the rest, and she looked on them with rising tenderness. `How does it feel to be deserted?' she thought. `Poor dear fool! The girl deserves that he should see this order.'

Without more delay, she passed into the palace and asked for an audience of Prince Otto. The Prince, she was told, was in his own apartment, and desired to be private. She sent her name. A man presently returned with word that the Prince tendered his apologies, but could see no one. `Then I will write,' she said, and scribbled a few lines alleging urgency of life and death. `Help me, my Prince,' she added; `none but you can help me.' This time the messenger returned more speedily, and begged the Countess to follow him: the Prince was graciously pleased to receive the Frau Gräfin von Rosen.

Otto sat by the fire in his large armoury, weapons faintly glittering all about him in the changeful light. His face was disfigured by the marks of weeping; he looked sour and sad; nor did he rise to greet his visitor, but bowed, and bade the man begone. That kind of general tenderness which served the Countess for both heart and conscience, sharply smote her at this spectacle of grief and weakness; she began immediately to enter into the spirit of her part; and as soon as they were alone, taking one step forward and with a magnificent gesture -- `Up!' she cried.

`Madame von Rosen,' replied Otto dully, `you have used strong words. You speak of life and death. Pray, madam, who is threatened? Who is there,' he added bitterly, `so destitute that even Otto of Grünewald can assist him?'

`First learn,' said she, `the names of the conspirators; the Princess and the Baron Gondremark. Can you not guess the rest?' And then, as he maintained his silence -- `You!' she cried, pointing at him with her finger. "Tis you they threaten! Your rascal and mine have laid their heads together and condemned you. But they reckoned without you and me. We make a partie carrée, Prince, in love and politics. They lead an ace, but we shall trump it. Come, partner, shall I draw my card?'

`Madam,' he said, `explain yourself. Indeed I fail to comprehend.'

`See, then,' said she; and handed him the order.

He took it, looked upon it with a start; and then, still without speech, he put his hand before his face. She waited for a word in vain.

`What!' she cried, `do you take the thing down-heartedly? As well seek wine in a milk-pail as love in that girl's heart! Be done with this, and be a man. After the league of the lions, let us have a conspiracy of mice, and pull this piece of machinery to ground. You were brisk enough last night when nothing was at stake and all was frolic. Well, here is better sport; here is life indeed.'

He got to his feet with some alacrity, and his face, which was a little flushed, bore the marks of resolution.

`Madame von Rosen,' said he, `I am neither unconscious nor ungrateful; this is the true continuation of your friendship; but I see that I must disappoint your expectations. You seem to expect from me some effort of resistance; but why should I resist? I have not much to gain; and now that I have read this paper, and the last of a fool's paradise is shattered, it would be hyperbolical to speak of loss in the same breath with Otto of Grünewald. I have no party, no policy; no pride, nor anything to be proud of. For what benefit or principle under Heaven do you expect me to contend? Or would you have me bite and scratch like a trapped weasel? No, madam; signify to those who sent you my readiness to go. I would at least avoid a scandal.'

`You go? -- of your own will, you go?' she cried.

`I cannot say so much, perhaps,' he answered; `but I go with good alacrity. I have desired a change some time; behold one offered me! Shall I refuse? Thank God, I am not so destitute of humour as to make

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