and on whom she gazed with unutterable tenderness, volupty and
love. I shuddered with mortal anguish ; for I loved my friend, and
that woman bore his name. Until that hour I and he had believed
her to be pure as an angel from heaven; and now did I, through
sympathy for him, suffer, — ay, the agonies of the nether hell.
Presently you will see whether the vision was a lesson or a fact; and
whether jealousy is, and is not, sometimes based on solid ground,
sometimes empty air.
On the day I met the man ; he had told me that she had asked him
very singular questions : " Is it possible for a husband to discover if
his wife goes astray during an absence, without the ordinary evidence
that establishes such facts? Can he find it out without seeing or hear¬
ing of it?" I don't know what answer was given; but I do know
that the words sunk deep, like hot iron, into his soul; and he pon¬
dered on them till he grew morbid, and every day, in his loneliness,
he imagined all sorts of things, which now bodied themselves in
palpable form before my soul's gaze.
Subsequently she had written to say that her yearnings were great,
and she was dying from the mere fa6t of prolonged absence ; yet
within a week wrote that she was supremely happy, and longed for
nothing. This was ground for suspecting her to be a truant wife,
and my friend a deceived husband; and all the more in that she was
thrown in contact with some very popular agitators of the marriage
and fidelity questions, — on what I regarded as the wrong side.
As I gazed on the scene upon the mystic mirror's face, I saw the
lady and her lover as before, and beheld his burning kisses fall thick
and fast upon her rich, ripe, and alluring lips; saw her languish in
voluptuous death in his strong arms, and watched her return his.
fiery salutation. I heard his love expressions, and her warm replies ;
but the most cruel thing of all was their combined laugh and "joke"
they were playing on my friend, by making his slender purse bear
the cost of their guiltful amours. He loved that woman as mothers
love the babes God sends through wailing agony to their longing
I leaped from the couch; rushed to my friend's place; told him
the tragic tale ; fired his soul with vengeance dire ; and, putting a