Her very dreams, too, were filled with this strange new unrest, and she was continually wakeful at night—she who in former days fell asleep the instant her head touched the pillow, and enjoyed eight hours’ dreamless slumber as regularly as clock-work.
It was the same again to-night. After several hours of fitful dreaming, Sahwah wakened, and in her half-consciousness there lingered an impression of eyes staring intently at her and a dream of being back in the railway train on the way to Nyoda’s. The spell of the dream left her and she lay awake a long time, unaccountably happy, mysteriously sad, and with no desire to sleep.
Through the wide open window the moon poured in the fullness of its late glory and by and by Sahwah slipped from her bed and went over to the window, and, leaning her arms on the sill, sat looking out on the magic world. Below her the garden lay bathed in silver, with intense velvety black shadows, with only the faintest sigh of a breeze stirring the leaves. Far across in the valley she could see the roofs of the town shining white in the moonlight, and they seemed to be part of a magic city in which she now dwelt, far more real than the daytime town of familiar things. For a long time she leaned out over the sill, rapt and dreaming, unconscious of time, forgetful of the companions of her days, intoxicated by the moonlight until her blood raced madly through her veins and she was filled with an intense desire to go out and dance in the garden and flit in and out among the trees like a moon sprite.
Then, without warning, the strange, whimsical mood passed, and Sahwah was her old self again, the old alert, wide-awake self of former days, staring with concentrated attention at a figure which was moving rapidly through the garden. It had come from around the side of the house and was going toward the stable. Fully wide awake, Sahwah leaned farther over the sill and watched. The figure emerged from the great shadows of the elm trees into the glaring moonlight. With a start of surprise Sahwah saw that it was Veronica, fully dressed and with a cloak thrown about her shoulders. Before Sahwah had recovered herself sufficiently to call to her, Veronica had passed through the gate into the stable yard and was lost in the shadows of the high barn.
“Whatever can she want out there?” thought Sahwah, with visions of Kaiser Bill loose and on a rampage. But there were no disturbing sounds anywhere; Kaiser Bill was not out. Veronica did not go into the barn; she went around behind it and struck into the path that led down the hill to the carriage road below. The path was bathed in moonlight for a good part of its length; Veronica was plainly visible as she ran lightly along, and Sahwah watched wonderingly. Sahwah was very far sighted, and constant practice in focusing on distant objects enabled her to distinguish plainly things quite far away. Down at the bottom of the hill, where the path met the road, Sahwah saw Veronica come to a standstill and look about her for a few moments; then a man appeared in the road and together he and Veronica moved forward and vanished into the shadows that lay beyond.