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A Long Fatal Love Chase Louisa May Alcott

CONTENTS i Fair Rosamond ii The Circe m A Companion iv Rose in Bloom v Cholera vi A idden !rave vii A "oman#s Shado$ vin %nto the Night i& The Chase Begins & Mademoiselle onorine &i One More 'n(ortunate &ii Behind the !rating &iii Flee Temptation &iv A !limpse o( appiness &v Madame la Comtesse &vi Mad &vii Torment &viii One Friend

&i& )My *aughter) && T+ F &&i Mrs+ Tempest &&n T$ice Con,uered &&m Retri-ution &&iv The .ision .eri(ied

C A/TER %

Fair Rosamond

)% tell you % cannot -ear it0 % shall do something desperate i( this li(e is not changed soon+ %t gets $orse and $orse1 and % o(ten (eel as i( %#d gladly sell my soul to Satan (or a year o( (reedom+) An impetuous young voice spo2e1 and the most intense desire gave (orce to her passionate $ords as the girl glanced despairingly a-out the dreary room li2e a caged creature on the point o( -rea2ing loose+ Boo2s lined the $alls1 loaded the ta-les and lay piled a-out the $eird1 $ithered old man $ho $as her sole companion+ e sat in a lo$1 $heeled chair (rom $hich his paraly3ed lim-s $ould not allo$ him to stir $ithout help+ is (ace $as $orn -y passion and $asted -y disease -ut his eyes $ere all alive and possessed an uncanny -rilliancy $hich contrasted strangely $ith the immo-ility o( his other (eatures+ Fi&ing these cold1 2een eyes on the agitated (ace o( the girl1 he ans$ered $ith harsh -revity1 )!o $hen and $here you li2e+ % have no desire to 2eep you+)

)Ah1 that is the -itterest thing o( all0) cried the girl $ith a sudden tremor in her voice1 a pathetic glance at that hard (ace+ )%( you loved me1 this dull house $ould -e pleasant to me1 this lonely li(e not only endura-le -ut happy+ The 2no$ledge that you care nothing (or me ma2es me $retched+ %#ve tried1 !od 2no$s % have1 to do my duty (or /apa#s sa2e1 -ut you are relentless and $ill neither (orgive nor (orget+ 4ou say #!o1# -ut $here can % go1 a girl1 young1 penniless and alone5 4ou do not really mean it1 !rand(ather5) )% never say $hat % do not mean+ *o as you choose1 go or stay1 -ut let me have no more scenes1 %#m tired o( them1) and he too2 up his -oo2 as i( the su-6ect $as ended+ )%#ll go as soon as % can (ind a re(uge1 and never -e a -urden to you anymore+ But $hen % am gone remem-er that % $anted to -e a child to you and you shut your heart against me+ Someday you#ll (eel the need o( love and regret that you thre$ mine a$ay7 then send (or me1 !rand(ather1 and $herever % am %#ll come -ac2 and prove that % can (orgive+) A so- cho2ed the indignant voice1 -ut the girl shed no tears and turned to leave the room $ith a proud step+ The sight o( a stranger pausing on the threshold arrested her1 and she stood regarding him $ithout a $ord+ e loo2ed at her an instant1 (or the e((ect o( the grace(ul girlish (igure $ith pale1 passionate (ace and dar2 eyes (ull o( sorro$1 pride and resolution $as $onder(ully enhanced -y the gloom o( the great room1 the presence o( the sinister old man and glimpses o( a gathering storm in the red autumn s2y+ *uring that -rie( pause the girl had time to see that the ne$comer $as a man past thirty1 tall and po$er(ul1 $ith peculiar eyes and a scar across the (orehead+ More than this she did not discover1 -ut a sudden change came over her e&cited spirit and she smiled involuntarily -e(ore she spo2e+ ) ere is a gentleman (or you1 !rand(ather+) The old man loo2ed up sharply1 thre$ do$n his -oo2 $ith an air o( satis(action1 and stretched his hand to the stranger1 saying -luntly1 )Spea2 o( Satan and he appears+ "elcome1 Tempest+) )Many than2s7 (e$ give the Evil One so (ran2 and cordial a greeting1) returned the other1 $ith a short laugh $hich sho$ed a glitter o( $hite teeth under a drooping -lac2 mustache+ )"ho is the Tragic Muse5) he added under his -reath as he shoo2

the pro((ered hand+ )!ood0 She is e&actly that+ Rosamond1 this is the most promising o( all my pupils1 /hillip Tempest+ The #Tragic Muse# is !uy#s daughter1 as you might 2no$1 /hillip1 -y the state o( re-ellion in $hich you (ind her0) The girl -o$ed rather haughtily1 the man li(ted his -ro$s $ith an air o( surprise as he returned the -o$ and sat do$n -eside his host+ )Ring (or lights and ta2e yoursel( a$ay1) commanded the old man1 and Rosamond vanished (rom the room1 leaving it the dar2er (or her a-sence+

888

For hal( an hour she sat in the great hall $indo$ loo2ing out at the $aves $hich dashed against the roc2y shore1 thin2ing sad and -itter thoughts till t$ilight (ell and the outer $orld gre$ as som-er as the inner one o( $hich she $as so $eary+ "ith a sigh she $as a-out to rise and see2 her o$n room $hen a sudden consciousness o( a human presence near-y made her turn to see the ne$comer pausing 6ust outside the old man#s door to regard her $ith a curious smile+ An involuntary start -etrayed that she had entirely (orgotten him1 a slight $hich she tried to e&cuse -y saying hastily1 )% $as so a-sor-ed in $atching the sea % did not hear you come out+ % love tempests and9) e interrupted her $ith a short laugh and said in a deep voice $hich $ould have -een melodious -ut (or a satiric undertone $hich seldom le(t it1 )% am glad o( that1 (or your grand(ather invites me to pass the night1 and % shall do so $illingly since my young hostess has a taste (or tempests1 though % cannot promise to -e as a-sor-ing as the one outside+) %n the (it(ul light o( the dus2y hall the ne$comer#s (ace suddenly appeared (iery:eyed and menacing1

and1 glancing at a portrait o( Mephistopheles1 Rosamond e&claimed1 )"hy1 you are the very image o( Meph9) Tempest strolled to the picture $hich hung opposite the long mirror+ Loo2ing up at it1 a change passed over his (ace1 an e&pression o( $eariness and melancholy $hich touched her and made her repent o( her (ran2ness+ "ith an impulsive gesture she put out her hand1 saying in a tone o( s$eet contrition1 )% -eg your pardon7 %#ve -een very rude1 -ut % live so entirely alone $ith !rand(ather1 $ho is peculiar1 that % really don#t 2no$ ho$ to -ehave li2e a $ell:-red girl+ % had no $ish to -e un2ind7 $ill you (orgive me5) )% thin2 % $ill on condition that you play hostess (or a little $hile1 (or your grand(ather -egs me to pass the night and gives me into your care+ May % stay5) e held her hand and spo2e1 loo2ing do$n into the -eauti(ul (ace $hich $as so unconscious o( its -eauty+ A hospita-le smile -ro2e over her $ist(ul (ace and $ith a $ord o( $elcome she led him a$ay to a little room $hich overhung the sea+ /lacing him in an easy chair1 she stirred the em-ers till a cheery -la3e sprung up1 lighted a -rilliant lamp1 dre$ the curtains and then paused as i( in dou-t a-out the ne&t step+ )% al$ays have tea here alone and send !randpapa#s up+ "ill you ta2e yours $ith him or $ith me5) )"ith you i( you are not a(raid o( my dangerous society1) he ans$ered $ith a signi(icant smile+ )% li2e danger1) she said $ith a -lush1 a petulant sha2e o( the head and a daring glance at her guest+ Ringing the -ell1 she ordered tea and $hen it came -usied hersel( a-out it $ith the pretty earnestness o( a child playing house$i(e+ Lounging in his easy chair1 Tempest regarded her $ith an e&pression o( indolent amusement1 $hich slo$ly changed to one o( surprise and interest as the girl tal2ed $ith a spirit and (reedom peculiarly charming to a man $ho had tried many pleasures and1 $earying o( them all1 $as glad to discover a ne$ one even o( this simple 2ind+ Though her isolated li(e had deprived Rosamond o( the polish o( society1 it had preserved the artless (reshness o( her youth and given her ardent nature an intensity $hich (ound vent in demonstrations in(initely more attractive than the arti(icial graces o( other $omen+ er -eauty satis(ied Tempest#s artistic eye1 her peculiarities pi,ued his curiosity1 her vivacity lightened his ennui1 and her character

interested him -y the unconscious hints it gave o( po$er1 pride and passion+ So entirely natural and unconventional $as she that he soon (ound himsel( on a (amiliar (ooting1 as2ing all manner o( unusual ,uestions1 and receiving rather pi,uant replies+ )So1 li2e #Mariana in the moated grange1# you are o(ten #a$eary1 a$eary1# and $ish that you $ere dead % (ancy5) he said1 a(ter a series o( s2ill(ul ,uestions had elicited a history o( the solitary li(e she had led+ To his surprise she replied $ith a -rave -right glance that -etrayed no trace o( sentimental $ea2ness in her nature1 -ut an indomita-le $ill and a cheer(ul spirit+ )No1 % never $ish that+ % don#t intend to die till %#ve en6oyed my li(e+ Everyone has a right to happiness and sooner or later % $ill have it+ 4outh1 health and (reedom $ere meant to -e en6oyed and % $ant to try every pleasure -e(ore % am too old to en6oy them+) )%#ve tried that plan and it $as a (ailure+) )"as it5 Tell me a-out it1 please+) Rosamond dre$ a lo$ seat nearer $ith a (ace (ull o( interest+ Tempest smiled involuntarily at the idea o( recounting his e&periences to such a listener1 and said1 in ans$er to an imperious little nod1 as he paused1 )That history $ould not interest you7 -ut o( this % can assure you1 one may -egin $ith youth1 health and li-erty1 may taste every pleasure1 o-ey no la$ -ut one#s o$n $ill1 roam all over the $orld and yet at (ive and thirty -e unuttera-ly tired o( everything under the sun+) )Are you so old as that5 % didn#t thin2 it1) $as Rosamond#s reply+ )*oes (ive and thirty seem venera-le to (i(teen5) as2ed Tempest curious to learn her age+ )% am eighteen1) she ans$ered $ith an air o( dignity $hich $as very -ecoming7 then returning to $hat interested her1 she said thought(ully1 )% don#t understand ho$ one can ever tire o( pleasure+ %#ve had so little % 2no$ % should en6oy it very

much1 and % can imagine nothing so delight(ul as to have entire li-erty as you have+) )There is very little real li-erty in the $orld7 even those $ho seem (reest are o(ten the most tightly -ound+ La$1 custom1 pu-lic opinion1 (ear or shame ma2e slaves o( us all1 as you $ill (ind $hen you try your e&periment1) said Tempest $ith a -itter smile+ )La$ and custom % 2no$ nothing o(1 pu-lic opinion % despise1 and shame and (ear % de(y1 (or everyone has a right to -e happy in their o$n $ay+) )Even at the cost o( $hat is called honor and honesty5 That is a com(orta-le philosophy1 and having preached and practiced it all my days %#ve no right to condemn it+ But the saints $ould call it sin(ul and dangerous and tell you that li(e should -e one long penance (ull o( sorro$1 sacri(ice and:psalm:singing+) )%#m so tired o( hearing that0 %n the -oo2s % read the sinners are al$ays more interesting than the saints1 and in real li(e good people are dismally dull+ %#ve no desire to -e $ic2ed1 -ut % do $ant to -e happy+ A short li(e and a gay one (or me and %#m $illing to pay (or my pleasure i( it is necessary+) )4ou may have to pay a high price (or it1 -ut sooner or later % am sure you $ill have it1 (or a strong $ill al$ays $ins its $ay+) )Than2 you (or saying that+ %t#s the (irst $ord o( encouragement %#ve had (or years+ % com(ort mysel( $ith hopes and dreams -ut cheery prophesies uttered -y (riendly lips are (ar -etter1) she said grate(ully+ )Tell me your hopes and dreams+) )4ou $ould laugh at some o( them1 -ut %#m not a(raid to o$n that % hope to -e (ree as air1 to see the $orld1 to 2no$ $hat ease and pleasure are1 to have many (riends and to -e dearly loved+) The last $ords (ell slo$ly1 so(tly (rom her lips and the -rilliant eyes dimmed suddenly+ As the ruddy -la3e shone on the slender (igure in the simple go$n and the drooping (ace (ramed in clusters o( dar2 hair1 Tempest thought that the little room held the s$eetest piece o( $omanhood he had ever seen+ Most men $ould have -een touched -y the innocent con(essions o( the girl1 -ut this man#s heart had gro$n hard $ith years o( sel(ishness and he merely en6oyed her as

he $ould have done a lovely (lo$er1 an e&citing -oo21 a passionate song+ Rosamond sat listening to the $ind that no$ raved $ithout and the rain that -eat upon the $indo$:pane+ Tempest listened also and smiled a curious smile7 the girl sa$ it and as2ed $ith an ans$ering smile1 )4ou li2e storms as $ell as %5) )4es1 -ut % $as thin2ing o( something peculiar+ "henever % enter a house $here some adventure or e&perience is to -e(all me1 % invaria-ly -ring a tempest $ith me+) )O( course you do1 i( you -ring your name+ But do you really mean it al$ays storms $hen you pay visits5) )The omen never (ails1 and %#m gro$ing superstitious a-out it+ For that reason % seldom ma2e visits or come ashore1) he ans$ered1 as she loo2ed up laughingly into his (ace+ )"hy1 $here do you live then5) )Cruising a-out in my yacht+) )Then it $as you % $atched coming gallantly into port today and $ished a -on voyage5) )Than2s1 % seldom have any other+ For months % have led the li(e o( a sea 2ing1 (loating to and (ro $ith no society -ut -oo2s and my !ree2 -oy1 %ppolito+) ) o$ charming0 "hat a delicious li(e it must -e0 Tell me a-out it1 please+ % love the sea so dearly that everything concerning it delights me1) and Rosamond plied him $ith ,uestions till he $as irresisti-ly roused (rom his ennui and incited to recount the pleasures and perils o( a summer voyage+ The girl listened $ith an eager (ace1 a -reathless interest more (lattering than $ords1 and $hen he paused e&claimed $ith a sigh o( satis(action1 )4ou tell it so $ell it seems as i( % sa$ all you descri-e+ "here are you going $hen you sail a$ay again5) )% shall cruise a-out among the islands o( the Mediterranean i( no other $him sei3es me+ 4ou 2no$ there is no $inter in that lovely climate -ut one long summer all the year round7 this suits me as a change a(ter our (ogs and $inds1 so $hen you sit here ne&t ;anuary $ith sleet -eating on the $indo$ and sno$dri(ts $hitening the roc2s -elo$1 you can imagine me lying among violets and primroses under the orange trees o( .alrosa+)

)"hat is that5) as2ed the girl1 drin2ing in every $ord+ )My little villa near Nice+ %#ve not seen it (or t$o or three years and have a (ancy to revisit it+ A pretty place in a nest o( roses7 6ust the spot to spend one#s honeymoon in+) )*id you spend yours there5) )*o % loo2 as i( % ever had one5) 'ndaunted -y the sudden sharpness o( the ,uestion1 Rosamond -ent (or$ard and gravely scanned the (ace opposite+ %t $as inscruta-le1 and all she discovered $as that Tempest had magni(icent eyes and a mouth $hich -etrayed a ruthless nature+ )No1 % thin2 you never did1) she said decidedly+ )4ou haven#t the loo2 o( a man $ho has a $i(e to love1 or little children to ta2e upon his 2nee+ 4ou don#t care (or such things1 do you5) )Not %7 no -onds (or me o( any 2ind+ 4ou read (aces $ell+) e indulged in a noiseless laugh that had more o( moc2ery than merriment in it+ )*o % amuse you5) as2ed Rosamond1 loo2ing pi,ued+ )*elight(ully+ %#ve not laughed so much (or an age+ % $ish % could persuade your grand(ather to try a voyage $ith me and let me en6oy your gay society+) )Ah1 % $ish he $ould0 But it is impossi-le+ e never stirs out and % am almost as much a (i&ture as he+) )*o you never go a$ay5) )Never+ Till you came % had not seen a strange (ace (or $ee2s1 and $hen you go the dread(ul loneliness $ill return+ Must you sail in the morning5)

)The $ord #must# is not in my voca-ulary+ % go and come as % li2e1 and lead the li(e o( the "andering ;e$7 $ith the com(orta-le di((erence o( 2no$ing % have the privilege o( dying $hen % li2e+)

)4ou don#t loo2 as i( you ever could die1 you are so strong and9) she did not (inish her sentence -ut loo2ed at the vigorous (igure -e(ore her $ith genuine $omanly admiration (or a manly man+ )% have -een very near proving % could die more than once7 -ut my hour has not come yet so % must -ide my time+) )"as that $ound received on one o( the occasions o( $hich you spea25) in,uired Rosamond1 touching her o$n smooth (orehead to indicate the scar on his+ A transient glitter shone in Tempest#s eye1 and his po$er(ul hand closed li2e a vise1 -ut his voice -etrayed no emotion+ )4es1 % have to than2 a (riend (or that and a year o( su((ering+ The de-t is paid ho$ever1 and %#m none the $orse (or the $ound+ %#m told such scars are an improvement as they give an heroic air+ *o you li2e it5) )Not no$+ %( you had received it in a real -attle % might admire it1 -ut duels are not heroic+) Tempest smiled at her decided mode o( spea2ing1 yet passed his hand across his (orehead as i( he did not consider the scar an ornament1 and as2ed $ith some curiosity1 )"here did you get that idea5 Not (rom your grand(ather1 %#m con(ident7 he has (ought too many himsel( to condemn the practice+) )% got it $here % get most o( my ideas1 out o( -oo2s+ The house is (ull o( them and %#ve nothing to do -ut read+ "as !rand(ather very $ild and $ic2ed $hen he $as young5 e never spea2s o( himsel(1 and during the ten years %#ve -een $ith him %#ve discovered nothing a-out his past li(e e&cept that he never $ould (orgive /apa (or marrying as he did+) ) e is 2ind to you5) )4es1 in his o$n $ay+ e gives me a home -ut nothing more+ % never understood $hy he did it1 -ecause he $as angry $ith Mama and yet at her death he too2 me in+) )% can tell you $hy he did it+) )"hat do you 2no$ a-out it5) Rosamond#s dreamy eyes (lashed $ide open as she turned to him+

)% never sa$ your lovely mother -ut once1 yet % do not (orget her+ % $as your grand(ather#s pupil even then1 though only a lad1 -ut he $as a gay old man and $e sa$ li(e together+ 4our mother $ould have inherited a (ortune had she not displeased her+ (ather -y marrying a poor man+ er sister has the (ortune1 -ut $hen she dies it $ill come to you+ There(ore the old man 2eeps a hold upon you+) )%s that it5 % 2ne$ he did not love me1 -ut % thought there might -e a little pity in his cold heart+ % hope that (ortune $ill come ,uic2ly so that % may -e (ree sooner than % planned+) )4ou mean to go a$ay then5) )4es1 % can -ear this li(e no longer1 it is so purposeless and lonely+ % care (or no-ody and no-ody cares (or me7 the years drag on and nothing changes+) )E&cept that the -ud -ecomes a rose+) )A very thorny one1 (or there is no 2ind gardener to tend and train it1) she said sadly+ )"ild roses are (airest1 and nature a -etter gardener than art+) She loo2ed a rose indeed as she -lushed -rightly under the glance he gave her1 and (ran2ly sho$ed that his admiration pleased even $hile it hal( a-ashed her+ )% never had a compliment -e(ore1 -ut % thin2 % li2e it1 though % don#t deserve it1) she said1 so naively that his satirical mouth so(tened $ith a smile o( genuine amusement+ )% seldom pay them1 -ut tonight % (eel as i( % had got into a (airy tale1 sitting here in an enchanted to$er $hile the storm raves $ithout and Fair Rosamond entertains me hospita-ly -y her (ire+ 4ou 2no$ the old -allad5) )Oh yes1 and li2e it very much+ % o(ten ma2e romances $hen %#m tired o( reading them+ Shall % sing you a little song % made a-out my namesa2e5) )%( you $ill+ %t is 6ust the time and place (or such music+) Turning to the old instrument that stood near1 Rosamond poured into the simple lay all the passion and the pathos o( her (resh young voice+ Tempest listened $ith the indolent satis(action o( a man $hose senses1 those ministers o( pleasure1 had

-een cultivated to the utmost -y years o( indulgence+ 4et $hen she ceased he did not than2 her1 -ut sat loo2ing moodily into the (ire as i( the music had con6ured up memories o( other short:lived roses $ho had lent s$eetness to his li(e+ Be(ore either spo2e there came a sharp peal o( thunder and a vivid (lash o( lightning (ollo$ed -y a heavy crash+ The man never stirred -ut the girl sprang to her (eet1 e&claiming1 )%t $as the cedar on the cli((0 % thought it $ould -e struc2 some day1) and she $ent to the $indo$+ )Come a$ay or you $ill share the (ate o( the tree1) said Tempest commandingly+ But Rosamond remained in her dangerous position till a second (lash sho$ed that her surmise $as correct7 then she resumed her seat1 saying sorro$(ully7 )That $as my (avorite tree+ /apa planted it $hen % $as -orn and % al$ays called it mine+ %t is a -ad omen1 (or the superstitious say $hen the tree dies % shall (ollo$ soon+ *o you -elieve in such things5) )No1) $as the -rie( reply1 -ut Tempest muttered to himsel(1 )My coming $as a $orse omen than either storm or thunder-olt1 i( the child did -ut 2no$ it+) At this moment a -ell rang sharply and an instant a(ter a servant appeared to summon the guest to his host#s room+ Tempest o-eyed reluctantly1 -ade Rosamond good night1 and $ith a -ac2$ard glance at the -right little noo2 and its charming occupant he $ent a$ay1 leaving her to dream dreams o( the ne$ hero $ho had come to play a part in the romance o( her li(e+

C A/TER %%

The Circe

All night the gale -le$1 the rain poured and the sea thundered on the coast+ But at day:-rea2 the $ind lulled a little1 the rain ceased and the sun shone (it(ully+ Tempest le(t his room early1 paused an instant -e(ore the picture in the hall1 eyeing it $ith a curious e&pression1 and strolled a-out the great1 silent house1 $ondering i( his young hostess had yet le(t her room+ A gust o( air -lo$ing do$n$ard (rom an open door led him to loo2 up+ A (light o( $inding steps led to the (lat roo(1 and noiselessly clim-ing them he (ound Rosamond+ A stone -alustrade ran round the roo( and in the angle $hich overhung the sea stood the girl1 her dress (luttering in the $ind1 her hair -lo$n -ac2 (rom chee2s rosy $ith its 2een -reath1 her eyes intently (i&ed upon the hori3on $here the ocean seemed to meet the s2y+ )%s ero loo2ing (or her Leander5) as2ed Tempest#s resonant voice+ )My Leander has not yet -een (ound1) she ans$ered1 glancing over her shoulder $ith a sudden smile+ )"hat $ere you loo2ing (or so intently then5) he said1 going to lean -eside her+ )4our yacht+ % dreamed % sailed a$ay in it -ut -e(ore $e reached a lovely land lying in the distance % $o2e+ Can $e see her (rom here5) )No1 the Circe lies in a little -ay -ehind the cli((s1 and there she must lie till the gale a-ates+) )%#m glad o( it0) )"hy5) )Because % $ant you to stay+ %#m so dull here % should $elcome even9) she paused (or a $ord and he supplied it9)Mephistopheles+) )*on#t remind me o( that rudeness or % shall thin2 you have not (orgiven it+ % don#t see the resem-lance no$+) olding -ac2 her hair1 she loo2ed up at him $ith a (ran21 con(iding glance $hich $ould have so(tened the most relentless heart+ )"ho $ould not linger $hen $elcomed -y such a s$eet Miranda5) he said1 $ith#a loo2 $hich made her (lush and change the su-6ect suddenly1 as i( some $omanly instinct $arned her that his compliments $ere dangerous+

)%sn#t it splendid up here5 % al$ays come $hen there is a storm1 and long to -e a seagull to (loat a$ay on the $ings o( the $ind as they do+) She spread her arms $ith such an impetuous motion that Tempest involuntarily put out his hand to arrest her (or she loo2ed as i( she $ould in truth )(loat a$ay on the $ings o( the $ind+) She laughed and dre$ -ac2 (rom the detaining hand+ )No (ear o( that7 i( %#d $anted to ma2e a romantic end % should have done it long ago+) )Then you don#t approve o( suicide5) )Not %7 it#s a co$ardly $ay o( ending one#s trou-les+ Better con,uer or -ear them -ravely+) )% li2e that+) Tempest gave an approving nod $hich pleased her more than the most grace(ul compliment1 and made her tal2 on (reely+ )% used to amuse mysel( -y testing my o$n courage in many $ays+ 'p here % -egan -y $al2ing round on the top o( the -alustrade1 and $hen % could run along it $ithout (ear % tried the ledge outside+) )Faith0 That $as a dangerous test1) and Tempest leaned (or$ard to loo2 at the narro$ ledge $hich pro6ected over the roc2y shore1 (or the house $as -uilt on the very verge o( the cli((+ )%t $as very (oolish and % $as terri-ly a(raid at (irst1 -ut % never give up1 so % 2ept on and no$ can go all round $ithout touching the -alustrade+) )Can you5) e loo2ed politely incredulous+ )%s that a $rec25) said Rosamond1 suddenly pointing to a spec2 (ar out at sea+ Tempest turned to loo27 an instant a(ter a laugh recalled him and he sa$ the girl outside the lo$ railing+ )*on#t touch me or %#ll let mysel( (all1) she said1 and (olding her arms1 $ith a (earless smile and a steady step she $ent rapidly along the perilous path+ The stones $ere $et1 the $ind -le$ strongly1 the sun shone in her (ace1 and Tempest1 as he $al2ed inside $ith his eye on her1 his hand ready to clutch her i( she slipped1 (elt his pulse ,uic2en as she turned corner a(ter corner

till she reached her starting point7 then he dre$ a long -reath and e&claimed1 )Bravo0 That $as a (eat to -e proud o(+ *idn#t it ma2e your heart -eat5) )No1 % thin2 not+ %#m never conscious that % have one+) Tempest smiled at a simplicity $hich had no touch o( co,uetry in it1 and said1 $ith a tone o( pity in his voice1 )4ou $ill (ind it soon enough1 and perhaps regret the discovery+ No$ come out o( danger1 a gust may -lo$ you a$ay+) )% li2e danger1 there#s e&citement in it and that is $hat % $ant+) ).ery $ell1 then you shall have it+ "ill you come -ac25) )4es1 $hen %#m ready9) she -egan1 $ith a de(iant little gesture1 (or his air o( command displeased her+ But the $ords $ere hardly spo2en $hen Tempest -ent suddenly1 too2 her -y the $aist and set her do$n inside the parapet+ ) o$ dare you0) she demanded1 scarlet $ith1 surprise and anger+ )% dare anything1) $as the cool reply+ )*on#t -oast1 you dare not do $hat % did1) said the girl petulantly1 though rather a(raid o( him+ )% dare try it1) and he put his hand on the railing $ith such an evident determination to ma2e the attempt that Rosamond held him -ac21 (orgetting her resentment in alarm+ )No1 no1 you must not0 % 2no$ you are -rave1 there is no need to prove it+ *on#t (righten me and endanger yoursel( (or such a (oolish thing+) )4et you did -oth and added diso-edience to the (olly+ % $ill -e more docile+ Sit here and recover (rom your (right+) e spo2e in a master(ul $ay $hich su-dued the girl#s $ill(ul spirit and she sat do$n on the stone seat to $hich he pointed1 heartily ashamed o( her (rea2 and its conse,uences+

)%t $as my (ault1) she said $ith an air o( mingled dignity and humility+ )%( % -ehave li2e a child % must e&pect to -e treated li2e one+ %#ll try to -e a $oman and then perhaps % shall receive the respect $hich is due a $oman1 according to the -oo2s+) Tempest made her a de(erential -o$ and said penitently1 though a moc2ing smile lur2ed in his eye1 )% -eg pardon1 % $on#t (orget mysel( again+ No$ to assure me that my o((ense is (orgiven $ill you come and see the Circe -e(ore she $eighs anchor5) Rosamond (orgot her dignity and clapped her hands $ith delight as she ans$ered1 $ith no trace o( anger in (ace or voice1 )"ith all my heart0 % $anted to see it very much1 -ut did not li2e to as2+ "hen can $e go5) )There $ill -e another sho$er -e(ore it clears1 so $e must $ait till a(ternoon1 $hich $ill give me time to put my (loating home into holiday trim in honor o( your visit+) ) o$ charming it $ill -e0 % $as longing (or something to happen and $as ,uite desperate1 -ut no$ you have come and everything is changed+) She stopped $ith a shy glance1 and added a-ruptly1 )% am (orgetting that you have had no -rea2(ast7 come and let me give you some+) Tempest smiled his inscruta-le smile and (ollo$ed1 idly as2ing himsel( i( it $as $orth his $hile to linger and amuse himsel( (or a time $ith the -eauti(ul1 impetuous creature $ho seemed to have reached a point $hen a $ord $ould ma2e or mar her (uture+

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e -rea2(asted and remained shut up $ith the old man (or several hours1 then departed1 promising to return in the a(ternoon+ Meantime Rosamond $atched the s2y1 counted the hours1 and $hen the sun -ro2e out -rilliantly she -eguiled her impatience -y ma2ing hersel( as pretty as her+ scanty $ardro-e allo$ed+ 4outh and -eauty supplied all de(iciencies1 (or the lithe grace o( her girlish (igure set o(( the simple go$n1 and the little old hat $ith no ornament -ut a garland o( red autumn leaves shaded such a -looming (ace that one (orgot to loo2 (arther+ "hen ready a sudden $him too2 her into the dra$ing room+ %t had long -een disused and $as hal( dismantled1 -ut a great mirror still hung there1 and standing -e(ore it in a strea2 o( sunshine she e&amined hersel( $ith unusual interest+ Something seemed amiss1 (or she shoo2 her head and $as turning a$ay $ith a listless air $hen

she caught sight o( another (ace in the tall dar2 mirror+ Not a $hit a-ashed at -eing (ound there she nodded to it1 saying $ith -rightening eyes1 )Shall $e go no$1 Mr+ Tempest5) )%( you please+) Then1 as they $al2ed a$ay together1 he as2ed in a tone that $ould have daunted many young girls1 )"ere you admiring yoursel( or loo2ing (or your (ate as in old times1 Miss Rose5) She did not ans$er -ut said so(tly1 as i( to hersel(1 )% li2e that name7 no one ever calls me so no$+) )Rosamond means #Rose o( the "orld1# you 2no$+ The name suits you and % unconsciously gave it to you+ But you do not tell me $hat you sa$ in the glass+) )% sa$ mysel(9and you+) )"ell1 $ere you satis(ied $ith your (ate5) )% $as not thin2ing o( my (ate -ut o( my old stra$ hat+) Then1 li2e an in,uisitive child she as2ed1 )*id you ever see a magic mirror5) )4es+) )And read your (ate in it5) )That remains to -e proved5) )% $ish % 2ne$ $hat you sa$+) )A lovely dead $oman1 an old man mourning over her and mysel( standing near $ith an e&pression o( remorse and despair such as % am ,uite incapa-le o( (eeling+ %s that su((iciently mysterious and romantic (or you5) )But did nothing li2e that ever happen to you5) she as2ed1 stopping to loo2 up at him $ith her great eyes (ull o( interest and $onder+ )Nothing resem-ling it in the slightest degree+ The mirror lied and the dead lady has never appeared to me e&cept as a part o( that melodramatic (arce+) )"here $as it5)

)%n .enice+)

) o$ long ago5) )Four or (ive years+ A (riend had a (ancy to visit the magician $ho $as amusing the idlers there so $e $ent+) )"hat did your (riend see5) ) er hus-and+) )Oh1 it $as a $oman1 $as it5 That must have pleased her+) )On the contrary1 it alarmed her e&tremely as she particularly desired not to see him+) )*idn#t she love him5) )Not a $hit+) )Then % hope her (ate proved as (alse as yours+) )%t proved e&actly true+ She sa$ her hus-and three days a(ter$ard and $ent raving mad -y $ay o( a pleasant $elcome+) ) o$ terri-le0 "as he angry or $ic2ed1 that she (eared him so5) ) e $as an amica-le (ool enough1 and not at all angry $hen she sa$ him1 -ut ,uite calm and com(orta-le $ith a -ullet through his heart+) Tempest spo2e carelessly -ut there $as a sinister glitter in his -lac2 eyes1 and an involuntary motion o( the hand across the (orehead -etrayed that the scar and the story had some connection+ Rosamond loo2ed trou-led1 (or even her innocent heart (elt -y instinct the dar2er tragedy that remained untold+ )"hy do you tell me such things5) she said1 $atching him as2ance as he $al2ed -eside her $ith an indolent gait curiously out o( 2eeping $ith his athletic (igure and -ron3ed (ace+ )4ou said you pined (or e&citement so %#m trying to give you some+ *on#t you li2e it5)

)4es1 -ut % thin2 that perhaps it#s not good (or me1 at least this 2ind+ One more ,uestion and then $e#ll tal2 o( something else+ Aren#t you a(raid that your vision may yet -e (ul(illed as your (riend#s $as5) Tempest shrugged his shoulders $ith his peculiar laugh1 noiseless1 -rie( and mirthless1 a sound that made the listener sad -ecause it seemed to moc2 not only at others -ut at the laughter himsel(+ )% have some curiosity on that point1) he said+ )So much has -een $ritten a-out remorse and despair that % sometimes thin2 % should li2e a taste o( them+ %#ve tried almost all the other passions and sentiments and this $ould have the charm o( novelty at least+ There is the Circe curtsying to her master+) Rosamond#s (ace cleared as she eyed the little vessel in its holiday trim+ /ennons streamed (rom the mast1 a gay a$ning $as spread on dec21 and several (oreign sailors in pictures,ue costume stood ready to receive her+ Li2e a delighted child she loo2ed a-out her1 -rea2ing into merry e&clamations and enthusiastic praise o( all she sa$ as Tempest did the honors o( his (loating home1 $hich $as as per(ect as s2ill1 taste and money could ma2e it+ )% do not $onder you seldom go ashore+ %#d + never land i( % $ere you1 e&cept to ma2e this more charming -y contrast+ Ah1 % $ish % had such li-erty as yours+) Rosamond $as standing at the -o$1 loo2ing across the -oundless $aste $ith an e&pression o( intense longing $hich made her young (ace tragical+ )Shall % $eigh anchor and sail a$ay $ith you in the (ree (ashion o( the sea 2ings5) as2ed Tempest+ )% $ish you $ould1) and her eyes shone $ith merriment at the play(ul proposition+ )Should you regret nothing that you $ould leave -ehind5) he as2ed1 alert to catch the changes o( her e&pressive (ace+ )Nothing1) she said1 decidedly1 then $ith a gesture as i( she put aside some un$elcome su-6ect she added1 )Let us (orget all that7 % $ant to en6oy my holiday undistur-ed -y a sad thought+ Can % go -elo$5)

e led the $ay to the lu&urious little saloon and sho$ed her all the appliances (or ease and pleasure $hich it possessed1 (inding much amusement in her demonstrations o( delight+ )"hy didn#t you have more o( these charming nests so you could (ill your yacht $ith (riends sometimes5) as2ed Rosamond1 putting her lovely head out o( the daintiest o( the t$o dainty state rooms $hich opened on the saloon+ )% never $ant -ut one at a time+ % am as (ic2le as a $oman and o(ten change+) )All $omen are not (ic2le+ % never had -ut one (riend1 yet % loved him (aith(ully and have not (illed his place though % lost him si& years ago+) )Ah1 then you did (ind a Leander once5 4ou are young to -e such a constant lover+) )%t $as not a person -ut a dog+) The tone o( tender regret made the (act that her only (riend had -een a -rute touching instead o( ludicrous+ Tempest turned a-ruptly to the door and called1 )%ppolito0) A light step came -ounding do$n the ca-in stairs and a slender1 handsome -oy o( t$elve in !ree2 costume appeared on the threshold+ ) ere is a (riend (or you1 Miss Rose1 a sa(e and (aith(ul little (riend+ "ill you have him5) said Tempest1 as the -oy pulled o(( his em-roidered (e3 and stood regarding her $ith a glance o( admiration in his -old -right eyes+ Be(ore she could reply he smiled and nodded approvingly as he said to Tempest in prettily accented English1 )She is to stay then5 O( that % am glad (or she has more o( -eauty than Senora <oe+ *o you9) )*o you remem-er $hat % told you1 young marplot5) demanded Tempest laying a heavy hand on the -oy#s shoulder as a ,uic2 glance arrested (urther $ords on his lips+ %ppolito held his peace1 -ut he loo2ed ,uite undismayed and leaned against his master $ith the air o( a (avorite $ho $as more accustomed to caresses than reproo(s+

)4es1 %#ll have him and than2 you heartily1) said Rosamond1 charmed $ith the grace and -eauty o( the -oy+ )*o you thin2 your grand(ather $ould allo$ me to leave him in your care (or a time5 % $ant a sa(e home and someone to -e 2ind to the young rascal+) For the (irst time Tempest#s (ace -etrayed a trace o( emotion as he stro2ed the short gold curls that shone a-ove the -oy#s dar2 eyes and classically molded (eatures+ The girl sa$ the momentary so(tening o( that hard (ace and $as touched1 -ut shoo2 her head1 saying regret(ully1 )% am sure !rand(ather $ill not let me 2eep him1 he hates children+ But $hy not let him stay $ith you i( you are (ond o( him5) )%t is too $ild a li(e (or him1 and % am too rough a master+ ey1 Lito5) The -oy#s only ans$er $as an elo,uent loo2 and a closer grasp o( the hand that still lay on his shoulder+ Tempest smiled a genuine1 $arm1 so(t smile $hich changed and -eauti(ied him $onder(ully as he said1 ) e#s a pretty plaything1 isn#t he5 % (ound him in !reece and too2 a (ancy into my idle head that % could ma2e a (ine man o( him+ "ell1 $hat is it1 Mademoiselle5) he as2ed suddenly1 (or Rosamond $as loo2ing intently at the -oy+ )% $as trying to thin2 $ho he resem-les+ % never remem-er seeing anyone li2e him1 yet his (ace loo2s so (amiliar it ,uite pu33les me+) )Sharper eyes than % gave her credit (or1) muttered Tempest1 adding aloud1 as he put the -oy a$ay1 )Some picture pro-a-ly7 Lito has a classical head and is a direct descendent (rom some o( the !ree2 gods % daresay+ No$ come and amuse yoursel( $ith these tri(les $hile my !anymede prepares supper+) Opening the dra$ers o( a ca-inet1 Tempest entertained his guest $ith rare and curious spoils gathered (rom many lands1 2eeping her intent on corals1 cameos and anti,ue coins till %ppolito thrust his -lond head -et$een them $ith the announcement1 )Master1 it is ready+)

)%t is % $ho (eel as i( %#d got into a (airy tale no$1) said Rosamond1 as she sat at a ta-le covered $ith (oreign dainties1 drin2ing her host#s health in choice $ine (rom a slender:stemmed .enetian glass1 $hile the pretty -oy served her li2e a page1 and everything a-out her heightened the romantic charm o( time and place+ As the $ords passed her lips she paused suddenly1 conscious (or the (irst time o( the unusual motion o( the yacht+ ) o$ it rolls0 The $ind must -e rising+ "hy does he laugh and $hy do you loo2 so $ic2ed5 ave % said or done anything very a-surd5) she as2ed1 glancing (rom one to the other+ )Come on dec2 and you $ill see $hy $e laugh at you+) Tempest rose1 Rosamond (ollo$ed1 and one loo2 e&plained everything+ The yacht $as (lying do$n the har-or -e(ore the $ind1 and land $as already (ar -ehind+ She stood a moment hal( -e$ildered1 $hile Lito danced $ith delight and Tempest $atched her (ace+ )"hat are you doing5 "here are $e going5) she demanded+ )% am ta2ing you at your $ord1 and $e are going out to sea1) Tempest replied so gravely that her smile (aded and she loo2ed a little startled+ )Not (ar % (ancy+ %t#s a pleasant 6o2e1 -ut you $ould tire o( it (irst+) )"e shall see1) and turning he gave some order to his men+ )*o you mean $hat you say5 Are you in earnest1 Mr+ Tempest5) )=uite in earnest+ *o you li2e this sort o( e&citement -etter than housetops and magic mirrors5) Rosamond eyed him 2eenly1 -ut his (ace -etrayed no sign o( relenting and she gre$ pale $ith anger1 not (ear+ )4ou said you dared do anything and % can -elieve it1 -ut % $ish % could -e sure $hether you really mean $hat you say no$+) )"hy not5 % am simply grati(ying your $ish7 you $ant to -e (ree1 % $ant a companion1 Lito a playmate+ %#m (ond o( $ild e&ploits and have a (ancy to try this+) e certainly did have the air o( a man $ho $as capa-le o( any (rea2 regardless o( conse,uences+

)"ill he ta2e me -ac21 %ppolito5) she as2ed an&iously+ )%( he $ants you he $ill 2eep you as he did9) A hand on his mouth silenced the -oy and Tempest s$ung him over the -oat side1 holding him there $ith one strong arm $hile he emphasi3ed his $ords $ith the other+ )4ou imp0 "ill nothing silence your unruly tongue5 Shall % drop you and try that cure again5) )4es1 i( the Master $ishes another grand (right1) ans$ered the -oy1 laughing in the ire(ul (ace -ent over him+ The child#s apparent peril made the girl (orget her o$n+ She clung to Tempest#s arm1 imploring him to ta2e the culprit out o( danger1 till1 $ith a relenting smile1 he complied1 saying1 as he s$ung Lito -ac2 to the dec2 and (i&ed his eyes upon her1 )4ou see o( $hat % am capa-le7 are you resigned to your (ate1 Miranda5) The act1 the loo21 the name reassured Rosamond7 her (ace -rightened and she gave him a con(iding glance $hich $ould have con,uered Tempest had his threat -een made in earnest+ )4es1 % do not (ear you no$1 (or % remem-er that -rave men are not cruel+ % trust you -ecause % 2no$ you are too honest to steal a poor little girl1 and % am sure that your love (or Lito $ill ma2e you 2ind to me+) )"ell (or you that you su-mit7 i( you had opposed me % thin2 % should have 2ept you1 (or % never yield to another+ 4ou too2 it so seriously % $anted to try your mettle+ "hat $ould you have done had % persisted in stealing the #poor little girl#5) )!one over-oard7 % never yield to in6ustice i( % can help it1) and Rosamond#s resolute mouth and (lashing eyes proved the truth o( her $ords+ Tempest#s (ace -etrayed redou-led admiration as he said $ith his emphatic nod1 )% thin2 you $ould+ No$ $e $ill en6oy ourselves and go -ac2 -y moonlight+ No one $ill -e an&ious a-out you at home and you have no neigh-ors to gossip over our improprieties+)

888

For an hour Rosamond paced up and do$n the dec2 reveling in the -ree3y motion o( the -oat1 the delicious sense o( (reedom $hich possessed her1 the atmosphere o( romance $hich surrounded her+ Tempest lounged -eside her1 $atching her -eauti(ul (ace1 listening to her happy voice1 and en6oying her innocent companionship $ith the relish o( a man eager (or novelty and s2ill(ul in the art o( playing on that delicate instrument1 a $oman#s heart+ "hen she $earied o( $al2ing1 he placed her in a nest o( cushions under the a$ning1 $rapped her in a so(t sil2en cloa2 >at the appearance o( $hich she $ondered much -ut said nothing? and sitting -y her -eguiled the t$ilight -y telling the tales girls love1 $hile Lito up alo(t sang song a(ter song in his clear1 -oyish voice+ Slo$ly the moon rose1 -athing sea and s2y in her magical splendor1 and slo$ly the Circe (loated home$ard along that shining path+ The air $as -almy1 the heavens clear1 the ocean -eauti(ul a(ter its $ild unrest1 and Rosamond (elt li2e one in an enchanted dream as she lay there conscious o( an intense desire never to a$a2e -ut to go (loating on (orever+ All too soon the moonlight voyage ended and the girl reluctantly rose to go -ac2 to the dreary li(e $hich no$ seemed dou-ly dreary+ )!ood:-ye1 Lito7 % $ish you could stay and -e my little (riend1 (or % need one very much1) she said as the -oy (ollo$ed her $ith $ist(ul eyes+ )!ood night1 not good:-ye1 $e shall see you soon again % $ell 2no$1) he ans$ered1 2issing her hand in his pretty (oreign (ashion $ith a last )Addio1 -ella Rosa+) As her (oot touched the shore1 Rosamond sighed and cast a lingering loo2 -ehind+ )Are you tired5) as2ed Tempest very gently+ )Not tired -ut sad -ecause %#ve -een so happy and no$ it is all over+) e made no reply and they $al2ed a moment in silence1 then Rosamond -ro2e out $ith sudden energy1 )Mr+ Tempest1

you 2no$ a good deal o( the $orld and you ta2e a little interest in me perhaps (or !rand(ather#s sa2e1 so % $ill venture to as2 you $hat % can do to earn my -read in peace and (reedom $hen % can -ear this dread(ul li(e no longer5) )Turn governess and drudge your youth a$ay as most indigent gentle$omen do1) $as the -rie( reply+ )% don#t 2no$ enough and am too young1 % thin2+) )Be an actress1 that#s a (ree li(e enough+) )%#ve no talent and no money to start $ith i( % had+) )4ou can stitch your health and spirits into #-ands and gussets and seams# as a needle$oman+ o$ does that suit5) )Not at all1 % hate se$ing and 2no$ very little a-out it+) )Then marry some rich old man $ho $ill let you have your o$n $ay in everything and die -y the time you are tired o( it+) )A rich man $ouldn#t care (or a poor girl li2e me and % should not li2e money $ithout love+) )Be$itch a young man and let him ma2e an idol o( you9(or a time1) he added under his -reath+ )% don#t 2no$ any1) she said in a tone o( artless regret that made the listener smile+ )4ou might -e a companion7 % thin2 you#d ma2e a charming one (or some people+) )% li2e that1 and $ill gladly try it i( % can (ind anyone $ho $ants me+ *on#t you 2no$ o( any-ody $ho $ould have me5) )% 2no$ a do3en people $ho $ould ta2e you in a moment1 -ut you $ouldn#t li2e them+) )"hy not5) )Too gay and too (ree even (or you1) and Tempest laughed+ )*on#t do that1 -ut tell me $hat you mean1) said the girl1 peering up at his (ace as she spo2e1 hal( impatiently1 hal( pleadingly+ )4ou loo2 as i( you had some plan in your head yet $ould not tell it+ 4ou need not -e a(raid i( it is hum-le $or21 %#ll do anything to get out o( my prison+) )Anything5) e loo2ed at her 2eenly+

)4es1 % mean $hat % say+ No$ $ill you tell me your plan5) )Not yet7 % have one1 -ut must prove its practica-ility -e(ore % propose it+ "ait a little longer1 you impatient -ird1 and do not try to (ly too soon+) Something in his tone made the girl dra$ nearer and say con(idingly1 )% 2ne$ you#d help me1 you are so 2ind and 2no$ so much+ "hen % sa$ you standing in the door$ay last night % $as glad and $elcomed you as the captive ladies used to $elcome the -rave 2nights $ho came to (ree them+ 4ou $ill try to (ree me1 $on#t you5) )%#ll thin2 o( it+ !ood night1 little Rose+) They stood in the old porch no$7 he too2 her hand as he spo2e and -ent on her a loo2 that made her heart -eat1 (or the po$er(ul hand pressed hers1 the (ine eyes $ere (ull o( pity (or her loneliness and the deep voice made her name dou-ly s$eet+ The moon shone (ull upon him1 -ut his hat -rim hid the sinister scar and as she glanced shyly at him Rosamond thought this -ron3ed (ace the comeliest and 2indliest she had ever seen+ %n her impetuous $ay she said1 $armly1 grate(ully1 )Than2 you very much (or this day#s pleasure and your promise to help me+ % $ish % could do something to sho$ ho$ grate(ul % am1 -ut there $ill -e no time+) )"hy not5) he as2ed suddenly+ )Because you go so soon7 at least you said you must+) e $atched the innocent (ace an instant1 then said almost sternly as i( to himsel(1 )4es % must+ Addio1 -ella Rosa1) and -ending his head he imitated the -oy#s act as $ell as his $ords+ )!ood night1 good night0) cried the girl1 and lingered till he disappeared1 leaving her $ith a 2iss on her hand1 a so(t name in her ear1 a happy memory at her heart and on her lips the eager1 longing ,uestion1 )"ill he go or $ill he stay5)

C A/TER %%%

A Companion

e stayed7 not (or a day -ut (or a month7 and (or Rosamond that month $as a long holiday+ Autumn seemed changed to summer1 her dreary li(e gre$ (ull o( interest and delight and her (uture shone -e(ore her1 (or the hero o( her girlish (ancy had -ecome a living man and she had (ound her heart at last+ As Tempest had said1 there $ere no neigh-ors to gossip1 (or there $as no other house upon the %sland1 and no (riend ever came to $atch over or $arn the girl o( $hat she $as too ignorant and innocent to 2no$ hersel(+ Many another voyage did the Circe ta2e her1 and each time she returned $ith increased reluctance1 (or soon the yacht seemed more li2e home than the prison on the cli((+ O(ten the three roamed a$ay into the $ood1 or spent hours among the caves along the shore+ "hen storms (or-ade these pleasant $anderings1 they sat in the little room -eguiling the time $ith music1 -oo2s and conversation+ Or they strolled a-out the great1 solitary house1 (illing it $ith laughter and gay voices1 (or Lito (ollo$ed Tempest li2e a shado$ and soon loved Rosamond $ith -oyish devotion+ All day they $ere happy1 -ut $hen evening came the old man claimed his guest and Tempest seldom denied him1 though the girl#s eyes silently -esought him to remain and Lito openly lamented1 (or neither o( the young ones $ere admitted and they (ound the hours very long $ithout )the Master+) )"hat is it that they do5 They do not tal2 % 2no$1 (or one evening as % passed % could not resist stopping an instant -ecause the room $as so still1 though they $ere there+ % $aited several minutes1 -ut heard not a sound e&cept Mr+ Tempest#s laugh once and an odd chin2 as o( silver or glasses+ % must (ind out+) Rosamond said this one evening as she

and Lito $ere $aiting (or Tempest1 $ho had gone to the mainland (or a day as he o(ten did+ They $ere in the dra$ing room1 $hich the girl had tried to ma2e ha-ita-le $ith a cheery (ire in the great chimney place1 the (e$ pictures she o$ned1 and some ancient (urniture covered $ith (aded damas2+ The t$o $ere $al2ing up and do$n in the t$ilight tal2ing con(identially1 (or the -oy had much endeared himsel( to the girl -y his a((ection and the happiness he (ound in her society+ )4ou never $ill unless you peep and that you are too honora-le to do1) said Lito1 (eeling proud to have her on his arm+ )% shall as2 Mr+ Tempest+) ) e $ill not ans$er and he $ill -e angry+) )%#ll ma2e him ans$er and % should li2e to see him angry+) )Ah1 you#d not say that i( you had ever seen one o( his rages+ e is terri-le then+) ) o$ does he loo25) )Li2e that+) The -oy pointed to the (ace o( Mephistopheles1 $hich loo2ed singularly menacing as the (it(ul (irelight played over it+ )4es1 % can (ancy that1 -ut it $on#t (righten me and % shall as2 him+) Be(ore the -oy could ans$er the clang o( the great door startled them+ ) ar21 he is come0 % hear his step in the hall+ =uic21 let us -e dancing or he $ill 2no$ that $e have -een tal2ing o( him+) Catching her round the $aist he $hirled her a$ay in the $alt3 he had taught1 (or he made an e&cellent little cavalier1 -eing nearly as tall as she and an adept in the grace(ul pastime+ As they circled round the room they sa$ Tempest enter noiselessly and seat himsel( on the couch -y the (ire $here he leaned $atching them till they paused+ Lito1 -eing rather conscience:stric2en1 a((ected to -e a-sor-ed in settling the loose velvet 6ac2et $hich $as the most pictures,ue part o( his costume1 -ut Rosamond1 $ho 2ne$ no (ear1 $ent straight to Tempest $ith her ,uestion ready on her tongue+ )4ou told me to as2 (or anything % $ished1 may % no$5) )"ell1 $hat is it1 little Eve5) e motioned her to ta2e her usual place -eside him+ She did so loo2ing very gay and lovely

$ith the glo$ o( e&ercise in her chee2s and a gleam o( mischie( in her eyes as she said persuasively1 )Lito says you $ill -e angry i( % as21 % should rather li2e that so %#m going to venture+ "hat do you and !randpapa do every evening $hen you shut yourselves up and leave us dismally alone5) Still hovering in the -ac2ground1 Lito $atched an&iously to see ho$ this $as received1 and $as much ama3ed $hen )the Master) merely laughed1 and ans$ered -landly1 )"e have discovered the philosophers# stone and $e ma2e gold+) )%#m not satis(ied $ith that7 tell me the truth1 Mr+ Tempest1) she said imperiously1 (or no$ she sometimes ruled+ )%t is so1 % assure you+)

)Then let me come and see you do it+) )The old gentleman $ill o-6ect to it+) )Not i( you present our petition+) )*o you thin2 % have such po$er over him5) )% 2no$ it+ /lease grant my $ish and %#ll grant anything you as2 o( me1 i( % can+) )"ill you5) )4es1 try me+) )Not no$1 $ait till tomorro$+) )There is the -ell1 can $e go up $ith you5) )4ou can1 persistent angel+) e o((ered her his arm+ )Not $ithout Lito1 he $ants to see also1) she said+ )*o you1 -oy5)

)%( the Master permits that % go1 % am glad to see+) )Come then1 % am in a good humor tonight and disposed to -e gracious+ % shall not (orget your promise1 Rose1 -ut hold you to it+ "ill you grati(y your curiosity on these terms5) he as2ed1 pausing+ )4es+ "on#t it -e pleasant1 Lito1 to go in and stay $ith them all the evening instead o( moping here alone5) The -oy did not ans$er1 -ut (ollo$ed $ith a trou-led1 curious (ace as Tempest led her a$ay to the old man#s room+

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e $as $aiting in his easy chair7 a shaded lamp -urned on a small green:covered ta-le on $hich lay cards and some pieces o( gold+ e loo2ed up impatiently1 -ut his (ace dar2ened as he sa$ that Tempest $as not alone+ )"hy do you -ring those children here5) he demanded angrily+ )Because they $anted to come and % had a (ancy to grati(y them1) $as the cool reply+ )% shall not play i( they remain+) )And % shall not play i( they go+) For an instant the t$o men loo2ed at each other and the children dre$ -ac2 alarmed at the (ierce glance o( the old man1 the scorn(ul sneer o( the young one+ )4our play $ill -e the $orse (or it1 -ut % yield1) said the old man1 $ith a visi-le e((ort at mee2ness+ )4ou are $ise to do so1 (or it#s your last chance to ma2e any play1 good or -ad+ Sit here1 Rose1 and en6oy yoursel( i( you can+) Tempest dre$ a chair -eside his o$n and sat do$n $ith a de(iant air $hich made his host clench his thin hand and

vent on the -oy the $rath he dared not vent upon the master+ )*on#t s2ul2 -ehind my chair that you may telegraph the contents o( my hand to my opponent1 you young villain+ !o opposite and play pran2s i( you dare+ Rosamond1 come here1 %#ll have no (lirting in my presence+ No$1 /hillip+) Rosamond o-eyed and the game -egan+ "hat it $as she did not 2no$ and dared not as21 -ut soon $as a-sor-ed in it as her ,uic2 eye (ollo$ed the cards and gave her some clue to its mysteries+ She (elt that the players $ere -oth e&cited1 though neither spo2e o(ten or -etrayed any emotion -eyond an impatient gesture no$ and then+ But their eyes $ere terri-le1 (or there the passion sho$ed itsel(+ %n the old man#s a rapacious e&pression glittered $hen he glanced at the gold $hich lay -et$een them+ %n the young man#s $as a cool1 relentless purpose $hich nothing could tha$ out or so(ten1 and in -oth that concentrated loo2 $hich only gam-lers $ear+ !ame a(ter game $as played and Tempest al$ays $on1 yet the old man al$ays said sternly1 )!o on1 %#ll try again1 (ortune may (avor me at last+) They did go on till late into the night and the young pair still sat there (ascinated -y the -ale(ul spell $hich held the players1 till Tempest thre$ do$n his cards $ith a triumphant smile and the one1 emphatic $ord1 )Mine0) The old man sat silent $ith his eyes on the girl $ho $as $atching Tempest $ith evident satis(action in his success+ "ith an air o( relie( he said slo$ly1 )Be it so+ %#ve done my -est1 -ut the pupil out$its his master -y the very tric2s he taught him+) )4ou $ill 2eep your $ord5) as2ed Tempest suddenly+ )Ay1 $e shall neither o( us pro(it -y the -argain and the devil $ill get his o$n in time+ % have done my part+ % leave the rest to you1 see that you 2eep your $ord regarding the one condition and trou-le me no more a-out it+ Ta2e these children a$ay+ %#m tired+) ).ery good1 here is the paper7 % shall settle the rest tomorro$+ Come in(ants1 the revel is over+)

Tempest $ent to the door1 (ollo$ed -y Rosamond and the -oy+ But as the handle turned in his grasp the old man#s voice arrested them+ )Child1 come here+) Rosamond turned to see her grand(ather stretching his hand to$ard her $ith an e&pression $hich ama3ed her as much as his altered voice+ She $ent to him1 he loo2ed up into the -looming (ace $ith a trou-led glance1 dre$ it do$n to his and 2issed it1 saying in a -ro2en tone $hich changed suddenly to its usual sharpness1 )!ood:-ye1 !od -less you1 my girl+ !o1 go0) *um- $ith astonishment she (ollo$ed Tempest1 $ho -ro2e into a peal o( laughter $hich completed her -e$ilderment+ )"hat does it mean5 e never did so -e(ore+ %t ,uite (rightens me+ *on#t laugh -ut spea21) she said as they reached the dra$ing room and Tempest#s eyes still danced $ith that uncanny merriment+ ) e has lost heavily and that has a((ected his mind perhaps+ Or he is touched $ith late remorse at his neglect no$ that he is a-out to lose you+) )Lose me0 Am % going to die5) cried the girl+ )No1 % hope not1 -ut you are going a$ay+ % (orgot to tell you %#d (ound a place (or you as companion+) ) ave you5 Many than2s1 -ut9) there Rosamond#s voice (ailed her (or the granted $ish $as no -lessing no$1 since it too2 her (rom him+ )%t#s a middle:aged person $ho $ants you to sing1 read1 tal2 and ma2e yoursel( agreea-le+ Salary and the rest o( it can -e arranged $hen you meet tomorro$1 (or % $ant it to -e settled -e(ore % go+) )Are you going0) All the light and color (aded out o( the girl#s (ace and she clasped her hands together $ith a gesture o( despair+ Still loo2ing indolently at the (ire as i( ,uite unconscious o( her emotion Tempest $ent on1 )4es1 $e are o(( at noon+ %#ve stayed too long1 -ut no$ that you are happily provided (or % must get the Circe into her $inter -erth as soon as possi-le+ Shall you miss me1 Rose5) )4es0) Only a $ord -ut there $as a heart-rea2 in it+ )% thin2 you $ill a little+ 4ou#ll come do$n (or a last loo2 at the yacht in the morning1 $on#t you5)

)%#ll come+) e rose and strolled a$ay to the picture $hich hung opposite the long mirror+ Loo2ing up at it1 a dar2 smile passed over his (ace and he said lo$ to himsel(1 $ith a glance over his shoulder at the girl#s drooping (igure and pallid (ace1 )/oor little Margaret1 no hope (or you $hen Faust and Mephistopheles are one+) e came -ac21 touched her -ent head $ith a caress1 and said 2indly1 )%#m going no$1 you are tired and so is the -oy+ Come do$n early and $e $ill tal2 over everything -e(ore % go+) e pressed her passive hand+ Lito1 hal( dead $ith sleep1 $hispered a 2ind )!ood night1) and she $as le(t alone to lie on the desolate little couch all night long1 $eeping the -itter tears that aged her more than years+

888

She did go early1 loo2ing so $an and $eary that her little (riend cried out $hen she appeared1 and Tempest needed no con(essions to assure him o( her love+ The anchor $as up and only a ha$ser held the Circe1 $hich seemed eager to -e gone+ All $as ready1 and as the girl loo2ed her last1 traitorous tears dimmed her eyes7 Tempest sa$ them and loo2ed $ell pleased -ut o((ered no consolation+ )Come into the saloon and let me tell you a-out the place+ Time is going and that must -e settled+) Listlessly she (ollo$ed1 too $retched to -e curious1 and sitting $here he placed her listened to his $ords $ith eyes that sa$ nothing -ut the tall (igure pacing to and (ro -e(ore her1 ears that heard only those sad $ords1 )% am going1) and a heart that ached as only young hearts can+

)This person is going a-road and you are to accompany the party+ 4ou $ill li2e that1) he said as he $al2ed+ )%#ll try to+) She sti(led a so- -e(ore she could spea2+ )4our duties $ill -e very light and you can demand any salary you choose+ Odd1 isn#t it5) )Rather+) She had hardly heard the ,uestion+ )The person is hard to please1 -ut you $ill suit e&actly and % thin2 you $ill -e happy+) )% hope % may1) and she pressed her hands together in mute despair+ )"hen can you go5) )Any moment1 a(ter you are gone+) The mee2 voice -ro2e there and hiding her (ace in her hands1 Rosamond tried in vain to control the passion o( grie( $hich over$helmed her+ )Nay1 don#t -e tragical1 my child+ 4ou as2ed me to (ind a home (or you and no$ you loo2 at me as reproach(ully as i( % had proposed some hate(ul scheme+) )No1 no1 (orgive me1 %#ll -e good and grate(ul1 indeed % $ill0) And1 cho2ing -ac2 her so-s1 the poor girl tried to smile upon him as he stood -eside her $ith a curiously e&cited loo2 on his usually impassive (ace+ )4ou do not as2 $here your ne$ home is to -e7 have you no $ish to 2no$5) he as2ed a-ruptly1 -eing satis(ied+ )4es1 tell me1) -ut there $as no curiosity in her tone+ )%t is here+) All the coldness $as gone (rom his voice1 the calmness (rom his manner as $ith a sudden gesture he gathered her into his arms and held her (ast1 saying so tenderly she could not dou-t an instant1 )My little Rose1 did you thin2 % $ould leave you5 % only $aited to -e sure you loved me and to $in the old man#s consent+ % 2no$ this tender heart is mine and % have -ought

this little hand -y its $eight in gold+ Loo2 up1 my darling1 and -egin your pleasant $or2 at once1 (or you are my companion no$+ "ill you have /hillip Tempest (or your master1 s$eetheart5) )% $ill0 % $ill0 Oh $hat have % ever done to -e so happy1 so -eloved5) and Rosamond (orgot her tears1 her heartache1 her despair and clung there radiant $ith the -liss $hich comes -ut once in a li(etime+ Seating himsel(1 Tempest dre$ her do$n -eside him and $hen her (irst glad e&citement $as a little calmed1 amused himsel( -y ans$ering the ,uestions she poured out1 o(ten pausing to caress the lovely head that leaned upon his -reast $ith the con(iding a-andon o( a child+ )"hat did you mean -y saying you had -ought my hand5) She loo2ed at it $ith a charming air o( -e$ilderment+ e too2 it in his o$n1 and dra$ing (rom his poc2et a circlet o( diamonds smilingly (ettered one slender (inger as i( to claim the hand1 perhaps also to so(ten the hard truth1 (or he said slo$ly as she $atched the glittering ring $ith girlish pleasure1 )4our grand(ather1 little Rose1 $as once a s2ill(ul gam-ler1 (or having spent t$o (ortunes he made another -y dice and cards+ Riotous living -rought ruin and sic2ness and no$ in his old age he is helpless and poor+ 4ou may never inherit the (ortune o( your Aunt1 a young and health(ul $oman1 and he is tired o( $aiting+ e told me he $as 6ust -eginning to thin2 o( disposing o( his one valua-le possession1 yoursel(1 $hen % came+ % loved you1 % $anted you and this saved him time1 e&pense and trou-le1 (or % am rich and thought no price too high (or such a companion+) )*id you play (or me5) suddenly as2ed the girl1 $ith a (ro$n o( shame and pain+ )4es1 he $ould have it so+ %t -egan in 6est1 you see1 -ut the old appetite a$o2e in him and $hile % $ooed you % amused him $ith his (avorite pastime+ % e&cel him no$ and he lost heavily7 this angered him and $hen he said he could never pay

me (or he had sta2ed and lost all he possessed1 % ans$ered hal( in 6est1 )Sta2e Rose and i( % $in %#ll (orgive the de-t+) e too2 me in earnest1 yet as the game $ent on he seemed to dread losing you and a strange touch o( remorse or cupidity came over him+ % played $ith all my heart and $on1 (orgave the de-t and added a gi(t $hich $ill 2eep him a-ove $ant i( he plays no more+ That is the truth1 (orget it and -e happy1 dear+) )Then you -ought me5) A shado$ (ell on the girl#s happy (ace+ )% ransomed you as 2nights did captive damsels in the romances you love1 and no$ shall you leave the lonely island1 the stern $i3ard and the sad li(e -ehind you (orever+) So stated the ungracious (act gre$ -eara-le1 (or the master $as a lover and the slave an ine&perienced1 tenderhearted girl+ Rosamond sat silently recalling many things1 among them the $ords she had heard spo2en -et$een the t$o men the night -e(ore1 and $hen she spo2e it $as to as2 curiously1 )"hat $as the condition $hich !rand(ather -ade you remem-er5) )4ou recollect that1 do you5 "ait a little1 %#ve some ,uestions to as2 you (irst+ The night % came you said to me as $e sat tal2ing -y the (ire1 #Everyone has a right to happiness and sooner or later % $ill have it+# Are you happy no$5) )Supremely happy+) er (ace shone $ith the intense 6oy $hich (illed her innocent heart+ )!ood7 do you remem-er saying also1 that you $ere $illing to pay a high price (or it5) )4es1 and % am $illing0) )One more ,uestion and then %#ll ans$er you+ Another thing you said $as this1 #La$ and custom % 2no$ little o(1 pu-lic opinion % despise1 shame and (ear % de(y+# No$ prove it+) )% $ill1 $hat must % do5) )4ou $ill soon see+ The condition upon $hich % $as to have you $as that % should marry you+)

)%s that so terri-le5) Rosamond turned her -lushing (ace to him $ith eyes (ull o( so(t surprise+ )4es1 to me7 % hate -onds o( any 2ind7 % $ant you to go $ith me as my little (riend $hom % love and $ho loves me+ /ay this price (or your happiness and de(y pu-lic opinion as % do+ "ill you not1 my darling5) .oice and eyes and tender lips pleaded (or him and he thought that she $ould yield+ But the instinct o( a maidenly heart rose up to oppose him in spite o( love and sorro$+ %nnocent and ignorant as she $as1 the -oo2s she had read gave her some hints o( the e&istence o( sin and her $oman#s nature $arned her $hen no other voice $as near to save+ Ama3ement1 terror1 shame and grie( s$ept over her (ace and le(t it pale -ut steady as she shrun2 a$ay and stood up -e(ore him1 saying -ro2enly1 )No1 % $ill not0 Let me go home1 you do not love me1 and % must not stay+) )4ou promised to grant me anything9) he -egan1 -ut she $ould not listen and1 as i( (earing her o$n resolution1 she retreated to the door+ )!o then1) he cried1 )go and (orget me i( you can+) )% $ill go1 -ut % never can (orget you1) and $ith one loving1 despairing loo2 she (led up the ca-in stairs+ )Too late1 too late0) called a moc2ing voice a(ter her1 and in a moment she sa$ that it spo2e truly1 (or $ith all sail set the Circe $as (lying out to sea1 and this time there $as no return (or Rosamond+

C A/TER %.

Rose in Bloom

)More than a year since you stole me li2e a pirate1 /hillip+ o$ short the time seems1 and ho$ happy0) )The shortest and the happiest year %#ve spent since % $as a -oy+ 4ou are a $onder(ully accomplished companion1 Rose1 to 2eep me contented so long+) )And you a 2ind master not to tire o( me sooner+ 4ou are not tired o( me yet are you1 /hillip5) )No1 nor ever shall -e % thin2+ "hat the charm is % cannot tell1 unless it -e that (or the (irst time in my li(e % really love+) Fe$ persons loo2ing at his -eauti(ul companion $ould have (ailed to see $here the charm lay1 or have $ondered that a(ter many counter(eits real love had come at last+ They $ere together on the terrace o( .alrosa+ Tempest1 cigar in hand1 lounged on the $ide steps $hich s$ept do$n to the garden1 loo2ing up at Rosamond1 $ho leaned on the carved -alustrade ga3ing $ith delight upon a scene o( -eauty in $hich she $as unconsciously the (airest and most stri2ing o-6ect+ A mile a$ay the -lue Mediterranean rolled up to meet the curving shore1 along $hich lay the $hite:$alled city $ith its gilded domes1 its (eathery palms and lovely villas+ .alrosa $as the loveliest o( all7 in truth )a nest o( roses1) -looming as lu&uriantly through ;anuary in that climate o( perpetual summer+ Roses overhung the arch$ay and thrust their s$eet (aces through the -ars o( the great gates1 luring all passers:-y to stop and long to enter there+ Roses (ringed the avenue that $ound up through orange and lemon groves to the -road terrace that ran round the villa+ Roses covered its $alls $ith -loom1 draped every cornice1 clim-ed every pillar and ran riot over the -alustrade+ Every green noo2 $here seats invited one to sit and dream $as a mass o( (lo$ers7 every cool grotto had its $hite nymph smiling out (rom a veil o( -lossoms7 every (ountain $as (ringed a-out $ith -eauty1 and no$here could the eye (all $ithout resting on some (air and (ragrant sisterhood+ A (it ,ueen (or that nest o( roses $as the human (lo$er that adorned it1 (or a year o( love and lu&ury had ripened her youth(ul -eauty into per(ect -loom+ !race(ul -y nature1 art had little to do (or her1 and1 $ith a

$oman#s aptitude1 she had ac,uired the polish $hich society alone can give+ Fran2 and artless as ever1 yet less (ree in speech1 less demonstrative in act7 (ull o( po$er and passion1 yet still hal( unconscious o( her gi(ts7 -eauti(ul $ith the -eauty that $ins the heart as $ell as satis(ies the eye1 yet unmarred -y vanity or a((ectation+ She no$ sho$ed (air promise o( -ecoming all that a deep and tender heart1 an ardent soul and a gracious nature could ma2e her1 once li(e had tamed and taught her more+ %n the stately (igure standing on the terrace one $ould have scarcely recogni3ed the little girl $ho (irst met Tempest#s eyes+ The simple (roc2 $as replaced -y costly sil2s that s$ept rustling a-out her1 the loose curls $ere gathered up $ith a golden com-1 the slender -ro$n hands $ere sno$ $hite no$ and shone $ith rarer 6e$els than the diamond ring7 the scar( that trailed -ehind her $as o( the richest cashmere1 and the lace $hich ornamented her $hole dress $as $orth a small (ortune in itsel(+ An e&,uisite taste $as sho$n in her costume1 and the careless grace $ith $hich she $ore it proved ho$ slight a hold the (eminine passion (or (inery had ta2en upon her+ As she leaned there $ith one hand lying on a cushion o( thornless verdure1 the other idly gathering cluster a(ter cluster o( tiny cream:colored roses1 her eyes $andered $ith un$earied delight over the green $ilderness -elo$1 and $hen she spo2e a smile o( genuine happiness touched her lips+ As he ans$ered her1 Tempest had loo2ed up $ith a glance that too2 in every charm o( e&pression1 tint and outline1 and in his (ace $as a $armer1 tenderer admiration than any $oman had ever seen there -e(ore+ )% am so proud to have you say that7 to thin2 that % had po$er to ma2e you ris2 your li-erty1 and a(ter a year o( $edded li(e to hear you o$n that you are happy+) She stooped and laid a caressing hand on the dar2 head -elo$ her1 -ut Tempest turned a$ay and $ith a hal(:laugh replied in the tone o( one not ,uite at ease1 )% ris2ed my li-erty -ecause you le(t me no other choice+ 4ou remem-er % did my -est to 2eep it and $in love also1 -ut that (ailed as % (eared it $ould1 and you had your $ay+ % never shall (orget ho$ super-ly de(iant and determined you loo2ed as you stood ready to dash into the sea $hen you (ound % had sailed a$ay $ith you

that second time+ % 2no$ you $ould have done it had % not promised to atone -y a speedy marriage and produced the Reverend at once1 marrying you in less than an hour+) )% should1 /hillip1 and % thin2 % never could (orgive you that insult i( you had not proved your -etter 2no$ledge o( me -y calling up the minister $hom you had prepared in case % $as re-ellious+ Let us (orget it7 % am your $i(e no$ and % $ant to respect as $ell as love my hus-and+) "ith a sudden impulse Tempest 2issed the so(t hand that touched his lips $hen he $ould have spo2en1 and thought -itterly $ithin himsel(1 )% $ish to heaven % had (ound this girl ten years ago and saved mysel( (rom treachery (or $hich % never can atone+) )"hy do you sigh1 /hillip5 "hat are you thin2ing o(5) as2ed Rosamond as he sat $ith his head on his hand loo2ing do$n at the golden:green li3ards playing on the $arm stones -elo$+ )% $as thin2ing $hat a curious thing love is7 only a sentiment1 and yet it has po$er to ma2e (ools o( men and slaves o( $omen+) )%t never $ill have po$er to ma2e a slave o( me+) Rosamond li(ted her handsome head $ith the de(iant air o( some $ild1 (ree thing1 indignant at the thought o( -onds+ )% thin2 it $ould1 Rose+ %( you love me as you say you do1 $ould you not prove it -y doing anything (or me1 ma2ing any sacri(ice at my -idding1 and de(ending me against the $orld i( there $as need o( it5) )% $ould do anything that $as right1 ma2e any sacri(ice e&cept o( principle1 and de(end you against anyone $ho $rong(ully accused you+) )"here did you get your ideas o( right and principle and all the rest o( it5 % never taught you that1 nor did the old man+ /erhaps it#s instinct7 $omen are o(ten 2ept sa(e and made $ise -y that #$onder(ul thing1# as Sha2espeare calls it+ Suppose % had committed some terri-le crime5 "ould you stand -y me5 % merely as2 to see ho$ (ar your

principle $ill carry you+) )4es1 i( you repented o( it %#d cling to you and -ear the disgrace (or your sa2e+) )Suppose it $as a crime o( a peculiarly -lac2 and damna-le nature1 the conse,uences o( $hich $ould (all upon you1 ma2ing it $rong (or you to cling to me+ "ould you hate and desert me5) )No1 % $ould love you and leave you+) )% dou-t it+ Ta2e another case+ Suppose you discovered that % did not love you and $ished to -e (ree+ o$ then5) )%#d try to $in your heart -ac2 and -e (aith(ul to the end1 as % promised $hen % married you+) )Suppose % -ro2e a$ay and le(t you1 or made it impossi-le (or you to stay+ That % $as -ase and (alse7 in every $ay un$orthy o( your#love1 and it $as clearly right (or you to go1 $hat $ould you do then5) )!o a$ay and9) e interrupted $ith a triumphant laugh1 )*ie as heroines al$ays do1 tender slaves as they are+) )No1 live and (orget you1) $as the une&pected reply+ )*o you thin2 that possi-le i( you still loved me5) )Everything is possi-le to a strong $ill+ %( it $as right to cease loving you1 %#d do it i( % spent my $hole li(e in the tas2+) She clenched her hand $ith a resolute gesture+ )By my soul % thin2 you $ould0 That is $hy % don#t tire o( you1 Rose1 you are su-missive to a certain point -ut -eyond that (irm as a roc2+ Could % -rea2 your $ill i( % tried5 %#ve -ro2en many+) e got up and stood -eside her1 loo2ing as i( he longed to ma2e the attempt+ She eyed him intently1 -ut smiled as she shoo2 her head $ith an air o( conscious po$er+ )4ou might 2ill me -ut not -end me i( % had once decided to oppose you+ *on#t try any more tests1 /hillip1 (or you $ould (ail in spite o( past success+ They are dangerous (or -oth o( us+)

)%#ll $ait a little and 2eep that amusement (or the time $hen others lose their charm+) )4ou are in a singular mood today+ "hat is amiss5) she as2ed1 leaning on his arm+ )Nothing+ %#m only prying into your heart as you pry into the heart o( that poor rose+ %#m curious -ut % don#t tire o( my investigations as soon as you1) and he pointed to the (lo$er1 $hose petals $hitened the stones at her (eet+ She loo2ed at it a moment1 then (i&ed her eyes on him $ith a strange e&pression as a (ore-oding chill passed over her+ )/romise me one thing1 /hillip+) She laid a hand on either shoulder as i( to en(orce her $ords+ )Anything1 s$eetheart1 promises are easily made1) he ans$ered1 smiling into the lovely1 serious (ace -e(ore him1 adding $ithin himsel(9)and -ro2en+) )4ou married me upon an impulse1 suddenly and $ithout much thought7 perhaps % should say (rom pity i( % did not have daily proo(s that you love me+ % am young and ignorant7 you might easily $eary o( me and regret your hasty act+ But do not deceive me7 $hen you are tired o( me tell me (ran2ly and let me go a$ay till you $ant me again+ % never $ish to -e a -urden1 never $ill claim anything1 or reproach you (or $hat $as a 2ind though perhaps an un$ise act+ /romise me this and % shall -e happy+) )% promise+) )Than2s7 no$ come (or a drive1 the sea -ree3e is rising and sunset along the shore is my (avorite hour+) )Mine also1 not -ecause o( -ree3e or sunset1 -ut -ecause the /romenade is cro$ded then and % am proud to sho$ my handsome $i(e+ 4ou 2no$ you are ac2no$ledged to -e the most -eauti(ul $oman at Nice this year5) )% 2no$ one (oolish man thin2s so+ There#s a carriage coming up the avenue1 $e must $ait a little+ %t is !rammont1 % thin2+) Rosamond paused $ith one hand over her eyes and loo2ed across the orange orchard to$ard the lodge gates1 $hich had

6ust admitted a carriage containing t$o gentlemen+ Tempest loo2ed also and a(ter a careless glance strolled do$n the steps to meet his guests1 saying morosely as he $ent1 )"ho the deuce has !rammont got $ith him5 An Englishman1 % 2no$ -y the veil on his hat and the $hite coat+ % told him not to -ring any o( the stupid1 conceited1 gossiping (ello$s here1 % hate the $hole tri-e+)

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)Behold me1 my /hillipe0 % come $ith ne$s o( Ristori81 and % present a (riend $ho yearns to o((er his homage to Madame1) cried the young Frenchman1 s2ipping (rom the carriage the instant it stopped+

8 Adelaide Ristori >@ABB:@CDE? $as a leading tragedienne o( the European stage+ One o( her greatest roles $as Medea1 $hich Louisa May Alcott sa$ her per(orm in Nice in April @AEE+9Ed+

The other gentleman leisurely (ollo$ed1 thro$ing -ac2 the gau3e veil $hich the da33ling sun and dust ma2e a necessary part o( everyone#s $al2ing costume at Nice+ Be(ore !rammont could introduce him1 Tempest (ell -ac2 a step $ith a startled (ace and the inhospita-le greeting1 )"illough-y0 "hat the devil -rings you here5) )'pon my $ord1 that#s a cordial $elcome+ "hy man1 % came to see you (or old ac,uaintance sa2e and to get a peep

at your charming $i(e1 as !rammont says1) returned the other good:naturedly+ )% -eg pardon1 you too2 me -y surprise+ !lad to see you1) and $ith a (ace $hich -elied his $ords Tempest o((ered his hand1 glancing up as he did so in hopes that Rosamond had gone in+ She had not1 -ut $as leaning over the (lo$ery parapet $ith the evening glo$ upon her -eauti(ul1 e&pectant (ace+ Tempest set his teeth and the instant "illough-y released his hand a(ter a true English grasp and sha2e1 he said ,uic2ly1 )Step on1 !rammont1 and give Madame your ne$s1 $e#ll (ollo$+) 'p pranced the agile Frenchman1 hat in hand1 and (or ten minutes poured (orth ne$s1 gossip1 compliments and ,uestions $ith the charming ease and spirit o( his gallant nation+ /eople al$ays loitered up the $ide steps that led (rom the drive to the terrace1 (or the enchanting spot dre$ praises (rom the least enthusiastic and raptures (rom the appreciative1 there(ore the delay o( the gentlemen caused no surprise to those $ho $aited (or them+ The change in Tempest#s (ace caught Rosamond#s eye the instant he appeared1 -ut there $as no time (or ,uestions as he spo2e at once+ )Rosamond1 this is an old (riend (rom England7 "illough-y1 my $i(e+) The stranger -o$ed $ith a curiously con(used air1 -ut Englishmen are prover-ially -ash(ul and a$2$ard among ladies1 so Rosamond thought nothing o( it1 and recovering himsel( in a moment he plunged into a lively conversation1 glancing o(ten at his hostess $ith admiration and curiosity very visi-ly e&pressed in his (ace+ !rammont dragged Tempest a$ay much against his $ill to loo2 at the horses and "illough-y pro(ited -y their a-sence+ )% had not heard o( Tempest (or an age till1 -y the merest chance1 % learned that he $as here1 and came up at once to see him1 though % had no idea he $as so charmingly situated+) The stout Englishman tried to e&ecute a complimentary French -o$ $ith indi((erent success+ )4ou are very 2ind+ Our marriage $as so sudden and $e sailed so soon that no one 2ne$ o( it1 %

-elieve+ Since then $e have -een moving a-out the Continent till $e came here in the autumn+) )4ou $ill not -e a-le to tear yoursel( (rom this little /aradise (or a long $hile1 % (ancy1 i( the climate permits you to remain1) said "illough-y a(ter a long pause and an odd loo2+ )%t $ill not1 the heat is intolera-le -y ;une+ "e shall ta2e to the Circe in May and sail a$ay again to some ne$ /aradise+ /hillip seems to have a gi(t (or (inding them+) )And angels to inha-it them1) added "illough-y $ith a glance that annoyed Rosamond though she $as accustomed to compliments even more direct than this+ She did not li2e the man and chid hersel( (or the causeless disli2e1 trying to -e gracious1 yet ill at ease+ )4ou are (rom the north o( England1 % thin2 Tempest mentioned5) )No1 (rom the east7 ythe $as my home+) )Ah1 no$ % understand7 %#ve heard o( the -eauti(ul Miss St+ ;ohn o( ythe -ut never dreamed that Tempest had $on her+ e $as al$ays a (ortunite (ello$+) )Not in this case1 (or he did not $in the -eauti(ul Miss St+ ;ohn7 he contented himsel( $ith poor Rosamond .ivian+ *o you see my pretty little page5) An&ious to turn the conversation1 she pointed to Lito1 $ho $as $atering a tame antelope at the (ountain -elo$+ )By ;ove0 e#s the very image o(9% -eg pardon1 yes1 a pretty -oy indeed+ Some protege o( Tempest#s1 % ta2e it5) Again "illough-y loo2ed con(used and hal( -e$ildered1 yet ,uite una-le to restrain his curiosity1 (or a(ter a moment#s pause he added1 ) o$ old is the lad1 Mrs+ Tempest5) )Nearly (ourteen1 % thin2+)

)Ah1 yes1 e&actly1) and having indulged in a long meditative stare at the -oy he as2ed another ,uestion again $ith the odd smile+ )"here did Tempest (ind him1 i( % may as25) )%n !reece1 $hen he $as there some years ago+ e is a (aith(ul little (riend o( mine and % am very (ond o( him+ 4ou -egan to say he resem-led someone1 may % as2 $hom5 %#ve o(ten tried to thin2 -ut cannot1 and (ancy it must -e some picture %#ve seen+) As she put her ,uestion1 "illough-y loo2ed up ,uic2ly1 colored to the roots o( his -lond hair and seemed much distur-ed7 -ut as she spo2e o( the picture an e&pression o( relie( came into his (ace1 and he replied eagerly1 )4ou are right1 it is the /iping Fa$n you have in your mind+ The -oy is very li2e it+) )But % never sa$ it1) said Rosamond1 $ith her eyes still on Lito+ )Then it#s !anymede or one o( the anti,ue statues+ % had a do3en (loating in my (ancy $hen % spo2e o( the li2eness+) )4es1 % daresay it is+ % shall (ind out some day+) A loo2 o( pain and pity made "illough-y#s pale eyes almost tender (or a moment as he loo2ed at the s$eet1 placid (ace -eside him+ is -lunt manner so(tened1 his tone gre$ respect(ul1 and no more compliments le(t his lips+ Something in the ,uiet assiduity $ith $hich he gathered up her parasol and scar(1 too2 the little -as2et o( em-roidery $hich stood near1 and o((ered her his arm to lead her in $hen Tempest -ec2oned1 pleased Rosamond1 and she -egan to thin2 the odd Englishman more endura-le+ )% am on my $ay to England+ Can % serve you as -earer o( dispatches to anyone at home1 Mrs+

Tempest5) said "illough-y1 as they sat in the -ree3y salon $hile Lito served them $ith (ruit and $ine+ )Than2s+ *o you ever go to ythe5) she as2ed $ist(ully+ )O(ten)9$hich $as a (riendly (alsehood1 -y the $ay+ )/erhaps then you $ould 2indly ta2e a letter to my grand(ather and post it sa(ely m London+ % have $ritten several times -ut receive no reply and (ear he has never got my letters1 (oreign mails are so irregular+) )% $ill do so $ith pleasure and as soon as possi-le+ %t is singular that all the letters should -e lost+) As he spo2e1 "illough-y glanced at Tempest1 $ho stood apart apparently intent on something !rammont $as saying+ )The cholera still continues in /aris in spite o( the season7 many deaths a day *r+ Montenari tells me1 though it is 2ept as ,uiet as possi-le lest the panic spread+ % tell "illough-y not to stop there on his $ay home1 he is 6ust the su-6ect (or it+ % have an ardent (riendship (or him1 -ut % con(ide to you that he is a gourmand as $ell as an invalid and the cholera loves such victims+) ) e does not loo2 ill1 $hat is his malady5) as2ed Tempest1 in the same lo$ tone $hich the Frenchman used+ )*isease o( the heart7 it is hereditary he tells me+ e is much -etter (or his tour1 -ut sooner or later he must drop a$ay as his (ather and -rothers have done+ A sudden shoc21 a violent illness1 or any intense e&citement $ould 2ill him he tells me1 so he resigns himsel( to indolence1 gro$s stout1 and supports his a((liction $ith heroism+) )Sensi-le (ello$+ o$ long does he stay1 !rammont5) )Only a day or t$o1 $hich gives me no time to do the honors1 (or my $i(e is as yet too (ee-le to permit long a-sences on my part+ Can you give him a day5 e is an&ious to see the lions -ut1 pardon that % say it1 li2e most Englishmen very slo$ to ma2e (riends $hen among strangers and so (inds it dull+) )%#ll give him a day tomorro$7 $here is he staying5) said Tempest1 $ith une&pected cordiality+ )At the otel des Anglais+ Too noisy and (ashiona-le (or him1 he says+ e may decide to remain long1 can you recommend a good1 ,uiet hotel5 4ou are an ha-itue and should 2no$ the -est5)

)The otel de /onchette is a plain1 com(orta-le house and near the old to$n1 $hich to me is (ar more interesting than the ne$+) )Ah1 -ut not so airy and health(ul+ The drains are a-omina-le1 and in the autumn1 $hen cholera $as here1 seven persons died in that hotel1 they say+) )All gossip1 my dear !rammont1 and i( it $as not % could match your story $ith one o( the otel de Lanure $here you are7 a do3en died there and the house $as shut up (or a time+ These things are 2ept ,uiet -ecause it is (or the interest o( the people to dra$ cro$ds here during the $inter1 $hich is their harvest time+ *r+ Montenari could tell you o( cases no$1 almost daily do$n in the city and the hospital+ Say nothing a-out it1 -ut ta2e care o( yoursel( and 2eep out o( the sun1 it is unusually hot this year+ eat1 ice1 (ruit and (atigue % $arn you against+) )% $ill remem-er7 my poor Adele $ould (ly at once i( she 2ne$ it1 and the air is doing $onders (or her so % shall -e on my guard+ Come1 "illough-y1 $e must tear ourselves a$ay i( $e $ould get -ac2 in time (or dinner+ % have good ne$s (or youF this amia-le Tempest desires to devote a day to you and $ill sho$ you in that time more than % could in a $ee21 (or he 2no$s every noo2 and charming sight li2e a pro(essional guide+) The Englishman loo2ed surprised -ut grate(ul1 and $ith than2s and compliments the guests departed+ Their host accompanied them to the carriage and as they drove a$ay "illough-y said maliciously1 $ith a glance at Lito1 ) e is very li2e !anymede1 as % told your $i(e $hen she as2ed me $ho he reminded her o(+ By the $ay1 $ho $as the (ather o( !anymede1 Tempest5 My mythology is de(ective+) )%#ll loo2 up the story and tell you tomorro$1) ans$ered Tempest1 $ith a loo2 $hich caused !rammont to hasten their departure -y a touch o( the $hip+ )% li2e that Englishman a(ter all1 he is so (riendly1) said Rosamond as Tempest 6oined her+ ).ery (riendly1) he ans$ered1 adding under his -reath an emphatic1 )*amn him0)

C A/TER .

Cholera

The ne&t morning $hen Rosamond $as in the garden $ith her pets1 Tempest $ent up to his dressing room and1 closing the door $ith unusual care1 opened a large1 silver:mounted -o& $hich al$ays stood in his room on shore1 his stateroom $hen at sea+ %t $as a medicine chest1 and1 selecting one o( the little -ottles1 he poured a (e$ drops o( its contents into a glass o( $ater and mi&ed it care(ully1 saying1 as he s$allo$ed the draught1 ) ere#s to your health1 "illough-y+) /ulling out a dra$er in the -o&1 he e&amined several small pac2ets1 reading the la-els and directions on each $ith care+ One he opened1 and ta2ing a pinch or t$o o( the (ine1 aromatic po$der $hich it contained he sprin2led it in his hair and among his clothes1 smiling a $ic2ed smile as he did so+ Replacing -ottle and pac2et he reloc2ed the -o&1 prepared himsel( (or the day#s e&pedition and $ent to -id Rosamond good:-ye+ )% may not -e -ac2 till late1 do not $ait up (or me1 Rose+ 4ou loo2 (orlorn7 silly child1 don#t you 2no$ that it is $ell to part occasionally that $e may have the pleasure o( meeting and so not $eary o( one another5 No1 Lito1 you are not to go $ith me today1 % $ant Baptiste+ Madame $ill need you $hen she drives7 adieu+) Baptiste $as Tempest#s o$n man7 he passed (or a Frenchman -ut $as an Algerian -y -irth1 a slender1 s$arthy1 (iery:eyed young man $ho loo2ed as much out o( place in the so-er livery o( a servant as an Ara- o( the desert $ould have done+ For some reason he served his master $ith the -lind (idelity and un,uestioning o-edience o( a dog1 though cold1 reticent and haughty to everyone else+ None o( the

servants li2ed him1 Rosamond had an uncon,uera-le pre6udice against him and Lito hated him intensely+ "ith this man sitting in the little seat -ehind him motionless as a statue1 Tempest drove a$ay to give "illough-y his day o( pleasure+

888

)4ou are late1 % $as ready at the appointed time and have -een $aiting hal( an hour1) $as the punctual Englishman#s (irst remar2 as Tempest dre$ up at the door o( the otel des Anglais1 $hich $as all alive $ith the s$arm o( titled English $ho al$ays haunt its splendid rooms+ )A thousand pardons+ % stopped to -oo2 mysel( up a little so that $e might economi3e time+ "e $ill ta2e .illa Franca (irst1 -e(ore it gets hot1 -ecause the glare (rom the sea1 the sand and the roc2s is -linding -y noon+ One o( our vessels is $intering there and Captain 'pshur1 $hom % met 6ust no$1 -egs $e $ill go a-oard and lunch7 $hich is not an invitation to -e re(used i( you care (or capital $ine and good company1) said Tempest+ Much molli(ied -y the prospect "illough-y settled his overcoat1 linen sun um-rella1 -lue veil and green glasses to his satis(action and a$ay they $ent+ Tempest $as in charming spirits1 the day (ine1 the carriage lu&uriously easy and the drive indescri-a-ly -eauti(ul1 so that -y the time they reached the pictures,ue little to$n on the hillside $ith its dus2y olive orchards1 its red:trousered troops a-out the (ortress1 and the ships riding at anchor in the -ay1 "illough-y $as in an enthusiastic state o( delight and ready (or anything+ The company $as good1 the $ine e&cellent1 the lunch all that an epicure could desire1 and the young o((icers $ere never tired o( pressing upon "illough-y the iced claret and orange salad o( $hich he partoo2 so copiously that there $as a general shout o( merriment $hen he at last re(used more on the plea that he $as an invalid+ %t $as $ell past noon $hen they got ashore1 and the sun -la3ed do$n on sandy road1 glittering sea and granite -oulders $ith da33ling -rilliancy+ )Let us go home and rest till it is cooler1) panted "illough-y -ehind his veil and goggles+ )Not yet1 %#ll ta2e you to a charmingly cool place $here you can rest and amuse yoursel( the $hile $ith some really $onder(ul Roman relics+ %t is close -y and in a moment $e shall turn into a shady road a$ay (rom all this glare1) said Tempest1 unconscious o( heat or (atigue+ )"here are they5) as2ed "illough-y1 interested at once1 (or relics $ere his delight+ )At Cimie37 there#s a (ine old Franciscan monastery there $ith some good pictures in the chapel1

anti,ue curiosities in the crypts and the ruins o( a Roman amphitheater near-y+ %t#s the pet lion o( Nice and you $ill en6oy it+ %#ve -een so o(ten the mon2s 2no$ and $elcome me1 (or a (ranc or t$o $ins their hearts+ %sn#t this delicious5) and Tempest too2 o(( his hat as they $hirled round a corner into a shado$y green road overhung -y ile& and olive trees+ )%t#s a very imprudent thing to do1 -ut % must (ollo$ your tempting e&ample1) and o(( came the other hat as "illough-y resigned himsel( to the grate(ul coolness o( the spot+ *riving slo$ly1 they -egan to $ind up a steep path -et$een (la& (ields and orange orchards1 $ith villas on either side and glimpses o( the gray monastery (ar a-ove+ A sudden e&clamation (rom Baptiste interrupted an interesting conversation and caused his master to pull up+ The man sprung do$n1 e&amined a $heel and $ith much gesticulation e&plained that an overturn $ould inevita-ly (ollo$ unless the damage $as repaired1 $hich might easily -e done -y applying to the smith near-y among the -eeches yonder+ )Con(ound the $heel0 Come1 "illough-y1 let us stroll leisurely on $hile it is set to rights instead o( stopping here to -e stared at1) said Tempest impatiently1 as a (loc2 o( -lac2:eyed peasants -egan to collect $ith (lo$ers and (ruit to sell and petitions (or money and o((ers o( assistance+ "illough-y assented and $al2ed on1 glad to escape the staring and the -eggars+ Tempest 6oined him a(ter giving Baptiste directions to (ollo$1 adding in English $hich none o( the -ystanders understood1 (or "illough-y $as out o( hearing1 )Leave the coat and don#t hurry+) Resuming the conversation1 Tempest made it so a-sor-ing that his (riend (orgot $armth and $eariness and $al2ed on (aster and (arther than he had dared to do (or a long $hile+ Failing -reath and a $arning pain in his side recalled the (act1 and he insisted upon stopping (or the carriage+ %t came -e(ore he had time to rest or cool and in a (e$ moments they reached the monastery+ )*o the vaults (irst -e(ore other visitors arrive to inter(ere1) advised Tempest1 and $iping the drops (rom his (orehead1 "illough-y descended into the deathly damp and chilly crypts $here no sun had

shone (or centuries+ 'nconscious o( his danger and a-sor-ed in the rare and curious relics1 he pored over them (or an hour to the great $onderment o( the mon21 his guide+ Tempest soon tired o( them and $ent up to get the chapel and cemetery opened ready (or his guest+ Blue and shivering1 "illough-y appeared at length and $ith a hasty e&amination o( the pictures $ent out to -as2 in the sunshine1 $hich shone $arm and -right over the cemetery+ )"ill Monsieur permit that % advise him to put on his overcoat i( he has one here1 and not sit still in the sun1 it is dangerous a(ter a chill1) said the mee2 mon21 o-serving that Monsieur still shivered and loo2ed pale+ "ith than2s (or the $arning "illough-y sent (or his coat1 re6oicing that he had -rought it+ But Baptiste returned $ith a despairing countenance to report that it had -een le(t at the smithy1 and calling himsel( a -east and a villain o((ered to (ly and -ring it to Monsieur+ )The mischie( is done1 % thin21 so $e#ll $aste no time in complaining or #(lying# any$here+ "e $ill go1 Tempest1 and (ind the coat on the $ay+ "e#ll leave the amphitheater (or another day1) said "illough-y good:naturedly1 and $ith a generous (ee to the mon2 they rolled rapidly do$n the $inding road up $hich the cool sea -ree3e $as -lo$ing as the tide came in+ The coat $as (ound and put on and as $armth returned hunger -egan to hint that it $as dinner time+ )%#m going to ta2e you to an e&cellent hotel and give you a dinner in honor o( the day+ !rammont says you may decide to stay and don#t li2e otel des Anglais1 so this $ill serve as a trial o( otel de /onchette1) said Tempest1 and a(ter driving through the dirtiest1 narro$est and most s,ualid part o( the city he came out upon a gay little s,uare $here stood the hotel1 overloo2ing the sea+ )"ait an instant and % $ill see i( $e can dine here in private+) Tempest $ent in1 procured a room1 inspected it1 dropped the curtains over the -ac2 $indo$s >that opened on a courtyard $here 2itchens1 sta-les1 (ish houses and all manner o( accumulated (ilth produced an atmosphere such as can only -e (ound in an %talian)) city?1 set several pastilles alight

G Although $e tend to thin2 o( Nice >Ni33a in %talian? as a French city1 it $as at this time o$ned -y Sardinia1 $hich claimed it a(ter the (all o( Napoleon in @A@H+ %t $as not restored to France until a(ter @AED+9Ed+

to -anish the noisome odors that haunted it and ordered a charming dinner to -e served near the (ront $indo$s1 -e(ore $hich a glorious prospect o( sea and s2y $as spread+ Then "illough-y $as invited up to ma2e a hearty meal on every delicacy $hich could -e procured1 no matter ho$ un(it (or an invalid+ "hen he hesitated1 Tempest ridiculed his prudence unmerci(ully and -y raillery or e&ample overcame his sel(:restraint+ "ine (lo$ed (reely and $hen they rose (rom ta-le the chill $as replaced -y (ever and the poor gentleman $as (itter (or his -ed than (or the moonlight e&cursion Tempest proposed+ )No$ a ,uiet drive to Castle ill (or the vie$ and to cool our heads1 and then $e $ill go home to supper+) )% am desperately tired1 Tempest7 your energetic style o( sightseeing is rather too much (or me+ o$ever1 as my time is short %#ll ma2e the most o( it and leave as little as possi-le to less agreea-le guides1) and1 ,uite unconscious that the evening air $as particularly dangerous to invalids1 "illough-y allo$ed Tempest to drive him a$ay along the shore+

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The vie$ $as glorious and they lingered long1 -ut even $hen they descended they did not reach

home $ithout one more adventure $hich completed poor "illough-y#s destruction+ Coming to the Cathedral1 they (ound it all alight and astir as i( some (estival $as a(oot+ )"hat is it1 Magnico5) as2ed Tempest o( a peasant $hom he recogni3ed in the cro$d as they paused to let a train o( nuns pass in+ )A (uneral1 Monsieur+ /rince /assati died suddenly on his $ay (rom Rome and desired to -e -uried in Ni33a1 his native city+ %t is super-7 Monsieur should enter+) Tempest turned to as2 "illough-y i( he cared (or it and sa$ -e(ore he spo2e that the ne$s had shoc2ed him+ )% 2ne$ the /rince in Rome1 he $as my -est (riend+ % $ill go in1 not (or the spectacle -ut as a mar2 o( respect to his memory1) he said -rie(ly1 $ith such honest grie( in his (ace that Magnico pulled o(( his hat and Baptiste helped him out $ith unusual respect+ The church $as pac2ed and $ith the greatest di((iculty they (orced and -ri-ed their $ay to a spot $hence they could see the high altar and the glittering group -e(ore it+ The dead man lay on a -ier o( (lo$ers1 his $eeping (amily 2nelt around him1 nuns and mon2s $ith lighted candles (ormed a -arrier -et$een them and the throng7 priests $ent to and (ro $ith holy $ater1 (ragrant censers and pious prayers7 the great organ pealed solemnly and -ehind the golden screen a choir o( voices chanted the Miserere (or the dead+ The heat $as su((ocating1 the pressure o( the cro$d oppressive1 the lamentations heart-rea2ing and the atmosphere indescri-a-ly horri-le+ "omen (ainted as they 2nelt and $ere passed out over the heads o( the throng1 men gre$ pale1 and the most in,uisitive stranger $as soon satis(ied+ Even Tempest1 hardy as he $as1 (elt his temples -egin to thro- and his -reath come heavily a(ter hal( an hour o( it+ "illough-y (orgot discom(ort in grie( (or a time1 -ut sudden di33iness roused him to the (act that he $as hal( su((ocated+

)Tempest1 % must get out o( this as ,uic2 as possi-le+ % ought not to have come+ For heaven#s sa2e get me out0) he $hispered an&iously as a (resh arrival o( peasants caused a general movement to$ard the altar+ )%#m a(raid it is impossi-le+ ere#s a poor girl ,uite gone and she#d -e crushed under(oot -ut (or my arm+ old (ast to me1 %#ll do my -est1) ans$ered Tempest+ e did do his -est1 (or leaving the girl to her (ate he struggled to$ard the door1 dra$ing his companion a(ter him+ But -e(ore he reached it1 $ith a sti(led cry o( pain and a (ee-le clutch at his shoulder "illough-y (ell against him ,uite unconscious+ A loo2 o( grim satis(action passed over Tempest#s (ace as he caught him $ith one arm and (ought his $ay out $ith the other+ Fresh air and $ater (rom the (ountain dashing in the S,uare soon restored "illough-y enough to $hisper (aintly1 )Ta2e me home1) and home they too2 him $ith all speed+ )My dear (ello$1 % never shall (orgive mysel( (or letting you get into that pestilential place+ o$ are you no$5 Can % do anything (or you5) and Tempest -ent over the e&hausted man as he lay on his -ed $ith an e&pression o( solicitude that touched the other+ O((ering him his clammy hand1 "illough-y said grate(ully1 )Nothing1 than2 you1 % shall send my man (or a doctor i( %#m not -etter a(ter an hour o( ,uiet+ 4ou must -e very tired1 go and rest+ 4ou#ve done enough (or me today+) )*on#t say that1 %#ll gladly stay i( % can -e o( use1) said Tempest ,uic2ly as he laid the pale hand do$n+ )% need nothing -ut ,uiet+ !o to your Rose1 and /hillip1 -e 2ind to her7 she is so young1 so trusting7 (or your mother#s sa2e -e gentle $ith the poor girl+) The momentary so(tness vanished (rom Tempest#s (ace and the sinister e&pression returned+ Ta2ing up his hat1 he said in a (riendly tone -ut $ith averted eyes1 )No (ear o( that+ % love her as % never loved a $oman -e(ore+ No$ good night1 Ro-ert1 sleep $ell and let me (ind you ,uite yoursel( in the morning+ *on#t call in any o( the %talian doctors i( you can get on $ithout7 they all -leed their patients hal( to death and you can#t -ear that1 so % $arn you+)

)Many than2s1 good night+ Tell Madame %#ll not (orget her message $hen % go to ythe+) )No1 % thin2 you $ill not1) muttered Tempest as he le(t the room+

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aving driven home1 he -athed1 changed every article o( dress and $ent do$n to (ind Rosamond $aiting (or him in spite o( his advice to the contrary+ )"hat no$1 my little -oo2$orm5) he as2ed1 as he thre$ himsel( do$n on the couch near the ta-le $here she sat reading and lit the cigar al$ays laid ready (or him+ She loo2ed up $ith an e&cited1 trou-led (ace and pushing the -oo2 a$ay said1 $ith a sigh o( relie( as i( the magic o( some evil spell $as -ro2en -y his presence1 )The "andering ;e$+ %t#s a horri-le -oo2+ "hy do you have it in the house1 /hillip5) )%t is a (avorite o( mine+ % li2e horri-le -oo2s i( they have po$er+ % thought you#d get hold o( that and % le(t it a-out as a test o( your taste+) )%t (ascinates me -ut % don#t li2e it+ *o you thin2 there ever $as or could -e so thoroughly $ic2ed a man as Rodin5) as2ed the girl1 so interested in the -oo2 that she (orgot to in,uire a-out the day#s adventures+

)4es1 %#ve no dou-t o( it+ e $as simply a man $ithout a conscience+ *o you 2no$1 Rose1 % sometimes thin2 % have none+) )"hat a dread(ul thing to say+ "hat do you mean5) )% mean that it is more natural (or me to -e $ic2ed than virtuous7 $hen % do a -ad act1 and %#ve done many1 % never (eel

either shame1 remorse or (ear+ % sometimes $ish it $as not necessary as % don#t li2e the trou-le1 -ut as (or any moral sense o( principle1 % haven#t a particle+ Many people are li2e me as their actions prove1 -ut they are not so (ran2 in o$ning it and insist on 2eeping up the hum-ug o( virtue+ 4ou#ll (ind that is true1 Rose1 $hen you 2no$ the $orld -etter+) )% hope not7 -ut $hy do you say such things1 /hillip5 4ou 2no$ % don#t -elieve nor understand them+) )Bless your innocent heart+ % never thought you did+ No$ and then % li2e to say -oldly $hat others dare hardly thin2+ 4ou do 2no$ that %#m not a saint1 don#t you5) )4es1 % cannot help that1 (or you are constantly telling me you are not1) and Rosamond sighed as i( some -urden o( regret oppressed her+ )4et you love the sinner and9) )But not the sin1) she added ,uic2ly+ )O( course not1 that $ill (ollo$ in time+ %#m a -ad (ello$1 my dear1 and % give up the hope o( ever -eing any -etter+ Since % have had the nearest approach to an angel that humanity can produce (or a companion % have cherished a (oolish (ancy that % might develop a conscience as $ell as a heart7 -ut today % discover that % am $orse than ever1 and the cro$ning sin is that %#m not sorry (or it+) )"hat have you done5) as2ed Rosamond1 $ith the serious yet pu33led e&pression she al$ays $ore $hen he $as in this mood+ )Nothing -ut devote mysel( to my (riend1 yet all the $ay home %#ve -een telling mysel( that %#m a villain and it ma2es no impression upon me as you see+) %t certainly did not seem to1 (or he lay there smiling tran,uilly as he $atched the (ragrant smo2e curl up$ard1 apparently $ith no regret o( any 2ind to mar his lu&urious repose+ )/erhaps remorse $ill come all at once $hen least e&pected1 (or atonement surely must -e made here

or herea(ter1) said Rosamond $ith so(tly $arning voice+ )% dou-t that+ "hen children inherit the sins o( their (athers it is not 6ust that they should ma2e the atonement+ My (ather $as a $ild1 $ic2ed1 handsome man1 *are:*evil Tempest they called him+ Fortunate1 happy and la$less all his li(e+ A lovely $oman adored him till he -ro2e her heart and $hen her pride could -ear no more she 2illed hersel(+ % remem-er her and % hated my (ather most heartily+ e diso$ned me and % roamed a-out the $orld a homeless lad till your grand(ather met and too2 a (ancy to me+ My mother#s (ortune $as mine so % never lac2ed the po$er to purchase pleasure and % got on capitally+ My (ather died peace(ully yet unrepentantly in his -ed1 cordially detested -y everyone $ho 2ne$ him1 and le(t me nothing -ut his evil nature+ % simply live out my real sel( and % don#t thin2 % shall -e called upon to atone (or my sins1 as they are his+ % never told you that story -e(ore7 no$ you $ill understand your hus-and -etter1 Mrs+ Tempest1 and see ho$ hopeless his redemption is+) )No1 everything is possi-le $ith !od+ % do not give you up+ % pity you1 and love can $or2 miracles1 so % shall still hope and $or2+) er (ace $as li2e the (ace o( an angel as she laid a so(t hand on that scarred (orehead1 as i( in spite o( everything she claimed him (or her o$n in the (irm (aith that love $ould save him+ )%( it is a human possi-ility you $ill do it1 my Rose+ But you do not 2no$ $hat % am1 and there may come a time $hen you $ill cease to hope1) he ans$ered1 loo2ing at her $ith strange $ist(ulness1 (or no man is utterly $ithout a desire (or virtue+

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At noon ne&t day Tempest $ent to in,uire (or "illough-y1 and met *r+ Montenari standing at the door o( the cham-er $ith an an&ious (ace and a vinaigrette at his nostrils+ ) o$ is he5) as2ed Tempest a-ruptly+ )!one1 sir1 gone+ *on#t go in1 it#s cholera0) returned the doctor in a shrill $hisper1 dra$ing the ne$comer a$ay and

sni((ing nervously at his salts as he spo2e+ )"hen5 o$5 *id he leave no message5 !ood !od1 ho$ sudden0) and dra$ing the doctor into an empty anteroom1 Tempest dropped into a seat li2e one overcome $ith the shoc2+ )Calm yoursel(1 my dear sir+ % did my -est (or him1 -ut % $as not called till midnight and then it $as too late+ % don#t say % could have saved him7 the state o( his heart complicated the case1 -ut % might have 2ept him+ e spo2e o( you1 and o( your $i(e and some commission $hich he had (ailed to e&ecute+ e -rie(ly directed his man regarding his a((airs1 and a(ter hours o( mortal su((ering -ecame merci(ully unconscious and so died an hour ago+ This sad occurrence is to -e 2ept as ,uiet as possi-le out o( regard (or the (ears o( the many invalids no$ in the house+ eart disease may truly -e said to have caused his death1 (or he spo2e o( the shoc2 he received at hearing o( the /rince#s demise+ e $ill -e removed at once and his man leaves (or home tomorro$+ % may depend on your silence1 Mr+ Tempest5) )4ou may1 *octor7 % shall never spea2 o( it+) Nor did he+

C A/TER .%

A idden !rave

At (ive o#cloc2 in the a(ternoon all the (ashiona-le $orld at Nice may -e seen on the /romenade des Anglais1 so called -ecause laid out and 2ept in repair -y contri-utions (rom the English+ %t is a $ide $al2 -ordered -y palms1 roses1 and tropical shru-s1 $ith seats all along1 -athing pavilions on the -each $hich it overloo2s and a (ine drive -et$een the $al2 and the hotels and villas standing on the outer curve o( the -ay along $hose edge the /romenade

e&tends+ Every nation is represented1 every language spo2en1 every costume $orn1 and o( a sunny day the spectacle is as -rilliant as any Carnival+ aughty English1 gay French people1 plain phlegmatic !ermans1 handsome Spaniards1 uncouth Russians1 mee2 ;e$s1 (ree:and:easy Americans1 all drive1 sit or saunter chatting over the ne$s and critici3ing the latest cele-rity1 -e it the $ic2ed old 2ing o( Bavaria1 the dus2y ,ueen o( the Sand$ich %slands or /rincess *agmar mourning (or her lost C3arovitch+ The e,uipages are as varied as the company1 and attract as much attention1 especially the lo$ -as2et -arouches in $hich ladies drive themselves1 $ith a groom or page in the little seat -ehind1 a pair o( dashing ponies1 a parasol1 $hip and a net to 2eep their voluminous (lounces (rom over(lo$ing the diminutive vehicles+ Many o( these carriages $ere rolling to and (ro one a(ternoon1 some t$o or three $ee2s a(ter poor "illough-y#s death1 and one among them seemed to attract much attention+ Lined $ith -lue sil2 as daintily as a lady#s $or2-as2et1 $ith a pretty lad in !ree2 costume on the perch -ehind1 dra$n -y sno$:$hite ponies in silver:plated harness $ith -lue (avors on their spirited little heads1 and driven -y a -eauti(ul $oman $hose dress o( -lue velvet and ermine completed the charming e((ect1 it $as no $onder that many eyes (ollo$ed it and more than one party o( gentlemen paused to e&amine and admire+ Among the cro$d $as a small1 dar21 sharp:eyed man $ho $atched the pretty turnout $ith un$earied attention+ T$ice it $ent up and do$n the mile:long drive and his eye never le(t it+ At the third turn it dre$ up -e(ore one o( the villas and handing the reins to the -oy1 the lady entered the house as i( to pay a call+ %nstantly the stranger#s lounging gait changed to a ,uic2 pace1 his listless manner -ecame alert1 and crossing the drive he approached the carriage+ "ith a ,uic2 glance a-out him he stooped as i( to replace the $hite net $hich trailed in the dust and at the same moment thrust a letter into the -oy#s hand1 saying authoritatively1 ) ide it1 read it in private and tomorro$ give your ans$er to Camille1 the (lo$er girl o( the ;ardin /u-li,ue+) )But1 Monsieur9) -egan the -oy in ama3ement+

) ush1 % 2no$ you1 %ppolito7 do as % say and you $ill than2 me+ ide it1 and -ring an ans$er tomorro$1) said the stranger and $as gone+ Lito glanced at the letter1 sa$ London on the postmar2 and $as so intensely curious to learn $ho his un2no$n correspondent $as that he $ould have read it on the spot i( Rosamond had not appeared+ Slipping it into the poc2et o( his vest1 he leaped do$n to help her in and all the $ay home sat -ehind her in a (ever o( impatience+ The instant they reached .alrosa he vanished and $as seen no more that night+

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"hatever the contents o( his letter $ere they seemed to a((ect him strongly1 (or ne&t morning he appeared $ith heavy eyes1 pale chee2s and an a-sor-ed air $hich caused the French maids to accuse him o( -eing in love+ e scarcely seemed to hear their -adinage1 though usually ,uic2 to resent such accusations+ The (e$ light duties given him $ere either (orgotten or hal( done1 and he sho$ed no interest in anything till the hour (or his mistress#s daily drive approached+ Then he seemed to $a2e up and -ecome all devotion+ The carriage $as -rought round (i(teen minutes too soon and having hurried Rosamond into it -y suggesting that they $ould -e too late to hear the ne$ -and in the !arden1 he -egged to drive and did so at a dashing pace till they came to the ;ardin /u-li,ue1 $here the -and (illed the air $ith (ine music $hile the -rilliant cro$d sat a-out under the trees1 or lounged in the carriages dra$n up along the side$al2+ )Madame $ill not descend5) )No1 Lito+ % $ill $ait here (or the Master1 he agreed to meet me at the gates+) )"ill Madame permit that % go a little nearer to see the (amous -and o( the Crimea5 % am gone -ut a moment+) )!o1 child1 and stay as long as you $ill+ "e are too early (or /hillip+)

A$ay sprung Lito and vanished in the cro$d+ Leaning -ac2 in her -as2et Rosamond#s eye idly (ollo$ed the little scarlet (e3 as she listened and sa$ it pause an instant outside the great circle $hich surrounded the -and1 then disappear in an acacia grove near the (ountain1 $hich $as deserted no$+ "ondering $hy he $ent to that solitary spot she $atched (or his return1 musing meantime on the curious mood in $hich he had -een all day+ A (resh -ree3e $as -lo$ing up (rom the sea1 rustling the palms and tossing the drooping acacia -oughs+ As Rosamond mused1 her eyes still (i&ed on the entrance o( the green noo21 the trees $ere suddenly -lo$n apart and standing in the shado$ $ere Lito and Camille1 the pretty (lo$er girl+ An involuntary smile came to Rosamond#s lips and she loo2ed a$ay at once1 un$illing to play the spy on the unconscious little lovers1 i( such they $ere+ The -oughs (ell again and Lito appeared 6ust as Tempest 6oined his $i(e+ "ith a shy1 sel(:conscious loo2 the -oy resumed his place and said not a $ord during the drive1 though usually he chatted $ith the (reedom o( a (avorite+ Master and mistress chanced to -e a-sor-ed in their o$n conversation and neither o-served his taciturnity+ But a(ter dinner1 as they sat together on the terrace1 Tempest o-served that something $as amiss1 (or $hen Lito -rought the am-er:mouthed Tur2ish pipe his eye did not meet his master#s and he seemed in haste to -e gone again1 most unusual demonstrations (rom the petted lad+ )"hy1 Lito1 $hat is amiss5 Come and tell your master1) said Tempest detaining him $ith a hand on his shoulder+ )Nothing1 nothing1) the -oy ans$ered hastily as he shrun2 a little and still 2ept his eyes averted+ )"as Camille un2ind5) as2ed Rosamond1 smiling+ Lito loo2ed up ,uic2ly1 turned scarlet and demanded1 )*id you see her5 o$5 "hen5) )The $ind -etrayed you $hen you held her hand in the acacia grove+ Never loo2 so (rightened1 child1 no one $ill reprimand you (or doing $hat every one is doing all a-out you1) she said 2indly as he loo2ed dismayed+ )Flirting1 Lito5 'pon my li(e you -egin early+ So she (ro$ns upon you does she7 and you are driven to despair1 $hich accounts (or the melancholy to $hich Baptiste tells me you are a prey+) Tempest laughed aloud at the -oy#s con(usion+

)Baptiste is a spy and a liar0) he -urst out hotly+ )Tut1 my little gallant1 cur- your tongue or $e shall (ancy that you are 6ealous o( Baptiste+ %s that the thorn that lacerates you1 hey5) and still laughing1 Tempest gave the -oy a play(ul sha2e+ As i( angered past endurance -y the rough caress1 Lito 6er2ed himsel( a$ay and as he did so (rom the poc2et o( his 6ac2et (ell a paper+ e made a snatch at it -ut Tempest#s ,uic2 eye had caught something that roused his suspicion1 and as the paper (ell near him he put his (oot on it+ Flinging himsel( upon his 2nees1 Lito desperately struggled to recover his lost treasure7 -ut the (oot $as (irm as roc2 and his attempts $ere vain+ )Let me have it0 %t is mine1 you have no right to 2eep it+ % $ill have it0 Ma2e him give it up1 Madame1 oh help me0 elp me0) he cried despairingly as he clung a-out Tempest#s 2nees1 -reathless and imploring+ )*ear1 do not ve& the poor child+ %t is only some silly note (rom Camille+ Let me give it -ac21 /hillip+) )Camille does not use (oreign postmar2s (or a love letter $hich she delivers hersel(+ Leave me to manage the little rascal7 there is mischie( a(oot and % must si(t it to the -ottom+ !et up1 -oy1 and stop $hining+) So stern and ire(ul $as Tempest#s manner that Rosamond dared say no more1 -ut Lito still clung and (ought and prayed to regain the paper+ Li(ting and holding him o(( $ith one hand Tempest secured the letter and coolly read it over the -oy#s head+ Rosamond had once $ished to see him in a passion1 her desire $as granted no$1 (or as he read Tempest#s dar2 (ace gre$ a-solutely livid $ith that terri-le pale $rath so much more appalling than the sudden (lash $hich comes and goes+ is -lac2 eyes gre$ (iery1 the scar -ecame purple $ith the hot -lood that rose to his (orehead and (aded1 leaving his (ace very $hite e&cept that dar2 line a-ove the (ierce eyes+ A ruthless smile came to his lips and his hand gripped the -oy as i( he $ould crush him+ "hen he spo2e his voice $as cold and calm1 -ut there $as an undertone o( suppressed passion $hich made the hearers trem-le+ )So0 This is your ne$ amusement is it5 "ell (or me that % discovered it in time to put an end to such dangerous play+

o$ dare you receive and ans$er letters $ithout my 2no$ledge1 you young traitor5) /ale and trem-ling -ut undaunted in spirit1 Lito loo2ed straight at him and ans$ered steadily1 )% had a right to 2no$ $hat that letter tells me+ %#m glad % do1 and though you 2ill me (or it %#ll not say %#m sorry+) )% could (ind it in my heart to 2ill you1 you audacious imp1) muttered Tempest -et$een his teeth+ )But you dare not -ecause % am9) )Stop0) cried Tempest in a tone that rung through the garden startling the timid antelope and causing the tame doves to circle $ildly round their heads+ )Rose1 go in1 % must deal $ith the -oy alone+ No1 %#ll have no intercession1 no delay+ !o at once and as2 no ,uestions1 %#m not in a mood to -e# tri(led $ith+) %n truth he $as not1 and Rosamond hurried in to hide hersel( lest she should see or hear the poor lad#s punishment+ Not a sound reached her1 and $hen at length she ventured to li(t her head (rom the cushions o( the couch and steal a loo2 at the terrace it $as empty+ For t$o long hours she sat alone and no one approached her -ut Baptiste1 $ho came to get in2 and paper+ From his impenetra-le (ace she could learn nothing1 and $hen she ventured to as2 $here Tempest $as the -rie( -ut respect(ul ans$er $as (ar (rom satis(actory+ )%n his room1 Madame+) )And Lito1 $here is he5) she as2ed an&iously+ )Madame must pardon me that % do not ans$er1 (or % o-ey the orders o( Monsieur1) and $ith a regret(ul air he departed1 leaving her to $atch and $ait+ Tempest came at last1 loo2ing pale and grim7 the storm $as over -ut its e((ects remained+ Rosamond $as standing at the $indo$ loo2ing out onto the moonlight scene7 as he entered she turned1 longing to spea2 yet (earing to rouse his $rath again+ e paused an instant1 regarding her $ith a strange e&pression in $hich love1 regret and resolve mingled1 then came and dre$ her to him $ith an impulsive tenderness that touched and surprised her very much1 (or

something in the loo2 and act seemed to suggest that he had (eared to lose her and yet de(ied (ate to separate them+ ) ave you discovered the mystery and (orgiven the poor -oy5) she as2ed1 thin2ing the moment an auspicious one+ %nstantly his -lac2 -ro$s lo$ered and he ans$ered $ith an ominous smile+ )% never shall (orgive him+ Leave him to his (ate1 Rose1 and than2 heaven that the mystery $as discovered in time+ No$ tal2 no more o( it or him1 -oth are (or-idden su-6ects hence(orth -et$een us+) )But1 /hillip1 $hy5) )Because % choose it+) )% must 2no$ one thing1 $here is Lito5) )Sa(ely out o( the $ay+) )!one0) )E&actly+) )But he $ill come home again in time5) )No+) )Shall % never see him any more5) cried Rosamond1 aghast at this sudden separation+ )Never+) )Oh1 /hillip1 this is cruel1 this is too hard0 e is so young1 so loving1 so accustomed to indulgence and (reedom+ %( you have shut him up in any gloomy place or given him into the 2eeping o( any stern master it $ill -rea2 his heart and ruin him (or li(e+ Forgive him (or my sa2e and let him come home+) )% never pardon treachery+ %t is impossi-le (or him to return+ /lead no more1 Rose+) )"ill he -e happy5 as he any clothes or money $ith him5 4ou should have let me say good:-ye1) and tears (lo$ed (or poor lost Lito as she spo2e+

) e has gone $here he needs nothing+ e sent you his (are$ell and this+) Tempest o((ered her a short gold curl as he spo2e1 -ut something in his sinister tone made her shudder as she too2 it and glided (rom his arms $ith a sad sin2ing o( the heart at the thought o( never seeing her little page again+ er tears1 her silence1 annoyed Tempest1 and in a tone he had never used to her -e(ore he said emphatically1 )Rose1 remem-er one thing+ % am master here1 my $ill is la$1 and diso-edience % punish $ithout mercy+ % tell you the -oy is sa(e and happy1 more than that you cannot 2no$+ % (or-id ,uestions to mysel( or anyone else1 so dismiss the matter (rom your mind and (orget that such a creature as Lito ever e&isted+) )% shall remem-er1) $as Rosamond#s ,uiet reply1 -ut her eyes (lashed and her heart re-elled against the tyrannical decree+ She $ould as2 no ,uestions -ut she $ould $atch1 listen and i( possi-le discover $here the -oy had gone1 (or it $as not in her nature to su-mit tamely to any in6ustice to$ard hersel( or others+ Baptiste $as a-sent all the (ollo$ing day1 and the ne&t time she sa$ him she (ancied she detected a gleam o( satis(action in his stealthy eyes1 (or Lito $as no (avorite o( his -ecause he $as 6ealous o( anyone $hom Tempest admitted to his con(idence or (or $hom he sho$ed any a((ection+ Baptiste evidently e&pected to -e ,uestioned and relished the prospect o( -a((ling curiosity -y mysterious replies+ But Rosamond uttered not a $ord and the man seemed ama3ed and annoyed+ Ta2ing advantage o( an hour $hen Baptiste $as a$ay and Tempest engaged $ith a (riend1 Rosamond stole to the -oy#s room1 hoping to discover something there+ %t remained e&actly as he le(t it+ is color(ul garments hung in the $ardro-e1 his little purse lay untouched in his dra$er1 nothing $as gone -ut a rude miniature o( hersel( $hich he had painted1 and his ivory cruci(i&+ As she loo2ed a cold thrill passed over her and Tempest#s $ords returned $ith a ne$ signi(icance9) e has gone $here he $ill need nothing+) Could he -e dead5 ad his master 2illed him in a (it o( passion and sent Baptiste a$ay to hide the poor little -ody5 No1 that $as too horri-le1 and she drove the thought a$ay (rom her again and again -ut it $ould return $ith pain(ul pertinacity+

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T$o days a(ter the -oy#s disappearance her dar2 (ear $as augmented -y a (e$ $ords $hich she overheard+ Baptiste -rought a letter to his master as he sat alone in the salon and as Rosamond $as a-out to enter noiselessly she heard the man say1 $ith a shrug and a glance to$ard a $ooded dell a mile or more a$ay1 )Rest tran,uil1 Master1 no one $ill thin2 o( his -eing -uried there+) 'nseen the girl stepped -ac21 hurried to the garden and tried to ,uiet hersel( -e(ore it $as necessary to (ace her hus-and1 $hose ,uic2 eye instantly detected any change in those a-out him+ "ho could Baptiste mean -ut Lito5 "as he -uried in the olive grove5 And $ere all the assurances o( his -eing $ell and happy only (alsehoods5 At (irst she trem-led and gre$ pale1 then her eyes 2indled1 her color rose indignantly and she clenched her $hite hand $ith a gesture o( determination as she said $ithin hersel(1 )%#ll satis(y mysel( o( this1 and i( it -e so1 much as % love /hillip he shall atone (or it1 to me at least+) "ith one li2e Rosamond1 to resolve $as to do1 -ut time and stratagem $ere necessary1 (or Baptiste seemed suddenly to turn sentinel+ Another -oy came to (ill Lito#s place1 -ut his mistress1 though 2ind1 never too2 any interest in the slee2 -ro$n %talian lad+ Another groom rode a(ter Tempest1 and Baptiste al$ays remained at home $hen his master $as a-sent+ our a(ter hour he sat on a sunny -ench in a retired corner o( the terrace $hich overloo2ed the drive1 and no carriage entered the gates that he did not scrutini3e its occupants and in the most natural1 uno-trusive manner discover their names and -usiness -e(ore they reached Madame+ At night Rosamond sa$ him still there1 and ho$ever early she $ent do$n in the morning he $as already at his post+ At (irst she did not mind this1 -ut the instant she desired to escape uno-served she -ecame conscious that she $as $atched+ Not only did Baptiste hover a-out her1 -ut Tempest gre$ more devoted than ever1 (or o( late a little coldness had e&isted -et$een them+ e drove1 $al2ed1 sat1 sang and read to her as in the days o( their honeymoon1 and -ut (or the -lac2 thought hidden in her heart she $ould have -een very happy+

She never had -een -lind to the (act that Tempest $as no saint1 -ut li2e many another $oman she hoped to save him through her love1 and as time sho$ed her more and more clearly the nature o( the man1 she tried to (orget his sins to others and remem-er only his generosity1 his tenderness to her+ Lately he had -een less 2ind1 less 6ust and generous1 and it -ecame impossi-le to (orget+ Many things had trou-led and perple&ed her since she married him1 -ut the loss o( the -oy alarmed and roused her1 and once in the (ield Rosamond $as not a $oman to -e deceived or de(eated -y any adversary+ One or t$o trials proved to her that she $as no longer (ree to go and come as she li2ed1 and her ,uic2 $it soon suggested a means o( escape+ All day she $as $atched+ Night there(ore $as her only time1 and though she shrun2 a little at the thought o( stealing a$ay through dus2y groves and lonely paths on such an errand1 the intense longing to set her (ear at rest drove her on+

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)Are you ill or $orried a-out anything1 /hillip5) she as2ed an&iously one morning as they sat together+ )No1 love1 $hy do you as25) and in spite o( the tender $ords the tone $as sharp+ )Because you are so restless at night and moan and mutter in your sleep+ Forgive me1 % (orgot that % $as not to as2 ,uestions+) She mee2ly $ent on $ith her -rea2(ast+ )*o %5 that#s odd+ "hat do % say1 Rose5 A sleeper#s nonsense is sometimes amusing1) said Tempest1 veiling 2een an&iety under a careless air+ )4ou $ill -e annoyed i( % tell you1 (or it is a (or-idden su-6ect+) )4ou mean the -oy5 *id % spea2 o( him5 4ou may tell me+) e (i&ed his piercing eye upon her+ )%t $as not much1 only you sighed and seemed una-le to sleep $ithout dreaming o( him+ Once you called him and that $a2ed me7 then you said sternly1 as i( going through the sad scene o( his last day1 #!et up1 -oy1 and stop $hining1# and a(ter a time you groaned and cried out1 #Bring him -ac21 Baptiste1 -ring him -ac20# and added in a dread(ul tone1 #%s it too late5# )

)"hat melodramatic ru--ish0 /oor Rose1 did % (righten you5 % $as tired and various things ve&ed me yesterday+ %( % distur- you1 % can sleep in the red room on the ground (loor+ %#ve o(ten thought it $ould -e $ell to slip in there $hen % come home late+ Let it -e made ready today1 (or %#ve got more e&asperating -usiness to attend to and you shall have a ,uiet night1 poor child+) .ery (ran2 and easy $as his manner and he laughed over the )melodramatic ru--ish1) -ut Rosamond sa$ an&iety under the smile and the proposed change proved that he had something to conceal+ %t $as $hat she had planned and desired ho$ever1 so she yielded and the red room $as prepared+ That night she dared not go (or Baptiste $as at home7 on the (ollo$ing his master sent him to the city $ith letters (or the midnight7 mail and -ade him stay till morning+ )No$ is my time1) thought Rosamond1 and having e&erted hersel( to -e particularly charming all evening1 she (inished -y singing Tempest into a dro$sy state and sent him a$ay to -ed declaring that he should dream o( nothing -ut angels chanting Scotch melodies+ Till midnight she remained ,uiet1 then1 an&ious to pro(it -y the moon1 she nerved hersel( to the tas2 and li2e a shado$ crept through the silent house1 glided along the dus2y paths and struc2 a$ay to$ard the distant olive grove+ The peace1 the de$y so(tness1 and the mello$ moonlight made the night too -eauti(ul (or (ear1 and on any other errand Rosamond $ould have en6oyed the midnight $al21 $hich reminded her o( (ormer pran2s in the old house on the cli((+ Nothing $as stirring -ut the -ats1 no sound -ro2e the hush -ut a late nightingale mourning musically (rom the rosy coverts o( .alrosa1 and the girl sa(ely reached the grove through $hich a long disused and hal(:e((aced path $ound its $ay to the hills -eyond+ Shado$y and still $as the place as $ith a -eating heart she passed through it1 loo2ing 2eenly a-out her+ A sudden sound o( (ootsteps made her start and spring a$ay into the thic2 undergro$th1 there to crouch li2e a hunted deer+ As the steps passed she peeped out to see only a stray lam- trotting home$ard+ "ith a sigh o( relie( she rose to her 2nees and $as a-out to seat hersel( (or an instant on a lo$ mound -ehind her $hen1 as the moon shone (ull through the s$aying -ranches1 she sa$ $ith a cry o( terror that the mound $as li2e a ne$:made grave0

C A/TER .%%

A "oman#s Shado$

For a moment horror held Rosamond motionless1 then $ith the cool1 desperate calmness o( a strong purpose she recovered hersel( and dra$ing -ac2 a step e&amined the spot+ er eye measured the length o( the mound1 scanned the roughly cut sods that covered it1 the -ro2en -ranches heaped over it -ut disarranged -y her hasty (eet1 and everything assured her that it $as a grave+ But $hose5 That she could not tell1 (or no $oman1 unless goaded to despair -y some strong passion1 could (ind nerve enough to distur- the earth that hid the dead (rom her sight+ !hostly pale and cold as ice1 she le(t the spot intent on reaching home unseen1 -ut as she stepped again into the path a (e$ paces -e(ore her the moonlight shone on some -right o-6ect in the trampled grass+ Scarcely conscious o( the act1 she stooped and too2 it up1 gave one loo2 and (led out o( the grove as i( some phantom had con(ronted her+ %t $as only a little ornament o( gold (iligree1 -ut it proved her (ear to -e an a$(ul truth1 (or this ornament her o$n hands had (astened on Lito#s (e3 and it $as too peculiar to -e any other than that very one7 o( this she $ould have -een sure $ithout the shred o( red velvet to $hich her stitches still held it (ast+ o$ she reached home and spent that night she never 2ne$7 her maid (ound her in a high (ever $hen she $ent to her a(ter $aiting vainly (or a summons ne&t morning+ )%t is only a cold7 % sat on the terrace too late+ Rest and ,uiet $ill restore me+ Tell Mr+ Tempest to e&cuse me (rom -rea2(ast and let me sleep i( % can+) ;ustine $ent a$ay and soon a(ter Tempest stole in1 (ull o( an&iety+ But Rosamond seemed asleep1 (or $hen he so(tly called her she did not ans$er and lay motionless $ith her (ace averted and hal( hidden in the mass o( -ro$n curls $hich had -ro2en (rom the little cap and (ell over $hite arm and (lushed chee2+ Leaving a note and nosegay o( her (avorite roses on her pillo$1 he drove a$ay and -ecame so a-sor-ed in )the e&asperating -usiness) >$hich1 -y the -ye1 $as -illiards? that he did not

return till sunset+ )Are you -etter1 s$eetheart5) he as2ed tenderly as he hurried to meet Rosamond1 $ho1 $ith a lace sha$l $rapped a-out her head and shoulders1 lay languidly reading in a hammoc2 slung under the ile& trees+ )Than2 you1 yes1) $as the ,uiet ans$er as she received his 2iss $ithout returning it+ )That is $ell1 (or % have a treat in store (or you+ Ristori is here1 % have secured a -o& and i( you are a-le $e $ill go this evening+) )To the theater0) e&claimed Rosamond1 to $hom the idea o( pleasure seemed impossi-le+ A second thought made her add1 $ith a sense o( relie( at the prospect o( escaping an evening alone $ith her hus-and1 )4ou are very 2ind to remem-er my $ish+ % am a-le and glad to go+ Let us dine at once1 so ta2e me out1 /hillip+)

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"ell pleased at the eagerness o( $hich he little 2ne$ the cause1 Tempest $as unusually devoted and gay as i( an&ious to e((ace (rom her mind all disagreea-le recollections+ "hen they reached the theater Rosamond $as annoyed to (ind their -o& the most conspicuous in the house1 (or she (elt in no mood to -e stared at1 and having -ut little vanity she had long ago $earied o( pu-lic admiration+ She shran2 -ehind the curtains1 (eeling as i( the glasses leveled at her must inevita-ly discover the secret (ear that $eighed upon her li2e a sense o( guilt+ The pertinacious ga3e o( one gentleman particularly annoyed her1 (or his lorgnette remained up long a(ter the play -egan+ e $as a small1 dar21 2een:eyed man $ho1 in spite o( his ease1 loo2ed as i( he $as rather out o( his element+ No$ and then he leaned -ac2 and appeared to spea2 to someone concealed -ehind the red curtains o( the -o&+ !limpses o( a $hite arm and shoulder -etrayed that his companion $as a lady1 and several times the glitter o( a glass $as seen at the inner corner o( the curtain1 as i( another pair o( eyes $atched as $ell as his o$n+ Being nervous and e&cited1 Rosamond (elt trou-led -y this strange scrutiny and (ound it di((icult to (orget it in her delight and admiration at

Ristori#s splendid rendering o( Medea+ Tempest $as leaning (or$ard1 apparently intent on the stage1 $hen Rosamond1 $ho $as covertly studying his (ace1 sa$ it suddenly turn deathly pale as he started violently and let his dou-le:-arreled glass (all $ith a crash+ er eyes (ollo$ed his and sa$ the outline o( a $oman#s (igure 6ust vanishing -ehind the curtain o( the opposite -o&1 $here sat the impertur-a-le little man $ho no$ appeared a-sor-ed in the play+ )*euce ta2e the glass0 %t#s ,uite spoilt+ Lend me yours1 Rose1) and ta2ing it hastily Tempest loo2ed long at their in,uisitive neigh-ors+ )*o you 2no$ that man1 /hillip5 e seems to ta2e a great interest in us1 (or he has -een staring ever since $e came+) )Never sa$ him -e(ore in my li(e+ There#s a lady $ith him1 have you seen her5) )Only her arm and a very handsome one it is+ She 2eeps hersel( hidden (rom me+ 4ou sa$ her1 % thin25) )A mere glimpse7 she#s not pretty1 that accounts (or her concealing her plain (ace and sho$ing her (ine arms+ % daresay he is some -ear o( a Russian prince1 they are all per(ect savages as (ar as good -reeding is concerned+) ) e loo2s li2e a Frenchman1 small1 su-tle and sharp+ The Russians are all -ig1 stupid and -oorish li2e that immense Baron La2vre(32i nodding yonder+) )/erhaps he is1 -ut no Frenchman $ould stare in that rude $ay unless he had some strong reason (or (orgetting his manners+ Than2 you1 $e mustn#t tal21 this is the (inest scene and our $hispering annoys others+) Tempest gave -ac2 the glass and dra$ing his chair a little -ehind Rosamond#s seemed to (orget the man and see only Medea+ The door o( the -o& stood open (or coolness1 a -rilliant 6et o( gas -urned in the lo--y near-y1 and happening to turn her head to as2 Tempest the meaning o( an %talian phrase $hich pu33led her1 Rosamond sa$1 clearly de(ined against the open door1 the shado$ o( a $oman+ %t $as leaning (or$ard as i( the person tried to peep unseen1 (or the instant Rosamond spo2e it vanished+ )Someone $as $atching us1 % sa$ the shado$1) she said ,uic2ly in English+ Be(ore the $ords $ere (ully uttered Tempest sprang up and $as gone1 closing and loc2ing the door -ehind him+ O-eying a sudden impulse1 she loo2ed over at the opposite -o&1 it $as empty and a curious (eeling o( dis,uiet too2 possession o( her+ Tempest#s long a-sence did not lessen this1 (or the tragedy ended and the house $as nearly cleared -e(ore he returned1 loo2ing li2e a man $ho had passed through an e&citing scene since he le(t her+ is (ace $as (lushed1 his eyes shone ire(ully1 his -reath $as ,uic2ened and his laugh

(orced as he said1 $hile hurrying Rosamond#s -urnous a-out her1 )%t $as that a-surd young Thoma+ The -oy is in love $ith you and thin2s you an ice-erg li2e most English $omen -ecause you don#t see the necessity o( having a lover as $ell as a hus-and+) )*id he come in mas,uerade costurne5 The shado$ $ore an opera cloa2 and had long curls1) said Rosamond $ith a very incredulous e&pression+ ) e $ore his o$n cloa2 and has curls1 you 2no$+ A shado$ $ould distort and magni(y any o-6ect and you might -e easily deceived+ % told him+ there must -e no more o( this nonsense and sent him home1) ans$ered Tempest1 loo2ing her (ull in the (ace $ith his (ran2est air+ )*id it ta2e you all this $hile to do that5) )No1 % $ent to (ind the carriage1 (or that Nicolo is a -orn -loc2head and it is never ready+ There is terri-le con(usion a-out carriages here and % had a long search -e(ore % (ound mine+ ere it is+ ome1 Nicolo+) Nothing more $as said1 Rosamond as2ed no ,uestions -ut had her o$n suspicions+ Tempest 6ested a-out young Thoma -ut loo2ed horri-ly an&ious ne&t day1 and Baptiste $as on guard $ith redou-led vigilance+ A(ter dinner Tempest loo2ed up suddenly (rom some ne$ly arrived letters $ith the a-rupt ,uestion1 )Rose1 % am tired o( Nice1 are you ready (or another cruise5) )4es+) )!ood0 "e $ill -e o(( the day a(ter tomorro$+ Tell no one -ut ;ustine7 let her get your personal e((ects ready1 Baptiste $ill attend to everything else+) )4es+) )"e $ill go to Sicily (or a month or t$o1 $ould you li2e that5) )4es+) The lac2 o( interest1 the spiritless docility o( the three mee2 a((irmatives struc2 Tempest and caused him to say $ith an an&ious glance at her pale (ace1 )4ou need change1 my darling7 $e have -een too gay this $inter and it is ,uite time that

$e $ent a$ay to some ,uieter spot $here $e can (orget the (rivolities o( this giddy place+) )% never can (orget .alrosa+) Tears rilled Rosamond#s eyes as she recalled the happy days spent here -e(ore her trou-le -egan+ )4ou (oolish child1 $e shall come again ne&t $inter and (ind everything unchanged+ "here are you going1 Rose5) he as2ed1 as she $ent to$ard the long $indo$ opening on the terrace1 $here the glo$ o( sunset still (aintly lingered+ )To $ander a-out the garden1 /hillip+ %( % am to leave so soon % must en6oy my (lo$ers $hile % can+) )Shall % go $ith you5) )No1 than2 you1 % shall only roam a-out a little and you are -usy+ %#ll not go out o( sight o( Baptiste i( you (ear % shall get lost+) )!o $here you li2e and come -ac2 my cheer(ul1 happy:tempered girl i( you can+ 4ou are not li2e yoursel( lately7 -ut %#m used to (eminine caprices and never -rea2 my heart a-out them+) "ith that he returned to his $riting and Rosamond $ent do$n into the garden $ondering $hat he meant -y calling out to Baptiste as she le(t the room1 )%s Nicolo at the gate5) )4es1 Master+) )And !iuseppe in the garden5) )No1 Master+) )Tell him to go then+) )% $ill1 Master+) )Once at sea and there $ill -e an end o( this surveillance1 (or there he can $atch me himsel(1 and there $ill -e no dar2 secret (or me to discover1) thought Rosamond1 and $andering (rom one green noo2 to another she came at last to the grotto9a roc2y little cavern $here a spring gushed up crystal clear and icy cold (rom the mossy -asin scooped (or it+ The roo( $as

green $ith clim-ing vines and the $alls covered $ith (eathery lady:(erns+ aving gathered a hand(ul1 she stooped to drin2 at the (airy pool1 -ut as she raised her head again the rosy shell $hich served (or a cup (ell (rom her hand1 (or tall and dar2 along the sandy (loor lay the shado$ o( a $oman+ One instant she stood motionless1 the ne&t she sprang out into the path and loo2ed a-out her+ Nothing $as visi-le1 and as she glanced -ehind her no shado$ -ut her o$n (ell on the grotto (loor+ A second and a 2eener inspection sho$ed her an o-6ect $hich proved that some (oot -eside hers had lately passed that $ay+ "hen she came she had seen one o( the gay scarlet anemones $hich spring up every$here nodding in the middle o( the path and had turned aside to spare it7 no$ it lay -ent and -ruised -y a hasty step1 (or as she loo2ed it slo$ly li(ted itsel( as i( -ut ne$ly pressed+ );ulie0 Lucille0) called Rosamond1 thin2ing it might have -een one o( the maids $ho had made a trysting place o( the grotto and $hom her presence had (rightened a$ay+ No ans$er came1 -ut the rustle o( leaves at some distance caught her ear+ "ith a rapid step she (ollo$ed1 peering into the (ragrant gloom o( the orange grove on either side7 yet all in vain1 (or nothing human re$arded her search e&cept the -oy !iuseppe1 $hom she (ound lounging on the grass at the entrance to the only path that led to the grotto+ )*id you see ;ustine in the garden5) as2ed Rosamond1 (eeling sure the lad must have met the intruder $hoever she $as i( she entered that $ay+ )No1 Madame1 % have seen no one -ut Mademoiselle Bahette1 $ho comes to play $ith me1) and he sho$ed his $hite teeth as he smilingly caressed the little antelope $ho ni--led the grass -eside him+ )4ou are sure no one has passed1 !iuseppe5) )No one1 Madame may -elieve me+ There is no $ay -ut this to the spring and the maids never go at night7 they (ear it1

a ghost $al2s there they say+ /erhaps Madame sa$ the ghost5) The -oy#s -lac2 eyes dilated $ith such genuine curiosity and alarm that Rosamond could not dou-t him+ )"hat is the ghost li2e5) she as2ed+ )A tall pale lady1 all in -lac2 $ith a veil a-out her head1 and she $al2s here $eeping -y the spring $here she $as (ound dead many years ago+ They say her tears 2eep the -asin (ull and (resh and that $hoever drin2s o( the $ater $ill soon have cause to $eep+) )!od (or-id0) e6aculated Rosamond1 remem-ering her o$n cool draught+ )% thin2 % sa$ the ghost1 -ut it is a happy one9 % sa$ it last night also at the theater+ Say nothing1 !iuseppe1 or they $ill laugh at us+ % shall go in no$7 put Bahette to -ed and go soon yoursel(+)

888

)"hat is the story o( the ghost o( the grotto1 /hillip5) she as2ed as she entered the salon and -egan arranging her (erns and (lo$ers in a mar-le urn upon the $riting ta-le at $hich he still sat+ e loo2ed up and laughed+ )% send you a$ay to recover your spirits and you come -ac2 $ith a dismal (ace demanding a ghost story+ o$ did you 2no$ there $as one5) )!iuseppe told me+ /lease relate it+) ) e (irmly -elieves in it+ % don#t1 nevertheless here is the legend+ Once upon a time a young %talian -uilt this house (or his lady:love1 and here she reigned a ,ueen till one day she un(ortunately discovered that he $as (alse to her+ So1 in the summary style o( those days1 she sta--ed him in the dar21 and cursed .alrosa $ith a dread(ul curse1

prophesying that hence(orth no $oman should ma2e it her home $ithout (inding -e(ore she le(t it that the -right $aters $ere -itter1 the roses (ull o( thorns and love all a tragical delusion+ Then she very sensi-ly -ro2e her heart1 and very (oolishly continues to go $eeping and $ailing a-out the place (or her (alse lover+) )% hope she $ill (ind him1) $as Rosamond#s sole reply+ The ne&t day $as a -usy one1 -ut -y night all $as ready (or their departure ne&t morning1 and $eary $ith her preparations Rosamond $ent early to her -ed1 leaving Tempest to give the last orders to such o( the servants as remained+ o$ long she slept she did not 2no$1 -ut $o2e suddenly $ith a vague consciousness that some noise in the red room -elo$ had startled her+ Listening she heard no sound1 and $as a-out to drop asleep again $hen a chilly gust (rom the open $indo$ -le$ over her and she rose to shut it+ A strong light (rom the lo$er room streamed out across the (lo$ery la$n and a murmur o( voices caught her ear+ )"hat can /hillip -e doing so late5) she thought1 and stepped out upon the little -alcony -e(ore her $indo$1 meaning to spea2+ er hearing $as remar2a-ly acute and as she -ent over the lo$ railing $ith his name upon her lips she -ecame conscious that one o( the voices $as a $oman#s+ "ith strange vividness the legend (lashed into her memory1 the mysterious shado$ that haunted them1 and the ne$ an&iety $hich had -eset her hus-and o( late+ Never pausing to thin2 o( danger1 she 2nelt do$n1 thrust her head and shoulders through the $idely parted -ars o( the -alustrade and steadying hersel( $ith -oth hands leaned (ar over1 intent upon seeing or hearing something o( this nocturnal visitor+ "ell (or her that her hold $as a (irm one1 else she $ould have (allen $ith the start she gave $hen her eye (ell on the $indo$1 (or there1 distinctly outlined on the $hite inner -lind1 $as a $oman#s shado$+

C A/TER .%%%

%nto the Night

A moment she leaned so1 all eye and ear1 then $ith an almost (ierce e&pression she sprung -ac2 into her room1 hurried on her clothes1 noiselessly opened her door and crept to the stairhead+ There she paused $ith an in$ard e&clamation o( despair1 (or Baptiste sat tran,uilly reading in the hall -elo$+ !liding to her cham-er1 she stood rac2ing her -rain to discover some private means o( descent+ That $as the only staircase she could reach1 (or the servant#s $ing $as shut o(( (rom the main house1 $hich $as long and lo$ $ith many rooms on the ground (loor+ Once more she $ent to the -alcony and loo2ed do$n+ %t $as not high1 and could she have ta2en the leap $ithout noise she $ould have dared it7 that $as impossi-le and she groped a-out the room (or something -y $hich she could lo$er hersel(+ %n her search her (oot struc2 against a long1 strong leather strap -rought in to (asten a-out one o( the trun2s $hich stood ready (or the 6ourney+ Snatching it up she care(ully -uc2led one end a-out the railing o( the -alcony1 muttering sternly to hersel( as she did so1 )My $ild (eats as a girl stand me in good stead no$+) "hen the strap $as (irm1 she s$ung hersel( do$n $ith the agile s2ill she had ac,uired long ago1 and pausing till a gust -le$ up the valley she too2 advantage o( the general rustling o( (oliage to creep under the rose trees that gre$ thic2 and tall close a-out the house+ Crouching there she listened $ith every sense alert7 -ut though the $indo$ $as a6ar and the conversation in English1 $hich none o( the servants -ut Baptiste understood1 so lo$ and rapid $ere the voices that she o(ten lost a sentence and could have cried out in her desperate suspense -ut (or the (ear o( losing everything+ )Since you have -een mad enough to come here in spite o( all my $arnings and promises1 you must

ans$er my ,uestions -e(ore % ans$er yours+ o$ did you 2no$ % had come -ac21) said Tempest#s voice savagely+ )"illough-y told me1) replied the $oman in a clear (irm tone+ )"illough-y0 The man is dead+) )% 2no$ it1 -ut the very evening he (irst sa$ you he $rote to me telling me $here and $ith $hom you $ere+) )Curse his precipitation0 ad % 2no$n that % might have spared mysel( and him+ "hen % heard he $as dead % said1 #Fortune (avors me as usual1# and never dreamed the mischie( $as already done+ "ell1 he#ll meddle no more1 that is a consolation+ So you came on at once5) )4es1 *ovenant promised to in(orm and secure the -oy unsuspected1 -ut % so longed to see my Lito % came also and remained concealed $hile *ovenant $or2ed+ e did give Lito my letter and % got his ans$er1 then you discovered the plot and spirited a$ay the -oy+ /hillip1 % must have him+ %t is my right and % claim it+) )No court o( la$ $ill grant it to you1 nor $ill %+ Might ma2es right $ith me and you shall never have him1 never0 % s$ear it and %#ll 2eep the oath+) )Oh1 -e merci(ul0 Thin2 $hat % have su((ered1 ho$ patiently % have $aited1 ho$ long % have clung to the hope that in time % might have the child (or a little $hile+ Even $hen % $rote % did not -lame or -etray you1 though you say he 2ne$ you $ere his (ather+ e (elt or guessed it1 % never told him+) )4ou told him enough to separate you (orever+ e is as much lost to you as i( he $ere in his grave+) A sudden cry -ro2e (rom the $oman as i( in his (ace as $ell as in his som-er voice she sa$ some ominous hint o( loss or danger+ )%s he dead1 that you loo2 and spea2 in that horri-le $ay5 ave you 2illed the -oy in one o( your savage moods5 %( so %#ll have 6ustice1 though % hunt you through the $orld+) ) e is not dead1 -etter (or him i( he $ere1 % spea2 the solemn truth1 Marion1 you may -elieve me+)

)% $ill -elieve nothing1 there is no truth in you+ "here is the -oy5 Tell me that and prove it or % $ill rouse the city till he is (ound+) ere a sudden gust dro$ned -oth voices and $hen it passed the ans$er had -een given+ "hatever it $as the mother seemed appeased -y it1 (or the time at least+ )% 2no$ the place1 dar2 and dreary -ut -etter (or him to -e there than here $ith you+) )Let that pass1 %#m tired o( the everlasting rehearsal o( my sins1 % 2no$ them $ell enough and need no catalogue+ "hat $ill you have ne&t5) )% might say my o$n rights and 6ustice (or mysel(1 -ut % gave up all hope o( that long ago7 % do claim it (or this poor girl+ From the lips o( strangers % learn that she passes (or your $i(e7 is that true5) )4es1 $hy not5) )And she consents to the lie5) )She thin2s it a truth+ There $as no other $ay7 the old man 2ne$ nothing o( you and made me promise to marry Rose+ % 2ne$ it $as impossi-le and tried to $in her $ithout1 -ut she $as (irm and to satis(y her % prepared a convenient (riend to play the parson on -oard the yacht+ She 2ne$ nothing o( such matters1 trusted me -lindly1 and has -een as happy as an angel till you came to mar our /aradise+) )/oor child1 poor lost unhappy girl0 Man may (orgive you (or this1 /hillip+ !od never $ill1 and the punishment $ill come dar2 and dire $hen least you loo2 (or it+ as she no suspicion o( the truth5 *oes she still -elieve and trust5) )She -egins to (ro$n a little at times1 -ut that only ma2es her lovelier1 and she still trusts me or she $ould not -e glad and

ready to (ly a$ay again tomorro$+ "e need not go no$ as you leave1 (or the danger o( your meeting her $as $hat % have -een guarding against+ "hy did you sho$ yoursel( at the theater $here there might have -een English people $ho 2no$ us -oth5) )% $ished to see you and this girl+ % (ound her so young1 so lovely1 and in her (ace such innocence that % could not resist the longing to say one $ord o( $arning in her ear+ 4ou th$arted me1 -ut %#ll say it yet7 she shall -e saved i( % $or2 a miracle to do it+) )The same de(iant spirit1 the same indomita-le $ill and -itter tongue+ Time does not so(ten your hatred1 Marion7 nor lessen my aversion to the chain you ma2e me $ear+ %s there no desire on your part to -rea2 it and let me do poor Rose the only 6ustice in my po$er5) )"ould you marry her i( % (reed you5) )% thin2 % $ould+) )Then you must truly love her1 or is it -ut a ruse5) )% do love her as % never thought to love any mortal creature1 -elieve it or not as you please+) )"ill you give up the -oy (orever i( % consent to the divorce5) )No+) )Then % $ill not give up the only hold % have upon him+ The la$ gives me the po$er to 2eep you1 % $ill until you yield the child to my sole care+ The poor girl may -e saved (or a -etter (ate than that o( your $i(e+) )As you please1 so long as % love her and she is happy % care nothing (or la$ or gospel1 and de(y your po$er to $in (or you the one thing you $ant o( me+ %t is late1 *ovenant $ill -e tired o( $aiting and as your errand is accomplished $ill

you allo$ me to see you to your carriage1 Mrs+ Tempest5) )!ive me something o( the -oy#s -e(ore % go7 any tri(le that my darling used+ %s there no picture o( him as he loo2s no$5 %#ve only the -a-y (ace+ Oh1 /hillip1 do you remem-er ho$ many -itter years have passed since % sa$ my son5) )4es1 yes7 don#t cry and ma2e a scene (or !od#s sa2e+ ere ta2e this1 % al$ays $ear it -ut it#s sentimental (olly and %#m $illing to -e rid o( it+ No$ come1 %#ve told you $here %#ve sent him1 -e satis(ied and give me another long holiday i( you $ish (or any peace yoursel(+) ere the voices ceased and so(t steps passed through the guarded hall1 do$n the stone steps and a$ay into the garden1 -ut Rosamond did not hear them+ "hite and cold and still she lay among the -ro2en roses1 the saddest $rec2 o( all+ No one sa$ her in the moonless night1 no one dreamed o( the presence o( the very person against $hom all precautions had -een ta2en1 and (ortunately (or her Baptiste $as too $eary $ith many nights o( $atching to go his rounds again1 so nothing $as discovered+ "hen the chilly $ind and (alling de$ at length aroused her1 the (irst thought that came into her -e$ildered mind $as escape+ Not another day or hour $ould she remain1 no help $as possi-le1 no atonement could retrieve the past1 no love or pity1 pardon or e&cuse should so(ten the sharp pang o( reparation (or the guilty man+ To go instantly and (orever $as her only thought1 and this gave her strength to rise and loo2 a-out her+ %t seemed an age since the last $ords (ell upon her ear1 yet it could not have -een many minutes1 (or the door still stood open1 the lights still -urned1 and (rom the garden came the sound o( steps and voices+ Baptiste had gone to meet his master and they $ere returning together+ The hall $as empty and li2e a shado$ she darted through it1 up the stairs sa(ely to her room -e(ore they reached the terrace+ Loc2ing the door1 she dropped into a seat and clasping her hands over her thro--ing temples she compelled hersel( to thin2+ Not o( the terri-le a((liction $hich had -e(allen her1 the -light upon her li(e1 or the death o( con(idence and love7 these sharp grie(s $ould come later and years $ould not end

their pain7 no$ she must thin2 ho$ to act1 and her strong $ill ruled the $ea2 -ody1 the -ro2en heart royally+ Soon her plan $as made7 a glance at her $atch -y the (aint gleam o( a match sho$ed her the hour7 hal(:past t$elve7 at one the mail train to /aris passed through Nice that must ta2e her a$ay i( she could reach it in time+

888

The house $as dar2 and still no$1 )all a-ed and asleep1 and her -rie( preparations $ere so noiselessly made that they $ould not have distur-ed a $a2e(ul ear+ Choosing the plain -lac2 sil2 in $hich she meant to travel on the morro$1 she added a dar2 cloa21 pulled the delicate (lo$ers (rom a -lac2 lace -onnet and put on a thic2 veil+ One change o( linen and a (e$ relics o( the happy past she put in her small traveling -ag7 the purse in her poc2et $as al$ays $ell supplied and the rings on her (ingers $ould 2eep her long (rom $ant+ "hen all $as ready she had -ut (i(teen minutes1 and $asting no time in lamentation or (are$ells she dropped again (rom the -alcony and hurried a$ay to the station -y a little path $hich led through the vineyard and lessened the distance materially+ She reached the station in time1 -ought her tic2et and $as a-out to step out o( the -right salle d#attente lest someone should recogni3e her1 $hen young Thoma came rushing in $ith a lady all in -lac2 and closely veiled+ e did not see Rosamond and she glided out1 hoping to secure a carriage to hersel(+ T$o trains came thundering in1 one (or !enoa1 one (or /aris+ She had (orgotten the southern train and had there -een time $ould have changed her plan1 thin2ing Rome or Naples a sa(er re(uge than /aris+ %t $as too late no$ and stepping into an empty carriage she hid hersel( in the dar2est corner1 alone $ith her misery+ Could she have 2no$n that Mrs+ Tempest and her (riend occupied the coupe ne&t her it $ould have added another sting to her su((ering+ She $as merci(ully spared that 2no$ledge and so1 almost side -y side1 these t$o heavy: hearted $omen $ere -orne a$ay into the night+

C A/TER %I

The Chase Begins

igh up in the si&th story o( one o( the tall old houses in the Rue Napoleon at her attic $indo$ sat a $oman se$ing+ Not a grisette1 (or the -are1 neat room sho$ed none o( the ruling tastes o( that industrious -ut co,uettish sisterhood+ No -irdcage1 no pot o( (lo$ers at the $indo$1 no -it o( cheap muslin (estooned $ith pin2 cam-ric rosettes over the tiny mirror1 no gay picture o( some (avorite actor or lover opposite the cruci(i& at the -ed#s head1 or any glimpse o( Sunday (inery on chair or ta-le+ A glance at the $oman $ould have settled that point at once1 (or1 though -eauti(ul1 the (ace $as pale and $orn1 the mouth almost stern in its lines1 the eyes a-sent and mourn(ul1 the $hole (igure suggestive o( one -urdened $ith a heavy sorro$ against $hich she struggled -ravely+ %t $as a dull Novem-er day1 )the month o( suicides) as they call it in /aris1 and i( ever sad1 solitary $omen1 $orn out $ith ill:paid la-or or driven to desperation -y $ant or sin or $rong $ere to choose a day (or ending hopeless lives that $ould have -een a (itting one+ Blea21 cold and (oggy1 there $ere (re,uent sho$ers that made the street a sea o( mud and those $ho $al2ed there (orlorn o-6ects+ Nothing $as visi-le (rom that high $indo$ -ut a leaden s2y and a ro$ o( s,ualid houses opposite1 -ut as her eye turned (rom her $or2 Rosamond sa$ only the sunny gardens o( .alrosa or the -lue $aves o( the sea -eating round her to$er on the cli((+ Nearly nine months had passed since she (led a$ay and (aced the $orld alone+ On that dread(ul night as she $ent on and

on to meet her (ate she had done her -est to -e prepared (or it as (ar as possi-le+ %n /aris $as a 2ind old $oman $ho had ta2en her (ancy on a (ormer visit and $hom she had served -y procuring her $or21 there-y earning her gratitude+ Mother /u6al1 as her neigh-ors called her $as a lace:mender7 a cheery -usy1 honest1 little $oman and to her Rosamond resolved to go1 (or to none o( the delight(ul (riends o( an hour $ould she con(ide her do$n(all+ The old $oman had $elcomed her1 given her a re(uge1 and as time $ent on $ithout any alarm1 she ventured out+ Being un$illing to spend her little all in idleness1 Rose too2 up her needle1 thin2ing sadly o( the time $hen she had re6ected )-ands and gussets and seams) as un-eara-le+ No$ she earned her -read -y them1 and $hen the (irst shoc2 o( her dou-le loss had -een lessened -y a-sence1 time and la-or1 she (ell into a dull1 cold mood1 and li2e a -eauti(ul machine sat at her $or2 day a(ter day $ith no hope1 no (ear1 no care (or anything+ 4es1 one $ish she did cherish1 to 2no$ $here Tempest $as+ "hy he had not (ollo$ed and (ound her $as a mystery1 (or he $as not a man to su-mit tamely to any loss1 ho$ever $ell deserved1 $ithout a struggle (irst+ "as he dead1 did he still search vainly1 or had he (orgotten her5 These ,uestions she -rooded over daily and lay a$a2e long1 tear(ul nights endeavoring to ans$er1 (or in her heart yet lingered love (or the hero o( her early dreams1 not (or the man $ho had deceived and $ronged her+ Bac2 to him she $ould never go1 -ut in her lonely li(e still lived the s$eet memory o( that happy time $hen she -elieved in him and he $as all in all to her+ As the last stitch $as (inished she (olded her $or21 put on a gray cloa2 and -onnet $ith the thic2 veil $ithout $hich she never stirred a-road1 and $ith a little -as2et on her arm $ent out into the dreary street+ %t $as dar2 $hen she returned1 and $earily groping her $ay up the long unlighted stairs she unloc2ed her door1 entered and groped (or a match+ Turning $ith a candle dimly -urning in her hand she uttered a loud cry and rushed to the door1 (or there

seated in her one chair $as /hillip Tempest+ )At last1 at last1 my little truant1 % have (ound you0) he said1 rising $ith a laugh o( triumph and a $elcoming gesture as he advanced to meet her+ )%t is (ast1 Baptiste is $ithout1 so -e ,uiet (or escape is impossi-le1 and i( you raise the house %#ll s$ear you are mad and carry you a$ay -y (orce+ Be $ise1 my little Rose1 and tell me $hy you so cruelly deserted me+ Come1 % $ill listen patiently1 and $e may (ind some (oolish tri(le is to -lame (or this $earisome separation+) e $as right1 the door $ould not yield to her desperate hands and (inding (light vain she composed her startled nerves -y remem-ering that he had no po$er over her no$+ This thought steadied her and gave her courage to con(ront him $ith indignant eyes -ut un(altering voice+ )The #tri(le# $hich separates us (orever is your $i(e+) Contempt em-ittered the -rie( ans$er and a de(iant loo2 $arned him -ac2+ e paused $ith a -lac2 (ro$n1 though still his eye rested e&ultingly upon her and he $ore the air o( a master $ho has recovered a runa$ay slave+ )Ah1 my suspicion $as correct then1 you heard us $hen that cursed $oman came to .alrosa that last night5) )4es1 than2 !od1 % did0) )And you -elieved her5) )Every $ord+) )But i( % tell you it $as (alse1 and prove it5) )% should echo her speech1 #%#ll -elieve nothing1 (or truth is not in you+# 4our o$n lips convicted you1 my o$n senses are to -e trusted1 and that night#s $or2 cannot -e undone+)

)%t shall -e0 %#ll not have $or2ed so long in vain1 Rose1 sooner or later you must come -ac2 to me+) )Never alive+) )Bah0 Let us avoid heroics and tal2 rationally+ Sit here1 s$eetheart1 and give me a 2inder $elcome than this+) e spo2e in a so(tened tone and gently ta2ing the candle (rom her he placed it on the ta-le1 dre$ up the chair and motioned her to come and ta2e it $ith un(eigned tenderness in voice and eyes+ But she never stirred7 $ith one hand on the door1 the other hal( hidden under her cloa2 as i( some $eapon $ere concealed there1 she stood erect1 and (i&ing her steady eyes (ull upon him she said in a tone o( calm determination1 )*o not touch me or % $ill end this intervie$ sooner than you $ish+) )Fire or sta- as soon as you choose+ %#m -ullet:and dagger:proo( or % should have -een dead long ago1) he ans$ered $ith a scorn(ul smile+ )4ou are sa(e1 % had no thought o( 2illing you1) she -egan $ith a smile as scorn(ul as his o$n+ )4oursel(5 *id you not once a((irm that suicide $as co$ardly5) he as2ed1 $ith secret an&iety at her threat+ )% did1 -ut there are times $hen it is -raver and -etter to die than to live+ This is one o( them+) )'pon my soul1 you are complimentary0 "hy1 most unreasona-le and hardhearted o( charming $omen1 % have gone (ar and $ide (or many months searching (or you and $hen at last % (ind the desire o( my eyes you turn upon me li2e a tiger+ %t is very -ecoming -ut mee2ness is -etter+ *on#t -e thorny1 little Rose1 it $ill avail nothing1 (or love must con,uer in the end+) )Leave sentiment7 %#m sic2 o( it as % 2no$ its $orth+ o$ did you (ind me5) The contempt o( her glance1 the stern command o( her voice stung his pride and (or a moment su-dued him1 (or he had never seen her thus and the ne$ charm arrested him+ )%#ll tell you+ /ardon me i( % sit $hile you stand1 -ut % have -een ill and your (ive (lights o( stairs rather e&hausted me+) That hint o( illness touched her as he 2ne$ it $ould7 her eye scanned his thin (ace an&iously and gre$

piti(ul1 (or mar2s o( $asting disease $ere there+ Seeing that this stro2e succeeded $here violence (ailed1 Tempest assumed a ,uiet1 serious air and simply told his story+ )"hen % (ound you gone1 Rose1 % $as in despair+ The -alcony e&plained the manner o( your (light and % at once -ethought me o( the night trains+ "hich $ay you had gone $as the mystery+ T$o clues $ere (ound and un(ortunately % too2 the $rong one+ % learned that my $i(e1 as % must call that $oman1 and her (ello$ conspirator had gone to$ard /aris together7 also that young Thoma had 6oined a tall1 veiled lady at the station and gone to$ard Rome1 % could not thin2 you $ould 6oin Marion7 $oman#s pride $ould (or-id that+ % did thin2 you might have gone $ith that in(atuated -oy+ But in order to e&plain this you must have made some plot -e(orehand1 as there $as no time to (ind him a(ter you le(t .alrosa+ o$ $as it5) )4ou thought % $as (alse as $ell as yoursel(5 A natural conclusion (or a man li2e /hillip Tempest+) )Say $hat you $ill1 Rose1 %#ll hear it1 (or the 6oy o( seeing you again out$eighs the pain o( your hard $ords and cruel accusations+) )Finish1 i( you please1) $as her only reply to the plaintive speech and the reproach(ul loo2 $hich accompanied it+ e -it his lip and $ent on $ith an in$ard resolve that she should e&piate her present de(iance -y redou-led devotion herea(ter+ )% 2ne$ that all $omen $ere (ic2le1 (alse and easily $on -y youth1 money and s$eet promises+ 4ou had -een cold and shy o( late7 unli2e yoursel(1 too o-edient and mee2 to -e ,uite natural1 and $hen % spo2e o( Thoma you al$ays turned the conversation+ These things % recalled a(ter you $ere gone and (ancied that you had heard nothing -ut had hurried your (light -ecause o( my proposed departure+ % (ollo$ed1 gro$ing surer as % $ent on that it $as you1 (or everyone con(irmed the story o( the enamoured youth1 the lovely $oman1 and the evident (ear -oth evinced o( -eing overta2en+ Some rumor o( pursuit had reached them and they (led -e(ore me till % had chased them all over the Continent+ Ah1 that pleases you1 revenge(ul girl0 4ou en6oy the thought o( my (ruitless (atigue1 my -itter disappointment+) )% do7 it $as a 6ust punishment1 though too light (or your o((ense+) )Than2 you1 amia-le love+ *o you 2no$1 % thin2 % li2e this ne$ tone o( yours7 it#s stimulating1 and as a change really charming no$ % am accustomed to it+ Thoma it seems had run a$ay $ith a pretty English girl -y $ay o( consoling himsel( (or your coldness+ e thought % $as her (ather pursuing them until $e met1 $hen % gave him my -lessing and advised them to go to Egypt+ % had sent Baptiste to /aris $hen % $ent to$ard Rome and he soon reported that Marion >% $on#t use the o((ensive $ord1 $e -oth hate it? had returned to England+ %t seemed as i( (ate $as against me1 (or all trace o( you $as lost1 precious

time $asted1 and to complete my despair % (ell ill $ith a (ever $hich $ould have (inished me -ut (or my (aith(ul Baptiste+ *on#t you love him (or that5) he as2ed $ith a sneer+ )% love truth and (idelity in anyone+ o$ did you (ind me at last5) )By the merest accident+ "hen % $as a-le to travel % $ent to ythe1 thin2ing you $ere there+ But the old man 2ne$ nothing o( you and a(ter a stormy tete:a:tete % returned to /aris (eeling sure you must -e here+ Most men $ould have employed a detective1 -ut % disli2e them (or they ma2e inconvenient mista2es sometimes and -ring to light things that are -etter (orgotten+ Baptiste $as my spy and $ould have (erreted you out as surely as a hound had he not seen you in the street and recogni3ed you in spite o( the veil+ Tonight $hen you $ent out $e came in1 and no$ nothing remains -ut (or you to (orget and (orgive and come a$ay $ith me to en6oy the gay1 (ree li(e you love+) )*are you as2 me5 4es1 you dare anything0 My only ans$er is1 i( my grave stood open on one side and you upon the other %#d go into my grave -e(ore % $ould ta2e one step to meet you+ No$ leave me7 you have no right to stay1 no po$er to (orce me a$ay1 and alive % $ill not go+) She e&pected a -urst o( $rath or some violent demonstration1 -ut Tempest $as too $ise (or that7 he 2ne$ her too $ell1 and loo2ing at her $ith the one genuine passion o( his li(e elo,uently e&pressed in his (ine eyes1 he said in the tender tone (e$ could resist1 )*o you no longer love me5) She $ould have given $orlds to have -een a-le to ans$er )No1) -ut she could not7 he sa$ her hesitation and 2ne$ that her heart $as traitor to her $ill+ Feeling sure that she $ould yield i( he did not press her too strongly1 he concealed the satis(action this -etrayal gave him and $ithout $aiting (or her reply said gently1 )4ou do1 and in that (act is my hope+ % have no right % 2no$1 (or % have deceived you7 % $ill atone -y li(elong devotion -ut % cannot give you up+ %t is too late to undo the past1 it is $iser to (orget it and -e happy+ The (ault $as not yours1 so $hy should you destroy your peace and mine -y trying to atone (or it in this stern $ay5) )The sin is yours1 -ut the shame and sorro$ are mine7 the past % cannot retrieve1 the (uture is still

unspoiled and % $ill not em-itter it -y any $ill(ul sin+ Be(ore % $as innocently guilty1 no$ % should -e dou-ly guilty i( % $ent -ac2 to the #gay (ree li(e % love+# Atone (or the $rong you have done me -y ceasing to tempt and trou-le me+ % $ill not yield1 though you hunt me to death+) )Nor $ill %1 Rose+ %( % $ere (ree1 $ould you -e my $i(e5) he spo2e $ith sudden purpose and $atched the e((ect o( his $ords $ith covert an&iety+ An instant and indignant re(usal rose to Rosamond#s lips1 -ut a second thought chec2ed it and made her say coldly1 )4ou cannot do it unless you give up the -oy+) )% have given him up+) An angry (lash o( sharp pain passed over Tempest#s (ace+ )"hen and ho$5) )%#ll tell you nothing -ut that the -oy is dead+) She as2ed (or no proo( o( this assertion -ut dropped her traitorous eyes and concealed the detestation that (illed her heart1 (or necessity taught her dissimulation+ )Then you deceived your $i(e $hen you re(used to e&change your son (or your li-erty5) e shrun2 and put up his hand+ )4es1 yes7 let it go1 it $orries me0 %t $as no (ault o( mine1 they e&ceeded my orders7 it cannot -e helped no$+ Marion $ill (ree me $illingly1 since the -oy is gone1 and then % $ill marry you1 Rose1 % s$ear it+) )!ive me till morning to thin2 o( this7 it is too sudden+ % must have time+ !o1 /hillip1 %#ll ans$er you tomorro$+) )4ou promise me1 and you#ll not do anything tragical mean$hile5 Escape $ill -e impossi-le1 (or % shall engage the room -elo$ lest you try your old plan1 and Baptiste $ill guard the door+ "e have a plausi-le tale (or the curious1 and you $ill -e $ise to thin2 ,uietly and give me a 2ind ans$er tomorro$+) )%#ll not 2ill mysel(1 % promise that1 (or no$ % $ish to live+) e did not see her (ace1 her voice $as lo$1 her $hole air changed and he -elieved she $ould yield i( he $as patient+ !oing to the $indo$1 he

loo2ed out7 nothing -ut a narro$ slope o( tiled roo( lay -et$een it and a (all into the street (ar -elo$+ )That is sa(e i( she#s not a -ird1) he said $ith a smile1 and opening the door he departed1 saying hope(ully1 )% shall come early (or your ans$er1 let it -e a happy one1 my little Rose+) e did come early1 -ut the ans$er $as an empty room+

C A/TER I

Mademoiselle onorine

%n the gray da$n /auline Laurent $as startled (rom the hour#s sleep $hich she allo$ed hersel( a(ter a long night#s $or21 -y a hand upon her shoulder and a -reathless voice $hispering in her ear1 )"a2e and help me1 %#m in danger0) 'p she sprung $ith her ,uic2 $its all a-out her in an instant+ er $indo$ stood $ide open and -y her -ed 2nelt a girl $ith -loody hands and a $hite1 resolute (ace that $ould have daunted any $oman+ )!reat heavens $hat is this5 Mam#selle Ruth1 ho$ came you here1 my door is loc2ed5) she e&claimed+ )% came -y the $indo$+ Shut it so(tly and let me tell you the sad strait % am in1) $hispered the other as she glanced apprehensively a-out her as i( (earing that the $alls had ears+ /auline closed the $indo$1 made )Ruth) sit upon the -ed and1 $hile she listened1 -ound up the torn hands+ )Forgive me that % came to distur- and as2 (avors o( you1 -ut you are my only hope1 (or Mother /u6al is too (ar a$ay1)

-egan Rosamond1 $ho had assumed a (alse name in coming to these lodgings1 $here no one 2ne$ her story1 though /auline had gathered hints o( it+ )My poor child1 con(ide in me1 % am at your service soul and -ody+ % too have had dangers and -een helped in my need+ Spea2 (reely1 % listen+) )Many1 many than2s0 % told you in one o( our little tete:a:tetes (rom our $indo$s that % had le(t my hus-and and hid mysel( (rom him7 /auline1 he has (ound me and no$ $aits at my door to ta2e me -ac2+ % $ill not go1 (or % detest him and he has $ronged me+ % -egged the night to thin2 o( his proposal7 he put a guard at my door and slept -elo$ himsel(1 -ut % escaped as % had resolved to do $hen % as2ed (or delay+) )But1 dear Mam#selle1 it is incredi-le that you came along the roo(0 %t $as a (right(ul danger7 % al$ays trem-le $hen my cat $al2s there+ o$ could you do it5) cried /auline1 ama3ed and hal( incredulous+

)% scarcely 2no$+ %t $as (right(ul1 -ut % had rather -e dashed to pieces on the stones -elo$ than go -ac2 to that man7 -etter destroy the -ody than the soul+) There $as a dread o( something $orse than death in the girl#s $ild1 $oe(ul eyes+ )Long ago1 $hen a daring1 restless child1 % learned to $al2 steadily along a more perilous place than this7 -ut % (ind % have lost my steady nerves1 (irm (oot and -rave heart+ The $ay $as very short -et$een our $indo$s -ut % $as (orced to cra$l and cling and drag mysel( along the di33y edge $here once % should have $al2ed $ithout a (ear+ No$ % must get a$ay immediately1 -ut $here can % go5) )Not to /u6al1 she is 2no$n to -e your (riend+ "ait a little1 % have ideas1 % shall devise something+ Lie do$n and rest7 %#ll thin2 $hile % pac2 my $or2+) "orn out $ith a sleepless night and reassured -y the (riendly sympathy o( the 2ind soul1 Rosamond lay do$n1 not to rest

-ut to thin2 also as she $atched /auline (old several heavy velvet mantles and trains lined $ith moc2 ermine and evidently intended (or some actress+ As /auline $or2ed she 2nit her -ro$s1 muttered1 shrugged and nodded in a $ay that $ould have -een ludicrous had it not -een so heartily earnest+ Suddenly she (lung the drapery do$n1 ran across the room and li(ting the lid o( an immense $ic2er -as2et pointed to it $ith a theatrical gesture1 crying 6oy(ully1 )Behold the means o( escape0 % have a super- idea1 an inspiration0 See no$1 % go today early $ith my costumes to Mademoiselle onorine7 she is an angel1 adores romance1 is true as steel and a (riend to the unhappy+ 4ou $ould vanish and leave no trace -ehind7 the $indo$ $as a grand stro2e1 mine shall e,ual it+ % $ill leave the trains and ta2e you in my cor-eille1 $hich /ierre comes (or $ith his covered cart+ % go $ith you1 $e give Mademoiselle a charming surprise1 interest her in you1 she is your (riend at once1 and Monsieur1 votre man1 is out$itted+ Say is it not super-5) )But it is impossi-le7 % am too large1 too heavy7 the -as2et is not strong enough1 they $ill suspect1 and this onorine may -e o((ended at my -oldness+) )Bah0 % do not listen to your (ears+ See here1) and in s2ipped the lively French$oman1 dropping the lid and calling out (rom $ithin1 )%t is lu&urious1 airy and charming7 the -ottom is o( $ood1 strong as iron1 and the -as2et (irm enough to hold another o( your English Falsta((s as in that so droll play+) ere she s2ipped out again1 still tal2ing and gesticulating in a most inspiring manner+ )No one $ill suspect me7 % go every $ee27 sometimes my load is heavy1 sometimes light7 /ierre is a stupide and % can manage him $ith ease+ Mademoiselle onorine $ill -e delighted1 not annoyed7 % 2no$ her $ell1 % assure you o( this and % implore you to let me have my $ay+) %t $as impossi-le to re(use1 (or her good$ill and con(idence $ere irresisti-le+ Rosamond yielded and $hen all $as ready she stepped into the great -as2et1 caring little $hither she $ent i( she only escaped the 2een eyes o( Baptiste and his master+ /auline laid a tulle dress over her as a screen i( -y any mischance the lid $as li(ted1 and calling up /ierre and the concierge she -ade them -e very care(ul1 (or the cor-eille contained Mademoiselle#s most costly velvets+ So (ull o( 6ests and compliments and odd merriment $as she that the men $ent laughing do$n the long stairs scarcely

conscious o( the unusual $eight o( their -urden+ Once in the covered cart1 $ith /ierre $histling on the seat outside and /auline sitting near her $ith the lid hal( open to give her air1 Rosamond#s spirits rose and the t$o $omen tal2ed in $hispers as they rolled -ris2ly a$ay to$ard .ersailles1 -et$een $hich place and /aris stood Mademoiselle#s little villa+

888

onorine $as at -rea2(ast in a charming room surrounded -y every lu&ury a French$oman could desire+ She $as thirty -ut loo2ed -arely t$enty1 so care(ully had she preserved the -eauty $hich had made her (ortune+ Rosy1 petite and plump1 she $as altogether charming in her $hite cashmere dressing go$n $ith its trimming o( s$ansdo$n and rose:colored ri--ons as she sat sipping her chocolate and studying a ne$ role+ )Al$ays punctual1 my good /auline1) she said gaily as the -as2et $as set do$n and the t$o $ere le(t alone+ )Ah1 Mademoiselle1 % have a thousand pardons to -eg that % disappoint you (or a day+ The costumes are ready -ut % do not -ring them1 -ecause % 2no$ your in(inite goodness and % assure mysel( that a 2ind deed $ill give you more happiness than the most ravishing toilette in /aris+ Behold1 % -ring you one $ho needs the help you so delight to give1) and (linging -ac2 the lid1 /auline li(ted the dress and discovered Rosamond+ As the girl rose to her (eet $ith a gesture o( mute appeal1 onorine uttered a little cry o( surprise1

(ollo$ed -y a glance o( recognition1 and hastened (or$ard $ith e&tended hands1 saying in a tone o( mingled astonishment and $elcome1 )Madame Tempest0 %n truth % am charmed that you visit me even in this so une&pected and romantic $ay+) ) ush1 % am not Madame Tempest9it is at an end and % am alone9oh1 Mademoiselle1 (or the love o( charity1 -e(riend me+) Overcome -y con(licting emotions o( gratitude and grie(1 surprise and shame1 Rosamond covered her (ace and thre$ hersel( at the (eet o( the actress1 $hom she no$ remem-ered to have seen at Nice though the name had entirely escaped her memory+ *ivining the sad truth $ith the ,uic2ness o( a $oman1 onorine proved that she deserved the praises o( /auline -y the tender sympathy1 the delicate respect1 the cordial $elcome she gave the innocent outcast+ Li(ting her1 she laid the -eauti(ul tear(ul (ace on her 2ind -osom1 and said $ith so(tened voice and the pressure o( a (riendly hand1 )My (riend then1 i( % may call you so+ Believe me you are dou-ly $elcome i( % can serve or com(ort you+ Tell me all that a((licts you and let me help you as % have -een helped in times past+) ere /auline -ro2e in1 (or seeing that her $or2 $as done she $as an&ious to -e gone and serve else$here1 )*ear Mademoiselle1 % go to $atch and report tomorro$ $hen % -ring the costumes+ 4ou are sa(e1 my poor child1 (or this angel $ill guard you+ Con(ide in her and the good !od -less you -oth+) "aiting (or no reply1 she sei3ed her -ig -as2et and vanished1 dragging it -ehind her so--ing and laughing as she $ent+ Then Rosamond opened her $hole heart to onorine1 (eeling the indescri-a-le consolation o( sympathy a(ter months o( loneliness+ "hen all $as told the actress said1 a(ter a thought(ul pause1 )4ou love this man1 he o((ers to marry you7 it is -ut 6ustice1 $hy not consent and -e happy5) )Because % can never (orget nor (orgive1 and happiness is impossi-le $ith such a memory as this to poison all my li(e+ % $ill not love him1 % $ill learn to hate him1 % $ill ma2e the (uture one long penance (or the past+) )4ou $ill return to your grand(ather perhaps5) )No1 % could not -ear that house no$+ e does not love me7 % never $as a pride or 6oy to him+ % cannot return no$ to

-e a disgrace+) )"hat then $ill you do1 my (riend5 Tell me your $ish and it shall -e done+) )% only $ant a sa(e and ,uiet place to hide in1 $here % may $or2 and $ait till !od sees (it to end the li(e that is no$ a -urden to me+ % (oresee -ut little peace $hile /hillip (ollo$s me1 and (ollo$ he $ill until he tires o( the chase+ Neither o( us $ill yield and he $ill hunt me do$n $herever % may hide+) )No1 that $ould -e too cruel0 Surely he has some pity7 or i( not1 continued de(iance $ill $eary him at last i( he is li2e most men+) )4ou do not 2no$ him+ e has no pity1 and my de(iance $ill -ut increase the e&citement o( the pursuit+ % am solitary1 poor and a $oman7 he po$er(ul1 rich and a man $hom all (ear+ The $orld $hich re6ects me though % am innocent $ill $elcome him1 the guilty1 and uphold him+ % am helpless and must go my $ay as -est % can1 praying that it -e a short one+) )Nay1 that is too melancholy a (uture (or a lovely young creature li2e you+ See1 % have a charming plan1 or i( that does not please you there is still another re(uge to $hich you can (ly+ % am to play this $inter in Berlin7 (or this % am preparing and in a $ee2 % go+ Come $ith me as my (riend1 and i(1 $hen you have seen the gay yet innocent li(e % lead1 you $ill share it1 % $ill help you1 and $ith -eauty such as yours the (uture may yet -e a -rilliant and happy one+) )4ou are too 2ind1 too generous0 % $ill go1 -ut tell me o( the other plan -e(ore % decide on this+) )Ah1 that is only the last resort (or those $hom the $orld $earies or ill treats+ % have an Aunt in the convent o( St+ Annunciata near Amiens+ She o(ten implores me to come and share her tran,uil li(e1 -ut % re(use and she laments over me+ %( you choose this she $ill $elcome you and (it you (or eaven+ %t is a sa(e and ,uiet place1 and one might

-e happy there i( one li2ed shado$ -etter than sunshine+ Thin2 o( -oth1 % give you a $ee2 to decide7 meantime $e $ill en6oy each other and de(y Monsieur+) To this Rosamond agreed1 and so cheering $as the society o( the lively and (riendly ononne that each day gre$ -righter as hope and courage returned and the possi-ility o( happiness and peace -egan to com(ort her1 (or at t$enty the heart is $onder(ully gi(ted $ith the po$er o( outliving trials $hich later $ould -rea2 it at once or -urden it (or li(e+ /auline reported that a grand e&plosion had ta2en place $hen Tempest discovered that Rosamond had gone+ Both houses $ere searched1 /auline cross:e&amined and evidently strongly suspected o( having some 2no$ledge o( the missing girl+ Nothing could -e proved1 no one had -een seen to enter or leave her room1 and the merry soul convulsed her listeners $ith laughter as she recounted the scenes $hich had ta2en place -et$een hersel(1 Baptiste and Tempest+ )They are gone no$1) she said on her second visit1 )-ut they leave spies -ehind % (ancy1 and it is $ell that you start so soon else that (o& $ould surely discover your retreat -e(ore long+ % shall come no more7 it is not $ise1 -ut % $ill see you the day you leave and report the last ne$s+)

888

Sunday came and on Tuesday they $ere to start+ More than once Rosamond had nearly chosen the convent rather than the stage1 (or a sense o( sa(ety came over her as she thought o( that sacred seclusion and shrun2 (rom the gaiety and glare o( a theatrical li(e+ But onorine could not part $ith her and used every inducement to (i& her choice as G she $ould have it+ They had -een tal2ing o( the t$o plans as they sat together that sunny a(ternoon $hen the sound o( music in the courtyard

made onorine loo2 out+ T$o young lads $ith harp and pipe $ere singing at the gate1 loo2ing $ist(ully in the $hile $ith tired1 hungry (aces+ )/oor children0 They must not go (rom my door un(ed1) cried onorine1 $hose 2ind heart over(lo$ed $ith pity (or every un(ortunate she sa$+ Opening the $indo$1 she smiled and -ec2oned as she said hospita-ly1 )Come in1 come in7 % li2e your music $ell+ But (irst go do$n and eat and rest1 then return and play to me+ Adolph1 see that the little ones are cared (or -elo$+) /ulling o(( their caps1 the -oys murmured grate(ul than2s as they smiled -ac2 at the s$eet (ace a-ove and (ollo$ed the man a$ay+ )Jind soul0 "hat pleasure you ta2e in helping others+ %t is this $hich 2eeps you young and good and gay+ *ear onorine1 % used to pity you at Nice1 thin2ing mysel( your superior1 no$ % respect and love you more than any $oman % have ever 2no$n1) said Rosamond1 as the actress turned (rom the $indo$ $ell content+ )4es1 you have my secret (or 2eeping young and happy+ % envy no one1 % am (ree as air1 % earn my -read honestly and ma2e success s$eet -y sharing it $ith the poor+ Ah1 it is so -eauti(ul to give1) she ans$ered1 $ith an indescri-a-ly e&pressive gesture o( her pretty hands+ Soon a(ter1 the -oys came up to return than2s+ One $as a Savoyard and loo2ed ill and very tired7 the other an %talian and his -eauty struc2 onorine at once+ )See1 Rose1 the charming lad $ith his -rilliant -lac2 eyes1 his thic2 mass o( dar2 curls1 his pretty mouth and the grace o( his carriage+ 4es1 he is a per(ect picture9) Rosamond loo2ed up1 started1 sprung (or$ard and caught him close1 crying 6oy(ully1 )Lito0 Lito0 Can it -e you5)

C A/TER I

One More 'n(ortunate

)Bella Rosa0 Bella Rosa0) $as all the -oy could ans$er as he clung to her so--ing $ith 6oy in spite o( all his e((orts to control any unmanly emotion+ )But Lito1 ho$ came you here5 "here have you -een5 % mourned you as one dead+ *ear child1 sit here and tell me all1) cried Rosamond1 (orget(ul o( everything -ut the delight o( (inding the -oy1 the relie( o( 2no$ing that the sin o( his death did not -urden Tempest#s soul+ Bidding the Savoyard $ait -elo$1 onorine $ould have (ollo$ed had they not 2ept her to share their happiness+ )4es1 % shall tell you all1 though it is hard to spea2 ill o( my9o( Madame#s9no1 o( Monsieur1) stammered the -oy1 suddenly con(used -y the 2no$ledge $hich he -elieved he alone possessed+ )4our (ather1 not my hus-and+ % 2no$ all1 Lito7 (or your mother came to .alrosa (or you1 % learned the truth and came a$ay at once7 /hillip is nothing to me no$+ !o on1 %#ll tell my tale a(ter$ard+) olding her hand and stopping no$ and then to caress it $ith a mute e&pression o( the love and sympathy $hich he 2ne$ not ho$ to spea21 Lito told his story+ )The day he (ound the letter and $as so angry and sent you a$ay he threatened to 2ill me i( % $ould not promise to $rite a letter saying % pre(erred to stay $ith him+ % 2ne$ then he $as my (ather1 though

the letter said nothing o( it1 -ut % $ould not promise and that night Baptiste carried me a$ay to a gloomy monastery (ar -ac2 among the hills and there -uried me alive+) )Ah1 that $as $hat he meant -y spea2ing o( no one#s suspecting that you $ere -uried there $hen he loo2ed to$ard the hills+ But the mystery o( the olive grove5 % (ound a ne$:made grave there1 Lito1 and an ornament (rom your (e31 and % thought you $ere gone1 dear+) The -oy smiled1 then sighed and ans$ered sadly1 )No1 it $as my great hound#s grave+ % loved him1 -ut Baptiste 2illed him -ecause he hated me+ That night poor Leo (ollo$ed me1 % -egged to have him -ut Baptiste shot him -e(ore my eyes and a(ter$ard -uried him there1 % (ancy1 that it might -e thought the dog $as $ith me+ The (iligree image o( my patron saint1 $hich % missed and $anted -ecause you gave it1 must have (allen out as % struggled $ith Baptiste $hen he 2illed my dog in the grove+ That is the mystery $hich alarmed you1 Rosa+) )Than2 !od1 it is made clear to me0 !o on1 Lito+) )%t $as horri-le at San Andre7 they $ere so stern1 so grave and cold % could not -ear it1 and nearly a month ago % ran a$ay+ % had tried -e(ore and (ailed1 (or it is li2e a prison1 -ut old Tomaso1 the gardener1 pitied me and yielded at last to my prayers+ e let me slip a$ay one evening as $e $or2ed together1 and -ade me (ind a certain (riendly peasant in the valley $ho $ould help me on+ % did (ind him1 -ut he $as poor and could only give me a suit o( coarse clothes as a disguise+ % had no money -ut % met 2ind people along the $ay and so got on to /aris+ My plan is to reach England and my mother7 % remem-er the address she gave me and % $ill (ind her+ ere in /aris % (ound -y chance a good %talian to $hom % told my story7 he gave me my harp and sent me $ith Anton to earn a little money that % may go more ,uic2ly to England+ % do $ell and soon % shall see my mother+) ) appy child1 to have a re(uge li2e that0) sighed Rosamond $ith an aching heart+ )Come $ith me1 dear Madame1 no1 it shall -e Rosa no$+ Come to my mother1 she $ill love you (or your 2indness to me1 and $elcome you -ecause you are un(ortunate+ That $ill -e too happy (or me i( % have you -oth0) )No1 Lito1 % cannot7 any $oman -ut your mother may help and pity me1 (rom her % cannot -ear it+ She is 2ind % 2no$1 (or % heard her spea2 gently o( me at .alrosa+ % -less her (or it1 -ut % cannot as2 charity o( her+) Rosamond#s (ace $as covered

$ith sudden tears+ Boy as he $as1 Lito (elt the sad truth o( her $ords and urged no more1 -ut listened to her plans (orget(ul o( his o$n1 -egging to go $ith her $henever she $ent and -e her protector+ As they tal2ed onorine said suddenly1 )% must go and order the gates shut7 $ith such precious (ugitives in my charge % must (orti(y my house lest the enemy surprise us+) %t $as hal( a prete&t to leave them alone1 -ut she $as also nervous and e&cited -y the discoveries and plots going on a-out her1 though she en6oyed them $ith a French$oman#s relish (or intrigue+ "ishing a -reath o( (resh air1 she tripped do$n to the (lo$ery courtyard and -ade Adolph close the gates+ As he did so he glanced do$n the road and muttered $ith an air o( annoyance1 )There he is again0) )"ho5) as2ed onorine pausing in her $al2+ )%t is nothing1 Mademoiselle1 only an impertinent $ho amuses himsel( $ith riding or $al2ing -y every day and e&amining the house+) ) o$ long has this -een5) )For three days1 Mademoiselle+ % o-served him -ecause (e$ pass this $ay and he is neither groom nor gentleman+ A -ad (ace1 % shall insult him i( he comes o(ten1) said the old servant angrily+ )Let me loo21 Adolph+ Leave the gates a6ar and a((ect to -e sho$ing me something amiss $ith the -olts as he passes1) said onorine ,uic2ly1 (or the sound o( hoo(s $as already near+ Adolph o-eyed and his mistress used her 2een eyes to some purpose+ A dar21 slight man passed slo$ly $ith a careless loo2 a-out him and the courteous salute $ithout $hich (e$ Frenchmen pass a lady+ The instant he turned the corner onorine (le$ into the house and related $hat she had heard and seen+ )%t is Baptiste0) cried the (ugitives together1 and regarded one another $ith (aces o( dismay+ )% $ill 2ill him i( he comes (or you1) said Lito (iercely+ ) e shall not 2eep you (rom your mother1) ans$ered Rosamond1 holding the -oy#s hand as i( she (eared another separation+

)4ou must -oth go at once+ e has discovered you1 Rose1 o( that % am sure+ % thin2 he 2no$s nothing o( Lito#s arrival1 (or Adolph says this is his (irst appearance today and the -oys $ere sa(ely in nearly an hour ago+) )4es1 $e must go1 -ut onorine1 % cannot leave Lito to go $ith you+ e must -e helped on7 my little store o( money % give him1 and % $ill go as (ar as Amiens $ith him1 (rom there to Calais is not (ar and once across the Channel he is sa(e+ % must do this as the only return % can ma2e his mother1 $ho 6udged me so gently and desired to save me+ That % never shall (orget+) )And you1 Rose5) as2ed the actress an&iously+ )% shall go to the Convent1 (or a time at least7 it suits me -est and leaves you (ree+ *ear (riend1 you have done enough (or me1 % $ill not -urden you+ Already % can see that this an&iety (or me $ears upon you and it must not -e+ No1 say nothing % am (i&ed7 my only care is ho$ to get a$ay $ithout e&citing suspicion+) )"e must deceive Baptiste and thro$ him o(( the trac2+ e $ill ride to and (ro at intervals (or the ne&t hour as i( trying a ne$ horse1 Adolph says7 meantime $e must devise some stratagem1) said onorine1 $hen all her entreaties (ailed to 2eep Rosamond $ith her+ For several minutes the three sat silent1 then Lito e&claimed hal( dou-t(ully1 )Rosa might dress li2e a -oy and go out as Anton i( her hair $as short+ % dyed mine and stained my s2in1 -ut her hair is too long to hide and perhaps she $ould not dare to try that plan+) )%#ll cut my hair and do it0) cried Rosamond at once+ )%t is a good idea1 -ut % $ill improve it+ 4ou shall ta2e Anton#s clothes1 he shall ta2e some o( yours and % $ill carry him to to$n in my coupe $ith a((ected haste and mystery+ Baptiste $ill see and (ollo$1 then you t$o can slip a$ay and go on to .ersailles7 there change your dress1 Rose1 and ta2e the train to Amiens+ %t is capital0 But $e must lose no time+ Fortunately

the servants are all at the (ete -ut Adolph and old Margot1 $ho nods -y the 2itchen (ire+ % $ill prepare Anton and -uy his silence and his suit7 do you go and clip this lovely hair9ah1 $hat a sacri(ice09$hile Lito helps me $ith the -oy and the coupe is prepared+)

888

All $as e&citement and hurry (or a time1 then the (our met in the saloon and in spite o( danger could not re(rain (rom a general laugh+ Anton in Rosamond#s dress1 $ell veiled and cloa2ed1 loo2ed the part $ell enough -ut $as a$2$ard in his movements1 and onorine drilled him up to the last moment+ Rosamond made a charming -oy1 $ith short1 dar2 curls a-out her head and Anton#s rusty velvet suit and rough mantle+ er small (eet $ere hidden in -ig shoes1 the -rim o( the hat shaded her (ace1 and Lito had dar2ened her (air s2in $ith the pigment $hich he carried to rene$ the olive color o( his o$n (ace+ "ith the pipe in her -ro$ned hands1 $hich she concealed as much as possi-le under the long sleeves o( her 6ac2et1 and a pouch slung over her shoulder1 she loo2ed li2e one o( the pictures,ue %talian -oys $hom artists have immortali3ed+ She $as too shy and (eminine at (irst1 -ut Lito taught her to ta2e a larger stride1 to loo2 -oldly up and s$ing her arms1 no$ modestly (olded+ The actress and the lads entered so heartily into the spirit o( the mas,uerade that the girl could not long resist the in(ectious merriment1 and $hen the carriage came round she gaily $ished the others success as they departed1 and1 $ith Lito1 peeped (rom the curtains to $atch the e((ect o( the ruse upon Baptiste1 $ho passed e&actly as they drove out1 though $hen Adolph loo2ed a moment -e(ore he had not -een in sight+ They sa$ him lean (or$ard and dart a sharp glance into the coupe1 sa$ onorine assume an alarmed e&pression and pull do$n the curtains1 sa$ them drive rapidly a$ay and heard Baptiste

galloping a(ter as i( ,uite satis(ied+ )No$ $e may go1 (or it is getting dus2 and the servants $ill not o-serve the change+ Come do$n and than2 old Margot1 then (ollo$ me -oldly out and trust to my protection1) said Lito1 assuming the man#s part though in spite o( his (ourteen years and a -rave spirit his heart -eat ,uic2ly and his manner $as a little nervous as he made his adieu& and led his companion out onto the lonely t$ilight road+ ) ave you got your pistol5) $as his (irst ,uestion as they hurried a$ay+ )4es1 % never go $ithout it+) )!ood1 % have the little dagger % al$ays carry no$1 so $e $ill (ight (or our li-erty and sell it dearly i( need -e+ Can you $al2 a mile or more5) )% can $al2 t$enty to -e (ree1 Lito+ "here shall $e sleep5 Or is it -est to push on all night5) ).ersailles is t$o or three miles (arther1 $e can easily reach it and go to some small au-erge to sleep+ %( you (ear to meet people so soon $e can (ind a -arn perhaps7 % li2e them and have slept in them o(ten+ "e need not go hungry either1 (or Margot (illed my pouch $ith meat and -read and $ine+) )"e $ill try the -arn1 % am as yet too shame(aced to see men and play my part7 % $ill practice (irst+ 4et % li2e it1 Lito1 and i( % $ere a -oy %#d roam the $orld over1 happy $ith my pipe1 my (reedom and my little (riend+) )% $ish you $ere1 and this reminds me that you have no name+ "hat shall % call you5 #Anton# is surest1 (or % am used to that+) ) #Anton# let it -e then1 and % thin2 $e should tal2 in %talian1 it is sa(er as (e$ understand it here+ % $ill pretend to comprehend no French and so run no ris2 o( -etraying mysel( -y my voice+) )That is a $ise thought+ Tomorro$ % $ill teach you an air or t$o upon the pipe+ %t is very easy to accompany me on the harp and you $ill learn ,uic2ly+)

So tal2ing and planning the (ugitives pressed on1 and soon the lights o( .ersailles shone -e(ore them+ Near the outs2irts o( the to$n a lovely1 some$hat dilapidated -arn appeared1 and1 having reconnoitered1 Lito pronounced it empty e&cept (or a little hay+ ere they paused and having arranged t$o (ragrant -eds1 eaten their supper and had several panics1 the $anderers (ell asleep to dream serenely until da$n1 $hile onorine -a((led and -e$ildered Baptiste to her heart#s content+ Anton $as le(t at the house o( a (riend $ho had a young son7 a plausi-le story o( a harmless 6est $as told1 the -oy reclothed in proper attire and sent a$ay $ith a $ell:(illed purse in his poc2et and in6unctions to e&ecute the desire o( his heart and return to S$it3erland at once+ Then the actress drove home alone1 leaving Baptiste to guard the ne$ cage to $hich he -elieved the -ird had (lo$n+

888

Early $ere the (riends astir and1 a(ter a lesson on the pipe $hich (itted the moc2 Anton to play his part i( necessary1 they $ent on their $ay $ithout (ear1 (or already the girl (elt at ease and en6oyed her (reedom so heartily that she decided not to change -ut to go on to Amiens in her ne$ costume+ )%t is t$o hours -e(ore the train leaves7 go1 Lito1 and -uy some -rea2(ast at the house yonder7 % $ill go do$n and $ait (or you -eside the river1 it is sunny and sa(e there and % am thirsty1) she said as they neared the to$n+ The -oy $ent and Rosamond (ollo$ed a little path made -y the (eet o( cattle going to drin2+ %t led her to a ,uiet noo2 (ormed -y a curve in the river $hich (lo$ed on outside the stiller $ater o( the little -ay+ Stepping on a (lat stone1 she 2nelt do$n and1 putting -ac2 the rushes1 stooped to drin2+ But no drop touched her lips1 (or close -eside the stone a $oman#s -ody lay hal( hidden in the $ater+ So pale and peace(ul $as the young (ace $ith its closed eyes and -reathless lips that Rosamond (elt neither disgust nor dread1 -ut loo2ed till tears dimmed her sight+

A paper $as pinned on the dead -osom1 the sun had dried it since the tide had (loated its -earer to that haven1 and gently ta2ing it Rosamond read the (e$ pale lines it held+ % pray that $hoever (inds the -ody o( one driven to her death -y a great $rong1 $ill -ury it decently $herever it may -e (ound1 (or % have no home1 or (riends1 and pray (or the soul o( Madelaine Constant+

)Shall % -e driven to this in time5) thought Rosamond $ith a shudder+ "ith the (ear li2e a (lash came a strange design+ An instant she paused (ancying it too $ild1 too uncertain to -e $orth e&ecuting1 -ut a strong impulse urged her to it1 and o-eying the ine&plica-le (eeling she too2 out her purse1 $hich contained -oth pencil and paper1 and copied the $ords e&actly1 e&cept that $here the name )Madelaine Constant) appeared she $rote )Rosamond .ivian+) *ipping the paper in the $ater1 she re(astened it to the dead -reast1 and as i( as2ing pardon (or the act1 she -ent and 2issed the cold (orehead $ith the silent promise#to pray (or the soul o( this sister su((erer $hose sorro$ had -een greater and $hose soul less strong than her o$n+

C A/TER I%

Behind the !rating

Feeling sure that -e(ore the day $as over the -ody $ould -e (ound1 Rosamond le(t the spot to meet Lito and tell him $hat she had done+ )4ou are right1 she $ill -e discovered and -uried as no (riends can come to claim her+ As you say1 it $ill -e put in the papers and Baptiste $ill see it1 he al$ays reads deaths and murders1 -ut a description o( the girl $ill also -e put in7 did you thin2 o( that5) as2ed the -oy1 $hom danger $as ma2ing precociously 2een and cra(ty+ )4es1 -ut % do not (ear the description+ She had dar2 hair1 and dar2 eyes pro-a-ly1 $as young and slender1 $ith (air s2in

and delicate hands1 $ell dressed and evidently o( respecta-le -irth+ % sa$ this as the plan (lashed into my mind and 2ne$ that any description $ould apply to us -oth+ %t is a mere chance1 -ut it may succeed (or a time at least+) They -rea2(asted $ith such appetite as they could1 then too2 the early train1 and at night(all $ere set do$n $ithin sight o( the Convent o( St+ Annunciata+ )*ear Lito1 here $e must part7 it is -est not to -e seen together -y these people $ho are to receive me1 lest $e endanger each other+ ere is money1 Calais is near1 you have your mother#s address and soon may -e sa(e in her arms+ !od 2eep you1 dearest child1 thin2 sometimes o( poor Rose1 and so good:-ye+) %t $as a sad and tender parting1 -ut Rosamond $ould not detain the -oy an hour (rom his mother and -y this sacri(ice tried to repay the 2ind $ords the $i(e had spo2en o( her at a time $hen most $omen $ould have (elt only hatred or contempt+ "ith tears the t$o young creatures separated1 each to go on their lonely $ay7 Lito hastened at once to Calais and Rosamond to the shelter o( the Convent+

888

;ust out o( the to$n it stood1 a ,uiet1 shado$y place (ull o( pious $omen intent on good $or2s and the glori(ication o( St+ Annunciata+ Sending in the letter onorine had given her1 Rosamond $as 2indly $elcomed -y Mother 'rsula1 the Superior1 $ho1 though some$hat scandali3ed at the costume1 $as only too glad to receive another lam- into her (old+ That night the girl slept in a narro$ cell $ith a sense o( peace and sa(ety to $hich she had long -een a stranger+ Nothing

-ut the slo$1 so(t (oot(alls o( the sisters passing to midnight mass and the solemn chant (rom the distant chapel -ro2e the silence1 and lulled -y sounds li2e these she san2 into a dreamless sleep untrou-led -y a (ear+ On the morro$ her ne$ li(e -egan+ a-ited in the -lac2 go$n and veil o( the sisterhood1 her -eauti(ul (ace loo2ed dou-ly young and lovely1 and more than one $ithered old nun (ollo$ed the ne$comer $ith eyes that plainly -etrayed the admiration $omen seldom lose (or youth and -eauty+ To none -ut the Superior $as her story 2no$n1 (or sins and sorro$s $ere held sacred there1 and she too2 her place among them un,uestioned and un2no$n+

888

For si& months she led a li(e o( tran,uil seclusion1 seldom leaving the Convent e&cept upon the errands o( mercy $hich the sisters did among the sic2 and poor+ To these she came li2e an angel $ith her $ords o( com(ort1 her gentle care1 and soon )Sister Agatha#s) s$eet1 saintly (ace $as $atched (or and $elcomed $ith a love and gratitude very precious in her sight+ er days $ere spent in learning the dainty art o( em-roidery -y $hich the nuns earned money (or their charita-le deeds7 she did her share o( household la-or1 none -eing thought too hum-le (or the highest there7 vigils and prayers1 penances and con(essions had a charm (or her no$1 and Mother 'rsula did her -est to change the young /rotestant into a devout Catholic+ %n all those months nothing $as heard or seen o( Tempest1 and Rosamond tried to (eel that she re6oiced in the success o( her last stratagem+ But in that perverse heart o( hers $ould linger a longing to 2no$ $here he $as1 $hat he $as doing and i( he mourned her death $ith a grie( as strong as his love had -een+ She tried to (orget -ut it $as impossi-le1 (or since the 2no$ledge o( Lito#s sa(ety had (reed her (rom that dar2 (ear1 she could not conceal (rom hersel( that her a((ection (or Tempest $as not dead in spite o( deceit and $rong+ e $as the (irst1 the only love o( her li(e1 and in a nature li2e hers such passions ta2e deep root and die hard+ %n vain she recalled his sins against hersel( and others7 in vain she told hersel(

that he $as un$orthy any $oman#s trust and love1 still the uncon,uera-le sentiment that once made her happiness no$ remained to -ecome her torment+ )Everything is possi-le to !od1 -ut $e must help ourselves i( $e $ould -e helped -y im+ % have not as2ed aright1 so my poor prayers remain unans$ered+ % $ill ta2e counsel $ith some o( these pious souls $ho have (ound peace and they $ill sho$ me ho$ to earn a li2e tran,uillity1) she said $ithin hersel(+ Mother 'rsula $as a 2ind -ut $ea2 and narro$ $oman and Rosamond could not turn to her+ None o( the sisters1 though (riendly creatures1 $ere persons to $hom she could con(ide a grie( li2e hers+ T$o priests -elonged to the Convent and to one o( them she $ould apply+ Father %gnatius1 the younger1 $as a cold1 silent man $ith a pale1 ascetic (ace and eyes that seemed so -ent on turning (rom the vanities o( the $orld that they $ere seldom li(ted (rom the ground+ But Rosamond had seen them (i&ed on her more than once $ith the loo2 o( devout admiration $hich a devotee casts upon a saint1 and she shrun2 (rom spea2ing o( her heart to him+ Father *ominic $as an old1 $hite:haired man1 $ith a -enignant (ace1 mild voice and a paternal manner $hich attracted her strongly+ e should -e her con(idant1 and under the seal o( Con(essional $ould she lay -are her trou-led soul+ T$o events delayed her purpose (or a time+ A contagious (ever -ro2e out in the to$n and many died among the poor1 -ut the rich escaped $ith one e&ception+ The daughter o( the Comte de Luneville (ell ill and terror sei3ed the (ather+ e sent to the Convent (or a nurse1 -ut all the good sisters $ere either $orn out $ith other la-ors or too timid to go+ Rosamond alone $as ready1 and regardless o( danger prepared (or the tas2 $hich might -e her last+ As she stood $aiting (or the carriage o( the Comte in the gloomy parlor o( the Convent1 Father %gnatius came in1 haggard and $orn $ith many sleepless nights and

days o( care among the poor+ There $as no sternness in his voice1 no coldness in his manner1 no melancholy in the eyes no$ (ull o( an e&pression $armer than admiration as he said1 gently1 an&iously1 )My daughter1 is this $ise5) )% -ut (ollo$ your e&ample1 Father1) $as the so(t ans$er as Rosamond put -ac2 her veil and loo2ed up $ith a (ace (ull o( a reverence never (elt -e(ore+ A sudden (lush rose to the priest#s pale (orehead and (or the (irst time in many months a smile shone on his (ace+ )But you are young1 my daughter1 and to such li(e is s$eet+ To me it is -ut a -urden $hich % am ready to lay do$n $henever !od $ills+) )% also am ready1 (or li(e is not dear to me+ Let me go1 my (ather1 and $or2 $hile % may+) The -eauti(ul eyes (illed as she spo2e1 aad $ith a gesture o( in(inite compassion %gnatius laid his hand on the mee2 head1 saying tenderly1 )May the oly Mother 2eep and -less you1 Agatha+) "ith the -lessing she $ent a$ay to her ministry o( love and per(ormed it so $ell that the young girl lived1 though death had seemed inevita-le+ Boundless gratitude and costly gi(ts $ere her re$ard $hen the tas2 $as done1 and a (e$ months later the Comte de Luneville added another proo( o( gratitude1 another costly gi(t+ On returning to the Convent she (ound Mother 'rsula dead o( the (ever and a ne$ reign -egun under a ne$ Superior+ Sister Magdalene $as a haughty1 -igoted $oman $ho had -een mortally 6ealous o( Rosamond -ecause the girl $as such a (avorite $ith the a--ess+ No$ that her day o( po$er had come1 Magdalene revenged hersel( -y every petty slight1 in6ustice and indignity $hich one $oman can sho$ another+ Rosamond -ore this mee2ly (or a time1 -ut soon the calm li(e gre$ monotonous $hen no (riendly in(luence gave it grace and $armth+ She -egan to pine (or (reedom1 and to remind hersel( that she had ta2en no vo$ to stay+ But $here go i( she a-andoned this home5

Suddenly a ne$ care -eset her+ Father %gnatius -egan to haunt her li2e a shado$+ %( she $ent out upon some mission o( mercy he $as sure to cross her path1 to (ollo$ a(ar o(( and $atch over her $ith a silent vigilance that surprised and then annoyed her+ %( she $al2ed in the Convent garden as the spring came on1 he $as al$ays there at $or21 or pacing to and (ro1 -oo2 in hand+ %n the house she seldom sa$ him1 yet (elt conscious that he $as o(ten near+ "hen they met he sometimes passed $ithout li(ting up his eyes or uttering a $ord7 usually a grave salutation1 a -rie( glance and nothing more+ All these things determined Rosamond to as2 counsel o( Father *ominic1 $hose 2indness remained unchanged1 indeed had rather increased o( late as i( he sa$ and pitied her discom(orts+ She sent $ord that she desired to see him and he appointed an hour (or her to come to Con(ession+ As the time approached she gre$ restless1 and thro$ing aside the delicate $or2 $ith $hich she had vainly tried to calm hersel(1 she $ent do$n into the ,uaint old garden $here the so(t May sunshine lay $arm on trim -eds o( her-s and -udding (ruit trees+ The lo$er $all $as close upon the river and in one angle $as a stone seat near a narro$ opening $hich (ramed a lovely picture o( the opposite shore1 sloping up$ard to the Comte#s Chateau+ Sitting here hal( hidden -y the ivy screen that shut in the spot1 Rosamond loo2ed across the $ater1 thin2ing o( the young Comtesse to $hom she had that day said (are$ell -e(ore her (ather too2 her to the !erman -aths (or the summer+ Natalie had prayed her to go $ith them1 -ut she had re(used1 thin2ing it a girlish $him+ No$ she $ished she had accepted1 (or $ith the spring (reshness came an irresisti-le desire to leave the gloomy cloister and go out into the sunshine+ The plash o( oars distur-ed her reverie1 and peeping do$n she sa$ Father *ominic approaching (rom the to$n+ She $as a-out to spea2 $hen the sight o( %gnatius sitting motionless and $atch(ul on the steps that led do$n (rom the garden door to the $ater#s edge arrested her+ "ith his -road:-rimmed hat upon his 2nees and his $hite hair stirring in the mild air Father *ominic sat serenely smiling as

a sturdy lad ro$ed him along the ,uiet river+ The smile (aded as he sa$ %gnatius and he shoo2 his head $ith a trou-led loo21 saying as the younger man advanced to help him land1 )This is not $ell1 my son1 (lee temptation1 chasten the (lesh and de(y the devil+) )% do1 Father1 especially the latter1) and Rosamond heard a grim laugh (rom lips that rarely even smiled+ )The delusion is strong upon thee1 %gnatius1 (ast and pray1 (ast and pray1 my son+) )Nay1 rather $atch and pray1 my (ather1) returned the other1 adding to the -oy $ho $as a-out to push o((1 )Leave the -oat1 ;an1 % shall have occasion (or it shortly+) )For $hat purpose5) as2ed *ominic1 pausing $ith his (oot upon the (irst step+ )The salvation o( saints1) $as the enigmatical reply as %gnatius (astened the -oat and -ade ;an go -ac2 -y the -ridge+ The -oy ran o(( along the little (ootpath -y the riverside1 and the young priest turned to the old one1 saying1 $ith his accustomed de(erence and a suggestive motion o( the hand1 )A(ter you1 my (ather+) *ominic put on his hat $ith a -enign smile1 gathered up the long s2irts o( his cassoc2 and nim-ly mounted the steps+ At the top he paused1 and as %gnatius reached his side he too2 his arm $ith a con(idential air+ )% have something upon $hich % desire to con(er $ith you1 my son+ There is time -e(ore Con(ession1 come $ith me to the little Oratory1 there $e can -e private+) "hat the other ans$ered Rosamond did not hear1 -ut it $as evidently an a((irmative (or they $al2ed a$ay together to$ard a small isolated -uilding near-y+ Leaning (or$ard1 she sa$ Father *ominic produce a 2ey1 (ling open the door and motion his companion to enter+ e did so1 *ominic seemed a-out to (ollo$1 -ut suddenly closed the door1 reloc2ed it on the outside and $al2ed a$ay1 putting the 2ey in his poc2et+ Surprise 2ept the girl motionless as the old man approached+ e did not see her as he descended the steps1 unmoored the -oat and pulling out a silver $histle recalled ;an1 $ho still loitered along the shore+ The -oy returned1 and having received the -rie( order1 )Ta2e the -oat over and leave it on the other

side1) ro$ed a$ay1 loo2ing some$hat perple&ed -y these contradictory commands+ Laughing ,uietly to himsel(1 Father *ominic returned1 and as i( $eary approached the ivy seat+ At sight o( the girl he paused an instant1 then came on as tran,uilly as ever+ )Ah1 my daughter1 % had no thought o( seeing you here1 -ut it is as $ell+ 4ou overheard us1 Agatha5) )4es1 Father1 % -oth heard and sa$ you+) )And $ondered dou-tless at my conduct5 %t is -ut natural1 yet % could have $ished to spare you this+) )"hat1 Father5) )The 2no$ledge that a priest can (orget the de(erence due to his superiors1 the sanctity o( his vo$s1 and the honor o( his Order as %gnatius has done+) ) o$1 Father5 % 2no$ nothing o( this+) )%nnocent child0 %( % could 2eep it (rom you % $ould1 -ut it $ill -e told -y him i( % delay and it is -etter that % utter the sacrilegious truth+ Agatha1 he loves you+) She had (eared this1 had tried not to read the language o( those elo,uent eyes1 the meaning o( the sleepless vigilance1 the secret o( the change $hich had crept over %gnatius since she 2ne$ him (irst+ Loo2ing 2eenly at her1 the old man sa$ regret and sorro$ in the do$ncast (ace -e(ore him -ut neither surprise or 6oy1 and an aspect o( relie( replaced the (ormer one o( an&iety in his o$n+ )% can divine your horror and pain at this1 my child1 and % $ill spare you any ans$er+ % simply $arn you to shun this unhappy man $hile he remains1 it $ill not -e long+ No$ give me your arm1 daughter1 % must see Mother Magdalene and then % shall a$ait you in the Con(essional+) She rose and o((ered the old man the support he as2ed1 -ut could not restrain a $ist(ul glance to$ard the little Oratory1 $hence no sound proceeded+

)%s he to -e le(t there1 Father *ominic5) )For a time1 my child1 it is your only sa(ety+ e is mad $ith this temptation o( the devil and planned to carry you a$ay this very night+ % have removed the -oat1 and imprisoned him thus you are sa(e (or a time+ %t gro$s damp1 let us go in+) Than2ing the 2ind old priest (or his paternal care1 she le(t him $ith the Superior and retired to her cell to $ait and muse over this ne$ trou-le+ At the appointed hour she repaired to the chapel+ Father *ominic#s hat lay on the -ench -eside the door and (earing to have 2ept him $aiting she hurried into the Con(essional1 t$o compartments each# large enough to hold a single person+ %n the priest#s hal( $as an easy chair1 in the other a hassoc2 (or the spea2er to 2neel upon7 dou-le doors shut in -oth parts and in the partition -et$een them $as a little $ic2et $ith a grating and a curtain -e(ore it on the priest#s side+ To this $ic2et he placed his ear and the sinner spo2e unseen+ Jneeling here1 Rosamond said in a lo$1 eager voice1 )My (ather1 shall % spea25) )% listen1 *aughter1) $as the $hispered reply+ )The chie( sin $hich % have to con(ess is that % cannot (i& my thoughts on heaven as -ecomes this holy place+ % am no nun and no vo$ -inds me1 -ut % $ould gladly (orget the vain $orld i( % could+ %t seems impossi-le7 % am so young1 so (ull o( li(e1 so hungry (or happiness that % daily (ind less and less desire to devote mysel( to the duties o( a cloister+ "hat can % do to cure this5 Or is it -est to yield to a natural longing and go -ac2 to the $orld5 4ou are $ise and 2ind1 tell me my duty+) )"hat tempts you -ac2 to the $orld5) )Chie(ly the uncon,uera-le $ish to 2no$ i( a (ormer (riend still lives+) )"hat (riend5 Tell me all -e(ore % advise+) )The man % loved+ e $ronged me and % le(t him+ e (ollo$ed me1 o((ering to atone (or the $rong7 % re(used and (led7 -ut no$ li2e a daily temptation comes the thought that % might go -ac2 $ithout sin $hen he has removed the only o-stacle -et$een us+) )"hy call it a temptation5) )Because in spite o( this longing % 2no$ that % shall purchase happiness at a high price i( % return7 that ne$ (alsehood may -etray me1 ne$ tyranny oppress me1 and a-ove all % (eel that $ith this man % must lose more and more

the love o( all good things1 so strong is his in(luence1 so unprincipled his nature+ My only hope is that % may save his soul and yet not lose my o$n+ Can %1 dare % do this5) )4es1 heartily1 and at once+) )Ah1 i( % could only (eel assured that it $as right and not a -lind impulse o( a $ea2 $oman#s heart0) )One thing1 my daughter1 in spite o( all deceit1 un$orthiness and $rong do you still love this man5)

)4es+) Almost inaudi-le $as the lo$1 reluctant1 ans$er1 so lo$ that she thought the old man had not heard it and $as a-out to spea2 again $hen a -urst o( e&ultant laughter startled her li2e a thunderclap1 the curtain $as pushed aside and through the grating loo2ed the dar2 (ace o( /hillip Tempest0

C A/TER I%%

Flee Temptation

Li2e a -ird held -y the terri-le (ascination o( a serpent#s eye1 Rosamond 2nelt motionless and mute1 ga3ing at that (amiliar (ace as i( it $ere a !orgon#s head $hich had turned her to stone+ )*early -eloved1 you are pardoned1 (or that last $ord cancels all your sins1) said Tempest1 still smiling+ Then1 as i( impatient o( delay1 he le(t his noo21 thre$ open the door o( hers and added1 as he gently li(ted her1 )S$eet saint1 come and em-race1 not #(lee temptation+# )

She did not spea2 -ut she su-mitted1 (or in that moment o( surprise her heart turned traitor and cried out $ithin her1 )Let me -e happy (or a little $hile1 then % $ill -e $ise+) Seating himsel( on the steps o( the Con(essional1 Tempest dre$ her to his 2nee1 put o(( the veil and close coi( that enveloped her head so that all the -eauti(ul hair came clustering a-out her (ace1 changing the mee2 nun into a lovely girl again+ Li(ting the startled (ace1 Tempest loo2ed long and ardently into the eyes that could not conceal their happiness1 -ut suddenly he clasped her close1 e&claiming in a tone $hich proved ho$ much he had su((ered1 )Oh1 my darling1 ho$ could you leave me to -elieve that % had driven you to your death0) )4ou (ound the paper then1 you thought the girl $as me5) she as2ed1 so touched -y his emotion that she (orgot to reproach or repel1 -ut put her ,uestion $ith a so(t hand against his chee21 the caress he used to li2e so $ell+ )4es1 ho$ could % help it5 Baptiste sa$ the story in the paper three days a(ter1 and $e $ent to the place at once+ The -ody had -een -uried1 -ut the note1 the name1 the description $ere enough+ % $ould not have your rest distur-ed1 % le(t you in the churchyard at .ersailles and $ent a$ay to mourn you (or si& long months+ See1 Rose1 % have $orn this ne&t my heart all this $eary $hile1 the last relic o( my lost Rose+) e dre$ out a little velvet case and in it sho$ed her the $orn paper and a -it o( cam-ric $ith her name upon it+ )My hand2erchie(0 "here did you (ind it1 /hillip5) )Among the rushes $here the poor girl $as (ound+) )Ah1 % remem-er1 % meant to -athe my (ace that morning -ut as % loo2ed into the $ater % sa$ my olive s2in and 2ne$ that the color $ould -e $ashed a$ay7 then % sa$ the dead -ody and (orgot everything else till that strange thought came to me+) )Baptiste $as (illed $ith admiration at the ruse7 he is seldom long deceived1 -ut (or a time he $as entirely -a((led and lamented that such an e&citing chase should end so soon+) )"hat caused it to -egin again5 o$ did you (ind me out5 "ho -etrayed me5) )Father *ominic+) )%mpossi-le0 4ou mean Father %gnatius1) cried Rosamond -reathless $ith ama3ement+

)% mean $hat % say7 my complaisant old (riend *ominic1 $ho is open to -ri-ery and a most o-liging old rascal+ The other is as true as steel and as (irm as a roc27 -ut (or him % should have (ound you $ee2s ago7 % have yet to settle that score+) )/oor %gnatius1 ho$ % have $ronged him0) thought the girl1 and the remem-rance o( his truth1 his (idelity1 made her shrin2 instinctively (rom one $ho possessed so little o( either virtue+ She hal( rose and loo2ed a-out her1 longing to go and (ree him yet a(raid to increase his danger -y -etraying any interest in him+ *etaining her gently yet irresisti-ly1 Tempest said1 laughing1 )Sit still1 s$eetheart1 you are not the (irst nun $ho has met a lover in these $alls % (ancy+ %#ve much to say and $e are sa(e1 (or *ominic 2eeps guard $ithout and your priestly $atchdog is sa(ely 2enneled (or the night+) )Spea2 ,uic2ly then1 it is late and $ill soon -e time (or mass+) )/oor (rightened heart1 ho$ it -eats0 They have ta2en hal( the spirit and courage out o( you1 Rose1 $ith their stupid penances and prayers+ %#ll soon mend that $hen you are mine again+ "hat shall % tell you (irst5 %( you are still a $oman and not all saint1 you must -e curious+) )Tell ho$ you discovered me1 (or even no$ % cannot thin2 that good old man could -e so (alse+) )4ou $ill (ind that money can -uy everything1 even the conscience and integrity o( a priest1) -egan Tempest+ )%t could not -uy that o( %gnatius1) she interrupted $ith a loo2 o( triumph1 (or amidst so much deceit she (elt a dou-le gratitude that one man had -een (ound true+ Tempest (ro$ned and shot a ,uic2 glance at her $ith the sudden recollection that %gnatius $as younger than himsel( and that (or si& months young priest and lovely nun had seen each other daily+ )%t $ould have -ought him had not a higher -ri-e -een o((ered+ "ell (or me that his vo$s doom him to li(elong celi-acy else % might have come too late1 (or he is a handsome man1 Rose1 and you hate me1 you 2no$+)

Stung -y the un6ust suspicion1 the insulting loo2 $hich accompanied it1 she tore hersel( (rom his hold1 saying passionately1 )% $ish % did0 % $ish % did0) Conscious o( his mista2e in rousing her spirit1 Tempest changed his tone1 and -ec2oned $ith a repentant air+ )%t $as -ut a 6est1 (orgive it and come -ac2 to me+) )No % $ill not0 The momentary $ea2ness is over no$ and you shall see that penances and prayers have strengthened my courage and give me a spirit that you cannot con,uer+ Stay there1 and say $hat you $ill1 come nearer and %#ll rouse the house to de(end me in spite o( that traitor *ominic+) She had her hand on the great sil2en rope that rung the chapel -ell and one stro2e $ould -ring a (loc2 o( indignant $omen to the rescue+ Tempest 2ne$ he had invaded sacred premises and (elt that caution $as $ise+ /ausing as he strode to$ard her1 he leaned against a pillar and so(tly applauded her last $ords+ )E&cellent0 onorine must have taught you that pose+ % su-mit1 you thorny rose1 and % $ill maintain a distance until you relent1 as you $ill $hen % tell you $hat % have -een doing $hile you told your -eads and gre$ more charming than ever+ % shall let you $ait (or that good ne$s till % have satis(ied your curiosity on the other point+ Mother 'rsula died a (e$ $ee2s ago1 and on her death-ed con(ided you to her successor1 $ho it seems1 hates you $ith the 6ealous (ervor o( your amia-le se&+ As soon as the good 'rsula $as dead and Madame Magdalene in her place that pious soul too2 pity upon me1 (or she had -een told your story1 and $rote an anonymous letter stating that in Amiens % could (ind $hat % had lost+ % have had many anonymous letters in my li(e and should pro-a-ly have ta2en no notice o( it1 -ut % $as in London $hen the messenger arrived in /aris to (ind me and the letter (ell into the hands o( Baptiste+ e $as idle $hile $aiting (or my return1 had never recovered (rom the chagrin o( his de(eat in not -ringing you -ac2 to me1 and something in the mystery o( the thing interested him+ e returned no ans$er -ut disguised as a peasant came to Amiens and tried to (ind you+ e 2ne$ not $here to loo21 (or the letter gave no hint1 -ut $or2ed in the dar2 till a short time ago the praises o( Sister Agatha#s -eauty1 piety and devoted courage roused1 his suspicions+ e $atched you1 -ut -eing al$ays veiled in the street and guarded -y this %gnatius he (ound no opportunity o( satis(ying himsel(+ A $ee2 ago as he ro$ed do$n the river he sa$ you in the garden loo2ing out o( the ivy $indo$ in the $all+ 4ou did not recogni3e him in the -lue:-loused -oatman $ith the -lac2 -eard1 -ut he $as

enraptured at his discovery and $rote at once to me+) )Then you came to -ri-e the priest1 and tempt me (rom the only sa(e sanctuary le(t (or such as %5) )E&actly7 -ut % cannot agree a-out the sa(ety or the sanctity o( this re(uge+ There is a delusion that those $ho enter here leave human passions -ehind1 yet you (ind to your sorro$ that love1 6ealousy1 hypocrisy1 avarice and (alsehood e&ist in the holy shado$ o( St+ Annunciata as $ell as in the $ic2ed $orld+ So the sooner you leave this unsa(e sanctuary the -etter1 little Sister Agatha+) ) ave you more to tell me1 /hillip5) she as2ed sadly1 (or indignation had given place to sorro$1 and though she loo2ed calm and cold yet in her trou-led heart she $as praying (or strength to (lee temptation+ )Much more1 i( you $ill hear me+ %t seems that 'rsula had given Magdalene to understand that you $ere an in6ured $i(e $ho had (led here (or peace+ Not 2no$ing this $hen % $rote to tell her % $as come % -etrayed the truth and the $oman $as scandali3ed1 having in spite o( her 6ealousy a tri(le o( that inconvenient article called principle+ She re(used to give you up1 -ut dismissed me $ith the com(orting assurance that you should e&piate your share o( the sin -y morti(ications o( the (lesh and humiliation o( soul+ aving lost that ally % loo2ed a-out me (or another1 (or in these days one cannot sac2 a convent as in the chivalrous old times+ The $orld does not give me a (lattering character1 as you 2no$+ %gnatius had heard o( me and complimented me -y regarding me as a (iend incarnate+ e re6ected my o((ers $ith such scorn that $hen % am at leisure % shall teach him a lesson he $ill not soon (orget+ Father *ominic proved more tracta-le7 he loves money and % -ought him -ody and soul+ *esiring to create no scandal1 % planned to enter ,uietly1 -ut %gnatius has th$arted me t$ice+ Tonight1 than2s to the old man#s $it1 % got in unseen and (latter mysel( that the surprise $as a success+) e paused there1 $aiting (or some demonstration (rom her1 -ut $ith her hand still holding the -ell rope (ast and the dim light o( the altar lamps shining on her colorless (ace she loo2ed -ac2 at him1 saying coldly1 )"hat ne&t5)

)Only thisF Marion has consented to a divorce1 since the -oy is dead+ % have -een -usy in the matter and soon % shall -e (ree+ Then1 Rose1 you $ill -ecome my $i(e in solemn earnest5) )No+) )"hy not1 most capricious o( angels5 *id you not con(ess that you loved me1 longed (or me1 and desired to save my soul+ 4our *irector -ade you do it at once and $ith all your heart1 $ill you not o-ey him5) )No7 the $ish $as a $ea2 and $ic2ed one1 the ans$er (alse and % re6ect it+ % thought % had a $ise1 2ind (riend in Father *ominic1 -ut he -etrayed me and no$ % have no one to trust9-ut %gnatius1) she added $ithin hersel(1 )he is true1 he $ill help me7 %#ll stand (irm no$ and as2 counsel o( him $hen /hillip goes+) Tempest eyed her (or an instant as her head drooped and her voice (altered+ Finding that (orce and (alsehood (ailed to $in her1 he had resolved to try generosity and 6ustice+ %n a serious1 (ran2 tone he said1 )Rose1 you may trust me1 (or though % have deceived you cruelly once1 no$ % am in earnest and % $ill prove it+ % do not as2 you to go $ith me yet1 % leave you (ree until % can come to claim you honestly+ 4ou dou-t me1 and % cannot -lame you1 -ut it is the solemn truth and time shall convince you+ .ery soon the divorce $ill -e completed and then1 Rose1 % shall have the right to demand an ans$er+) )4ou shall have it7 meantime % hold mysel( aloo( (rom you and go $here % $ill un(ollo$ed+ 4ou promise me this5) she said (irmly yet $ith an incredulous air+ is manner changed1 the malicious merriment came -ac2 to his eyes1 the imperious accent to his voice and the master(ul e&pression to his (ace+ )That % cannot promise+ % must 2no$ $here you are1 -ut % $ill not molest nor -etray you till the time arrives+ !o $here you li2e1 assume $hat disguise you choose1 do $hat you please1 e&cept die or marry+ %#ll stand o(( and $atch the play1 -ut % must (ollo$+ % li2e the chase1 it is e&citing1 novel and a-sor-ing+ % have tried and tired o( other amusements1 this satis(ies me and % am in no haste to end it+ 'pon my soul1 Rose1 it gives a ne$ interest to li(e and ma2es

my $ooing $onder(ully varied and delight(ul+ No$ % am going straight -ac2 to /aris $hile you lose yoursel( again1 and in a $ee2 or t$o Baptiste and % $ill ta2e the (ield (or another harmless hunt+ Are you too angry to say adieu5) Sure that it $as only a test o( her (irmness1 she o((ered her hand $ith a scorn(ul smile+ To her intense surprise he 2issed it $armly and le(t the chapel $ithout another $ord+ Still e&pecting him to return1 she (ollo$ed to the door that loo2ed upon the garden1 sa$ Tempest pause (or a (e$ $ords $ith Father *ominic1 then vanish do$n the steps1 and a moment a(ter the dash o( oars assured her that he had really gone+ Agitated and -e$ildered1 she hurried a$ay to her cell and thro$ing hersel( on her narro$ -ed lay there a prey to con(licting thoughts and (eelings till the -ell rang (or midnight mass+ Then she rose $ith her decision made1 her plan arranged+ /utting her purse and the little pistol in her poc2et1 she read6usted her veil1 thre$ on a cloa2 and $aiting till the stillness assured her that the house $as empty she stole a$ay to the chapel -y the garden+ /eeping in1 she sa$ the sisterhood devoutly murmuring their prayers and Father *ominic in his ro-es chanting -e(ore the high altar+ They $ere sa(e7 and gliding to the sacristy she glanced eagerly a-out (or the old man#s cassoc21 $hich he laid aside $hen he assumed his ro-es+ %t hung over a chair and slipping her hand into the poc2et $here she had seen him deposit the 2ey o( the Oratory1 she (ound it+ "ith a glad heart and noiseless step she ran across the garden1 (ull o( moonlight shado$s no$1 and tapping at the door called so(tly1 )Father0 Father %gnatius1 are you there5) The sound o( someone springing up told her the prisoner still $aited1 and opening the door she stood -e(ore him in the silvery light li2e an angel o( deliverance+ e sei3ed -oth her hands $ith a (ace (ull o( grate(ul $onder1 an e&clamation o( intense relie(+ )4ou1 Agatha5 Than2 heaven you are sa(e0) )No1 % than2 you1 and hum-ly as2 you to (orgive me (or my long distrust+ % 2no$ all no$1 Tempest has come and gone1 and (or a time % am (ree again+ One (avor more % as2 o( you1 help me to reach the Chateau+)

)Tonight5) he said regret(ully+ )4es1 at once+ % cannot stay among those $ho have -etrayed me+ The Comte $ill -e(riend me and % must go+) )But this man1 $hat $ill he do5 "hy has he gone5) She told him rapidly1 (or no$ she clung to this one (aith(ul heart $ith a child#s con(idence1 (orgetting (or a time that he loved her and remem-ering only that he $as )true as steel7 (irm as+ a roc2+) e listened1 detected the secret $ea2ness o( the girl#s love1 and resolved to save her (rom it i( he could+ e had dra$n her out o( the moonlight into the little room and still holding the hands that unconsciously clung to him he said1 imploringly1 )My child1 never go -ac2 to this man+ % 2no$ him and i( % dared sully your innocence $ith such 2no$ledge % $ould tell you the history o( his li(e+ 4ou love him still and struggle against your love1 (eeling that it $ill undo you+ e 2no$s this and he $ill tempt you -y every lure he can devise1 every deceit he can employ+ Sorro$ and sin $ill surely (ollo$ i( you yield7 happiness never can -e yours $ith him7 dou-t1 remorse and sel(:reproach $ill 2ill love1 and a time $ill come $hen you $ill (ind that in gaining a -rie( 6oy you have lost your peace (orever+ Oh1 Agatha1 -e $arned in time1 do not listen to your o$n $ea2 heart -ut to the conscience that nothing can -ri-e or silence+ Child0 child0 4ou must -e saved1 listen to me and let me 2eep your $hite soul (it (or heaven+) %n his earnestness %gnatius had (lung himsel( upon his 2nees -e(ore her1 passionately pleading not (or a return o( the love $hich loo21 touch and tone unconsciously -etrayed1 -ut that she $ould save hersel(+ %t $as as i( her o$n conscience had ta2en human shape1 (or his voice elo,uently uttered the (ears1 the (eelings that had (illed her heart that night+ She had $avered1 (or love $as s$eet and li(e loo2ed desolate $ithout it7 -ut the e&ample o( this man $ho as2ed nothing (or himsel( and $as as true to his o$n soul as he $ould have her to hers1 touched and inspired her $ith a -rave desire to -e $orthy his respect1 to emulate his virtue+ The (irst tears she had shed that night (ell on the (orehead o( the priest as1 2neeling at her (eet1 he loo2ed up and $aited (or

an ans$er+ Bro2en -y emotion yet hum-ly trust(ul $as the ,uic2 reply1 )Father1 % am $ea2 -ut you are strong1 into your care % give my soul7 help me to do right and save me (rom mysel(+) )% $ill0 Than2 !od (or this0) 'p he sprung1 his (ace shining $ith sudden 6oy1 his manner (ull o( a cheer(ul courage $hich sustained and com(orted the girl $ith a con(idence that never (ailed+ )4ou $ill go $ith the Comte5 %t is $ell7 they leave tomorro$ and he $ill -e(riend you (aith(ully+ Come1 $e $ill cross at once and leave no trace -ehind+) "ith un,uestioning (aith she let him lead her do$n the steps to the little landing -elo$+ No -oat lay there and she loo2ed a-out her $ondering till %gnatius1 $ith that rare smile o( his1 said1 glancing over the stream1 ) ave (aith and $ait1 % shall $or2 a miracle (or your deliverance+) !oing on a step or t$o he thre$ o(( his cassoc2 and plunged into the river+ Rosamond uttered a sti(led cry -ut he never turned1 and $ith a -eating heart she $atched the strong s$immer cross the $ide1 rapid stream1 unmoor the -oat upon the other side and $ith no pause (or rest come ro$ing s$i(tly -ac2+ %t $as a (eat to stir a $oman to that admiration o( manly strength and s2ill $hich men most love to $in7 %gnatius sa$ it shining in the girl#s eyes as she $elcomed him and his -arren li(e seemed suddenly to -lossom li2e the rose+ )Ah1 that $as a -rave miracle -ravely $rought0 %t reminds me o( the days o( romance+ 4ou should have -een a 2night and not a mon21) she said1 smiling up in his (ace as he stretched out his hands to help her in+ )% $ill -e (or an hour+ Lie there1 detested thing0) and he (lung the cassoc2 li2e a cushion on the seat $here she $as to sit+ Something in his impetuous manner1 his vehement tone recalled to Rosamond#s memory the (act that this man loved her+ !athering her veil a-out her1 she sat silently $atching him as he plied the oars1 and (or the (irst time (ully reali3ed that he

$as -oth young and comely+ The priestly gar- $as gone1 (or he had torn o(( the -ands a-out his throat and le(t his hat -ehind him+ Thin and pale $ith thought and su((ering $as the (ine (ace opposite her1 -ut as she loo2ed color came into his chee2s1 (ire 2indled the melancholy eyes1 a happy smile so(tened the lines o( that (irm mouth and as he shoo2 the thic21 dar2 loc2s o(( his (orehead there $as no sinister scar to mar the -eauty o( the -road1 -enevolent -ro$+ A no-le1 true and most attractive (ace she (ound it1 and the moments $hich (ollo$ed that -old act did more to $in regard (or %gnatius than months o( ,uiet intercourse had done+ As the -oat touched the shore and they stepped out1 Rosamond thre$ o(( her cloa2 and o((ering it1 said $ith the air o( so(t command $hich in her $as peculiarly charming1 )Jnights $ore cloa2s7 ta2e mine1 you $ill -e cold+) e gave her a smile that $armed her heart1 -ut $rapped the cloa2 a-out her $ith a gesture $hich she could not resist1 and said decidedly as the smile (aded1 )Not $hen ladies needed them+ No1 % $ill -e a mon2 again1 it is -etter not to (orget the truth even (or an hour+ Come1 my child1 there is no time to lose+) %n(initely tender $ere the $ords )my child1) -ut a sigh (ollo$ed as i( he said $ithin himsel(1 )She can -e nothing more to me1 % must remem-er that+)

C A/TER I%.

A !lympse o( appiness

%n one o( the -alconies o( the otel o( the Four Seasons at "ies-aden t$o -eauti(ul $omen $ere $al2ing to and (ro1 one apparently1 the other really unconscious o( the admiring glances (i&ed upon them (rom a-ove and -elo$1 (or the street $as (ull o( young o((icers and the $indo$s o( the great hotel o( loungers+ One $as a pretty -londe French girl o( seventeen1 vivacious and gay though evidently an invalid1 (or she $as $rapped in a great sha$l and leaned on the arm o( her companion+ The elder and much lovelier o( the t$o $as a slender1 grace(ul $oman o( one or t$o and t$enty1 $ith the per(ect outlines o( nec2 and shoulder $hich one sees only in England+ The delicate (ace $as pale1 the lines o( the mouth -etrayed past su((ering1 and the eyes $ere (ull o( melancholy -eauty+ %n loo2ing at her one involuntarily said1 )That $oman has 2no$n great sorro$1 -ut it $ill not 2ill her1) (or there $as an inde(ina-le air o( strength and courage a-out her $hich $onder(ully enhanced the spell o( her -eauty+ )4ou $ill 2no$ it tonight1 Rosalie1) e&claimed the girl1 $ith a pretty a((ectation o( mystery a(ter a (e$ silent turns had -een ta2en+ )"hat shall % 2no$1 dear5) as2ed the other1 sho$ing no sign o( curiosity+ )Ah1 that % must not tell and you $ill never guess it+ But you must promise to agree to it $hen you do 2no$ -ecause it is such a charming plan and $ill ma2e us all so happy+) )% thin2 % dare promise1 Natalie1 (or % guess it+) ) as /apa told you then5) cried the girl1 loo2ing disappointed+ )No1 -ut $hen % (ound a costly dress in my room $ith my name on the card that accompanied it1 ho$ could % help 2no$ing that it $as a (riendly hint to -e ready (or the -all at the ne$ Jursaal5)

)"rong0 "rong0 %t is not that1 though you are to go in spite o( all re(usals1 and % than2 you (or your mee2 o-edience+ %t is something (ar -etter than -alls1 something % have $anted and $aited (or all the three months you have -een $ith us+ T$o days ago /apa said % should have it i( you $ere $illing and tonight he is going to arrange the plan+) )%t is to spend the $inter in /aris5 % agree1 -ut % do not thin2 you strong enough (or that gay + place+) )"rong again1 it#s not /aris+ 4ou $aste time in trying to guess and % shall -e tempted to tell i( % stay1 so %#m going in to leave you the torments o( suspense+ Blind Rosalie1 not to see $hat % have seen so long+) "ith a mischievous laugh Natalie stepped into the salon through one long $indo$ 6ust as her (ather stepped out at the other+ The Comte de Luneville $as a tall1 soldierly man o( (ive and (orty7 slightly gray1 -ut $ith a handsome patrician (ace $hich age $ould only so(ten and re(ine+ %ntensely proud -ut too $ell -red to sho$ it e&cept -y the cold courtesy o( his manner7 very 6ealous o( the honor o( his ancient name1 and (iery as a -oy at any insult o((ered it7 (astidious and reserved1 yet chivalrously compassionate to $ea2ness or $ant1 and passionately (ond o( his one motherless child+ Rosamond he had received into his heart and home $ithout a ,uestion1 (or in her he sa$ the savior o( his daughter and he (elt that that de-t could never -e paid+ For three months they had $andered through !ermany1 devoted to the invalid $ho no$ $as almost restored1 than2s to the healing $aters o( the Spas and Rosamond#s untiring care+ No mother could have -een more tender and the girl loved her $ith the ardor o( a grate(ul heart7 no (ather could have )(elt greater pride and a((ection (or her than the Comte1 no lover sho$ed his regard in $ays more delicate and charming+ A happy trio1 (or so guarded and cherished1 Rosamond could not -ut recover cheer(ulness and heartily en6oy the s$eet atmosphere o( home $hich no$ surrounded her+ %gnatius $as the Comte#s spiritual *irector and through him she o(ten heard o( her (riend1 though he never $rote to her in spite o( all temptations+ Follo$ing this e&ample Rosamond employed every device to -anish Tempest

(rom her thoughts1 and succeeded -etter than -e(ore+ No sign had he made1 and having resolved to renounce him she schooled hersel( to re6oice at this silence on his part7 yet at times a vague dis,uiet possessed her and she (elt an uncon,uera-le (ore-oding that no po$er -ut death $ould (orce him to relin,uish his claim upon her+ This hidden (ear had haunted her o( late so strongly that she o(ten as2ed hersel( ho$ she could escape1 and loo2ed a-out her (or some help $hich should end her an&iety (orever+ From a source the most une&pected and in a guise the most tempting it came to her at last+ Along the -alcony approached the Comte $ith e&tended hand and the cordial smile $hich he gave only to his daughter and her (riend+ e had heard Natalie#s last $ords and a slight (lush rose to his chee2 as he said1 o((ering his arm1 )4ou shall not su((er long1 Mademoiselle Rosalie+ /ermit me to seat you here to -rie(ly tell the little plan $hich so delights /etite+) Most men $ould have -een -oth a$2$ard and con(used at that moment7 a Frenchman is never a$2$ard and can conceal emotion $ith consummate s2ill i( he chooses+ Rosamond (elt the Comte#s hand trem-le as he placed her in a chair 6ust inside the $indo$1 -ut as he stood -eside her his (ace $as ,uite calm and there $as no change in his manner e&cept a slight additional de(erence as he addressed her+ )Mademoiselle1 you have already con(erred upon me an o-ligation $hich % never can repay1 yet % cannot resist the desire to as2 o( you another and a greater (avor+ % 2no$ $ell ho$ little % can o((er to one so rich in -eauty1 youth and goodness as yoursel(1 -ut % am presumptuous enough to hope that you $ill ma2e a grate(ul man proud and happy $ith your love1 (or his heart is $holly yours+) Surprise and emotion le(t Rosamond no po$er to ans$er (or a moment+ The delicate generosity and respect o( the o((er touched her to the heart+ /utting aside all he could give1 ran21 $ealth1 protection1 honor1 and $ith no hint at her poverty1 (riendlessness or the shado$ on her li(e1 he had o((ered the one gi(t that made -oth e,ual1 his love1 and sued (or hers as hum-ly as i( she $ere a princess o( the land+ Such things $in $omen1 and though she did not love him Rosamond could (ind no courage to re(use him1 no $ords $arm enough to than2 him+ )4ou are too 2ind9% am not $orthy9you do not 2no$ my past9) she (altered $ith (ull eyes and grate(ul heart+

)% do 2no$ it1 Rosalie1) he ans$ered $ith unchanged tenderness+ )Forgive me i( % erred in as2ing o( another the truth $hich % $ould spare you the pain o( telling me+ To Father %gnatius % (irst told my love and as2ed i( it $as $ise to nourish it $ith hope+) )4ou told him this0 "hat did he ans$er5) Rosamond (orgot -oth her lover and hersel( in pity (or the hard tas2 the unconscious Comte had given poor %gnatius+ "ell pleased at her eagerness1 the cause o( $hich he utterly mistoo21 *e Luneville put a letter and a note into her hand1 saying hope(ully1 as he stepped into the -alcony to leave her (ree1 )Read it and let your ans$er -e as 2ind1 ma chere) %t $as a long letter telling her story in the truest yet the 2indest language+ !iving her no -lame -ut d$elling elo,uently on her innocence and ignorance1 the courage $ith $hich she had shunned temptation1 and the penitence -y $hich she had striven to atone (or her unconscious o((ense+ e encouraged the Comte to hope1 assured him that Rosalie $as $orthy to -e the $i(e o( any man1 -egged him to pardon the past1 the sin o( $hich lay not on her shoulders1 and to ma2e her (uture happy $ith every -lessing she deserved+ Tears dropped upon the paper as she read1 (or1 2no$ing that the $riter loved her1 every generous $ord1 every 2ind $ish $as dou-ly precious and yet dou-ly sad+ Even in spea2ing o( the man $ho $as his rival %gnatius had -een 6ust1 had given no name and spared Tempest the Comte#s detestation+ The note $as to hersel(1 very -rie( and very -eauti(ul1 (or in it he -ade her (reely accept the good gi(t o((ered her and (orget a dangerous passion in a true and happy love+ No $ord o( himsel( e&cept to assure her o( his approval and his prayers (or her peace+ That note she put into her -osom $ith a long sigh and the $ords1 )% gave mysel( into his hands1 he -ids me do it1 and % $ill o-ey him+) Then1 as *e Luneville glanced in $ist(ully1 she said1 steadily though tears still lay on her chee2s and her eyes $ere (ull o( a touching humility1 )Monsieur le Comte1 % $ill -e (ran2 $ith you1 (or such great 2indness inspires me $ith a $ish to -e $orthy o( it+ 4ou 2no$ the truth no$ and yet you o((er me your honora-le name1 your no-le heart7 % never can prove my gratitude (or this1 -ut my li(e shall -e spent in the service o( you and yours+ Nay1 do not than2 me1 % am not done+ Forgive me i( %

con(ess that % do not love you as % should7 my heart is (ull o( a((ection1 reverence and than2(ulness7 these % can give you gladly1 -ut no more+ % have su((ered much1 % thin2 % can never love again1 -ut i( this daughterly regard contents you1 ta2e it and let me live (or you+) The Comte smiled and eagerly accepted the hand she o((ered him1 (or1 manli2e1 he (elt sure that a $oman so young and tenderhearted $ould not long remain insensitive to love+ But even as he did so something in her (ace made him pause and as2 an&iously1 )%s this a sacri(ice1 Rosalie5 Can you -e happy $ith me5 *oes no tie still -ind you5 "ill no secret regret poison your peace herea(ter5) As he spo2e her eyes (ell1 the color died out o( her (ace1 her head sun2 and $ith a sudden tremor she dre$ her hand a$ay1 ans$ering slo$ly1 )%t is no sacri(ice1 % shall -e happy1 -ut % cannot utterly (orget+) Remem-ering all she had su((ered1 the+ Comte sa$ in this demonstration only the humiliation o( a $oman $ronged as she had -een1 and pity deepened his love+ )%t shall -e my care to e((ace the past and ma2e you (orget the -itter in the s$eet+ This hand is mine1 and % claim it no$1 the heart % $ill $in herea(ter+) As he retoo2 it1 Rosamond -ent and 2issed his o$n $ith a mute gratitude $hich he $ould have ans$ered li2e a lover in de(iance o( French eti,uette1 had not Natalie peeped in1 and seeing the act1 clapped her hands1 crying $ith an April (ace as she em-raced Rosamond1 )Mamma0 Mamma0 4ou have said yes0 /apa is happy and %#m your little daughter no$+) So $ooed1 so $elcomed1 it $as impossi-le (or Rosamond to regret her promise or to (ear the (uture+ Seeing the happiness it $as in her po$er to give1 (eeling the love $hich surrounded her1 and 2no$ing that no deceit $ould ever $rec2 her peace in this sa(e home she yielded to the gentle po$er that controlled her and lived in the 6oy(ul present+ At her desire the Comte consented that the marriage should -e very private1 and at his desire she consented that it should -e a speedy one+ A secret presentiment possessed Rosamond that it $ould never ta2e place at all and in spite o( every e((ort to -anish it this (eeling remained unchanged+

The trousseau $as ordered (rom /aris and the Chateau prepared to receive its ne$ mistress7 Natalie $as in a perpetual rapture over her -eauti(ul Mamma1 the Comte devoted and supremely happy1 the day (i&ed and everything prepared1 yet still Rosamond said $ithin hersel(9)%t $ill never -e+) %n spite o( orders and entreaties to servants and Natalie the secret too2 $ind and the (ashiona-le loungers at "ies-aden 2ne$ $ell that Comte de Luneville $as a-out to marry Mademoiselle Rosalie .arian1 his daughter#s (riend1 (or Rosamond had thus disguised her name1 hoping the longer to elude Tempest and Baptiste+

888

The grand -all came t$o days -e(ore the $edding1 and to grati(y his daughter1 $ho $as sadly disappointed that there $ere to -e no pu-lic (estivities in honor o( the marriage1 the Comte had promised to give her a glimpse o( the ne$ Jursaal in its evening splendor+ Rosamond had consented1 and Natalie $ould not release her1 though she desired to -e le(t at home+ She $as standing -e(ore her toilette $hile the maid put the last touches to her dress o( the richest -lac2 lace >(or she had $orn no colors since she le(t the convent? $hen Natalie came (lying in $ith a velvet case in her hand+ .ery charming did she loo2 in the elegantly simple costume $hich French girls $ear $ith such grace1 and having ta2e a loo2 at her pretty sel( + She turned to Rosamond1 saying gaily as she opened the case1 )/apa -egs that you $ill $ear these (or his sa2e+ e is very proud o( you1 my lovely Mamma1 and though you re6ect all other ornaments % 2no$ you $ill $ear these+) "ith a consenting smile Rosamond -ent her head to receive the -andeau o( -ridal pearls1 and allo$ed Natalie to

decorate nec2 and arms $ith the 6e$els that only enhanced their -eauty+ )4ou are ravishing no$1 come and than2 /apa as he -est li2es+) Follo$ing the girl1 Rosamond $ent do$n and1 advancing to the Comte1 $hose eyes $ere (ull o( tender admiration1 she put a $hite arm a-out his nec21 a so(t chee2 to his and $hispered $ith a shy (irst 2iss1 )!ustave1 % than2 you+) )Monsieur le Comte1 the carriage $aits+) "ith a thrill o( terror Rosamond turned to see standing at the door1 in the Luneville livery1 Baptiste0

C A/TER I.

Madame La Comtesse

e $as gone as she loo2ed and in the hurry o( departure no one o-served Rosamond#s pallor+ As she descended she tried to persuade hersel( that it $as a phantom con6ured up -y her o$n (ears1 -ut at the carriage door appeared the real Baptiste+ "ithout the slightest sign o( recognition on his e&pressionless (ace he put her in $ith the respect(ul care o( a $ell:trained servant and she sun2 -ac2 (eeling that all $as lost+ As they $ere a-out to drive o(( he put his head in at her $indo$1 saying $ith a meaning(ul smile and an o-se,uious -o$ as he o((ered a glittering o-6ect1 )Madame la Comtesse dropped her (an+) Natalie laughed1 and the Comte pulled up the $indo$ loo2ing hal( amused and hal( annoyed1 -ut Rosamond clutched the (an1 (eeling sure that it concealed some threat or $arning (or her eye alone+

)"ho is that man5) she as2ed1 trying to spea2 naturally+ )A ne$ valet $hom % engaged today+ %t is evident he $ished to propitiate his ne$ mistress1 and so imitates the other servants in giving you your title some$hat prematurely+) ) e has a -ad (ace1 % do not (ancy him+) ) e is merely on trial1 % shall dismiss him i( he does not please you1) replied the Comte $ith all su-mission+ )"e $ill arrange that tomorro$+) But even as she spo2e1 Rosamond thought drearily $ithin hersel(1 )"hat may not have happened -y tomorro$5) "hile *e Luneville $aited (or them at the door o( the cloa2room and Natalie arranged her curls1 Rosamond e&amined the (an+ As she e&pected1 a tiny paper $as (olded in it7 only a line in Tempest#s handF

Meet me as a (riend and (ear nothing+

e $ould -e there then0 er heart sun2 $ithin her1 (or the shado$ o( his presence seemed to (all dar2ly over all her (uture+ "hat $ould he say5 "here $ould he meet her5 A (everish an&iety at once too2 possession o( her and her usual grace(ul ,uietude $as replaced -y a suppressed e&citement $hich heightened her -eauty and made her seem gayest $hen most misera-le+ The immense Saal $as (illed $ith a -rilliant throng made up o( all nations7 some dancing1 some sitting in the recesses -et$een the mar-le pillars that alternated $ith tall vases heaped $ith (lo$ers1 some roaming in and out (rom the lighted gardens $here the la2e shone1 music echoed and lovers $hispered in the linden $al2s+ But the chie(

attraction $ere the gam-ling ta-les+ Several o( these occupied the small rooms ad6oining the grand hall and $ere al$ays surrounded1 (or at "ies-aden every one plays and no one reproves+ Men and $omen ali2e ta2e their places at the green ta-les1 sta2e their napoleons and lose or $in as the impassive croupier turns a card and rolls a -all+ Natalie1 (ull o( girlish delight1 hung chattering gaily on her (ather#s arm1 and Rosamond1 scarcely 2no$ing $hat she said1 tal2ed as gaily $hile her eye eagerly scanned every (ace that passed them as they promenaded slo$ly round the hall+ =uite unconscious o( the glances that (ollo$ed her1 the $hispers interchanged as she $ent -y or the Comte#s satis(action at her de-ut1 she $ent on searching (or one (ace $ith ever:increasing e&citement+ er altered demeanor (irst surprised1 then pleased1 then distur-ed *e Luneville1 (or he could not understand it+ er usually pale chee2s -urned $ith an unnatural color1 her glittering eyes roved restlessly to and (ro1 she tal2ed at random1 turned almost rudely to loo2 a(ter passers:-y1 started and -reathed ,uic2ly sometimes1 and o(ten seemed a-out to -rea2 a$ay and (ollo$ some uncontrolla-le impulse+ She evidently tried to conceal this strange e&citement and seem li2e hersel(1 -ut (ailed to do so and the consciousness o( her (ailure added to her trou-le+ *e Luneville $as on the point o( spea2ing to her a-out it $hen Natalie -egged to see the gam-ling1 and1 hoping a ,uieter scene might compose Rosamond1 the Comte led them into the nearest room+ The ta-le $as (illed and a dou-le ro$ o( spectators surrounded it1 -ut several gentlemen at once gave $ay and permitted the ladies to dra$ near+ A curious scene1 (or princes1 -arons1 $omen o( ran21 adventurers1 actresses1 and disreputa-le characters o( -oth se&es sat side -y side in per(ect silence $atching the cards1 laying do$n their gold or ra2ing up their $innings $ith such a variety o( e&pressions that the (aces alone $ere an a-sor-ing study+ *e Luneville $atched the game1 Natalie -ecame interested in the (ortunes o( a pretty French Mar,uise $ho in (ull -all costume sat playing rec2lessly $ith a group o( young adorers -ehind her chair+ As i( still possessed -y the same unrest1 Rosamond glanced eagerly round the long ta-le1 and suddenly her eye caught a glimpse o( something at the (ar end $hich made her color change and her heart -eat (ast+ Forgetting everything -ut a desperate desire to see1 she leaned (or$ard1

,uite unconscious that her arm touched the shoulder o( the gentleman sitting -e(ore her+ e turned $ith a (ro$n to re-u2e the rudeness1 -ut at sight o( the -eauti(ul arm the (ro$n melted to a smile and leaving his napoleons to their (ate he sat loo2ing up into the eager countenance a-ove him+ At the other end o( the ta-le1 $ith averted (ace and head leaning on his hand1 sat the man $ho had arrested her attention+ Short -lac2 curls covered the head1 and the hand that hid the (ace $as shapely and $hite1 $ith a signet ring on the third (inger+ "as it Tempest5 "ould he never turn5 Trem-ling $ith suspense1 Rosamond -ent nearer till the gentleman over $hose shoulder she leaned could hear the rapid -eating o( her heart+ er an&iety $as almost un-eara-le $hen the man turned1 and $ith a long sigh o( relie( she sa$ that it $as not Tempest+ /ressing her hand upon eyes $eary $ith that long strain1 she stood so till a $arm -reath on her arm made her loo2 up to see the dreaded (ace close -e(ore her1 smiling $ith a smile o( satirical satis(action that nearly drove her $ild+ Neither spo2e (or an instant1 -ut Tempest touched his lips $ith a signi(icant gesture and assumed the air o( a stranger+ Scarcely 2no$ing $hat she did1 Rosamond dre$ -ac2 $ith a hasty )/ardon1 Monsieur1) $hich he ans$ered $ith the -o$ and smile o( a gallant man and a glance at the $hite arm as he said1 )Merci1 Madame+) A moment a(ter1 the Comte1 turning to spea2 to Rosamond1 $as startled at the entire change $hich appeared in her+ /ale and motionless as a statue1 she stood $ith a strangely a-sent e&pression in the so lately eager eyes1 and the loo2 o( a $oman $ho $aited to receive some impending -lo$+ !lancing a-out him to discover any cause (or this entire metamorphosis1 the Comte sa$ nothing -ut the -usy cro$d and most a-sor-ed o( all $as the peculiar:loo2ing man 6ust -e(ore her+ )4ou are tired1 come and rest1 ma chere1) $hispered *e Luneville1 dra$ing her arm through his $ith tender an&iety+ She

(i&ed a -lan2 loo2 on him as i( she had not heard or comprehended1 then roused hersel( -y a strong e((ort and1 passed her hand over her eyes $ith a nervous shudder as she said so(tly1 )4es1 ta2e me a$ay1 the cro$d distracts me+) )/apa1 /apa1 % entreat you to let me stay a little longer1 it is so (ascinating1) cried Natalie1 $ho $as a spoilt child and ruled her (ather li2e a petty tyrant+ Be(ore he could e&plain1 Rosamond said1 $ith all her usual sel(:possession and in her usual clear tone1 )Stay $ith her1 !ustave1 here is Madame *uval and her son going to sit in the garden1 % $ill 6oin them1 the air $ill re(resh me and you can meet us at the /agoda+) "ith a decided gesture she $ithdre$ her hand and $as gone -e(ore *e Luneville could detain her+ /erple&ed and some$hat annoyed1 he su-mitted and remained to guard his daughter1 ,uite una$are that the peculiar:loo2ing man $as o-serving him $ith 2een -ut covert scrutiny till he rose and mingled in the cro$d+ Madame *uval and her party $ere soon a-sor-ed in ices and gossip1 -ut as Rosamond cared (or neither she $as politely allo$ed to rest some$hat apart (rom the gay group+ She had purposely le(t the Comte1 had purposely raised her voice as she spo2e o( the /agoda1 (or she 2ne$ Tempest $ould haunt her till he had spo2en and no$ she $aited (or him1 resolved to have no meeting or e&planation -e(ore the Comte i( possi-le+ She did not $ait long7 soon Tempest appeared1 and having said to Madame *uval $ith the utmost suavity in his per(ect French1 )% am an old (riend1 % have ne$s (rom England (or Mademoiselle1 is it permitted that $e ta2e a little promenade -y the la2e5) and $ithout $aiting (or a reply he o((ered his arm to Rosamond1 adding under his -reath+ )"ill you come1 or shall % spea2 here+) She $ent at once1 leaving Madame to shrug her shoulders and lament the un$ise (reedom allo$ed their young ladies -y )the mad English1) as they are called a-road+ Leading her into a shado$y path lighted only -y the moon and deserted (or livelier $al2s1 Tempest said1 almost sternly

though he held her hand $ith a $arm grasp1 )"hy did you -rea2 your promise5) )% made none1) $as her e,ually stern reply+ )4ou (orget1 % told you that % le(t you (ree to amuse yoursel( as you chose7 t$o things only % (or-ade you1 death and marriage7 yet % (ind you on the point o( -ecoming Madame la Comtesse+) )4ou have no right to (or-id me anything+) )/erhaps not1 -ut % have the po$er+) )% dou-t it and de(y it+) )% $arn you to -e$are1 Rose1 % am in earnest and % al$ays con,uer+) )% am in earnest and % never yield+) e paused and e&amined her (ace in a )strea2 o( moonlight $hich (ell across the path+ %t $as very pale -ut per(ectly emotionless1 and the eyes she (i&ed steadily on his $ere (ull o( a dauntless determination deeper and stronger than de(iance+ is o$n eyes 2indled1 his ruthless mouth gre$ grim1 and his $hole air sho$ed plainly that he (elt the crisis had come and held himsel( ready to meet it+ )Rose1 do you love this man5) he as2ed vehemently+ )As a (ather+) )And he is satis(ied $ith that cool a((ection5) )4es+) )4ou are am-itious1 you marry him (or his ran25) )% am (riendless1 % marry him (or protection+) )Against $hom5) )4ou+) ) e $ill not protect you $hen he 2no$s my claim upon you1) sneered Tempest1 stung -y her $ords+

) e 2no$s the truth and still loves me+) )All1 does he 2no$ all1 Rosamond5) )Everything -ut your name+ %gnatius spared you the added shame o( a good man#s contempt+) She had $ithdra$n her hand and $ith (olded arms1 head erect and the carriage o( a ,ueen she $al2ed -eside him through the light and shado$ o( the (lo$ery path+ Tempest ground his teeth as he $atched her1 conscious that some invisi-le -arrier had risen up -et$een them to -a((le and de(eat him+ "hat it $as he could not tell1 -ut (elt it1 and the su-tle resistance roused passion1 pride and $ill to con,uer it at all ha3ards+ %n a tone o( concentrated $rath and hatred he said1 )% understand1 the handsome priest has $rought this change+ e is the Comte#s con(essor and Madame la Comtesse $ill -ecome a devotee+ Chateau and convent are not (ar apart and English$omen soon learn that French customs permit a young lover as $ell as an old hus-and+) She ans$ered not a $ord1 never turned her head1 and -etrayed no sign o( having heard the insult e&cept -y1 $ith a sudden1 disdain(ul gesture1 gathering -ac2 the s$eeping s2irt that -rushed against him as i( he $ere some no&ious thing+ %t $as an involuntary act1 a $omanly retaliation1 -ut it $ounded him more deeply than the sharpest $ord1 (or he loved her the more intensely the more she repulsed him1 (eeling sure that1 in spite o( all1 her heart $as his and $ould yield at last+ That little touch o( silent contempt stung him to the soul and harassed him $ith the (ear that her coldness $as real1 not assumed+ "ith an e&pression that $ould have daunted any $oman he placed himsel( -e(ore her and $as a-out to spea2 $hen1 (inding her passage -arred1 she turned and s$ept slo$ly -ac2 again1 out$ardly untrou-led -ut in$ardly intensely grate(ul to -e nearer help in case o( need1 (or he loo2ed as i( a $ord $ould goad him to any violence+ "ith a sti(led oath he sprung to her side and put out his hand to arrest her1 -ut something in her (ace restrained him and $al2ing at her side he said lo$ -et$een his teeth1 )4ou $ill marry this man5) )% $ill+) )4ou no longer love me then5)

)Not a $hit+) )4ou utterly re6ect me1 do you+) )4es+) )4ou re(use my prayers and de(y my $arning5) )% do+) )Then it is $ar to the death0 Are you prepared (or the conse,uences o( your act5) She turned no$ and loo2ed at him1 (or his (right(ul calmness made her -lood run cold+ )"hat $ill the conse,uences -e5) she as2ed1 hal( pausing+ )A -ullet through *e Luneville#s heart is one o( them+) At this threat1 uttered $ith a loo2 $hich plainly proved that it $ould -e mercilessly e&ecuted i( she de(ied him1 all her courage (ailed her+ Any insult1 $rong or danger to hersel( she could -ear1 -ut death to the man $ho loved her1 Natalie#s -eloved (ather1 her generous (riend1 that $as impossi-le1 that sin must never lie at her door even i( she 2illed hersel( to prevent it+ Tempest sa$ his po$er and used it $ell1 (or as she stretched her clasped hands to$ard him in mute entreaty1 -e(ore $ords could come he dre$ -ac2 as i( implaca-le and ans$ered her $ith a relentless voice1 )No1 % $ill not -e ca6oled nor -ri-ed again+ % have $aited long and patiently1 have le(t you (ree and let no $ord o( mine -etray the tie that -inds us+ % have no desire to 2ill this man -ut i( you persist in putting an insurmounta-le -arrier -et$een us % s$ear % $ill have his li(e1 and his -lood $ill -e upon your head+) )%( % su-mit1 $hat then5) she $hispered $ith a terror:stric2en (ace1 (or in the shado$ that other (ace1 s$arthy1 (ierce and (iery:eyed1 recalled the night $hen she sa$ it (irst and li2ened it to Mephistopheles+ )Then % vanish1 un2no$n as % came+ % leave you (ree and $ait till this cursed divorce is $on+ A month more and my chain

is o((7 % am glad and ready (or another then1 and surely % can give no -etter proo( o( my love than that1 $hen a(ter (i(teen years o( slavery % give my (reedom into your 2eeping1 Rosamond5) is voice so(tened as he spo2e1 and he laid his hand upon her head as i( he claimed her -y an inaliena-le right+ The proud head drooped at once1 the chaplet o( pearls (ell at her (eet1 and all the peace(ul1 happy (uture vanished in the gloom o( the shado$ on her li(e+ Tempest li(ted the 6e$els1 guessed their giver and $ith a dar2 smile said1 )See1 Rose1 your -ridal cro$n drops a$ay at my touch1 (or it is none o( mine+ Accept the omen and promise that in a month % shall put another in its place+) )% cannot promise0 /hillip1 -e merci(ul0 Let me ma2e this good man happy7 % o$e him so much1 % can sho$ it in no other $ay the gratitude % (eel (or him+ 4ou have done me -itter $rong and % pardon it1 -ut (or !od#s sa2e do not haunt and ruin my $hole li(e+) Regardless o( time or place1 Rosamond had sun2 upon her 2nees as she implored pity o( the pitiless+ e loved her1 -ut it $as a sel(ish love and he $as glad to see her proud spirit -ro2en1 (or he thought that her de(eat $as his victory+ She had (orgotten everything -ut her despair1 he $as $atch(ul and $ary even at this e&cited moment+ e desired to remain un2no$n i( possi-le1 to $or2 -ehind the scenes and avoid -loodshed1 2no$ing $ell that Rosamond $ould (ind many de(enders i( the truth $as 2no$n+ To $or2 upon her (ears $as the sa(est course1 yet not to drive her too (ar lest he lost all+ Steps and voices approached -e(ore he could reply1 and hastily raising her he led her on1 saying in a tone she could not (orget1 )!o and thin2 o( this7 % give you till tomorro$ night+ Escape is impossi-le1 (or Baptiste $atches in the house and % $atch $ithout+ 4our $oman#s $it $ill devise some prete&t (or retracting your promise to the Comte1 or de(erring its (ul(illment (or a month+ Then % shall appear and this long struggle must end happily+ Be $ise and decide as % $ould have you1 else9) e did not (inish -ut the pause $as terri-ly signi(icant1 and -o$ing her head in mute assent Rosamond ,uitted his side to glide into a seat at the door o( the /agoda $here Madame *uval still sat+

Tempest vanished and $hen the Comte came to loo2 (or his (iancee he (ound her $aiting (or him $ith the same unnaturally ,uiet1 a-sent loo2 on her colorless (ace+ Natalie -egged (or one more promenade through the great salon $here the -all $as no$ at its height and Rosamond assented (or the child#s sa2e1 though *e Luneville desired to ta2e them -oth a$ay+ As they (ell in $ith the gay procession $hich eddied round the hall1 he (elt the hand that lay on his right arm clenched $ith sudden (orce1 and loo2ing do$n sa$ Rosarnond#s (ace (lash into li(e and color in the dra$ing o( a -reath+ /ride1 de(iance1 scorn and hatred mingled in that -rie(ly -rilliant e&pression+ %t $as gone as ,uic2ly as it came and she $al2ed on li2e a -eauti(ul automaton again+ Loo2ing up $ith a -e$ildered glance1 the Comte sa$ the peculiar1 scarred (ace o( the man at the gaming ta-le1 no$ arm in arm $ith a (riend o( his o$n $ho -o$ed in passing1 $hile the stranger (i&ed his eyes on Rosamond $ith a singular loo2+ )"hat a repulsive person *e Launoy has $ith him+ *id you o-serve1 Rosalie5) as2ed the Comte ,uic2ly+ )4es1 he $as horri-le1) she ans$ered $ith a shiver+ ) e had magni(icent eyes1 /apa+ Some hero % am sure -y the great scar on his (orehead+ % shall as2 *e Launoy $ho his romantic:loo2ing (riend is tomorro$1) said Natalie1 all unconscious o( the tragedy going on so near her+ As the carriage door closed upon them Rosamond leaned (or$ard to put do$n the $indo$1 $hen a moc2ing voice $hispered in her ear1 )Adieu1 till tomorro$ night1 Madame la Comtesse+)

C A/TER I.%

Mad

The spacious gardens ad6oining the Jursaal $ere usually (illed $ith (ashiona-le louneers -y t$elve o#cloc21 -ut on the morning a(ter the -all they $ere deserted -y all -ut a (e$ gentlemen $ho had spent the night at the gaming ta-les and $ere -rea2(asting under the trees -e(ore the great Ca(e+ At one o( these ta-les sat Tempest and his ne$:made ac,uaintance1 *e Launoy1 en6oying co((ee and cigars+ 'p and do$n a distant $al2 a tall soldierly (igure $as marching in the Septem-er sunshine $ith -ent head and a-sor-ed e&pression+ From time to time Tempest glanced that $ay and presently his companion#s eye (ollo$ed his+ )Ah1 the poor *e Luneville0 e tries to dissipate his impatience -y an early promenade+ My (aith0 e is as ardent a lover as i( his head $as not gray+ One $ould thin2 he had had enough to 2eep him (rom a second e&periment o( this sort+) )Might % as2 $hat mis(ortune -eside the death o( his $i(e has a((licted the Comte5) )%t is $ell 2no$n and % may spea2 o( it+ Madame la Comtesse $as mad (or years -e(ore she died1 and *e Luneville su((ered so intensely that $e never allude to the un(ortunate lady+ Any discussion or hint o( insanity drives him hal( distracted1 (or he is haunted -y a (ear that Mademoiselle may inherit her mother#s malady+) )Ah19yes19than2 you+) The $ords (ell slo$ly (rom Tempest#s lips and (or many minutes he sat so still that *e Launoy (ancied he $as hal( asleep+ ad he seen the eyes -ehind those do$ncast lids he $ould have 2no$n that some purpose $as a-sor-ing the man#s mind so intensely that he $as unconscious o( everything else+ A sudden laugh -ro2e the silence and seemed to recall Tempest to the (act that he $as not alone+ Chec2ing his mysterious merriment1 he accounted (or it -y relating

some ludicrous incident o( the night -e(ore and had 6ust (inished the story $hen *e Launoy said1 ) ere is *e Luneville1 do you 2no$ him5) )No1 % desire to1 pray present me+) The Comte approached1 -ut in no mood (or introductions1 and $hen his (riend presented Tempest it re,uired all his native -reeding to receive him courteously+ *e Launoy made him sit and having started an agreea-le su-6ect o( conversation pleaded an engagement and slipped a$ay to -ed+ Tempest smiled as he $ent1 and eyed the Comte as a cat might eye a mouse -e(ore she tortured it+ A $ord had inspired him $ith a dia-olical plot and chance seemed to (avor its e&ecution1 (or even $hile he hesitated ho$ to ta2e the (irst step accident -e(riended him+ e dropped the cigar $hich he $as a-out to light and stooping to recover it a little loc2et slipped (rom his vest poc2et and rolled to$ard the Comte+ The spring $as -ro2en1 and as it (ell opened1 causing the Comte to e&claim in the act o( ta2ing it up1 )Mon *ieu1 ho$ li2e Rosalie0) )%t is my $i(e1) $as the ,uiet ans$er as Tempest stretched his hand (or the miniature+ But *e Luneville 2ept it1 saying $ith an air o( haughty surprise mingled $ith an&iety as his eye (ell on t$o letters1 )% do not dou-t your $ord1 Monsieur1 -ut permit me to as2 the name o( this lady $hose initials and (ace are so $onder(ully li2e those o( Mademoiselle .arian5) )Rosamond .ivian is the name o( the lady $hom % married nearly three years ago1 and $ho1 % have the unhappiness o( in(orming Monsieur le Comte1 is the same person as Mademoiselle Rosalie .arian+) )%t is (alse0) *e Luneville (lung do$n the picture as i( it $ere a -attle gage+ "ith the same calm air1 the same piti(ul glance1 Tempest too2 up the trin2et and opening the other side displayed a curl o( dar2 hair (olded in a little paper on $hich in a hand the Comte 2ne$ $ell $as $ritten1 )For /hillip (rom his Rose+) As he loo2ed the angry color (orsoo2 the unhappy man#s (ace1 he dropped into the seat (rom $hich he

had started1 and laying a trem-ling hand on Tempest#s arm he $hispered hoarsely1 )Tell me $hat it means5) )% $ill+ For this % came hither1 hoping to -e in time to save you (rom the terri-le mis(ortune $hich rumor $hispered you $ere a-out to -ring upon yoursel(+) A loo2 o( relie( s$ept over the Comte#s (ace as he e&claimed li2e one $ho caught at a clue to the mystery1 )% 2no$ the story o( her li(e and % (orgive it+) )Ah1 Monsieur1 you are no-ly generous -ut you are deceived7 you -elieve that romantic tale1 you pity and (orgive+ !od 2no$s the poor girl needs pity and pardon (or the (raud1 -ut you $ill than2 me (or the truth1 -itter though+it -e1 $hich saves you (rom marrying a mad$oman+) Tempest#s voice dropped lo$ and his lips trem-led as he uttered the -lac2 lie that $as to doom the Comte#s happiness to a sudden death+ *e Lu:neville#s (ace -lanched $ith unuttera-le grie( and horror as he listened and -elieved even $hile repelling the dread(ul (act+ )No1 no1 it is impossi-le0 %t cannot -e my Rosalie1 she is as sane as %+ %t is some terri-le mista2e7 (or !od#s sa2e tell me anything -ut that1) he cried in tones that $ould have touched a heart o( stone+ They did touch Tempest#s1 hard as it $as1 -ut having sta2ed much upon the venture he $ould not retract1 seeing ho$ strong an adversary he had in this man#s love1 and (eeling that *e Launoy#s hint $as the -est $eapon to use against it+ "ith $ell:(eigned compassion he soothed the Comte#s anguish and seemed to share it as a (ello$ su((erer+ )My poor (riend1 % -eseech your pardon (or this -lo$1 -ut it $as inevita-le+ Listen $hile % tell you the sad tale o( my -ereavement and her malady+ % loved her passionately1 nay1 still do in spite o( all1 and yearn to $in her -ac2+) No acting there1 real love in the voice1 real longing in the eye1 real sorro$ in the sigh that (ollo$ed+ This touch o( nature struc2 the

listener $ith the (orce o( truth and gave $eight to every $ord o( the art(ul story+ "ith a groan the Comte pulled his hat over his -ro$s and listened in despairing silence+ )"e $ere married hastily1 % have the proo(s o( the act and can produce $itnesses1 though the poor girl denies the $hole+ For a year $e $ere very happy1 -ut at times a strange restlessness tormented her and trou-led me+ % indulged every $him1 led a $andering li(e to grati(y her1 and devoted mysel( soul and -ody to her pleasure+ %n the -eginning o( the second year the vague (ear $hich had haunted me $as con(irmed -y her sudden (light+ % (ollo$ed and (ound her1 a sad $rec2 in /aris $here some 2ind /rovidence had thro$n her into the hands o( (riends+ % could no longer conceal (rom mysel( the dread(ul truth1 (or she $as the victim o( one o( those monomanias $hich -a((le the s2ill o( the $isest and lie unsuspected till some mysterious impulse -etrays them+ She denied that % $as her hus-and1 accused me o( deceiving her -y a (alse marriage1 (irmly -elieved that % had a $i(e living1 and $as in a hopeless state o( mental con(usion+ % did my -est1 not $ishing to use (orce1 -ut $hile % $aited (or some change in her she (led again to Amiens+) )4es1 it is true1 the story is the same7 go on1 go on1 % $ill hear all1) murmured the Comte1 leaning his head upon his hands in an attitude o( desperate patience+ )At times she is ,uite hersel(1 so lovely1 mild and $inning no one $ould suspect the sad malady till a $ord (rom me1 a hint o( the past1 Kor some ine&plica-le mood -rings -ac2 the mania in its stu--orn or its (rantic (orm+ At the Convent she $as apparently $ell1 and this %gnatius having $on her con(idence espoused her cause $ith the -lind devotion o( a lover+ %t is true1 priest though he -e1 and Rosamond $ill not deny it+ She $as touched -y his passion -ut 2no$ing that it $as vain1 and possessed $ith a never:dying (ear o( me1 she too2 re(uge $ith you+ % 2ne$ $hither she had gone (or % never lost sight o( my poor a((licted girl long1 yet cannot (ind the courage to con(ine her lest it con(irm the malady past cure+ "hile she $as use(ul1 $ell and happy % remained passive1 -ut $hen tidings o( your approaching marriage reached me % could no longer hold my peace1 and as an honora-le man % came to con(ide the heavy secret to you1 regretting deeply that % could not have spared you (rom all su((ering+) )Too late1 too late0) groaned the Comte+

)%t a((licts me to the heart to learn this1 -ut % had never dreamed that you $ould love my Rosamond other than as a (riend1 a (ather+ 4our gray hairs deceived me and no$ % can do nothing -ut o((er you my than2s (or past 2indness1 my respect(ul sympathy (or present pain1 and remove my unhappy $i(e as soon as possi-le+) The thought o( parting seemed to calm *e Luneville -y the very $eight o( his grie(1 and though over$helmed $ith the sudden shoc2 he still tried to delay the end+ Loo2ing up he as2ed1 as an ominous recollection returned to him1 )Monsieur1 allo$ me to as2 ho$ o(ten these paro&ysms occur1 and ho$ their approach is mani(ested5 % have had cause to 2no$ and dread this terri-le malady and % have never detected any o( its symptoms in Rosalie9till last night1) he added to himsel(+ ) ers is a peculiar case and every physician % have consulted assured me that it is incura-le1 though time may mitigate its violence+ Once or t$ice a year this restless mood comes over her1 -eginning $ith melancholy1 increasing to e&citement $hich usually ends in some out-rea2+ She is conscious o( her a((liction1 tries to hide it and (orget1 -ut (eels its approach and i( possi-le she see2s to save hersel( (rom the (ear and pity o( others -y (light+ ave you o-served none o( these signs o( late5) )4es1) and $ith that one hard $ord the Comte (ell into a state o( passive despair+ %n ans$ering the ,uestion Tempest had descri-ed a case o( insanity $hich he had 2no$n1 shre$dly suspecting that an impetuous1 demonstrative creature li2e Rosamond had passed through many changes o( (eeling and demeanor during her so6ourn $ith the Comte+ e remem-ered that her manner the previous evening had-een e&cited and must have seemed dou-ly so to one $ho possessed no 2ey to the mystery+ is reply had con(irmed *e Luneville#s (ear and -anished his last dou-t+ Rosamond had -een melancholy7 there $as something peculiar in her manner $hen he o((ered her his hand7 the events o( the evening $ere (resh in his mind and no$ seemed strongest con(irmation o( the story he had heard+ On reaching home she had gone hastily to her room1 and there he had heard her $al2ing hal( the night+ She had re(used -rea2(ast1 and Natalie reported that she loo2ed li2e a ghost lying dressed upon her -ed $ith everything in unusual disorder round her+ All this the unhappy man recalled as he sat there $ith hidden (ace $hile his tormentor $aited to (inish the $ic2ed deed he had -egun+

/resently he loo2ed up1 deathly pale -ut very calm1 and said1 rising li2e a man suddenly gro$n old1 )Monsieur Tempest1 % than2 you1 % relin,uish all claims o( course1 % put the unhappy lady into your hands and leave "ies-aden at once (or my daughter#s sa2e+ ere is my address1 you $ill (ind me there at any hour and may (reely as2 any assistance in my po$er+ /ardon1 that % leave you no$1 % have much to do1 (or tomorro$ $as to have -een my $edding day1) and -o$ing $ith sad dignity the Comte $ent a$ay to hide his sorro$ (rom all eyes+ Tempest sat in deep thought (or several minutes and then hurried a$ay in an opposite direction1 (or he also had much to do+

888

*e Luneville $as a -rave man1 -ut the (rantic scenes he had passed through $ith his mad $i(e had given him an intense (ear o( insanity1 and much -rooding over the sad memory had not lessened its horror+ As he $andered through the most desolate portions o( the par2 he $ent over his intervie$ $ith Tempest+ At times he dou-ted the $hole story and resolved to demand proo(s7 then he recalled Rosamond#s strange moods and (elt sure that the malady $as there+ Again he thought o( her past and shrun2 as he had not done $hen %gnatius told its history1 (or since he had seen Tempest an instinctive repugnance came over him at the idea o( marrying the girl $ho once had loved this man+ The longer he thought o( it the (irmer -ecame his resolution to relin,uish all hope o( Rosamond and save his name (rom any stain1 his daughter (rom any harm1 -y the sacri(ice o( his o$n love+ "hatever the truth might -e he $ould end his o$n part in the tragedy and -rea2 loose (rom the entanglement -e(ore it $as top late1 sparing himsel( as much as possi-le (rom pu-lic criticism and censure -y timely (light1 (or the thought o( (acing the $orld#s pity or contempt made the proud man $rithe+ Full o( this determination he turned to$ard his hotel a(ter hours o( solitary meditation1 and $as approaching home $hen his attention $as arrested -y the erratic movements o( a lady hastening on -e(ore him+ A thic2 veil hid her (ace and she carried a small parcel in her hand+ She $al2ed ,uic2ly do$n the long street1 o(ten glancing nervously -ehind her7 once or t$ice she paused and seemed undecided $hich $ay to go1 then dived into a shop till some one passed1 and emerging cautiously1 retraced her steps a little $ay to cross and return more rapidly than -e(ore as i( an&ious to reach some

distant point uno-served+ Something in the (igure and the gait o( the lady made him (ollo$ her1 and 6ust as she $as stepping into a (iacre he touched her arm $ith a ,uiet )Rosalie0) She sprung -ac21 thre$ up her veil and a(ter a startled glance1 laughed nervously as the color dyed her haggard (ace1 and said hurriedly1 )"here have you -een so long5 "hy do you (ollo$ me5) )% have -een in the /ar21 and % (ollo$ to 2no$ $here you are going in such haste1) he ans$ered soothingly+ ) ome1 $ill you come5) and she stepped into the carriage $ith the e&pression o( one -a((led in some secret purpose+ )She meant to escape7 Tempest is right1) thought *e Luneville1 mar2ing her restless eyes1 her eager manner1 as $ith a ,uiet1 )Than2 you1 yes1) he seated himsel( -eside her+ She leaned -ac2 and put do$n her veil $ithout a $ord till the parcel slipped (rom her lap+ She snatched it up -e(ore he could reach it and holding it (ast1 said rapidly1 )%t is nothing1 % had a little plan1 a surprise (or you1 -ut % cannot do it1 % must $ait+ As2 no ,uestions1 and don#t tell Natalie % came out1 she thin2s % am asleep+ % $ish % $as0) The $ish -ro2e (rom her $ith a heavy sigh1 and touched $ith pity1 the Comte too2 her hot hand in his1 o-serving that she $ore no gloves and $as dressed $ith strange simplicity+ )Ma chere1 you should rest a(ter the (atigue o( last night7 it $as too much (or you1) he said 2indly+ )4es1 too much1 too much0) she ans$ered $ith a sudden tremor and a ,uic2 glance (rom the $indo$ as Baptiste1 still (ollo$ing her1 passed leisurely -y unseen -y *e Luneville+ )Come home and let me send (or *r+ !euth7 % am sure you are ill and need advice1) -egan the Comte1 already terri-ly an&ious1 (or her pulse -eat (aster than he could count and her $hole appearance (rightened him+ As he spo2e she caught her hand a$ay to drag do$n -oth curtains1 saying a-ruptly1 )% hate to -e stared at0)

She had caught a glimpse o( Tempest driving rapidly in an opposite direction1 and (earing some harm to the Comte had hidden him -y that un(ortunate act+ Mad people dread and avoid the eyes o( the sane1 2no$ing that they cannot meet them7 this speech o( hers and the veil held close made the# Comte#s heart sin2 as no peril $ould have done+ e said no more1 -ut having seen her sa(ely to her room -id her maid 2eep her ,uiet and shut himsel( up to arrange (or a speedy departure+

888

The hal( hour -e(ore dinner is the ,uietest o( the day even in hotels1 (or then everyone is dressing and salons and halls deserted+ Ta2ing advantage o( this time1 Tempest $ent to the Comte#s apartments7 Baptiste received and sho$ed him into the private parlor1 and too2 up a $ritten message to Rosamond+ She came at once1 as preternaturally calm as she had -een e&cited a (e$ hours -e(ore1 (or she had resolved upon another means o( escape1 having (ailed o( the (irst+ ) ave you decided5) $as Tempest#s -rie( greeting1 still -ent on moving her through (ears (or the Comte+ )4es1 % su-mit7 % $ill delay the $edding and $ait i( you $ill have no mercy+) )% do not accept your su-mission1 % distrust you1 (or in spite o( your promise to meet me no$ and here you $ould have -ro2en your engagement -ut (or Baptiste+ "here $ere you going in that $ild $ay5 Bac2 to the priest perhaps+) e $ished to rouse and agitate her and used the taunt that seldom (ailed+ %t succeeded no$1 (or every nerve $as stung to the utmost and she loo2ed li2e a hunted creature driven to -ay+ er $hite (ace (lushed $ith indignant color and her eyes dar2ened and dilated $ith strong e&citement as she

said1 almost (iercely1 )'tter his name again and % $ill ta2e you at your $ord+ %n de(ending me he $ill (orget he is a priest and teach you to respect and (ear him as you never (eared and respected man -e(ore+ Say $hat you have to say and go+) er mood alarmed him1 and a sudden dread o( ma2ing her a mad$oman in dread(ul earnest chec2ed the scorn(ul ans$er $hich rose to his lips1 (or the thought o( %gnatius angered him more than he $ould con(ess even to himsel(+ Ta2ing out a case o( pistols he laid it open on the ta-le1 saying calmly as he pointed to it1 )Choose one o( t$o things+ !o $ith me at once or see me insult *e Luneville and shoot him7 % never miss my aim+) At this instant the Comte appeared upon the threshold+ Forgetting everything -ut his danger1 Rosamond clutched the pistols and rushed to$ard him crying $ildly1 )!o0 !o0 he $ill murder you0) %n her despair she spo2e in English1 $hich *e Luneville did not understand1 and seeing her (ly to$ard him $ith outstretched hands so armed he (ancied the (rantic paro&ysm possessed her1 and $ith an e&clamation o( horror turned and (led+ ) e does not (ear me7 it is you he (lies (rom+ % told him you $ere mad1 he -elieves it and renounces you+ No$ choose+) As the $ords le(t Tempest#s lips she turned on him $ith a loo2 o( super- de(iance and disdain1 saying only1 )% do choose9this0) and placing a pistol to her side she (ired+

C A/TER I.%%

Torment

"hen Rosamond recovered the consciousness she lost as the -ullet entered her side she loo2ed a-out her in ama3ement1 (or everything $as strange+ She lay on a narro$ -ed in a large1 com(orta-le1 -ut some$hat -are: loo2ing room+ The $indo$s $ere -arred1 the (ire -urned -ehind a tall1 $ire screen1 and on the $all hung a shapeless garment $ith many straps and -uc2les+ Rain -eat on the panes1 glimpses o( a dar2 pine (orest $ere seen1 and the $ind sighed drearily do$n the mountain passes+ Strange sounds met her ears1 loud laughter1 discordant singing1 incoherent voices1 and no$ and then a terri-le1 shrill cry as o( one in mortal pain+ Beside the -edside sat a strong1 so-er $oman in a sort o( plain uni(orm1 gray go$n1 $hite cap and apron1 a $histle hung (rom her nec2 and a -adge on her shoulder+ Jnitting -usily1 she sat $ith hal(:shut eyes1 -ut no movement o( the girl#s escaped her vigilance+ )"here am %5) as2ed Rosamond $hen she had collected her (ee-le senses and recalled the past up to a certain point+ )Madame is ,uite sa(e1 rest tran,uil1) $as the -rie( reply+ )%s this a hospital5) as2ed the (aint voice again+ )%( Madame li2es to call it so+) )"hat name has it5) )The Re(uge1 Madame+) )"here is it5 Near "ies-aden5) )A (e$ miles south1 Madame+) )"ho -rought me here5) )The hus-and o( Madame+) )"hen5) )Last night1 asleep and ill+) )%s he gone5) )4es1 Madame+)

)Than2 !od (or that0) The $oman $ho had eyed her curiously smiled at the (ervent e6aculation and said1 as i( to test her sanity1 )Monsieur $as in despair at leaving Madame -ut it $as -est as Madame could not travel+ e le(t orders that everything should -e+ done (or Madame#s com(ort1 and his valet remained to serve Madame+) )Baptiste here to $ait on me5 % understand1 he $atches me till % am $ell lest % escape1 cruel1 cruel0) )Madame did not see the grie( o( Monsieur $hen he $ept over her and saluted her tenderly as he $ent+ %t $as not cruelty -ut great 2indness ta leave Madame in so sa(e and e&cellent a home+) ) ome0) echoed Rosamond1 -ut at the instant a cry so loud and terri-le rung through the place that she sprang up e&claiming1 as the truth (lashed on her1 )!reat heaven1 it is a madhouse0) )Madame is right1) replied the $oman coldly+ "ith a moan o( mingled pain and horror the poor girl (ell -ac2 upon her pillo$1 not unconscious -ut over$helmed -y the dread(ul truth+ Sic21 helpless1 (riendless1 guarded -y Baptiste and in Tempest#s po$er1 $hat could she e&pect $hen this outrage $as the (irst step he too2 to $in her -ac25 Mute and tearless1 she lay (eeling utterly (orsa2en -y !od and man+ The calmness o( despair came over her and saying1 )% have done my -est1 % can do no more1) she resigned hersel( to $hatever (ate had in store (or her+ One thing she resolved and remained true to throughout all her coming trials7 Tempest desired to ma2e others thin2 her mad1 in that she $ould th$art him and -y no loo21 $ord or act con(irm the lie+ A sharp pain in her side roused her (rom a -itter reverie and loo2ing do$n she sa$ that it $as -andaged+ Spea2ing in a ,uiet tone1 she said civilly1 )"ill you 2indly loosen these things1 % cannot -reathe+) )Certainly1 Madame1) and laying do$n her $or2 the $oman s2ill(ully un$ound the -andages+ )A little $ound to give so much pain+ *id Monsieur tell you ho$ % received it5) as2ed Rosamond1

loo2ing at the tiny purple mar2 on her $hite (lesh 6ust -elo$ her heart+ )4es Madame1 he sadly con(essed that in a paro&ysm o( delirium Madame essayed to destroy hersel(1 -ut happily the -all $ounded no vital part and is not dangerous though pain(ul+ To prevent such mis(ortunes he -rought Madame hither (or a time1 $hich $as $ise+) )*id he leave any message (or me5) )4es1 the servant o( Madame has a letter $hen Madame is a-le to receive it+) )Bring him at once1 % am a-le no$1) commanded Rosamond and Manton $ent to (ind Baptiste1 a(ter vainly urging that Madame should $ait+ The man appeared $ith a (ace as inscruta-le as his master#s1 respect(ully delivered a note and in(ormed her that he $as at her service $henever she chose to ring (or him+ Sei3ing the paper she dismissed him and eagerly read $hat Tempest 2ad le(t (or herF My dearest1

4ou cannot tell ho$ it a((licts me to treat you $ith such seeming harshness1 -ut you leave me no alternative+ % cannot lose you and your desperate act prevents my ta2ing you $ith me as % long to do+ The Comte has gone1 renouncing you entirely a(ter % told my tale1 (or his pride re-elled and he $as glad to escape+ Let him go1 he is not $orth a tear1 (or such lu2e$arm a((ection is not love+ For a time you must devote yoursel( to recovery7 the instant you desire to -e (ree in(orm Baptiste and he $ill -ring you to me+

% am (orced to -e in England1 (or the divorce is passing through its last (orms+ Soon % shall -e all your

o$n and then % claim you+ Ma2e haste to recover your -loom1 my little Rose1 and come soon to re$ard the constancy o( one $ho loves you (aith(ully as master1 lover and hus-and+

/hillip

)No hope there+) *ropping the note Rosamond hid her (ace to conceal the tears that disappointment1 su((ering and indignation $rung (rom her+ The paper (ell open at Manton#s (eet and $ithout stirring she read it1 glanced at the girl and shrugged her shoulders as only a French$oman can1 e&pressing -y the gesture sympathy1 dou-t and determination+ Rosamond said no more and (or a $ee2 lay ,uietly on her -ed $aiting (or strength and spirit to act+ So calm1 rational1 patient and s$eet $as she that the $oman#s heart $as touched1 and *r+ !erard treated her $ith the utmost respect in the daily call he made+ An unscrupulous1 s2ill(ul charlatan $ho made money -y lending his house (or any illegal imprisonment o( inconvenient people1 he $as all suavity1 smiles and compliments1 -ut underneath as ruthless as a savage and as cra(ty as a (o&+ Rosamond disli2ed him at once1 -ut hid her repugnance and o-eyed him $ith a docility (or $hich he $as evidently unprepared+

888

By the second $ee2 her -ed -ecame insupporta-le1 and she sat at her $indo$ loo2ing out upon the Blac2 Forest and the lovely valley at its (oot+ She never sent (or Baptiste -ut o(ten sa$ him sitting in the garden or -usy among the autumn (lo$ers o( $hich he sent her up a delicate -ou,uet each morning as i( to remind her o( his presence+ Manton $as her only society and she $as not lo,uacious though 2ind+ Boo2s $ere denied her1 also pen or needle and she $as le(t to -rood over her unhappy (ate+ Tempest proved his $it in leaving her no employment1 thus (orcing her to thin21 2no$ing $ell that she could not (ail to contrast her present dreary solitude $ith the gay1 lu&urious li(e $hich might -e hers $ith a $ord+ She did thin2 o( this1 -ut (or a time it $as no temptation and she made no sign o( relenting1 though she (elt sure -y *r+ !erard#s manner that he reported her state to Tempest and received directions (rom him+ The third $ee2 she $as moved into another $ing o( the house and a ne$ torment -egan+ She $as surrounded -y lunatics7 in the court -elo$ they roamed and moped so that she could not loo2 (rom her $indo$ $ithout seeing sad or (rantic (igures+ A-ove and around her shrie2ed1 laughed and chattered maniacs and idiots1 ma2ing day $retched and night terri-le+ Sleep1 appetite and spirits (orsoo2 her1 li(e $as unuttera-ly dar2 and heavy to her1 hope seemed to die $ithin her1 and the (uture to sho$ no gleam o( light+ Still she held (ast to her resolve1 sent no message1 sho$ed no sign o( madness1 and clung to one (aint possi-ility7 %gnatius $ould remem-er her1 $ould see2 (or her and might save her+ e $as her only (riend and to him she cried (or help in her despair1 -ut no ans$er came+

888

So $an and $ild:eyed did she soon -ecome in this dread(ul place that Manton re-elled and implored the doctor to remove Madame -e(ore her health gave $ay+ A(ter some delay he complied1 and Rosamond $as allo$ed to $al2 in the private garden $here Baptiste $atched her1 -ut so uno-trusively she scarcely 2ne$ it+ Even Baptiste $as shoc2ed $hen he sa$ her1 and plainly sho$ed his sympathy -y mute to2ens o( respect and good$ill+

At (irst she too2 no heed o( this1 -ut as time $ore on and no help came1 she -egan to $atch Baptiste $ith the hope that pity might so(ten his heart1 or money -ri-e his vigilance+ /ausing near him as he $or2ed one day1 she said1 $ith her eye upon his dar2 e&pressionless (ace1 )Baptiste1 (or ho$ much $ill you let me escape (rom this dread(ul prison5 % might try to (latter and -lind you -ut it $ould -e in vain1 there(ore % -oldly as2 the price o( your (idelity+) )Madame is $ise1 she understands me $ell7 -ut % regret that my (idelity cannot -e sold+ %t is the Master#s and % dare not -etray his trust+) ) #*are not+# % thought you (eared nothing human1 Baptiste+) )%t is not (ear -ut gratitude $hich -inds me to him1 Madame+ e saved my li(e once and % s$ore to devote it to him+ % cannot (or(eit my $ord1 much as % may long to do so+) )But i( he orders you to commit a great $rong1 does your gratitude re,uire you to do it5) )4es1 Madame1 a crime even7 my li(e is his and he may use it as he $ill+) )Ah1 i( % had a (aith(ul servant li2e you ho$ grate(ul % should -e1 (or in all the $orld % have not a single (riend+) Rosamond turned a$ay to hide the tears that $ould not -e restrained+ Baptiste#s eye (ollo$ed her and so(tened as he loo2ed+ So young1 so lovely1 so $ronged and so (orsa2en1 it $as little $onder the man#s heart smote him and duty gre$ repugnant to him+ e $or2ed in silence till she came round again and $as a-out to pass in silence $hen he loo2ed up1 touched his cap and as2ed -elo$ his -reath1 )"hat $ould Madame o((er (or li-erty5) )Everything % o$n+ Tempest sent all my possessions to me+ % have many trin2ets1 (or the Comte#s gi(ts are there7 % have a little money and % can add the -lessings o( a grate(ul heart saved (rom despair+) )"here $ould Madame go5) )Any$here to escape (rom Tempest+ Once (ree (rom this place % can (ind a re(uge and -e happy+ Baptiste1 do not torture me0 %s it possi-le5 "ill you relent5)

)% $ill thin2 o( Madame#s proposal1 and ho$ever % may decide Madame may -e assured o( my respect(ul sympathy+) )Oh Baptiste1 -e generous1 -e piti(ul0 Let me go and % $ill pray (or you all my days1) cried Rosamond stretching her hands to him imploringly+ e dropped his spade1 pulled o(( his cap and pressing his hand on his heart -o$ed deeply1 saying only1 )Madame % than2 you1) -ut as he spo2e he glanced to$ard the -arred gate1 the 2ey o( $hich he held and smiled signi(icantly+ )% understand1 i( % (ind it open % am (ree0 *o not deceive me1 is it so Baptiste5) )Madame must give me time+ Tomorro$ the doctor goes to to$n1 perhaps Madame goes also -y another route7 % do not promise1 % only suggest1) and $ith a second smile Baptiste departed1 leaving his mistress in a state o( suspense hard to -ear+

888

The morro$ came and saying not a $ord to Manton1 Rosamond le(t a ring and $ritten than2s in her room1 placed the rest o( her 6e$els and money in her poc2et and at the usual hour $ent do$n to $al2 in the garden+ Baptiste $as not there1 the gate $as loc2ed as usual and nothing appeared -ut her nosegay on the stone seat $here she sometimes sat+ Angry and heartsic2 $ith disappointment she thre$ it (rom her and as it (ell something clashed on the (lagged $al2+ *arting to the spot1 she (ound the 2ey hal(:hidden in the (lo$ers1 and $ith a cry o( 6oy she sei3ed it+ This garden opened on the ,uiet and lonely road that $ound a$Ly through the valley1 and led through the outs2irts o( the (orest to "ies-aden+ Stealing to the gate1 Rosamond opened it noiselessly and shut it a(ter her unseen1 (or no one thought o( $atching Baptiste1 $hose (idelity $as so $ell 2no$n+ Scarcely daring to -elieve the truth Rosamond hurried

a$ay1 intent on reaching the nearest to$n $here she could in,uire o( -oat or train+ No one (ollo$ed or met her1 and $ith increasing hope she 2ept on till a pictures,ue old mill appeared $ith a motherly $oman spinning in the door$ay+ Feeling (aint $ith her unusual e&ertion Rosamond ventured to as2 (or -read and $ine1 e&plaining her lonely state -y saying she had lost her party in the (orest and desired to get on to "ies-aden as soon as possi-le+ The good soul gladly (ed the $anderer and sent her on in the charge o( her son1 $ho gallantly led the mule she rode and -eguiled the $ay -y tales o( the (amous (orest in $hich he $as a Forstmeister or 2eeper+ Avoiding the (ashiona-le part o( "ies-aden1 Rosamond desired Lud$ig to ta2e her to some hum-le !asthaus $here she could pass the night and ta2e -oat (or Co-len3 in the morning+ Alarmed at Tempest#s last act1 she had decided on see2ing the only re(uge $here she could -e sa(e1 and $ith this purpose she turned her (ace to$ard England+ A$ay early in the morning in one o( the cheap steamers that ply up and do$n the Rhine1 she spent an an&ious day (loating do$n that lovely river1 and in the t$ilight landed at Co-len3+ aving -een there -e(ore1 she (elt less (orlorn than i( it had -een utterly ne$1 and going to a ,uiet inn $as trying to eat a hasty meal $hen a pretty1 some$hat -old:eyed girl came in and ordering $ine sat do$n to en6oy it+ Being an&ious to hus-and her small store o( money lest she should incur suspicion -y trying to sell the 6e$els1 $hich $ere very valua-le1 Rosamond had not ordered a private room -ut sat a little apart at one o( the ta-les in the eating:saal1 $hich chanced to -e empty $hen she came+ At (irst she $as grate(ul that the ne$comer $as a $oman1 -ut presently the girl#s manner annoyed her1 (or she stared pertinaciously and had a sharp1 in,uisitive e&pression $hich alarmed the (ugitive+ astily (inishing her supper she desired to -e sho$n her cham-er and $as a-out to loc2 hersel( in $hen the girl appeared1 and o((ering a letter1 said she $ould $ait -elo$ (or a reply+ Ta2ing it $ith (ear and trem-ling1 Rosamond read1 Che#re amie1

% am here1 % recogni3ed you in the s(reet hut made no sign lest % should do harm+ % long to see and

spea2 $ith you1 $ill you not come to me and let me -e as o( old your (aith(ul (riend5

onorine

No address1 no date -ut the peculiar hand$riting $as genuine and the monogram on the dainty sheet $as (amiliar to Rosamond+ ere $as a happy chance1 a hope o( help and com(ort too precious to -e lost+ Calling up the girl she said eagerly1)"here is Mademoiselle5) )At her little chateau 6ust -eyond the to$n+)

)She sent you (or me5) )4es1 Madame1 % am her (emme de cham-re1 % 2no$ the place and $hen Mademoiselle sa$ you pass not long ago she said1 #Annette1 (ollo$ that lady and give her this note unperceived+ %( she consents to visit me1 -ring her ,uic2ly to the chateau1 i( she cannot come1 return -ringing me permission to 6oin her i( possi-le+# ) )% $ill go $ith you1 call a carriage+) )One $aits at the corner (or Madame+) They $ent1 and entering the com(orta-le English coupe $hich $aited (or them they $ere rapidly driven a$ay over the -ridge to$ard the (amous (ortress that commands the to$n+ Spirit and hope rene$ed in the poor girl#s -reast as Annette spo2e o( her mistress#s delight on seeing her (riend and her eagerness to $elcome her+ She $as reposing here -e(ore another $inter at Berlin it seemed1 and Rosamond hal( resolved to go $ith her i( onorine repeated her o((er+ Full o( con(idence and courage1 she listened to the maid#s chat and (ollo$ed her up the steps o( the pretty chateau perched on a green slope overloo2ing the to$n+ She $as led into a charming -oudoir1 and Annette -egged her to repose a moment $hile she in(ormed Mademoiselle o( her happy arrival+ Being le(t alone she loo2ed eagerly a-out her1 seeing many signs o( her (riend in the em-roidery (rame dra$n to the $indo$1 music scattered over the instrument1 a mas2 and pair o( (oils1 a pet dog and a

pro(usion o( e&,uisite (lo$ers+ A pair o( man#s gloves lay on the ta-le and as her eye (ell upon them Rosamond smiled1 thin2ing to hersel(1 )/erhaps onorine is married and plans a surprise (or me+ appy the man $ho $ins her+) A -urst o( laughter (rom -elo$ made her pause $here she stood+ A $oman#s laugh1 and soon the rustle o( a $oman#s dress $as heard as i( some one hastily approached+ ) onorine0) cried Rosamond as the door opened1 and $ith a cry o( 6oy thre$ hersel( into the arms o( Tempest0

C A/TER I.%

One Friend

)"elcome #chere amie0# ) cried Tempest em-racing her $armly+ )% did not e&pect so 2ind a greeting1 little s$eetheart 9-ut1 good heaven0 Rose1 ho$ terri-ly you are changed0) "ell might he say so and loo2 dismayed1 (or she stood li2e one turned to stone1 regarding him $ith a $ild and $oe(ul air that made her haggard (ace more tragical than death itsel(+ The surprise and -etrayal $ere so sudden1 so treacherous1 it hal( -e$ildered and $holly over$helmed her+ Baptiste#s per(idy1 Tempest#s triumph1 her o$n despair crushed her1 and $hen he $aited (or an ans$er she had only strength to -rea2 (rom him and stagger to$ard the door+ er lim-s (ailed her -e(ore she reached it and he laid her do$n utterly spent $ith the (ruitless (light1 the -itter disappointment+ )Curse !erard1 he e&ceeded orders7 % -ade him -rea2 her spirit and he has destroyed her health1) muttered Tempest $rath(ully as he rung (or Annette+ )Bring $ine and recover her $ithout delay+ Then -eg erman to ta2e Ludmilla a$ay (or a time1 my

poor girl cannot -ear such society yet1) he said in a tone o( command1 and Annette o-eyed $ith the utmost mee2ness1 (or he $as evidently master here+ Rosamond $as soon hersel( again1 -ut1 seeing ho$ her condition alarmed Tempest1 she concealed her strength and lay mutely $aiting $hile she girded up her courage (or the coming con(lict o( $ills+ Jneeling -y her $hen Annette le(t them1 he $atched her $ith a (ace (ull o( remorse(ul tenderness as he caressed her $asted hand and sought to e&cuse his past cruelty+ )My darling1 (orgive me0 % never meant that you should su((er li2e this+ !erard promised to deal gently $ith you1 Baptiste to guard you care(ully+ Both shall atone (or their negligence1 % s$ear it to you+ Spea2 to me1 Rosamond1 % cannot -ear to see your (ace so $hite and stony1 to (eel that your heart is hardened against me+ % seem a -rute1 -ut it is my love $hich drives me to such harsh measures7 $hen you relent % shall -e your slave again+) But Rosamond never moved nor spo2e7 li2e a lovely1 pale statue she lay as i( dea( to his prayers1 unconscious o( his caresses1 -lind to his regret and love+ er immo-ility (rightened him7 it $as so unli2e her1 so di((erent (rom the scene he had anticipated and prepared (or+ Thin2ing to rouse and interest her he tal2ed on1 telling her $hat she longed to 2no$ -ut $ould not as2+ )This last plot $as Baptiste#s7 % 2ne$ nothing o( it till he telegraphed to me to come on at once as you $ere ill -ut $ould not yield and purchase (reedom at the price % set+ % hurried a$ay at once to (ind you gone1 -ut Baptiste told me his plan and % $as (orced to -e satis(ied+ e said your entreaties $ould have $on him -ut (or his vo$ to me+ "ishing to serve us -oth1 he permitted you to escape -ut sent a spy a(ter you and (ollo$ed -y rail in time to -e prepared (or you here+ e chanced to have a note sent -y onorine $hile you $ere at "ies-aden $ith the Comte+ For reasons o( his o$n he did not deliver it then -ut 2ept it as he does all such tri(les1 (or he 2no$s ho$ to use them+ aving trac2ed you here he

-ade me $ait at this chateau -elonging to a gay (riend o( mine $ho lends it (or a time+ e lured you ,uietly (rom the inn $ith the note1 and no$ you shall $ander no more -ut rest here till % am (ree1 $hen $e $ill -e married and go $here you $ill+) She gave him a loo2 $hich proved that ho$ever $ea2 her -ody might -e her soul $as uncon,uered still1 and turned her (ace a$ay $ithout a $ord+ %t angered him -ut he controlled himsel( and rising1 said $ith real solicitude in voice and manner1 )/erverse child1 $hy torment yoursel( and me $hen $e might -e so happy5 4ou are $ea2 and $eary no$1 you shall rest tonight and tomorro$ $a2e to (ind yoursel( at home+) Ta2ing her tenderly in his arms he carried her into a lu&urious cham-er ad6oining the -oudoir and1 laying her do$n as i( she $ere a su((ering child1 he called Annette to $ait upon her+ )She $ill stay $ith you1 love1 so sleep tran,uilly $hile % guard the spot that holds my treasure+ ave you no $ord (or me1 no 2inder loo21 or 2iss o( pardon1 my little Rose5) he as2ed1 -ending over her so $ist(ully and $ith such love in his (ace that (e$ could have denied his prayer+ But Rosamond#s delusion $as utterly destroyed1 that last act o( his had steeled her heart against him and as he spo2e she shrun2 a$ay $ith a shiver o( detestation1 saying only as she hid her eyes1 )Leave me in peace1 the sight o( you is a-horrent to me+) /ale $ith anger he turned (rom her1 pointed to the closely shuttered $indo$s $ith an imperious1 )Remem-er your orders1) to Annette1 and le(t the room1 loc2ing the doors -ehind him+ The long night passed slo$ly7 Rosamond lay sleepless on her -ed+ Annette read novels -y a shaded lamp and Baptiste slept -e(ore the door+ "ith morning came Tempest1 grave and 2ind -ut very unli2e his usual sel(+ "ith no greeting -ut a ,uiet -o$ he approached and said1 )Rose1 % come to propose a truce+ 4ou need rest and care (or a time+ % have a -rie( holiday and $ant to en6oy it here $ith you+ Let us -e (riends and -ear $ith one another+ 4ou shall -e (ree to go $here you $ill in this little 2ingdom $hich erman lends me7 % $ill demand nothing -ut the privilege o( seeing you daily1 $ill devote mysel( to you

and spare no e((orts to $in your heart again -e(ore % have the right to claim it+) )"hen $ill that -e5) she as2ed a-ruptly+ )'navoida-le delays have arisen1 -ut a $ee2 or t$o $ill see this tedious -usiness ended+ Till then % $ill $ait and prove the sincerity o( my love -y my patience+ *o you dou-t me still5) She did1 -ut concealed the distrust and ans$ered sadly1 )%( you proved your love -y generously giving me my li-erty % could not dou-t its sincerity+ %t is a sel(ish passion $hich $ill give me no rest till % die1 (or it can never $in again the heart it has -ro2en+) )% am arrogant enough to thin2 it can -oth $in and heal+ Be $ise1 Rosamond1 sign the truce and do not rouse the devil in me -y opposition+ % $ill 2eep my $ord and you $ill lose nothing -ut a $ee2 or t$o o( li-erty -y staying here $ith me+) e o((ered his hand1 she gave him hers and he sealed the compact $ith a 2iss upon it1 loo2ing $ell pleased as he smiled and added1 )No$ let Annette ma2e you com(orta-le and $hen you are re(reshed go and lounge in the -oudoir1 no one $ill distur- you there+) e le(t her loo2ing as i( he had $on an une&pected victory1 and Rosamond o-eyed him1 resolving to (eign su-mission (or the sa2e o( peace and to escape i( possi-le -e(ore the treaty ended+ She rose1 -athed1 and let Annette dress her in the simplest o( the rich garments hanging in the $ardro-e o( the un2no$n Ludmilla+ She ate and dran21 and then1 (eeling too un,uiet to rest1 she $ent to the -oudoir1 trying to $hile a$ay the $eary hours -y e&amining the -eauties and com(orts that surrounded her+ As she sat listlessly at the $indo$ $hich overloo2ed the river and the to$n Tempest entered+ )Ah1 this is $ell0 No$ % shall amuse you1) he said1 eyeing her $ith un(eigned satis(action and delight+ )% am past that+) She turned her $an (ace a$ay as i( no po$er could ever recall its smile again+ )4ou once said everything $as possi-le to love+ % shall prove it and sho$ that you are not past

amusing1 (or /hillip Tempest never yet (ailed to charm a $oman $hen he gave himsel( to the tas2+) Rosamond loo2ed coldly incredulous1 -ut he $as right and she $as (orced to o$n it in the end1 (or he did give himsel( to the tas2 o( charming this $oman+ "ell as she thought she 2ne$ him she $as surprised at the discovery o( unsuspected resources1 accomplishments and traits o( character+ Be(ore he had not -een o-liged to e&ert himsel( to $in her young heart1 and even $hen (ondest had also -een imperious+ No$ the tas2 $as harder1 (or the heart $as shut against him7 time had only made it more precious in his eyes and -oth love and pride united to recover the lost treasure+ All that day he $as devoted to her1 a slave no$1 not a master+ !entle yet gay1 lover:li2e yet not presuming1 he read1 tal2ed and entertained her $ith untiring pleasure+ "rapped her up and drove her out along the mountain roads1 -eguiling the $ay $ith legends o( ruin and river1 or leaving her to en6oy in silence the loneliness $hich no $ords could descri-e+ At dinner he let no one $ait upon her -ut himsel(1 tempting her to eat -y play(ul arti(ices $hich she could not resist+ %n the evening he esta-lished her on a nest o( pillo$s and $hiled a$ay the t$ilight hours $ith music1 singing song a(ter song $ith a po$er and passion $hich $ould have melted the heart o( any $oman+ .ainly did Rosamond endeavor to resist the spell1 -ut it $as too ne$1 too s$eet and su-tle to $ithstand1 (or never had he sung to her -e(ore+ %n the old time it $as (or her to serve and amuse him1 no$ the parts $ere changed and a(ter her late unhappy e&perience such love1 and entire devotion $ere dangerously $elcome and alluring+ %n spite o( her e((orts to remain cold and indi((erent that tender music touched her1 -ringing tears even $hile it soothed her -y its magic+ A sti(led so-etrayed her to the ,uic2 ear alert to catch any sound o( hers1 and1 satis(ied $ith this test o( his po$er1 Tempest $ent to sit near her $hile he tal2ed o( things $hich could not (ail to interest and amuse her+ So s2ill(ully did he play his part that more than once Rosamond smiled against her $ill and involuntarily -ro2e the silence she had imposed upon hersel( -y an impulsive ,uestion1 or an e&clamation $hen he art(ully paused in

the middle o( some e&citing adventure1 romantic incident or $itty anecdote+ So rapidly did the evening pass that she loo2ed up at the pendule $ith surprise $hen Tempest rose1 saying regret(ully1 )Ten o#cloc2 so soon0 My invalid must 2eep early hours1 so good night and happy dreams1 my Rosamond+) )!ood night1 /hillip1) $as the une&pected ans$er as she put out her hand in momentary (orget(ulness+ %nstantly she caught it -ac2 and $arned him o(( $ith a (or-idding (ro$n+ e laughed1 -o$ed $ith moc2 humility and le(t her1 saying to himsel(1 )That #/hillip# had the old sound7 patience and a $ee2 o( this treatment $ill ma2e her mine more entirely than ever+) %t surely $ould have done so had Rosamond -een unchanged1 -ut the years that had passed since they (irst met had strengthened the $oman#s nature -y su((ering1 e&perience and that long struggle against temptation+ Even no$ she might have yielded to the su-tle po$er o( the man once so -eloved had not another and a no-ler sentiment1 hal( un2no$n and $holly uncon(essed even to hersel(1 guarded her heart (rom treachery and de(eat during that s2ill(ul siege+ "hen most tried and tempted1 most $eary1 $ea2 and $avering1 some ine&plica-le impulse al$ays made her turn a$ay1 crying $ithin hersel( to that one (riend o( hers1 )%gnatius1 help me1 save me (rom mysel(0)

888

*ay a(ter day $ent smoothly1 s$i(tly -y at the little chateau on the Rhine+ Tempest never (orgot the ne$ role he played1 never $earied o( his devotion or changed the purpose1 $hich had -ecome the ruling passion o( his li(e+ Rosamond could

not help reviving1 so cherished and -eloved1 yet despite her seeming su-mission she $as still un$on1 though o(ten a desperate desire to cease struggling and -e at peace came over her+ She still called upon %gnatius1 -ut her good angel never ans$ered her prayer and she -elieved he had deserted her+ This sad (ear did more to destroy her hope and courage than all Tempest#s -eguilements1 (or i( no one in the $orld cared (or her $hy should she care (or hersel(5 "ith this gloomy thought in her mind she sat one day $ondering ho$ the tangle o( her li(e $ould end $hen Tempest entered $ith a letter in his hand+ e $atched her 2eenly -e(ore he spo2e1 and his (ace cleared1 (or he divined her mood and (elt that it $as an auspicious moment (or the proposal he had come to ma2e+ )Rosamond1 % am (ree at last0 Read (or yoursel( and tell me you are glad+) e gave her the letter1 she read it1 2ne$ that it $as true1 and loo2ed up at him as i( trying to reali3e the (act $hich might ma2e such a change in her o$n (ate+ )% am glad1 not (or your sa2e or mine1 -ut (or hers+ "hat comes ne&t5) she said slo$ly+ )The (irst use % ma2e o( my li-erty is this+) e $ent to her1 2nelt do$n upon the cushion at her (eet and o((ering her his hand said $ith an earnestness she could not dou-t1 )% have a right to do it no$1 accept it1 Rose1 and save -oth o( us (rom (urther sin and su((ering+ 4ou alone have po$er to ma2e me $hat % should -e1 % alone love and cling to you through everything7 -e my $i(e and you shall (ind me $hat % have proved % can -e1 (aith(ul and (ond+ Let me atone (or past $rongs1 let me recall past happiness and in an honest1 honora-le (uture (ind salvation (or us -oth+) Coming at a moment $hen she (elt unuttera-ly (ee-le1 (orsa2en and (orlorn the ardent $ords sounded s$eet to her1 the eager (ace loo2ed very $inning1 and the thought that this act $ould in the $orld#s eye atone (or her disgrace seemed to

ma2e it possi-le+ She hesitated1 scanned Tempest#s upturned (ace $ith eyes made clear -y many tears1 and yielding to the passionate entreaty o( the lover1 the uncon,uera-le yearning (or a((ection so strong $ithin her1 and the temptation $ithstood so long1 she sighed1 hal( smiled and $as a-out to accept the o((ered hand1 $hen in putting out her o$n it touched a little rosary that al$ays hung at her -elt+ She had $orn it since she le(t the convent as a talisman1 (or %gnatius had given it and she loved it (or his sa2e+ As her hand touched it her eye (ell on it and the memory o( her good angel saved her1 (or she thought o( that1 hour $hen %gnatius 2nelt to her in the moonlight $arning her to -e$are o( her o$n $ea2 heart1 imploring her never to go -ac2 to this man1 and1 putting -y his o$n love1 praying her to save hersel( (rom sin+ Clear and strong as an actual presence1 that remem-rance (lashed upon her in an instant1 that e&ample upheld her1 and the true love de(eated the (alse+ olding (ast the e-ony cruci(i& she dre$ -ac2 and gave her ans$er steadily yet $arily1 (or sad e&perience taught her to -e$are o( rousing the devil in Tempest -y opposition+ )%t is too late1 /hillip+ % have no heart to give you+ % $ill -e your (riend1 % cannot -e your $i(e+) Still 2eeping his place Tempest received her reply $ith a slo$ smile stealing to his lips+ e had e&pected this1 (ancied pride and resentment restrained her1 and $as sure that another appeal $ould succeed1 (or he mar2ed the sudden change $hich so(tened and -eauti(ied her as she spo2e1 and -elieved that she loved him still+ )%( % must % $ill -e content $ith that (or a time+ % see it is too much to hope (or pardon so soon and $ill e&piate my sins -y patient $aiting+ 4ou re(use one prayer1 $ill you grant this5 % am recalled to England1 let me ta2e you $ith me1 Rpsamond+) Only an instant did she hesitate1 (or $ith the $ord )England) came the thought1 )Once there % am near my haven9my chances o( escape are in(initely -etter than here+)9)%#ll go+) The last $ords $ere uttered aloud1 and Tempest could not restrain a glance o( e&ultation as he rose1 (eeling that one great step $as gained+ )Than2s (or such gracious granting o( my re,uest+ But tell me $hy you spo2e out in that decided tone5

"hat $ic2ed little plot do you har-or no$1 you cruel1 cra(ty girl5) he as2ed1 pu33led -y her prompt ac,uiescence+ )None1 % only hope to see my grand(ather1 % only plan to -e a true (riend to you1 and try to earn my li-erty -y giving all % can to one $hose love ma2es a tyrant o( him1) she ans$ered1 still in that changed tone+ )A slave you mean7 -y my soul0 % never served a $oman as % have you1 Rosamond+ ;aco-#s seven years $ere -oy#s play compared to $hat % have undergone and $ill yet -ear (or you1 tyrant that you are+ %( % stay $ith you much longer % shall -e completely su-6ugated and you $ill rule me $ith a rod o( iron+) )May that time come soon+ To prove the truth o( your assertion %#ll venture to as2 you to ta2e me out (or a sunset stroll as in the old times+ "ill you1 /hillip5) )%#ll ta2e you any$here on the (ace o( the earth i( you $ill as2 me in that tone+ ere are the $raps laid ready1 come at once -e(ore the night $ind rises+) "ith the devoted air (ast -ecoming natural1 not (eigned1 he (olded her cloa2 a-out her1 tied on the grace(ul hat provided (or her1 and insisted upon (astening the (urred overshoes he made his invalid $ear+ Catching up his o$n hat on the $ay1 he led her out along the $inding road that stretched over the hills+ )"hen can $e go5) )At once+ Tomorro$ i( you $ill+ No$ come and let me get some color into these pale chee2s -e(ore % sho$ my $i(e in England+) She $ent1 and leaning over the lo$ $all that separated the garden (rom a deep ravine1 stood musing happily $hile Tempest1 al$ays restless1 roamed here and there tal2ing o( the (uture $hich he (ondly -elieved no$ lay -e(ore him+ Coming to her side1 he loo2ed into her (ace1 $ondering at her long silence+ er eyes $ere (i&ed on a pretty -lue (lo$er gro$ing 6ust -elo$ on a narro$ ledge o( roc2+ )Shall % get it (or you5) he as2ed1 )Nay1 there is no danger1 surely % can venture here $hen you run much greater ris2s (or

a girlish caprice+) An&ious to preserve her gracious mood and prove his docility1 Tempest ,uitted her side and1 grasping a sturdy shru-1 s$ung himsel( over the cli((1 $hich $as not perilously steepi+ As he stooped to sei3e the aster1 a man sprang (rom some unsuspected hiding place and uprooted the shru- $ith one -lo$+ Losing his hold1 Tempest $ent crashing do$n into the ravine -elo$+ Rosamond opened her lips to utter a shrill cry -ut a (irm hand sti(led the sound and a voice said in her ear1 ) ush1 have no (ear1 it is %gnatius0)

C A/TER I%I

)My *aughter)

"aiting (or no reply1 %gnatius caught her up and hurried her a$ay through the open gates into the $ood+ Too -e$ildered and happy (or anything -ut -ro2en e&clamations Rosamond clung to him $ith the per(ect con(idence o( a child+ A short rapid $al2 -rought them to a little hut near $hich stood a traveling carriage as i( $aiting (or someone+ /lacing her in it he gave an order to the postillion1 sprung in himsel(1 and they drove s$i(tly a$ay along the lonely road+ *ra$ing a long -reath1 Rosamond sei3ed the hands o( her deliverer $ith an e&pression o( gratitude that $armed him to his heart#s core+ )% 2ne$ you $ould come0) she cried1 )% $as sure o( my one (riend1 and though the time seemed long %

never lost the hope that sooner or later you $ould remem-er me+ o$ can % than2 you1 %gnatius5) %( she had ever (eared that he $ould cease to love her she no$ sa$ ho$ unchanged that true heart $as+ Love1 stronger1 deeper1 $armer than -e(ore1 shone in his eyes1 glo$ed in his (ace and sounded in his voice1 though -y no $ord did he con(ess it+ Loo2ing at her as a man might loo2 at the treasure o( his li(e ne$ly rescued (rom danger1 he ans$ered eagerly1 as he placed cushions -ehind her and $raps a-out her (eet1 )My child1 % never (or a moment (orgot you7 % thought o( you -y day1 % prayed (or you -y night1 and $hen the Comte $rote me o( your removal -y Tempest % set out at once to (ind and protect you at all ha3ards+ %t has -een a long tas2 -ut this moment is $orth years o( e((ort and suspense+) )Tell me more1 %gnatius1 tal2 to me and ma2e me (orget the dread(ul scenes %#ve passed through since $e parted+ 4our voice al$ays soothes me1 your presence cheers and com(orts me li2e a charm1 and you are indeed my good angel as % call you+) Still li2e a child she loo2ed and spo2e and clung to him1 (eeling nothing -ut a -liss(ul sense o( sa(ety1 rest and happiness+ e sa$ ho$ $ea2 and $an she $as and $as paternally tender $ith her1 conscious the $hile o( a satis(action and delight too deep (or $ords+

)"hen % reached "ies-aden the Comte $as gone1 you had disappeared1 and no one could give me any clue to your prison+ All % could discover $as that Tempest had returned to England alone1 that you had -een carried a$ay mortally $ounded and guarded -y Baptiste+ .arious rumors sent me hurrying (rom place to place till % at last discovered !erard#s asylum+ For a $ee2 % vainly tried to enter1 and at length managed to catch Manton1 only to (ind you gone+ % traced you here and have haunted the place trying to see or give you a hint o( my presence+ Many times have % (ollo$ed you in disguise as you $al2ed or drove1 and once actually passed the gate as a -eggar1 -ut you $ere so $ell guarded % could do

nothing1 so $aited (or chance to help me1 as it has1 than2 !od0 That ne$ carriage $as driven in1 % slipped in -ehind it and have -een hidden here (or hours+) A sudden (ear shot through Rosamond#s heart and she turned to him $ith a shudder+ ) ave you 2illed /hillip5) %gnatius clenched his hand and his eye gre$ (iery1 (or neither prayer nor penance had su-dued the native spirit o( the man+ )No1 the cli(( is not steep7 the (all may maim -ut $ill not 2ill him+ Better (or the $ea2 and innocent perhaps i( it did+ *o you hate me (or $hat % have done5) he added1 $ith sudden humility and an imploring glance+ )Nothing could ma2e me do that1 % thin2+ No1 my (aith(ul (riend1 % could not -lame you had the (all -een (atal+ % should have regretted that you had stained your hands $ith a -ad man#s -lood+ But a sense o( (reedom $ould have come to me $ith tidings o( his death+ %t is sin(ul1 -ut only natural7 % have su((ered so much1 he is so (alse1 so cruel and sel(ish % $onder that % ever loved him+) )Then you no longer love1 Agatha5) he as2ed earnestly+ )No1 no0 % detest1 despise1 hate and discard this man (orever+ My delusion is gone1 % 2no$ him no$1 and nothing can restore love1 respect or con(idence+ e is my evil genius1 and long ago $hen as a rec2less girl % said %#d sell my soul to Satan (or a year o( (reedom little % 2ne$ that % should -e ta2en at my $ord in such (ear(ul earnest+ %#ve -een happy1 %#ve paid a high price (or it1 and no$ % have no desire -ut to e&piate the impious $ish -y patience and su-mission+) There $as a momentary silence -ro2en only -y the steady roll o( $heels and tramp o( hoo(s+ As i( the sound recalled her thoughts (rom past to present peril she said suddenly1 )"here are $e going5 % never thought to as2+)

e smiled and ans$ered $ith a mi&ture o( de(erence and dou-t1 )% can desire no -etter proo( o( con(idence than that+ "e

$ill go $herever you $ish+ % am your courier as $ell as (riend7 name any re(uge and % $ill ta2e you to it and guard you in it as long as you remain+ %#ll not trust you to the care o( others again9i( you permit me to protect you+) )% do1 so grate(ully1 so gladly0 % $ill tell you the plan % made $hen % escaped1 -ut i( you thin2 it un$ise you shall direct me1 % leave all to you+ % meant to see2 and as2 the protection o( Mrs+ Tempest+) ) is $i(e5) )4es1 strange as it may seem % turn to her as my sa(est re(uge no$+ %#m hum-ler than % $as1 % remem-er her 2ind pity (or me at Nice1 her $ish to save me1 and % also remem-er that /hillip said once in spea2ing o( her that he shunned her li2e the plague+ %( she consents to -e(riend me % am sa(e1 (or he $ill never dream o( my going to my rival+ Shall % do it5) %gnatius mused a moment1 and impatient at his silence Rosamond added1 $ith a $omanish satis(action in the (act1 )She is not his $i(e no$1 they are divorced and she is (ree+) )Then it $as true that Tempest $ished to marry you5) )4es1 $ho told you that5) ) erman1 the (riend $hose chateau $as lent (or your temporary home+ % met him and dre$ several important reports (rom his careless conversation+) )And Ludmilla $as his $i(e5) )No1 she should have -een+ *id you see her1 Agatha5) )/hillip sent her a$ay $hen % came and never called her -ac21 though % as2ed (or her thin2ing she might help me+) ) e had more regard (or you than % -elieved i( he spared you the insult o( that $oman#s presence1) muttered %gnatius $ith

a (ro$n+ )4ou (orget $hat % have -een1) she said1 turning her (ace a$ay $ith an e&pression o( intensest pain+ )More sinned against than sinning1 % never (orget that1 my child+) The $ords $ere in(initely tender as he laid the homeless1 $eary head on his shoulder as i( she $ere indeed a su((ering child+ To divert her mind (rom that sad thought he added in a hope(ul tone1 )% li2e your plan1 and $e $ill try it+ 4ou need the protection o( a good and (riendly $oman7 Mrs+ Tempest cannot (orget your 2indness to the -oy1 and i( she -e the creature you descri-e your mutual $rongs $ill dra$ you closer to each other+ %n order to perple& and elude our pursuers1 $ho $ill -e sure $e have escaped -y -oat or rail1 $e $ill travel -y un(re,uented roads to) Cologne or *iisseldor(1 there ta2e steamer to Rotterdam and so across to England $ithout loss o( time+) )E&cellent0 % care little ho$ long $e are on the $ay1 it is so pleasant to -e (ree and $ith you9) she chec2ed hersel( suddenly1 colored1 and gently dre$ a$ay (rom the supporting arm as i( at last she recollected that the priest $as a lover and hersel( no longer a child+ e (eigned unconsciousness o( the change and -usied himsel( in ma2ing her com(orta-le1 saying as he did so1 )"e must travel several hours -e(ore $e reach Miilheim1 $here $e rest till morning+ Can you -ear a rapid drive li2e this5 % have made all possi-le preparations (or your com(ort -ut you are very (ee-le still1 % see+) )% (eel strong no$1 % en6oy the air1 the motion1 and the thought that each step ta2es me (arther (rom that man gives me ne$ po$er and spirit+ %t is dar2 and strange1 -ut % have no (ear+) She loo2ed (rom the evening gloom $ithout to the staunch (riend $ithin $ith a -rave -right smile long a stranger to her lips+ "ith play(ul pride %gnatius sho$ed her the unsuspected treasures o( the $ell:arranged carriage+ The seats $ere converted into a couch1 a lamp $as lighted1 a delicate supper appeared and $as eaten $ith much ,uiet merriment -y the pair1 $ho

heartily en6oyed the romance o( the (light1 and each (elt the potent charm o( the unspo2en passion hidden in either heart+ For an hour or t$o they planned and tal2ed $ith increasing cheer(ulness and con(idence1 then Rosamond#s strength -egan to (ail1 her lids gre$ heavy and a(ter vain e((orts to conceal her (atigue she $as (orced to o$n it and allo$ hersel( to -e $rapped up and lulled to sleep -y the murmur o( her companion#s voice as he read aloud in a soothing tone+ Soon she slept1 then %gnatius dropped the -oo2 and1 leaning (or$ard1 (easted his longing eyes upon the -eauty o( the -eloved (ace lying so pale and peace(ul on the pillo$ opposite+ Every line and shado$ made -y pain and care1 every remem-ered charm o( e&pression1 shape or color1 every (litting smile or (ro$n as dreams passed through the sleeper#s -rain $ere seen1 en6oyed and pondered over $ith un$earied interest and delight1 (or no$ he dared indulge his love $ith a -rie( holiday+ Once she $hispered his name and stretched her hands imploringly as i( -eseeching him to come+ Several times she clutched the little cruci(i& he had given her1 and through all her trou-led sleep he sa$ that she held (ast a (old o( the cloa2 he $ore+ *angerous hours (or %gnatius1 and a dangerous a$a2ening (or Rosamond as she suddenly loo2ed up to see his heart in his eyes and to give involuntarily a mute -ut elo,uent reply+

888

Neither spo2e and -oth $ere glad that the lights o( the little to$n appeared -e(ore them a moment a(ter+ Not till the postillion came to as2 at $hich inn to stop did a sound -rea2 the silence+ aving given his orders1 %gnatius turned to Rosamond and said1 )"e must decide on our names -e(ore $e encounter curious eyes and gossiping tongues+ "ho and $hat shall $e -e5) )Anything you please+ *o you 2no$ it never occurred to me -e(ore that you had any name -ut %gnatius5 May % 2no$ it5) Leaning on her el-o$1 she gave him a hal(:timid1 hal(:curious glance $hich con,uered his reluctance to con(ess+ )Bayard Conde $as the name % -ore -e(ore % -ecame a mon2+) )A -rave and no-le name0 % remem-er hearing my grand(ather read $ith admiration o( a young *ue de Conde $ho led the gallant students in the last revolution+ e $as my hero and % longed to 2no$ $hat -ecame o( him+ "as it any relative

o( yours5) )4es+) )Tell me a-out him that my romance may -e complete+ There $as something a-out a lovely girl $hom he adored and $hose coldness drove him so rec2lessly into danger+ *id he marry Leonie and en6oy the happiness he deserved5) )No1 he disappeared and never $ooed or (ought again+) Something in his tone made Rosamond start up1 e&claiming $ith mingled $onder1 6oy and reverence1 )%gnatius1 it $as you0 % 2no$ it no$1 % am so proud1 so glad to (ind my hero is my (riend+ Mon *ieu1 to thin2 that under the priest#s go$n is hidden a *ue1 a man $hose name $as (amous once and o( $hom it $as predicted that he $ould rival his great ancestor0) Seeing her pleasure1 he no longer tried to deceive her -ut $ith a hal(:sad1 hal(:amused e&pression grati(ied her curiosity+ )Such predictions al$ays (ail+ % tried love1 glory and pleasure7 none satis(ied me1 and1 $eary o( the $orld1 % le(t it+ %t $as a mista2e1 -ut -eing young and enthusiastic % (elt that % should give my -est to !od and not $ait till % had -ut the dregs o( li(e to o((er+ 4outh1 ran21 (ortune1 and (ame % could dedicate to is $or2 and % did it heartily+ A time came $hen % re-elled against my choice1 hated my vo$s and struggled to -e (ree7 that is over no$ and $ith eaven#s help % $ill -e (aith(ul to the end+) )And Leonie5) (altered Rosamond1 longing to 2no$ all+ )Married and dead long ago+ A cold1 proud $oman $hose memory % neither cherish nor respect+ No$ (orget that % am anything -ut a poor priest and herea(ter call me Father+ %t is sa(est and easiest (or -oth+) )4ou are too young (or that and % too old+) )% am gro$ing gray as the daylight $ill sho$ you1 and many (urro$s have come o( late7 these short curls1 your simple hat1 and your late illness ma2e you loo2 more girlish than you 2no$+ "e are S$iss gentle(ol2 going to England (or your health7 Monsieur Sal3-urg and his daughter1 Minna+ *oes that please you5 Shall it -e

so5) )4es1 Father1 % have played so many parts that % shall not (ail no$ -ut en6oy the mas,uerade1 since % have a partner in it1) ans$ered Rosamond1 laughing $ith a little o( her old gaiety as she gathered up her curls and prepared to meet strangers1 (or no$ the inn $as reached+

888

A ,uiet night passed1 and a glad a$a2ening came $ith the thought1 )% am sa(e and %gnatius is here0) Leaving her room early1 Rosamond $ent do$n to the little salon and (inding it empty amused hersel( -y loo2ing do$n into the courtyard1 $here the carriage stood ready+ A gentleman $as tal2ing to the postillion and she $atched him a moment -e(ore in the elegant stranger she recogni3ed her (riend+ No sign o( the priest remained and the modern costume1 though per(ectly simple1 $as $orn $ith the indescri-a-le air o( ease and grace $hich mar2s the gentleman -orn+ Scrutini3ing him $ith the 2een eye o( a $oman1 she sa$1 as he stood uncovered to en6oy the autumn sunshine1 that the gray hairs had come and that deep lines mar2ed the -rave (orehead7 yet in spite o( this she thought she had never seen a comelier man1 (or happiness made him young and the eyes that $atched him $ere those o( a lover+ She smiled at the idea o( his impersonating her (ather and turned to the glass to resmooth the curls that clustered round her (ace1 and gave to her dress those little touches $hich add charm to the plainest costumes+ As she did so she sighed1 and said to hersel( $ith a conscious -lush at the (ervency o( the $ish1 )% $ish he $as not a priest0) %n spite o( all resolutions %gnatius $ished so also $hen he came in and sa$ the -eauti(ul (ace -righten as it turned to him1 heard the happy1 )!ood morning1 Father1) $hich greeted his coming+ )!ood morning1 *aughter7 are you ready (or another (light today5) e smiled as he spo2e1 -ut dropped her hand $ith a heavier sigh than hers had -een+

888

All day they traveled on through un(re,uented roads1 en6oying the ever:varied panorama o( (orests1 mountains1 ruins and pictures,ue valleys $hich ma2es the Rhine the loveliest river in the $orld+ Early ne&t morning they too2 steamer to Cologne and (or several days $ent (loating do$n$ard to$ard the sea+ "onder(ully calm and happy days they $ere1 (or the mild Octo-er days $ere cloudless1 the nights made magical -y moonlight1 and each hour increased the charm that made the little voyage so memora-le to -oth+ One care annoyed and yet amused them7 a party o( English came on -oard at Arnhem and among them t$o in,uisitive old ladies $ho -eguiled the $ay -y speculating on their neigh-ors+ %gnatius and his pale charge attracted their attention and e&cited their curiosity1 (or there $ere (e$ other passengers and the river -elo$ Cologne has little to vary the monotony o( its lo$ green shores+ Believing themselves ,uite sa(e in spea2ing English1 they sat chatting together one day $ith (re,uent glances to$ard Rosamond1 $ho lay1 apparently asleep1 under the a$ning1 and at %gnatius $ho sat -eside her $ith a -oo2 in his hand+ );ane1 % 2no$ %#m right1 it#s nonsense to say that man is her (ather+ e#s -arely (orty and unless %#m much deceived she is past t$enty+ %t#s not illness alone that ma2es her loo2 a $oman1 it#s an indescri-a-le e&pression o( mental su((ering $hich girls don#t have1 unless their lives have -een uncommon+) )But1 Mary1 she calls him )mon pere) and he calls her )mon en(ant+) % must con(ess % never sa$ a (ather so devoted1 -ut i( he is not hers $hat is he5) ) er hus-and or lover1 my dear+ These French are so odd and romantic one sees all sorts o( curious marriages+ They are evidently ne$ly married1 that accounts (or his devotion and her docility1 (or a girl $ith eyes li2e hers has a $ill and is not ruled -y anyone -ut a lover+ e adores the ground she treads on1 and she $orships him though she conceals it under that shy calm manner+) )4ou are as (ull o( romance as a young girl1 ;ane+ %t#s very interesting to hear you go on0) %n the earnestness o( the discussion their voices -ecame audi-le and the pair heard distinctly $ords $hich agitated -oth+

A sad yet happy day (ollo$ed as they $ent (loating do$n the Rhine7 (or -oth delighted in -eing together1 and -oth dreaded the separation hourly dra$ing nearer+ As they approached Cologne1 silence (ell -et$een them1 and presently %gnatius -egan to pace restlessly to and (ro1 $hile Rosamond (eigned to read+

C A/TER II

T+ F+

"ell (or -oth that events o( an e&citing nature a-sor-ed the last day o( their voyage1 (or in the morning neither loo2ed the other in the (ace and (or the (irst time seemed happier apart+ Rosamond a((ected to -e a-sor-ed in a -oo2 and %gnatius roamed restlessly a-out1 pausing occasionally to say a $ord lest the sudden change in his manner should attract attention+ %n one o( these aimless $anderings to and (ro %gnatius $as surprised to see a little1 gray:headed1 mild: loo2ing gentleman start (or$ard suddenly1 as i( a-out to accost him1 -ut stop hal($ay1 glance at him (rom head to (oot1 catch up a chair and return to his place as a-ruptly as he le(t it+ A vague (ancy that he had seen that gentleman -e(ore caused the priest to return stare (or stare1 and presently1 $hen the (ancy too2 a shape and name1 he approached the stranger1 $ho sat apart1 and entered into conversation $ith him+

Rosamond1 $ho lost no movement o( her (riend#s1 $ondered much $ho the person could -e $hose chat so interested %gnatius1 (or though some$hat sti((ly -egun the conversation soon gre$ easy and animated1 and $hen %gnatius le(t the little man he came at once to her1 as2ing in a lo$ tone1 )"ho do you thin2 that is1 Minna5) )Some learned pro(essor gro$n dry and dusty digging in the graves o( dead languages to 6udge (rom his appearance1) ans$ered Rosamond1 glad to have the truant -ac2+ ) e is .etrey1 the great Chie( o( /olice in /aris+ e is on the trac2 o( an escaped criminal and thin2s the person is on -oard in disguise+ e thin2s9pardon1 Madame1) and he stepped aside to let a lady7 pass+ She $as a tall $oman in deep -lac2 $ith dar2 curls a-out her (ace7 a respirator hid her mouth and a crepe veil partially concealed her (ace+ Fine -lac2 eyes and a pale olive s2in $ere all a hasty glance could discover+ Ac2no$ledging his courtesy $ith a stately -o$1 she passed +on to a seat $hich commanded a vie$ o( theirs+ )%#ve not seen her -e(ore1 $ho is it5) Rosamond did not say )my (ather) nor did %gnatius say )my child1) (or -oth (elt $hat empty phrases they had no$ -ecome+ )She came on -oard at the last stopping place+ A handsome1 (ierce:loo2ing lady1 Spanish % (ancy1 and a $ido$+ "ill you come and $al21 or is the -oo2 too captivating5) She thre$ it do$n1 too2 his arm1 and they $ent a$ay together1 loo2ing so li2e lovers that Miss ;ane nodded triumphantly at Miss Mary and $hispered1 )4ou#ll see %#m right in spite o( all their pretense+) As they passed (rom sight the lady in -lac2 crossed the dec2 and paused near the seat Rosamond had le(t+ er s$eeping s2irts concealed the -ench and $hile a((ecting to loo2 pensively do$n into the $ater she opened the -oo2 and read the name on the (lylea(1 )Minna Sal3-urg+) A smile passed over her (ace -ut died suddenly as1 gliding on1

she addressed a courteous remar2 to the garrulous old sisters+ !lad to tal2 $ith anyone1 they readily gave the stranger all the gossip they had collected a-out their (ello$ travelers and d$elt $ith particular relish on )the mysterious couple) as they called %gnatius and Rosamond+ The lady listened $ith polite attention and seemed to en6oy the con6ectures o( the in,uisitive spinsters till Monsieur .etrey came up to o((er his glass (or a (ine vie$ o( a distant ruin+ Sudden paleness overspread the lady#s (ace as she turned and sa$ him7 (or an instant her eyes (lashed and she set her teeth1 then smiled1 murmured her than2s and accepted the glass+ Nothing could have -een more tran,uil and -land than the Frenchman1 or more grace(ully sel(: possessed than the lady1 yet as they stood ,uietly critici3ing the ruin .etrey $as e&ulting $ithin himsel( that he had (ound the criminal1 and the Spaniard $as (eeling stealthily (or the stiletto hidden in her -reast+ From that moment Monsieur .etrey devoted himsel( to Madame Monte31 much to the amusement o( the other passengers1 $ho (ancied that the little gray man $as (ascinated -y the handsome Spaniard+ %gnatius and Rosamond1 -eing in the secret1 $atched them $ith interest and rather $ondered at the evident annoyance o( Madame at their o-servation1 (or she occasionally darted a (ierce glance at them+ As the -oat approached Cologne1 her dis,uiet seemed to increase and .etrey#s assiduous attentions increased li2e$ise+ They $ere standing side -y side near the gang$ay1 Madame leaning on the -ar $hich guarded the opening and .etrey leaning near her1 tal2ing in a lo$ tone+ Suddenly1 as i( -urdened -y its $eight1 the Spaniard untied her long velvet cloa2 and hung it on the railing+ An instant a(ter$ard the -ar gave $ay and -oth $ere precipitated into the rapid stream+ As she (ell the $oman uttered an e&clamation more li2e a laugh than a cry1 and disappeared1 leaving -oth -onnet and respirator to (loat do$n the stream+ All $as con(usion at once7 the -oat $as stopped as soon as possi-le and .etrey pic2ed up nearly e&hausted1 not -y the struggle1 (or he s$am $ell1 -ut -y a $ound in the shoulder+ e $as soon himsel( again1 said the $ound $as made -y some

part o( the $heel1 and seemed to (orget everything -ut the loss o( Madame+ No sign o( her appeared and a(ter a long delay the steamer $ent on+ At the moment o( the (all %gnatius (elt Rosamond clutch his arm and1 loo2ing do$n1 sa$ her pale and trem-ling+ )%t $as Baptiste0) she $hispered in a terri(ied tone+ ) e thre$ o(( the -onnet as he leaped and % 2ne$ him+ Oh %gnatius1 $hat shall $e do5) )Nothing -ut re6oice that he $as disposed o( -e(ore he had time to annoy us+ .etrey tells me he is an escaped convict $hose disappearance caused much e&citement some years ago1 (or the escape $as a most daring and mysterious one+ e vanished and no one has -een a-le to discover a trace o( him1 till a short time ago in /aris .etrey caught a glimpse o( him+ e never (orgets a (ace1 and trusting the $or2 to no one1 he set out himsel( and $ill yet succeed1 % have no dou-t+) )% hope so+ The mystery o( Baptiste#s escape and disappearance can -e e&plained % thin2 -y the (act that Tempest (ound him concealed some$here1 too2 him a$ay on one o( his voyages1 and has -e(riended him ever since+ Baptiste is grate(ul and serves /hillip $ith -lind (idelity+) )They 6ust suit each other+ But $hy do you loo2 so trou-led5 "hat do you (ear no$5) )% (ancy Tempest must -e dead else he $ould (ollo$1 and that Baptiste#s (ierce loo2s $ere caused -y his secret purpose to avenge his master#s death+) )No (ear o( that no$+ .etrey $ill daunt him and $hile he is $ith us $e are sa(e+ % must go and o((er my services to the poor man1 that desperate (orgat tried to dro$n him1 and that (ailing1 to sta- him under$ater+)

888

%n a (e$ hours they landed1 and as no train le(t (or England till ne&t day at noon they devoted their evening to Monsieur .etrey1 $ho promised to protect them in return (or the in(ormation they gave him+ e le(t them at ten1 not to sleep -ut to $or21 and early ne&t morning came )in radiant as they sat at -rea2(ast+ )4ou are right0) he e&claimed1 )That pascal has -raved the danger o( capture that he may o-ey his master -y securing you+ e is actually here1 % have seen him in the dress o( a $or2man do$n yonder in the S,uare+ e did not o-serve me1 (or % $as in a carriage1 -ut % am not to -e deceived+ No$1 Mademoiselle1 % must as2 o( you the (avor to help me ta2e him+) )Me1 Monsieur1 ho$ is it possi-le5) Rosamond dre$ nearer to %gnatius as i( see2ing protection (rom her old enemy+ )No danger to you1 Mademoiselle1 % give you my $ord+ My idea is thisF The (ello$ desires to spea2 $ith you1 (or that he $atches and $aits7 you $ill give him an opportunity -y going do$n into the garden as i( (or a stroll+ Monsieur goes $ith you1 -ut you send him -ac2 (or a sha$l1 a -oo2 or some tri(le+ Nothing escapes the ,uic2 eye o( Baptiste1 he sei3es the moment1 he accosts you1 $e $atch our time unseen and ta2e him+ "ill you do this (or me and so rid the $orld o( as -lac2 a scoundrel as ever $al2ed in it5) )% $ill+) Rosamond#s native courage returned to her1 (or years o( danger had not entirely -ro2en her spirit+ /eeping (rom -ehind the curtain o( a -ac2 $indo$1 .etrey pointed out among a group o( -lue:-loused $or2men one $ho $ore a thic2 -lac2 -eard and a cap slouched over his eyes+ e $as not $or2ing1 -ut stood hal( leaning on a stout sta(( as i( 6ust in (rom the country in search o( $or2+ .e:trey surveyed him $ith satis(action+ )% entered unseen and -ade the porter say i( anyone in,uired (or me that % $as ill o( my $ound+ That $ill reassure him9ha0

e is coming1 as % thought he $ould+ e addresses the porter9 see1 he smiles and loo2s $ell pleased+ No$ he $ill lounge in that alley till you appear+ "ait a little1 then saunter out and leave the rest to me+)

888

They o-eyed him and presently $ent do$n to $al2 in the garden1 $hich al$ays (orms a part o( a Continental hotel#s attractions+ A pretty green spot1 $ell 2ept and (ull o( little ta-les not yet occupied+ Choosing one near a thic2 lo$ hedge -ehind $hich he meant to conceal himsel(1 %gnatius le(t Rosamond there $hile he returned at her desire to -ring a parasol+ "hen alone1 her heart -eat (ast and an uncontrolla-le desire to glance a-out her made it di((icult to assume an unconcerned demeanor+ Several minutes passed and no one came7 a (aint rustle -ehind the hedge assured her that %gnatius $as near1 and so guarded she soon -ecame impatient to see the much:dreaded Baptiste appear+ /resently a lad came do$n the path1 arranged the seats and returned a(ter a glance at the solitary lady+ A moment later the -lue -louse came out slo$ly (rom a cross alley $ith a ra2e in his hand+ "hen opposite Rosamond1 he li(ted his cap as is the custom $ith the rudest peasant $hen passing a lady1 and at the same instant gave her a glance o( recognition so (iery and threatening that her start o( (ear $as per(ectly natural+ ) ist0) he said reaching her in one stride and -arring her $ay $ith outstretched arms+ )Madame must hear me or % shall -e (orced to compel her+) One hand $ent to his -reast $ith an ominous gesture+ )% $ill hear you1 $hat have you to say1 Baptiste5) )Merely a message (rom the Master+ e lies dying at Co-len3 and pines to say a (are$ell $ord to Madame+ e (ears you $ill not come1 -ut he implores1 he promises (reedom and sa(ety1 he only as2s (or one $ord1 one loo2 -e(ore he dies+ 4ou $ill grant this prayer or %9)

Rosamond $as spared an ans$er1 (or as Baptiste -ent to$ard her1 spea2ing in a lo$1 rapid tone1 %gnatius leaped the hedge and sei3ed him+ "ith the ,uic2ness o( a practiced $restler he (reed himsel( and turned to (ind .etrey and three gendarmes -ehind him+ The suddenness o( the thing too2 him -y surprise1 -ut he (ought li2e a tiger to escape and yielded only $hen -ound hand and (oot and held do$n -y the men+ )Chut0 e is the same devil as ever1) e&claimed .etrey1 ru--ing his hands $ith an air o( supreme satis(action+ )A thousand than2s1 Mademoiselle1 (or this service+ All goes admira-ly and no$ you are sa(e+ Stay1 Monsieur1 $ill you satis(y yoursel( that this amia-le valet is in truth a (orcat5 Behold our mar2+) /ulling aside the torn -louse1 he sho$ed on the -ro$n shoulder o( Baptiste the letters )T+ F+) >travau& (orces?1 the -rand o( the galleys+ Rosamond turned a$ay $ith a shudder and the men eyed him $ith glances o( detestation1 -ut Baptiste smiled scorn(ully and said to .etrey tauntingly1 )4ou too1 Monsieur le Che(1 have a mar2 upon your shoulder $hich you $ill not soon (orget+) .etrey laughed good:humoredly and ans$ered1 )4es1 -y my (aith1 the souvenir o( Madame Monte3 is a mar2 to -e proud o(+ ave you anything to say to that charming creature -e(ore she goes1 Mademoiselle5) Rosamond loo2ed at the convict as he lay there panting1 -ound and -leeding7 $omanli2e pity con,uered resentment1 and -ending over him she tied her delicate hand2erchie( a-out his $ounded head1 saying so(tly1 )% (orgive you and entreat you to leave me in peace herea(ter (or your o$n sa2e i( not (or mine+)

)Mademoiselle1 you are an angel0) e&claimed .etrey+ ) ave no (ear o( (urther molestation1 this gentleman#s time is up1 he#ll never trou-le you again (or % shall guard him till he is shot tomorro$+ A convict#s doom1 Mademoiselle1 and (rom it there is no escape+) The (ace o( Baptiste had so(tened as the $oman he had hunted so mercilessly -ent over him1 -ut as the Chie( spo2e it

hardened again as he said maliciously1 )The Master is neither dead nor dying7 he is unhurt1 he is on your trail and he $ill avenge me+ Madame1 permit me to o((er my congratulations+) And $ith a grim laugh and a signi(icant glance at %gnatius1 Baptiste disappeared (rom her sight (orever+

C A/TER II%

Mrs+ Tempest

%n the most secluded room at the /riory sat Mrs+ Tempest1 a handsome -ut $orn:loo2ing $oman o( (ive and thirty+ An open letter $as in her hand and as she read it her eyes (illed1 her lips trem-led1 and her $hole (ace -etrayed the presence o( some hal(:pleasura-le1 hal(:pain(ul emotion+ %n the $indo$ lounged Lito $ith a -oo21 $hich he neglected in order to $atch his mother#s (ace+ As she put do$n the letter and loo2ed at him $ith a (ond smile1 he hurried to her1 e&claiming as he caressed her $ith a protective air1 )Mamma dear1 $hat is it that ma2es you sigh and smile and loo2 at me in that $ay5 %#m the head o( the house no$ and % ought to 2no$ everything that trou-les you+) )%t is a-out your Rosamond1 my -oy1 she is coming to us+ er good and (aith(ul (riend Father %gnatius $rites to prepare me1 that the poor girl may not (ail to receive a cordial $elcome+ e thought % might have (orgotten1 or time perhaps changed my (eeling to$ard her1 and so $ith the most delicate 2indness he tells me her hopes1 her trials and virtues1 un2no$n to her1

ma2ing me more her (riend than ever+) )Oh1 Mamma1 no$ % have no $ish ungrati(ied+ %t $ill -e per(ect heaven to live $ith you and Rose+ % 2no$ you#ll love her as % do and she $ill -e so happy $ith you1 (or she al$ays spo2e o( you as the s$eetest $oman she had ever 2no$n1 though she sa$ you -ut once+ "hen $ill she come1 Mamma5) )At any moment1 dear7 the letter $as $ritten at Cologne -ut has -een delayed and it is already past the time $hen Father %gnatius spo2e o( arriving+) )% $ish % could run do$n to the gates to $atch (or them+ %#m not a(raid1 Mamma1 the danger is over no$ % thin2+ )Not $hile your (ather has a right to claim you1 Lito+ As yet he does not suspect your presence here1 -ut % never 2no$ ho$ near he may -e and never cease to (ear losing you again+ ar21 there is a carriage0 4ou#ll not have to see2 (or your (riend+ No1 dear1 $ait here1 let us meet her in private1 it is 2inder+) A (e$ moments later %gnatius entered the room alone+ Mrs+ Tempest had e&pected to see an old man and $as some$hat em-arrassed at the sight o( the elegant stranger1 -ut a (e$ $ords (rom him set her at ease and completely $on her heart+ "aiting (or no introduction1 Lito greeted him enthusiastically and then rushed into the anteroom to em-race and $elcome Rosamond $ith all the $armth and rapture o( a loving heart+ Rosamond could only lay her head on his shoulder and $eep1 longing yet (earing to meet the mother+ Be(ore she had recovered hersel(1 Mrs+ Tempest came to her1 too2 her in her arms and1 2issing the tear(ul (ace1 said in a tender motherly tone1 )My child1 you are very $elcome+ % hoped you $ould one day (ind me out and let me give you a sa(e home+) )Oh1 Madame1 % am not $orthy o( such 2indness1 -ut in my despair % turned to you1 remem-ering your -eauti(ul compassion long ago+ %( % may stay a little and serve you in the hum-lest $ay % shall -e more grate(ul than $ords can e&press+)

)"e -oth have su((ered1 let us com(ort one another1) $as the s$eet ans$er to her prayer1 and (alling on her 2nees Rosamond than2ed heaven that a(ter many dangers she $as sa(e at last+ %gnatius had dra$n the -oy a$ay and $hen1 a(ter a long hour spent in un-urdening their (ull hearts to each other1 the $omen 6oined them1 the priest sa$ $ith a glance that a (riendship had -egun $hich $ould end only $ith their lives+

888

The /riory held a happy (amily that night1 (or the ne$comers $ere not strangers long1 and sitting round the (ire they told their various adventures and made pleasant plans (or their (uture+ Lito $as in the gayest spirits and amused Rosamond $ith an account o( the panics he had su((ered (or a long time a(ter he $as sa(e at home+ All the servants in the house $ere old and (aith(ul and there $as no (ear o( their yielding to -ri-ery+ But Tempest never $ent do$n into Sta((ordshire1 the /riory -eing his $i(e#s property and the neigh-ors regarding him as a (iend incarnate+ e so (irmly -elieved in the -oy#s death that he made no in,uiries and endeavored to (orget him1 so Lito $as dou-ly sa(e and led a ,uiet li(e $ith his mother1 never venturing out alone and -eing provided $ith several hiding places should any une&pected danger arise+ )See1 Rose1 here is my re(uge $hen strangers come or $hen Mamma is o(( guard1) he said1 touching a spring $hich caused a mimic li-rary to revolve upon unseen hinges and disclose a closet lighted -y a narro$ $indo$ and (urrtished $ith a seat1 -oo2s and sundry com(orts and amusements to ma2e the -oy#s temporary captivity endura-le+ Rosamond e&amined it $ith interest and play(ully promised to share his re(uge $ith him1 little dreaming ho$ soon she $ould -e driven to do so+

888

A tran,uil $ee2 passed -y $ith -ut a single care to distur- the $andererF %gnatius too2 lodging in the to$n and only came up to the /riory (or an hour in the evening+ A $ise arrangement1 -ut Rosamond missed him sadly and unconsciously -etrayed hersel( to Mrs+ Tempest -y the change $hich came over her on his arrival+ %gnatius never varied in the grave (riendliness o( his manner1 yet the elder $oman read his secret as $ell as the girl#s and $ondered an&iously ho$ it $ould end+ Sitting alone $ith Rosamond1 one day they (ell to tal2ing o( love and marriage as $omen o(ten do and Mrs+ Tempest told her something o( her o$n past li(e+ )My (ather married a !ree2 lady and % $as -orn in !reece and lived there till my mother died $hen % $as nineteen+ Soon a(ter /hillip came1 made me love him and o-tained my (ather#s consent to our marriage+ For t$o years % $as very happy1 (or /hillip $as devoted and my -a-y $as the 6oy o( my li(e+ My (ather died1 /hillip $earied o( everything and roamed a$ay in his restless (ashion to -e gone months together+ e $anted me to go $ith him1 -ut % clung to the child and $ould not e&pose him to the dangers o( travel+ No$ and then % $ent on a little voyage and on returning (rom one o( these $as told the -oy $as dead+ No tie -ound me longer there and % $ent $ith /hillip+ But time rapidly changed him (or the $orse1 % learned to 2no$ him -etter and a(ter -earing many slights and insults % le(t him+) )"hy $ere you not divorced then1 dear Mrs+ Tempest5) as2ed Rosamond1 $ith a (ace (ull o( sympathy+ )Because % still hoped to re(orm him and $hen that hope died a ne$ one had sprung up+ 4ears had passed since % $as told my -a-y died and % -elieved the tale1 -ut -y the merest accident a (riend passing through Nice sa$ at .alrosa a -oy so li2e /hillip that he $as sure it $as a son o( his1 though he denied it+ "illough-y

mentioned it to me $hen he $rote to England and % at once $ent to (ind the child+ e $as gone1 ta2en a$ay -y his (ather1 and since then % have vainly tried to recover him+ The la$ gives /hillip a right to 2eep him1 and % had no hold upon him e&cept so long as % remained /hillip#s $i(e+ e desired a divorce -ut could not get one $ithout my consent1 (or his in(idelity $as $ell 2no$n and it $as (or me to demand a legal separation+ % $ould not unless he gave up the -oy+ That he re(used and it $as only a(ter Lito came to me that % agreed1 (or my la$yer is sure o( getting a promise (rom /hillip that % shall have the child should he ever appear+ e $as thought to have -een lost in the -oat that le(t Nice (or !enoa and as /hillip has heard nothing o( him he is sure o( his death and $ill consider my re,uest a $oman#s (oolish clinging to hope $hen hope is gone+) A -ell rang as Mrs+ Tempest paused and a servant -rought up a card+ The name on it $as /hillip Tempest+ )"here is Lito5) $as her (irst thought and $ord+ ) ere1 Mamma+) The -oy came in (rom the ne&t room1 $here he $as $aiting (or %gnatius+ )=uic20 %nto the closet and ma2e no sound (or your li(e+ 4ou also1 Rose7 have no (ear9% can meet and (oil him+) %n -reathless haste the t$o ran into the re(uge1 the (alse door closed upon them and the lady o( the house $as (ound alone $hen Tempest and t$o gray:headed la$yers $ere sho$n in+ us-and and $i(e met $ith the coolness o( strangers1 and $ith merely a $ord o( greeting they sat silently apart $hile the old men e&plained certain papers $hich $ere to -e signed as the last (ormalities o( the divorce+ "hen this $as done1 Mr+ Furnival1 Mrs+ Tempest#s la$yer1 said $ith a glance at her1 )Mr+ Tempest agrees to your $ish1 Madam1 though he cannot -ut thin2 as % do that you (eed yoursel( $ith vain hopes+ ere is a $ritten promise made in due (orm $hich gives you the sole right to the -oy i( he ever appears+) )4ou 2no$ nothing o( him1 Marion1 to this you can s$ear5) as2ed Tempest1 $ith a 2een scrutiny o( her pale1 (irm (ace+

She loo2ed him straight in the eye $ith $ell:(eigned eagerness1 $hich changed to sorro$ as she ans$ered $ith a -itter sigh and an impetuous1 )% $ish to heaven % did0)9adding to hersel(1 )!od pardon me (or the lie % tell to save my son+) )So do %1) and $ith a momentary sadness on his hard (ace Tempest signed the promise to $hich he attached no importance7 the la$yers $itnessed it and Mrs+ Tempest received it $ith a 6oy almost impossi-le to conceal+ A (e$ $ords more and the intervie$ $as a-out to close $hen a hal(:sti(led laugh made Mrs+ Tempest start and turn so pale it attracted the attention o( the three gentlemen+ She recovered hersel( instantly and murmured something a-out the giddy maidservants1 -ut Tempest#s suspicions $ere aroused1 (or the laugh $as a -oy#s hearty ) a0 ha0) and sounded (amiliar to his ear+ "ithout a $ord he strode to the spot $hence it had come1 e&amined the (alse door and tried to open it+ %n an agony o( alarm Mrs+ Tempest assured him that it $as only the little (oot-oy and -egged him to -elieve her+ )Not till % satis(y mysel(+ % understand the meaning o( your a-surd re,uest no$+ The -oy is here and % $ill (ind him i( % ra3e the house to the ground+) And e&erting his great strength he shoo2 the door till it crac2ed in his grasp+ The old men inter(ered and Mrs+ Tempest implored1 -ut1 heeding none o( them1 he $as a-out to give another -lo$ $hen the door (le$ open and Rosamond appeared in the re(uge alone+ Tempest (ell -ac2 as i( a ghost had con(ronted him+ Mrs+ Tempest san2 into a seat $ith a (ervent than2sgiving that the -oy $as sa(e1 and the la$yers stared1 alert to catch a clue to the mystery+ =uite calm and $ith no sign o( agitation -ut the indignant (ire o( her eyes1 Rosamond demanded imperiously1 )By $hat right do you violently -rea2 upon my privacy5 The house is not yours and on me you have no claim7 % place mysel( under the protection o( these gentlemen1 and that they may comprehend the case % shall e&plain my appearance here+) Tempest seemed literally una-le to reply1 and $hile he stood speechless she rapidly and (orci-ly recounted her $rongs1

her su((erings and her (irm resolution to discard him (orever+ The truth1 elo,uence and (ire o( her recital thrilled even the cold hearts o( the old men1 made them her champions at once1 and $hen she ended $ith an appeal to them1 -oth heartily assured her o( their protection and support+ )Surely there is some redress (or me1 some sa(ety in this land o( la$ and li-erty+ % claim entire (reedom (rom this man#s persecution7 % $ill hide no longer1 here % shall remain and let him molest me at his peril+) Never had she loo2ed so -eauti(ul1 so dauntless and determined1 and never had Tempest loved her so passionately as $hen she cast him o(( $ith $omanly contempt and de(iance+ As i( nothing should -e $anting to ma2e his de(eat galling and complete1 %gnatius suddenly entered the room and1 uttering a little cry o( 6oy1 Rosamond $ent to him $ith such con(iding (reedom it needed not the protecting gesture or tender glance o( %gnatius to -etray ho$ much they $ere to one another+ The sight o( a rival roused Tempest to (ury1 (or it not only stung his man#s pride -ut it convinced him past all dou-t that Rosamond $as lost (orever+ "hite and trem-ling $ith $rath1 he turned on them $ith a terri-le (ace1 e&claiming in a tone that made Rosamond cling closer to the arm o( %gnatius1 )% read the riddle no$ and admire the art $ith $hich you have allied your (orces1 against me+ But it $ill not succeed+ /lot1 lie and de(y as you $ill1 %#ll con,uer yet1 (or no man ever de(eated /hillip Tempest+ 4ou have heard the art(ul story o( this girl1 gentlemen1 let me add that she -rings these charges against the man $ho loves her that she may -e (ree to give her (ic2le heart to this (alse priest1 this lo$ adventurer $hom no one 2no$s9) e paused (or -reath7 and %gnatius smiled a smile o( mingled pity and contempt -ut uttered not a $ord+ Rosamond spo2e (or him and disregarding his $arning glance -ro2e out eagerly1 )%s Bayard Conde1 $hom you once said you admired -eyond any man1 a lo$ adventurer $hom no one 2no$s5 %s he a (alse priest $ho gave up (ame and (ortune1 youth and love to serve !od $ith all his po$ers in their prime0 %t is you $ho are (alse and -ase1 you $ho should pray to -e un2no$n1 (or in all the $orld no human creature loves1 trusts or honors you+)

Something in her 2indling (ace1 her proud smile1 her clear glad voice carried instant conviction to Tempest#s mind and daunted him $ith sudden shame -e(ore the man $hose no-le li(e made his o$n seem dou-ly despica-le+ Fearing to disgrace himsel( -y some out-rea2 o( the passion (ast -ecoming ungoverna-le1 he clenched his hand and cast on %gnatius a loo2 o( deadly hatred as he le(t the room1 saying -et$een his teeth $ith a gesture o( insolent signi(icance1 )Monsieur le *ue1 % shall not (orget you+)

C A/TER II%%

T$ice Con,uered

"ith hasty assurances o( help the la$yers (ollo$ed1 and as the door closed on them Mrs+ Tempest e&claimed1 )Lito5 $here is he5) )Sa(e in one o( his other hiding places+ "e listened1 and $hen the paper $as signed he could not repress a triumphant laugh+ % $as dismayed and made him slip out -y the $indo$ at once1 and remained to divert suspicion1 (or % heard /hillip#s threat+) ) e (orgot the -oy in his $rath and no$ that you have the paper Lito may venture to appear7 though % should advise prudence (or a time1) said %gnatius+

)% $ill -e care(ul1 -ut no$ % must (ind him+) olding the precious promise (ast1 Mrs+ Tempest hurried a$ay to assure hersel( o( her darling#s sa(ety+ )Baptiste $as right1 the (all did not in6ure /hillip+ % should -e glad o( that and yet % am not+ %t#s $rong1 -ut % did $ish it might cripple him (or a time that $e might -e sa(e+ %#m gro$ing hard and $ic2ed and this persecution is destroying me -ody and soul+ %gnatius1 % hate that man $ith a mortal hatred+) Rosamond loo2ed dar2ly to$ard the spot $here he had stood+ )4ou $ould -e more than human i( you did not+ Even in a generous nature li2e yours love $ill turn to hate $hen $rong (ollo$s $rong and insult is added to insult+ "hat $ill he do no$5) ans$ered %gnatius1 hoping to dra$ her thoughts (rom hersel( (or her dar2 mood trou-led him+ )*o0 e $ill haunt us1 $aylay1 entrap and torment us as he has done+ e has the su-tlety o( an evil spirit and though Baptiste is gone he $ill devise some scheme alone more treacherous than any yet+ Oh1 -e$are o( him0 e $ill destroy you i( he can1 his $rath (alls heaviest on you and % can do nothing to de(end my de(ender+ Stay here $here $e can $atch over you1 % entreat you to let me repay a little o( my great de-t in this $ay1 %gnatius+)

)%t is impossi-le1 my child+) )But $hy5) )This house is more dangerous than any other to me+) ) e $ill not return1 he dares not+) )% have no (ear o( him (or mysel(+) )"ho do you (ear1 then5) )4ou+)

She understood him no$ and drooped -e(ore his sad -ut steady ga3e+ e loo2ed do$n at her $ith an e&pression o( the deepest su((ering1 -ut $hen he spo2e it $as in a cheer(ul tone1 and his parting glance $as cheer(ul also+ )% shall not change my $ay o( li(e (or him+ %t is my duty to guard you and % shall do it at all costs+ %( he molests me or threatens you1 let him loo2 to himsel(+)

888

Rosamond $as right1 Tempest did haunt them1 not in person -ut -y means o( spies1 he 2ept himsel( ac,uainted $ith their movements till an e((ectual stop $as put to his surveillance+ Three days a(ter his visit one o( the old servants came to Rosamond $ith an an&ious (ace+ )/lease1 Miss1 as Mistress is out % ma2e -old to tell you that a strange man has -een hanging a-out the place o(( and on all day1 and 6ust no$ % caught him tal2ing over the garden $all to Margery1 the ne$ girl+) )"hat $as he saying1 Bar-ara5) ) e $as (lattering her at (irst and then $hen she $as a -it (luttered $ith his so(t speeches he as2ed a-out the (oreign gentleman1 Miss+ "hat time he came up here usually1 $here he lived and so on+ % put a stop to it -e(ore Margery ans$ered and sent him a-out his -usiness $ith a $arning not to sho$ himsel( here again+) )Than2s1 Bar-ara+ Father %gnatius has enemies and $e must do our -est to guard him+ Mrs+ Tempest and Lito are a$ay (or the day so % must go and $arn him+ Let the pony carriage -e ready as soon as possi-le and as2 ;ohn to go $ith me+) "ithout loss o( time Rosamond $as on her $ay to the lodging o( her (riend1 -ent on preparing him to

meet $hatever danger impended over him+ %gnatius had a modest set o( rooms over a shop1 and entering -elo$ as i( to ma2e purchases she $ent up -y a private $ay at the rear+ e $as alone and asleep1 loo2ing as i( $orn out $ith $a2e(ul nights and restless days+ A -oo2 had (allen (rom his hand as he lay on the couch1 and li(ting it Rosamond sa$ that it $as the li(e o( Martin Luther+ %t opened at a certain page $hich seemed to have -een much read1 (or several paragraphs $ere mar2ed and the lea( $as $orn -y (re,uent turning+ %t $as that part o( the story $here the great re(ormer practiced as he preached1 and1 -oldly a((irming that priests might marry1 con(irmed his sincerity -y $edding his -eloved Jatherina+ Rosamond#s eye $ent (rom the -oo2 to the sleeper and an irrepressi-le hope sprung up $ithin her1 (or the circumstance had+ a 6oy(ul signi(icance to her+ So(tly touching him1 she -reathed his name1 and opening his eyes he stretched his arms to her as i( he (ancied her a vision o( his sleep+ Even in the act he $o2e and sprung up1 e&claiming $ith $onder and pleasure in his voice and (ace+ )4ou here0 % dreamed it -ut never thought to (ind the dream (ul(illed+ "hat is amiss1 dear child5) e never called her Rose1 (or the sound o( it on Tempest#s lips had made it distaste(ul to him+ She told her (ears1 implored him to -e care(ul and insisted on hurrying a$ay again lest too long a stay should e&cite suspicion+ e let her go1 -ut -e(ore the pony carriage had clim-ed the (irst hill he $as (ollo$ing and 2ept it in sight till it turned sa(ely in at the /riory gates+ Then1 $ith an air o( satis(action1 he retraced his steps entirely regardless o( himsel(+ al($ay across the $ide1 desolate moor a man appeared (rom -ehind one o( the great stones scattered among the gorse+ A tall1 po$er(ul man1 $ho li(ted his hat as he approached as i( disdaining concealment+ For an instant %gnatius paused1 remem-ering his utterly unarmed and helpless condition1 then $ith a smile at his

hesitation he $ent on as tran,uilly as i( a-out to meet a (riend+ %n the middle o( the lonely moor the t$o men met1 and pausing (ace to (ace1 eyed each other silently (or a moment+ %( Tempest had detected the slightest symptom o( (ear in his rival#s (ace he $ould have -een -etter a-le to -egin the intervie$+ But so per(ectly cool and calm $as the -earing o( %gnatius1 so clear and steady his glance1 so almost indi((erent his tone that Tempest $as impressed in spite o( himsel(+ )4ou see2 me1 % am here1) $as the -rie( greeting o( the priest as the other did not spea2+ )% do1 $e are $ell met and $ill settle this ,uestion -e(ore $e part+ %( you $ere $hat % thought you % should have shot you li2e a dog as you passed me not long ago+ Jno$ing you to -e my e,ual1 % o((er you a chance (or your li(e and demand the only satis(action you can give me+ ere are $eapons1 ta2e your choice and do your -est1 (or -ut one o( us shall ,uit this spot alive+) Spea2ing sternly1 Tempest o((ered a pair o( pistols $ith a grim smile $hich increased as %gnatius too2 one o( the $eapons1 saying ,uietly1 )% possessed some s2ill once1 let me see i( % have entirely lost it1) and turning $ithout any apparen( pause to ta2e aim he (ired at a -ird perched on a tall gorse-ush some yards distant+ The -ird (ell dead1 and returning the pistol %gnatius said in the same ,uiet tone1 )*o not trou-le yoursel( to reload+ % shall shoot nothing else today+) Entirely ta2en -y surprise at his s2ill and his reply1 Tempest made no ans$er till %gnatius moved as i( to go1 then he -ro2e out savagely1 )Stay1 this -ravado $ill not save you7 s2ill(ul as you are1 % am your match and you shall shoot again or share the -ird#s (ate+ This is a revolver+ Ta2e it and stand o((7 %#ll not -e -al2ed this time -ut have revenge (or the Co-len3 a((air i( nothing more+)

Standing erect -e(ore him1 %gnatius (olded his arms and ans$ered $ith calm decision1 )% decline your challenge+) )Co$ard0 %#ll (orce you to accept it+) Tempest li(ted his hand as i( (or a -lo$1 -ut the steady eye and commanding (igure opposite restrained him+ )%t $ill avail nothing to insult me1 % shall not (ight+) )% demand your reason (or re(using+) )% deny your right to do so1 nevertheless % comply1 that you may understand me -etter+ %( % $ere $hat % once $as % should say #Bayard Conde (ights only $ith gentlemen#7 -eing $hat % am % reply1 #Father %gnatius as a priest o( !od may use only spiritual $eapons and needs no other+# ) Tempest laughed contemptuously1 -ut his (ace dar2ened terri-ly1 (or the ans$er stung him to the soul+ Stepping -ac21 he raised his arm and said tauntingly1 )*e(end yoursel( $ith either $eapon you choose1 (or -y the Lord % s$ear % $ill shoot you as you stand (or this last insult+) 'n(olding his arms and turning so that his -reast o((ered a (air mar2 (or the other#s aim1 %gnatius replied $ith per(ect composure touched $ith scorn1 )Fire1 and deepen Rosamond#s detestation -y adding another murder to your list o( crimes+) The pistol dropped (rom Tempest#s hand and an unmista2a-le e&pression o( (ear passed over his (ace as he demanded in an unsteady voice1 )"hat do you mean5) )% mean that the man $ho shot the hus-and o( the unhappy Lady Clyde and lured Ro-ert "illough-y to his death is a murderer $hom it $ould need little to convict and pu-licly condemn+ "ell (or him that the con(idences o( the Con(essional are held sacred1 or the name o( Tempest $ould -e disgraced (orever+) The last $ords seemed to reassure the listener1 (or his (ormer hardihood returned1 and as i( an&ious to (orget the past he said a-ruptly1 )%( you $ill not (ight1 $ill you ans$er a (e$ ),uestions5)

)Out o( pity (or your desperate state1 % $ill1 i( they are such as % have a right to ans$er1 $as the mild reply+ )Tell me then1 do you love my Rose5) )4es+) Only a $ord1 -ut it spo2e volumes+ )And she loves you5) as2ed Tempest -et$een his teeth+ )That % have no right to say+) )Bah1 it is plain1 $hy ma2e a pretense o( dou-ting it5) )%( it is plain1 $hy ,uestion me5) )Because % choose+ 4ou $ill get a-solved (rom your vo$s and marry her5) he $ent on eagerly+ )% shall do neither+) A sti(led sigh heaved the -road chest o( the priest+ )Ah1 % understand1 Rose has pro(ited -y my teaching and having (ound marriage a (ailure $ill dispense $ith it no$ as % $ould have had her in the -eginning9) e got no (arther1 (or $ith one step %gnatius caught him -y the throat e&claiming in a tone o( suppressed $rath1 scorn and disgust $hile his (ace -la3ed out suddenly $ith the passion controlled so long1 )Breathe a $ord against that innocent creature and %#ll throttle you as % $ould a venomous reptile0) The instant his hand touched Tempest he grappled $ith him and %gnatius (orgot everything e&cept that he $as a man avenging the $rongs o( the $oman he loved+ %n (ierce silence they struggled together li2e t$o $restlers1 each (eeling the po$er o( the other and e&erting every muscle to con,uer+ They $ere $ell matched in height -ut not in strength1 (or Tempest#s li(e had -een one to undermine the most per(ect health1 $hile %gnatius1 temperate in all things as an anchorite1 possessed the super- muscular po$er o( manhood in its prime+ Tempest soon perceived %gnatius#s superiority and (ought $ith the desperation o( despair1 (or no$ he 2ne$ that his rival#s

-lood $as up and that he $as not a man to -e su-dued in spite o( his seeming gentleness+ %t $as a short struggle -ut a deadly one1 (or Tempest $ould not unloose his hold though thro$n more than once+ The third time his head struc2 a stone in the heath and he lay stunned1 still grasping his enemy $ith the tenacity o( a $ild -east+ "hen he recovered1 his head lay on the priest#s 2nee and $ith all the passion gone out o( his (ace1 %gnatius $as -ending over him as he loosened his cravat+ For several moments he lay loo2ing -lan2ly up at that compassionate countenance and his (irst $ords $ere the $ondering ,uestion1 )"hy do you restore me and not rid yoursel( o( me $hen % am in your po$er5) )% $ill not stain my hands $ith -lood nor send you out o( this $orld till you are (itter (or another+ Can you stand5 So0 Lean on me and sit $ith your -ac2 against this stone1 the air $ill revive you+) Lost in $onder1 and docile (rom $ea2ness1 Tempest o-eyed and sat moodily leaning his di33y head upon his hand $hile %gnatius $ent to (ill his hat (ull o( $ater (rom the pool near-y+ There is a saying1 )%( you 2noc2 an Englishman do$n in a (air (ight he $ill respect you ever a(ter$ard+) %t $as so no$+ Fe$ men had ever con,uered Tempest in anything and he (elt superior to most7 -ut this man surpassed him in strength1 s2ill1 courage and magnanimity1 (or1 hard as he $as1 Tempest still (elt the -eauty o( a generous act1 a no-le $ord+ %gnatius had con,uered in love and $ar7 had -orne insult mee2ly (or himsel(1 had avenged it man(ully (or another1 had given compassion (or contempt1 and having $on the victory generously spared his enemy+ %t galled Tempest terri-ly and yet it touched him also1 (or the no-le sincerity o( the man impressed him and the in(luence o( real virtue could not -e resisted+ As %gnatius came -ac21 o((ering the $ater $ith a (riendly air1 Tempest rather startled him -y as2ing a-ruptly1 as i( the $ords lingered in his mind1 # #Fitter (or another $orld#9is that possi-le5) )4es1 greater miracles have -een $rought+) )By you5) %n Tempest#s haggard (ace there $as a momentary e&pression o( hope struggling $ith a nameless (ear+ Be(ore the other could reply it $as gone and he dropped his head impatiently on his

hand again1 saying hal( angrily1 )Chut1 $hat a (ool % am to tal2 in that maudlin style+ Say $hat you have to say and leave me+) )% have only this to say1 #!o and repent+# ) )Stay1 one more ,uestion1) cried Tempest1 as %gnatius turned a$ay+ /ausing1 the priest $iped his (lushed (orehead and said $ith a smile as he glanced (rom the trampled heath to his o$n disordered dress and the desperate:loo2ing man -e(ore him1 )% listen1 % repeat your o$n phrase1 #Say $hat you have to say1# and add1 let your $ords -e care(ully chosen1 (or % have no desire to ma2e a -rute o( mysel( again1 and % assuredly shall i( you insult Rosamond+) )Tell me one thing7 you love Rose and are -eloved yet cannot marry7 ho$ $ill it end5) Tempest needed one more lesson and he received it $hen %gnatius turned on him a (ace (ull o( love and longing1 (ull o( a man#s dearest and strongest passion1 yet ans$ered steadily though his chee2 paled and his eye dar2ened $ith intensity o( (eeling1 )% shall love her all my li(e1 shall -e to her a (aith(ul (riend1 and i( % cannot remain loyal to -oth !od and her % shall renounce her and never see her (ace again+ 4ou call this (olly7 to me it is a hard duty1 and the more % love her the $orthier o( her $ill % endeavor to -ecome -y my o$n integrity o( soul+) "ith that they parted1 and %gnatius le(t Tempest sitting on the lonely moor1 t$ice con,uered in an hour+

C A/TER II%%%

Retri-ution

Tempest $ent -ac2 to London and tried to ta2e up his old li(e again1 -ut soon (ound that (or him as (or all sinners the inevita-le hour o( retri-ution had -egun+ The divorce had laid -are his past and honest men shunned him1 modest $omen shran2 (rom him as (rom the plague1 old (riends dropped a$ay1 the $orld condemned him1 and he $as set apart among the -lac2 sheep o( society+ %t annoyed him intensely and he $ould have gone a-road again to some o( his (ormer haunts -ut (or Rosamond+ e could not ta2e her $ith him so $as (orced to remain in decorous England1 $here his disreputa-le li(e and $ild (rea2s (ound no support+ e gre$ moody and sat much alone -rooding over many things1 (or no$ pleasure palled upon him and companionship gre$ distaste(ul+ For the (irst time in his li(e he (elt remorse1 not (or the sins committed -ut (or the unto$ard conse,uences o( the sins+ e $as in the po$er o( %gnatius and o(ten $or2ed himsel( into a (ever trying to discover ho$ the truth o( his evil deeds had come to the priest1 and i( it $as true that the secrets o( the Con(essional $ere 2ept sacred+ ealth too $as (ailing1 (or the (all at Co-len31 though it le(t no out$ard sign1 had in6ured him1 and -eing too impatient to ta2e proper precautions at the time1 the in6ury $as augmented1 and a constant $eary pain in the chest $ore upon him terri-ly+ The loss o( Baptiste $as another thorn7 he dared not openly in,uire1 -ut -y clandestine means learned that the convict had -een shot $ithout -etraying anything+ e did not regret him as a man -ut as a tool1 (or the unscrupulous (idelity o( Baptiste $as invalua-le and it seemed impossi-le to (ill his place+ Tempest never (or a moment relin,uished his purpose o( $inning -ac2 Rosamond1 -ut $aited to (ind some $ay o( sa(ely accomplishing his design+ %n England he could not a-duct the girl or use (orci-le means o( getting her into his po$er $ithout danger1 scandal and opposition+ e hated %gnatius $ith a mortal hate1 (eeling that he $as the greatest o-stacle in the $ay1 and the most insurmounta-le1 (or the priest $as a rival to -e $ary o( approaching+ The scene upon the moor had proved

his po$er and its memory still ran2led in Tempest#s mind+

888

*ay a(ter day he roamed the streets or sat in his rooms trying to devise some $ay o( accomplishing his dou-le purpose+ That Rosamond no longer loved him he could not dou-t1 and $ith his o$n una-ated passion $as no$ mingled a resent(ul desire to ma2e her e&piate her contempt -y (resh humiliation or su((ering+ Accident -e(riended him+ A letter came (rom old .ivian through Tempest#s la$yer+ Ne$s o( the divorce had reached him1 and he commanded Tempest to atone (or the $rong he had done Rosamond -y marrying her or he $ould compel him to so do -y legal proceedings7 he also added as a -ait that the aunt o( the girl $as dead and the (ortune passed to his granddaughter1 su-6ect to his control+ Not 2no$ing $here Rosamond $as >(or all her letters had -een suppressed -y Tempest?1 he $rote to him (or tidings o( her and desired him to -ring her home at once+ Armed $ith this letter1 Tempest ventured to return to Sta((ordshire1 thin2ing it $ould a((ord an e&cuse (or seeing Rosamond i( nothing more1 and might ma2e some impression upon her+ %t $as evening $hen he arrived and entering the gates unseen he $as attracted -y the -rilliant light o( a certain $indo$+ Stealing up the -an21 he s$ung himsel( onto the -alcony and putting -y the vines that curtained the $indo$1 loo2ed in upon a scene $hich (orced a -itter malediction (rom his lips+ Rosamond1 more -eauti(ul than ever1 $as the central (igure o( the group1 and a-out her $ere gathered the other three1 as i( she dre$ all hearts to her -y the spell o( her unconscious grace and loveliness+ She had -een singing and $as 6ust reseated at her $or2 $ith the glo$ called up -y commendation still on her chee2+ %gnatius sat opposite and pushing a$ay his -oo2 leaned (or$ard tal2ing earnestly $hile she listened1 apparently (orget(ul o(

everything -ut the elo,uent dar2 eyes that told so much+ Near-y sat Mrs+ Tempest1 much o( the youth(ul cheer(ulness restored to her comely (ace1 and leaning on the arm o( her chair stood Lito1 tall and handsome1 tal2ing gaily as he spoilt her em-roidery li2e the petted -oy he $as+ The start Tempest gave $hen he sa$ his son $ould have -etrayed him had not a general -urst o( laughter at some sally o( Lito#s dro$ned the rustle o( the leaves as they escaped (rom the $atcher#s hand+ e loved the -oy1 and real than2(ulness (illed -is heart as he sa$ him sa(e and $ell1 (or he had@ (elt his loss 2eenly and repented -itterly o( his harshness+ A moment he ga3ed at him $ith genuine delight1 then came the remem-rance o( the promise he had given and the thought1 ) e is no longer mine+) As i( the recollection o( the deceit practiced on him recalled him to his (ormer sel(1 he turned and le(t the -alcony1 saying $ith a sardonic smile1 )% need amusement and shall (ind it -y $al2ing in among them unannounced+) e 2ne$ the $ays o( the household1 and slipping in $ithout ringing he glided to the door o( the room $here sat the happy group+ e meant to $ear his usual air o( cool audacity1 -ut as he entered and sa$ the sudden terror that (ell on all at sight o( him1 the longing to -e 2indly $elcomed $as so strong he could not resist it1 and $ith a humility that surprised himsel( as much as them1 he said gravely1 as he -o$ed to Mrs+ Tempest1 )/ardon (or coming une&pectedly1 -ut % have good ne$s (or Rose and could not deny mysel( the pleasure o( -ringing them+ May % $ait (or your reply5) Neither o( the $omen spo2e1 (or Mrs+ Tempest clung to her son and Rosamond disdained to ans$er+ %gnatius1 $ith undistur-ed composure1 rose and o((ered the un$elcome guest a seat1 saying courteously1 )%t is an inclement night1 you are $et and $eary7 sit and rest $hile Mademoiselle receives your tidings+) Tempest laid the letter -e(ore Rosamond >$ho -ec2oned %gnatius to come and read it $ith her as i( she (eared some treachery lur2ed in it?1 and sat do$n1 (eeling an alien and an outcast in his o$n home+ Lito eyed him de(iantly at (irst1 -ut $hen his (ather $ith an uncontrolla-le impulse stretched out his hand and e&claimed imploringly7 )My -oy1 $ill you not come and spea2 to your (ather5) he -ro2e (rom his mother#s grasp and putting his hand

in Tempest#s loo2ed (earlessly at him+ Something in the haggard (ace1 the $arm clasp o( the hand1 the sound o( that last $ord touched the generous heart o( the lad1 and (orgetting the past he remem-ered only that he $as a son+ /utting his arm a-out his (ather#s nec2 he 2issed him1 saying a((ectionately1 )%#m glad you o$n me at last1 /apa+) Regardless o( everyone1 Tempest held the -oy close1 muttering (ervently in a -ro2en voice1 )Than2 !od you are sa(e1 my Lito0) /ale and agitated $ith an ominous (ear1 Mrs+ Tempest dre$ near1 longing to $ithdra$ the -oy yet touched -y the emotion o( the man+ She laid her hand on Lite#s shoulder $ith a $arning touch and Tempest loo2ed up+ Steadying his voice1 he said -eseechingly1 )Let me 2eep him (or the little $hile % stay1 Marion7 you have made him yours (or li(e+) )4ou $ill not claim him then5 4ou a-ide -y your promise1 /hillip5) she said eagerly+ )4es1 though $on un(airly % $ill 2eep my $ord1 dear as the -oy is to me+ 4ou are a (itter guardian than %7 2eep him and let me no$ and then remind him that he has a (ather+ Tell me1 Lito1 ho$ you vanished so entirely5 % have searched and mourned (or you1 -elieving you $ere dead+) !rate(ul yet hal( incredulous1 Mrs+ Tempest dre$ -ac21 and leaning on his (ather#s 2nee1 Lito told his little story+ "hile listening1 Tempest#s eye o(ten $andered to the pair $ho sat apart1 -ending their heads together over the letter and discussing its contents in lo$ tones+ e had (orgotten the terri-le indelicacy o( ma2ing any appeal to Rosamond in that house+ is $i(e had long ago -ecome a stranger to him and the divorce $idened the -reach -et$een them almost as entirely as i( death had sealed the separation+ %n his impetuous haste1 his sel(ish love1 he thought only o( supporting his claim -y the old man#s command and $aited impatiently (or her reply+ Soon it came1 cold1 -rie( and decided+ )Than2 you (or your tidings+ % shall go to my grand(ather at once+ There is -ut one reply to his other command1 you 2no$ it and this is not the place to repeat it+) er tone and manner $ere e,ual to a dismissal and putting Lito a$ay Tempest rose1 (eeling that any

importunity no$ $ould in6ure his cause+ )% may at least -e permitted to congratulate you on your good (ortune1 and to hope that your !rand(ather#s $ishes $ill have more $eight $ith you than mine+) ere his respect(ul manner changed to one o( ironical politeness as he turned to the priest and Mrs+ Tempest+ )Father %gnatius1 as you have a-solved Mademoiselle (rom past sins7 perhaps you can $in her to a Christian (orgiveness o( the chie( sinner1 and so(ten her hard heart as a pious Con(essor should+ To you1 Madam1 % leave the -oy1 though % might claim him easily1 (or your moral in(luence $ill e&ceed mine i( % may 6udge -y the e&ample o( truth(ulness you have already given+ Lito1 good:-ye1 in a (e$ years you $ill -e o( age and (ree to 6oin your (ather and en6oy li(e+ %#ll $ait till then1) and $ith a moc2ing laugh1 a -o$ o( a((ected respect1 Tempest retired1 solacing himsel( $ith the thought that he had made them all as unhappy as $as possi-le in so short a time+ A servant sa$ him out and -arred -oth door and gates -ehind him1 -ut in spite o( $ind and rain he haunted the spot (or hours1 una-le to tear himsel( a$ay+ %t $as an ine&pressi-ly -itter moment $hen he stood alone in the -lea2 Noven(-er night1 shut out (rom the $armth and (riendliness o( the home $hich no$ held the only creatures $hom he loved+ Rose and Lito $ere there7 neither money1 treachery nor po$er could restore them to him and their guardians $ere the persons o( all others most detested -y him+ This added a su-tle sting to the retri-ution already dar2ening over him1 (or he $ho had $on and $asted love so $antonly all his li(e no$ pined (or it $ith a longing $hich nothing could appease1 and pined in vain+ As he $andered to and (ro -e(ore the gates that shut him (rom his /aradise1 he raged against (ate and s$ore to con,uer

yet+ The memory o( %gnatius leaning side -y side $ith Rosamond over the letter1 her so(t hair touching his chee21 her eyes loo2ing con(idingly into his1 her $hole air -etraying ho$ deep and per(ect $as her love and honor (or him1 $as torture to Tempest1 and as he recalled the picture again and again all his short:lived regret and humility changed to a savage desire to destroy that happiness in $hich he could -ear no part+ The sound o( opening doors arrested him as he stood sha2ing his clenched hand at his unseen rival in a paro&ysm o( mute $rath+ Lito and Rosamond $ere saying good night to the priest and1 gliding into a shado$y angle o( the $all1 Tempest heard the happy voices reiterating (are$ells1 entreaties to come early on the morro$1 and charges to ride care(ully across the moor+ Then the gates $ere opened and a horseman rode a$ay1 (ollo$ed -y a last adieu in Rosamond#s s$eet voice+ Tempest set his teeth $ith an oath and hurrying to the spot $here his o$n horse $as tied1 cautiously (ollo$ed the unsuspecting man $ith a -lac2 thought in his mind+ The night $as very dar2 and the tempestuous $ind roared over the -lea2 moor as the t$o riders crossed it+ No sound $arned %gnatius o( the approaching danger and nearer and nearer came the man $ho thirsted (or his -lood+ Tempest rode $arily lest the clash o( his horse#s (eet on the road should -etray him1 and had nearly reached his rival $hen the ,uic2 tramp o( hoo(s echoed -ehind them+ /ausing1 he heard the ne$comer pull up -eside the priest1 saying in a hearty voice1 )Miss .ivian sent me1 Sir1 -eing (ear(ul you might lose your $ay or come to harm this $ild night+ %t#s ;ohn1 Sir1 and %#m entirely at your service+) )Foolish child1) the listener heard %gnatius say in a tender undertone1 then added cheerily1 )Than2s1 my man1 let us ride on that Miss .ivian may not -e disappointed+) So1 guarded (rom impending danger1 %gnatius crossed the moor+

C A/TER II%.

The .ision .eri(ied

The so6ourn in England $as all too ,uic2ly over and the point reached $hen they must set sail (or the %sland+ The day had -een mild and clear1 -ut at noon the $ind rose1 clouds -egan to gather and the s2y loo2ed so threatening that %gnatius advised delay+ But Rosamond $as (everishly eager no$ to -e at home1 (or the thought that Tempest $as still on her trac2 (illed her $ith such alarm that all lesser (ears $ere (orgotten+ er $ill $as la$1 and leaving her to rest in the parlor o( the little inn he $ent out to secure a -oat+ e $as delayed a long time and $hen he returned it $as $ith an an&ious (ace $hich his (irst $ords e&plained+ )Tempest is here+) ) ere1 impossi-le0 Are you sure5) she cried1 turning very pale+ )Beyond a dou-t+ e must have (ollo$ed us rapidly+ is yacht is here and $hile % $as in,uiring (or a -oat % discovered it+ 4ou had 6ust -een telling me a-out the Circe and there she lies1 ready to sail at a moment#s notice+) )Let her sail or let her stay+ % shall not -e turned aside -y this un(ortunate meeting+ /hillip may (ollo$+ % shall go straight on and de(y him to the last+ %s the -oat ready5) She spo2e almost (iercely and put her ,uestion in a tone as imperious as Tempest#s o$n1 (or her

patience $as e&hausted and (or hersel( she no longer (eared anything+ To prevent another meeting -et$een the t$o men $as her purpose and she longed to -e sa(ely a$ay upon the sea+ )4es % have (ound a little cra(t and pair o( s2ill(ul sailors to man it+ They tell me it is -ut an hour#s sail $ith a (air $ind and $e shall reach the %sland -e(ore dus2+ Shall $e go5) )4es+) Smiling at her resolute air1 %gnatius too2 her a$ay at once and placed her sa(ely a-oard the Os:prey+ Everything $as ready and they $ere 6ust a-out to start $hen %gnatius discovered that his purse $as gone+ aving a vague recollection o( laying it on the hotel ta-le $hen he put on Rosamond#s cloa21 and the place -eing close at hand1 he returned to (ind it1 (earing to trust any strange messenger+ %t $as no$here to -e seen and a(ter some delay he gave it up1 $ith a strong suspicion that the o((icious $aiter 2ne$ something o( it+ Fearing to $aste the daylight1 he hastened -ac2 to the pier to (ind to his dismay that the -oat had sailed+ Though still in sight and $ithin sound o( his voice the men paid no heed to his signals nor his shouts -ut 2ept steadily on and soon vanished1 leaving him in despair+ astily hiring a -oat1 he o((ered a sound sum to the men i( they $ould overta2e the other+ )The Osprey is a (ast sailor1 sir1 -ut $e#ll do our -est1) $as the reply and a$ay they $ent $ith all sail set+ The men $ere right7 the Osprey le(t them (ar -ehind and they soon lost her in the gathering (og $hich -le$ up (rom the sea as day declined+ Mean$hile Tempest $atched and $aited1 e&ulting in the success o( his impromptu plot+ e had (ollo$ed close and as he heard %gnatius engaging the -oat a terri-le thought struc2 him+ Accidents $ere (re,uent1 $hy not let one rid him o( his rival+

The presence o( Rosamond alone inter(ered $ith his plan+ This o-stacle $as surmounted -y -ri-ing the men o( the Osprey in the a-sence o( %gnatius to sail $ithout him1 and detaining him -y the loss o( his purse1 $hich $as easily managed -y the $aiter1 $ho received a hint that a disgrace(ul elopement $ould -e prevented i( he $ould lend his aid and poc2et a rich re$ard+ Bad men o(ten prosper miraculously (or a time at least1 and all $ent $ell7 the Osprey sailed $ith Rosamond sa(e in the ca-in1 %gnatius (ollo$ed in a little coc2leshell1 and the Circe glided a(ter -oth li2e a great $hite ghost through the deepening mist+ Night (ell early1 the $ind rose1 the (og thic2ened and as he made his $ay $ith di((iculty Tempest com(orted himsel( that the ,uic2:sailing Osprey $as sa(ely in har-or -y that time+ e ordered lights hung (rom the -o$ and $ent slo$ly on1 $aiting and $atching (or the little -oat+ As the tide turned the (og li(ted no$ and then1 and in one o( these clearer moments a (aint spar2 appeared not (ar a$ay1 and a shout $as heard+ )!ood1 they see my lights and they thin2 % $ill help them+ "ait a little1 holy (ather1 and % $ill sho$ you % don#t (orget all % o$e you+) Tempest smiled a terri-le smile as he spo2e and calling one o( his men to him he gave an order+ The man had -een a pirate in his youth1 -ut hardened as he $as he shrun2 -ac2 and loo2ed incredulous as the emphatic $hisper met his +ear1 )Run do$n that -oat0) )4ou $ish to ta2e them a-oard1 Mastar5) he as2ed1 as i( slo$ to comprehend+ )Not alive0 No (olly1 man1 you#ve done $orse deeds than this1 and you 2no$ ho$ it (ares $ith those $ho diso-ey me1) $as the stern reply+ Muttering the disgust he dared not sho$1 the man doggedly o-eyed+ Straight (or the doomed -oat steered the Circe1 looming dar2ly through the mist $ith her lights li2e the (iery eyes o( some monster -earing upon its prey+ At the -o$ stood Tempest1 a (it pilot (or such a voyage+ As they neared the -oat a clear voice rung $arningly through the night+ e 2ne$ the spea2er1 ans$ered $ith a decisive shout1 and a moment a(ter rising in a great $ave the Circe plunged do$n on the little

-oat1 $hich vanished amid the despairing cries o( its a((righted cre$+ Never pausing1 the yacht s$ept on and Tempest stood immova-le1 muttering $ith $hite lips1 )No (ear o( his -etraying me no$1 (or no one $ill live to tell the tale+ Sleep tran,uilly1 %gnatius1 % go to com(ort Rosamond+) e laughed yet shuddered as i( a colder touch than that o( the chilly mist $as on him1 and $ent to give the last orders (or the night+ *ropping anchor in the little -ay1 he sent ashore to as2 i( the Osprey had come in and received an ans$er in the a((irmative+ Feeling in no mood to meet any human creature1 Tempest loc2ed himsel( into the ca-in and tried to sleep+ But he had )murdered sleep1) and every o-6ect his restless eyes encountered reminded him o( Rosamond+ Never -e(ore had these memories (ailed to soothe and satis(y him1 -ut no$ they harassed him terri-ly1 (or a strange shado$ seemed to have (allen on all he sa$+ is thoughts tormented him increasingly7 every evil deed rose up to daunt him and a nameless dread chilled soul and -ody $hich nothing could lessen or -anish+ Snatching a vial (rom the ta-le1 he put it to his lips and rec2lessly s$allo$ed a strong dose o( laudanum+ Then1 thro$ing himsel( onto his -erth1 he resolutely closed his eyes1 thin2ing1 )%t is that (all that has unstrung my nerves+ Once ashore %#ll ta2e care o( mysel( and Rosamond shall nurse me+) "ith (re,uent starts and mutterings he at last (ell into a sleep $hich held him (ast till the sun $as high the ne&t day+ e $o2e $ith a thro--ing head and at (irst did not recall the past1 -ut suddenly the night#s $or2 (lashed on him and he sprang up as i( his pillo$ $as o( thorns1 his -ed o( (ire+ Rapidly arranging his dress1 he steadied himsel( $ith the strongest stimulant in his li,ueur:case and $ent on shore+ eeding no one1 he trod the $ell:2no$n path to the old house on the cli(( and entered ,uietly+ Not a sound -ro2e the deep hush e&cept h(c o$n (oot(all as he stole along1 saying to himsel(1 )%#ll see .ivian (irst1 assure him o( my $illingness to atone1 and enlist him in my (avor+) is cautious tap $o2e no ans$er and peering in he sa$ that the room $as deserted+ "ith an astonished ga3e (i&ed on the

chair seldom empty1 he muttered1 )%s the old man dead or asleep5) and passing through the dreary room $here he had (irst seen Rosamond1 he entered the -edcham-er -eyond+ Empty also and sho$ing signs o( unusual con(usion+ )They are together in her little nest a-ove+ %#ll creep up and surprise them+) Still tal2ing to himsel( as i( the silence oppressed him1 he stole a$ay to -e again met -y solitude and the unmista2a-le evidences o( some unusual event+ )*euce ta2e the people1 $here are they all5) A(ter a thought(ul pause he hurried again to the great dra$ing room1 (ancying Rosamond had gone to the spot $here her early love dream (irst -egan+ 4es1 she $as there1 lying on the lo$ couch $here they had o(ten sat together1 her damp hair clinging dar2 a-out her (ine pale (ace $here shone the smile seen only upon countenances on $hich death has set his seal+ Beside her1 $ith his $hite head -o$ed upon his hands1 the old man sat alone7 a piteous sight+ A smothered groan (rom Tempest made him loo2 up+ %nstantly he -ro2e into a (ren3y o( passion1 crying in a voice shrill $ith age and terri-le $ith grie( and $rath1 ) ave you come to loo2 upon your $or25 ere she is sa(e and (ree at last+ 4ou said you $ould hunt her to her grave and you have done it+ Are you satis(ied5) )For !od#s sa2e hear me0 % thought her sa(e1 % 2ne$ nothing o( this1 the -oat came in last night1 $hat happened5 Oh0 "hat 2illed my Rosamond5) and li2e a man suddenly gone -lind Tempest groped his $ay to$ard the pale $rec2 o( the creature $hom he had loved so $ell+ But as i( endo$ed $ith strength -y his intense emotion1 the old man hal( rose on his long helpless lim-s1 and1 clenching his $ithered hands1 $aved him -ac21 shrie2ing out the dread(ul truth $ith an a$(ul e&ultation in the retri-ution the man had -rought upon himsel(+ )4ou 2illed her1 you $rec2ed her and le(t her to die in the cruel sea0 The priest (ollo$ed and compelled your tools to give her up1 and $ould have -rought her to me $ithout harm -ut (or your -lac2 deed+ "ring your hands and groan till your hard heart -rea2s1 you are too late (or any $ord o( hers+) The shrill voice ,uavered and died out in a -urst o( tearless so-s as the old man -o$ed his $hite head again1 e&hausted $ith emotion+ Standing $here the truth had trans(i&ed him1 Tempest stared straight -e(ore him $ith a stony (ace1 (or in the solemn silence $hich (illed the room he sa$ the vision o( the .enetian mirror veri(ied+

Opposite him hung the great glass1 re(lecting the -eauti(ul dead $oman1 the old man mourning -eside her1 and the li2eness o( himsel( standing near $earing an e&pression o( unuttera-le remorse and despair+ )"hy are you here5) Tempest turned and sa$ %gnatius on the threshold o( the door+ But (or the living eyes the priest loo2ed as i( he too had received the peace o( death1 so colorless and calm his (ace1 so emotionless his voice1 so (ar removed (rom human pain or passion did he seem as he passed slo$ly to his place -eside the dead girl1 and standing there repeated his -rie( ,uestion1 )"hy are you here5) )Because % thought to (ind her living and you dead1) $as the stern ans$er as Tempest advanced1 in spite o( the old man#s (ee-le $arnings1 to claim her even no$+ )Stand -ac2+ She is mine and % $ill have her1) he said (iercely1 con(ronting the tran,uil (igure opposite+ )She is mine and you can never ta2e her (rom me1 (or in time % shall re6oin her in a -lessed $orld $here such as you cannot enter+ Nothing can part us long7 our love $as true and pure1 and though (or-idden here it $ill unite us (orever in the -eauti(ul herea(ter+) %gnatius spo2e $ith the 6oy(ul con(idence o( a per(ect (aith and in his (ace shone the serenity o( a true heart strong to love1 patient to $ait+ Li2e a (allen spirit shut out (rom eternal li(e1 Tempest loo2ed at him a moment1 then1 as the old (ire -la3ed up $ithin him (or the last time1 he drove a hidden dagger deep into his -reast and1 dropping on his 2nees1 gathered the dead $oman in his arms1 saying $ith mingled love and de(iance in his despairing voice1 )Mine (irst9mine last9 mine even in the grave0)

T E !ENES%S OF A LON! FATAL LO.E C ASE

%n @AEM Louisa May Alcott em-ar2ed on her (irst trip to Europe in a state o( eager anticipation1 and various 6ournal entries o( her movement through the Continent serve as -ac2drops (or A Long Fatal Love Chase+ She visited the gam-ling halls at "ies-aden1 $al2ed in .alrosa1 )a lovely villa -uried in roses1) attended the opera Medea1 starring Adelaide Ristori1 and voyaged up the Rhine+ "ithout the (inancial means (or a grand tour1 she traveled as a companion to Anna "eld1 a sic2ly young $oman (rom a $ealthy Boston (amily+ As Miss "eld -ecame more and more demanding1 Louisa (ound the 6ourney tedious+ er emotions $ere stirred $hen she met a young /olish (reedom (ighter1 Ladislas "isnie$s2i1 o( $hom she -ecame ,uite (ond >and1 as she later con(essed1 upon $hom she modeled much o( the character o( Laurie in Little "omen?1 only to discover that he $as more attracted to Miss "eld+ Louisa $as placed in the uncom(orta-le position o( acting as a go:-et$een (or her )Laddie) and her charge+ Much to the displeasure o( the "eld (amily1 Louisa ,uit their employ midstream and (inished the tour on her o$n1 )(eeling as happy as a (reed -ird+) *uring the (inal $ee2s o( her time a-road she reunited $ith Ladislas in /aris (or )a very charming (ortnight+) Returning home a(ter a year overseas1 she (ound the (amily#s (inancial situation )as % e&pected1 -ehind hand $hen the money:ma2er $as a$ay) and -egan to $rite immediately+ Responding to the speci(ic re,uest -y a Boston pu-lisher o( pulp (iction1 ;ames R+ Elliott1 (or a novel o( t$enty:(our chapters in $hich each second chapter $ould -e so )a-sor-ingly interesting that the reader $ill -e impatient (or the ne&t1) she dashed o(( A Long Fatal Love Chase in August and Septem-er o( @AEE >see Madeleine Stern1 %ntroduction1 A Modern Mephistopheles and Taming a Tartar1 Ne$ 4or2F /raeger1 @CAN1 p+ &i?+ Louisa#s need to address her recent emotional e&periences in Europe no dou-t played a ma6or role in shaping -oth the plot and characters o( the novel+ The creation o( a strong1 independent1 spirited heroine $ho $ould do anything (or her (reedom served as a healthy antidote (or the (rustrations e&perienced at home and a-road in matters o( money and interpersonal relations+ The nostalgic reader $ho holds a memory o( charming -oo2s $ith (eisty -ut )good) little $omen and men >$hat Louisa hersel( re(erred to as her )moral pap (or the young)? may -e startled -y the contemporary issues $ith $hich the novel grapplesF a $oman#s right to -e independent and (ree1 the healing po$er o( intimate (emale:(emale as $ell as (emale:male (riendships1 the psychological dynamics o( a-usive relationships >including the danger and trauma (or the victim o( a )stal2er)?1 priestly celi-acy1 divorce1 -igamy1 suicide1 and murder+ Sprin2led $ith (oreshado$ing accomplished through revealing literary re(erences to Sha2espeare1 !oethe1 and !ree2 myths and tragedies1 the novel $hirls the reader through the development o( a most engaging nineteenth:century literary heroine+ A consistent Alcottian theme runs throughout the -oo2F the ,uest (or physical1 (inancial1 intellectual1 and spiritual independence+ ;ames R+ Elliott1 $ho had $armly received Louisa#s dramatic thrillers in the past1 (ound the overall

e((ect -eyond even his much:e&tended pale1 (or as the author records in a Septem-er @AEE entry in her diaryF )Elliott $ould not have it1 saying it $as too long L too sensational+ So % put it a$ay and (ell to $or2 on other things+ + + +) 4ears later1 re(lecting on the e((ort re,uired to $rite A Long Fatal Love Chase1 she o-served that )$hen novelettes $ere called (or1 o( t$enty:(our chapters1 $ith a -reathless catastrophe in at least every other chapter1 thirty pages a day o( such $or2 proved too much+ + + +) >see Louise Chandler Moulton1 )Louisa May Alcott1) Our Famous "omen1 art(ordF A+ *+ "orthington1 @AAM1 p+ HD?+ Shortly a(ter Louisa May Alcott#s death in @AAA1 the unpu-lished pages (or A Long Fatal Love Chase $ere improperly la-eled as a di((erent $or2+ Eventually the manuscript $as deposited (or sa(e2eeping in a university li-rary1 $here it lay (or decades1 attracting minimal attention in the $orld o( critics and -iographers+ /erhaps it $as ignored -ecause to read it $as ,uite challenging+ er hand >especially $hen she $rote rapidly? is not al$ays easy to decipher1 and in this case she had made many alterations1 including stri2e:throughs1 inserts1 and re$rites in the margins and on the verso o( many pages+ Alcott scholars have suggested that these revisions $ere intended to ma2e it less sensational as $ell as to remove the Mephistophelian theme utili3ed in a later novel+ A Long Fatal Love Chase $as initially titled A Modern MephistophelesF or The Fatal Love Chase+ Alcott su-se,uently struc2 the (irst (ive $ords and inserted )A Long+) This may have occurred $hen she chose to recycle a portion o( the title >)A Modern Mephistopheles)? (or a completely di((erent novel she $rote eleven years later (or her pu-lisher#s (amous )No Name Series+) The manuscript has -een re(erred to variously as The Fatal Love Chase >Madelon Bedell?1 )The Long Love Chase) >Elaine Sho$alter?1 )A Modern Mephistophiles) OsicP >Eli3a-eth Jeyser?1 and A Modern Mephistopheles or The Fatal Love Chase >Madeleine Stern?+ %n the spring o( @CCQ the e&istence o( the manuscript and the possi-ility o( ac,uiring it came to my attention+ A year later1 $ith great (ortune and the generous -ac2ing o( a (riend1 Tim Mather1 the manuscript and the rights to pu-lish $ere secured+ The tas2 )$as then to recti(y the editorial neglect imposed so long ago on this delight(ul )thriller1) $ritten -y one o( the most popular American authors o( the past t$o centuries+ A Long Fatal Love Chase consists o( BCD pages >recto and verso? $ritten and su-se,uently revised -y Louisa May Alcott+ The revisions1 as stated1 appear to have -een an e((ort to ma2e the novel less sensational1 $ith the result that its po$er $as diminished+ This is evident in a much:truncated copy o( the $or2 at arvard 'niversity#s oughton Li-rary1 catalogued under the title o( its (irst chapter1 Fair Rosamond+ %t is a (air copy in the hand o( Louisa#s sister1 May1 and includes many o(

the author#s changes+ "hile incomplete9its NQ pages cover Chapters @ through H1 C through @D1 @N1 and BH9 it has -een help(ul in (illing the rare gaps o( the manuscript pu-lished here+ My intent has -een to restore the original1 more vi-rant te&t $hich Louisa su-mitted9 unsuccess(ully9to her pu-lisher in @AEE+ % have made a (e$ >unac2no$ledged? emendations to clari(y certain portions o( the novel1 and corrected spelling and punctuation errors+ Apart (rom this1 A Long Fatal Love Chase appears as the author $rote it+ Jent Bic2nell1 Editor The Sant Bani School Ne$ ampshire9@CCM NoteF All unattri-uted ,uotations in )The !enesis o( A Long Fatal Love Chase) $ere ta2en (rom The ;ournals o( Louisa May Alcott1 edited -y ;oel Myerson and *aniel Shealy $ith Madeline B+ Stern+ BostonF Little Bro$n1 @CAC+

ACJNO"LE*!MENTS

Because Louisa May Alcott $rote A Long Fatal Love Chase to help alleviate the (inancial plight o( her (amily1 it seems particularly (itting that a portion o( the royalties earned -y this -oo2 -e donated to Orchard ouse1 the home o( the Alcotts in Concord1 Massachusetts1 $hich is maintained -y the Louisa May Alcott Memorial Association+ Alcott#s (ather1 Bronson1 $as dedicated to educational re(orm1 and Louisa1 too1 $as a visionary1 as evidenced in her classics on the ne$ education1 Little Men and ;o#s Boys+ %t there(ore seems appropriate that an e,ual share o( this -oo2#s proceeds -e given to support curricula that teach -oth reverence (or li(e and the a$areness that the goal o( 2no$ledge is service to others+ The editor $ishes to than2 the (ollo$ing 2ind (riends1 $ithout $hom this -oo2 $ould not have come to lightF Tim Mather1 Lane <achary1 and Ann !odo((+ Along the $ay1 much help and encouragement came (romF Tom Blanding1 Chris Francis1 .ictor !ulotta1 Frit3 Jussin1 Louisa Jussin1 Bruce Lisman1 Jevin Mac*onnell1 ;ean:%sa-el McNutt1 ;oAnn Malino$s2i1 Cheryl Needle1 Charles /ratt1 Frederic2 /ratt1 ;ohn /ratt1 ;ohn /ye1 Elaine Rogers1 Leona Rosten-erg1 "hit Smith1 Madeleine Stern1 Linda Turnage1 %2e "illiams

and the /almer L *odge Agency+ Than2s also to the administration1 (aculty1 students1 parents1 and -oard o( the Sant Bani School1 the sta(( o( Orchard ouse1 and the oughton Li-rary at arvard+ The editor grate(ully ac2no$ledges the loving support o( his (amily9Jaren1 Christopher1 and Nicholas 9 and the grace and patience o( Sant A6ai- Singh ;i and Raa6 Jumar Bagga+

ABO'T T E A'T OR

Louisa May Alcott $as -orn in @AQB in /ennsylvania1 -ut came o( age in Concord1 Massachusetts1 at a time $hen it $as home to a group o( passionate dissidents9 the transcendentalists+ One o( the most radical o( these $as Louisa#s (ather1 Bronson+ But passion $as no su-stitute (or -asic necessities1 and it (ell to Louisa to help support her (amily -y her $riting1 $hich she did (rom an early age+ She $rote several other novels in the years prior to gaining (ame and (inancial (ortune $ith the pu-lication o( Little "omen in @AEA9one o( these -eing A Long Fatal Love Chase+ Alcott $as an ardent -eliever in $omen#s rights1 and $as actively involved in campaigns (or $omen#s su((rage until her death in @AAA+

ABO'T T E E*%TOR

Jent Bic2nell is the principal o( the Sant Bani School1 a private day school in San-ornton1 Ne$ ampshire+ %n @CCQ he -ecame a$are o( A Long Fatal Love Chase1 $hich Louisa May Alcott $rote in @AEE -ut never pu-lished+ !ood (ortune and a generous -ac2er ena-led him to purchase it the (ollo$ing year1 and he at once set a-out

recti(ying the editorial neglect imposed on it (or so long+ Bic2nell and his $i(e1 Jaren1 share the Concord group#s a((inity $ith the East1 and ma2e (re,uent visits to %ndia+ They have t$o gro$n sons1 and live in Ne$ ampshire $ith a Nor$egian el2hound and a -lac2 cat+

LO'%SA MA4 ALCOTT $as -orn in @AQB in /ennsylvania and gre$ up in Concord1 Massachusetts+ She is -est 2no$n (or her -oo2s (or children+ The daughter o( philosopher and re(ormer Amos Bronson Alcott1 she $as also a supporter o( $omen#s rights and an a-olitionist+ Family de-ts led her to $rite the auto-iographical novel Little "omen >@AEA?+ The -oo2 $as a huge success1 (ollo$ed -y Little Men1 An Old:Fashioned !irl1 and several other novels+