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and inexhaustible in the variety of its disclosures. Whether

2023-12-01 21:39:08 source:A Spring Dream Netauthor: hot click:379Second-rate

All at once the sound of horns and the baying of hounds announced the approach of a party of huntsmen. While we, on our side, were answering with shouts, Patience ran to meet them. Edmee, longing to see her father again, and forgetting all the horrors of this bloody night, whipped up her horse and reached the hunters first. As soon as we came up with them, I saw Edmee in the arms of a tall man with a venerable face. He was richly dressed; his hunting-coat, with gold lace over all the seams, and the magnificent Norman horse, which a groom was holding behind him, so struck me that I thought I was in the presence of a prince. The signs of love which he was showing his daughter were so new to me that I was inclined to deem them exaggerated and unworthy of the dignity of a man. At the same time they filled me with a sort of brute jealousy; for it did not occur to my mind that a man so splendidly dressed could be my uncle. Edmee was speaking to him in a low voice, but with great animation. Their conversation lasted a few moments. At the end of it the old man came and embraced me cordially. Everything about these manners seemed so new to me, that I responded neither by word nor gesture to the protestations and caresses of which I was the object. A tall young man, with a handsome face, as elegantly dressed as M. Hubert, also came and shook my hand and proffered thanks; why, I could not understand. He next entered into a discussion with the gendarmes, and I gathered that he was the lieutenant-general of the province, and that he was ordering them to set me at liberty for the present, that I might accompany my uncle to his chateau, where he undertook to be responsible for me. The gendarmes then left us, for the chevalier and the lieutenant-general were sufficiently well escorted by their own men not to fear attack from any one. A fresh cause of astonishment for me was to see the chevalier bestowing marks of warm friendship on Patience and Marcasse. As for the cure, he was upon a footing of equality with these seigneurs. For some months he had been chaplain at the chateau of Saint-Severe, having previously been compelled to give up his living by the persecutions of the diocesan clergy.

and inexhaustible in the variety of its disclosures. Whether

All this tenderness of which Edmee was the object, this family affection so completely new to me, the genuinely cordial relations existing between respectful plebeians and kindly patricians-- everything that I now saw and heard seemed like a dream. I looked on with a sensation that it was all unintelligible to me. However, soon after our caravan started my brain began to work; for I then saw the lieutenant-general (M. de la Marche) thrust his horse between Edmee's and my own, as if he had a right to be next to her. I remembered her telling me at Roche-Mauprat that he was her betrothed. Hatred and anger at once surged up within me, and I know not what absurdity I should have committed, had not Edmee, apparently divining the workings of my unruly soul, told him that she wanted to speak to me, and thus restored me to my place by her side.

and inexhaustible in the variety of its disclosures. Whether

"What have you to say to me?" I asked with more eagerness than politeness.

and inexhaustible in the variety of its disclosures. Whether

"Nothing," she answered in an undertone. "I shall have much to say later. Until then will you do everything I ask of you?"

"And why the devil should I do everything you ask of me, cousin?"

For a moment she hesitated to reply; then, making an effort, she said:

"Because it is thus that a man proves to a woman that he loves her."

"Do you believe that I don't love you?" I replied abruptly.

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