had no feuds in their own country, were trying to stop them in the

mountain. Over in Breathitt, as everybody knew, soldiers had

come from the " settlemints," had arrested the leaders, and had

taken them to the Blue Grass for the feared and hated ordeal of

trial by a jury of "bigoted furriners." On the heels of the soldiers

came a young preacher up from the Jellico hills, half " citizen,"

half furriner," with long black hair and a scar across his forehead,

who was stirring up the people, it was said, " as though Satan was

atter them." Over there the spirit of the feud was broken, and a

good effect was already perceptible around Hazlan. In past days

every pair of lips was sealed with fear, and the non-combatants left

crops and homes, and moved down the river, when trouble began.

Now only the timid considered this way of escape. Steve and old

Jasper found a few men who refused to enter the fight. Several,

indeed, talked openly against the renewal of the feud, and

somebody, it was said, had dared to hint that he would send to the

Governor for aid if it should break out again. But these were

rumors touching few people.

For once again, as time and time again before, one bank of the

Cumberland was arrayed with mortal enmity against the other, and

old Gabe sat, with shaken faith, in the door of his mill. For years

he had worked and prayed for peace, and for a little while the

Almighty seemed lending aid. Now the friendly grasp was

loosening, and yet the miller did all he could. He begged Steve

Marcum to urge Rufe to seek aid from the law when the latter

came back; and Steve laughed, and asked what justice was

possible for a Stetson, with a Lewallen for a judge and Braytons

for a jury. The miller pleaded with old Jasper, and old Jasper

pointed to the successes of his own life.

"I hev triumphed ag'in' my enemies time 'n' ag'in," he said. "The

Lord air on my side, 'n' I gits a better Christian ever' year." The old

man spoke with the sincerity of a barbarism that has survived the

dark ages, and, holding the same faith, the miller had no answer.

It was old Gabe indeed who had threatened to send to the

Governor for soldiers, and this he would have done, perhaps, had

there not been one hope left, and only one. A week had gone, and

there was no word from Rufe Stetson. Up on Thunderstruck Knob

the old Stetson mother was growing pitiably eager and restless.

Every day she slipped like a ghost through the leafless woods and

in and out the cabin, kindling hatred. At every dawn or dusk she

was on her porch peering through the dim light for Rufe Stetson.

Steve Marcum was ill at ease. Rome Stetson alone seemed

unconcerned, and his name was on every gossiping tongue.

He took little interest and no hand in getting ready for the war. He

forbade the firing of a gun till Rufe came back, else Steve should

fight his fight alone. He grew sullen and morose. His old mother's

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