Page:Yule Logs.djvu/430

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414
ON A MEXICAN RANCHE

"I came here in hopes that, in spite of your prejudice against me, I might still succeed in winning your love. I see now that it is useless, and can understand the real reason of your refusal of it. I am not blind; and when I heard you speaking to that young Englishman as you had never spoken to me, I comprehended the whole matter."

The girl flushed angrily. "You insult me," she said. "I am not one of your slaves, Don Pedro; and my father will not forgive any one, whosoever he may be, who insults his preserver. As to your insinuation, it is contemptible. You know full well I informed my father, after your first visit here, that nothing would induce me to marry you, and I would rather enter a convent than do so. My visit to your house confirmed me in that determination; but at that time I had never even seen this Englishman. Your insinuation proves to me how rightly I judged your character. I would rather marry the lowest peon on my father's estate than you. You are here on false pretences, sir. You declared in your letter to my father that you acquiesced in his and my decision, and that you wished to come only as a friend; it seems now that this was false."

"It was false, señora, and I intend to make you my wife. You may be cruel, you may be unjust, you may even love another, but that will not turn me from my purpose. Mine you shall be, by all the saints;" and, without waiting to hear the indignant reply, he left the room.

"I am going, Don Garcia," he said abruptly, as he met the latter coming from the stables. "My love is stronger than my power of repressing it. I had hoped that I had to some extent conquered it, but I cannot do so, and it may be, Don Garcia, that you may some day be sorry that you did not give my suit the support that my father and I hoped and expected. I understand now the reason of my refusal. There is another more fortunate than I am, and