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Copyright, 1911, by the Now York Herald Company. AU rights reserved.
SYNOPSIS. t-^IDER HAGGARD'S romance. "Red Eve." la laid LJin the period of the battle of Crecy and of the scourge of the black death, both of these events playing important parts in the story. "Red Eve" opens with a prologue, which is placed In Cathay and Is a fanciful and yet grewsome pic ture depicting the embarking of Murgh, god of death, on his passage from China, which he has devastated with the plague, to the western lands, over which he Is about to lay his scourging hand and Its blight. From this prologue the scene passes to Rlyth burgh. in Suffolk, a village near to the seaport of Dunwich, In which place dwell the families of the Claverlngs and their -cousins, the De Cressls. The ClaverlngC of whom the head la. ..Sir John Claverlng. are large feudal land owners, and the De Cressls are wealthy wool merchants at Dunwich. Sir John Claverlng has two children—a son. John, an" a daughter. Eve, the Red Eve of the story, so called because of her fancy for wearing crimson, which sets off her dark beauty. Eve, a lady'of great character, la in love with Hugh de Cressl, the younger son of the merchant, a young man of many part* but small fortune, with whom she has grown up from childhood, Sir John Claverlng, however, will have none of the match, partly because of a feud that has arisen between his house and that of the De Cressls and still more because he wishes Ms lovely daughter to marry a great lord, half Norman and half Eng lish, who Is named Sir Edmut-d Acour in England, Count de Noyon In France and '.he Seigneur Cat trlna In Italy, in all three of which oountrlea he has possessions. This Acour, a handsome but false hearted noble, la at the time of the opening of the story staving with the Claverlngs under pretext of visiting his English estates, but really as a spy of King Philip of France and to make arrangements for the Inva sion of England. , The opening of the story describes the secret meeting of Red Eve with her sweetheart, Hugh de Cressl, in Blythburgh fen, upon a winter day. Hugh la accompanied by one of the main characters Of the tale, his henchman. Gray Dick, or Richard Archer, so called for his marvelous skill with the bow, a fatherless and' misanthropic man, who ia supposed to be of the De Cressi blood and who cer tainly loves Hugh like a brother*..;' Their meeting Is interrupted by Cir John Claver lng, Eve's father; John, he- brother, and Sir Ed mund Acour. with a posse of knights serving men, who finally fire the reeds in order to drive out the sweethearts, whom they can not find. Hugh and Eve's brother John have a desperate fight, rolling over each other, but too close to stab. The flurry In the snow waa at an end. John lay on his back: De Cressl knelt on him and lifted his short sword. \ "Do you yield?" men heard him say. "'Nay," answered Claverlng. Then suddenly Hugh rose and suffered his adversary to do likewise. "I'll not stick you like a hog," he said, and some cried, "Well done!" for the act seemed noble. Only Acour muttered "Fool!" Next Instant they were at It again, but this time It was Hugh who attacked and John who gave back right to the river's edge, for skill and courage seemed to fall him at once. "Turn your head, lady," said Dick, "for now one must die." But Eve could not - The swords flashed for the last time In the red light. Then that of De Cress! vanished. Claverlng threw his arms wide and fell backward. A splash as of a great stone thrown into water, and all was done. The sweethearts, escaping, swim the, Blyth In flood In an effort to find sanctuary In the precep tory at Dunwich. After an exciting ana perilous passing of the river Eve and Hugh are Joined by Gray Dick, who when asked the outcome of the fight tells them he shot thrice and slew three men, but the fourth CHAPTER X (Continued). The King Makes Hugh His Champion WELL nigh a year had gone, for once again the sun shown in the brazen August heav ens. Calais had fallen at last, Only that day six of her noblest citizens had come forth, bearing the keys of the fortress, clad in white shirts, with ropes about their necks, and been res cued from instant death at the hands of the headman by the prayer of Queen Phillippa. In his tent sat young Sir; Hugh de Cressi,;who, after so much war and hardship, looked older than, his years, perhaps because of a.red scar across the forehead, which he had come by during the siege. With him was his father, Master de Cressi, who had sailed across from Dunwich with a cargo of provisions, whereof, if the truth be known, he had made no small profit, for they were sold, every pound of them, before they left the ship's hold, though it is true the money remained to be collected. "You say that Eve is well, my father?" "Aye, well enough, son. Never saw I woman bet ter or more beautiful, though she wears but a sad face. I asked her if she would not sail with me and visit you. But she answered: 'Nay, how can I, who am another man's wife? Sir Hugh, your son, should have killed the wolf and let the poor swan go. When the wolf is dead them, perchance, I will visit him. But meanwhile, say to him that Red Eve's heart is where it always was and that, like all Dunwich, she joys greatly in his fame and is honored in his honor.' Moreover, to Gray Dick here she sends many mes sages and a present of wines and spiced foods for his stomach and of six score arrows made after his own pattern for his quiver.'" "But for me nothing, father?" said Hugh. "Nothing, son, save her love, which she said was enough. Also, in all this press of business and in my joy at finding you safe I had almost forgotten it, there is a letter from the holy father/Sir Andrew. I have it somewhere in my pouch amid the bills of exchange," and he began to hunt through the parch ments which he carried in a bag within his robe. - At length the letter was found. It ran thus: ' - "To Sir Hugh de Cressi, knight, my beloved god son: With what rejoicings I and another have heard of your knightly deeds through the letters that you have sent to us and from the mouths of wounded sol diers -returned from the war your honored * father will tell you. I thank God for them and pray, him that this may find you unhurt and growing ever in glory. _ ,■ .. / • _ / / "My, son, I have no good news for you. The pope at Avignon, having studied the matter (if indeed it ever reached his own ears), writes by one of his sec retaries to say that he will not dissolve the alleged marriage between the count of ' Noyon arid the lady Eve of Clavering until the parties have appeared be fore him and set out their cause to his face. There fore Eve can not come to you, nor must you' come to her while De Noyon lives, unless the mind of his holiness can" be changed. Should France become more quiet, so that English folk can travel there in safety, perchance Eve/and I will journey to Avignon to lay her plaint. before the holy father. But: as yet RED EVE H. RIDER HAGGARD time he missed. "Whom?" asks Eve. "The French man who means to marry you," ia Gray Dick's answer. Arriving at the preceptory of the Knights Tem plar at Dunwich, Eve and Hugh; find themselves given sanctuary by an, old priest,. Sir Andrew Ar j nold, who Is In charge of the preceptory, the Knights Templar having been ' dissolved. Sir Andrew is of high degree and has a famous record as a warrior. ! Also he is Red Eve's confes sor and Hugh's godfather. He learns the tale of slaughter ana love _nd In turn tells a fantastic story of his experience In his youth with Murgh, the god of death. Early in life Sir Andrew had traveled to Cathay. He It was who met Murgh in a marvelous temple. Murgh in a remarkable Interview bestowed on Sir Andrew some of his weird wisdom. After this recital and the demand of Red Eve and Hugh that they be forgiven and married, Hugh's father reaches the preceptory, learns Of the fight In the marshes and praises his son for hla courage. He regrets that a feud Is now established between the Claverlngs and the De Cressls, but proceeds nevertheless to protect his son's life, while showing pride in the fact that the old Nor man blood In his veins Is shown In his courage. While father and son talk Sir Andrew take* ac tion by announcing that as part of Hugh's penance he Is to ride to London on an errand that shall save hla neck. The father grants permission for Hugh to undertake the perilous ride, but asks, "To whom does he go?" * V, He is told that Hugh la to visit none other than' King Edward 111, to whom he Is to carry proofs of the treachery of Acour. Eve la to be left In charge of Sir Andrew. Accompanied by Gray Dick and hla men, Hugh reaches Windsor and Is graciously re ceived by the king. VI ,-*';'" Queen Phllllppa hears from Hugh the story of his love for Red Eve and becomes interested. She learn* of the battle on Blythburg heath, ' and the king then grants a full pardon to Hugh and puts In his hand a royal warrant calling for either the capture or death of Acour. Gray Dick then amazes the king and hla retinue with an exhibition of archery, at the conclusion of which. th* monarch exclaims, "We do not see such shooting every day." Meantime Red Eve Is decoyed out of the sanc tuary by a tale of her father's illness. She finds htm: not 111, but violently angry at the turn of affairs. He insists that she become the bride of Acour, and on her defiance of him . and absolute refusal to do his bidding she is conviyed to a dungeon, where It' Is hoped her spirit will be brcken. Her father visits her and she again defies him, but ha demands that she swear by a solemn oath to break forever with Hugh de Cressl. ! Otherwise he declares she can not regain her'freedom. Eva remains firm, and with a curse her father leaves her, to be followed soon by Acour, who tells her Hugh is dead, having been beheaded by order of the king. She refuses to listen to the knave's professions of love and drives hint from her. Acour then contrives to have Eve drugged and taken to the chapel, where, half con scious she is married to * him. Just as the servivc Is completed Hugh arrives with the king's warrant for the slaying or capture of Acour, and a terrific battle takes place in the chapel when Hugh learns what is taking place. Acour escapes, leav ing Eve, his wife in the eyes of the church. Hugh Is badly wounded by Sir John Claverlng, who, how ever, dies of his wounds. Hugh, recovering, ; fol lows Acour to France, where he arrives in time for the battle of Crecy. lf Hugh ana Gray Dick play a great part In the battle, which is graphically described in the story, Hugh all j the while seeking Acour, who, however, escapes him b_ a shameful trick whereby he causes another knight to be slain by Hugh in his stead. this seems scarcely possible. Moreover, I trust that fhe traitor, Acour, may meet, his end in this way or that and save us such necessity. For, as you know, such cases take long to try and the cost of them is great. Moreover, at the court of Avignon the cause of one of our country must indeed be good just now when the other party to it is of the blood of France. "Soon I hope to write to you again, who at present have no more to say, save that notwithstanding my years I am well and strong and would that I sat with you before the walls of Calais. God's blessing and mine be on you, and to Richard the Archer greetings. Dunwich has heard how he shot the Frenchman before the great battle closed and the townsfolk lit a bonfire on the walls and feasted all the archers in his honor. ANDREW ARNOLD." "Here is another letter," said Master de Cressi when Hugh had finished reading,; "which Sir Andrew charged me to give to you also," and he handed him a (paper addressed in a large, childish hand. Hugh broke its silk eagerly, for he knew that writing. '. • ' ''';/ "Hugh," it began simply, "Clement the pope will not void,my false marriage unless I appear before him, and this as yet I can not do because of the French wars. Moreover, he sets the curse of the church upon me arid any man with whom I shall dare to remarry until this be done. For myself . I would : defy the church, but not for you or for children that might' come to us. Moreover, the holy father, Sir 1 Andrew, forbids it, saying that God will right all in his season and that we. must not make him wroth. Therefore, Hugh, lover you are but husband you may not be while De Noyon lives or until the pope gives his dispensation of divorce, which latter may be long in winning, for the knave De Noyon has been whis pering in his ear. 'Hugh, this is my counsel: Get yon to the king again and crave his leave to'follow De Noyon, for if once you twain come face :to face I ; know well how the fray will end. Then, when he is dead, return to one who waits for you through this world and the next. ' "Hugh, lam proud of your great deeds. No longer can they call you the 'merchant's son,' Sir Hugh. God be with you, as are my prayers and love. / \ "EVE OF CLAVERING." «. "I forgot to . tell you , that Sir Andrew is disturbed in heart," said Master de Cressi presently. "He looks into a crystal which he says he brought with him from the east, and swears he sees strange sights there, pictures of woe such as have not been since the beginning of the world. Of this woe he preaches to the folk of Dunwich, warning them of judgment to come, and they listen affrighted because they know him to be a holy man who has the gift,of God. Yet he says that you and I need fear nothing. May it hz so, Hugh." Now when he had thought a while and hidden up Eve's letter, Hugh turned to his father and asked him what were these sermons that Sir Andrew preached. . * - "I have heard but one of them, son," answered Master de Cressi, "though there have been three. By the holy mother, it frightened me so much that I needed no more of that medicine. Nor, to tell truth, when I got home again could I remember all he said, save that it was of some frightful ill that comes upon the world from the east and will leave it desolate.". "And what think folk of :such talk, father?" "Faith, son, they know not what to think. Most say that he is mad; others that he is inspired of God. Yet others declare that he is a wizard and that his familiar brings him tidings from Cathay, where once he dwelt, or, perchance, from hell itself. These went to tho bishop, who summoned Sir Andrew and was closeted with him for three hours. Afterward lie called in the complainers and bade them cease their, scandal of wizardry, since he was sure that what the holy, father said came from above and not from be low, and that they would do well to mend their lives and prepare to render their account, as for his part he should also, since the air was thick with doom. Then he gave his benediction to the old knight and turned away weeping, and since that hour none talk of, wizardry but all of judgment. Men in Dunwich who have quarreled for years forgive each other and sing psalms instead of swearing oaths, and : I have been paid debts that have been owing to me * for years, all because of these sermons." ; ' "An awesome tale, truly," said Hugh. "Yet, like that bishop, I believe that what Sir Andrew, says will come to pass, for I know that he is not as other men are." That nighty by special leave, Hugh waited on the king, and with him Gray Dick, who was ever his shadow. Leaped to Earth, and Shot Two of Them With as Many Arrows, Whereon the Other Two Ran Away. "What is it now, Sir Hugh de Cressi?" asked Edward. "Sire, after the great battle, nigh upon a year, ago, you told me that I must serve you till Calais fell. I have served.as best I could,.and" Calais has' fallen. Now I ask, your leave to go seek my enemy yours Sir Edmund Acour, Count de Noyon." "Then/you must go far, Sir Hugh, for I have tid ings that this rogue i who was not ashamed to wear another man's armor and to save himself from your sword, is away to Italy this six months gone, where as the Seigneur de Cattrina, he has estates near Ven ice*. But tell me how things stand. Doubtless that Red Eve of strangely enough I thought of her at Crecy when the sky grew so wondrous at night fallis at the bottom of them." ..'•'' "That is so, sire," and he told him all the tale. "A strange case truly, Sir Hugh," said the king when he heard it out. "I'll write to Clement for you both, but I doubt me whether you and your Eve will get justice from him, being English, for England and Englishmen find little favor at Avignon just now, and mayhap Philip has already written on behalf of De Noyon. At the best his holiness will shear you close and keep you waiting while he weighs the wool. No, Red Eve is right; this is a knot ; soonest severed by the sword, and if you can find him De Noyon can scarce refuse to fight- you, for you shall fight him as the champion of our cause as well as of your own. He's at Venice, for our envoy there reported "it" to me, s trying to raise a fresh force of archers for the French. "You have leave to go, Sir 'Hugh, who deserves much more/who have served us well," went on the king. "We'll give you letters to Sir Geoffrey Carleon, who represents us there, and through him to the doge. Farewell to you, Sir Hugh de Cressi, and to you, Cap- Richard v the Archer. When all this game is played return and make report to us of your adven tures and. of how De Noyon died. The queen will love to hear, the tale and your rraptials and Red Eve' 3 shall be celebrated at Westminster; in our presence, for you have earned no Master secretary, get your tools; I will dictate these letters. After they are signed tomorrow see them into the hands of Sir Hugh with others that I will give him for safe carriage, for alas! I have creditors at Venice. Make out an open patent also to show,that he arid this .captain travel as our messengers, charging all that do us service to forward them upon their journey." Three days later Hug_h and Gray ,Dick in the char acter of royal messengers from the king of England to the doge of Venice took passage in a geat vessel bound for Genoa with a cargo of wool 1 and other goods. * On board this ship before he sailed Hugh handed to his father letters.for" Eve and for Sir An drew Arnold, and received from him money in plenty for his faring bills of exchange upon certain mer chants of Italy, which would bring him more should it be needed. Their parting was very sad since the prophecies of Sir Andrew had taken no small hold upon Master de Cressi's mind. "I fear me greatly," dear son," he said, "that we part to meet no naore. Wel.l, such is. the lot of parents. They breed those "children that * heaVen decrees to them; with toil and thought and fears they rear them up from infancy, learning to love them more than their own souls; for their sakes fighting a hard world. Then the sons go forth, north and south, and the daughters find* husbands and joys and sorrows of their own, and both half forget them, as is nature's way. Last of all, those parents die, ,as also is na ture's way, and the half rorgetfulness becomes whole as surely as . the young moon ' grows' to full. Well, well, this is a lesson that each generation must learn in turn, as you will know ere all is done. Although you are my youngest, I'll not shame to say I have loved you best of all, Hugh, and made such provision as I can for you, who have once more raised up the old name; to honor, and who, as . I hope, will once more blend the De Cressis and the Claverings, the foes of three generations, into a single house." '* "Speak not so, father," answered - Hugh, who was moved almost to tears. "Mayhap it is I who shall die, while you live on to a green old age. At least know that I am not forgetful of your love and kind ness, seeing that after Eve you are dearer to me than any on the earth." y "Aye, aye, after Eve and Eve's children. Still, you'll have a kind thought for me now and then— the old merchant who so often thwarted you when you* were a wayward lad—for your own good, as he held. For what more can a father hope? But let us not weep before all these stranger men. Farewell, son Hugh, of whom liam :so proud. Farewell, sbn Hugh," and he embraced him arid went across the gangway, for the sailors were already singing their chanty at the anchor. „ - "I never had a father that I can mind," said Gray. Dick aloud to himfelf, after his fashion, "yet now I wish I had, for I'd like to think -011 his last words when there was nothing else to do. It's an ugly world as I see it, but there's beauty in such love as this. The man for the maid and : tne maid; for the man— they want each other. But the father and the mother— give all and take nothing. Oh, there's beauty in such love as this, so perhaps God made it. '.' Only, then, how did he make Crecy field and Calais siege and my black bow, and me the death who draws it?" * The voyage to Genoa was very long, for at this season of the year the 'winds were ; light and for the most " part contrary. At > length, however, Hugh and Dick came there safe and sound, and having landed and bid farewell to the captain and crew of the ship, waited on the head of a great trading house with which : Master de Cressi had dealings. This . signor, who .could speak French, gave them lodging and wel comed them well, both for the sake of Hugh's father The San Francisco Sunday Call and because they came as messengers from the king; of England. On the morrow of their arrival he took them to a great lord in authority, who .was called a duke. This duke, when he learned that one was a knight and the other a captain archer of the English army and that they both had fought at Crecy, where so many of his countrymenthe Genoese bowmen—> had been slain, looked on them somewhat sourly. Had he known all the part they played in that bat tle, in truth his welcome would have been a rough one. For Hugh, with the guile of the serpent, told him that the brave Genoese had been slain, not by the English arrows, for which even with their wet strings they were quite a match (here Dick, who was standing to one side, grinned faintly and stroked the case of his black bow, as though to bid it keep its memories to itself), but to the cowardly French, their allies. Indeed, his tale of that horrible and treacher ous slaughter was so moving that the duke burst into tears and swore that he would cut the throat of every Frenchman whom he could lay hands on. After this he began to extol the merits of the cross bow as against the long arm of the English, and Hugh agreed that there was much'in what he said. But Gray Dick, who was no courtier, did not agree. Indeed, of a sudden he broke in in his bad French, offering to fight any cross bowman in Genoa at six score yards, so that the duke might learn which was_*B the better weapon. But Hugh trod on hla foot and explained that he meant something quite "different, being no master of the French tongue. So that cloud passed by. \ The end of it was that this duke, or doge, whose ' name they learned was Simon Boccanera, gave thorn safe conduct through all his dominion, with an order; for relays of horses. Also, he made. use of them to take a letter to the doge of Venice, between whir'_^ town and Genoa, although they hated each other bit* terly, there was at the moment some kind of hollow truce. So having drunk a cup of wine with him they; bade him farewell. • . ; Next morning, the horses having arrived, and with them two led beasts to carry their baggage in charge^ of a Genoese guide, they departed! on their long ride of something more than 200 English miles, which they hoped to cover in about a week. In fact, it took them 10 days, for the roads were very rough and the pack beasts slow. Once, too, after they had entered the: territory of Venice, they were set on in a defile by four thieves, and might have met their end had not Gray Dick's eyes been so sharp. As it was, he saw them coming and^aving his bow at hand, for he did not like the '. look of the country or its inhabitants, leaped to earth and shot two of them with as many arrows, whereon the other two ran away. Before they went,* however, they also shot and killed a pack beast, so that the Englishmen were obliged to throw away some of their gear and go on with the one that remained. ' " «(_ """"" —-■. At last, on the eleventh afternoon, they taw the lovely city of Venice, sparkling like a cluster of jew els, set upon its many , islands amid the blue waters of the Adriatic. Having crossed : some two miles of open water by a ferry which plied for the convenience of travelers,; they entered the town through the west ern gate and Inquired as best they could (for now - they had no guide) for the house of Sir Geoffrey Carleori, the English envoy. For a long while they could make no one understand. Indeed, the whole place seemed to be asleep, perhaps because of the *__• dreadful heat, which lay over it like a cloud and seemed;to burn them to; the very bone*. (To be s continued.)