|• Main||• Contacts|
settlement. Well, as it chanced, I met that handsome lady who was with
you yesterday, returning from her marketing--a friendly soul--she says
she is your cousin. She brought me to the house, and having learned that
your father, whom I wished to see, was at his prayers, good man, in the
old chapel, led me to its door and left me to seek him. I entered, but
could not find him, so, having waited a while, strayed into this garden
through the open door, purposing to walk here till some one should
appear, and, you see, I have been fortunate beyond my expectations
"So!" said Peter shortly, for the man's manner and elaborated
explanations filled him with disgust. "Let us seek Master Castell that
he may hear the story."
"And we thank you much for coming to warn us," murmured Margaret. "I
will go find my father," and she slipped past him towards the door.
D'Aguilar watched her enter it, then turned to Peter and said:
"You English are a hardy folk who take the spring air so early. Well, in
such company I would do the same. Truly she is a beauteous maiden. I
have some experience of the sex, but never do I remember one so fair."
"My cousin is well enough," answered Peter coldly, for this Spaniard's
very evident admiration of Margaret did not please him.
"Yes," answered d'Aguilar, taking no notice of his tone, "she is well
enough to fill the place, not of a merchant's daughter, but of a great
lady--a countess reigning over towns and lands, or a queen even; the
royal robes and ornaments would become that carriage and that brow."
"My cousin seeks no such state who is happy in her quiet lot," answered
Peter again; then added quickly, "See, here comes Master Castell
D'Aguilar advanced and greeted the merchant courteously, noticing as he
did so that, notwithstanding his efforts to appear unconcerned, Castell
seemed ill at ease.
"I am an early visitor," he said, "but I knew that you business folk
rise with the lark, and I wished to catch our friend here before he went
out," and he repeated to him the reason of his coming.
"I thank you, Senor," answered Castell. "You are very good to me and
mine. I am sorry that you have been kept waiting. They tell me that you
looked for me in the chapel, but I was not there, who had already left
it for my office."
"So I found. It is a quaint place, that old chapel of yours, and while I
waited I went to the altar and told my beads there, which I had no time
Page 5 from 9: Back 1 2 3 4  6 7 8 9 Forward