« AnteriorContinuar »
duced, and that each explosion might ring some brave man's knell.
Ere they approached the city, the partial cannonade had wholly ceased. Balmawhapple, however, having in his recollection the unfriendly greeting which his troop had received from the battery at Stirling, had apparently no wish to tempt the forbearance of the artillery of the castle. He therefore left the direct road, and sweeping considerably, to the southward so as to keep out of the range of the cannon, approached the ancient palace of Holy-Rood without having entered the walls of the city. He then drew up his men in front of this venerable pile, and delivered Waverley to the custody of a guard of Highlanders, whose officer conducted him into the interior of the building.
A long gallery hung with pictures pretended to be the portraits of kings, who if they ever flourished at all, lived several hundred years before the invention of painting in oil colours, served as a sort of guard chamber, or vestibule, to the apartments which the adventurous Charles Edward now occupied in the palace of his ancestors. Officers, both in the Highland and Lowland garb, passed and repassed in haste, or loitered in the hall as if waiting for orders. Secretaries were engaged in making out passes, musters, and returns. All seemed busy, and earnestly intent upon something of importance; but Waverley was suffered to remain seated in the recess of a window unnoticed by any one, in anxious reflection upon the crisis of his fate, which seemed now rapidly approaching.
END OF VOLUME I..