Edward Bulwer-Lytton: The Last Days of Pompeii

12. Chapter XII (continued)

'Come, Calenus,' said Arbaces, winningly, and with a frank and generous air, 'thou art an old friend, and hast been a faithful servant. Thou canst have no wish to take away my life, nor I a desire to stint thy reward: thou shalt descend with me to that treasury thou referrest to, thou shalt feast thine eyes with the blaze of uncounted gold and the sparkle of priceless gems; and thou shalt for thy own reward, bear away with thee this night as much as thou canst conceal beneath thy robes. Nay, when thou hast once seen what thy friend possesses, thou wilt learn how foolish it would be to injure one who has so much to bestow. When Glaucus is no more, thou shalt pay the treasury another visit. Speak I frankly and as a friend?'

'Oh, greatest, best of men!' cried Calenus, almost weeping with joy, 'canst thou thus forgive my injurious doubts of thy justice, thy generosity?'

'Hush! one other turn and we will descend to the Oscan arches.'

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