Abbildungen der Seite
[ocr errors]

disappointment broke out in dreadful the god; and then Taiofa inquired of execrations.

him, whether they should succeed in Meantime the unfortunate Mamana, their intended attack on the white men's on recovering from her swoon, found ship. The priest seemed to meditate herself in an apartment of the house for some time, then appeared in a sort which had lately been the king's, at- of trance; then foamed at the mouth, tended by two of her own women. uttered several strange cries ; and soon They informed her that several of their afterwards became calm. He then told companions had been killed in the late them Tooitonga had been with him, dreadful affray, and the rest ensiaved by and assured him that if they did not the Hamoa people ; and that the house conquer, it would be their own fault in which they were was strongly guard- and that as he intended to protect them, ed. From them also she learned the he required them to offer to him, through fate to which her lover had been con his priest, all the drink they might find demned, and which they imagined he in the white men's ship, together with had suffered. At this dreadful intelli some shirts and trowsers, for the more gence her grief was unbounded; she magnificent apparel of his priest. These seized a sharp instrument that lay acci- conditions they promised to fulfil, and dentally near her, and wounded her face departed full of confidence in their unand head in several places ; tore her dertaking. beautiful hair, and throwing herself on It was determined that Taiofa, and the ground, abandoned herself entirely eleven Hamoa chiefs, should each go to her grief, uttering the most piteous on board the vessel, with a canoe laden cries. In this state she was found by with hogs, cocoas, and other provisions, Taiofa on his return. Her swollen and

as presents and for traffic, and attended bleeding face, her torn and soiled gar- by eight or ten resolute warriors. They ments, her scattered tresses, and the ex were to affect the most friendly dispositravagance of her sorrow, protected her tion and peaceable intentions, until they for the time from the wild passions of should be so dispersed over the ship the chief. He gave orders for every at- that every one of the crew might be tention to her accommodation, and re- singly and suddenly attacked, and stabbed tired to meditate and ripen a new and with their iron-wood daggers, which important scheme. In returning from were to be concealed under their cloaks. their fruitless pursuit, the Hamoa war Early the next mornrng the ship had riors had perceived a small European anchored in the bay, and a few canoes vessel in the offing, which was evi were sent to open a friendly communidently endeavouring to make Vavaoo. cation, which was very adroitly perTaiofa was desirous of taking this ves- formed. The confederate chiefs then sel; and as that could only be effected began to go off to the ship by degrees, by stratagem, he had appointed a con- and were received on board in the most sultation of chiefs at the house of the amicable manner. Presents were intergod Tooitonga

changed, and purchases made. The The priest of Tooitonga was the oracle number of the islanders on board someof these islands. He kept up a daily in- what exceeded that of the crew. Taiofa, tercourse with his divinity, and managed as the principal chief, met with particular his replies with so much address, that attentions from the captain. His people they were generally sure of being con were now dispersing themselves in the firmed by events. To maintain the dig- manner agreed on, and Taiofa perceived nity of the divinity he represented, he they would presently expect the signal often judged it expedient to require a he was to give by stabbing the captain. human sacrifice ; and such was his in- A loud cry suddenly pierced his ear, and fluence, that even when he named for turning round, he saw one of his conthat purpose the children of the most federates fall mortally wounded by the distinguished persons in the island, their dirk of an officer. Instantly the whole parents never withheld them from his crew drawing pistols from their bošoms, sanguinary grasp. He was maintained fired upon the treacherous natives, whose in the most luxurious manner by the lifeless bodies soon strewed the deck. A devout natives, who carried himn plenty few only escaped by jumping overboard. of dainties which, he assured them, Taiofa, detected, terrified, and thunder: was the most agreeable service they could struck, conceiving that the gods had rerender to heaven.

vealed the plot to the white men, fel! When the chiefs had assembled in his prostrate at the captain's feet

. He was house, each of them made an offering to raised from the deck by iwo seamen ;

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

but what was his horror and amaze- istence. I breathed the air, but' seemed ment at seeing, immediately behind the in utter darkness. With what rapture captain, the figure of Malohi. He now did I hear my companion whisper, judged that he was in the land of spirits, Courage-be still-you are safe ! --At where his victim's ghost would eternally the same instant he assisted me to a torment him for his cruelty. But he crag, by which I held for some time. was soon undeceived...,

*My eyes soon began to accustom “ Thou seest ine alive," said Malohi, themselves to the dim light of the place " and my preservation has led to the de- in which we were, and which at first I tection and punishment of thy perfidy. thought quite dark. 1 then perceived it Where is Mamana ?”

to be a spacious cavern, into which the A faint hope of safety cheered the entrance from the sea lay beneath the miserable Taiofa. He knew the genero- surface. The light was faintly reflected sity of his rival, and eagerly declared from the bottom of the sea, through that Mamana was well and safe, and had the aperture into this cave. We now suffered no insult or injury from him. emerged from the water, and sat on the

" Tis well,” said Malohi, “traitor crags in silence, dreading lest any of our and murderer as thou art, thou hast yet pursuers should remain on the watch forborne one crime. Say, should I ob- near the spot. But when the failure of tain thy life from the white chief, shall the light warned us of the approach of there be peace between us?”

evening we ventured to quit the cave. But the reproaches of his rival had We dired out of it in the same manner changed the thoughts of Taiofa. He as we had entered it, swam for a consiperceived that his power was destroyed derable distance round the projecting --his reputation gone-his hopes blight- rock, and at length safely landed. We ed—and that protracted life would only remained concealed among the cliffs be lengthened infamy; nor could he till the evening, during which time my hope that the people of Vavaoo, his preserver informed me of the motives injured countrymen, would forgive his by which he had been induced to undertreacherous introduction of their Hamoa take my deliverance, and explained the enemies. He therefore resolved to die. means by which he had effected it. He Know,” said he, “ that Taiofa dis. was a young native of Hamoa, named dains thy intercession. He can suffer Fanaw; and although I did not rememdeath as unmoved as he can inflict it.” ber him, yet he fortunately recollected

As he said these words, he was seized that in an invasion of his country by by the French seamen, who dragged the people of Vavaoo, while he was yet him into the hold, and loaded him with a boy, I had dissuaded our chiefs from irops.

putting to death a number of prisoners, Hundreds of canoes surrounded the among whom were himself, his mother, vessel, chiefly filled with natives of and sister. He had accidentally disVavaoo. When they saw the fall of so covered this cave when fishing, and many of the llamoa warriors, they re- happily for me had never disclosed the joiced in the prospect of their speedy de secret of its existence. At night we liverance from those invaders. They, issued from our concealment, and I found therefore, shewed no disposition to in- that we had landed near the dwelling of terfere. The French captain, however, the priest of Tooitonga. I had no doubt regarded them all as enemies, and main- that Taiofa and his Hamoa warriors had tained all due precautions ; he was there- spared the old man from veneration for fore much relieved when Malohi ex- the god he serves, and I thought that I plained to him the real state of affairs. might depend on his aid for food, shelter, After relating the jealous rivalship be- and the means of escaping to one of the tween himself and Taiofa, and the trea- Tonga islands. We therefore advanced cherous manner in which that warrior towards his dwelling; but as we aphad betrayed his countrymen to the proached, we perceived an unusual people of Hamoa, he proceeded to nar- number of lights, and heard the sound rate his own escape.

of many voices. Fanaw proposed to "When I precipitated myself into retreat instantly, but I felt an irresistithe waves, in imitation of my com- ble impulse to ascertain who were with panion, I thought merely of disappoint- the priest, and on what occasion. I ing the vengeance of my rival, by rush- therefore crept through the shrubs close ing into the arms of death. But when I up to his house, near the apertures rose again to the surface, the instinct of where only a mat separated me from nature compelled me to strive for ex those within. «There I overheard the account of your arrival, O brave white heard without ; and in a few minutes the chief ! and the treacherous plot laid for two Hanoa warriors, who had been left your assassination, and the capture of to guard them, entered the house, puryour ship. Fanaw and I determined to sued by a mumber of the Vavaoo people, apprise you of the intended attack, in who soon dispatched them with their hopes that timely notice might enable clubs. They then explained to Mayou to turn the attempts of your ene- mana the revolution of her fortune, and mies to their own destruction, and thus that of her country, occasioned by the relieve the island of Vavaoo from its failure of Taiofa's enterprise, in which sanguinary tyrants. For this purpose the principal Hamoa warriors having we traversed the country till we arrived fallen, the people had risen against on the coast opposite your vessel, seized those who were left behind, and put a canoe, and came off to you before them to death. They also acquainted dawn. The event has fulfilled our ex- her with the supposed fate of her lover. pectations."

As she was already, persuaded of his The sorrowful Mamana, exhausted death, the information that he had esby her frantic grief, had sunk into a caped by a voluntary act from the cruelty deep but unquiet sleep, in which she of his rival, gare her a mournful satispassed the night The visions of slum- faction. As a chieftainess of rank they ber presented to her the most fearful carried her directly to the marly, where images : sometimes she beheld her lover all the remaining nobles, who had surbound and sinking in his canoe-she vived the treacherous attack of Taiofa, saw his face sink beneath the waves, were immediately to assemble to reguand heard his last gurgling cries as the late the government of the island. waters suffocated him. Again he ap- As she approached the spot where peared as if revived, struggling with his several chiefs had already met, she per. terrible rival, and at last slain by his ceived another party advancing to the spear ; when the victor commanded his place in another direction. This was Aesh to be prepared for his horrid feast. the French captain and his crew, In the morning she awoke to the con- with two other persons, one of whom sciousness of her dreadful fate. On instantly attracted the eyes of the astoa pile of mats she sat motionless ; her nished Mamana. At the same moment arms embracing her knees; her tear- he flew to meet her, and in the next less eyes fixed on vacancy. Her sa- was in her arms. She clasped the livgacious attendant soon perceived the ing Malohi ; she could not mistrust her symptoms of impending insanity: and senses, but her excessive joy was too in hopes to relieve her by exciting her powerful for the weak state to which tears, she sang in a low tone, and she was reduced, and she would have mournful measure, an old and pathetic fallen senseless to the ground but for elegy, of which the following may give the support of her lover. He, who some idea :

thought her dying, uttered frantic cries, "What sounds, in the forest, so mournfully swell. which happily reaching the ears of the ing,

French seamen, they ran to the spot, Thrill, plaintive, and sweet, through the silence when a surgeon among them instantly

of night? *Tis the heart-broken maid, in her desolate dwell. comprehending the affair, promptly bled

the fair Manana, who soon recovered Bewailing the youth who has perish'd in fight. to life, and love, and happiness. Fled is the beauty her eyes that enchanted,

The assembled chiefs, after lamenting Mute is the voice th. t pour'd love and delight,

the destruction of most of their order Cold is the breast on her bosom that panted, through the treason of Taiofa, found

Fall'n is the youth in the terrible fight. that the rank of Mamana was such as Far o'er the waves is an island of pleasure,

to entitle her to the sovereignty. They Heroes departed there reign in delight;

therefore declared her queen, and apThere, hapless maid, seek thy dearly-lor'd treasure, pointed an early day for her marriage

There dwells thy lover, who fell in the fight. with Malohi, which took place accordMamana at first seemed unconscious ingly, and conferred on him the royal of the song ; but at length some parti- dignity. The wretched Taiofa was excular note seemed to rivet her attention. ecuted by the French, as an example to She listened changed her attitude the contrivers of similar treachery. May and towards the conclusion wept abun- the reign of Malohi and Mamana be santly.

long and prosperous--their lives virtaA loud and continued noise was now ous and happy.


[graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small]
« ZurückWeiter »