Yet, when Edward was forced by home affairs to quit Scotland, Annandale and certain earldoms, including Carrick, were excepted from the districts he assigned to his followers, Bruce and other earls being treated as waverers whose allegiance might still be retained.
To waverers it held up an absolutely sure and uniform Rule of Faith, contrasting impressively with the already multitudinous variations of the Protestant Churches.
Half Europe was full of waverers between Protestantism and Catholicism tolerably certain to decide for the Church that offered them the cheapest terms of salvation; and even in wholly Catholic countries many, especially of the upper class, might easily be scared away from the confessional by severity.
Nicholas was saved by the very belief of the conspirators in the universal sympathy of the army with their aims. Had the mutinous troops early in the day received the order to attack, they would have carried the waverers with them; but they hesitated to fire on comrades whom they expected to see march over to their side; and when at last the emperor had steeled his heart to use force, a few rounds of grape-shot sufficed to quell the mutiny.