DOLLARD DES ORMEAUX 13
the river-side, two hundred paces distant. With a promptitude that showed the vigilance of the besiegers, an instant hailstorm of lead whistled about their ears, and though a small supply of water was obtained, the terrible experiment was not repeated. Later, the heroic garrison, by digging within the palisades, endeavoured to relieve their tortures, but with little success. A tiny thread of muddy water resulted, it is true, but as the pitiful old record asserts, it was much less in quantity than the blood flowing from their veins.
In this way five days passed, and matters having reached a point beyond even the en-durance of Indian stoicism, thirty of the Christian Hurons at length gave way to the repeated inducements of their faithless brothers outside, and making their exit with a rush, were seen no more. The Algonquins, to their honour, remained firm, and fought to the last.
But the awful experience of the self-devoted few had not yet reached its limit. The air now resounded with turmoil and hideous outcries, that could only mean one thing, the arrival of reinforcements ; and these speedily turned out to be five hundred Iroquois from the Richelieu. Several of the besieged had already been killed