QUEEN ESTHER'S LOVE FOR HER PEOPLE 173
Mordecai returned to the king's gate, but Haman hurried to his house, mourning, with his head covered. And Haman told Zeresh, his wife, and all his friends everything that had happened to him. Then his wise men and Zeresh, his wife, said to him, "If Mordecai before whom you have already been disgraced is of the Jewish race, you can do nothing against him, but you will surely fall before him."
While they were still talking with him, the king's servants came and quickly took Haman to the feast that Esther had prepared. So the king and Haman went to drink with Queen Esther. And the king said to Esther, as they were drinking wine, " Whatever you ask, Queen Esther, it shall be granted you, even if it takes half of the kingdom." Then Queen Esther answered, "If I have won your favor, O king, and if it seems best to the king, let my life and my people be given me at my request, for I and my people have been sold to be destroyed, to be killed, and to perish!"
The King Xerxes said to Queen Esther, "Who is he and where is he who dares to do so?" Esther answered, "A foe, an enemy, this wicked Haman." Then Haman shrank in terror before the king and the queen, and Harbonah, one of those who waited on the king, said, "There, standing in the house of Haman, are the gallows, seventy-five feet high, which Haman built for Mordecai, who spoke a good word for the king." The king said, "Hang him on them." So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai. Then the wrath of the king was quieted.
At that tune King Xerxes gave the property of Haman, the Jews' enemy, to Queen Esther. And Mordecai was made one of the king's advisers, for Esther had told of his relationship to her. The king also drew off his signet-ring, which he had taken from Haman, and gave it to Mordecai; and Esther placed Mordecai in charge of Hainan's property.
Then Esther came again before the king and fell at his feet and with tears begged him to prevent the evil that Haman had planned against the Jews. The king held out to her the golden sceptre, and she arose and stood before him. Then King Xerxes said to Queen Esther and to Mordecai, the Jew, "Write in behalf of the Jews, as seems best to you, in the king's name and seal it with the king's ring; for what is written in the king's name and sealed with the king's ring no one may disobey."
So Mordecai wrote in the name of King Xerxes and sealed it with the king's ring. And he sent by messengers, who rode the king's