Kenilworth (Chapter 8, page 2 of 9)

Previous Page
Next Page

Chapter 8

At the same time, unshrouding the dark lantern, which had hitherto
only emitted an indistinct glimmer, the goodly aspect and figure of
the landlord of the Black Bear was visibly presented to his astonished

"What mummery is this, mine host?" said Tressilian. "Have you supped as
jollily as last night, and so mistaken your chamber? or is midnight a
time for masquerading it in your guest's lodging?"

"Master Tressilian," replied mine host, "I know my place and my time as
well as e'er a merry landlord in England. But here has been my hang-dog
kinsman watching you as close as ever cat watched a mouse; and here have
you, on the other hand, quarrelled and fought, either with him or with
some other person, and I fear that danger will come of it."

"Go to, thou art but a fool, man," said Tressilian. "Thy kinsman is
beneath my resentment; and besides, why shouldst thou think I had
quarrelled with any one whomsoever?"

"Oh, sir," replied the innkeeper, "there was a red spot on thy very
cheek-bone, which boded of a late brawl, as sure as the conjunction of
Mars and Saturn threatens misfortune; and when you returned, the buckles
of your girdle were brought forward, and your step was quick and
hasty, and all things showed your hand and your hilt had been lately

"Well, good mine host, if I have been obliged to draw my sword," said
Tressilian, "why should such a circumstance fetch thee out of thy warm
bed at this time of night? Thou seest the mischief is all over."

"Under favour, that is what I doubt. Anthony Foster is a dangerous man,
defended by strong court patronage, which hath borne him out in matters
of very deep concernment. And, then, my kinsman--why, I have told
you what he is; and if these two old cronies have made up their old
acquaintance, I would not, my worshipful guest, that it should be at
thy cost. I promise you, Mike Lambourne has been making very particular
inquiries at my hostler when and which way you ride. Now, I would have
you think whether you may not have done or said something for which you
may be waylaid, and taken at disadvantage."

"Thou art an honest man, mine host," said Tressilian, after a moment's
consideration, "and I will deal frankly with thee. If these men's malice
is directed against me--as I deny not but it may--it is because they are
the agents of a more powerful villain than themselves."

Previous Page
Next Page

Rate This Book

Current Rating: 2.4/5 (185 votes cast)

Review This Book or Post a Comment