He would have taken his leave of Ebn Thaher towards the evening; but this faithful friend found him still so weak, that he obliged him to stay till next day, and in the mean time, to divert him, gave him a concert of vocal and instrumental music in the evening; but this concert served only to put him in mind of the preceding night, and renewed his trouble, instead of assuaging it; so that next day his distemper seempd to increase.
I know a fitter place for this interview, where you will be safe." When the jeweller had finished, the prince embraced him with transports of joy. "You revive," said he, "by this promise, a wretched lover, who was condemned to die. You have fully repaired the loss of Ebn Thaher; whatever you do will be well performed; I leave myself entirely to your conduct."
His friends and physicians retired one after another, so that Ebn Thaher being alone with him, approached his bed to ask him how he had been since he had last seen him.
She came to buy something; and when she had spoken to Ebn Thaher, entered his shop, which was very neat and large, and receiving her with all the marks of the most profound respect, entreated her to sit down, and showed her the most honourable place.
"Ah! dear Ebn Thaher," exclaimed the prince, "how easy is it for you to give this advice, but how hard for me to follow it! I am sensible of its importance, but am not able to profit by it. I have said already, that I shall carry to the grave the love I bear to Schemselnihar." When Ebn Thaher saw that he could gain nothing upon the prince, he took his leave, and would have retired.
I am confounded with all that you do for me with so much affection, and I know not how I shall be able to express my gratitude." "Prince," answered Ebn Thaher, "do not speak thus, I entreat you. I am ready, not only to give one of my eyes to save one of yours, but to sacrifice my life for you. But this is not the present business.
In Ebn Thaher, we have indeed sustained a great loss; but let this not hinder you, dear prince, from thinking of your own preservation. If our friend has abandoned us through fear, let us consider that it is a misfortune which we could not avoid.
Is it possible they can be insensible of the dangerous consequences of their correspondence? How deplorable is their blindness! I perceive all the consequences of it as well as you; but you are wise and prudent, and I approve your resolution; that is the only way to deliver yourself from the fatal events which you have reason to fear. The jeweller then rose, and took his leave of Ebn Thaher.
Abn Thaher, shocked at the obstinacy of the prince of Persia, left him hastily, and going to his own house, recalled his former reflections, and began to think seriously what he should do. In the mean time a jeweller, one of his intimate friends, came to see him.
After the collation was taken away, they brought a silver basin, with water in a vessel of gold, and washed together; they afterwards returned to their places, and three of the ten black women brought each a cup of rock crystal full of exquisite wine, upon a golden salver; which they placed before Schemselnihar, the prince of Persia, and Ebn Thaher.