Page:Mehalah 1920.djvu/287

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277
THE RETURN OF THE LOST

"Well?" asked Mehalah, eagerly.

"Don't catch me up, Glory. I only stopped to turn the quid. As I was about to say, I did not remember what I had promised. I had nothing else to send you that would serve as a token. The medal was an article about which there could be no mistake. I knew when you saw that you would make sure Elijah's story was true, and my promise would be sacred—I have kept it. I have returned to you. Glory, and if you were not married I should make you my wife. I love you still, as I always did love you. I have seen a sight of fine girls since I left Mersea. There's more fish in the sea than come out of it; but I'm darned if I have seen a finer anywhere, or more to my liking than you. Glory. You were my first love and the sight of you brings back pleasant memories. The more I look at, you now, the more I feel inclined to wring that old prophet's neck. You are too good for such a chap as he; you should have waited for me. You had promised, and might have had patience. But, Lord bless me! how the girls do run after the men! Glory! I have seen the world since I left Mersea, and I know more of it than I did. I suppose you thought that as I was gone to Davy Jones's locker you must catch whom you could."

"George! " exclaimed Mehalah, "do not speak to me thus. I cannot bear it. I know you are only talking in this way to try me, and because you resent my marriage. I promised once to be true to you. I gave you my heart, and I have remained, and I will remain, true to you; my heart is yours, and I can never recover it and give it to another."

"This is very fine and sentimental. Glory," said George; "I've smelt powder and I know the colour of blood. I've seen the world, and know what sentiment is worth; it is blank cartridge firing; it breaks no bones, but it makes a noise and a flash. I don't see how you can call it keeping true to me when you marry another man for his money."

"You are determined to drive me mad," exclaimed Mehalah. "Have mercy on me, my own George, my only George! I have loved and suffered for you. God can see into my heart, and knows how deeply it has been