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the next balista.-"Bravo! engineers! as dead as Adam!"—" Out of the way, my liege; that imp of the devil is aiming here."-"Lord Hetariarch-go to the angle of the Horn, and bring me word"—a roar of cannon from somewhere out by S. Peter's Port.-" Hot work, Justiniani.”—“ All right, Sire; the pieces wanted depressing."-"S. George the Nicephorus! The Virgin the Protectress !"-"What's the shout ?"-" Blown up a galley!"-" Who ?"-" De Rushton."-"There's a fellow at the wall."-"I'll make sure of him."-A shriek, as a well directed stone crushed in his chest ;—a heaving in the half dead, half living mass of mingled bodies and clay in the ditch—a fresh roar of cannon from the Horn-blinding clouds of smoke-cries of "S. Luke for Genoa !""What's that, Justiniani ?"—"I don't know, Sire-run, some one-you, fellow, and inquire." "Well, Lord Hetariarch? how goes it ?"-" Gloriously, Sire, they are beating them back everywhere."-" S. Edward for England!"-" Flanders and the Lion !"—" S. Christopher for Wolfenstein!"-A tremendous crash, as a discharged rock struck the bastion of S. Nicetas."Somebody down."-" Who's that ?"-"Young_Cantacuzene." "Dead ?"-" Dead as he can be."
let his father know."-"There's Mahomet!"-" Where?" -"Yonder-in a straight line with this side of S. Romanus."-Bang, bang, bang, from a new battery.-"The foul fiend seize those engineers!-Nicephorus,_cannot you do something there ?"" I'll try, my liege. Peter!"
"He is just carried off, master."- -" George, thenwind away,-so-that's about it-loose all!"-A tremendous crash.—" Well aimed, Nicephorus !"—" I will but run to the Horn, Sire, and be back again—they may want me more there.". "Do not be long.' "No, sire." "We shall win the day yet, Justiniani.' ing, very soon, my liege.' they are swarming thick up! 'They are getting too close,' "Are more coming in ?". "That's well, that's well"-A fresh roar of cannon-a loud shout from the Infidels-eight or nine large stones falling from S. Nicolas's bastion.
"GOD will"Faster, men, faster, men! Three days' free sack." more stones this way." -"Here's another dray.'
Such was the first onset on the north side.
Now we turn to see what was doing at the Horn. When De Rushton, hurrying from the Emperor to his post, arrived on the harbour wall, the conflict was already in its full heat; and far more hand to hand, than in any other quarter of the city. The mariners, and soldiers who served on board, absolutely reckless of life, were planting their scaling ladders on the parapet, and rushing up to the most assured destruction: the brave defenders of the city seized the tops of the ladders, and flung them back; or clove the mounting soldier in twain with the tremendous battle-axe.
"De Rushton! De Rushton!" came the cry, as he advanced to his post.
"S. Edward for England! De Rushton! De Rushton!"
"Phranza, who is at yonder petraria." Calliergus."
"Burstow, to him, and bid him bring it here: we need it more."
"There's a man's head over the wall."
A struggle for the ladder; shrieks, cries; back it falls, splashing into the water.
"Aim at Leontius! aim at Leontius! engineer!" "I have aimed at him four times already; the dog must have a charmed life."
"Master gunners, fire higher," shouted Achmet. "You waste your shot."
"Carpenters, this way," cried Leontius; "make fast this ladder to the deck while we hold it up."
"Back with it, men! back with it!" roared Choniates. "S. George the Nicephorus! Back with it." "Hold on, slaves, for your lives," from below.
"Stones this way, stones; pass them hand over hand." Loud shrieks from the workmen and carpenters, as the volley crashed in among them.
"Try again! Try again," cried Achmet. "A province for him that first mounts the wall."
Eight or ten ladders, held up by main force; a huge Bulgarian by the parapet, grappling, struggling, with a Greek; he heaves him up: the Greek clutches at the
breastwork. "Help! help! for God's sake!" Rushton! De Rushton!" The Bulgarian looses hold; the Acolyth is on him; they clasp each other in that deadly embrace. De Rushton is off his feet; he will surely be dragged over; his right arm is pinioned by his foe. Burstow is rushing up; ere he can reach him, the knight has disengaged his dagger of mercy; it is in the Bulgarian's throat; he falls, a senseless mass into the
DEAFENED by the unceasing roar of the cannon, and the hubbub and tumult of the general assault, Theodora de Rushton sat with Euphrasia Choniatis and her mother on the morning of that Whit-Tuesday. From time to time Barlaam had gone out to obtain what news he could; but being unable to make his way among the hurry and crush of the walls, and equally incapable of taking in, by his own observation, the position of affairs, they had obtained nothing but a series of the most vague and unsatisfactory tidings, picked up from those who were no better acquainted with the subject than were they on whom they bestowed their information.
But, towards ten o'clock, Manuel Chrysolaras made his appearance. Bursting into the room, with joy in every feature of his face, his countenance told them the news he had to announce, before he could speak.
"You have good news, Manuel," cried Euphrasia. “I am sure you have."
"Excellent news, thank God," replied Chrysolaras. "In every one of the places they have assaulted, the Turks have been beaten back. Most decisively by the Emperor, at the Tower of S. Romanus, and at the Silivri
gate; but De Rushton has also done wonders, though the odds were greater."
"And he is quite safe ?" cried Theodora.
"Quite," replied Manuel; "at least he was a quarter of an hour ago."
And my father ?"
"Quite safe also," said Chrysolaras: "and at this moment out of the way of danger; for the Emperor has despatched him on some errand to the Contoscalion."
"Then do you really think they will beat them off?" cried Euphrasia.
"Good faith, I do," returned Manuel.
"And there are they, doing wonders for the Emperor and for the Faith, and I, like a sick woman, can only stand by and look on."
"And I am so thankful that you can do as much as that," replied Euphrasia; "and so should you be also; a week ago we should neither of us have believed it." "My daughter speaks wisely, my lord," said Maria -Choniatis. "We have all great reason to be thankful that you are able to do so much; and we, more especially that, on such a day, we have the safety of your protection."
Thus they talked for nearly half-an-hour, and Barlaam was called up to hear the good tidings. In the meantime, the thunder of the cannon and the shouts of the onset went on without the slightest interruption; till at length, Manuel Chrysolaras, growing impatient to be at the scene of action, though he could not join in it, took leave of his affianced bride and her friends, and again went on to the ramparts.
The attack had now extended much further along the Horn, and almost stretched as far as the Seraglio Point; but yet not one real advantage seemed to have been gained by the assailants. As Manuel came in sight of the first balista in this direction, there was a momentary lull in the storm; and looking round him, he caught Burstow's eye.
"Well, Burstow! how goes it ?" cried he.
"Excellently well, so far as the city is concerned, my lord. But I tell you what, Lord Manuel," he added in
a lower voice.
"I have seen something just now that I did not at all like."
"What, good Burstow ?" inquired Chrysolaras, looking round him, as if he expected to see some advantage gained by the Mussulmans.
No, not that way, my lord," replied the other. "What I mean is this. Twice this day I have seen Zosimus in the galleys: and once I saw Leontius holding a most earnest conversation with him."
"It is strange enough, Burstow; but he cannot hurt us.'
"Well, my lord; I hope not; and I don't see how he can; but at all events, I think he will try. Stand forward there, lads, stand forward there," exclaimed he, as a trumpet brayed loudly out, and the attack recommenced with increased vigour.
"One word, Burstow; what would you have me do ?" "I would make inquiries-this way, this way, good fellows-empty the dray there-inquiries of the foul fiend seize you, Nicetas-why did you loose so soon ?if stand out of the way, my lord—that fellow has his engine this way-crouch down-so-I would go back to Lord Phranza's house, and make particular inquiries when and where Zosimus was last seen. Something might be gathered from that."
Chrysolaras resolved to do so; but he thought that it might be as well in the first place to make the circuit of the walls, as far as the Tower of S. Romanus ; in order that he might judge for himself how the defence was succeeding. A quarter of an hour brought him to the side of Sir Edward de Rushton, now heated, jaded, and anxious; but still giving out his directions with undiminished vigour, and exposing himself with the most undaunted courage.
"How goes it, De Rushton ?"
"Not well-the dogs have fixed the ladders, and we cannot throw them back."
It was as he said; from one of the galleys, that on which Leontius had placed himself, a scaling ladder of unusual strength had been so securely lashed to strong uprights and cross bars at the bottom, that the utmost