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Dialogue following No. 12a


ETHAIS has entered unperceived from the bower. He is very pale and weak, and his arm is in a sling.

Ethais. Selene, I am weak; give me thine hand. [She goes to him.
Selene. My love, thou shouldst no yet have left thy couch.
Come, thou hast need of rest.
Ethais.       No, let me stay.
  The air revives me; I am strong again.
And so thou trustest me?
Selene.     In truth I do.
  Although I cannot tell thee whence proceeds
This strange, irrational belief in thee -
Thee, whom I hardly know!
Ethais. I see no marvel!
Selene.   Nay, my love - reflect:
  I am a woman, and thou art a man.
Well, thou art comely - so, in truth, am I.
We meet and love each other - that's to say,
I am prepared to give up all I have,
My home, my very fairyhood for thee -
Thou to surrender riches, honour, life,
To please the fleeting fancies of my will.
And why?
Because I see in thee, or thou in me,
Astounding virtue, brilliant intellect,
Great self-denial, or shining godliness?
No!
Because, forsooth, we're comely specimens,
Not of our own, but Nature's industry!

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