`Yes, Christine, when they love and are not sure of being loved.'

They came to Christine's dressing-room.

`Why do you think that you are safer in this room than on the stage?' asked Raoul. `You heard him through the walls here, therefore he can certainly hear us.'

`No. He gave me his word not to be behind the walls of my dressing-room again and I believe Erik's word. This room and my bedroom on the lake are for me, exclusively, and not to be approached by him.'

`How can you have gone from this room into that dark passage, Christine? Suppose we try to repeat your movements; shall we?'

`It is dangerous, dear, for the glass might carry me off again; and, instead of running away, I should be obliged to go to the end of the secret passage to the lake and there call Erik.'

`Would he hear you?'

`Erik will hear me wherever I call him. He told me so. He is a very curious genius. You must not think, Raoul, that he is simply a man who amuses himself by living underground. He does things that no other man could do; he knows things which nobody in the world knows.'

`Take care, Christine, you are making a ghost of him again!'

`No, he is not a ghost; he is a man of Heaven and earth, that is all.'

`A man of Heaven and earth...that is all!...A nice way to speak of him! ...And are you still resolved to run away from him?'

`Yes, to-morrow.'

`To-morrow, you will have no resolve left!'

`Then, Raoul, you must run away with me in spite of myself; is that understood?'

`I shall be here at twelve to-morrow night; I shall keep my promise, whatever happens. You say that, after listening to the performance, he is to wait for you in the dining-room on the lake?'


`And how are you to reach him, if you don't know how to go out by the glass?'

`Why, by going straight to the edge of the lake.'

Christine opened a box, took out an enormous key and showed it to Raoul.

`What's that?' he asked.

`The key of the gate to the underground passage in the Rue Scribe.'

`I understand, Christine. It leads straight to the lake. Give it to me, Christine, will you?'

`Never!' she said. `That would be treacherous!'

Suddenly Christine changed color. A mortal pallor overspread her features.

  By PanEris using Melati.

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