less cross of ivory or rosary of berries long cherished ifl
some aching breast after all else was lost or spent.
She had barely tasted food that day, worst of all she had
not had even a few grains to scatter to the hungry pigeons
as they had fluttered to her on the house-top in the stormy
twUight as the evening fell.
She had lain aAvake all the night hearing the strokes of
the bells sound the hours, and seeming to say to her as they
beat on the silence—
" Dost thou dare to be strong, thou ? a grain of dust, a
reed of the river, a Nothing ?"
When she rose, and drew back the iron staple that
fastened her door, and went out on the crazy stairway, she
struck her foot against a thing of metal. It glittered in
the feeble beams from her lamp.
She took it up; it was a little pjrecious casket, such as of
old the Red Mouse lurked in, amongst the pearls, to spring
out from their whiteness into the purer snow of Gretchen's
With it was only one written line.
" When you are tired,—Folle-Farine ? "
She was already tired, tired with the horrible thirsty
weariness of the young lioness starved and cramped in a
cage in a city.
An old crone sat on a niche on the wall. She thrust her
lean bony face, lit with wolfs eyes through the gloom.
" Are you not tired ?" she muttered in the formula taught
her. "Are you not tired, Folle-Farine?"
" If I be, what of that?" she answered, and she thrust
the case away to the feet of the woman, still shut, and went
on with her little dim tajper doAvn round the twist of the
She knew what she did, what she put away. She had
come to know, too, what share the sex of her mother takes
in the bringing to the lips of their kind the golden pear
til at to most needs no pressing.
" If 1 had only your face, and your chances," had said to
her that day a serving-girl, young, with sallow cheeks, and
a hollow voice, and eyes of fever, who lived in a den lower
down on the stair-way,
" Are you mad that you hunger here when you might
hang yourself with diamonds like otu: Lady of Atocha?"