244 THE ARABIAN NIGHTS
returning yours to you, and I am resolved to wear that as long as I live.'
Meantime the eunuch had hastened back to the king. ' Sire, ' he cried, ' all the former doctors and astrologers were mere quacks. This man has cured the princess without even seeing her.' He then told all to the king, who, overjoyed, hastened to his daughter's apartments, where, after embracing her, he placed her hand in that of the prince, saying:
' Happy stranger, I keep my promise, and give you my daughter to wife, be you who you may. But, if I am not much mistaken, your condition is above what you appear to be.'
The prince thanked the king in the warmest and most respectful terms, and added: ' As regards my person, your Majesty has rightly guessed that I am not an astrologer. It is but a disguise which I assumed in order to merit your illustrious alliance. I am myself a prince, my name is Camaralzaman, and my father is Schahzaman, king of the Isles of the Children of Khaledan.' He then told his whole history, including the extraordinary manner of his first seeing and loving the Princess Badoura.
When he had finished the king exclaimed: ' So remarkable a story must not be lost to posterity. It shall be inscribed in the archives of my kingdom and published everywhere abroad.'
The wedding took place next day amidst great pomp and rejoicings. Marzavan was not forgotten, but was given a lucrative post at court, with a promise of further advancement.
The prince and princess were now entirely happy, and months slipped by unconsciously in the enjoyment of each other's society.
One night, however, Prince Camaralzaman dreamt that he saw his father lying at the point of death, and saying: ' Alas! my son. whom I loved so tenderly, has deserted me and is now causing my death.'