Deep interest—Goodly country—Two mansions—Welshman’s Candle—Beautiful universe—Godly discourse—Fine church—Points of doctrine—Strange adventures—Paltry cause—Roman pontiff—Evil spirit.
On the morrow I said to my friends, ‘I am about to depart; farewell!’ ‘Depart!’ said Peter and his wife, simultaneously; ’whither wouldst thou go?’ ‘I can’t stay here all my days,’ I replied. ‘Of course not,’ said Peter; ’but we had no idea of losing thee so soon: we had almost hoped that thou wouldst join us, become one of us. We are under infinite obligations to thee.’ ‘You mean I am under infinite obligations to you,’ said I. ‘Did you not save my life?’ ‘Perhaps so, under God,’ said Peter; ’and what hast thou not done for me? Art thou aware that, under God, thou hast preserved my soul from despair? But, independent of that, we like thy company, and feel a deep interest in thee, and would fain teach thee the way that is right. Hearken, to-morrow we go into Wales; go with us.’ ‘I have no wish to go into Wales,’ said I. ‘Why not?’ said Peter, with animation. ’Wales is a goodly country; as the Scripture says—a land of brooks of water, of fountains and depths, that spring out of valleys and hills, a land whose stones are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig lead.’
‘I daresay it is a very fine country,’ said I, ’but I have no wish to go there just now; my destiny seems to point in another direction, to say nothing of my trade.’ ‘Thou dost right to say nothing of thy trade,’ said Peter, smiling, ’for thou seemest to care nothing about it; which has led Winifred and myself to suspect that thou art not altogether what thou seemest; but, setting that aside, we should be most happy if thou wouldst go with us into Wales.’ ’I cannot promise to go with you into Wales,’ said I; ’but, as you depart to-morrow, I will stay with you through the day, and on the morrow accompany you part of the way.’ ‘Do,’ said Peter: ’I have many people to see to-day, and so has Winifred; but we will both endeavour to have some serious discourse with thee, which, perhaps, will turn to thy profit in the end.’
In the course of the day the good Peter came to me, as I was seated beneath the oak, and, placing himself by me, commenced addressing me in the following manner:—