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"Warn him that the man he has made his enemy is in a phrensy, and that he doesn't know him if he makes light of his approach. Tell him that he is on the road-I know he is !-and hurrying on. Urge him to get away while there is time-if there is time-and not to meet him yet. A month or so will make years of difference. Let them not encounter, through me. Anywhere but there! Any time but now! Let his foe follow him, and find him for himself, but not through me! There is enough upon my head without."

The fire ceased to be reflected in her jet black hair, uplifted face, and eager eyes; her hand was gone from Harriet's arm ; and the place where she had been, was empty.

CHAPTER LIV.

The Fugitives.

THE time, an hour short of midnight; the place, a French apartment, comprising some half-dozen rooms;-a dull cold hall or corridor, a dining-room, a drawing-room, a bed-chamber, and an inner drawing-room, or boudoir, smaller and more retired than the rest. All these shut in by one large pair of doors on the main staircase, but each room provided with two or three pairs of doors of its own, establishing several means of communication with the remaining portion of the apartment, or with certain small passages within the wall, leading, as is not unusual in such houses, to some back stairs with an obscure outlet below. The whole situated on the first floor of so large an Hotel, that it did not absorb one entire row of window upon one side of the square courtyard in the centre, upon which the whole four sides of the mansion looked.

An air of splendor, sufficiently faded to be melancholy, and sufficiently dazzling to clog and embarrass the details of life with a show of state, reigned in these rooms. The walls and ceilings were gilded and painted; the floors were waxed and polished; crimson drapery hung in festoons from window, door, and mirror;

and candelabra, gnarled and intertwisted like the branches of trees, or horns of animals, stuck out from the panels of the wall. But in the day-time, when the lattice-blinds (now closely shut) were opened, and the light let in, traces were discernible among this finery, of wear and tear and dust, of sun and damp and smoke, and lengthened intervals of want of use and habitation, when such shows and toys of life seem sensitive like life, and waste as men shut up in prison do. Even night, and clusters of burning candles, could not wholly efface them, though the general glitter threw them in the shade.

The glitter of bright tapers, and their reflection in lookingglasses, scraps of gilding, and gay colors, were confined, on this night, to one room-that smaller room within the rest, just now enumerated. Seen from the hall, where a lamp was feebly burning, through the dark perspective of open doors, it looked as shining and precious as a gem. In the heart of its radiance sat a

beautiful woman-Edith.

She was alone. The same defiant, scornful woman still. The cheek a little worn, the eye a little larger in appearance, and more lustrous, but the haughty bearing just the same. No shame upon her brow; no late repentance bending her disdainful neck. Imperious and stately yet, and yet regardless of herself and of all else, she sat with her dark eyes cast down, waiting for some one. No book, no work, no occupation of any kind but her own thoughts, beguiled the tardy time. Some purpose, strong enough to fill up any pause, possessed her. With her lips pressed together, and quivering if for a moment she released them from her control; with her nostril inflated; her hands clasped in one another; and her purpose swelling in her breast; she sat, and waited.

At the sound of a key in the outer door, and a footstep in the hall, she started up, and cried "Who's that?" The answer was in French, and two men came in with jingling trays to make preparation for supper.

"Who bade them do so?" she asked.

"Monsieur had commanded it, when it was his pleasure to take the apartment. Monsieur had said, when he stayed there, for an hour, en route, and left the letter for Madame-Madame had received it, surely?"

"Yes."

"A thousand pardons! The sudden apprehension that it might have been forgotten had struck him; a bald man, with a large beard, from a neighboring restaurant; "with despair! Monsieur had said that supper was to be ready at that hour: also that he had forewarned Madame of the commands he had given, in his letter. Monsieur had done the Golden Head the honor to request that the supper should be choice and delicate. Monsieur would find that his confidence in the Golden Head was not misplaced."

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Edith said no more, but looked on thoughtfully while they prepared the table for two persons, and set the wine upon it. She arose before they had finished, and taking a lamp, passed into the bed-chamber and into the drawing-room, where she hurriedly but narrowly examined all the doors; particularly one in the former room that opened on the passage in the wall. From this she took the key, and put it on the outer side. She then came back.

The men-the second of whom was a dark, bilious subject, in a jacket, close shaved, and with a black head of hair close cropped-had completed their preparation of the table, and were standing looking at it. He who had spoken before, inquired whether Madame thought it would be long before Monsieur arrived?

"She couldn't say. It was all one."

"Pardon! There was the supper! It should be eaten on the instant. Monsieur (who spoke French like an Angel-or a Frenchman-it was all the same) had spoken with great emphasis of his punctuality. But the English nation had so grand a genius for punctuality. Ah! what noise! Great Heaven, here was

Monsieur.

Behold him!"

In effect, Monsieur, admitted by the other of the two, came, with his gleaming teeth, through the dark rooms, like a mouth; and arriving in that sanctuary of light and color, a figure at full length embraced Madame, and addressed her in the French tongue as his charming wife.

"My God! Madame is going to faint. Madame is overcome with joy!" The bald man with the beard observed it, and cried

out.

Madame had only shrunk and shivered. Before the words were spoken, she was standing with her hand upon the velvet back of a great chair; her figure drawn up to its full height, and her face immovable.

François has flown over to the Golden Head for supper. He flies on these occasions like an angel or a bird. The baggage of Monsieur is in his room. All is arranged. The supper will be here in a moment." These facts the bald man notified with bows and smiles, and presently the supper came.

The hot dishes were on a chafing dish; the cold already set forth, with the change of service on a side-board. Monsieur was satisfied with this arrangement. The supper table being small, it pleased him very well. Let them set the chafing-dish upon the floor, and go. He would remove the dishes with his own hands.

66

"Pardon !" said the bald man, politely. "It was impossible !" Monsieur was of another opinion. He required no further attendance that night.

"But Madame"

the bald man hinted.

"Madame," replied Monsieur, "had her own maid. It was enough."

"A million pardons! No! Madame had no maid !"

"I came here alone," said Edith. "It was my choice to do SO. I am well used to travelling; I want no attendance. They need send nobody to me."

Monsieur accordingly, persevering in his first proposed impossibility, proceeded to follow the two attendants to the outer door, and secure it after them for the night. The bald man turning round to bow, as he went out, observed that Madame still stood with her hand upon the velvet back of the great chair, and that her face was quite regardless of him, though she was looking straight before her.

As the sound of Carker's fastening the door resounded through the intermediate rooms, and seemed to come hushed and stifled into that last distant one, the sound of the Cathedral clock striking twelve mingled with it, in Edith's ears. She heard him pause, as if he heard it too and listened; and then come back towards her, laying a long train of footsteps through the silence, and shutting all the doors behind him as he came along. Her hand, for a moment, left the velvet chair to bring a knife within her reach upon the table; then she stood as she had stood before. "How strange to come here by yourself, my love," he said as he entered.

"What!" she returned.

Her tone was so harsh; the quick turn of her head so fierce; her attitude so repellent; and her frown so black; that he stood, with the lamp in his hand, looking at her, as if she had struck him motionless.

"I say," he at length repeated, putting down the lamp and smiling his most courtly smile," how strange to come here alone! It was unnecessary caution surely, and might have defeated itself. You were to have engaged an attendant at Havre or Rouen, and have had abundance of time for the purpose, though you had been the most capricious and difficult (as you are the most beautiful, my love) of women."

Her eyes gleamed strangely on him, but she stood with her hand resting on the chair, and said not a word.

"I have never," resumed Carker, "seen you look so handsome as you do to-night. Even the picture I have carried in my mind during this cruel probation, and which I have contemplated night and day, is exceeded by the reality."

Not a word. Not a look. Her eyes completely hidden by their drooping lashes, but her head held up.

"Hard, unrelenting terms they were!" said Carker, with a smile, "but they are all fulfilled and past, and make the present more delicious and more safe. Sicily shall be the place of our retreat. In the idlest and easiest part of the world, my soul, we'll both seek compensation for old slavery."

He was coming gaily towards her, when, in an instant, she caught the knife up from the table, and started one pace back.

"Stand still!" she said, "or I shall murder you!"

The sudden change in her, the towering fury and intense abhorrence sparkling in her eyes and lighting up her brow, made him stop as if a fire had stopped him.

"Stand still!" she said, "come no nearer me, upon your life!" They both stood looking at each other. Rage and astonishment were in his face, but he controlled them, and said lightly:

"Come, come! Tush, we are alone, and out of everybody's sight and hearing. Do you think to frighten me with these tricks of virtue ?"

"Do you think to frighten me," she answered fiercely, "from any purpose that I have, and any course I am resolved upon, by

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