**** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE ****

Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!

A Lovely Bully
by [?]

He was seven feet and fat. He came to Fort O’Angel at Hudson’s Bay, an immense slip of a lad, very much in the way, fond of horses, a wonderful hand at wrestling, pretending a horrible temper, threatening tragedies for all who differed from him, making the Fort quake with his rich roar, and playing the game of bully with a fine simplicity. In winter he fattened, in summer he sweated, at all times he ate eloquently.

It was a picture to see him with the undercut of a haunch of deer or buffalo, or with a whole prairie-fowl on his plate, his eyes measuring it shrewdly, his coat and waistcoat open, and a clear space about him–for he needed room to stretch his mighty limbs, and his necessity was recognised by all.

Occasionally he pretended to great ferocity, but scowl he ever so much, a laugh kept idling in his irregular bushy beard, which lifted about his face in the wind like a mane, or made a kind of underbrush through which his blunt fingers ran at hide-and-seek.

He was Irish, and his name was Macavoy. In later days, when Fort O’Angel was invaded by settlers, he had his time of greatest importance.

He had been useful to the Chief Trader at the Fort in the early days, and having the run of the Fort and the reach of his knife, was little likely to discontinue his adherence. But he ate and drank with all the dwellers at the Post, and abused all impartially. “Malcolm,” said he to the Trader, “Malcolm, me glutton o’ the H.B.C., that wants the Far North for your footstool–Malcolm, you villain, it’s me grief that I know you, and me thumb to me nose in token.” Wiley and Hatchett, the principal settlers, he abused right and left, and said, “Wasn’t there land in the East and West, that you steal the country God made for honest men–you robbers o’ the wide world! Me tooth on the Book, and I tell you what, it’s only me charity that kapes me from spoilin’ ye. For a wink of me eye, an’ away you’d go, leaving your tails behind you–and pass that shoulder of bear, you pirates, till I come to it sideways, like a hog to war.”

He was even less sympathetic with Bareback the chief and his braves. “Sons o’ Anak y’are; here today and away to-morrow, like the clods of the valley–and that’s your portion, Bareback. It’s the word o’ the Pentytook–in pieces you go, like a potter’s vessel. Don’t shrug your shoulders at me, Bareback, you pig, or you’ll think that Ballzeboob’s loose on the mat. But take a sup o’ this whisky, while you swear wid your hand on your chest, ‘Amin’ to the words o’ Tim Macavoy.”

Beside Macavoy, Pierre, the notorious, was a child in height. Up to the time of the half-breed’s coming the Irishman had been the most outstanding man at Fort O’Angel, and was sure of a good-natured homage, acknowledged by him with a jovial tyranny.

Pierre put a flea in his ear. He was pensively indifferent to him even in his most royal moments. He guessed the way to bring down the gusto and pride of this Goliath, but, for a purpose, he took his own time, nodding indolently to Macavoy when he met him, but avoiding talk with him.

Among the Indian maidens Macavoy was like a king or khan; for they count much on bulk and beauty, and he answered to their standards–especially to Wonta’s. It was a sight to see him of a summer day, sitting in the shade of a pine, his shirt open, showing his firm brawny chest, his arms bare, his face shining with perspiration, his big voice gurgling in his beard, his eyes rolling amiably upon the maidens as they passed or gathered near demurely, while he declaimed of mighty deeds in patois or Chinook to the braves.