> The midnight clock has toll'd; and hark, the bell Of Death beats slow! hear_e the note profound? It pauses now; and now, with rising knell, Flings to th_ollow gale its sullen sound.
When Montoni was informed of the death of his wife, and considered that sh_ad died without giving him the signature so necessary to the accomplishmen_f his wishes, no sense of decency restrained the expression of hi_esentment. Emily anxiously avoided his presence, and watched, during two day_nd two nights, with little intermission, by the corpse of her late aunt. He_ind deeply impressed with the unhappy fate of this object, she forgot all he_aults, her unjust and imperious conduct to herself; and, remembering only he_ufferings, thought of her only with tender compassion. Sometimes, however, she could not avoid musing upon the strange infatuation that had proved s_atal to her aunt, and had involved herself in a labyrinth of misfortune, fro_hich she saw no means of escaping,—the marriage with Montoni. But, when sh_onsidered this circumstance, it was 'more in sorrow than in anger,'—more fo_he purpose of indulging lamentation, than reproach.
In her pious cares she was not disturbed by Montoni, who not only avoided th_hamber, where the remains of his wife were laid, but that part of the castl_djoining to it, as if he had apprehended a contagion in death. He seemed t_ave given no orders respecting the funeral, and Emily began to fear he mean_o offer a new insult to the memory of Madame Montoni; but from thi_pprehension she was relieved, when, on the evening of the second day, Annett_nformed her, that the interment was to take place that night. She knew, tha_ontoni would not attend; and it was so very grievous to her to think that th_emains of her unfortunate aunt would pass to the grave without one relative, or friend to pay them the last decent rites, that she determined to b_eterred by no considerations for herself, from observing this duty. She woul_therwise have shrunk from the circumstance of following them to the col_ault, to which they were to be carried by men, whose air and countenance_eemed to stamp them for murderers, at the midnight hour of silence an_rivacy, which Montoni had chosen for committing, if possible, to oblivion th_eliques of a woman, whom his harsh conduct had, at least, contributed t_estroy.
Emily, shuddering with emotions of horror and grief, assisted by Annette, prepared the corpse for interment; and, having wrapt it in cerements, an_overed it with a winding-sheet, they watched beside it, till past midnight, when they heard the approaching footsteps of the men, who were to lay it i_ts earthy bed. It was with difficulty, that Emily overcame her emotion, when, the door of the chamber being thrown open, their gloomy countenances were see_y the glare of the torch they carried, and two of them, without speaking, lifted the body on their shoulders, while the third preceding them with th_ight, descended through the castle towards the grave, which was in the lowe_ault of the chapel within the castle walls.
They had to cross two courts, towards the east wing of the castle, which, adjoining the chapel, was, like it, in ruins: but the silence and gloom o_hese courts had now little power over Emily's mind, occupied as it was, wit_ore mournful ideas; and she scarcely heard the low and dismal hooting of th_ight-birds, that roosted among the ivyed battlements of the ruin, o_erceived the still flittings of the bat, which frequently crossed her way.
But, when, having entered the chapel, and passed between the moulderin_illars of the aisles, the bearers stopped at a flight of steps, that led dow_o a low arched door, and, their comrade having descended to unlock it, sh_aw imperfectly the gloomy abyss beyond;—saw the corpse of her aunt carrie_own these steps, and the ruffian-like figure, that stood with a torch at th_ottom to receive it—all her fortitude was lost in emotions of inexpressibl_rief and terror. She turned to lean upon Annette, who was cold and tremblin_ike herself, and she lingered so long on the summit of the flight, that th_leam of the torch began to die away on the pillars of the chapel, and the me_ere almost beyond her view. Then, the gloom around her awakening other fears, and a sense of what she considered to be her duty overcoming her reluctance, she descended to the vaults, following the echo of footsteps and the fain_ay, that pierced the darkness, till the harsh grating of a distant door, tha_as opened to receive the corpse, again appalled her.
After the pause of a moment, she went on, and, as she entered the vaults, sa_etween the arches, at some distance, the men lay down the body near the edg_f an open grave, where stood another of Montoni's men and a priest, whom sh_id not observe, till he began the burial service; then, lifting her eyes fro_he ground, she saw the venerable figure of the friar, and heard him in a lo_oice, equally solemn and affecting, perform the service for the dead. At th_oment, in which they let down the body into the earth, the scene was such a_nly the dark pencil of a Domenichino, perhaps, could have done justice to.
The fierce features and wild dress of the condottieri, bending with thei_orches over the grave, into which the corpse was descending, were contraste_y the venerable figure of the monk, wrapt in long black garments, his cow_hrown back from his pale face, on which the light gleaming strongly shewe_he lines of affliction softened by piety, and the few grey locks, which tim_ad spared on his temples: while, beside him, stood the softer form of Emily, who leaned for support upon Annette; her face half averted, and shaded by _hin veil, that fell over her figure; and her mild and beautiful countenanc_ixed in grief so solemn as admitted not of tears, while she thus sa_ommitted untimely to the earth her last relative and friend. The gleams, thrown between the arches of the vaults, where, here and there, the broke_round marked the spots in which other bodies had been recently interred, an_he general obscurity beyond were circumstances, that alone would have led o_he imagination of a spectator to scenes more horrible, than even that, whic_as pictured at the grave of the misguided and unfortunate Madame Montoni.
When the service was over, the friar regarded Emily with attention an_urprise, and looked as if he wished to speak to her, but was restrained b_he presence of the condottieri, who, as they now led the way to the courts, amused themselves with jokes upon his holy order, which he endured in silence, demanding only to be conducted safely to his convent, and to which Emil_istened with concern and even horror. When they reached the court, the mon_ave her his blessing, and, after a lingering look of pity, turned away to th_ortal, whither one of the men carried a torch; while Annette, lightin_nother, preceded Emily to her apartment. The appearance of the friar and th_xpression of tender compassion, with which he had regarded her, ha_nterested Emily, who, though it was at her earnest supplication, that Monton_ad consented to allow a priest to perform the last rites for his decease_ife, knew nothing concerning this person, till Annette now informed her, tha_e belonged to a monastery, situated among the mountains at a few mile_istance. The Superior, who regarded Montoni and his associates, not only wit_version, but with terror, had probably feared to offend him by refusing hi_equest, and had, therefore, ordered a monk to officiate at the funeral, who, with the meek spirit of a christian, had overcome his reluctance to enter th_alls of such a castle, by the wish of performing what he considered to be hi_uty, and, as the chapel was built on consecrated ground, had not objected t_ommit to it the remains of the late unhappy Madame Montoni.
Several days passed with Emily in total seclusion, and in a state of min_artaking both of terror for herself, and grief for the departed. She, a_ength, determined to make other efforts to persuade Montoni to permit he_eturn to France. Why he should wish to detain her, she could scarcely dare t_onjecture; but it was too certain that he did so, and the absolute refusal h_ad formerly given to her departure allowed her little hope, that he would no_onsent to it. But the horror, which his presence inspired, made her defer, from day to day, the mention of this subject; and at last she was awakene_rom her inactivity only by a message from him, desiring her attendance at _ertain hour. She began to hope he meant to resign, now that her aunt was n_ore, the authority he had usurped over her; till she recollected, that th_states, which had occasioned so much contention, were now hers, and she the_eared Montoni was about to employ some stratagem for obtaining them, and tha_e would detain her his prisoner, till he succeeded. This thought, instead o_vercoming her with despondency, roused all the latent powers of her fortitud_nto action; and the property, which she would willingly have resigned t_ecure the peace of her aunt, she resolved, that no common sufferings of he_wn should ever compel her to give to Montoni. For Valancourt's sake also sh_etermined to preserve these estates, since they would afford that competency, by which she hoped to secure the comfort of their future lives. As she though_f this, she indulged the tenderness of tears, and anticipated the delight o_hat moment, when, with affectionate generosity, she might tell him they wer_is own. She saw the smile, that lighted up his features—the affectionat_egard, which spoke at once his joy and thanks; and, at this instant, sh_elieved she could brave any suffering, which the evil spirit of Montoni migh_e preparing for her. Remembering then, for the first time since her aunt'_eath, the papers relative to the estates in question, she determined t_earch for them, as soon as her interview with Montoni was over.
With these resolutions she met him at the appointed time, and waited to hea_is intention before she renewed her request. With him were Orsino and anothe_fficer, and both were standing near a table, covered with papers, which h_ppeared to be examining.
'I sent for you, Emily,' said Montoni, raising his head, 'that you might be _itness in some business, which I am transacting with my friend Orsino. Al_hat is required of you will be to sign your name to this paper:' he then too_ne up, hurried unintelligibly over some lines, and, laying it before her o_he table, offered her a pen. She took it, and was going to write—when th_esign of Montoni came upon her mind like a flash of lightning; she trembled, let the pen fall, and refused to sign what she had not read. Montoni affecte_o laugh at her scruples, and, taking up the paper, again pretended to read; but Emily, who still trembled on perceiving her danger, and was astonished, that her own credulity had so nearly betrayed her, positively refused to sig_ny paper whatever. Montoni, for some time, persevered in affecting t_idicule this refusal; but, when he perceived by her steady perseverance, tha_he understood his design, he changed his manner, and bade her follow him t_nother room. There he told her, that he had been willing to spare himself an_er the trouble of useless contest, in an affair, where his will was justice, and where she should find it law; and had, therefore, endeavoured to persuade, rather than to compel, her to the practice of her duty.
'I, as the husband of the late Signora Montoni,' he added, 'am the heir of al_he possessed; the estates, therefore, which she refused to me in her life- time, can no longer be withheld, and, for your own sake, I would undeceiv_ou, respecting a foolish assertion she once made to you in my hearing—tha_hese estates would be yours, if she died without resigning them to me. Sh_new at that moment, she had no power to withhold them from me, after he_ecease; and I think you have more sense, than to provoke my resentment b_dvancing an unjust claim. I am not in the habit of flattering, and you will, therefore, receive, as sincere, the praise I bestow, when I say, that yo_ossess an understanding superior to that of your sex; and that you have non_f those contemptible foibles, that frequently mark the female character—suc_s avarice and the love of power, which latter makes women delight t_ontradict and to tease, when they cannot conquer. If I understand you_isposition and your mind, you hold in sovereign contempt these commo_ailings of your sex.'
Montoni paused; and Emily remained silent and expecting; for she knew him to_ell, to believe he would condescend to such flattery, unless he thought i_ould promote his own interest; and, though he had forborne to name vanit_mong the foibles of women, it was evident, that he considered it to be _redominant one, since he designed to sacrifice to hers the character an_nderstanding of her whole sex.
'Judging as I do,' resumed Montoni, 'I cannot believe you will oppose, wher_ou know you cannot conquer, or, indeed, that you would wish to conquer, or b_varicious of any property, when you have not justice on your side. I think i_roper, however, to acquaint you with the alternative. If you have a jus_pinion of the subject in question, you shall be allowed a safe conveyance t_rance, within a short period; but, if you are so unhappy as to be misled b_he late assertion of the Signora, you shall remain my prisoner, till you ar_onvinced of your error.'
Emily calmly said,
'I am not so ignorant, Signor, of the laws on this subject, as to be misled b_he assertion of any person. The law, in the present instance, gives me th_states in question, and my own hand shall never betray my right.'
'I have been mistaken in my opinion of you, it appears,' rejoined Montoni, sternly. 'You speak boldly, and presumptuously, upon a subject, which you d_ot understand. For once, I am willing to pardon the conceit of ignorance; th_eakness of your sex, too, from which, it seems, you are not exempt, claim_ome allowance; but, if you persist in this strain—you have every thing t_ear from my justice.'
'From your justice, Signor,' rejoined Emily, 'I have nothing to fear- -I hav_nly to hope.'
Montoni looked at her with vexation, and seemed considering what to say. '_ind that you are weak enough,' he resumed, 'to credit the idle assertion _lluded to! For your own sake I lament this; as to me, it is of littl_onsequence. Your credulity can punish only yourself; and I must pity th_eakness of mind, which leads you to so much suffering as you are compellin_e to prepare for you.'
'You may find, perhaps, Signor,' said Emily, with mild dignity, 'that th_trength of my mind is equal to the justice of my cause; and that I can endur_ith fortitude, when it is in resistance of oppression.'
'You speak like a heroine,' said Montoni, contemptuously; 'we shall se_hether you can suffer like one.'
Emily was silent, and he left the room.
Recollecting, that it was for Valancourt's sake she had thus resisted, she no_miled complacently upon the threatened sufferings, and retired to the spot, which her aunt had pointed out as the repository of the papers, relative t_he estates, where she found them as described; and, since she knew of n_etter place of concealment, than this, returned them, without examining thei_ontents, being fearful of discovery, while she should attempt a perusal.
To her own solitary chamber she once more returned, and there thought again o_he late conversation with Montoni, and of the evil she might expect fro_pposition to his will. But his power did not appear so terrible to he_magination, as it was wont to do: a sacred pride was in her heart, tha_aught it to swell against the pressure of injustice, and almost to glory i_he quiet sufferance of ills, in a cause, which had also the interest o_alancourt for its object. For the first time, she felt the full extent of he_wn superiority to Montoni, and despised the authority, which, till now, sh_ad only feared.
As she sat musing, a peal of laughter rose from the terrace, and, on going t_he casement, she saw, with inexpressible surprise, three ladies, dressed i_he gala habit of Venice, walking with several gentlemen below. She gazed i_n astonishment that made her remain at the window, regardless of bein_bserved, till the group passed under it; and, one of the strangers lookin_p, she perceived the features of Signora Livona, with whose manners she ha_een so much charmed, the day after her arrival at Venice, and who had bee_here introduced at the table of Montoni. This discovery occasioned her a_motion of doubtful joy; for it was matter of joy and comfort to know, that _erson, of a mind so gentle, as that of Signora Livona seemed to be, was nea_er; yet there was something so extraordinary in her being at this castle, circumstanced as it now was, and evidently, by the gaiety of her air, with he_wn consent, that a very painful surmise arose, concerning her character. Bu_he thought was so shocking to Emily, whose affection the fascinating manner_f the Signora had won, and appeared so improbable, when she remembered thes_anners, that she dismissed it almost instantly.
On Annette's appearance, however, she enquired, concerning these strangers; and the former was as eager to tell, as Emily was to learn.
'They are just come, ma'amselle,' said Annette, 'with two Signors from Venice, and I was glad to see such Christian faces once again.— But what can they mea_y coming here? They must surely be stark mad to come freely to such a plac_s this! Yet they do come freely, for they seem merry enough, I am sure.'
'They were taken prisoners, perhaps?' said Emily.
'Taken prisoners!' exclaimed Annette; 'no, indeed, ma'amselle, not they. _emember one of them very well at Venice: she came two or three times, to th_ignor's you know, ma'amselle, and it was said, but I did not believe a wor_f it—it was said, that the Signor liked her better than he should do. The_hy, says I, bring her to my lady? Very true, said Ludovico; but he looked a_f he knew more, too.'
Emily desired Annette would endeavour to learn who these ladies were, as wel_s all she could concerning them; and she then changed the subject, and spok_f distant France.
'Ah, ma'amselle! we shall never see it more!' said Annette, almost weeping.—'_ust come on my travels, forsooth!'
Emily tried to sooth and to cheer her, with a hope, in which she scarcel_erself indulged.
'How—how, ma'amselle, could you leave France, and leave Mons. Valancourt, too?' said Annette, sobbing. 'I—I—am sure, if Ludovico had been in France, _ould never have left it.'
'Why do you lament quitting France, then?' said Emily, trying to smile,
'since, if you had remained there, you would not have found Ludovico.'
'Ah, ma'amselle! I only wish I was out of this frightful castle, serving yo_n France, and I would care about nothing else!'
'Thank you, my good Annette, for your affectionate regard; the time will come, I hope, when you may remember the expression of that wish with pleasure.'
Annette departed on her business, and Emily sought to lose the sense of he_wn cares, in the visionary scenes of the poet; but she had again to lamen_he irresistible force of circumstances over the taste and powers of the mind; and that it requires a spirit at ease to be sensible even to the abstrac_leasures of pure intellect. The enthusiasm of genius, with all its picture_cenes, now appeared cold, and dim. As she mused upon the book before her, sh_nvoluntarily exclaimed, 'Are these, indeed, the passages, that have so ofte_iven me exquisite delight? Where did the charm exist?—Was it in my mind, o_n the imagination of the poet? It lived in each,' said she, pausing. 'But th_ire of the poet is vain, if the mind of his reader is not tempered like hi_wn, however it may be inferior to his in power.'
Emily would have pursued this train of thinking, because it relieved her fro_ore painful reflection, but she found again, that thought cannot always b_ontrolled by will; and hers returned to the consideration of her ow_ituation.
In the evening, not choosing to venture down to the ramparts, where she woul_e exposed to the rude gaze of Montoni's associates, she walked for air in th_allery, adjoining her chamber; on reaching the further end of which she hear_istant sounds of merriment and laughter. It was the wild uproar of riot, no_he cheering gaiety of tempered mirth; and seemed to come from that part o_he castle, where Montoni usually was. Such sounds, at this time, when he_unt had been so few days dead, particularly shocked her, consistent as the_ere with the late conduct of Montoni.
As she listened, she thought she distinguished female voices mingling with th_aughter, and this confirmed her worst surmise, concerning the character o_ignora Livona and her companions. It was evident, that they had not bee_rought hither by compulsion; and she beheld herself in the remote wilds o_he Apennine, surrounded by men, whom she considered to be little less tha_uffians, and their worst associates, amid scenes of vice, from which her sou_ecoiled in horror. It was at this moment, when the scenes of the present an_he future opened to her imagination, that the image of Valancourt failed i_ts influence, and her resolution shook with dread. She thought she understoo_ll the horrors, which Montoni was preparing for her, and shrunk from a_ncounter with such remorseless vengeance, as he could inflict. The dispute_states she now almost determined to yield at once, whenever he should agai_all upon her, that she might regain safety and freedom; but then, th_emembrance of Valancourt would steal to her heart, and plunge her into th_istractions of doubt.
She continued walking in the gallery, till evening threw its melanchol_wilight through the painted casements, and deepened the gloom of the oa_ainscoting around her; while the distant perspective of the corridor was s_uch obscured, as to be discernible only by the glimmering window, tha_erminated it.
Along the vaulted halls and passages below, peals of laughter echoed faintly, at intervals, to this remote part of the castle, and seemed to render th_ucceeding stillness more dreary. Emily, however, unwilling to return to he_ore forlorn chamber, whither Annette was not yet come, still paced th_allery. As she passed the door of the apartment, where she had once dared t_ift the veil, which discovered to her a spectacle so horrible, that she ha_ever after remembered it, but with emotions of indescribable awe, thi_emembrance suddenly recurred. It now brought with it reflections mor_errible, than it had yet done, which the late conduct of Montoni occasioned; and, hastening to quit the gallery, while she had power to do so, she heard _udden step behind her.—It might be that of Annette; but, turning fearfully t_ook, she saw, through the gloom, a tall figure following her, and all th_orrors of that chamber rushed upon her mind. In the next moment, she foun_erself clasped in the arms of some person, and heard a deep voice murmur i_er ear.
When she had power to speak, or to distinguish articulated sounds, sh_emanded who detained her.
'It is I,' replied the voice—'Why are you thus alarmed?'
She looked on the face of the person who spoke, but the feeble light, tha_leamed through the high casement at the end of the gallery, did not permi_er to distinguish the features.
'Whoever you are,' said Emily, in a trembling voice, 'for heaven's sake let m_o!'
'My charming Emily,' said the man, 'why will you shut yourself up in thi_bscure place, when there is so much gaiety below? Return with me to the ceda_arlour, where you will be the fairest ornament of the party;—you shall no_epent the exchange.'
Emily disdained to reply, and still endeavoured to liberate herself.
'Promise, that you will come,' he continued, 'and I will release yo_mmediately; but first give me a reward for so doing.'
'Who are you?' demanded Emily, in a tone of mingled terror and indignation, while she still struggled for liberty—'who are you, that have the cruelty thu_o insult me?'
'Why call me cruel?' said the man, 'I would remove you from this drear_olitude to a merry party below. Do you not know me?'
Emily now faintly remembered, that he was one of the officers who were wit_ontoni when she attended him in the morning. 'I thank you for the kindness o_our intention,' she replied, without appearing to understand him, 'but I wis_or nothing so much as that you would leave me.'
'Charming Emily!' said he, 'give up this foolish whim for solitude, and com_ith me to the company, and eclipse the beauties who make part of it; you, only, are worthy of my love.' He attempted to kiss her hand, but the stron_mpulse of her indignation gave her power to liberate herself, and she fle_owards the chamber. She closed the door, before he reached it, having secure_hich, she sunk in a chair, overcome by terror and by the exertion she ha_ade, while she heard his voice, and his attempts to open the door, withou_aving the power to raise herself. At length, she perceived him depart, an_ad remained, listening, for a considerable time, and was somewhat revived b_ot hearing any sound, when suddenly she remembered the door of the privat_tair-case, and that he might enter that way, since it was fastened only o_he other side. She then employed herself in endeavouring to secure it, in th_anner she had formerly done. It appeared to her, that Montoni had alread_ommenced his scheme of vengeance, by withdrawing from her his protection, an_he repented of the rashness, that had made her brave the power of such a man.
To retain the estates seemed to be now utterly impossible, and to preserve he_ife, perhaps her honour, she resolved, if she should escape the horrors o_his night, to give up all claims to the estates, on the morrow, provide_ontoni would suffer her to depart from Udolpho.
When she had come to this decision, her mind became more composed, though sh_till anxiously listened, and often started at ideal sounds, that appeared t_ssue from the stair-case.
Having sat in darkness for some hours, during all which time Annette did no_ppear, she began to have serious apprehensions for her; but, not daring t_enture down into the castle, was compelled to remain in uncertainty, as t_he cause of this unusual absence.
Emily often stole to the stair-case door, to listen if any step approached, but still no sound alarmed her: determining, however, to watch, during th_ight, she once more rested on her dark and desolate couch, and bathed th_illow with innocent tears. She thought of her deceased parents and then o_he absent Valancourt, and frequently called upon their names; for th_rofound stillness, that now reigned, was propitious to the musing sorrow o_er mind.
While she thus remained, her ear suddenly caught the notes of distant music, to which she listened attentively, and, soon perceiving this to be th_nstrument she had formerly heard at midnight, she rose, and stepped softly t_he casement, to which the sounds appeared to come from a lower room.
In a few moments, their soft melody was accompanied by a voice so full o_athos, that it evidently sang not of imaginary sorrows. Its sweet an_eculiar tones she thought she had somewhere heard before; yet, if this wa_ot fancy, it was, at most, a very faint recollection. It stole over her mind, amidst the anguish of her present suffering, like a celestial strain, soothing, and re-assuring her;—'Pleasant as the gale of spring, that sighs o_he hunter's ear, when he awakens from dreams of joy, and has heard the musi_f the spirits of the hill.'[](footnotes.xml#footnote_2) But her emotio_an scarcely be imagined, when she heard sung, with the taste and simplicit_f true feeling, one of the popular airs of her native province, to which sh_ad so often listened with delight, when a child, and which she had so ofte_eard her father repeat! To this well-known song, never, till now, heard bu_n her native country, her heart melted, while the memory of past time_eturned. The pleasant, peaceful scenes of Gascony, the tenderness an_oodness of her parents, the taste and simplicity of her former life—all ros_o her fancy, and formed a picture, so sweet and glowing, so strikingl_ontrasted with the scenes, the characters and the dangers, which no_urrounded her—that her mind could not bear to pause upon the retrospect, an_hrunk at the acuteness of its own sufferings. Her sighs were deep an_onvulsed; she could no longer listen to the strain, that had so often charme_er to tranquillity, and she withdrew from the casement to a remote part o_he chamber. But she was not yet beyond the reach of the music; she heard th_easure change, and the succeeding air called her again to the window, for sh_mmediately recollected it to be the same she had formerly heard in th_ishing-house in Gascony. Assisted, perhaps, by the mystery, which had the_ccompanied this strain, it had made so deep an impression on her memory, tha_he had never since entirely forgotten it; and the manner, in which it was no_ung, convinced her, however unaccountable the circumstances appeared, tha_his was the same voice she had then heard. Surprise soon yielded to othe_motions; a thought darted, like lightning, upon her mind, which discovered _rain of hopes, that revived all her spirits. Yet these hopes were so new, s_nexpected, so astonishing, that she did not dare to trust, though she coul_ot resolve to discourage them. She sat down by the casement, breathless, an_vercome with the alternate emotions of hope and fear; then rose again, leane_rom the window, that she might catch a nearer sound, listened, now doubtin_nd then believing, softly exclaimed the name of Valancourt, and then sun_gain into the chair. Yes, it was possible, that Valancourt was near her, an_he recollected circumstances, which induced her to believe it was his voic_he had just heard. She remembered he had more than once said that th_ishing-house, where she had formerly listened to this voice and air, an_here she had seen pencilled sonnets, addressed to herself, had been hi_avourite haunt, before he had been made known to her; there, too, she ha_erself unexpectedly met him. It appeared, from these circumstances, more tha_robable, that he was the musician, who had formerly charmed her attention, and the author of the lines, which had expressed such tender admiration;—wh_lse, indeed, could it be? She was unable, at that time, to form a conjecture, as to the writer, but, since her acquaintance with Valancourt, whenever he ha_entioned the fishing-house to have been known to him, she had not scrupled t_elieve that he was the author of the sonnets. As these considerations passe_ver her mind, joy, fear and tenderness contended at her heart; she leane_gain from the casement to catch the sounds, which might confirm, or destro_er hope, though she did not recollect to have ever heard him sing; but th_oice, and the instrument, now ceased. She considered for a moment whether sh_hould venture to speak: then, not choosing, lest it should be he, to mentio_is name, and yet too much interested to neglect the opportunity of enquiring, she called from the casement, 'Is that song from Gascony?' Her anxiou_ttention was not cheered by any reply; every thing remained silent. He_mpatience increasing with her fears, she repeated the question; but still n_ound was heard, except the sighings of the wind among the battlements above; and she endeavoured to console herself with a belief, that the stranger, whoever he was, had retired, before she had spoken, beyond the reach of he_oice, which, it appeared certain, had Valancourt heard and recognized, h_ould instantly have replied to. Presently, however, she considered, that _otive of prudence, and not an accidental removal, might occasion his silence; but the surmise, that led to this reflection, suddenly changed her hope an_oy to terror and grief; for, if Valancourt were in the castle, it was to_robable, that he was here a prisoner, taken with some of his countrymen, man_f whom were at that time engaged in the wars of Italy, or intercepted in som_ttempt to reach her. Had he even recollected Emily's voice, he would hav_eared, in these circumstances, to reply to it, in the presence of the men, who guarded his prison. What so lately she had eagerly hoped she now believe_he dreaded;— dreaded to know, that Valancourt was near her; and, while sh_as anxious to be relieved from her apprehension for his safety, she still wa_nconscious, that a hope of soon seeing him, struggled with the fear. Sh_emained listening at the casement, till the air began to freshen, and on_igh mountain in the east to glimmer with the morning; when, wearied wit_nxiety, she retired to her couch, where she found it utterly impossible t_leep, for joy, tenderness, doubt and apprehension, distracted her during th_hole night. Now she rose from the couch, and opened the casement to listen; then she would pace the room with impatient steps, and, at length, return wit_espondence to her pillow. Never did hours appear to move so heavily, as thos_f this anxious night; after which she hoped that Annette might appear, an_onclude her present state of torturing suspense.