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“Signed,

Clarie. Your head is light," the blue schimmel and ride hard and he stroked her hair. after Baas Hartley. Give him

She took his hands and looked this, and when you have done him straight in the face. it I shall give you a pound.

“No, father, my head is not Which way did he go?” light. I know well what I say. “He is gone Krugersdorp It was I bade Hartley kill way, baas.” Johannes. Now do you under- “If you find him I will give stand why I sent him away?” you another pound, Toli.” The old man was dazed.

Clarie had followed her father do not understand, to the hut. haartje.”

“You have forgotten this,” “It is easy to understand, said she. She handed him a father. You know how I hated pass, without which no native Johannes. Hartley knew it can travel in the Transvaal also. I told him how much I under penalty of arrest.

It suffered, and he arranged to rantake Johannes away.

Did he not break with you over the “Pass my native, Toli, lookwaggon that he might take ing for his brother. Johannes ? He did it because

P. DE VILLIERS, I wished it.” She broke again

"Rietspruit." into sobs, then, checking them, with a supreme effort she got They waited until Toli reoff the sofa. “Father, you turned from the paddock with must help me.

The Smeers the horse. He was hardly will be here soon. I must awake yet, and bungled the write a letter to Hartley, and saddling. Clarie pushed him you must send Toli to find away, and tightened the

girths. She went to her room, and “Now, Toli, ride harder than returned with a sealed envelope.ever you did. Find the baas,

“I understand, Clarie; but and if you bring me an answer she must not know.” He took I will give you two pounds. the envelope, and glanced fear- “I'll catch him, Missie," and fully in the direction of the the bare legs thrashed the kitchen.

horse's flanks viciously, sendClarie put her arms round ing him off at a fast triple. the old man and kissed him When the two re-entered the for reply.

sitting - room Mrs de Villiers “He must not be caught, was there. haartje. I see it all very “Where have you been? I clear. He kissed her awk- heard a horse." wardly, almost violently, quiet- “We have sent Toli to catch ly opened the door, and went Hartley," Clarie answered as out, shoeless, to the Kafir she passed into her room. quarters.

Thanks to the circumlocuHe roused the herd-boy. tory system of passing on “Toli, get up quick. Saddle orders in the de Villiers' house

him.”

Hartley felt sick, and made manner of a man who heard an no reply.

excuse he could not accept. “Yes, where is Wilmot ?-he His stolid, stupid face had inwill tell the truth.”

credulity and obstinate sceptiHendrika had entered the cism stamped upon it.

" You room, and stood by the side of had better go away," he her mother. She was in an said. His passive, quietelaborate dressing-gown, whose loving nature revolted at embellishment she had con- everything violent. He hated cealed and marred by throwing a scene, and would rather an old shawl over her head and allow a malefactor to escape shoulders. She stood an

em- than have the trouble and bodiment of inartistic incon- exertion of arresting him. gruity,—delicate lace and rib- “ Run

away

before the bon, ragged and dirty woollen. Smeers come : they are wait

“Why did you make Wilmot ing for you,” he repeated. bury

Johannes?" she de- Hartley started as if stung. manded. "We know, - you “Run away! By God, no! dared not look on him. It is not for all the police in the always SO with murderers. Transvaal," he shouted, standHave you murdered Wilmot? ing up and facing the

group Where is he? Why does he defiantly. “Where's Clarie? not come to bear out your You may believe I'm a murlies?

derer, but she does not." Hartley relit his pipe. The “Go away,” Piet repeated questioning of the girl unnerved petulantly and paralysed him.

His cour

“It's your house, Piet, but age was oozing. He wanted I don't go until Clarie tells to be brave and conceal noth- me to." ing, but he hesitated to make At that moment there was a the answer that he felt must flash of white at the door. condemn him irretrievably. Clarie, with a wrapper thrown Where was Wilmot ? He hon- round her, her long brown hair estly did not know, but dare streaming over her shoulders, not confess it, much less could her face white as her robe and he put his suspicions into her dark eyes gleaming feverwords. To impute treachery ishly, glided noiselessly into the to his friend while he himself room.

She walked swiftly up under grave suspicion to Hartley, and pointing to the would be the act of a coward. door that opened upon the

“You cannot answer," came stoep, said in a tone strangely the voice of Hendrika. “You at variance with her usual know you have murdered him. subdued and gentle speech, I can feel it. Father, send a “Go-go at once!" Kafir for Frickkie and Jan Hartley stood dazed and Smeer: they are on the farm, irresolute. and must catch this schelm.” “But, Clarie, why should I

Old Piet spoke at last. He go if I am innocent ?had been listening with the “Go!" she repeated, and she

was

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put her hand on his arm as if “Don't cry, haartje,” he said to force him.

soothingly. “Why did you tell He looked at her for a space. him you thought him a mur

“I'll go if you believe me a derer? I know you don't. murderer.

But it looks black against "I do,-go."

him.” “ You do?” He asked the Clarie controlled herself with question with lingering, doubt- an effort. “It does look ful emphasis.

black,” she said. “ That's "I do,-go away."

why I drove him away." He picked up the sjambok “But do you think he murthat he had laid on the table, dered Smeer?” gave one long stupefied look “I should have sent him at the white-robed, trembling away just the same. figure, put on his hat, and “Then you don't think him passed into the darkness with- bad.” out a word.

She shook her head. Clarie stood, statuesque, till

“ You are a strange girl, the door had closed behind Clarie. Why did you say you him, then threw herself on to believed him guilty ?” the sofa and burst into “Father, you don't underhysterical sobs.

stand Dick. You heard him Mrs de Villiers walked over say he would not go but for and stood by her. “ That is me. If I had told him I your Rooinek lover, eh? - a thought him innocent, he would murderer; and you send him have stayed to be caught that away that he may not be he might justify my faith in caught. But he will be. him ; but I know he would have Hendrika, tell Toli to ride fast no chance. They would conto Frickkie Smeer. Quick! I vict him easily. It broke my can hear he is going that way. .” heart to say it, but it was the

Hendrika left by the kitchen, only way, -I know him so and her mother followed. As well.” And she broke again she disappeared, a little figure into sobs, while little Lisbeth in a dishevelled night - dress lavished wet kisses and old came furtively into the room Piet awkwardly stroked her and climbed on to the sofa, hair, muttering, “ Haartje, where she nestled beside the haartje!” weeping woman. It was little Clarie had summed the inLisbeth.

cident accurately when she Old Piet sat at the table said she knew Hartley so well. watching the child fondling Her strangely unexpected deand kissing her sister. Pres- nunciation of the man was the ently he got up, slouched to outcome of a woman's instinct the sofa, and sat down. Clarie and impulse. She had heard lay with her back to him, her her sister's threat to send for face buried in a cushion. Her the sons of the dead Smeer, father gently pulled one hand and knew well that it portended &way.

disaster for Hartley. Days before his arrival the family had people, which is an abominaheard the story told by Toli, tion in the sight of the Lord. and judgment had been given. Yet you have sent him away. Clarie had schemed to send Mention of the Predikant Hartley warning, but her mes- stung Clarie into active resistsenger had been intercepted, ance. She had suffered much and threats of punishment had these past two days from deterred any other Kafir from the Predikantal moralisings undertaking the task. She and homilies. The culminating had been in bed some hours, crime of the Rooinek had justiworn out by anxiety and the fied to the uttermost all the torture of the incessant re- prophecies and forebodings that proaches and taunts of her the young zealot had poured stepmother. The quick-eared, out. He was painfully human, sympathetic little Lisbeth had and secretly proud of

of his discovered the

presence of triumph, therefore could not Hartley in the sitting-room, resist the petty revenge of and thither Clarie was pro- jubilation. Clarie had at last ceeding when she heard him turned upon him in an outexpress his resolve to wait for burst of indignation, and dethe arrival of the avengers. nounced his bloodthirstiness as She knew that he was in no unworthy one professing Christhumour to listen to remon- ianity. The mention of him strance, even from her, and by her father revived her that his loyalty would impel latent anger. She turned and him to scorn flight for her sake. faced the old man. A flash of instinctive reasoning “Father, don't tell me what showed her that she could Mr Stegmann has said. He is destroy this motive by pre- no godly man. He would not tending callous indifference, only separate me from-him, even aversion. His question but he would have me hanged gave her her cue. His look if he knew all.” and tone said plainly, “If you Piet looked surprised, beare against me, I yield.” So wildered. she uttered the stinging words “You, haartje? What do that fell upon his astonished you mean? The Predikant is

as the sudden and un- a just man, and would only accustomed lash startles the visit the Lord's anger on the petted steed to the effort that wrong-doer." averts the danger which gentle “You think he is just ?" coaxing would but precipitate. 'Ja, Clarie, I believe he is

Piet looked on in silence for the Lord's man." some minutes, then with that

" Then it is as

I
say.

He inconsequential ineptitude char- would have me hanged if he is acteristic of the Afrikander, just. Father, it was I killed remarked

Johannes Smeer!” “The Predikant says that The old man stared at his Hartley should be hanged. He daughter, then forced a laugh. has murdered one of our own “You are very sick and bad,

ears

66

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Clarie. Your head is light,” the blue schimmel and ride hard and he stroked her hair. after Baas Hartley. Give him

She took his hands and looked this, and when you have done him straight in the face. it I shall give you a pound.

“No, father, my head is not which way did he go?” light. I know well what I say. “He is gone Krugersdorp It was I bade Hartley kill way, baas." Johannes, Now do you under- "If you find him I will give stand why I sent him away?” you another pound, Toli." The old man was dazed.

Clarie had followed her father “I do not understand, to the hut. haartje.”

“You have forgotten this,” “It is easy to understand, said she. She handed him a father. You know how I hated pass, without which no native Johannes. Hartley knew it can travel in the Transvaal also. I told him how much I under penalty of arrest. It suffered, and he arranged to rantake Johannes away.

Did he not break with you over the “Pass my native, Toli, lookwaggon that he might take ing for his brother. Johannes ? He did it because “Signed, P. DE VILLIERS, I wished it.” She broke again

“Rietspruit." into sobs, then, checking them, with a supreme effort she got They waited until Toli reoff the sofa. “Father, you turned from the paddock with must help me.

The Smeers the horse. He was hardly will be here soon. I must awake yet, and bungled the write a letter to Hartley, and saddling. Clarie pushed him you must send Toli to find away, and tightened

the him.”

girths. She went to her room, and “Now, Toli, ride harder than returned with a sealed envelope.ever you did. Find the baas,

“I understand, Clarie; but and if you bring me an answer she must not know.” He took I will give you two pounds." the envelope, and glanced fear- “I'll catch him, Missie," and fully in the direction of the the bare legs thrashed the kitchen.

horse's flanks viciously, sendClarie put her arms round ing him off at a fast triple. the old man and kissed him When the two re-entered the for reply.

sitting - room Mrs de Villiers “He must not be caught, was there. haartje. I see it all very “Where have you been? I clear.” He kissed her awk- heard a horse." wardly, almost violently, quiet- “We have sent Toli to catch ly opened the door, and went Hartley,” Clarie answered as out, shoeless, to the Kafir she passed into her room. quarters.

Thanks to the circumlocuHe roused the herd-boy. tory system of passing on “Toli, get up quick. Saddle orders in the de Villiers' house

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