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from Venice had gone to the fortresses. He too any officer of artillery who had been in Venice and might be wounded, --might be dead. If alive at had left it during the war must be in one of the the end of the war, he would hardly return to her four fortresses. “Mother,” she said, “I shall go after what had passed between them. But if he to Verona.” And to Verona she went, all alone, in did not come back no lover should ever take a kiss search of her lover. At that time the Austrians from her lips.
still maintained a sort of rule in the province; and Then there was the long truce, and a letter from there were still current orders against private Carlo reached Venice. His wound had been slight, travelling, orders that passports should be invesbut he had been very hungry. He wrote in great | tigated, orders that the communication with the anger, abusing, not the Austrians, but the Italians. four fortresses should be specially guarded; but There had been treachery, and the Italian general. there was an intense desire on the part of the in-chief had been the head of the traitors. The Austrians themselves that the orders should be king was a traitor! The emperor was a traitor! regarded as little as possible. They had to go, and i, All concerned were traitors, but yet Venetia was to the more quietly they went the better. Why be surrendered to Italy. I think that the two should they care now who passed hither and ladies in the Campo San Luca never really believed thither? It must be confessed on their behalf that that this would be so until they received that angry in their surrender of Venetia they gave as little letter from Carlo. “When I may get home, I trouble as it was possible in them to cause. The caunot tell," he said. “I hardly care to return, chief obstruction to Nina's journey she experienced and I shall remain with the general as long as he in the Campo San Luca itself. But in spite of her may wish to have any one remaining with himn. mother, in spite of the not yet defunct Austrian But you may be sure that I shall never go soldiering mandates, she did make her way to Verona. “As again. Venetia may, perhaps, prosper, and become I was true in giving him up,” she said to herself, a part of Italy ; but there will be no glory for us. “so will I be true in clinging to him.” Even in Italy has been allowed to do nothing for herself.” Verona her task was not easy, but she did at last
The mother and sister endeavoured to feel some find all that she sought. Captain von Vincke had sympathy for the young soldier who spoke so sadly i been in command of a battery at Custozza, and was of his own career, but they could hardly be un. | vow lying wounded in an Austrian hospital. She happy because his fighting was over and the cause contrived to see an old grey-baired surgeon before was won. The cause was won. Gradually there she saw Hubert himself. Captain von Vincke had came to be no doubt about that. It was now Sep- been terribly mauled; so the surgeon told her ; his tember, and as yet it had not come to pass that left arm had been amputated, and-and-andshop windows were filled with wonderful portraits It seemed as though wounds had been showered of Victor-Emmanuel and Garibaldi, cheek by on him. The surgeon did not think that his patient i jowl,—they being the two men who at that mo- would die ; but he did think that he must be left in ment were, perhaps, in all Italy, the most an- | Verona when the Austrians were marched out of tagonistic to each other; nor were there as yet the fortress. “Can he not be taken to Venice?" ; fifty different new journals cried day and night said Nina Pepé. under the arcades of the Grand Piazza, all advo. At last she found herself by her lover's bedside : cating the cause of Italy, one and indivisible, as but with her there were two hospital attendants, there came to be a month afterwards ; but still both of them worn-out Austrian soldiers, -and there it was known that Austria was to cede Venetia, was also there the grey-haired surgeon. How was and that Venice would henceforth be a city of sbe to tell her love all that she had in her heart Italy. This was known; and it was also known before such witnessess? The surgeon was the first in the Campo San Luca that Carlo Pepé, though to speak. very hungry up among the mountains, was still “Here is your friend, Captain,” he said ; but safe.
as he spoke in German Nina did not understand Then Nina thought that the time had come in him. which it would become her to speak of her lover. I “Is it really you, Nina ?” said her lover. "I
“Mother,” she said, “I must know something could hardly believe that you should be in Verona." of Hubert.”
“Of course it is I. Who could have so much “But how, Nina; how will you learn? Will business to be in Verona as I have? Of course I you not wait till Carlo comes back ?”
| am here." “No,” she said. “I cannot wait longer. , I “But-but-what has brought you here, Nina ?” have kept my promise. Venice is no longer “If you do not know, I cannot tell you." Austrian, and I will seek for him. I have kept my " And Carlo ?” word to Carlo, and now I will keep my word to “Carlo is still with the General; but he is well.” Hubert."
“And the Signora ?” But how to seek for him? The widow, urged by “She also is well ; well, but not easy in mind her daughter, went out and asked at barrack while I am here." doors; but new regiments had come and gone, and “And when do you return ?” everything was in confusion. It was supposed that “Nay; I cannot tell you that. It may be to-day.
It may be to-morrow. It depends not on myself before he answered her. “Nina,” he said, “why at all."
did you come hither?” He spoke not a word of love to her then; nor she “Why did I come ?!" to him, unless there was love in such greeting as “Why are you here in Verona, while your mother has been here repeated. Indeed, it was not till is alone in Venice ?” after that first interview that he fully under "I had business here, -a matter of some moment. stood that she had made her journey to Verona, It is finished now, and I shall return." solely in quest of him. The words between them “Was it other business than to sit at my bed. for the first day or two were very tame, as though side ?" Deither bad full confidence in the other; and she' She paused a moment before she answered him. had taken her place as nurse by his side, as a sister “Yes,” she said ; "it was other business than that." mught have done by a brother.—and was established “And you have succeeded ?" in her work,--Day, had nearly completed her work, “No; I have failed.” beiore there came to be any full understanding be He still held her hand; and she, though she was tween them. More than once she had told herself thus fencing with him, answering him with equithat she would go back to Venice and let there be vokes, felt that at last there was coming from him an ead of it.
some word which would at least leave her no longer “The great work of the war,” she said to herself, in doubt. “And I too,-have I failed ?” he said. “has so filled his mind, that the idleness of his days “When I left Venice I told myself heartily that I in Venice and all that he did then, are forgotten. I had failed.” If so, my presence here is surely a sore burden to “You told yourself, then?” said she, " that him, and I will go." But she could not now leave Venetia would never be ceded. You know that I him without a word of farewell.
would not triumph over you, now that your cause “Hubert,” she said, for she had called him has been lost. We Italians have not much cause Hubert when she first came to his bed-side, as for triumphing." though she had been his sister, “I think I must “You will admit always that the fortresses have return now to Venice. My mother will be lonely not been taken from us," said the sore-hearted Tithout me.”
soldier. At that moment it appeared almost miraculous to “Certainly we shall admit that." ber that she should be sitting there by his bed-side, “And my own fortress ;---the stronghold that I that she should have loved him, that she should thought I had made altogether mine-is that, too, have had the courage to leave her home and seek lost for ever to the poor German ?” him after the war, that she should have found him; “You speak in riddles, Captain von Viacke,” and that she should now be about to leave him, she said. She had now taken back her hand ; but almost without a word between them.
she was sitting quietly by his bed-side, and made no "She must be very lonely," said the wounded sign of leaving him. man.
“Nina,” he said, “Nina,-my own Nina. In “And you, I think, are stronger than you were." losing a single share of Venice, one soldier's share of
"For me, I am strong enough. I have lost my the province, shall I have gained all the world for arm, and I shall carry this gaping scar athwart my myself? Nina, tell me truly, what brought you to face to the grave, as my cross of honour won in the Verona ?” Italian war; but otherwise I shall soon be well.” She knelt slowly down by his bed-side, and “ It is a fair cross of honour." .
again taking his one hand in hers, pressed it first to * Yes; they cannot rob us of our wounds when her lips and then to her bosom. “It was au unll our service is over. And so you will go, Signorina?” | maidenly purpose," she said. “I came to find the
** Yes; I will go. Why should I remain here ? man I loved." I will go, and Carlo will return, and I will tend “But you said you had failed?” apon him. Carlo also was wounded.”
“And I now say that I have succeeded. Do you “ But you have told me that he is well again.” not know that success in great matters always “ Nevertheless, he will value the comfort of a trembles in the balance before it turns the beam,Toman's care after his sufferings. · May I say fare thinking, fearing, all but knowing that failure has well to you now, my friend ?” And she put her weighed down the scale." haad down upon the bed so that he might reach it. “But now-- ?" She had been with him for days, and there had been “Now I am sure that-Vevice has been won !" no word of love. It had seemed as though he had. It was three months after this, and half of understood nothing of what she had done in coming December had passed away, and all Venetia had in to him; that he bad failed altogether in feeling that truth been ceded, and Victor-Emmanuel had made she had come as a wife goes to her husband. She his entry into Venice and exit out of it, with as bad made a mistake in this journey, and must now little of real triumph as ever attended a king's rectify her error with as much of dignity as might progress through a new province, and the Austrian be left to her.
army had moved itself off very quietly, and the He took her hand in his, and held it for a moment city had become as thoroughly Italian as Florence itself, and was in a way to be equally discontented, have both. If he kept his Venice, he could not when a party of four, two ladies and two gentlemen, have me; but as he has lost his province, he shall sat down to breakfast in the Hotel Bauer. The have his wife entirely.” . ladies were the Signora Pepé and her daughter, “I told him that it was fated that he should lose and the men were Carlo Pepé and his brother-in- Venetia,” said Carlo, “but he would never believe law, Hubert von Vincke. It was but a poor fote, me." this family breakfast at an obscure inn, but it was “Because I knew how true were our soldiers," intended as a gala feast to mark the last day of said Hubert, “and could not understand how false Nina's Italian life. To-morrow, very early in the were our statesmen.” morning, she was to leave Venice for Trieste, -50 “See how he regrets it," said Nina. “What he early that it would be necessary that she should be has lost, and what he has won, will, together, on board this very night.
break his heart for him.” “My child," said the Signora, “do not say so; “Nina,” he said, “I learned this morning in the you will never cease to be Italian. Surely, Hubert, city, that I shall be the last Austrian soldier to she may still call herself Venetian ?”
leave Venice, and I hold that of all who have "Mother,” she said, “I love a losing cause. I entered it, and all who have left it, I am the most will be Austrian now. I told him that he could not successful and the most triumphant."
THE OLD ASTRONOMER.
Reach me down my Tycho Brahé, I would know him when we meet,