The Viper of Milan
She grasped the old man's arm. 'Marked you how she looked at me?' she cried.
The peasant checked her outbreak, but looked down the road with gloomy eyes.
'They will never return from Brescia,' he said; 'they must be near seventy--old for such an end. However, hush thee, woman, 'tis no affair of ours!' Several anxious voices echoed him.
'Why should we care!' said one, ''tis a Visconti the less to crush us.'
And Vittore saw the whole band turning off, pushing, driving, and urging their beasts along. He dragged at his still senseless companion in a sudden panic.
'Help me!' he said. 'We would go on; I dare not stay alone.' The old man laughed harshly.
'Where will you go to? Are we to drag you into Milan to be whipped to death for harbouring you; and Verona is in the hands of the Visconti--his last and greatest victory!'
'But my uncle--della Scala's court!' cried the boy distractedly. The old man drew himself up in his rags