BOOK V. — THE EFFECTS OF THE ELIXIR.
Wo das nahe Schreckness droht?
Nur das Irrthum ist das Leben
Und das Wissen ist der Tod,
Delusion is the life
And knowledge death; oh wherefore, then,
To sight the coming evils give
And lift the veil of Fate to Man?
Zwei Seelen wohnen, ach! in meiner Brust.
(Two souls dwell, alas! in my breast.)
Was stehst du so, und blickst erstaunt hinaus?
(Why standest thou so, and lookest out astonished?)
It will be remembered that we left Master Paolo by the bedside of Glyndon; and as, waking from that profound slumber, the recollections of the past night came horribly back to his mind, the Englishman uttered a cry, and covered his face with his hands.
“Good morrow, Excellency!” said Paolo, gayly. “Corpo di Bacco, you have slept soundly!”
The sound of this man’s voice, so lusty, ringing, and healthful, served to scatter before it the phantasma that yet haunted Glyndon’s memory.
He rose erect in his bed. “And where did you find me? Why are you here?”
“Where did I find you!” repeated Paolo, in surprise,—“in your bed, to be sure. Why am I here!—because the Padrone bade me await your waking, and attend your commands.”
“The Padrone, Mejnour!—is he arrived?”
“Arrived and departed, signor. He has left this letter for you.”
“Give it me, and wait without till I am dressed.”
“At your service. I have bespoke an excellent breakfast: you must be hungry. I am a very tolerable cook; a monk’s son ought to be! You will be startled at my genius in the dressing of fish. My singing, I trust, will not disturb you. I always sing while I prepare a salad; it harmonises the ingredients.” And slinging his carbine over his shoulder, Paolo sauntered from the room, and closed the door.
Glyndon was already deep in the contents of the following letter:—
“When I first received thee as my pupil, I promised Zanoni, if convinced by thy first trials that thou couldst but swell, not the number of our order, but the list of the victims who have aspired to it in vain, I would not rear thee to thine own wretchedness and doom,—I would dismiss thee back to the world. I fulfil my promise. Thine ordeal has been the easiest that neophyte ever knew. I asked for nothing but abstinence from the sensual, and a brief experiment of thy patience and thy faith. Go back to thine own world; thou hast no nature to aspire to ours!