“But mother,” said Veronica, looking with a wonder that was almost awe upon the peaceful countenance of the mother, “can you truly say that you have found peace and happiness, while you have no news from him, and do not know what dreadful tidings any minute may bring you?”
“Yes, Veronica, I can and I do say so,” answered Gertrude, and her face even without words would have borne witness to the truth of what she said. “I know that what ever comes to us, comes from God, and is for our good. But Veronica, we must put away all hatred and bitterness from our hearts; these feelings are all evil, and we must ask to be forgiven for them. Shall I go on with the prayer, where you left off, my child? Try to join with me; it will help you, dear.”
And Gertrude finished the Lord’s prayer.
Veronica sat silent for a time, and then rose and went to her own room. She could not sleep, but she had no inclination to seek relief for trouble in her sewing, as she had been accustomed to do. Gertrude’s words were working in her heart. How often had she said lately in the proud bitterness of her heart, “A fine truth indeed!
’Fortune stands ready,
full in sight,
He wins, who knows to grasp it right!’”
And now Gertrude had shown her that the words were true after all, and that she had herself grasped Happiness, the truest Fortune, even in the midst of a deep sorrow, greater even than Veronica’s own.
Sleeplessly for Veronica the hours of the night went by; but over and over again the mother’s words sounded in her ears, and she strove to quiet with them the trouble and unrest of her heart.
Man proposes, but god disposes.
Still no news came from Dietrich. Jost made many attempts to show Veronica how much he wished to win her favor. He often went to meet her, and he gave himself endless trouble to convince her of his attachment. He could not boast that he made himself of any use by going to meet her; for she was always accompanied by Blasi, who marched by her side with a triumphant air as if to say, “Jost can judge for himself who holds the place of honor here!” When Jost joined them, Veronica took care that Blasi should walk between herself and the intruder, and she neither said a word herself, nor seemed to hear what the others were saying. Jost grew pale with suppressed rage. Whenever at other times he met Blasi anywhere, he threw contemptuous words at him. If occasionally Blasi stepped into the Rehbock for a glass of beer, Jost would cry out,
“Oh ho, she allows it to-night, does she, you donkey of a servant? How will you look when she doesn’t want your services any longer, and gives you your dismissal? She is already beginning to soften towards me, but until she comes to me and begs me to hear her, I won’t listen to a word, nor pay the slightest attention to her.”