The McCook tribune. (McCook, Neb.) 1886-1936, April 28, 1893, Image 3

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    flUTHOI? .f-VB*
CHAPTER IH—Continued.
“She calls herself a witch.” an
swered Keyork with considerable
scorn. “I do not know what she is,
nor what to call her—a sensitive, an
hysterical subject, a medium, a witch
—a fool, if you like, or a charlatan, if
you prefer the term. Beautiful she is,
at least, whatever else she may not
be.”
“Yes, she is beautiful.”
“So you have seen her, have you?”
The little man again looked sharply
up at his tall companion. “You have
had a consultation—.”
“Does she give consultations? Is
she a professional seer?” The Wan
derer asked the question in a tone of
surprise. "Do you mean that she
maintains an establishment upon such
a 6cale out of the proceeds of fortune
telling?”
••l uo noi mean any tiling oi tne
sort. Fortune telling is excel,ent!
Very good!” Keyork’s bright eyes
flashed with amusement. “What are
you doing hero—I mean in this
church?” He put the question sud
denly.
“Pursuing—an idea, if you please
to call it bo.”
“Not knowing what you mean, I
must please to call your meaning by
your own name for it. It is your na
ture to be enigmatic. Shall we go out?
If I stay here much longer I shall be
petrified instead of embalmed. I shall
turn into dirty old red marble, like
Tziho’s effigy there, an awful warning
to fortune philosophers, and an exam
ple for the edification of the faithful
who worship here.”
They walked toward the door, and
the contrast between the appearance
of the two brought the ghost of a smile
to the thin lips of the pale sacristan,
who was occupied in renewing the
tapers upon one of the side altars.
“So you were pursuing an idea,”
said the little man as they emerged
into the narrow street. “Now, ideas
may be divided variously into classes,
as for instance, ideas which are good,
bad or indifferent. If you have an
idea upon anj subject I will utterly,
annihilate it to my own most profound
satisfaction: if you have none con
cerning any special point, I will force
you to accept mine, as mine, or to die
the intellectual death. That is the
general theory of the idea.”
“And what does it prove?” inquired
the Wanderer.
“If you knew anything, answered
Keyork, with twinkling eyes, “you
would know that a theory is not a
demonstration but an explanation.
But, by the hypothesis, since you are
not I, you can know nothing certainly.
Now, my theory explains many things,
and among others the adamantine, im
perishable, impenetrable nature of
the substance vanity, upon which the
showman, nature, projects in fast fad
ing colors the unsubstantial images
of men. Why do you drag me through
this dismal passage?”
“i passed through it this morning
and missed my way.”
“In pursuit of the idea, of course.
That was to be expected. Prague is
constructed on the same principle as
the human brain, full of winding
ways, dark lanes and gloomy archee,
all of which may lead somewhere, or
may not.
“The self which you propose tp
preserve from corruption, since you
think so poorly of the lodger and the
lodging. I wonder that you should be
anxious to prolong the sufferings of
the one and his lease of the other.”
“It is all I have,” answered Keyork
Arabian. “Did you think of that?”
“That circumstance may serve as
an excuse, but it does not constitute a
reason. ’ ’
“Not a reason? Is the most abject
poverty a reason for throwing away
the daily crust? Myself is all I have.
Shall I let it perish when an effort
may preserve it from destruction?”
“So soon as you speak of enjoyment,
argument ceases,” answered the Wan
derer.
“You are wrong, as usual,” re
turned the other. “It is the other
way. Enjoyment is the universal
solvent of all arguments. Enjoyment!
Enjoyment is the protest of reality
against the tyranny of fiction.”
“Have wisdom and study led you no
farther than that conclusion?”
Keyork’s eyes brightened suddenly,
and a peal of laughter, deep and rich,
broke from his sturdy breast and
rolled long echoes through the dismal
lane. But his ivory features were
not discomposed, though his white
beard trembled and waved softly like
a snowy veil blown about by the
wind.
“If wisdom can teach how to pro
. long the lease, what study can be
A compared with that of which the re
a suits may beautify the dwelling?
A What more cun any man do for him
B self than to make hjmself happy?
eT The very question is absurd. Is it for
f the sake of improving the physical
condition or of promoting the moral
ease of mankind at large that you are
dragging me through the slums and
byways and alleys of the gloomiest
city on this side of eternal perdition?
You admit that you are pursuing an
idea. Perhaps you are in search of
some new and curious form ol mildew,
and when you have found it—or some
Qliu—^8, RCt i >cyM . c.c'
thing else -you will name your dis
covery 'fungus Pragen-is or *• ryp
togamus minor errrntiV—• he v> n
derer’s toadstool.’ Hut I -uv you of
old. my good friend. The id a 01
pursue is not an idea at a I . it l > it
specimen of the gi-ni homo kuo n
as ‘woman,’ species nady. vur ty
•true love,’ vulgar designation ‘sweet
heart. ’ ”
The Wanderer stared col ily at his
companion.
••The vulgarity of the designation is
indeed only equaled by th t o y .ur
taste in selecting it," he said • <• y.
Then he turned away, intend g to
leave Keyork standing where h ■ wm.
But the little man ha.; already e
pented of his S|a e • He ran qn :<y
to his friend's sine and l id on< a d
upon liis arm. The vy anderer paused
and again looked down.
•‘is n oi any use to do onencled witn
my speech? Am I an aequain anee of
yesterday? Do you imagine that i.,
could ever be my intention to annoy
you?” The questions were asked
rapidly, rn tones of genu-ins anxiety.
••Indeed, I hardly knowhow I could
suppose that. You have always b- en
friendly—but I confess—your names
for things are not—always—”
The Wanderer did not complete the
sentence, but looked grave'y at Key
ork, as though wishing to convey
very clearly again what he had before
expressed in words.
“Come, forgive my lack of skill,
and do not let us quarrel. Perhaps I
can help you. You may know Prague
well, but I know it better. Will you
allow me to say that I know also
whom it is you are seeking here?”
“Yes. You know. I have not
changed since we last met, nor have
circumstances favored me.”
“Tell me—have you really seen this
Unorna and talked with her?”
“This morning.”
“And she could not help you?”
“I refused to accept her help until
1 had done all that was in my power
to do.”
“You were rash. And have you
now done all, and failed?”
“I have.”
“Then, if you yvill accept a humble
suggestion from me, you will go back
to her at once.”
“I know very little of her. I do
not altogether trust her-”
“Trust her! Power of Eblis—or
any other powers! Who talks of trust?
Does the wise man trust himself?
Never. Then how can he dare trust
anyone else?”
“Your cynical philosophy again,”
exclaimed the Wanderer.
“Philosophy? I am a mysosophist!
All wisdom is vanity, and I hate it!
Autology is my study, autosophy my
ambition, autonomy my pride, I am
I, one, indivisible, central! Oh I!
Hail and live forever!”
Again the little man’s rich bass
voice rang out in mellow laughter.
“You are happy, Keyork,” he said.
“You must be, since you can laugh at
yourself so honestly.”
“At myself? Vain man! I am
laughing at you, and at every one
else, at everything except myself.”
“Can you tell me nothing more of
her? Do you know her well?”
“She does not offer her help to
every one. You would have done
well to accept it in the first instance.
“I had supposed, from what you
said of her, that she made a profession
of clairvoyance, or hypnotism, ormes
merism—whatever may be the right
term now-a-days. ”
“It matters very little.” answered
Keyork, gravely. “I used to wonder
at Adam’s ingenuity in naming all
living things, but I think he would
have made but a poor figure in a tour
nament of modern terminologists. No.
Unorna does not accept remuneration
for her help when she vouchsafes to
give it.”
“And yet I was introduced to her
presence without even giving my
name.”
“That is her fancy. She will see
any one who wishes to see her, beg
gar, gentleman or prince. But she
only answers sucu questions as she
pleases.”
Keyork Arabian was silent, as
though he were reflecting upon Unor
na’s character and peculiar gifts be
fore describing them to his friend. The
Wanderer preferred the little man’s
silence to his wild talk, but he was de
termined, if possible, to extract some
further information concerning Unor
na, and before many seconds had
elapsed he interrupted Keyork’s med
itations with a question.
“You tell me to see for myself,” he
said. “I would like to know what I
am to expect. Will you not enlighten
me?”
“What?” asked the other, vaguely,
as though roused from sleep.
“If I go to Unorna and ask a con
sultation of her, as though she were a
common somnambulist, and if she
designs to place her powers at my dis
posal, what sort of assistance would I
most probably get?”
“Of two things, one will happen,”
he answered. “Either she will her
self fall into the abnormal state, and
will answer correctly any questions
you put to her, or she will hypnotize
you, you will yourself see—what you
wish to see.”
<* . ■ y ••If?"
•‘You yourself. The peculiarity of
the womau is her duality, hyr double
powt r. She car. by an act of volition,
become hyunmic. clairvoyant—what
ever you choose to c ill it. Or, if her
vis t“r i- at all sens tive, she can re
verse the h laation. nil play the part
of a hy.pnotizer. I never heard of a
like case.”
“After all,l do not see why it should
not be s said the Wanderer,
thoughtfully. “At all events, what
ever she can do Is evidently done by
hypnotism, and suc.i extraordinary
experiments have succeeded of late—”
“1 oiil not say that there was noth
ing bu- hy notism in Her process."
"Y\ cat then? Magic?” The Wan
derer’s lip curled scornfully.
“I do not know,” replied the little
man. sp a ng slowly. “Whatever
her secret may be, she keeps it, even
when speaking in 8i<-ei».
“1 will go.” an-wered the Wan
derer, after a moment’ • hesitation.
••Very good,'’ said Keyork Arabian.
“If you want to find n again, come
to my lodging. Do y >u know the
house of the Black Motherof GodP”
“Yes—ihere is a legend about a
Spanish picture of our Lady once pre
served there-.” •
“i-.x.tctly, it takes its name from
that black picture It is on the corner
of the Fruit market, over against the
window at which the Princess Wind
iscli grata was shot. I live in the up
per st. try. Good-by. ”
“Good-by.”
CHAPTER IV.
1; i bb the Wan
derer had left her
Unor'ia continued
iioldinherh nd
boo she had
a am t ken up,
oiluw : n g the
printed lines me
dian c. II from
left to , ight, from
the top o t the page
to the foot.
‘•Ia it he?” she
asked aloud in a voice r.nging with
the oy and the fear of a passion that
has waited long and is at last ap
proachine the fulfillment of satisfac- j
tion.
‘•Is it he? Is it he? Is it he?” she
repeated again and again.”
She did not see the dark red squares
of marble, alternating with the white
and the gray, but as she looked a face
and a form rose before her, in the con
templation of which all her senses
and faculties concentrated themselves.
“Are you indeed he?” she asked,
speaking softly and doubtfully, and
yet unconsciously projecting her
stro g will upon the vision, as though
to force it to give the answer for
which she longed.
And the answer came, imposed by
the effort of her imagination upon the
thing imagined. The face suddenly
became luminous as with a radiance
within itself, the shadows of grief
melted away, and in their place
trembled the rising light of a dawn
ing love. The lips moved and a voice
spoke.
“I am he, I am that love for whom
you have waited, you are that dear .
one whom I have sought throughout 1
the world. The hour of our joy has
struck, the new life begins to-day, and
there shall be no end.”
Unorna’s arms went out to grasp
the shadow, and she drew it to her in
her fancy and kissed its radiant face.
“Na veky vektiy! To ages of ages!” ;
she cried.
Then she covered her eyes as
though to impress the sight they had
seen upon the mind within, and, grop
ing blindly for her chair, sank back
into her seat.
“Ah, but I will!” she exclaimed.
“And what I will—shall be.”
As though she were satisfied with
the promise thus made to herself, she
smiled, her eyelids drooped, the ten
sion of her frame was relaxed and she
sank again into the indolent attitude
in which the Wanderer had found her.
A moment later the distant door
turned softly on its hinges and a light
foot-fall broke the stillness. There
was no need for Unorna to speak in
in order that the sound of her voice
might guide the newcomer to her re
treat. The footsteps approached
swiftly and surely. A young man of
singular beauty came out of the green
shadows and stood beside the chair
in the open spa ce.
Unorna betrayed no surprise as she
looked up into her visitor’s face.
She knew it well. In form and
feature the youth represented the
noblest type of the Jewish race.
Israel Kafka stood still, gazing
down upon the woman he loved and
drawing his breath hard between his
parted lips.
“Well?” She interrogated.
Under an irresistible impulse he
fell upon his kness beside Unorna,
covering her marble hand with all his
lean, dark fingers, and pressing his
forehead upon them, as though he
had found and grasped all that could
be dear to him in life.
“Unorna! My golden Unorna!” he
cried, as he knelt.
Unorna looked down upon his bent
head. As though collecting her
thoughts she closed her eyes, as she
tried to draw back her hand; then as
he held it still, she leaned back and
spoke to him.
“You have not understood me,” she
said, as quietly as she could.
“Not—understood?” he repeated in
startled, broken tones.
Unorna sighed and turned away, for
the sight hurt her and accused her.
“No, you have not understood. Is
it my fault? Israel Kafka, that hand
is not yours to hold.”
“Not mine? Unorna!” Yet he
could not quite believe what she said
“I am in earnest,” she answered.
“Do you think I am jesting with you,
or with myself?”
Israel Kafka still knelt beside her.
motionless and hardly breathing.
“I have been mistaken,” Unorna
continued at last. “Forgive—forget
_11
Israel Kafka rose to his feet and
drew back a step from her side.
“How easy it is for you!” exclaimed
the Moravian. “How easy! How
simple!. You call me, and I come.
Fou let your eyes - rest on me,
and I kneel before you. You sigh,
»nd I speak words of love. You lift
your hand, and I crouch at your feet.
You frown—and I humbly leave you.
How ea-y!”
“You are wrong and you speak fool
ishly. You are angry and you do not
weigh your words.”
“Angry! What have I to do with
so common a madness as anger? 1 am
more than angry. Do you think that,
because I have submitted to the veer
ing gusts of your good Ad evil hu
mors these many months, I have lost
all consciousness of myself? Have
you promised me nothing? Have
you giveir me no hope? Have you
said and done nothing whereby you
are bound?”
“I never gave you either pledge or
pr mise,” answered Unorna in a
haruer tone. “The only hope I have
ever extended to you was this, that I
would one day answer you plainly. I
have done so. You are not satisfied.
Is there anything more to be said? I
do not bid you to leave my house for
ever, any more than I mean to drive
you from my friendship.”
“From your friendship. Ah, I
thank you. Unorna, I most humbly
thank you. For the mercy you ex
tend in allowing me to linger near
you, I am grateful. Your friend,
you say? Ay, truly, your friend and
servant, your servant andyour slave,
your slave and your Y<»ur friend
ship—I have no wor«a»»— *l»anks.”
“Take it, or take c« aksr-as you
will.” Unorna glanetfl w. ..is angry
face and quickly looked ay.
“Take it? Yes, am* more too,
whether you will give it or not,” an
swered Israel Kafka, moving nearer
to her. “Yes. Whether yon will, or
whether you will not—I will have all,
youp friendship, your love, your life,
your breath, your soul—all or noth
ing.”
“You are wise to suggest the latter
alternative as a possibility,” said
Unorna, coldly, and not heeding his
approach.
The young man stood still and
folded his arms.
“Do you mean what you say?” he
asked, slowly. 1 ‘Do you mean that I
shall have not all, but nothing? Do
you still dare to mean that, after all
that has passed between you and me?”
Unorna raised her eyes and looked
steadily into his.
“Israel Kafka, do not speak to me
of daring.”
But the young man’s glance did not
waver. The angry expression of his
features did not relax.
“Where is your power now?” he
asked suddenly. “Where is your
witchery? You are only a woman,
after all—you are only a weak
woman. ”
Very slowly he drew nearer to her
side, his lithe figure bending a little
as he looked down upon her. Unorna
leaned far back, withdrawing her face
from his as far as she could, but still
trying to impose her will upon him.
“You cannot,” he said, between his
teeth, answering her thought.
Men who have tamed wild beasts
alone know what such a moment is
like. A hundred times the brave man
has held the tiger spellbound, and
crouching under his cold, fearless
gaze.
To draw back, to let his glance
waver, to show so much as the least
sign of fear, is death. The moment
is supreme, and he knows it.
Unorna grasped the arms of her
chair, as though seeking her physical
support in her extremity. Between
her and her mistake the'image of
what should be stood out, bright, vivid
and strong. A new conviction had
taken the place of the old, a real
passion was flaming upon the altar
whereon she had fed with dreams the
sem -lance of a sacred fire.
“You do not really love me,” she
6aid softly.
Israel Kafka started, as a man who
5* struck unawares. The monstrous
untruth which filled the words broke
down his guard, sudden tears veiled
the penetrating sharpness of his gaze
and his hand trembled.
“I do not love you? I! Unorna—
Unorna!”
The first word broke from him in a
cry of horror and stupefaction. But
her name, when he spoke it, sounded
as the death moan of a young wild an
imal wounded beyond all power to
turn at bay.
She knew that the struggle was over
and that she had gained the mastery,
though the price of victory might be
a broken heart.
“You thought 1 was jesting,” she
said in a low voice- “But there was
no jest in what I said—nor any un
kindness in what I meant, though it
is all my fault. But that is true—you
never loved me as I would be loved.”
“Unorna—”
“No—I am not unkiua. ,our love
is young, fierce, inconstant; nail ter
rible, half boyish; ready to turn into
hatred at one moment, to melt into
tears at the next-”
“It pleased you once,” said Israel
Kafka in broken tones. It is not less
love because you are weary of it, and
of me.”
“Weary, you say? No, not weary
—and very truly not of you. You will
believe that today, tomorrow you will
still try to force life into your belief
—and then it will be dead and gone
like all thoughts which have never
entered into the shapes of reality. We
have not loved each other. We have
but fancied that it would be sweet to
love, and thd knife of truth has parted
the web of our dreams, keenly, in the
midst; so that we see before us what
ia, though the ghost of what might
have been is yet lingering near.”
“Who wove that web, Unorna?
You or I?” He lifted bis heavy eyes
and gazed at her coiled bair.
"What matters it wheUier it was
your doing or mine? But we wove it
togeth-r—and together we must see
the truth-”
“If this is true, there is no more
•together’ for you and me.”
“We may yes, glean friendship in
the fields where love has grown.”
“triendphip—t ie very word is a
wound! Friendship—the very dregs
and lees of the wine of life! Friend
ship—the sour drainings of the heurt’s
cup, left to moisten the lips of the
damned when the blessed have drunk
their till. I hate the word, as I hate
the thought!”
Unorna sighed, partly, perhaps,
that he might hear the sigh and put
upon it an interpretation soohingto
his vanity, but partly, too, from a sin
cere regret that he should need to suf
fer as he was evidently suffering. She
had half believed that she loved him.
and she owed him pity. Women’s
hearts pay such debts unwillingly,
but they pay them, nevertheless.
“I am sorry,” said Unorn.t. “You
will not understand—”
“I have understood enough—I have
understood that a woman ran have
two faces, and two hearts, two minds,
two souls—it is enough, my under
standing need go no further. You
sighed before you spoke. It was not
for me—it was for yourself. You
never felt pain or sorrow for an
other.”
He was trying to grow cold and to
find cold words to say, which might
lead her to believe him stronger than
he was and able to master his grief.
But he was too young, too hot, too
changeable for such a part.
“You are wrong, Israel Kafka. You
would make me less than human. If
I had promised, if I had said one
word—and yet, you are right, too, for
I have let you think in earnest what
has been but a passing dream of my
own thoughts. It was all wrong, it
was all my fault—there, lay your
hand in mine and say that you for
give, as I ask forgiveness.”
He was still standing behind her,
leaning against the back of her chair.
Without looking around, she raised
her hand above her shoulder, as
though seeking for his. But he would
not take it.
“Is it to hard?” she asked, softly.
“Is it even harder for you to give
th >n for me to ask? Shall we part
like this—not to meet again—each
bearing a wound, when both might be
who e? Can you not say a word?”
“What is it to you whether I for
give you or not?”
“Since I ask it, believe that it is
much to me,” she answered, slowly
turning her head until, without catch
ing sight of his face, she could just
see where his fingers were resting on
her chair. Then, over her shoulder,
she touched them, and drew them to
her cheek. He made no resistance.
“Shall we part without one kind
thought?”
“Is this friendship?” asked Israel
Kafka. Then he sank upon his knees
beside her and looked up into her
face.
“it is friendship—yes—why not?
Am I liae other women?”
••Then why need there be any part
ing?”
“If you will be my friend, there
need be none. You have forgiven me
now—I see it in your eyes. Is it not
true?”
He was at her feet, passive at last
under the superior power which he
had never been able to resist.
“Sit beside me, now, and let us
talk,” she said.
Like a man in a dream, he rose and
sat down near her.
Unorna laughed, and there was
something in the tone that was not
good to hear.
“You are only my slave, after all,”
said Unorna, scornfully.
“lam only your slave, after all,”
he repeated.
“I could touch you with my hand
and you would hate me and forget
that you ever loved me.”
“You would hate me and forget that
you ever loved me,” she repeated,
dwelling on each word as though to
impress it upon his consciousness. ;
“Say it. I order you.”
“I should hate you and forget that
l ever loved you,”he raid, slowly.
“You never loved me.”
“I never loved you.”
Again Unorna laughed, and he
joined in her laughter, unintelli
gently, as he had done before. Israel
Kafka sat motionless in his chair,
staring at her with unwinking eyes.
Yet the man was alive and in the full
strength of his magnificent youth,
supple, active, fierce by nature, able
to have killed her with his hands in
the struggle of a moment. Yet she
knew that without a word from her
he could neither turn his head nor
move in his seat.
“I must ash him,” she said, uncon
sciously.
“You must ask him,” repeated
Israel Kafka from his seat.
For the third time Unorna laughed
aloud, as she heard the echo, of her i
own words.
“Whom shall I ask?” she inquired
contemptuously, as she rose to her
feet.
The dull, glassy eyes sought hers in
painful perplexity, following her face
as she moved.
• ‘I do not know, ” answered the pow
erless man.
Unorna came close to him and laid
her haftd upon his head.
“Sleep, until I wake you.” she
said.
The eyelids drooped and closed at
her command, and instantly the man’s
breathing became heavy and regular.
tJnorna’s full lips curled as she looked
down at him.
“And you would be my master!”
she exclaimed.
Then she turned and disappeared
among the plants, leaving him alone.
CHAPTI K V.
NOUN A passed
through a cor
ridor which whs
indeed only a
long bulcony
covered in with
■Vi arches and
'/< closed with win
1 down against the
JvJj outer air. At
' the Tart her end
three steps do
scended to a
1 ' dark door,
t li r o u g li the
thickness of u
massive wall, showing that t this
point Unorna’s houso had at some
foimer time been joined with another
building beyond, with which it thus
formed one habitation. Unorna
paused, holding the key as though
hesitating whether -ne should put It
in the lo k, and then with un impa
tient frow i. opened the door and wont
in. Sue j assed th ough a small, woll
lighted vestibule and entered the r.,ora
beyond.
In one of the lounges, not far from
the window, lay a colossal old man,
wrapped in a 1 ose robe of warm white
stuff, and fast asl ep..
He was a very old man, so old, in
deed, as to make it hard to guess his
age from His face and his hands, the
only parts visible us he lay at rest,
the vuat body and limbs lying motion
less under his garment as beneath a
heavy white pall. He could not be
less than 100 years old, but how much
older than that he might really be it
was impossible to say.
Unorna came 10 his side. There
was something of wonder and udmira
tion in her own eyes as she stood there
gazing upon the face which other gen
erations of men and women, all long
dead, had looked upon and known.
Unorna had hesitated at the door,
and she hesitated now. It was in her
power, and in hers only, to wake the
hoary giant, or at least to modify his
perpetual sleep so far as to obtain from
him answers to her questions.
She drew back at the thought, as
though fearing to startle him, and
then she smiled at her own nervous
ness. To Wake him she must exer
cise her will. Strange faculties were
asleep in that ancient brain, and
strange wisdom was stored there,
gathered from many sources long ago,
and treasured unconsciously by the
memory, to be recalled at her com
mand.
The man had been a failure in liis
day, a scholar, a student, a searcher
after great secrets, a wanderer in the
labyrinths of higher thought, in his
100th year he had leaned for breach
against Unorna’s door, and she had
taken him in and eared for him, and
lince that time she had preserved his
life. For his history was known in
the ancient city, and it was said that
he had possessed great wisdom in his
day. Unorna knew that this wisdom
could be hers if she could keep alive
the spark of life, and that she had
employed his own learning to that end.
Already she had much experience of
her powers, and knew that if she
once had the mastery of the old man’s
free will, he must obey her fatally and
unresistingly. Then she conceived
the idea of embalming, as it were, the
living being, in a perpetual hypnotic
lethargy, from whence she recalled
him from time to time to an interme
diate state, in which she caused him
to do mechanically all those things
which she judged necessary to pro
long life.
Seeing her success from the first
she had begun to fancy that the
present condition of things might be
made to continue indefinitely. Since
death was today no nearer than it had
been seven years ago, there was no
reason why it might not be guarded
against during seven years more, and
if during seven, why not during 10,
20, 50? She had for a helper a
physician of consummate practical skill
—a man whose interest in the result
of the trial was, if anything, more
keen than her own; a friend, above
all, whom she believed she might
trust, and who appeared to trust her.
But in the course of their great ex
periment they had together made
rules by which they had mutually
agreed to be bound. They had of late
determined that the old man must not
be disturbed in his profound rest by
any question tending to cause a state
of mental activity. They hoped, and
believed, that the grand crisis was at
hand, and that if the body did not
lose strength and vitality for a con
siderable time, both would slowly,
though surely, increase, in conse
quence of the means they were using
to instil new blood into the system.
She hesitated, therefore, well know
ing that her ally would oppose her
intention with all his might, and
dreading his anger, bold as she was,,
almost as much as she feared the dan
ger to the old man’s life. On the
other hand, she had a motive which
the physician could not have, and
which, as she was aware, he would
have despised and condemned. Two
very powerful incentives were at
work, two of the very strongest whichr
have influence with mankind, love
and a superstitious belief in an espe
cial destiny of happiness, at the pres
ent moment on the very verge of real
ization.
[TO BE CONTINUED.]
Army Desertions Decreasing.
Recent statistics on army desertions
Show that this great evil is gradually
lessening. The desertions for the
year ending on the 3Xst ult. were a lit
tle less than 8 per cent of the actual
enlisted strength, a reduction of
about 1 per cent from the correspond.
Ing period of the previous year, or the
half of l per cent for the month of
jArch. ________