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ventas of his own country, he forgot perfect master. Besides, he was the perils he had encountered, anti- aware that he could only understand cipated the pleasures before him, the characters of those whom he and so far relaxed from the habitual desired to appreciate by seeing reserve of his country as to form an them in domestic life ; nor can we acquaintance with a very pleasant suppose him insensible to the admiFrenchman, who appeared like him- ration which he was so well formed self to be only just arrived.
to awaken. The stranger had, however, the They went at a late hour in the advantage of possessing a dear and Spaniard's estimation, but the seaintimate friend in Rotterdam, on son was summer, and it was not which account he purposed remain- much past the middle of the day. ing two days in that busy city be- They found no other company than fore he proceeded to Amsterdam. the master of the house and MadeThe arrangement suited Don Ray- moiselle Louise, who was indeed a mondo, and they agreed to procced very handsome, though not a very together. M. d'Henin, in the mean- young woman, and possessed in an time, was much at the house of his extraordinary degree those powers friend, who was spoken of as a of light conversation and amusing princely merchant," and who, on badinage, for which her countrywo the second day, waited on Don men had been long celebrated. The Raymondo, and requested him to house was large and splendidly furaccompany his new acquaintance to nished, and care had been taken to his house and partake of the family provide such dishes and wines as dinner.
were likely to please the palate of The inviter appeared by no means the Spanish guest, to whose amusea favorable sample of that glorious ment the lady more particularly appeople on whom our young Arrago- plied herself. Indeed, after dinner, nian had bestowed so large a portion M. d'Henin entered into so warm of his affection-he was squat in an argument with his host respectperson, coarse in feature, and min- ing either the name of a ship, or the gled with much heaviness of coun- lading, as to be quite absorbed in tenance a character of cunning, pe- the subject, and, at length, both culiarly disgusting to one so open started on their feet, and professed and high-spirited as Raymondo, and a determination of satisfying each who, accustomed to act from im- other by stepping to see the object pulse, hesitated not to decline the of their contention. offered kindness, alleging “the ne Louise, who had been coquetting cessity he was under of replenishing in the most agreeable manner for his wardrobe before he could enter the last hour with the young stranany gentleman's house in a new ger, approved their determination, country.”
at the same time leading Don RayThe Frenchman with ready kind- mondo towards another apartment, ness obviated all difficulties, and to which she had ordered coffee to undertook to bring him at the hour be brought. Before they had taken appointed, a task rendered much their seats, however, she said, "If easier by the assurance, “that Myn- he had a taste for natural curiosities heer's niece, a countrywoman of his she would show him her museum, own, was beautiful as an angel, and for her uncle's extensive commerce impatient to see a Spanish gentle- had enabled her to make a valuable man, since it was a pleasure which collection of minerals, shells, and she had never enjoyed.”
such like things." The Spaniard was much too gal The stranger knew that such purlant to refuse a lady's request, and suits were common in the country, by no means sorry to meet a French- and professed, of course, a desire woman, of whose language he was to visit the lady's museum.
The large bunch of keys taken by In another moment he heard the Mademoiselle for this purpose com- lock of the next door turn, and, municated an idea of some very ex- straining his ears, learned from the tensive repository ; nevertheless sound that the lock beyond that when, after traversing a long narrow also turned. Unpleasant passage and descending some steps, thoughts came over him—“but perthey entered a kind of grotto, they haps she was careful of her trumcame to so miserable a collection of pery shell ? perhaps she was pracfossils, that even a Spaniard found tising some jest upon him ?--he it difficult to compliment the fair would show her that he could bear owner.
“You are disappointed here, I He had abundance of time allowsee, signor, but we will proceed to ed for observation. There was no my shells.'
skylight in this place, nor any winAnother door was unlocked, a dow, save a square opening in the few more steps passed, and a small wall, which was higher than his room, lighted from the roof, was head, and admitted so small a pordisplayed ; this was certainly bet- tion of light, that it could not have ter worth seeing than the last, but displayed the contents of the cupMademoiselle said, that “this was board. --" It was possible that Louinferior to the next,” which, in its ise was waiting for lights”- this turn, was visited by the same medi- consolation in time departed, for it um as the last.
was evident that the sun was setHere the stores in question were ting—she must have returned to the deposited in one large cupboard. room they had quitted considerably They were all of the most common more than an hour. kind ; and, as the place was very Awakened perforce to a thousand chill to one who had so lately left ú horrible suspicions, Raymondo used much warmer country, Don Ray- the little light he had to examine mondo would willingly have given the door which he had passed, and them a very cursory view, but the was soon convinced that it had been lady lingered on each, and, as she formed for purposes of extraordiput one after another into his hand, nary security. There was an opher own trembled, and it was evi- posite outlet, which was scarcely dent, even in this dimly lighted four feet high, but not less strong, place, that she blushed excessively. and which appeared to be fastened At length, as if suddenly recollect- on the outside. In examining the ing herself, she opened another cupboard, he found that its doors door, saying, she had “ reserved yielded to his hand immediately, the best for the last."
and that, so far from being a depoAgain they descended, again en- sitory of shells, it contained a straw tered a small ornamented and un- mattress at the bottom, whilst on a furnished room, in which, as in the shelf were deposited a folding-seat, last, was a kind of press or cup- a cheese, and some biscuit, with a board.
pitcher of water. “Ah ! how thoughtless I am !” As he drew forth these strange cried Louise; “I have forgotten contents, one after another, the the very key I wanted most, but I overwhelming idea that he was enwill fetch it in a moment.”
trapped and imprisoned, and should “Not for the world would I give shortly be murdered, pressed every you that trouble,” said Raymondo ; moment more strongly on his mind, but the nymph had already vanished, The hesitation and blushes of the and, what was more strange, she fair fiend who had betrayed him had locked the door after her, noto confirmed his fears, and the recolwithstanding the rapidity of her lection that his sword had been taflight.
ken by the Frenchman, as an act of
courtesy, on his entering this den of but, as the wall itself was more than thieves, whilst it confirmed his hor- that in thickness, he could not gain rible surmises, inspired him with the power of seeing more than exrage and indignation that amounted actly what was opposite, or of putto madness. He screamed and ting out his arm to the exterior. yelled in his fury until he was ex- In his anxiety to listen for sounds hausted, and rendered terribly sen- he became necessarily silent ; but, sible that his curses reached no as many hours passed, and the caears but his own, and that nothing nal below was never again disremained to him, but to sell his life turbed, his hopes died away, and as dearly as he might, for which he began to conceive that, instead purpose he grasped the jointed of being robbed and murdered, as stool, drew out the mattress on he had expected, he was doomed to which he sate or knelt, listened ea- the more terrible infliction of pergerly for the sounds that might pre- petual captivity, or lingering death cede his destruction, or watching by hunger. for some ray of light that should The dear home he had left—the prelude the approach of the mur- beloved mother on whose picture derer.
he gazed-the blighted promise of When the night was far spent, a life devoted to love and gloryand neither sound nor light had ap- now filled his breast with such inproached him, he began to consider describable anguish, that he was with more discrimination the pecu- fain to fly from grief so bitter, by liar circumstances in which he was compelling himself calmly to review placed. He had not mentioned the every circumstance in his converletters he carried, which were now sation and conduct, which could by about his person, or he should have possibility have conduced to place thought that the wily Frenchman him in jeopardy. He had never had some intention to personate heard of an Inquisition in a Proteshim, and obtain certain moneys tant country, but so nearly did his which they empowered him to re- present state assimilate with the ceive. He had two brilliant rings situation of those amenable to its upon his finger, and a massy gold tribunal in his own land, that he chain round his neck, from which could not help considering himself was suspended his mother's picture, in a place of the same kind ; yet surrourded by diamonds ; but he he had not the slightest recollection had no reason to think that this or- of having uttered a single word, nament had met the eye of his per- which even the most ingenious masecutors, and he took some pains to 'lice could render subservient to conceai it further. Whilst thus em- such a purpose. Neither had he ployed, a dashing of water, like the spoken to a single female since his light stroke of an oar, struck upon landing, excepting the mistress of his ears—he listened breathless-it the inn, an old woman, and Louise, was evident that it approached, and to whom his attentions had been regularly receded : he was there- rather the distant ones of his own fore led to conclude that the place country than the free admiration of in which he was confined was situ- hers. Besides ! she was herself ated on one of the canals, and it was his gaoler—without the not impossible that his voice of com- which jealousy, or injury, might plaint might reach some human be- have given her. ing, if he could raise himself nearer In the calmer emotions which to the aperture in the wall.
succeeded he sunk to sleep, and So soon as daylight appeared he probably enjoyed a salutary and mounted the stool, which enabled happy forgetfulness of many hours, him to reach the square hole in the in consequence of the exhaustion Wall; it was about a foot wide ; produced by his agonizing sorrow
and unavailing anger. When he have touched the most insensible awoke, all was in darkness, and it heart with wonder and pity. was only by slow degrees that the The vision vanished, but it had recollection of the past came over inspired hope, and after taking the his mind as truth ; for it appeared last of the coarse food left to him, as if he were awaking from a fear- he began again to sing, under the ful dream, until the hard mattress, full persuasion that his voice had and the damp stone wall that met reached the child, and caused her his outstretched hand, convinced to look out of a place not usually him of the dread reality of his mise- within her reach. He was not misrable condition.
taken--the beautiful girl re-appearHe wept long and bitterly-heed, and seemed by her motions to then prayed fervently, as one who cheer him ; she indeed spoke with has hope only in God, and by de- earnest kindness, but he could grees his mind became more com- scarcely catch her words, and the posed, and the tenderness of an language was unknown; and this humble and trusting spirit suc- time she vanished much more ceeded to terror and despair. The quickly than before, but not until grey light of morning penetrated she had again crossed herself, and his cell, and he hailed it by once lifted up her little hand to heaven, more singing the matin hymn ; and as if in assurance of assistance. so fully were his feelings recalled But how would that assistance by this holy exercise to the home reach him, and when would it arof his youth, that he afterwards rive? The pains of hunger were thought his voice, which was singu- now added to those of anxiety ; it larly sweet and powerful, had never was become impossible to sing, or rolled forth so rich a volume of me- to sleep, and the last glimmerings lody as in that solitary dungeon. of day fell upon him in the very .
When the beams of the sun pour- gloom of despair. ed a fuller light into the aperture,
In the middle of the night again he sprang up, and, mounting as be- a faint plashing was heard, and, fore, looked out to meet them. To exerting all his remaining strength, bis astonishment and awe, precisely he uttered a loud but tremulous opposite to him was a female face adjuration. In a moment he became of such exquisite beauty and ange- sensible that a boat had stopped at lic character, that it was no wonder the low door ; its bolts were speeif for a moment he believed the Vir- dily withdrawn-it opened--a dark gin herself had appeared to con- lantern was thrust within, and in sole him. Involuntarily he made another moment two human faces the sign of the cross on his fore- appeared, and stream of cold but bead, but not for an instant did he welcome air rushed into the close withdraw his riveted eyes from the cell. bright vision before him, which, to But were these men liberators or his unspeakable satisfaction, repeat- murderers ?-In a few minutes ed the same holy sign, raising a Raymondo was bound, gagged, and small delicate hand, and shaking carried forth—he was placed on the from an ivory brow clustering curls bottom of a low boat, an old sail of the palest flaxen. He now saw was thrown over his face, and he that a lovely girl, about ten years was rowed away he knew not whiold, was the witness of his captivity, ther. and he held up his hands in sup At length it was plain that they plication ; but such was his agita- had reached a ship, for he was raistion that he was unable to speak, ed, and conveyed on board, where save by those expressive features, his fetters were removed and his which, in such a moment, must power of speech restored, and he
lost not a moment in expostulating to release him until the ship should with the man who appeared to be be far out at sea. The breeze, the commander on the treatment he' however, still set against them. had experienced, and demanding, About nine o'clock he was aware of in the name of his country, justice considerable commotion on deck, from the land which he had visited. and, as every change was of mo
“Men are wanted for the service ment to him, he listened with the of our East India Company ; you most painful and intense interest, are destined to that duty-' tis of no under the idea that fresh persons use complaining.”
had arrived on board. He conjecThe sang-froid, the utter heart- tured rightly—his little, unknown lessness, with which these words friend had been true to her silent were uttered, roused all the blood promise. In a few minutes he was in Raymondo's veins, in spite of his brought on deck and resigned into reduced state ; nevertheless, he so the hands of a person, apparently of far controlled his rage as to appeal authority, who was accompanied by from the justice which did not exist two legal officers. to the cupidity which probably A few words from this gentleman might--be offered to pay a large explained his late, and present, situsum for his ransom, declared his ation. He had been beguiled for utter incapability of ever becoming the purpose of being impressed, a sailor or laboring as a colonist, as stated, into the service of the and finally protested that he would East India Company, at that time die rather than submit to the slave- forming a settlement in one of the ry thus infamously imposed upon islands off the coast of Africa, to him.
which, as being reported savage A single glance to his surround- and unhealthy, the Dutch had an ing myrmidons from their chief suf- insuperable objection, in ficed to refasten the bonds of the quence of which these illegal means captive, who was now hurried to had been resorted to. The sound the hold, and left in a state scarcely of his voice, whilst singing the better than that from which he had morning hymn, at the usual hour, been taken ; and such were the had induced the daughter of a manew transports of sorrow and fury gistrate to climb to a place in her which now overwhelmed him, that father's premises to listen ; there he afterwards considered himself to she saw him, and, perceiving he have been for several hours in a was a Catholic, she informed her state of phrenzy. Some time after father, who was himself of that faith, he had ceased to rave, and believed and who promised her to inquire himself to be dying, he heard one concerning the supposed prisoner ; sailor remark to another, “that a but this he could not do until the breeze sprung up at midnight which following day. Meanwhile poor would prevent their getting out at Raymondo had been removed, and daybreak, as they had proposed ;" it was with great difficulty that he in consequence of which, a ray of had effected his generous purpose. hope once more broke on his mind, “And now, sir,” added he, “I He condescended to ask for water, will conduct you to my own house, and when food was offered he took and assist in discovering the wretchit, and bore without further resent- es who entrapped you ; but I must ment the sneers and coarse raillery not disguise that they will probably with which it was accompanied. be secreted before now, that they
The fever of solicitude denied are supported by persons in power, him that repose which he so greatly and that a further residence in Rotneeded, especially when he found terdam will be unsafe for you." that every preparation was made for “Sir, I can only thank you, and sailing, and that it was not intended entreat you to add one favor more