“Our young friend, peradventure, will be pleased to see her brothers and cousin without any delay, while Jupheena will accompany her father on an errand of business at the house of an officer nearby. Thou mayest inform thy brothers and cousin that we shall call and see them presently.”
Perreeza embraced the opportunity, and, thanking the officer with one of her peculiar smiles, hurried to their apartment.
“Back again, precious Perreeza!” cried Azariah, hastening to meet her. “And did our sister see the king’s officer and his young daughter, of whom Barzello spoke?”
“I did!” exclaimed his sister, while unusual joy beamed in her countenance.
“And from thy countenance I am prepared to judge that the interview has been a happy one,” said her cousin Daniel.
“Never was there a happier interview, cousin. The noble officer’s kindness is unbounded, and his daughter is one of the loveliest beings I ever beheld.”
“Perreeza, I trust, will not forget the kindness of Barzello, in the warmth of her gratitude to her new friend,” said Azariah.
“Never fear that, my dear brother. The remembrance of Barzello’s kindness is too deeply graven on Perreeza’s heart to be ever forgotten; and while I remain under the roof of the king’s officer, I shall daily become more and more deeply indebted to the kind Barzello.”
“It must be that through his kind interposition our beloved sister found so good a home,” said Mishael, “and if this officer, under whose roof she has found a shelter, partakes of the spirit of Barzello, her home must be a happy one. Perreeza, does he appear like unto our noble friend?”
“The very image of him!” said the sister, laughing heartily. “Now, brothers and cousin, let Perreeza undeceive you on this point. This noble officer, whose house is to be my future home, is none other than our own illustrious Barzello himself. This truth was made known to me in a way that well-nigh prostrated me. Oh, brothers, is not this delightful?”
“Praised be Jehovah!” broke from the lips of the youths of Judah.
“For conversation we have but a short time,” said Perreeza; “Barzello and his lovely Jupheena are below, and will be here in a few moments, and from hence I accompany them to their home. Hark ye! I hear their footsteps.”
Barzello, with a smiling countenance, entered the apartment, leading by the hand his beautiful daughter. Perreeza ran to meet her young companion, while the four youths were not wanting in appropriate obeisance to the noble officer; all of which was closely watched by the smiling young Chaldean maid.
“Have our young friends received any communications from any of the king’s officers since our last interview?”
“Thy servants have received no communication from any source, since the departure of their kind friend, about the ninth hour,” answered Daniel.
“To-morrow morning, peradventure, ye shall learn the pleasure of the king in regard to your future course; and I trust ye will find that our noble monarch is not wholly unmindful of your former rank and station in your own land.”