmness of utter misery. He raised her from where she knelt at his feet, and said, "Tomorrow I will see you again; then all shall be made clear, and you shall be saved."

Did Catherine understand this word "saved," as it was meant by him! Perhaps not; but be that as it may, when she was left alone, her heart was elated with hope and joy.

Early next morning, the doctor was called to the young man, whose health appeared to be his peculiar charge. The scene of the previous night had wrought its effect on his frame; he was pale, though fever burned in his restless eyes, and a nervous tremor pervaded his limbs. The physician was struck with alarm; and advancing hastily to his side, exclaimed, with an air of deep interest, "Gracious heavens, my lord! You are suffering dreadfully!"

"No, it is nothing, be not alarmed. We will speak of that presently. In the meantime, I have something of more importance to think of."

There was a pause; he walked rapidly backward and forward several times, apparently lost in thought; then stopping abruptly before the physician, he said:

"Doctor, I stand in need of a friend. May I find him in you?"

The answer was brief, and spoken with deep and sincere emotion.

"You may."

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need your counsel as well as your aid." "I am ready."

"Well, then, doctor- I must speakit is of a woman, young, lovely—an angel of truth and innocence-a poor girl who must be saved; and who has a right to every kindness and care at my hands."

As he had continued to walk rapidly, he did not perceive that at the word "woman," the face of the doctor had totally changed in its expression of friendly interest, nor yet the sad smile of pity that hovered upon his lips, as the disclosure was finished. But receiving no answer, he stopped suddenly, and added

"You are surprised, doctor, at what I have told you?"

"No, my lord," was the grave and sorrowful answer.

"The service that I require of you will prove dangerous, perhaps."

The physician looked at him with a slight expression of surprise and resentment, and said

"There will be no danger in it, assuredly."

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"Then you are displeased at my asking it? it is enough; let it drop; we will say nothing more on the subject.'

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"My lord," answered the physician, "command me; I am ready to comply with your orders."

"Oh, doctor," said the young man, sorrowfully, "this is not what I expected from you: I thought you had promised to be my friend!"

"And it is precisely because I wish to deserve the name, that in this matter I can act only in obedience to your commands."

"For heaven's sake, doctor, explain yourself."

"If I were nothing more than your friend, I would; but my duty to others will not permit me to do that. Nevertheless, as I said before, I am ready to execute your commands."

"Alas, doctor, am I deceived in you? I fancied there was one, at least, in whose heart But enough; since I have no friend, I must seek for a tool, whose services money can buy. I will detain you no longer, sir."

"It will he better thus," said the physician, with a profound bow, as he left the room.

The young man followed him with his eye. He had never opened his heart to this gentleman, but he had always esteemed him trust-worthy and good, and treasured him up, as it were,

in reserve, for the first occasion in which he should stand in need of a faithful, devoted friend.

"It is but another deception," he thought; "nevertheless, it is bitter." Well would it have been for him if this fatal day had witnessed no other and greater!

After a few moments of painful thought, a few sighs of vexation and disappointment, he passed his hand over his brow, as if to disperse the unwelcome thoughts that still harassed his mind. and then ringing the bell, requested the servant, who came at its summons, to send for the baron. Disappointed in friendship, he was fain to resort to the most abject servility.

"Baron," said he, when that person made his appearance, "you will seek and hire, somewhere in the city, a small house, in a retired situation. You will furnish it neatly but simply."

"For a lady?" said the baron, with his coarse smile of intelligence.

The youth gave him a look, but the question did not surprise him; he ascribed it merely to the quick apprehension of base minds, always ready to understand and perform servile actions. But the truth was, that the secret to which the clue had been foolishly yielded up by the minister, in a moment of weakness, and which he had since ferreted out in all its details, had become at last too weighty to rest in the baron's own keeping; hitherto he had merely given a hint, now and then, to one or two of his intimate friends, just to excite their envy and wonder at his superior knowledge; but now he could hold no longer. Besides, he fancied that, seeming to know all, he should at last gain the confidence of the young man, whose movements were to a certain extent his peculiar charge, and whose haughty reserve had so often repulsed his attempts at greater freedom of intercourse. The fault of the minister was about to produce its effects.

"For a lady," the young man coldly replied.

"And I suppose," said the baron, with a shrewd, knowing look, "that in hiring this house I am not to give in the name of your highness as tenant; nor yet, I presume, would your highness care to have that of Catherine Tillman mentioned."

"Catherine Tillman!" exclaimed the youth; "what of her? Who has dared to speak or even to think of her? From whom have you learned that name?"

The terrified baron stammered, hesi

tated, and wished he had been less ready to shew his knowledge; but, with still greater vehemence, the young man continued:

"Speak-answer! By what infamous treachery-from what detestable spy have you learnt aught of her? Wretch! villain! speak!"

"My lord," answered the baron, indignant at being accused of a baseness of which he was really innocent, simply because its performance had not been entrusted to him—" My lord, you must ask his excellency the minister; he can answer your questions."

"He! Is it he?" Then, after a moment of fearful silence, he added, "Begone, sir, leave the room instantly." And as soon as the door was closed, he threw himself into a chair, and clasping his hands over his eyes, exclaimed"Monstrous, infamous baseness! detestable villany!"

But the blow, severe as it was, had yet to be followed up by another of deeper infliction. As he was sitting, absorbed in thought, the door of his room was opened, and the physician again stood before him.


Oh, doctor," the young man exclaimed, "you knew of this, and yet you withheld it from me. Is it thus you perform the part of a friend?"

The friend would have explained all, but the physician feared.

"How could I tell you without dreading the consequence to your health, to your very life, that the innocent girl to whom you had given your heart, from whom you had no reserve, was a spy, and betrayed all that you said or did to a vile priest in the pay of the government ?"

The mischief was done; to this had the foolish confidence of the minister come, enlarged and improved by the baron. With a fearful cry, the unfortunate youth fell prostrate upon the floor, as if struck by the hand of death, and lay motionless there, with his eyes fixed, and murmuring once or twice, in a low voice of despair and horror, Betrayed by her! by Catherine Tillman!"

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The physician rang for assistance, the victim was laid on a couch, and, in process of time, they succeeded in calling him back to life. The wild glare of his eyes passed away, and, as the night drew on, powerful opiates triumphed over the fever that raged in his exhausted frame.

The next day he was so far restored as to be able to ride out in a carriage with his physician. The character of

the patient seemed now totally changed: heretofore he had always been silent, grave, and reserved; but now he was full of discourse, excitement, and animation. It appeared as though he was striving to keep away thought by incessant action and change. He declaimed, disputed, argued; flew from subject to subject; from the objects around him to sciences, arts, battles, and great political movements; pouring out, with inconceivable fluency, as it seemed, the pentup thoughts of his whole previous life. They returned, and the physician was just on the point of quitting his patient, urging him to seek repose for an hour or two, when a servant came in, and spoke in a low voice to the former. It was to announce the return of an unknown man, who had called at the palace several evenings past, seeking an interview with the young man, but had never before found him within. The physician was glad to be furnished thus with something that might divert the mind of his patient, trifling though he presumed the stranger's business to be, and directed the servant to give him admittance. He was a man of about fifty, tall, and erect, with a rugged and warworn visage; he advanced without speaking, and placed in the hands of the youth a paper, which he drew from his breast. Its contents, instead of allaying, as the physician had hoped, the excited mind of his patient, seemed only to give it new force; a fierce delight gleamed in his eyes as he read, and when he had finished, he broke out in a species of phrenzy:-"Yes, I will go; the design is glorious. I alone, with my sword, for France and the crown of a hero! France is my mother, and she calls me with a voice from the grave. She is fettered like me, and I only can break the chains. If we fail, it is but a bullet aimed at the heart, and the destiny is achieved. I, too, can die; but there can be no St. Helena without a Marengo, an Austerlitz. We shall see."

His hearers, astonished, gazed upon him without a word, as he strode rapidly from one side of the room to the other, with head erect and gestures abrupt, and full of a terrible meaning. On a sudden he stopped directly in front of the stranger, and said,

"What is your name?"
"The Captain Tillman."

The effect of these words upon the fiery spirit to which they were addressed, was like that of water on flame. "Tillman!" he repeated, turning suddenly

pale, and sinking at once into apathy. A single instant sufficed to recall to his mind the archduke's warning, the relation existing between this man and the monk of the abbey at Kleusterneubourg, and between the same monk and Catherine. He beheld, in father and daughter, only the agents of an infamous system of espionage, of which he was the object, and of which the paper he had just read was designed as the consummation; scorn, misery, and despair, struck at the seat of life, and again he fell on the floor without sense or motion.

Tillman rushed from the room, loaded with curses by the physician, shocked and astounded at what he had seen, and hastened to bury his mortification and grief in the solitude of his own humble dwelling. Up to this moment the secret design of which he was the agent, the hope which had just been destroyed in his very sight, had engrossed his thoughts so completely, that nothing within his own household had received the least share of his attention. This night he returned much sooner than usual. Supposing that Catherine had retired to rest, he proceeded at once to his own room, taking the light which he found burning in the lower apartment, and which he presumed she had left by mistake; but as he passed the door of her chamber, he saw that it was open, and looking within, found the apartment unoccupied. Catherine absent at this late

hour! The incident was suspicious. He called aloud, but no voice replied: seized with terrible doubts, he rushed forth into the wood, armed with his sword, for his intent now was not merely to find but to surprise. With this purpose he no longer called on his daughter's name, but glided between the trees, silent, watchful, and brooding on fearful designs. At length, through the dim obscure he perceived a white, motionless object. Like a tiger creeping upon its prey, he advanced slowly, without the least noise, and at last came near enough to make out the form of a woman; but she was alone, leaning against a tree, in an attitude of deep grief. As her father approached, she lifted her eyes, and rushing into his arms, exclaimed, "At last you have


"No, he is not come," replied Tillman, with a terrible voice, and thrusting her from him.

"Oh, my father! my father!" she cried, falling upon her knees at his feet, "have you slain him, then ?"

"Not yet," he replied; come in good time."

"but he will

"No, my father," she cried, in the depth of her sorrow, "he will come no more; he abandons me to despair." "Thou liest!" fiercely exclaimed the old man.

The unfortunate girl, who indeed hoped that her words were not true, burst into sobs and tears; and then was rehearsed, not for the first time, the dreadful scene of an outraged parent and guilty child-a scene of threats, reproaches, curses and misery. The old man would have renounced his daughter and driven her from his door, had it not been for the hope of vengeance to be wreaked on the head of another; and if, when he demanded the name of her seducer, she had not answered him simply, "I know it not." His wrath was augmented at this reply, esteeming it nothing less than an insolent falsehood; but, perhaps, other thoughts came into his mind when she continued firmly, "If I knew, I would never disclose it to you, though you should slay me here, on this spot; but in truth, I know not his name;" for he merely answered, "It matters not; I shall find him out:" and then, without saying another word, he began to march up and down with long strides, while his daughter sat motionless on the earth. Thus the night passed away; and when morning came and no one appeared, the old man, taking Catherine by the hand, returned with her to the humble dwelling from which hope and joy were now banished for


Days passed in one uniform course; at evening the captain went forth, armed with his sword, to watch near the spot where his daughter had waited the coming of her seducer; there he remained until midnight, and then returned. Catherine watched too, but it was the expression of Tillman's face; she was a prisoner; and the only moments of comfort that lightened her sorrow, were gained from the gloomy and almost ferocious look which told her, night after night, that the hand of her father was not yet red with the blood of her faithless lover. She believed him base; the thought of his perfidy withered her heart, but she loved him still, and hope still whispered at times, that perhaps he would yet return. An event, which neither supposed to be in the least connected with their affliction, was soon to afford the key to the singular history of their misfortunes.

One evening a stranger appeared at the door of the old soldier; a stranger, at least, to Catherine. Tokens of recognition were exchanged between her father and this unknown, and the former commanded his daughter to leave the room. She obeyed; but a vague sus. picion of some fearful relation between the stranger's coming, and that which engrossed all her thoughts, induced her to listen to their discourse. A name was first mentioned, with which she had long suspected her father's political schemes to be in connexion, and then the stranger went on:

"It is all over; his life is despaired of. Our meetings are useless now, and they must be given up. Some of us even think it imprudent to stay longer in Austria; there is reason to fear that the government is advised of our plans, and that nothing but fear of what the young lion might do if aroused, has so far protected those who designed to break open his den. When he is dead, its vengeance will have no check."

"You speak truly," said Tillman, "and flight will no doubt be prudent. But come what may, I shall remain. I have a duty that keeps me here, and must be fulfilled."

At first

Catherine heard no more. she had trembled with fear at the thought of leaving Vienna; now she dreaded the stern purpose for which, as she well knew, her father determined to stay. During the rest of the day, he was even more silent and gloomy than she had ever beheld him; at evening he went out, and at midnight returned, still silent and gloomy. She saw that as yet he had not found what he sought, and arose to go to her chamber. He too, arose, and closing the door, commanded her by a sign to be seated again. She breathed a prayer for herself and her child, and obeyed, with a sinking heart.

"Catherine," said he, "does your betrayer know of your situation."

She blushed and cast down her eyes, which were filled with tears. "Speak," continued her father; "does he know?"

"He does."

"He knows it, and comes not! He is worse than a villain; a monster, a wretch who abandons his child."

"Catherine," he resumed, "this must not be. Listen to me; your father assumes your cause, pledges to you an honour that never was stained. Your father renounces his own vengeance to save you; he swears to forgive the man

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