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[He steps forward to take it. A hideous light ! his torch lay on the Dost thou dare receive it?
ground; For I have sworn by Alla and the Pro- Its flame burnt dimly o'er a chasm's brink: phet,
I spake ; and whilst I spake, a feeble No tear shall dim these eyes, this
groan woman's heart
Came from that chasm ! it was his last ! Shall heave no groan, till I have seen
his death-groan ! that sword
Comfort her, Alla. Wet with the life-blood of the son of Alhadra. I stood in unimaginable Valdez !
trance Ordonio was your chieftain's murderer! And agony that cannot be remembered, Naomi.
He dies, by Alla! Listening with horrid hope to hear a All (kneeling).
By Alla ! Alha Ira. This night your chieftain But I had heard his last : my husband's armed himself,
death-groan ! And hurried from me. But I followed Naomi.
Haste ! let us onward. him
Alhadra. I looked far down the pitAt distance, till I saw him enter—there! My sight was bounded by a jutting fragNaomi.
The cavern ?
ment : Alhadra. Yes, the mouth of yonder And it was stained with blood. Then cavern.
first I shrieked, After a while I saw the son of Valdez My eye-balls burnt, my brain grew hot Rush by with flaring torch ; he likewise
as fire, entered.
And all the hanging drops of the wet roof There was another and a longer pause ; Turned into blood—I saw them turn to And once, methought I heard the clash
blood ! of swords !
And I was leaping wildly down the chasm, And soon the son of Valdez re-appeared : When on the farther brink I saw his He flung his torch towards the moon in
And it said, Vengeance !-Curses on my And seemed as he were mirthful ! I
tongue ! stood listening,
The moon hath moved in Heaven, and Impatient for the footsteps of my hus
I am here, band !
And he hath not had vengeance! Isidore! Naomi. Thou called'st him?
Spirit of Isidore! thy murderer lives! Alhadra. I crept into the cavern- Away ! away! 'Twas dark and very silent.
Away! away! [Then wildly.
[She rushes off, all following her. What said'st thou ? No! no! I did not dare call, Isidore, Lest I should hear no answer ! A brief
ACT V while,
SCENE I Belike, I lost all thought and memory
A Dungeon. Of that for which I came ! After that pause,
ALVAR (alone) rises slowly from a bed of O Heaven ! I heard a groan, and fol
reeds. lowed it :
69 Alvar. And this place my forefathers And yet another groan, which guided me
made for man ! Into a strange recess
and there was This is the process of our Love and light,
To each poor brother who offends against And life's best warmth still radiates from US
the heart Most innocent, perhaps — and what if
- and what if | Where love sits brooding, and an honest guilty ?
purpose. [Retires out of sight. Is this the only cure ? Merciful God !
Enter TERESA with a taper.
Teresa. It has chilled my very lifeHis energies roll back upon his heart,
my own voice scares me ; And stagnate and corrupt, till, chang'd! Yet when I hear it not I seem to lose to poison,
The substance of my beingmy strongest They break out on him, like a loathsome
Sends inwards but weak witness that I Then we call in our pampered mounte
am. banks :
I seek to cheat the echo.--How the half And this is their best cure ! uncomforted
sounds And friendless Solitude, Groaning and Blend with this strangled light! Is he Tears,
not hereAnd savage Faces, at the clanking hour,
[Looking round. Seen through the steam and vapours of O for one human face here—but to see his dungeon
One human face here to sustain me. By the lamp’s dismal twilight! So he Courage ! lies
It is but my own fear! The life within Circled with evil, till his very soul
me, Unmoulds its essence, hopelessly de- It sinks and wavers like this cone of formed
flame, By sights of evermore deformity !
Beyond which I scarce dare look onward !
[Shuddering: With other ministrations thou, O Nature! If I faint? If this inhuman den should be Healest thy wandering and distempered At once my death-bed and my burial child :
vault? Thou pourest on him thy soft influences, [Faintly screams as ALVAR emerges Thy sunny hues, fair forms, and breath
from the recess. ing sweets;
Alvar (rushes towards her, and catches Thy melodies of woods, and winds, and
her as she is falling). O gracious waters !
heaven ! it is, it is Teresa ! Till he relent, and can no more endure Shall I reveal myself? The sudden To be a jarring and a dissonant thing
50 Amid this general dance and minstrelsy; Of rapture will blow out this spark of life, But, bursting into tears, wins back his And Joy complete what Terror has begun. way,
O ye impetuous beatings here, be still ! His angry spirit healed and harmonized Teresa, best beloved ! pale, pale, and By the benignant touch of love and
Teresa ! my
Teresa ! I am chill and weary ! Yon rude bench Teresa (recovering, looks round wildly).
I heard a voice ; but often in my In that dark angle, the sole resting
I hear that voice ! and wake and tryBut the self-approving mind is its own light
To hear it waking ! but I never could
And 'tis so now-even so! Well ! he is Alvar.
Beloved Teresa ! dead
It told but half the truth. Olet this Murdered perhaps ! And I am faint,
portrait and feel
Tell all that Alvar lives that he is As if it were no painful thing to die !
here ! Alvar (eagerly). Believe it not, sweet Thy much deceived but ever faithful maid! Believe it not,
Alvar. Beloved woman! 'Twas a low imposture
[Takes her portrait from his neck, Framed by a guilty wretch.
and gives it her. Teresa (retires from him, and feebly Teresa (receiving the portrait). The supports herself against a pillar of
same — it is the same. Ah ! the dungeon). Ha ! Who art
Who art thou ? thou?
Nay I will call thee, ALVAR ! Alvar (exceedingly affected). Suborned
[She falls on his neck. by his brother
O joy unutterable ! Teresa. Didst thou murder him ? But hark ! a sound as of removing bars And dost thou now repent ? Poor At the dungeon's outer door. A brief, troubled man,
brief while I do forgive thee, and may Heaven Conceal thyself, my love! It is Ordonio. forgive thee!
For the honour of our race, for our dear Alvar. Ordonio-he
Teresa. If thou didst murder him- O for himself too (he is still my brother) His spirit ever at the throne of God Let me recall him to his nobler nature, Asks mercy for thee : prays for mercy That he may wake as from a dream of for thee,
murder ! With tears in Heaven !
O let me reconcile him to himself, Alvar. Alvar was not murdered. Open the sacred source of penitent tears, Be calm ! Be calm, sweet maid !
And be once more his own beloved Teresa (wildly). Nay, nay, but tell me!
Alvar. [A pause, then presses her forchead. Teresa. O my all virtuous Love! I O'tis lost again !
fear to leave thee This dull confused pain
With that obdurate man. [A pause, she gazes at ALVAR. Alvar. Thou dost not leave me !
Mysterious man ! But a brief while retire into the darkness : Methinks I can not fear thee: for thine O that my joy could spread its sunshine eye
round thee! Doth swim with love and pity- Well ! Teresa. The sound of thy voice shall Ordonio
be my music! Oh my foreboding heart ! And he
[Retiring, she returns hastily and suborned thee,
embracing ALVAR. And thou didst spare his life? Blessings Alvar ! my Alvar ! am I sure I hold shower on thee,
thee? As many as the drops twice counted o'er Is it no dream ? thee in my arms, my In the fond faithful heart of his Teresa !
[Exit. Alvar. I can endure no more. The
[A noise at the Dungeon door. It Moorish Sorcerer
opens, and ORDONIO enters, Exists but in the stain upon his face.
with a goblet in his hand. That Picture
Ordonio. Hail, potent wizard ! in my Teresa (advances towards hin). Ha ! speak on!
I poured forth a libation to old Pluto,
And as I brimmed the bowl, I thought There's poison in't-- which of us two on thee.
shall drink it?
139 Thou hast conspired against my life and For one of us must die ! honour,
Alvar. Whom dost thou think me? Hast tricked me foully ; yet I hate thee Ordonio. The accomplice and sworn not.
friend of Isidore. Why should I hate thee? this same world Alvar.
I know him not.
And yet methinks, I have heard the name 'Tis but a pool amid a storm of rain,
but lately. And we the air-bladders that course up Means he the husband of the Moorish and down,
woman? And joust and tilt in merry tournament ;
Isidore? Isidore? And when one bubble runs foul of another, Ordonio. Good ! good ! that Lie! by [Waving his hand to ALVAR.
heaven it has restored me. The weaker needs must break.
Now I am thy master !-Villain ! thou Alvar. I see thy heart !
shalt drink it, There is a frightful glitter in thine eye Or die a bitterer death. Which doth betray thee. Inly-tortured Alvar.
What strange solution man,
Hast thou found out to satisfy thy fears, This is the revelry of a drunken anguish, And drug them to unnatural sleep? Which fain would scoff away the pang [ALVAR takes the goblet, and throwof guilt,
ing it to the ground with stern And quell each human feeling.
contempt. Ordonio. Feeling ! feeling !
My master! The death of a man—the breaking of a
Ordonio. Thou mountebank ! bubble
Alvar. Mountebank and villain ! 'Tis true I cannot sob for such misfor- What then art thou ? For shame, put up tunes ;
thy sword !
151 But faintness, cold and hunger--curses on What boots a weapon in a withered me
arm ? If willingly I e'er inflicted them !
I fix mine eye upon thee, and thou Come, take the beverage ; this chill place
tremblest! demands it.
I speak, and fear and wonder crush thy [ORDONIO proffers the goblet.
rage, Alvar. Yon insect on the wall,
And turn it to a motionless distraction ! Which moves this way and that its Thou blind self-worshipper ! thy pride, hundred limbs,
thy cunning, Were it a toy of mere mechanic craft, Thy faith in universal villainy, It were an infinitely curious thing ! 130 : Thy shallow sophisms, thy pretended But it has life, Ordonio ! life, enjoyment ! And by the power of its miraculous will For all thy human brethren--out upon Wields all the complex movements of its
What have they done for thee? have they Unerringly to pleasurable ends !
given thee peace ?
160 Saw I that insect on this goblet's brim Cured thee of starting in thy sleep? or I would remove it with an anxious pity !
made Ordonio. What meanest thou ?
The darkness pleasant when thou wak'st Alvar. There's poison in the wine.
at midnight? Ordonio. Thou hast guessed right ; | Art happy when alone? Can’st walk by there's poison in the wine.
With even step and quiet cheerfulness? Methinks I know thee ! ha! my brain Yet, yet thou may'st be saved—
190 Ordonio (vacantly repeating the words). At its own dreams !---off-off, fantastic Saved? saved ?
shadow ! Alvar. One pang!
Alvar. I fain would tell thee what I Could I call up one pang of true Re
am, but dare not ! morse!
Ordonio. Cheat! villain ! traitor! what. Ordonio. He told me of the babes that
soever thou beprattled to him,
I fear thee, Man ! His fatherless little ones ! Remorse! Teresa (rushing out and falling on Remorse!
Alvar's neck). Ordonio ! 'tis thy Where got'st thou that fool's word ?
[ORDONIO with frantic wildness Can it give up the dead, or recompact
runs upon ALVAR with his A mangled body? mangled-dashed to
sword. TERESA flings heratoms !
self on ORDONIO and arrests Not all the blessings of an host of angels
his arin. Can blow away a desolate widow's curse !
Stop, madman, stop! And though thou spill thy heart's blood Alvar. Does then this thin disguise for atonement,
impenetrably It will not weigh against an orphan's Hide Alvar from thee? Toil and paintear !
ful wounds Alvar (almost overcome by his feelings). And long imprisonment in unwholesome But Alvar
dungeons, Ordonio. Ha ! it choaks thee in the Have marred perhaps all trait and lineathroat,
ment Even thee ; and yet I pray thee speak it Of what I was ! But chiefly, chiefly, out.
199 Still Alvar !--Alvar !--howlit in mine ear! My anguish for thy guilt ! Heap it like coals of fire upon my heart,
Ordonio— Brother! And shoot it hissing through my brain ! Nay, nay, thou shalt embrace me. Alvar.
Alas! Ordonio (drawing back, and gazing at That day when thou didst leap from off
Alvar with a countenance of at the rock
once awe and terror). Touch me Into the waves, and grasped thy sinking
not ! brother,
Touch not pollution, Alvar! I will die. And bore him to the strand ; then, son
[He attempts to fall on his sword, of Valdez,
ALVAR and TERESA prevent How sweet and musical the name of
Alvar. We will find means to save Then, then, Ordonio, he was dear to your honour. Live, thee,
Oh live, Ordonio! for our father's sake! And thou wert dear to him : heaven only Spare his
Spare his grey hairs ! knows
Teresa. And you may yet be happy. How very dear thou wert! Why did'st Ordonio. O horror! not a thousand thou hate him !
years in heaven O heaven ! how he would fall upon thy Could recompose this miserable heart, neck,
Or make it capable of one brief joy! And weep forgiveness !
Live ! Live! Why yes ! 'Twere well to Ordonio. Spirit of the dead ! live with you: