PART II. The Country of the Saints.
4. CHAPTER IV. A FLIGHT FOR LIFE.
ON the morning which followed his interview with the Mormon
Prophet, John Ferrier went in to Salt Lake City, and having
found his acquaintance, who was bound for the Nevada
Mountains, he entrusted him with his message to Jefferson
Hope. In it he told the young man of the imminent danger
which threatened them, and how necessary it was that he
should return. Having done thus he felt easier in his mind,
and returned home with a lighter heart.
As he approached his farm, he was surprised to see a horse
hitched to each of the posts of the gate. Still more
surprised was he on entering to find two young men in
possession of his sitting-room. One, with a long pale face,
was leaning back in the rocking-chair, with his feet cocked
up upon the stove. The other, a bull-necked youth with
coarse bloated features, was standing in front of the window
with his hands in his pocket, whistling a popular hymn.
Both of them nodded to Ferrier as he entered, and the one
in the rocking-chair commenced the conversation.
"Maybe you don't know us," he said. "This here is the son of
Elder Drebber, and I'm Joseph Stangerson, who travelled with
you in the desert when the Lord stretched out His hand and
gathered you into the true fold."
"As He will all the nations in His own good time," said the
other in a nasal voice; "He grindeth slowly but exceeding small."
John Ferrier bowed coldly. He had guessed who his visitors were.
"We have come," continued Stangerson, "at the advice of our
fathers to solicit the hand of your daughter for whichever of
us may seem good to you and to her. As I have but four wives
and Brother Drebber here has seven, it appears to me that my
claim is the stronger one."
"Nay, nay, Brother Stangerson," cried the other; "the question
is not how many wives we have, but how many we can keep.
My father has now given over his mills to me, and I am the