The Baronet's Bride (Chapter 7, page 1 of 9)


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Chapter 7

"I have said it, and I mean it; they ought to know me well enough by this time, Godsoe. I'd transport every man of them, the poaching scoundrels, if I could! Tell that villain Dick Darkly that the first time I catch him at his old tricks he shall follow the brother he makes such a howling about, and share his fate."

Sir Everard Kingsland was the speaker. He stood with one hand, white and shapely as a lady's, resting on the glossy neck of his bay horse, his fair, handsome face, flushed with anger, turned upon his gamekeeper.

Peter Godsoe, the sturdy gamekeeper, standing before his young master, hat in hand, looked up deprecatingly.

"He takes it very hard, Sir Everard, that you sent his brother to Worrel Jail. His missis was sick, and two of the children had the measles, and Will Darkly he'd been out o' work, and they was poor as poor. So he turns to and snares the rabbits, and--"

"Godsoe, are you trying to excuse this convicted poacher? Is that what you stopped me here to say?"

"I beg your pardon, Sir Everard; I only wanted to warn you--to put you on your guard--"

"To warn me--to put me on my guard? What do you mean? Has that villainous poacher dared to threaten me?"

"Not in my hearing, sir; but others say so. And he's a dark, vindictive brute; and he swore a solemn oath, they say, when his brother went to Worrel Jail, to be revenged upon you. And so, Sir Everard, begging your pardon for the freedom, I thought as how you was likely to be out late to-night, coming home from my lord's, and as Brithlow Wood is lonesome and dark--"

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