into the ornamentation of the guard.
On his hand was an antique gem set in a ring.
In his pocket was a gold watch, marked with his name, attached to a gold chain.
Although he had given certain papers and letters to his friend, Mr. Pierce
, he retained his pocket-book, which doubtless contained papers which would establish his identity.
His manner, generally reserved before his men, seemed to unbend to them, for he spoke as he had never done before.
He said, ‘Now I want you to prove yourselves men,’ and reminded them that the eyes of thousands would look upon the night's work.
His bearing was composed and graceful; his cheek had somewhat paled; and the slight twitching of the corners of his mouth plainly showed that the whole cost was counted, and his expressed determination to take the fort or die was to be carried out.
Meanwhile the twilight deepened, as the minutes, drawn out by waiting, passed, before the signal was given.
Officers had silently grasped one another's hands, brought their revolvers round to the front, and tightened their sword-belts.
The men whispered last injunctions to comrades, and listened for the word of command.
The preparations usual in an assault were not made.
There was no provision for cutting away obstructions, filling the ditch, or spiking the guns.
No special instructions were given the stormers; no line of skirmishers or covering party was thrown out; no engineers or guides accompanied the column; no artillery-men to serve captured guns; no plan of the work was shown company officers.
It was understood that the fort would be assaulted with the bayonet, and that the Fifty-fourth would be closely supported.