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friend Gomez. How Gomez learned the I fear, I greatly fear: at all events he facts he would not inform me;, but he as- gives me no hope.” sured me that I might rely upon them. A " And is there no one,” asked Rosita, year ago, when Don Manuel Prieto
gave "whom you can trust ?" his daughter in marriage to young Echever- “ Not one of the whole court,” replied ria, he said to him, “Carlos, choose which her husband in a tone of despair. you will of my houses in town, or my es- only advocate who cannot be bribed, and tates in the country, for your residence, of whom lawyers and judges alike stand in and it is yours.' Echeverria answered, awe, has long been my implacable enemy." + I will not rob you of any of your splendid
« The Dr. Francia ?" residences or your great plantations. Give “ Yes; ever since that unhappy affair me only a little cottage, with an orchard of Gomez and Paredes. I remember well and a few fields about it, like that of En- the terrible scowl he wore when he said to rique Gonsalez, and I shall be happy.' me, 'You have wilfully crossed my path; Then Prieto said, “If that be all you re- you have injured one who never forgets a quire, you shall have the very house and favor or an offence.' Since that time, he farm you speak of.' Thereupon he came has done all in his power-openly and fairto me and offered me a large price for the ly I admit-to thwart, annoy, and injure property-its full worth, and even more. Nor have I been slow, I confess it, I refused, instantly and positively, to sell to retaliate. He is an intimate friend of my patrimony, which was endeared to me Prieto's. Oh how he must cxult in my by the recollections of childhood. Why approaching ruin!” should I part with it at any price? Be- "Not, surely,” said Rosita, “if he be sides, Rosita, it was at that very time that the honest, upright man he is proclaimed I was preparing to lead you, my lovely, to be. His integrity must revolt at such blushing bride, from your own happy home injustice." to the house of my fathers. Was that a " There are many esteemed very honest," time to sell my homestead? I told the replied Gonsalez, “who will rejoice in a old man flatly that all his fortune would result attained by evil means, provided not tempt me.
Now, this is what I learn they are not responsible for the evil-doing. from Gomez. When Prieto returned home, But,” he continued, rising from his chair, he was bursting with fury at his failure, and pacing the room with hasty steps, inasmuch as be bad given his word to his “ what is it to me who cxults or who lason-in-law, and had expected that his ments over my unhappy fate? What is doubloons would accomplish everything. certain is, that in three days we are driven He swore a solemn oath, that if it cost him forth, to beg or starve, from this house, in his whole fortune, he would have my house which I fondly hoped to spend a long and and land, and that I should yet beg of him happy life with thee, my beloved. Ah, a pittance to save me from starvation." Rosita ! what day-dreams have been mine
" Santa Maria !--Blessed Virgin! Can of the pleasant future which araited us this be ?” exclaimed the young wife in as- here, but which will never be ours to enjoy! tonishment.
It is not for myself that I grieve. I can “This, this," continued Gonsalez, “is struggle with the current. But when I the origin of this sudden and outrageous think that I have drawn you from the suit, which at first I considered to be in- peaceful shelter of your paternal roof in tended only for my annoyance, and as a Villa Rica to this distant city, to share in mode of petty revenge. But it now ap- my desperate fortunes, I am ready to go pears too clearly that be is determined to mad with remorse and push it to extremity; and his measures " And this is the way you treat me!” have been taken with such consummate replied the young wife in an offended tone. skill, that no resource is left to ine. The “When I, poor, foolish creature, was thinkjudge is gained. Every advocate has his ing that my presence and my love would retaining fee. I have even begun to doubt be some alleviation to your misfortune, you my own paid lawyer, Ramirez, who has do your best to distress me by calling them suddenly become very cautious and cold." an aggravation. Come here, sir,” she con
“ Ramirez! He leagued with the ene-tinued, seizing him by the hand, and pulmy! Oh, Enrique, surely your suspicions ling him with a gentlc force to a chair by mislead you ?”
her side" sit down by me, you treache
rous man, and tell me what you married and then I will pick and card your ootton, me for. Was it only to have me in your and spin and weave it, and cut it, and make house like a great doll, prettily dressed, it up, and tambour it so, that the governor for a plaything and a show? Or was it himself shall be only too happy to give a merely that I should keep you company, hundred dollars for a shirt from my fingers. and entertain your friends in Tertulias,* and Moreover, every Saturday I will go into the make your maté,t and see that your clothes market, like the other paisanas,* with my were in order, and your dinners well cook- donkey, and my panniers filled with all the ed ? No, sir; your ama de llavest did good fruits that you will raise, and all the these things quite as well as I. Well, nice and pretty things that I can make then, was it to be your helpmate, to love my tarts and pies, my bouquets, my toys you in joy and in sorrow, to comfort you, and cigarrillos " Ah, I think I see myself to toil for you, to pray for you, to believe in a corner of the market-house, in my that there was no unhappiness where you white petticoat and embroidered vest, with were, and to make you believe so too? Oh, my little rebozof on my head, seated in Enrique ! you do not know me. You are state on my mat, with all my wares about a man : well, am not I a woman?”
I am sure I shall draw all the custom. “ You are an angel, I believe," said Buy a water-melon, senor? Buy my canEnrique, interrupting her rapid speech by dles, senorita-elegant mould candles ? clasping her round the waist.
Here's your nice new-laid eggs! Here's “Let me alone. I say I am a woman : your beautiful onions ! Here's your fine and are there not poor women as well as white yams—yams-yams! Ah, buy a pie, poor men!
And do not women have to ma'am, baked this morning, I assure you; toil and suffer as much as men? Yes, or a bunch of elegant flowers, for the dear truly, and a great deal more. Now, En- good saint;§ or a sweet pretty little doll for rique,” said the lovely pleader, leaning with the charming little senorita ; or a little her clasped hands on her husband's shoul- whip for the dear little senorito to whip his der, and looking fondly in his face,“ listen beautiful little horse with ?". The lively to my plan, which I have formed while you Rosita mimicked so admirably the tones and were poring over your musty papers. manner of the market-women of AssumpWhen we leave our dear home, which I tion, that her husband shouted "Bravo ” shall regret as much as you, for I have had and clapped his hands, and laughed till the my day-dreams too, Enrique”—and a tear, tears ran down his cheeks. It was a delightunbidden, stood in her bright blue eye- ful scene; and it ended by his clasping “ but when we leave it, you shall bire a once more his lovely wife to his bosom, and little hut, and a little piece of ground, such thanking heaven that he had one treasure as we can find for twenty dollars a year, of which Prieto could not deprive him. like that which old Antonio lives in the At this moment they were startled by a old Mulatto, who talks all the time with loud knock at the door. “ Who can it be his Indian wife, who never says anything : at this hour ?" said Enrique. just like me, you know."
“ Some messenger from the city, per“But where are we to find our twenty haps,” replied his wife. Here, Rossi," dollars, you dear little St. Tacita :" inter- she said, opening the door of the apartment, rupted Enrique, smiling in spite of him-“ go and see who it is that knocks.” self.
Rossi, their trusty Mulatto servant, who Hush with your impertinent inquisi- was nodding in the passage, arose, rubbed tions. You are
worse than a lawyer. bis eyes, yawned, and proceeded to obey the Why, my earnings are worth more than commands of his mistress. He returned in sixty dollars; so there is three years' rent a minute with his eyes wide open,
every at once. You shall cultivate the ground trace of drowsiness banished by consternaand raise your yams, your maize, and your tion. “Oh, senor ! oh, mistress !” he pine-apples, your water-melons and your
* Peasant women. musk-melons, your sugar-cane, and, above
+ Little cigars made of tobacco cut fine, and all, your cotton ; while I shall take care of wrapped in a slip of paper or maize leaf. the house which won't be much, you know ; A sort of scarf, thrown over the head or round
the neck, at the pleasure of the wearer. * Evening parties.
0 It is common throughout Spanish America to | Paraguay tea, made from the leaves of a plant have an image of the patron saint in the best room peculiar to that country:
of the house, and great care is taken in dressing and Housekeeper : literally, mistress of keys. adorning it with jewels and garlands.
stammered ; it is that man, Dr. Francia! you my services. Will you trust me with Shall I let him in ?"
your cause ?" Rossi knew well the inveterate enmity “ With my life !” exclaimed Gonsalez, between his master and the doctor, which astonished and overjoyed.
“Oh, senor, was indeed notorious to all the city and under what a load of obligation do you lay neighborhood. “Dr. Francia !” exclaimed me!" Gonsalez, no less astonished, and much per- “ Under none,” returned the lawyer, hasplexed. " What can he want with me?" tily. “ I serve the cause of justice. We
“ Perhaps he comes from Don Manuel to are enemies now and ever !" propose some compromise," suggested his Surely, senor, not now?” exclaimed wife. “Pray see him by all means.” Rosita. Not after this?"
Well, Rossi, desire the doctor to enter. “Madam," replied the doctor, coldly, We shall know our fate."
“neither my friendships nor my enmities Rossi returned to the door, and shortly are like a cloak, to be put on and off at afterwards a hasty step was heard in the pleasure, and thrown aside when worn out. passage, and the person of whom they These, 1 perceive, are your documents,” he spoke entered the room. His tall erect continued, sweeping from the table the pile form was clad from head to foot in scholas- of papers which lay upon it, and collecting tic black, with the exception of his ample them under his arm within his cloak. cloak of crimson cloth, which was wrapped “ Have no further anxiety, Don Enrique ; around his shoulders after the Spanish fash- your cause is safe. I do not think that ion. He might be above forty years of age. Don Pedro de Sarmiento will dare to trifle His face was long, with strongly-marked with me!” he said proudly, drawing up his features ; thin lips firmly closed, dark stately form to its full height. “ Let him piercing eyes, and a swarthy complex- beware: if he turns to the right or to the ion, but with that peculiar tinge of sallow- left, he is lost. Judge of appeal as he is, ness acquired by close confinement and royal auditor as he styles himself, I will study. His dark hair was drawn back from drag him from his seat to ignominy and his capacious forehead, and fell in heavy ruin. What ! is it come to this, that a cormasses on his shoulders. His whole physi- rupt judge and venal advocates shall twist ognomy conveyed a strong impression of the law with impunity to their own vile intellect and firmness. He waited for no ends, and rob us of our fortunes without salutation, but spoke at once. " Senor redress? I, José Gasper Francia, say that Don Enrique, I know that my presence here this thing shall not be. Farewell, sir; I. is as unwelcome as it is unexpected.” repeat it, your patrimony is safe. Adieu,
“I am honored,” began Gonsalez; but madam ; I kiss your feet;" and bowing the doctor interrupted him with a hasty mo- with ceremonious politeness, the great lawtion of the hand.
yer abruptly turned, and departed as has“I do not come to bandy compliments, tily as he had come. He left behind him senor; but on an errand of duty. You are glad hearts and joyous countenances. now engaged in a suit with my friend Don “How much better are the grim doctor's Manuel Prieto (he pronounced the word acts than his words !” said Rosita.
" Surefriend' with a strong emphasis), by which ly he cannot be in earnest when he speaks you are about to lose this house and estate. of enmity ?" From what I learn, it appears that this suit “ Dr. Francia seldom speaks in jest," is an atrocious outrage on law and justice, replied Enrique ; " but what matters his and is likely to be gained by a violation of enmity after this? I defy him to do me as every legal and honest principle. Is this much harm hereafter as he now does me the truth, senor ?"
“It is,” replied Gonsalez eagerly, “as Ill-founded confidence ! Alas! there surely as there is a just God in heaven !" came a time when Gonsalez would have
“ This must not be, Don Enrique,” re- given house and land, and all his hopes of plied Dr. Francia. “I cannot allow the worldly prosperity, to buy even the miseralaw, that noble science to which I have de- ble boon of eternal banishment from the voted my life, to be so perverted to an en-country in which Dr. Francia dwelt ! gine of fraud and oppression. I am the friend of Don Manuel ; I am, and ever shall be, your enemy. But I am more the friend Twelve years have elapsed since the of right, and the enemy of wrong. I offer scene just described. We must now ask
SCENE THE SECOND.
our readers to accompany us to the Casa excellency,” continued the young man ; de Gobierno, or government house in the “I only thought, that possibly, without city of Assumption, the capital of the free perplexing ourselves by foreign alliances, and independent republic of Paraguay. It we might cultivate an advantageous comis a large low edifice of whitewashed brick, merce by exchanging our surplus producwith no pretensions to elegance or state. tions for their cheap and useful wares. At one extremity of it is a room of mode
finished your lecture ?" inrate size, very poorly furnished. A long quired Francia with a tone of bitter sartable which occupied the upper end, close casm, and a ferocious scowl. to the wall, supported a double row of “ Ah, pardon !-pardon !” exclaimed the books, and several astronomical and sur- unhappy youth; “I meant not to offend.” veying instruments. At a small round When I took you for my secretary,”. table, in the centre of the room, was seated continued the unrelenting dictator, “and a youth of pleasing intelligent appearance, favored you by my countenance, I trusted engaged in writing ; while a tall elderly that you had at least the sense not to burn man, dressed in black, but with a crimson your fingers by thrusting them wilfully into cloak thrown round his shoulders, walked the fire. So you are a political economist, slowly up and down the room in deep senor! and aspire to be a partner in my thought. It was Francia, no longer a sim-government. Do you know how I treat ple doctor of laws and advocate, but, by such intermeddlers" the election of his fellow-citizens, and the “Pardon my folly, my lord ! cried the force of his indomitable will, supreme dic- youth, still more and more terrified. “I tator of Paraguay, the absolute ruler of the will never offend again !" country. There was little change to be “ Out ! away with you!” thundered perceived in his appearance, except that Francia, stamping violently on the floor. his hair was slightly grizzled, and his coun-" Quit my presence now and for ever ! tenance gloomier than ever. At length Remain in your house till further orders. the young man ceased writing, and after I will take care that you never repeat the glancing timidly towards the stern dictator, offence.” as if to ask permission, he said, "May it The unfortunate secretary slunk terrorplease your excellency, the letter is fin- stricken from the room, while the excited ished."
dictator paced up and down like an enrag, “ Read it," said Francia.
ed tiger in his lair. His eyes glared, and The young man read the document, his brow was knit. " Shall I never find a which was a letter directed to the public tool,” he said, “who will not erect himself authorities of Buenos Ayres, positively re- into an adviser ?” Suddenly the door fusing to enter into any treaty, either of opened. “Ha! thou villain, wouldst thou commerce or alliance, with them. When assassinate me?” cried the despot, rushing he had concluded, the dictator said, “Very to the table, on which lay two loaded pisgood. Transcribe it and bring it to me for tols and a drawn sword. my signature. You have a good style, Vil- “Oh, Senor Excellentissimo, it is only larino, and your compositions please me.” your poor servant,” said the new comer in
“Ah, your excellency,” stammered the a piteous tone, dropping on his knees; “I youth, much gratified by a speech of thought I heard your lordship’s excellency commendation from his stern master, “if bid me enter." the supremo would but allow me to speak." “Ha, Estevan! is 'it thou ? Beware
“Well, what is it?” inquired Francia, how thou rushest so hastily into my preturning and directing a piercing gaze at his sence, or thou mayest chance to repent secretary
it with a bullet in thy fat carcase. Well, “ I am proud to obey your excellency's what news ” commands, whatever they may be," said The person addressed was a little, plump, the young man;
but may I not venture round-faced man, with an air of good-huto express a wish that my honored master mor and sly cunning on his oily features. would regard the foreign policy of our coun- He might be, from his appearance, a small try in a somewhat different light :” shopkeeper, or perhaps a publican. Scratch
“Well, go on !” said the dictator in a sing his head, as if to collect his scattered deep harsh tone, observing that the secre- senses from the shock of his first reception, tary hesitated.
he replied, “I have not much to tell your "I shall be miserable if I offend your excellency, but I learn that Don Domingo Saavedra and Don Vicente Valdez meet gently opened, and a man appeared, dressfrequently, and in private, at the house of ed in the garb of a cura, or parish priest. Don Fernando Pinto.”
His face was pale, and his look constrained “Ha! well, that corresponds !” said and downcast. Francia. “What more ?"
“Well, Pai* Melindez, what word from “ Manuel Artigas says, that if you com-yoar penitent?” inquired the supremo. pel him to pull down his house to form your “ Dona Teresa informs me that, from new street, he shall expect compensation.”|the expressions let fall by her lover, she is
“He shall have it-free lodgings in the more than ever convinced that some plot is publie prison ; I will have no grumblings at going on in which Saavedra and Vicente my plans for the improvement of my capi- Valdez are concerned. But she cannot actal. Anything more?”
quire any certainty with regard to their “ The old Pelado says that you can designs." drive out the Franciscans to-day, but your
Have you warned her that her salvaown turn may come to-morrow."
tion depends on bringing you a full and ac“ He says so ?-the scoundrel ! I have curate report of all she sees and hears on long borne with his mutinous expressions. the subject ?” Good! No one suspects you of communi- “ Yes, your excellency." cating with me, Estevan ?
“Well, then, I warn you, Pai Melindez, “No, your excellency; thanks to my that your salvation-do you understand ?-little office and my management."
depends on your bringing me a full report “Well, go! Be faithful, and you shall of all you see and hear on that and every meet with your reward.”'
other subject.” The spy departed, and the dictator ring- “ Yes, your excelleney; I endeavor to ing a bell, a sergeant of the guard entered. do my duty,” answered the poor priest “Sergeant,” said Francia, " you will take submissively. “I was this evening at the a file of men and arrest Manuel Artigas country-house of Don Enrique Gonsalez, without delay, and commit him to the pub- where there was a large tertulia, to celelic prison. This will serve him for lodgings brate the recovery of his charming wife, while his house is pulled down, and teach after the birth of their fourth child. A him discretion.
Tell him so. You will lovely family is that of Don Enrique.” then proceed to seize the old Spaniard, “ Pah !” interrupted the dictator with a Ruiz Palacios, commonly called the Pela- scowl. " What is this trash about lovely do ; iron him with a double bar, and have children and charming wives, with which him ready for the banquillo* to-morrow you are stuffing my ears? Beware, Senor morning, as a warning for all traitorg." Cura; tell me what is important for me to
“ Yes, your excellency. I have to report know, and remember that I have other that the French merchant, Latour, is at the sources of information to check you if you point of death. He is with his family play me false." at the house of his father-in-law, Don Pe- “Don Enrique spoke of your excelleney, dro Cortina.”
and of the noble manner in which you “Very well. Place a guard in the rescued his patrimony from the clutches of dwelling, and also in his warehouse, and at his villanous enemies." the moment he dies, seize his property for “Ha! well?" the use of the state. Our treasury is get
“ He said that he could not conceive ting low; and whatever happens, my faith- how the Dictator Francia and Dr. Francia ful troops, who love me like children, shall the advocate should be the same man. not want their pay. You may go, ser
“Don Enrique has a feeble imaginageant."
tion,” said the despot in a dry sarcastic The soldier departed on his errands of tone. “Well, what else? There was terror, enchanted with the favor shown by more of it?" his master to the body to which he belong- “Yes, your excellency,” replied the uned, and by means of which the crafty despot happy priest, twitching at the sleeve of his secured his ascendency over his fellow-citi-cassock, and hesitating with a look of diszens, and maintained his arbitrary power. tress ; " he said that if you continued to A low knock was then heard ; and after a add to your prisons, and the number of reiterated command to enter, the door was
* Pai, which signifies “father" in the Guarani The " little bench” or stool on which criminals or native Paraguayan tongue, is the term by which are seated for execution.,
priests are usually addressed in that country.