Page:Idalia, by 'Ouida'.djvu/216

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before her as a book;—she knew her power over a dauntless, loyal life: how would she use it?

She let her glance dwell on him for a moment, those lustrous changeful eyes, whose hue could never be told, calmly meeting the passion of his own: calmly reading and watching the type and the worth of this life, which through her was still amongst the living.

"Have you found no trace of your assassin?" she asked him carelessly. "They told me there were no signs of him on the shore last night."

"I forgot him! I have only, remembered that he brought me here."

"It is not many who would follow so generous a code as yours. You have a deathless memory for gratitude, a forgiving oblivion of injury."

"Hush! do not give me credit that is not mine. As for gratitude—it is not that only which has made my life know no memory save the memory of you!"

His voice trembled, the words escaped him involuntarily: he was scarcely conscious what he said. She bowed with that dignity which repulsed without rebuking the meaning of the words.

"You do me far too much honour. The little I did in common human charity merits, as I said