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Crystal Thielkien
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« Reply #210 on: April 05, 2009, 09:51:42 pm »

"Tell me," I said, controlling my voice as well as I could, "when Antinea holds one of us in her power, she shuts him up near her, does she not? Nobody sees him any more?"

The old woman shook her head.

"She is not afraid that he will escape. The mountain is well guarded. Antinea has only to strike her silver gong; he will be brought back to her immediately."

"But my companion. I have not seen him since she sent for him. . . ."

The negress smiled comprehendingly.

"If you have not seen him, it is because he prefers to remain near her. Antinea does not force him to. Neither does she prevent him."

I struck my fist violently upon the table.

"Get along with you, old fool. And be quick about it!"

Rosita fled frightened, hardly taking time to collect her little instruments.

"Was it not Fate, that on this July midnight . . ."

I obeyed the negress's suggestion. Following the corridors, losing my way, set on the right road again by the Reverend Spardek, I pushed open the door of the red marble hall. I entered.

The freshness of the perfumed crypt did me good. No place can be so sinister that it is not, as it were, purified by the murmur of running water. The cascade, gurgling in the middle hall, comforted me.

p. 221

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