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La Chatelaine de Vergi - part 12 (final)
(By Ysabeau de Vergi as appeared in the September 1990 Bolt)

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La Chatelaine de Vergi - part 12 (final)

But her lover did not know of it;
He was amusing himself
At the carols and dances and the ball.
But nothing that he saw pleased him,
Since he could not see the one
To whom his heart belonged, and was surprised.
So he said in the duke's ear,
"Sire, why is it that your niece
Has stayed so long away
And does not come to the carols?
Can you have put her in prison?"
And the duke looked at the carols,
For he had not noticed this.
And he took the knight's hand
And led him straight to the bedroom.
And when the duke did not find her,
He commanded the knight
To seek her in the dressing-room,
Because he wanted in this way
To give the pair a moment of joy
To hug and to kiss.
And the knight who was grateful for this,
Entered the dressing-room
Where his love lay upon her back
On the bed, colorless and still.
He hugged her and kissed her,
Since they had the time and place.
But her mouth he found cold,
And all pale and stiff,
And her body seemed to show
That she was dead.
All at once horrified, he cried,
"What is this? Alas! Is my love dead?"
And the servant girl who was lying
At the foot of the bed got up,
And said, "Sire, I truly believe
That she is dead, since of nothing else
Did she speak after she came here
Except the suffering caused by her lover,
Whom my lady reproached;
And at the same time of a little dog.
From this suffering came a mortal agony."
And when he heard these words,
That it was what he had told the duke which killed her,
His despair was without measure,
"Ah! Alas!" he said, "My sweet love,
The most courteous and best
And the most loyal that ever was!
It is my disloyal treachery
That has killed you! It would have been right
That upon me my wrong would fall,
If you had not been harmed;
But you had such a loyal heart
That you have taken it upon yourself.
But I will bring upon myself justice
For the treason which I have committed."
He took a sword
Which hung from a hook
And ran it through his heart.
He let himself fall on the other body,
And his blood flowed, and he died.

When she saw the lifeless bodies
The servant girl ran out,
Distraught at what she had seen.
And to the duke whom she met, she told
What she had heard and seen.
And she kept nothing back;
How the affair began,
And of the little trained dog
About which the duchess had spoken.
And then the duke took leave of his senses.
Right away he entered the chamber,
And from the knight's chest he took
The sword with which he had killed himself.
At once he took himself
In great fury straight to the carols.
Without speaking a word,
He went to the duchess,
And fulfilled his promise.
On the head he struck her
With the bared sword,
Silently, so angry was he.
The duchess fell at his feet,
Seen by all those of the land.
Therefore was there much distress
Among the knights who were there,
Who had been celebrating joyfully.
And the duke at once,
So that all who wanted could here,
Told all the story in the midst of the court.
There was not a one who did not cry,
Especially when they saw
The two dead lovers,
And the duchess, lying aside.
In mourning and in horror
The court dispersed in great confusion
The next day the duke
Buried the lovers in the same tomb,
And the duchess in another place;
But of the events he felt such distress,
That never again was he heard to laugh.
Right away he took the cross overseas
Where he went, never to return,
Thus the duke became a Templar.

O! Lord! All these mishaps
And this misfortune came
Because the knight had the mischance
To say what he should have kept secret,
And what had been forbidden
By his love to tell,
For as long as he wished to enjoy her love.
And from this example one must
Conceal his love wisely,
And always remember
That by revealing it one gains nothing,
And to keep one's secret in every case is perferable.
Whosoever does this fears not the assault
Of false, spying felons
Who pry into the loves of others.

This concludes the Serial Feature
La Chatelaine de Vergi

 Page last updated 12/28/99