The Circassian Slave
As the slave retired she could not but look back at the Sultan, who had greeted her with such kind consideration, and as she did so she met his dark, piercing eye bent upon her in gentle pity. She almost sighed to leave the presence of one who had showed her the first kindness, the first token of thoughtful consideration for her situation since she left her own home, far away beyond the sea. But Mustapha beckoned her forward, and she hastened to obey his summons, wondering as she went what was to be her fate; whether that was to be her future home, and what position she was to hold there. Musing thus, she followed the Turk towards the sacred precincts of the harem.
The monarch left alone, save the thoughtless boy, who lay upon the rich divan, coiled up like an animal gone to sleep, seemed to be troubled in his mind. Stern and imperious by nature, it was not usual for him to evince such feeling as had exercised him towards the dumb slave, and it was