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IDALIA

an altar-piece for Monastica—would she like to see it? She assented—she has a voice as low and rich as music—and I led her to the chapel, and pointed to the Virgin's altar, where it hangs. She went forward—and I saw her start; she gave a stifled cry, and then stood silent. She could not but see that it was her own beauty. I let her stand awhile, for I thought she was agitated; then I went forward, and said to her, 'He who painted that picture, my daughter, when he left it with me, said, "If you ever see a woman whose portrait you recognise in it, she will he the woman to whom I first owed the rescue of my life. Tell her Fulke Erceldoune waits to pay his debt." My daughter, yon are she.' Her lips quivered a little though she answered me coldly. 'He said that? How could he have known?—how could he have remembered?' 'How well he remembered, my daughter,' I answered her, 'his painting says. Your words confess that you first saved this stranger's life; why conceal so noble an act of mercy?' She turned her eyes on mine, half mournfully, half haughtily. 'I had due reason. It was little that I did for this English traveller. My hound led me to him, and I found him, as I supposed, dying—left for dead, doubtless, by some forest brigands. I did what I could to revive him—