Author: Marie Corelli
Release Date: February, 2004 [EBook #5079] [Yes, we are more than one year ahead of schedule] [This file was first posted on April 17, 2002]
Character set encoding: ASCII
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Produced by Charles Franks and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team.
The problem of A wicked soul
The sorrows of Satan Barabbas
A romance of two Worlds the
atom, etc., Etc.
The problem of A wicked soul.
Dark against the sky towered the Great Pyramid, and over its apex hung the moon. Like a wreck cast ashore by some titanic storm, the Sphinx, reposing amid the undulating waves of grayish sand surrounding it, seemed for once to drowse. Its solemn visage that had impassively watched ages come and go, empires rise and fall, and generations of men live and die, appeared for the moment to have lost its usual expression of speculative wisdom and intense disdain—its cold eyes seemed to droop, its stern mouth almost smiled. The air was calm and sultry; and not a human foot disturbed the silence. But towards midnight a Voice suddenly arose as it were like a wind in the desert, crying aloud: “Araxes! Araxes!” and wailing past, sank with a profound echo into the deep recesses of the vast Egyptian tomb. Moonlight and the Hour wove their own mystery; the mystery of a Shadow and a Shape that flitted out like a thin vapor from the very portals of Death’s ancient temple, and drifting forward a few paces resolved itself into the visionary fairness of a Woman’s form—a Woman whose dark hair fell about her heavily, like the black remnants of a long-buried corpse’s wrappings; a Woman whose eyes flashed with an unholy fire as she lifted her face to the white moon and waved her ghostly arms upon the air. And again the wild Voice pulsated through the stillness.
“Araxes! ... Araxes!
Thou art here,
—and I pursue thee! Through life into
death; through death out into life again!
I find thee and I follow! I follow!