« PreviousContinue »
through the shrubbery-path down to the privet-hedge one blow of his great hand; and Eva pretends not to below, her small dark face, with raven hair, and glitter- see me when she passes me like a queen, and looks ing eyes, showed itself to Horace and Eva Gray, gallop-down on the ground as if looking for a grasshopper, ing in the sunlight.
when she hears my voice; and other impertinences “The children of the Hall,” thought she"what can they are always offering me, with even more malice and bring them down the haunted lane of the Hollow, the cruelty in them. And I sometimes get angry, though lane which not the strongest man in Oakenden would often it is only a pretence. But I should not be angry pass through after nightfall, and which the gentry never with these two foolish prattling children ; they have venture down at any time?"
been warped by the fatal education of prejudices Those bright young heads turned as they passed the far warped, as to forget the claims of a common huthick privet-hedge of Maud's garden : and Eva, langh- manity, because of a shade more or less of brown on ing like a merry bird trilling in the sky, when she saw the cheek, or an inch more or less of height to the the dusky face peering out among the shining leaves, figure. No, I do not blame them! They repeat, parchecked her bay-mare, and asked how all her rela- rot-like, what they have been taught, and the responsitions bad been behaving lately? “For you know, bility of this sin of theirs rests with older heads. And Maud,” she added, " that you are something more or it is a sin to pour unmerited sorrow into the cup of less than human, and that all the goblins and imps, and any human life! No, I do not blame them! A curso witches, and bad spirits, which are so plentiful in the is laid on me, which I must bear, and of which they Hollow, come there at your bidding.”
work out one small portion; the form and features of a “ Then how dare you, Miss Eva, come here ?" asked gnome, with the feelings of a passionate humanity; the Maud : "you are not very famous for courage, nor blinding strength of love, the warm idolatry of beauty, your brother there, great and strong as you both are.” with the impossibility to be loved, and the conscious“We are protected, Maud, by our own innocence,
ness of deformity! I, who could love these two young said Horace roughly. “ Witches have no power over things in all their glorious youth and beauty, must feel Christians, so that is why we defy you, Maud, and laugh myself shut out from them, as from all others, because you to scorn ;” and he shook his whip at the elfin face of this fearful curse of outward unloveliness !” And among the leaves, more boyishly than brutally, though then she turned her face to the ground, and her tears brutality was not wanting either-at no time wanting, fell like heavy rain among the dry leaves of the fallen for it made up the very fundamental element of Horace evergreens. “ And yet it is not a fault that I am dark Gray's character.
and small,” she said, drying her tears; “born no one "Well done, Master Horace!" retorted Maud, con- knows where, of an outcast mother, whose gipsy-home temptuously. “It is a fine amusement for you to insult was of all countries, whom no nation claimed, and no Maud of the Hollow; a manly pastime for a great boy kinsman owned. It is not a sin that I am not fair and of nineteen to annoy a weak girl. If I had a brother queenly, like Eva; nor like Horace, strong and beautias big as you, Master Horace, I wonder if you would ful. But it is made a fault, and I suffer the penalties of call me bad names then !" And Maud's large, black a sin all the same. She is like a princess-she is so eyes rained out contempt and anger like fire from grand and noble in her beauty; while I creep along the beneath their lids: for though she tried hard to subdue earth, like a forgotten reptile at the foot of the golden her natural impetuosity, and her keenness to take throne whereon she sits like a queen. But yet, I would offence, it was not always possible to hold such check not change my stunted form and swarthy skin for Eva's and string over herself as to make her patient and for- glorious beauty, if I must take Eva's mindless brain as giving all at once; and there was something in the tone well. I can feel; I can love; while Eva--the bright of Horace's insults which roused her blood more than morning star in the sky, knows as little of human symanything else.
pathies as she! Yet, ah, she is so beautiful that one “Come away, Horace,” whispered Eva; “Maud is forgives all her sins and short-comings, and almost angry, and I am afraid of her when she is angry. She could love her solely for the sake of that beauty! And looks so dreadful, I am sure she will do us some harm Horace, too, rough, rude, uncultivated as he is; for if we tease her any longer.” And the two young crea- beauty is so divine a gift from God, that we must needs tures started off without another word-Horace vainly worship it; and ah!” added Maud with a sigh, endeavoring to look heroic and indifferent, and Eva always prize so much the good we have not.” And showing more terror than might have been expected Maud thrust herself into the sunlight, pleasing herself from anything so grand and queenly.
with a sad pleasure, by exaggerating in the slanting Maud stood by the hedge, listening to their voices for rays the slight deformity indicated rather than developa long time; and when they had died away, she crept ed in her person. back to her lair among the laurels, feeling very sad and
While standing thus, her deformity hidden now in lonely.
the long, black hair which she often allowed to fall “They call me dwarf, witch, elf, imp," said Maud; loose from a scarlet cincture round her head, she heard "they laugh at me for swarthy skin—and it is again the the tramp of hoofs careering boisterously swarthy by the side of theirs, fair as flowers, and bright down the hill; and a moment after, a furious plunge, as morning clouds; they ridicule me for being small a woman's shrill scream, and Horace's voice calling and deformed; and Horace threatens to crush me with loudly for help, woke up the still evening.
One bound, like the spring of a gazelle, cleared the loves, to her life from the hands of Maud the gipsy ??? hedge, and Maud, her long hair streaming behind her, said the girl quietly, speaking with an unruffled voice, ran breathless to where Eva lay fainting on the ground, though running by the young man's side. Horace vainly endeavoring to arouse her by a clumsy “It is not you, Maud,” cried Paul, his words coming succession of boyish restoratives. Paul Desprez, pale in a series of convulsive gasps, " but that vagabond boy. and agitated, was holding the horses; Eva's kicking Oh, Maud, if you have woman's heart in you, rescue and plunging violently, bathed in foam and trembling, her from his arms! He will love her if he sees her face while the heavy chestnut ridden by Horace, fed tran- and bewitch her to love him, if he breathes on her. quilly by the wayside.
Oh! Maud, Maud, give her to me!" “Oh, Maud, perhaps you may be of some use," said “Nonsense, Paul. What madness yon are talking! Horace, in his off-hand, lordly way. “Eva has been Lemuel is not a god; he is nothing miraculous. Let thrown by this cursed brute, you see. Just as we him carry her; you are not strong enough.” passed the Hollow Lane, it took to kicking like a mad “No, no," sobbed Paul, throwing up his hands. thing; and look at her now-one would think she was At this moment Lemuel stopped to open the little bewitched.” The word struck his own ear. He cast a wicket-gate leading through Maud's garden. sudden glance on Maud, and turned very pale.
“Here, Lemuel, let the young gentleman take Miss knows ?” he thought to himself. “We vexed Maud this Eva," said Maud quietly. morning; perhaps she has bewitched the bay mare out The lad looked astonished, but, without speaking, of revenge.” He placed himself between the gipsy-girl placed his burden in Paul's arms. and his sister. “On second thoughts, Maud,” he said, A fainting woman of Eva's height and development "you cannot be of any use here in the middle of the is no light burden ; besides, Paul, never very strong at road; you may go home. Paul, give me Eva's horse to any time, at this moment was overpowered with emohold ; and do you ride off to the Hall for help; I will tion, and exhausted with his rapid pursuit: he staggered wait here for you. And you, Maud, pray don't stay beneath Eva's weight, could not move a step, and finally here. I must insist on your not staying with me—and would have fallen, if Horace had not come up at that Eva."
moment-and, both together, they carried her into “Don't be a baby, Horace," retorted Maud, sharply; Maud's cottage. " and don't go to the Hall, Mr. Paul, till I tell you to Horace shuddered as they crossed the threshold. The do so. Help me to take your sister into my cottage, evening had come, and the last rays of the sun made a Horace-Master Horace, I mean—and don't carry her kind of mournful glory round the outer world, while all home like a corpse, when nothing is really the matter within Maud's house looked dark and gloomy as the with her. Come! do as you are bid, and don't stand grave. there like a frightened school-boy. Carry her in your
“There!” said Maud majestically, pointing to a deep arms, and I will soon make her well again."
couch covered with a tiger's skin. The young men “ I carry my sister into your cottage, Maud !” cried obeyed her gesture, and laid Eva on the couch. Horace Horace, petrified with amazement.
looked undignifiedly frightened; and Paul, divided “Yes, into my cottage, Master Horace.”
between his artist's appreciation of the arrangements of “That I certainly will not do," he cried, tossing his that cottage-room, and his lover's agony at Eva's probeautiful bright head, and looking very willful and very longed faint, was distressed, excited, and bewildered ; handsome.
while Maud was mysterious and important, doing her “I always knew you were a coward, Horace, in spito best to convince Horace of her supernatural powers, and of your six feet,” cried Maud, disdainfully. “A great to make him believe her a witch-or worse. boy-baby, and nothing more. But your cowardice Yet Paul noticed that she was prompt and careful must not be allowed to harm your sister. You may about Eva, and that the most matter-of-fact nurse in an think me a witch if you like, but I must show her that hospital could not have been more quick and clever I am a nurse and sister."
than this strange-looking dwarf of the Hollow. She “Maud-sister-impertinent-house-witch-Eva!" loosened the ribbon round the girl's-throat, and felt the stammered Horace, fairly aghast at the tone of com- blue veins carefully; she passed her hand rapidly through mand assumed by Maud.
the golden flood of hair falling on the tiger's skin, to see Maud turned her back on him, and gave a peculiar if there was any wound on the head; and then she took cry. A wild-looking foreign lad, known far and near a small bottle of some powerful essence, and shook a as the Hobgoblin, rushed out of the shrubbery, as sud- few drops over the fainting face. Eva sighed, opened denly as a stage-imp. Maud said a few words, in a her eyes, moved restlessly, smiled softly, and a few genstrange language, and Lemuel caught up poor Eva in tle pencillings of color came into her cheeks like the his long, sinewy, ape-like arms, and bounded off with first small rays of morning. Maud stood by her, her her like a leopard with his prey. The whole passed so clasping fingers of dusky brown holding that long pearlquickly, that neither Horace nor Paul could interfere. colored hand, and her falling hair of jet dropping on the Paul flung the reins of the bay-mare to Horace, and golden tresses spread all abroad. Her eyes were fixed rushed after the lad, calling to him loudly to stop. intently on Eva, who seemed, as if under a spell, con
“What! is Paul Desprez so far infected with Oaken- strained to become gentle and loving against her naden folly, as to prefer perhaps the death of a girl he lture.
"Your hand is sprained,” then said Maud caressingly, you may all go home,” she said quietly. 6. The ointchafing that delicate member carefully.
ment and the linen are both magic, Eva, and you will Oh Maud !" cried Eva with a reproachfal glance, as be well to-morrow. By the time the thrushes begin to if it had been Maud who had done her that injury. sing in the evening, you may ride the bay-mare right
"Well,” cried the gipsy, answering her look, “why into the heart of the Hollow. So you see, Master do you blame me?”
Horace, witches may be of use sometimes; and if I “You bewitched the horse !” exclaimed Eva, and bewitched the bay mare, as you both think, out of then she turned her face away and burst into tears. revenge for your impertinence this morning, I have
"Don't cry, Eva," said Horace, coming to her, and healed the hurt I caused at very little trouble or cost; patting her head. “Be a good girl—that's a dear! and perhaps given you both a useful lesson,” she added You will soon get well, for Dr. Fairfield shall be sent with a low laugh. for, and you know he will do more than all this absurd " Thank you, Maud,” said Eva, tossing her head. quackery could, even if Maud understood what she was “But I would rather be without your lessons, if they about."
are to come in the shape of falls, fainting-fits, and “ Eva-Miss Gray!” almost sobbed poor Paul, “for sprains." our sakes, control yourself. You do not know what “Oh!" said Maud coldly, "you are such a featheranguish you are causing us."
head, it is necessary to give you a severe experience, if A blush of gratified vanity came on Eva's cheek; but one gives you any at all.” she did not stop her tears for all that; indeed her sobs Eva was very angry. She flung herself off the couch became more hysterical, as Maud was keen enough to with the gesture of a petted child, red and pouting. As notice, though her head was turned from the group. she raised her head, all her fair hair fell blinding into She was searching among a collection of queer vases her blue eyes; at this moment, she looked lovely. Her and bottles, stuffed birds, quaint boxes, charms, amu- crimson cheeks; her red and pouting lips, a trifle thick lets, and a heap of jewels flung carelessly together; and and full; her golden hair in long waving masses over now she held in her hand a strip of linen, curiously her shoulders, and veiling her broad white forehead and marked along and across with foreign characters, in her large blue eyes; her graceful figure, supple and well purple, and blue, and scarlet; and she held also a case, developed : all formed a lovely picture, which none of no manufacture of this time or country, shining with could help admiring. various hues curiously blended; like an opal, but They all left the cottage—Eva mingling sarcasms
She looked back, raising her eyes to the agi- with her thanks ; Horace lordly and innocent; and tated face of the artist, and as she looked, a mingled Paul taking about as much thought of Maud as of the expression of contempt and pity came into her eyes, and cricket chirping on her floor; but his indifference, at then a look of sorrow, and then a look of love.
least, had nothing brutal and wounding in it, and Maud "A sprain is not dangerous, Paul Desprez,” she said was grateful for even that small measure of human coldly.“ A woman of my race would laugh at such a recognition-so far had injustice and injury tamed a trifle as has caused Miss Eva those bitter tears, and you proud and impatient spirit. such bitter anguish. A child of my race would make a “She must be a witch or something worse," pouted play of a hurt no worse than this, and not even the Eva, breathing deeply when they had left the cottage. most devoted heart among our men- Well, the “She is a stupid little dwarf,” said Horaoe, tossing black blood of the gipsy must needs be something differ- his head ; " and pretends to a vast deal of power and ent to your fair bloods, and I am well content it should knowledge she does not possess. She is only a mountebe so." This was said in a low tone, more as if she was bank after all !" speaking to herself than to an audience. “Come, Miss Paul said nothing. Maud was only a name to him Eva,” she then added authoritatively, “ dry your eyes. now. He was walking by the side of Eva's horse, and You are making them red and ugly."
had no world beyond. The sun was setting, and long "Insolent !" muttered Horace.
lines of crimson threaded the sky, like veins on a blush“Unfeeling!" said Eva half aloud.
ing brow; a soft warm air crept along the earth like “What blindness and what coldness !” thought Paul. a stealing spirit from the home of night, and the
Mand did not speak. Something stole up into her whole voice of nature was one sweet hymn of peace face-an undefinable expression of intensest feeling. and beauty. Paul saw the sunset mirrored in Eva's Her great eyes looked moist and loving, but oh, so sad! eyes, when she stooped her head to speak to him pleaand once she raised them heavily to Paul's face, and santly; and all of nature, of heaven, and of humanity then she dropped them on the ground musingly, as one was gathered in those eyes for him. He saw nothing measuring a sister's wealth by her own poverty.
else, knew nothing else, lived in nothing else. He was Eva dried her eyes with a frightened glance, fasci- by Eva's side ; and life gave him the full measure of a nated and subdued; while Maud folded back the dainty poet's ecstasy. Boy-poet that he was ! he saw an angel cuff of snowy linen, and bathed that tender wrist in a and heard a muse in the woman he adored. white creamy substance, which dropped in large masses,
But Maud wandered in the meadow and the wood soft and sweet, from the curious old opaline bottle. She until the moon had risen and set; and the dews of then bound up the wrist and hand in her strip of linen, morning glittered in the sun before the lonely gipsyand fastened all together with golden thread. “Now, I girl pushed aside the curtain over her cottage door. Tears were on her cheek and a strange light lay in her bodily before me the features I have dreamed of so long? eyes when she entered ; and then she knelt down, and a Those features, what will they be like? Long masses prayer burst from her quivering lips: “God give me to of golden hair falling in a heavy curtain over a calm be loved also."
smooth brow; eyes blue as summer skies, like Eva's; It had long been a custom with Paul Desprez to keep hands long, white, and slender; a figure made up of a journal. Since he had lived in Oakenden, this jour- grace and dignity together; manners arch and playful, nal, in the beginning a mere pleasure, had now become serene and thoughtful by turns; a voice soft, not powa necessity; it was his only friend, his only confidant. erful, and exquisitely true—such as Eva's. Yes, my To it he confided all his highest thoughts and purest Egeria will be like Eva, as beautiful--for she could not aspirations, his secret sorrows, and the grief of genius be more beautiful—and as good !" unsatisfied with itself; and from it he drew consolation, “ July 19. Another fortnight; but an age in my as if from the living words of a friend. He had also a soul--a generation in my life. Still nothing is done, fancy connected with this journal, which made it doubly but all is felt and understood. Eva knows that I love precious to him. He had created an Ideal for himself, her, and Eva loves me. I see it in her blush when I which he called his Egeria, and with which he used to speak to her, in her upturned eye so suddenly downcast hold long conversations, he said, in the mornings when with that sweet look of modesty which fits her so well. the stars were fading out of the sky, and when all I see it in her pretended sarprise at seeing me, when I nature was fresh with youth and strength. All that he have known that she has been watching for me on the had of good in him came from this Egeria; all his best terrace hours long, for I can see the terrace of the Hall thoughts and highest endeavors were from that hidden across the fields from Oakenden ; I see it in her playful voice; those sweet, low whispers heard by the soul smile, malicious with a child's maliciousness, as she alone, which seemed to teach and guide him, and by half hints at her affection for me, and pouts out her which he struggled with the evil of his nature, up to belief that I find her uninteresting and tiresome; I see greater good and purity. He devoutly believed in this it in her favorite flowers, which are always those that I spirit, thinking it a foreshadowing of what life would prefer, or that I have gathered ; and in her favorite airs, give him in the future, and regarding it more as a pro- which are those that I have praised : in every manner phecy than a fancy. And as all men are mad more or by which a girl's feelings can be expressed unconsci less on one point, if not on more, in their lives, this ously to herself, have I fathomed the truth of her affecEgeria may be considered as the stationary madness of tion for me; and I have never known such intensity of Paul Desprez.
joy as I have felt since I believed that Eva Gray loved This preface was necessary for the right understand-me. Yet I dread to break the sweet spell of silent ing of the following extracts from the journal : acknowledgement now between us; I dread to reduce
"July 5. This summer-life of mine is sadly enervat- to words the vague bliss on which I am living. It ing. I look back on the severe discipline of my student seems as if speech, while it will consolidate, yet will life as on another existence. I am too happy in this also roughen; as if the delicate hues of this rainidleness ; though I cannot entirely get rid of certain bow love will be tarnished by the material breath stings of conscience, which tell me I am highly repre- of words. Will Eva prove the real embodiment of hensible for neglecting my work in the lethargy of my Egeria? Will the impersonation equal the ideal ! pleasure. I came here originally for leisure; thinking In a few days, I shall be able to answer these questhat I could work better out in the free country than if tions, when I shall have probed her mind to its depths, pent up in a town; but a spell, nameless and irresisti- and unrolled her character like a rare golden fabric ble, has fallen on me, which has destroyed all my inten- before me. I shall then know in Eva the attributes I tions and shipwrecked my resolution. Nature herself have dreamed of in Egeria, and shall be loving, trustful, has conspired against me. In such glorious weather, and happy. what can one do but live-dream out one's days on the “ July 20. This has been a day of sorrow and evil grass under the lime-trees, and pass one's nights in to me. I walked over to the Hall, intending to tell Eva prayer beneath the stars ? I have lately felt very all that I had in my heart for her, when I met her vividly the influence of my guardian angel, Egeria. I coming from the shrubbery with young Mr. Rollestone, was lying in the shade of the beech-trees by the river, the squire of Oakenden West. He remained close to us when a hand of light seemed to sketch a glorious por- the whole of my stay, and I could not find one solitary trait on my canvas. I swear it was but a copy that I moment wherein to speak to Eva alone. I wonder how made. I followed those gleaming lines like a school- Eva can like that young man! He could never love boy; and lo! there came out, all unknown to myself, her as well as he loves his dogs and horses. Yet if she the exact portrait of Eva Gray! I heard a low voice does not like him, why does she suffer hiin to be so at my side whisper · Egeria,' and then I think I must much with her ? Perhaps her parents would like to have fainted, for the evening had begun when I roused bring about a marriage between them. Her mother, I myself up from my stupor. My Egeria, my attendant remember, did once hint to me something about the spirit, shall it indeed be that I shall ever see thee em- two properties of Oakenden Vale becoming one. That bodied in human form? Shall I ever sit at the feet of was when I first came, and did not understand what the being who, as woman, will receive my love; as she meant. But of course I feel quite at ease on that angel, my adoration With what ecstasy shall I see head. Eva loves me; she almost said so yesterday;
and of course she could not commit such a crime as to steals over me when I listen to her, with her low trifle with my heart, leave and break it. Yet how con- voice and gleaming eyes, pouring forth such deep fused she looked to-day when I met her leaving the thoughts and exquisite feelings. She seems like a reveshrubbery; perhaps he had been forcing his pretentions lation from the unseen world; and I never feel so holy on her, and she had been rejecting them out of greater or so good as when I return from one of our long, long 'love for me. She would naturally look confused if she conversations in the woods, or by the river-side. She met me then. Yesterday she pressed my hand when I seems to strengthen all the manly part of my mind; put that white moss-rose into hers: I felt the press dis- while Eva, dear, womanly, lovely Eva, fascinates me to tinctly; besides, she blushed as she did so.
Armidan indolence. What a difference between those “ July 22. I saw Maud to-day. She started up like two beings! The one, all poetry; the other, all intelan elf from the fern in the park, and whispered in my lect; the one, Life; the other, Thought! A strange ear: “Boy, boy! when will you find that your star of contrast; but very beautiful too. For I confess that I, heaven is only a marsh-light guiding you to sorrow, too, was like the rest, and at one time despised Maud of perhaps to death ?” What did she mean? She disap- the Hollow with the unruffled equanimity of superiority. peared before I could ask her. How or where she dis- I have learned my mistake, and now acknowledge appeared to, I don't know; but she was gone like a Maud's rare artistic powers, her grand soul, her powershadow. Her words have troubled me much. She ful brain, and am proud to name myself her champion could not allude to Eva. It is an insult to her pure and friend.” heart to couple it with the idea of deception. I am unworthy of her love, if I can doubt it. But I am in a
Paul and Eva sat beneath the beech-tree by the river. painful state of suspense altogether, and feel doubly the Eva sat on the mossy bank, and at her feet lay Paul. strange kind of lets and hindrances and impalpable bar- Horace and the young squire of Oakenden West had riers that have suddenly risen up between Eva and me. gone for a day's excursion, and Paul had seized the The unrestrained intercourse in which I took such opportunity, so long looked for, by which he hoped to heavenly pleasure, and which was worth all the fixed secure his worldly happiness for life. A handful of and definite love in the world, has been abruptly inter-wild-flowers was in Eva's band, more lay strewn on rupted, and now I never see Eva, unless in company her lap, a water-lily bud glistened among her golden with her brother, or that young Mr. Rollestone.
hair, and a scarlet poppy glowed beside it. Paul bad “July 31. I have not seen Eva alone, and I am placed them there, and the three colors, the white, the thinking of writing to her, unless I can snatch some scarlet, and the brownish-gold, showed how well he unopportunity from the net of precautions in which we derstood the harmony of contrasts. A deep blush are both enveloped. Yet I am so satisfied that she loves burned Eva's cheek, a look of inquietude troubled her me, that I am comparatively happy even under all this eye, a smile of embarrassment determined to be frivowearisome restraint. What a strange creature is that lous, and of hardness overlaying uneasiness, was about elfin Maud! What a wonderful influence-irresistible her mouth; for Eva felt that the hour had come when and almost terrifying—she has over every one she meets the mask must fall. She had worn it long, and had with! Yesternight I met her again, her lap laden with hidden the true face underneath carefully; but it must roots and herbs and weeds, and worlds of unsightly drop now, and expose the deformity it had not only insects crawling over them in the light of the full moon. covered, but transformed. She has no idea of anything loathsome in nature. She
The youth's face, upturned, was all love, serenity, says that we are atheists and impious if we reject any purity, and trust. He smiled, and fixed his deep eyes of God's creatures, for that there is only beauty and full of a love such as angels might feel, on the burning, love and fitness in all things. Hers is a grand creed; guilty face above him. But he saw no guilt in that but I feel myself incapable of adhering to it, for I am fevered fush, he read no shame in that downcast eye, more impressed by the outwardly beautiful than by the the hollow smile betrayed no falsehood dragging itself worthy in life. Maud says that I am too Sybaritic fc: to light, false and hardened still; he read only maiden her faith; and I acknowledge it. Yet she is not indif- modesty, and the pure happiness of a girl's first love, ferent to beauty. Last night she murmured, clasping where a keener eye and a colder heart would have her hands together: “And I, too, Paul, could die for spelt out every letter of the black truth. love of loveliness !” Does she love? I think so. But
“Eva,” said Paul, “few words are necessary between whom? Not Horace—vain, brutal, and selfish as he is,
Our hearts have spoken, though our lips have though so beautiful, and so like Eva. Yet there is love been mute; and our spirits have met and understood in her eyes and love in her voice, and she bears its in- each other, while yet the stirred air had not echoed one press on all she does; and there are not many in Oak- word of the wakened breath. I love you, Eva. Why enden on whom she could expend the treasures of her do you cover your face, and shake your head? You rich heart; for it is rich. Despised though she may be, have known it long-you have seen it: yes, Eva, fosher heart is a mine of wealth, which no one in Oaken- tered and returned it. You are too good and pure to den either understands or equals. How wonderfully have played me false; and by every sign that woman fascinating she is! Hours on hours she can keep me
could give, you have told me that you loved me. And entranced, though I know that the broken spell will Eya, it was so dear, to me to watch it stealing out, throw me at Eva's feet. A mysterious kind of awe like a listening angel, in unguarded looks.
(For continuation, see p. 170.)