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A Meeting with Rob Roy

This celebrated freebooter, towards the end of his career, being hunted from his own shire of Dumbarton, took refuge among the inaccessible mountains of Lochaher, and lived on shabby depredations among the few flocks of sheep supported by their pasturage, with now and then a deer which he shot where it might not alarm. At that time it was the custom of the War
Office to send to Fort Augustus the monthly pay of that garrison by an orderly sergeant. One of those sergeants was travelling on this errand, with the monthly allowance in his pocket, across the mountain of Corryarrick, where the road to Fort Augustus separates from that to Inverness a little beyond the inn of Dalwhinnie, when he overtook a stout good-looking man in the Highland garb and arms, who told him, on being accosted, that he
was going towards Fort Augustus. ‘I am glad of that,’ said the sergeant, a very uncautious messenger, ‘because I think you will serve me as a protector from a desperate fellow who, I am informed, frequents this district, called Rob Roy, who would have a good subject for his trade in me, as I am the bearer of the monthly pay of the garrison of Fort Augustus.’ ‘I do not believe’, answered the Highlander, ‘that Rob Roy would meddle
with you, but you are welcome to such protection as I can afford.’ They journeyed on together, till they reached the high ground from which there is a bird’s eye view of the Fort, ‘Now,’ said the Highlander, ‘you cannot miss your way, and I must bid you farewell.’ ‘But we must not part so, my good friend,’ replied the sergeant. ‘You must be my guest tonight at the Fort, and shall have the best supper it can afford, as a reward for your good company.’
‘That would not be quite convenient for me,’ rejoined the stranger; ‘but when you reach the Fort, make my compliments to the Governor, and tell him that Rob Roy escorted you in safety.’

Henry Mackenzie (1745—1831)

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