240 STORY OF THE THREE SONS OF HAL I
this morning for three hundred sequins. Those must be the women who caused Izif and Izouf to dance, and took from them the two talismans of the daughters of Siroco. They only can break the spell that has been cast on us. Let them be found and I will gladly give them the half of my possessions. Idiot that I was to send them away !'
While the Bassa was bewailing his folly, Ibrahim in his turn had opened the book, and blushed deeply as he read the words: ' The chaplet of beads has been defiled by the game of " Odd and Even." Its owner has tried to cheat by concealing one of the numbers. Let the faithless Moslem seek for ever the missing bead.'
' O heaven,' cried Ibrahim, ' that unhappy day rises up before me. I had cut the thread of the chaplet, while playing with Aurora. Holding the ninety-nine beads in my hand she guessed " Odd," and in order that she might lose I let one bead fall from my hand. Since then I have sought it daily, but it never bas been found.'
' Holy dervish ! ' cried the Bassa, l how true were your words! From the time that the sacred chaplet was no longer complete, my son has borne the penalty. But may not the Book of Spells teach us how to deliver Ibrahim also?'
' Listen,' said Sunii, ' this is what I find : " The coral bead lies in the fifth fold of the dress of yellow brocade."'
'Ah, what good fortune! ' exclaimed the Bassa, 'we shall shortly see the beautiful Aurora, and Ibrahim shall at once search in the fifth fold of her yellow brocade. For it is she no doubt of whom the book speaks.'
As the Jewess closed the Book of Moizes, Zelida appeared, accompanied by a whole train of slaves and her old nurse. At her entrance Hassan, beside himself with joy, Hung himself on his knees and kissed her hand.
' My lord,' he said to the Bassa, ' pardon me these transports. No elixir of love was needed to inflame my heart! Let the marriage rite make us speedily one.'