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at him swiftly, "or hate," and her face changed.
"Not hate of me, I think," said Peter.
"No, Senor, not hate of you. Why should I hate you who have been so
helpless and so courteous to me?" and she bent the knee to him a little.
"Why indeed? especially as I am also grateful to you who have nursed me
back to life. But then, why hide the truth from a helpless man?"
Inez glanced about her; the room was empty now. She bent over him and
"Have you never been forced to hide the truth? No, I read it in your
face, and you are not a woman--an erring woman."
They looked into each other's eyes a while, then Peter asked: "Is the
Dona Margaret really dead?"
"I do not know," she answered; "I was told so." And as though she feared
lest she should betray herself, Inez turned and left him quickly.
The days went by, and through the slow degrees of convalescence Peter
grew strong again. But they brought him no added knowledge. He did not
know where he dwelt or why he was there. All he knew was that he lived a
prisoner in a sumptuous palace, or as he suspected, for of this he could
not be sure, since the arched windows of one side of the building were
walled up, in the wing of a palace. Nobody came near to him except the
fair Inez, and a Moor who either was deaf or could understand nothing
that he said to him in Spanish. There were other women about, it is
true, very pretty women all of them, who acted as servants, but none of
these were allowed to approach him; he only saw them at a distance.
Therefore Inez was his sole companion, and with her he grew very
intimate, to a certain extent, but no further. On the occasion that has
been described she had lifted a corner of her veil which hid her true
self, but a long while passed before she enlarged her confidence. The
veil was kept down very close indeed. Day by day he questioned her, and
day by day, without the slightest show of irritation, or even annoyance,
she parried his questions. They knew perfectly well that they were
matching their wits against each other; but as yet Inez had the best of
the game, which, indeed, she seemed to enjoy. He would talk to her also
of all sorts of things--the state of Spain, the Moorish court, the
danger that threatened Granada, whereof the great siege now drew near,
and so forth--and of these matters she would discourse most
intelligently, with the result that he learned much of the state of
politics in Castile and Granada, and greatly improved his knowledge of
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