His arms were around her, and he kissed her. Griselda looked at him in wonder. She could not understand.
“Griselda,” he said, “thou art my wife. I have no other. This is thy daughter; her brother is my heir. Thine are they both. Take them again, and dream not that thou art bereft of thy children.”
When Griselda heard all this she fainted away in her great joy. When she woke again she called her children to her. Timidly they came, but soon they were caught close to her breast. While she fondled them, and kissed them, her hot tears of joy fell on their fair faces, and on their hair. Then she looked at Lord Walter, and said, “Death cannot harm me now, since thou lovest me still.” Then she turned back to the children.
“Oh tender, oh dear, oh little ones, my children! Your sorrowful mother thought that cruel dogs or other fearsome beasts had torn you! but God has kept you safe.”
Once again the ladies of the court dressed Griselda in royal robes. Once again they set a golden crown upon her head. Once again the wedding-ring slipped into its own place on her finger.
Ere she entered the hall of feasting again, swift messengers had brought her old father, Janicola, to the castle, never to leave it again.
Then Griselda sat with her children beside her husband. To her feet came lords and nobles, peasants and farmers, eager to kiss her hand and to show the joy they felt in her return.
Never had the walls of the castle reechoed the laughter of so glad a people. All day long till the stars shone in the cool clear sky the feasting went on.
For Griselda this was the first of many happy days, happier than she had known before.
In her home sounded the gay voices of happy children as they played with, and cared for, the old grandfather whom their mother loved so dearly. And ever as she moved about the castle she met the eyes of Lord Walter, that told her again and yet again that he trusted her utterly.
THE PILGRIM’S PROGRESS
By John Bunyan
ADAPTED BY MARY MACGREGOR
As I slept I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold, I saw a man clothed with rags, standing in a certain place, with his face away from his own house, a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his back. I looked, and saw him open the book, and read therein, and as he read, he wept and trembled. His fear was so great that he brake out with a mournful cry, saying, “What shall I do?”