The Algona Republican from Algona, Iowa on May 27, 1896 · Page 7
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The Algona Republican from Algona, Iowa · Page 7

Algona, Iowa
Issue Date:
Wednesday, May 27, 1896
Page 7
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T Mfc ALQOKA, IOWA, WEDNESDAY, MAY 27, 1866. She did Mot wait a moment, but went at once to the jewel case. She took from it a gold ring—a heavy seal ring. She Lreld this out to me in the most matter- of-fact way—scarcely turning, in fact. "Put it on your finger," she said, hurriedly. "If you are stopped by soldiers, or if they will not give you a, boat to cross the river, say boldly that you are on the ldng's ( service. Call for the officer and show that ring. Play the man. Bid him stop you at his peril!" I hastily muttered rny thanks, and she as hastily took something from a drawer, and tore it into strips. Before I knew what she was doing she was on her knees by me, fastening a white band of linen round iuy left sleeve. Then she took my cap, and with the same precipitation fixed a fragment of tlio same stuff in it, in the form of a rough cross. "There," she said. "Now, listen, M. de Caylus. There is more afoot to-night than you know of. These 1,-s clges will help you across TO St. Geritviiu, but the moment you land, tear them off. Tear them off, remember. They vrill help you no longer. You will o.ome back by the same boat, and will not need them. If you are seen to wear them as you return, they will command no respect, but on the contrary will bring you—and •perhaps me—into trouble." "I understand," I said, "but—" "You must ask no questions," she retorted, waving one snowy finger before my eyes. "My knightcerrant must have faith in me, as I have in him; or he •would not be here at this time of night, and alone with me. But remember this also. When you. meet Pavannes do not say you come from me. Keep that in your mind; I will explain the reason afterwards. Say merely that his wife is found, and is wild with anxiety about him. If you say anything as to his danger he may refuse to come. Men are obstinate." I nodded a smiling assent, thinking I understood. At the same time I permitted myself in my own mind a little discretion. Pavanucs was not a fool, and the name of the vidame—but, however, I should see. I had more to say to him than she knew of. Meanwhile she explained very carefully the three turnings I had to take to reach the river, and the wharf where boats most commonly lay, and the name of the :housf in which I should find M. de Pavannes. "He is at the Hotel de Bailli," she said. "And there, I think that is all." "JS T o, not all," I said hardily. "There is one thing I have not got. And that is a sword I'' She followed the direction of my eyes, started, and laughed—a little oddly. But she fetched the weapon. "Take it, and do not," she urged, "do not lose time. Do not mention me to Pavannes. Do not let the white badges be seen as you return. That is really all. And now good luck!" She gave me her hand to kiss. "Good luck, my knight-errant, good luck—and come back to me soon!" She smiled divinely, as it seemed to me, as she said these last words, and the Siime smile followed me downstairs; for she leaned over the 'stairhead with one of the lamps in her hand, and directed me how to draw the bolts. I took one backward glance as I did so at the fair stooping figure above me, the shining 1 eyes, and tiny out-stretched hand, and then darting into the gloom I hurried on iny way. I was in a strange mood. A few minutes before I had been at Pavannes' door, at the end of our journey; on the verge of success. I had been within ( an ace, as I supposed at least, of executing my errand. I had held the cup ol success in my hand. And it had slipped. Now the conflict had to be fought over again; the danger to be faced'. It would have been IK> more than natural if I • hod felt the disappointment keenly; if I had almost despaired, But it was otherwise—far otherwise. Never had my heart beat higher or more proudly than as I now hurried through the streets, avoiding such groups as were abroad in them, and intent only on observing the proper turnings. Never in any moment of triumph in after days, in love or war, did anything like the exhilaration the energy, the spirit, of those minutes come back to me. I had a woman's badge in my cap—for the first time—the music of her voice in my ears. I had a magic ring on my finger; a talisman on my arm. My sword was at my side again. All round me lay a misty city of adventure, of danger and romance, full of the richest and most beautiful possibilities; a city of yeal witchery, such as 1 hod read of in Btories, through which those fairy gifts and my right hand should guide me safely. I did not even regret my brothers, or our separation. J was the eldest. It was fitting that the cream of the enterprise should be reserved for roe, Anne de Caylus. And to what might it not lead? I fancy I saw myself already a duke and a peer of France—already I held the baton. Yet while I exulted boyishly, I did not forget what I was about. I kept my ejfis open, and soon remarked that the number of people passing to and fro in the dark streets $ad, much increased within the Je-st hiW hour, TJje gijence in wbich, in, groups or singly, these %.- ureg ste-le by me T?W TWy striking. I heard no brawling, fightingorsinglng, yet if it were not too late for these things, why were so many people up and about? I began to count presently, and found that at least half of those I met wore badges in their hats and on their arms, similar to mine, and that they all moved with a business-like air, as if bound for some rendezvous. I was not a fool, though I was young, and in some matters less quick than Croisette. The hints which had been dropped by so many had not been lost on me. "There is more afoot to-night than you know of!" Mmc. d'O had said. And having eyes as well as cars I fully believed it. Something was afoot. Something was going to happen in Paris before morning. But what, I wondered. Could it be that a rebellion was about to break out? If so I was on the king's service, and all was well. I might even be going—and only ]S—to make history! Or was it only a brawl 011 a great sca.le between two parties of nobles? I had heard of such things happening in Paris. Then— well I did not see how I could act in that case. I must be guided by events. I did not imagine anything else which it could be. That is the truth, though it may need explanation. I was accustomed only to the milder religious differences, the more evenly balanced parties of Quercy, where the peace between the Catholics and the Huguenots had been welcome to all save a very few. I could not gauge therefore the fanaticism of the Parisian populace, and lost count of the factor, which made possible that which was going to happen—was going to happen in Paris before daylight as surely as the sun was going to rise! I knew that the Huguenot nobles were present in the city in great numbers, but it did not occur to me that they could as a body be in danger. They were many and powerful, and as was said, in favor with the king. They were under the protection of tlu 1 kiluj of Navarre—France's brother-in-law of a week, and the prince of Concle; and though these princes; were young, Coligny. the sagacious admiral, was old, and not much tho worse I had learned for his wound. •He at least \V:\H high in royal favor, a trusted counselor. [Tad not the UVag visited him on his sick-bed and sat by him for an hour together? Surely, 1 thought, if there were danger, these men would know of it. And then the Huguenots' main enemy, Henri le Balafre, the splendid duke of Guise, "our great man," and "Lorraine," as the crowd called him—he, it was rumored, was in disgrace at court. In a word, these things, to say nothing of the peaceful and joyous occasion which had brought the Huguenots to Paris, and which seemed to put treachery out of the question, were more than enough to prevent me forecasting the event. If for a moment, indeed, as I hurried along towards the river, anything like the truth occurred to me, I put it from me. I say with pride I put it from me as a thing impossible. Tor God forbid— one may speak out the truth these 4t) years back—God forbid, say I, that all Frenchmen should bear the blood-guiltiness which came of other than French brains, though French were the hands that did the work. I was not greatly troubled liy my forebodings therefore; and the state of exaltation to which Mme. d'O's confidence had raised my spirits lasted nutil one of the narrow streets by the Louvre brought me suddenly within sight of the river. Here faint moonlight bursting momentarily through tho clouds was shining on the placid surface of the water. The fresh air played upon, and cooled my temples. And this, with the quiet scene so abruptly presented to me, gave check to my thoughts, and somewhat sobered me. At Bomo distance to my Jeft 1 could distinguish in the middle of the river the pile of buildings which crowd the He de la, Cite, and could, follow thenear- er arm of the stream as it swept landwards of these, closely hemmed in by houses, but unbroken as yet by the arches of the Font Neuf which 1 have lived to see built. Not far from me on my right—indeed, within a, stone's throw - -the baulky mass of the Louvre rose dark and shapeless against tho sky, Only a narrow open space—the foreshore—separated *&* from the water; beyond which J could see an ir-> regular line of buildings, that no doubt formed the Faubourg St. Germain. I had been told that I should find stairs leading down to the water, and boats moored at the foot of them, at this point, Accordingly I walked quickly across the open space to a spot, where I made out a couple o| posts set up on the brink-rdoubtless to mark the landing place. I had not gone ten paces, however, out of the shadow, before I chanced tp look round, and discerned with an. un* pleasant; eerie feeling three figures detach themselves from it, and advance in a row behind me, so as the better to cut off my retreat. I was not to succeed in my enterprise too easily, then. That was ctear. Still I thought it better to act as if J ho/I not seen my followers, collecting myself, I walked as. quickly As I caul:! down to the steps. The three were by thot time close upon me—within striking 'distance almost. I turned abruptly and confronted them. "Who are you, and what do you want?" I said, eyeing them warily, iny hand on my sword. They did not answer, but separated more widely, so as to form a half- eirele; and one of them whistled. On the instant a knot of men started out of the line of houses, and came quickly across the strip of light towards us. The position seemed serious. If 1 could have run, indeed—hut I glanced round, and found escape in that fashion impossible. There were men crouching on the steps behind me, between me and the river. I had fallen into a trap. Indeed, there was nothing for it now but to do as madamc had bidden me, and play the man boldly. I had the words still ringing in my cars. I had enough of ths excitement I had lately felt still bounding in my veins to give nerve and daring, I folded my arms and drew myself up. "Knaves!" I said, with (is much quiet contempt as I could muster, "you mistake me. You do not know whom yoti have to deal with. Get me a boat, and let two of yon row me across. Hinder me, and your necks shall answer for it —or your backs!" A laugh and an oath of derision formed tho only response, and before I could add more the larger group arrived, and joined the three. "Who is it, Pierre?" asked one of these in a matter-of-fact wa.y, which showed I had not fallen amongst mere thieves. The speaker seemed to be the leader of the band. He had a feather in his bonnet, and I saw a steel corselet gleam under his cloak, when some one held tip a lanthorn to examine me the better. His trunk-hose were striped with black, white and green—the livery as 1 learned afterwards of monsieur the king's brother, the dukeofAnjou, afterwards Henry the Third; then a close friend of the duke of Guise, and later his murderer. The captain spoke with a foreign accent, and his complexion was dark to swarthincss. His eyes sparkled and flashed like black beads. It was easy to see that he Was an Italian. "A gallant young cock enough," the soldier who whistled answered. "Not quite of the breed we expected." He held his lauthorn toward me and pointed to the white badge on my sleeve. "It strikes me we have caught a crow instead of a pigeon!" "How comes this?" the Italian asked, harshly, addressing me. "Who are you? And why do you wish to cross the river at this time of night, young sir?" I acted on the inspiration of the moment. "Play the man boldly!" mad- ame had said. I would; and 1 did with a vengeance. I sprang forward and, seizing the. captain by the clasp of his cloak, shook him violently, and flung him off with all my force, so that he reeled. "Dog!" I exclaimed, advancing, as if I would seize him again. ''Laarn how to speak to your betters I Am I to be stopped by such sweepings as you? Hark ye, 1 ani on the king's service!" He fairly spluttered with rage. "More like the devil's!" he exclaimed, pronouncing his words abominably, and fumbling vainly for his weapon. "King's service or no service, you do not insult Andrea Pallavicini!" I could only vindicate my daring by greater daring, and I saw this even as, death staring me in the face, my heart seemed to stop. The man had his mouth open and his hand raised to give an order which would certainly have sent Anne de Caylus from the world, when I cried, passionately—it was my last chance, and J. never wished to live more strongly than ah that moment—I cried passionately: "Andrea Pallavicini, if such be your name, !ook at that! Look at that!'" I repeated, shaking my open hand with the ring on it before his face, "and then hinder me, if you dare! To-ino.vrow, if you have quarterings enough, I will see to your quarrel! Now send me on my way or your fate be on your own head! Disobey—ay, do but, hesitate—and I will call on these- eery men of yoiirs to cut j'ou down!" It was a bold throw, for 1. staked all on a talisman of which 1 did not know the value! To mo it was the turn of a die, for I had had no leisure to look at the ring, and knew no more than a babe whose it was. But the venture was as happy as desperate. Andrea Pallavicini's expression—no pleasant one at the best of times- changed on the instant. His face fell as he seized my hand and peered at the ring Jong and intently. Then he cast a quick glance of suspicion at his men, of hatred at me. But I cared nothing for his glance, or his hatred, I saw already that he had made up his mind to obey the charm; and that forme was everything, "If you had shown that to me a little earlier, young sir s it would, maybe, have been better for both of us," he said, a surly menace in his voice. And cursing his men for their stupidity, he ordered two of them to unmoor a boat. Apparently the craft had been se- pured with more oare than skill, for to loosen it seemed to be a work of time. Meanwhile J. stood waiting in the midst of the group, anxious and yet exultant, at), object of curiosity, and yet curious myself. J heard the guards whisper together, and caught such phrases as: "It is the Due d'Aumale." "No, it is not D'Aumale. It is nothing like him.* r . "Well, he has the duke's ring, foolt" "The duke's?" •*Ay." "Then it is all right, God bless him!" This last was uttered with extreme fervor. I was conscious too of being the object 9! many respectful glances; and had just bidden the men on the steps below me to be quick, when, I discovered, witt). alarm thisf figures moving across thj flpsn sp&G§ towards us, coining apparently from the same point from which Pallavicini and his men had emerged. In a moment I foresaw danger. "Now be quick there!" 1 cried again. But scarcely had I spoken before I saw that it was impossible to get afloat be fore thcso others came up, and I pre pared to stand my ground resolutely. The first words, however, with which Pallavicini saluted the newcomers scat tered my fears. "Well, what the foul fiend do you want?" he exclaimed, rudely; and he rapped out half a dozen corpos before they could answer him. "What have you brought him here for, when I left him in the guardhouse? Imbeciles!" "Capt. Pallavicini," interposed tho midmost of the three, speaking with patience—he was a man of about 30, dressed with some richness, though his clothes were now disordered as though by a struggle—"1 have induced these good men to bring me down—" "Then," cried the captain, brutally interrupting him, "you have lost your labor, monsieur." "You do not know me," replied the prisoner with sternness—a prisoner ho seemed to be. "You do not understand that I am a friend of the prince of Conde. and that—" lie would have said more, but the Italian again cut him short. "A fig for the prince of Conde!" he cried; "I understand my duty. You may as well take things easily. You cannot cross, and you cannot'go home, and you cannot have any explanation; except that it is the Idug's will! Explanation?" he grumbled, in a lower tone, "you will get it Koou enough, 1 warrant! Before you want it!" "But there is a boat, going- to cross, f.nicl the other, controlling- his temper by an effort and speaking with dignity. "You told me that by the king's order no one could cror.s: and you arrested me; because, having urgent need to visit St. Germain, i persisted. Now, what does this mean. Cnpt. Pallavicini? Others are crossing. ! ask whzit this moans?" "Whatever'you please. M. de Pavan- nes," the Italian retorted, contemptuously. "Explain it for yourself!" 1 started as the name struck my ear, .•ind at once cried out in surprise: "M. do Pavannes!" Had 1 heard aright'r Apparently 1 had, for the prisoner turned to mo with a bow. "Yes, sir," he said, with dignity, "1 am M. de Pavan- nes. I have not the honor of knowing you,but you seem to be a gentleman." Lie cast a withering glauce at the captain as he said this. "Perhaps you will explain to me why this violence has been clone to me. If you can I shall consider it a favor; if not s pardon me." 1 did not answer him at once for a good reason—that every faculty 1 had was bent oil u close scrutiny of the man hiiuself. He was fair, and of a ruddy complexion. His beard was cut in the short pointed fashion of the court; and in these respects he bore a kind of likeness, a curious likeness, to Louis de Pavannes. But his figure was shorter and stouter. He was less martial in bearing-, with more of the air of nschoJ- nr (ban n soldier. "You are. related to M. Louis de i?avannen?" I said, iny heart beginning to beat, with an odd excitement. .I think I foresaw already what was coming. "I ana Louis de Pavannes," he replied, with impatience, I stared at him in silence; thinking-—• thinking— thinking. And. then I said, slowly: "You have a cousin of the same name ?" "I have." "He fell prisoner to the Vicomte de Caylus atMoncontour?" "He did." he answered, curtly. "But what of that, sir?" Again I did not answer—at once. The murder was out. I remembered; in the dim fashion, in which one remembers such things after the event, that I had heard Louis de Piivannes, when we first became acquainted with him, mention this cousin of the same name; the head of a younger branch. Butour Louis living in Provence and the other in Normandy, the distance between their homes, and the troubles of the times, had loosened a tie which their common religion plight have strengthened. They had scarcely ever seen one another. As Louis had spoken of his namesake but once during his long stay with us, and I had not then foreseen the connection to be formed between our families, it was no wonder that in the course of months the chance word had passed out of my head, and I had clean forgotten the subject of it. Here, however, he was before my eyes, and, seeing him, I saw too what the discovery meant. It meant a most joyful thing! a most wonderful thing which I longed to tell Croisette and Marie. It meant that our Louis de Vavanues—my cheek burned for my want of faith in him—was no villain after all, but such a noble gentleman as we had always iintil this day thought him! It meant that he was no court gallant bent on breaking a country heart for sport, but Kit's own tj-ue lover! And—and it meant more—it nieantthathe wasyetin danger and still ignorant of the vow that unchained fiend Peters had taken to have his life! In pursuing his namesake we had been led astray, how sadly I only knew now! And had indeed lost most precious time. "Your wife, M. de Pavannes"—I bean in haste, seeing the necessity of explaining matters -with the utmost quickness, "Your wife is—" "An, m y wife!" he cried, intei'rupt- ing me, with, anxiety in his tone. "What of her? You have seen her?" "I have. She is safe at your bouse in the line St. Merri." "Thank heaven for that!" he replied, fervently. Before he could say more lapt, Andrea interrupted us, J could see that his suspicions were aroused a,fresh,. He pushed rudely between us, end addressing me, said: ''Now, young , y$,uj: boat is ready." "My boatj" I answered, while J yap- idly considered the situation, oi course I flu! not want to cross the rivrr now. Is'o doubt Pin-anncs'—tlm Pa- vannes—could guide me to Louis' nd- dress. "Afy boat?" "Yes, it is waiting," the Italian replied, his black eyes roving from one to the other of us. "Then let it wait!" I answered haughtily, speaking with an assumption of finger. "Plague upon you for inter- AN "Tas, sir," he Bald: "I arc M. c'.o rupting us! I shall not cross thu river now. This gentleman can give me the information I want. I shall take him back with me." "To whom?" "To whom? To those who sent me, sirrah!" 1 thundered. "You do no1 seem to be much in the duke's confidence, captain," I went on; "i-ov,-, tal" a word of advice from rio! There '<•• nothing so easily c;i:;b cv.'f as :'.:i ovc- officious servant! He goes too far— and he goes like an old glove —an old glove," 1 repeated grimly, sneering in his face, "which saves the hand and suffers itself. Beware of too much zeal, Capt. L'allavicini! It is n dangerous thing!' He turned pale- with anger at being thus treated by a beardless boy, but he faltered all the same. What I said was 'unpleasant, but the bravo knew it was true. 1 saw the impression 1 had made, and I turner) to the soldiers standing round. "Bring here, my friends." I said, "M. ne Pavannes' sword!" One ran up to the guard-house and brought it at once. They were townsfolk, burgher guards or such like, and for some reason betrayed KO uvidentre specfc for me, that I soberly believe they would have turned on their temporary leader at my bidding. Pavannes took his sword, and placed it under his arm. Wo both, bowed ceremoniously to I'al- Uivic'mi. who seowleci in response; and slowly, for 1 was afraid to' show any signs of haste, we walked across the moonlit space to the bottom of the street by which 1 had come. There the gloom swallowed Us up once. Pavannes touched my sleeve and stopped in the darkness. "I beg to be allowed to thank you for your aid," he said, with emotion, turning and facing me. "Whom have I the honor of addressing.?" "M. Anne de Caylus, a friend of your cousin," I replied. "Indeed?" he said. "Well, 1 thank you most heartily," and we embraced with warmth "But I could have done little," I answered, modestly, "on. your behalf, if it had not been for this ring." •'And the virtue of the ring- lies in—" "In—I am sure I cannot say in what!" I confessed. And then, in the sympathy which the scene had naturally created between us, I forgot one portion of my lady's commands, and I added, impulsively: "All I know is that Mme. d'O gave it to me; and that it has done all and more than all she said it would." "Who gave it to you?" he asked, grasping my arm so tightly as to hurt me. "Mme. d'O," I repeated. It was too late to draw back now. "That woman!" he ejaculated, in a strange, low whisper. "Is it possible? That woman gave it to you?" I wondered what on earth he meant, surprise, scorn and dislike were so blended in his tone. It even seemed to me that he drew off from me somewhat. "Yes, M. de Pavannes," I replied, offended and indignant. "It is so far possible that it is the truth; and more, I think you would not so speak of this lady if you knew all; and that it was through her your wife was today freed from those who were detaining her, and taken safely home!" "Ha!" he cried, eagerly. "Then where has my wife been?" (Continued next week.) Sewing machines and organs very cheap ttt J. B. Winkei's. 32-35 We have what you want. M. Z. GROVE & SON, UP TO PATE-1896, The most complete Tariff Text Book ever published is the new edition of 'Tariff Facts for Speakers and Stud* euts," Defender Document No. 9—360 •acres, just out- Publishers, The Am- rican Protective Tariff League. Cam- laign text books issued just before the election are pf little value. The Tariff Ueague is to be congratulated on its 'oresight in getting out its hand book so early io the year. Order by number only. Sent to any address for 2oc, Address W. F. Wakeman, Gen. Sec., J3§ ~ '"^.,Kevy York. H. Woodward Company, Baltimore, Md,, awnpuuce a new book, "Story of Spain aiid Cuba." This book is written by Mr. Nathan C. Green, the well-known author and former resident of Cuba. It is beautifully illustrated with aearly ^X) en-' jravings and is sold by subscription^ Ta$0 ttoe best pill. Dr. Swyei-'s tltft 'sresJiy wi4e awaJfce m, W, D'.Sfovor a Town flld Irt ftoDrels of (be Kitnh, The Russians have mode n discovery in Central Asia. In T.urkefc« tan t on the right bank of the Amott Darifi, is a chain of rocky hills neni' the Bokharan town of Karki, and a number of large eaves, which upon examinution were found to lend to an underground city, built apparently 1-oug before fhe Christian era. In Popular Science News we find the following description of this pingftilnr city: According to effigies, inscript/onsattd designs upon the ;>-old and silver money unearthed from srmong- the ruins, the existence ot' the town dates back to -some tv,-Q centuries before the birth of Christ. The underground Bokharau city is a little over a mile long-, and is composed of nn enormous Inbyrinth of corridors, streets mul squares, surrounded by houses and other building's two or three Btories high. The edifices contain all kinds of domestic utensils, pots, urns, vases and the like. In f;ome of the streets falls of earth and rock have obstructed the passages, butR-eiierally the visitor can walk about withoutsomuch as lowering hi:! head. The high degree of civilization attained by tho inhabitants of the city is shown fry the fa.ct Hint tlu-y built in several stories, by the symmetry of the streets and squares, and by the beauty of the baked clay and metal utensils, and of tbe ornaments and coins which have beo'n found. It is supposed that long centuries ago this city, so carefully concealed in tho bowels of the earth, provided an entire population with a refuge from the incursions of nomadio savages and robbers. THE PARIS CABBY. For Ways That Aro Dark IIo Hao Very Few Kquals. Should an accident befall the vehicle, of a Pa.ris cabman during- your occupancy, he will abandon himself to a paroxj-sm of grief, compute the loss, and tell in moving accents of his wife and children, whose bread will be taken from their mouths by the mishap. IJut it your lingers thereupon make instinctively for your pocket, restrain them; he is insured. He pays a small monthly premium to a cab insurance company; and in the case of a smashup, only the company suffers. A playful intimation that you are aware of this circumstance will do wonders to console .him. There was, in days gone by, a cabman who made such a good thing- out of accidents that he ended by adopting them, as a specialty. He confined his labors to those quarters of the town chiefly affected by tha English, and his system was to pick up a benevolent English tourist (by preference a lady) and break a shaft. He knew a method of turning a corner which no shaft could resist. Then lie would beat his beast, and shake his fist a.t heaven; call upon the universe to witness that he was a poor- man, who would be ruined by the sum it nrnst cost to get his cab repaired, bring- in his wife and children, though the unprincipled creature, was a bachelor—and what could a benevolent-looking- English toin-ist do but help him out? HIGHLANDER COSTUME. Caused Consternation in a, French, Bail- way Coach. A person arrayed in full Hig-hland costume caused a terrible commotion in a railway carriage in the Perrache station, near Lyons, recently. Two, ladies who were in the carriage shrieked as they saw the awful spectacle presented by the entry into their compartment of a man without trousers. The Highlander, who was on his way to Kice, nevertheless took his seat with Caledonian coolness, whereupon the ladies screamed the louder. It was in vain that the apparition in the garb of the old Gaul apologized and explained Jjbe situation in bod French, and equally futile were the efforts of the station master, who assured the ladies that the gentleman in the dirk, the sporran and the tartan accessories was perfectly harmless. "You don't run the shadow of a risk, mesdames," insisted the station master in his blandest tones; "the gentleman comes from the country where the men wear petticoats and do not use trousers." Despite everything-, however, which WAS said in order to calm their apprehensions, the over-timid lady travelers had to be placed in a carriage at a safe distance fvom where the Caledonian, stern and wild, was seated. Ostrich Beats a Bicycle. The Capie Times says that a peculiar experience befell a local cyclist, Don- ald'Menzies, recently. He was riding 1 along the main road from Cape Town, to Somerset West Strand, when an ostrich, attracted apparently by what was in its eyes a novel vehicle, com-r menced to waltz around the bicycle, After a few preliminary ajatjcs the bir^ took it into its head to pace Mr. Me:&» ides, and so long as it abstained from, using its wings the cyclist an.<l the ostrich ran a dead heat. HoweVfr>/*; after covering about half a mile in. way the ostrich utilized its wings as sails and spurtec). record-breaking pace, leading elist far behind. 'After thfck troubled Mr. Menzies no more, the body, el§4 i* m % tied |t «j* a Battle W»» Afte* Peat?*, The battle won by a king 1 after bjf • ath, was the victory achj£Yft4 by p?8» pie of the Cid, in Spjtin, after the death Q| |he,C44 a#l£e4 by the His

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