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Get out of my way, or I'll knock you down."
But the stranger kept the point of his sword at Fairbrother's breast, and it could not be passed. Fairbrother dropped his hands, and in a moment the stranger had struck him with the flat of his sword, and recovered his position before the other could rush in. And then Fairbrother, with fighting blood in his veins and claret in his head, drew his sword and put himself on guard, and the blades crossed. And in this strange way there happened a thing which may well have happened there before, but could not have happened-the dress and the act considered-for two hundred and thirty odd years in the dining-room at Mereworth.
But my romance is trivial, and I have to record that the fight was bloodless. Fairbrother
attacked fiercely; but the stranger, recovering his composure and the smile coming back to his face, contented himself with defence, and made no actual passes. They had fought for a few seconds only when a girl's voice called "Arthur!" in the hall, and a moment later, "Why, what's happening?" Fairbrother slipped on the polished edge of the floor, and knocked his head violently against the wall in falling, and between the blow and wine and confusion lost consciousness and lay still. At the moment the door opened, and Lady Betty ran in. She stopped suddenly and covered her face with her hands, giving a little shriek. But it was not until two or three minutes afterwards that she ran into the
drawing - room, crying that Arthur had hurt himself and was lying unconscious.
(To be continued.)
SURE, maybe ye've heard the storm-thrush
Before there a primrose peepin' out,
Or a wee red cone on the larch: Whistlin' the sun to come out o' the cloud,
An' the wind to come over the sea,-
Sure, maybe ye've seen the song-thrush
Slip from in-undher the drippin' leaves,
Och, low wid love when he's near the nest,
But for all he can flutter the heart in your breast,
Sure, maybe ye've heard the cushadoo
Callin' his mate in May,
When one sweet thought is the whole of his life,
An' he tells it the one sweet way.
But my heart is sore at the cushadoo
Filled wid his own soft glee, Over an' over his "me an' you!". He's never the bird for me.
Sure, maybe ye've heard the red-breast
The time is in dark November,
An' no spring hopes has he:
"Remember," he sings, "remember!"— Ay, thon's the wee bird for me.
THE battle of Leipsic was fought on the 18th and 19th of October 1813, and from the numbers engaged was termed by the Germans the Völkerschlacht. The combined Russian, Prussian, and Austrian forces, to the number of nearly a quarter of a million, encountered Napoleon's army of 160,000 men, and inflicted upon it one of the most crushing and terrible defeats on record. It is said that over 80,000 men fell, of whom about half were French, and Napoleon was forced to recross the Rhine with hardly onequarter of his troops, the rearguard of his flying army being captured by the Allies.
The following account of the Retreat from Leipsic, lately found among some family papers, and never before published, was taken down from the lips of a survivor, a young French officer, by his cousin, an English lady, Miss G., not long after the event, and is here translated into English.
It was there that French bravery shone in its brightest colours. You should have seen these youths advancing with cheers on the enemy's batteries repulsed, almost overwhelmed, by the heavy fire, then dashing forward once more with levelled bayonets and carrying them! Or, again, the formidable squares of infantry, posted before the village, awaiting motionless the charge of the masses of cavalry hurled upon them, the front rank forming a bristling rampart of steel, from behind which the others poured in a hail of balls which drove back their assailants in the most hopeless disorder. Nothing seemed to shake these stalwart masses. We watched them literally melting under the enemy's fire, dropping by files at a time, then-as coolly as if on parade-they dressed up, though they had lost quite half their number; and this, too, without a man leaving the ranks, or the line breaking.
No! it is impossible to deny that the French soldier is a chef-d'œuvre of the art of war. What precision and rapidity in drill, and what dexterity and skill in each man as a unit! What fire and enthusiasm in assault, yet what coolness in defence!1
A most terrible sight it was to see the artillery fire in the streets, the hand-to-hand fighting, and the cavalry charges, made for the most part over the still breathing bodies of our unfortunate wounded, who strewed the pavements of the town and its suburbs to the number of 10,000 men, the hospitals having hardly sufficed for the wounded of the battle of the 16th. Add to this the villainous joy of the canaille of Leipsic, who, barricaded in in their houses, filled the windows and roofs, and howled curses and taunting adieux to the flying French, and even fired upon them. Lucky was it for them that there was
1 Ye larger portion of ye French army retreated on ye night of 18th October. A. C., having had nothing to eat all day, went out at night to try and find some potatoes, and, losing his regiment, was thus left in ye town.-Note by Miss G.
no time to put a worthy end to this terrible engagement by exterminating this den of ruffians.
But these moments which we longed to devote to vengeance we had to give up to flight, and we fled from the town in a state of disorder impossible to describe-cavalry, infantry, baggage, artillery, huddled together pell-mell. But at the instant that we got free of the town and gained the road in all haste, thinking ourselves at last safe, a terrific explosion was heard the bridge was blown up!! A cry of fear and horror broke from every lip at this dreadful blow. A shout immediately arose that the enemy was upon our rear, and in a moment every man, leaving the ranks, rushed forward to escape. The enemy, observing this disorder, brought their artillery to the front in haste, and placed their guns, loaded with grape, to enfilade us, at the same time charging us in flank with their light cavalry.
No one who had not witnessed it could form any conception of this scene of horror. Imagine 20,000 men, stampeded, entrapped; having in front of them a wide and deep river without a bridge, and at their backs a horde of barbarians, who charged upon and slaughtered them, while to right and left a hail of bullets mowed them down. The younger men, in terror, half mad, threw themselves upon each other, screaming in their despair; the older ones awaited death in silence, or poured forth a stream of curses on their chief, whom they
imagined to have betrayed them. Brave officers ran hither and thither to cheer their men and rally some battalions while they sought to contrive a
bridge, but they soon saw that their efforts were in vain. The baggage and artillery, thrown into disorder, blocked the road, while the horses, wounded and masterless, plunged about in all directions, knocking down the terrified crowd. Those who dared not jump into the stream watched in gloomy silence from the banks those who chose this desperate alternative, and saw with dread how little trust was to be placed in it. Almost all the foot soldiers, indeed, encumbered without exception by their knapsack and accoutrements, were carried away, or stuck fast in the mud and perished there, uttering heartrending cries. The mounted men
for the most part got across, but many sank or were struck down in the water by the fatal hail of grape-shot. For officers and men alike discipline no longer existed. Orders, prayers, or threats to obtain a horse, or to avoid being crushed beneath the feet of those riding, were alike in vain. Generosity and pity were no more, and self-interest cried aloud to each man to save himself.
As for me, in the midst of this scene of horror, rage, terror, and hope mingled in my breast. But retaining my presence of mind, my state of uncertainty soon vanished, and I pushed into the river with my horse without further hesitation. A few steps and he was swim