Margaret glanced at the speaker, and knew immediately that
His hand was on the door-knob; he stood still and looked back. She was by his side--pale, with burning eyes and trembling lips, she threw her arms around him and kissed him passionately.
"Farewell, my Carlo!--farewell, thou lover of my soul, thou light of my eyes!"
She kissed his mouth, his eyes, his hands; she pressed him to her heart, and then she pushed him from her, saying, in cold, rough tones, "Go! go, I say!"
Without again looking at him she hurried up the stairs. Ranuzi, laughing and shaking his head at her foolishness, left the house with a contented and assured heart.
This time Marietta did not call him back; she did not gaze after him from the window, as she was accustomed to do; she stood, pale as death, in the middle of the room, with panting breath, with flashing eyes; motionless, but with eager and expectant mien, as if listening to something afar off.
To what was Marietta listening? Perhaps to the echo of his step in the silent, isolated street; perhaps to the memories which, like croaking birds of death, hovered over her head, as if to lacerate and destroy even her dead happiness; perhaps she listened to those whispering voices which resounded in her breast and accused Ranuzi of faithlessness and treachery. And was he, then, really guilty? Had he committed a crime worthy of death?
Marietta was still motionless, hearkening to these whispered voices in her breast.
"I will deliberate yet once more," said she, walking slowly through the room, and sinking down upon the divan. "I will sit again in judgment upon him, and my heart, which in the fury of its pain still loves him, my heart shall be his judge."