Chapter 1: San Carlos.

Ruins! A pile of stone, standing in a country of mud-tracks, adobe ranches, and timber-sheds? Yes, broken dome, projecting rafter, crumbling wall, and empty chancel, open to the wind and rain, poetic wrecks of what, in days gone by, have been a cloister and a church.

A wide and ragged field, enclosed within a fence of sun-dried bricks, surrounds the fane, marking the sacred precincts with a dark and perishing line. No human form is seen, no human voice is heard. An owl, disturbed in her siesta, lifts her brow and hoots; a lizard hisses through the weeds; a catamount, unused to tramp of horse and bark of dog, deserts her hole and darts into the bush. Near by, the ocean laps in measured tones along

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