452 UNCLE TOM'S CABIN; OR
could not be mistaken. Legree shook with anger ; his greenish eyes glared fiercely, and his very whiskers seemed to curl with passion; but, like some ferocious beast, that plays with its victim before he devours it, he kept back his strong impulse to proceed to immediate violence, and broke out into bitter raillery.
" Well, here 's a pious dog, at last, let down among us sinners! — a saint, a gentleman, and no less, to talk to us sinners about our sins ! Powerful holy crittur, he must be ! Here, you rascal, you make believe to be so pious,— did n't you never hear, out of yer Bible, ' Servants, obey yer masters ' ? An't I yer master ? Did n't I pay down twelve hundred dollars, cash, for all there is inside yer old cussed black shell ? An't yer mine, now, body and soul ? ' he said, giving Tom a violent kick with his heavy boot; " tell me ! "
In the very depth of physical suffering, bowed by brutal oppression, this question shot a gleam of joy and triumph through Tom's soul. He suddenly stretched himself up, and, looking earnestly to heaven, while the tears and blood that flowed down his face mingled, he exclaimed, —
" No! no! no! my soul an't yours, Mas'r! You have n't bought it, — ye can't buy it! It's been bought and paid for, by one that is able to keep it; — no matter, no matter, you can't harm me ! "
"I can't!" said Legree, with a sneer; "we'll see,— we 'U see! Here, Sambo, Quimbo, give this dog such a breakin'-in as he won't get over, this month ! "
The two gigantic negroes that now laid hold of Tom, with fiendish exultation in their faces, might have formed no unapt personification of the powers of darkness. The poor woman screamed with apprehension, and all rose, as by a general impulse, while they dragged him unresisting from the place.