She took the path to the cottage.
Knock! – knock! – knock!
“Who is there?”
“If you can content yourself with a morsel of
bread, a glass of water, and a little fresh straw, come in: -- but first tell me
who you are.”
“I am the Pansy.”
“Accursed one, avaunt! You come to disturb my
slumbers. I have to-day been watering with my sweat my master’s fields. Now he
is indulging in the pleasures of the festive board, while my wife is weeping,
and my children have not bread to eat. If, to-morrow, I would have strength to
resume my toils, it is necessary that I should forget. You disquiet both mind
and body. Begone! I shall not open the door.”
So, neither the rich nor the poor would have
any thing to do with the Pansy. She sat down on the edge of a ditch, and
supported her head with her hands.
A young man happened to pass that way. As he
walked, he gazed at the stars, and uttered, in a low tone, words and phrases
which made him open his mouth wide and stare wildly.