a great knight, Sir John Maltravers, who would be his patron; and another to the Prior's good friend, the Abbat of St Alban's. The Convent bade him a sad farewell, for they loved this gentle lad who had been with them from a little child; and Brother Richard strained his filmy eyes to look his last at the young face he would never see again.
The Prior gave him the Communion; and later walked beside him to the gates. Then as Hilarius knelt he blessed him; and the boy, overmastered by nameless fear, sprang up and prayed that he might stay and learn some other way, however hard. The Prior shook his head.
"Nay, my son, so it must be; else how shall I answer to the Master for this most precious lamb of my flock? Come back to us--an thou can'st--let no fear deter thee; only take heed, when thine eyes are opened and the great gifts of hunger and love are vouchsafed thee, to keep still the faithful heart of a little child."
Then he bade him go; and Hilarius, for the pull of his heart- strings, m
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