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Gabor. You may do so, and in safety: Gabor. I am unarm'd, Count - bid your I know the assasin.
son lay down his sabre. Siegend. Where is he?
Ulric (offers it to him contemptuously. Gabor (pointing to Ulric). Beside you! Take it.
(Ulric rushes forward to attack Gabor. No, Sir, 'tis enough
Gabor; Siegendorf interposes. That we are both unarm'd- I would not Siegend. Liar and fiend! but you shall choose not be slain;
To wear a steel which may be stain'd with These walls are mine, and you are safe within them.
Blood than came there in battle
(He turns to Ulric. Ulric (casts the sabre from him in conUlric, repel this calumny, as I
tempt). It-or some Will do. lavow it is a growth so monstrous, Such other weapon, in my hands—spared I could not deem it earth-born : but,be calm;
yours It will refute itself. But touch him not. Once, when disarm’d and at my mercy.
(Ulric endcarours to compose himself. Gabor. TrueGabor. Look at him, Count, and ihen I have not forgotten it: you spared me for hear me.
Your own especial purpose - to sustain Siegend. (first to Gabor, and then looking An ignominy not my own. at Ulric) I hear thee.
Ulric. Proceed. My God! you look
The tale is doubtless worthy the relater. Ulric. How ?
But is it of my father to hear further? Siegend. As on that dread night
[To Siegendorf. When we met in the garden.
Siegend. (takes his son by the hand) Ulric (composes himself ). It is nothing. My son! I know mine own innocence-and Gabor. Count, you are bound to hear doubt not I came hither
of yours - but I bave promised this man Not seeking you, but sought. When I knelt patience; down
Let him continue. Amidst the people in the church, I dream'd Gabor. I will not detain you not
By speaking of myself much; I began To find the beggar'd Werner in the seat Life early-and am what the world has Or Senators and Princes; but you have
At Frankfort, on the Oder, where I pass'd And we have met.
A winter in obscurity, it was Siegend. Go on, Sir,
My chance at several places of resort Gabor. Ere I do so,
(Which I frequented sometimes, but not Allow me to inquire who profited
often) By Stralenheim’s death? Was't I-as poor To hear related a strange circumstance, as ever;
In February last. A martial force, And poorer by suspicion on my name. Sent by the state, had, after strong resistance, The Baron lost in that last outrage neither Secured a band of desperate men, supposed Jewels nor gold; his life alone was sought- Marauders from the hostile camp. They A life which stood between the claims of
However, not to be so-but banditti, To honours and estates, scarce less than Whom either accident or enterprise princely.
Had carried from their usual haunt-the Siegend. These hints, as vague as vain,
forests attach no less
Which skirt Bohemia- even into Lusatia. To me than to my son.
Many amongst them were reported of Gabor. I can't help that.
High rank- and martial law slept for a time. But let the consequence alight on him At last they were escorted o'er the frontiers, Who feels himself the guilty one amongst us. And placed beneath the civil jurisdiction I speak to you, Count Siegendorf, because of the free town of Frankfort. Of their fate, I know you innocent, and deem you just. I know no more. But ere I can proceed — Dare you protect Siegend. And what is this to Ulric} me!
Gabor. Amongst them there was said Dare you command me?
to be one man
garian, and then at Ulric, who fortune,
And courage as unrivalled, were proclaim'd Ulric. (looks at his father and says) His by the public rumour; and his sway Let the man go on!
Not only over his associates but
Hi, judges, was attributed to witchcraft. Gabor. Still you owe me go
gomething, Such was his influence : - I have no great Though not for that - and I owed you my faith
safety, In any Magic save that of the Mine- At least my seeming safety-when the slaves I therefore deem'd him wealthy.—But my Of Stralenheim pursued me on the grounds soul
That I had robb’d him. Was roused with various feelings to seek out Siegend. I conceal'd you-1, This Prodigy, if only to behold him. Whom, and whose houso, you arraign, Siegend. And did you so ?
reviving viper! Gabor. You'll hear. Chance favour'd me: Gabor. I accuse no man-save in my A popular affray in the public square
defence. Drew crowds together - it was one of those You, Count! have made yourself accuserOccasions, where men's souls look out of judgethem,
Your hall's my court, your heart is my And show them as they are—even in their
Be just, and I'll be mcrciful. The moment my eye met his-I exclaim'd Siegend. You merciful! “This is the man!” though he was then, You! Base calumniator! as since,
Gabor. I. "Twill rest With the nobles of the city. I felt sure With me at last to be so. You conceal'd me-I had not err’d, and watch'd him long and In secret passages known to yourself, nearly:
You said, and to none else. At dead of night, I noted down his form—his gesture--fea- Weary with watching in the dark, and tures,
dubious Stature and bearing-and amidst them all, Of tracing back my way - I saw a glimmer 'Midst every natural and acquired dis-Through distant crannies of a twinkling tinction,
light. I could discern, methought, the assassin's eye I follow'd it, and reach'd a door--a secret And gladiator's heart.
Portal which open'd to the chamber, where, Ulric (smiling). The tale sounds well. With cautions hand and slow, having first Gabor. And may sound better, - He
undone appear'd to me
As much as made a crevice of the fastening, One of those beings to whom Fortune bends I look'd through, and beheld a purple bed, As she doth to the Daring-and on whom And on it Stralenheim !-The Fates of others oft depend; besides, Siegend. Asleep! And yet An indescribable sensation drew me You slew him-Wretch ! Near to this man, as if my Point of Fortune Gabor. He was already slain, Was to be fixed by him. There I was wrong. And bleeding like a sacrifice. My own · Siegend. And may not be right now. Blood became ice. Gabor. I follow'd him,
Siegend. But he was all alone! Solicited his notice -- and obtain'd it- You saw none else? You did not see tho Though not his friendship:- it was his
[Hle pauses from agitation. intention
Gabor. No, To leave the city privately-we left it He, whom you dare not name-nor even I Together--and together we arrived Scarce dare to recollect-- was not then in In the poor town where Werner was con- The chamber. ceal'd,
Siegend. (to Ulric) Then, my boy! thou And Stralenheim was succour'd -- Now we art guiltless still –
Thou bad'st me say I was so once-Oh! now The verge—dare you hear further? Do thou as much ! Sicgend. I must do som
Gabor. Be patient! I can not Or I have heard too much.
Recede now, though it shake the very walls Gabor I saw in you
Which frown above us. You remember, or A man above his station, and if not If not, your son does, - that the locks were So high, as now I find you, in my then
changed Conceptions—'twas that I had rarely seen Beneath his chief inspection-on the morn Men such as you appear'd in height of mind, which led to this same night: how he had In the most high of worldly rank; you were enter'd, Poor-even to all save rags—I would have He best knows--but within an antechamber, shared
The door of which was half ajar-I saw My purse, though slender, with you-yon A man who wash'd his bloody bands, and oft refused it.
With stern and anxious glance gazed back Sicgend. Doth my refusal make a debt upon
The bleeding body, but it moved no more. That thus you urge it?
Siegend. Ol! God of Fathers !
Gabor. I beheld his features
With you; you are wealthy, noble, trusted by As I see yours- but yours they were not, The Imperial powers-You understand me? though
Siegend. Yes. Resembling them—behold them in Count Gabor. Not quite. You think me venal, Ulric's!
and scarce true: Distinct-as I beheld them, though the Tis no less true, however, that my fortunes expression
Have made me both at present; you shall Is not now what it then was ;-. but it was so When I first charged him with the crime:- I would have aided you - and also have so lately.
Been somewhat damaged in my name to save Siegend. This is so—
Yours and your son's. Weigh well what I Gabor (interrupting him). Nay — but have said. hear me to the end!
Siegend. Dare you await the event of a Now you must do so. I conceived myself few minutes' Betray'd by you and him (for now I saw Deliberation ? There was some tie between you) into this Gabor (casts his eyes on Ulric, who is Pretended den of refuge, to become
leaning against a pillar). The victim of your guilt; and my first
If I should do so? thought
Siegend. I pledge my life for yours. Was vengeance: but though arm'd with a Withdraw into short poignard
(Opens a turret-door. (Having left my sword without) I was no Gabor (hesitatingly). This is the second match
safe asylum For him at any time, as had been proved
You have offer'd me. That morning - either in address or force. Siegend. And was not the first so? I turn'd, and fled - i' the dark: Chance, Gabor. I know not that even now-but
rather than Skill, made me gain the secret door of The second. I have still a further shield. the hall,
I did not enter Prague alone-and should I And thence the chamber where you slept- Be put to rest with Stralenheim- there are if I
Some tongues without will wag in my behalf. Had found you waking, Heaven alone can Be brief in your decision ! tell
Siegend. I will be so.What Vengeance and Suspicion might have My word is sacred and irrevocable prompted ;
Within these walls, but it extends no further. But ne'er slept Guilt as Werner slept that Gabor. I'll take it for so much. night.
Siegend. (points to Ulric's sabre, still Siegend. And yet I had horrid dreams! upon the ground). and such brief sleep
Take also that -
Gabor (takes up the sabre). I will; and And now my dream is out!
so provide Gabor. 'I'is not my fault,
To sell my life-not cheaply. If I have read it. -- Well! I fled and hid me- (Gabor gocs into the turret, which Chance led me here after so many moons
Siegendorf closcs. And show'd me Werner in Count Siegendorf! Siegend. (advances to Ulric) Now, Count Werner, whom I had sought in huts in vain,
Ulric! Inhabited the palace of a Sovereign ! For son I dare not call thee-What sayst You sought me, and have found me-now
Ulric. His tale is true. My secret, and may weigh its worth. Siegend. True, monster! Sicgend. (after a pause) Indeed !
Ulric. Most true, father; Gabor. Is it Revenge or Justice which And you did well to listen to it: what inspires
We know, we can provide against. He must Your meditation ?
Be silenced. Siegend. Neither-I was weighing Siegend. Ay, with half of my domains; The value of your secret.
And with the other half, could he and thou Gabor. You shall know it
Unsay this villany. Atonce -- when you were poor, and I, though Ulric. It is no time poor,
For trifling or dissembling. I have said Rich enough to relieve such poverty His story's true; and he too must be silenced. As might have envied mine, I offer'd you Sicgend. How so? My purse-you would not share it :-'l'l Ulric. As Stralenheim is. Are you so dall be franker
As never to have hit on this before ?
When we met in the garden, what except Known as our foe- but not from vengeance.
As doth the bolt, because it stood between us Then summond, would the cry forthe police And our true destination-- but not idly. Been left to such a stranger? Or should I As stranger I preserved him, and he owed me Have loiter'd on tho way? Or could you, His life; when due, I but resumed the debt. W'erner,
He, you, and I stood o'er a gulf, wherein The object of the Baron's hate and fears, I have plunged our enemy. You kindled Have fled - unless by many an hour before
Ulric. Let us have done with that which
cankers lifeThan common stabber! What deed of my Familiar feuds and vain recriminations life,
Of things which cannot be undone. We have Or thought of mine, could make you deem No more to learn or hide: I know no sear,
And have within these very walls men For your accomplice?
(Although you know them not) dare ven-
Will not excite her too great curiosity : Could I be calm? Think you that I have Keep your own secret, keep a steady eye, heard
Stir not, and speak not; -leave the rest This fellow's tale withont some feeling? yon
to me: Have taught me feeling for you and myself; We must have no third babblers thrust For whom or what else did you ever teach it?
[Erit Ulric. Siegend. Oh! my dead father's curse ! Siegend. (solus) Am I awake? are these 'tis working now.
my father's halls ?
The Hungarian's !-Ulric— he hath par-
Into the turret. Now then! or once more That passion was our nature that the To be the father of fresh crimes-no less goods
Than of the criminal! Ho! Gabor! Gabor!
power to vindicate myself and race SCENE II.-The Interior of the Turret. In open day? By his disgrace which stamp'd
GABOR and SIEGENDORF.
jewels, and thrusts them into Gabor's With right and wrong; and now must only
Gabor. What am I to do
And prosper; but delay not-or you are lost!
Gabor. You pledged your honour for Ulrio. What! remain to be my safety!
Denounced-dragg’d, it may be, in chains; Siegend. And
and all Must thus redeem it. Fly! I am not master, By your inherent weakness, half-humanity, It seems, of my own castle-of my own Sellish remorse, and temporising pity, Retainers - nay, even of these very walls, That sacrifices your whole race to save Or I would bid them fall and crush me! Fly! A wretch to profit by our ruin! No, Count, Or you will be slain by
Henceforth you have no son! Gabor. Is it even so ?
Siegend. I never had one; Farewell, then! Recollect, however, Count, And would you ne'er had borne the useless You sought this fatal interview!
name! Siegend. I did:
Where will you go? I would not send you Let it not be more fatal still:-Begone!
forth Gabor. By the same path I enter'd ? Without protection. Siegend. Yes; that's safe still :
Ulric. Leave that unto me. But loiter not in Prague;-you do not I am not alone; nor merely the vain heir know
of your domains: a thousand, ay, ten With whom you have to deal.
thousand Gabor. I know too well
Swords, hearts, and hands, are mine.
JExit Gabor. With whom the Hungarian found you first Siegend. (solus and listening) He hath at Frankfort ?
clear'd the staircase. Ah! I hear Ulric. Yes - men—who are worthy of The door sound loud behind him! He is
the name! Go tell safe!
Your senators that they look well to Praguez Safo!-Oh, my father's spirit!- I am faint-Their feast of peace was carly for the times;
(He lcans down upon a stone-scat, near | There are more spirits abroad than have the wall of the Tower, in a drooping
been laid posture.
With Wallenstein ! Enter ULRIC, with others armed, and with
Enter JosEPHINE and IDA. weapons drawn.
Josephine. What is't we hear 1 My SicUlrio. Despatch!- he's there!
gendorf! Ludwig. The Count, my Lord !
Thank Heaven, I see you safe! Ulric (recognising Siegendorf). You Siegend. Sale! here, Sir!
Ida. Yes, dear father! Siegend. Yes: if you want another victim, Siegend. No, no; I have no children:
strike! Ulric (sccing him stript of his jewels). Call me by that worst name of parent. Where is the ruffian who hath plunder'd you? Josephine. What Vassals, despatch in search of him! You see Means my good Lord ? 'Twas as I said, the wretch hath stript my Siegend. That
have given birth father
To a demon! Of jewels which might form a prince's Ida (taking Ulric's hand). Who shall heirdom!
dare say this of Ulric? Away! I'll follow you forthwith.
Siegend. Ida, beware! there's blood [Ercunt all but Stralenheim and Ulric.
upon that hand.
What's this? Ida (stooping to kiss it). I'd kiss it off, Where is the villain ?
though it were mine! Sicgend. There are two, sir; which Sicgend. It is so! Are you in quest of ?
Ulric. Away! it is your father's! Ulric. Let us hear no more
(Erit Ulric. Of this: he must be found. You have not Ida. Oh, great God! let him escape?
And I have loved this man ! Siegend. He's gone.
[Ida falls senseless - Josephine stands Ulric. With your connivance ?
speechless with horror. Siegend. With
Siegend. The wretch hath slain My fullest, freest aid.
Them both!- my Josephine! we are now Ulric. Then fare you well!
alone! (Ulric is going. Would we had ever been so!-All is over Sicgend. Stop! I command-entrcat For me!-Now open wide, my sire, thy grave; implore! Oh, Ulric!
Thy curse hath dug it deeper for thy son Will you then leave me?
In mine!—The race of Siegendorf is past!