An Essence of the Dusk, 5th Edition eBook

F. W. Bain
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 56 pages of information about An Essence of the Dusk, 5th Edition.
sun.  And just in front of him there stood a little hut, buried in the blossom of the malati creeper.  And in its doorway was standing a young Brahman woman, with a pitcher on her head.  And she beckoned to him with a smile, and he looked, and lo! it was Natabhrukuti.  Then moved as if against his will, on feet that carried him towards her as it were of their own accord, he approached her.  And as he drew nearer, there came from that creeper a wave of perfume, resembling that of jasmine, but sweeter, and so pungent that it entered like fire into his soul.  And then she lifted the pitcher from her head, and set it down upon the ground, and caught him by the hand, and drew him within the hut.  And there she cast herself into his arms, whispering in his ear, very low, so as to caress it as she spoke with her lips:  My father is away, and now we are alone, and the day is all before us.  Come now, what shall I do for thy delight?  And she ran and shut the door; and then, taking from a chest rich clothes and splendid jewels, she began to put them on, saying as she did so:  See! am I becoming more fit to be thy queen?  And he watched her, stupefied, like one in a dream, and all the while she bathed him with intoxicating side glances shot like arrows from the bow of her arching brows.  And at last, she came slowly towards him, walking on tiptoe, and attitudinising, placing herself exactly in the posture in which he had seen her first among the poppies on the wall, with one hand on her hip.  And she said, lifting her brow, with a smile that stole his reason:  Now, then, the idol is ready for the devotee.  And at that moment the door opened, and an old Brahman entered through it.  And he said slowly:  Abandoned daughter, that hast forgot thy duty in thy passion for this King’s son, become what thou hast represented, an idol of stone on the wall of a ruined temple far away; and thou her guilty lover, fall into another birth, and be separated from thy guilty love.

And then, Aja heard no more.  The world whirled around him; the blackness of night closed over his soul; he uttered a terrible cry, and fell to the ground in a swoon.

VII.

And when he came to himself, he was back again among the poppies in the tamala wood.  And he was lying on the ground, with Natabhrukuti bending over him, holding him by the hand, with anxiety in her eyes.  And instantly he started up, and seizing his sword, stood gazing at her with stupefaction.  And he said to himself:  Am I dead or dreaming?  And what does it all mean?  Is it a delusion of the Creator, or a mirage and a madness of the desert, out of which I have never yet escaped at all?  Aye! beyond a doubt, I am wandering still in the waste of sand, raving mad, and dying; and haunted by phantoms that are the premonitors of approaching death.

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An Essence of the Dusk, 5th Edition from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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