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wards to the Signor, and she has lived here ever since)-Caterina was sitting with them in the little hall; says Carlo, I wish we had some of those figs to roast, that lie in the store-closet, but it is a long way off, and I am loth to fetch them; do, Caterina,' says he, for you are young and nimble, do bring us some, the fire is in a nice trim for roasting them; they lie,' says he, ' in such a corner of the store-room, at the end of the north gallery; here, take the lamp,' says he; and mind, as you go up the great staircase, that the wind through the roof does not blow it out.' So, with that, Caterina took the lamp-Hush! Ma'amselle, I surely heard a noise!"
Emily, whom Annette had now infected with her own terrors, listened attentively; but every thing was still, and Annette proceeded :
"Caterina went to the north gallery, that is, the wide gallery we passed, Ma'am, before we came to the corridor, here. As she went with the lamp in her hand, thinking of nothing at all
-There, again!" cried Annette, suddenly, "I heard it again!-it was 'not fancy, Ma'amselle !"
"Hush!" said Emily, trembling. They listened, and, continuing to sit quite still, Emily heard a low knocking against the wall. It came repeatedly. Annette then screamed loudly, and
the chamber door slowly opened.-It was Caterina, come to tell Annette that her lady wanted her. Emily, though she now perceived who it was, could not immediately overcome her terror; while Annette, half laughing, half crying, scolded Caterina heartily for thus alarming them; and was also terrified lest what she had told had been overheard. -Emily, whose mind was deeply impressed by the chief circumstance of Annette's relation, was unwilling to be left alone in the present state of her spirits; but, to avoid offending Madame Montoni and betraying her own weakness, she struggled to overcome the illusions of fear, and dismissed Annette for the night.
When she was alone, her thoughts recurred to the strange history of Signora Laurentini, and then to her own strange situation, in the wild and solitary mountains of a foreign country, in the castle and the power of a man, to whom, only a few preceding months, she was an entire stranger; who had already exercised an usurped authority over her, and whose character she now regarded with a degree of terror apparently. justified by the fears of others. She knew that he had invention equal to the conception and talents to the execution of any project, and she greatly feared he had a heart too void of feeling to oppose the perpetration of whatever his interest
might suggest. She had long observed the unhappiness of Madame Montoni, and had often been witness to the stern and contemptuous behaviour she received from her husband. circumstances, which conspired to give her just cause for alarm, were now added those thousand nameless terrors which exist only in active imaginations, and which set reason and examination equally at defiance.
Emily remembered all that Valancourt had told her, on the eve of her departure from Languedoc, respecting Montoni, and all that he had said to dissuade her from venturing on the journey. His fears had often since appeared to her prophetic-now they seemed confirmed. Her heart, as it gave her back the image of Valancourt, mourned in vain regret; but reason soon came with a consolation, which, though feeble at first, acquired vigour from reflection. She considered, that, whatever might be her sufferings, she had withheld from involving him in misfortune, and that, whatever her future sorrows could be, she was at least free from self-reproach.
Her melancholy was assisted by the hollow sighings of the wind along the corridor and round the castle. The cheerful blaze of the wood had long been extinguished, and she sat with her eyes fixed on the dying embers, till loud gust, that swept through the corridor and
shook the doors and casements, alarmed her; for its violence bad moved the chair she had placed as a fastening, and the door leading to the private staircase stood half open. Her curiosity and her fears were again awakened: she took the lamp to the top of the steps, and stood hesitating whether to go down; but again the profound stillness and the gloom of the place awed her; and, determining to inquire further when daylight might assist the search, she closed the door, and placed against it a stronger guard.
She now retired to her bed, leaving the lamp burning on the table; but its gloomy light, instead of dispelling her fear, assisted it; for, by its uncertain rays, she almost fancied she saw shapes flit past her curtains, and glide into the remote obscurity of her chamber.-The castle clock struck one, before she closed her eyes to sleep.
END OF THE SECOND VOLUME