Montemayor's Diana

Page 119

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sake. If thou seruest any other Lady, let me know her, that I may serue her to: And if thou hast any other greefe (which shall not offend me) tell it me, for I will either die, or rid thee from it. And clasping him with a kinde of violent and forcible loue, she turned him to her againe, who being then confounded, and ashamed for that he had done, and thinking that it might be an occasion (if he did not tell her the cause of his sorrow) to fill her head full of iealousie and suspicion, with an appassionate sigh he said vnto her. If I did not (my sweetest life) loue thee more then mine owne soule, I woulde neuer haue made such signes of inwarde greefe, for the wounding thoughts, which I brought with me (whē I came with my selfe all alone) I passed away with a better hart; but now that I am constrained to go from thee, I haue no force to endure them at all. And because thou shalt be no longer in suspence of knowing the cause of my sorrow, I will tell thee what lately passed: And then he told her all the matter, not leauing any thing out, in the end of his tale with many teares saying thus vnto her. So that thy captiue (faire Lady) is also prisoner to the Gouernour of Alora: And the paine of that imprison∣ment, which thou hast cast vpon me, and taught my hart to suffer, I feele not, but the torment and bondage by liuing without thee, I account woorse then any death: Wherupon thou seest, that my sighes are rather arguments of greater loyalty, then of any want thereof. And with this, he began againe to be so pensiue and sad, as he was before he had tolde her his greefe. But then with a merrie countenance she said vnto him: Trouble not thy minde Abyndaraes with these thoughts, for I will take the care and remedie of this greefe vpon mee, as a thing that toucheth mee most of all; and the more, since it is not denied any prisoner that hath gi∣uen his worde to returne to prison, to satisfie it, by sending the ransome that shall be demaunded of him: Wherefore set thy selfe downe what summe thou wilt, for I haue the keyes of al my fathers treasure, which I will put into thy hands, & leaue it all at thy disposition. Rodrigo of Naruaez is a curteous gentleman, & a good knight, and one who gaue thee once thy libertie: And as thou hast acquainted him with the trust of these affaires; so is he now the more bound to vse greater virtue and gentlenes towardes thee. I am sure he will be contented with reason; for ha∣uing thee in his power and prison, he must perforce set thee at libertie, when he hath the value of thy ransome. I see well faire Ladie (said the Abencerraje againe) that the loue which thou dost beare me, will not suffer thee to giue me the best coun∣sell, for I will neuer commit so foule a fault as this. For if I was bound to fulfill my word, when I was alone, and without thee, now that I am thine, the bond is grea∣ter: I will therefore returne to Allora, and yeeld my selfe into the Gouernors hands, and when I haue done what I am bound to do, let Fortune do with me what she will. Nay let me rather die, saide Xarifa (if thou goest to be prisoner) then once desire to remaine here at libertie. For being thy captiue, by duetie I am bound to accompa∣nie thee in this iourney for the extreme loue that I beare thee, whereas also the feare of my fathers frownes, which I haue purchased by offending him, will let me do no lesse. The Moore weeping for ioy, to heare these words, embraced her saying. Thou neuer ceasest (my deerest soule) to heape fauours vpon my happie head, do therefore what thou wilt, for this is my resolution. With this determination they rose before it was day, and prouiding some necessarie things for their iourney, they went verie secretly towards Allora: and when the day began to waxe cleere, Xarifawent with her face couered with a maske, for feare of being knowen, and by reason of the greath aste they made, they came in good time to Alora, where going directly to

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