"Why?" cried Felipe. "Because I hold them to be yours, and yours only. I would never have given them to the Church, until I had sure proof that you were dead and had left no children."
Ramona's eyes were fixed earnestly on Felipe's face. "You have not read the Senora Ortegna's letter?" she said.
"Yes, I have," he replied, "every word of it."
"But that said I was not to have any of the things if I married against the Senora Moreno's will."
Felipe groaned. Had his mother lied? "No, dear," he said, "that was not the word. It was, if you married unworthily."
Ramona reflected. "I never recollected the words," she said. "I was too frightened; but I thought that was what it meant. I did not marry unworthily. Do you feel sure, Felipe, that it would be honest for me to take them for my child?"
"Do you think Father Salvierderra would say I ought to keep them?"
"I will think about it, Felipe. I cannot decide hastily. Your mother did not think I had any right to them, if I married Alessandro. That was why she showed them to me. I never knew of them till then. I took one thing,-- a handkerchief of my father's. I was very glad to have it; but it got lost when we went from San Pasquale. Alessandro rode back a half-day's journey to find it for me; but it had blown away. I grieved sorely for it."