Page:Biagi - The Centaurians.djvu/258

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The Centaurians

pered: "You are sad that I go?" She raised the lovely eyes brimful of tears, the sweet mouth with its full red lips quivered, drooped, and was very close.

"Abella!" I murmured; then our lips met in a long, long kiss—her first kiss of love. Ah, but she was beautiful!

With a low cry she darted from me and with her face well averted bade me go.

"Go," she muttered; "go to Alpha Centauri."

With the name of the woman I worshipped reason returned. Without a word I left her—left her forever.

Abella was completely forgotten in the exciting events that followed. Possibly I acted wrong, but was innocent of harm, and did none. True, Abella had met with an experience few women of Centauri ever encounter, but I knew her brilliant eyes would be dimmed but a few minutes after my departure, and in a very little time I would cease to be anything but a remembrance, a pleasant remembrance circling in dreamy mist till submerged, obliterated.

Abella and all the women of this strange land are devoid of depth, which is the secret of their great beauty. Nothing affected them, the perfect surface challenged contact with the cold hardness of gems, ills glanced aside, leaving a placid, flawless mask.

I shall always remember Abella, but knew she had forgotten me long before I left her wonderful and unnatural world.