One day, during her pilgrimage in quest of the entrance to Pluto's kingdom, she came to the palace of King Cereus, who reigned at Eleusis.
Finally, as there seemed to be no other remedy, our old friend Quicksilver was sent post-haste to King Pluto, in hopes that he might be persuaded to undo the mischief he had done, and to set everything right again, by giving up Proserpina.
The child had declared, as you may remember, that she would not taste a mouthful of food as long as she should be compelled to remain in King Pluto's palace.
The inhabitants all felt this, and King Pluto more than any of them.
"No, no," answered Pluto, with his gloomy smile, "I will not trust you for that.
"Not half so pretty," said Proserpina, snatching the gems from Pluto's hand, and flinging them to the other end of the hall.
King Pluto gazed after her, and wished that he, too, was a child.
"Do you, indeed, my dear child?" cried Pluto, bending his dark face down to kiss her; but Proserpina shrank away from the kiss, for, though his features were noble, they were very dusky and grim.
When Pluto heard this, he began to see that he had mistaken the best method of tempting Proserpina to eat.
Now, it happened, curiously enough, that, just as the servant was bringing the pomegranate into the back door of the palace, our friend Quicksilver had gone up the front steps, on his errand to get Proserpina away from King Pluto.
But there was no choice of such things in King Pluto's palace.
Just as this fatal deed was done, the door of the apartment opened, and in came King Pluto, followed by Quicksilver, who had been urging him to let his little prisoner go.