OCR Interpretation

The San Francisco call. [volume] (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, June 30, 1907, Image 15

Image and text provided by University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1907-06-30/ed-1/seq-15/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for 15

The $an Francisco Sunday Call
QUAZIOSa; panting with excite
menu hurried them Into the
l:ou?c and ir-lo the lower room.
from which Use secret passage
opened. The pleasant Jitt'.e horae was
still half dismantled from the recent
?*ta.ck of toe Germans, the neat trim
ness of the chambers j?on<\
* ft » w
-*t tncjr entrance Agnolo came for
ward in alarm, but at his daughter's
bunded explanation turned willingly to
the secret door he kept well concealed.
J or the liltle painter took no thought
of what it must m^an to shelter any
from Vi«conti's wvath.
"Vuick:" oriel Valentine imperiously.
"How long can one page keep that
"The poor boy!" mo&nt-d Ifotta, hanpr
iris- half lifeless' upon Valentines arm.
"l-nhappy boy — they will kill him!"
Valentin* looked at her with scorn.
"Cajiet tho'.i think of a pasc now?"
*ho cried. -Think of- Delia JScsla.
But the door would not yield, and
while Agnolo struggled with the spring
a crash was heard, a cry. the ring of
armor and the tramp of feet.
"The door is down,"' raid Valentine.
.'We are lost."
"I cannot move the spring, ' cried Ajc
nolo. 'JUBB
*Quck: quick." shrieked Grazlosa. but
even as ehe spoke the chamber door
burst open and a m^n stepped in; ther«
were others at his liecls, but he entered
Ag-nolo, startins back, dropped his
concealments into place and trembled
for Ins secret and these poor folk who
had not escaped Vjsconti.
The man who entered was in black;
it was all that could be seen in the
*:ark. disordered chamber, but Valentine
nodded no light to tell her who it was-.
IsoUa sank to the ground, shrieking
\u25a0"Oh. father, father'"; cried Grasiosa,
agonized, "save, them!"
The newcomer lakl his hand on Val
entine's shoulder, she standing: calm
?nd erect, and turned his face to <3ra
"From me?" he said, and his voice
was very sweet. "From me. Graziosa?"
"An-.brogio: AmbrogrioV cried the &lrl.
"What do you here?"'
Valentine would have spoken scorn
folly, but Visconti turned his eyes on
her and she dared not. The courtyard
vras full of armed men.
"Ainbrogio:" repeated the painter in
dismay. "What does this mean?"
Visconti laughed pleasantly, but h'.s
ii.^nd tightened on his sister's shoulder.
"It means thy dausrht^r hath found a
io*-*-r worthy of her in Visconti." •
Visconti: As in a flush the little
paintor saw explained a thousand things
lhax had perplexed him. Visconti:
His quickly working: brain had
trrasped jt and summed It up
before Graziosa oould even realize she
i;<^trd aright. She stared there silent,
w-tn a piteous look upon her face. Vis
c&ati turned to his prisoners.
'Take Isotta d'Este bac« to b<»r pris
on." he said, curtly, and «. group of
soidiers advanced.
Isotta clung to Valentine in an
"At last:* said Viseonti. in bcr car,
"iU last thr calm fails thee!"*
And then he .«iood aside watchins,
while she implored in turn VeJcntinu
*nui Agnolo to save her. in incoherent
words of anguisu.
"I eatmot bear it:" «he crie*}. "I have
oorne it too lofts:'. O God. have pity on
me: Have pity on me. I have not the
courage to face it again. I have not
the courage!"
Visconti turned to her in a savage
triumph of hate he scarcely troubled to
"Kind thy courage again where thou
foundst it before." he said. hus
band is not dead, although he leaves
thee to pine In prison. He may remem
ber thee even yet."
isotta sprang up at the taunt, wild
X?* Keep thy face away from me: " she
'"sUrielied. "Ye have slain him! Kill me
; too:"'- m
Then/ seeing resistance useless, and
t" those nvho would have s&ved her help-
Jcps. Delia Scala'a unhappy wife sur
rendered quietly; onry. *.* she crossed
the courtyard with her guard and saw
the tree tops wave above the walls and
the sky that was outside Milan, a cry
rose that made the hardened soldiers
•"Mastino: Oh. Mastino!"
. Visconti watched her out of sight,
then turned again to Graziosa. his hand
still on his sister's shoulder.
• ••Graziosa." he murmured.
But the girl made no answer: she
wa? huddled on the bench that ran
Mlong the wall, looking out with fright
ened eyes.
As tie spoke she shuddered, and
« rouched closer to the wall.
But Agnolo answered, and Visconti.
*ercn«» in his pride, did not notice the
painter's tone.
"My daughter i* dazed with her $ur
rtrj.sc^ lord, as who would not be?
Graziosa. «r»*&k to thr «!i::;e. s-pe.*k to
* thy Ambrogio." and' he gripped her
• hand fiercely. But Graziosa'rose at fti«
§ touch, and snatching her hand away,
f'.cd from the room, ."with one wild look
toward Visconti.
"Ye see. my lord, she is bewildered,
she can scarce believe it true "
"It matters not for now." said Vis
coiitS. "Thy daughter loves me, paint
er, and none the less. I doubt not, that
1 am duke of Milan: and she shall oe
my duchess, as I have vowed."
"Truly, the honor is mure, I think,
tlxan *he can bear." and Agnolo bowed
to the ground.
-••i have won a wife for myself — a
wife who loves mo for myself alone."
•"Ah. she loves thee for what thou art
not," cried Valentine alyUtlJ
.Hut Visconti took no liced of her.
"Think of thy daughter as a precious
ehurge. Agnolo," he continued. "Mean- .
while I leav* one of my captalr.c ueie
on guard. That la«t attack on theft
»nd tuinc came ; near costing me too
"My daughter " began the pair.ter.
but Visconil interrupted him:;
•Thy dausrhtc.r will, be my wife,
painter; r reincruber it. nnd lieod lier
s;ifety. And thou. Valentine, come with
jik- and 1 will tell th.--; i'A privnto how
Count Conrad's folly lost Delia Scala
thy dear brother, nnd gave, mr the
day— and an arr.iy," He turned. to ?o:,
Atrnolo made an impulsive movement
forward. t»ut checked himself.' /
•Tell Grazioea." Mid .Visconti, "she
ie my duche?«; on the day my sister
•weds the diike d'Orleaus."
Visconti crossed the courtyard; the
soldier* closed around him and his cap
tive- Ajrhoio sprang forward and,
drawing the Uttlc dagger he wore,
burled it after him.
it fell _ unheard, unseen, amid the
trampling feet.
- Tour hand — hurts me." gasped A al
cntine. suddenly very white and
A soldier was pulling Adrian's dead,
body from the gate to allow of ; the
duke's passing, and she. dragged in, his.
era sp, bad almost stepped on him. This*
\u25a0was what it had end<*d* ln— Adrian had :
flung away his life for.noUimgv
ViHContl's voice broke upon her.
-Take thla cloak to hide thygarb; I
could not have Milan see thee thus —
even if tbou hast lost all shame."
A ring of soldiers kept the crowd
back, all the crowd the narrow streets
permitted. The high morning sun
sparkled on their "halberds. ?p<-ars and
armor; t- the dazzle of scarlet ami gold
from thelF trapplnjrsfwas , blinding in
its confusion ami Valentine hid her
<*ys — from- that and the dead boy's
"A Visconti: A. Vi?conti:" came the
shout. The" horses of the Paduans were
champing,' impatiently; Visconti's
charger reared between its holders In.
"Now. where is my lord?" cried De
L*nia. riulngr up breathless thrnujrh the
noise and glitter — "I have bsen out
witted- "
"Hush:" said Visconti softly. "I am
herp. De Lana — and so i* she who out
witt"o thee," and he pointed to tho
tloak»d fljrure beside him. "Take her
ahead in rccrecy, and swiftly^ to .the
The command and the movement
were lost in the confusion? The horse
in«»n were forming up behind Visconti,
and the v,?.1l and street crowded: from
every distant window and house top
fhoutlns; spectators gazed on th'-* gor
geous' F<:ene below.
Visconti drew his sword and held its
glittering cross high up against the
sapphire sky. <
"Xow. glory be to God. his ! angels
ana \u25a0 San* Apollinare^ my patron s=ainti
that 1 nm entered Into 'my city again,
and for my niost miraculous escape
there shall be an altar of jasper and
sprpentine in the Lord's new chut ch—
and therein hear my vow!"
lie lowered his sword and kissed the.
hilt, then turning- in h'.s saddle to the
men who had followed him a? their new
leader: "Have I not led you well. Pad
uans," he cried, "safe into the fairest
city of I^ombardy.? Do you repent you
of following a .Visconti through the
proud of Milan— Milan that 1
have made more beautiful than . Tta
venna and stronger than Rome? I am
your leader now, knight* of Parlua. and
Glan Visconti never yet led lo aught
but victory or turned agrainst a foe he
did not crush: > Onoo already hAve I
trample*) Delia. Sea la to the dust and
ridden through nine wid<? cities of him
and spoiled hli*. palaces to pay my sol
diers, with pay tharmen would die to
"I do not pay with ducats. Paduana.
or measure my rewards with coin; fol
low me. find I ,wi 11 give you cities for
your plunder., and nobles to. hold for
ransom. Like to the thunder will I cir
cle .Lombards', and city after city shall
surrender me it 3 keys, and the meanest
soldier Jn my train shall gain- him
fame and riehfs from my Spreading
greatness such as king.* might envy!
Xow. who but n faint heart would fol
low Dolla Sealu, who loi«t into my
hands his very wife? So long us there
is ;i Visconti he rules in Italy:*'
Shout after shout, triumphant,
preetcd his words, the very air
filled with tho spirit of victory, tho
madness of triumph; the glamour of^
gold, the flash of scarlet, the high glit
ter of spear*, that waved to and fro,
the mad plunging of a thousand horees
blinded with the dazzle of the sun; and
from the throats of the thronging oiti-'
zens. one wild cry arose: - "V'isreonti:
Visconti: San' ApoHlnarc' Vlsconli and
Milan! The d'ukc rides the city: 1
The Sr«Tf< rn^iaijr
STANDING on the^steps of the old
castle, Delia ScaT-t looked down
~on his diminished army; et least
they were purged of traitors, he
thought, grimly; what remained were
Veronese, and true.
At the news of Carrara's treachery
D'Este had marched aside to Mantua,
whither Vincenzo had been sent.
The *»n was dazzling- down, a glory
of gold, sparkling on the still wet
leaves, and the brilliant colors of the
pennons and banners that floated above
the tentc,
Delia Scala greeted Ligozzi and his
son. jg^^aESWWwMfc^Mi
Tomaso would have" spoken eagerly,
but his father hushed him.
"The news Is' most important, my
lord." Jie said, "beet tell it you in pri
vate."" Then, unable, to restrain" him
self, he added in a whisper: "Oh. the
saints and angels be praised, I think
we hav<j Milan:"
Mastino della. Scala. as he led the
way back to the castle, trembled, al
most with- awe. It was a sign from
. heaven,.
As they gained 'the"" chamber and
L'.gozzi closed the door. Tomaso b'ur«t
out Into hie tale, half crazy with do
"It seems you have success," said
Mastinp. quietly. . • .
But lie -seated -himself at the extem
porized table and with hit hand shaded"
Ills face; it was almost more than he
could bear.
"The passage leads into Milan." (said
LIgOMi breathlessly. "It i« largj
enough to admit an army, and opens
Into the house of one who is our friend
That, my lord, is why we hay-» been so
long. The good fortune is miraculous,
for we were brought out into the houise
of a man mad against Visconti. and
thinking of nothing but revenge. ;ilfe
alone knows of this, passage, and
through it will admit your men."
"Ah!"' MaKtlno drew a deep breath
and raised his eyes. "God hath heard
me, Llgozzl."
"It was true." cried Ligozzi. "Oh,
lord, he was indeed here, Only this
morning he re-entered' MUßn. Carrara's'
army behind . him:-' returned .In. time to
stay his sister, who loathe* her -en
forced marriage, and— und— ~" he BUd- H
donly faltered in his recital as Tomaso
laid his hand upon his shoulder.
Mastino looked at them 'keenly, j
"And ".vhat"'"' he asked. - "
"1 was Roing to say. lord, that in his'
absence. Valentino. Vlecontl, trying to:
escape, was recaptured .by the duke
.himself instills Agnolo's •\u25a0 ho,use." .
"Is it -.for/that he hates; Visconti?",
ask^d Delia Stala. \u25a0 *
"Xay. my lord. he hath other
wrong-s," and Ligozzi proceeded to re
late the tale the little painter had
poured into his ears: that morning.
. "'Not for naught did I conceal that :
passacrc:' he cried to 4 me.; "My lord,
trulyit w«s notfor-naught. seeing we
shall" thereby slay Vjsconti '." .
"This man. Agnolo, he is to be
trusted?" said M»stlno. » .
"If ever man ; was' He would see
Milan in aphes and- Visconti were
among them."
"Ar.d : the girl ?:*
. { "I. did not see the girl, but methinks '
she has the samo cause to hate Vis- ~
"And that no one should , know' of
this passage,, It ; is "strange," mused
Delia Scala.; VThouftrt sure. there : Is
no trap, Ligozzi? ?^M uclr " disappoint- :
ment ' makes me wary." J, v \
"I will ; stake;' my.' life* there is - no
trap, my lord, and: that this man; ' AgV
nolo ; Vistarnini, is dealing with. tho.
truth." ;; fajjHiyi ljifjl tjyiMßil'lMf
VVlatarnlhl."/. repeated , Mastino. ' "Me--.
thinks ..'.I. know, thetname^— a painter, :
didst Uhoii^eay?*.' -. .~\ r« .
"A" palnter.,my ' lord; the house \u25a0-'" is;'
near tho western: : srate.V, ] ;-' Y.^J"?
/-'The western 'ffate!;, 5 Iremember. It
was the day I found ' Von .^Schulemf- ";'
bourg. :. Truly- Igthlnk . we- may/ trust - c
\u25a0 ~ - \u25a0 \u25a0 ..-.\u25a0- \u25a0\u25a0*'•' •-"--\u25a0
the man that I remember," and Mastinp
•faintly smiled. "There Is.no guile In
him — noK^; in ..his, daughter; 'poor lady;
he was' happy then"'
"Visconti had left a guard, of. soldiers
to, protect the douse; but not so many'
that they: will iiot : be easily disposed
of. Vistarnini speaks \u25a0them. fair." they
. have no suspicion." -
Mastino rose and ;held k 'out'his hand.'
•;Po .thou haet done It, ray friend;' thou
and thy son. 1 ow6; thee .much, Li
gozzl. A poor man's; thanks are but
a halting gift: v some > >day;*~h6weveiv
the duke of, Verona shall tell thee.what
his s gratltude is worth, my friend. : I
thank God. Llgozai; = for one frJcna:",,
• ' • ' * - \u25a0\u25a0'•\u25a0.-\u25a0',•'
In a thiok wood near Milan. 1 a- man on:
\u25a0a. white liorse' was 'slow! yj; picking.; his'
way through the dense -undergrowth.*
The trre?. were' ..tilpsc'ianrjiln their.dark
shadow the place was ni^h-asblackas
niKht: :*. — . . , - \u25a0
tufts of flowers grew in the cool:
shadowy. J There were no sicrns uf-llfe."
«a».the~ birds-! whirring through the
leaves, th^ plants nodding in- "the
bi i^ro, . s \ , \u25a0 ---
The rider, dismounted and . tied his
horse to the low boußh of a
large 'beech, rllnsdng \ hlm«»f:lf on r th«
space of cleared ground beneath
with a sigh. Ile r .wore a dress
of peacock colored' velvet, ! I umblcd and
torn, and. «aye ; for a richly"* jeweled :
dagger, more for r ornament ' than luse,
was Unarnicdiibut in, the fight in 1 which-
Count" Conrad had just: engaged,
though a fight with two,, weapons had
not "been needed: persuasion had done
the ,work, v and .he had come out vic
torious. ". •: " .\u25a0 ...
S In a bundle. On liis : Baddl« liung his
frpalle, and as heidUcontentedly, sucked
; the scratches on* h'ln ; wrist, he: looked
at them. with intJsreflt-and triumph. :
/ Preeently. he fell to"~ flrserina: his
hair, thciu\_!«ittins:: suddenly -upright,
drew Ills' dagger.: with, fine; resolution;'
He seized tho first of his long- curln -
and fevered 1. it.
Grimly, not' giving himself time - to;
pause,". li« procecclor] „ to" tiie : next ; and'
one by one hacked i'thenT. from his" VieaU.'
his -beautiful; blond, perfumed scurls.-. r . ' ;
Conrad sighed kr h« s-aw them '-. lying
on the . sraeB,;arid fel t rliis" shorn v liead. '"\u25a0
He; longed mirror, in J.whleh : to
see;theextent;of ails disfigurement, but
there.^wa»; not'iOven'a' pool ;n«*aK- • :\u25a0 "- ;
arose and : detach-:
Ing; the'ibundlo-.from^thc"; saddle, he lald-
Jl upon the groimd 'and opened].it.
'lt cuntainctl a 'mbnk'a robo; a rosary,
a:book. a wallet'krid a'gir.3!e; .; ;.
Conrad; opened'theiwallrt, nnd found
food therein, and ho was ; growing hunr;:
;gry;.but when he came' to- consider it <
he sickened' at Its \u25a0[ coarseness. V
\u25a0 Scraps Vof ; fftt;^Vsour,\.-hafd
mostly soaked r, in stale wine—^-the refuse?
of farm houses. fl(B»|WFSffip' --
: ,',' Have 1 1 with ; and i robbed Taj
disgust,; and (flung, the :; wallet ifar into'
theibushes., "Food; f oh hogs!" v - . '
- Then;; ivlth^many'f sighs,? he removed -
the ' peacock colored f doublet;: and f ho»« %
and ? donned i the I monk's '"garbVrdrawingii
the , hood .'over! his 'shorn' head,"- tying thei;
girdlofarouhd'! his^waist :.; . ; ' \;'
]> The robe '.was ' rather = short arid :\u25a0 Con -
rad noticed u/.with '; dismay/ is that^S hls^
laced white ; shoes ; showed \u25a0 beneath; ' ; r - ,
\u25a0I "Saint "pomlnick '^curses; hihlr.^butU I. :
forgot ; to; take his "sandals'."; ho cried
;i!ita.;passion.v" ? '.". :; - i '.'-. \u25a0:'' : J' . > : - \u25a0.]»..:\u25a0\u25a0 " -\-~
But passion did r.otv avail him;. he
must go barefoot. ' ,
. i'Bleeding-foet. will complete .the dis
guise," he bitterly, -and'flung
off. ' his. shoes and stockings. . .
\u0084The-^ robe -was- rather dfrty;, Count
Conrad's . fastidious nostril? fancied it
smclled uf ttteCroadaitle, .'where tlieold'
wretch has of ten' slept.-. I: warrant.": he
said, i then crossed .himself -in.'contri-
Uonat the:s£LCrllege.^ , : '.-;. .--.: v., ; : .
; Next he hiihg'^ the"; rbsaryjand 'crucifix:
;about*his:neek— itlv/as hatefully. heavy.
\u25a0— : ahd ; the -wallet; about his shoulder.
The. a trap, galled vhim, and the wretched
count iTioanediat lilsifate. '\u25a0\u25a0--.; \u0084
- He; 'was;' bound ; to admit ; he .v.-had:
brought It on.hlmself: he' would /carry,
itl' ; .through";and with a truly, heroic, air!;,
he 'strapped /the .velvet, doublet -on the
-horse. w - and? taking*, thesbr ldle, ; made his '
•wa yi bac/u toward .the : rbacj. : • ; ; \u25a0 : . - , v
I Om, reaching nt::.h?nungXthevreius
over* the 'steed's; back and turned him
adrift to ward ir then, with; res
olution : in. his It oar t and 'tears in . his
eye,; Count Conrad : yon Sehulembburg,.
with feet'barc 011 :the stony road; made
painful progress toward. Milan. - V "
For ?l»bve': of =.- Aiubro^io
IT was, early aiorhlng; oorf r the- second
day since Ligozzi had discovered the
.secret passage, and Milan' lay. peac?-"
ful, forjin thos3/wo days there ha«l
been no 'fighting; but the calm was the
lull before the storm. ; .
Asnolo/Vlstiirnlril stood "in front of
theVsccret^oor, with shining eyes. , The
springs had - just% slipped .£rback r ;. behind
Tomaso^ :, the ; last v.a rr i*ngements . ha-1
been niade ; Vtqhightif Delia Scala "^should
enter, Milan-^and he,' Agnolo." would be
tiio mean?; "^i;; : ; '\u25a0; '? : ': ; .:-":'----" : ' : " /.. -
: ? Agnolo; looked ; across: the 'courtyard
. now; in ; shadow/ to '.where, ai soldier kept
h 1 s ! - guard." ''The ; guard 1 waai, t ho ; d v ke'a
orders. '\u25a0 and to * t he ;- pal n tor's • face : the
;, soldiery "showed J all Ir'eispect;; yet >,weU
Agnblo^knew^theyJauafUccliat Viscontrs
£t ', A lie. -/pale." faced gliTi wJk>~ was^to" be
\ il uc'hess 3 of \u25a0; Milan: ; And ': t he > pal n ter i had
heard Vthelr .-"talk- among. ithemseive.?.'
.••Tt^vas'likely^enough /for thetduke^lo
; am use^liimself Tin ;: disguise,"/: they- saidi'
;"b v t "; to /' mar ry| a^pai nte r' a .', daugh ter '.''.i~\ :
"I t were ;'. niofe ~un rea sonable • had he
:d: do wercd * her> to^wed 'another, \u25a0 and '{ y at
Uls bf-a piece .with; all His-, madness!"
; . .''i /would ;^.sooner, '•.'peeX-her..?* dead,'*,
'thought: Uh<fj little"- pain t«r.'v"tham diffcli-'
cs3of I MUanrithe ; .yisc6»ti"B:w|fc.'- - % \u25a0"--\u25a0/.
._ Th«: t whlte7--ag6nitedvfaceVof^i*ott4.'
; rose^UeforcS; him. Kth^-lflftrcej rebellious
.hate i that f, mar red^,Valent!heK%*iaconti's
!.bcauty.iand; i yiBconti's|own?expr«Ssloh:
as he .- stooped, to mock a. woman .In his
\ power ;'£tnV£ gallant * heart iOf ; the, 1 ; little
jpalnter,! throbbed swlth^ratht and ihon-;
\u25a0 SSii fury; againstjthe -tyrant 'WhOipteysd
crowri'i he': had 'usurped atoned for. crimes
>as \u25a0 black las I hell.'^ -" t- '*"\u25a0\u25a0*" '£*?*\u25a0 .'• :-'•"-" \u25a0*. \u25a0*'. '\u25a0"'• "\u25a0
tonight!",,; he to
himself (as ; he 'mounted ithejstalr^to , Geek
for *hls - L'.'Tonlght J,we iahall
b6thf avei«S'e » the 'tlso^of iufif to'' please "&!
wiiim/.-'ji^;^:'.'vii>'v_^-J:'?;"'7--"*> -.vr'^-w: >•\u25a0-,\u25a0-;• '..~^
:^> ; lle^htered^hlB|Btudib;|lt\Wasiempt^>
.thoUwojplcturea 'stood twit h^thelfj backs '\u25a0*\u25a0
.to 5 the'i roomi'v; Agnblo ; , looked " at £ them - :
grimly:; \u25a0 How;* of ten^had'iVisconti^ sit "^
pain ting mhat'-St/i Catherine,':, unarmed U :
-;•\u25a0 \u25a0•••-.•\u25a0\u25a0,-\u25a0 \u25a0 \u25a0;.i/---:\.: :-:?\u25a0 \. \u25a0-\u25a0- \u25a0--:->•-* j«asseßaß*H
liow ca?y then'To'have struck -him low!
What .would- Lombardy, have said? ;/.-,
: "Gra.E{osa!", J he called. •." He Jwas eager
to tell ; her; Tomaso had been again.
" ; Tlo'riever doubted jfor a'moment:thai-^'
her love _had\turrie<l.\ as .his -'had done,
to a .passion- of (outraged pride! .\u25a0
-/"Graziosa!"- .: 'W.-* . .' K ." .'^~:\>
£'7But 110 ..answer^ came, and __Agnolo
uioun ted . the" ataltv and'entered j her. U ttle
chamber. ln: the .turretrr-'lt -was "circular;
lit. by. three , long, '\u25a0\u25a0. windows, .and uovv
ablaze .with the inornlnK"sun,' ; . . -.. -
-Tho.walJa were' hung -.with -pain ted
linen; : faded : brov/n»,^and i in eafch 1 win
dow stood;a^r6ush stone jar :6f lilies,
drooping^neglocted Inithe^sun. ; ' : .-','.. '.
r.. Seated "oii; the floor inear one of I them
was \Grazlos6; ; her. fi.ee "bijrledf in her
hari"ds,but'a.t her father's entrance she
raised, her head and looked* out "of the
Window. 'jl~- :.: " r' - ;•'\u25a0.- "••- '.
'.s"GraziOBa,V;; said v Asnblb,. and.- there
wasfa. boyish. Irlumph 1 in his. voice,
"Visconti* dies', tonight."
did^nbt move. ;
I "Tonight :\u25a0: l"»ella' Scala enters . Mila ft ;
there; IsrriOf cfiahec- of -failure.'.'.
" ; VNone?" \u25a0 she /asked. Her.. voice was
dull.*' • .. : -/-:; :"--' :'.' ' > " : ',^ i -./'\u25a0:'-'
.„ \u25a0"'.; "None : .v'A h. Graziosa. Visconti rouse i
more dangerous foea: than he, reckoned
.onlwhenhe-playtd with' me; arid thre.'.*
.: ;Tlieglrl. moved impatiently; ,her
: father's words jarred :on her; sensies.
>;' "Father. ;I;am\tlred.'! r slie, said .weari
ly, ."and .my ,. : h'eart ;is very; sio're --':*\u25a0'\u25a0 'L. :
-.";jt'Xever7fear, i my ;daughter-^-t6night,
tonight!"; ; : ,';.„'' '• '.- '".-•" :'-\u25a0'\u25a0: '-\u25a0'\u25a0
: ;*GrA2lo3a' turned ltd him; her face was
white Jnrid strained. • > "• '.*";
"Cut if-^-he-— th&-duke— should not be
slain?!*-.'? he said, "lie has<a new
army here. in^ Milan.". .- .
; .; "Aye,- but asurprise/at'dead of-nlpht
- is 'worth two; armies, to ; theiotners. T The
' palace ISjnear.^Vlscontiwlirbe In their
hands "oven '"while, lieTsleeps-——" >
. :')'-ln, '.-'-: Scala's .hand-—— " she
: breathed. : ;^"That means, T . ! indei»d— he-^— "
\u25a0: OiGod, It ;nieans Arnbrbglb dicsl" ~- s ••>\u25a0
:i>The last ( wordg were'briathed 90 low
did I riot \hearj them,"' but he saw
i the i- pal n4 on Ills \\ dausr h ter's ; face I a rid
came,g*htly.;to«her.sjide. \u25a0 '.'- :.'• "'.' -"_.. -:
'•;.> "Forgive | mtl lf, I pain Hhee. Imy; <lear ?
i.eatr.iGodtknowsr.'tif I^peak^llghtly 'tis
bu t . to i? hid*? • a ;bl tt er > gf I «f-^— " • ; ", '. >
>;Biitf Graziosa interrupted? hlm\wltii a:
.^passionate^ cry. ißPd,";ftelainff ; ;his "Viands;
'cbvered'jthcniiwith! ktase?.. :. - :.-*,
':~Z : "Take :no "heed^of^ me!"- sh*-,crlerl. I'l
;*rn:lia!fi distraught— soon \u25a0 I; shall 'be
; ; ,bettcr-i r-i.K^'X'''. '\u25a0\u25a0-,,- y'-J^- ".';'• '-;;;;;..:-\u25a0 \u25a0\u25a0;
. ' - ''After ; tonight • there will be a shadow.
-KonVifroni Joft ,us,;tGrazl<isa;* : and "-not ,
froml off/ us? alone.". ' ;' .v;> :; '--.} r \u25a0'•-''
-VX "There is. no chance of failure?? ask»d
ithesglrl^agaln^vf.T -;';•:\u25a0\u25a0'\u25a0 :-..'• '
?, ' t -
\u25a0^Grailosa.* said i no'i more.i and
I turned Ito i leave, t or^ there .w«re \u25a0 the'lsol- *
'hlsVdaughter^ called 'hlm:r\.' ; '" ' .
-;*;"At ; what jhourMo^pellaiScala's men
£ eflter?*t f sh^f asked lin r a ; lbw \u25a0.voice, her \u25a0
* head i still 'away.:-;? . ,* -.' ; ;~; ~
''One; hour' after -midnight,"; returned
: the i little 'palnter^k^;^- -.•"-•...;• .
'"'"l^lla'i Scala! leads them?"
t(??,i'DeHa| Scalaf himself.V -- ; said Agnblo,
:; proudly.^ /"He r is ;a."i noble : ;"- prl nee.V :^>Z
'0?. His I daughter made! no » answer ; ; long '•
- af ter jrithejf little p; painter 'ihadsieft'her^
\u25a0again^ftloneSshej.satiftth'erelllstless in"
{ the [sunny/ 1 silentrchamber.tlistless. with
\u25a0her; iwhltei face, r leaning. 'back :: 5 against
ithej^vindow; frame ;>.' . '\u25a0\u25a0'; :'-^"iSBB
"There was.no possibility of failure."
The words beat upon her heart till she
thought IT would break.
."Tomorrow he will be dead'"
r S!io sjirang- to' her feet w;»b sudden
energy.; -the aun was rising high— the
time was short.
\u25a0' It;. was 'sileot. maddeningly .client:
Grazlosaryrew afraid oZ' It — the silence
and the pun: she wished she were dead;
it -came .to;her_to kill, herself, yet full
-well she knew that she had not the
She twistod her damp, cold hands to
gether: she, wondered if she shut her
eyes and leaped from the -window she
.might -/.die .without knowing it. and
"nerving. herself looked out. .
V ".But- the.'atone .courtyard seemed far
away, ;,harii : and cruel, and -she winded
back .again. -
In her ". own. heart she knew she was
a- coward,' and . wept to think it was
so--wept;to think she could not ri?c to
act, in; any way toiact.
There was no tin?* of s:re{jincss in
Grazio««a.'s ?oul: ~r>hc would have gone
through"" life. "if . 'unmolested, merry,
: gentle, '.sweetness jitkl happiness itself,
[content"^ to' always "stand aside for oth
\u25a0er!».%.'eager, to do little kindnesses that
"carnal •\u25a0...within'.- her .^compass, never
, tempted.' because never isecingr the
.tethptatiori, s happy :in utter -simplicity
;and ignorance: : but a'' great moment
found h<:r wanting, a crisis she could:
not \u25a0 f4co: us she tried to think, rlffht
and 'wrong grew strangely, confused.
She: only;knew. ? shc-loved Visconti, and
that.; he was" in; dang-sr.
, ShevwaJt'too weak to kill herself, al
though 'she' did not shrink from the
. cowardice of it. only fromthe pain; she
.r. : as"too .weak to tell her father she
rsUH-loved .Vlscor.ti::.>>hc «^ould not bear
to-seehls, fs'.-c' shouid she confess it:
!• he ; would nnvcr. understand.
"I will ' lock the .door."' she said. .with
wild eyes. . "lock the door, and let -no
fone^en ter .till "it is all" over— r.nd per
haps fny heart will break," she added.
p|tlfully;. : :^|g^^^p^Sg|S^«B|HHßHß
.: ;Theh she stood a long timeratlll with
..hands '.Joelced : tiffht. '•'. Suddenly she'
-turned and her robe caught -the -jar of
Jllies.. thro wins: them •\u25a0!« to the "room.
.: ..There !"th^y lay. faded ; by the .heat,
lamld'iUH\il)rblcpn jar.-, and Graziosa
\ loqked^wilh^unseeins: .eyes, and picked -
them ' up mechanically. ',\u25a0' ?
_,f Opposite buns ;a, mirror, and as she
• raised .'her ~'- . h'ehd she" saw herself = re-.
. fleeted ~th*re.V- •" I \u25a0\u25a0'\u0084'
lilir^ dropped from her hands
-l»sth»y. had; dropped v before \u25a0 in the
street.Hlie' day- Tislo. took' her jbracelet."
; "He* would have* made me ' duchess ; of -
.Milan." ' --] .. :'.._-\ .. '\u25a0\u25a0 '.- \u0084;:: :_;:' \~. . \u25a0:\u25a0.' •,
v~Sh?.-dfew hearer and surveyed her
pal<! face '..\u25a0'\u25a0_'.\u25a0 . f \u25a0;-!., Z- .
;:">"Duche6s; t of;- Milan! and he had all
'\u25a0 Italy , to - choose ; from :"„ ,
The ;thoughtlbrought-:a flush , to her
cheek. ' - - r
: "Hls v sister: is very, very beautiful. ;
sl*am!notVsolfalf. r as she, noV* as ,- Delia
• Scala'SiWifcjand yet'he; thought me "fit
\ to shar«\his. throne——" : i;
VnShejmoyed toward the door, with fal
terlnjf.'steps.'-.'•;•. . ".< -.
>y"li^iust.inot:think.'.' she moaned. "I
will £ lock J. the '* door— l % will lock, the
\u25a0dOOrJ^ "»'-;.-\u25a0-' 7}- ;'.
; Butl another; thought "struck her, and
.• she * qulveredV with J agony. r
;;:t'He *me^-he trusted us— he
rie;veK T questioned [our/ faith"'
-Thenjheriheartrrose^nVrcbeilion at
B HpißH9 l '& * -
her own r;eakn»js. : Let 'Visconti b«
betrayed: why? "Wnat d!d she knvTir of
his crlmp«?
She could hear her father feasting
the soldiers below, ami thought o< Inn
restless and Impatient for the nightfall.
ll<* had never ioved Ambrogio.
'. She; listened and h<?ard his voles In
pleasant lauchter T/lth a triumpnant
rln^ In it. and a sort of raje rose \n
her heott. '\u25a0
- "Who Sre we to save Milan from *
tyrant?" she thought. "Ambrogio is
more to me than all the Milanese."
She put her hand on the door handle.
i "When would he have sent for me."
she wondered dully. "He smiled. H'9
voles was gentle: Ambroglo's voice!
and hi la Ambrogio. and— tonight, to
ll<»r ey*s f«n on the lonr blu»
hooded cloak" hanging on the wall near.
She took It down and paused with It In
her hand, looking: at i: with fixed eyes.
A t bird flew past the window, sendln?
a swift shadow across th« floor..
Graziosa opened tfcft door slowly and
stepped out on the xtalr. It was al
most dark tfwre; silently «h« closed!
tb« door behind her and wrapped th«
cloak about her. drawing the hood over
her head and face.
Leaning over the stair rail. sh« say
that the door of tbs room belov was
open, her father's voice was silent: th<»
soldiers had gone, elsewhere. Softly
she crept down fnto that pleasant
chamber where Visconti had sat so
often; the sunlight came In from tha
open door in a great band across the
dark floor, falling on her white faca
as she movH through it and ont into
the yard. She saw there was no soldier
by the door into the street. She
opened It; she could see her father and
the guard chatting over wlnecups by
the sundial in the earden; they were
not looking; ahe crossed like tha
shadow of the bird upon the floor. Her
pet doves flew away at her guilty step*
as If they did not know her. and Gra
ziosa knew herself indeed changed from
the one who had last fed them.
The bolt of the door would at first
not move for her trembling fingers,
but she did not stay here; in a second
morevshe stood in th© 'street, a closed
door behind her. Graziosa would never
see It open more.
The houses stood clear against a
brilliant sapphire sky. and above them
moved a silver banner, the banner of
the Viper. It floated from the Vis
conti palace, and Graziosa, with no
glance back, bent her steps in Us di
rection. - —
THE day that was to place Mflan
in. the enemy's Hands was wear-
Ing to a close: the aun had almost
"•set In a wide sky. a flaro of
orange. and purple, against which th*
chestnuts stood in rich dark.
Mastino della Scala and some few
of his officers were standing in the little
wood into which the secret passage
Behind them the army was in readi
."I have wrenched success from th©
hands of failure!" cried Mastino. his
eyes brilliant, a different man. He could
have laughed aloud 'for joy; he would
see Isotta tonight, he would keep his
word: Vlsconti's palace was near the
western gate: they would be upon him
before he knew.
"There is no possibility of failure.
Ligozzi; no possibility of treachery?"
he said. £ eagerly, and pressed his
f rienfl'3 hands in his.
"None, lord; Vistarnini is to be
trusted to the death."
"Yon Schulembourg'3 horse returned
to camp this morning," said Ligozai.
"I know, not where th« count Is."
"When I. am In 3lHan I will find him;
he shall wed the Lady Valentine: I
bear him no bitterness. Ah. Ligozzi,
the world will be a different place to
' morrow."
And Mastino leaned forward eagerly,
waiting for the first sign of the return
of Tomaso. who had been stnt ahead to
The sky flared and blazed through
the trees till the whole world seenvul
on fir<»;- the .red clouds were reflected,
on Delia -Kcala's polished armor till «t
glowed in one bright flame, above
which the plumes on his steel cap
floated long and white.
The next second the grlory faded and
was gone, leaving the world cold and
The sun had set.
A cold breeae stirred the leaves
against the pale sky, but to Mastino, -
leaning against the tree trunk, waiting,
no foreboding came, it wa3 success,
success— at last!
"Tomaso is long," said Ligoral.
"The way "is long." smiled Mastino.
"But not so long that we shall not
cuter Milan before dawn"*
The passage opened into the under
growth from tha wide mouth of a cave,
and Delia Scala, in his eagerness,
stepped forward Into the shadow of Its
blackness, listening Intently.
No sound broke the stlllnes3 save the
little murmur of the wind, the ocoa- •
sional clank of the bridles of the idle
"Harkr* cried Mastino. "I hear
„ He turaed with shining eyes to U
gozzl. - .
._ "Myl friend; at last heaven has
"He carries no torch." said Ligoszl,
wonderingly. for though footsteps as
cended, no ray of light fell across tha
dark.. . -*•""
- "He stayed not for torch," cried Delia.
Scala. "Bring.up the men. Lisozzi:"
As he, spoke, a figure forced itseif
out of the dark, a wild figure, and yet
Tomaso'sj.hls whiteface was smeared
with blood .which trickled from a great
gash on' his forehead, his doublet was
rent and. torn, and he reeled as if hurt
-and spent.
TO Mother of God!" muttered Mas
_tlno. "Mother ofTGotl!"
Tomaso sank at feet with a blt
"All is over!" he cried. "We are be
trayed. Oh. would I were dead be
fore I had to. tell thee!"
"Betrayed?'' echoed Delia Scala. AH
the v Hfo was struck' out o? him. he
steadied- ..himself against the\ca.vern
wall . and looked ' at, the boy dully.
''Betrayed?" <«9BflHMilWi|
"Betrayed? By whom?' cried L1503
%\. ••Ah,;thou art hurt"' "
"Xothlng", v nothlnsr. I am in time—
yiscontl-rhls-men guard the other en
trance-—with' difficulty I escaped to
warn thee,", gaspel Tomaso.
•'.Who betrayed us?" demanded his- -
father, -his: face dark with passion.'
"The ;gtrl."*Y said bitterly;
"the gifkwho loved. Visconti."
"And Heaven favors her love and not
; mine!" The cry was wrung from Mas
tino. . "We are betrayed for a sirl's
love of Visconti. And my wife waits
for me!" .He laughed .wildly, and drew
a faded rose from the folds of hi 3 sasn.
flinging^ it on tht 'ground.* ;
"Look,' Ligozzi. a &\%xx from heaven- —
a sign I thought had been fulfilled. But .
a 'girl • prayed '\u25a0\u25a0 for Visconti, doubtless. •",
and : her** prayers are heard. Isotta
: must : perish, but Visconti is saved! To
moelc heaven sends me a slßn."
tTo-Be Continp«d.>
I— W 11 iiSrl Una iilfci 1 m wimu \u25a01111111 1 iM^^B^W^B^^^B^

xml | txt