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hast thou responded to the strains of love my soul poured to-ah me! how beautiful was the fairhaired Mary!"
Again the echo spoke--again all were hushed. The minstrel's voice rose again ; but its tones were not akin to joy.
“Why remember this, deceitful echo? War's blast hath blown, and hushed are the notes of love. The foe hath polluted my hearth— I wander an exile. Where, where is Mary?”
The echo faintly but plaintively replied. There were some imagined that a tear really started to the eye of the singer. He struck the guitar wildly
-his voice became more agitated-he advanced to the extremity of the balcony.
“My sword! my sword! May my right hand be withered ere it forget to grasp its hilt! One blow for freedom. Freedom—sweet as was the lip Yes! I'll revenge my Mary!”
Schezer paused, apparently overcome by his emotion. The echo wildly replied, as if registering the patriots vow. For a moment all was still ! A thundering burst of applause ensued.
The mountain music was succeeded by a sweep of guitars, accompanying a Venetian serenade, whose burthen was the apostrophising the cruelty of “la cara Nina."
It was near midnight, when all eyes were directed to a ball of fire, which, rising majestically upward, soared amid the tall elm trees. For a moment, the balloon became entangled in the boughs, revealing by its transparent light the green buds of spring, which variegated and cheered the scathed bark. It broke loose from their embrace-hovered irresolutely above them—then swept rapidly before the wind, rising till it became as a speck in the firmament.
This was the signal for Mr. Robinson's fireworks, which did not shame Vauxhall's reputation. At one moment, a salamander courted notice; at another, a train of fiery honours, festooned round four wooden pillars, was fired at different places, by as many doves practised to the task. Here, an imitation of a jet d'eau elicited applause--there, the gyrations of a Catherine's wheel were suddenly interrupted by the rapid ascent of a Roman candle.
Directly after the ascent of the balloon, Emily and Clarendon had turned towards the ball room. Julia's sisters had a group of laughing beaux round their chairs, Mrs. Glenallan and Mrs. Vernon were discussing bygone days,--and no one seemed disposed to leave the pavilion. Sir Henry, in his silent mood, was glad to escape from the party; and engaging Julia in a search for Emily, made his way to the crowded ball room. He there found his sister spinning round with Clarendon to one of Strauss's waltzes; and Sir Henry and his partner seated themselves on one of the benches, watching the smiling faces as they whirled past them. It was a melancholy thought to Delmé, how soon Emily's brow would be clouded, were he to breathe one word of George's illness and despondency. The waltz concluded, a quadrille was quickly formed. Miss Vernon declined dancing, and they rose to join Emily and Clarendon ; but the lovers were flown. The ball room became still more thronged ; and Delmé was glad to turn once more towards the pavilion. The party they had left there had also vanished, and strangers usurped their seats. In
this dilemma, Miss Vernon proposed seeking their party in the long walk. They took one or two turns down this, but saw not those for whom they were in search.
“If you do not dislike leaving this busy scene," said Sir Henry, “I think we shall have a better chance of meeting Emily and Clarendon, if we turn down one of these winding paths.”
They turned to their left, and walked on. How beautiful was that night! Its calm tranquillity, as they receded from the giddy throng, could not but subdue them. We have said that the moon was not riding the heavens in her full robe of majesty, nor was there a sombre darkness. The purple vault was spangled thick with stars; and there reigned that dubious, glimmering light, by which you can note a face, but not mark its blush. The walks wound fantastically. They were lit by festoons of coloured lamps, attached to the neighbouring trees, so as to resemble the pendent grapeclusters, that the traveller meets with just previous to the Bolognese vintage. Occasionally, a path would be encountered where no light met the eyes save that of the prying stars overhead. In the distant vista, might be seen a part of the crowded promenade, where music held its court; whilst at intervals, a voice's swell or guitar's tinkle would be borne on the ear. There was the hum of men, too—the laugh of the idlers without the sanctum, as they indulged in the delights of the mischievous fire-ball—and the sudden whizz, followed by an upward glare of light, as a rocket shot into the air. But the hour, and the nameless feeling that hour invoked, brought with them a subduing influence, which overpowered these intruding sounds, attuning the heart to love and praise. They paced the walk in mutual and embarrassed silence. Sir Henry's thoughts would at one time revert to his brother, and at another to that parting, which the morrow would assuredly bring with it. He was lost in reverie, and almost forgot who it was that leant thus heavily upon his arm. Julia had loved but once. She saw his abstraction, and knew not the cause; and her timid heart beat quicker than was its wont, as undefined images of coming evil and sorrow, chased each other through