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Page:The despatches of Hernando Cortes.djvu/154

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132 LETTERS OF COKTES. service, despatched the Licentiate Lucas Vazquez de Ayllon, one of their number, with an order from them, requiring and commanding Diego Velazquez to stop the saihng of the expedition. On his arrival Ayllon found Diego Velasquez with all his fleet at the extreme point of the island Fernandina, ready to set sail, when he im- mediately required both the commander and all those engaged with him to desist from the enterprise, as in- jurious to the service of your Highness, imposing heavy penalties in case of disobedience ; notwithstanding which, and in open violation of the requisitions and orders of the Licentiate, the fleet had been despatched by Velasquez. Thinking to be able to avert the mischief likely to be the result of this expedition, the evil design of which was well known to him and others, Ayllon had also embarked and arrived with it. I sent this priest with a letter to Narvaez, in which I informed him I had learned by the priest and those who had come with him, that he had the command of the force which had arrived in the ships, whereat I was much pleased, since otherwise I might have supposed the expedition an unfriendly one, as the messengers despatched by me had not returned ; nevertheless I was surprised, that, as he knew I was here in the service of your Highness, he had not written or sent a messenger, apprising me of his arrival ; especially when he knew that the information must afford me pleasure, as well on account of our old friendship, as from the circumstance that he came in the service of your Highness, which I was most desirous of promoting ; but, on the contrary, had sent secret agents with bribes to induce the men under my command, and in the service of your Majesty, to throw off their allegiance and join him, as if we were