Flemish Legend The Three Sisters by Charles de Coster Chapter 4

Of the voice of the divine bridegroom, and of the horseman in silvern armour

Suddenly they heard a low voice saying: “Take heart.”

“Hark,” they said, “the husband deigns to speak to his brides.”

And presently the room was filled with a perfume more delicate than that of a censer burning finest frankincense.

Then the voice spake further: “To-morrow,” it said, “when dawn breaks, go out from the town. Mount your palfreys, and, riding without halt, follow the road without heeding whither it leads. I will guide you.”

“We will obey you,” they said, “for you have made us the happiest of the daughters of men.”

And rising from their knees, they kissed one another joyfully.

While the voice was speaking to them, there had come into the square a beautiful horseman in silvern armour, with a golden helm on his head, and, flying above that like a bird, a crest more brilliant than a flame. The horse whereon he rode was of pure white.

None of those there had seen him coming, and he was as if risen from the ground among the crowd of lovers, who, seized with fear, dared not look him in the face.

“Rascals,” quoth he, “take these horses away out of the square. Do you not know that the noise of their hooves troubles these three ladies in their prayers?”

And therewith he rode away towards the east.

“Ah,” said the lovers to one another, “saw you that silvern armour and that flaming crest? ’Twas an angel of God assuredly, come from Paradise for the sake of these three ladies.” The more insistent among them muttered: “He did not forbid us to stand on foot before the door, and in that wise we may yet remain with impunity.”