Karl had grown accustomed to it, though he did not know what it meant, — and he listened to it, till drowsiness made him fancy it was the hum of his mother's spinning wheel, at home in his native German village among the pine-forests, and so he fell happily asleep. Meanwhile El - Rami, ascending to the tower, knocked sharply at a small nail- studded door in the wall. The mysterious murmuring noise was now louder than ever, — and the knock had to be repeated three or four times before it was attended to.
Then the door was cautiously opened, and the " Herr Doctor" himself looked out, his wizened, aged, meditative face illumined like a Rembrandt picture by the small hand-lamp he held in his hand. And like ' Bernardo ' — you ' come most care- fully upon your hour. Kremlin shut to the door carefully and bolted it — then he turned the light of the lamp he carried, full on the dark handsome face and dignified figure of his companion. But I am getting very old, — the life in me is ebbing fast, — and I have not done my work —. I have not done my work! El -Rami's black beaming eyes rested on him compassionately.
You shall sleep to-night. I have come according to my promise, and I will do what I can for you. Trust me — you shall not lose the reward of your life's work by want of time. You shall have time, — even leisure to complete your labours, — I will give you ' length of days '! You cannot overstep it or penetrate beyond it — you cannot slacken the pace of the on-rushing years ; — no, no!
Kremlin took up the flask curiously. I have kept one human creature alive and in perfect health for six years on that vital fluid alone. As I have often told you, there! It would be a false note and a useless calcula- tion to allow thought to dwell on what cannot be, — hence our airiest visions are bound to become facts in time. All the same, I am not of such superhuman ability that I can make you change your skin like a serpent, and blossom into youth and the common vulgar lusts of life, which to the thinker must be valueless.
What you hold there, will simply renew the tissues, and gradually enrich the blood with fresh globules — nothing more, — but that is all you need. Plainly and practically speaking, as long as the tissues and the blood continue to renew themselves, you cannot die except by violence. There is nothing really astonishing in the statement. The first death in the world, according to that legend, was death by violence.
Without violence, life should be immortal, or at least renewable at pleasure. He was balancing the little flask in his hand in wonderment and awe. May He not snatch the unwilling soul from its earthly tenement at an unexpected moment, — and so. Kremlin, still playing with the flask he held. One little trifle of exactitude, which is always missing, unfortunately, — one little delicate scientific adjustment, and the fiercest storm and wind could not prevail against the properly poised vessel.
As for lightning — of course people are killed by it if they persist in maintaining an erect position like a lightning-rod or conductor, while the electrical currents are in full play. If they were to lie flat down, as savages do, they could not attract the descending force. But who, among arrogant stupid men, cares to adopt such simple precautions? Any way, I do not see that you need fear any of these disasters. I have nothing to fear. He and El- Rami were sitting in a small square chamber of the tower, — very narrow, with only space enough for the one tiny table and two chairs which furnished it, — the walls were covered with very curious maps, composed of lines and curves and zig-zag patterns, meaningless to all except Kremlin himself, whose dreamy gaze wandered to them between-whiles with an ardent yearning and anxiety.
And ever that strange deep, monotonous humming noise surged through the tower as of a mighty wheel at work, the vibration of the sound seeming almost to shake the solid masonry, while mingling with it now and again came the wild sea-bird cry of the wind. Kremlin looked up, his pale eyes full oi a sudden fire and animation. The music of the Earth, my friend! Your gift of long life would be almost valueless compared to my proof of what is beyond life " " Yes — if the proof could be obtained — " interposed El-Rami.
I will not die till the secret is won. I will wrench it out from the Holy of Holies — I will pluck it from the very thoughts of God! A brisk puff of wind blew in their faces through the aperture, but this subsided into mere cool freshness of air, as they entered and stood together within the great central chamber of the tower, — a lofty apartment, where the strange work of Kremlin's life was displayed in all its marvellous complexity, — a work such as no human being had ever attempted before, or would be likely to attempt again.
The singular object that at once caught and fixed the eye in fascinated amazement and something of terror, was a huge Disc, sus- pended between ceiling and floor by an apparently inextricable mesh and tangle of wires. It was made of some smooth glitter- ing substance like crystal, and seemed from its great height and circumference to occupy nearly the whole of the lofty tower-room. It appeared to be lightly poised and balanced on a long steel rod, — a sort of gigantic needle which hung from the very top of the tower.
The entire surface of the Disc was a sub- dued blaze of light, — light which fluctuated in waves and lines, and zig-zag patterns like a kaleidoscope, as the enormous thing circled round and round, as it did, with a sort of THE SOUL OF LI LIT H measured motion, and a sustained solemn buzzing sound. Here was the explanation of the mysterious noise that vibrated through- out the house, — it was simply the movement of this round shield-like mass among its wonderful network of rods and wires.
Kremlin called it his ''crystal" Disc, — but it was utterly unlike ordinary crystal, for it not only shone with a transparent watery clearness, but possessed the scintillating lustre of a fine diamond cut into numerous prisms, so that El-Rami shaded his eyes from the flash of it as he stood contemplating it in silence.
It swirled round and round steadily ; facing it, a large casement window, about the size of half the wall, was thrown open to the night, and through this could be seen a myriad sparkling stars. The wind blew in, but not fiercely now, for part of the wrath of the gale was past, — and the wash of the sea on the beach below had exactly the same tone in it as the monotonous hum of the Disc as it moved. At one side of the open window a fine telescope mounted on a high stand, pointed out towards the heavens, — there were numerous other scientific implements THE SOUL OF LILITH in the room, but it was impossible to take much notice of anything but the Disc itself, with its majestic motion and the solemn sound to which it swung.
Shall the actual offspring of my thought refuse to clear up the riddle I pro- ]: Nay, is it possible the creature should baffle the creator? Then he seemed to suddenly recollect himself, and looking up, he rose to his feet and spoke in a perfectly calm and collected manner. Nothing can stop that movement save the destruction of the whole piece of mechanism.
By some such subtly delicate balance as that, the Universe moves, — and nothing can stop it save the destruction of the Universe. Is not that fairly reasoned? You cannot claim to yourself any actual discovery of perpetual motion, because that is Nature's own par- ticular mystery. If we could imagine our planet stopping suddenly in its course, your Disc would stop also, — is not that correct?
With perpetual motion itself you have nothing to do, — you cannot find its why or its when or its how, — it is eternal as Eternity. Things must move, — and we all move with them — your Disc included. Would you drive me mad? No human brain could steadily contemplate the thought of such pitiless infinity! El-Rami met his gaze with a compassionate glance in his own eyes. I grant you the human brain has Hmits ; but the human Soul has none!
The soul of Lilith
There is no 'pitiless in- finity ' to the Soul's aspirations, — it is never contented, — but eternally ambitious, eternally enquiring, eternally young, it is ready to scale heights and depths without end, uncon-. What of a million million Universes? I — even I — can contemplate them without dismay, — the brain, may totter and reel at the multiplicity of them, — but the Soul would absorb them all and yet seek space for more!
He paused in his uneasy rocking to and fro, and listened as though he heard music. Yet with all your large ideas 1 find you inconsistent ; for example, you , talk of the Soul now, as if you believed in it, — but there are times when you declare, yourself doubtful of its existence. It is the natural instinct of every man to credit himself with immortality, because this life is so short and unsatisfactory, — the notion may be a fault of heritage perhaps, still it is implanted in us all the same.
The Soul of Lilith, Vol. 1.
And I do believe in the Soul, — but I require certainty to make my mere belief an undeniable Fact. And the whole busi- ness of my life is to establish that fact provably, and beyond any sort of doubt whatever, — what inconsistency do you find there? Kremlin jumped up excitedly. It is well known that every star in the heavens sends forth per- petual radiations of light ; which radiations in a given number of minutes, days, months or years, reach our Earth.
It depends of course on the distance between the particular star and our planet, as to how long these light-vibrations take to arrive here. One ray from some stars will occupy thousands of years in its course, — in fact, the original planet from which it fell, may be swept out of existence before it has time to penetrate our atmosphere. All this is in the lesson - books of children, and is familiar to every beginner in the rudiments of astronomy. But apart from time and distance, there is no cessation to these light-beats or vibrations ; they keep on arriving for ever, without an instant's pause.
Now, my great idea, was, as you know, to catch these reflexes on a mirror or dial of magnetic spar, — and you see for yourself that this thing, which seemed impossible, is to a certain extent done. Every little zig- zag or circular flash on that Disc, is a vibra- tion of light from some star, — but what puzzles and confounds my skill is this ; — That there is a Meaning in those lines — a distinct Meaning which asks to be interpreted, — a picture which is ever on the point of declaring itself, and is never declared.
Mine is the torture of a Tantalus watching night after night that mystic Dial!
- The Zebra Murders: A Season of Killing, Racial Madness and Civil Rights.
- Find a copy in the library.
- Lesson Plan #3: The Pigman?
- Mais títulos a considerar!
From what stars they fall, and why they have deeper colours than most of the reflexes, I cannot tell. I have seen them four times only since the Disc was balanced twelve years ago, — and 1 have tried in every way to trace their origin — in vain —. If 1 could only decipher the Meaning! The light may be said to create landscape and generate Colour. Reflexes of light make pictures, — witness the instantaneous flash, which with the aid of chemistry, will give you a photo- graph in a second.
I firmly believe that all reflexes of light are so many letters of a marvellous alphabet, which if we could only read it, would enable us to grasp the highest secrets of creation. And just as the whole realm of music is in seven tones of natural Sound, so the whole realm of light is in a pictured Language of Design, Colour, and Method, with an intention and a message, which wc — we human beings — are intended to discover. Yet with all these great mysteries waiting to be solved, the most of us are con- tent to eat and drink and sleep and breed and die, like the lowest cattle, in brutish ignorance of more than half our intellectual privileges.
I tell you, El-Rami, if I could only find out and place correctly one of those light-vibrations, the rest might be easy. Kremlin looked at him suspiciously — and then began to laugh with a sort of hysterical nervousness. El-Rami heard him with an expression of pain and pity in his fine eyes. As for poison — see! Your Star-problem is your own, — and I desire that you should live long enough to read its great mystery.
As for me, 1 have other labours ; — to me stars, solar systems, aye! Enough ;- - will you live or will you die? It rests with yourself to choose — for you are ill, Kremlin — very ill, — your brain is fagged and weak — you cannot go on much longer like this. We see that the works of men live ages after their death, — why not the works of God? I do not want to die, El- Rami! Kremlin stared at it, shaking all over with nervousness — then on a sudden impulse clutched it. El-Rami bent his head in assent. Kremlin hesitated a moment longer — then with the air of one who takes a sudden desperate resolve, he gave one eager yearn- ing look at the huge revolving Disc, and putting the flask to his lips, drained its con- tents.
He had scarcely swallowed the last drop, when he sprang to his feet, uttered a smothered cry, staggered, and fell on the floor motionless.
El-Rami caught him up at once, and lifted him easily in his strong arms on to the window-seat, where he laid him down gently, placing coverings over him and a pillow under his head. The old man's face was white and rigid as the face of a corpse, but he breathed easily and quietly, and El-Rami, knowing the action of the draught he had administered, saw there was no cause for anxiety in his con- dition.
Now and then he glanced back over his shoulder at the great Dial and its shining star-patterns. But then, do I in truth believe what she tells me? The transcendentally uplifted soul of a woman! We men are composed of such stuff that we must convince ourselves of a fact by every known test before we finally accept it, — like St. Thomas, unless we put our rough hand into the wounded side of Christ, and thrust our fingers into the nail-prints, we will not believe.
And I shall never resolve myself as to which is the wisest course. I think not, — since there is nothing that can make us so for long. It had a sweet sound, — an exquisite suggestion ; and his thoughts clung round it persistently as bees round honey. The answer came unbidden to his brain — "Love! There is Desire, — the animal attraction of one body for another, which ends in disgust and satiety. Love should have no touch of coarseness in it, — and can anything be coarser than the marriage - tie? To call that love is a sacrilege to the very name, — for Love is a divine emotion, and demands divinest comprehension.
Carrinho de compras
El-Ram i felt his pulse, — it beat regularly and calmly. Satisfied with his examination, he wheeled away the great telescope into a corner, and shut the window against the night air, — -then he lay down himself on the floor, with his coat rolled under him for a pillow, and com- posed himself to sleep till morning. Kremlin's servant Karl got up in a very excellent humour, — he had slept well, and he awoke with the comfortable certainty of finding his eccentric master in better health and spirits, as this was always the case after one of El- Rami's rare visits.
And Karl, though he did not much appreciate learning, especially when the pursuit of it induced people, as he said, to starve themselves for the sake of acquiring wisdom, did feel in his own heart that there was something about El-Rami that was not precisely like other men, and he had accordingly for him not only a great attrac- tion, but a profound respect.
THE SOUL OF LILITH "If anybody can do the Herr Doctor good, he can — " he thought, as he laid the breakfast - table in the little dining-room whose French windows opened out to a tiny green lawn fronting the sea, — '' Certainly one can never cure old age, — that is an ailment for which there is no remedy ; but however old we are bound to get, I don't see why we should not be merry over it and enjoy our meals to the last. My friend here has to catch an early train.
Could it be the old VOL. Was it his master at all, — this hale, upright, fresh-faced individual who stood before him, smiling pleasantly and giving his orders with such a brisk air of authority? Bewildered and half afraid, he cast a desperate glance at El- Rami, who had also entered the room, and who. We shall be glad of our breakfast ; I told you we should, last night. Don't keep us waiting! Kremlin, — then, scarcely know- ing whether he was on his head or his heels, he scrambled out of the room into the passage, where he stood for a minute stupe- fied and inert. Yes — twenty years younger, — he looks that, if he looks a day.
God have mercy on us! He meant nothing by it, except perhaps a vague allusion to the inno- cent days of his childhood, when he was ignorant of the wicked ways of the wicked world, and when " Oh, my poor mother! Meantime, while he went down into the kitchen and bustled about there, getting the coffee, frying the fish, boiling the eggs, and cogitating with his own surprised and half- terrified self, Dr. Kremlin and his guest had stepped out into the little garden together, and they now stood there on the grass-plot surveying the glittering wide expanse of ocean before them.
You have been as a god to me ; — I Hve again, — I breathe again,- — this morning the world seems new to my eyes, — as new as though I had never seen it before. I have left a whole cycle of years, with all their suffering and bitterness, behind me, and I am ready now to commence life afresh. To see your strength and vitality thus renewed, is more than enough reward for me. Yes, you are changed, though not miraculously so. Your hair is as gray as ever, — the same furrows of thought are on your face ; — all that has occurred is the simple renewal of THE SOUL OF LI LIT H the tissues, and re-vivifying of the blood, — and this gives you the look of vigour and heartiness you have this morning.
I have left with you a certain quantity of the vital fluid, — all you have to do is to take ten drops every third night, or inject it into your veins if you prefer that method ; — then, — as 1 told you, — you cannot die, except by violence. The world is very beautiful — that I grant, — but the beings that inhabit it spoil it for me, albeit I am one of them.
And so I cannot die, except by violence? Almost I touch immortality! You should be a king of nations I" "Too low a destiny! It is not sufficient to have traced the ripple of a brain-wave through the air and followed its action and result with exactitude, — nor is it entirely satisfactory to have all the secrets of physical and mental magnetism, and attrac- tion between bodies and minds, made clear and easy without knowing the reason of these things.
It is like the light-vibrations on your Disc, — they come — and go ; but one needs to know why and whence they come and go. I know much — but I would fain know more. Infinity is possible — and I believe in it, — all the same I must prove it. Kremlin looked at him in vague awe, — the dark haughty handsome face spoke more resolvedly than words. Of all animals on earth, they have the least attraction for me. I would rather stroke a bird's wings than a woman's hair, and the fragrance of a rose pressed against my lips is sweeter and more sincere than any woman's kisses. As the females of the race, women are useful in their way, but not interesting at any time — at least, not to me.
I, who am not poetical, cannot so idealize the physical attraction between male and female, which is nothing but a law of nature, and is shared by us in common with the beasts of the field. Moreover it is an imperative spiritual sense, as well as a material craving, — the soul can no more be satisfied without love than the body.
Why do you talk on these subjects, my dear Kremlin? I am sure there are many more interesting matters worthy of discussion. But the meannesses, vanities, contemptible jealousies, and low spites of women such as inhabit this earth fill me with disgust and repulsion, — besides, women are treacherous, — and 1 loathe treachery. How such a change had been effected he could not imagine, but on the whole he was disposed to be content with the evident improvement.
There's no doubt about that. I suppose I am an abandoned sinner only fit for the burning — but if God insists on making us old and sick and miserable, and the devil is able to make us young and strong and jolly, why let us be friends with the devil, say I! Oh my poor mother! I shall work it out in the course of a few weeks, I dare say — and I will let you know if the result is successful. You see, thanks to you, my friend, I have time now, — there is no need to toil with feverish haste and anxiety — death that seemed so near, is thrust back in the distance " "Even so! Oddly enough, there are some who say there is no death " " But there is — there must be!
El-Rami raised his hand with a slight commanding gesture. It was yet early in the afternoon when he arrived back in London.
He went straight home to his own house, letting himself in as usual with his latch-key. In the hall he paused, listening. He half expected to hear F6raz playing one of his delicious dreamy improvisations, — but there was not a sound anywhere, and the deep silence touched him with an odd sense of disappointment and vague foreboding. His study door stood slightly ajar, — he pushed it wider open very noiselessly and looked in. His young brother was there, seated in a chair near the window, reading. El-Rami gazed at him dubiously, with a slowly dawning sense that there was some alteration in his appearance which he could not all at once comprehend.
He looked handsome enough for a new Agathon as he sat there apparently absorbed in study, — the big volume he perused resting partly on his knee, — but El-Rami's brow contracted with sudden anger as he observed him from the half-open door- way where he stood, himself unseen, — and his dark face grew very pale.
He threw the door back on Its hinges with a clattering sound and entered the room. You know I generally return after a night's absence early in the next day. Where is your usual word of welcome? You seem in a very odd humour! How did you find your old madman? And did you tell him you were nearly as mad as he? You shall play no more with me ; I refuse to be your dupe as I have been.
This is what I mean! I tell you it is a cursed deed you are doing, — a deed worse than murder — I would not have believed it of you! But I will release her from your spells, — she is too beautiful to be made her own living monument, — Zaroba is right — she needs life — joy — love! It was Zaroba who bade me go up yonder and see her where she slept ; No other than a woman could thus break a sworn word.
Naturally it was Zaroba, — the paid and kept slave of my service, who owes to me her very exist- ence, — who persuaded my brother to dis- honour. El-Rami's dark eyes blazed upon him scornfully. You — you — the poet, the dreamer, the musician — the gentle lad whose life was one of peace- ful and innocent reverie — are you so soon changed to the mere swaggering puppy of manhood who pranks himself out in gaudy clothing, and thinks by vulgar threatening to overawe his betters? If so, 'tis a pity — but I shall not waste time in deploring it. Hear me, Feraz — I said 'dishonour,' — swallow the word as best you may, it is the only one that fits the act of prying into secrets not your own.
But I am not angered, — the mischief wrought is not beyond remedy, and if it were there would be still less use in bewailing it. What is done cannot be undone. Now tell me, — you say you have seen Her. Whom have you seen? His brother was transformed with the passion that surged through him, — his eyes flashed — his lips quivered — his very form seemed to tower up and tremble and dilate with rage. To be of common clay, w4th household joys and kitchen griefs, is Zaroba's idea of noble living. Oh rash unhappy Feraz! She — the girl I saw — lives and breathes Otherwise, according to all the laws of ordinary nature, that girl is dead — she died in the Syrian desert six years ago!
At these words, pronounced slowly and with emphatic distinctness, Feraz staggered back dizzily and sank into a chair, — drops of perspiration bedewed his forehead, and a sick faint feeling overcame him. He said nothing, — he could find no words in which to express his mingled horror and amaze- ment. El-Rami watched him keenly, — and presently Feraz, looking up, caught the calm, full and fiery regard of his brother's eyes. With a smothered cry, he raised his hands as though to shield himself from a blow. You shall no longer delude my eyes and ears — I have read — I know, — I know how such trickery is done!
When I do, I will tell you, that you may be prepared to resist me if you choose. I am using no power of any kind upon you — be satisfied of that. But, as you have forced your way into the difficult labyrinth of my life's work, it is as well that you should have an explanation of what seems to you full of mysterious evil and black magic.
You accuse me of wickedness, — you tell me 1 am guilty of a deed worse than murder. Now this is mere rant and nonsense, — you speak in such utter ignorance of the facts, that I forgive you, as one is bound to forgive all faults com- mitted through sheer want of instruction. I do not think I am a wicked man ' — he paused, with an earnest, almost pathetic expression on his face — "at least I strive not to be.
I am ambitious and sceptical — and I am not altogether convinced of there THE SOUL OF LILITH being any real intention of ultimate good in the arrangements of this world as they at present exist, — but I work without any malicious intention ; and without undue boast- ing I believe I am as honest and con- scientious as the best of my kind.
But that is neither here nor there, — as I said before, you have broken into a secret not intended for your knowledge — and that you may not misunderstand me yet more thoroughly than you seem to do, I will tell you what I never wished to bother your brains with. For you have been very happy till now, Feraz — happy in the beautiful sim- plicity of the life you led — the life of a poet and dreamer, — the happiest life in the world!
Our father's small but rare library came into my possession, together with his own manu- scripts treating of the scientific and spiritual organization of Nature in all its branches, — and these opened such extraordinary vistas of possibility to me as to what might be done if such and such theories could be practically carried out and acted upon, that I became fired with the ardour of discovery. The more I studied, the more convinced and eager I became in the pursuit of such know- ledge as is generally deemed supernatural, and beyond the reach of all human inquiry.
One or two delicate experiments in chemistry of a rare and subtle nature were entirely successful, — and by-and-bye I began to look about for a subject on whom I could practise the power I had attained. I began by slow degrees to educate you — not with the aid of schools or tutors — but simply by my Will. You had a singularly unretentive brain, — you were never fond of music — you would never read, — you had no taste for study. Your delight was to ride — to swim like a fish, — to handle a gun — to race, to leap, — to play practical jokes on other boys of your own age and fight them if they resented it ; — all very amusing performances no doubt, but totally devoid of intelligence.
Judging you dispassionately, I found that you were a very charming gamesome animal, — physically per- fect — with a Mind somewhere if one could only discover it, and a Soul or Spirit behind the Mind — if one could only discover that also. After to-day, the subject must drop between us forever, and I shall refuse to answer any more questions. What is there strange or terrible in the pursuit of Wisdom? Yet — perhaps you are right, and the blank ignorance of a young child is best, — for there is something appalling in the infinitude of knowledge — an infinitude which must remain infinite, if it be true that there is a God who is forever thinking, and whose thoughts become realities.
One of my chief desires was to avoid the least risk of endangering your health — your physical condition was admirable, and I resolved to keep it so. In this I succeeded. The other and more subtle task was harder, — it needed all my patience — all my skill, — but I was at last rewarded. Through my concentrated influence, which surrounded you as with an atmosphere in which you moved, and slept, and woke again, and which forced every fibre of your brain to respond to mine, the animal faculties which were strongest in you, became subdued and tamed, — and the mental slowly asserted themselves.
I resolved you should be a poet and musician — you became both ; — you developed an ardent love of study, and every few months that passed gave richer promise of your ripening intelligence.
Having thus, unconsciously to yourself, fostered your mind by the silent workings of my own, and trained it to grow- up like a flower to the light, I thought I might make my next attempt, which was to probe for that subtle essence we call the Soul — the large wings that are hidden in the moth's chrysalis ; — and influence that too ; — but there — there by some inexplicable op- position of forces, I was baffled. I found I could in- fluence your Inner Self to obey me, — but only to a very limited extent, and in mere trifles, — for example, as you yourself know.
I could compel you to come to me from a certain distance in response to my thought. You became subject to long trances, — this I was prepared for, as it was partially my work, — and during these times of physical uncon- sciousness, it was evident that your Soul enjoyed a life and liberty superior to any- thing these earth-regions can offer. But you could never remember all you saw in these absences, — indeed, the only suggestions you seem to have brought away from that other state of existence are the strange melodies you play sometimes, and that idea you have about your native Star.
But your genius, Feraz, belongs to me ; — I gave it to you, and I can take it back again if I so choose ; — and leave you as you originally were— a handsome animal with no more true conception of art or beauty than my Lord Melthorpe, or his spendthrift young cousin Vaughan. El-Rami, I cannot — I will not! I will undo all I have done, — and you shall re- assume the existence for which Nature originally made you — an idle voluptuous wasting of time in sensualism and folly.
You would alter this? At present I have only told you what con- cerns yourself — and how the failure of my experiment upon the spiritual part of your nature, obliged me to seek for another subject on whom to continue my investigations. As far as you are personally concerned, no failure is apparent — for your spirit is allowed frequent intervals of supernatural freedom, in which you have experiences that give you peculiar pleasure, though you are unable to impart them to me with positive lucidity.
Now what I needed to obtain, was not only a higher insight, but the highest knowledge that could possibly be procured through a mingled combination of material and spiritual essences, and it was many a long and weary day before I found what I sought. At last my hour came — as it comes to all who have the patience and fortitude to wait for it. Both were perishing of fever and famine. I came to the rescue. I saved Zaroba, — and she, with the passionate im- VOL.
All her people were dead, she told me — she was alone in the world — she prayed me to let her be my faithful servant. But of that hereafter. The child Lilith, more fragile of frame and weakened to the last extremity of exhaustion — in spite of my un- remitting care — died.
Do you thoroughly understand me — she diedr ''She died! But before her flesh had time to stiffen, — before the warmth had gone out of her blood, — an idea, wild and daring, flashed across my mind. And 1 will preserve the body, its mortal shell, by arti- ficial means, that through its medium I may receive the messages of the Spirit in mortal language such as I am able to understand.
I injected into the still warm veins of the dead girl a certain fluid whose properties I alone know the working of — and then 1 sought and readily obtained permission from the Arabs to bury her in the desert, while they went on their way. They were in haste to continue their journey, and were grateful to me for taking this office off their hands. That very day — the day the girl died — I sent you from me, as you know, bidding you make all possible speed, on an errand which I easily invented, to the Brethren of the Cross in the Island of Cyprus, — you went obediently enough, — surprised perhaps, but suspecting nothing.
That same evening when the heats abated and the moon rose, the caravan re- i8o THE SOUL OF LI LIT H sumed its pilgrimage, leaving Lilith's dead body with me, and also the woman Zaroba, who volunteered to remain and serve me in my tent, an offer which I accepted, seeing that it was her own desire, and that she would be useful to me. She, poor silly soul, took me then for a sort of god, because she was unable to understand the miracle of her own recovery from imminent death, and I felt certain 1 could rely upon her fidelity.
Part of my plan I told her, — she heard with mingled fear and reverence, — the magic of the East was in her blood, however, and she had a superstitious belief that a truly ' wise man ' could do anything. As soon as I received proof positive that my experiment was likely to be successful, I procured means to continue my journey on to Alexandria, and thence to England. I chose my residence in London, because it is the largest city in the world, and the one most suited to pursue a course of study in, without one's motives becoming generally known.
One can be more alone in London than in a desert if one chooses. Now, you know all. You have seen the dead Lilith, — the human chrysalis of the moth, — but there is a living Lilith too — the Soul of Lilith, which is partly free and partly captive, but in both conditions is always the servant of my Will! El-Rami bent his burning gaze upon him. There is the terror of the thing. Zaroba's foolish teaching, and your misguided yielding to her temptation, might have resulted in the fatal end to my life's best and grandest work. But — I forgive you; — you did not know, — and she — she did not wake.
Create lists, bibliographies and reviews: Search WorldCat Find items in libraries near you. Advanced Search Find a Library. Your list has reached the maximum number of items. Please create a new list with a new name; move some items to a new or existing list; or delete some items. Your request to send this item has been completed. Citations are based on reference standards. However, formatting rules can vary widely between applications and fields of interest or study. The specific requirements or preferences of your reviewing publisher, classroom teacher, institution or organization should be applied.
The E-mail Address es field is required. Spirits of the Dead. Mosses from an Old Manse, and Other Stories. The Essays of Elia. Frankenstein and the Critics. Works of Ella Wheeler Wilcox. Behind the Veil Illustrated Edition. Selected from -Mosses from an Old Manse-. The Flight of the Shadow. The Christmas Banquet Illustrated. The Treasure of the Humble. The Spinster Book The Spirit of Place and Other Essays. Alice Christiana Thompson Meynell.
Paul Clifford, Volume 1.