What are you asking?... There is something there of which we have no right to speak, do you understand?... There is a life there that does not belong to our poor life, and which love has no right to approach except in silence.... We are here, like two beggars in rags, when I think of it.... Go! go!... I could tell you things....
Palomides!... What is the matter?
Go! go!... I have seen tears that came from further
than the eyes.... There is something else....
It may be, nevertheless, that we are right ... but
how I regret being right so, my God!... Go!...
I will tell you to-morrow ... to-morrow ... to-morrow....
SCENE III.—A corridor before the apartment
of ALLADINE. Enter
ASTOLAINE and the SISTERS OF PALOMIDES.
The horses wait in the forest, but Palomides will not flee; and yet your lives and his are in danger. I do not know my poor father any longer. He has a fixed idea that troubles his reason. This is the third day I have followed him step by step, hiding myself behind the pillars and the walls, for he suffers no one to companion him. To-day, as the other days, and from the first gleams of the morning he has gone wandering through the corridors and halls of the palace, and along the moats and ramparts, shaking the great golden keys he has had made and singing at the top of his voice the strange song whose refrain, Go follow what your eyes have seen, has perhaps pierced even to the depths of your chambers. I have concealed from you till now all that has come to pass, because such things must not be spoken of without reason. He must have shut up Alladine in this apartment, but no one knows what he has done with her. I have listened at the doors every night and whenever he has been away a moment, but I have never heard any noise in the room.... Do you hear anything?
ONE OF THE SISTERS OF PALOMIDES.
No; I hear only the murmur of the air passing through the little chinks of the wood....
It seems to me, when I listen hard, that I hear the great pendulum of the clock.
A THIRD SISTER.
But what is this little Alladine, then, and why does he bear such ill-will to her?
It is a little Greek slave that came from the heart of Arcady.... He bears her no ill-will, but ... Do you hear?—It is my father.... [Singing heard in the distance.] Hide yourselves behind the pillars ... He will have no one pass by this corridor.—[They hide.]
Enter ABLAMORE, singing and shaking a bunch of great keys.