Guy Livingstone; - or,
95 Pages
English
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Guy Livingstone; - or, 'Thorough'

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95 Pages
English

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Published 01 December 2010
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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Guy Livingstone;, by George A. Lawrence This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net Title: Guy Livingstone; or, 'Thorough' Author: George A. Lawrence Release Date: November 17, 2005 [EBook #17084] Language: English Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1 *** START OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK GUY LIVINGSTONE; *** Produced by David Garcia, Martin Pettit and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team at http://www.pgdp.net (This file was produced from images generously made available by The Kentuckiana Digital Library) Transcriber's note: Greek transliterations added. GUY LIVINGSTONE; OR, "THOROUGH." BY GEORGE A. LAWRENCE. ICH HABE GELEBT UND GELIEBT. NEW YORK: HARPER & BROTHERS, PUBLISHERS, FRANKLIN SQUARE. 1868. CONTENTS CHAPTER I. CHAPTER II. CHAPTER III. CHAPTER IV. CHAPTER V. CHAPTER VI. CHAPTER VII. CHAPTER VIII. CHAPTER IX. CHAPTER X. CHAPTER XI. CHAPTER XII. CHAPTER XIII. CHAPTER XIV. CHAPTER XV. CHAPTER XVI. CHAPTER XVII. CHAPTER XVIII. CHAPTER XIX. CHAPTER XX. CHAPTER XXI. CHAPTER XXII. CHAPTER XXIII. CHAPTER XXIV. CHAPTER XXV. CHAPTER XXVI. CHAPTER XXVII. CHAPTER XXVIII. CHAPTER XXIX. CHAPTER XXX. CHAPTER XXXI. CHAPTER XXXII. CHAPTER XXXIII. CHAPTER XXXIV. CHAPTER XXXV. CHAPTER XXXVI. CHAPTER I. "Neque imbellem feroces Progenerant aquilæ columbam." It is not a pleasant epoch in one's life, the first forty-eight hours at a large public school. I have known strongminded men of mature age confess that they never thought of it without a shiver. I don't count the homesickness, which perhaps only affects seriously the most innocent of débutants, but there are other thousand and one little annoyances which make up a great trouble. If there were nothing else, for instance, the unceasing query, "What's your name?" makes you feel the possession of a cognomen at all a serious burden and bar to advancement in life. A dull afternoon toward the end of October; the sky a neutral tint of ashy gray; a bitter northeast wind tearing down the yellow leaves from the old elms that girdle the school-close of ——; a foul, clinging paste of mud and trampled grass-blades under foot, that chilled you to the marrow; a mob of two hundred lower boys, vicious with cold and the enforcement of keeping goal through the first football match of the season—in the midst, I, who speak to you, feeling myself in an eminently false position—there's the mise en scène. My small persecutors had surrounded me, but had hardly time to settle well to their work, when one of the players came by, and stopped for an instant to see what was going on. The match had not yet begun. There was nothing which interested him much apparently, for he was passing on, when my despondent answer to the everlasting question caught his ear. He turned round then— "Any relation to Hammond of Holt?" I replied, meekly but rather more cheerfully, that he was my uncle. "I know him very well," the new-comer said. "Don't bully him more than you can help, you fellows; I'll wait for you after calling over, Hammond. I should like to ask you about the squire." He had no time to say more, for just then the ball was kicked off, and the battle began. I saw him afterward often during that afternoon, always in the front of the rush or the thick of the scrimmage, and I saw, too, more than one player limp out of his path disconsolately, trying vainly to dissemble the pain of a vicious "hack." I'll try to sketch Guy Livingstone as he appeared to me then, at our first meeting. He was about fifteen, but looked fully a year older, not only from his height, but from a disproportionate length of limb and development of muscle, which ripened later into the rarest union of activity and strength that I have ever known. His features were very dark and pale, too strongly marked to be called handsome; about the lips and lower jaw especially there was a set sternness that one seldom sees before the beard is grown. The eyes were very dark gray, nearly black, and so deeply set under the thick eyebrows that they looked smaller than they really were; and I remember, even at that early age, their expression, when angered, was any thing but pleasant to meet. His dress was well adapted for displaying his deep square chest and sinewy arms—a close-fitting jersey, and white trowsers girt by a broad black belt; the cap, orange velvet, fronted with a silver Maltese cross. The few words he had spoken worked an immediate change in my favor. I heard one of my tormentors say, not without awe, "The Count knows his people at home;" and they not only left me in peace, but, a little later, some of them began to tell me of a recent exploit of Guy's, which had raised him high in their simple heroworship, and which, I dare say, is still enumerated among the feats of the brave days of old by the fags over their evening small-beer. To appreciate it, you must understand that the highest form in the school—the sixth—were regarded by the fags and other subordinate classes with an inexpressible reverence and terror. They were considered as exempt from the common frailties of schoolboy nature: no one ventured to fix a limit to their power. Like the gods of the Lotus-eater, they lay beside their nectar, rarely communing with ordinary mortals except to give an order or set a punishment. On the form immediately below them part of their glory was reflected; these were a sort of ἡμίθεοι [hêmitheoi], awaiting their translation into the higher Olympus of perfected omnipotence. In this intermediate state flourished, at the time I speak of, one Joseph Baines, a fat, small-eyed youth, with immense pendent pallid cheeks, rejoicing in the sobriquet of "Buttons," his father being eminent in that line in the Midland Metropolis. The son was Brummagem to the back-bone. He was intensely stupid; but, having been a fixture at ---- beyond the memory of the oldest inhabitant, he had slowly gravitated on into his present position, on the old Ring principle, "weight must tell." I believe he had been bullied continuously for many years, and now, with a dull, pertinacious malignity, was biding his time, intending, on his accession to power, to inflict full reprisals on those below him; or, in his own expressive language, "to take it out of 'em, like smoke." He was keeping his hand in by the perpetration of small tyrannies on all whom he was not afraid to