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THE DOMINICAN CHURCH.

Notre Dame de los Desemparados, by Tovalito, | himself to the malediction and anger of his who was resolved not to lose sight of him again father ?” till be entered the palace. Tovalito then retraced “What he has just done proves it; to-morrow his steps back to the church door. Paco had it will be too late to repent it. He will be margone on his mission to the Dominican convent, ried according to the rites of the Catholic and another mendicant occupied his place. church. Let him undo them if he can,"

“God save thee, friend Lazarillo," said Tova- “ He can if he dares," replied Tovalito, “and lito, taking off his lat, politely saluting the new I think he would do anything to gain his own comer, “how goes on the world with thee? Has ends." bis highness the archbishop given thee his usual “ We shall see,” said Paco Rosales. blessing to-day, in the shape of some vedis ?”

“He has not yet left the palace ; but we have had a benediction from Heaveu in a shower of small coin distributed amongst the poor by a

CHAPTER VI. noble stranger in Valencia. His illustrious highness the duke de Medina Sidonia has just arrived at the palace with a suite of six carriages and Before midnight, Paco and Tovalito were at the about fifty mounted cavaliers.”

appointed place near the garden of the Archiepis. * Where the duke had the pleasure of finding copal palace. Don Alonzo did not keep thein one of his family," interrupted Tovalito.

waiting, for he was already there. He was alone. “Oh! thou knowest then that his son, Dou “Right,” said he, when Paco had delivered his Alonzo de Guzman, arrived the preceding day?" message ;

“ art thou sure of thy companion's dis“I heard so, but was not quite sure of it,” cretion ?” said Tovalito.

“ As of my own, Signor,” said the mendicant. “It is their bighness's first visit to the noble “ In that case I will trust him. Go both of city of Valencia,” observed Lazarillo ;. " and it you to the Dominican convent. I shall be there will be a short one, for they take their departure in half-an-hour with Donna Theresa de Vasconagain to-morrow for the frontier of Catalonia, cellos.” where the king has already arrived."

Don Alonzo then gained a by.street in the sub“ Can he have dared to have concealed bis mis. ) urbs of San Juan del Mercado.

When he came tress in the palace ?" thought Tovalito, as he incognito to Valencia, he generally lodged in the

? walked away in the direction of the Dominican house of a good lady who took him for the son of convent, in the hope of meeting his comrade Paco some rich merchant of Seville. It was to this Rosales, to whom he wished to confide the disa person that he conducted Donna Theresa. The covery he bad just made. He had not gone far young person was at length acquainted with the when he met hin returning from his private em- name of him whose wild and daring passion had bassy.

torn her from the arms of her betrothed husband, The friends then related to cach other what they but the knowledge of his high rank and princely bad learnt.

position, bad no weight with ber. She was too “I delivered the letter to Father Cyrillo," said young, and loved too deeply and devotedly to be Paco Rosales ; "thou knowest what a wide sleeve influenced by any ambitious or worldly considerahe has; for two pounds of chocolate he would tion. At this moment she feared nothing, she give absolution at Easter, and at ordinary times regretted nothing; the only pang she felt was for much less. I am convinced he would marry being separated from her mother, whom she loved Satan to a nun for fifty reals”

so tenderly; but she consoled herself with the "Hold thy tongue,” interrupted Tovalito, hope of soon being restored to her affection an " don't talk of the devil, for it makes him appear.” | honoured and adored wife. Don Alonzo had sworn

“Nonsense !” said Paco, shrugging his should- by the faith of a gentleman and a soldier that he ers, “it is not the devil that I fear, but the holy would marry her that night. It was bis wife, not inquisition. However, that is not the question; his mistress, who was to follow him. What then it is the marriage. Father Cyrillo has read the had she to fear? She therefore awaited patiently letter, and he wanted to make a mystery of the for the moment that should absolve her in her own name at the bottom, but as I knew it already, I eyes from her error. She was still in her bridal did not ask him it. It was not necessary to go dress--all that remained to her of her rich attire down on one's two knees to induce bin to con- of the evening before, no flowers, no diamonds sent; as good luck would have it, he watches by adorned her bosom, and her soft lovely features a dead body to night. The marriage ceremony were concealed by a black lace mantillo, which can therefore be solemnised before the interment she had thrown over her head. When Don takes place.”

Alonzo entered the room slic was knceling in silent “Thou thinkest then that Don Alonzo really prayer. intends to marry this young person ?

Thou “ Theresa,” said hic, “I am waiting for thee. thinkest that he loves her enough thus to expose A noble Spaniard never breaks his word. Come,

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my love, my time is but short. The priest awaits | All was in deep obscurity at the end of the nave, us.'

but a dim light proceeding from two side chapels “ I am ready," replied she, extending him her that faced each other shone across the tesselated hand, with a smile of ineffable tenderness and pavement, and partially illumined the steps before sweetness.

the altar. Theresa advanced in deep and silent “My own, my life !” said he, rapturously em- meditation up the aisle ; suddenly a cry of horror bracing her, “ let us hasten from this dull place. escaped from her trembling lips. In one of the chaEvery moment that we lose is fraught with dan. pels, hung with black, was a bier, on which was ger."

stretched the corpse of a monk, arrayed in all its “ Heaven guide me !" cried she, clasping her religious vestments. Its pale and ghastly countehands. “Oh! Don Alonzo, I am alone with thee nance looked out in bold and terrible distinctness a helpless, confiding girl, away from her friends, from the dark cowl which surrounded it; one of her family, her home. If thou shouldst fail me !" its stiff and bloodless hands grasped a green

“ Foolish child,” murmured he, pressing her branch of palm, while the other closed upon the still more fondly to his heart, “is not this the silver crucifix which lay upon its breast. Father hour of our marriage? Come.”

Cyrillo, seated in a stall, had fallen asleep as be When the lovers descended, they found the watched by the dead monk. landlady waiting for them in the passage.

Theresa, struck with some horrible presentiment, “It is on the stroke of midnight," said she. shrieked aloud. “Mercisul Heaven pro!ect me!" “ May God shield ye both from the assassin's cried she, “ Oh! Alonzo, is this bier to be our koife. The streets are dangerous at this hour, altar, the dead the only witvess of our marriage ?" Signor."

“Come this way,” cried he, leading her towards “ I have my sword,” replied Don Alonzo, “and the opposite chapel, “ do not tremblo thos, am I we shall soon returu."

not with thee?" The church of the Dominicans was outside the But the arm that supported the form of the walls, on the other side of the Guadalquivar, timid girl, shook with some deep emotion, and the whose bed, dried up during the summer months, strong man staggered under the light weight of resembled a vast moat traversed by stone bridges. his innocent, but too confiding victim. The beautiful walk of the Alameda then shaded, "Signor,” said the monk, who had but just as it still shades, the left border of the river, and awoke from bis sleep, "I have been waiting for terminated at the walls of the convent which was thee--approach.” partly concealed on this side by the thick foliage "Father," interrupted Don Alonzo, in a falterof the trees which threw their branches across its ing voice, “the witnesses are not yet come.” Gothic front. Here the building was buried in The two lovers prostrated themselves on the profound darkness, and the solemn stillness that steps before the altar. It was a strange picture ; reigned around was unbroken, save by the wild on one side of the church lay the dead in the notes of the solitary nightingale, and the murmur. midst of funeral pomp and solemnity, on the other ings of the distant waters. Two shadowy forms knelt the quick, surrounded by the gay emblems of glided beneath its portal, which stood partly open life and marriage. Before them stood the pries', to receive them. They were those of Don Alonzo robed in his canonicals, and an open book in his and Theresa de Vasconcellos.

band, ready to begin the ceremony. “Well,” said Don Alonzo to Paco Rosales, who “Here are our witnesses,” said Don Alonzo, had awaited their arrival in the church, "is all as the sound of several footsteps echoed through ready for the ceremony ?”

the aisle. “Yes, Signor ; the tapers are lighted, and father “Yes, Don Alonzo," cried a severe and angry Cyrillo at the altar ; but there is one thing which voice behind him, “ here are thy witnessess," and

; your highness has forgotten."

immediately several armed men surrounded the " Which !!

altar, “Oh Heavens !" exclaimed he, starting to “ According to the rites of the ecclesiastical bis feet, “my father !” law, there must be two witnesses to a marriage.”

“I know it, and therefore I told thee to bring thy companion with thee; ye will be our witnesses, and I will pay ye well ; but if ever the

CHAPTER 11. name which ye are about to hear transpires from your lips, I will hang ye like dogs.”

Paco Rosales, stepping a few paces back, replied, The Duke de Medina Sidonia, followed by se"Signor, I am here alone, my companion remained veral gentlemen of his household, had entered the behind in the square of the Archiepiscopal palace church, and now stood face to face with his son to bear a serenade.”

Don Alonzo de Guzman. Theresa, pale and stalue“Go then, and bring him here, bring some like, remained kreeling on the steps of the altar. one, no matter who, provided he will keep silence,” | After a moment of deep and painful silence, the cried Don Alonzo angrily, "the time presses." duke spoke, "Don Alonzo, if thou art still worthy

Theresa had entered the body of the church. of thy name, follow me.”

A BETRAYAL.

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" Father,” said he, bending on one knee, “ for- folded arms and downcast eyes, in silent aud bitter give me, and deign to hear me."

reflection. “I will listeo to thee when we are out of this. “Farewell! Don Alonzo !" repeated Theresa, as Follow me, I command thee,” replied the duke, she moved away in the direction of the opposite turuing to leave the church.

chapel. "Signor,” said Don Alonzo faintly,

“Adieu, Theresa,” faltered he whose daring abandon this young girl? I have seduced her passion, and whose wild, impetuous energy were all from her family, from her affectionate hus- subilued and crushed beneath the influence of paband"

rental authority. Like all persons who sacrifice "By Saint Jacques !" interrupted the Duke, their daties to their inclinations, and gratify their

, contemptuously, “she must be crazed to look so passions without considering the evil consequences high. And hast thou deluded her into the belief that may result to others, Don Alonzo was weak, or the possibility of such a marriage. Hast thou selfish, and cowardly. He saw the young gi:1 forgotten that there are laws to protect and guard

whom be had seduced from her home, whose un. the honour of the noble families of Spain, and that sullied name be had dishonoured, spurned, and init does not depend on thee to sully the princely sulted before his face, without making one effort name thou bearest. What! my son, my only son, to mollify his father's resentment against her, or to with royal blood flowing in his veins, marry a shield her from the scorn to which his heartless nameless girl! Bestow upon her the honours and selfishness had exposed her. Apart from her side, titles which thy noble mother so proudly bore ! he suffered her to stand alone in the midst of No, no, Don Alonzo, it shall not be. I would strange and armed men; and when his father rather see thee a corpse at my feet, than the hus. turned to leave the cliurch, he followed in his band of one beneath thee."

steps, nor cast one look at the victim he left beAroused by this insult from the momentary stu- hind him, a prey to her anguish and despair. por into which she had been thrown by the strange

“ Merciful Father !” cried she, sinking on the and unexpected scene before her, Donna Theresa steps of the altar, as their receding footsteps echoed suddenly yet tremblingly arose from her kneeling through the aisles, “ Justice ! justice-or I shall posture, and, drawing herself up to the full die. Oh, that I were dead-stretched like that height of her graceful and commauding form, re- cold corpse in yonder chapel!" plied to the sarcasms of the haughty Duke de “Rise, daughter,” said a voice near lier, but Sidonia, with that dignity and persuasiveness that Theresa heard it not, for she had fainted. Pale and belongs to proud and sensitive natures alone. deathlike, the young girl lay motionless as the dead

Signor," said she, “it is no nameless girl who she bad so lately gazed upon with such prophetic has followed thy son to the altar, but a high-born horror. Her dark hair, loosened from its contineand disinterested Spanish maiden, who had given ment, fell over her shoulders, and swept the steps her whole heart, with all its first affections, in of the altar. exchange for what was to her a nobler and a ricber “Daughter," repeated the priest, as he endea. gist than the vain empty sound of a name—his voured to raise ber, “take courage. He in whose love. If she has erred, it has been against herself, house of prayer thou art will not forsake thee if her outraged family, and affianced lover ; not thee thou forsake not Him. Look up. Put thy trust nor thine, proud Duke—who hast thought it no and faith firmly in Ilim who will not betray shame to insult a defenceless woman, even whilst thee. Grieve not for one who is not worthy of thy she knelt before the sacred altar of her God, and love. He is gone; rejoice that he is ; for he thine! She cannot appeal against this insult and meant this ruin." cruel injury, for she stands alone, without a friend At these words, Theresa slowly opened her eyes, to shield and protect her from the insolence and but scarcely appeared conscious of having heard contempt of licensed power. Bnt she can kneel them. The monk was kneeling by her side, and and sue for the mercy and justice which she can- the two mendicants stood leaning against a pillar, not command. On my knees, then, I beg-im gazing upon her with deep and compassionate inplore--for more than my lise, my honour !" terest.

"Rise, madam, " said the duke, in a tone of Daughter," said the monk," put thy trust in disdainful pity, “I will pay your way into what God, and submit to his will, with the resignation ever convent you may select for your future abode; of a good Christian. Return to thy family and but let us end those worse than useless arguments. all will be well again.” Don Alonzo, thoa hast heard my commands. Fol- “Never!” interrupted she, with gloomy energy ; low me!”

“ I bave no longer any family; I am alone in the “Don Alonzo,” said she proudly, as she rose world-- dishonoured-disgraced !” from her knees, “a noble Spaniard keeps his pro

“Where wouldst thou go then, my daughter ?" mise. Theresa de Vasconcellos will not wait to interrupted the monk. hear thee perjare thinc own words. Farewell !” “I know not; suffer me to remain bere for this

Overwhelmed with shame, disappointment, and night, father. Here will I pray to the Almighty fear of his father's anger, Don Alonzo could make to direct me what to do.”

Weak and tottering Do reply to this dignified reproach, but stood with she then arose, and went into the funereal chapel

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where lay the dead monk, and, kneeling down by become of her, and it was some time before he discothe bier she gazed in silent earnestness upon the vered her in a of niche at the end of a dark chapel. livid countenance before her, as if she sought in the mendicant, seized with pity and remorse, resolved the eternal repose of its rigid features for strength from that instant to revenge her wrongs and his and patience to support her in the future trials of own. His hatred of Don Alonzo was aggravated her now desolate life.

by the sight of the young girl's misery to an intense The monk had resumed his prayers for the dead. degree, and if he had been behind him at that moThe two mendicants had retired.

ment he would have assassinated him on the spot. “If I had kuown thy design,” said Paco Rosa- Paco Rosales took the road to the town house les, in a tone of deep resentment, “thou shouldstof Donna Beatrice de Vasconcellos. Nothing not have accomplished it. They would have been else was talked of in Valencia but the sudden and man and wife by this time.”

mysterious disappearance of Donna Theresa, who, “ By Heaven !” interrupted Tovalito,“ in reveng. it was generally supposed, eloped with a lover. ing myself, I have saved that young girl. Don All researches for her discovery were fruitless—30 Alonzo, by some means or other, would have an- traces of her were found that could possibly lead to nulled the marriage ; she would not have been a conjecture of where she was, or with whom. his wise, but his mistress--& mistress whom he It was still early in the morning. Paco Rosales would have remorselesly adandoned after having sat down on a stone bench in front of the house, satisfied his passion. Miserable, cowardly villain and waited patiently till some of the servants should that he is! A word, a mere angry threat has been make their appearance-for, although not easily sufficient to make him abandon her—and in what embarassed, Paco would not venture to knock at a manner! Without one look of pity or regret, the door of a great house ; so he waited humbly without a whisper of consolation, or promise to aud quietly for a full hour before the door was see her again! Oh, I could have planted my dag. opened, wbich it at length did, when Donna Beager in his dastardly, unmanly heart, when I saw trice herself came out, followed by an old footman him quit her side, and stand cowering before his carrying her prayer book and hassock.

She was father--as vain and haughty an old man as any going to morning prayers at Notre Dame. crowned head in the two kingdoms."

The old lady was dressed in deep mourning, as "I see but one way of repairing this misfortune, if her daughter were dead. After her flight she which is to go and tell the Senora Donna Beatrice had shut up her country house, and returued to that her daughter is found. Besides, we may gain town, refusing to see any one, and spending almost something for the information.

It is worth a re- her whole time at Church. Don Antonio de Gueward, and the marriage may take place after all, vara had taken his departure that same night, and between Donna Theresa and Don Antonio," said joined the army. Paco.

“Charity! madam," cried Paco, holding out his “I see no chance of so good an end to so bad bat by the force of habit, “ I bring you good news, a beginning," said Tovalito, shaking his head I have seen Donna Theresa walking along the Aladoubtfully.

meda ; she entered the church of the reverend “But she can denounce her seducer, which will Dominican fathers—to pray, no doubt. be some satisfaction,” replied Paco Rosales.

The old lady changed colour. “ And even if she should, she would not obtain “ Theresa, my daughter !" cried she, “let us redress," answered Tovalito. A grandee of hasten to her.” Spain is next in rank and power to the King, and But, instantly checking the impulse, she asked is beyond the reach of justice except for high trea in a tone of feigned composure if Donna Theresa Let the Medina Sidonias beware that they

was alone." are not convicted of it; for if they are, they may “Quite alone, madam.” bid adieu to their high sounding titles, their wealth, “Enough ; return to where thou hast left her, their pride--and their heads."

and do not lose sight of her. Go, Paco, go “Basta !” interrupted Paco, in a ball jesting, quickly," cried she anxiously, dropping him a large half serious tone, “now that thou art no longer silver piece. there to aid and abet the conspirators, and convey letters to Portugal, the King, our master, may sleep in peace.”

CHAPTER VIII. Morning dawned, and the monks began to assemble in the Chapel, when Father Cyrillo cum. manded Theresa to rise and follow him to the When Paco was gone, Donna Beatrice immediately confessional, where she might remain concealed sent for the old Canon, a near relative of her defrom further observation. The unfortunate young ceased husband, in whom she placed entire configirl seemed to have lost all consciousness of her dence. He was not one of those gay and well-sed situation; her strength, her will, her understanding incumbents who quietly digest the good things of were annibilated. She no longer felt that she the church, and whose devotion is of that accomlived ; she mechanically obeyed the monk. Tova modating nature that makes them readily excuse lito had returned to the church, to see what had little peccadilloes, and shut their eyes to more

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THE EXPIATION.

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fagrant faults. Don Ignacio de Vasconcellos had The hour for morning prayers was passed, but a not been regularly brought up for the Church, nor few old women still knelt before the railing of the did he enter it till late in life. He had had his altar. Tovalito, standing behind a pillar, was obchoice, when a young man, of either the cowl or serving Theresa with fixed and melancholy attenthe profession of arms. He choose the latter, tion. She was still seated in the confessional, ber and, if certain stories were to be believed of his head resting upon one hand, whilst the other hung youthful indiscretions, he had not much to hope listlessly by her side. Her eyes were wild and for in the next world; but being one day suddenly haggard, and there was something fearful in the converted, his sins were forgotten, and he became immobility of their vacant gaze, that made one as much renowned for his austere virtues as he tremble for the life or reason of the unfortunate was formerly notorious for his licentious vices. girl. He was one of those exaggerated characters who The Canon entered the church, and bastily mut. are never moderate in anything—who are either tering a short prayer, went up to where Theresa excessively bad or excessively good. To all out- was sitting, and standing before her, made her a ward appearance, he had conquered and subdued sign to rise; but she appeared unconscious of his all his earthly passions ; but his pride, which was presence. still predominant, clung tenaciously to his heart, “Theresa," said he, “ arise." and ruled his actions, although decently veiled At the sound of this voice she shuddered, and beneath the garb of pious humility.

Such was

arose in silence. the man whom Donna Beatrice selected to decide “ Put on thy veil.” upon her daughter's fate. He had arrived the Theresa obeyed, and, throwing it over her head evening before; he had seen the desolation of the so as to conceal her face, quietly awaited his fur. family, the tears, the disappointment of the he-ther commands. reaved mother, untouched-almost with indiffer- “ Follow me,” cried he, in a tone of ill-disguised ence; but their dishonoured name, so closely severity. connected with his own, stung him to the quick, The young girl made an effort to advance, but and urged him on to seek for retribution and her trembliug limbs sank under her, and to save revenge.

herself from falling, she involuntarily placed her When Donna Beatrice, with tears in her eyes, hand upon Don Ignacio's arm ; but he indiginformed him that her daughter was found, a gleam nantly shook her off

, and she would have fallen to of malignant satisfaction lit up his cold grey eye, the ground if Tovalito had not rushed forward and and for a moment played upon the thin compressed caught her in his arms. lips, that were never seen to smile but in sarcastic “Put your trust in God, and follow me," said bitterness.

the Canon, affecting not to perceive her weakness. "It is well, my daughter," replied he quietly, Then, leading the way, he walked out of the in a sanctified tone; "I rejoice in the return of church ; whilst Theresa, weak and faint, slowly and the lost sheep to the fold ; may the penance which painfully followed in bis steps. the church enjoins lift from her benighted soul the Thus was the unfortunate girl made to traverse weight of sin that lies heavily upon it, and cleanse the suburbs, then the streets of the populous part her name from the foul stain of dishonour which of the city, the jeer and scoff of every passer clouds its brightness! I will myself take care that by; and when she reached her own neighbourher penance shall not be overmuch for her youth. hood where she was recognised, and her story But where is she at present, daughter ? Art thou known, the crowd that had gathered to witness quite sure that the lamb has not again strayed her penance and degradation was so dense, that beyond our reach ?”

she could with difficuly make her way through it. “She was last seen to enter the Dominican Here she had to endure every kind of insult ; Church, Father,” replied Donna Beatrice, still cries of shame, coarse jests, the bitter mockery of Weeping bitterly.

affected pity, and even blows from the unthinking "Enough!” cried Don Ignacio, as he hastily children, who looked upon her as some monster of arose and left the house.

crime, whom it was praiseworthy to hate and illIt was then about eight o'clock in the morning ; treat. Silently and patiently she submitted to already a busy and noisy crowd buzzed in the po- this kind of moral pillory, but a bright pink spot pulous quarter of the town where the family man. that burned in the centre of her pale cheek shewed sion of the Vasconcellos was situated. But the the internal struggle of her agonised heart. The beautiful walk of the Alameda was completely Canon who had purposely exposed her to this deserted, as it usually was at that early hour, unless public expiation of her fault, walked on with the we except one solitary being, who kept pacing to proud humility and dignified composure of one and fro under the trees. It was Paco Rosales, who accomplishes a difficult act of courage and who was on the watch for Donna Theresa ; but resiguation. On arriving before the house, he perceiving the Canon Don Ignacio approaching, he turned round, and said in a loud voice to the stepped aside to let him pass, not forgetting, how- assembled crowd, which had pursued them to the ever, to hold out his hat as he did -and then very door : "As the crime was public, so should followed him into the church.

the retribution be public.”

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