"Noo, by--!" he cried in a terrible voice, "where is he?"
He looked up and down the road, darting his fiery glances everywhere; and his face was whiter than his hair.
Then he turned and hunted madly down the whole length of the High, nosing like a weasel in every cranny, stabbing at the air as he went, and screaming, "By--, Kirby, wait till I get ye!"
Chapter XVIII. HOW THE KILLER WAS SINGED
No further harm came of the incident; but it served as a healthy object-lesson for the Dalesmen.
A coincidence it may have been, but, as a fact, for the fortnight succeeding Kirby's exploit there was a lull in the crimes. There followed, as though to make amends, the sevcn days still remembered in the Daleland as the Bloody Week.
On the Sunday the Squire lost a Cheviot ewe, killed not a hundred yards from the Manor wall. On the Monday a farm on the Black Water was marked with the red cross. On Tuesday--a black night--Tupper at Swinsthwaite came upon the murderer at his work; he fired into the darkness without effect; and the Killer escaped with a scaring. On the following night Viscount Birdsaye lost a shearling ram, for which he was reported to have paid a fabulous sum. Thursday was the one blank night of the week. On Friday Tupper was again visited and punished heavily, as though in revenge for that shot.
On the Saturday afternoon a big meeting was held at the Manor to discuss measures. The Squire presided; gentlemen and magistrates were there in numbers, and every farmer in the country-side.