"I beg pardon, sir, but I have no views in which your assistance could be useful."
"Oh very well--perhaps you are right--it's quite time enough, and I love to see a young gentleman cautious. But I was talking of your wound--I think I have got a clew to that business--I think I have--and if I don't bring the fellow to condign punishment!--"
"I beg your pardon, sir, once more; but your zeal outruns my wishes. I have every reason to think the wound was accidental--certainly it was not premeditated. Against ingratitude and premeditated treachery, should you find any one guilty of them, my resentment will be as warm as your own." This was Hazlewood's answer.
"Another rebuff," thought Glossin I must try him upon the other tack.--"Right, sir; very nobly said! I would have no more mercy on an ungrateful man than I would on a woodcock--And now we talk of sport (this was a sort of diverting of the conversation which Glossin had learned from his former patron), I see you often carry a gun, and I hope you will be soon able to take the field again. I observe you confine yourself always to your own side of the Hazleshaws burn. I hope, my dear sir, you will make no scruple of following your game to the Ellangowan bank. I believe it is rather the best exposure of the two for woodcocks, although both are capital."
As this offer only excited a cold and constrained bow, Glossin was obliged to remain silent, and was presently afterwards somewhat relieved by the entrance of Colonel Mannering.
"I have detained you some time, I fear, sir," said he, addressing Glossin; "I wished to prevail upon Miss Bertram to see you, as, in my opinion, her objections ought to give way to the necessity of hearing in her own person what is stated to be of importance that she should know. But I find that circumstances of recent occurrence, and not easily to be forgotten, have rendered her so utterly repugnant to a personal interview with Mr. Glossin, that it would be cruelty to insist upon it: and she has deputed me to receive his commands, or proposal, or, in short, whatever he may wish to say to her."
"Hem, hem! I am sorry, sir--I am very sorry, Colonel Mannering, that Miss Bertram should suppose--that any prejudice, in short--or idea that anything on my part--"
"Sir," said the inflexible Colonel, "where no accusation is made, excuses or explanations are unnecessary. Have you any objection to communicate to me, as Miss Bertram's temporary guardian, the circumstances which you conceive to interest her?"