Page:Idalia, by 'Ouida'.djvu/214

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thought still—he would see her again! With the early dawn, while the sound of the drums was rolling through the mists, as they heralded the Commander of the Faithful going to prayer, he was plunging into the grey depths of the Bosphorus: sleep beyond his bidding. He knew that for hours yet he could not go to her, but he watched the sun in intolerable impatience for it to travel faster on its way; he walked alone to and fro the silent shore in a dream that was filled with her memory, and dead to all else. He did not pause to analyse what he felt, not even to wonder at it; his life was launched on the tempestuous sea of passion, and he lived in a trance of feverish intoxication, restless pain, and sweet idolatry. What avail how great had been his strength before? It only served to fling him down in more utter captivity now.

Far sooner than ceremony would have allowed him, he rode down the same path by which he had pursued the Greek the night before; but of him he had no more thought than if he were blotted from his life, when once more he looked upon her;—a woman fitted for a throne.

She did not give him her hand, but she smiled, that smile which gave its light to her eyes yet more