It was a strong, authoritative voice and came from a man mounted on a black horse.
"Well, Girty, what is it?" shouted Silas Zane.
"We demand unconditional surrender," was the answer.
"You will never get it," replied Silas.
"Take more time to think it over. You see we have a force here large enough to take the
Fort in an hour."
"That remains to be seen," shouted some one through porthole.
An hour passed. The soldiers and the Indians lounged around on the grass and walked
to and fro on the bluff. At intervals a taunting Indian yell, horrible in its suggestiveness
came floating on the air. When the hour was up three mounted men rode out in advance
of the waiting Indians. One was clad in buckskin, another in the uniform of a British
officer, and the third was an Indian chief whose powerful form was naked except for his
buckskin belt and legging.
"Will you surrender?" came in the harsh and arrogant voice of the renegade.
"Never! Go back to your squaws!" yelled Sullivan.
"I am Capt. Pratt of the Queen's Rangers. If you surrender I will give you the best
protection King George affords," shouted the officer.
"To hell with lying George! Go back to your hair-buying Hamilton and tell him the whole
British army could not make us surrender," roared Hugh Bennet.
"If you do not give up, the Fort will be attacked and burned. Your men will be massacred
and your women given to the Indians," said Girty.
"You will never take a man, woman or child alive," yelled Silas. "We remember
Crawford, you white traitor, and we are not going to give up to be butchered. Come on
with your red-jackets and your red-devils. We are ready."
"We have captured and killed the messenger you sent out, and now all hope of succor
must he abandoned. Your doom is sealed."
"What kind of a man was he?" shouted Sullivan.
"A fine, active young fellow," answered the outlaw.
"That's a lie," snapped Sullivan, "he was an old, gray haired man."