in an adjoining room. But half awake, and with the
sole idea of getting back to sleep again as quickly as possible,
Barney paid only the slightest attention to the meaning of the words
that fell upon his ears, until, like a bomb, a sentence broke
through his sleepy faculties, banishing Morpheus upon the instant.
"It will take but little now to turn Leopold against Von der Tann."
The speaker evidently was an Austrian. "Already I have half
convinced him that the old man aspires to the throne. Leopold fears
the loyalty of his army, which is for Von der Tann body and soul. He
knows that Von der Tann is strongly anti-Austrian, and I have made
it plain to him that if he allows his kingdom to take sides with
Serbia he will have no kingdom when the war is over--it will be a
part of Austria.
"It was with greater difficulty, however, my dear Peter, that I
convinced him that you, Von Coblich, and Captain Maenck were his
most loyal friends. He fears you yet, but, nevertheless, he has
pardoned you all. Do not forget when you return to your dear Lutha
that you owe your repatriation to Count Zellerndorf of Austria."
"You may be assured that we shall never forget," replied another
voice that Barney recognized at once as belonging to Prince Peter of
Blentz, the one time regent of Lutha.
"It is not for myself," continued Count Zellerndorf, "that I crave
your gratitude, but for my emperor. You may do much to win his
undying gratitude, while for yourselves you may win to almost any
height with the friendship of Austria behind you. I am sure that
should any accident, which God forfend, deprive Lutha of her king,
none would make a more welcome successor in the eyes of Austria than
our good friend Peter."
Barney could almost see the smile of satisfaction upon the thin lips
of Peter of Blentz as this broad hint fell from the lips of the
Austrian diplomat--a hint that seemed to the American little short
of the death sentence of Leopold, King of Lutha.
"We owed you much before, count," said Peter. "But for you we
should have been hanged a year ago--without your aid we should never
have been able to escape from the fortress of Lustadt or cross the
border into Austria-Hungary. I am sorry that Maenck failed in his
mission, for had he not we would have had concrete evidence to
present to the king that we are indeed his loyal supporters. It
would have dispelled at once such fears and doubts as he
must be very cruel and hard upon the poor.Page 23
Now the black reared and wheeled, striking and biting, full upon the youth, but the active figure swung with him--always just behind the giant shoulder--and ever and ever he drew the great arched neck farther and farther to the right.Page 25
"What ho, there, lad!" shouted Paul of Merely.Page 32
Six of them there were, clothed in dirty leather, and wearing swords and daggers at their sides.Page 37
" CHAPTER VII It was a beautiful spring day in May, 1262, that Norman of Torn rode alone down the narrow trail that led to the pretty cottage with which he had replaced the hut of his old friend, Father Claude.Page 40
"What ails you, my son?" asked the priest, "that you look so disconsolate on this beautiful day?" "I do not know, Father," replied Norman of Torn, "unless it be that I am asking myself the question, 'What it is all for?' Why did my father train me ever to prey upon my.Page 44
"It is said that Edward is in France.Page 59
Then, drawing his dagger, he made a mark upon the dead foreheads of each of the five, and mounting, rode rapidly toward Torn.Page 63
"Return to thy chamber," he thundered.Page 67
Your sister is not here.Page 88
The letter contained this brief message: "The tall knight in gray with closed helm is Norman of.Page 90
"Come, my ladies," he cried, "quick and you may escape.Page 100
They were upon the highroad now, but he did not put her down.Page 104
" So saying, Norman of Torn crept boldly across the improvised bridge, and disappeared within the window beyond.Page 108
Instantly the call "to arms" and "mount" sounded through the camp and, in five minutes, a hundred mercenaries galloped rapidly toward the castle of Richard de Tany, in the visions of their captain a great reward and honor and preferment for the capture of the mighty outlaw who was now almost within his clutches.Page 110
And, as the officer hurried from the castle and, with his men at his back, galloped furiously away toward the west, the girl sank down upon a bench, pressing her little hands to her throbbing temples.Page 118
raged and stormed, swearing by all the saints in the calendar that Norman of Torn should hang for his effrontery before the snow flew again.Page 127
The Devil of Torn! How that name froze the hearts of the assembled guests.Page 141
"Where be my daughter, Bertrade?" "I be here, My Lord Earl, to attend to mine own affairs," replied Norman of Torn, "which be the affair of no other man.Page 144
But ere he fell, his sword responded to the last fierce command of that iron will, and as his body sank limply to the floor, rolling with outstretched arms, upon its back, the little, grim, gray man went down also, clutching frantically at a gleaming blade buried in his chest.