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word for it; I dare say he is there, since you say so.

And now explain to me how you mean to get at him; communicate, my good fellow; for it seems, by all your caution, that even at this distance you dare not show a hair of your head.”

“ Creep back there behind the hill, whilst I mark the very spot in the burn which is opposite his lair. Well, now, I will tell you: we must go all round by the east, behind yon hill, and then come up at the notch behind yon two hills, which will bring us into the bog; we can then come forward up the burn, under cover of its bank, and pass

from thence into the bog again by a side-wind, when we may take his broadside and thus have at him; so let us make the best of our way. It would be quite easy to get at the hart, if it were not for the hinds on the top of the hill; but if we start them, and they go on belling, the hart will follow them whether he sees us or not. Get your wind; he cannot. Maclaren, you will remain here, and watch the deer when I have fired. Sandy, follow you at a proper distance with the dogs; and come you along with us, Peter, and take the rifles. And now, my lads, be canny.”

The party then advanced, sometimes on their hands and knees, through the deep seams of the bog, and again right up the middle of the burn, winding their cautious course according to the inequalities of the ground. Occasionally the seams led in an adverse direction, and then they were obliged to retrace their steps. This stealthy progress continued some time, till at length they came to some greensward, where the ground was not so favourable. Here was a great difficulty ; it seemed barely possible to pass this small piece of ground without discovery. Fraser, aware of this, crept back, and explored the bog in a parallel direction, working his way like a mole, while the others remained prostrate. Returning, all wet and bemired, his long, serious face indicated a failure. This dangerous passage, then, was to be attempted, since there was no better means of approach. Tortoise, in low whispers, again entreated the strictest caution. “Raise not a foot or a hand; let not a hair of your head be seen; but, as you value sport, imitate my motions precisely; everything depends upon this movement; this spot once passed successfully, we


are safe from the hinds." He then made a signal for Sandy to lie down with the dogs, and, placing himself flat on his stomach, began to worm his way close under the low ridge of the bog, imitated most correctly and beautifully by the rest of the party. The burn now came sheer up to intercept the passage, and formed a pool under the bank, running deep and drumly; the leader then turned his head round slightly, and, passing his hand along the grass as a signal for Lightfoot to wreath himself alongside of him, said, “Now, my good fellow, no remedy—if you do not like a ducking, stay here; but if you do remain, pray lie like a founder till the shot is fired. Have no curiosity, I beg and beseech you; and speak, as I do, in a low whisper."

“Pshaw! I can follow wherever you go, and in the same position too."

“Bravo! here goes, then; but if you love sport, do not make a splash in the water, but go in as quiet as a fish, and keep under the high bank, although it is deeper there—there is a great nicety in going in properly; that is the difficult point. I believe it must be head foremost; but we must take care to keep our heels down as we slide in, and not to wet the rifles. Hist! Peter, here, lay the rifles on the bank, and give them to me when I am in the burn.”

Tortoise then worked half his body over the bank, and, stooping low, brought his hands upon a large granite stone in the burn, with his breast to the water, and drew the rest of his body after him as straight as he possibly could. He was then half immersed, and, getting close under the bank, took the rifles; the rest followed admirably; in fact, the water was not so deep as it appeared to be, being scarcely over the hips. They proceeded in this manner about twenty yards, when, the ground being more favourable, they were enabled to get on dry land.

“Do you think it will do ?”

“Hush ! hush! he has not seen us yet; and yonder is my mark; the deer lies opposite it to the south-he is almost within gunshot even now."

A sign was given to Fraser to come alongside, for they were arrived at the spot from which it was necessary to diverge into the moss. In breathless expectation they now had gone


turned to the eastward, and crept forward through the bog, to enable them to come in upon the flank of the hart, who was lying with his head up-wind, and would thus present his broadside to the rifle when he started; whereas, if they had gone in straight behind him, his haunches would have been the only mark, and the shot would have been a disgraceful one. Now came the anxious moment. Everything hitherto had succeeded; much valuable time had been spent; they

forward in every possible position: their hands and knees buried in bogs, wreathing on their stomachs through the mire, or wading up the burns; and all this one brief moment might render futile, either by means of a single throb of the pulse in the act of firing, or a sudden rush of the deer, which would take him instantly out of sight. Tortoise raised his head slowly, but saw not the quarry. By degrees he raised himself an inch higher, but Peter plucked him suddenly by the arm and pointed. The tips of his horns alone were to be seen above the hole in the bog, no more. Fraser looked anxious; for well he knew that the first spring would take the deer out of sight. A moment's pause, when the sportsman held up his rifle steadily above the position of the hart's body; then making a slight ticking noise, up sprang the deer--as instantly the shot was fired, and crash went the ball right against his ribs, as he was making his rush. Sandy now ran forward with the dogs, but still as well concealed by the ground as he could manage.

“We must louse a dog, sir, or he will gang forrat to the hill."

“ Let go both of them; it will be a fine chance for the young dog; but get on a little first and put him on the scent, the deer is so low in the bog that he cannot see him.”

Fraser now went on with the hounds in the leash, sinking and recovering himself, and springing from the moss-bogs, till the dogs caught sight, and they were slipped; but the fine fellow was soon out of the bog, and went over the top of the Mealown. On following over the hill, the voice of the hounds broke full upon the stalkers, and they saw the magnificent creature standing on a narrow projecting ledge of rock within the cleft, and in the mid course of a mountain cataract; the upper fall plunged down behind him, and the water

coursing through his legs, dashed the spray and mist around him, and then, at one leap, went plump down to the abyss below; the rocks closed in upon his flanks, and there he stood, bidding defiance in his own mountain hold. Just at the edge of the precipice, and, as it seemed, on the very brink of eternity, the dogs were baying him furiously-one rush of the stag would have sent them down into the chasm; and, in their fury, they seemed wholly unconscious of their danger. All drew in their breath, and shuddered at the fatal chance that seemed momentarily about to take place. Of the two dogs at bay, Derig was the most fierce and persevering; the younger one had seen but little sport, and waited, at first, upon the motions of the older, nay, the better soldier. But his spirit being at length thoroughly roused, he fought at last fearlessly and independently. Whenever the deer turned his antlers aside to gore Tarff, Derig seized the moment to fly at his throat; but the motions of the hart were so rapid, that the hound was even compelled to draw back, which retrograde motion brought him frequently to the very verge of the precipice; and it was probable that, as he always fronted the enemy, he knew not, or, in the heat of the combat had forgotten, the danger of his situation. At this stage it was necessary to act speedily; and Tortoise having at length gained a spot which commanded a view of the stag, prepared to pour in a final shot. Three times the rifle was raised, but each time the aim was abandoned from fear of wounding the dog, or missing the deadly spot. At length an opening; the crack was heard faintly in the din of the waterfall—the ball passed through the back of the deer's head, and down he dropped on the spot without a struggle. The dogs now rushed forward and seized him by the throat, and were obliged to be choked off. The men came cautiously on, and began to lift the huge animal out of the water, two at his fore and the same number at his hind quarters. At last they laid him on the grass, then plunging the long knife into his throat, and opening him for the purpose of gralloching him, his head was bent back on his shoulders, a black flag was tied to his horns to scare away the ravens, a little gunpowder was shaken over him, and he was left to be sent for on the next day with the aid of the forester's pony. Such is the account of stalking this animal in quiet style; let us now see the nature of the second mode adopted.

DOUBLE-QUICK STALKING and DRIVING are both of them dependent almost entirely upon the gillies, and the stalker himself has little to do with the sport except to keep quiet till the deer are in sight, and then to make a rush to get within shot, if the nature of the ground requires it. This constitutes what Mr. Scrope calls “ stalking in double-quick time;" the term driving being by him confined to the case when the hillmen are able, in consequence of the peculiarity of the ground, to drive the deer within shot. In this latter species a large number of men are required, while one or two generally suffice for the former, their knowledge of the habits of the animal enabling them to induce him to take certain passes, without being absolutely forced to do so. This is effected by acting on the senses of smell and sight, which are very keen in the red deer. For instance, by posting the stalkers in a certain pass to leeward of the deer, and then taking a large circuit round them, the hillmen can, by very carefully giving the deer notice either by sight or scent that they are posted in the opposite direction, send them with great precision (when luck attends their efforts) towards the ambush prepared for them. There is, therefore, some difference, no doubt, and practically the two are conducted with details “wide as the poles asunder.” In either kind of sport, however, it appears to me that the chief agents are the gillies, and that neither is to be compared with the quiet stalking previously described so graphically in the extract given above. Tastes differ, however, and for those who cannot bear the fatigue necessary for the first kind, the second and third are, no doubt, better suited.

In DEER STALKING of all kinds the heart is the organ aimed at, because, though no larger than the brain, and therefore quite as difficult to hit, yet a shot in many of the adjacent parts is likely, by the aid of the deer-hound, to result in the death of the stag. For instance, a broken leg, arm, or shoulder, or a wound of the lung, will put a stop to the flight of the animal, and the deer-hounds being slipt, soon bring him to bay. On the other hand, if the ball misses the brain, the deer goes away as well as ever, even if

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