Chapter 35: - Page 5 of 7

The Fiesta

(English version of “El Filibusterismo”)

Come, Isagani, let’s get away from that house.  Come! Basilio urged in a hoarse voice, catching his friend by the arm.

Isagani gently shook himself free and continued to stare with the same sad smile upon his lips.

For God’s sake, let’s get away from here!

Why should I go away? Tomorrow it will not be she.

There was so much sorrow in those words that Basilio for a moment forgot his own terror.  Do you want to die? he demanded.

Isagani shrugged his shoulders and continued to gaze toward the house.

Basilio again tried to drag him away.  Isagani, Isagani, listen to me! Let’s not waste any time! That house is mined, it’s going to blow up at any moment, by the least imprudent act, the least curiosity! Isagani, all will perish in its ruins.

In its ruins? echoed Isagani, as if trying to understand, but without removing his gaze from the window.

Yes, in its ruins, yes, Isagani! For God’s sake, come! I’ll explain afterwards.  Come! One who has been more unfortunate than either you or I has doomed them all.  Do you see that white, clear light, like an electric lamp, shining from the azotea? It’s the light of death! A lamp charged with dynamite, in a mined dining-room, will burst and not a rat will escape alive. Come!

No, answered Isagani, shaking his head sadly.  I want to stay here, I want to see her for the last time. Tomorrow, you see, she will be something different.

Let fate have its way! Basilio then exclaimed, hurrying away.

Isagani watched his friend rush away with a precipitation that indicated real terror, but continued to stare toward the charmed window, like the cavalier of Toggenburg waiting for his sweetheart to appear, as Schiller tells.  Now the sala was deserted, all having repaired to the dining-rooms, and it occurred to Isagani that Basilio’s fears may have been well-founded.  He recalled the terrified countenance of him who was always so calm and composed, and it set him to thinking.

Suddenly an idea appeared clear in his imagination—the house was going to blow up and Paulita was there, Paulita was going to die a frightful death. In the presence of this idea everything was forgotten: jealousy, suffering, mental torture, and the generous youth thought only of his love.  Without reflecting, without hesitation, he ran toward the house, and thanks to his stylish clothes and determined mien, easily secured admittance.

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