"Come, O sinners, Come, and we will sing Tender hymns To our refuge,"
was the chorus, repeated after each of the five verses of the hymn.
Alessandro also knew the hymn well. His father, Chief Pablo, had been the leader of the choir at the San Luis Rey Mission in the last years of its splendor, and had brought away with him much of the old choir music. Some of the books had been written by his own hand, on parchment. He not only sang well, but was a good player on the violin. There was not at any of the Missions so fine a band of performers on stringed instruments as at San Luis Rey. Father Peyri was passionately fond of music, and spared no pains in training all the neophytes under his charge who showed any special talent in that direction. Chief Pablo, after the breaking up of the Mission, had settled at Temecula, with a small band of his Indians, and endeavored, so far as was in his power, to keep up the old religious services. The music in the little chapel of the Temecula Indians was a surprise to all who heard it.
Alessandro had inherited his father's love and talent for music, and knew all the old Mission music by heart. This hymn to the
"Beautiful Queen, Princess of Heaven,"
was one of his special favorites; and as he heard verse after verse rising, he could not forbear striking in.
At the first notes of this rich new voice, Ramona's voice ceased in surprise; and, throwing up her window, she leaned out, eagerly looking in all directions to see who it could be. Alessandro saw her, and sang no more.
"What could it have been? Did I dream it?" thought Ramona, drew in her head, and began to sing again.
Original article, if reprinted, please indicate the source