Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter XI / The Bride of Hate: Or, The Passage of a Night >> Page 201

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription MYSTERY INCREASES. 201
right did I exclude her, and what reason could I give to my-
self or others for such disrespectful treatment ? The discussion
of this question in my own mind led to various and conflicting
resolves. My reflections all required that I should answer the
summons, and open the door to the mistress of the castle ; but
my feelings, swayed equally by the mystery of my situation,
and the singular influence which Bruno had acquired over me,
were opposed to any compliance. While I debated, however,
with myself, I heard another voice without the voice of Bruno
�which seemed to produce as much annoyance and fluttering
among my nocturnal visitors, as their summons had occasioned
in my own excited heart. His tones were loud, and he seemed
to be under as much excitement as the baroness. The words
of his first address were clearly audible.
Ah, madam," he exclaimed, it is as I apprehended ; you
have then violated your promise you have dared !"
Dared----dared !" was the almost fierce exclamation in re-
ply.
Ay, madam, dared. You knew the penalty of faithlessness
when you complied with the conditions; can it be that you
would defy it. How is it then �"" Stand from my way, insolent !" cried the baroness, inter-
rupting him in haughty accents, and evidently moving forward.
Willingly," was the answer ; " willingly, but I go with you
for awhile. Dismiss the girl."
Strange to say, this command, for command it was, was in-
stantly obeyed. I heard the baroness clearly address a third
person, of whom I knew nothing, but whom I conceived to be
the person meant by Bruno, in terms which despatched her from
the presence. The dialogue between the two was then resumed,
but the sounds gradually died away from my ears, as it seemed
in consequence of the parties retiring to some more distant spot.
My agitation may be fancied all the while. So long as the in-
terlocutors were within hearing, I was more composed and quiet.
When I ceased to hear them and to be conscious of their neigh-
borhood, my anxiety became utterly unrestrainable. I defied
the fears which oppressed me, the warning which had been
given me, the nice scruples of propriety and delicacy, which, at
another time, I should have insisted upon as paramount to every