In the present instance, the unpretending and quiet seclusion of the monk of Saint Cuthbert’s had hitherto saved him from the general wreck; but it would seem ruin had now at length reached him. Anxious to discover if he had at least escaped personal harm, Roland Graeme entered the half ruined cell. The interior of the building was in a state which fully justified the opinion he had formed from its external injuries. The few rude utensils of the solitary’s hut were broken down, and lay scattered on the floor, where it seemed as if a fire had been made with some of the fragments to destroy the rest of his property, and to consume, in particular, the rude old image of Saint Cuthbert, in its episcopal habit, which lay on the hearth air max 90 hyperfuse like Dagon of yore, shattered with the axe and scorched with the flames, but only partially destroyed. In the little apartment which served as a chapel, the altar was overthrown, and the four huge stones of which it had been once composed lay scattered around the floor. The large stone crucifix which occupied the niche behind the altar, and fronted the supplicant while he paid his devotion there, had been pulled down and dashed by its own weight into three fragments. There were marks of sledge-hammers on each of these; yet the image had been saved from utter demolition by the size and strength of the remaining fragments, which, though much injured, retained enough of the original sculpture to show what it had been intended to represent.8 Roland Graeme, secretly nursed in the tenets of Rome, saw with horror the profanation of the most sacred emblem, according to his creed, of our holy religionIt is the badge of our redemption,” he said, “which the felons have dared to violate would to God my weak strength were able to replace it my humble strength, to atone for the sacrilege!” He stooped to the task he first meditated, and with a sudden, and to himself almost an incredible exertion of power, he lifted up the one extremity of the lower shaft of the cross, and rested it upon the edge of the large stone which served for its pedestal. Encouraged by this success, he applied his force to the other extremity, and, to his own astonishment, succeeded so far as to erect the lower end of the limb into the socket, out of which it had been forced, and to place this fragment of the image upright. While he was employed in this labour, or rather at air max 2013+ the very moment when he had accomplished the elevation of the fragment, a voice, in thrilling and well-known accents, spoke behind him these words:“Well done, thou good and faithful servant! Thus would I again meet the child of my love the hope of my aged eyes.” Roland turned round in astonishment, and the tall commanding form of Magdalen Graeme stood beside him. She was arrayed in a sort of loose habit, in form like that worn by penitents in Catholic countries, but black in colour, and approaching as near to a pilgrim’s cloak as it was safe to wear in a country where the suspicion of Catholic devotion in many places endangered the safety of those who were suspected of attachment to the ancient faith. Roland Graeme threw himself at her feet. She raised and embraced him, with affection indeed, but not unmixed with gravity which amounted almost to sternnessThou hast kept well,” she said, “the bird in thy bosom. 9 As a boy, as a youth, thou hast held fast thy faith amongst heretics thou hast kept thy secret and mine own amongst thine enemies. I wept when I parted from you I who seldom weep, then shed tears, less for thy death than for thy spiritual danger I dared not even see thee to bid thee a last farewell my grief, my swelling grief, had betrayed me to these heretics. But thou hast been faithful down, down on thy knees before the holy sign, which evil men injure and blaspheme; down, and praise saints and angels for the grace they have done thee, in preserving thee from the leprous plague which cleaves to the house in which thou wert nurturedIf, my mother so I must ever call you” replied Graeme,“if I am returned such as thou wouldst wish me, thou must thank the care of the pious father Ambrose, whose instructions confirmed your early precepts, and taught me at once to be faithful and to be silentBe he blessed for it,” said she; “blessed in the cell and in the field, in the pulpit and at the altar the saints rain blessings on him! they are just, and employ his pious care to counteract the evils which his detested brother works against the realm and the church, but he knew not of thy lineageI could not myself tell him that,” answered RolandI knew but darkly from your words, that Sir Halbert Glendinning nike air max 90 holds mine inheritance, and that I am of blood as noble as runs in the veins of any Scottish Baron these are things not to be forgotten, but for the explanation I must now look to youAnd when time suits, thou shalt not look for it in vain. But men say, my son, that thou art bold and sudden; and those who bear such tempers are not lightly to be trusted with what will strongly move themSay rather, my mother,” returned Roland Graeme, “that I am laggard and cold-blooded what patience or endurance can you require of which he is not capable, who for years has heard his religion ridiculed and insulted, yet failed to plunge his dagger into the blasphemer’s bosom!” “Be contented, my child,” replied Magdalen Graeme; “the time, which then and even now demands patience, will soon ripen to that of effort and action great events are on the wing, and thou, thou shalt have thy share in advancing them. Thou hast relinquished the service of the Lady of AvenelI have been dismissed from it, my mother I have lived to be dismissed, as if I were the meanest of the trainIt is the better, my child,” replied she; “thy mind will be the more hardened to undertake that which must be performedLet it be nothing, then, against the Lady of Avenel,” said the page, “as thy look and words seem to imply. I have eaten her bread I have experienced her favour I will neither injure nor betray herOf that hereafter, my son,” said she; “but learn this, that it is not for thee to capitulate in thy duty, and to say this will I do, and that will I leave undone No, Roland! God and man will no longer abide the wickedness of this generation. Seest thou these fragments knowest thou what they represent? and canst thou think it is for thee to make distinctions amongst a race so accursed by Heaven, that they renounce, violate, blaspheme, and destroy, whatsoever we are commanded to believe in, whatsoever we are commanded to reverence?” As she spoke, she bent her head towards the broken image, with a countenance in which strong resentment and zeal were mingled with an expression of ecstatic devotion; she raised her left hand aloft as in the act of making a vow, and thus proceeded; “Bear witness for me, blessed symbol of our salvation, bear witness, holy saint, within whose violated temple we stand, that as it is not for vengeance of my own that my hate pursues these people, so neither, for any favour or earthly affection towards any amongst them, will I withdraw my hand from the plough, when it shall pass through the devoted furrow! Bear witness, holy saint, once thyself a wanderer and fugitive as we are now bear witness, Mother of Mercy, Queen of Heaven bear witness, saints and angels!” In this high train of enthusiasm, nike air max 1 she stood, raising her eyes through the fractured roof of the vault, to the stars which now began to twinkle through the pale twilight, while the long gray tresses which hung down over her shoulders waved in the night-breeze, which the chasm and fractured windows admitted freely. Roland Graeme was too much awed by early habits, as well as by the mysterious import of her words, to ask for farther explanation of the purpose she obscurely hinted at. Nor did she farther press him on the subject; for, having concluded her prayer or obtestation, by clasping her hands together with solemnity, and then signing herself with the cross, she again addressed her grandson, in a tone more adapted to the ordinary business of lifeThou must hence,” she said, “Roland, thou must hence, but not till morning And now, how wilt thou shift for thy night’s quarters? thou hast been more softly bred than when we were companions in the misty hills of Cumberland and LiddesdaleI have at least preserved, my good mother, the habits which I then learned can lie hard, feed  
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