MOTHER AND DAUGHTER
Lona was so disgusted with the people, and especially with the women, that she wished to abandon the place as soon as possible; I, on the contrary, felt very strongly that to do so would be to fail wilfully where success was possible ; and, far worse, to weaken the hearts of the Little Ones, and so bring them into much greater danger. If we retreated, it was certain the princess would not leave us unassailed ! if we encountered her, the hope of the prophecy went with us ! Mother and daughter must meet: it might be that Lona's loveliness would take Lilith's heart by storm ! if she threatened violence, I should be there between them! If I found that I had no other power over her, I was ready, for the sake of my Lona, to strike her pitilessly on the closed hand ! I knew she was doomed : most likely it was decreed that her doom should now be brought to pass through us!
Still without hint of the relation in which she stood to the princess, I stated the case to Lona as it appeared to me. At once she agreed to accompany me to the palace.
From the top of one of its great towers, the princess had, in the early morning, while the city yet