He stretched his hand with the roll to Simonides.
"The things these papers take into account--all of them: ships, houses, goods, camels, horses, money; the least as well as the greatest--give I back to thee, O Simonides, making them all thine, and sealing them to thee and thine forever."
Esther smiled through her tears; Ilderim pulled his beard with rapid motion, his eyes glistening like beads of jet. Simonides alone was calm.
"Sealing them to thee and thine forever," Ben-Hur continued, with better control of himself, "with one exception, and upon one condition."
The breath of the listeners waited upon his words.
"The hundred and twenty talents which were my father's thou shalt return to me."
Ilderim's countenance brightened.
"And thou shalt join me in search of my mother and sister, holding all thine subject to the expense of discovery, even as I will hold mine."