The story of the beautiful and accomplished Nancy Stair as told by her father, Lord Stair ,is a delightfully intimate glimpse of this remarkable personality. For who should know her so well as "Jock," her own father, who "watched her grow from a wonderful child into a wonderful woman; and saw her, with a man's education, none but men for friends and no counselings save from her own heart, solve most wisely for the race the problem put to every woman of gift; and with sweetest reasoning and no bitter renouncings enter the kingdom of great womanhood?" Throughout, the story pulsates with the vivid personality of Nancy Stair. Little Nancy, with her wilful waywardness and her great heart which held "wide room for all that be," so that Castle Stair, in order to keep her, must shelter all her folk, from Dame Dickenson and Father Michel, down to "the drey hen and the broken owl." Nancy Stair, the girl fascinating and beautiful, with the charm of her poetic nature and her unconventional ways, the innocent daring of her coquetry with "Bobby Burns"; Nancy Stair, whose heart, so pure and unsullied, was wakened by her love for Dandie Carmichael; her nimble wit which served in Dandie's hour of trial for murder, to outwit the canny lawyer, Hugh Pitcairn, and get her lad free of a false charge! Nancy Stair! This is a delightful tale of this witty, good, and charming woman.
e of my recent assertion that I had no heart to leave Stair, there fell a funny performance between us. He handed me my cap and coat, determined to catch my eye, and I, having no desire to see the reproach which his glance contained, was equally set to avoid it; so that I received my cap with my eyes on my boots, my gloves with an averted head, and my riding-stick looking out of the doorway, and mounted my horse with no small resentment in my breast at this surveillance from a servant which would never be borne in any spot outside of Scotland.
"I'm thinking," said I to Sandy as we rode toward the town gate, "I'm thinking of discharging Huey when I come back."
"That will make the fifty-third time," said Sandy, with a grin, as he started his horse off at a gallop.
After the visits with Sandy, I kept an engagement with Hugh Pitcairn at the Star and Garter, just around the corner from the Tron Church, at four o'clock of the same day. It was a few minutes past the hour as I neared the place, t