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CHANDRASHEKHAR.

condition for some time. She began to muse again, “Another day I held the knife in the same way on the breast of the sleeping Foster. I could not kill him—I had not the courage. ‘To-day also I do not find courage for self-destruction. This knife could tame the fierce Englishman; he knew that if he had entered my chamber, this knife would have killed either him or me. The terror of it could hold him back, but how is it that my savage heart quails before it now? Shall I die? No, not to-day. If I am to die at all, I will go to Vedagram first, and then die. There I will tell Sundari that I have lost my caste, I have disgraced my family name, but I have not lost my virtue, and then I will die. But him—he who is my husband——what shall I tell him before my death? I cannot think of anything. The very idea is like the sting of a hundred thousand scorpions, and sends a fire coursing through every vein in my body. I am not worthy of him, and that is why I left him. Has it pained him? Is he sorry for it? No, I am nothing to him—his manuscripts are his all—he cannot grieve for me. Oh, how fondly I wish some one would tell me how he is and what he is doing now! I never loved him and never shall, yet if I have hurt him in any way, then the cargo of my sins becomes heavier still. ‘One other matter I should like to tell him very much, but Foster is dead, who will bear testimony to it, who will believe my word?’

Shaibalini laid herself down on her bed and remained buried in thoughts of a kindred nature. Towards morning sleep came to her. In that sleep she saw diverse evil dreams. Day had advanced when she woke. The sun had been streaming into the room through the open casement. She opened her eyes, and what she saw before her amazed and staggered her, and held her spell-bound—she saw Chandrashekhar.