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Antonina

But now, when Numerian confronted them, neither by word nor look did he
express the slightest recognition of any who surrounded him. To all the questions
addressed to him, he replied by hurried gestures that none could comprehend. To
all the promises of help and protection heaped upon him in the first outbreak of
the grief and pity of his adherents of other days, he answered but by the same dull,
vacant glance. It was only when they relieved him of his burden, and gently
prepared to carry the senseless girl among them back to her father's house, that he
spoke; and then, in faint entreating tones, he besought them to let him hold her
hand as they went, so that he might be the first to feel her pulse beat--if it yet
moved.
They turned back by the way they had come--a sorrowful and slow-moving
procession! As they passed on, the reader again opened the Sacred Book; and then
these words rose through the soothing and heavenly tranquillity of the first hours
of night:--
'Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the
chastening of the Almighty:
'For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole.'
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