Caesara- (pages 17-18)
«Then look over the whole town, a brilliant lot of palaces and domes, just look how the tower tops and the sails of boats on the river shine in the moonlight over the darker masses. In spite of all this, the center of the picture is your own self, you! Not a sound. Except a nightingale far away, in some garden and a swirl of water swishing gently. So silent and innocent you are gazing upon this world. Roses are blooming in your face. You, a queen of the spirit; you are as pure as well-water, are you not, as lissome as a cypress, as sweet-voiced as Philomela, as young as the full moon, childlike like a canary, worshipped like a divinity. Look,» he said under, his breath, «look at that narrow dark street. Its shadow is pierced by a shaft of light in a single corner, but that spot looks snow-covered. Come with me; come home with me. I’ll draw away the curtain in my room’s window and we shall gaze at the sky all night long. Why, I love you!» he shouted firmly, «I do love you, only too well I realize that I love you!»
He held her so tight that were both clenched in a long nervous grip. Then, tired with such unparalleled commotion never before experienced, he dropped against the back of the seat, closed his eyes, his head upon the seat’s back. The moon shone full in his face. Caesara stood before him, bowed down over him and leaning with both hands upon the back of the bench, she kissed him, eyes half-closed, with innumerable kisses. He felt nothing; like a child, drowsy, fondled by his mother.
There was a rustle of leaves in a bush.
«God in Heavens!» she thought in fear, «what if they had seen me? Maybe Castelmare. Poor boy! How could then he reach home? That man may be watching.»
She waited a moment for him to wake up from that ecstasy; then she questioned gently as if trying but slowly to interrupt his thoughts, his sleep.
'Are you a swordsman?'
'I am,' he said.
'Let me bring a sword, shall I?'
'And you’ll give me a kiss for it?'
She ran up the stairs into the palace, then two minutes later she came with a sword. When girding him with it, she took this opportunity to put her arms tight around his waist.
'My sweet icicle, you marble, you stone, you!'
'Leave me alone, Caesara. I wish I were dying.'
'No, no, my angel. Go home. Let no harm come near you on the way. Think of your own Caesara, my treasure.'
She could not help taking his head into her cupped hands and kissing him once more, a passionate and sounding kiss.
'Now go away, please go!'
'Why do you ask it?'
'Because I would kill you if you stayed.'
'Kill me, how? '
'I know how,' she said as sly as a child.
She led him on to a forest path and pushed him out of the garden. Then turned and putting her arms round the trunk of a tree, she spoke under her breath, with a kind of spite:
'Hyeronimo! I’ll bite you!'
She beat her fists against the tree-trunk, then went to her room; furiously she tore at her velvet vest, she tangled her fair hair, then gazed into a mirror, her eyes full of tears, her lips trembling. She threw herself on the bed murmuring softly, very softly, tender, unspeakably tender words smothered with tearful sights, a single name, more distinctly pronounced sounded: Hyeronimo.
Things fared differently with Hyeronimo. He was making for the narrow street. The soft night air had brought him to his senses and being less sensual than his dove, he was left with the theoretical conviction that he loved her. He went along the dark street with a light step indicating an elastic weight, as you feel it in a horse of breeding. He heard behind him a severe, soldierly step and knew it was Castelmare. He stopped showed up. Silence. Hyeronimo struck a stone wall with the point of his sword and in the flashing light, both rivals recognized each other. That very moment, without as much as one word, the swords crossed. Then a groan and a heavy fall on the hard street pavement; one of the two shadows disappeared in a house nearby. The other lay dumb.