â€˜Had you seen her!â€™ exclaimed Basil, and grew rapturous again. Whilst he exhausted language in the effort to prove how remote was Veranilda from any shape of loveliness easily presented by memory or imagination, Marcian pondered.
â€˜You are not afraid,â€™ whispered Veranilda, â€˜that Basil may be in the garden when we go forth?â€™
â€˜Permit me now to leave you, lady. This house is yours. I would it offered you worthier accommodation. As soon as I have news, I will again come before you.â€™
â€˜Are your senses more delicate than mine?â€™
â€˜That it shall,â€™ replied Marcian. â€˜Or, better still,â€™ he added, â€˜the hospitality of my father Gaudiosus.â€™ He touched the priestâ€™s arm, as if affectionately. â€˜For here there is little solace; barely one chamber habitable. You have often heard me describe, O Basil, my poor, ruinous island villa, and now at length you behold it. I did not think you would pass this way, or I would have prepared for your fitting reception. By the greatest chance you find me here; and tomorrow I must be gone. But scarce two thousand paces from here is the dwelling of this reverend man, who will entertain you fittingly, and give you the care you need; for it seems to me, dear Basil, that you are more than wearied.â€™
Then there sounded a knock at the door of his cell. Commanding himself, and turning away so as to hide his face, he bade enter.