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So well did she feign happiness that her husband heard no change in her voice as she bade him welcome, and, having travelled far that day, he soon laid himself down on the couch and fell sound asleep. Then Psyche seized the lamp and snatched off the covering, but by its light she saw stretched on the cushions, not a huge and hideous serpent, but the most beautiful of all the gods, Cupid himself.

The succeeding minister took away La Fontaine's pension, as might have been expected. In 1664 La Fontaine published his first collection of fables, and it gave him immediately the very highest rank as a fabulist. Shortly after, he published a tale entitled "Psyche and Cupid." He was now without money and a home. The duchess of Orleans added him to her suite, and gave him a pension.

The girl was exquisitely fair, a veritable Psyche of soft charms! and a little lovemaking by moonlight would do no harm, . . ... here he suddenly became aware that while these thoughts were passing through his brain he had unconsciously allowed her hands to slip from his hold, and she now stood apart at some little distance, her eyes fixed full upon him with an expression of most plaintive piteousness.

'So far it is well, then, sighed he; 'but remember that even at this moment they are plotting how they may destroy you, by filling your heart with their own evil curiosity, so that one day you may ask to see my face. But recollect, the moment you do this I vanish for ever. 'Ah, you do not trust me, sobbed Psyche; 'yet I have shown you that I can be silent!

They are three grooms; the celestial butterfly is drowned in them; and there are formed there in a membranous smoke, vaguely condensed into the wing of the bat, three mute furies, Nightmare, Night, and Death, which hover about the slumbering Psyche. Grantaire had not yet reached that lamentable phase; far from it. He was tremendously gay, and Bossuet and Joly retorted. They clinked glasses.

It would be foolish of me to even pretend that after seeing him at work I had thought of anything else. We have all said, this evening, that the frescoes were wonderful, and that no one, not even Raphael, who did the same thing, has ever had a more beautiful idea of the history of Cupid and Psyche. Why should we not tell the truth, just because he happens to be here? How illogical you are!"

Psyche gave ear to the admonitions of her vocal attendants, and after repose and the refreshment of the bath, seated herself in the alcove, where a table immediately presented itself, without any visible aid from waiters or servants, and covered with the greatest delicacies of food and the most nectareous wines.

Psyche obeyed the commands of Ceres and took her way to the temple of Venus, endeavoring to fortify her mind and ruminating on what she should say and how best propitiate the angry goddess, feeling that the issue was doubtful and perhaps fatal. Venus received her with angry countenance. "Most undutiful and faithless of servants," said she, "do you at last remember that you really have a mistress?

"Yes, for always love begets truthfulness." "I pray it may beget between us utter truthfulness, and nothing else, King Jurgen." "Not 'Jurgen' now, but 'love'." "Indeed, they tell that even so, in such deep darkness, Love came to his sweetheart Psyche." "Then why do you complain because I piously emulate the Gods, and offer unto Love the sincerest form of flattery?"

Such a form of female loveliness he had never before beheld yet stay: he had seen it, painted by Raphael, painted as a Psyche, in one of the Roman palaces. Yes, there it had been painted; but here it passed by him in living reality. "The remembrance lived in his thoughts, in his heart. He went home to his humble room, and modelled a Psyche of clay.