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BLOSS C.A. Heroines of the Crusades

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BLOSS C.A.
Heroines of the Crusades
page 226



precise location of the monarch's couch. Creeping stealth-ily over the floor, he first laid his hand upon the foot of the physician, which with an instinctive kick warned him of his dangerous vicinity. Finally, as his eyes became ac-customed to the darkness, he discovered the sparkle of the jewel upon the hand of themonarch, hanging over the side of the bed. To withdraw the ring from the somewhat at-tenuated finger was the work of a moment, but the touch, however slight, was sufficient to disturb the slumbering lion. "Ha! the foul fiend !" ejaculated the dreamer, clutching the woolly hau' of the negro. " The talisman is safe—cheer —thee—Berengaria—" Inarticulate sounds followed, which finally died away in silence ; when Salaman, with practised caution, extricated his head from the lion's paw, and effect-ed his retreat by the same stealthy and tedious process. Elsiebede awaited his coming with torturing impatience. Grasping the ring, she muffled her face in the veil usually worn by eastern females, and bidding him follow her took her way towards the city. The moon, just dipping its sil-ver rim in the Mediterranean with its parting beam, threw the lengthened shadow of the patrol full across their way. Cowering behind the awning of a tent they paused breath-less and terrified, while the sentinel, turning his face to-wards Jerusalem, shouted above their heads in a tone ren-dered clear and startling by the stillness of the midnight, "Help! Help! Help for the Holy Sepulchre !" The ad-jacent sentinel took up the cry, repeating the words to his neighbor, who passed the watchword on, till "Help! Help! Help for the Holy Sepulchre !" echoed in all the languages of Europe, smote upon the ear of every sleeper in the chris-tian camp. When the sounds died away in the distance, the patrol continued his round. The terror of Elsiebede afforded infinite amusement to Salaman, whose irrepressi-ble laughter added to her fears of being discovered, and increased her trepidation. After this adventure they pursued their course with re-newed speed, and arrived without molestation at the out-post, where the guard challenged-their advance. Elsicbede BERENGARIA OF NAVARRE. 237


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