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he continued to scrutinize the drawing minutely where he sat. At length he arose, took a candle from the table, and proceeded to seat himself upon a sea-chest in the farthest corner of the room. Here again he made an anxious examination of the paper; turning it in all directions. He said nothing, however, and his conduct greatly astonished me; yet I thought it prudent not to exacerbate the growing moodiness of his temper by any comment. Presently he took from his coat pocket a wallet, placed the paper carefully in it, and deposited both in a writing-desk, which he locked. He now grew more composed in his demeanour; but his original air of enthusiasm had quite disappeared. Yet he seemed not so much sulky as abstracted. As the evening wore away, he became more and more absorbed in reverie, from which no sallies of mine could arouse him. It had been my intention to pass the night at the hut, as I had frequently done before, but seeing my host in this mood, I deemed it proper to take leave. He did not press me to remain, but, as I departed, he shook my hand with even more than his usual cordiality.

It was about a month after this (and during the interval I had seen nothing of Legrand) when I received a visit, at Charleston, from his man, Jupiter. I had never seen the good old negro look so dispirited, and I feared that some serious disaster had befallen my friend.


Well, Jup," said I, "what is the matter now?how is your master?"


Why, to speak de troof, massa, him not so berry well as mought be."

"Not well! I am truly sorry to hear it. What does he complain of?"


Dar, dat's it!-him neber plain of notin-but him berry sick for all dat."


Very sick, Jupiter !-why didn't you say so at once? Is he confined to bed?"

"No, dat he aint! he aint find nowhar-dat 's just whar de shoe pinch-my mind has got to be berry hebby bout poor Massa Will."


Jupiter, I should like to understand what it is you are talking about. You say your master is sick. Has n't he told you what ails him?”


Why, massa, taint worf while for to git mad about de matter-Massa Will say noffin at all aint de matter wid him-but den what make him go about looking dis here way, wid he head down, and he soldiers up, and as white as a gose? And den he keep a syphon all de time-”

"Keeps a what, Jupiter ?"


Keeps a syphon wid de figgurs on de slate-de queerest figgurs I ebber did see. Ise gittin to be skeered, I tell you. Hab for to keep mighty tight eye pon him noovers. Todder day he gib me slip fore de sun up, and was gone de whole ob de blessed day. I had a big stick ready cut for to gib him deuced good beating when he did come-but Ise sich a fool dat had n't de heart arter all-he look so berry poorly."


· Eh?—what?—ah, yes!—upon the whole I think you had better not be too severe with the poor fellow -don't flog him, Jupiter-he can't very well stand it -but can you form no idea of what has occasioned this illness, or rather this change of conduct? Has anything unpleasant happened since I saw you?"


No, massa, dey aint bin noffin onpleasant since den-'twas fore den I'm feared-'twas de bery day you was dare."


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How? what do you mean?'

Why, massa, I mean de beetle-dare now." "The what?

De beetle-I'm berry sartain dat Massa Will bin bit somewhere bout de head by dat goole-beetle." "And what cause have you, Jupiter, for such a supposition."

"Claws enuff, massa, and mouff too. I nebber did

see sich a deuced beetle-he kick and he bite ebery ting what cum near him. Massa Will cotch him fuss, but had for to let him go gin mighty quick, I tell you-den was de time he must ha got de bite. I didn't like de


look of de beetle mouff, myself, no how, so I would n't take hold ob him wid my finger, but I cotch him wid a piece ob paper dat I found. I rap him up in de paper, and stuff piece ob it in he mouff-dat was de way.

"And you think, then, that your master was really


bitten by the beetle, and that the bite made him sick?"

"I don't tink noffin about it-I nose it. What make him dream bout de goole so much, if taint cause he bit by de goole-beetle? Ise heerd bout dem goolebeetles fore dis."


But how do you know he dreams about gold?" "How I know? why cause he talk about it in he sleep-dat's how I nose.'

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Well, Jup, perhaps you are right; but to what fortunate circumstance am I to attribute the honour of a visit from you to-day?”




What de matter, massa?

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Did you bring any message from Mr. Legrand?" 'No, massa, I bring dis here pissel; and here Jupiter handed me a note, which ran thus:


Why have I not seen you for so long a time? I hope you have not been so foolish as to take offence at any little brusquerie of mine; but no, that is improbable.

Since I saw you I have had great cause for anxiety. I have something to tell you, yet scarcely know how to tell it, or whether I should tell it at all.

I have not been quite well for some days past, and poor old Jup annoys me, almost beyond endurance, by his well-meant attentions. Would you believe it?-he had prepared a huge stick, the other day, with which to chastise me for giving him the slip, and spending the day, solus, among the hills on the main land. I verily believe that my ill looks alone saved me a flogging.

I have made no addition to my cabinet since we met. If you can, in any way, make it convenient, come over with Jupiter. Do come. I wish to see you tonight, upon business of importance. I assure you that it is of the highest importance.

Ever yours,


There was something in the tone of this note which gave me great uneasiness. Its whole style differed materially from that of Legrand. What could he be dreaming of? What new crotchet possessed his excitable brain? What "business of the highest importance" could he possibly have to transact? Jupiter's account of him boded no good,-I dreaded lest the continued pressure of misfortune had, at length, fairly unsettled the reason of my friend. Without a moment's hesitation, therefore, I prepared to accompany the negro.

Upon reaching the wharf, I noticed a scythe and three spades, all apparently new, lying in the bottom of the boat in which we were to embark.

"What is the meaning of all this, Jup?" I inquired. "Him syfe, massa, and spade."

"Very true; but what are they doing here?"

"Him de syfe and de spade what Massa Will sis pon my buying for him in de town, and de debbil's own lot ob money I had to gib for em."

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"But what, in the name of all that is mysterious, is your Massa Will' going to do with scythes and spades?"

"Dat's more den I know, and debbil do n't blieve 't is more dan he know, too. cum ob de beetle."

take me if I But it's all

Finding that no satisfaction was to be obtained of Jupiter, whose whole intellect seemed to be absorbed by "de beetle," I now stepped into the boat and made sail. With a fair and strong breeze we soon ran into the little cove to the northward of Fort Moultrie, and a walk of some two miles brought us to the hut. It was about three in the afternoon when we arrived. Legrand had been awaiting us in eager expectation. grasped my hand with a nervous empressement, which alarmed me and strengthened the suspicions already entertained. His countenance was pale even to ghastliness, and his deep-set eyes glared with unnatural lustre. After some inquiries respecting his health, I


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