Who can gainsay, even in these days of light, the truth of this that the good priest said to the sick lad so far away in the past?
One day the Earl of Mackworth came to visit Myles. At that time the young knight was mending, and was sitting propped up with pillows, and was wrapped in Sir James Lee's cloak, for the day was chilly. After a little time of talk, a pause of silence fell.
"My Lord," said Myles, suddenly, "dost thou remember one part of a matter we spoke of when I first came from France?"
The Earl made no pretence of ignorance. "I remember," said he, quietly, looking straight into the young man's thin white face.
"And have I yet won the right to ask for the Lady Alice de Mowbray to wife?" said Myles, the red rising faintly to his cheeks.
"Thou hast won it," said the Earl, with a smile.
Myles's eyes shone and his lips trembled with the pang of sudden joy and triumph, for he was still very weak. "My Lord," said he, presently "belike thou camest here to see me for this very matter?"
The Earl smiled again without answering, and Myles knew that he had guessed aright. He reached out one of his weak, pallid hands from beneath the cloak. The Earl of Mackworth took it with a firm pressure, then instantly quitting it again, rose, as if ashamed of his emotion, stamped his feet, as though in pretence of being chilled, and then crossed the room to where the fire crackled brightly in the great stone fireplace.