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Full text of "Poseidon's paradise : the romance of Atlantis"












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Adapted from Ignatius Donnelly's map of Atlantis, page 47 of the "Atlantis," by per- 
lission of Harper & Brothers. Cleit, Chimo, and Luith are names fictitious. 



POSEIDON'S PARADISE 



The Romance of Atlantis 



BY 
ELIZABETH G. BIRKMAIER 




415 MONTGOMERY STREET 
1892. 



\7 of 

COPYRIGHT, 1892, 

BY ELIZABETH G. BIRKMAIER. 
All Rights Reserved. 



T Uf: 



CONTENTS. 



PAGE. 

I. A DECLARATION OF WAR . 5 

II. QUEEN ATLANA 20 

III. ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA 29 

IV. THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES 38 

V. THE ABDUCTION 55 

VI. THE VOICE 67 

VII. THE TEMPLE 79 

VIII. POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY 98 

IX. THE 'SILENT PRIEST' ;.. in 

X. LIGHT ON THE PATH. 127 

XI. THE HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED 142 

XII. THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS 153 

XIII. IN THE 'DEEPS' 162 

XIV. A TIMELY TORRENT 176 

XV. THE ALTAR FIRES Go OUT 198 

XVI. THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS 217 

XVII. THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND 237 

XVIII . PYRRHA 253 ' 

XIX. THE BEGINNING OF PEACE 269 

XX. HAPPY PAIRS 275 

XXI. IN PELASGIA 291 



"Time dissipates to shining ether the solid angularity of facts.. 
No anchor, no cable, no fences avail to keep a fact a fact. Babylon, 
and Troy, and Tyre, and even early Rome are passing into fiction. 
The Garden of Eden, the sun standing still in Gibeon, is poetry 
thenceforward to all nations' ' EMERSON. 






ELIZABETH G. BIRKMAIER, 

Author of "Poseidon's Paridise.' 




POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

CHAPTER I. 

A DECLARATION OF WAR. 

IT was thousands of years before the Christian era 
how many thousands no chronicler has stated. And 
the island lay, as through the ages past, fair and imperial 
in the Atlantic. Though now was it becoming wanton, 
even to its undoing. Else would not this be written. 

Midsummer was upon this Atlantis, upon the islands 
attendant that served as stepping-stones to the continents 
beyond. Under the soft sensuousness, the morn was tak- 
ing richer glow, the streams brightening to gold, the 
gardens and vineyards glorifying in green; whilst hill 
and mountain grew alluring in shadow and color, the 
palaces lustrous in their tri-tinted stones, and the tem- 
ples' syenite a gleaming red that rivaled the flashing 
orichalcum studding domes and pinnacles. The great 
island was a gorgeous mosaic: and its setting, sapphire, 
that royal stone emblematic of calm and truth ; for the 
laving waters were as serene as blue, in such being all 
suggestive of that repose which comes of perception of 
the true. The whole was a glory. 

About Cleit, that royal city gracing the stream Luith, 

(5) 



6 POSEIDONS PARADISE. 

in the southeastern part of the island, there was an 
unusual stir. This day was to be observed one of the 
most ancient, and therefore simplest, of the customs of 
Atlantis. The king and royal rulers were to give 
audience to the principal captains of the nation, and 
receive the certificates of their prowess for the year. 
And now, from Cleit's harbor, which was a few miles 
southward of the city, at the mouth of Luith, were speed- 
ing the galleys of Cleit's captains; whilst from points 
north, east, south, and west, the many other captains 
were hastening, that all might meet in the grounds of 
the royal palace before noon of this auspicious day. 

Upon the great marble landing place, these captains 
came together, about them thronging the people in gay- 
est holiday attire. Most evident was it that the latter 
still. took pleasure in this old-fashioned observance, thai 
they wished not to fall behind in its celebration, not- 
withstanding the times were changing so wofully. Many 
had been the prognostications of the few conservatives 
remaining that erelong this simple, this most ancient 
custom, would come to naught. Indeed, most of these 
had averred privately that the meeting of the year before 
would prove the last. 

Yet here were again convening these mighty captains 
size being a consideration of their office. Here, again, 
were they towering above the average Atlantean, tall as 
he was. Fine was it to note their flashing eyes, their 
grand bearing, as they imparted such information as they 
were free to give to the curious, fast-questioning ones ; 
but finer to witness the expanding eyes of the latter as 
their ears took in the wonder, the verity of it all! 

But the great silver gong was sounding. It was noon. 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. 7 

Then men, women, and children burst into acclamations. 
Already were the captains forming into line, with the 
captain general at the head. Again sounded the gong; 
Therewith, the line filed along the marble pathway to 
the palace, followed by the cheering throng. 

But gradually the throng quieted. Ever was the pal- 
ace neared reverently. There was a hush, when, from 
out the thick foliage, it arose upon them lustrous in its 
stones of red, white, and black, its facings of alabaster, 
its columns of marble and orichalcum, its red pinnacles; 
a palace well befitting this land of glamour. 

Like all the other palaces of the island, this was sim- 
ple of construction. The main plan consisted of rectan- 
.gles set about a great court, these rectangles being two- 
storied. In the lower story, light was admitted through 
large apertures protected by curtains and shutters of 
hard wood set in at wiM. Additional light was also 
admitted from the upper story, which was supported 
by columns and open at the sides, curtains excluding the 
sunshine at pleasure. Some of these columns extended 
from the lower floor to the roof; others rested on the 
walls of the lower story, where the thickness would per- 
mit ; and each was many volumes in its inscriptions and 
sculptures. 

The captains mounted the grand portico with its col- 
umns of marble and orichalcum, each innumerable vol- 
umes; passed through the narrowing portal, guarded by 
its colossal winged bulls, to the great hall ; and thence to 
the state chamber -on the right, still followed by the 
throng. 

Great and glittering was this oblong state chamber. 
Its high, arched ceiling of ivory and bronze was rich in 



8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

gilding. The walls were paneled in ivory overlaid with 
silver, many of the panels being inscribed with the laws 
of Poseidon and Atlas. The pavement was of blue and 
white marbles. To this fell from the apertures hangings 
of finest yellow linen. The seats were of carved ebony ; 
and at the farther end were the golden throne, and the 
ivory chairs of the rulers, priests, and nobles. 

With arms folded on their breasts and heads bent low, 
the captains advanced until they stood a goodly row 
before their king. He, of name Atlano, sat high on a dais 
raised above another dais; and about him were ranged 
the royal rulers. On the lower dais sat the priests and 
nobles, the priests being to the right. 

When the apartment could hold no more, the gong 
sounded. Thereupon the chamberlain, who stood out 
upon the lower dais, made the sign ; and low bent these 
that had just entered before their king, until the cham- 
berlain said, "Ye will arise." 

The king then waved his scepter. As one, the priests 
and nobles stood to intone a welcome to the captains. 
Afterward, arose the royal rulers to smile and bow in 
greeting. 

The white raiment and silver circlets of the priests 
were, in strong contrast to the gorgeous robing and jew- 
eled headgear of the rulers and nobles. But the king 
was dazzling in his royal purple robe, his scintilla- 
ting crown, and the wondrous mantle sacred to him- 
self. This last was ingeniously fashioned of finest, rarest 
feathers, varying in color from cream to orange, and was 
of such length as to sweep the floor behind. Though well 
he bore this aggregation of rich hues. For Atlano was 
handsome in the best Atlantean type, though his expres- 



IO POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

sion was harsh, cruel. But he was softening somewhat 
at sight of these brave captains standing in such humility 
before him. And, smiling, he addressed them . 

"Captains, thy king giveth greeting." 

They responded, "O most gracious of kings, Atlano, 
long may thy great self thus beam upon thy captains ! " 

Atlano inclined his head. The rulers, priests, and 
nobles intoned: 

" Long, O most gracious king, Atlano, may thy cap- 
tains thus come before thee ! " 

"Long live the king!" returned the captains. 

Then followed an invocation to the gods by the aged 
high priest Olto, his son, the chief priest Oltis, assisting. 
Thereafter, the rulers, priests, and nobles sat down, and 
the king addressed the chamberlain. 

"Shafo, if it seemeth good, the captains may now tell 
us of their work." 

The chamberlain pointed with his wand : " Captain 
General, thou wilt begin." 

The captain general stepped out from his fellows, and, 
in measured tones, replied as if to the king: 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, this I state to 
thy great self: I, captain of the war vessel Atlas, since 
leaving the harbor of Cleit, eleven moons since, have 
sailed around the country of the Afrites, and up its east- 
ern coast. At many places, we fell upon the black peo- 
ple, and took of their gold and ivory; and then sent them 
into the inner parts to get incense trees, nutwoods, ebony, 
apes with dog heads,* monkeys with long tails, and 
greyhounds. It is two weeks since we came into har- 

*Dog-headed apes. 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. I I 

bor, and yielded our cargo. This showeth its worth, and 
stateth the sums we of the vessel merit." 

Bowing low, the captain general handed a roll of papy- 
rus to an attendant, who laid it upon a table below the 
dais. 

The chamberlain then pointed his wand toward the 
captain first in line. He stepped forward, and spoke in 
uncertain tones that slowly strengthened : 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, this I state to" thy 
great self: I, captain of the trading vessel Mestor, came 
into Chimo thirty days since from our people of Chimu,* 
whither I sailed twelve moons ago, bearing a cargo of 
dried fruits, grains, and rare woods. There I found our 
people building a temple to the great Amen, that in 
shape is like unto a pyramid, and in size is half a mile 
around. Already are the temples, palaces, and tombs of 
Chimu looking as ours. And great is the decking in 
gold and silver, for the mines are not far. Of gold, sil- 
ver, and gems I bring to Chimo large stores. This 
showeth the worth of the cargo, and the sums which we 
of the vessel merit." 

The captain handed his roll to the captain general, who, 
in turn, handed it to the attendant. When this captain 
had resumed his place, the next captain, at beck of the 
chamberlain, stepped out to continue: 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, this I state to thy 
great self : I, captain of the war vessel Asaes, left Autoch- 
thin seven moons since to bear to the fair green islandf 
in the north a band of our people, and with them left the. 
means of living for the time of twelve moons. On my 

*Chimu in Peru, 
t Ireland. 



12 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

way from there I ran in the passage to the Middle Sea* 
to look about a little, but at once sped back upon seeing 
some large vessels, strange and threatening. It is twenty 
days since I came into Autochthin. I bring to thee, O 
most gracious King, this written word of the planting of 
our people in the island, of their further needs, and of the 
sums that we of the vessel merit." 

And the captain handed in his roll. 

At mention of these unknown vessels, the king's 
scarcely-concealed indifference vanished. He looked 
surprised, then alarmed. With increasing emotion, he 
glanced from rulers to nobles to find their wearied ex- 
pressions had, at least, become interested. 

But on went the harangues. One captain had sailed 
beyond the western seas, and northward up a mighty 
river to the colony Missos.f Another had sailed 
around the country of the Afrites, and eastward to that 
sultry land that supplied them with gems. Another had 
been to the land of the Eskaldi.J Thus ran the reports 
until it was the turn of the last captain but one. He 
stepped out with an air important; and, in more impor- 
tant tone, began : 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, to thy great self I 
would state that I am captain of the vessel Paero. It is 
eleven moons since I left for Khemi, with a cargo of 
rare woods, grains, and wool. I bring from Khemi green 
stone, red granite of Syene, and the byssus of the Middle 
Sea. Yesterday came I back to Cleit; and therefore 

^Mediterranean . 

fBank of Mississippi (east). 

JEskaldi Iberians, in Gaul Basques. 

SEgypt. 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. 13 

have I not my roll. * But within a day will it be ready." 

But this captain, instead of returning to his place, 
stood waiting. 

"What wilt thou, Sir Captain?" asked the chamber- 
lain. 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, to thy great self I 
would state more." 

Most eager became the expressions of king and nobles. 
The captain paused until the chamberlain signed for him 
to continue. 

" Most gracious king, a people across the Middle Sea, 
to the north of Khemi, causeth fear in the lands about it 
because of its quick rise to power. It is not long since 
this people passed over from the far east, and now it rul- 
eth the sea. It is magic." 

The king's red skin deepened to p urple. In a voice 
grown hoarse, he exclaimed: 

"The name of this people!" 

And the chamberlain iterated, "The name of this peo- 
ple!" 

"O most gracious king, Atlano, their land is Pelasgia. 
They are called Pelasgians. Their king is Pelasgus." 

" They have a king, then ? " 

This the chamberlain also iterated, as he did the 
ensuing questions. 

"O most gracious king, Atlano, they have a king." 

"Know they how to war? " 

"O most gracious King, they are fond of peace ; and 
think but of trade and tilling the ground." 

"More! More!" 

"O most gracious King, I know no more." 

" Let him to his place. Cause some other captain to 
tell me more ! " 



14 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The captain who had put back from the Middle Sea 
stepped out, getting the start of the only captain yet to 
be heard from. But the latter was willing to bide his 
time. At beck of the chamberlain, the former declared: 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, then was it the 
vessels of this people that so troubled us. Nothing like 
them have I seen for size and strength." 

The king turned to left, to right, demanding fiercely, 
"Hear ye this? Hear ye this? " 

Senil, the most venerable of the rulers, arose. 

"Senil, what wilt thou?" 

"King Atlano, we hear; and it seemeth evil." 

"What is the thing we shall do?" 

"O most gracious King, that will we do which seemeth 
good to thee." 

The king's face testified to his emotions. His anger 
had given way -to wild triumph. He ejaculated: 

"Senil, Rulers, Nobles, we will bring them to naught! 
It shall not be said that any power holdeth the sea with 
Atlantis ! " 

He turned to regard the captain, who had not as yet 
resumed his place; and muttered; 

" If this be true if this be true." 

There was then heard a meaning cough from the last 
captain, who had been so forgotten. The king noted this, 
and said : 

"Shafo, there is one captain who hath not been heard." 

At the sign, this captain stepped forth with an air even 
more important than had been that of the captain of the 
Paero,a.nd the captain who had withdrawn from the Middle 
Sea bowed back to his place. Of due weight were this 
captain's tones. 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. 1 5 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, to thy great self I 
would state that I, the captain of the trading vessel Osir, 
came back but yesterday to Elasippa from our land of 
Shaphana,* after bringing there grain, cotton, and linen, 
and taking in corn, wine, and oil. There I heard .much 
of this new power, for, of late, its vessels come within the 
harbor of Shaphana. Thus far this Pelasgia thinketh 
not of war, but of trade. Her vessels are marvels of 
strength and speed." 

"Hear ye this?" interrupted Atlano, turning to rul- 
ers and nobles, " Her vessels are marvels of strength 
and speed! " Then, of the captain, he demanded: 

"Thou sayest not that thou didst see aught of these?' 

The chamberlain iterated this. 

" O most gracious of kings, I have to say that I saw 
them. Two were speeding into harbor as we left it. No- 
where have I seen vessels that come nigh them!" 

The king arose and stared at this captain, Until he 
perforce stammered: 

" O most gracious king, I have not my roll ; but in 
two days will it be ready," 

But not of him, nor of his certificate, was the king 
thinking. His thought was for this new, menacing 
power. After some minutes' absorption, his tones rang 
fierce: 

"Is there more?" 

The chamberlain iterated, "Is there more?" 

" O most gracious of kings, there is no more." 

The captain was waved back to his place. The king, 
standing most erect, addressed all. 

"Rulers, Priests, Nobles, Captains, Leaders, People, 

* Spain. 



1 6 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

let us look to this. Let it be the one mind to fall upon 
and crush this Pelasgia ! What will ye?" 

Senil arose. 

"Senil, what wilt thou?" 

"King Atlano, we will as thou." 

The other rulers arose. 

"Rulers, what will ye?" 

"King Atlano, we will as thou." 

Phiro, a noble young and ardent, here arose. 

" Phiro, what sayest thou ? :> 

"Gracious King, if it pleaseth thee, let those who are 
for war bend the knee." 

"It is well. Rulers, Priests, Nobles, Captains, Lead- 
ers, People, ye that are for war bend the knee, and let 
us beseech the gods." 

Great was the stir in the vast assemblage. Then every 
soul bent the knee, even to the king, while the feeble 
tones of the high priest began to be heard, .asking for 
blessing on this so suddenly conceived undertaking. 
When he had finished, the king arose, the others still 
remaining on their knees, until he said: 

"Ye may arise." 

When all were standing, and the hush was deepening, 
the king exulted: 

"It is one voice. Here let us make the vow to sweep 
from the earth this new power these marvels of vessels. 
Swear! " . 

Every right arm was pointed heavenward, every voice 
said solemnly, "We swear!" 

"So be it. Now will we to work. The Leaders!" 

There was a mighty stir. This indeed meant war. 

The chamberlain beckoned; and the leaders, who were 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. I/ 

next in rank to the captains, stepped from their places 
against the walls on right and left. Tall and stalwart were 
they, and attired much like the captains. They wore 
not the ordinary loose-flowing robes, but close-fitting 
tunics, short, loose lower garments similar to the trous- 
ers of to-day, and high boots of soft skins. On their 
heads were helmet-shaped caps of. red linen; and about 
their waists were broad bronze belts, inscribed with their 
office and number. 

These leaders formed a considerable body in the king- 
dom, each province having its quota. Their office was 
this : When war was declared, each was to furnish' one- 
sixth of the portion of a War chariot with its two horses 
and riders; also, a light chariot with a fighting man on 
foot and charioteer; also, two heavy-armed men, two 
archers, two slingers, three stone shooters, three javelin 
men, and four sailors.* 

Of course these leaders present belonged to Cleit ; but 
it was understood that whatever the king commanded 
them, the nine rulers would command their own. 

To these leaders the king spoke impressively . 

''Leaders, ye know your duty. This day begin meas- 
ures for most bitter war." 

On their knees sank the leaders, and there remained 
until ordered by the chamberlain to arise. Then their 
spokesman answered : 

"O most gracious of kings, Atlano, thy leaders, as thou 
hast said,, know well their duty. They will to it 'this 
day." 

Then, with faces to the king, they moved to their 
places. 



*Ptato. 

2 



1 8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The king addressed the rulers. 

"Ye, kin rulers, will speed on the morrow to your 
cities, and then give orders to your leaders. Ere the 
coming moon is old, gather your vessels within this har- 
bon Then on to lay Pelasgia low!" 

The assemblage, as one, echoed: 

"Yea on to lay Pelasgia low!" 

The exultant king continued: 

"This further will I say: Daily, at the noon hour, let 
every noble come to this state chamber, that plans may 
be made, and given out. Let every captain make well 
ready tiis vessel for the men, food, and weapons of war. 
Let the people be of one mind through it all." 

A murmur of acclamation arose and swelled, the smil- 
ing king permitting it, until it became a mighty shout. 
This the people without heard, and answered forgetting 
reverence until the hangings of the palace moved. And 
still the king stood smiling. 

When there was quiet, he said, with warmth : " Thus 
endeth this gathering of the captains. Brave captains, 
well have ye done. Thy king knoweth pride beyond 
measure. The gods be with you." 

The captains, after bowing to the floor, stood proudly 
erect. The high priest gave the blessing. Afterward, 
when the king, with his rulers, nobles, and priests, had 
sat down, the chamberlain waved his wand. Slowly 
the assemblage went out, with faces ever to the king. 
Deeply they saluted him at the threshold, before disap- 
pearing. Of these the captains were the last to with- 
draw, as they had been the first to enter. Exultant, with 
the king, all passed out to the perfect day, to spread wide 
this unlooked-for result of the convention. 



A DECLARATION OF WAR. 19 

Yet still continued the day in its soft, serene loveliness. 

The king, rulers, and nobles remained to confer. 
But this conference was interrupted somewhat when the 
waiting islanders without received word of this declaration 
of war. Again , forgetting reverence, they became j ubilant. 
So much did these Atlanteans love conquest. Those 
within the state chamber were but stimulated, doing 
quick, vigorous work. 

One most important measure of this conference was 
the unanimous agreement that the queen should reign 
during the king's absence. The nine rulers (descend- 
ants of the nine younger brothers of Atlas, eldest son of 
Poseidon) were to remain at home in order to sustain 
her, and be subject in a body to her call. Further, 
though this was spoken only inwardly, they could the 
better watch each other. As each made solemn vow to 
be loyal to country and queen, Atlano, of his mocking 
spirit, laughed within. 

For, how could they do otherwise? Would not he 
bear with him, his ablest nobles, his chiefs, his captains, 
his warmen, his sailors? And would they not return 
laden with spoils, strengthened, rioting of victory? What 
could stand against them? Well might these rulers 
vow to be loval! 




CHAPTER II. 

QUEEN ATLANA. 

FROM the state chamber the king sped buoyantly 
through the great hall, with its lines of bowing officers and 
attendants, each as smiling as himself over thi-s war pros- 
pect; and thence, to the right, along the corridor, to the 
queen's bower room. 

Most eloquently did this .large apartment testify to the 
industry of the queen and her ladies, as theirs were the 
embroidery upon the hangings of byssus and the cover- 
ings of the couches, the plaiting of the great mats upon 
the inlaid floor, the festooning of the flowers from the 
satinwood walls. The room was a veritable bower in its 
brightness, fragrance, and floral adornments; and, as the 
climax to its charms, three of its sides opened upon the 
fairy-like, private garden, which spread to the eastward. 

The queen's ladies were throwing over a couch 'the 
covering they had just finished as the king entered. After 
low salutations, they withdrew. The queen, meanwhile, 
Jiad arisen for greeting; and, sad as it may seem, was 
wondering at her husband's cheerfulness of mien. 

Queen Atlana was tall, gracious, lovely. She was 

Atlano's cousin, being the daughter of his father's brother 

by a princess, of Khemi-. Owing to her Semitic blood, 

hers was not the complexion of the true Atlanteans. In 

(20) 



QUEEN ATLANA. 21 

her, the mixture of the red and yellow had produced a 
richness of skin whose tints were of the olive and the 
peach. Her eyes were brown, large, soft, and lustrous; 
her hair, black and waving, and worn in high braids about 
her head. Her features were straight, the forehead reced- 
ing but little, and the mouth beautiful and tender. 

Her robe was of fine white linen, embroidered in buff; 
and hung from her shoulders in folds to the floor, being 
confined at the waist by a golden girdle. Her perfect 
arms were bare and without ornament. With a grace 
bewitching, she moved toward the king, her face flushing 
sweetly, and said low in love: 

" With joy I greet thee, Atlano." 

He took her extended hand and led her to her couch, 
responding, as he sat down beside her, " With the like 
feeling do I greet thee, Atlana." 

Her eyes lighted gladly. Such crumbs had begun to 
fall rarely from the king's table, and, therefore, had now 
the fullness of the banqueting board. Smiling, she said: 

"Thou art happy, Atlano. Comest thou from the 
meeting of the captains ? " 

"The captains left an hour hence. Since then we have 
had thought for matters of weight." 

There was a strange exultation about him. She looked 
at him in inquiry. 

"Thou askest not of the meeting." 

"It was in my thought. Tell me of it." 

" There were the like olden speeches of cargoes taken 
out and cargoes brought back, of the planting of. our 
people in new lands, and their doings; of spoils taken. 
Pfui ! how sick am I of it! How great is my wish to put 
some other in my place to hearken to it all!" 



22 POSEIDONS PARADISE. 

"But the people would not have it. It hath ever been 
the custom of the kings." 

o 

"A custom of the fools! How weary I grow of it! 
This day I was almost in sleep. But one thing I heard 
that roused me!" 

"What heardst thou?" 

He was rubbing his hands gloatingly, his long, thin, 
cruel hands. 

" What thinkest thou, Atlana?" 

" I think not. Tell me." 

He waited, delighting to prolong her impatience; and 
then drawled: 

"We have heard that will force us to " 

"To what?" 

"To war." 

She looked so incredulous that he laughed. " I say 
the truth, Atlana. We are to war." 

"To war!" 

Her face had blanched, yet she could not believe. 

"Yea, Atlana, to war. A new power showeth itself to 
the north of Khemi. It aimeth to hold the Middle Sea. 
We go to crush it!" 

She s^rew faint at his relentless tone. However, she 
managed to plead : 

" It cannot harm us. Spare it." 

".Spare it! Much would it spare us should it grow 
stronger. Even now is it mighty enough to thrust us to 
one side. Do us harm ! That is my fear." 

'Atlano, I beseech that thou wilt seek no quarrel with 
this people." 

"There is no need to seek. I will make one. I will 
show them that Atlantis still hath being that she is not 



QUEEN ATLANA. 23 

dead of her power, her wealth, her spoils, her glory. 
Spoils! Here will be another a grand one! Here will 
another land mourn its being those marvels of vessels 
sink beneath the waters, or, better, swell the numbers 
of our own. Here will Atlantis show another line to 
that dreaming Khemi that doth not rouse even when the 
smallest haven goeth beyond her in treading the sea. 
What are her piles of stone to one strong, free breath of 
the sea? And what a glory to hold every breath as we 
have until now! Base Khemi to be thus given over to 
her sands, her works of stone!" 

"Atlano, call to mind that I am fond of Khemi. It is 
the land of my mother." 

" One would know it when thou wouldst bid me spare 
this Pelasgia." 

"Thou art wrong to trouble this people." 

"Such is what I might look for from thee. Ever art 
thou against me!" 

"When have I ever been against thee?" 

He tried hard to recall an instance, but could not. 
Less angry, he insisted: 

"As a wife, thou hast the right to think with me 
hast the right to bid me good speed when I go to crush 
this people." 

"Thou! Thou wilt not go?" 

" I go to crush them. The gods have my vow. Here 
have I rusted too long. I am as king of Khemi!" 

"Thou wilt be killed! Atlano, thou wilt be killed!" 

"Then wilt thou be queen," he returned derisively. 
"Thou art next in line with all thy Khemian blood, and 
these Atlanteans love thee. Ill would they take it should 
Oltis come after me for his father counteth not. That 



24 POSEIDON'S PARA'DISE. 

smooth Oltis well doth he wish it! But I shall not be 
killed, if but to bring to naught the hopes of that cun- 
ning priest He thinketh I see not through him." Loud 
rang his mocking laugh. 

The queen arose, and, standing before him, besought: 

"Atlano, for the sake of our land and people, war not. 
Think of our Atlanteans who will not come back of 
their darkened homes. Call to mind how, in the time 
of thy father, we lost our people in warring against 
Fun-hi. And what evil came of it, for it brought on 
the death of thy father!" 

"Yea, but it made the way for me." 

"Atlano!" 

"Say on, 'Atlano! ' Well should I sicken of my name!" 
(He had arisen to face her vindictively.) "I say to thee, 
Atlana, we are to war, war. And now I have done with 
it and thee." (He turned to go.) 

"So be it war! But I warn thee, it is one thing to 
war, another to win." 

" Put not upon it an evil eye, Atlana. If thou dost 
croak, I fear." (He was again facing her.) 

"I croak not, but I warn thee. The cause is not just.'' 

" Thou art in evil temper this day. It is best that I go 
to the temple and talk with Oltis. Ah, thou dost shake!' 

"Why art thou ever with Oltis if thou trustest him 
not?"' 

" I like to draw him on, to make him believe I think 
with him, to make him take my way in the end. I like 
to see him, the proud one, bend bend because I am 
the king. He is a toad." 

"But thou goest to this toad from me." 

"Yea, but wert thou more as he I would stay with 
thee." 



QUEEN ATLANA. 25 

"Think. Thou didst call him a toad." 

"I mean, wert thou not so bent of mind. Oltis. never 
sayeth nay to me. It would be better, Atlana, couldst 
thou ever think with me." 

" It is but this time, Atlano. Come, sit with me 
again. I will be more calm." 

" Nay, I go." 

"Go. not to Oltis." 

" I like the mirth of it." 

" I fear him. He will do thee evil." 

There was another mocking laugh. " If thou didst 
but know, I think evil toward, him. I like him not. 
And now my good wishes I leave thee." 

"Go not." 

Seeing there were tears in her eyes, he stooped to kiss 
her carelessly; thei\drew from her restraining hand and 
went out. 

Atlana was left to weep inconsolably. Well she loved 
her husband ; and hard to bear was his growing indiffer- 
ence. Now had come this new terror, this suddenly 
sprung up cloud of war, and the injustice of such a con- 
test could presage only defeat. For the remainder of 
the day she continued alone, given over to despondency, 
and dreading lest any eye should witness her plight. 

Before night, many were the aching hearts on the island 
beside the queen's. The wives of high and low. degree 
had alike fallen. to sorrowing. Mourning was rife among 
the females of the land, and grew in intensity from the 
hard-heartedness of the males, who had no patience with 
such puerile manifestations, and, therefore, laughed at 
them, derided. When some wives took courage to hint 
of the possibility of defeat, they were so withered by 



26 

scorn as to run for hiding places; and it was days before 
quite a goodly number rallied sufficiently to show them- 
selves. The women of Atlantis could imagine and suf- 
fer thereby as ably as their sisters of to-day. 

As the preparations grew brisker, more despairing be- 
came these Atlantean women. As for the queen, she 
only brightened when in presence of the king. Then 
she was strong. Thus he knew not of the agony she 
was enduring could not have appreciated it had she 
disclosed it. Once he even complimented her upon her 
sensible way of accepting the matter, she smiling back 
in a weary manner that was lost upon him, so centered 
was he in self. But, day by day, she grew more fond, if 
possible, so that his eyes opened somewhat; and, at last, 
he exclaimed : 

" Atlana, where didst thou get such heart ? Well would 
it be if thou hadst children." 

" Children ! Torment me not ! " 

The cry was tragic. The king, though amazed, scoffed: 

"Thou sayest well. They are but a torment." 

"I meant not that they are a torment. It is torment 
that I have them not !" 

Wildly she spoke, unsealing her lips upon this subject, 
and to the astounding of the king, as she continued: 

"Why speakest thou of children, and at this time? 
It is hard to bear. To have no child to look upon, to 
nurse, to clasp! Here is the heart of a mother, but 
where is the child to cling to it, to bless it? I am alone 
alone! 

She bowed her head to hide the bursting tears. The 
king, touched, attempted consolation. 

" Grieve not, Atlana. I care for children but to vex 
Oltis. As life is, they are ever a trouble." 



QUEEN ATLANA. 2? 

" I care not about Oltis. For trouble, fathers have no 
trouble. It is the mothers alone who have to bear 
that have the right to murmur. But I should never mur- 
mur. " 

" Nay, for a queen need have no care." 

"I should have care, and hail it, were I many times a 
queen." 

Such strong yearning was in her face that the king ex- 
claimed: 

"Atlana, what is it? What is upon thee? Is it this 
matter of war?" 

" Day and night I think of naught else. Hard have I 
tried to be brave. Atlano, go not from me. The pain 
I cannot bear." 

" There is no need for pain. We go to lay Pelasgia 
low. And I shall come again. Think, thou art the wife 
of a king. Trouble me no longer with bodings of evil. 
Would we had a child. It would take my place." 

Atlana sighed, and raised her head, determined to say 
no more. Relieved that her tears had ceased, Atlano 
said more gently: 

"Let us sail down to the harbor. There have the ves- 
sels of all the ports gathered. It will cheer thee but to 
look upon them." 

Fine cheer, indeed, was this for such an aching heari ! 
The queen looked at him, thinking he meant to jest. 
But no, his earnestness was too apparent. Already had 
his face brightened at the prospect. So she forced a 
smile, and, calling her ladies, gave the necessary orders. 

Shortly, herself, the king, and a few of the nobles, with 
their wives, went gliding down Luith to the harbor. But 
great heaviness of spirit was beneath the smiles of these 



28 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

women; and this heaviness increased when, upon arriv- 
ing at the harbor, they beheld the many war vessels in 
brave array, with pennants flying, and men crowding their 
decks. Bitter was it to listen to the exulting speeches of 
Atlano and his nobles; bitterer, to listen to the acclama- 
tions of those on deck and shore. The nobles' wives 
looked from their queen to each other, but could derive 
no comfort, no hope. There was not one to lighten the 
gloom of the others among these suffering women. 



.CHAPTER III. 

ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA. 

A FEW days later the Atlantean fleet sailed to the 
eastward to invade this upstart Pelasgia these Pelasgians 
that had come from Western Asia by way of the Cycla- 
des to make an abiding place in the Greece of to-day, as 
well as the islands of the ^Egean Sea. 

A mysterious people we.re the Pelasgians. Their ap- 
pearance among the past known races of the earth was 
sudden; their extinction has been complete. Yet we 
know they were peaceful, and fond of agriculture; that, 
under the favoring skies of their adopted land, they be- 
came the greatest merchants and sailors of most ancient 
times, antedating the renowned Phoenicians; that from 
Greece they passed over to Southern Italy, there, per- 
haps, to inaugurate that "golden age of Saturn," when 
peaceful agricultural pursuits superseded the piratical 
habits of the Carians and Leleges. But this is little. 

However, their monuments endure. These are the 
vast Cyclopean remains of Greece and Asia that puzzle 
while they amaze. Evidently intended for fortification, 
they were built of huge polygonal stones, fitted together 
without cement and mortar, so perfectly as to survive the 
structures of succeeding ages and races. These are all 

(29) 



3O POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

that are left to point to a people who, though forced 
everywhere to yield to the conqueror, must yet have 
been possessed of indomitable energy and perseverance. 
.Though ineffaceable are their invisible imprints for good. 

Under Pelasgus, their leader and king, this colony won 
renown so quickly that it is no wonder Atlano should 
doubt its existence. But this knowledge proved the im- 
petus he had been desiring. Now there was new life in 
the mere thought of the stifling of this menacing people. 

Thus the fleet went gayly sailing along the Middle Sea, 
so high were the hopes, so positive the convictions* of 
success. 

The skies were favorable: and the time dragged not, 
because of the ravages made upon the coasts to the left. 
At length the islands off the southern shore of Greece 
were sighted; and there came into view what could only 
be some Pelasgian vessels. As the great fleet bore down 
upon them, these took to flight, and made such good 
speed, the while warning other vessels they met, that all 
were out of sight before reaching the southern point of 
Attica.* 

Up the western coast they speeded to their port,f whilst 
the Atlanteans, mistaking their route, rounded Attica to 
sail up its eastern coast. Nothing here invited them ex- 
cept some outlying hamlets, which they pillaged and de- 
stroyed. When well along between Attica and Euboea, 
the fleet lay to, and many warriors disembarked. 

These advanced through Bceotia, the surprised Pelas- 
gians fleeing before them into Thessaly. But quickly 
did Thessaly prepare for defense, calling as leader Deu- 

*These less ancient names will be used for convenience. 
fPort of Athens. 



ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA. 31 

calion, who, with his family, dwelt at Larissa, on its 
southern shore. 

This Deucalion was revered and beloved; and it was 
whispered that he possessed mysterious powers that 
could come only of the gods. So none but himself must 
lead these ready Thessalonians. 

He, most willing, hastily gathered his neighbors. And 
then these Pelasgians of Thessaly met the invaders, gave 
them fierce battle, and forced them back, even through 
Bceotia, and into Attica. Meanwhile, a few of the At- 
lantean vessels had proceeded along the coast of Attica 
and Boeotia, seeking pillage; and, all too soon, came upon 
Larissa, whose simple homes and cultivated lands were 
on either side of its gentle stream and by the coast. 
Here, at this inviting spot, they paused to descend 
upon ' its women and children, every man having gone 
with Deucalion. When home after home had been pil- 
laged and destroyed, these defenseless ones fell before the 
red warriors to plead, agonized, for mercy. But when 
unanswered, spurned, their importunities changed to de- 
spairing cries for Deucalion, which the marauders were 
only too quick to distinguish. 

Thus the leader inquired of one of the shrieking 
women, in a tone she could not fail to understand, "Deu- 
calion?" 

She, foolish one, by. her gestures and pointing, made 
them comprehend that this Deucalion had led his fellows 
southward to meet the invading foe. 

Grim was then the laughter of the Atlanteans. To 
this succeeded desire to know which was Deucalion's 
home. They were about to inquire, when the same 
woman, of her frenzy, cried : 



32 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. . 

" See Pyrrha, Pyrrha ! The wife of Deucalion ! " 

The Atlanteans, following her glance, again compre- 
hended. Under some trees, at a little distance, were 
kneeling, entwined, a woman and two children. The 
leader eagerly asked : 

" Is that the wife of Deucalion ? " 

The woman, understanding, bowed in affirmation. 

"And the children of Deucalion?" 

Again the woman bowed her <4 Yes." 

There was a swift movement of the chief and his men 
toward the group. Perceiving this, Pyrrha, with her 
children, arose, and the three stood in passive dignity. 
But less swift grew the approach of the marauders, as 
they the better beheld this Pyrrha, this fair, noble, most 
lovely woman, who, with, the mother fear in her eyes, was 
holding tightly a youth well grown and a little maiden. 
For the moment a feeling akin to reverence came upon 
the fierce men, so that they halted. But the leader, 
overcoming this, went still nearer, and demanded : 

"Give me the children!" 

Of her intuition, Pyrrha understood. Tighter grew 
her grasp, as she besought mercy with her eyes. But 
the chief hardened only the more, for he was calculating 
upon the ransom that these children must bring. So he 
laid his hand upon the youth, strong in his purpose. 

Then fine it was to behold the youth's flashing eyes, 
his proud crest, and the brave air with which he turned 
to repel this mighty-looking warrior. Though Pyrrha, 
by tone and grasp, endeavored to restrain him, as she, in 
her Pelasgian, pleaded for mercy. Vain, however, were 
her sweet tones. The chief's hands went about young 
Hellen; the cruel men pressed sore; and Pyrrha and her 
daughter, bereft, sank upon their knees, heart pressed to 
heart, to cry to heaven for help. 



ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA. 33 

But again went the hands at their work. The mother 
was drawn back ruthlessly, and the maiden wrenched 
from her arms. Brave, unyielding, Pyrrha struggled to 
her feet, prepared to follow, to drag her children back. 
But the evil spirits held high their captives, and gath- 
ered about them in mass as they moved onward to the 
ships. Dark became everything to Pyrrha; her lovely 
body tottered, and she fell unconscious. Heaven at last 
was kind. 

The other women, with their children, collected about 
her. But to all efforts for her revival, she responded not. 
So they forbore, to fall on their knees, and gaze dumbly 
at the vessels, which, with booty and captives, were al- 
ready beginning the journey southward. When these 
were out of sight, they arose, their thought only for the 
miserable creature who had revealed Deucalion's family 
to the despoilers. As one, they fell upon her with their 
tongues ; and of her it need hardly be told that, for the 
balance of her life> it would have been better had she 
never been born. 

The despoilers hastened southward to hear evil. The 
brave Atlanteans who had disembarked to destroy these 
Pelasgians, had met with defeat. Yes, Atlano had been 
pressed back into Attica by Deucalion, and there had 
been routed by a small army under Pelasgus. In conse- 
quence the ranks of the Atlanteans could only tear their 
way to the coast, many dying as they went of exhaus- 
tion or wounds, so that Atlano with the other survivors 
appeared but as a handful to those awaiting them on the 
ships. 

When Atlano was again on his own vessel, his rage 
and humiliation were so intense that none dared to ven- 
3 



34 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

ture near him to tell of the presence of the two young 
captives. Even Maron, his chief attendant, kept aloof 
and eyed him in fear the great, grim, swarthy Maron, 
who had never known awe until now. 

But the king had not been long on board when, as he 
stood gazing upon the shore of this uncrushed Pelasgia, 
'he heard a sound as of sobbing, and that not far from 
him. Surprised, he listened for some seconds, and then 
signed to Maron. The latter came forward eagerly, 
while the others of the vessel scarcely breathed in their 
interest. 

" What is that noise, Maron ? " 

" Most gracious king, it cometh from the two children 
made captive on the coast above, at a place where some 
of our vessels landed for booty." 

."Who took them?" 

"Most gracious king, it was the chief captain, Zekil." 

"Let them be brought before me." 

Maron signed to an officer, who hastened to the mid- 
dle of the vessel, where there was a small apartment 
used for storage, to return with the two miserable ones. 
When these beheld the fierce, dark red face of the king, 
they cried out in alarm. 

"Bring the rod," ordered the king, "and let Zekil come 
before me." 

The two children had fallen on their knees to suppli- 
cate for deliverance. This Atlano well understood from 
their signs, their tones, their agony. With contempt he 
looked down upon them until the bronze rod was 
brought. At his word a blow upon the back of each 
brought the hapless pair to their feet But their tears 
had ceased, and, with eyes shining of indignation, they 



ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA, 35 

held to each other. Their shoulders were smarting, 
but the pain was as nothing beside the indignity, for 
these children had known only tenderness and reverence 
hitherto. 

Then, as the youth Hellen turned from his sister to 
flash at him a look as haughty, as fierce, Atlano smiled 
in derision, and asked : 

" Maron, is this the son of a king ? " 

"Most gracious King, he is the son of a great chief. 
Zekil knoweth; and yonder he cometh." 

Soon Zekil was on board, and kneeling to the king. 
When bidden to arise, he stood up as if well satisfied 
with himself. 

"Zekil, whence came these children?" 

" Most gracious King, we brought them from the coast 
above." 

"Whose children are they?" 

"Most gracious King, the people whom we fell upon 
were ever calling upon their father, as if he had all 
power. It was 'Deucalion!' 'Deucalion!' on every 
side." 

" Deucalion ! " Atlano gasped the word. Then, of his 
astonishment and exultation, cried: 

" Ha Deucalion ! Art thou sure?" 

" Most gracious King, their father is Deucalion." 

"Knowest thou who is Deucalion? Knowest thou 
who he is, Zekil?" 

Even Zekil was shrinking back at the fury of his tone. 

" He is the one who headed the horde that drove us 
back into the way of loss, ruin. But for Deucalion, we 
would have swept from earth this Pelasgia! 

"Yea, and as they thronged about him, and pressed 

EC 

THB 

TJSITBRSIT7] 



36 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

against us, it was to the cry of 'Deucalion -Deucalion!' 
And we fled before this 'Deucalion!'" He hissed the 
word at the terrified children. 

"Now to pay him now to pay him! And it shall be 
fine ransom ! Ah, what ransom will I have for you, ye 
thrice cursed children of Deucalion!" 

He raised his hand as if to smite. ^Eole, compre- 
hending, looked full in his face, calmly but beseechingly. 
And, as he, for the first time, obtained a clear view of the 
sweet, innocent, fair, lovely countenance of this child of 
thirteen, and received the appealing look of eyes beauti- 
ful like violets, eyes of a color unknown in Atlantis, the 
hand, losing force, fell to his side. 

Further, as he continued to stare into these eyes, and 
note the gestures of the small, perfect hands, he under- 
stood that she was imploring their return to Pelasgia. 
But, at his frowning shake of the head, she desisted, to 
speak in quick, firm tone, to his comprehension : 

"Then free my brother, and I will stay." 

At perceiving the king's threatening hand, Hellen had 
raised his own to ward off the blow. Great was his 
astonishment when the king's hand fell to his side, as he 
was not aware of yEole's look or gestures. But, at her 
words, he started, shocked, and faced her. 

"^Eole, thou knowest not what thou askest. Think- 
est thou I will go, and leave thee here, to the mercy of 
these ?" And he looked with scorn at King Atlano, who 
was quick to interpret his words. 

In spite of himself, Atlano could not but admire Hel- 
len's courage. He glanced from one to the other, the 
uncowed demeanor of both so impressing him that he 
said to those in attendance : 



ATLANTIS VERSUS PELASGIA. 37 

"They are a noble pair, this brother and sister. If we 
take naught of the spoil of Pelasgia with us to Atlantis, 
we are rich in them, for their value must bring us 
fine ransom, and before the sun of the morrow. Mean- 
while, let them be held in honor. Maron, lead them 
whence they came." 

Then he turned to speak apart with Zekil. And Maron 
conducted the youth and maiden to the outside room. 

Later, there was a conference of the king and his few 
surviving nobles and chief captains when it was decided 
that the Atlantean fleet would remain where it was, and, on 
the morrow, dictate terms for the ransom of the captives. 

After Atlano had sent away his nobles and captains, 
he went to look upon the sufferers, and found them re- 
clining upon some cushions, in the very stupor of grief. 
They heeded him not as he stood and watched them. 
And many forms did his thoughts take as he noted their 
beauty and grace. The one that would recur most often 
was, "I would almost keep them in spite of many ransoms." 

But, as it proved, there was no ransom on the morrow. 
For, that night, the vessels of the Pelasgians, hurriedly 
brought together from every available point, so harassed 
and destroyed a portion of the Atlantean fleet that the 
remainder was forced to speed off in the early morning, 
leaving to an uncertain future the wished-for ransom. 

Thus the invading fleet passed away. And the bit- 
terly weeping children stood straining their eyes at the 
beloved, the fast disappearing shores. At about the time 
that their dear Pelasgia was beyond their view, Deucalion 
rejoined his still unconscious wife, and learned from those 
about her of this terrible bereavement. 



CHAPTER IV. 

THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 

SACRED mountain, uplands, shore, and harbor became 
black with people, as the returning fleet drew inward. 
The enthusiastic welcomings were all that the proudest 
conqueror could wish. Yet these islanders, fearing they 
were but lukewarm in their manifestations to these so 
victorious, grew but the more enthusiastic until it came 
upon them that the fleet was moving with ominous slow- 
ness, that few were the pennants, that there were no 
responses, and that the decks were looking wofully scant 
of men. 

Almost as one they became mute; and each began to 
eye his fellows in doubt. Could it be that victory had 
not been with Atlantis? Fast fell their hopes, until wild 
became the speculations as to who were returning, who 
were left dead in a far-off clime. 

Gradually, the cry of terror overspread harbor, shore, 
uplands, and mountain ; and its sounds were the first to 
fall upon the king's ears as the fleet drew into Luith's 
outlet. 

Quick were the king and his nobles in boarding the 
galleys awaiting them. No looks were there for the 
masses, looking gloomily on from shore and docks, 
though a few of the latter tried hard to shout welcomes 

(38) 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 39 

that would stick in their throats. As the galleys began 
to move off, the gloom deepened, until amazement light- 
ened it a little; for what meant these two fair children that 
Maron and an officer were bearing from the king's vessel to 
a galley? Also, why was this galley keeping so near 
that of the king? The tongues were loosened, and con- 
jecture ran high until the warmen and sailors began to 
disembark. These were at once surrounded by the im- 
patient beholders on land; and, as Atlano and his nobles 
moved away, they knew the listeners were hearing of the 
dead, so eloquent of anguish grew the air. 

Useless was it to stop their ears. What was the outer 
hearing to the powerful inward faculty that naught could 
render deaf? 

Onward, up the beautiful Luith, glided the king and 
his nobles, their eyes ever turned from the galleys that 
had come to meet certain nobles nevermore to be seen 
in Atlantis. Of these Phiro was one Phiro, the young, 
the ardent. Then they thought of the wives awaiting 
these, the non-returning, and grew abject in their humil- 
iation and fear. Mute, they glided by the palaces whose 
marble landing places were covered with anxious ob- 
servers. 

When they reached the upper part of the stream and 
beheld banks and heights swarming with people, and 
many galleys coming toward them, the king drew more 
closely under his awnings, that he might not respond to 
the cheers of these loyal subjects who were content in 
that he was of those returning. 

And there, at the royal landing place, were priests also 
awaiting him. In spite of the anxiety, shout after shout 
went up from all sides as his galley touched the granite 



4O POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

steps. But terrible was the hush when the king came 
forth, unsmiling, unanswering. After the steps were as- 
cended, his chariot entered, and he was driven off, they 
knew their every fear was verified. 

Shivering with dismay, they looked on in silence as 
the downcast nobles, now that the king no longer needed 
their attendance, thought of their homes, and, entering 
their chariots, drove off. But there came diversion for 
the time when the half-fainting captives were borne to a 
chariot, and driven after the king. 

The priests, who were of inferior rank, were about to 
drive to the temple when these children appeared. They 
waited until they were gone, when one spoke out to the 
captain of the galley that had borne them: . 

"SirCaptain, whence are those children?" 

"Priest Kluto, Maron telleth that they are of Pelasgia, 
and the children of a great chief." 

" Well, I knew it ! " exclaimed a swarthy man, a Kabyle 
of the Amazirgi.* Before I lost this arm, and when I 
was in Shaphana, I saw these Pelasgians. Fair were some 
even as these children, and of foreheads as straight. 
Marked ye their foreheads?" 

" I marked them ! " 

"And I!" 

"And I!" 

Then, for the first time in the history of the island, these 
Atlanteans began to regard the receding foreheads every- 
where about them with less than the usual favor. 

Thereupon, another priest, of his shrewdness, warned: 

"Such foreheads come not of the gods. Call to mind 
that ye spring from Poseidon. Was not the forehead of 

*the Berbers of North Africa. 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 4! 

Poseidon even as our foreheads? Are not our foreheads 
as his? Then have a care. Else will ye mock!" 

"But how fair, how white are they!^' demurred a yel- 
low man of the Eskaldi.* "Of a truth, the gods love such 
a color! " 

" Get thee beyond the mountains of Shaphana.f whither 
we found thy tribe famishing," scofifed the priest. " I speak 
but to Atlanteans. Atlanteans, we are of the gods we 
are red. But other things are for our thoughts than 
skins and foreheads. We are the children of Poseidon. 
Let us look to it that we anger him not. For, what a 
day is this!" 

Then, shaking his head in a manner that drew forth 
the cries and groans of the bystanders, he made the 
sign, and was driven off. The other priests followed. 

During this conversation more galleys had approached ; 
and from one got out a few warmen and sailors. These 
were at once questioned by men, women, and children. 
But short was the listening, when the air was rent with 
anguish. Then those unbereaved led the mourners to 
their homes, themselves sick of shame and despair. 

What had come upon Atlantis? Never had a king 
been so humiliated. Never before had the ships returned 
without brilliant booty. Fun-hi was as a grain of sand 
to this. And, ah, the non-returning ! Woe to the stricken 
ones the desolated homes ! 

The thinking ones, in their places of retirement, trem- 
bled at what this might mean. 

The king, with his attendants, drove on to the palace 

*Iberians (in Gaul) same as Basques. 
fSpain. 



42 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

court. He alighted; and, waving off the clustering ones, 
passed on to the queen's apartments. He would tell 
Atlana that this had come of her croakings. 

But Atlana was* standing alone in her bower room, her 
arms outstretched, the glad tears pouring. She hastened 
to embrace him, crying: 

"Atlano, I see thee again, and not harmed! The gods 
be thanked forever!" 

''Yea, thou seest me again. Though better were it 
had I been left to feed the birds in Pelasgia!" 

"Could I but cheer thee." 

She kissed his hand and yearned for the embrace 
that would not come. 

" It is because of thy croaking, Atlana. From the 
first thou didst look with cold eye upon it. And the 
other women of the land have helped thee. Thy bodings 
of evil, and theirs, have helped towards our loss, our ruin ! 
Knowest thou not the power of thought?" 

"Say not so, Atlano. Say not our thoughts could 
have such power. Small cheer would it bring to mourn- 
ing wives and daughters. Ah, wretched Atlanteans 
wretched women ! And to think I could greet thee with 
smiles, with these sorrowing ones about us! It is cruel 
cruel! But my heart will leap that thou hast come 
back, though with no kiss no fond clasp within thine 
arms." 

She bent her head as a tall lily might when over- 
borne by a bitter blast, and then raised her eyes appeal- 
ingly. 

" Yea, I have come back, and in what manner? Hard 
is it to raise my head, harder to look about me. I am cra- 
ven ! Small heart have I for kiss or clasp. But here they 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 43 

are, since thou dost ask for them." And he proceeded 
to do both so coldly that she drew away from him in 
haste, her eyes flashing, her cheeks crimsoning, that she 
had thus besought him. But her indignation was short. 
It was plain that he was suffering sore in his humiliation ; 
and her wifely pity triumphed when he began to pace 
moodily. Only, love and tenderest sympathy . shone in 
her eyes when at last he ejaculated : 

"Could I but hide myself. Would I were a priest!" 
the last being uttered in derision. 

Hoping to divert him, she whispered : 

"Atlano, knowest thou the high priest is dying?" 

" Nay." He stopped, interested. 

"They have looked for him to pass away through the 
night." 

"And Oltis is he dying likewise?" Grim was his 
laugh. 

"Oltis is well. He hath been cruel to his father. Yet, 
to the people, he mourneth as a tender son." 

" The sly, smooth face! So he is to be high priest as 
I come back. It bodeth evil." 

" What meanest thou ? " 

"It bodeth evil for Atlantis that I come back with my 
spirit sore to find Oltis stepping into the place of high 
priest. Would this matter had naught to do with line. 
It would be well if the chief priests came not of the blood 
of the kings. It could be changed." 

This last idea seemed to please him, as he grew ab- 
sorbed over it, and even smiled. But the queen shud- 
dered. Well she dreaded any further departure from the 
ancient customs. Already had there been enough such 
to cause her faithful, devout spirit untold suffering and 
fear. She waited a little, and then said cheerfully: 



44 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Let us hope that Oltis wilt do better as high priest." 

"Thou knowest as well as I there is no good in him." 

The queen sighed, and said almost under her breath : 
"Well was it for his wife that she died early. But his 
poor children ! " 

"And his poor, poor niece, poor of a truth before he 
hath done with her ! " 

"Atlano, since thou didst leave, he hath kept Electra 
from me. He hath pleaded the sore state of Olto, that 
he hath ever need of her." 

"Hath Olto been sick so long?" 

"From the time thou didst leave, he failed. Soon he 
was too weak to serve in the great temple even. The 
other temples thou knowest he had not visited in a year." 

"And now Oltis will have charge over them all. 
Would the law were not as this. Would it could be 
changed." 

"Call to mind that Oltis hath no son. His nephew 
Urgis coineth after him." 

"Yea, that followeth that Urgis will leave the temple 
at Chimo, to be the chief priest in our temple when Oltis 
is high priest. I could take cheer in the thought that 
one. is of like cunning with the other. So Oltis will be 
high priest, and Urgis chief priest of our great temple. 
The two will need a firm hand, Atlana." Again his laugh 
rang grim. 

The queen had become very pale. Noting this, Atlano 
continued, "But, to change, I have brought thee a gift." 

"A gift ! " She smiled rosily. 

"I have brought thee thy wish, children. Ah, thou 
dost not see! We have taken two captives, the son and 
daughter of a great Pelasgian chief. If ransom cometh 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 45 

not, they are thine. Thou wilt care for them, wilt cause 
them to be taught our tongue and habits. Here, in this 
palace, will they stay to be treated as are the children oi 
the king." 

Much did he enjoy her astonishment, and the yearning 
look that came into her eyes. 

" But how old are they, Atlano?" 

"The boy is sixteen years; the girl, thirteen." 

"And their parents are dead ? " 

" Nay, nay, they live!" 

"They live, and without their children?" 

"Yea, yea, and without their. children! " 

"It is a horror." 

"It is a delight." Most mocking was his laugh. 

"Thou meanest it not." 

"But I do. These are the children of Deucalion. To 
him we owe our loss, ruin. If ransom cometh not, I can 
well pay him. Atlana, the girl is most fair." 

The queea shivered, and her eyes fell. 

"The boy is noble of look and brave. He will be a 
warrior, and, in the coming time, can help to fall upon 
Pelasgia, What delight if, in battle, he should slay his 
father!" 

The queen turned from him, and a cry of torment 
escaped her. 

"Atlana, there was enough of such noise ere I went 
from thee. I mean this I tell thee." 

She was ghastly in her paleness. 

"Atlana, thou lookest far from well. It may be thou 
art not able to look upon these captives now. I will 
show them to thee on the morrow." 

"I would see them now, now!" 



46 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The king pulled a cord hanging from the wall, and the 
queen's pygmy entered. 

This pygmy, who was but four feet in height, had 
been captured in Afrita* near the middle part, together 
with many of his tribe of Akka; and it was ten years since 
the forlorn creatures had entered upon servitude in At- 
lantis. But Azu was fortunate in that he had been given 
to the queen. Her heart had gone out to him, as it ever 
did toward the wretched; and, of her kindness, she often 
questioned as to his former life, receiving crude descrip- 
tions of his tribe's home in the great forest, and boastful 
accounts of its ability and prowess for quickly had he 
learned Atlantean, being but a child when captured, and 
now scarcely twenty. 

Very bright was Azu, and affectionate, though most 
peculiar of look because of his large round head, snout- 
like projection of the jaws, receding chi'n, flat chest, huge 
paunch, and angular, projecting lower limbs. Further, 
his grotesqueness of body was enhanced by his garb. 
This, in color, was flaming red, and consisted of a tunic, 
close-fitting, short lower garments, pointed cap, and 
pointed shoes. He looked a goblin. His one beauty 
was his hands, which were small and well formed. More- 
over, his teeth were strong and pearly, and served some- 
what to lighten the darkness of his visage, as he grinned 
without ceasing. 

With feet turning inward and a waddling or lurching 
of the body, he approached, to fall most suddenly flat on 
his face before the king. Smiling, Atlano ordered: 

"Azu, arise. Speed to Maron, who is in the first small 
room. Bid him bring hither the captives." 

"Africa; 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 47 

Azu then arose, and backed to the door with head- 
bent low. When he went out, the queen sank on a 
couch, and shaded her eyes with her hands. In a few 
moments, he reentered to lurch, bow, and say : 

" Gracious King, Maron and the children are without." 

" Bid them come in." 

Azu went out. Then entered Maron, half bearing yole, 
whilst Hellen walked feebly beside him. Maron laid ^Eole 
on a couch, and then made his obeisance to the queen, who 
had arisen. After receiving this, she bade him place a 
chair for the youth near his sister. Into this Hellen sank 
in weariness. Then Atlana moved beside them to gaze 
upon yole, who lay back with eyes closed, breathing 
faintly. And,as she gazed, the queen thought the maiden's 
loveliness more of heaven than earth. Shortly, with 
tears starting, she turned to look upon the noble, hand- 
some youth, who was regarding her so despairingly, 
and she the more marveled. Where got these children 
their exceeding fairness, their straightness of feature, 
their grace of form and face? What a color was the 
maiden's hair, so rich in its brownish red, so golden 
where the sun was kissing it! What must her eyes be, 
for the youth's were blue as the deepest skies ! 

Of her admiration and compassion, the queen leaned 
over and kissed the sweet, straight forehead with such 
Fervor that ALole opened her eyes. One look from their 
beautiful blue depths so stirred Atlana that she kissed 
her again and again. Then, as she perceived Hellen gaz- 
ing in woe upon her, she felt a sudden love for both. 

"Altano, they are mine. My heart leapeth. They 
will be my children. At last the gods pity me!" 

" AS thou wilt, Atlana, They are thine unless ransom 



48 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

cometh. Though, I have the mind not to yield them." 

"Ransom! Ah, I forgot! They have a mother, a 
father. What is there more than woe to lose such chil- 
dren! I beseech thee, send them this day to their 
home." 

"Thou art a driveler!" With fierce look he turned to 
leave; and, as he strode away, added, "Fit wife art thou 
for Olto! ." 

But she went after him. " Again I ask that thou wilt 
send them to their home, and this day. Choose between 
them and me." 

He half turned, and cast at her a peculiar look, in 
which showed wavering. Then, in smooth, persuasive 
tone, said : 

" Atlana, it is for thee to wait. I have to please my 
nobles in this. They look for ransom. It is best to 
seem to hearken to them for the time. After the sting 
of this loss is less keen, they will the better yield. Fur- 
ther, have a care for thyself Where is thy trust as a 
wife?" 

"Thou wouldst do better had I less trust, as thou 
callest it. There are some who have no eye for such 
some who can be stirred only by lack of thought, lack 
of feeling, lack of faith,* until they become as full of life 
as were the dying under that draught of our cousin. 
Viril!" 

"Thou meanest that draught that gave youth, never- 
ending youth?" asked he, eagerly, unmindful of her 
reproach. 

"Yea." 

* FaiuWfidelity. 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 49 

"Would we knew that draught, if it was found, for 
Viril died." 

" We know that he lived long, so long that he came 
to wish for death. Without doubt, he ceased to take it." 

" Would he had left the word to us. Would it could 
again be found! Would we, in our seeking, "could" 
He paused in fear. He had been incautious. But 
Atlana, unheeding his words, for her thought had re- 
turned to the captives, implored: 

"Think well upon it, Atlano. In a few days come to 
me with x the word that these children will go back to 
Pelasgia." 

Relieved, he answered mildly, " Trouble me not with it 
now." And again would have gone. 

"Yield tome." 

" Take away thy hand. I must to Oltis, whom thou 
likest so well. Later will we think upon this." And, 
pushing aside her detaining hand, he passed from the 
apartment. 

The queen again leaned over ./Eole; but shortly 
beckoned to Hellen. Taking his hand, she sat beside 
them, looking from one to the other with such affection 
that they revived somewhat. This was the first sympa- 
thy they had received, and no mother's could have been 
tenderer. 

After a little JEole sat up, and the relieving tears fell 
fast. When the queen had wiped these well away, she 
spoke reassuringly to Hellen; and then the two, by their 
signs, made her to understand how grateful' were her 
sympathy and quick affection. 

Soon Azu brought them some refreshment, the while 
refreshing their spirits to the extent that they even 
4 



50 

laughed. Here was a novelty of novelties. Whereupon, 
and out of his goodness of heart, he became overjoyed, 
and to express this, executed some extraordinary leaps 
that made them laugh the more. Finally, at the queen's 
behest, he struck off into a wild, weird dance that he had 
learned in the inmost recesses of the Afrite forest. At 
this their tears were paralyzed, and the laughing, 
strengthened. 

They were now in good condition for the services of 
the lady Elna. She showed them to rooms near the 
queen, ordered for them fresh clothing, and bade Azu 
conduct them to the bath. Afterward they reposed. 

As the days passed, they became more cheerful, owing 
to the thoughtfulness of the queen. Every morning, 
they drove with her about the environs of the sacred 
mountain, even going long distances on the great plain 
to the left. This plain much amazed them, so boundless 
was it, so intersected with canals and streams, so culti- 
vated in every tree and plant that could please the eye 
and gratify the palate. Moreover, marvelous was the 
great ditch about it, that, they were told, was hundreds 
of miles in circumference; whose depth of a hundred feet 
was almost incredible; whose width was as that of a 
river. 

Further, there were the great quarries to the north end 
of the sacred mountain, from which were taken out the 
stones red, white, and black, that were used in building the 
palaces. Here many men worked; and even the pyg- 
mies, who showed a strength and endurance wonderful 
for their size. 

Also, there were fountains leaping everywhere, great 
cisterns roofed over, many bath houses, and race courses 
with their attendant horses. 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 51 

Stupendous were the pyramids, several of which arose 
on the great plain. With astonishment was it heard that 
these contained the dead. That of the royal family arose 
towards the summit of the sacred mountain, to the west- 
ward of a purling stream. In front of it was the temple 
of Poseidon and Cleito, that now was never opened, its 
sanctity being preserved by an inclosure of gold. They 
were not long in comprehending that here had been the 
home of Poseidon and Cleito, here the birthplace of their 
ten sons. 

But their chief entertainment was found in the great 
hall of the palace and its corridors. This hall ran through 
the center of the rectangle forming the front of the pal- 
ace, and to the court; whilst its corridors ran to the right 
and left, and overlooked the court. Everywhere were the 
walls covered with sculptured slabs of alabaster, twelve 
feet in height, representing events in the history of the 
island. There were recorded battles, sieges, triumphs, 
and exploits of the race course and chase. Even the 
ceremonies of religion were portrayed. Beneath these 
slabs were pictures engraved on copper, also historic. 
Above the slabs were paintings of the different kings and 
queens inclosed in borders of fine designs and brilliant 
coloring. The pavement was of sculptured slabs of mar- 
ble, representing flowers and trees. At every doorway 
were colossal winged lions or bulls, some human faced; 
and all either of alabaster or greenstone. And numerous 
were the columns of orichalcum, engraved, and the 
statues of greenstone. 

Yes, here was entertainment, and almost forgetfulness 
that there were such strange faces, such unknown tongues 
about them. 



52 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Before the month had passed, they were able to take 
up certain duties, as well as to enter upon the study of 
the alphabet and language of Atlantis. Every morning 
they received instruction in the bower room ; and, rather 
strangely, when they had mastered the rudiments of the 
language, the queen took it into her head to study Pelas- 
gian. It was not long before the bower room was a tower 
of Babel on a small scale, as it rang with young voices, 
and even laughter in which the queen had full part. 
Well was it for Atlana that some lightness had entered 
into her days. 

Thus it happened that the queen accused herself when 
her heart leaped at hearing from Atlano that the nobles 
would not permit the captives' return. It had even been 
determined that they must enter upon their initiation into 
the industries of the island at once. In consequence, 
Hellen began to go about the adjacent parts with an 
attendant, in order that he might obtain knowledge of 
agriculture, sheep raising, and metal working. And 
,^Eole quickly became proficient in embroidery, in the 
spinning and weaving of cotton and wool, in flower cul- 
ture, and in poultry raising. Soon, like Queen Atlana, 
she had her own particular flower garden, and her pets 
among all our fowls of to-day with the exception of the 
turkey. Soon, even, she was wearing robes similar in 
fashion to the queen's, of her own weaving and embroid- 
ering. The queen n'ever tired of exclaiming to the king 
at the progress of this youth and maiden. 

But, though busy and outwardly cheerful, Hellen and 
<ole ever longed for Pelasgia. They could not recon- 
cile themselves to this new life, in spite of its charm of 
novelty, its many wonders. When they looked upon the. 



THE PELASGIAN CAPTIVES. 53 

magnificent temples and luxurious palaces, they thought 
of the plain homes of Larissa to sigh, to grow faint. 
Ever were the enchanting gardens fading away before 
their dimming eyes, giving place to the simply cultivated 
fields of Pelasgia, instead. The canals, aqueducts, and 
pyramids were wonders they never could have dreamed 
of, but, oh, for the river, the springs, the modest tombs of 
their home! Pelasgia knew not this perfection of cereals 
and fruits, these great race courses, the mighty elephants, 
the lavish adornments of gold, silver, orichalcum, and 
precious stones. Also, it knew not the lack of .truth and 
honor, the profligacy, the sensuality of these degenerate 
islanders. Thus, the. two, when alone together, could 
talk but of their parents and home, as well as their dread 
of the glitter and falsehood about them. Their only 
balm was the love of the queen. 

The king they feared and disliked. Keen were they 
to perceive the shadow he ever left upon the queen. She, 
it was plain to see, was daily growing sadder. And, about 
the palace it was whispered that the king's profligacies* 
were causing this, as he had steadily progressed in wick- 
edness since his return from Pelasgia. 

Thus these two Pelasgian captives grew to be Atlana's 
comfort, her al'eviation. Indeed, she became bound up 
in them as the weary months went by. 

The first year passed, and no offer of ransom arrived ; 
but Hellen and yEole ceased not to hope. The second 
and third years dragged, and no word had been received. 
Then each confessed a dread that their parents were no 
more. 

When the third year had passed, the nobles often 
hinted of the desirability of another invasion of Pelasgia; 



54 ' POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

but always Atlano advised delay, for his martial spirit 
had weakened under the sloth and indulgence of these 
later years. He lived but for ease and sensuality. 

So, as the time was ripe, he put in operation long- 
devised plans. Hellen and JEole were now to realize 
in the fullest their most forlorn, helpless situation. The 
tears that were but beginning to dry were about to fall 
faster than ever. 



CHAPTER V. 

THE ABDUCTION. 

THE queen, ^Eole, and Hellen had returned from the 
seashore, where they had been watching a swimming 
bout of the young nobles and the crowning of the victor. 
After the glare of the hot sands, they were impatient to 
be in their favorite cool nook of the garden. This was a 
large green plat quite inclosed in sycamores and acacias 
that bordered the side stream to the east. Here, when 
her ladies had served some refreshment and been dis- 
missed, the queen spoke anxiously : 

";ole, Hellen, I read the looks ye cast far over the 
sea. Would ye could forget." 

" Dear Queen Atlana," returned ^Eole, "it is our wish 
not to forget. The lotus is not for us. Most dear art 
thou, as thou knowest. But ever, at sight of the sea, 
cometh this wish to breast it, that we may learn of our 
home. Ah, the drawing! Ah, the pain!" 

"Yea," added Hellen, "when we look upon the sea, 
we can but dash against our bars. This causeth us to go 
so little to the shore. At sight of the luring, mocking 
water that leadeth to Pelasgia, we grow sick of our 
longing." 

"Had I my will, ye should go this day. If the king 
would but heed my prayers." 

(S5) 



56 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

. "Dear Queen, we know how often thou dost beseech 
him for us, and we tremble." 

" Fear not that he would harm me. Too well doth 
he need me." 

She smiled pathetically. Then into her face came 
such a weary expression and succeeding far-away look 
that the two fell to talking in subdued tones of lighter 
matters; and, as they talked, vEole took up her 
embroidery, which Hellen at once began to examine 
and admire. 

While thus engaged with each other, the queen 
aroused from her reverie, and regarded them intently. 

^Eole was looking as the lilies in her white linen robe 
embroidered in blue, which she herself had wrought 
from spinning to completion. Wonderfully fair and per- 
fect was the face, and aglow with intelligence, character, 
sweetness, purity. Of a strange beauty was the gold red 
hair that curled from the low, straight forehead to fall 
long from the pearly fillet; whilst her eyes were dark 
blue stars, and touching the grace of every pose and 
movement of her lovely form. 

As she gazed, the queen agonized, for perils were 
threatening this innocent one; and she wondered if Hel- 
len had any inkling of these, any suspicions. He was so 
handsome, fiery, generous, brave. It was not in him to 
brook scorn or insult. Besides, how well did the two 
love each other! What one would suffer in the other! 

The queen again closed her eyes to lose herself in sor- 
rowing over them, but not for long. Soon footsteps 
were heard beyond the trees. She aroused to speak the 
dread words : 

"The king." 



THE ABDUCTION. 5/ 

JEole also half arose, with the wild intent to run 
away. Then, regaining self-possession, sat again ; though, 
when the king appeared she was trembling and paling 
so as to alarm Hellen. "Strange," he thought, "this 
dread of yole for the king. She know.eth liking for all 
save him." 

To the homesick yole, this presence of the king was 
doubly unbearable. She wished Hellen had not been 
there, that she might have slipped away. The queen, 
who comprehended her feeling, could only motion to. 
Atlano to sit beside herself, the while murmuring: 

" We have been to the sands." 

" I saw you as ye drove back. Thou goest there but 
little, jEole." 

She bowed in affirmation. 

"Thou likest not the water? " 

" King Atlano, I like the water, but it causeth me the 
more to think of my home." 

" It is time thou didst forget thy home, ^Eole. Hellen, 
thou hast no such longing?" 

" King Atlano,, my sister and myself feel the same. 
At sight of the sea we sicken for our home." 

The king frowned. 

" How old art thou, Hellen?" 

" King Atlano, I am nineteen." 

"Thou art of age to be a warrior. Wouldst thou be 
a captain ? " 

" I would be a warrior like my father. I care not to 
war for the sake of it, but I would joy to war if it was 
to save my land, my home." 

The queen glanced at him in reproof. His honesty 
and fearlessness she was ever dreading. The king glared 
for a moment, then, smiling, inquired: 



58 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 



, how old art thou ? " 

"King Atlano, I am sixteen." 

"Thou art of age to be a handmaid. yEole, wouldst 
thou be a handmaid in the great temple? " 

The queen checked a cry of dismay, and became so 
white that Hellen, in his fear, moved nearer her. 

^Eole, also, was alarmed, though, after taking the 
queen's hand, she spoke out with a fine bravery: 

" King Atlano, I would not be a handmaid. I would 
stay with Queen Atlana while I am here." 

"While thou art here? Hast thy stay a limit?" 

" I fear it hath not a limit. But I am happy if I stay 
with Queen Atlana. She holdeth the next place to my 
parents and Hellen." 

And she looked at the queen with most loving eyes. 

Upon the king's face came an expression that only 
Atlana beheld. Her head whirled, and she fell back 
upon her chair as if about to swoon. Hellen was quick 
to raise her, while ^Eole flew for some water that 
chanced to be upon the rustic table. The two then 
bathed her brow and chafed her hands as they begged 
her to revive. 

Atlano watched, unimpressed. When Atlana had sat 
up with an arm of each faithful one about her, he said 
sarcastically : 

"Well didst thou manage, Atlana." 

The three stared at him, confounded. 

He continued: "Thinkest thou any good can come of 
this acting? Of a truth, if I cause thee such trouble, it 
would be well to stay from thee ever." 

"Atlano, talk not thus!" 

" I go now." And he arose. " But I have to tell thee 
that /Eole and Hellen will leave thee." 



THE ABDUCTION. i>9 

She also arose. "Hellen and ^Eole will leave me? 
Thou wouldst jest ! " 

"Another handmaid is needed in the temple. ^Eole 
hath been called. A messenger is wanted between the 
temple and this place. Hellen is chosen." 

A dread faintness came upon the queen. But she 
urged : 

"yole will die if she leaveth me. Spare her to me. 
Thou knowest my fond feeling." 

"^Eole will go, on the morrow, to the temple." 

"Atlano, call to mind that thou gavest me these chil- 
dren." 

He laughed derisively. "I gave but to take away." 

"Atlano, have mercy. The temple is no place for 
^Eole for any maiden any woman." 

"Beware," he vociferated, in warning tone. "Thou 
ravest. Have a care. Thou wouldst mock." 

"Mock!" Such meaning was in -her look that his 
lips paled. "Mock! Thou dost use that word, and to 
me." 

"Atlana, cease, or thou wilt have sorrow." 

"Sorrow! What sorrow is like to this, to take yole 
from me. Say thou wilt not." 

"Oltis is firm. ^Eole will serve in the temple. Hellen 
will be the messenger." And he turned as if to avoid 
further insistence. 

She seized his hand, and implored, " What shall I say 
do that thou wilt hear ? " 

"Thou canst say naught. I leave thee to think upon 
it." 

With this, he roughly withdrew his hand, and turning, 
strode away. 



60 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Most direful was this shadow. As nothing were the 
longings, the homesickness. ^Eole became so wrought 
with terror, that Atlana set aside her own woe in order 
to comfort. As for Hellen, he paced as if beside himself 
for a little. Then paused before the queen, declaring: 

"^Eole shall not go to that temple. May her life 
cease ere then. Thinkest thou, dear Queen, that I have 
no eyes, no ears? " 

"Hellen, what knowest thou ? " 

"I know that for all its fair outward look evil 
worketh within. The gods are thought of only in form. 
Those priests would be gods, would rise in their flesh to 
heaven. Have I not heard the whisperings of the people 
as to the noise and mirth of the inner parts ? Is not Oltis 
without truth, full of guile ? Is not the worship mocked ? 
Are not the animals yielded on the altar, yea, the serving 
of handmaids, mockeries of the olden holy laws ? Hand- 
maids, in truth ! " 

Of his agony, he paused. 

" Hellen, what more knowest thou ? " 

"What more? Is not this enough? What more 
knowest thou?" 

There was no reply. But yole spoke feebly : 

" Hellen, may I die rather than go there. To be near 
the king and those priests!" Her shuddering was so 
excessive that Hellen was obliged to support her, while 
he implored : 

"yole, be brave. There will be a way out of this." 

"She hath not gone. I have a voice." The queen 
dreyv ^Eole to her, and whilst caressing her, and looking 
upon her in her grace and innocence, thought: 

"Ah, ^Eole, I could hate thee, but that thou art so 



THE ABDUCTION. 6 1 

dear! If I could die in my shame. If we could both 
die. And once I was happy, in the young days of my 
fond trust. How ages far they seem. It is that I have 
lived before. Is this Atlano ? " 

She fell to weeping in a quiet, hopeless way, so that 
Hellen and ^Eole, in their turn, essayed what comfort 
they could. Thus passed the weary day. 

The next morning, Maron was announced with a 
message from the king. ^Eole was bidden to leave the 
palace at noon. As the queen had been expecting this, 
she was ready. 

"Maron, bear to the king my word that yole shall 
not leave me. I ask that he will no more of it." 

Maron withdrew. 

In an hour, appeared two officials of the temple, bear- 
ing a written order from the high priest. The queen 
dismissed them with a message that the king would come 
to her. But answer was immediately returned that the 
king was engaged, and that Oltis' order'must be obeyed, 
as it was given of the gods. 

To the officials, Queen Atlana merely said : 

" Bear the word to the high priest that I will not 
yield in this." 

The officials departed. 

Shortly they returned with two others, and presented 
an order for dole's immediate presence signed by At- 
lano and Oltis. The queen's answer was: 

" Ye will bear to the king and high priest my word 
that -^Eole shall not go." 

"But, gracious Queen," demurred Ludor, the spokes- 
man, "this is to please Amen." 

"Who sayeth it is to please Amen?" 



62 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" The high priest told me thus after his most gracious 
self, the king." 

" I believe it not." 

The four drew back in dismay. How dared she to dis- 
pute king and high priest. It was sacrilege. Never had 
such been known. 

Courteously waving them off, she added: 

"Go to them with my words." 

Notwithstanding their orders to use force, if necessary, 
they withdrew in reverence, for the queen's majesty and 
fearlessness were most impressive as well as provocative 
of sympathy. 

Upon the appearance of the unsuccessful four, the furi- 
ous king hastened to the palace; and burst into the bower 
room to meet only the lady Rica, who informed him 
that the queen was in the room adjoining. He entered 
this to find Atlana leaning over JEole, whom she was 
vainly trying to comfort. Drawing back, he beckoned 
to her to follow him to an unoccupied apartment to one 
side. 

When she had obeyed, and they could not be heard, 
he vociferated : 

"Thou darest to set me at naught?" 

"It is not Amen, nor Poseidon, then." Atlana was 
grand in her brave dignity. 

He looked at her sidelong, and said more smoothly: 

" I am but their worker." 

"I have said that I believe it not." 

He seized her hands, and even shook her as he hissed: 

"Thou wouldst set thyself against me, then. Dost 
thou forget I am the king? That I can do with thee as 
I will?" 



THE ABDUCTION. 63 

"Shake me to death, if thou wilt. Yield me upon 
thine altar, even. But thy sorrow and pain will follow." 

He laughed mockingly. 

" Thou dost forget the prophecy of thy father on his 
bed of death, ' With Atlana at the palace no evil befalleth 
Atlano'?" 

He drew his breath hard, and averted his eyes before 
her steady look. With assumed indifference, he replied : 

"It was but the babble of age." 

"Then am I free to visit Khemi to visit the kindred 
of my mother." 

"Never, Atlana! Thou hast sworn to- me ever to stay 
at this palace unless I grant thee leave." 

"Thou believest that prophecy. Thou canst never 
harm me." 

"Atlana, I wish thee no evil, but thou hast to obey me. 
Thou hast to yield in this going of ^Eole." 

"^Eole shall not go." 

He leaned toward her, and whispered: 

"Wouldst thou see her yielded on the altar? The 
priests will have her either as gift or handmaid. We 
have to please Amen that he may favor us." 

The queen cried out in horror. It was too true that 
human blood had defiled the altar. Shortly before the 
invasion of Pelasgia, Oltis, then chief priest of the temple, 
had offered as sacrifice, within the inner sanctuary, an 
African captive a king at behest of Atlano, who desired 
vengeance because of the latter's refusal to reveal where 
certain treasure of his massacred tribe was hidden. 
Worse, the excuse for this great profanation had been 
that Amen and Poseidon needed propitiation, All this 
Atlano had confided to his wife. 




64 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The queen, of her horror, spoke not for a little. Then 
she towered almost to his height, as she cried: 

" Tell me not that Amen and Poseidon are as men ! 
Ye would make them as such as frail, as wicked in 
that they give favor for favor ! Mock them no further. 
Make them no longer gods to suit your weak minds, your 
base thoughts! They are gods gods above such fee- 
ble doings of the flesh. Have done with this shield that 
they must be vilely served to give favor, and all the other 
shields! 

Atlano was confounded. 

" Yea, and the curse is already upon thee for that 
dread mockery. The blood of that poor king is a 
blight upon this island, a mildew; and thou wouldst add 
another, further mock the gods. If thou hast heed for 
their favor, hast thou no thought for their anger ? Hast 
thou no faint, deep feeling that evil broodeth over this 
island ? Hadst thou my dreams ! Night after night they 
come." 

" Atlana, thou art getting an old woman." 

His tone was contemptuous, but his eyes had lost their 
boldness. 

"More than that. I am ages old. Each night of 
brooding care hath been as years." 

"What care canst thou have known?" 

Was he in earnest, or did he speak thus to hide even 
from himself knowledge that she had suffered, and through 
him? Atlana could not tell, but she would not upbraid. 
Such had never been her fashion. Though better might 
it have been if Atlano could have seen himself, as in a 
glass, through her wifely chidings at times. 

He continued in a tone strangely conciliatory; 



THE ABDUCTION. 65 

"Thou art not well. New air will help thee. Too 
long hast thou staid here in this palace. What thinkest 
thou of a short stay on the western coast where the 
breezes most have power say Chimo ? There the new 
pyramid riseth high. Wilt thou go ? " 

"With thee, yea." 

"But I have not time to go. In a few days is the fes- 
tival of our Father Poseidon." 

"I may take yEole?" 

"^Eole will leave for the temple now. It is time her 
bearers were here." 

"Thou meanest she will go by force?" 

"If it needeth." 

" It is only over my dead body she will go ! " And 
Atlana, spurred by her terror, fairly ran back to the 
retiring room. 

But close upon her was Atlano, as she leaned over the 
shrinking girl. Then, as they faced each other defiantly, 
the king gave a low call to which came the answering of 
many soft footsteps. 

The dazed queen next heard Rica shriek, and fall as 
in a swoon. Then the hangings were thrust aside, and 
there hastened in several of the guards of the great court 
of the temple. At this outrage, the brave spirit might 
well have succumbed ; but instead, she threw herself upon 
ALole and held her tight. 

Severe was the struggle between husband and wife; 
but Atlana held on with that strength that comes of des- 
peration, until the king produced a taper, which one of 
the guards lighted, and held to her nostrils. Then the 
dauntless lady fell back into the arms that should have 
been her stay, her shield, senseless; and was placed on a 
couch, there to lie as if in deep slumber. 
' 



66 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

ALole, who had fainted, was borne on a chair to the 
courtyard, where a closed chariot was awaiting her; 
whilst the mystified attendants looked on, and listened 
to the plausible explanations of her bearers. 

Atlano remained with his wife until the day waned. 
And none knew the secret of the queen's yielding. 



CHAPTER VI. 

THE VOICE. 

DREAR was the night to Hellen, given over as it was 
to agony. He was torn with futile promptings; but, 
toward morning, came slight alleviation, as soon he 
would be with ^ole. Scarce, though, had he arisen 
from his almost untouched meal, than Maron appeared 
with an order from the king. He was to go at once to 
the harbor with a message for the chief priest of the tem- 
ple of Ouranos, and await answer. 

" Maron, it meaneth that the king would be rid of me. 
I will not go." 

No pity stirred within ihe huge swarthy Maron because 
of this youth's drawn face, his passionate, desperate out- 
cry. With grim smile, he replied : 

"Thou wilt speed. The king is in haste. Come." 
" I would first bid ALole good-morning." 
" Linger not, for the galley waiteth. Come come." 
The despairing youth complied ; and, as he went, Maron 
further enforced the king's order. Though deaf was 
Hellen. Wild, murderous thoughts were chasing through 
his brain. He felt he could have strangled this pitiless 
man beside him with delight, and thus whetted have 
rushed upon the king. Hard hard was it to forbear. 
Upon arriving at "the galley, Maron was obliged almost 

(67) 



68 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

to drag him on board; when at once it shot off Maron 
remaining to watch until it was out of sight 

As Hellen sailed, torture the more possessed him. 
Three times was he on the point of bidding the rowers 
return. When over half way, his anguish conquered; 
and he gave the order, the men obeying, dissatisfied, as 
they were hoping to join some cronies at the port. 

Tardily the glum rowers retraced the way. Mean- 
while, Hellen's fears so lightened that they almost ceased 
to exist as the palace carne into view ; and, as he as- 
cended the steps of the landing place, he laughed at him- 
self, so much did the vicinage of yEole encourage him. 

He hastened to the courtyard, and was about to enter 
when obliged to give way to a closed chariot that was 
being driven therefrom. 

But, following this chariot, rode some guards of the 
temple. As they dashed past, Hellen became rigid for 
the moment. Now were his fears confirmed. That 
chariot contained ^Eole. She was being borne to the 
temple was lost unless he could tear her from her cap- 
tors. 

His inanity vanished. Madly he flew through the 
palace grounds; and eschewing the grand roadway, made 
a short cut up to the gateway of the outer court of the 
great temple. 

Here he paused to gather breath and strength, until 
he heard the chariot approaching. Then he stepped just 
within the gateway, and waited, indifferent to the curious 
looks of the few loitering guards. 

The chariot came through the gateway slowly. When 
abreast of him, he sprang on its step, thrust aside the 
curtains, and beheld his sister unconscious. In a second 



THE VOICE. 69 

he was beside her, and drawing her into his arms. Then 
in defiance, he eyed the clustering guards, who were 
seizing him as they bade him come out. And, with a 
madman's strength, shook- them off, to hold his sister 
the firmer. 

The guards, exclaiming in fierce tones, began to pull 
him as if to pieces. Still he held on, the while looking 
for some weapon with which to end their sufferings. 
Death must come to them. It was their only saviour. 

Suddenly, a priest appeared beside the contestants. 
It was Partlan, a creature of Oltis. As he looked within 
the chariot, and perceived Hellen struggling, this priest 
grinned much as. a hyena does when assured of its prey; 
and then felt for something within his vestment. 

With a sign to the guards to relinquish their hold, he 
drew forth a tube much like a siphon. As the luckless 
Hellen was wondering that he should thus have been 
let alone, Partlan began to play upon him a spray that 
caused him to sink back benumbed, though still main- 
taining hold of his sister. 

Then Partlan gave the word, and the chariot went on 
through the cou/t to a side portico of the temple exten- 
sion. Here ^Eole was taken from Hellen's arms, and 
given over to several handmaids. ' And Hellen, who had 
partially retained consciousness, swooned. 

When Hellen revived, he found himself lying upon a 
couch in a room through whose one aperture the sunset 
light was streaming. He raised to look about him; and, 
at once, his eyes fastened upon a high grating at the 
farthest end. Upon hearing a clicking behind him, he 
turned, but saw nothing. Again he looked toward the 
grating, to become horrified at perceiving behind it a 
tall, imposing, red-garbed, masked figure. Stonily, Hellen 



7O POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

returned the gaze of this worse than specter, his dread 
augmenting because of the dizziness overcoming him. 
It was something of relief when the figure, in lowest tone, 
spoke . 

''Youth, thou art to bend, to obey. Wouldst thou 
bring evil upon thy sister and thyself? Is it thy will to 
see thy sister upon the altar ? The high priest hath said 
she will be gift, or handmaid." 

" Better the gift upon the altar," spoke Hellen as he 
strove to overcome his weakness, and arise. 

"Shouldst thou no longer chafe, thy sister will but be 
a handmaid. This I promise thee." 

"Who art thou that art so able to promise?" 

"Thou hast heard of the 'Silent Priest'?" 

"I have, and I have seen him." 

" I speak for him." 

" Then he hath brought this upon us. And thou art 
his base helper, his tool ! " 

With regained strength, Hellen leaped from the 
couch, and darted toward the grating, his hands out- 
stretched, menacing. 

But, as he reached it, he was overborne by a sweet, 
subtle force. A tenderness exquisite pervaded him, so 
that his threatening hands fell limp, and he stood motion- 
less, eagerly gazing. 

"My son," pathetic, persuasive were the tones, "if 
thou wilt but wait, a way will open for thee and thy sis- 
ter out of this bondage. This is but the step toward 
thy home. Dost thou not feel that I speak truth ? " 

"I do, I do." Hellen was mastered. 

"Then chafe no longer, but wait for the light." 

"I will." 



THE VOICE. 71 

The fi^urj then looked over, and beyond Hellen, and 
said with authority : 

"Lead this youth to the chief priest." 

Hellen turned sharply to behold close behind him a 
weird, unnatural shape, closely habited in dust color. 
How had it come almost within touch without noise or 
rustle? And how of a serpent did it remind him as it 
stood tall, slender, vibrating, and observing him with 
brilliant, piercing eyes. 

The red-garbed figure waved his hand in farewell to 
Hellen, saying : 

"Follow him." 

Hellen, as if charmed, went after the noiseless, gliding, 
quivering shape, through an opening door, and down a 
wide passage to a great apartment to the north of the 
temple proper. This was the gathering room of the 
priests, and several of these stood about the door. 

When fairly within this apartment, Hellen's listlessness 
fled. He had caught sight of ^Eole at the farther end. 
She was standing before the chief priest Urgis, who was 
seated at a table; and by her side, and half supporting 
her, was a maiden apparently as young as herself. 

In his eagerness, Hellen hurried past his dust-colored 
guide, and paused almost beside ALo\e. With strange 
intensity, he took in her grace, and the subtle charm of 
expression pervading face, hands, and limbs, each as 
potent as her magnetic glance. yEole's soul fascinated 
in repose, in activity in turn of the head, curves of the 
limbs, shaping of foot, movement of hands, in voice, 
smile, buoyancy of tread. It was as though the material 
body gladly served as glass the most transparent to dis- 
close the spiritual body within, in all its purity, beauty, 
and perfectness of organization. 



72 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

But, as Hellen gazed and wondered, he became aware 
of the power of a pair of eyes of rare beauty and intelli- 
gence. These were set in the head of the maiden sup- 
porting ALole, and so magnetic were they that his care- 
less look became fixed, whereat she blushed, and turned 
the eyes away. He was quick to observe that hers was 
a type of feature not purely Atlantean, a type similar to 
Queen Atlana's in its large brown eyes, rich olive com- 
plexion, and fine, dark, waving hair. Who was this 
bright, beautiful, imperial young creature? To his sur- 
prise, conjectures about her began to rival his anxiety 
for ALole; though not for long. For Priest Urgis, with, 
due solemnity, was addressing the newcomers . 

" Maidens, we of the temple greet thee. And hearken 
ye well, Electra of Khemi, ^Eole of Pelasgia, and to this : 
It is the will of the gods that, from this day, the great 
temple holdeth you. For this honor, cease not to give 
thanks. For this high place, call forth thy powers." 

"But, Cousin Urgis!" remonstrated Electra, proudly, 
and to the amaze of the gathering priests. Never before 
had incipient handmaid lifted her voice thus. 

"Hush, daughter," interrupted Urgis, his unctuous, 
hypocritical tone vanishing. "Not here canst thou 
speak unless bidden. Thou art to hearken, and to this. " 

Electra turned from him with such royal indifference 
as to amaze the beholders the more. But Urgis, unheed- 
ing, continued: 

"Thou, Electra of Khemi, daughter of the princes of 
Atlantis and Khemi, and owner of many arts gained in 
the palace of the high priest, art deemed most worthy 
this honor. Much have we heard of thy fond care of the 
mother passed away, and of the high, bright powers of 



THE VOICE. 73 

thy mind. Thus hath it been thought fitting to call thee 
to the service of our Father Poseidon. Then greeting 
to thee, Princess Electra, and worthy Cousin." 

At this mention of her mother, the tears came into 
Electra's eyes, and, in spite of herself, dashed down upon 
her robe. But her spirit being brave, she was endeavor- 
ing to compose herself to answer, when Urgis continued: 

"And thou, ^Eole of Pelasgia, hast been so long with 
our gracious queen that we know thou wilt do well in 
all that will be asked of thee. Much have we heard of 
thy gentle ways, thy warm heart, thy quick mind, thy 
zeal gifts of value in a handmaid. Then greeting to 
thee, yEole of Pelasgia." 

Profound was the quiet when Urgis ceased. Indeed, 
all were waiting for speech of Electra, whose tears were 
drying. After pausing in impressive manner for a few 
seconds, Urgis concluded: 

"Sensel, it is for thee to lead these handmaids to their 
rooms. There let them be served with food. In the 
morning will their duties begin." 

Then spoke Electra in low, sweet tones that thrilled. 

" Priest, Cousin Urgis, to thy words of greeting I 
hearken not. Happy was I in the palace of my Uncle 
Oltis. Why force me hither? Why tear me from my 
duties, the dear presence of my cousins ? And I am a 
princess of Khemi and Atlantis." Haughtily she regarded 
him. "It is not a high place. No princess hath ever 
served in a temple. Cousin Urgis, be just have 
mercy." 

"Electra of Khemi, it cometh of more light In the 
coming time, princesses, like those of less place, may 
look to be called as handmaids." 

"By what right, Cousin Urgis?" 



74 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"To the High Priest it hath been given of the gods." 

"Oltis given of the gods!" 

The contempt of her tone astounded even Urgis. 

"Tell Oltis that I believe it not. Tell him I will not 
yield. Tell him I will lift rhy voice until I arouse this 
sluggish Atlantis!" 

Hellen's heart beat wildly. What strength was hers 
thus to speak. Besides, how rich and soft was her 
voice with all its agitation. How exalted her look! 

She resumed more calmly, and in most loving tone: 

" Now, Cousin Urgis, I will withdraw to the palace, 
and take with rue this maiden." And she looked at ALole 
reassuringly. 

"Never! Here wilt thou stay. And speak not again, 
else worse will come upon thee." 

She took ./Sole's hand, and whispered: "Speak for 
thyself." 

yole glanced upward at the frowning Urgis. The 
look was of such effect that he said gently : 

" Is it thy will to speak, ^Eole of Pelasgia?" 

To Hellen's astonishment, she implored, in tones 
almost as firm as Electra's: 

" Priest Urgis with Electra I ask, Why force me 
hither ? For I, too, was happy quite happy with Queen 
Atlana. Further, I have a brother; from him part me 
not. For we are strangers, captives and sorrow much 
for Pelasgia. Yet are we ever able to cheer each other. 
I need him ; he needeth me. Priest Urgis, I beseech thee, 
let me go to my brother ! " 

So heartrending was her tone that Hellen could 
endure no further. Thus he cried : 

" But here is thy brother, ALole thy brother who 
hath not power to save thee!" 



THE VOICE, 75 

He extended his arms as she turned, bewildered. 
Upon perceiving his suffering expression, she uttered a 
cry that brought more tears to Electra's eyes, and sprang 
to embrace him. 

Priest Urgis, enraged, arose, and ordered the pair to 
separate. At the same moment King Atlano entered. 
There was a falling back, a dread hush, as the king's 
eyes fastened upon the pathetic tableau. Scowling, 
until his face grew black, he advanced menacingly 
toward the unhappy brother and sister. 

But he was impeded. Someone had caught at his 
robe. He turned to perceive it was Electra. 

"King Atlano, in the name of our Father Poseidon, I 
ask that ^Eole and myself may go from this place." 

"Electra, ask naught in the name of Poseidon that is 
not his will. By his wish thou art here. Thou hast 
but to obey." 

"Never hath a princess been pressed into the temple. 
I shall call to the queen, to the rulers." 

"Thinkest thou any call of thine will reach them? 
Thou wilt be too well watched. It is the will of thine 
uncle thou art here; therefore, yield to it." 

" Thou saidst it was by wish of Poseidon a moment 
since." 

It might be truly said that the listeners held their 
breaths. Even Atlano's was suspended for some sec- 
onds. 

" Electra, the wish of Poseidon is the will of thine 
uncle." 

"Thou answerest with cunning; but tell me, is Oltis 
ever thus ready to obey the higher powers? Is not 
this a strange humility? Is there naught behind?" 



76 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Here a thought presented itself. " I believe not that the 
higher powers are in this. It is further false speech 
another shield for the working of evil by Oltis. And I 
know his will, his wish. He hath an eye for my riches." 

Atlano was confounded, but only for the moment. 
He made the movement as if to withdraw from her 
detaining hand. But she held on firmly, and continued: 

" Yea, his will, his wish, is my riches. Bear to him 
the word to take all, if he will but leave me free. I speak 
for ^ole, likewise." 

The king at this was more than confounded. His 
face paled, then flushed, and the words would not come. 
After a terrifying pause, he said in a tone subdued, con- 
ciliatory: 

" Electra, another word, and thou wilt know sorrow. 
Mock not the will of Poseidon." 

She relinquished her hold on his robe, and fell on her 
knees to implore: 

"O Poseidon, our father, our god, I ask this of thee: 
Is it thy will that I am here that these wishes of , king 
and priests shall have weight? Grant some sign, either 
of yea or nay. Is it thy will, or is it not thy will?" 

Stricken with awe, king and priests listened to this 
first, bold appeal to Poseidon that had ever been made 
within the temple by aught save the initiated. And a 
fearful quiet succeeded. Unconsciously, each was expect- 
ing an answer. And it came. Far up, near the top of 
the high vaulted ceiling, a low, soft voice dropped the 
words : 

"It is not." 

They stared dumbly upward, awaiting more. In a 
few seconds, was added: 

"But out of this will good work." 



THE VOICE. 77 

The three unhappy ones took in a little hope. The 
priests appeared less terrified. Atlano, recovering, looked 
about in triumph, before deriding: 

"That was a weak voice for a god. I thought the 
gods thundered when they spoke to men. Electrv 
wilt thou try again ? " 

Electra shuddered. She felt it was blasphemy. 

Atlano subjoined, "It is time to end this. Where is 
Sensel?" 

From the door glided in the dust-colored shape. 

"Sensel, lead these handmaids to their rooms." 

"King Atlano I" gaculated Hellen. 

" Ha Hellen ! What wouldst thou ? Pardon for thy 
wrongdoing of this morning?" 

"Nay. Do with me for that as thou wilt, but tear not 
JEole from me." 

" It is ordered that ye shall part, not to meet." 

"Mercy!" besought poor Hellen, looking upward. 

Upon them was again falling the voice, and firmer, 
louder : 

"It is not ordered that the brother and sister shall 
thus part. With every sun, will they meet." 

Appalling was the hush. In spite of himself, the 
king showed a mighty fear. He looked stealthily about 
him to see every face blanched. Indeed, their hearts 
felt blanched. UpwarcJ they gazed in voiceless horror, 
each as if intent upon finding some crevice, or flaw in the 
ceiling, that might explain the mysterious tones. But 
this was a stone ceiling, well cemented. Vain could be 
the most searching glances. Besides, the twilight was 
creeping on. 

Protracted was the silence, until the king said, as if 
against his will : 



78 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Hellen, it may be that thyself and yole can meet 
each day. I shall speak with the high priest." 

" King Atlano, wilt thou grant us Electra?" 

A glad light came into. Electra's eyes. This Atlano 
perceived. 

" Hellen, thou askest too much. Electra cannot join 
you." 

"Electra will join the brother and sister." 

The voice was now faint, and far away. It seemed as 
if it came rather from above than beneath the ceiling. 
Some of the priests were so overcome as to fall on^their 
knees abjectly. With uncertain voice, Atlano called to 
Sensel, who had again retired to the doorway: 

"Sensel, lead these new handmaids to their building, 
and let them be served with food. In the morning, will 
their duties begin." 

With one dread look at Hellen, yEole turned to com- 
ply. But Hellen seized and embraced her, and held 
tight Electra's proffered hand. Thus they stood, until 
Sensel said, softly 

"Come." 

Then yEole drew away from her brother's arms, 
walking as if faint. Electra, with a proud air, went 
after her, and took her hand. 

When they had passed but, the king said to the dazed 
Hellen: 

"For thee, thou wilt go to the palace. In the morn- 
ing, come hither for thy duty. But think not, I shall 
forget thy wrongdoing. Go!" 

Hellen, following an attendant, tottered out. 



CHAPTER VII. 

THE TEMPLE. 

and Electra followed the quivering Sensel into 
the passage, thence .to its end, and through a door lead- 
ing into a court about which was ranged the building 
allotted to the handmaids. 

In this building, they ate and slept. As to recreation, 
there was time for none, rest being their one desire when 
relieved from duty; and thus there was no comradeship 
among them. They were virtually as cut off from each 
other as from their friends without. 

Sensel conducted the newcomers to rooms that ad- 
joined, and received their most grateful looks, though 
he shook his head as if to disclaim thanks. As he was 
about to leave them, he said: 

"In a little while, will I send you food and drink." 

They thanked him, this time in words; and looked 
after him until he had disappeared, when Electra whis- 
pered : 

"Didst thou note his kind voice, the gentle look of 
those shining eyes? I believe him to be good for all." 

"Electra, I like him; I am sure he is good." 

"Ah, thou art growing as the rose over it!" 

" Let us look at our rooms, Electra." 

These, they found, were g-ood sized and well lighted. 

(79) 



So 

Rugs covered the smooth floors, and soft were the 
couches, easy the chairs. Besides, there was a table for 
each. The apertures had hangings of white linen, full 
and long, and an air of neatness prevailed. 

^Eole sighed, but said: 

" We shall have some cheer, Electra." 

" It is fair for a prison, ^Eole." 

yEole stepped to her aperture to look out. Then 
she went into Electra's room, and inspected her view. 
When this was done, she said, with effort: 

" Electra, wilt thou change rooms with me?" 

"Yea. But why?" 

" From my room I can see the water; the sight caus- 
eth pain. Thou knowest it leadeth to my home." 

Her voice failed. 

"Thou dear, sorrowing yEole!" 

Electra took her in her arms and held her tight, and 
kissed her again and again. 

" I am glad that my room will do that those great 
trees hide that mocking water. Thou poor dear!" 

" Electra, thou givest cheer. I should not grieve 
with thee to brighten." 

Fondly she returned the embrace and kisses. Tears 
were springing in both pairs of eyes when a low tap was 
heard at the door. 

Electra answered to admit Sensel. He, himself, was 
bearing the food and drink thin cakes made of corn 
and honey, pomegranates, melons, and a sherbet of al- 
monds and honey. 

As he set these upon the table., he apologized : 

" It was not my will to let another bear them." 

"It pleaseth us; doth it not, Electra?" 



THE TEMPLE. 8 1 

"Of a truth it pleaseth. Sensel, I own I am hungry 
in spite of this prison." It was good to see her smile. 

^Eole smiled back, as she said: 

"One cannot stay in the depths where thou art, Elec- 
tra. It giveth a fine hunger to look at thee." 

Sensel laughed charmingly, then bowing low, retired. 
At once they sat down, and with all their woe, did jus- 
tice to the dainty fare. 

When Sensel returned, they were sitting side by side, 
deep in conversation. He said : 

" Ye see I come again. Have ye ended? " 

Each smiled her yes and such smiles! A dotard's 
head would have been turned. No wonder was it that 
his own smile answered, that his olive skin grew rosy, 
that his beautiful eyes became even more brilliant, that 
his tall body undulated with a grace surprising, that he 
almost forgot what he had come for. However, Electra's 
words somewhat restored him. She said, with feeling: 

"Sensel, well hast thou treated us. Thou hast 
brought us what we like. Our thanks are thine." 

He laughed so that they laughed to hear him; after- 
ward, he looked at ^Eole, his color rising. Thus she 
said with fine graciousness: 

" Sensel, our rest this night will be calmer that thou 
hast served us." And with this began to blush as Psyche 
might because of his gallant bow. 

After the like attention to Electra, he thought of his 
dishes, and withdrew with the air of a prince, 

" He is a wonder," ejaculated Electra. 

"Yea; and one it will be hard to get over. Was 
there ever such grace as his in the bowing?" 

" Never! His serpqnt self knoweth how to do things," 
6 



82 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Then, fearing -he might have heard this, Electra arose, 
and looked out with due caution. She returned, whis- 
pering: 

" He standeth in deep thought at the end of the pas- 
sage, and without the dishes or food. He hath passed 
his burden to some other. I have it! He would know 
more of us." 

" Well is it, for we would know more of him." And 
yole arose to peer out. "He hath gone," next came 
regretfully. "We shall not look upon him further this 
day." 

They resumed their seats, again to confide their fears, 
or to remain quiet and muse. Upon parting for the 
night, they wept in each other's arms. 

But they were young. Thus sleep wooed them from 
their sorrow, and they aroused only when the gong had 
sounded long in the morning. When Sensel came to 
conduct them to breakfast, they looked refreshed; and, if 
it must be told, sped rather .buoyantly to the eating 
room. 

Here they found about twenty of the handmaids. 
These were walking up and down, awaiting the serving 
of the meal. All were pretty and graceful. Indeed, a 
few were beautiful. Their complexions varied from olive 
to red, their eyes were either gray, brown, or black; and 
the hair ranged from light brown to jet black. Thus, 
all looked curiously at ^Eole ' because of her auburn 
hair, blue eyes, and fair skin. 

Witnout exception, their expressions were sweet and 
intelligent; and they responded with warmth when intro- 
duced to the newcomers. After a short talk, all sat 
down to the simple meal of pease, milk, bread, and fruit 



THE TEMPLE. 83 

Sensel, meanwhile, leaving them, until the meal should 
be ended. 

When he returned, it was to bid the new handmaids 
follow him. This they did, passing from the eating 
room into the court, and thence to the passage they had 
been in the night before. Through its length they went, 
and paused at a great arched door at the end. Then 
Electra whispered: 

"^Eole, look within." 

This door opened into the temple proper* Thus JEole, 
who had never attended the services because the queen 
did not, exclaimed of her exceeding wonder and admira- 
tion. For this is what she saw: 

A great circular space, marble paved, and inclosed by 
walls and ceiling resplendent in settings of gold, silver, 
and orichalcum; at the eastern end, a richly engraved 
golden altar on which the sacred fire blazed high, and 
above which the morning light streamed in through a wide 
aperture ; a row of handmaids and one priest standing by 
who had been in attendance the night through ; flowers, 
flowers everywhere, on altar, statues, in niches, and the 
apertures ; numbers of lamps of silver and gold pendent 
from the ceiling by silver chains or supported by alabas- 
ter stands each lamp simulating a bird or flower, and all 
having a handle at one end and a beak at the other for 
pouring in oil, while through their upper surfaces pro- 
jected wicks from the reservoirs below; great stands of 
alabaster bearing golden vessels in which smoked the in- 
cense ; and, wonder of wonders, the many golden statues! 

After entering, Sensel led them among these golden 
statues these representatives of Poseidon, Cleito, and 
the Nereids. Poseidon in his chariot, and with head 



84 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

reaching to the roof, was a piece of work so stupendous 
that ^Eole gazed bewildered, awed, until Sensel merci- 
fully set her to counting the Nereids disporting about 
him on their dolphins. 

But this was like making way through a labyrinth to 
the dazed ^Eole; and she found no rest until her eyes 
lighted on the beauteous Cleito, who was standing in her 
sweet serenity beside Poseidon. With a happy cry, she 
darted toward the entrancing figure, put her arms about 
it, and looked up with love into the tender face. 

" Electra, thus looked my mother. It is herself in 
gold. My mother my mother!" 

"She was the wife of Poseidon. It is Cleito. Hast 
thou not heard the story? How, in the ages past, Posei- 
don came unto this island to find it a wilderness with her 
for its one fair flower? How he wedded her, and made 
of this a heaven almost? How ten sons were born to 
them in the palace which is now the temple above? 
How, when she died, he could no longer be king for 
grief? How he placed the crown upon his eldest, Atlas? 
How, after fond last words, he speeded away nevermore 
to be seen of the islanders, whose heavy hearts at last 
found cheer in the thought that their father was a god, 
and had gone back to his heaven from there to watch 
over and guide them?" 

"I have heard it all from Queen Atlana. How dear is 
the story. Ah, Electra, if she were like this, what have 
we to fear?" 

The tears were in Electra's eyes. And. Sensel's, could 
it be that his were moist? Eager were his low tones. 

"Fear not, JEole. The spirit of Cleito may not be 
able to aid thee, but the gods have other workers." 



THE TEMPLE. #5 

Then, perceiving that the priest was nearing them, he 
added in his ordinary tone: 

" We may linger among these no longer Thy duties, 
and those of Electra, are now for thy thought. This 
priest will show you all." 

To this priest they were then introduced, and he at once 
began to initiate them in their duties. These were to 
dust, to arrange the flowers, to fill and light the lamps, 
to watch the sacred fire, and to assist in the chanting of 
the services. Thus entered they upon their servitude. 

Through the day, the two looked forward to the night. 
Would Hellen be permitted to join them, in deference to 
the voice, or would -the king be overruled? Their anx- 
iety grew as the day waned ; and, when dismissed late in 
the evening, they repaired to their rooms without hope. 
When ready for supper, and about to emerge from their 
doors, Sensel was perceived standing near. At their 
greeting, he came towards them smiling his brightest, 
and said: 

" Hellen doth wait for you on the hill above, near the 
temple of Poseidon and Cleito. There ye may talk with 
him for an hour, when ye have ended your meal." 

"It is good," returned yEole, overjoyed. "Sensel, we 
thank thee. To think the king doth grant it, We feared 
to hope." 

" Yea, the king granteth it. But let there be care," 
and turning quickly, he glided off. 

After a hurried meal, they came out into the court to 
find him awaiting them. He led them to a low door 
towards the west, and opening this disclosed the hillside. 

"Thou wilt find him above," he whispered, ''and have 
a care. Well is it the moon riseth." 



86 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

They hastened out, and upward to meet Hellen just 
below the gold inclosed temple. Much time did he take 
in embracing JEo\e, the while holding Electra's hand. 
When his ardor could no longer be prolonged, he said in 
lowest tone: 

" I have found the spot for us. It is the watch tower 
on the northern slope. There can no ear hearken." 

He then took the lead. When passing the sacred tem- 
ple, Electra forgot not to fall on her knees in devotion to 
Poseidon and Cleito, and afterward besought their inter- 
cession. Her face was the brighter when she arose. 

This watch tower stood below the temple of Poseidon 
and Cleito, and above the inclosures holding the sacred 
bulls that were roaming in their grounds with much of 
bellowing. This bellowing was indeed a safeguard, as it 
could but drown all sounds contiguous. 

The round tower must have been fifty feet in height, 
stone steps leading up to its doorway which was fifteen 
feet from the ground. At the base, the interior was 
about seventy-five feet in diameter, the wall here being 
fifteen feet in thickness, this thickness decreasing grad- 
ually upward, until at the top it was but eight feet. 

When inside, Hellen assisted each up the stone stair- 
case. At the top, they seated themselves on the broad 
ledge; and when the bulls grew rampant of noise, Hellen 
explained : 

"Ere night fell, the king sent me word that we could 
meet here on this part of the mountain for an hour of each 
evening, until it is his will to change. But I think he 
recked not of the bulls." 

They laughed. Then ^ole asked: "Who brought 
thee the word?" 



THE TEMPLE. 8/ 

"Sensel!" 

. " Say not his name in such tone," urged Electra. " He 
hath been very good to us." 

" His serpent self, then. I believe he is half serpent." 

" It is because of his dress, and his manner of moving 
and speeding," interposed ^Eole. But his voice is fine 
and rich in kind tones, and his eyes speak good. Though 
let us not talk of him now. Tell us of the queen." 

" She hath been sick through the day. None have seen 
her save the ladies Rica and EIna. They are in sore 
trouble. Ah, how my blood doth heat!" 

"Of a truth thou lookest in a fever," said Electra. 
" But calm thyself, for the air surgeth much about us." 

He smiled. Electra continued: 

"Ah, the poor queen! How fond is her heart; yet 
she hath but a stone in the king!" 

It was Hellen's turn. "Electra, thou speakest to be 
heard in thy warmth. We must have a care. The air 
surgeth, and in it there are ears. Thus it is wise to keep 
cool, and speak low." 

Good was it to hear Electra laugh. 

" Ah, Hellen, but thou hast the last. Though for this 
time alone." 

Here ^Eole, who had been far off in her abstraction, 
asked: 

" Hellen, thinkest thou the queen will see thee on the 
morrow?" 

" It is my hope." 

" Bid her take cheer. Tell her my duties are light, 
that my room is next to that of my sister Electra. Tell 
her my fond thoughts are hers, that I live on my hope to 
get to her." 



88 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"I will." 

"And give her my fond greeting," spoke Electra. 
" She was the friend of my mother, and I saw her much 
until these last years." 

" Electra, why did we never meet thee before ? " 

" Queen Atlana and mine Uncle Oltis have not been 
friends since my grandfather Olto died. The queen doth 
think my grandfather was hastened to his death through 
the lack of care of Oltis." Her voice had sunk to a 
whisper, and she looked cautiously about her. "That 
is why the queen never cometh to the temple. That is 
why I have been kept from her." 

" Oltis is a blight on all that is good," responded Hel- 
len. 

"Yea, and he doth master the king. It is no wonder 
that the queen doth shun him." 

Then followed quiet, the quiet of despair, almost. The 
three looked sadly down from their eyry upon the scene 
beneath upon the zones of water* with their boats and 
galleys; upon the zones of land* with their guardhouses 
and race courses; upon the plain to the west with its 
many streams, its pyramids, its denseness of verdure, its 
brightly lighted habitations ; upon the restless bulls in 
their inclosures; upon the dwellings of the artificers, 
miners and husbandmen that spread northward beyond 
the third zone of water; upon the mountains towering to 
the northeast ; upon the ocean to the east. At length 
^Lole spoke. 

"This is a most smiling spot. Why are not the people 
better?" 

*Plato's "Timceus." 



THE TEMPLE. 89 

"They lack thought for gods and man," answered 
Electra. 

"Yet they show faith in worship." 

"It is the letter not the spirit. Theirs is a weak faith; 
their only feeling a warm one for self." 

"Yea, they are sunk in thought of self, and thus in 
the placing high of self," added Hellen. 

" It is too true. Atlano and Oltis would be gods. 
They would scale heaven there to be waited upon by 
even Amen and Poseidon. Ah, whata spirit of evil hath 
mine uncle the brother of my mother!" Poor Electra 
turned away that they might not see her emotion. 

"JEole, Electra, I call to mind that, in Pelasgia, we 
were taught to put away self, to seek the truth. ALole, 
I often heard our father say: 'It is much to win a battle, 
more to do a kind act.' " 

"Ah, Hellen, Hellen ! Of late, I dream much of our 
*father. But last night, he came to me in sleep, and 
whispered, ( JEo\e, all will be well. Have hope.' Think- 
est thou it was his spirit talking to mine ? Is it that in 
sleep our spirits so throw off the bonds of flesh as to have 
full being? Is it that they can see, can hold sweet speech 
with those beyond? Yea, it is, it is! I know that our 
father is not of earth that he cometh to me in spirit. 
And our mother? If he hath gone, she hath not staid. 
They look on us from above." 

" ALole, wouldst thou rave? Dost thou think the 
above, a place of torment?" 

"Hellen!" 

"Could they look upon us would they joy?" 

"They could see beyond this." 

" It is well thou canst hold such a thought better if 



9O POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

thou canst believe such best of all, if thou wouldst have 
them dead. But I doubt them. Often I think what if 
they live to forget us. The horror of it!" 

"The horror is in such a thought, Hellen. Wouldst 
thou sin?" 

" JEole, it is they who sin/thus to forget their children." 

" Hellen," cried Electra, " thou hast shocked ^Eole. 
Look how white she is." 

Indeed ALole was not only white, but quivering of her 
wounded love and indignation, and she turned her head 
away when Hellen, of his contrition, begged for her for- 
giveness. A miserable quiet fell upon the three until 
Electra said below her breath : 

"Someone cometh down the mountain side." 

"It is that shaking Sensel!" exclaimed Hellen. 

They remained still until the figure came beneath 
them, and proved to be Sensel. He called softly: 

"Are ye above?" 

Electra answered: "Yea." 

He returned : " It is past the hour. Thyself and 
JEole should be in the temple." 

"We will come at once, Sensel," spoke ^Eole, firmly. 

This, her firmness, was the result of Hellen's rebellious 
expression. Thereupon, she made the movement to 
descend, but Hellen heeded it not. Then she called: 

"Sensel, wilt thou come up?" 

"Never!" cried Hellen. Starting to his feet, he held 
out his hand, and led her half way down, there to meet 
Sensel, who had been quick to respond. 

" Hellen, thou wilt go back for Electra," said she. " I 
will go the rest of the way with Sensel." Then quickly 
drawing her hand from his, she gave it to Sensel, arid 
down they went. 



THE TEMPLE. 1 

Hellen returned for Electra. When without, they 
beheld the other pair already far up the hill. The dis- 
comfited Hellen could only mutter, as he began to lead 
Electra: 

11 1 merit this. But never have I seen ALole thus." 

"Dost thou think thou canst ever know a woman, 
Hellen?" was the unsatisfactory return. 

In unbroken silence, they continued their way. When 
the advancing pair were joined at the hillside door, 
Hellen put his arm about ^Eole, and kissed her good- 
night, afterward whispering, "I was wrong/' 

" But I have not been right." 

With this, she kissed him again and again, so that he 
was comforted. When he had well pressed Electra's 
hand, off he sped. 

The next two nights, Hellen bore no better tidings of 
the queen. She still continued too feeble to see any but 
her ladies, therefore the three young hearts grew in sad- 
ness. 

But, on the fourth day, he received the message by 
Azu that the queen would speak with him; and, over- 
joyed, followed the smiling pygmy to the bower room, 
there to meet the Lady Rica who conducted him to an 
inner room. Here, on a couch, lay Atlana; and, as he 
approached, his joy became dread, so great was the 
change in her. Listlessly she held out her hand, which 
the affectionate youth fell on his knees to kiss, while the 
heavy sighs came fast. When Rica had withdrawn, 
Atlana murmured: 

" Hellen, be not cast down. I am better, though weak, 
weak. Tell me, how is yole?" 

"Dear Queen, yEole is well in body, but sore in mind 
because of thee. She hath not smiled for days." 



92 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" My poor JEole." 

"But for Electra she could not have borne it." 

"Electra!" In spite of her weakness the queen half 
arose to stare at him in .doubt and terror. 

"Yea, Electra. She is a handmaid, and was called 
with ^Eole." 

"Electra a handmaid! She is a princess is. of our 
blood. Hellen, thou art wrong." 

"Dear Queen, Electra, the niece of Oltis, is she that I 
mean a maiden most fair, most bright. There could be 
but one Electra with such eyes, such a smile, such a 
grand spirit. To look upon her is to fall at her feet." 

The queen lay back and moaned : " Electra it is it 
is." Then clasping her hands she implored: "O Po- 
seidon, is this the next? And canst thou look on? O 
Amen, hast thou no shafts of fire?" 

Hellen was awestricken at the intense despair of her 
tone, the reproach even. 

" Dear, dear Queen, be not so wrought. Thou wilt 
die." 

" Nay, Hellen." To his amazement, she again half 
arose. " Nay, I shall not die. I will live live to bring 
to naught these fiends these monsters of false dealing. 
Yet, ah, Atlano, Atlano !" She began to weep in a way 
that rent him. 

After a little, with the hope to divert her, he said : 

"Electra hath told us of thy fond feeling for her 
mother." 

"Yea. We were most dear to each other. The 
horror of it, the crime, that Electra hath been called to 
the temple!" 

"Queen Atlana, why is it a crime?" 



THE .TEMPLE. 93 

"Hellen, I will tell thee." She looked about her in 
fear, before whispering: 

" It is that, at times, the handmaids have been called to 
the inner holy place, where only the highest priests and 
the king can serve. And these handmaids never have 
been heard of more. Never hath one been seen after 
passing into the inner holy place." 

Alas for poor Hellen ! He could only break away and 
utter cry after cry of dismay until speech came. 

" What can I do? What can I do? Ah, why have I 
not known this?" 

" It is wise for these Atlanteans, in their lack of spirit, 
to be quiet, Hellen. But, hearken." Her tone was calm 
with all its anguish. Insensibly, he also calmed, and 
again knelt beside her. 

" I must tell thee these handmaids who have thus 
vanished were the fairest of their sisters. Thus do I fear 
for ^Eole and Electra." 

Hellen, groaning, sank prostrate, unnerved. 

" Thinkest thou, Hellen, they were yielded on the altar, 
the gifts of a wicked worship ? Or what else thinkest 
thou? What thoughts have been mine since the first 
lovely young girl was taken from the others. And I have 
had from Atlano but laughter, mockery, when I have 
questioned." 

"Queen Atlana, thou hast rent me!" 

Hellen had arisen to pace wildly : and then stopped, 
and fell to considering after the manner of one demented. 

" Hellen, it will not do to give way as if mad. Rather, 
case thyself in rock. Thou shouldst be serpent and dove, 
wouldst thou help ^Eole and Electra." 

" Easy it is to talk thus ! " fie paused, choked for the 



94 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

moment. " But- what can I do ? How can I help them ? 
Oh, ye base Pelasgians, to leave us to this fate! I would 
wish to be born of stones, iron not of such flesh and 
blood!" 

" Hellen, thou art going mad, thus to charge thy par- 
ents, and such parents! Call to mind that thou hast told 
me of their truth, their care. Nay thou art not going 
mad thou art mad. Yea, demons hold thee. Leave 
me, Hellen!" 

The queen's indignation would have overwhelmed any 
save this fiery, reckless, despairing youth. He was too 
far gone to be reached by reproach of any kind. Thus, 
he turned away, saying: 

"Thou hast said it, Queen Atlana. I will leave thee. 
My own bitter thoughts are more dear than the cheer 
thou givest. But with thee I leave my fond wishes, for 
thou hast been father, mother in one, the gods bless 
thee!" 

With this he began to hasten away. 

The queen watched him in anguish. He must not 
leave with such a sore spirit. When he was even at the 
door, she murmured: 

" Hellen, one more word." 

"Queen Atlana, thou hast given me too many." 

Though he had paused and turned full around. 

" I am sure all will go well, if thou wilt wait and be 
calm." 

"Have we not waited years? And this is what they 
bring." 

"It may be the first step to your home." 

Hellen walked toward her with eager face, "That 
calleth to my mind this/' he said. 



THE TEMPLE. 95 

Then he related what had occurred between himself 
and the red-garbed figure, and dwelt upon the interven^ 
tion of the mysterious voice. The queen acknowledged 
the force of Electra's reason for being dragged to the 
temple by bending her head in shame; and raised it not 
until he spoke of the voice. At the end, she was so awed 
as to fall back overcome. Her lips then moved as if in 
prayer, and Hellen distinguished: 

u O Amen O Poseidon ye have not forgotten, as I 
feared." 

She continued quiet for a little, her eyes closed.' Then 
she raised with sudden strength and brightening look. 

" Hellen, hope. The gods answer. I feel it." 

" Could I but feel it. Are there gods? " 

"Hellen, no more. Call to mind thy last sin. There 
are limits." 

"Forgive me, dear Queen." 

"The king seeth the powers above are in this, or he 
would not have yielded. He hath granted vEole and 
thyself much." 

" Every night since have we met, and Electra hath been 
with us each time." 

"Dear Electra. Hellen, she is noble. Such care was 
hers of her mother. She is true and fond." 

"Do I not know it?" 

Then he blushed because of the queen's keen look. 

"Think not too much of her, Hellen. It will but cause 
thee further sorrow." 

"Dear Queen Atlana, didst thou know her father?" 

" Yea. Cairais was a most noble prince of Khemi. He 
came hither to visit, and learn of our land of Chimu. 
Then it was that he met Lustra, the sister of Oltis, At 



96 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

once were they drawn to each other ; and soon were wed- 
ded, and went to Khemi. They staid in Khemi several 
years; and there was Electra born. But Lustra began to 
fail, and pined for Atlantis. Cairais brought her back, 
and she grew better. Then he sickened and passed 
away before we thought him in danger. Lustra so 
mourned that she again failed; and was not long in going 
to him. Through her time of pain, the child Electra 
showed a grand heart. She was a woman in thought 
and help." 

" Have not ^Eole and I felt it?" 

" Her mother was good and most fair ; her father, noble 
of heart and mind. Electra, in truth, is their daughter." 

"But dear Queen why should the Atlanteans bear 
as they do?" 

" They have been changing fast since the rule of Oltis. 
They are blind, lost to feeling, sunk in pleasure. When 
some have risen in their anger they have been sore treated. 
The father of the first handmaid that was called became 
too questioning, too threatening. Therefore, he and his 
family were banished to Chimu. After a few such cases, 
the people yielded. Thou knowest even I was forced 
to yield." 

"How?" 

"Whilst I clung to ^Eole, a drug was held at my nos- 
trils that made me, fcr the while, lose all sense. Their 
arts are many." 

" I shall be crazed again ! " 

"Be calm, Hellen. Call to mind that the gods are 
hearkening. My dreams long have boded some dire evil 
to this island." 

"May such come. May this island sink into these 



THE TEMPLE. 97 

waters, and soon to rid the world of such wicked 
work! " 

"Hellen, thou knowest not what thou sayest. Yet, 
thou dost but speak my dreams." 

She covered her eyes with her hands, and tremor after 
tremor passed over her. 

"Dear Queen Atlana, we will cease this talk so full of 
horror. Let me kiss thy hand. Then will I go." 

"Yea, Hellen. It were better thou shouldst leave me 
for a little." 

She held out her hands. He rubbed them gently, 
magnetically, so that she became calmer, and soon lay 
quiet. Then he arranged the cushions, and placed the 
shawl over her most tenderly. 

" Dear Queen Atlana, mayest thou now slumber. I go 
fora little." 

" My fond : wishes to JEole and Electra. And bid them 
hope." 

"I will." 

After kissing her hands he went from her. The ladies 
Rica and Elna then came in and fanned her until sleep 
came. 

Alas, poor Queen Atlana! 



CHAPTER VIII. 



IT was an hour past noon when Hellen left the palace. 
Soon he was traversing the great roadway among throngs 
of people, some on foot, some on horseback, some in 
chariots; and all, like himself, bound for the great tern- 
pie. 

For this was the Festival day of Poseidon, and he 
must now be honored less from love than from habit. 
So much had this people fallen. 

This great roadway was stupendous of construction. 
Of thirty feet in width, it coiled about the mountain, 
spiral-like, from the base to the summit fifteen hundred 
feet above, in terraces of a hundred feet in height these 
terraces being interrupted only about the vast ground- 
work of the temple, and there being continued in tunnels. 
In many places the roadway was cut out of the solid rock; 
and, in others, built over solid masonry in which the 
arch was a conspicuous figure; whilst transverse paths 
led from it up and down in numerous available points, 
causing the mountain to be accessible in every part. In 
this manner did the ancient Atlanteans testify their hom- 
age for Poseidon and Cleito, whose temple surmounted 
all-^-whose temple now was so seldom approached even 
by those considering themselves the most devout. 

(98) 



POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY; 99 

Along the roadway, with the throng, speeded Hellen 
until he arrived at the wide transverse road that curved 
upward to the Grove of Poseidon and through the grove 
to the great court of the temple. 

This Grove of Poseidon, dense in its shade, was planted 
in cypresses and palms that stood in groups of threes, 
and about it were stationed columns of orichalcum in- 
scribed with the ancient laws, both civil and religious. 
The largest of these columns stood in front of the gate- 
way of the great court, and of this more will be said 
anon. Sufficient for the present is it to add that, as every 
Atlantean passed it, he was supposed to bow in venera- 
tion. Though of late years even this simple observance 
was falling into almost utter neglect. 

Hellen entered the gateway to find the great court 
quite filled with people. On he pressed to the main 
portico that vast portico about which were ranged the 
golden statues of Poseidon's ten sons and their wives.* 
Here he paused, as did others, to admire the garlands 
flung about these, as well as gaze upon the scene below, 
of mountain with encircling zones of land and water, of 
the beautiful Luith winding to the sea, of that sea spread- 
ing blue and serene to the eastward. And Hellen 
thought that never had a day been so fair, never had the 
view been so enchanting. 

' He passed through the portal, and into a spacious hall 
whose stone ceiling was supported by columns of granite 
and syenite. From this hall opened the great circular 
temple proper, its wide portal facing.the entering one; and 
both looking to the east. 

*Plato. 



IOO POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

Just within this sacred portal, Hellen took his stand so 
as to face the great altar to the right. As the people 
entered, they also turned to face both portal and altar, 
and consequently the east. Of the four cardinal points, 
the east was held in the most reverence, it being deemed 
the especial abiding place of the gods. 

At the northern curve of the temple were three doors 
that led to the temple extension. The one toward the 
east opened into a passage leading to the inner holy place, 
or sanctuary, and through it only the king, high priest, 
chief priest, and the few priests highest in authority 
could pass. The middle door admitted the inferior 
priests from their gathering room. By the third door, 
toward the west, the handmaids entered from the long 
passage that extended northward to their own building. 
On the left of this passage were the rooms reserved for 
the priests and the few male attendants. On its right, 
the first door opened into the great gathering room, and 
farther along were other doors leading to rooms connect- 
ing with this that were sacred to the priests. As the 
rooms on the right of the passage, as well as the gather- 
ing room, were inside rooms, they would have been dark 
had not this part of the extension been run up higher, 
thus admitting of apertures in the walls just below the 
vaulted ceilings. To the right of this middle part, was 
the inner sanctuary with its rear connecting rooms. 
These were lighted by apertures; and those of the inner 
sanctuary and the principal rooms overlooked the eastern 
coast. 

On the great stone dais holding the golden altar and 
leading to the inner sanctuary, were gathered the priests, 
chanting. Toward the portal were the minstrels with 



IO2 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

lyre, syrinx, harp, pipes, cymbals, and drum. At inter- 
vals these accompanied the priests, the people swelling 
the refrains. 

On a dais near the middle door, sat the king in his 
robes of state, and about him on a lower dais were 
seated the nobles and their wives. Grouped about the 
statues of Poseidon and Cleito were the Handmaids, 
attired in long flowing robes of thin white linen and 
garlanded with lilies. Each held a bunch of rarest flow- 
ers, beside. A charming spectacle were they of youthful 
grace and innocence. But the despairing Hellen, as he 
gazed, could but shudder and grow faint at thought of 
their probable fate. 

At first he could not distinguish yEole, nor Electra. 
But erelong, he perceived them to the left of the statue 
of Poseidon ; and soon was brightening under a loving 
look from the one and a smile from the other. Then, so 
great became the pressure of the crowd, that he lost sight 
of them, and thus turned his attention to the statues of 
the Nereids nearest him. These, as well as the others, 
were lavishly decorated with flowers conspicuous among 
which were the blue lotus, chrysanthemum, anemone, 
acacia blossom, convolvulus, water lily, rose, tuberose, 
lilac, and the graceful plumes of the papyrus. Tall shoots 
.of the last, over ten feet in height, also adorned the aper- 
tures, producing fine effect; whilst garlands and festoons 
hung from every available point. Most elegantly did the 
vast interior bear testimony to the Atlanteans' skill in 
flower culture. 

When the temple was full, and but few stragglers 
arriving, the great silver gong was sounded before the 
altar by a priest, Profound became the quiet. And ? 



POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY. 103 

almost instantly, the door leading to the inner sanctuary 
opened to admit the high priest, the chief priest, and the 
few priests of superior rank. 

Of course, Oltis was the observed of all, not so much 
because of his office, nor the fact of his officiating so 
seldom, as that the people held an unconscious fear and 
distrust of him. Every eye was fixed. 

Now, as he moved with slow, stately step toward the 
altar, a mighty shock came upon these quiescent island- 
ers. Oltis had dared to make another innovation upon 
the ancient sacred customs ! He had discarded the white 
linen robe of the priests, the silver circlet with its sapphire, 
and was resplendent in a purple woolen robe embroidered 
in gold and a miter richly jeweled. Worse, he was wear- 
ing these with an air indicating he would brook no inter- 
ference. 

The great throng began to sway, and murmur; and 
those that could, looked from Oltis to King Atlano, in- 
quiringly, resentfully. 

But Atlano was smiling back as response to the salu- 
tation of the high priest, appearing to think it in order 
that the priestly vestments should rival his own in color 
and splendor. For Atlano wore the royal purple sacred 
ever before to the king, and his^ high crown was no 
richer in gems than the high priest's miter. 

When the king showed no disapproval, the murmurs 
of dissent grew louder, and even began to swell above the 
anthem the priests were raising to the accompaniment of 
the minstrels. But this anthem was long, and in honor 
of Poseidon, and of such beauty that the dissenting ones 
began to listen, charmed. When it ceased, the vast 
assemblage had calmed. 



IO4 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Then Oltis swept before the altar to chant with melo- 
dious voice an invocation to Poseidon, the while heaping 
upon it the fruits and flowers the people presented for 
offering. When the altar could hold no more, he turned 
and implored blessings from the gods in return for the 
virtues of their monarch. He dwelt long upon the king's 
moderation, justice, self-command, generosity, love of 
truth, freedom from covetousness and sensuality in so ful- 
some a manner that Hellen writhed; and next caught 
himself groaning as he wondered over the easy forbear- 
ance of this listening people. 

When Oltis had finished, and was raising his head 
-proudly 'to survey the immense audience, Hellen took in 
as never before his strong likeness to Atlano. Both 
were tall, powerfully formed, strong featured, slightly re- 
ceding of forehead and chin, red of skin, and fiery-eyed. 
But, in Oltis' face was a look of dissimulation and craft 
that repelled even more than Atlano's sensual expression. 
In a flash Hellen understood. 

"Ah," thought he, "Oltis hath aims beyond this tem- 
ple. Can it be that he pandereth to Atlano with the view 
to be king himself? That royal robe meaneth much!" 

While Oltis stood gazing at the people, and receiving 
with unconcern their dissatisfied looks, a great stir was 
heard in the entrance hall. As this increased, every eye 
that could turned to the portal, to behold there enter- 
ing Queen Atlana with her ladies, whilst Azu himself 
held up her long .purple train! 

At this most unusual appearance, the audience went 
wild smiling, waving their hands, bursting into enthusi- 
astic cries. The Atlanteans loved their queen, and her 
long absence from worship had been wondered at and 



POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY. 105 

deplored. Her vacant chair had been a protest of which 
they had not felt free to speak. But now all must be 
right, as she was coming back. So they went wild of 
their delight. 

The astonished king had arisen. Oltis stood fixed and 
staring. Queen Atlana, crowned, clad in purple and 
gold, and ablaze with jewels, slowly advanced the peo- 
ple joyfully giving way until she had come nigh the 
king. With her ladies' assistance she mounted the few 
steps of the dais; and sank into the chair she had been 
wont to occupy at the side of the king, but which now 
was placed toward the edge of the dais. Then her 
ladies formed about her, and, following her example, bent 
in prayer. 

Intense had grown the quiet. They were as spell- 
bound, waiting for the queen to raise her head. When 
she did, it was to look toward the king. But his face 
was averted. Then her glance was toward the priests. 
Breathlessly watched the people. How would she ac- 
cept the high priest's latest profanity? 

Her eye was quick to distinguish Oltis in his royal 
robing. And she started violently. For this the people 
were prepared. But the olden spirit of Atlantis stirred 
within them, when, accepting to the full his intent, she 
arose and stared at him, astounded ! 

Despite himself, Oltis' eyes fell beneath hers. This en- 
couraged the awakening islanders', who began to mur- 
mur rebelliously, even to hiss. Yes, it had come to this 
a high priest of Atlantis was suffering indignity in the 
temple, and from its worshipers ! 

Shuddering, the queen again looked toward the king, 
to meet his scornful smile. This smile the people beheld, 



io6 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

anch further, the grand manner in which the queen drew 
herself up and questioned with her eloquent eyes. In 
their appreciation, they burst forth into their favorite cry 
of "All dear is Queen Atlana!" but at once hushed upon 
perceiving the baleful looks the king was casting at her. 

Mute of their rage, they began to sway tumultuously, 
vengefully : then made as if they would array themselves 
about her as she tottered, and leaned upon the Lady 
Rica. And the ensuing mutterings grew into impreca- 
tions. 

At this serious moment, diversion occurred. The door 
leading to the inner sanctuary opened, admitting a figure 
taller than any in that assemblage, and of such majesty 
that the surging crowd quieted, and a few cried out in 
awe: 

" The ' Silent Priest ' ! The ' Silent Priest ' ! " 

The 'Silent Priest' bowing in grand, yet benign man- 
ner, advanced until almost beside Oltis; then, facing the 
people, signed that the murmurings must cease, and the 
ceremonies continue. Most graceful and significant were 
his gestures : and even Atlano and Oltis followed them as 
if charmed. 

As to Queen Atlana, her amazement was supreme. 
Never had she seen this priest, though much had she 
wondered over his mysterious advent upon the island, 
and what such presence meant. Thus she stood trans- 
fixed. 

Rarely had the ' Silent Priest ' appeared at the services. 
Yet, among the people, it was already whispered that, 
since his coming, things had changed for the better. 
Fewer were the animal offerings, and no handmaids had 
been forced into the inner sanctuary. Now it was plain 



POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY. 107 

that he exercised some subtle force not only upon the 
subordinate priests, but even -upon King Atlano and the 
high priest as these were regarding him in reverence, in 
subservience. 

When the king and queen were seated, the 'Silent 
Priest' went before the altar, there to raise his eyes 
and move his lips in prayer. But no sound came forth, 
for the 'Silent Priest' was voiceless. But such were his 
magnetism and expression that king, queen, priests and 
people followed him in awe, and partly comprehending. 

When his prayer was finished, he went from the altar, 
a little to one side, and stood absorbed. 

Then Oltis moved before the altar, and signed to the 
handmaids. These began to sing in such fashion that 
the people listened, enthralled. Soon they were gliding 
about the statues of Poseidon and Cleito, and in and out 
among the Nereids, still singing. To Hellen, knowing 
what he did, it was unbearable to listen to the sweet 
voices, and watch the graceful movements of these beau- 
tiful, innocent, perhaps doomed young girls, each wear- 
ing so charmingly her robe of filmy white, her garland 
of purest lilies. 

As they moved about Poseidon, they threw in his 
chariot their bunches of flowers, so that quickly he was 
standing amid heaping floral tributes. And Cleito was not 
neglected, for each took off the garland running from 
shoulder to waist, to lay it about her, after stooping to 
kiss her hand. And, oh, the grace of it all ! 

Quite a while did this last, to the delight of the 
beholders. After the handmaids had again resumed their 
places, all grew grave, for the time had come when Oltis 
was to deliver the speech eulogistic 




io8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

He stood up high before them in front of the altar, and 
his haughty tones rang out: 

"Gracious King, Gracious Queen, Priests, Nobles, 
People: another year hath brought plenty upon Atlantis. 
Another year have the gods smiled : another year have 
they breathed into our minds their will. And, this day, as 
a year since, yea, as thousands of years since, we meet to 
joy in the festival of our Father Poseidon, and to plead 
for his further favor. I, his high priest, though far from 
worthy ' 

Here was most fearful interruption. From the statue 
of Poseidon emanated a groan; and then it flung at Oltis 
this. 

"Why art thou far from worthy?" 

Oltis shrank back, mute, and gazed in horror at the 
statue. The people, screaming in terror, fell against each 
other. The king and queen started to their feet, and 
stood rigid. 

But Oltis, with greatest effort, rallied. In loud, though 
shaking tones, he continued: 

"I call myself far from worthy, because with the years 
I the better know my failings, my evil turnings " 

"Is thy new robe an evil turning?" was now spoken 
abruptly by a powerful voice at the rear of the assem- 
blage. 

There was a simultaneous looking backward to discover 
this speaker. Oltis stared in the same direction, paling 
even to his lips. Fearful was the hush that followed. 
At length, he desperately resumed: 

"On this day so promising " 

But paused to gaze, petrified, at the people, who were 
reflecting his stony horror, 



POSEIDON'S FESTIVAL DAY. 109 

Far off, beneath the waters, was beginning a loud, 
menacing rumbling! It was approaching the island! 
On on it was coming even to beneath their feet! 
Was the sea pouring into the bowels of the earth? 

As they stood dazed, the massive walls began to shake 
violently, threatening to fall inward the accompaniment 
to the earth now quivering fast beneath that earth they 
had deemed so solid, so stable! 

With the cry of panic, the islanders began to rush 
upon each other, no purpose in their movements. Great 
loss of life would have resulted had not the silver gong 
sounded imperatively. 

The frantic people turned to see it held by the ' Silent 
Priest,' who was still standing in his place with mien un- 
daunted. He returned their agonized looks by smiles; 
then gesticulated that the worst was over. Indeed, the 
earth was already quieting. Next, he pointed to Queen 
Atlana, as if beseeching their consideration. They looked 
to perceive her fainting in the arms of the Lady Rica. 
Then they calmed. 

The oscillations had ceased. Atlano, haggard and 
trembling, signed that the queen must be taken out. 
Accordingly, she was placed in a chair and borne by 
some of the nobles to her chariot, the people looking on 
mute, motionless. 

But when she had been borne out, they began to. 
hasten after her, with no regard for the benediction Oltis 
was endeavoring to mutter. When king and priests alone 
remained, these, by one accord, speeded to their respec- 
tive passages, thence to escape into the air. Surely such 
a convulsion must have direfully disfigured the face of 
nature. 



no POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

But without, all was bright, serene, unchanged. Not 
a stone had fallen. But what did it mean? Never 
within the island's existence, had there been any evidence 
of the earth's instability. And it was Poseidon's Fes- 
tival Day ! Was there warning in this ? 



CHAPTER IX. 

THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 

DURING the earthquake, Hellen had tried to force his 
way to ^Eole and Electra in face of the panic-stricken 
throng pressing toward the portal. He would have 
been crushed had not the people quieted under the mag- 
netism of the 'Silent Priest.' 

./Eole and Electra were standing close to the statue of 
Poseidon when the queen became prostrated because of 
the king's baleful looks. And they could not hope to 
get beside her, so great was the surging of the people. 

Then appeared this ' Silent Priest.' From the first 
glance, ^Lole had stood motionless, fascinated ; and aroused 
only when her companions began to sing and march. 
During'the evolutions, her eyes were continually turning 
to him. When in her place again beside the statue, she 
saw only him, heard not Oltis when he attempted his 
speech. Then came the shock of the mysterious voice. 

"Ah, Electra, it speaketh again," she whispered: "It 
is the voice of our friend." 

" Yea, but not the voice of a friend to these Atlanteans. 
Look at the queen ! " 

^Eole turned to perceive both king and queen gazing 
stonily at the statue. She responded : 

"Electra, I fear for her. Let us get to her." 

(in) 



112 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

Desperately they tried to make their way, but vain 
was their puny strength. It was some relief when the 
queen sat down; but again she arose when the voice came 
from the rear; and was as marble until the earthquake 
when she fell in Rica's arms. 

^Eole, of her dizziness, would have fallen also, had not 
a strong arm upheld her, and a tender voice whispered : 

"yEole, strength. The worst is over." 

It was Sensel, and he was offering his other arm to 
Electra; whilst about him were flocking the nearest hand- 
maids, as though he alone could save them. 

It was at this moment that Hellen succeeded in getting 
sight of the two. Reaching an aperture, he sprang up 
among its clustering papyrus plumes to perceive them 
with Sensel. By this time, the people were quieting, and 
Queen Atlana was being borne out. As the throng 
pressed after her, Hellen was the better able to watch. 
Great was his relief when Sensel began marshaling the 
handmaids to their door. "If he can but get them to the 
air," he thought, "before more evil cometh." 

Hid among the papyrus, he waited until all had 
passed out even to the priest and handmaids in attend- 
ance upon the altar fire. 

For once the great temple was deserted. Heften was 
alone. As he realized this, an idea came that he was 
quick to act upon. Springing from the aperture, he 
darted across the great space toward the door of the 
handmaids, opened this, and beheld, stretching deep, the 
passage through which Sensel had conducted him to the 
priests' gathering room; and knew that some distance 
down, was the side passage leading to the cell where he 
had seen the red-garbed figure. At the very end was a 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 113 

door leading, probably, to the building of the handmaids. 
If he could but run down this long passage, and come 
upon fiLole and Electra! 

As if urged by a force uncontrollable, he sped onward 
his eyes, his thoughts on the door at the end. But, 
when midway, was arrested, and by a voice. It was as 
t!i KI rh a wall had sprung up in front of him. Low, 
s >ii in fe.ir, it warned. 

1 Ridi youth, thou wilt ruin all. Go back ere the 
priests come. Wouidst thou die?" 

Hellen still would have pressed on. 

" Gall to mind thy promise. If here thou art found, at 
an end are the meetings with thy sister the hope of free- 
dom." 

Hellen, now irresolute, was looking about him for the 
red-garbed figure, when Sensel appeared through the far 
door. For one moment, the latter stood motionless. 
Then he bounded toward Hellen. Seizing his wrist, he 
cried : 

"If thou lovestthy sister, out of this. Fly!" 

But Hellen shook off his hand as he answered: 

"Touch me not. I will go of my own will." 

Sensel, holding with the more strength, began to draw 
him along as with the force of the wind. On on they 
sped, and into the temple. Here it was still empty, 
but voices could be heard in the passage leading to the 
inner sanctuary. Sensel cried : 

"On to the portal!" still holding fast. And Hellen, 
at last realizing his rashness, complied. But not to es- 
cape. The sanctuary door opened as they neared the 
portal ; and in came Oltis and Urgis. 

The former's assurance had returned. But he paused 
8 



114 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

in dismay at beholding the temple thus deserted, and 
Hellen and Sensel by the portal. The former was freeing 
himself; the latter looked worsted, conquered rather 
than conquering. 

Hurriedly the priests approached them. And Oltis 
asked : 

"Sensel, what doeth the youth here with thee?" 

" He went not with the others. I would have forced 
him away." 

"The place of a messenger is in the outer court," said 
Urgis sternly. 

"He is the brother of JEole the handmaid." Oltis' 
tone was meaningful; and his glare boded such evil that 
Hellen was roused to resentment. Though he returned 
with surprising calm : 

" Yea, I am the brother of JEole her wretched brother. 
When all fled the temple, I staid that I might follow her. 
I was making my way through the passage when set 
upon by Sensel, and carried back as if by the wind." 

Oltis looked at Urgis. Triumph was in his eye. 
And triumph responded. Though Urgis, in hypocritical 
tone said : 

"The temple doth pride itself upon this strength of 
Sensel." 

"I thought I was strong," continued Hellen, as he re- 
garded Sensel. 

"Thou wilt find thy strength as naught here. Tell me 
how far was he, Sensel?" 

" Most Honored and High Priest, he was well in the 
passage. But I seized him, and speeded him here." 
Sensel's tone was very low. 

"Didst thou see aught?" demanded Oltis of Hellen. 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 115 

"I saw naught but doors and Sensel. Those doors are 
the same I saw when brought before thee, Priest Urgis." 

"Thou shouldst say, 'Chief of the Priests,' " corrected 
Urgis, angrily. 

"Then, 'Chief of the Priests, Urgis.'" And Hellen 
bowed to the ground, but with little of reverence. 

His manner was not lost upon Oltis. Though smooth 
his tones, his eyes emitted a lurid satisfaction. 

"He who cometh into that passage not bidden, mock- 
eth the holy laws of the temple. There is sore pain for 
this sin." 

"There should be sore pain, then, for other sins. The 
presence of the handmaids is a sin. Are the gods wait- 
ing?" 

Sensel's eyes were piercing the rash Hellen, in their 
indignation. Further, did they contain warning? It 
seemed as though the latter predominated as Hellen looked 
from Oltis to him. As for Oltis, he was exultant; though 
most grave was his expression. 

"The youth would chide us of the great temple would 
even chide the gods. For such sin there is worse than 
pain. He will go to the 'Deeps.' Sensel, the guards!" 

Sensel turned as if to obey, and then paused to arrange 
his sandal. 

" Hasten, Sensel. Every moment he doth stay bring- 
eth taint to the temple." 

"Taint!" returned Hellen. " It is ye thyself and Oltis 
who bring taint upon the temple! Thou, Oltis, hast 
brought upon its face the black look of guile, the slime 
of sense, the marring of every line of that pure grace so 
long its own. Tell me, where are the handmaids thou 
didst thrust into thine inner holy place? Are they to be 
my neighbors in thy 'Deeps'?" 



ii6 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

It was a revelation, the shrinking back of the two. 
Never before had been such braving, such questioning! 
Sensel and Hellen read but the one thing from their cow- 
ering attitude. 

As the four stood mute, the door of the gathering 
room was heard to open ; and there entered the ' Silent 
Priest' and several other priests. The latter at once 
resumed their neglected duties; but the silent one has- 
tened toward the group by the portal. 

Oltis and Urgis were again breathing. And, strangely, 
a great hope possessed Hellen as the * Silent Priest' came 
opposite him. Eloquent was the mysterious priest's 
glance from one to the other, so eloquent that Oltis, as 
if against his will, explained: 

" This youth hath sinned. He pressed within the west 
passage in search of his sister, the haadmaid ^Eole. 
Further, he hath scorned, mocked, Urgis and myself. 
For these, he will go to the 'Deeps.'" 

By a gesture, the 'Silent Priest' deprecated this going 
to the ' Deeps.' But Oltis, though with less of determi- 
nation in voice and manner, iterated : 

"He will go to the ' Deeps.' " 

Merely by the movement of his expressive hands, the 
silent one referred to the earthquake and the mysterious 
voice, and advised clemency as the youth had erred 
from love of his sister. All Hellen was as quick to com- 
prehend as the priests, so ably did the gestures speak. 
But Oltis continued: 

" He hath chided the gods. It is the crowning sin. 
Sensel, the guards!" 

Sensel still hesitated. The 'Silent Priest' had glanced 
at him, his glance expressing negation. As he stood 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST/ 117 

irresolute, unmindful of the indignation of Oltis. The 
'Silent Priest' took from an inside pocket a small roll of 
papyrus, and signed to Sensel for reed and ink. 

When these were brought, he wrote in large Atlantean 
characters swiftly: 

" It is the Festival of Poseidon. On this day, mercy is 
ever shown all sinners. It is one of the oldest laws, the 
law of King Atlas." 

Oltis and Urgis read. And Oltis, with exceeding re- 
luctance, replied : 

" We know it. It hath ever been kept." 

The silent one wrote again: 

"There is an olden prophecy ' When the stranger 
from a far land would seek his own within the temple, the 
high priest is safe in forbearing of the heart' " 

" A prophecy I laugh at," sneered Oltis. Though his 
uncertain looks testified to the opposite. 

He of silence again wrote: 

"Putting the olden law beside the olden prophecy 
meaneth much on this day." 

Oltis and Urgis looked at each other in doubt, more 
than in doubt. For fear lurked behind the doubt the 
fear that comes of dread of penalty the fear that will 
attack the stoutest, most reckless villains, at times. 
What was there in this mysterious priest that served to 
tongue-tie them, as it were yet loosened every evil and 
falsity of their souls until their minds beholding, shrank 
from such as though they were ghastly phantoms? 
Finally, Urgis, in his quality of lesser villain, broke silence. 

" Oltis, it would be well to think upon it. Let us speak 
together." 

" I will speak here," vociferated Oltis. " There needeth 



n8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

no meddling priest, no speaking together to show me my 
duty. If olden law and olden prophecy join, I must 
obey. The youth can go free. But woe to him should 
he sin again ! " 

Well was it for Sensel that the two saw not the glad 
light that came into his eyes, the happy color that swept 
over his face. As for the silent one, the expression that 
irradiated him was not detected, either, as, at the begin- 
ning of Oltis' words to Urgis, he had turned as if to walk 
away. Yet again, and instantly, did he face them, for 
Hellen's voice was ringing: 

"O * Silent Priest' I thank thee, I bow to thee. In 
truth art thou of the gods as the islanders say!" 

The silent one stretched out his hands to him in bless- 
ing; and then, with a peculiar look at Oltis, moved away. 
Oltis, with a strange drooping about him, turned to Sen- 
sel with the order, "See the youth well away." 

Then to Hellen, he added, "Youth, go. But forget 
not that olden laws and olden prophecies will not ever 
be at hand to save thee." 

* When Hellen had bowed to each, he turned after Sen- 
sel; and followed his gliding, quivering, dust-colored 
self to the gateway of the outer court. After Sensel, 
without one word, had left him, Hellen went on to the pal- 
ace as if in a dream, absorbed over the ' Silent Priest.' 
Wonderful was the power of this grand man, amazing 
the hopefulness that possessed him when this being came 
opposite him ! Was he, indeed, more than mortal as the 
islanders hinted? Or were his powers natural in them- 
selves, but seldom bestowed upon man ? 

That evening, it was evident to yEole and Electra that 
Hellen was unduly disturbed, for his voice was husky, 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 119 

his eyes and color feverish. As to themselves, they were 
very pale; and ^Eole owned to a feeling of weakness, 
even looking in apprehension at the hill they were about . 
to mount. Perceiving this, Hellen, as he took an arm of 
each, whispered: 

" Let us not climb the tower. We will go to the alley 
on its right. There no one cometh this late. Though, 
there are ears in the air." 

"It is not so safe as the tower, Hellen." 

"There is still the noise of the bulls, ^ole." 

"I forgot. May their zeal be great!" 

Electra laughed; and a little color came into her face. 
"How I thank those bulls," she said naively. "Well 
are they worthy to be held in honor, and to be kept about 
the temple!" 

The three laughed, their spirits lightening in accord- 
ance; and they began to walk with briskness towards 
the northern slope. As they neared the broad leafy 
alley that extended downward to the right of the tower, 
ALo\e paused to regard this distrustfully. 

" We could be followed, and not know it because of 
the trees." 

" My eyes and ears will be well open," said Hellen. 

Down the alley they hurried to come upon a thicket: 
arfd here paused to listen. But no sounds could be 
heard save the songs of the night birds and the faint 
chanting of the priests when the bulls permitted. 

As they were about to pass around the thicket, Hellen 
thought to look backward up the alley just as a tall 
slender shape showed itself in entering; and darted for 
this only to see it vanish. Vainly did he search on all 
sides, thereupon returning scant of breath, but yet with 
voice to air his indignation. 



I2O POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

" It could but be that Sensel so fast did he fly. He is 
an evil spirit!" 

" Say not so, Hellen. He is good. Often doth he aid 
Electra and myself. And the other handmaids never 
tire of speaking of his kind deeds." 

"yole, I forget not that he came upon me without 
noise when I met the red shape." 

" Hellen, I have the thought that good will come of 
those two," insisted Electra. 

They were around the thicket; and had come upon 
one of the streams flowing down the mountain side. By 
this they sat so as to face the thicket; and, under cover 
of the noise of the bulls, Hellen began with this: 

"^Eole, Electra, I have seen the queen." 

The two jumped to their feet, and as quickly sat down 
again. " Tell us ! " " Tell us ! " they chorused. 

Hellen recounted all save the terrible part concerning 
the handmaids. When he finished, they were weeping. 

"Thinkest thou the queen will get well?" asked yEole, 
finally. 

"Her spirit is mighty. She feeleth she should live to 
help us. I fear not she will die." 

"Great is the wonder that she found strength to come 
to the temple." 

"Yea, but it is herself," said Electra. "And well did 
Atlano and Oltis cower before her. It passeth belief that 
Oltis should thus deck himself when the law is strong 
the priests shall ever wear white linen." 

"But, the 'Silent Priest,'" interposed ^Eole, "was he 
not as beyond earth? How did Oltis pale before him ! 
What shame did his pure raiment and silver circlet cast 
upon the purple and gems of the high priest! And, 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' I2i 

even at my first look, what a spell took hold of me. 
Hard was it to draw from him mine eyes." 

"He is a power," added Hellen. "The other priests 
fear him while they look up to him. And, he doth cause 
me to thrill with hope and strength at the first glance. 
What is it? Ah never can I forget how he came be- 
fore these islanders ! " 

" Tell us of it, Hellen," said Electra. " I, also, am drawn 
to him. He seemeth more than man." 

"Yea, Hellen tell us and hasten. The time doth 
fly." 

"It is a year since. One morning, while I was on the 
sands, I chanced to see far off on the water a moving 
speck. As it drew on, it proved to be a boat, and a boat 
of strange behavior for long it hovered far, as if it feared 
to draw nigher. The islanders also noting this, watched 
with me. After two hours, it began to near us a little. 
Then it stopped. 

"So we on the sands beckoned. Thus on it came again. 
And soon we saw that it was of odd shape, and held two 
persons, one being clothed in white. Slow, very slow 
was it in nearing us ; but at length drew up on the sands, 
amid our loud greetings. 

"Then stepped among us this grand man robed in shin- 
ing white, and wearing about his head a circlet of silver 
studded with golden stars. His was the garb of the 
priests of Poseidon, save that he wore soft folds of white 
about his brow beneath the circlet. So we pressed about 
him to know whence he came. To our sorrow he an- 
swered not by speech; but, by signs, made the king, 
high priest, and all, to know that Amen had sent him to 
serve in the temple, and that he would speak at such time 
as the gods willed.'' 



122 POSEIDONS PARADISE. 

" How chanced the king and high priest on the sands ? " 
inquired Electra. 

" When we had watched the strange behavior of the 
boat for a while, we sent for them." 

"But the figure behind him?" asked yole. 

"He sat still until the 'Silent Priest' signed for him to 
come. It was Sensel." 

" Now I call it to mind, Hellen. I heard thee tell of 
it, but had forgotten." 

"Yea, I told thee. This second figure was Sensel. 
Out he glided, tall, slender, shining of eye, the color of 
dust, and swaying. We fell back as though he was a 
serpent; and watched him, charmed, as he took his place 
beside "the 'Silent Priest.'" 

"I think he is fair, noble," urged Electra, "in spite of 
his ugly dust garments and wavy walk. How his eyes 
shine beneath that low cap he ever weareth!" 

This pleased ^Eole much. But Hellen looked severe. 
In grimmest tone, he said: 

" Look to it that he throweth not his spells about you. 
Such charming is death!" 

" Hellen, thou hast need of more heart," warned ^Eole. 
"Thou art getting to look but for the evil in people." 
And she turned from him. 

This, coming from her, was a blow. Hellen was so 
smitten, that Electra entreated : 

";Eole, thou hast wounded him. But look upon him 
with thy fond eyes.' 

.^Eole obeyed to soften. Taking his hand, she said in 
her loving way: 

"Dear Hellen, how could I thus hurt thee. Forgive 
me." 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 123 

He kissed her. "Dear ALole, how can I forgive when 
naught doth need it. I am wrong to speak evil of 
Sensel when he is kind to thee and Electra." 

The last sentence though somewhat lacking in firmness, 
yet was strong in its concession. In appreciation, sweet 
peace hovered over them again; and Electra, that the 
gentle presence might not go on the wing, hastened to 
say: 

"But, Hellen, thou hast not told us all. And soon 
should we go back." 

" There is little more. As to the ' Silent Priest ' already 
were we looking upon him as a higher being. And this 
strange Sensel but added to our awe. When the king 
and high priest had spoken further, by their signs, we 
followed them to the temple. Here the new priest was 
given place. Now he is a power, checking even Atlano 
and Oltis. But few animals have been yielded on the 
altar; and no handmaids have been called to the inner 
holy place, since he hath been in the temple." 

^Eole and Electra shuddered. The latter whispered : 

"Hellen, we are getting a dread of the inner holy 
place." 

"What meanest thou ?" 

"The other handmaids tremble and grow pale at name 
of it." 

"We found it thus the first day," added jEole. "Why 
is it?" 

"Ask me not, ALo\e. But pray that no more hand- 
maids may go in there." 

They looked at him in fear. 

" Hellen, much have we seen and heard that causeth 
us to believe evil goeth on in the inner parts. I feel 
as if the air, even, is not pure." 



124 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Dwell not upon such thoughts. I am sure that it 
groweth brighter for us. Let me tell you what happened 
after the earth quaked, after Sensel had led you from the 
temple." 

Hastily ne recounted the whole, not omitting Sensel's 
perturbation. When he had finished, the two, of their 
doubt and anxiety, were silent. Finally, ^Eole murmured: 

" Hellen, what a risk was thine to go in that passage. 
And thine awful words to the high priest." 

" I have been smitten ever since. But the words would 
come." 

"I know, Hellen. But, take cheer. Be not so cast 
down^" 

"I fear it will bring evil to thee and Electra." 

"But there are the 'Silent Priest' and Sensel," urged 
Electra. 

"If Sensel is our friend. Though he came with the 
'Silent Priest,' he hath gained favor with Atlano and 
Oltis. Both look to him; and both may have weight 
with him. It may be it was at their order that he came 
after us in the alley. He may be beyond that thicket 
now." He pointed to the nearest clump. 

" I will see," returned Electra. 

Scarce had they accepted her words than she was 
speeding off to the place designated, hopeful of convinc- 
ing Hellen of his injustice. 

But, when almost there, paused because of a significant 
rustling. Though the pause was only for the instant. 
Bravely she resumed her way; and was at the thicket 
just as a tall form showed itself before vanishing! 

Poor Electra, overcome, could only turn and look to 
Hellen, who had fast followed her. Pitiful was it to wit- 



THE 'SILENT PRIEST.' 125 

ness her trembling. Hellen, in his loving commiseration, 
put his arm about her, nay, both arms; and thus sup- 
ported her. 

" Come, dear Electra, come away. Thou wilt be sick." 

She burstinto tears ; and was emulated by the approach- 
ing yEeole. As she sobbed, she said: 

" I grieve not to believe him our friend." 

" It doth not make him the less our friend that he hath 
done this," spoke ^ole, with head held high. " How 
know we but he is the more our friend in thus doing. 
It is plain he was not. there to hearken. It is too far 
from the place where we sat." Sweet was her majesty. 

" Why, then, didst thou weep ? " asked the keen Hellen. 

" I know not," she faltered, her head lowering. "Un- 
less it was because everything was so sudden and 
Electra was trembling and weeping." 

" Wert thou in fear, Electra?" 

"Nay, Hellen, but I became without hope." 

"And I am, likewise. I fear he is not for us." Hellen 
was gloomily looking down. 

"I have it," exclaimed JEole. "He came to warn 
us!" 

"Thou hast it, ^ole!" Glad was Electra to clutch at 
this straw. 

"Why ran he then?" asked Hellen. 

This was unanswerable. The two lovely heads bent, 
disconsolate, thus causing softening in Hellen. In gen- 
tlest tones, he said : 

" Let us not question it. And, it is time to go back." 

As they went, he thought to ask: "Where are those 
'Deeps'?" 

" They are beneath the temple. The handmaids whis- 
per of them in horror," replied Electra, 



126 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Nothing further was said until they reached the hill- 
side door, when they bade each other good-night de- 
jectedly. As the door was opening, Heiien whispered: 

"Beware of him j ' 



CHAPTER X. 

LIGHT ON THE PATH. 

THE next evening, when yEole and Electra came out 
upon the hillside, Hellen was not awaiting them. Then 
did each own to anxiety; and, as the moments speeded, 
their uncertainty became sickening. Finally, as some re- 
lief, yole proposed that they should go on to the alley. 
To,this both inclined, the more as voices were heard 
nearing the temple from the southward. In the alley they 
would be quite secure from interruption, as it was seldom 
traversed after nightfall. 

So they sought its shade; and, just within its entrance, 
paused to await Hellen. 

Exceeding was their relief when he joined them a little 
later. Hard was he panting, not so much from his run, 
as from dread that he had missed them. He muttered: 

" It hath been sore trouble to get here. It seemed as 
though the messages of the king would end not." 

"It may be his thought to stop these meetings," spoke 



"The voice is yet too young," reasoned Electra. 
" Though, Oltis may master him. Ah, that voice ! My 
father told of one that was heard in a temple of Khemi, 
and how the people hearkened unto it." 

" It seemeth a helper either of gods or man," said 

(27) 



128 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

^Eole. "It is ever in my thought that it cometh of our 
parents, whether they be of earth or heaven." 

"Let us hope they are in heaven, yEole." Hellen's 
voice was savage in his despair. " If they are of earth, 
shame upon them!" 

" Hellen, I will not own thee, brother. Thus to charge 
the best we have known in our lives. This is what At- 
lantis hath done for thee!" 

Sweet peace was again spreading her wings. And 
Electra was fearful she would get far away. Yet, JEole, 
in her sweet indignation, was right. Hellen was almost 
impious. In dread, she looked from one to the other. 

"^Eole, our eyes were young when we were torn from 
them. Young eyes are fond; they see no faults." 

" Would we had died young, Hellen. To grow old 
enough to see faults, such faults in those so dear and 
to charge them should cause one to sorrow for his 
birth." 

" Well would it be had we never seen the light. 
Thinkest thou that I could have rested under it thus to 
be robbed of my children? I would have rent heaven to 
get them!" 

"Hush, Hellen," implored Electra. "Thou art sin- 
ning. To dare to think of warring upon the gods ! " 

"Yea well could I war upon any gods. that could look 
down, and not check such evil. And make their heaven 
a thing of naught ! " 

He looked upon the shocked face of his reprover to 
become penitent; and mourned: 

"Electra ^Eole it is ye who make me sin. My 
days and nights hold but one thought how to free you 
from the taint of the temple from this island, this fair, 
most evil spot from this your dire slavery." 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 

Of their pity, they seized his hands. Each implored 
him not to be so bitter, but to be calm, even hopeful, and 
to consider that God's ways are not the ways of men. 

Thus stood they absorbed, unheedful of a gliding, 
noiseless shape that was speeding toward them; that 
paused when near them to gaze with eyes of pity, love; 
that, of its magnetism, was quick to draw Hellen's glance 
upon itself. 

Gently did Hellen release the two clinging figures as 
he eyed the quivering Sensel. Then, with a bound, he 
was almost upon him, his hands outstretched to strangle. 
But, swift as a dart, did Sensel move to one side, thereto 
stand motionless, and regard Hellen with eyes wonder- 
ful in their keenness and brilliancy. 

Again did Hellen bound almost upon him; and again 
did the swaying figure, with the same astonishing celer- 
ity, change its place. 

"Enough of this play, Sensel," cried Hellen, seeing it 
was futile to come upon him. " Tell me what meanest 
thou by stealing upon us to view our misery?" 

Sensel gracefully pointed upward; and, in low, musi- 
cal tones, answered: 

11 There are gods in the heavens. Why cease to hope ? " 

'* There are not gods for us. Parents heaven gods 
are proving myths. The evil spirits, though, have be- 
ing." Meaningful was Hellen's tone and look. "Yea, 
the evil spirits have being, and to good purpose for this 
island." 

"Thou hast thrown from thee, then, the warm feeling 

for the Higher Good, the trust of thine early years- 

Only the evil spirits have being!" Strong was Sensel in 

his rebuking. "Because sorrow is thine, there is no 

9 



130 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Higher Good. Because thou art not happy, only evil 
ruleth. Look to thyself! For false spirits close about 
thee. Their thoughts are thine. Therefore cometh thy 
lack of warmth to the gods, of trust thy. wicked 
thoughts. Hellen, beware!" 

^Eole and Electra drank in these words; and then 
looked furtively at Hellen. Glad were they to see he was 
touched, that he seemed conscience-stricken. And he 
was conscience-stricken, for Sensel's tones were even 
more forcible than his words. After some moments, he 
admitted: 

" Sensel, I own that thou speakest truth. Of late, I 
have lost warmth, trust. The Higher Good hath been 
shunned. But I am wild torn with fears for these. 
Therefore, canst thou wonder blame ? " 

" I wonder not. I blame not. But I have come to 
tell thee the clouds will lift. Soon will light be on thy 
path. Be calm, and wait. Thou art not forgotten of 
gods or man." 

With a farewell wave of the hand, he turned away, and 
glided beyond the thicket. 

Hellen moved as if to follow him; but checking him- 
self, moaned: ? 

"He is right. Long is ft since I have looked to the 
Higher Powers. My trust is gone. I have been mad." 

" Hellen, my trust hath not failed. Sure am I that all 
is for our good." 

" ^Eole, thine are ever warmth, trust. But I am cold, 
full of doubt." 

"After the way of men," interposed Electra. "Men 
are cold of heart toward the Higher Powers, but to rea- 
son the more: and, of their reasoning, see the 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 13! 

" Thou art right. Ah, Electra, if thou wouldst but 
help me." He looked at her with tenderest eyes. 

" Thou shouldst ask help only of the Higher Good 
and Truth, Hellen." Electra was blushing. 

^Eole, though listening, was thinking deep upon Sen- 
sel. During Hellen's last words, she was even saying to 
herself, " What a glance is that of Sensel. What a voice 
is his. Without doubt, he is good. After this night, 
Hellen can but believe in him." 

So full was she of this last thought, that out she spoke: 

" Hellen, Sensel is our friend. Now wilt thou be sure." 

"Unless he is full of guile, JEole." Then, because of 
her hurt expression, he hastened to add, "^Eole, doubt 
hath firm hold of me. But thou wilt forgive." 

She was silent. Therefore, Electra entreated : 

"Hellen, thine is a strong, honest spirit, but it is 
weighed down by these doubts. Throw them off that 
thou mayst soar to find trust, peace." 

Hellen, gazing into her earnest eyes, and listening to 
her thrilling tones, was so carried away that he re- 
sponded: 

" Electra, but to hearken to thee is to rise higher. 
Come, dear one, give me thy hand that some of the 
grand ether filling thee may pass into my poor frame 
to give life to my spirit, to raise it a little to the heights 
thou speakest. Ah, Electra, my strength is of the body. 
Give me that of the spirit." 

Electra was mute, though she held out her hand. 
This he took, and continued: 

"Dost thou not feel how my hand leapeth because of 
thy living words? And thine will I keep as we go back, 
for it is time that we part again." So did his look linger 



132 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

upon her, that she, paling, glanced at ^Eole to meet her 
sad eyes fixed upon them. Already was she understand- 
ing Hellen's feeling for Electra ; and she feared for him, 
feared for his further suffering. Electra meeting this 
sad gaze, thought, "She is not pleased with me." And 
answered by a look so humble and beseeching that 
JEole darted to embrace her, and say with utmost ex- 
pression: 

"Dear, dear Electra!" 

" Yea, dear Electra, it is ! " Hellen was elated. 
" And dear ^Eole ! Now, ye dear ones, take hold of me. 
For, it is time that we go." 

Each clung to him; then buoyantly they sped to the 
temple. 

The next evening, Hellen was again delayed; and 
again hastened to the alley, hoping there, as before, to 
rejoin the waiting ones. 

But, in the alley, they were not. Neither beyond the 
thicket. 

Back he rushed to the tower with the faint hope that 
they might be teasing. But neither were they here not 
even at the top. 

In a great dread, he tore down the staircase, and to the 
hillside door; thence back through the alley, and be- 
yond the thicket : and there paused to gaze on the stream 
as if it, if it would, might help him. 

Then he called; and, for response, heard but the bulls 
that seemed to mock at him. Where were they? Could 
they be hiding ? Were they laughing in some near nook 
over his distracted movements ? No too well he knew 
their tender hearts, their impatience ever to greet him! 

But, perhaps Sensel had come beyond the thicket, 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 133 

was there laughing at his distress. Hellen waited, 
even hoping he might step forth. Hard was it to bear 
up as the moments crept on, as his imagination grew 
riotous. 

Erelong, he started to run back to the alley. And 
was on the point of rounding the thicket, when a tall 
figure came upon him. 

But, it was not Sehsel. No, this was King Atlano! 
And without attendants. 

At Hellen's stony stare, the king smiled derisively; 
and asked : 

" Why art thou in such haste ? Thou earnest near 
falling upon me." 

"King Atlano, I seek my sister and Electra." For his 
life Hellen could not bow. 

This the king noted. Though he corrected him not, 
but said, as if indifferent: 

"So, here is the place where ye meet." 

" For two nights past have we met here as thou 
knowest, King Atlano." Hellen was now calm, and 
looking fearlessly at his tormentor. "This third night, 
they come not." 

"Nay they come not!" The king laughed as the 
evil spirits might. 

"King Atlano, will they come?" 

" They will not come." 

"Why?" The hot blood was surging now. 

" I like not these meetings. Evil will come of it. 
Other handmaids will ask to creep out, and meet their 
brothers or, fonder ones." Again the king laughed, 
and so that Hellen writhed. 

" But, the voice hath willed that we meet." 



134 'POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"I doubt the voice. It may be jugglery* jugglery 
known to Khemi. There such arts are beginning." 

"Then is all in the temple jugglery! " 

"Thou forgettest fear, awe. For such there is pain." 

"Tell me, King Atlano, where are ^Eoleand Electra?" 

Again the king smiled, and replied suavely: 

"This night hath ^Eole been called to the inner holy 
place. Electra will go in on the morrow." So gloating 
had become his look and tone that Hellen grasped at the 
air as if to steady himself; and repeated, dazed : 

"In the inner holy place?" 

"Yea." Atlano's tone was soft though his eyes 
gleamed cruelly. " The priests have willed that thou art 
to be parted from ALo\e and Electra. Their stay, for the 
coming time, is in the inner holy place." 

Hellen's agony was bewildering. Despair so clogged 
his utterance that he could only gasp: 

"Not that not that!" 

"It is a high honor." The king regarded him in tri- 
umph and derision. 

Then Hellen's tongue loosed. He towered grand in 
his passion. 

"Thou knowest it is not a high honor. Thou know- 
est thine inner holy place is a hell. Thou knowest that 
thyself and those priests are fiends worse than those of 
hell for ye are fair in seeming, and fiends look what 
they are. Ye are monsters of self and sense! And, by 
your arts have ye worked upon these islanders, until they 
see with your eyes, walk in your ways. 

" But think ye there is no coming pain for this? Oh, 

*Common jugglery is said to have originated in Egypt; and been 
thence introduced into Greece. 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 135 

poor, wretched, groveling King, I tell thee sorrow and 
pain fast near thee. In . the height of this thy power com- 
eth thy fall. The powers above are raging at thee. 
Their vengeance is sure. It playeth about thee now. It 
is ready to dart upon thee. It will crush thee. May it 
come this night !" 

And Hellen sank upon his knees to implore: 

"O ye Gods, send down your shafts of flame to con- 
found this monster! O spare to yEole and Electra their 
purity!. Smite them dead ere worse befalleth them !" 

The king listened as if turned to stone. The audacity 
of this youth was more dreadful than his words. Whilst 
he stood glaring, and unable to speak, Hellen arose, and, 
in commanding tone, said: 

" Yield to me Electra and ^Eole." 

"Ah, thou askest for Electra first," was sneered with 
strange slowness and huskiness. 

Hellen darted for him, and in his young strength, and 
emotion, would doubtless have prevailed had he not been 
mastered by the same force that had rendered him help- 
less when endeavoring to rescue JEole from the temple's 
guards. An essence pungent and pleasant was thrown 
at him by Atlano, and he sank upon the ground. As he 
lay inert, the king continued: 

"As for thyself, it was meant thou shouldst join the 
warmen in a falling upon the Afrite coast at a place 
where treasure can be gained. But, because of thy 
words, thou shalt be yielded on the altar. Amen and 
Poseidon are again calling for blood, as the late troubles 
prove." 

A fearful nausea came upon Hellen. He struggled to 
defy: 



136 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Thou mockest Amen and Poseidon. My yielding upon 
the altar all such come of thy longing for blood. But 
the gods thou wouldst make so vile are ready to fall 
upon thee for the base deeds thou doest in their name. 
Rather would I be yielded on thine altar than stand in 
thy place!" 

With fiendish face, the king bounded upon him, and 
would have strangled him had not a rustling been 
heard in the thicket. He looked to see Sensel glide out, 
quivering and pallid. 

"King Atlano, thou art wanted in the temple. A 
great evil hath befallen." 

"jEole! Electra!" panted Hellen. 

The king turned to go, but Hellen's feeble hand caught 
at his robe. 

" King Atlano, yield me upon thine altar if thou wilt, 
but spare ^Eole and Electra. It is but a crumb." 

Atlano, smiling as the fiends, removed the hand, say- 
ing: 

"Thou wilt hear from me with the morn." 

Then, motioning to Sensel to lead the way, he rejoined 
the attendants awaiting him in the alley. 

Hellen watched until he had disappeared. If he could 
but move but fly after him but crush him ! 

Not long though, did his agony endure. It was 
scarcely five minutes when the thicket again rustled. 
The startled Hellen listened, and with hope. The rustling 
was repeated. Then, wonderful, his muscles began to 
grow less rigid, his blood to course warmer. In another 
moment he was leaping to his feet, and towards the 
thicket .when, from behind it, appeared the 'Silent 
Priest' I 

"The 'Silent Priest/" murmured poor Hellen. 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 137 

The silent one approached, and extended his hands to 
grasp Hellen's. Instantly, their soft, firm pressure gave 
confidence and strength to the forlorn youth. All fear 
and distrust vanished, and he looked into the noble 
countenance bending over him with strange yearning. 

The priest signed that Hellen must follow him; and 
he acquiesced, feeling as if this strange being could 
draw him .to the world's end. Arm in arm they walked 
to the tower, to mount it, the priest showing an agility 
as great as Hellen's. 

They sat down on the ledge. And, to Hellen's amaze, a 
sudden, strong hope possessed him. Could it be owing 
to the tender manner of this priest? Or could the warm 
pressure of his hand have aught to do with it? Neither 
spoke, and both turned their eyes to the water, in the 
direction of the far-off Pelasgia. After a little, Hellen 
moaned : 

"Ah home, home! As if we sorrowed not enough 
in being torn from it! Yet, what was that pain to this? 
The woe of this night! Tell me, 'Silent Priest' how 
can I save my pure ones, or kill them ere too late?" 

" My son, a way openeth. Thou wilt come out of this 
with thy sister. But woe woe to this wicked island!" 

Great was the shock to Hellen at the first tones of this 
voice. But it was as nothing to that which followed. 
For, this hitherto voiceless priest was not only giving 
utterance to Atlantean speech at the first, but continuing 
his sentences in Pelasgian. 

"Who art thou?" Hellen seized his garment and 
stared, bewildered, in his face. 

"Have care, Hellen. I am no priest of Poseidon. 
Feelest thou not who I am?" The 'Silent Priest' 
extended his arms in longing. 



138 

Hellen was speechless from the ecstasy of hope. 

" Hellen, this is but a mask this garb. Feelest thou 
not that I am ?" 

"My father?" 

Yea yea Hellen, thy father!" 

But Hellen was unconscious in the arms so eagerly 
enfolding him. His strained condition could not bear 
this quick change from agony to joy. Self- reproachful, 
his father chafed his hands, and gave him of a medicine 
he carried within his vestment. Overwhelming was his 
relief when Hellen unclosed his eyes to look at him, and 
opened his arms for a long embrace. 

When he was able to sit up, his father whispered: 

" We have need of care. The stones have eyes, the air 
hath ears. Now, hearken, for soon will I go back to the 
temple." 

Hellen pressed his hand in assent; then asked: 

11 But, first mother. Is she well ? " 

"Thy mother is as well as she can be under her great 
grief." 

"The gods be thanked. Ah, what a wretch am I! 
Father, when thou knowest my evil heart, thou wilt not 
own me." 

" Fear not, Hellen. Thou art but man. And now, 
hearken." 

"I will." 

" Hellen, after the Atlanteans had borne away thyself 
and yole, I reached Larissa to find thy mother nigh to 
death. Day and night I watched until she came out of 
the shadow. Then I besought ransom of the people. 
But they were deaf, in their rage at the Atlanteans. I 
ceased my pleadings after it was given me to feel, yea, 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 139 

to see hidden things and to be sure that all would end 
well. 

"Then came new misery. The tribes to the north 
sought battle with us; and I was forced to leave thy 
mother, and go against them. For a year did this last. 

" In the end, the loss and ruin were theirs. Then came 
I home to find thy mother again nigh to death. But, 
after a little, new life came to her, and with it hope. She 
was strong in the thought -that we should get our chil- 
dren was of one mind with me for, if knowledge can 
come from above, such was mine. But of this later. 

"Yea, thy mother was her old self, and urged me to 
again plead with the king and people for help. Our 
hopes proved in reason, for they agreed to lend us a few 
vessels. Then friends gathered about us to do the rest. 
And I built the boat in which I came hither. 

"Thus, after years of dread waiting, thy mother and I, 
with these dear friends, sailed for the Great Rock that 
riseth where the Middle Sea joineth the ocean. There, 
under its shadow, I left them. And, as a priest of Posei- 
don, came to these Atlanteans. 

"Ah, Hellen, that day I knew thee, even as my foot 
pressed the sands. Hard was it to keep from flinging 
myself upon thee in r thy strong young grace and pure 
look. Hellen, my dear son, all I had borne was as 
naught when I beheld thee. How it was that I ran not 
to thee to cry, 'Hellen, here is thy father! ' I know not. 
So strong was my yearning." 

" And, father, what were my feelings. Thy grand 
looks seemed beyond earth. Ah, how thou didst draw 
me ! Though, after that, was I willing to think of thee 
evil." 

" It was nature working in thee." 



140 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"But how these Atlanteans have bent, yielded to 
thee." 

"They fear the gods now that they have become 
wicked, and dare not make light of my warnings. 
Though Atlano and Oltis hate me, and would harm me 
if they dared. How often, by my. signs, have I chided 
them, and made them cease their evil. Upon their fears 
am I working that I may free thyself and yole. Oh, 
most wretched people ! " 

He had arisen. And raised his eyes as if imploring 
heaven's mercy. 

"But Sensel who is he, father?" 

Deucalion sat down again, and whispered: 

"He is young Prince Pelasgus, the son of our king." 

Hellen, of his surprise, exclaimed so loud that his 
father again cautioned him. As he sat confounded, it 
was to listen to this . 

" During our struggle with the tribes to the north, he 
served under me; and dear did we become to each other. 
He is noble, brave, good, and so true that he would not 
hearken that I should come without him. Though with 
ill grace was his father willing. But in all Pelasgia, there 
was not a youth who could run, turn, and bend himself 
as Prince Pelasgus not one so strong. Thus he asked 
to use these gifts as a mask in my. service. After some 
days, he came before me in his present shape ; and I saw 
that this mask of serpent look would aid me. I now 
know that I could not have done without him. Sensel 
is an able one. And the voice is his." . 

"Father!" 

"It is as I say. It is but in nature. Sensel learned it 
of a captive taken when the northern tribes fell upon us. 



LIGHT ON THE PATH. 14! 

He said it was quite common in his own land. But, as 
most of his tribe were killed, it is almost as if of the hid- 
den." 

"How will ALole and Electra glory in this," was said 
with due penitence. "From the first, they liked and 
trusted him. But I how have I tried to stifle their 
belief in him. How have I scorned him for his serpent 
ways, his services to king and priests." 

" It is a lesson for thee. But look yonder he cometh." 
"Let us go to him, father. I would kneel for his par- 
don." 

"Not here, my son." 

They descended from the tower. Upon meeting, Hellen 
would have embraced Sensel, had his father permitted it. 
As it was, his expressive face testified to his regret, his 
contrition for his unjust opinion, his former contempt, 
even before he whispered of such to the responsive Sen- 
sel. 

Afterward, still under cover of the bulls, were imparted 
to Hellen confidences at which he marveled. Then Deu- 
calion and Sensel hastened to the temple. 

Hellen remained to walk up and down the alley in a 
condition of mind far removed from that in which he had 
parted from Atlano. Now hope was not only showing 
herself, but promising abiding. 



NOTE. "Down to the present century, ventriloquism was re- 
garded as a physiological mystery. And, of old, it seemed awful 
when the river Nessus saluted Pythagoras, when a tree spoke be- 
fore Apollonius, and when a newborn infant, or animals, or stat- 
ues talked." 



CHAPTER XL 

THE HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED. 

DEUCALION entered the hillside door to be met in the 
court by several weeping handmaids, one of whom cried 
out to him: 

"^Eoleis no more. ^Eole is no more!" 

He paused, and his look questioned; when another 
handmaid answered. 

."She had just been called to the inner holy place, 
when, therein, we heard a great stir, and Sensel ran out 
to cry that she was lying dead at the foot of the statue 
of Amen. He had borne her in there, as she, of her 
grief, fell even at the door. Ah, poor yole poor 
./Eole!" 

This handmaid began to sob so that she could not 
continue. Then another handmaid spoke for her. 

" Thus we ran to the inner holy place, forgetting we 
should not go there. And, at the foot of Amen, beheld 
her as Sensel had said, whilst about her were gathering 
the high priest and the other priests. At first we could 
not believe her dead; and rubbed her hands, and bathed 
her brow. But she would not arouse. Now is the cold 
of death upon her." 

And this handmaid began to sob loud, the others join- 
ing with her. So extreme w%$ their grief that Deuca- 



HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED. 143 

lion could obtain no further information, in spite of his 
many signs. Thus he left them to hasten to the inner 
sanctuary. 

This apartment, upon entering, gave the impression of 
mystery, luxury, sensuousness anything save devotion 
notwithstanding its golden altar at the eastern end, its 
sacred fire thereon ; notwithstanding its great golden 
statues of Amen and Poseidon, the one to the altar's 
right, the other to its left, and both most wonderful in 
their size, majesty, and benignity of mien. 

Everywhere in this inner sanctuary were gold and sil- 
ver used lavishly. And, in the available places, were set 
magnificent gems, that, in their artful clustering, simu- 
lated flowers and fruits, thus affording the needful climax 
to all the splendors. 

Glowing with orichalcum and clustering gems was the 
ceiling, while from it hung golden lamps resplendent in 
jewels. In corners, smoked silver vessels emitting per- 
fumes whose subtlety overmastered the will. About the 
greenstone columns, the rarest flowers were wreathed. 

Yet, incongruously with the taste displayed, the fitness 
of the splendors, were the effeminate furnishings. Soft- 
est mats covered the tiled floor; couches, stands, and 
tables of fantastic workmanship were scattered about; 
whilst, in the center, stood a larger table containing stim- 
ulating drinks, fruits and sweetmeats. And elegant 
hangings fell from the doors. Could this indeed be a 
sanctuary ? 

The vast apartment was a dream of luxury and sen- 
suousness; and, from the half-opened doors at its north- 
ern end, could be gained a faint idea of the sumptuous- 
ness of its withdrawing rooms, No wonder was it that, 



144 

upon entering, the mind, instead of concentrating upon 
things divine, should become enthralled by dreams of 
sense ! 

The great Amen was represented as a human being 
with the head of a ram, for the reason, doubtless, that he 
was considered as standing in the same relation to the 
people that the ram does to the flock. He was guide, 
governor, and protector. And, about his head was a 
crown simulating the sun's rays. For, Amen was the 
Sun God. 

^Eole had been laid on a couch near this statue ; and 
about her were gathered handmaids and priests. Yes, 
here, pale and motionless, lay the lovely form hushing 
the gazers into awe. Here, revelry had given away to a 
strange quiet. Here, the handmaids, with blanched 
faces, were restraining their sobbing. Here, priests were 
looking from the dead to each other, mystified and ap- 
prehensive. Here, Atlano and Oltis were ever casting 
terrified, quickly averted looks at the statue of Amen 
that seemed to frown in response. 

As the 'Silent Priest ' took his place among the watch- 
ers, they turned as one to regard him. But, unmindful 
of their questioning gaze, his eyes rested long upon the 
waxen form. Finally, at an impatient movement from 
Oltis, he raised his head, and flashed from him to At- 
lano a look so- condemnatory that the spectators shook 
with dismay. Though neither of the ones thus rebuked 
gave any response, save to turn as if to look upon the 
dead girl. 

Then, the 'Silent Priest' moved toward the statue of 
Amen. But, had scarcely reached it, when attracted by 
the sudden incoming of Electra. As if beside herself, 



HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED. 145 

she ran to kneel before him ; and in tones as persuasive 
as piteous, entreated : 

" O ' Silent Priest,' is this how the gods would help ? 
If thou wilt but heed me. Beseech of them that I, too, 
may go. Life is such a woe that I am tempted to end 
it. Ah, to die with ^Eole ! If thou wilt but plead with 
Amen and Poseidon to have mercy upon me as they 
have had upon her. Let me go to her." 

He took her hand. And, oh the sudden* strength that 
carne to her ! In an instant, she was no longer despair- 
ing. Then, he signed for her to arise; and she stood up 
as a queen. 

" ' Silent Priest,' thou hast spoken. It is not mine to 
ask thee to beseech the gods. If it is their will I should 
sorrow more, I must bear. I will chafe no longer." 

He regarded her with approbation ; and bowed in ac- 
quiescence. She felt he was saying inwardly : 

"Keep this, thy humility. It will lead thee to light. 
May the gods cheer thee." 

Though the tears were welling thick in her eyes, for 
all her strength. As these fell, she moaned, " Hard, 
hard, will it be without ^Eole. How soon she filled my 
heart. From the first was I fond of her. And fond was 
she to me ! " Then, impetuously, with arms outstretched, 
she turned to run toward the couch, when called by one 
of several handmaids entering from the passage. 

She paused. They came beside her; and the hand, 
maid who had called, whispered: "We have made- ready 
the bed of lilies in front of the altar. There yEole will 
lie until the embalmers send the word. We have come 
for her." 

Painful was it to witness Electra's pallor. She mur- 

10 



146 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

mured: "Let us draw beside her. I would kiss her." 
Whereupon, this handmaid led the suffering girl in 
among the watchers, and to the place where she could 
take dole's hand to kiss, to bathe it with her tears. 

One of the handmaids left then spoke to a priest. This 
priest, in turn, spoke to Oltis. Thus Oltis, in loud tone, 
asked : 

"Where is Sensel?" 

In answer, Sensel appeared in the passage. Oltis 
ordered : 

" Bring the white robe." 

Sensel left to return at once with a robe of lamb's 
wool, pure as snow. Oltis continued: 

"Wrap therein the maiden. And bear her to the bed 
of lilies." 

Touching was the reverence with which Sensel enfolded 
^Eole in this. Amid the hysterical sobbing of the hand- 
maids, he raised her in his arms. And bore her, as a 
babe might have been borne, through the great apartment 
to the passage, and thence into the temple; king, priests, 
handmaids following. 

Upon the bed of lilies was yole laid the robe being 
removed. With loving touch, the handmaids drew her 
long gown about her feet, and arranged the hands and 
arms. Then they kissed the sweet forehead, and caressed 
the long, shining hair. After this, they ranged about her 
and the kneeling Electra, who had again taken a hand to 
clasp. to her breast. Thus, they awaited the summons of 
the embalmer. 

Crowds of people were arriving, so fast had spread the 
news. Even Queen Atlana came to hang stricken but 
un weeping over the body of this young girl she had loved 



HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED. 147 

so well. Hellen also came, to stand and gaze fixecUy 
upon the dear, calm face. 

In an hour, word was brought that the embalmers 
were ready. Amid the stir that ensued, the attendants 
deputed moved to the sides of the bed of lilies, in order 
to bear it with its lovely burden to the embalming room. 
But, scarcely had they taken their places than rendered 
motionless by the shrill cry from Hellen: 

"See! Her eyelids quiver!" 

Awful was the hush. Instantly, the ' Silent Priest' was 
beside yEole, and looking in her face. Breathlessly the 
people waited until he turned to sign that Hellen spoke 
the truth. Then went up a great cry of gladness. Then 
sank the relieved queen in the arms of her ladies. Then 
arose Electra from her knees to stare at the ' Silent Priest' 
incredulously. 

Atlano and Oltis came forward for inspection ; and 
found confirmation. Oltis said to the people: 

"Of a truth, her eyelids quiver. She is not dead." 

Another glad shouting went up. Each felt as thankful 
as though the young girl was his own. From Queen 
Atlana, the blessed tears of hope were beginning to flow; 
whilst Electra, in her revulsion of feeling, so tottered 
that Hellen darted to her side to sustain her. 

Then, while the people .were quieting somewhat, and 
the handmaids were sobbing loud for gladness, the attend- 
ants and messenger from the embalmers retired. 

Still ^Eole lay passive. Even the eyelids had ceased 
to quiver. Yet, the faintest tinge of pink was coming 
into her cheeks. The great throng about her scarcely 
pulsated more than herself in its expectation of the unex- 
pected when those beside her proclaigil-thi^^w de- 
velop me nt. 




148 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

There was a long interval of suspense. Then arose 
the cry : 

" Look ! Her lips part ! " 

Terrible was the hush. Would she speak? Would 
her soft tones issue forth ? 

Instead, there came upon them a sound as of the 
sweeping wind a sound, that, as it became intelligible, 
caused the listeners to shake as aspens. This must be 
the voice of a mighty spirit ! And these words none 
could mistake. 

"Atlanteans, I would warn. There are gods ! There- 
fore, call to mind how ye have set aside the olden laws, 
what mockeries ye 'have brought upon temple and inner 
holy place. 

' Further, hold no longer the Pelasgian children. This 
day, give them over unto the 'Silent Priest.' He, with 
the sun of the morrow, will bear them to their home." 

The lips closed. 

Atlano and the priests had listened, shivering. Theirs 
was the corruption of these islanders theirs, the profana- 
tions of altar and sanctuary. The sharp spear of dread 
was piercing them. It was minutes before Atlano could 
control himself to ask humbly: 

" Mighty Spirit, is it in truth the will of our Father 
Poseidon that we give over the captives to the .' Silent 
Priest'?" 

"Thou speakest it." 

"Tell our father that we hearken. We pray that he 
will plead for us with Amen." 

"It is heard." 

There succeeded an awful silence. It was felt that the 
mighty spirit had departed. And, as before, ^Eole lay as 
dead. 



HAPPENING OF THE UNEXPECTED. 149 

Though the throng, in its expectation wavered not 
to be rewarded within an hour For then, Hellen cried: 

" Look look ! Again cometh the color into her 
cheeks!" 

Frantically were they pressing about her when waved 
back by the ' Silent Priest/ The queen and Electra, of 
their trembling, required support. As to Atlano and 
Oltis, they seemed as if turned to stone. 

There came another cry from Hellen: 

" She doth breathe ! Her eyes open ! " 

He bent over her in such agitation that the 'Silent 
Priest ' thought best"to lead him away, and beside Elec- 
tra. She held out to him her hand, which he seized. 

" Hellen, dear Hellen, be calm," she whispered. "Our 
strength is needed. The gods are with us." 

She cast a grateful look at Sensel, who stood between 
them and ^Eole vibrating and brilliant, and who returned 
her look with one that meant victory. 

Meanwhile, the handmaids had been applying to 
^Eole's nostrils a sponge dampened with a pungent liquor 
brought by Oltis. Under its influence, she quickly 
revived, and shortly was being propped up on cushions, 
whilst about her was tucked the robe of lambs' wool. 
Afterward, the ' Silent Priest' brought her a drink which 
caused her to be quite herself, though her bewilderment 
at her surroundings proved her unconsciousness of what 
had occurred. 

But the priests, of their doubt, would question her. 
Therefore, Oltis was not long in asking: ." Handmaid 
^Eole, didst thou dream in thy sleep?" 

^Eole, reddening and paling, replied feebly: 

" Most Honored and High Priest, I dreamed not." 



150 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Knowest thou aught of what hath happened since 
thou wert found as if dead?" 

"Most Honored and High Priest, I know naught since 
I fell before Amen in the inner holy place, and besought 
him to take me from this life." 

Oltis shrank back, and a murmur arose that swelled 
through the vast assemblage. This murmur grew to a 
shout as Queen Atlana, who had not shown herself, 
leaned over, and clasped ALole to her. 

With a glad cry that brought tears to the eyes near 
her, the young girl returned the embrace, and kissed 
again and again the hands of this almost mother. 

But soon Queen Atlana raised to her full height, to 
her lovely, gracious bearing, and looked about her. 

"Atlanteans," she said, with a world of meaning. 

Delighted cries answered her. 

"Atlanteans, am I right to take her back to the palace 
this fair young captive who hath grown to be my 
daughter ? " 

Deafening were the shouts : 

" Yea ! Yea ! " 

"Ye will aid me?" 

"We will! We will!" 

She turned to Rica, and said: 

"Order a chair." 

This Rica proceeded to do of an attendant, as Atlano, 
in a rage, vociferated: 

"Nay!" 

Queen Atlana again spoke to Rica: "I will have the 
chair." Then to Atlano, she said low, and with em- 
phasis: "If I am not obeyed, I go not back to the pal- 



HAPPENING OP THE UNEXPECTED. 15 I 

They eyed each other as no man and wife should. 
Hard is it when a wife is obliged, in presence of others, 
to assert herself. Terrible is it to perceive a husband's 
face take on an expression murderous! The people 
again clamored their indignation until Atlana herself 
quieted them by the eloquence of her hands. Though 
there continued cries here and there for the chair. 

King Atlano had turned aside in sullen discomfiture, 
when the queen again spoke the word for the chair. 
And now it was brought beside her, and eagerly, if it 
must be told. 

The attendants were thronging to lift ^Eole therein 
when Sensel pressed in among them, to urge: 

" It is mine to lift her, to bear her." 

Before they had scarcely accepted his purpose, she 
was raised from the bed of lilies and placed in the chair, 
and he waited calm beside it. 

The queen's look pierced him, but he returned it 
proudly, growing so brilliant that her look became one 
of amaze. Then, to her surprise, as well as that of the 
beholders, she bowed in consent. With that, Sensel 
and an attendant bore the chair on to the queen's chariot. 

As Queen Atlana turned to follow, she beckoned to 
Electra. Electra then came beside her, and the queen 
subjoined: 

"Electra, thou wilt come also." 

Unmindful of the scowling king, she took the hand of 
the overjoyed young girl, and passed with gracious 
smiles through the lines of intent islanders, whose love 
showed in their looks, whose sympathy breathed in elo- 
quent undertones. Quickly they were entering the 
great broad low chariot, on whose soft cushions reclined 



152 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Sensel was standing very near her. He had been 
talking with her, and she was smiling, rosy. Further, 
to the surprise of the queen and Electra, she held out 
her hand when they were about to drive off, and said, in 
her gracious way: 

" I will give the parting word, Sensel." 

"Thou wilt do that after I have seen thee in. the pal- 
ace," he returned, in his brilliant manner. Then the 
chariot drove away. 

True to his word, he was in the courtyard when they 
arrived, and not only that, but would lift her out, 
would place her in the chair, would help to bear her 
within. When no more could be done for her, he said, 
in softest tone: 

"Now is my parting word, ^Eole." 

Then bowing low and elegantly to the queen, he darted 
away in his most undulatory fashion. 

"What a strange being," exclaimed Queen Atlana. 
" But I like him." 

"So do we," murmured ^Eole, and blushed. 



CHAPTER XII. 

THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS. 

IN the inner sanctuary, the lamps were casting feeble 
radiance, the altar fire acting strangely capricious, when 
Atlano, Oltis, Urgis, and the superior priests met for 
conference upon the day's awful events. 

Close they drew their couches, and reclined to cast 
about them looks serious, apprehensive. Only too appar- 
ent was the ease affected by Atlano and Oltis as they 
surveyed the dark countenances upon which alarm was 
setting its seal as they averted their faces from the 
majestic, upright figure that was eyeing them so fixedly. 

This silent one how they were longing to fall upon 
him, to strangle, to trample him under their feet ! What 
was the strange power that held them that forced them 
to his will ? Cravens had they become ! 

After an ominous quiet of some minutes, and when 
Atlano was beginning to chafe under the anxious gaze 
of these white-robed, imposing figures, he said, with 
affected buoyancy, 

"This night we meet not here for mirth. The troubles 
of the day claim our thought. But, first, I would ask are 
any among you shaken weak of spirit ? v ' 

They looked at each other in doubt how to answer. 
Finally, Hafoe, a priest old in wickedness, spoke out. 

('S3) 



154 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" O King, I believe the gods are in this. I believe they 
look upon us in anger." 

Atlano's was the utmost suavity. "Though why 
should the gods look upon us in anger, Hafoe?" 

There was silence. 

Oltis, who had been glaring at Hafoe, now addressed 
hi.n. 

"Thou believest the gods look upon us in .anger, 
Hafoe? One week since, thou didst mock at our rites 
in the temple, thou didst laugh at the people because 
they still hold enough of the faith of their fathers to come 
and worship in form, if not in spirit with the lip, if not 
with the heart." 

" Who mocked, who laughed with me, High Priest 
Oltis?" returned Ha'foe, angrily. 

"I. And I mock and laugh still. I am not one. to 
change. I tell thee, Hafoe, I mocked and laughed because 
I believe not. I fear no gods. I know not if there are 
any!" And Oltis brought his fist down heavily upon 
the small table at the head of his couch, in his defiance. 

The other priests shivered. Whence had come this 
strange sensitiveness ? Such language as that of Oltis and 
Hafoe, such derision of holy things, had been heard 
hourly in this inner sanctuary, and heard lightly even 
by those who could not quite steel themselves in un- 
belief. But now, an indefinable dread, a strange horror, 
was creeping over them as they listened. Therefore, they 
looked with disapproval upon Oltis because of his de- 
fiance. They would have rebuked his temerity, had they 
dared, would have bid him incur no further displeasure 
from the all too evident Unseen. 

Yet, even as they looked with growing disfavor, did 
they begin to wonder, and shortly, to stare in amaze, 



THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS. . 155 

What was coming over him? 

Even as his hand fell had he become as it were trans- 
fixed. The hand that lay heavily, began to press heavily; 
the entire body grew in rigidity; and a deathlike pallor 
was overspreading his face. Atlano, who had been gaz- 
ing alarmed, demanded: 

"Oltis, what aileth thee? Cease that staring." 

But Oltis continued to stare, and remain rigid. Fear- 
ful was it to see his pallor, even amid this deathlike 
repose, increase. Hafoe, wan and trembling, lifted his 
hand from the table. But it fell a dead weight. The 
eyes, in their growing glassiness, were horrible. Hafoe 
cried : 

"Oltis, dost thou live?" But not a quiver of the eye- 
lids answered, although the eyes lost none of their intel- 
ligence. 

Stonily they watched, wondering if he would come out 
of this to laugh at them. Finally Atlano spoke. 

"Oltis, cease thy spells. Wouldst thou have us as 
thyself?" 

Upon this, the king arose stiffly, and, with some exer- 
tion, walked beside him to gaze in his face, and feel of 
his skin. 

" Oltis, thou art a corpse, with life in it! What aileth 
thee?" 

But Oltis replied not save by his eloquent eyes. Every 
other part of him was marble. Nervously, Atlano bade 
a priest bring the life cordial. This was applied to brow 
and nostrils, but had no effect. Still Oltis was as dead, 
except in glance. 

Thus, Atlano sat down. To the terrified priests who 
had gathered about the stricken one, he said: 



156 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Sit ye again. We will talk together and Oltis can 
listen, that is if his ears are as alive as his eyes. 
Should we settle aught, such can be laid before him, 
when he cometh out of this." 

But they were quivering with dread, and the calm 
they tried to assume, made it but the more apparent. 
The voice of Hafoe shook, his words dragged feebly. 

"O King Atlano, let us have a care what we say! " 

" We are here to talk upon the troubles of the day, and 
to settle this matter of the Pelasgian children," resumed 
Atlano. Voice and manner had gathered assurance. 

" Was not the matter of the Pelasgian children settled 
this day?" asked Kluto, the youngest of the priests. 

"It was not settled;" and Atlano looked at him confi- 
dently. 

"King Atlano meanest thou that thou hast the 
thought to keep them after thy promise?" 

"My promise to what? Kluto, believest thou in that 
jugglery?" 

" King Atlano, thou didst seem to believe even as much 
as we." 

"Have a care!" 

" I mean naught save to fall before thee. But I have 
the dread that the earth is about to fade away. Didst 
thou note the thick, dark look of the air before we came 
in here and how gloomy was our supper room, even 
with its many lights?" 

"I did." 

"And, King Atlano, hast thou noted how faint is the 
flame on the altar of the temple and on this?" 

"I have." 

"And these lamps in their paling?" 



THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS. !$/ 

"I have." 

"Then what thinkest thou of it all?" 

"It is that the air is heavier than common." 

" May such not be to our woe ! " 

".We can but wait and see." Atlano's laugh rang 
mockingly. 

But with his words, the priests were startled at per- 
ceiving a change in Oltis. They pointed; and the king 
looked to see him slowly raising his hand from the table. 
Then it paused as if to warn. 

"Ah he doth rouse." And Atlano arose, and went 
to him. Lightly he seized the hand, saying as if to it, 
" Thou wouldst warn us wouldst thou ? Down ! " 

But the hand, in this position, was as iron; and moved 
riot when Atlano, with all his strength, would have 
pressed it to the table again. It remained fixed in the 
air, enforcing its warning. 

After several trials, Atlano returned to his couch. 
Very pale, but determined was his face. He said to the 
trembling priests as he stood and looked his haughtiest, 

" Why cower ye? Think ye this is also of the gods? 
Think ye this will baffle me?" 

The silent one, the only priest calm and undaunted, 
arose, and looked at the king in rebuke. Atlano, un- 
willing to own to himself the strange effect of this look, 
struggled to shout : 

"And I would tell thee, 'Silent Priest/ that whether 
thou comest of heaven or hell thou art not to stand and 
look at me thus. To thy couch! Further, turn from 
me thine evil eye. Or, thou too, wilt find that, when 
the king willeth, the highest in the temple, if it needeth, 
shall feed the holy fire," 



158 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The silent one stood calm, unblenching. 

" Wilt thou to thy couch ? " 

And King Atlano made a step forward as if he would 
fall upon the man towering so grandly before him. An- 
other step, and he called : 

"Urgis, Hafoe, Sudor, Kluto come that we may 
bring him to the earth ! " 

But neither Urgis, Hafoe, Sudor, Kluto, nor any 
other priest moved at his bidding. They could but 
stare at this priest as he stood in his majesty and fear- 
lessness, could but wonder at the strange power of his 
eyes. This strength of look must be what held them. 
Though, why held it not Atlano, who was still advancing, 
with hand stealing within his garment after his weapon, 
the mysterious liquor, that had rendered Hellen impotent. 

Well the priests knew this liquor, for they, in their se- 
cret laboratory, had concocted it after an almost illegible 
receipt found among the possessions of the dead Viril, 
who had been their instructor in alchemic arts. Well 
they knew its power ! Now, they awaited, in their im- 
mobility, for its sure effect. 

Onward drew Atlano with gleaming eyes and stealing 
hand. And, when well upon the 'Silent Priest,' who 
still maintained his wonderful look, would have drawn 
the weapon forth to fell him. But, with the significant 
attempt, came dread resistance. The hand refused to 
move, to come from out the folds that held it ! 

Atlano, in his struggle to free the helpless member, 
grew black in the face, black of his terror and desire for 
revenge. Yet, he made as though he would still ad- 
vance upon the immovable figure, desisting only when he 
found himself inert. Then did his tones ring through 
the sanctuary. 



THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS. 159 

" Man or demon I fear thee not ! I fear not thy 
spells. Think not this will confound me. I say to the 
voice to those not seen that I will not obey. I will 
not yield the Pelasgian children!" 

Then went up the cry of terror from this inner sanctu- 
ary, from the priests so motionless before. But it was 
not because of Atlano's words. No, the earth was threat- 
ening again. Again was smiting upon their ears the ter- 
rific rumbling of the day before. Again was the earth 
lurching as does a ship when at mercy of wind and wave. 

Vibration after vibration increased in such force and 
velocity that it seemed the hanging lamps must come 
crashing down, the walls fall in upon them. Terrible was 
it to witness the statues of Amen and Poseidon sway 
as though they would kiss the floor and this continu- 
ously. More terrible to hear Oltis' hand fall with a loud 
.thud upon the table, and yet perceive that he remained 
rigid and staring. Most terrible to see Atlano wrench 
forth his hand, turn from the silent one, and fly to. the 
passage, calling after him: " Come come ere it be too 
late ! " 

Never had he been so well obeyed. After him sprang 
the priests, Urgis leading. Scarce had the last escaped 
than the ceiling yielded its lamps, which fell with terrific 
noise, one almost grazing the hapless Oltis, who still sat 
as iron, listening to the swift running in passages and 
apartments, the shrieks that filled the air. 

Through the tottering temple sped all to the great 
court king, priests, handmaids, attendants when there, 
pausing to watch the temple as it swayed in the semi- 
darkness. And, oh the fierce rocking of the earth be- 
neath ! Where could they run ? Not toward the ocean, 



160 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

for that was white in its threatening. Naught was left 
but to fall on their knees, and utter prayers that for once, 
were heartfelt. 

The while, they watched the temple which was sway- 
ing less and less. Would it stop, though ? Incredulity 
answered. But, when no longer in doubt, they fell to 
embracing each other; and laughed and wept spasmod- 
ically. 

Then occurred another shock, a light one, that sent 
them into despair. These light ones continued at short 
intervals, so that they could but await the final one, 
which would bring down the temple. 

People were thronging in to inquire as to the safety 
of the temple, remaining long enough to give their ex- 
periences, and receive those of the attendants. Mean- 
while, the king stood in his chariot near the portico sur- 
rounded by his guards ; whilst scattered about him were . 
priests and shrinking handmaids, the latter under strict 
surveillance. 

Long had Atlano been looking on every side in the 
gloom for the ' Silent Priest,' but without perceiving him. 
Finally, he beckoned to Kluto. And asked, " Hast thou 
seen the ' Silent Priest ' since we fled ? " 

" O King, I have not seen him since we sped from the 
inner holy place. Then he was lost in looking upon 
Oltis with no mind for the terrors about him." 

"Poor Oltis! I wonder whether he hath moved," was 
said ironically. Then, with concern, he added, " Could 
it be that the silent one was harmed killed by the fall- 
ing lamps?" 

" It might be, oh King. He seemed fixed, and with no 
thought of flying." 



THE EARTHQUAKE CONFOUNDS. l6l 

"I will go back, and find what hath happened to him." 

"Gracious king, dare it not. Wait until the shocks 
cease I beseech thee. Or I will go for thee." 

" Nay I would go. I can go in and out between 
them." 

/'There would be no time to get out should the heavy 
shock that we look for come whilst thou wert within. 
Here is it now!" 

But this proved light also. However, Atlano said, as 
if to himself: "I will wait a little. But it doth trouble 
me." 

Thus, he fidgeted, and looked most anxious. And at 
last whispered to Urgis, who stood at his right, "Well 
would it be if the silent one were lying stark stifTer 
than Oltis!" 

" Gracious king, have a care." Urgis looked in fear 
about him. 

" I am having a care a care for myself for all of us. 
While he liveth, I cannot breathe. Of that, am I sure 
Ah to see him on the altar! " 

Then, because of Urgis' terrified look, he laughed 
recklessly. And subjoined: 

" I wonder how are the queen and her children. At 
eve, when I asked after the sleeping one, I was told that 
herself and Electra were fastened within the inner room 
of the queen, where they were resting. Even the queen 
denied me, being therein also. In meek manner did I 
come away. But this day that now is beginning will 
they learn the power of the king!" 

Again he laughed recklessly. Though Urgis and the 
others hearing this laugh could but shudder. 
TI 



CHAPTER XIII. 

IN THE 'DEEPS.' 

As Kluto said, the ' Silent Priest' had remained in the 
inner sanctuary to gaze upon Oltis who still showed no 
life save in the eyes, that of his agony, were almost 
bursting from their sockets. 

Yet alas for Oltis the greatest shock was to come. 
His humiliation and despair were not complete. 

When the fleeing priests were without, the ' Silent 
Priest' moved nearer; and standing over him, severe in 
his majesty, gave utterance to speech. Fearful was it to 
hear his deep tones in the gruesome apartment, but more 
fearful to witness the great beads that started upon Oltis' 
forehead at sound of this voice. 

"Yea, Oltis I can speak when I will. The time hath 
come. I have to say I go from theefor a little. I would 
look into the hidden things of the 'Deeps.' Then will I 
comeback." 

In Oltis' eyes was a look of utmost horror, and 
the perspiration rolled off him. Yet he stirred not 
even when the 'Silent Priest' after lighting a hand lamp, 
had left the apartment to penetrate those mysteries which 
had been supposed so artfully veiled. 

Deucalion entered the passage dividing the with- 
drawing rooms of Atlano, Oltis, and Urgis. Unheedful 



IN THE ' DEEPS.' 163 

of the lavish luxury disclosed by the open doors, on he 
hastened, his eyes, his thoughts intent upon a door at the 
end that was set low in the wall. 

Reaching this, he pressed the lower left hand corner. 
There was heard the sound of something smoothly mov- 
ing. The door was disappearing within the wall, disclos- 
ing a stone stairway extending into darkness. 

Lamp in hand, he darted down this to come upon two 
doors side by side. He pressed upon the lower. right 
hand corner of the left one; and it yielded, gliding into 
the wall about the other which was but an imitation. 

As though blinded, he stepped through. 

When the film had cleared from his eyes, he beheld 
spreading deep, a vast, crypt-like apartment whose high 
ceiling was supported by pillars of red syenite ; and about 
which were burning lamps securely fastened in niches. 
The walls were covered with a coating of lime so smooth 
that the figures painted thereon in rich colors and quite 
elegantly, stood out in fine relief. 

As these figures treated of the gods and the future life, 
Deucalion would have been glad to study them, had the 
occasion allowed. As it was, he but glanced at thenij 
and then his eyes darted from point to point. Almost 
instantly, at the farther end, where the shadows were 
thickest, they lighted upon some indistinct white objects, 
that moved with every vibration of the still rocking 
building. 

It was a terrible moment for Deucalion. Over him 
swept a mighty dread a dread to go nearer these. Yet, 
stifling this, he began to run down the long apartment, 
tottering as he ran. And came beside these large white 
objects that proved to be beautifully sculptured*coffins 
of alabaster, mounted on great blocks of red syenite. 



1 64 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

In the extreme of weakness, he fell against the first; 
and moaned; and implored for courage to look within. 

And arousing, did so to weep and groan, to run like 
a madman from one to the other until he had looked in 
all. 

For, here were no priests in these alabaster coffins. 
Instead, were the embalmed bodies of what had been 
fair maidens each with a lifetime of woe upon its 
features. Such haggardness, such suffering, surely never 
before were stamped on young faces. So fine was the 
embalming that every line showed as in life arid with 
its weight of agony. 

He ran from one to the other, crying, "Ye powers 
could such things be? Their poor bodies tell the tale. 
The pretty ones the tortured ones! Ah those thrice- 
cursed monsters! Yet they live live to gloat upon their 
work. Ye gods crush them out. Never again let such 
work mar the face of earth. ALole, ^ole to see what 
was before thee! " 

He fell on his knees, the tears streaming, and besought: 

" Mercy, ye gods ! Help ! Set us Tree from this house 
of death ! (Ye vile islanders to lose these fair ones and 
not pull down this pile !) Help me, ye gods, to save my 
dear ones. And give Electra, too. Aid me still to mas- 
ter king, priests, people, until I am on the sea, and bear- 
ing my dear ones to Pelasgia. Ah, ./Cole, Hellen what 
sorrow is like unto this?" 

He arose; and ran again, as if distracted, from coffin to 
coffin. 

"Ye pretty ones! Where were your fathers your 
mothers? Was it for .this ye were given them ? Do the 
gods grant that men may live lost to all save sense, and 



IN THE 'DEEPS.' 165 

die in peace in such? Never! Thrice-cursed island, 
thou art doomed! Thou and thy vile people will vanish 
as down blown by the wind! And coming ages will 
doubt thy being; or, if not doubting, will mock at thee!" 

When he had turned from the last coffin, and was 
staggering about aimlessly, he came upon a door set low 
under the stairway. "Ah," he muttered, "I know. It 
leadeth to the embalming room the private one of these 
priests. Well know they the art as these tortured ones 
show." 

He hastened to this door, and pushed it open. Here 
again was darkness. He went for .his lamp; and then 
stepped through into a low passage; and thence through 
another door into a very large apartment. As he had 
surmised, it was the private embalming room. 

With lamp held high, he walked in its fell shadows, 
examining. Here was the crooked piece of iron for 
drawing out the brain through the nostrils. Here was 
the Ethiopian stone for making the incision in the side. 
There were the palm wine, the powdered myrrh, the cas- 
sia, the other aromatic drugs. There were the bandages 
of linen, the gum, the natron, even the cinnamon. And 
yes there in the most distant corner were more of 
those pure, translucent alabaster coffins. Empty wait- 
ing for whom? 

The apartment was shaken with his groans. He felt 
if he staid longer his senses would give way. Wildly he 
ran back into the vault, and toward the stairway. His 
soul was filled with horror. His .eyeballs burned. His 
body shook as if with palsy. So overcome was he that, 
on the topmost step, he fell panting. And could not 
rise for many minutes. When he did, it was to totter to 



1 66 

the inner sanctuary. Here he fell on a couch, groaning 
repeatedly. 

Finally, his strength returning, he went over to Oltis, 
and said, " I have been down the stairway." 

Over the marble figure passed a tremor. 

"I have seen the dead handmaids in their alabaster 
coffins!" 

There was another tremor. 

"Whose work was this?" 

The marble lips moved. 

"It was that of Atlano and myself." 

"This was in thy base search for that draught said to 
give life without end? To get this, thou hast tortured 
those fair young creatures?" 

"Yea. And the younger and fairer, the more the 
power," burst from Oltis. "Viril knew! Viril found it 
out for his own use! But was so base as not to tell us! 
Though, among his goods, we found a torn piece of 
papyrus that gave us the clue. On it was written some 
of the parts forming the draught. The blood of mai- 
dens lovely maidens was one- And, as tjieir blood 
dripped from them into the crucible, they were to stand 
and stir the blessed mixture. Ah, how we worked ! How 
we tried to find the missing parts. Maiden after maiden 
lost her life!" Oltis had become gloating in his remem- 
brance. "And if, at times, Atlano would have had mercy, 
I would not. His mercy, thou canst judge. As for my- 
self, no maiden was so fair as the one, who, in her mix- 
ing, most promised the draught. For, there is power in 
maiden blood! Once, we almost reached it. Once, I 
believed I should be High Priest King, forever! But 
it came to nau'ght." And his head sank on his breast. 



.IN THE 'DEEPS.' 167 

''They died then?" 

" Yea. Their blood was their life ! " 

"This was done in the room yonder?" 

Deucalion had pointed to a door at the northwestern 
corner. 

"Yea." Oltis again raised his head; his eyes were 
resuming their savageness. "Since thou earnest for 
some reason we have not had the wish." 

"Then why came ^Eole into this inner place?" 

"Ask me not." 

"Ah ^Eole my child my child ! " cried Deucalion, 
involuntarily. And he fell on his knees to utter his grat- 
itude. 

"Thanks, ye gods! Thanks that I came in time. 
Thanks for these powers that have aided me to this. Ah 
^Eole Hellen to have you again in Pelasgia. To 
bring you to the arms of your mother!" 

Most terrible was the cry that burst from Oltis. In 
his horror at this sudden revelation, he started to his feet 
but only to sink to his couch, helpless. Untold agony 
was upon him. Light had come that was paralyzing, 
blinding. Groan after groan rent his stiffened body. 

Deucalion arose to gaze at him ; and quickly he calmed 
almost to stupor. Then Deucalion questioned him. 

"Where got ye the coffins?" 

"They were made in Khemi;* and brought into the 
vault in the darkest night." 

"Doth Kluto know aught of this?" 

"He knoweth not. He was raised to tliis inner holy 
place as thou earnest. He hath not been told." 

*Sharpe's History of Egypt. 



i68 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"The other higher priests know?" 

"They know, and aided, hoping for the draught. In 
the temples of all the great cities are the priests seeking. 
I have been among them." Here was a sigh that had 
terrible meaning. 

"The rulers, like the king, have aided?" 

"Yea." 

"That is the reason the captains meet no more?" 

"Yea." 

"That is the reason the sixth year was .not kept?" 

"That was the year before thou earnest. We had not 
the time." 

" O most wretched people ! With all thine ease, there 
is now no time for the keeping of thine oldest law, one 
handed down by thy father Poseidon! How couldst 
thou dare to let the sixth year go by, Oltis?" 

" I care not for the olden laws. Thinkest thou because 
such are graved on their columns that they must stand 
forever? We can make laws now for ourselves; and 
have." 

Deucalion shivered. 

This violation in not observing the sixth year was 
most heinous. The first men had inscribed its regula- 
tions on the great column of orichalcum, before men- 
tioned, that stood in the grove of Poseidon in front of 
the gateway of the great court. Here, before this col- 
umn, were the king and sub-kings (or royal rulers), 
to meet every fifth and sixth year alternately, in order 
to consult about public affairs, inquire into weighty trans- 
gressions, and afterward pass judgment. It was a grand 
Congress. But before judgment was passed, certain 
pledges were given, and in this wise: 



IN THE ' DEEPS.' .169 

The sacred bulls that ranged the inclosures on the 
northern slope of the mountain were hunted by ten 
chosen men with staves and nooses. When one was 
caught, he was led up to the column, and struck upon 
the head to fall dead before the inscription. Then, on 
the altar near the column, were his limbs offered a burnt 
sacrifice. Afterward, a cup was partly filled with his 
blood; and in this, each one of the Congress cast a 
blood clot. Then the rest of the victim was laid on the 
fire. Thereupon, each took a golden vessel, drew from 
the cup, and poured a libation upon the fire, at the same 
time swearing that he would punish transgressors, that 
he would not violate the inscriptions, and that he would 
not obey any ruler who would command him to act con- 
trary to the laws of Poseidon. After drinking, each ves- 
sel was dedicated to the temple. 

When supper was eaten, and the altar fire was out, 
they put on beautiful azure robes; and sat in the dark- 
ness before the embers of the sacrifice in order to receive 
and give judgment. At daybreak were written on golden 
tablets their sentences, which were then deposited in the 
temple as memorials, together with the robes. 

At the end, they swore not to take up arms against 
each other; ever to aid the royal house in case of rebel- 
lion; and, in common, to deliberate upon war, giving the 
supremacy to the house of Atlas. Further, the king 
promised never to decide upon the life or death of a 
kinsman unless he had the assent of a majority of the 
sub-kings.* 

This was the most ancient and most important of 
observances. Yet rulers and priests had combined to 

*Plato. 



170 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

neglect it whilst the people looked on. No wonder 
was it that Deucalion shivered. 

Upon recovering somewhat, he exclaimed: " Oltis, it 
is the crowning crime!" 

" We have not lost through it. Let not thy mind be 
weighted." Scornful was his tone. 

" Oltis, I .am borne to earth. Yet will I rise that I 
may bring the people to the ' Deeps' there -to behold 
thy work there to open their eyes shouldst thou not 
do as I bid thee." 

The figure again growing into marble shuddered. 
Great beads of perspiration started. But no words came. 

"Oltis, when day breaketh, thou wilt go with me to 
the portico, and tell the people this: That the powers 
above will that the Pelasgian children leave with me at 
once. A few words will do. Else " 

The marble again quivered; the lips murmured, "I 
will." 

Deucalion sat down before the wretched man, and 
pondered. 

"Those who pressed within this inner holy place yes- 
terday, may have noted that there were no signs of the 
missing handmaids. And, of this, the people may have 
been told. They should, then, be more than ever in 
doubt as to their present place unless they are dead of 
all feeling. 

"Though, what else can come of a people who can 
bear such mockeries, who break the marriage laws, who 
wed within forbidden limits, who are given over to 
feasting, drinking, pleasuring; who think no longer of 
raising higher the mind, but only of delighting the body; 
and yet, who, in the midst of all, daily see and touch 



IN THE ' DEEPS/ I /I 

monuments that speak with force of past virtue, of a 
worship once most pure. 

"Should these islanders be brought in to see the sight 
below, it would not help. For the island is doomed. 
Not long could these evils last even if the islanders 
should still be as stone, after seeing. And any trouble 
now, will but hinder our going. 

"I have it. I will write what I have seen; and ere 
leaving, will send it to the people of Chimo. They are 
the best and strongest of these islanders. Yea that will 
I do. It may help the handmaids, should the doom of 
the island be stayed a little. 

" But, ah, this strange inner sight, why faileth it ? Why, 
for many days, hath it left me, so that I know not if 
Pyrrha liveth. Yet. why should I doubt, after what I 
have felt and seen? Sure am I that she liveth. Sure 
am I that, in the end, joy will be ours. Yet am I weak 
weak!" 

Whilst thus Deucalion mused and suffered, the day 
broke. With the first entering rays of the 'sun, Oltis 
stirred; and gradually shook off the now willing iron 
bands. Shortly he arose, but only to fall back of his 
weakness. Then Deucalion, gave him of the life cordial, 
after mixing with it a few drops of a red elixir. There- 
upon, Oltis arose, and stretched as if arousing from sleep. 
Some minutes afterward, he was walking about unstead- 
ily. And Deucalion waited a little. 

"Oltis, lean upon me. We will go to the portico." 

He complied. Sad was it to see the docility of this 
hitherto proud and intractable man. As they walked, 
Deucalion spoke low: 

" Say but the words that will speed the children and 
myself on our way to Pelasgia.". 



172 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" I know thee, at last, strange man," was returned wea- 
rily. "But what knowledge! Ah, if Atlano but knew! 
Even as it is how hath he longed for thy blood. And 
to find thou art Deucalion!" 

"This knowledge must be thine alone. He is not to 
know." 

"I will be dumb. But how hast thou mastered us." 

"I will master you when, with the children, I am on 
the sea, and facing Pelasgia." 

"How didst thou get such power? Are there gods?" 

"Oltis, there are. Know sorrow for thy sin, ere it be 
too late." 

"I cannot. Of what use is such sorrow? It would 
come only of fear. Should the fear be no more, I would 
be as I have been." 

"Thou speakest truth. Sorrow for sin should come 
of the heart alone. But that may be thine. Sorrow thus 
for warmth to the gods." 

" Sir Deucalion, I know no warmth of feeling. I never 
knew such for aught of earth not even for my children. 
How then could I know it for the gods, if such there be? 
I tell thee if there is a life beyond, I am doomed." 

"Say not so, Oltis. If one spark of feeling could be- 
gin to glow in thy heart, it would spread, giving heat, 
life to all the inner man wouldst thou grant it air. Faint 
though -the spark, it groweth with little feeding." 

Oltis sighed; then said, "I could strangle thee, now, 
had I the power. That is my spark of feeling ! To be 
thus humbled, weakened! Oh, but to have my fingers 
about thy neck, to see thine eyes burst from thy head, to 
fix that head on a pillar in the air, to watch the birds of 
prey gather its flesh, mite by mite! How I ache ! How 
I pant for thy blood ! " 



IN THE 'DEEPS.' 173 

"Have done," spoke Deucalion sternly, "or worse will 
befall thee than thou dreamest. Wouldst thou be given 
over to the tender mercy of the people?" 

"I will do that I am forced to. But for one moment 
of freedom !" Dreadful were his writhings. 

" Calm thyself. We are almost at the portal." 

And, at the portal they were most suddenly to come 
out before the watching islanders. 

The sun was just above the horizon when the shouts 
arose, "The High Priest!" "The 'Silent Priest'!" "Be- 
hold!" "Behold!" 

Atlano, who was talking with Urgis, turned; and per- 
ceived the two standing on the portico. Intense chagrin 
was expressed in his face as he gazed and wondered. 
The 'Silent Priest' not killed! But, instead, thus ap- 
pearing, bearing up Oltis who was trembling as an aged 
man. What meant it?" 

But the high priest was beckoning. In answer, the 
people surged forward. When there was quiet, Oltis 
spoke. 

"King Atlano, Priests, People, these troubles are of 
the gods. Anger them no further. Hearken to this, 
their will. Ere J;he morn is two hours older will the 
Pelasgian children leave, and with the 'Silent Priest.'" 

Atlano's derisive laugh burst forth. But the people 
began to cry their acquiescence. It was: 

" So shall it be ! " " So shall it be ! " "We will be rid of 
them!" "They are a scourge!" 

The guards encircling Atlano appeared alarmed. Al- 
ready they were fearing some manifestation against him. 
But he, with wonderful coolness, replied to Oltis, "How 
are we to believe that the gods thus will?" 



174 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"In like manner as the people believed that, at will of 
the gods, the handmaids were forced into the inner holy 
place never to be seen more!" Loud rang the imperial 
voice, seeming to be thrown from high above. 

Atlano paled in a terrible way. Many of the priests 
fell on their faces. The people groaned, and pressed 
about the guards so that the latter were forced to point 
their spears and raise their battle axes. And, oh the 
sullen discomfiture smoldering in some eyes, the menac- 
ing lightning ready to dart from others! 

But Atlano was brave. He spoke again, with bold- 
ness, " Oltis, go within. Thou art feeble, too feeble, to 
stand there. Thy mind giveth way as hath thy body. 
Go within." 

Oltis indeed proved the weakness of his body by fall- 
ing against the ' Silent Priest,' who lifted him, and bore 
him inside, after signifying that he would return. 

When Oltis had been laid upon his couch in the inner 
sanctuary, the 'Silent Priest' reappeared before the omi- 
nously quiet people, and signed that he would at once 
depart, recommended them to the mercy of the gods, 
blessed them, and bade farewell. 

Then to Sensel, who was near, he delivered a roll of 
papyrus addressed to the queen. 

As for Atlano, he felt it was policy to be quiescent. 
After the besotted conduct of Oltis, there was no know- 
ing what might happen. As to the voice, he would 
still disclaim it. 

Then, as the ground was resting of its tremors, he 
ordered the guards to disperse the excited, awakening 
islanders. When the great court was quite emptied, he 
entered the temple to seek Oltis that he might upbraid 
him for his faint-heartedness. 



IN THE * DEEPS 1/5 

Speedily he was beside the wretched high priest, who 
lay with closed eyes, scarcely breathing : though not a 
word was vouchsafed to all his questions and vitupera- 
tions. Thus, as a resource, he bethought him of the 
queen and her charges; and, returning to the courtyard, 
called his guards, and drove to the palace. 

As he passed along, much the people marveled. Never 
before had a king of Atlantis been known to require pro- 
tection in driving between the temple and the palace. 
Attendants, of course, were customary; but guards! 
What meant such a passing as this? 



CHAPTER XIV. 

A TIMELY TORRENT. 

QUEEN ATLANA and her young charges were finishing 
a hurried meal in the most delightful of morning rooms. 
This was in the east garden, and had for. floor, velvety 
grass; for ceiling, the interlacing boughs of two fragrant 
acacias; for background, a trellis overrun with morning- 
glories and flanked at each end by tall white lilies and the 
high blue shoots of the papyrus. 

Further the favorite lotus flowers spread thick on the 
bosom of a stream to the eastward that was running" 

o 

blithely to lose itself in the beautiful Luith. Flowers, 
flowers were everywhere; for this was their land. And 
those of the trellis in their white, pink, blue, crimson, and 
purple, were preeminent for size and tint. 

Who, with any spirituality, can look upon these thick- 
clustering morning-glories as they open joyfully to the 
morning sun, and not think of a higher blossoming? In 
their delicate texture, and soft rich coloring, they suggest 
the flowers of Heaven. Their ethereal loveliness fills the 
heart with a most tender rapture. Fit types are they of 
that fairer blooming of the Uplands, to which the eye has 
not yet pierced, to which the ear is yet unopened! 

The grand eating apartment, or banqueting room, was 
in the western wing of the palace, and facing the south. 



A TIMELY TORRENT. I// 

But the breakfast room proper faced the east, and over- 
looked this garden morning room, the latter superseding 
the former for about three-fourths of the year, from the 
tenderness of the climate. 

In the simplicity of their diet and table service, the 
Atlanteans might be held an example. Theirs were no 
cumbersome, broad tables weighed down with. plate and 
ornamentations. The dishes and drinking vessels were 
of gold, silver, bronze, or tin, as accorded with the degree 
of the family using; and were of simplest pattern and 
beaten light, the spiral being the principal adornment. 
There were spiral handles, and spiral supports to the 
larger dishes, also. As to the tables, they were hollow, 
either broken circles or horseshoes in shape, and of three 
feet in width of course affording seating capacity on 
the outer side only. Thus, well could the Atlanteans 
arrange for effective backgrounds, well could they be 
served. Further, such waitresses were theirs ! Through 
the openings of these broken circles, or horseshoes, flit- 
ted beauteous maidens, white-robed and garlanded, who 
could but whet the appetite. Maidens ever served in 
Atlantis. Clever people! 

In the middle of her table, sat Queen Atlana, with 
^Eole on the right, and Electra on the left; while, far- 
ther along the broken circle, on either side,, ranged her 
ladies. For this morning, there was a visitor Hellen; 
and his place was at 5 the end, on the queen's right. 

All were facing the garden, and the sun which was 
well up ; and feeling happily conscious of the fairy-like 
background, the soft singing stream, the warblers in the 
acacia blooms overhead, and the lovely gliding maid- 
ens attending their few wants. 
12 



178 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Three feet was the space allotted each at the table; 
and the dividing lines were rows of flowers extending 
crosswise, flowers of scent so delicate that they could 
not interfere with the appetite of the most sensitive. 

Fancy a breakfast of eggs, milk, honey, dried birds, 
fruit, and cakes made of corn and honey ye epicures. 
Well would it be could ye more than fancy. Well would 
it be for your poor, ill-treated organs! 

But, upon this sensible, paradisiacal breakfast w r as steal- 
ing the serpent. Through the garden was approaching 
Atlano, though not with the soft, quick gliding of the 
animal mentioned, but with infuriated stride. However, 
as the serpent is the symbol of sense, the comparison will 
hold. 

And the happy eyes of the eaters fell as one upon him ! 
For, they were happy, in spite of what had been under- 
gone, in spite of the parting to come. They were happy 
in being together. 

Very calmly, cheerfully did the queen arise to meet 
him as he drew near, though his scowling looks were 
sufficient to have chilled the stoutest heart. However, in 
response to her salutation, he forced a smile; and bowed 
to the others, who, following the queen's example, had 
also arisen and saluted him. 

Then he said, in questioning tone, "Ye are early at the 
morning meal." 

"Yea, Atlano. But for very good cause." Rather 
faltering was the queen's reply. 

"I have not broken fast since this troubled night." 

"Come, then ; and be strengthened." With the words, 
Atlana motioned him to the seat relinquished by ALole. 
Quite tractably he took this, and was permitting the 



A TIMELY TORRENT. \jg 

maidens to serve him, when his eyes fell upon Hellen, who 
was standing beside ^Eole and Electra, and talking fast. 

Direful was the anger that showed in his face; and this 
smote upon the queen. Though she tried to talk with 
ease as he grew even angrier, seeming with every morsel 
to choke the more. Finally, unable to restrain himself, 
he demanded in what is known as a stage undertone, 
"Why is Hellen here and at this meal ?" 

"It is his last morning, as thou knowest." 

"I know it not." 

" They leave this day." 

'"I have not said the word."" 

"Thou hast promised/ 

"I meant it not" 

"We have made ready," 

"That doth not matter." . 

. Then perceiving that the three had ceased their talking, 
and were watching him, he beckoned, and said, "^Eole, 
come hither." 

She, with the others, approached. 

He arose from his scanty meal, and in softened tone, 
inquired: 

"yEole, wouldst thou be glad to leave us?" 

" Gracious King, I would be glad to go to my home j 
but am loth to leave Queen Atlana." The lovely face 
had become downcast. 

"But Pelasgia is not so far," interposed the queen. 
" And we have good vessels. How strong is my wish to 
journey thither with thee, ^Eole, and place thee in the 
arms of thy mother!" 

"Much good would the vessels do thee, Atlana," said 
the king with meaning. "It is not for thee to go so far." 



i8o POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"I forgot." She laughed in a sorrowful way. "Too 
well I know the need of my presence to the king ! " 

"And thou, Electra, what wilt thou do when ^Eole 
hath left us?" 

"King Atlano, I will live in the hope of meeting her, 
if even in Pelasgia." 

" We will come for thee, Electra," spoke Hellen. " Pe- 
lasgia will not be Pelasgia nor my mother, mother nor 
my father, father without thee. Where thou art is the 
home for me. Rather would I stay here than go from 
thee to the brightest fate ! " 

"Hush, Hellen!" Poor Electra was trying hard to 
bear up. 

" Through the night and this morning have I wavered 
between my home and thee. Now is my mind clear!" 
And Hellen looked about him, fierce in his determina- 
tion. 

"Trouble thyself no longer, Hellen. Thou wilt never 
go back. Neither will ^Elole. I have need of thee, of 
her. Thou forgettest the pain in store for thee. I am 
not done with that. Never spoke Atlantean to king as 
hast thou, the stranger, the captive. This island may 
sink ere I forget it ! ;> 

The king was working himself into fury again. The 
listeners stood petrified, all but the queen. She spoke 
out with fine spirit: 

"Atlano, I have this to tell thee. It hath been sent 
me that they are to go. A little after daybreak came the 
word. Since then my serving men have been making 
ready. I must tell thee," and she spoke faster, "that 
I have ordered my galley. And another galley is mak- 
ing ready with food and drink for the use of Hellen and 



A TIMELY TORRENT. l8l 

yole. The two galleys are to sail down Luith to the 
coast, and up along that until they meet the 'Silent 
Priest' who will come in his boat." 

"Where gottest thou all this?" stammered the king. 

" Didst thou not know ? There came the written word 
from the 'Silent Priest' scarce an hour since. Sensel 
brought it." 

" Here is fine doing," vociferated he. "And thou to 
obey! Art thou, like'Oltis, becoming weak of mind? 
Art thou crazed?" 

"If to be crazed is to wish well to yole and Hellen, 
if to be crazed is to wish to see them well away from this 
island, if to be crazed is to wish to obey that grand priest 
then that I am." Drawing herself up, she looked at 
him with such brave eyes that he, in fear for what she 
might next say, temporized: 

"Atlana, thou must know everything hath gone 
wrong since this meddling priest set foot on the sands." 

"Have a care, King Atlano." 

"Ah, the fiery Electra speaketh. So, he is a favorite 
of thine." 

" He is. Better, he is the worker of the gods. That 
is why things have gone wrong, as thou callest it. Thy 
wrong meaneth right on the other side. There are two 
sides to all things." 

This was dreadful, but such was the force of example. 
If the queen would demean herself by speaking her mind, 
what could be expected of underlings. He glared 
from the rather aghast Atlana to this rebellious Electra, 
and said, as if hurling a weapon, "This, thy worker 
of the gods, is to come down from his height. Ere 
the day closeth, will he be yielded upon the altar!" 



1 82 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Beware," came from Hellen. And he made a step 
forward. 

" Ha ! Now it is the rash Hellen of ready tongue. 
Boy, thou art not in Pelasgia." 

" But soon will be." Then his crest lowered, for he 
thought of Electra. 

" Hellen," urged the queen, "better would it be if thou 
didst not speak." Then to the king, she said appeal- 
ingly, "Atlano, of a truth, the galleys wait for us. Let 
us to them. As thou goest, it maybe that thou wilt 
look with other eyes upon this." 

" Never will I look with other eyes. But I will go 
with thee to make this naught." 

" Make it not naught, King Atlano," interposed ^Eole, 
to the amazement of all, even himself. Never before had 
she be.en known to address him. " Make not naught our 
going. The heart of Queen Atlana is in this. Let not 
her hopes come to naught. And, anger not the gods." 

"Hearken unto her, Atlano," entreated the queen. 
" Let them go. Further, grant that I may go a short 
way with them. And come thou on this little sail." 

Atlano was looking into the beautiful, starry eyes that 
were even more eloquent than the sweet tones. And, 
most suddenly, felt like giving way. But, checking the 
impulse, he replied, as if to Atlana, 

" However willing I may be for thee to enjoy thy 'lit- 
tle sail,' I may not grant it for strong reason. Thou 
k.nowest why." 

"Atlano, I will be gone but half the day. If thou wilt 
bring to mind, thou wert willing I should go to Chimo, 
and stay for days, not long since." 

"Then skies were fair, and the gods smiling. But, I 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 183 

take it, these late troubles make of need thy presence 
here." 

"Atlano, once thou didst laugh at that prophecy." 

" Then I was young, and not so wicked." He laughed 
recklessly. 

" Of a truth, a stay so short cannot work evil." 

"Atlana, thy words seem as though I had said this 
thing could be. Talk no more of it." 

"Gracious King," urged yole, again to the surprise of 
all, "shouldst thou say the word, and then come with 
us, thou art with the queen." 

"^Eole, the prophecy doth run, 'With Atlana . at the 
palace, no evil befalleth Atlano' Wouldst thou have her 
go, did I grant it, after this ? " 

" Nay, King Atlano, not if it doth run thus." 

"^Eole, thou dost yield too soon," cried Electra, in her 
annoyance. "What are twenty prophecies to thy getting 
away!" 

"Ah, it is Electra again," sneered Atlano, "the lady 
of the tongue." 

" I bless heaven for my tongue if it doth wage for the 
right. So may all women. Only cowards or tyrants 
need fear the tongues of honest women ; and of their fear 
they rail." 

"And thou, it seemeth, hast had the hope of sharing 
in this ' little sail.' Will this help thee to it? " 

"The gods will help me." 

"The gods, it seemeth, are thy very good friends." 
And, oh his mocking tone! 

"Well would it be were they thy friends, King Atlano." 

Her eyes held more meaning even than her solemn 
tones. As if to ignore both, he turned to address 



184 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

just as an attendant came from behind the trellis with the 
message that the galleys were in readiness. Then, the 
ladies Rica and Elna who had gone within, reappeared, 
robed for the trip and bearing the queen's wraps as well 
as those of ALole and Electra. 

When Atlana's mantle was placed about her, she ad- 
dressed the king: "Now are we ready to go to the gal- 
leys if it needeth to see them off if it needeth to go 
with them a little. Say but the word, Atlano." 

He replied not. She continued, " Come. And thou, 
yole, walk on this side. Electra, thou wilt follow with 
Hellen. Rica and Elna, ye will lead. Where is Azu?" 

For answer, there was heard a sound as of a falling 
body. All turned knowing what this meant, knowing 
they should behold Azu flat on his face. This was ever 
the manner in which he testified his knowledge of the 
presence of the king. And there he was, prone in front 
of the trellis, behind which he had been awaiting call. 

Even Atlano laughed. Then, as usual, he gave the 
word to arise, which Azu did in sprightly fashion, to 
stand grinning and bowing, and showing only the whites 
of his great round eyes. 

" Come, Azu," said the queen. "Thou wilt hold up 
my robe." 

Azu lurched to this; and held up the train tenderly. 
The queen continued, "Now will we go." 

In this order, was the reluctant king borne through 
the garden, and on to the landing place. With scowling 
eyes fastened on the ground, he pondered as to the words 
he should speak upon arriving there. And no speech 
would he vouchsafe by the way. 

Hellen and Electra, naturally, fell a little behind. 



A TIMELY TORREN 7 T. 185 

When well beyond hearing, Hellen said low, " Electra, 
the king will never give the word." 

" Hellen, the king will give the word." 

"Thou art as full of hope as of strength. How didst 
thou come by a spirit so light?" 

"Always hath it been mine. Never have I known 
fear." 

"But, of late thou hast known it?" 

" Nay. Though I lost hope when I believed ^Eole had 
passed away. How I prayed to go to her." 

" Hadst thou no thought for me for my double sor- 
row?" 

"Hellen, I did think of thee. I knew thou wouldst 
sorrow much. But further, I knew it would not be for 
long. Thou wouldst have come to us. And what joy 
to be in the other life together! " 

"Had I thy hope." 

"Now shouldst thou have it if ever." 

" It cometh. Electra, hearken. I hug to myself that 
which even JEole knoweth not. Who, thinkest thou, is 
the 'Silent Priest'?" 

"One sent of the gods." 

" But who what person is he?" 

She looked at him keenly, and noted his excitement. 
"Thou meanest not that he cometh from Pelasgia?" 

"But I do he cometh from there." 

"It cannot be that he is thy father?" Her voice 
had sunk to an awed whisper. 

" Electra, thou readest my mind. Yea, yea, he is my 
father, that father I have so doubted. Thou canst imag- 
ine a little my shame, rny sorrow. But I have told him, 
and he hath said that he doth know that it was but in 
nature. Such is his grand heart." 



1 86 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Electra had paused, and was breathing hard. For the 
first time in her life, words refused to come. Thus Hel- 
len went on. 

" Yea, and this is his plan for saving us. His wisdom 
hath caused these wonders all save the quakings of the 
earth, and the voice. In Pelasgia, so much of hidden 
knowledge was his that the people called him the 'favor- 
ite of the gods.' And the gods are with him now." 

"But the voice Hellen? " 

"The voice ah, that is Sensel." . And he enlightened 
her. For the moment she stood motionless ; and then 
seizing his arm that they might hasten on, murmured: 

"Thou, Hellen, to further doubt! It is past belief. 
Help me to believe." 

"Electra, where now is thy surety?" laughed he gaily 
and fondly. 

"That is right, Hellen. Turn upon me. I merit it 
after making naught thy words." She smiled bewitch- 
ingly. 

"Turn upon thee, I will! If the king sayeth the word 
for us to go, thou wilt see such a turning upon, shouldst 
thou not be of us. I will turn away from them to thee. 
Thus will I turn upon thee. Never will I leave thee!" 

Hard was it for Electra to bear up under this. And 
more might follow. Hellen would do the wildest, rash- 
est things, without doubt; for this reason she must divert 
his thoughts. 

" I think when the thought cometh to one as strong as 
it did to me., during last night, that we should this day go 
sailing from Atlantis, it meaneth much. It meaneth we 
shall go. But what a drear night was this last, Hellen." 

" It was spent with thee and ^ole. Therefore, was it 
bright," 



A TIMELY TORRENT. l8/ 

There was danger again. Fortunately, a turn in the 
garden brought them in sight of the landing place, 
where the others of the party were pausing, with faces 
turned toward them expectantly. Thus, they quickened 
their pace. 

At the marble landing place awaited the two galleys, 
gay in their bright-colored awnings and hangings ; whilst 
hovering about, were other galleys belonging to the pal- 
ace and the neighboring nobles. The queen's galley, 
the smaller of the two, was built of cedar, and its sides 
were ornamented in ebony and gold. It had but one 
mast, whose sail was of the costly byssus. The hang- 
ings and awnings were also of byssus, white, and richly 
embroidered in pale blue and corn color. The deck was 
inlaid with fine woods; and in the middle was the with- 
drawing room. This was built of satin wood, and pan- 
eled within in sandalwood; and was furnished with 
rugs, couches, tables, and chairs, all luxurious. On 
either side of this apartment, were stretched awnings, 
beneath which were more rugs and couches. 

The other galley was arranged much like the queen's, 
but was not so luxurious in its appointments, or lavish 
in its hangings. Evidently it was built for use. Scat- 
tered about its deck were baskets of provisions; whilst 
near the prow was a shallow hold, also containing bas- 
kets, and jars large and small. The withdrawing room 
had doors instead of hangings. The one sail was square, 
large, and of strong linen colored blue. Indeed, there 
was an air about this galley indicating it meant work. 
Thus, the eyes were attracted toward it full as much as 
toward the elegant one of the queen. 

The figurehead of the queen's galley was a bust of 



1 88 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Amen; that of Hellen's, a bust of Poseidon. Both 
flaunted banners bearing the symbol of Atlantis, a cross 
surrounded by a circle,* in gold. From each, many 
pennants were flying symbolic of Poseidon's arrival on 
the island and his meeting with Cleito, the symbols be- 
ing wrought in gold upon a blue ground. 

Of the sailors, or oarsmen belonging, a few were at the 
the oars; but the greater number were on the decks of 
the neighboring galleys. 

Overhead/the sky was welcoming the beauteous Au- 
rora who was now treading securely on her way. The 
hush, the glow, the heavenliness of young morn was 
upon all; and a little of its peace fell upon the spirits of 
the queen and her young charges, so that they stood si- 
lent, for the moment; giving inward, upward voice to 
their yearnings, and finding hope. 

O East, with thy potent beams! It was for reason 
that the most ancient nations looked in thy direction for 
the especial Divine presence! It was for reason that 
their temples faced thee, their altars were placed toward 
thee; that they themselves, when bending the knee, 
looked to thee! For reason was it that the Star was 
set in thee, that the wise men journeyed of their knowl- 
edge toward thee and It ! 

Already, on this bright morn, were the islanders for- 
getting their terrors of the night. Banks of canal and 
stream were lined with them, for they of their curiosity, 
were awaiting what the king would do. Would he obey 
the voices of the past few days? Would he fulfill his 
promises to the Unseen ? Would the queen show her- 
self when her young charges were to leave ? 

*Ignatius Donnelly, in "Atlantis." 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 189 

And now, here she was! Surely the king was about 
to make good his promises. With keenest expectation, 
they waited until the queen should look a little about 
her. Then, they shouted their love. She, deeply 
touched, bowed again and again; and smiled rarely. 

But, there were no welcoming voices for the king; and 
the queen felt a culprit that she had received all. Mean- 
while, Atlano had affected to be observing* the galleys, 
such affectation giving place to interest until his dark 
face grew darker. Not long was he in bursting forth: 

"Good work was this. And in an hour! Whom 
didst thou get of these slow Atlanteans to manage 
this?" 

" Sensel ran much and helped in the bearing." The 
queen's tone was meekness itself. 

" He is the spawn of evil," vociferated Atlano, regard- 
less who might hear. "And his fitting master is that 
'Silent Priest.' I tell thee, Atlana, it is they have 
brought these evils upon us. I am more than ever sure 
it is their presence that doth anger Amen. Now I again 
say and before you all that Hellen and JEo\e shall not 
go. Then for some fine gifts on. the altar with the mor- 
row. The gods would thus order! Ha ha! " 

He looked a demon. Queen Atlana became gray in 
her terror, and clasped ^Eole to her. Hellen, freeing 
himself from Electra's detaining grasp, was about to dart 
upon him when prevented in a manner as unexpected as 
appalling. 

They were standing on a marble terrace beside a placid 
stream, beneath a smiling sky, and about them were 
heard the murmurings of the listening islanders. But, 
in an instant, came dread change. The sky darkened 



190 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

to blackness; great raindrops splashed down; and a 
shower succeeded that flooded the terrace in a moment. 
Further, wildest cries of terror arose from the fleeing 
islanders seeking cover. 

Panic seized upon those on the landing place. They 
flew down the stairway to the shelter of the larger gal- 
ley Atlano leading and helping. Into the withdrawing 
room they sped, to close the doors, and drop upon the 
couches. 

For full a minute the torrent beat whilst they sat 
voiceless, cowering. Then it ceased as suddenly as it 
had come; and the sun poured its beams with such 
strength that they began to pant for the air. When the 
doors were opened, they looked out upon a scene so 
brilliant that they were obliged to shade their eyes. 
Never had the sun been as potent thus early. 

They sank again upon the couches; and listened with 
dread to the running off of the water from the galley's 
deck. 

" My poor galley," the queen murmured after a little, 
" in what a state is it. And the food it is ruined/' 

"Thus is it that the gods smile upon me," triumphed 
Atlano. 

The four confounded ones glanced hopelessly at each 
other. Even Electra was despairing. What evil fate 
was this? 

Suddenly, footsteps were heard just without the door. 
Electra arose; and looked out to perceive Sensel. 

"What is it, Sensel?" 

"Naught is harmed." And he pointed toward the 
hold. It was closed and the deck shorn of its baskets. 
He pointed next to Azu, who like himself was dripping, 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 19! 

but whose port was that of a conqueror. Then at Elec- 
tra's inquiring look, he continued : 

"I was in the hold when the sky darkened. It took 
scarce a minute to gather the baskets, throw them into 
the hold and close it. I had ended while ye stood con- 
founded and then began to flee. As ye darted down the 
stairway, I called Azu ; and we leaped from this galley 
to that of the queen, and threw over her withdrawing 
room the shield used for showers, and drew in the outer 
rugs and couches. The awnings and hanging are drip- 
ping; but, with this sun, will dry in a few minutes. Thou 
shouldst have seen Azu work!" 

" Sensel, thou hast saved us. Azu, the queen shall 
know." Then Electra turned to the eager listeners inside. 

"Thou seest," she said to the king. 

"I hear, and it is Electra," he returned mockingly. 
Though it was plain that Sensel's words had upset him, 
as he was paling and flushing in a manner distressing to 
witness; and his eyes were sullen and averted. 

The queen was silently giving thanks. Then she 
arose, her expression most confident 

" Hellen, ALole, Electra, what is this strange heat but 
the more aid from above. Let us not sink under it, but 
go out, and look as it drieth everything." 

They arose to follow her, therewith hearing the 
familiar sound of a body falling. Azu was ready. He 
again lay flat in expectation of the king 

But when they had passed out, and had waited, and 
the king came not, Queen Atlana said, "Azu, arise." 

When he was on his feet, she continued, "Azu, I speak 
the thanks of all. Well hast thou done. May I never 
forget it!" 




192 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Azu's smile was ecstatic; and, between bowj to the 
ground, and gasps, he managed to reply: 

" Most gracious, most glorious Queen, for thee I can 
never do enough. What hast thou done for me!" 

It was a long speech for him, and rather overcoming. 
Seeing this, the queen said in her kindest tone, "And 
now, Azu, my robe." 

When he Jyd shuffled behind her, and was holding 
her train in hi loving manner, she beckoned to Sensel 
who came to kneel gallantly before her. Then she ex- 
tended to him her hand which he kissed in prince-like 
fashion and to her surprise. 

"Sensel, thou wilt not look for words. None could 
speak what I feel." 

"Gracious Queen, the smile thou givest me, speaketh 
beyond words. And, it was but little." 

"It hath saved ^Eole and Hellen." Her low tone was 
so impressive that the hearers were thrilled. Then, in 
sprightly fashion she subjoined: 

"Now, Sensel, arise. And lead us that we may note 
the power of this sun." 

Thereupon, they walked about to exclaim, " The 
wonder of it!" "The wonder of it!" For, so rapid was 
the drying that clouds of vapor were ascending. Al- 
ready was the deck as free from moisture as it had 
been before. 

As to the king, long was he in appearing. When he 
came out to them, his head was drooping, his tones mum- 
bling. 

"Atlana, I yield. Hellen and /Eole may go. And 
thou mayest take thy 'little sail;' though let it not go 
beyond a few hours. I look for thee by the wane of the 
day." 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 193 

In the midst of the sudden joy, was felt perplexity, 
fear. What had come upon him ? Was this most alarm- 
ing interposition of the elements producing effect? Or, 
was there more beneath? 

After some moments' quiet, the queen of her incredulity, 
asked, "Atlano, meanest thou that I can go?" 

"I mean it." Again were the words mumbled: then, 
with bent head, he turned to leave them. 

But yEole, in her pity and gratitude, went after him; 
and said bravely: 
" Gracious King" 

He faced her. " Speak, JEole" 

" Gracious King, bid us good speed. And, we would 
thank thee." 

"^Eole, thank me not. I would have done thee 
harm. But the powers have come between!" He 
spoke with a queer reluctance of articulation. Then an 
expression came into his face that caused the beholders to 
shrink with horror. It was that of a soul that, at last, sees 
the vortex, the Gehenna, to which it has been trending; 
of a soul that, in spite of its better knowledge and its fast 
coming fate, would not shake off the evilness of its bent, 
the sensuality that had destroyed it! 

yEole, alone, did not see this look. For, as the king 
faced her, she had glanced at Sensel to receive his intent 
gaze; and thereby had blushed, and bent her head. She 
lifted it to behold him staring at the king, horrified. 
When, in her alarm, she looked about her, it was but to 
see horror depicted on every face. As all eyes were on 
the king, she then turned to him. 

The questioning look of her deep, clear, innocent eyes 
was as a shock to Atlano; and a good impulse stirred 
13 



194 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

him. Possibly some unselfish spring was yet remaining 
within him. His lips moved as if he would speak, 
though no sound came at first, with all his effort; but 
finally, his unwilling tongue moved spasmodically. 

"Good speed, yole. And know that for thee I 
would have dared earth and the powers beyond. But 
now I tell thee I am glad that ruin doth threaten me 
.to thy saving!" 

Bending over, he kissed her robe. Then with no look 
about him, moved from their sight. 

^Eole was so overcome that Sensel came beside her, 
and led her within the withdrawing room, and to a couch. 
As she sank thereon, he entreated, "^Eole, cheer. The 
worst is past. Now for Pelasgia ! " 

"But thou, Sensel?" she murmured 

" I will go with thee. I carne to go when I willed. 
It is my will to leave this island." 

All precious was the joy that came into her face. 

" Sensel, always have I felt that thou earnest for our 
good." 

"^Eole, the service of my life is thine." Then, noting 
her changing color, her shrinking attitude, he added, in 
his usual voice, " Now will I go to the queen. She hath 
sore pain." 

But the poor queen, weeping bitterly, was just about 
to enter, supported by Electra and Rica. These drew 
her to a couch. When she had calmed somewhat, 
Sensel bowed low before her, awaiting permission to ad- 
dress her. "What is it Sensel?" she was quick to ask. 

" Gracious Queen, shall I give the word to the captains 
to call the oarsmen that we may go ? " 

"Yea, yea!" she criec! brokenly, "And forever! 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 1 95 

May I never more see this landing. May Atlano be for- 
ever freed from my presence. Better were it for me to 
sink beneath the sea than to cumber him further. Oh, 
for death ! So that he may no longer see my sad eyes, 
and through them .the grieving heart beneath. Electra, I 
pray for death ! " 

"Not so, dear Queen," answered Electra, bending over 
her in tears. " It is not thine to pray for death. It was 
not mine to pray for death as I did when I thought ^Eole 
had passed away. It is ours to be calm, and bear, be- 
lieving all is ordered." 

"Electra," was whispered, "this moment I feel that I 
hate yEole; and now that I say it I am flooded with 
fond feeling for her. I -am torn torn ! " 

"Ever art thou fond of her, dear Queen. But, thou 
wouldst have reason, were she not so pure, to hate her 
without end.. But, thou must think, it is JEole pure, 
weak, grieving yEole." 

"I know, I know. I will go to her; and clasp her." 
With this, she arose, and went to sit beside ^ole,to draw 
her to her as a mother might. Then they whispered to- 
gether to their comforting. 

Meanwhile, Sensel had informed the captains of the 
galleys that they were to depart; thus, pennants of red 
and gold were run up to call the oarsmen to their posts. 
When these were in their places, Sensel came again to 
the queen to report; and added: 

"Queen Atlana, I go now to my master. We will 
meet the galleys off the great pile of rocks on the eastern 
coast" 

She smiled faintly, despite her sore heart. "Thanks 
to thee, Sensel. And, good speed to thee;" 



196 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

After one look at yole, he bounded from the galley 
to the stairway; and vanished. 

Then the queen, with ^Eole, Electra, and her ladies 
went on board her own galley. Instantly the galleys 
moved off; and were followed by many of those of the 
nobles as well as those of less degree, in compliment to 
herself. While these glided through the canal, and 
through the water lilies of the stream, the islanders on 
the banks chanted their love for her. And happily they 
sang. 

Atlana, in response, stood under her awning, bowing 
to right and left, and kissing her hand. Thus, on sped 
the galleys to the harbor ; through the harbor to the 
ocean ; and along the coast to the point where the 'Silent 
Priest' was to join them. 

Here, opposite the pile of rocks, did himself and Sensel 
push off in the fantastic boat; whilst grouped on the 
sands, priests and people watched them, strangely quiet. 

But, when the 'Silent Priest' had crossed the smiling 
water almost to the galleys, Queen Atlana showed her- 
self. At once, the mass of islanders on the shore became 
vociferous in their acclamations. Many, of their zeal, 
threw off mantles, dashed into the surf, and swam even 
to her galley, arriving there almost with the silent 
one. When the latter had ascended, and was bowing 
low before her, the swimmers again burst forth in 
acclamations to be echoed strenuously by those on the 
galleys. The air was full of gladness. 

Grouped under the queen's awning were herself, the 
'Silent Priest,' Hellen, ^Eole, Electra, and the ladies Rica 
and Elna when the signal was given to move on. After 
Sensel had fastened the fantastic boat to the queen's gal- 



A TIMELY TORRENT. 197 

ley, he came on board also. At once, the voyage was re- 
sumed, and to the eastward, the swimmers and those re- 
maining on the shore chanting melodiously their 
farewells. 



CHAPTER XV 

THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 

ON hastened Atlano to the courtyard of the palace. 
And from there, drove to the temple in wild fashion. 
For a great dread was besetting him. 

When the others had gone out to watch the quick 
evaporation, he, whilst pondering in dismay upon Sensel's 
promptness, had suddenly realized that a strange torpor 
was overcoming him. Horrified, he essayed to break 
this, succeeding only after great struggling. Then, his 
tongue seemed to swell to twice its size, and clove to 
his mouth. In an agony of fear, he tried to burst its 
bands, it, at length, also yielding. Thereupon, an abject 
terror of his misdeeds and their penalty so possessed him 
that he hastened out, to atone in slightest measure, if pos- 
sible, by accession to the voice's demands. 

Further, spurred by his dread and some remnant of 
good yet left in him, he confessed his evil desire, and dep- 
recated it. Now he was speeding to the temple to con- 
fer with Oltis as to what these evils might forbode, what 
might be done to ward off further visitations, aye, judg- 
ments ! 

In the temple, he found only the presiding priest Kluto, 
and the handmaids whose duty it was to attend the 
sacred fire. 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 199 

"Kluto, where are the other priests?" 

"Gracious King, they have gone to the sands that they 
may wait upon the silent one." 

"Where is Urgis that this hath been done?" 

"Gracious King, Urgis hath gone, likewise." 

"Urgis?" 

" Gracious King, thus is it." 

"And hath the high priest gone?" 

" Priest Hafoe hath told it that the high priest sitteth 
again as stone in the inner holy place." 

" Why is the altar fire thus feeble?" 

" Gracious King, I know not. In spite of us, it wil 
but flicker, and, at times, doth threaten to go out." 

Here was a dreadful omen. 

The king would have spoken further, but his voice 
was thickening, his tongue growing sluggish: so, he 
turned abruptly from Kluto; and, with uncertain step, 
passed into the inner sanctuary. Here was still burning 
the 'Silent Priest's' hand lamp; here the altar fire flick- 
ered feebly as that of the temple proper; here the great 
apartment was in shadow save where the sun's beams 
entered faint through the hangings of the apertures. 

In a passion of fear, Atlano looked about him, and 
called, "Oltis Oltis!" 

There was no response. Though quickly his eyes 
lighted upon the unhappy Oltis, who was sitting behind 
the statue of Amen, his rigid body bent forward, his eyes 
bright to madness. 

The almost frenzied Atlano dragged a chair opposite 
him; and, as he sank into it, his sluggish tongue mumbled, 
"Oltis speak." 

Oltis' eyes showed his struggle to comply. 



2oo POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Is thy tongue dead? " 

Oltis gave a sigh so long and deep that the king shook 
in terror. 

"Oltis, strive to shake off thy torpor. I felt the like 
coming but mastered it; though my tongue is not 
yet right." 

There was another sigh. 

" Oltis, the silent one hath gone. Ere this, he hath 
joined the Pelasgian children. And they are sailing 
away even to the queen." 

"The queen!" 

The words burst from the marble Oltis, so terrifying 
Atlano that he leaped from his chair. 

"Ah thou speakest!" 

"The queen hath left the palace?" vociferated Oltis. 

"Yea, for half the day." 

"And with the Pelasgian children and their father 
Deucalion ?" 

Atlano almost fell back in his chair. As it was, he 
was obliged to lean upon it ; and then stared at Oltis, his 
eyeballs protruding, his lips ashy. 

" I say with Deucalion. Thy Deucalion the ' Silent 
Priest' hath mastered us." 

"Oltis, thou ravest!" 

But Atlano felt it was not raving. Like a flash, it went 
through him. He fell into his chair, confounded, baffled. 
Great sparks danced before his eyes; his tongue refused 
to move. If he could but speak the dreadful thoughts 
surging in his brain; if he-could but kill Oltis for telling 
him this ! 

Oltis spurred on, in spite of his helplessness and fear, 
continued: 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 2OI 

"The Silent One is Deucalion. I knew it when ye had 
fled. He spoke to me. The horror of it! He said he 
would search into the hidden things of the 'Deeps.' He 
opened the door. He went down the stairway. He saw 
the handmaids. He threatened to bring in the islanders. 
He forced me to go on the portico, and speak. Ah, 'he 
is a master!" The marble figure sighed as if it would 
rend itself. 

Atlano was writhing and groaning in his torment. But 
joy his voice was coming. He hissed, " Oltis, thou art 
a craven. Oh, for strength to get at thee! To aid 
Deucalion! I will strangle thee. for this. Then will I be 
king, high priest, chief priest in one. For Urgis shall 
die, likewise! " 

Then he made the motion to spring, his hand out- 
clutched, Oltis, with tongue again mute, awaiting him : 
but in spite of his mad hatred, his baffled revenge, he had 
not power to arise. In his immobility and dread, he 
moaned : 

"My foe Deucalion here under my hand and I 
not to feel it. How often have I longed to yield him on 
the altar that 'Silent Priest.' Baffled, and by such arts ! 
Oh, for Deucalion ! To have him here for one instant, 
even ! " 

" Call to mind how thou didst pale before him but last 
night," derided Oltis. "Wouldst thou grow weak again 
under his eyes? The man is master of strange, dire pow- 
ers. Well is it he hath gone. Though the queen ! " 

" Name her not. Ah, how hath she known thee. How 
hath she borne with me. What sorrow hath been hers. 
Mine eyes open to it. Fool that I am. Oltis, add an- 
other to thy doings. Call me fool ! " 



202 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

But Oltis again was dumb. 

u Oltis, I curse thee! Some good was in me when I 
came to the throne. Some good was in me as long as I 
hearkened to the queen; but that good, thou hast 
turned to evil. The evil in me thou dftlst pander to so 
that I am what I am. And why, Oltis, didst thou pan- 
der? -It was not for warmth for me. Nay, nay, I read 
thee. I saw thou didst look to be king. I knew of thy 
draught of death; that thou hadst just got it in shape so 
that it would leave no sign. (Thy father, of his age, 
needed not such art.) Ah, but I like to see thee writhe! 
-And well I bided, laughing at thee. Poor Atlana, 
how often hath she warned me. Now for thee!" 

He half arose, Oltis again awaiting him, his eyes 
flaming; but, as before, he sank in his chair, his muscles 
refusing to go farther. 

"Why can I not walk?" he cried frantically. "Oltis, 
thou art bewitching me? Or, is it, in truth; the gods? 
We made the show not to believe in them did we not? 
We believe now, ha ha! Let us not fear. Let us 
curse each other and them. Then will I go from here, 
and hunt up those lagging priests. This light on the 
altar groweth too dim. The gods will be getting in even 
worse temper because of it. Come, Oltis, raise thy voice. 
Let us curse together!" 

Again he essayed to rise. But, in that, moment, all 
power of volition forsook him. Instantly, his feet, hands, 
head, body, seemed encased in iron, in iron weighing tons. 
Not a muscle could he move for the immense pressure. 
His tongue was the deadest weight of all. His will was 
all of strength remaining him ; and that struggled long, 
superhumanly. But the end was that he like Oltis could 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 2O3 

only sit as stone, and stare before him and into the ter- 
rible eyes opposite. 

Yet, how active was the mind becoming. How 
keenly, already, was it suffering in its recollections of 
evil, its regrets, its humiliation at being baffled its hor- 
ror of the oncoming fate. Oh, for madness, instead! 

Thus sat the two in the growing gloom. Thus sat 
they when the priests returned from the seashore where 
they had been carried by the. silent one's will. When 
they entered, the hand lamp was burned out, the altar 
fire so feeble that they hastened, alarmed, to restore it. 
The more than semi-darkness was terrifying. 

Search was made for another hand lamp. When one 
was found and lighted, Atlano and Oltis were discovered 
sitting behind the statue of Amen. Both were marble, 
save their baleful eyes.* At sight of them, the startled 
priests fell back one upon another; then turned, shriek- 
ing, to flee. 

When without in the temple, Kluto said to them, "We 
have brought vengeance upon us. Let us try to win 
pardon while we may. But look I cannot make this 
flame last long." 

"We will help." 

Terror-stricken, they fanned the dying blaze. Though 
no life would come in it. At length, they tottered to the 
portico, suffocating of dread. 

But what had come over the face of earth? It was 
smiling when they had entered the temple after returning 
from the shore; yet now, a strange gloom, a murkiness 
was enveloping sky, ocean, stream, valley, hill. And 
significant, far-off rumblings were beginning ; the oqean 
was becoming white ; the stream Luith, as well as the 



204 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

other streams, was leaping up its banks. On every side, 
people were crying out in affright. What was this? 

Priests and handmaids ran out to the great court; and 
paused to look about in horror. Suddenly, lurid lights 
filled the northern heavens. Were the mountains of the 
northeast belching flame? Was that deafening noise to 
the east the roaring of the incensed waters ? They fell 
on their knees to supplicate forlornly. 

But Kluto, best of his fellows, could not pray long for 
thought of the king and high priest. He started to his 
feet, crying: 

" Who will go with me to save King Atlano and High 
Priest Oltis?" 

None answered. Indignant, he turned from his breth- 
ren to dart back to "the temple; and flew through it to 
the inner sanctuary. 

The hand lamp shed a feeble light. Upon the altar 
were a few faint sparks. Kluto made his way toward 
king and high priest who still sat rigid, glaring. He 
spoke, implored them to rise again and again but only 
their despairing eyes answered. 

Then he pulled the one, the other. As well might he 
have tried to move the temple itself. Almost frenzied, 
he cried : 

"King Atlano, High Priest Oltis, come, come. The 
ocean seetheth, the streams leap their banks, the moun- 
tains throw forth fire, the earth grumbleth. Come, come! 
Break your bonds!" 

But they stirred not, though their eyes grew like flames 
in their endeavors. Kluto then tried to lift Oltis' hand. 
As well might he have tried to move the statue of Amen 
that frowned in front of them. Before this statue, he 
flung himself. 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 2O$ 

" O Amen, have mercy. Break their bonds ! " 

So alive was his faith, that he felt some answer must 
come to his passionate appeal ; but the silence remained 
unbroken. 

"Amen, I cannot go. I cannot leave them to this. I 
will share their fate! " 

Now was the silence broken. There were heard the 
pattering of light feet and the cries of women. These, 
speeding through the western passage were the greater 
part of the handmaids who had been resting in their 
rooms after the vigils of the night; and who had just 
aroused to the terrors without. At their despairing tones, 
Kluto forgot king and priest, and ran out to them. 

"Get ye to the great court, there to pray. For the 
end is upon us!" 

They crowded about him, terrified and irresolute. 
When he had led them without among the priests and 
other handmaids, he went before the people thronging 
into the court, and bade them pray for the safety of the 
island. 

But the majority, in scorn, received his words. Not 
even the most anxious could bring themselves to believe 
this paradisiacal island in danger. Possibly Atlano and 
Oltis might suffer, but their dear island could not come 
to harm! Had not the gods loved it? Had not one 
dwelt in it? And was he not their father? Had not 
blessings ever been showered upon it? No no their 
island must be safe! 

But, as they ran in and out of the court, up and down 
the. hill, along the banks of canal and stream, complaints 
of king and high priest began to rise. 

"Said we not evil would follow that loss, ruin in Pe- 
lasgia?" murmured one. 



206 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"True, one evil bringeth another," returned a second. 
. "It may be that the gods were angry then, with King 
Atlano," whispered an old and thoughtful-looking man 
to his wife. 

"But, Queen Atlana is good," spoke their daughter, a 
young mother who was standing beside them with a lit- 
tle child clinging to each hand, and who was eyeing in 
dread the encroaching water of the stream. "Would she 
were here. Why, why did she sail away? But look, 
Father, Mother! The water riseth even to the top of the 
bank! Oh, my dear ones!" And she kneeled to draw 
forlornly within her arms her little ones. " Oh, wert thy 
father but here!" 

- For their father was afar. He was the captain of the 
queen's galley. 

Past this kneeling, weeping mother were surging the 
distracted islanders, some making their way to the shore 
others rushing to gaze upon the menacing streams^ 
others flying to the court of the temple there to plead 
for mercy, others running to the summit of the hill in 
order to view better the fast brightening sky of the north- 
east. And continuously now was the earth shaking, 
groaning beneath them whilst great raindrops were 
beginning to fall, and Amen's thunderbolts to play. 

About this mother moaning over her children gathered 
other mothers with their husbands and littleones, the 
plaints mingling in chorus. But soon came a shaking so 
long and severe that every voice hushed, every face set 
in terror. Then all groveled on the ground. 

When the trembling had subsided, and they were 
standing erect again, an old woman said to be the most 
aged person on the island, spoke an shrillest tone : 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 2O/ 

"This is what cometh of handmaids and animal gifts 
upon the altar. Think ye your fathers would have been 
thus led to evil. Oh, ye fools of Atlantis ! " 

She eyed the islanders about her with such derision 
that they forgot their terror, and felt like rushing upon 
her in a body. 

A gray-haired, quivering man retorted : 

"It is well for thee, old Nogoa, to stand there and 
taunt us islanders when it is known thou hast ever been 
loudest in favor of these new doings. Oh, thou old 
feather that goeth with the wind ! Have a care or thou 
wilt be more dragged in the dirt than thou hast been!" 

" Hah, it is the craven Puppo who speaketh," returned 
Nogoa viciously. " He who saw his daughter forced 
into the inner holy place, and lifted not his voice to man 
or heaven against it. It seemeth he can cry out only 
when an old woman talketh." 

Puppo darted for her. As she fell over backward in 
her effort to get out of his reach, a tall young man rushed 
between them. 

" Puppo, she speaketh truth. Thou wert a craven ; and 
hast been a toad to king and priests ever since. Look 
at me," he continued to the people. " Dear to me was 
his daughter Lota, and I would have made her my wife. 
And in an hour an instant the world became black to 
me. But became it black to him ? Hath he not laughed 
with the loudest, bent the lowest, slept through it? 
Thou worse than hypocrite ! Get thee away ! " 

He looked so evilly upon Puppo, and was so seconded 
by those listening, that Puppo, after a wicked glance at 
old Nogoa who had been lifted up and placed on a fallen 
bough, slunk off, 



2o8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The young man continued: "Nogoa, though as false, 
as full of guile as Puppo, is right in this : we have looked on 
when Atlano and Oltis changed the worship in these vile 
ways with never a nay. For this, woe is upon us! I 
come from my cave on yon mount where the fires rage 
to bid you flee in your galleys while there is time." 

"Why dost thou not flee, Monon? Show us the way," 
screeched Puppo, who was now brave because he was 
quite well to one side. 

"I flee not because I wish death. Every moment have 
I longed for it as thou shouldst have done since thy 
daughter vanished!" 

A shout of derision went up for the benefit of the hid- 
den Puppo, whose habitual discretion forbade further 
speech for the while. 

4< Monon," shouted a young man at his right, "I, for 
one, will stand by the island to the last!" 

Vociferous became the outcries in accordance. When 
these were subsiding, a scream was heard from the wife 
of the galley captain: and then the words, "Look, look! 
Luith floweth up over the bank; and higher higher! " 

They followed her glance to perceive that the stream 
was rising even above its banks, whilst the affrighted 
islanders thereon were beginning to flee, shrieking. The 
beholders, in their terror, swayed as one; and then grov- 
eled to implore mercy. 

But in wilder terror, at once arose to shake off the gray 
dust that was beginning to fall everywhere. And one 
voice shrieked, "The ashes from the mouth of the 
mountain ! To the sands to the sands ! " 

The mass stood irresolute, dazed. Then went up the 
cry, "Yea, the sands the sands!" 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 2OO, 

They parted to hasten toward that goal, youths sup- 
porting the aged, parents bearing their tender young. 
But they had not gone far, when, from the east, came one 
running as if pursued by demons ; -and he was crying: 
.z^Wte ftre-rlost! We are lost! The sea riseth even to 
cover the great pile of rocks! It will be upon us! " ~ 

Therewith he fell senseless among them. . 

After him came others running like madmen, and re- 
peating his words. One of these asked, "Where is the 
kingP'b rl Another, "Where-isr the highb priest jtfcfiiFgJs SBVJ 

An islander who had been in the court when the priests 
and handmaids hastened from the temple^ answered: 

"Atlano and Oltis sit in the inner holy place behind 
the statue of Amen, frozen in body, burning in torment 
of mind. There they will stay until the end, -for no one 
hath power to move them." 

A cry of horror went up. -^Iffo 

"How knowest thou this?" asked another of the new- 
comers, as he wiped the ashes from his lips. 

" I heard the chief priest and Priest Hafoe tell of it 
after they had fled the temple.?' .^lOyloom aii ar.sbia *{' 13V3 

"Who fled from the temple?" 

" The priests, handmaids, and serving men. None are 
left save those two frozen ones. Good company are th&y 
for each other!" 

Unanimous were the angry outcries of agreement 

"Well is,; it that the queen hath gone," remarked an- 
other newcomer. "We saw her off. May she have 
sailed too far to get back to this. The sea doeth its best 
to keep her away." 

" The dear queen ! " cried one after another. 

"Poor quesnr-she hath sorrowed and been meek. 
14 c 



2IO POSE1DONS PARADISE. 

"And we have known it, and lifted not our voices/' 
rang Monon's tones. 

"Yea; and many of us wives have been treated as her- 
self," said a clear voice from among a group of women. 

The male hearers accepted this in different ways. 
Some smiled scornfully; others glanced furtively at their 
fellows; a few appeared conscience stricken. A brave 
one exclaimed : 

" I will own I have sinned. I wedded my niece, which 
was against the old law. But there is Puppo he wed- 
ded his aunt! " 

"And tormented his first wife, the mother of Lota, to 
her death that he might do it," screamed old Nogoa. 

"Who put away five husbands?" yelled the unseen 
Puppo. There was silence. Then he answered sepul- 
chrally, "Old Nogoa!" 

Old Nogoa was speechless. 

But Monon spoke up, " Nogoa is not the only one. 
How many are there who have done as she! Until these 
last years, how holy hath been wedlock ; yet now, on 
every side, is its mockery. The handmaids and the animal 
gifts on the altar are but a few of the wicked changes in 
the laws of our olden fathers. Further, the curse of ava- 
rice is upon this island. And we have been steeped in 
pleasure, in sense. The body of flesh hath been our one 
thought. The inner body the spirit hath been forgot- 
ten, hath become of evil shape is evil. Let us look to 
it! Should this storm pass by, let us begin a better 
growth of the spirit. Let us go back to the warmth and 
trust of our fathers. Then may we have the knowledge 
of heaven that was theirs." 

"Thinkest thou there is still hope, Monon?" inter- 
rupted a by-sta&der, 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 211 

"Of what?" 

" That we may come out of this ?" 

" I believe there is no hope. But, we can die without 
murmur." 

In the next instant, he pointed to the temple gateway. 

" Behold Priest Kluto and the handmaids." 

They looked to perceive Kluto marshaling the hand- 
maids without. Well had he pleaded for this with Chief 
Urgis, pleaded that the wretched young creatures might 
be restored to the arms of their kindred whom he knew 
must be awaiting them. And he prevailed, as Urgis 
and the other priests had become so given over to terror 
as not to care for consequences. 

Further, Kluto was in the main, correct; for, as the 
handmaids stood clinging to each other, and glancing 
piteously about them through the falling ashes and rain, 
they were surrounded by watching, anxious dear ones ; 
and began to be suffocated almost of embraces. All 
save three ! 

Yes, three there were that stood shrinking, as they 
lost hope of recognition. In dreary silence, they waited 
a little, and then moved beside Priest Kluto, who had 
been looking inquiringly from them to the islanders. 
But all, excepting those caressing the fortunate hand- 
maids, were acting dazed because of the thickening show- 
ers of ashes and the now pelting rain. And prayers and 
groans were filling the air. 

So Priest Kluto gathered closer the three handmaids; 
and whispered to them. Thereupon, the four began to 
make their way through the excited, ejaculating crowds 
in order 'to ascend to the summit, to the temple of Posei- 
don and Qeito, 



212 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

larfcrt 
" Priest Kluto, thou goest the wrong way," called out 

a youth as he pointed to several galleys, that, unfastened 
from their moorings, were being borne higher and higher 
by the rising stream. " Why not set off in those galleys, 
and save the handmaids?" 

"No galley could live on the white water beyond. 
We go to the summit, to beseech the mercy of Amen 
and Poseidon; and, should the last moment draw nigh, 
to meet it as becometh us." With encouragement, he 
looked upon the shrinking handmaids. 

But one cried hysterically, " If my mother and father 
were not in Chimo. There is cheer in dying together!" 

In sweet, plaintive tones, spoke the second, "There 
is cheer in not being forgotten. I have father, mother, 
sisters, brothers. Yet not one cometh to look for me!" 

" For very good cause," screamed old Nogoa, who was 
still sitting on the fallen bough, and whom they .were pass- 
ing. "Celesa, I saw thy father, mother, sisters, and 
brothers go off in their galley after the queen." 

" I thank the gods ! " And Celesa, with face illumined, 
fell on her knees to implore that they might be beyond 
danger ; to give further thanks that she was not forgotten, 
that she alone of her family was selected to suffer. 

But Kluto raised her, and drew her arm within his. 
Then the third handmaid spoke low, " Happy are ye two! 
Though I have neither father, mother, sister, nor brother, 
yet one there was who cared for me when I was dragged 
to the temple. But him I see not. He hath not watched 
to know if I should need him. Yet we played together 
as children!" She laid her head upon Celesa's breast, 
and sobbed. 

"His name?" whispered Celesa, 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 213 

"Veris." 

"Where is the youth Veris?" inquired Celesa in low, 
clear tones, but without looking about her. 

A voice quite near replied, " It is even now time for 
him to come back from Chimo, whither he went a few 
days since." 

Luta was overjoyed. What were these dangers if she 
was not forgotten ? What was death if Veris shared it ? 
Her face lighted rosily as she looked around her, half 
expecting to see him speeding through the blinding 
showers of ashes and rain. Then she seized Celesa's 
arm, and said in exultation, " Now Priest Kluto, can I 
follow thee even unto death ! " 

Thus, when Priest Kluto had given his other arm to 
the first handmaid, did the four stand abreast, and look 
up to the summit, and at the volcano's light beyond un- 
dauntedly. They began to move upward, upon their 
faces coming the expression of the loving, trusting martyr. 
In amaze, the people beheld them; and could not but 
show some reflection. One cried: "They will die well. 
Why cannot we?" Then he, being a singer, commenced 
a hymn to Amen. So magnetic were his tones that the 
people about him joined in; a moment more, and the 
multitude was swelling the refrain. To this music, the 
four ascended to the summit, there to kneel before the 
temple of Poseidon and Cleito. 

But along by the palace was coming a horseman from 
the west, his horse smoking and foaming, for he had 
fairly flown over the country between Chimo and this 
place. As horse and rider came in among the chanting 
multitude, the singing ceased, and many voices cried, 
"Veris! Veris!" 



214 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Veris, as he walked his horse in among them, shouted, 
"The island sinketh ! Everywhere as I came across, rise 
the streams! Already hath the sea laid Chimo half 
under water!" 

He had been nearing the temple gateway. In a few 
moments more, he was looking through with most anx- 
ious face. Then he said, "I will go in." 

"Veris, look not there for Luta," called an islander 
who had been running after him. 

"Whither shall I look?" 

"Herself and two other handmaids have gone with 
Priest Kluto to the temple above to pray." And the man 
pointed in the direction. 

"I will join them." Then, in happy tones, Veris 
thanked his friend, shook his hand, and turned to mount 
the hill ; and as he mounted, the rain began to fall in 
sheets, the thunderbolts to strike. 

Terror-stricken, the people scattered, seeking shelter. 
Some ran to their homes, others to the palace. But 
many rushed into the great court of the temple, thence 
on to the temple, there to utter dismayed cries at behold- 
ing the altar fire but a faint spark. Despite the almost 
darkness they pressed on, invading the sacredness ol 
the inner sanctuary. Here, by the dim lamplight, did 
they further behold Atlano and Oltis, still as iron, still 
glaring at each other. And but a faint spark was remain- 
ing on this altar, likewise! 

Shriek after shriek went up as these intruders looked 
upon king and priest; these shrieks being echoed by the 
dazed ones running through passages, apartments, and 
temple until it seemed as though the weight of sound 
must bring the walls about them. 



THE ALTAR FIRES GO OUT. 215 

Some of these intruders even ventured to pass on 
through the private passage of Atlano and Oltis. Per- 
ceiving the end door open, they went toward it, and its 
dark stairway allured them. Down they rushed to the 
open door below through which a faint light could be 
seen. And hustled, awed, into the crypt-like apartment 
whose lamps were still burning, there to look about them 
in wonder, terror; and then dashed for the white objects at 
the far end ! 

There was an agonized staring, screams, yells, a fren- 
zied retreat up the stairway, frantic disclosures when they 
reached the inner sanctuary. "The lost handmaids!" 
" Dead dead ! " " In the vault below ! " " See for your- 
selves ! " were the cries to the ones that were here. 

Many of these ran down to look for themselves, whilst 
the discoverers hastened out to inform others. The 
second party, in turn, came tearing up, maddened; and 
rushed without to corroborate the reports of the first. 
The listening islanders, aroused to their gross neglect, 
their insensate yielding,were excited to extreme hatred and 
desire for revenge. With Monon as leader, they hastened 
in mass to the inner sanctuary, showering curses the while 
upon Atlano and Oltis. And, when before them, further 
cursed; then spat upon them. Yet still the two sat rigid. 

As they were thus reviled as the revilers endeavored 
to tear them, from their seats the great structure began 
to rock, and so terrifically that the infuriated ones, for- 
getful even of their revenge, turned to flee. Better the 
rain, the lurid sky, the unearthly gloom, the showering 
ashes, the thunderbolts than this ! 

The last to leave cried in their flight, "The spark is 
out! The spark is out!" but to repeat the same when 
the temple's altar was shot by ! 



216 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

But Luta was in Veris' arms ; and Kluto was holding 
fast Celesa whilst, on the summit, the four received the 
full fury of the elements. But they were happy. As to 
the first handmaid, she had passed away while praying. 
And was lonely no longer! 



CHAPTER XVI. 

THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 

As the galleys sailed to the east, the Atlantean eyes 
lingered with pride upon the island. Never had it looked 
fairer. What other spot of earth was so fitting to be 
chosen the abode of a god? What other land had so 
thriven, so conquered, so repeated itself even in the far- 
thest climes ? Surely upon this island the sun must shine 
forever! 

Thus, in happy accord, did they begin to sing praises 
to their father Poseidon, the while throwing back fond 
kisses at their island, and even at the water which was 
alive with porpoises and dolphins, the. former leaping 
their highest in their sportive appreciation of the music, 
the latter enjoying it with a dignified serenity befitting 
the state which the Atlanteans ever accorded them. 

Yet continually were the singers of every galley glanc- 
ing at the group under the queen's awning. In the midst, 
stood the 'Silent Priest' before the queen; and about 
them were ^Eole, Electra,and Hellen; while near swayed 
Sensel, a being as mysterious as the silent one. Small 
wonder is it that the inquisitive islanders would have 
gladly ceased their singing could they have heard what 
was spoken by those so interested. 

When presented to the queen, the 'Silent Priest' had 
bowed, then taken the hand she extended, and regarded 

(217) 



2i 8 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

her fixedly. At his magnetic touch, his eloquent look, 
she thrilled; and her voice trembled, as she said: 

"Father whom we call the 'Silent/ rather should I 
bow to thee. For thou' art one whom the gods favor. 
Of a truth, art thou sent of them." 

As the silent one stood calm, intent, yole thought, 
"How is this grand being to answer the queen?" And 
she drew nearer to him, her eyes filled with love rather 
than awe. Noting this, Hellen, Electra, and Sensel 
watched her eagerly. 

The next moment, she received a shock. The silent 
one, though gesticulating as usual, was also speaking, 
though in lowest tone. 

"Queen Atlana, now will I loose my tongue. In 
truth, can I say the gods have favored me." 

As his deep, musical tones continued, ^Eole had seized 
his robe, then his arm; and next was looking up wistfully 
in his face. Therewith, Electra began to weep; and 
Hellen and Sensel turned away, for they could bear no 
longer this look so commingled of remembrance, long- 
ing, hope, doubt. 

The queen of her wonder and perturbation, exclaimed, 
"We believed thee dumb!" 

"Queen Atlana, I spoke not that I might baffle." 

" Baffle what?" Very faint was the queen's voice. 

" The foes of ^Eole and Hellen, gracious Queen." He 
put his arm about the half-fainting JEole, and drew her 
to him. And Sensel glided beside them to whisper, " Be 
strong, be strong, dear ^Eole." 

She, though but half conscious, comprehended: and 
never had she been so happy. In her ears was the mu- 
sic of this sympathetic voice; upon her had come a 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 

tranquillity hardly of earth. In these arms so strongly 
enfolding her was she to be borne to heaven? Were the 
years on the island a dream? Surely these were the 
arms in which she had been wont to rest when the ram- 
bles over the dear Pelasgian fields had been too long, 
this was the touch that had ever soothed her! 

Meanwhile, the queen was noting the astonishment of 
the sailors, who had ceased singing, and were resting on 
their oars. Thus, she whispered to Sensel : 

"Look that no one is within the withdrawing room. 
Hither will we go." 

Sensel glided off. The queen said, as though to herself, 
" The 'Silent Priest' can only answer there." 

Great was her agitation. The priest, because of the 
quiet about them, bowed in acquiescence; further, sign- 
ing that there he would make all plain. 

Sensel returned to say the apartment was ready. 
Waving for her ladies to remain, the queen walked off 
supported by Electra; and was followed by the priest 
bearing JEole, and Hellen and Sensel. 

Deep was the hush as they passed along. Not only 
those of their own galley were interested. The occu- 
pants of the galleys attending them had also quieted. 
Every eye was fastened in wonder. When the six had 
entered the withdrawing room, the hush continued as 
the galleys pursued their way. 

The priest placed ^ole upon a couch. But, as she 
regained strength, she arose to her feet to gaze at him as 
if charmed. 

Meanwhile the queen had sat down ; and now was 
motioning for the others to sit also. But the priest 
shook his head, thereby causing her to question by her 
look. 



22O POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Queqn Atlana, I will stand until all things are made 
plain to thee." 

The others chose to stand also. Electra brought a 
fan, and fanned the queen, who had closed her eyes. 

Shortly Atlana was able to ask, " Thou whom we call 
the 'Silent Priest' who art thou?" 

"Queen Atlana I am of Pelasgia." 

He spoke in Atlantean ; and repeated in Pelasgian. 

As the once familiar tongue was heard, yEole ran 
half way toward him, clasped her hands, and looked up 
in his face with eyes brilliant from unspeakable hope. 
The most beautiful color came into her cheeks, and her 
lips parted in a heavenly smile. So lovely, so angelic 
was her expression that the beholders gazed spellbound. 
And low, fervent were her tones. 

" I felt it, .1 felt it ! ' Silent Priest ' who art thou ? Thy 
name?" 

"Daughter," and he approached her, his arms ex- 
tended, "my name is Deucalion." 

" Father!" She would have fallen at his feet, had he 
not caught her. 

The strong man was sobbing. "Ah, ^Eole, ^Eole, to 
hold thee once again ! " 

" Father, father, after these years ! But I knew thou 
wouldst come, if of earth ! " 

The rapture of her tone was so intense that he began 
to fear for her. Thus, he bore her to a couch, and sat 
beside her, supporting her; and then Electra came to chafe 
her hands, and bathe her brow. Her trembling was ex- 
cessive ; and she kept repeating, " Father father. Thanks 
thanks!" Though soon she calmed to question, " Fa- 
ther, tell me of mother. Is she well ? " And extreme was 
the pathos of her tone. 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 221 

"ALole, thy mother waiteth for thee." 

"What, then, is the past? One look from her will 
heal all. Mother mother!" So intense were tone and 
look that Sensel turned away. And Electra sobbed. 

Throughout this scene, Queen Atlana had gazed ston- 
ily. Though, at yEole's cry for her mother, she thrilled, 
and her eyes moistened. But she conquered her feeling, 
and now asked in irony: "Sir Deucalion, doth this thy 
guile come of the gods?" 

He arose, and bowed. "Most gracious Queen, this 
is not guile." 

Howcallestthouit?" 

" I call it working to the best end a matter between 
Pelasgia and Atlantis." 

"That is the look from thine eyes. I can see it in but 
one light." 

"Queen Atlana, I have a right to mine own." 

"But not a right to lead us wrong to to use us." 

"Queen Atlana, how have we been used?" 

C"t 1 

She answered not. 

" Queen Atlana, to gain my children, I have used pow- 
ers given from above. If through such, I have mastered 
king and priests, have caused the sleep of ^Eole, have 
drawn thee, judge whether or not the gods are with me. 
Answer me in this, seemeth they to be with Atlantis?" 

The queen arose; and ignoring his question, demanded, 
"Sir Deucalion of Pelasgia, if it doth agree with thy 
will, let it be ordered that the galleys turn toward At- 
lantis." Bitter, scornful was her tone. 

"Dear Queen Atlana, not yet," interposed Electra. 
"If thou wilt think for a moment, thou wilt judge he hath 

done what thou wouldst have done in his place, Wouldst 

. 



222 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

thou not have done as much for children of thine own 
even for ALole and myself? Further, with all his art, his 
power, none hath borne pain, hath lost life. Think, he 
might have brought an army upon Atlantis." 

" Electra, I could stand the bringing of an army better 
than this. How have I been, tricked ! To think I have 
set myself against the king, even to coming on this 'lit- 
tle sail.' And to please whom, to wait upon whom? 
Why, his foe Deucalion. Atlano Atlano ! " Utter de- 
spair was in tone and gesture. 

"Queen Atlana, thy coming is not of thine ordering. 
Cast such thought from thee. If it hath been of mine 
ordering, the higher will is behind," urged Deucalion. 

"Sir Deucalion, thy words are idle. As if the Higher 
Good should set aside thought for all save thee and thine. 
Thou hast high thought of self. But the sun shineth on 
all. It is my will that my galley be turned." Hard had 
it been to control herself. And now her tones broke; 
"Should harm come to Atlano, I cease to live! The 
blame, the grief, I could not bear ! Sir Deucalion, why 
hast thou not moved? My galleys are not ordered!" 
And she turned to Sensel, as if he might help her. 

" One moment, Queen Atlana, and I will. But first, 
think not thy presence with Atlano could turn aside that 
which doth threaten." 

" What meanest thou ? " 

"Thy presence, can it turn aside the judgment of the 
gods?" 

Faint, wondering was her tone, " So runneth the proph- 
ecy so runneth the prophecy." She clasped her 
hands to her forehead, gasping, "I shall go mad with 
this dread upon me!" 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 22$ 

JEole ran to her, and put her arm around her. " Dear 
Queen Atlana, call to mind it was thy kind thought for 
us that made thee leave the king for this short season. 
Could the gods make use of such?" 

At her touch and voice, the queen shivered, and averted 
her face. "^Lole, ^Eole, what thou hast cost me ! " 

"Dear Queen, thou hast not ceased to care for me?" 

Atlana held out her hand; and as Mole took it, replied: 
" Nay, I have not ceased to care for thee. For thy sake, 
I could joy over this. But, the king! Atlano Atlano!" 

There was a painful hush for a little, until she stooped 
to kiss the suffering girl. Afterward, with her old dig- 
nity, she commanded : " Sensel, as Sir Deucalion heedeth 
not, I ask that thou wilt order the galleys to be turned." 

"Dear Queen Atlana," explained Deucalion, "how 
could I give the order whilst thou art angered with me?" 

His tone and manner touched her. "Sir Deucalion, 
speak not of anger. Let us have no further words as to 
the right or wrong. We will part in peace." 

He stooped and kissed her robe. "Queen Atlana, 
thou art a queen, in truth. I go to make good thine 
order." 

" Father," burst from Hellen, " wilt thou note this fast 
gathering darkness?" 

In his absorption, Deucalion had not remarked the 
very sudden change. With serious, awed countenance, 
he looked about him; and then spoke lightly, hoping to 
reassure the blanching queen. 

" It meaneth rain. It seemeth as if the clouds gather." 

But the suddenness of this gloom was as nothing to 
the way in which it was deepening. It threatened to 
hide them from eagh other, In her alarm, the queen 



224 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

moved toward the door; and this was opened for her 
by Sensel just as her ladies were about to knock. 

"Gracious Queen," said Rica, the first lady, "it will 
storm. All is dark." 

Atlana stepped out; and those behind her, followed. 
They looked to become appalled. 

The atmosphere was thick and dark. The heavens 
were obscure. An inky cloud lay over the island. The 
sea was in foam. And the galleys were trying to keep 
close, whilst on their decks were huddled the fear-stricken 
islanders. These, upon perceiving the queen, cheered 

faintly. Then a spokesman inquired : " Most : gracious 
.~^ i 11 11 n'i"* '35 isnnonjjs ofij Sciyi Q. 

Queen, shall we now go back? 

TU j i 4-u u gVbgfaQBcqmpo:: 

The order hath been given, shouted Hellen, 

hest of the almost rigid queen. 

T , _ . u. Sani: . ;BRBu& riteuL) IBSU. , 

Instantly, Sensel went to the captain of the queen s 

galley, who, thereupon, gave orders to the other galleys. 
Thus, all the galleys were speedily pointed for Atlantis, 
excepting the one appropriated to Hellen and ^Eole. 

Then did Hellen's and Dole's thought turn to the 

3ri 

downcast Electra. Indeed, poor Electra seemed over- 
whelmed. Hellen, feeling he could not part with her, 
grew fierce in his determination to the declaring, " Father, 
if Electra goeth back, I go with her! " 

This was an unexpected obstacle, as Hellen looked a 
rock. For the moment, Deucalion felt he was not equal 
to it; and then spoke hesitatingly, "Queen Atlana, can 

we have Electra?" 

-,, . . , 4 , c . 

The queen recovering somewhat, was resolute. Sir 
** . & 

Deucalion, Electra will go with me." 

"To go again into the temple?" demanded Hellen 
"To be forced within the inner holy place? To " 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 225 

" To lose her life ? " interrupted Deucalion. " To pour 
out her blood as water to aid the vain, fiendish quest of 
king and priest? To stand over the crucible, and stir 
this lifeblood until she perisheth of the drain? Thrice 
cursed draught ! The ' Deeps ' tell the tale ! " 

They stared aghast at Deucalion. But the queen in- 
terpreted. Every unguarded sentence, every sudden pause 
of Atlano reverted to her until she felt like accusing her 
memory for its tenacity. And her horror grew. Tor- 
nado-like it swept over her the sufferings she had borne 
through him, his contempt, his neglect, his indignities, 
his infidelities. Now this revelation of Deucalion filled 
the measure. 

Her spirit revolted. The words came clear and firm 
" Electra will not go back. I go to the king without her. 
He can but yield me on the altar. Or try the blood of a 
queen, for change, in seeking his draught." 

Electra ran to embrace her. " Speak not of the altar, 
dear Queen. After that, I cannot leave thee." 

Atlana kissed her. "Dear Electra, I meant but to 
jest when I spoke of the altar. We know the need of 
my presence to the king." Sad, bitter was her tone. 
Then, bethinking her of their present condition, remorse 
swept over her so that she tottered, and would have 
fallen but for Sensel. 

At this moment, the blackness of the atmosphere be- 
came appalling; and a cry of horror went up from the 
galleys. All were pointing to the island. The queen 
looked, and fell half fainting upon Deucalion. As he 
sustained her, he whispered to Sensel: "It hath come!" 

Yes, it had come. There lay their beloved island at 
the mercy of fierce warring elements. For, about it 

15 



226 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

were dread waterspouts; upon it were falling sheets of 
water; above it were playing the fiery messengers of 
Amen. And the ocean responded white. 

Although so terror-stricken, the occupants of the gal- 
leys were anxious to return; and but waited to follow 
the queen. Already she was reviving; and presently 
stood up for another view, saying reproachfully, "We 
move not toward it." 

"Look! Look!" cried many voices. 

And utter despair came upon all. The island was 
rocking as if in the throes of a mighty earthquake, the 
waves were leaping up its cliffs, the waterspouts were 
breaking, the thunderbolts falling, the northern sky be- 
ginning to blaze. 

"The mountain burneth!" they cried. And fell on 
their knees. Once, only, in the history of the island, had 
this volcano burst its bands. 

Queen Atlana had looked to fall back insensible into 
the arms of Deucalion. He bore her to a couch in the 
withdrawing room; and then hung over her with restora- 
tives, Electra, ^Eole, and the ladies each dumb with ap- 
prehension. 

Outside, Hellen was addressing the galleys with tones 
firm and far-reaching, for he felt all-powerful now that 
Electra was not to return. 

"Ye Nobles, Elders, and Captains; the 'Silent Priest' 
is firm that the island is doomed! If ye go back, it is to 
your death. If ye press on with us toward the Middle 
Sea, ye will be saved. What say ye, captains of the 
galleys?" 

There followed hurried consultations between the cap- 
tains and their employers. Finally, one captain answered, 
" We, of this galley, will press on." 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 22/ 

Another captain, he of the queen's galley, spoke loud: 
"My wife, my children are on the island. I would go to 
them." 

"Thou art the captain of the galley of the que"en," 
cried another captain. " Wouldst thou leave the queen ? " 

The poor captain looked irresolute for an instant. 

"The queen is dear; but my family is dearer. I take 
it my duty is to them, even more than to the queen. 
There are other captains!" 

"Yea, there are other captains," rang" Hellen's voice. 
"The captain of my galley can take thy place, and I will 
take his. Thus mayst thou go back, if any do, to the 
island." 

The captain of the galley containing the relatives of 
the handmaid Celesa now called: "We will go back. 
Come with us, captain of the galley of the queen." 

The captain of the queen's galley looked upon the 
foaming sea, the beset island, his sailors at their oars 
the door of the withdrawing room through which the 
fainting queen had been borne. 

" How can I leave the queen? My men? I will not. 
I will stay. Heaven help me to bear this. Heaven help 
my wife, my little ones!" One heartrending sob burst 
from him. Then he stood firm, resigned. 

Loud cheers rent the air,though little cared he for these. 
He stood, as in a dream, seeing only his wife, his little 
ones, in their sore extremity. 

Immediately, the captain who had said he would return, 
parted from them; and after him, went a few galleys 
heroically. But the greater number, those bearing- entire 
families, determined to press on. 

Then Hellen called: "Captains, your queen our dear 



228 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Queen Atlana lieth as one dead. The -captain of her 
galley will lead us. In my galley is food enough for a 
few days, if shared with care. Moreover, there are islands 
near. And the Afrite Coast is not far." 

A faint cheering replied. 

Hellen then spoke apart with his father. "Would we 
could get the queen, her- ladies, ^Eole and Electra on 
my galley, for it is stronger, and holdeth the food. It 
might be tempted to leave us." 

"That is well thought of. But how to get them on 
board? The rowers cannot keep near enough, so fierce 
groweth the sea. I like not the crest of these waves." 

"It would be well to throw the ropes, to keep the gal- 
leys close. The sea may quiet a little; and then can they 
pass over." 

"Sensel, what thinkest thou?" inquired Deucalion. 

" It can be done, should the sea calm a little. It would 
be well to throw the ropes, when the rowers have come 
as nigh as they can." 

" It is well." 

At the word, Hellen's galley drew as near as it could 
for the tossing sea. Then, the ropes were thrown bring- 
ing them within unsteady touch, almost. Whilst thus 
engaged, Hellen remarked: "Father, the air seemeth 
more than full of rain. And yet none droppeth." 

" I, too, have wondered over it. But, where is Sensel ? " 

For Sensel had most suddenly disappeared. 

But even as they began to look about for him he re- 
appeared, coming from the direction of the withdrawing 
room,. And in each hand was held a lamp of beautiful 
pattern. These he hastened to lay before Deucajion. 

" Thou hast it, Sensel," exclaimed the latter, his eyes 
brightening. 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 22Q 

" Yea I thought this oil might ease the troubled wa- 
ters." 

"Thou thinkest of everything." 

"Thou hast taught me." 

"What meaneth it, father?" interposed the wondering 
Hellen. 

"It is the Pelasgian custom in storms, Hellen. Tell 
him, Sensel." 

"I will. But first, there is quite a -vessel of oil upon 
thy galley, Hellen, as I found when I was saving the 
food from that torrent. It is for thee to order that a lit- 
tle of that oil be dropped upon the water about thy gal- 
ley when we have done the like with this." 

" I will to it, Sensel. But, meanest thou that the oil" 
hath the power to still the waves?" 

"It hath." 

"It doth amaze." Then, atSensel's behest, he stood at 
that side of the galley toward his own, and slowly allowed 
some drops to fall from the lamp upon the tumultuous 
sea; and perceived that this small amount spread rap- 
idly, forming an expansive thin film upon the water. 

Meanwhile, with the second lamp, Sensel was acting 
to as good purpose on the other side of the galley. For, 
in scarce less time, was an even more expansive film 
spreading from his side also. Then he called, "Hellen, 
speak now to thy galley. The oil is in an earthen jar in 
the hold. They are to drop it at each side." 

The film was continuing to spread in a manner aston- 
ishing; and more astonishing, the water about them was 
unable to tear this film and send its wavelets to the crest 
The fierce sea was becoming subdued, threatening no 
longer with its cresting waves. There was now but a 




230 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

swell that was growing less and less. As Hellen com- 
prehended this, a passion of hope possessed him. En- 
thusiastically, he called to his galley, and gave commands 
that those on board were quick to understand. For, in 
scarce more than a minute were men stationed to pour 
the precious drops on the cresting waves beneath. 

Meanwhile, the occupants of the other galleys were 
watching, and gradually taking in this new position of 
affairs. In a few minutes, there was not a galley but had 
its men dropping oil; for each was supplied with lamps. 

And, oh the cheering that prevailed as the waves grew 
quieter, as the blanket of oil the thin, almost gossamer 
film continued to spread, the spreading so conquering 
the waters that the other galleys soon lay at ease near 
Hellen's galley, in obedience to his command! 

When the ropes had well united the queen's galley 
with Hellen's, Sensel called: "Now is the time. Thou } 
Deucalion, wilt bear the queen. Hellen, thou wilt lead 
Electra. I will look to ^Lole and the ladies. And, 
thou, Captain of the galley, wilt go over with us, and 
take charge for the queen." 

"Quick," added Hellen, nervously. 

The three ran to the withdrawing room, and each 
seized his charge. The queen was still unconscious ; but 
to the others, explanations were made as they were hur- 
ried along. 

Sensel, in delight that the calm was continuing, leaped 
over, and then held out his arms, when, with Hellen's as- 
sistance, ^ole was passed over. Then followed the 
queen, Electra, and the ladies in waiting. Next was 
transferred Deucalion's boat. 

Then went over the captain of the queen's galley with 



THE SILENt ONE SPEAKS. 231 

his men, the captain and men of Hellen's galley taking 
their places. Meanwhile, Hellen was gathering rugs and 
cushions, and throwing these over. Even a few couches 
were transferred. Then himself and Deucalion passed 
over, after Azu. 

Immediately the men on Hellen's galley bestirred them- 
selves to supply the queen's galley and the now adjacent 
other galleys with food, though small was the portion 
allotted each. But, as Hellen had said, the African Coast 
was not far; and several islands were between. 

Scarcely had all this been accomplished than a noise 
as of muffled thunder was heard beneath the water, the 
galleys receiving the shock as though they had struck 
upon the rocks. Again the waters began to rage and 
foam. The films of oil had yielded. Again were the 
waves cresting, and most threateningly. 

" Let us move on," shouted Sensel. " And more oil ! " 

"The island!" "The island!" cried a few agonized 
voices. 

The island was shaking terrifically. And it had cer- 
tainly lost in height. Deucalion, as he looked, exclaimed 
wildly : " Sensel Hellen it sinketh. It is lost ! " 

He spoke very loud, forgetting himself, and the listen- 
ing islanders, in their amazement, concluded that the 
time had arrived when the ' Silent Priest ' could speak the 
will of the gods. . 

"He knoweth," called one captain to the others. " Let 
us press on!" 

"Yea press on," cried Deucalion in his mightiest 
tone. " Further, forget r :t :hc oil ! " 

Then to Hellen and Sensel, he added, "Ye^will press 
on to the fifth island to the east, and there wait for me. 



232 POSEIDON^S PARADISE. 

I will take oil, food, and drink, and stay here in my boat, 
that I may witness the death throes of the island." 

" I will stay with thee," said Sensel. 

"And I," added Hellen. 

" I will stay alone. Your duty is with those on this 
galley. Hellen, call to mind that thy mother looketh 
for thee and ^Eole." 

"She looketh for thee, likewise." 

"I will come." 

Hellen, of his impatience, turned away. He dared 
not speak. 

" Sensel, thou wilt aid Hellen in caring for ^Eole, Elec- 
tra, and the queen. Further, forget not to take in water 
at that fifth island. It is fine." 

Fierce was Hellen's tone. " Father, if thou goest, I 
go also. I will share thy watch ! " 

"Nay, I will share it," urged Sensel. "I came with 
him. I stay with him to the end! " 

"Thou art not his son!" 

" Hellen, calm thyself. I will bide alone. Look ye to 
the queen, and to ^Eole and Electra. Bring me the food, 
drink, and oil while I go to speak with them." 

They gazed at him, irresolute. But, as he regarded 
them, they at length turned to comply; whereupon, he 
repaired to the withdrawing room to find that the queen 
was still unconscious, whilst beside her sat yEole and 
Electra. He took a hand of each, saying, " I would 
speak with you." 

When the ladies in waiting had withdrawn, he con- 
tinued: "^Eole, Electra, gather your strength. I have 
to tell you. that I will stay here in my boat after the gal- 
leys pass on to the east, that I may witness the last of 
the island." 



THE SILENT ONE SPEAKS. 233 

They were bewildered. Thus, he repeated his words, 
and with such conviction that they became horrified, and 
piteously besought him not to leave them, not to go to 
his death. 

" Do ye not feel I shall come back ? ALole, gather thy 
trust. Electra, where is thy strength?" 

"Gone, gone is my strength," .moaned Electra. "I 
now know fear. Ah, Sir Deucalion, think of us. Yield 
not to this wish. What is its furthering to the delight of 
joining thy wife, of bringing before her ALole and Hellen. 
And, tempt not the gods." 

"Thou meanest be not too sure of the favor of the 
gods, Electra." 

She blushed; but regarded him bravely. " I have said 
it. Take it as thou wilt. Either is my thought." 

" Thou art a ready one. And I like thy truth. But 
no talking will hold me. I go." 

He took them in his arms, and kissed them. "Now 
is my parting word for a little. But I shall come back. 
And, give of this to the queen when I am gone, a drop 
with every hour." 

He laid a vial upon the. table; then led them to a 
couch, and bade them comfort each other. They replied 
not to him, but drooped their heads forlornly as he 
passed out. As for ^Eole, she seemed turning to marble. 

At the threshold were awaiting Hellen and Sensel 
with their supplies; and each looked most determined 
as he passed onward. Then, Sensel knocked lightly at 
the door;- when Electra opened to them. 

Sensel hurried on toward ^Eole; but Hellen paused 
by the door. " Electra, I go with my father. Sensel will 
care for thee and yole. ^And now to kiss thee. For 
never shall I see thee more!" 



234 

The last words seemed to tear him. Electra, pallid 
and trembling, whispe/ed : " Thou art right to go. But 
the pain ! " 

He caught her to him, declaring how dear she was, 
and begging she would not forget his love; then kissed 
her, and ran out. 

Meanwhile, Sensel was pressing dole's hand so that 
she revived, and looked up at him. At sight of the 
anguish in her eyes, he forgot himself, and kissed her 
hair, her hands, her robe, as he cried, a ^ole JEole!" 

She, flushing and paling, would have arisen. But he 
said, "Nay, nay!" And after again kissing her hand, 
sped to the door where he paused to bid farewell to 
Electra, and then vanished. 

Deucalion stood at the stern. When they joined him, 
he said as though giving some simple order, " Press on 
to the island. There will I come to you." 

The two received his embraces, each biding his time, 
each watching the other. Into the boat, they threw the 
bags of food, the skins of water and wine; then, hand- 
ing him the oil, waited as he began the descent, each 
purposing to throw himself after. 

But Deucalion was not half way, when, in the hush of 
the amazed beholders, was heard a sharp cry from Elec- 
tra. Instantly, Hellen turned, and ran to the withdraw- 
ing room. Thus Sensel found no bar to his resolve. In 
a trice, he had leaped down beside Deucalion. " I came 
with thee, I go with thee!" he cried. With this, he de- 
tached the rope, and the boat tossed away. 

Deucalion, surprised at his insistency, demurred, 
"Rash youth, rash prince, thy life is of too much 
worth. 



THE SILENT ONE SPEARS. 235 

* Sensel smiled as he answered, " Is not thy life of 
worth ? " 

" We shall have evil work." 

"It lookethit." Then Sensel waved his hand gaily to 
the astounded Hellen, who was looking over at them; 
and who could only gasp, " Father! " 

"It is well. Be not troubled, my son. Think of thy 
mother. What aileth Electra?" 

"yole sleepeth as she did in the temple." 

"Again is it well. Should I know I could not come 
out of this, I would cause her to awake. But, let her 
sleep for three days, should I not come back. Then, the 
written word I left for thee in my case will show thee 
how to arouse her. Further, my son, press on with 
speed. Show thy fond feeling for me in this. And for- 
get not, my last word is for thy mother." 

Hellen could not reply; but merely waved his hand in 
farewell. As the boat shot off, he turned away without 
hope. 

But the galleys were awaiting his lead. Thus he im- 
parted the directions of his father to their occupants who 
were regarding the returning boat in dismay. 

Then quickly certain whispers spread. Was the ' Silent 
Priest' an evil spirit? And, was he going back to gloat 
over the condition of their island ? Or, was he indeed 
of the gods, and going to aid? Nobles, elders, captains, 
sailors, women and children were divided, some judging 
him to be on the side of evil, others on the side of good. 
But the majority inclined to the evil. However, his di- 
rections must be followed, as whether good or evil, he 
had shown proper 'knowledge of the fitness of the fifth 
island as a stopping place. And much they needed the 
water. 



236 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

After the opinions had been well expressed, they grew* 1 
mute, for the vessels began to labor eastward. It seemed 
as though their eyes must remain with the island, their 
heavy hearts drag them to the bottom. Alas, these poor 
Atlanteans ! 

When they had well gone on, Deucalion and Sensel 
stayed their course; and shortly bounded back to the 
place they had left, from there to watch the doomed 
Atlantis ! That is, to watch the points within their vision 
of this great, this magnificent island. 



CHAPTER XVII. 

THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 

THE two watchers were interested not only in the 
island, but also in the galleys speeding eastward. Ere- 
long, the galleys that had turned back, thought better of 
their resolution; and changed course again in order to 
rejoin their fellows But one continued toward Atlantis, 
that containing Celesa's relatives; and soon this disap- 
peared, thus leaving Deucalion and Sensel sole specta- 
tors of the sequel of this frenzy of the elements. 

Through the night, the island seemed as if afire from 
the continual thunderbolts and the volcano's stream. 
The fiery river of the latter had coursed down mouTitain 
and hill to the sea, and was leaping the cliffs a tremen- 
dous fall of flame; whilst the released gases, in their de- 
tonation, outrivaled the thunder. And waterspout was 
succeeding waterspout, each discharging its angry con- 
tents; the rain, meanwhile, falling as do the avalanches. 
It was indeed a deluge. 

Toward dawn, Sensel inquired, "Would it not be well 
to get farther away ? Should the island sink we are too 
near." * 

"There is yet time. Ah, the island rocketh again! 
Sensel, my heart faileth me." 

"The poor islanders! They merit it not." 

"The gods know," Yet Deucalion's face was drawn 

(237) 



238 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

in agony. As for Sensel, his pallor was extreme. For 
many minutes, neither spoke; and their eyes were turned 
from the dreadful sight. Then Sensel said, "Let us -be- 
seech that they come out of this." And he fell to plead 
silently, Deucalion emulating him. In the bounding boat, 
the two found it hard to keep on their knees as they im- 
plored heaven's mercy, and hoped it would come. 

But mercy was not for the island. They gave up 
hope when another volcano shot up, and poured its tor- 
rent broadcast to the left of the first. Then said Deu- 
calion, " Let us press on until the island lookethto be on 
the line where sky and water meet." 

When thus well away, they stood in the tossing boat, 
and gazed long, in mute anguish, for the island though 
ceasing to rock, had sunk far down in the water was 
still sinking. Then their exhausted frames insisted upon 
support. So they broke their fast, refreshing themselves 
with the bread, dried meat, pulse, fruit, and wine. " Soon 
shall we need our strength," said Deucalion. " For the 
end is near." 

By judicious use of the oil, the tempestuous waves 
were kept in abeyance. Thus they watched until the 
early morning, amidst the din of the rumblings under- 
neath, explosions of gases, burstings of waterspouts, and 
crashings of thunderbolts. The island was scarcely visi- 
ble for the great white waves leaping high upon it. The 
heavens were lurid with the volcano's flames; and two 
broad torrents of molten, fiery matter were springing 
from the island to the sea, that answered in tornadoes of 
spray. Whilst the dense vapors rolling toward them 
threatened to shut off the spectacle entirely. 

Through all, the doomed mass was slowly, determin- 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 239 

edly sinking down down into the mad waters, the 
consolidating thunderbolts seeming to press upon it to 
hasten its descent. The vapors, in their thickening, 
obliged Deucalion to move the boat from point to point 
in order to retain the view of what was now but the 
elevated portions of the island. A few times had this 
been done when there came a shaking so excessive in its 
length and severity that the two shrieked and closed 
their eyes. When they looked, the island was disappear- 
ing even to the peaks.. In an instant more it van- 
ished ! And the waters lashed over it in a vortex threaten- 
ing all things a vortex flame, steam, and smoke mounted ! 

"Now will we fly," shouted Deucalion, "or we shall 
follow the island. Scarce will the oil be of use ! " 

Though Sensel continued to drop, as Deucalion began 
his management. The boat bounded over the water, 
hardly touching it. It seemed to fly. As Sensel watched, 
he became awed, so bird-like, so sentient were the move- 
ments of the slender frame ! The water frothing madly 
about them might be the verge of the vortex! Would 
its terrific suction seize them, bear them down to share 
the fate of the vanished island? As they labored, they 
scarce breathed of their dread. 

But the boat continued to respond to the promptings 
bounding, skimming, flying over the turbid, grasping 
waters. A half hour's intensity of labor brought them 
relief. The sea was certainly less violent. At times, the 
boat could even rest. With hope, they began to regard 
each other as they relaxed a little in their efforts. Though 
hardly could they dare to accept it, when there was no 
longer any impetuosity of movement, but merely the 
rocking and rolling of rough contact. Shortly, there was 



240 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

not even rocking or rolling, but rather a gliding. Then 
fell they on their knees. 

And that night, slept peacefully, in turn, as the boat 
made good time, in the morning coming upon a region 
of sunshine. 

Past island after island they speeded, keeping ever to 
the east by means of Deucalion's knowledge of the heav- 
ens, as well as by a kind of rude compass known even in 
those days. This was a magnetized needle floating in 
water crosswise upon a reed.* For well were the prop- 
erties of the loadstone understood, and utilized. 

On the morning of the second day, they sighted the 
vessels, that, with some escaped vessels of Chimo, lay 
moored in a cove of the island indicated by Deucalion. 
And then upon the two came a mighty dread. How were 
they to tell these Atlanteans, these Atlanteans already 
signaling to them gladly. Thus, in telltale manner, did 
they slacken their oncoming, to the quick appreciation of 
the impatient islanders. The waiting vessels showed only 
despairing faces, as the boat more and more reluctantly 
approached. Then, when within earshot, a few would- 
be hopeful ones began to cry out welcomings and inqui- 
ries. 

Standing mute, downcast, Deucalion and Sensel moved 
in among them. Though this was not enough; for there 
came the cries, "The island is it well?" "Tell us the 
good word!" And so on. 

Yet still continued Deucalion and Sensel mute. 

Then demanded a voice, "Tell us the worst!" 

"That can I tell you," answered Deucalion. 

"What is it?" 

*Donnelly's " Atlantis," 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 24! 

"The island is no more. It hath sunk." 

Wails, shouts of incredulity responded. 

Deucalion repeated his words, and convincingly. 
There were no more incredulous tones, but instead de- 
spairing cries, wails, groans, fierce imprecations. The 
wildest sounds of woe prevailed. At length, the same 
voice that had asked for the worst rang loud, imperative, 
this time demanding silence. It proved to be that of the 
captain of the queen's galley. He agonized, but firm, 
was standing out on the prow of Hellen's galley; and 
continued: 

"Sir Priest, in .truth, is Atlantis no more? Have a 
care there left we our dear ones." His voice broke, but 
he stood straight .and strong. 

"Captain of the galley of the queen thy wife, thy lit- 
tle ones are above. Look not for them or the island 
on earth." Deucalion's tones were faltering, but he 
also stood firm. 

" We have but thy word. How can we believe ? I 
cannot. I would see with mine own eyes." 

"And I ! " "And I ! " rang many voices. 

"Sir Captain, thy doubts are in reason. I should feel 
asthou. It is but a short sail. Further, the queen should 
hear of it from Atlanteans." 

There were cries of approbation. 

"Sir Captain, I ask that thou wilt lead a few galleys 
back, bearing the nobles a'nd elders who are with us 
Their word the queen will believe." 
. Loud rang the cries of approbation. 

" It is well. But what of the galley that went on to 
Cleit?" 

"We saw it no more." 
16 



242 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"It was lost?" 

"Without doubt." 

"We may come upon some who live?" 

"It cannot be." 

" We will go back." Sorely overcome, the captain held 
out a hand to one of the sailors, with this aid, tottered 
from the prow to the deck , and then hid himself. 

After further deliberation, it was decided that the few 
vessels should return at once, and all the others await them 
here. Hard did Deucalion struggle with his impatience 
to be off! 

Shortly, the two captains had again exchanged galleys. 
When the captain of the queen's galley was once more on 
board his own, and had been supplied with food from the 
plenteous stores of the Chimoan vessels, he moved off; 
and was followed by two of the Chimoan vessels bearing 
such of the nobles as would return. To dire sounds, the 
three hastened away. 

When they were well off, Deucalion and Sensel went 
on to Hellen's galley, which lay quite to itself beyond 
the others the queen's condition demanding this. Dim- 
mer and dimmer grew Sensel's eyes, and more and more 
fluttering his heart. Was it well with yole? When 
departing, her unconsciousness had been his comfort; but, 
had such continued? Or, had she come out of it to 
keenest suffering not only for her father, but also for 
himself? (This last thought, he held in humility, so lit- 
tle did his selthood prevail.) 

Continually was he imploring that she might still be 
sleeping. But when beside the galley, his emotion be- 
came most evident. 

"Sensel, what aileth thee?" 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 243 

"^Eole thinkest thou she still sleepeth?" 

" Her sleep will not end until we are with her." 

"Unless Hellen hath waked her." 

He then became as in a dream until Hellen's voice 
was heard in greeting, when he looked up to perceive 
himself and Electra leaning over the galley's side. Not- 
withstanding the woe about them, the two were finding 
it hard to restrain their joy. Near them were a few 
nobles, and their attendants; farther back, stood the 
captain and sailors; and all statues of grief. 

Deucalion ascended; and was clasped in Hellen's arms. 
Sensel went up, still as in a dream; as in a vision behold- 
ing ./Eole in repose upon the couch where he had left 
her. But he was recalled by the grasp of Electra's hand, 
her words of welcome. 

" Electra, the sight of thee doth gladden. Almost 
can I forget the horrors we have passed through." 

"Sensel, we thought never to see thyself or Sir Deuca- 
lion more on earth. Drear was our way over the waters. 
And we reached this to learn there had been a dire rock- 
ing of the land for days." 

" I wonder that an island is left. But tell me, Electra, 
how is it with ^Eole?" 

"She sleepeth as doth the babe in the arms of its 
mother." 

The color flashed over his face, the light into his eyes. 
He was so transfigured that Electra stared at him. 
"Sensel, art thou not wearied after thy watching?" 

"Wearied! I feel as though I had come out of a long, 
sweet sleep." 

And now, Hellen was seizing his hand. The two en> 
braced as Deucalion and Electra spoke together, 



244 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

"Electra, ^Eole doth still sleep?" 

"She doth." 

"And the queen?" 

"She aroused but to faint again; and hath lain in a 
stupor through the night." 

" We will hasten to her," spoke Deucalion hurriedly 
"But first, JEole." 

^Eole lay as marble on a couch near that of the queen. 
Indeed, her immobility would have alarmed one not ac- 
quainted with the idiosyncrasies of her case. But, in her 
cheeks, was a reassuring, faintest tinge of pink, and her 
lips retained their color and dewiness. It was as though 
a rare statue was becoming replete with life; and these 
beholding, continued to gaze in admiring wonder tinc- 
tured with awe. 

Sensel's face was a study in its love and thanksgiving. 
He could not raise his eyes from this enthrallment. 

After one keen look, Deucalion bowed his head as if 
satisfied, and whispered: "I will first look to the queen." 

He found Atlana's set face like that of death, and 
instantly was applying restoratives. Then leaving Rica 
and Elna to chafe her hands, he returned beside ^Eole. 

Sensel seized his hand. "Ah, Deucalion, what a power 
is thine!" 

"Yea, Father. But, how earnest thou by it? Never 
hath the like been known in Atlantis. Else those priests 
would not have^een mastered." 

"Long hath it been mine, Hellen. Though I know 
not what it is. It must be a hidden force of nature that 
few hold. Often through it have I soothed thy mother. 
And, when ^Eole was a child, I used it upon her when 
she was hurt, and in pain. With her, there came a state 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 245 

like sleep. Again I used this force when she was called 
into the inner holy place; and to my amaze. But, it is 
a dread power. Such evil could come of -it." 

" I can well see that," said Sensel. 

" Hush, hush," here whispered Electra. 

"Yea, hush ye all. JEole doth waken." And Deu- 
calion leaned over her, the while signing for them to 
withdraw. 

The color was deepening, the eyelids fluttering, the 
lips parting. Scarcely were they outside, than she 
opened her eyes. A joyous smile lighted, her face at 
sight of this dear father; and she held out her arms. 

When they had embraced, he raised her to a sitting 
posture, and supported her. She said, in glad tone, 
"Father, thou didst not go. It was good of thee to 
hearken unto us." 

"But, I did go. And have but now come back." 

"Thou art pleased to jest. Is jesting a habit of the 
Pelasgians? I thought them a people sober of mind." 

He laughed. "yEole, thy chiding is fitting. But, I 
say again that I have but just come back. I caused thee 
to sleep." 

"As thou didst in the temple?" 

"Yea." 

"I did not feel it come upon me. Why is that?" 

" I Know not. I know this thou yieldest well." 

" Father, thou art an able one. It is well thou couldst 
do it, for my pain would have been sore. Yet, Hellen 
and Electra, how bore they it?" 

"Well, as I knew. Each had the other." 

" But Sensel ?" 

"Sensel went with me." 



246 .POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Father!" There was a fine condensation of amaze- 
ment, horror, reproach. 

"It was not pf my will. He and Hellen were strong 
in saying they would go, when Electra screamed because 
thou hadst fallen into this sleep. Thou shouldst have 
seen Hellen. Forgetting me, he darted to her. Here 
was the chance for Sensel. He leaped down beside me, 
and loosed the boat. I could but yield." 

" It was wrong of thee, of him. There are other things 
than that island. Thou shouldst have turned back 
rather than have risked a life so young and noble as that 
of Sensel. And, for thee thou wouldst have bereft a 
waiting, sorrowing wife and fond children. Should not 
wife, children, Sensel, have had more weight than the fate 
of fifty islands? Father, I thought better of thee !" 

He rubbed his hands hard in. his satisfaction. "That 
is right, ^Eole. I merit thy chiding. Yet I could not but 
go. It is worth the going to hearken to thy scolding." 
His eyes were twinkling. 

"A fine thing will it be to tell mother." Then her 
voice lowered in dread. " If she be but well ? If she 
hath not sunk beneath her woe? The doubt doth tor- 
ture." 

Deucalion shivered. He also was doubting; though 
she must not know. Thus he insisted : 

"yole, the gods can but bring joy to thy mother. 
Never hath she murmured, never hath her trust les- 
sened. But come. Let us go out into the air." (Though 
he turned for the moment aside.) 

The queen was stirring; her eyes were opening. 
Before passing out, Deucalion whispered to her ladies, 
"She is better. When she rouseth, say not aught of 
what hath happened." 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 247 

They went out to come upon Sensel who was standing 
near the door. At sight of yole, he hastened to draw 
a couch more under the awning, with the words, 

" vEole, thou wilt find ease on this." 

Much wondering at the sudden exhilaration possessing 
her, she sat down. 

u ^ole, thou art well?" 

"In truth am I." 

"She is well, and even strong enough to hear of the 
past night," said Deucalion, roguishly. 

"Father!" 

".Cole!" 

" I asked thee not of the island. How could I forget!" 

"Thou hadst much to do in chiding. Now will Sensel 
tell thee. I go to Hellen and Electra." And off he 
moved toward the other couple, who, at sound of his 
footsteps, faced him; and both exclaimed, "There is 



" Yea, she is well wakened." 

The two laughed gaily, then, blushing, looked off on 
the water. Though soon spoke Electra. 

"Sir Deucalion, we would hear of the past night." 

" For that I have come." 

In a few words, he described the sinking of the island. 
When he had finished, Hellen reproached him. 

"Father, thou didst dare too much. What pain hath 
it caused Electra and myself." 

"I knew ye would cheer each other. Further, there 
was the thought for the queen." 

"In truth, it was dire thought for her, for thee, and for 
Sensel, day and night," spoke Electra. " It was not 
right of thee!" 



248 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Now is thy time, Electra, to chide, to scold Already 
hath JEole done her part. I will hearken well, for I 
merit all." 

" If she can scold who hath lain in her sleep, free of 
dread, what might I say who have been waking through 
it all. Sir Deucalion, I will seal my lips. I should say 
too much." 

" Right, Electra, say no more," interposed Hellen. 
"Or, I, too, will join thee. But, father, instead, will I 
speak of Electra. Without her, I could not have borne 
it. Though she was torn with grief, she waited upon the 
queen, helped the ladies, cheered poor Azu who hath 
been stricken over the queen ; and at times, walked with 
me talking in bright manner and to the helping of the 
captain and sailors for the captain told me they watched 
her white robe as it were a beacon." 

"But I knew she would do thus, Hellen." 

" Ye will spoil, me. I have done but what I should." 

Deucalion was suddenly falling into revery. Hellen 
was about to address him, when Electra checked him. 
Then the two began to pace about the deck, ever regard- 
ing him anxiously. After a little, Electra whispered : 

"Thy mother?" 

" Yea, he is lost upon her. The fear is great, at times, 
that she may have passed beyond." 

"The gods are kind, Hellen. Ye will see her." 

Meanwhile, Sensel was giving his account to^Eole. 

"^Eole, we staid to see the island beset by high pillars 
of water, pressed upon by bolts of flame, and as if oh fire 
from the burning mountain. The seething waves were 
leaping higher and higher upon it: and it was plain it 
was sinking. Later, another mountain began to send 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 249 

forth fire. Imagine, if thou canst, those fiery streams 
rising high above the island to fall in rivers of flame, that 
rushed in fury onward to the cliffs from there to leap to 
the mad waters that answered in tempests of boiling, hiss- 
ing spray! And through all was the noise deafening. 
Ever were the pent airs* bursting from the mountain with 
noise as of thunder, the pillars of water breaking, the bolts 
of flame crashing whilst the rain fell in sheets, the ashes 
in showers !" 

"Did the rain and ashes fall upon you?" 

"They touched us not to our wonder." 

ALo\e sighed, relieved; then shivered. 

"It is too much for thee, ^Eole." 

"Say on, Sensel. I would hearken to all." 

"The island was sinking fast, whilst toward us speeded 
dense vapors that we feared would hide the end. Thus 
we moved from point to point that we might still behold. 
Though not for long : as, in the early morning came the 
end. There was a long and severe trembling as if 
heaven and earth were rending apart! We closed our 
eyes knowing the worst had come. We' opened them to 
behold the island vanishing ! 

" Yea, in a moment more, we saw it not saw naught 
but the meeting waters, the whirl of their drawing with 
flame and smoke rising high above! Then cried thy 
father, 'Now will we fly!' And amazing became his 
guiding of the boat. We bounded, leaped, flew, scarce 
touching the hungry waves that we feared would draw 
us down. Long we thought we should not get beyond. 
But the boat is charmed. And so is thy father. We 
bounded, leaped, flew on on to less raging waters; 

*Gases. 



250 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

thence to smooth ones; later sighting these vessels to be 
stricken with further dread. For, how were we to tell 
these Atlanteans that their island was no more?" 

"Ah how?" 

"Though thy father did it, jEole.' 

"The poor Atlanteans! " 

"yole, through it all, thou wert of more thought than 
the island. Ever was I fearing thou wouldst come out 
of thy sleep. As I helped thy father, I was dwelling 
upon thy grief shouldst thou waken ere we reached thee. 
Less worked I for life than for thy peace of mind. 
Though life is without price whilst thou art of it. Now, 
it is past belief that I am with thee, that peace and joy 
are our own, that I hold thy hand, that I kiss it thus ! " 

JEo\e had never seen anything so beautiful as his 
smile. She looked down at her hand, then at his; and 
upon her came the desire to kiss this hand so enfolding 
hers. But, her look was more than many kisses, as she 
said: "Sensel, our lives will prove our thanks." 

"Our life, ^Eole." 

Now upon his ears smote sore interruption. The 
voices of Hellen and Electra were very near. Thus he 
murmured, " There can be but one life for us, JEole." 

Then in came the two under the awning. They sat 
down unmindful of the agitation of Sensel and yEole, 
being all occupied with their own sweet emotions. But, 
they began to speak of the events of the night; and 
Sensel, in greatest patience, replied to their questions. 
Glad was he when Deucalion appeared. Then he excused 
himself. And, when outside, fell to pacing the deck ab- 
sorbed; at times, pausing to gaze in somnambulistic 
fashion upon the water. 



THE SINKING OF THE ISLAND. 25 I 

Under this awning, the evening meal was partaken of. 
This consisted of bread, pulse, dried meats, honey, mel- 
ons, pomegranates, wine, and a sherbet made of almonds 
and honey so well were the fleeing Chimoan vessels 
victualed, so generous was the fifth island in its offerings 
of fruit. 

Moreover, Azu served them. He was quite himself 
now that Deucalion had assured him the queen would 
recover, that he would again bear her train. Though, 
in this serving, his lurches threatened the gravity of the 
eaters full as much as the downfalling of the things he 
bore. Indeed, not a few of the latter came to grief, thus 
conducing to the lightening of spirit of those being 
served. Azu was Azu. 

The night was soft and bright, to the comfort of Deu- 
calion, Sensel, and Hellen, who reposed on couches 
under the awning, using the rugs as coverings. The 
oarsmen spread themselves about the deck. As to the 
ladies, they were well housed in the withdrawing room. 

Every night was as this in temperature. Never a cloud 
obscured the heavens. Thus were they favored. 

But a few more days, and the sails of the three return- 
ing vessels were sighted. Then, as had been agreed, all 
the waiting vessels save the one containing the queen, 
went noiselessly out to meet them. Laggard was the 
approach of these three: and this told the story. At 
last they met, far out on the water. 

The queen's galley was ahead of the other two; and, 
at its prow, stood the bowed form of the captain. Now 
was the worst verified! 

They called on him to speak. 

Slow were his words in coming: though, they b'urst 
forth with frantic vehemence. 



2$ 2 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

' Atlanteans, we hearkened unto the truth ! Our island 
hath vanished aft save the highest peaks* far to the 
northeast! Scarce could we push to where it hath lain 
for the mud and ashes that thicken the water! And 
dead men fill the sea even as the fishes ! " 

*The Azores according to Donnelly. 



CHAPTER XVIII. 

PYRRHA. 

SOFT continued the nights and bright the days as they 
sailed by the islands, and along the Afrite Coast. Quick 
were they in sighting the green gay Atlas Mountains, 
and then Cape Spartel. Upon viewing the latter, in- 
tense became Deucalion's emotion. With eyes eager 
and face flushing, he cried in husky tones: "Ah ^Eole, 
Hellen, now is your mother near! With what a heart I 
passed yon point to go onward to Atlantis ! Sensel, can 
we ever forget?" 

Sensel could reply only by pressing the hands held 
out to him. Then, with moistening eyes, both watched, 
as did the three beside them. 

On they pressed into a strait; and toward a point on 
the African Coast, the ancient Abyla and the Ape's Hill 
of the moderns. Nine miles across lay the great rock, 
afterward named Alube by the Phoenicians, and Calpe 
by the Greeks. It is the Gibraltar of to-day. 

These two points, the Rock of Gibraltar and Ape's 
Hill, constituted the ancient Pillars of Hercules. Not 
that the Greek hero had any part in their naming. 
Rather they were named for the Tyrian deity whose 
worship the Phoenicians introduced into all their settle- 
ments. Long after the sinking of Atlantis, in a forget- 
ting, perhaps unbelieving age of maritime sloth, these 

(253) 



254 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Pillars, the guards of the Mediterranean, came to be con- 
sidered the ends of the earth. Thus sank the glories of 
the island into fable ! 

When well off Abyla, the vessels steered northward 
toward the famous Rock, the rock that was raising its 
mammoth proportions high that rock that has since 
been called "a mountain of histories" the rock that 
was overshadowing the waiting ones! 

Eyes hopeful yet fearing, eyes sad to desperation, were 
fixed upon it every heart throbbed wild as the vessels 
crossed the waters of the strait to the green and gray 
coast from which the Great Rock jutted invitingly in its 
virgin stillness, even then exerting its strange fascination: 
a fascination that would impel to itself the Saracen 
Tank, thousands of years later; a fascination that would 
cause Moor and Christian to engage in warfare, as the 
years went on ; a fascination that would bring contention 
between Christian Spain and Christian England in the 
Middle Ages; a fascination that would draw upon itself, 
in modern times, that memorable, terrible siege of four 
years when French and Spanish exhausted their resources 
but to prove its latent magnetism in that it continued to 
hold, against all odds, the English garrison that had so 
long nestled in its rugged bosom ! 

On their right, spread the beauteous Mediterranean; 
on the left, was a small bay toward which lay the 
Rock's only sloping side. Erelong, all eyes began to 
ask of Deucalion which course should they take, this 
Deucalion who was standing so motionless with rapt 
face. Before them was the south end of the Great Rock, 
steep, precipitous, inaccessible ; and upon its grim height 
they began to look in fear. Should they go to its left or 
its right? 



PYRRHA. 255 

But, when the moment came, Deucalion was ready to 
give the order. " Behold, the point on the right. That 
will we round. There left we the vessels. ^Eole, Hel- 
len, then shall we sight them ! " 

So extreme was his agitation, that they forgot their 
fears in desiring to calm him. Bravely ./Eole spoke: 

"Yea, Father, mother is there as thou didst say." 

"Yea, mother is there," echoed Hellen. 

"As I did say," murmured Deucalion vaguely. Then 
he closed his eyes, for they were drawing very near. 
Already the Great Rock seemed looming over them 

" Round that point, Hellen, with speed," he aroused to 
command. " Then shall we behold them ! " 

Hellen's galley rounded the point, but not speedily; 
rather slowly, timidly. Would the vessels of Pyrrha and 
her friends be there moored? Would Pyrrha appear 
in answer to their shouts ? 

In the moment of r.ounding, none of these interested 
ones dared raise their eyes. But blessed sounds broke 
from the Atlantean sailors. In this moment of round- 
ing, they burst into cheers, for all their saddened hearts. 
Then the fearing ones took courage. They lifted their 
eyes; they looked; they beheld the Pelasgian vessels 
lying as if enchanted on the bright, smooth waters of the 
beautiful haven. 

The cheerings strengthened as the other vessels also 
rounded. These mighty tones quickly brought life to 
the enchanted vessels. Their decks filled with patient, 
faithful, loving ones whose joyous welcomings answered 
these newcomers these returning Pelasgians, these sad- 
eyed Atlanteans. 

Put Deucalion, 45ole and Hellen stood faint waiting 



256 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

for the one form to appear. The moments seemed ages. 

Though surely the hurrying of a few officers below on 
Pyrrha's vessel boded good. The three strained their 
eyes for the view of that dear form when it should hasten 
to respond. Holding each other tight, they reeled, when 
an officer returned, leading, rather supporting a white- 
robed lady. That was she. That was the wife! That 
was the mother! Deucalion and his children staggered 
to the edge of the prow, to wave and kiss their hands. 
And it was "Pyrrha, wife!" " Mother!" "'Mother!" 

Pyrrha raised her head, and looked ; and ran, weeping 
her thanks, to lean far over the vessel's side, and hold 
out her arms. 

On went the galleys toward her. When Hellen's was 
alongside, the rope thrown, and the plank laid, such a 
speeding across as there was by Deucalion and Hellen, 
with JEole between. 

Pyrrha awaited at the end of the plank. The specta- 
tors, as one, burst into cheers, when the four met and 
entwined. Though their fears were for the mother. 
Would she faint, perhaps sink under her happiness? 

And indeed dizziness did overcome Pyrrha for the 
moment. But Deucalion held her; and whispered reviv- 
ing words. Besides, these were her children kissing her 
hands, her face, her hair, her robe, and calling in heavenly 
fashion, "Mother!" "Mother!" 

So she strengthened to weep of her joy; to look from 
Helleri to ^Eole, from ^Eole to Hellen in wonderment, so 
striking was their beauty, aye, better still, their nobility, 
their purity of expression. 

And these children, in transport, were gazing upon 
their mother. They had borne into captivity an enduring 



PYRRHA. 257 

remembrance of her grace, nobility and beauty; but the 
remembrance was as naught to this reality. They could 
not take their eyes from her; and, at last, Hellen ex- 
claimed : 

" Mother, how fair, how grand art thou. Sorrow hath 
not marred, but glorified thee! " 

"She is a bright spirit," added Deucalion. "Nay, 
Pyrrha, thou art a goddess." 

"Hail to the goddess Pyrrha!" cried Hellen. 

At this, the officers and crew of Pyrrha's vessel shouted 
as one, "Yea, yea, hail to the good goddess, Pyrrha! " 

"They know thee, dear Wife," whispered Deucalion, 
" the good fitteth well." 

But Pyrrha knew she was not good that none are 
good save the Divine. She could not be good, but she 
could do good through the Divine influx. 

Yet these exaggerated expressions were dear, coming 
as they did of love. For ever is love precious. So she 
received them, blushing even as a girl. No fear was there 
now of her fainting. Strong she stood with an arm 
about each child as the friends from the neighboring ves- 
sels came aboard to greet her husband. Sensel came 
also to clasp her hand, and glide away. 

Very soon Hellen went to bring Electra. When this 
beauteous maiden bent before her, Pyrrha gazed sur- 
prised, admiring; and next held out her hand and drew 
her to her to kiss her well. Still retaining the hand, she 
asked of Deucalion, "Are all the Atlanteans like this?" 

"Would that they were. The spirit of Electra is as fair 
as is her body of flesh. With them the outer body was 
fair, but the inner one had become evil of shape. More- 
over Electra hath in her veins the best .blood of Atlantis 
and Khemi." 

17 



2 5 8 

"Hath she parents?" 

" Her parents are above. There were Alto the king 
and his two brothers. Alto was the father of the last 
king, Atlano. The wife of King Atlano was Atlana, the 
daughter of the second brother by a princess of Khemi. 
The mother of Electra was the daughter of the third 
brother and wife of a prince of Khemi; and her brother 
was Oltis, the last high priest. Yet, though Electra was 
a princess and his niece, Oltis placed her in the temple as 
handmaid. From there, we freed her." 

"Why did Oltis thus?" 

" He hated her father Cairais because Cairais well knew 
his evil spirit. And he longed for the riches, that would 
come to Electra. Further, he wished to trouble Queen 
Atlana who loved Electra well, after her mother." 

"Father, sudden was the passing away of Cairais. 
Could it be that Oltis poisoned him?" 

"Ask me not, Hellen." 

"If Atlano had died, would Queen Atlana have 
reigned ? " 

"I feel sure that she would, though she is not all At- 
lantean. Hitherto, the kings and queens have been of 
pure race. But the Atlanteans were so fond of Queen 
Atlana that they would have made light of her Khemian 
blood; and the more so that they hated Oltis." 

Pyrrha had continued to hold Electra's hand; and the 
latter had been regarding her brightly in her lack of 
comprehension of Deucalion's and Hellen's words. Thus 
Pyrrha's heart warmed the more. 

"Would that she knew our tongue, Deucalion." 

"It will come to her soon. In six months Sensel and 
myself mastered Atlantean." 



PYRRHA. 259 

Pyrrha looked again at Electra. It was strange how 
tliis young girl attracted her. With growing delight, 
Hellen watched his mother's interest. As to Deucalion, 
he was exultant that is, within. Things were going as 
he wished. 

For the next half hour, Deucalion was busy recount- 
ing to Pyrrha and their tried friends the ,main events as 
they had occurred since he parted from them. They 
listened to exclaim continually. When he had finished, 
for this time, he spoke in touching manner of his. gratitude 
to these dear Pelasgians, exalting their constancy to 
Pyrrha and himself. 

In turn, Illyr and wife, Ephes and wife, Pelop and wife, 
with their children, declared the stay with Pyrrha had 
been a bright holiday, and that theirs was the pleasure 
of gratitude. Stoutly they insisted that the obligation 
was on their side. This sweet wrangling was to the keen 
enjoyment of Hellen, who, with ^Eole and Electra, still 
stood beside Pyrrha. 

But, where was Sensel? After kissing Pyrrha's hand, 
he had vanished, not to return. Repeatedly had ^Eole 
looked about the vessel for him; and had as often won- 
dered if he were within the small cabin, or had gone be- 
low to the sleeping apartments. At last, as she was 
gazing wistfully at the stairway leading to the latter, she 
perceived a head rising into view. But this was a head 
on which was a cap of white linen with crown encircled 
by a fillet of scarlet cloth that tied in a bow behind and 
with ends .depending! 

Moreover, this figure, as it further arose into view, dis- 
played a most elegant garb. There was a broad cape of 
purple wool fitted to the shoulder, and reaching to the 



260 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

waist; and adorned with yellow lace. Beneath, was a 
coat of scarlet cloth fitting close to the body, opening in 
front, and reaching to the knees. Still beneath was an 
inner garment of yellow linen that fell in graceful fullness 
to the ankles. About the waist was a golden girdle; and 
shoes of red leather ornamented the feet. 

It took but a few moments to view all this. And ah, 
but it was a rare figure and garb; and bewildering for 
the height was Sensel's! Further, were not these brill- 
iant eyes meeting hers, Sensel's, also? Was not this his 
smile? 

Her head swam as this noble, elegant, lissome shape 
approached to bow gracefully, grandly to her and all. 
Next, she began to wonder why everyone, even to her 
father, should bend with utmost deference, in return. 

But Deucalion, who was much enjoying her perplexity, 
hastened to explain. 

"yEole, Sensel hath left us. In his place is Prince 
Pelasgus, the son of our king." 

She closed her eyes, stunned. But the prince was 
taking her hand. Thereupon, recovering somewhat, she 
opened her eyes, looked at him calmly ; and withdrawing 
her hand, made a low obeisance. He was the prince. 
He was not Sensel! Though most unhappy thoughts 
were crowding upon the shock of this revealment, she 
managed to speak with sweet dignity. 

" Prince Pelasgus, this cometh upon me without warn- 
ing. Little dreamed I that Sensel was other than he 
seemed." 

Deucalion's satisfaction was something to behold; and 
this the keen-eyed Pelop laughed over to himself. For, 
the former was thinking, 'VEole is like her mother. She 



PYRRHA. 26l 

will rise above the pressing weight ever." Then aloud, 
he added, in Atlantean, that Electra might be benefited, 

"Yea, yEole, this is the young prince who shared with 
me the perils of war, and who was firm in his wish to aid in 
freeing thyself and Hellen. And, who, after short trial, 
so ably took upon himself the shape of Sensel." 

" Ever have I known the noble spirit of Sensel," she 
returned. 

" So ever have I," interposed Electra. " Scarce did I 
open mine eyes when I heard he was the prince." 

"Thou didst know he was the prince?" 

" Hellen told me but this morn." 

"Why was not I told?" 

"It was for the reason that the prince wished thou 
shouldst believe him but Sensel until we reached here." 

"But Sensel" ^Eole checking herself, turned to the 
prince. "Why was this, Prince Pelasgus?" 

"I knew that thou didst look upon Sensel with good 
will ; but I knew not how thou wouldst look upon the 
prince." 

A great load seemed lifted. She said naively, charm- 
ingly, " Thou wert right to think I should like the old be- 
yond the new. There have been many princes, butnever 
another Sensel. Prince Pelasgus, ever shall I joy to think 
of thee as Sensel. No higher thought could I have for 
thee." 

Over Sensel's Prince Pelasgus' face passed a beauti- 
ful glow, and his eyes shone with a loving light that all 
might see. Pyrrha, comprehending, glanced at Deuca- 
lion, to find him watching the two in delight. As to the 
friends of their exile, they were receptive also. 

For one, the keen-eyed Pelop whispered to his wife : 



262 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" I see it. Those two are fond." 

She was as interested. " They are a noble pair. And 
most fair to look upon. May it be so. Well I like it 
that his eyes are so dark, and hers so blue. As thine 
and mine." 

Pelop laughed to himself. Well he knew his Peloppa's 
taste for romance. Then he looked about with a view 
to further discovery. 

" Look at Hellen. How he bendeth over that fair At- 
lantean," 

" It is another pair, that I see. Ah, Pelop, but our 
voyage over the Middle Sea will not drag ! " 

Again Pelop laughed, and hugged himself; and said 
with feeling, "We were young once, Wife." 

"And not so old now. Thou wilt speak for thyself; 
and I for myself. Ah, but our own joy maketh me kind 
to all who wish to pair. May I live to aid our children 
along the same bright path ! " And she looked at her 
gamboling ones with the air of a prophetess. 

"If one were old enough now, Peloppa. But matters 
will soon mend. And our Zoe will be another like thy- 
self." 

"How?" 

" She is bright of mind." 

"She is." 

" She hath a quick tongue." 

"Pelop!" 

"And a most tender heart." 

" It is well thou didst add that." 

"And she is one to hold most dear." Here his tone 
was such that Peloppa, in spite of the eyes about her, 
could but put her hand within the one he so eagerly held 
out. 



PYRRHA. 263 

Then they forebore further talking in order to listen to 
Deucalion, who, at inquiry of Epha, was again started 
upon the subject of Atlantis; whilst Prince Pelasgus 
talked with Pyrrha and translated much to Electra, who 
stood with an arm about ^Eole. 

After a little, Pyrrha inquired of her husband, "When 
can I see the queen?" 

"On the morrow, I hope. She is better, though she 
seemeth to see no one about her, not even her ladies. 
If she could but arouse. It may be that thou wilt do it, 
that thou wilt bring her back to peace. She is lost in 
grief." 

"The poor queen without kin, without a land!" 

" Poor people ! " said Prince Pelasgus. 

"We will make it bright for them in Pelasgia," spoke 
Hellen. 

"We will," declared Deucalion. 

"We will," echoed all. 

"We know what it is to be strangers in a far land," 
added Hellen. 

"Yet we had our land to look to," said yole. 

"Ho for Pelasgia!" cried these Pelasgians. And then 
looked sadly over at the Atlantean vessels. As with one 
impulse, they moved to the vessel's side to wartch the 
Atlanteans long and affectionately; and thus adopted 
them into their hearts. 

The Atlanteans appeared to understand, for they re- 
turned the looking with smiles, sad though they were to 
desperation. Not one of them but was mourning the 
loss of near or dear ones. Indeed, many were envying 
Celesa's relatives, that they had returned. But their grief 
must be in silence, for they yet had their queen. 



264 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

On the morn of the morrow, Pyrrha left her vessel 
elated. At last she was to behold this woman who had 
so tenderly cared for her children; and entered the 
withdrawing room confident that she could help. 

As she passed on to the queen, Deucalion beckoned 
for the ladies in waiting to come out. These, after listen- 
ing to his explanations, sat down under the awning, and 
regarded each other in wonder. Was this Pyrrha this 
fair, grand, most lovable looking woman but one of a 
type? If so, what a race was the Pelasgian, after Deu- 
calion and his children ! 

Pyrrha stood beside the queen reverently, adoringly. 
Indeed her love so went out from her as to affect the pale, 
passive recipient. For Pyrrha had gazed but a little 
while, when Atlana turned and looked full at her, and 
this though she had come without noise. 

Of her amaze, the queen strengthened to raise some- 
what, and stare at the angelic face bending over her; and 
finally whispered: 

"Who art thou? Comest thou of the gods?" 

Though the tongue was unknown, Pyrrha compre- 
hended. 

" Gracious Queen, I am of earth. I am one who hold- 
eth thee deep in her heart, whose prayers will ever call 
down blessings upon thee, whose days and nights will be 
favored in thanking thee." 

"Thou sayest thou art of earth?" asked Atlana in 
Pelasgian, and so correctly that Pyrrha answered not for 
wonder. "Thou sayest thou art of earth? " she repeated, 
after waiting. 

"Dear Queen, I am of earth, and until these last 
weeks one of its most sorrowing daughters." 



PYRRHA. 265 

" Most sorrowing. Then know I how thou hast felt. 
But why wert thou sorrowing? " 

"Dear Queen, I was a mother bereft of her children. 
Not that the gods had taken them to make Heaven more 
dear. But, through war through fierce, cruel man 
had they been torn from me ! " 

Atlana was rising higher, was looking at her piercingly. 

"Dear Queen, it cometh to thee. Why should I hold 
thee so dear, why should I bow down to thee I, a 
mother bereft of her children. Few such mothers are 
there in this happy world ! " 

"Thou art not ?" 

" But I am I am ! I am that mother who mourned 
for her children, Hellen and yEole!" 

Atlana, who had raised until she was sitting erect, 
burst into tears, weeping as if she could never cease. 
Pyrrha, as she supported her, looked around for Deuca- 
lion; and beheld him standing near the door, smiling. 
He signed that it was well. So she began to dry the 
queen's tears, pausing at times to embrace her, upon 
perceiving that such pleased her. 

Still the life-giving tears ran on, sobs coming heart- 
rendingly, so that Deucalion looked upward to murmur: 

"Thanks, ye Powers! And let the stream run long 
and fast. Let it be the beginning of life to the desert 
place. May that parched field, her mind, be so well 
watered that new flowers of hope may bloom again, and 
shed their fragrance upon her sad Atlanteans. Ah, poor 
queen,' poor people ! " 

Long was it before the tears were spent. Then 
Atlana put out her hand for Pyrrha's. "I would kiss 
thee," she murmured. 



266 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

Pyrrha leaned over. When Atlana had kissed her 
cheek, she pleaded, "Thou wilt not leave me?" 

"Dear Queen, from now, am I thy sister, nurse." 

"Ever wilt thou be my sister. But not for long my 
nurse. Already, I feel new life. And thou hast caused 
it- thou sweet spirit thou " 

" Pyrrha, call me Pyrrha." 

" Thou sweet ' Pyrrha thou mother of ^Eole and 
Hellen." So lovingly lingered she over these names that 
Pyrrha kissed her again and again, while Atlana sighed, 
content. Afterward, she asked as a child might, " Am I 
to know rest again? Long is it since I have felt such 
ease? I could sleep. Should I, dear Pyrrha, thou wilt 
not loose my hand?" 

"Nay, dear Queen. I will but hold it closer." 

With the confidence of a child, Atlana pressed the 
hand to her heart, and lay back passive, drowsy, shortly to 
slumber so serenely that Pyrrha marveled. 

Soon Deucalion drew near. "All will be well," he 
whispered, "but how knew she our tongue? Never was 
I so wondering ! " 

"Nor I, though I knew she had studied it, so well did 
she speak. Only this morning ^Eole told me that, when 
herself and Hellen had learned somewhat of Atlantean, 
the queen began to study Pelasgian. Thus, it came to 
pass that, on the one day, they would talk in Atlantean ; 
and, on the next, in Pelasgian." 

"As thou sayest, she speaketh it well." 

" She looketh wise; and, of a truth, is sweet and fond." 

"Ah, Pyrrha, such a heart is hers. But it was wasted 
on her husband. How hath she missed the good thing 
in life. Atlano could care but for himself." 



PYRRHA. 267 

At this dread name, Pyrrha shivered. Deucalion put 
his arm about her, and bade her lean upon him. Then 
she whispered, "Ah poor queen, life hath not been life 
to her! To be so fond, and have naught but a stone ! " 

"Say, rather, life is not life to the one who is not fond. 
Life was not life to Atlano. Life is not life to the wife or 
husband who knoweth not tender feeling. Such pluck 
but dead fruit." 

"Ah but thou speakest truth. With each moment of 
our wedded life how glad have I been that thou wert so 
dear. All bitter hath had its sweet. Though grief hath 
held me, yet have I had thee to think upon, to look for, 
to hearken unto." 

" Yea, and to joy in, for of me art thou sure. To think 
I have come into heaven again! And from hell. Ah, 
that island, Pyrrha, that fair Atlantis ! The thought of it 
cometh upon me strong at times, so that I find it hard to 
bear up. That fair, grand, most favored spot a heaven 
but for man ! " 

Thus, on they talked of past horrors, of the present 
brightness, of the happiness foregleaming from their chil- 
dren's hopes until the queen began to stir. Her rest- 
lessness increased. Erelong, she was turning toward 
them. After an intent look, she extended her hand to 
Deucalion. 

" I wronged thee," she murmured. " Forgive." 

"Gracious Queen, I have naught to forgive. We will 
be but the dearer friends. It is all in knowing the right. 
Thou hast thought it over since." 

"Well and long have I thought it over. And I know 
the worst. Think not I have been deaf whilst lying here. 
My body hath been as a stone, but the mind hath been 



268 POSEIDON > S PARADISE. 

quick. My poor Atlanteans ! Oh, to be of help to them ! 
We are bereft, bereft!" 

" Then thou knowest ? " 

"Yea, whilst lying here, I have heard that within and 
without to make me know our island is no more." 

"Some of thy people are left thee." 

"Call them not people. Call them Atlanteans. It is 
the dearer name. We are of Atlantis though it is no 
more." 

" Dear Queen Atlana, thy thought for these thy Atlan- 
teans will make it well for thee. Thy wish to cheer them 
will bring thee cheer. Cheer cometh in giving cheer. 
And, here is Pyrrha for thy sister. Erelong we hope to 
see thee thine old self." 

"Never, Sir Deucalion, can I be mine old self. Mine 
old self was full of hope, of joy, of sweet, warm feeling. 
Mine own self! Ah, I am dead dead ! " 

She leaned back, and closed her eyes. Deucalion 
pressed her wasted hand and spoke in softest tone, with 
intent to bring her out of her sad thought. 

" Dear Queen, I should have said a little like thine old 
self. That will be much. And now I would warn thee 
when next thou seest me, I will be more of my old self 
in garb. I shall be no priest of Poseidon. I shall be 
in Pelasgian dress, fairer of skin, and shorn of this beard. 
I would not change until thou couldst be told." 

"In any dress, thou art Deucalion, the kind, the noble. 
Pyrrha, how blest art thou ! But go, Sir Deucalion, that 
I may soon behold thee as Pelasgian. Whilst thou art 
gone, I will look at Pyrrha." 

"Not this day, dear Queen. But on the morrow. 
Though now will I leave thee that thou mayst look upon 
Pyrrha." 



CHAPTER XIX. 

THE BEGINNING OF PEACE. 

THE next morning, the vessels began their course up 
the Middle Sea. And with what a difference in the hearts 
they carried. Truly the Pelasgian vessels were bearing 
feathers, the Atlantean vessels stones. Alas for these 
poor Atlanteans! Well did their vessels, even in their 
port, testify to the weighty spirits of those aboard them, 
for they ploughed the water unwillingly, heavily. 

Later in the day, the noblest of Pelasgians appeared 
before his children and Electra to dazzle their eyes; 
whereupon, Hellen after much interchange of criticism 
with JEole, asseverated: 

"Ah, father, we would have known thee but for the 
beard. That it was that hid thee." 

But Electra said nothing so engrossed was she with 
the beauty of each separate feature. Now were disclosed 
the noblest of chins, the firmest, kindest of mouths, the 
perfect contour, the strength and sweetness of expression, 
the high purpose. She could not gaze enough. 

And thus felt Queen Atlana when Deucalion presented 
himself in this beautiful costume much like that of 
Prince Pelasgus, the difference being that there was less 
of trimming, and that the cape and coat were of one 
color, a rich deep blue. It was fine to see her admira- 
tion, finer to hear it expressed. Thus, Deucalion really 

(26q) 



270 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

blushed, and to steady himself, said, "Ah, dear Queen, if 
thou thinkest this so fine, wait until I bring before thee 
two noble youths of Pelasgia, which will be on the mor- 
row, if thou art willing." 

"Who are they?" ^she asked absently, in her study of 
his grand beauty. 

"The first is young Prince Pelasgus, the son of our 
king. The second is my Hellen. Then wilt thou behold 
garbs." 

"Dear Hellen! I can see him, as he will look. But 
when came this young Prince Pelasgus?" 

"It is a year since he first saw Atlantis. " 

"What sayest thou ? " 

" It is a year since he went with me to Atlantis* a year 
since he began to serve in the temple but a few months 
since thou didst see fit to praise him. Call to mind his 
tall shape, his garb of dust color, his shining eyes, his 
tender tones, his smile, the grace of his swaying body." 

It was most evident that Atlana called all this to mind, 
so overwhelmed did she show herself She could only 
implore him by a gesture to continue. 

" Yea, dear Queen, young Prince Pelasgus came upon 
the island with me as Sensel. Well had he served with 
me in war; and fond did we grow of each other. When 
I would come after my children, he would come with me 
in the shape of Sensel. And, as thou shouldst know, 
well did he aid me. Though little canst thou, or any 
other, know what he hath been to me. But for him I 
could not have mastered." 

"I believe it, Sir Deucalion." 

She pondered awhile; and then said, " I would see the 
Pelasgian youths now." 



THE BEGINNING OF PEACE. 27! 

"Dear Queen, on the morrow. It is enough for this 
day." 

She acquiesced, bending her head; and lay back in a 
sweet quiet, shortly whispering, "On the morrow." 

And on the morrow, did these youths of Pelasgia kneel 
before her. 

First entered the prince in his brightness, elegance, 
grace, and beauty. Charmingly he knelt to kiss her 
hand, his courtesy so affecting her that a faint smile came 
into her face as she gave him greeting. 

Then Hellen followed, kneeling and taking her other 
hand. Thus, the smile blended with glad tears. Here 
was her handsome, brave, impulsive, fiery Hellen, clad in 
blue and buff, and looking a young demi-god in his re- 
bound to freedom and happiness. His face was trans- 
figured; and hers grew in brightness as she greeted him. 
And she thought, as she pressed the two hands, "Am I, 
in truth, to smile again?" 

Then in her gracious way she spoke. " Noble youths 
of Pelasgia, with fond pride is my greeting. But rise 
that I may look with even more pride upon you, that I 
may feast my eyes upon your brave, free port. Ah, 
what garments!" 

Gleeful was their laughter. Whereupon, she smiled 
back quite in her olden way. 

"What thrills of joy ye cause me. Ah, Hellen Hel- 
len!" 

"Fine is it to be thus looked upon," burst from him 
naively. "All day could I hearken to thy praises. And 
to think I am that Hellen," he paused, fearing to bring 
sad thought to her forgetting self, and changed, "that 
Hellen, who, but yesterday, was lamenting his old gar- 



2/2 POSEIDONS PARADISE. 

ments, who feared to put them on so worn were they, 
who was lost in wondering where others would come 
from. When behold, this morning, did my father bring 
me these." 

" It was not that his garments vvere so old," interposed 
Deucalion, " but that he was rent with envy upon be- 
holding me in my change of garb, yesterday." 

" Have it thus, if thou wilt, father. It is rising high to 
envy thee in any state, or garb." 

"That is well said, Hellen," spoke the queen. "But I 
know thine envy hath for meaning the wish to be like 
him." 

" He will never reach to his wish," said Prince Pelas- 
gus, solemnly. "That is for me. For I hold Deucalion 
more dear even than doth he." 

At this calumny,. Hellen made as if he would dart 
upon him; whereupon, he took to his old posturing and 
evading. Then the two burst into laughter. It was 
plain they were the best of friends. This so pleased the 
queen that she declared : 

"Now is my spirit cheered to the full. Or will be 
when I have looked upon ^Eole and Electra. Where are 
they?" 

Immediately two glad voices cried from without the 
door, "Here!" "Here!" 

In a trice, their arms the arms of these two young girls 
she had so befriended and suffered for were about her, 
their fervent kisses on brow, lip, and cheek. 

" Dear Queen ! " " Dear Queen ! " they cried. 

She embraced one, and then the other. Speak she 
could not. Then she lay back to marvel at the change 
that happiness had effected even in them. In their 



THE BEGINNING OF PEACE. 2/3 

white, flowing robes and golden girdles, with long wav- 
ing hair crowned with chaplets of flowers flowers 
brought from beside the Great Rock in the early morn- 
ing by Hellen and Sensel with eyes lustrous from rest, 
happiness, and young love, they were beauteous as Aurora 
when she early treads her golden days! 

And these lovely flowers they were pressing into her 
hands but completed the spell. Supreme became her 
satisfaction, her delight. Surely now had come compen- 
sation. Here were these four youthful ones, here were 
Deucalion and Pyrrha, here were flowers that of them- 
selves brought peaceful rapture. No, her suffering had 
not been for naught A tide of thanksgiving surged in 
her heart; and she closed her eyes to allow it full sway 

They waited, mute, until she should again look at 
them. When she did, new light, new life was in her face. 
Here before her were these motionless ones, statues of 
sweet solicitude. In answering their gaze, she thought 
only of them, for the moment. Thus joyous was her 
tone. "Sir Deucalion, thou wert right. Much is there 
yet to live for. My life cannot be void, barren. It hath 
its bright, its fertile spots. I see them. They cheer me." 

She held out her hand to him. On his knees, he 
kissed it, the others, thereupon, emulating him: then, at 
his sign, the young people turned to withdraw with him. 
And Atlana and Pyrrha were left together. 

Not many days after, Queen Atlana was able to show 
herself to her Atlanteans, the while allowing the delighted 
Azu to bear her train. Rapturously was she greeted, so 
that she wept for joy. In these tears had gladness no 
place. For, gladness comes of the body, joy of the 
spirit. The queen's spirit was moved to its depths, for 
18 



2/4 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

ever, as now, had the Atlanteans shown her love and 
fealty. Never had they been lacking. Always might 
she be sure of them. 

Well did Deucalion speak her words. Her Atlanteans 
with her were to weep no more, with her were to hope, 
with her were to begin a new life in the country of their 
refuge, Pelasgia. 

To which were returned assurances the most comfort- 
ing. For, like herself, her subjects were trying to look 
upon the side least dark. Thus they declared their hom- 
age: that they would rally about her with no fear and 
all zeal, and make a new Atlantis for her and themselves. 

She, standing stately, signified her satisfaction. And, 
thereafter, retired to weep her last, and find the beginning 
of peace. 



CHAPTER XX. 

HAPPY PAIRS. 

MEANWHILE, the young people had been" reveling in 
their happiness, and this bright, smooth sailing over the 
Middle Sea. The hours were winged. As well were 
they winged to Pel op and Peloppa, whose eyes found 
constant entertainment, whose tongues, continual employ- 
ment. Even Pyrrha and Deucalion were as fruitful a 
source of interest as the young lovers. .Thus, Pelop 
and Peloppa were ever finding means to get upon their 
vessel that they might watch the tender- emotions so 
prevalent. 

One soft, breezeless, starlit evening, the friends .met to- 
gether on Pyrrha's vessel. Of course, conversation was 
not long in reaching its accustomed height; when, in the 
midst of the noise, Hellen, who had been standing at the 
stern, came beside Electra. 

" Electra, it is the night for a ride. Let us get in the 
boat. It tempteth as itfolloweth in such ease." 

For the fantastic boat had been attached to the, vessel ; 
and it was Deucalion and Pyrrha's habit to sit in it of 
mornings, and be pulled slowly or swiftly, as the vessel 
pleased. 

Hellen's tone, though subdued, was most eager. Thus, 
Electra, who had never been in the boat, and who longed 
for the ride, answered fitly, "Yea." And at once arose 
and walked off with him. 

(275) 



276 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

When they were at the stern, and looking over Pelop, 
who had apparently been all- intent upon some remark of 
Ephes, turned and confided : 

"Ah, Peloppa, but that young Hellen is a wary one! 
Didst thou note him ? Well can I see what he meaneth." 

Peloppa, who had been no less interested, returned, " I 
have lost naught. And how quick is she to further 
him. What haste was in her gait, what hope was in her 
eye. Is that Atlantean modesty?" 

"She hath no thought of his meaning." Petop's tone 
was indignant. "If she had thought of it, she would 
have looked wise, and said 'Nay/ however much against 
her will. As if I know not young women ! " 

"That is thou dost flatter thyself thou knowest them." 

"Thou canst not deny I have had my trials." Here he 
coughed and winked in his waggish way, so that Peloppa 
laughed, as she retorted: 

" Of a truth, thy trials have been sore if thou meanest 
me. Ah, to think I was once young, Pelop. And what 
a race I led thee. There was no such willing way as 
this, though I felt but the more willing within." 

" That is why I boast of my trials. When thou saidst 
'Nay,' and ran away, I read thee, and laughed. But 
caught thee soon." 

"Forsake not the truth, Pelop. And young was I." 

" Of .a truth, wert thou young. And art young still. 
Therefore, in thy youth of body and mirth of spirit, go 
not beyond the bounds of kind thought. I speak of 
Electra." 

"Thou hast the right, as ever, Pelop. I fear I have 
judged in haste. But, as thou knowest so well young 
women, thou shouldst have knowledge, also, of riper ones. 
We love to set up our sex in judgment." 



HAPPY PAIRS. 277 

"And yet, after judging, are but the more ready to for- 
give," was the gallant answer. 

Pelop, honor to him, was right. In all innocence had 
Electra gone with Hellen. So, when he had descended 
the ladder, brought the boat well under it, and attached 
it, she was ready to follow him ; and did. When at the 
bottom, she turned, and held out her hand to make the 
spring. Hellen, as he stood firmly in the boat, spoke in 
calmest of tones: "Jump, Electra." 

She obeyed, holding out both hands to him. But ig- 
noring the hands, he caught herself, -to hug her close 
and with the strength of his eager yo.ung love as he drew 
her down to a seat. Rapturous was his whisper, " Now 
have I thee to myself, Electra! " 

It must be confessed that, for the moment, Electra was 
helpless from delight. But, womanlike, in the next, she 
rallied to say and do that which was most foreign to her 
inclination. For all the times were so ancient, she re- 
monstrated with the usual dignified manner of to-day. 

''Shame, Hellen! Let me go. Thou dost forget thy- 
self!" 

"Forget myself, Electra! At last am I acting my true 
self. At last am I doing what I have longed for day and 
night, at last I clasp thee!" Here he hugged her even 
harder. '"And thus clasping thee, could I die, did I think 
thou wouldst not look upon me. For beyond words art 
thou dear as thou shouldst know. Now, wilt thou be 
my wife?" 

This suddenness was overwhelming. But such was 
Hellen. As she struggled to free herself, she spoke with 
fine reason. "For thee to talk of wedding! Thou art 
too young. As am I. Let me go." 



278 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Never until thou answerest." 

" Give me but breath to answer." 

" Make not merry. Come, let me see thine eyes." 

Hard he tried to turn her head; but she was strong, 
firm. There, under the starlight, with the noise of the 
talking above, and to the purling of the water against the 
neighboring vessels, they both persisted, he in holding 
her, and she in trying to get away. Pathetically, he con- 
tinued: 

"As thou sayest, Electra, we are young in years, but 
thou canst not add we are young in sorrowing. We are 
ages old in that we have borne! " 

Too much was this for Electra. The dreadful past at 
once swept over her. She thought of that time when 
she had first beheld Hellen in the temple; of the swift 
outgoing of her sympathy, aye, love; of those meetings 
in which she had come to know of his independence, 
his impetuosity, his agonies. Then her eyes suffusing, 
she turned to look at him looked to perceive the old 
anxiety reappearing, for again was he doubting, fearing. 
And this decided her. No more suffering should be his 
through her. Instantly, her struggling ceased. Then 
her arms got about him to fond murmuring, 

"As if ever I could forget aught that thou hast borne. 
Hellen dear Hellen!" 

His was then the distraction of joy. In a rnad way did 
he embrace her, the while whispering vehemently, " Elec- 
tra, as soon as we set foot in Pelasgia, will we wed." 

Intent upon soothing him, she answered, "Yea, yea, 
Hellen, we will. But I beg thee to be calm. I worry 
for thee." 

He held her close, not speaking. She subjoined in a 
faint tone, for the pressure was trying, 



HAPPY PAIRS. 279 

" Hellen, I beg, let us behave." 

"Callest thou not this behaving?" he entreated. 

She had to laugh; and this so impaired the small quan- 
tity of breath remaining that he was obliged to hold her 
more at arm's length. And well was it that he did. For 
scarcely were his arms removed than a voice was heard 
above. In the next instant, Deucalion was looking over 
at them, and marveling at the staid manner in which 
they were comporting themselves. 

" How is it with you ? " he inquired dryly. 

"Never as well, Father! Come down." 

"I think not." 

" But I beg thee, Father. We have somewhat to tell 
thee." 

"Can it not wait? 

" Not many moments. Come come ! " 

Therefore, Deucalion descended. When he was well 
steadied in the boat, Hellen said, with due caution, 
"Father but now have I asked Electra to be my wife." 

Hellen had thought to overwhelm his father. But 
nothing of the kind, for Deucalion only looked from one 
to the other with provoking coolness. "So I judged. 
I knew why thou didst wish Electra to come down here. 
We all did." 

"Father!" 

"Thinkest thou we are blind? Hath it not long been 
clear that thyself and Electra would come to this ? It is 
nature, and cannot be hid. Come, Electra, look at me." 

Electra, after several invitations, complied; but her 
eyes were shifting, and her color high. Deucalion, that 
he might reassure her, said, with much affection, " Electra,, 
after ^ole, no one could be so dear a daughter as thou. 
Of 'this, thou shouldst be sure." 



UNIVBRSITr] 



280 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

She murmured, "Yea, yea, I know it." Then with 
more strength, added, "And where could I find such a 
father ? " 

"I know thy mind. We are both pleased. So now 
to tell those above. Now to delight Pelop and Peloppa 
after thy mother." 

" What meanest thou, Father ? " 

"It is that Pelop and Peloppa, after thy mother and 
myself, have looked with strong favor upon thy heart for 
each other." 

Great was the astonishment of the two. " But how 
knew they it, Father?" 

"Call to mind that thyself and Electra have been so 
bent upon this as to be without eyes for others." 

" True true ! " 

" Thus was I. Thy mother caused me to think of 
naught but herself." 

"Then canst thou feel for us. For, will not I feel with 
my children when they come to this? Ah, but they will 
find in me the feeling they crave, that sweet knowledge 
they will believe none have known but themselves. Yea, 
this my delight, will live again in theirs. Its memory, 
even, will be delight. Thinkest thou not with me, Elec- 
tra?" 

Scarcely could Electra reply to so much. But Deu- 
calion spoke for her. " Hellen, leave that which may 
happen in the coming years to itself. Come back to the 
present. There art thou on safe ground. There can 
Electra answer thee. And that she may answer, I will 
leave you together, while I go to tell those above." 

"That is it, Father. After some little time, will we 
follow thee." 



HAPPY PAIRS. 28l 

"Take thy time take thy time. Life is too short to 
be in a hurry." With these last wise words, and a 
merry twinkling of the eyes toward the blushing Electra, 
he turned to ascend the ladder. 

But the bliss of being left to themselves was like all 
bliss in general. It did not last long. Scarce seemed it 
a minute wheri*Pyrrha's voice was heard calling to them. 
Thus warned, they sat up properly to await the moment 
when her dear eyes should be looking down upon them. 
Then it was, "Come, come, my children. Come, that I 
may clasp you." 

"Ah, Mother, if thou wouldst but wait a little. I 
have but just begun! " 

" Hellen! " reprimanded Electra; and so comically that 
Deucalion, who was peering over, burst into a laugh. 
This brought all the friends about him to peer over also. 
Foremost was Pelop. Upon catching his roguish look, 
Hellen was forced to laugh himself, though he said there- 
after, lugubriously: "Electra, up will we go. No peace 
is our own for this night, I know." 

So, up they hastened to be caressed and congratulated 
in Pyrrha's sweetest fashion, and then set upon by the 
friends and the rather pensive Sensel. As to ^Eole, she 
was in such a flutter of sympathy and delight that her 
lips refused duty, though her eyes answered for both : 
and her blushes almost equaled Electra's. 

High ran the enthusiasm. Then succeeded the usual 
calm. So it was that the plighted ones fell to regarding 
each other in surprise. It seemed as though months had 
passed, so much at home did they feel in this new con- 
dition. Upon parting for the night, Electra whispered : 

"Of a truth, Hellen, it seemeth an age since we left the 
boat." 



282 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

The world was now of a rare brightness to these lovers, 
and this increased in quality, if possible, with the days. 
Sensel, beholding, rejoiced; and yet pined with envy. 
Why could not he become thus positive as regarded 
^Eqle? It was sinful further to fritter away the precious 
time! He, like Hellen, must make opportunity. But 
how? The boat was an old story. What could he de- 
vise instead? 

Thus he fell to planning, as his eyes followed wistfully 
the happy pair that were ever moving about together. 
He and ^Eole might be as they. Yet were the precious 
hours wasting. 

Not that Sensel was always following with his eyes 
this couple. No, it was only at such times as ^Eole was 
not in sight; otherwise his absorption was in her, and was 
ecstatic. For with the happiness that had come about 
her, she had grown even lovelier; and further, seemed to 
tread the air. Besides, several times had Sensel sur- 
prised her regarding intently himself when he had 
turned back to look upon her and to her evident dis- 
comfiture. For it must be admitted that, at such times, 
she was deep in thought to some such effect: 

"What a noble beauty covereth the good in Sensel! 
What an air, what a movement is his ! He walketh not 
he soareth ! Never was there such grace, such a tread 
in man before. It is no wonder he could so well take 
his strange part. And, can I ever cease to think upon 
him as Sensel? Hard is it ever to bring to mind that he 
is Prince Pelasgus, harder to call him that. Ever will 
he be to me Sensel dear Sensel. And to think that his 
was the voice!" 

But Sensel would have been no true, ardent lover had 



HAPPY PAIRS. 283 

he not managed a way to press his suit. His first move 
was to confess his love to Deucalion, and his desire to 
speak with ^Lole. Whereupon, Deucalion replied to the 
effect that he knew this was coming, and was in sympathy, 
but that he could not give consent without that of King 
Pelasgus as he might have other views. However, his 
scruples were removed when the prince assured him it 
had ever been the advice of his father and mother that 
he should wed for love, and seek love. He was to scorn 
all thought of worldly advantage. Thus, there could be 
no bar to consent. His parents would think with him, 
especially as his love was the daughter of the man most 
revered in Pelasgia. At the end, he entreated : 

"Dear Deucalion, in this manner I ask thy help. On 
the morrow, in the morning, let there be no company. 
Then give Hellen the word. And afterward, go with 
Pyrrha to visit Queen Atlana. Thus will open the way." 

"Prince Pelasgus, it shall be as them sayest." 

"Thou dost not speak with cheer, Deucalion." 

''For reason, dear Prince. It is no light matter to find 
that children are going from one, are eager to make nests 
for themselves, that they pine not to leave the home tree. 
Yet, how much more is the weight when these children 
have been gone weary, cruel years; and make naught of 
those years in the strength of new, fond feeling." 

"Deucalion, were I the father, I should feel as thou. 
Yet, there is much that is bright. For, though ^Eole 
and Hellen go from thyself and Pyrrha, their sweetest 
hopes have full being. Happy art thou in that! " 

"It is well said. But it cometh hard. When thine 
own go from thee, thou wilt the better know." 

" May it come to that, dear Deucalion ! " He spoke in 



284 t POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

high glee. "May it come to that that ^Eole and I may 
live to see our children go from us in this way. Then 
will I think of this and speed them." 

"Thou art of a kind with Peloppa," laughed Deucalion. 
And then laughed the prince. For, well had both 
listened to Friend Pelop: only with this difference that 
the latter had listened to what concerned Hellen and 
Electra alone. 

"It is great praise to be thus likened, Deucalion. 
Peloppa is a dear, kind soul. Often have I wanted to 
listen to her when she hath taken Pelop to one side. 
Well I know what are her thoughts upon the giving up 
of children. Well I know what would be her words of 
cheer did she dream of my hope for yEole. There would 
I get feeling for feeling!" 

"Did she dream of thy hope for yEole? Thinkest 
thou her eyes have been open but for the other pair? 
Many times hath Pelop come to whisper what she hath 
noted, and how warm is her heart for thee. Well is 
everything for you two settled in her busy mind!" 

This left Prince Pelasgus without words. As he stood 
thus routeJ, Deucalion, smiling roguishly, turned away. 

"Dear Prince, I will leave thee to think upon it." 

As to the visiting, it had been well kept up in these 
day of calm sailing. For, as the vessels stood at no 
great height above the water, it was easy to get from one 
to the other, especially as certain ingenious ladders had 
been made by the sailors. But, if the visiting went on 
briskly, even more briskly moved the Pelasgian tongues. 

The next morning, Deucalion spoke with Hellen; and 
then took Pyrrha over to the queen. Thus the four 
young people were left to themselves in the cabin, 



HAPPY PAIRS. 285 

and Electra being busied in needlework, and Sensel and 
Helleri interested in watching them. 

But they had not long enjoyed this when Hellen, with 
abruptness, spoke fast, "Electra, it comer.h to me that I 
would see the captain. Wilt thou conic?" 

She at once arose, the while apologizing, "/Eole, we 
will come back ere a little." 

Then out they hastened. And Sensel arose as if to 
look after them. But, chancing to turn before he reached 
the door, he again met ^Bole's eloquent look." 

He went toward her. "What is it, ^Eole." 

Though somewhat confused, she answered calmly, 
"Sensel Prince Pelasgus I was wondering at thy man- 
ner of moving. Whence is it?" 

He sat down beside her. "^Eole, as a child, I was 
strong and quick. As a youth, I was first in the games. 
It is a gift." 

"Well didst thou bear thy part. After that, I shall 
ever feel kind to their serpent selves. And, that well- 
streaked garment of dust, where is it?" 

"It is laid away, ever to be kept." 

" It is good. But thine eyes, they puzzle me. Though 
they shine now, they shone even more then. They knew 
how to pierce. And thy skin was less fair." 

"It was but a little coloring for both." 

" How often do Electra and I talk of thy kind deeds to 
us. Thou wert ever ready, never weary." 

"Was it not delight to serve thee and her?" 

" But the priests. Strange it seemed that they should 
look so much to thee." 

"I was quick. They were sluggish as were the serv- 
ing men." 



286 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"Though Electra and myself were firm in the thought 
that thou wert our friend yet there was every reason 
for believing thee the helper of the king and high priest." 

"I wonder that they so soon looked to me. But thy 
father willed it. Thou knowest his power." 

"And thy mastery of the Atlantean tongue. Well 
was it ye were able to speak it before we were called to 
the temple." 

" Couldst thou have seen thy father and myself at our 
study when the noise and mirth of the temple were over 
for the night!" 

She shivered at the words noise and mirth. Then said 
low, "Often have I wanted to ask thee why thou didst 
watch us from behind that thicket." 

" I was there at wish of thy father. He feared Atlano 
might send spies upon you. Further, I wished to speak 
with Hellen." 

"Were there spies?" 

"Twice, far off, I saw figures; but, as I bounded tow- 
ard them, they fled." 

"What a mercy! And what good did thy words do 
Hellen. Dear Hellen, what he hath borne ! But he for- 
getteth, now that he is thus happy." 

He looked at her intently. "^Eole, hast thou ever 
witnessed any as happy as himself and Electra?" 

" Never have I been with two that have promised to 
wed. But there are my mother and father, Pelop and 
Peloppa." 

"Mighty is such feeling; and mightiest, if answered." 

^Eole, affected at his tone, looked at him to find that 
he was gazing at her very strangely. If ever eyes were 
full of love, his were. And he was seizing her hand. 
The moment had come, Oh, for time to speak ! 



. HAPPY PAIRS. 287 

"yole, thou must know why I spoke thus of 1 Hellen 
and Electra. They are one pair. There should be an- 
other. We should be as they. Tell me that thou carest 
for me. For ever since I first beheld thee in the temple 
hath my heart gone out to thee. Only thou canst be my 
wife!" 

Her hands were pressed hard in his, her little hands, 
that, like her whole body, were trembling ; and her face 
had become as a lily. Scarcely could she support herself. 
Perceiving this, he relinquished the hands, and put his 
arms about her. 

But yole, rallying, entreated, " Prince Pelasgus, I ask 
that thou wilt take away thine arms. Thou hast not had 
leave to place them thus. And hearken, I beseech thee." 

He withdrew his arms. " To good words will I hearken 
Can aught else come from thee? Say but the yea, first, 
dear ^Eole. Then will I hearken the day long ! " 

"As if thou hadst not spoken words that bring me 
joy in speaking as thou hast, in asking me for thy wife 
words that would bring yea but for this." Here she 
was obliged to repress his ardor, and with difficulty. 
"Thy father is the king. His will thou shouldst know 
I ask thee to wait until thou hast spoken with him." 

"Afterward will I speak with him. Where is thy yea?" 

' 'Think thou art the son of the king." 

"I do think of it. And now am I most honoring him! 
Ever hath my father said I should be free in my choice, 
his own happy life so bearing upon him. Further, such 
is the custom of the Pelasgians, high and low. They 
wed as did the people of the Golden Age. There is 
tender thought before all else. It is such thought in 
wedlock that causeth their sun to shine on happy days, 



288 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

their moon and stars to light sweet nights of rest. Ah, 
our Pelasgia is the land of lands! And Heaven, after 
Atlantis ! But, thou tremblest, yole. Wrong am I to 
name that island. Rather will I speak of the feeling my 
father hath for thine. None doth he honor as Deucalion! 
Then is thy doubt gone. There is no other?" 

" Prince Pelasgus, that was my one doubt." 

He drew her to him, and neither spoke for a little. Then 
he said : 

"^Eole, I went to Atlantis, out of the feeling I bore thy 
father. Little thought I that it could hold the one of all 
the world for me! But, at the moment of first beholding 
thee, there was such a springing up of strong, fond wish 
for thee that I became stricken with fear that such might 
be for naught, that thou wouldst feel for me but pity, 
because of my looks and state. Ah, what I bore ! Tell 
me, dear ^Eole, that thou didst not feel thus." 

"Sensel, from the first was I drawn to thee, and often 
did I wonder over my feelings. But when thou didst 
bear me from the temple to the chariot of the queen, then 
I knew knew how dear wert thou. And how hath it 
grown. Should we be parted, life would be more than 
an Atlantis of sorrow!" 

His beautiful eyes moistened. He whispered, " It hath 
come, it hath come!" 

Long they communed before ^Eole bethought her of 
the two that had gone off to speak with the captain. 
"Where can they be?" she exclaimed. 

"Who?" 

" Hellen and Electra. Never have I thought of them ! " 

"It is with thought they are staying away." 

"What meanest thou?" 



HAPPY PAIRS. 289 

"When Hellen took off Electra, he meant not to come 
back. Without doubt, he hath made it known to her ; 
and she, of her feeling, hath asked that they visit the 
queen." 

"What hath he made known to her?" 

"That I wished to be alone with thee." 

"Didst thou speak thus to Hellen?" 

"Nay; but thy father did." 

"My father!" 

"Yea; thy father." 

"Why should my father do thus?" 

"Because I told him my wish. Because I asked him 
to go away with thy mother, and bid Hellen take off 
Electra. Thus could I have thee alone." 

" Wouldst thou tell me this is a plot?" 

"Call it what thou wilt, dear JEole. If plot, it is my 
plot. And full as good is it as the way Hellen took. 
Yea, even better, for look how long I have had thee to 
myself in this the beginning of our bliss." 

"Sensel !" More than volumes was in her tone as she 
arose. 

"yole, much doth that air become thee. Have a 
care!" 

She looked down upon him in rebuke, and full of en- 
joyment was he over her dignity. 

"Prince Pelasgus, thou didst plot with my father!" 

"I did, ALole. Firm was I to have thee to myself, for 
I was wild for this thy sweet word. And now have I it ! 
As to thy father, ah the delight of his feeling for me, and 
better, his furthering ! Moreover, there is the feeling, the 
furthering of Hellen. Did he not hasten off with Electra ? 
Thus hath it come to pass, Thus have I thy word to be 
mine forever!" 
19 



290 POSEIDON S PARADISE. 

He also had arisen. 

"And thou thinkest I can bear to be plotted about? 
I have the thought to take back my word. It hath gone 
too .soon. Yea, I will have it again. Sensel, give it to 
me." 

"Atlantis will rise ere I yield it ! Ah, but I should 
like well to have thee take it back, though." He had 
now caught her to him. " Yea, dear yole, much should 
I like thee to take it back for only with me will it go ! " 



CHAPTER XXI. 

IN PELASGIA. 

FAST were they nearing the dear Pelasgian coast. And 
jubilant became those returning. Hardly seemed it re- 
ality when they began to thread the islands off-lying their 
land. But the exuberance of feeling was hidden because 
of the sad-eyed Atlanteans, whose vessels followed dis- 
piritedly. Thus, the Pelasgians hugged their joy to 
themselves. Never had the sky been a blue so deep, 
never the water so calm and tender, never the islands so 
enchanting, never the breezes so odorous. For home 
was near. 

But the morning before entering harbor, this happened. 

Deucalion called Pyrrha to their small sleeping room, 
and when none could hear, said : " Pyrrha, thou knowest 
that, since a little before the sinking of Atlantis, my strange 
sight hath failed me. Thus, I thought it had gone from 
me. But, a few minutes since, whilst sitting here thinking 
upon our present happy state, again I saw clearly." He 
paused, overcome. 

"Deucalion, what is it?" 

"Pyrrha, I saw our harbor lying waste, as though 
many waters had rushed upon it. Naught was left. 
Houses, vessels, landings all were gone. In a flash it 
passed before me. But, ah how plain! Pyrrha, our 
harbor is a ruin. The floods have swept it!" 

She was stricken with fear. " Deucalion, never hath 



292 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

that strange inner sight failed thee. What thou didst 
behold in that moment, is/" 

"Pyrrha, I was not thinking of home. I was dwelling 
upon our life on this vessel when it came upon me." 

"It is a strange, a dread power. Thinkest thou it 
cometh of some fine, airy force of the spirit?" 

"It may. But what is that force?" 

She mused a little to brighten and say confidently, 
"Could it be that that for the moment thy spirit 
leaveth its shell and, as in a flash traveleth far and 
back? That, in this, is thine inner sight?" 

He was surprised. "Pyrrha, thou mayest have it. I 
have wondered much if the sight of my body dulled be- 
fore the sight of the spirit. It is in my mind that the 
cares of the body hamper the spirit; but, if such cares 
become as naught, the spirit hath full power, and then are 
the inner sight and hearing opened. Again, I have ques- 
tioned whether this strange sight cometh not of some 
hidden force of matter. Ah, it doth confound me! For, 
all things are as air before it. They stand not in the 
way, however far the seeing. 

41 Yea yea either the spirit flasheth out and back, or 
the sight of the body giveth way to this second sight, 
this seeing of the spirit. When at war, how often did I 
see thee. When our children were in Atlantis, how 
often were they before me. And, when I was in Atlantis, 
how often I saw thee, until a little ere I left. Then did 
this inner sight fail me. Thus became I worried over 
thee to fall into doubt. Why could I not see thee then ? 
Nor afterward?" 

"Thy spirit was so torn with the evils about thee, the 
dangers besetting the children, the risk in setting them 
free, that it could not become calm enough to see," 



IN PELASGIA. . 293 

"That is it. Though, through all was I sure that I 
would master. Yet, the dread" 

"Thou art but man. Therefore must hope join 
hands with dread, at times. But tell me, why, if the 
children were so much before thee when in Atlantis, 
didst- thou not know of the Pelasgian speech of the 
queen?" She smiled through her tears, hoping to tease 
him a little. 

But he was ready. " Smile, if thou wilt, Pyrrha. 
Then will I. It was not every day that I could see them; 
but only on those days when Atlantean was spoken. 
Thou wilt call to mind that thou didst tell me the talk 
of one day was in Atlantean, the next in Pelasgian." 

"Ah, but thou hast the last! As I might have 
known. Never art thou at a loss !" 

" Not whilst thou art of earth, Pyrrha. All is gain, 
cheer, with thee beside me. And now wilt thou do thy 
best. For my heart faileth." 

"Yet here am I jesting, smiling." 

"It is well. But, ah, the vision! How plain. was it. 
Thus are we warned. But woe to Prince Pelasgus!" 

' 'What is it?" 

" His father is not of earth. He is with his wife above." 

"Deucalion!" 

" Yea, yea, I feel it. Call to mind that I felt the ruin 
that was to come upon Atlantis: and, that with all, I 
should save our children. Call to mind that I felt their 
state in Atlantis even before my inner sight showed such. 
Think how often I saw them afterward when under the 
care of the queen. Did not I picture the queen? Did 
not I tell thee of their daily life?" 

"Thou didst thou didst!" 



294 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

"And I felt even before I saw." 

" I call it to mind" 

"So now I feel this about the king and queen." 

"Wilt thou tell the prince?" 

" Ah, Pyrrha he is so happy." 

" Wouldst thou have me tell him?" 

"We will wait, and think upon it." 

The two, dejected, sat down to ponder. After a little, 
Deucalion concluded, "Pyrrha, this night will I speak 
with him. Let him spend one more day of joy. Before 
he seeketh his couch will I warn him." 

"I know thou wilt cheer him. Ah, what misery 
is ever ready to swoop upon us of earth ! Here are these 
poor Atlanteans with grief sorely checking their pulses, 
beginning to rouse a little. Their sluggish hearts are 
quickening. And to what? To further misery, further 
death of hope. Ah, our own misery will be as naught 
beside theirs ! " 

"True true. It doth confound me." 

Too soon came the night. When all had parted for 
rest, the unhappy Deucalion led the prince aside that he 
might relate the vision. The latter, though greatly 
shaken, could not bring himself to accept it, but again 
and again insisted : 

"Deucalion, thou art wrong. For once, mayst thou 
be wrong. I cannot believe. Our dear harbor, the ves- 
sels that have done such service, the homes, the lives ! " 

Deucalion was agonized; and his pallor was extreme. 

"Deucalion, be not thus wrought. Let mine be the 
sorrow. Enough hast. thou borne." 

" It may be that I should not have told thee." 

"Thou hast my 'thanks. Should the worst come, I am 



IN PELASGIA. 295 

ready. Shouldst thou be wrong, should our harbor wel- 
come us in its pride, there is the more cause for joy." 

Deucalion looked upon him piteously; then taking his 
hand kissed it. " Dear Prince," he wept, " Dear Prince ! " 

"Thou hast more to tell, Deucalion? My father, my 
mother is it well with them ? " 
" " Dear Prince, it is well with them too well." 

"Too well?" 

"I fear it." 

"Thou hast seen?" 
' " Nay, I have but felt." 

"Ah I know what that meaneth!" 

The words came in gasps. He turned aside, forlorn. 
But Deucalion, seizing his hands, besought. " May I be 
wrong may I be wrong!" 

The prince shook his head. A deathly paleness was 
upon him, and he began to totter. Deucalion, as he sus- 
tained him, implored him not to be overcome; and led 
him to a couch. Here he remained as if in stupor; but, 
erelong, stood up, himself, calm and resolute. 

"Deucalion, I will look for the worst. But will be- 
seech thou mayst be wrong." 

Then, under the stars, the two walked and whispered 
through the dreary night. 

Early the next morning, they drew nigh the harbor. 
Almost was the moment at hand when the dear port in 
its tranquillity and beauty would gladden their eyes. 
Eagerly did the strangers, as well as the returning ones, 
await the first glimpse of this lauded haven. 
And it came. 

They looked to see the peaceful bay, the busy land- 
ings, the speeding or quiescent vessels, the houses, the 



296 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

hurrying figures of the port, the glory of the distant 
hills ? 

Alas, they saw them not! 

What was this? In mistake had they entered some 
unknown bay that had been scourged by the furious ele- 
ments? Yon hills were blasted. This was not their 
tranquil harbor, their happy port! Where were the ves- 
sels, the houses, the active figures, the smiling hills? 
This place was a nightmare ! 

Almost frenzied, strangers and returning ones looked 
about them all save Deucalion and Prince Pelasgus who 
stood frozen. 

But on went the vessels the fact growing upon the 
horrified beholders that some mighty rush of waters 
must have swept the place this harbor they had hoped 
to enter, some in resignation, some in exultation. For, 
trunks of trees, pieces of houses, portions of vessels, 
everywhere began to impede their progress. Soon were 
descried the floating remains of animals- and later, here 
and there a gruesome remnant of humanity. At sight 
of the first of the latter, the women fled shrieking below. 
The men could but remain to gaze mute, despairing, 
heartsick. And some, in derision, thought, " Is this the 
haven of peace promised the stricken Atlanteans?" It 
was a mockery. 

But on they went, their eyes fastened on the wrecked 
haven, the ruined hills, until Deucalion ordered, 

" We will turn yonder point." 

It was done. They rounded this to perceive, in a shel- 
tered cove, a few vessels and some apparently hastily con- 
structed cots on the shore. They shouted. And figures 
appeared on the vessels to answer lustily. Then spok'e 
Prince Pelasgus: 



IN PELASGIA. 297 

" Deucalion, come with me into the boat that we may 
question them. Let the vessels rest." 

At the order, the vessels paused. Then Deucalion 
and the prince moved off in the fantastic boat. Upon 
reaching the nearest vessel, Deucalion, at behest of the 
prince, called, "We would speak with the captain." 

The captain proclaimed himself. Deucalion asked, 
"Sir Captain, when came the flood?" 

" Sir, the flood came the full of the moon four moons 
since." 

"It was then Atlantis sank," whispered the prince. 

Deucalion continued, "Sir Captain, tell us of it." 

" Sir, these vessels here lying have since come into 
harbor from their voyages. This they found. Now we 
wait for others, when we will build again the port. Some 
of yonder vessels look Pelasgian ; and thou art of us. 
Tell me, when sailed thy vessels? And greeting to them, 
and thee. So much will every vessel and every man 
help to bring the port to itself." 

The prince now spoke. "Thou wilt find us but too 
glad to help. But, Sir Captain, I would question thee. 
Do any of the port live?" 

" Not one liveth." 

"Doth the king know?" 

"The king ! Ah, the king lieth low ! " 

"What say est thou?" 

"The king, with some of his mighty men, was tenting 
in a vale to the north of this place. There the sudden 
torrents came upon them, there broke upon them the 
spouts of water from the hills, there were they swept to 
death!" 

"How knowest thou?" 



298 POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

" Two of the mighty men who were on the mountains 
above the vale hunting, and who had gone within a cave 
to rest, are the sole living ones. They are ill in yon cot. 
They beheld the waters rush upon the fleeing ones." 

" The queen?" 

"The queen had been one week dead. They had but 
come from her burial in the country above." 

"They are together, then," moaned the prince. "It is 
well. Ah, my father ! I see thee running followed fast 
by the cruel waters ! " 

"Thy father! Thou art not the prince?" 

The prince threw aside his mantle. " Sir Captain Pelio 
of Magnesia, thou canst but know me." 

The captain sank upon his knees, as did his officers 
and sailors. Of their quickness, the observing ones on 
the neighboring vessels did likewise. Indeed, others of 
the captains were familiar with the looks of the prince. 

When the prince had bidden them arise, Captain Pelio 
spoke out loud, and in reverence : 

"Thou art our king! We had begun to fear thou 
wouldst not come back. Long mayst thou live and in 
our hearts as did thy father!" 

"Ah, king it is. If it could but be 'Sir Prince'! But, 
Sir Captain, tell me of my father." 

"King Pelasgus, I would tell thee this. Think not 
that thy father ran from the waters. Ah, no. From the 
heights, the two mighty men beheld him meet the waters 
as if in glad greeting. He tried not to fly as did the 
others." 

" It is no wonder, with my mother gone." 

He was so weak and trembling, and hoarse of voice, 
that Deucalion put his arm about him, and asked for 



IN PELASGIA. 299 

him, "Sir Captain, where lieth the body of the king?" 

"It lieth beside that of the queen." 

Deucalion was trembling sorely, but the bowed figure 
of the prince forced him to continue. "Sir Captain, as 
thou seest, the prince, our king, is weak of his grief. If 
I am faint, what is his state. It is best we go back to our 
vessels for this day; but, on the morrow, we will see thee 
and all, again. And how, for the prince, I thank thee." 

The captain bowed low. Of his pity, he could not 
speak. 

Gently did Deucalion seat the pliant prince. Then, 
after waving farewell, he speeded off. Hard, hard was 
it to watch the suffering in this face so dear, harder to 
note the dryness of the eyes, the rocking of the body. 
And no reply could he get upon speaking. In anguish 
rowed Deucalion on. 

He reached the vessel to find yEole bending over its 
side, pale, resolved; and surely she comprehended, from 
her eyes. 

"Father," she said in lowest tone, "Father, I will 
come down, after thou hast come up." 

"It is well." 

He ascended, and assisted her. When almost at the 
bottom of the ladder, she spoke: 

"Help me,Sensel." 

This dear voice aroused him. He stood, and held out 
his arms. Into these she crept, -knowing well how to 
comfort him. Then she coaxed him to sit down beside 
her that they might talk. With her hand in his, and no 
thought for the eyes upon them, she whispered, ''What 
is it, Sensel?" 

Little by little, he related the sad story. At the end, 



3oo POSEIDON'S PARADISE. 

she was weeping. Distressed, he begged her not to be 
overcome. But the tears were as much for himself as 
for the evil news, so changed was he from the happy, 
ardent,, brilliant Sensel who had so fondly dwelt upon his 
hopes only the night before. 

He begged her to grow calm, whereupon she cried the 
more giving this as reason, "How can I not weep when 
I behold thee in such grief?" 

Then started the tears in his own eyes ; and they wept 
together, to their comforting. Thus does nature afford 
compensation. 

But shortly they were drawn from this by calls from 
Queen Atlana's galley, and looked to find Deucalion was 
beckoning to them. So Prince Pelasgus began to row to 
him, when near enough receiving this as explanation: 

"I have but just brought hither, Pyrrha. And the 
queen would speak with thee, dear Prince." 

When aboard, the prince with JEo\e, hastened beneath 
the awning where sat the queen and Pyrrha. Then 
talked lovingly, consolingly, these two women who had 
known so much of sorrow. Long, with yEole's hand in 
his, sat the prince to watch the gruesome hills, the 
floating timbers. And finally he said: 

"Deucalion, on the morrow, will we go where my 
father and mother are laid. Then for my duty to Pelas- 
gia." 

After King Pelasgus had knelt beside the tomb of his 
parents, he repaired with Deucalion to Thessaly, which 
had been undisturbed by the flood. In his beloved La- 
rissa, Deucalion was joyously welcomed; and the king 
was hailed with loving fealty. Though, only for a little, 



IN PELASGIA, 3OI 

could King Pelasgus tarry with ^Eole, as for a brief sea- 
son, he must return to the port/which was already re- 
building. 

Deucalion's Thessalian compatriots would have ac- 
corded him godlike honors upon learning of his adven- 
tures, his successes; and hard he found it to convince 
them he was but mortal. As to Pyrrha, they had always 
adored her. She was their goddess, indeed. 

Here, in Thessaly, the ardent Hellen speedily married 
Electra. Here, in Thessaly, King Pelasgus won his bride. 
Here continued Queen Atlana and Pyrrha in sisterly 
devotion, death parting them but a brief spell when ad- 
vanced in years, Atlana going first. Here, the polished 
Atlanteans introduced their language, arts, and ancient 
purity of religion a few generations later finding the 
two races merged in the cultured Hellenes, and speaking 
a tongue, the ^Eolic, very different from either Atlantean 
or Pelasgian. Indeed, this ALolic may be said to bear 
the same relation to the Pelasgian that English does to 
the Anglo-Saxon; and it, in turn, has colored the various 
dialects of Greece since existing. 

Here, in Thessaly, Deucalion continued chief among 
his countrymen ; and finally became their king at behest 
. of King Pelasgus. Here to himself and Pyrrha was born 
another son, the hero Amphictyon and the originator of 
the famous Amphictyonic Council that so long held the 
Greek tribes together in a bond surviving even their inde- 
pendence. Here, Hellen succeeded his father; and from 
him sprang that great race of the Hellenes that gave 
Greece its ancient name of Hellas. 

Here were born Hellen's sons, yolus, Doris, and 
Xuthus; and Xuthus' sons, Ion and Achseus, Here, 



302 

^Eolus was king after Hellen ; and from here spread his 
descendants over Central Greece as far as the Isthmus of 
Corinth, even occupying the western coast of the Pelo- 
ponnesus. From this central region branched the great 
divisions of the Hellenic race, the Dorians, the ^Eolians, 
the lonians, and the Achseans. 

King Pelasgus missed not the portion of his kingdom 
given over to Deucalion for his also, was the mighty 
spiritual kingdom of love; and ^Eole was its queen as 
well as queen of the natural kingdom. The mighty 
kingdom was theirs for eternity. . Over the natural, they 
reigned long and well, ever furthering the progress of the 
Atlantean industries. 

Thus, the arts flourished especially in Thessaly; and 
the Atlantean industries in the New Pelasgia. Whilst 
commerce became supreme. 

And, from the union of these primeval Pelasgians and 
the more cultivated Hellenes, generations afterward, 
sprang a people that were the fathers of the great intel- 
lectual Grecian race of antiquity. 



NOTES. 

"ATLANTIS, according to the tradition of the Greek geog- 
raphers, a large island in the Atlantic Ocean to the west of the 
north west coast of Africa and the Pillars of Hercules. It was fabled 
to possess a numerous population begotten by Neptune of mortal 
women. The sea-kings of Atlantis were said to have invaded the 
west of Europe and Africa, and to have been defeated by the Athe- 
nians and their allies. The inhabitants finally became desperately 
wicked, and the island was swept away by a deluge. Plato men- 
tions the island in his 'Timseus.' On the old Venetian maps, At- 
lantis is put to the west of the Azores and Canaries." The Amer- 
ican Cyclopedia. 

Atlantis. " Now, in the island of Atlantis there was a great and 
wonderful empire, which had rule over the whole island, and sev- 
eral others, as well as over parts of the Continent; and besides 
these, they subjected the parts of Libya within the Columns of 
Heracles as far as Egypt, and of Europe as far as Tyrrhenia. The 
vast power thus gathered into one, endeavored to subdue at one 
blow our country and yours, and the whole of the land which was 
within the straits; and then, Solon, your country shone forth, in the 
excellence of her virtue and strength, among all mankind; for she 
was the first in courage and military skill. . . . And when the 
rest fell off from her, she defeated and triumphed over the invad- 
ers. . . 

"But after ward there occurred violent earth quakes and floods, and 
in a single day and night of rain all your warlike men in a body sank 
into the earth; and the island of Atlantis in like manner disappeared, 
and was sunk beneath thesea." Plato's "Timaeus" per "Atlan- 
tis." 

Athens. "For there was a time, Solon, before that great deluge 
of all, when the city which now is Athens was first in war, and was 
preeminent for the excellence of her laws, and is said to have per- 
formed the noblest deeds, and to have had the fairest constitution 
of any of which tradition tells, under the face of heaven." Plato's 
^ "Atlantis," 

(303) 



304 NOTES. 

Pelasgians. "Amidst all the obscurity that hangs about the name 
of the Pelasgians, it is admitted that they were the earliest known 
inhabitants both of Greece and Southern Italy at least of the Indo- 
Germanic stock; for throughout Europe, as well as Asia, there ap- 
pears to have been a still earlier population. Now we are dis- 
tinctly told that the whole seaboard of Ionia and the neighboring 
islands was formerly peopled by Pelasgians. They are enumer. 
ated by Homer among the allies of the Trojans; Herodotus found 
traces of them on the Propontis, and Agathias in Caria; and the 
name Magnesia, which occurs twice in Lydia, as well as in Thessaly, 
seems to be certainly as Pelasgic. They were found in the islands 
of the ^Egean from Samothrace, Imbros and Lemnos, in the 
north, to Crete, in the south, as well as in the Cyclades, which form 
the natural stepping-stones from Asia Minor to the Peloponnesus. 
Hence, they seem to have passed from one continent to the other 
both round the head of the yEgean and across its islands; and, ac- 
cordingly, the chief remnants of the race after they were over- 
powered by the Hellenes, are found in Thessaly, in Epirus, in At- 
tica, and in the heart of Acadia. From Greece they passed over 
to Southern Italy; where, perhaps, the 'golden age of Saturn' is 
a tradition of the peaceful agricultural character which is every- 
where attributed to the Pelasgians, in contrast to the piratical habits 
of the Carians and Leleges. It remains, however, a question 
whether the Pelasgi were a branch of the Phrygian migration, or a 
still earlier movement of the Indo-European race from their prim- 
eval seats. The latter seems highly probable; but, at all events 
the two races were very nearly akin, and it is hardly practicable to 
distinguish their migrations." " The Ancient History of the East" 
by Philip Smith, B. A. 

"The HeUenes and the Pelasgi are the two races identified with 
Greece's earliest traditions; but when we appeal to history for 
their origin, or seek for the part that each has played in the ma- 
jestic drama of antiquity, there is little more than conjecture to 
guide us." Nottand Gliddon's "Types of Mankind," page 103. 

Deucalion and Pyrrha. "Deucalion married Pyrrha, daughter of 
Epimetheus and Pandora. Zeus determined to destroy the degen- 
erate race of man, but Deucalion and Pyrrha, on account of their 
piety, were preserved. Deucalion built a ship, in which he and 
Pyrrha floated in safety, while a nine days' flood devastated Hel- 
las," 



NOTES. 3O5 

Hellen. "The sons of the above were Hellenand Amphictyon. 
Hellen was king of Phthia in Thessaly. Amphictyon was said to 
ha ve founded the Amphictyonic of Thermopylae." Scull's "Greek 
Mythology Systematized." 

Deucalion and Pyrrha. "Deucalion, king of Phthia, in Thessaly, 
son of Prometheus and Clymene. According to tradition, being 
forewarned by his father of an approaching deluge, he built a ship 
in which he and his wife Pyrrha were saved from an inundation 
which destroyed all the rest of mankind^" etc. The American 
Cyclopedia. 

Hellen. " The Greeks were fond of tracing their origin back to 
a common ancestor Hellen, the son of Deucalion and Pyrrha who 
were the survivors of a deluge," etc. Page 107, Vol. VIII, Amer- 
ican Cyclopedia. 

Orichalcum. "That which is now only a name, and was then some- 
thing more than a name orichalcum was dug out of the earth in 
many parts of the island, and, with the exception of gold, was es- 
teemed the most precious of metals among the men of those days. " 
Plato. 

Spiral. "A favorite design of the men of the Bronze Age in 
Europe is the spiral or double spiral form." . . . "We find 
the same figure in an ancient fragment of pottery from the Little 
Colorado." . . . "The same design is also found in ancient 
rock etchings of the Zunis of New Mexico." Ignatius Donnelly. 

Handmaid. "And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah, Zilpah 
his maid, for an handmaid." Genesis xxix: 24. 

Feather Robes. The Maya nobles of ancient Yucatan wore fine 
robes of feather work on all occasions. Author. 

Magnet. " The Phoenicians were familiar with the use of the 
magnet. At the prow of their vessels stood the figure of a woman 
(Astarte) holding a cross in one hand and pointing the way with 
the other; the cross represented the compass, which was a magnet- 
ized needle, floating in water crosswise upon a piece of reed or 
wood." Ignatius Donnelly. 













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