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- Barbara Blomberg, Volume 4. - 11/11 -


Whatever the truthful girl so positively and solemnly denied must be far from her thoughts, and he now clasped her right hand in both his.

The heavy anxiety that his "queen" had fallen into the baron's hands as a toy had been removed. The thought of the Emperor Charles was as far removed from his mind as heaven from earth, though Barbara emphasized the fact that the man whom she loved would be sure of his respect. She also, with deep emotion, assured him that she wished him the best and most beautiful life, and would always retain her friendship for him whatever Fate might have in store for both.

The words sounded so truthful and loyal that Wolf's heart was moved to its inmost depths, and he now, in his turn, assured her that he would never forget her, and would treasure her image in his heart's core to the end. True, he must endure the keenest suffering for her sake, but he also owed her the greatest happiness life had granted him.

The eyes of both were dim, but when he began to talk in the old pathetic way of the magic of love, which would at last bring together those whom Heaven destined for one another, she tore herself away, hastily begged him to say farewell to Fran Hiltner for her, and then went into the hall; but here Martina overtook the departing guest, threw herself impetuously into her arms, and whispered the question whether she would permit her to pay her a visit at Prebrunn when she was with her old marquise, she had so much, so very much, to tell her.

But the wish, of which her mother was ignorant, remained unfulfilled, for Barbara, scarcely able to control her voice in her embarrassment, hurriedly replied that while with the lady in waiting she would no longer be her own mistress, pressed a hasty kiss upon the innocent child's brow, released herself from her embrace, and rushed through the door, which Wolf was holding open for her, into the street.

The former gazed after her with a troubled heart, and, after she was out of sight, returned to the others. He conscientiously delivered Barbara's farewell, and the praise which Frau Sabina lavished upon her pleased him as much as if nothing had come between them. Finally he made an engagement to see Erasmus Eckhart that evening in his lodgings, and then went to the Queen of Hungary.

After he had left the Hiltners Frau Sabina bent down to her mother-in- law's ear--though she had lost her quickness of hearing, she had retained her sight perfectly--and, raising her voice, told her the name of the young lady who had just left them. Then she asked if she, too, did not admire Barbara's beauty, and what she thought of her.

The grandmother nodded, exclaiming in a low tone, "Beautiful, beautiful-- a wonderfully beautiful creature!" Then she gazed thoughtfully into vacancy, and at last asked whether she had heard correctly that Jungfrau Blomberg was also a remarkable singer.

Her daughter-in-law eagerly nodded assent to this question.

The aged woman silently bowed her head, but quickly raised it again, and there was a faint tinge of regret in her voice as she began: "Too much, certainly too much. Such marvels are rare. But one thing or the other. For women of her stamp there are only two conditions, and no other-- rapturous happiness and utter misery. She will be content with no average. It does not suit such natures."

Here she paused abruptly, for Martina entered the room, and with affectionate solicitude said to her granddaughter: "Young Trainer was here just now. Has anything happened between you? I see by your eyes that you have been weeping."

ETEXT EDITOR'S BOOKMARKS:

Cunning which is often a characteristic of narrow minds Pride in charms which we do not possess (vanity)


Barbara Blomberg, Volume 4. - 11/11

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