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They marched to Regimental Headquarters and halted, and the Lieutenant-Colonel renewed his browbeating, Si and Shorty continued obstinate, and the Lieutenant-Colonel, getting angrier every minute,264 ordered them tied up by the thumbs. While the Sergeant of the Guard, who was a friend of the boys, and had little heart for the work, was dallying with his preparations, the Colonel himself appeared on the scene."Well, I should say we had," replied Shorty with an impressive whistle. "I thought the artillery would121 tear the foundations out of the whole State of Tennessee, the way it let into them. There won't ba more crashin' an' bangin' when the world breaks up. I'd a-bin willin' to serve 100 years just to see that sight. Lord, what a chance the cannoneers had. First time I ever wanted to be in the artillery. The way they slung whole blacksmith shops over into them woods, an' smashed down trees, and wiped out whole brigades at a clip, filled my soul with joy."
"Bob Smiles hated to let me go, but he couldn't help himself, unt I went with the officer. I was so tired I could hardly move a step, unt I felt I could not write a word. But I seemed to see a chance at Headquarters, unt I determined to make every effort to do something. They gave me a stiff horn of whisky unt set me to work. They wanted me to make out unt copy a consolidated report of the army.
So is the love I sendBut little had been said so far. At a turn of the road they came upon a gray-bearded man, wearing a battered silk hat and spectacles, whom Mrs. Bolster greeted as "'Squire."
CHAPTER XIV. DEACON KLEGG'S SURPRISE