Donald Dubh was Kenneth Og's foster-brother, and Imagining that Hector was accessory in an underhand way to Kenneth's captivity in Edinburgh Castle, and consequently to his death in the Torwood, he conceived an inveterate hatred for him, and determined to kill him in revenge the first opportunity that presented itself. Hector, knowing that his resolution proceeded from fidelity and affection to his foster-brother and master, not only forgave him, but ultimately took an opportunity of rewarding him and, as we have seen, afterwards gave him his choice of all the lands in Kenlochewe.
John immediately sent word of what had taken place to his uncle of Lovat, and next day marched for Kintail, where all the people there, as well as in the other parts of his property, recognised him as their chief.
The Castle of Ellandonnan was delivered up to him, with the charter chest and other evidences of his extensive possessions.
It has been maintained by the family of Gairloch that there is no truth in the charge against their ancestor, Hector Roy, which we have just given mainly on the authority of the Earl of Cromartie. The writer of the Ardintoul MS. of the Mackenzies, [Dr George Mackenzie gives substantially the same account,] however corroborates his lordship, and says that John was but young when his father died; and Hector, his younger uncle (Duncan, Hector's eldest brother, who should be tutor being dead, and Allan, Duncan's son, not being able to oppose or grapple with Hector), meddled with the estate. It is reported that Hector wished Allan out of the way, whom he thought only to stand in his way from being laird, since he was resolved not to own my Lord Lovat's daughter's children, being all bastards and gotten in adultery. The reason why they entertained such thoughts of him was partly this: Hector going to Ellandonnan (where he placed Malcolm Mac Eancharrich constable) called such of the country people to him as he judged fit, under pretence of setting and settling the country, but asked not for, nor yet called his nephew Allan, who lived at Invershiel, within a few miles of Ellandonnan, but went away. Allan, suspecting this to have proceeded from unkindness, sends to one of his familiar friends to know the result of the meeting, or if there was any spoken concerning him. The man, perhaps, not being willing to be an ill instrument twixt so near relations, sends Allan the following Irish (Gaelic) lines:--
Inversheala na struth bras, Tar as, `s fear foul ga d' fheitheamh, Nineag, ga caol a cas, Tha leannan aice gun thios, A tighinn ga'm fhaire a shios, Tha i, gun fhios, fo mo chrios Tha `n sar lann ghuilbneach ghlas,-- Bhehion urchair dha le fios.
Allan put his own construction on them, and thought a friend warned him to have a care of himself, there being some designs on him from a near relation; and so that very night, in the beginning thereof, he removed himself and family and anything he valued within the house to an bill above the town, where he might see and bear anything that might befall the house; and that same night about cock crow he saw bis house and biggings in flames, and found them consumed to ashes on the morrow. The perpetrators could not be found; yet it was generally thought to be Hector his uncle's contrivance."
The writer then describes the legitimation of Agnes Fraser's children by the Pope, and continues--"Hector, notwithstanding of the legitimation, refused to quit the possession of the estate," and he then gives the same account of John's feigned expedition to Ireland, and the burning of Hector's house at Wester Fairburn, substantially as already given from another source, but adding--"That very night they both entered upon terms of agreement without acquainting or sending for any, or to advise a reconciliation betwixt them. The sum of their agreement was, that Hector, as a man able to rule and govern, should have (allowing John an aliment) the estate for five or six years, till John should be major, and that thereafter Hector should render it to John as the right and lawful undoubted heir, and that Hector should ever afterwards acknowledge and honour him as his chief, and so they parted, all being well pleased. [John and Hector did condescend that Hector should have the estate till John were one and twentie years, and that John should live on his own purchase till then. Letter from MS.] But Allan and the most of the Kintail men were dissatisfied that John did not get Ellandonnan, his principal house, in his own possession, and so desired John to come to them and possess the castle by fair or foul means wherein they promised to assist him. John goes to Kintail, desires him to render the place to him, which he refused, for which cause John ordered bring all his cattle to those he employed to besiege the castle till Malcolm (the governor) would be starved out of it.
Yet this did not prevail with the governor, till he got Hector's consent, who, being acquainted, came to Lochalsh and met with his nephew, and after concerting the matter, Hector sends word to Malcolm to render the place to John. But Malcolm would not till he would be paid of his goods that were destroyed. But Hector sending to him the second time, after considerable negotiation for several days, telling him he was a fool, that he might remember how himself was used, and that that might be a means to take his life also. Whereupon Malcolm renders the house, but John was so much offended at him that he would not continue him governor, but gave the charge to Gillechriost Mac Fhionnla Mhic Rath, making him Constable of the Isle. So after that there was little or no debate twixt John and Hector during the rest of the six years he was Tutor.' [Ardintoul and Ancient MSS. of the Mackenzies.]