her face against his feet. Chandrashekhar lifted her up and seated her with the support of his body.
Shaibalini wept and loudly wept. she fell at Chandrashekhar’s feet and cried, “Tell me, what is to become of me now.”
“Why did you want to see me?” asked Chandrashekhar. Shaibalini dried her eyes and stanching her tears calmly said, “I think my days are numbered.” She shuddered; the dream came back to her. For a brief space she kept silent, the palm of her hand clapped on her forehead, and again went on, “I am sure, I shall not live long.” “ Before my death I felt a longing to see you once again. Who will believe it—and why? She who had gone astray and left her husband, how could she feel any longing to see that husband again?"
She ended with a bitter laugh of intense anguish.
“I don’t distrust your words,” said Chandrashekhar, “I know you were forcibly carried away?”
“That is not true; I came away with Foster out of my own free will. Before Foster attacked the house he had sent me word.”
Chandrashekhar dropped his head in shame. He gently laid her down again. Then he quietly got up, and while turning back he said in a soft and sweet voice, “Pursue your expiation for twelve years. If at the end of that time both of us happen to be alive, we shall meet again. Thus far now.”
“Sit down once more,” she appealed with folded hands. “Perhaps I am not destined to accomplish the expiation.” Again that dream came to her and again she appealed, “ Do sit down p1ease—let me look on you for a while.”
Chandra shekhar resumed his seat.