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so doing he would expose to imminent
danger the lady whom he had professed to
love. He told her, with a sullen relapse into
silence after his vehement outpouring of
passion, never to trouble herself about that.
At last he wearied out the old woman, and,
frightened alike of herself and of him, she
told him allthat Mam'selle Cannes was
Mademoiselle Virginie de Créquy, daughter
of the Count of that name. Who was the
Count? Younger brother of the Marquis?
Where was the Marquis? Dead long ago,
leaving a widow and child. A son? (eagerly)
Yes, a son. Where was he? Parbleu! how
should she know?—for her courage returned
a little as the talk went away from the only
person of the De Créquy family that she
cared about. But, by dint of some small
glasses out of a bottle of Antoine Meyer's,
she told him more about the De Créquys
than she liked afterwards to remember. For
the exhilaration of the brandy lasted but a
very short time, and she came home, as I
have said, depressed, with a presentiment of
coming evil. She would not answer Pierre,
but cuffed him about in a manner to which
the spoilt boy was quite unaccustomed. His
cousin's short, angry words, and sudden
withdrawal of confidence,—his mother's
unwonted crossness and fault-finding, all made
Virginie's kind, gentle treatment more than
ever charming to the lad. He half resolved
to tell her how he had been acting as a spy
upon her actions, and at whose desire he had
done it. But he was afraid of Morin, and of
the vengeance which he was sure would fall
upon him for any breach of confidence.
Towards half-past eight that evening
Pierre, watching, saw Virginie arrange
several little thingsshe was in the inner
room, but he sate where he could see her
through the glazed partition. His mother
sateapparently sleepingin the great
easy-chair; Virginie moved about softly, for fear
of disturbing her. She made up one or two
little parcels of the few things she could call
her own; one packet she concealed about
herself,—the others she directed, and left on
the shelf. " She is going," thought Pierre,
and, as he said (in giving me the account),
his heart gave a spring, to think that
he should never see her again. If either
his mother or his cousin had been more
kind to him, he might have
endeavoured to intercept her; but as it was, he
held his breath, and when she came out
he pretended to read, scarcely knowing
whether he wished her to succeed in the
purpose which he was almost sure she
entertained, or not. She stopped by him, and
passed her hand over his hair. He told me
that his eyes filled with tears at this caress.
Then she stood for a moment, looking at the
sleeping Madame Babette, and stooped down
and softly kissed her on the forehead. Pierre
dreaded lest his mother should awake (for
by this time the wayward, vacillating boy
must have been quite on Virginie's side), but
the brandy she had drank made her slumber
heavily. Virginie went. Pierre's heart beat
fast. He was sure his cousin would try and
intercept her: but how, he could not
imagine. He longed to run out and see the
catastrophebut he had let the moment
slip; he was also afraid of re-awakening his
mother to her unusual state of anger and


I REMEMBER to have fallen in once with
certain American captains and colonels and
men-at-arms, in a small place on the Brazos
River, a few miles north of Jose Maria, in
Texas. I had paid a visit to this place, near
which a dear companion of my youth had
been murdered. We were school-fellows,
and for five years we had been brother
officers in the same regiment. He went to
the United States just when the war broke
out with Mexico, and became captain of a
company of Kentucky riflemen. A few
mouths after the battle of Vera Cruz, he was
deputed by the officers of his brigade to
present to General Taylorwho was on
leave of absence at New Orleansa gold
medal as token of their respect. Choosing the
nearest way from the camp, across country,
he set out on his errand with a guide and
two servants, all on horseback, armed to the
teeth. In Jose Maria, my poor friend
unwisely exhibited the medal to a crowd of
respectable-looking persons, calling
themselves colonels, majors, and captains, who
seemed to take great pleasure in studying
its engravings. He did not even remark in
what a hurry some of those colonels were to
start before him. But the medal has, in ten
years, never more been heard of, and my old
comrade and two of his companions were
found shot dead in a ravine.

It was near this place that I also fell
among colonels. There was one of them who
took a great liking to my horse, when he
saw me giving it to the ostler. He tapped it
repeatedly on the neck, declaring it, with an
oath, to be a nice hanimal and no mistake
which assertion he repeated afterwards over
and over again to his fellow-men in the
coffee-room, who, when they had been out to
satisfy their curiosity, agreed with him upon
the matter. " Now, wouldn't that be a nag
for you, major?" he said to a tall, powerful
man, with a rough beard and disgusting
features, who sat a little apart from the rest,
and wore a large grey coat. The major said
nothing, but stalked out of the room, soon
afterwards, followed by the colonel. The
others had again taken up their old topic of
conversation, and were talking politics, rather
vehemently as I thought, when the waiter
a Germancame up to me, and told me in
our own language, that I had better take
care, as those two ruffians outside had set

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