smiled. He was
Count Zellerndorf, the Austrian minister to Lutha.
The king's outraged majesty goaded him to an angry retort.
"You forget yourself, Prince von der Tann," he cried. "Leave our
presence. When we again desire to be insulted we shall send for
As the chancellor passed into the antechamber Count Zellerndorf rose
and greeted him warmly, almost effusively. Von der Tann returned his
salutations with courtesy but with no answering warmth. Then he
passed on out of the palace.
"The old fox must have heard," he mused as he mounted his horse and
turned his face toward Tann and the Old Forest.
When Count Zellerndorf of Austria entered the presence of Leopold of
Lutha he found that young ruler much disturbed. He had resumed his
restless pacing between desk and window, and as the Austrian entered
he scarce paused to receive his salutation. Count Zellerndorf was a
frequent visitor at the palace. There were few formalities between
this astute diplomat and the young king; those had passed gradually
away as their acquaintance and friendship ripened.
"Prince Ludwig appeared angry when he passed through the
antechamber," ventured Zellerndorf. "Evidently your majesty found
cause to rebuke him."
The king nodded and looked narrowly at the Austrian. "The Prince von
der Tann insinuated that Austria's only wish in connection with
Lutha is to seize her," he said.
Zellerndorf raised his hands in well-simulated horror.
"Your majesty!" he exclaimed. "It cannot be that the prince has
gone to such lengths to turn you against your best friend, my
emperor. If he has I can only attribute it to his own ambitions. I
have hesitated to speak to you of this matter, your majesty, but now
that the honor of my own ruler is questioned I must defend him.
"Bear with me then, should what I have to say wound you. I well
know the confidence which the house of Von der Tann has enjoyed for
centuries in Lutha; but I must brave your wrath in the interest of
right. I must tell you that it is common gossip in Vienna that Von
der Tann aspires to the throne of Lutha either for himself or for
his daughter through the American impostor who once sat upon your
throne for a few days. And let me tell you more.
"The American will never again menace you--he was arrested in
Burgova as a spy and executed. He is dead; but not so are Von der
Tann's ambitions. When he learns that he no longer may rely upon the
strain of the Rubinroth blood that flowed in the veins of the
American from his royal mother,
At length he came upon it, and, after repeated pounding with the pommel of his sword, it was opened by a slatternly old hag.Page 13
dense bushes.Page 15
These were heavily curtained.Page 29
Together they buried the knights at the bottom of the.Page 31
On one occasion, he chanced upon a hut at the outskirts of a small hamlet not far from Torn and, with the curiosity of boyhood, determined to enter and have speech with the inmates, for by this time the natural desire for companionship was commencing to assert itself.Page 33
behind him to tie his neck with a halter later, and dead men talk the least.Page 39
Fifteen hundred war horses, beside five hundred sumpter beasts, were quartered in the great stables, while the east court was alive with cows, oxen, goats, sheep, pigs, rabbits and chickens.Page 47
The grim humor of the situation was too much for the outlaw, and, when added to his new desire to be in the company of Bertrade de Montfort, he made no effort to resist, but hastened to accept the warm welcome.Page 48
" "It be more to his liking to come while the master be home to welcome him," said De Stutevill, ruthfully.Page 52
And thou knowst it, and he too, as well as I.Page 64
So passed the afternoon, and as darkness settled upon the castle the Baron desisted from his attempts, intending to starve his prisoner out.Page 65
Easily they wrested the dagger from Bertrade's fingers, and at the Baron's bidding, they dragged her to the great hall below.Page 71
Soon he had found another lamp and made a light.Page 78
" "You must not say that you love me, Bertrade.Page 99
We have passed beneath the walls and the.Page 112
Silently they had come in the night preceding the funeral, and as silently, they slipped away northward into the falling shadows of the following night.Page 116
The outlaw presently entered in full armor, with visor lowered.Page 121
" The party mounted and rode rapidly away.Page 129
And then the gleaming point of Norman of Torn flashed, lightning-like, in his victim's face, and above the right eye of Peter of Colfax was a thin vertical cut from which the red blood had barely started to ooze ere another swift move of that master sword hand placed a fellow to parallel the first.Page 132
Half an hour later, a servant in the castle of Battel handed the missive to the daughter of Leicester as she sat alone in her apartment.