The Filigree Ball HTML version

27. You Have Come! You Rave Sought Me!
These are some words from a letter written a few months after the foregoing by one Mrs.
Edward Truscott to a friend in New York:
"Edinburgh, May 7th, 1900.
"Dear Louisa: - You have always accused me of seeing more and hearing more than any
other person of your acquaintance. Perhaps I am fortunate in that respect. Certainly I have
been favored today with an adventure of some interest which I make haste to relate to
"Being anxious to take home with me some sketches of the exquisite ornamentation in
the Rosslyn chapel about which I wrote you so enthusiastically the other day, I took
advantage of Edward's absence this morning to visit the place again and this time alone.
The sky was clear and the air balmy, and as I approached the spot from the near-by
station I was not surprised to see another woman straying quietly about the exterior of the
chapel gazing at walls which, interesting as they are, are but a rough shell hiding the
incomparable beauties within. I noticed this lady; I could not help it. She was one to
attract any eye. Seldom have I seen such grace, such beauty, and both infused by such
melancholy. Her sadness added wonderfully to her charm, and I found it hard enough to
pass her with the single glance allowable to a stranger, especially as she gave evidence of
being one of my own countrywomen:
"However, I saw no alternative, and once within the charmed edifice, forgot everything in
the congenial task I had set for myself. For some reason the chapel was deserted at this
moment by all but me. As the special scroll-work I wanted was in a crypt down a short
flight of steps at the right of the altar, I was completely hidden from view to any one
entering above and was enjoying both my seclusion and the opportunity it gave me of
carrying out my purpose unwatched when I heard a light step above and realized that the
exquisite beauty which had so awakened my admiration had at last found its perfect
setting. Such a face amid such exquisite surroundings was a rare sight, and interested as I
always am in artistic effects I was about to pocket pencil and pad and make my way up to
where she moved among the carved pillars when I heard a soft sigh above and caught the
rustle of her dress as she sat down upon a bench at the head of the steps near which I
stood. Somehow that sigh deterred me. I hesitated to break in upon a melancholy so
invincible that even the sight of all this loveliness could not charm it away, and in that
moment of hesitation something occurred above which fixed me to my place in
irrepressible curiosity.
"Another step had entered the open door of the chapel - a man's step - eager and with a
purpose in it eloquent of something deeper than a mere tourist's interest in this loveliest
of interiors. The cry which escaped her lips, the tone in which he breathed her name in
his hurried advance, convinced me that this was a meeting of two lovers after a long
heart-break and that I should mar the supreme moment of their lives by intruding into it