Vendetta: a story of one forgotten eBook

Marie Corelli
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 420 pages of information about Vendetta.

“Fool!” I shriek in his ear.  “Let me go to her—­her lips pout for kisses—­let me go!”

Another man advances and seizes me; he and the innkeeper force me back on the pillows—­they overcome me, and the utter incapacity of a terrible exhaustion steals away my strength.  I cease to struggle.  Pietro and his assistant look down upon me.

“E morto!” they whisper one to the other.

I hear them and smile.  Dead?  Not I!  The scorching sunlight streams through the open door of the inn—­the thirsty flies buzz with persistent loudness—­some voices are singing “La Fata di Amalfi”—­I can distinguish the words—­

   “Chiagnaro la mia sventura
    Si non tuorne chiu, Rosella! 
    Tu d’ Amalfi la chiu bella,
    Tu na Fata si pe me! 
    Viene, vie, regina mie,
    Viene curre a chisto core,
    Ca non c’e non c’e sciore,
    Non c’e Stella comm’a te!”
   [Footnote:  A popular song in the Neapolitan dialect.]

That is a true song, Nina mia!  “Non c’e Stella comm’ a te!” What did Guido say?  “Purer than the flawless diamond—­unapproachable as the furthest star!” That foolish Pietro still polishes his wine-bottles.  I see him—­his meek round face is greasy with heat and dust; but I cannot understand how he comes to be here at all, for I am on the banks of a tropical river where huge palms grow wild, and drowsy alligators lie asleep in the sun.  Their large jaws are open—­their small eyes glitter greenly.  A light boat glides over the silent water—­in it I behold the erect lithe figure of an Indian.  His features are strangely similar to those of Guido.  He draws a long thin shining blade of steel as he approaches.  Brave fellow!—­he means to attack single-handed the cruel creatures who lie in wait for him on the sultry shore.  He springs to land—­I watch him with a weird fascination.  He passes the alligators—­he seems not to be aware of their presence—­he comes with swift, unhesitating step to me—­it is I whom he seeks—­it is in my heart that he plunges the cold steel dagger, and draws it out again dripping with blood!  Once--twice—­thrice!—­and yet I cannot die!  I writhe—­I moan in bitter anguish!  Then something dark comes between me and the glaring sun—­ something cool and shadowy, against which I fling myself despairingly.  Two dark eyes look steadily into mine, and a voice speaks: 

“Be calm, my son, be calm.  Commend thyself to Christ!”

It is my friend the monk.  I recognize him gladly.  He has returned from his errand of mercy.  Though I can scarcely speak, I hear myself asking for news of the boy.  The holy man crosses himself devoutly.

“May his young soul rest in peace!  I found him dead.”

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Project Gutenberg
Vendetta: a story of one forgotten from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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