Gave heat unto the injury, which returned,
Like a petard ill lighted, into the bosom
Of him gave fire to't. Yet I hope his hurt
Is not so dangerous but he may recover
Fair Maid of the Inn.
The prisoner was now presented before the two worshipful
magistrates. Glossin, partly from some compunctious visitings, and
partly out of his cautious resolution to suffer Sir Robert
Hazlewood to be the ostensible manager of the whole examination,
looked down upon the table, and busied himself with reading and
arranging the papers respecting the business, only now and then
throwing in a skilful catchword as prompter, when he saw the
principal, and apparently most active, magistrate stand in need of
a hint. As for Sir Robert Hazlewood, he assumed on his part a
happy mixture of the austerity of the justice combined with the
display of personal dignity appertaining to the baronet of ancient
'There, constables, let him stand there at the bottom of the
table. Be so good as look me in the face, sir, and raise your
voice as you answer the questions which I am going to put to you.'
'May I beg, in the first place, to know, sir, who it is that takes
the trouble to interrogate me?' said the prisoner; 'for the honest
gentlemen who have brought me here have not been pleased to
furnish any information upon that point.'
'And pray, sir,' answered Sir Robert, 'what has my name and
quality to do with the questions I am about to ask you?'
'Nothing, perhaps, sir,' replied Bertram; 'but it may considerably
influence my disposition to answer them.'
'Why, then, sir, you will please to be informed that you are in
presence of Sir Robert Hazlewood of Hazlewood, and another justice
of peace for this county--that's all.'
As this intimation produced a less stunning effect upon the
prisoner than he had anticipated, Sir Robert proceeded in his
investigation with an increasing dislike to the object of it.
'Is your name Vanbeest Brown, sir?'
'It is,' answered the prisoner.
'So far well; and how are we to design you farther, sir?' demanded
'Captain in his Majesty's---regiment of horse,' answered Bertram.
The Baronet's ears received this intimation with astonishment; but
he was refreshed in courage by an incredulous look from Glossin,
and by hearing him gently utter a sort of interjectional whistle,
in a note of surprise and contempt. 'I believe, my friend,' said
Sir Robert, 'we shall find for you, before we part, a more humble
'If you do, sir,' replied his prisoner, 'I shall willingly submit
to any punishment which such an imposture shall be thought to
'Well, sir, we shall see,' continued Sir Robert. 'Do you know
young Hazlewood of Hazlewood?'
'I never saw the gentleman who I am informed bears that name
excepting once, and I regret that it was under very unpleasant
'You mean to acknowledge, then,' said the Baronet, 'that you
inflicted upon young Hazlewood of Hazlewood that wound which
endangered his life, considerably lacerated the clavicle of his
right shoulder, and deposited, as the family surgeon declares,
several large drops or slugs in the acromion process?'
'Why, sir,' replied Bertram, 'I can only say I am equally ignorant
of and sorry for the extent of the damage which the young
gentleman has sustained. I met him in a narrow path, walking with
two ladies and a servant, and before I could either pass them or
address them, this young Hazlewood took his gun from his servant,
presented it against my body, and commanded me in the most haughty
tone to stand back. I was neither inclined to submit to his
authority nor to leave him in possession of the means to injure
me, which he seemed disposed to use with such rashness. I
therefore closed with him for the purpose of disarming him; and,
just as I had nearly effected my purpose, the piece went off
accidentally, and, to my regret then and since, inflicted upon the
young gentleman a severer chastisement than I desired, though I am
glad to understand it is like to prove no more than his unprovoked
'And so, sir,' said the Baronet, every feature swoln with offended
dignity, 'you, sir, admit, sir, that it was your purpose, sir, and
your intention, sir, and the real jet and object of your assault,
sir, to disarm young Hazlewood of Hazlewood of his gun, sir, or
his fowling-piece, or his fuzee, or whatever you please to call
it, sir, upon the king's highway, sir? I think this will do, my
worthy neighbour! I think he should stand committed?'
'You are by far the best judge, Sir Robert,' said Glossin, in his
most insinuating tone; 'but if I might presume to hint, there was
something about these smugglers.'
'Very true, good sir. And besides, sir, you, Vanbeest Brown, who
call yourself a captain in his Majesty's service, are no better or
worse than a rascally mate of a smuggler!'
'Really, sir,' said Bertram, 'you are an old gentleman, and acting
under some strange delusion, otherwise I should be very angry with
'Old gentleman, sir! strange delusion, sir!' said Sir Robert,
colouring with indignation. 'I protest and declare--Why, sir,
have you any papers or letters that can establish your pretended
rank and estate and commission?'
'None at present, sir,' answered Bertram; 'but in the return of a
post or two---'
'And how do you, sir,' continued the Baronet, 'if you are a
captain in his Majesty's service--how do you chance to be
travelling in Scotland without letters of introduction,
credentials, baggage, or anything belonging to your pretended
rank, estate, and condition, as I said before?'
'Sir,' replied the prisoner, 'I had the misfortune to be robbed of
my clothes and baggage.'
'Oho! then you are the gentleman who took a post-chaise from---to
Kippletringan, gave the boy the slip on the road, and sent two of
your accomplices to beat the boy and bring away the baggage?'
'I was, sir, in a carriage, as you describe, was obliged to alight
in the snow, and lost my way endeavouring to find the road to
Kippletringan. The landlady of the inn will inform you that on my
arrival there the next day, my first inquiries were after the
'Then give me leave to ask where you spent the night, not in the
snow, I presume? You do not suppose that will pass, or be taken,
credited, and received?'
'I beg leave,' said Bertram, his recollection turning to the gipsy
female and to the promise he had given her--'I beg leave to
decline answering that question.'
'I thought as much,' said Sir Robert. 'Were you not during that
night in the ruins of Derncleugh?--in the ruins of Derncleugh,
'I have told you that I do not intend answering that question,'
'Well, sir, then you will stand committed, sir,' said Sir Robert,
'and be sent to prison, sir, that's all, sir. Have the goodness to
look at these papers; are you the Vanbeest Brown who is there
It must be remarked that Glossin had shuffled among the papers
some writings which really did belong to Bertram, and which had
been found by the officers in the old vault where his portmanteau
'Some of these papers,' said Bertram, looking over them, 'are
mine, and were in my portfolio when it was stolen from the post-
chaise. They are memoranda of little value, and, I see, have been
carefully selected as affording no evidence of my rank or
character, which many of the other papers would have established
fully. They are mingled with ship-accounts and other papers,
belonging apparently to a person of the same name.'
'And wilt thou attempt to persuade me, friend,' demanded Sir
Robert, 'that there are TWO persons in this country at the same
time of thy very uncommon and awkwardly sounding name?'
'I really do not see, sir, as there is an old Hazlewood and a
young Hazlewood, why there should not be an old and a young
Vanbeest Brown. And, to speak seriously, I was educated in
Holland, and I know that this name, however uncouth it may sound
in British ears---'
Glossin, conscious that the prisoner was now about to enter upon
dangerous ground, interfered, though the interruption was
unnecessary, for the purpose of diverting the attention of Sir
Robert Hazlewood, who was speechless and motionless with
indignation at the presumptuous comparison implied in Bertram's
last speech. In fact, the veins of his throat and of his temples
swelled almost to bursting, and he sat with the indignant and
disconcerted air of one who has received a mortal insult from a
quarter to which he holds it unmeet and indecorous to make any
reply. While, with a bent brow and an angry eye, he was drawing in
his breath slowly and majestically, and puffing it forth again
with deep and solemn exertion, Glossin stepped in to his
assistance. 'I should think now, Sir Robert, with great
submission, that this matter may be closed. One of the constables,
besides the pregnant proof already produced, offers to make oath
that the sword of which the prisoner was this morning deprived
(while using it, by the way, in resistance to a legal warrant) was
a cutlass taken from him in a fray between the officers and
smugglers just previous to their attack upon Woodbourne. And yet,'
he added, 'I would not have you form any rash construction upon
that subject; perhaps the young man can explain how he came by
'That question, sir,' said Bertram, 'I shall also leave
'There is yet another circumstance to be inquired into, always
under Sir Robert's leave,' insinuated Glossin. 'This prisoner put
into the hands of Mrs. MacCandlish of Kippletringan a parcel
containing a variety of gold coins and valuable articles of
different kinds. Perhaps, Sir Robert, you might think it right to
ask how he came by property of a description which seldom occurs?'
'You, sir, Mr. Vanbeest Brown, sir, you hear the question, sir,
which the gentleman asks you?'
'I have particular reasons for declining to answer that question,'
'Then I am afraid, sir,' said Glossin, who had brought matters to
the point he desired to reach, 'our duty must lay us under the
necessity to sign a warrant of committal.'
'As you please, sir,' answered Bertram; 'take care, however, what
you do. Observe that I inform you that I am a captain in his
Majesty's---regiment, and that I am just returned from India, and
therefore cannot possibly be connected with any of those
contraband traders you talk of; that my lieutenant-colonel is now
at Nottingham, the major, with the officers of my corps, at
Kingston-upon-Thames. I offer before you both to submit to any
degree of ignominy if, within the return of the Kingston and
Nottingham posts, I am not able to establish these points. Or you
may write to the agent for the regiment if you please, and---'
'This is all very well, sir,' said Glossin, beginning to fear lest
the firm expostulation of Bertram should make some impression on
Sir Robert, who would almost have died of shame at committing such
a solecism as sending a captain of horse to jail--'this is all
very well, sir; but is there no person nearer whom you could refer
'There are only two persons in this country who know anything of
me,' replied the prisoner. 'One is a plain Liddesdale sheep-
farmer, called Dinmont of Charlie's Hope; but he knows nothing
more of me than what I told him, and what I now tell you.'
'Why, this is well enough, Sir Robert!' said Glossin. 'I suppose
he would bring forward this thick-skulled fellow to give his oath
of credulity, Sir Robert, ha, ha, ha!'
'And what is your other witness, friend?' said the Baronet.
'A gentleman whom I have some reluctance to mention because of
certain private reasons, but under whose command I served some
time in India, and who is too much a man of honour to refuse his
testimony to my character as a soldier and gentleman.'
'And who is this doughty witness, pray, sir?' said Sir Robert,'
some half-pay quartermaster or sergeant, I suppose?'
'Colonel Guy Mannering, late of the---regiment, in which, as I
told you, I have a troop.'
'Colonel Guy Mannering!' thought Glossin, 'who the devil could
have guessed this?'
'Colonel Guy Mannering?' echoed the Baronet, considerably shaken
in his opinion. 'My good sir,' apart to Glossin, 'the young man
with a dreadfully plebeian name and a good deal of modest
assurance has nevertheless something of the tone and manners and
feeling of a gentleman, of one at least who has lived in good
society; they do give commissions very loosely and carelessly and
inaccurately in India. I think we had better pause till Colonel
Mannering shall return; he is now, I believe, at Edinburgh.'
'You are in every respect the best judge, Sir Robert,' answered
Glossin--'in every possible respect. I would only submit to you
that we are certainly hardly entitled to dismiss this man upon an
assertion which cannot be satisfied by proof, and that we shall
incur a heavy responsibility by detaining him in private custody,
without committing him to a public jail. Undoubtedly, however, you
are the best judge, Sir Robert; and I would only say, for my own
part, that I very lately incurred severe censure by detaining a
person in a place which I thought perfectly secure, and under the
custody of the proper officers. The man made his escape, and I
have no doubt my own character for attention and circumspection as
a magistrate has in some degree suffered. I only hint this: I will
join in any step you, Sir Robert, think most advisable.' But Mr.
Glossin was well aware that such a hint was of power sufficient to
decide the motions of his self-important but not self-relying
colleague. So that Sir Robert Hazlewood summed up the business in
the following speech, which proceeded partly upon the supposition
of the prisoner being really a gentleman, and partly upon the
opposite belief that he was a villain and an assassin:--
'Sir, Mr. Vanbeest Brown--I would call you Captain Brown if there
was the least reason or cause or grounds to suppose that you are a
captain, or had a troop in the very respectable corps you mention,
or indeed in any other corps in his Majesty's service, as to which
circumstance I beg to be understood to give no positive, settled,
or unalterable judgment, declaration, or opinion,--I say,
therefore, sir, Mr. Brown, we have determined, considering the
unpleasant predicament in which you now stand, having been robbed,
as you say, an assertion as to which I suspend my opinion, and
being possessed of much and valuable treasure, and of a brass-
handled cutlass besides, as to your obtaining which you will
favour us with no explanation,--I say, sir, we have determined and
resolved and made up our minds to commit you to jail, or rather to
assign you an apartment therein, in order that you may be
forthcoming upon Colonel Mannering's return from Edinburgh.'
'With humble submission, Sir Robert,' said Glossin, 'may I inquire
if it is your purpose to send this young gentleman to the county
jail? For if that were not your settled intention, I would take
the liberty to hint that there would be less hardship in sending
him to the bridewell at Portanferry, where he can be secured
without public exposure, a circumstance which, on the mere chance
of his story being really true, is much to be avoided.'
'Why, there is a guard of soldiers at Portanferry, to be sure, for
protection of the goods in the custom-house; and upon the whole,
considering everything, and that the place is comfortable for such
a place, I say, all things considered, we will commit this person,
I would rather say authorise him to be detained, in the workhouse
The warrant was made out accordingly, and Bertram was informed he
was next morning to be removed to his place of confinement, as Sir
Robert had determined he should not be taken there under cloud of
night, for fear of rescue. He was during the interval to be
detained at Hazlewood House.
'It cannot be so hard as my imprisonment by the looties in India,'
he thought; 'nor can it last so long. But the deuce take the old
formal dunderhead, and his more sly associate, who speaks always
under his breath; they cannot understand a plain man's story when
it is told them.'
In the meanwhile Glossin took leave of the Baronet with a thousand
respectful bows and cringing apologies for not accepting his
invitation to dinner, and venturing to hope he might be pardoned
in paying his respects to him, Lady Hazlewood, and young Mr.
Hazlewood on some future occasion.
'Certainly, sir,' said the Baronet, very graciously. 'I hope our
family was never at any time deficient in civility to our
neighbours; and when I ride that way, good Mr. Glossin, I will
convince you of this by calling at your house as familiarly as is
consistent--that is, as can be hoped or expected.'
'And now,' said Glossin to himself, 'to find Dirk Hatteraick and
his people, to get the guard sent off from the custom-house; and
then for the grand cast of the dice. Everything must depend upon
speed. How lucky that Mannering has betaken himself to Edinburgh!
His knowledge of this young fellow is a most perilous addition to
my dangers.' Here he suffered his horse to slacken his pace. 'What
if I should try to compound with the heir? It's likely he might be
brought to pay a round sum for restitution, and I could give up
Hatteraick. But no, no, no! there were too many eyes on me--
Hatteraick himself, and the gipsy sailor, and that old hag. No,
no! I must stick to my original plan.' And with that he struck his
spurs against his horse's flanks, and rode forward at a hard trot
to put his machines in motion.