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by the commotion, broke from a tree, to which he was tied, and, rearing himself on his hind legs, making a butting movement with his head, and uttering a strange, outlandish noise, came towards her, looking, to her excited fancy, like the foul fiend himself let loose to torment her.
Her new assailant was no less a person than Capricorn, the cashmere buck—arrived that morning, and full of what, as she after. wards said, was “ fun to him and death to her!” After rearing several times, and butting the air, as if for practice, he rushed after her; she fled, spite of her wounded foot, with miraculous speed; in vain, in vain : he gained upon her, he has reached her, he rears—she feels his fore-feet on her shrinking shoulders, she dares not look round—the next moment came a sharp butt from his horns, and she is prostrate on the grass. Too noble to persecute a prostrate foe, he repairs to peel the bark off of some valuable young trees, and
leaves her to the affections of the spaniels and cockatoo, who have at length waddled up.
It was just as they reached her that her cries and groans attracted the attention of Miss Tibby and Annie, who were roaming in the meadow. Loudly calling the gardener, they valiantly hastened towards her. Capricorn, however, no sooner saw them than he darted towards them loudly screamed Miss Tibby, who always hated him, “ Awa', awa', yer the vary Deil himsel - I ken ye weel !" He hastened towards herupset Annie, who tried to protect her old aunt - Miss Tibby valiantly and in desperation caught him by the horns.
Now, indeed, was the scene an animated one. Miss Tibby's old-fashioned turban and front came off, and her white hair stood on end—for a minute or two she kept her hold of Capricorn's horns, and then she was suddenly flung close beside the groaning and shrieking Mrs. Lindsay. The gardener and
his boy, now coming up, Capricorn was secured. Annie, unhurt, drew near with her aunt's turban and front, and removed Screech from a hold he had just got on Mrs. Lindsay's ear. Now there was a breathing space.
Both Mrs. Lindsay and Miss Tibby were more frightened than hurt; the latter slowly rose, exclaiming: -“A weel, a weel, Annie, where's my cop, lassie ? it's weel it's na waur. How do ye find yersel', Mistress Lindsay ?”
“Find myself !” exclaimed Mrs. Lindsay, rising, purple with passion, “I find myself half murdered, madam. Mr. Lindsay can do as he pleases, but I will no longer have my very life endangered by these pests of my brother-in-law's. I am sure I have endured enough, perhaps that fiend of a bird may cause me a lock jaw. My brother-in-law is welcome here in this his hour of ruin; but to expect me to put up with all his encumbrances, is too much.”
“If it's me you mean, ma’am, you'll na lang be troubled wi' me,” said Tibby, in indignant wrath. “ I've shared my kinsmon's prosperity, and I'll share his adversity, but na under your roof, madam. Once acquent wi' this insult to Annie and mysel', he'll na trouble ye lang, I'm thinking. Come, Annie, we're here too lang, lassie. Incumbrances, indeed! incumbrances to a Miss Gubbs that was !"
Mrs. Lindsay, fearing the result of Miss Tibby's wrath, called after her in vain. The indignant spinster would not hear, and, reaching her own room, shut herself up there with Annie, to await Mr. Lindsay's return, that she might report the “awfu' insult she had received fra Mistress Lindsay," and urge his prompt removal.
Mrs. Lindsay was far from comfortable in her own mind, after her violent encounters with all her brother's pets and protégés. Certainly she had had great provocation, but Conscience whispered that before the receipt of the letter announcing his ruin, no carelessness or awkwardness of Grunter's, no injuries inflicted by the cockatoo on her furniture or herself, and no attacks of Capricorn's or the spaniels', would have provoked her to use a harsh word to Miss Tibby, or to Annie.