"She's where she'll be nbittorrent engine searcho more trouble to us. Burfoot's seeing to that."
Josephine uttered one more cry, but this was the faint cry ofnature, sinking under the shock of terror. She swooned dead away,and fell senseless on the floor ere Raynal could debarrass himselfof the screen, and get to her.buy bitcoin with credit card on binanceThis, then, was the scene that met Edouard's eyes. His affiancedbride on her knees, white as a ghost, trembling, and screaming,rather than crying, for mercy. And Raynal standing over his wife,showing by the working of his iron features that he doubted whethershe was worthy he should raise her.
One would have thought nothing could add to the terror of thisscene. Yet it was added to. The baroness rang her bell violentlyin the room below. She had heard Josephine's scream and fall.At the ringing of this shrill bell Rose shuddered like a maniac, andgrovelled on her knees to Raynal, and seized his very knees andimplored him to show some pity."O sir! kill us! we are culpable"--Dring! dring! dring! dring! dring! pealed the baroness's bell again."But do not tell our mother. Oh, if you are a man! do not! do not!Show us some pity. We are but women. Mercy! mercy! mercy!""Speak out then," groaned Raynal. "What does this mean? Why has mywife swooned at sight of me?--whose is this child?""Whose?" stammered Rose. Till he said that, she never thought thereCOULD be a doubt whose child.
Dring! dring! dring! dring! dring!"Oh, my God!" cried the poor girl, and her scared eyes glanced everyway like some wild creature looking for a hole, however small, toescape by."O monsieur!" said Josephine, "what is the matter?""We have met with a little accident, mademoiselle, that is all.
Dard has hurt his foot; nothing to speak of, but I thought he wouldbe best at home."Rose raised the coat which Riviere, in spite of Dard, had flung overhis foot."He is bleeding! Dard is bleeding! Oh, my poor Dard. Oh! oh!""Hush, Rose!""No, don't put him out of heart, mademoiselle. Take another pull atthe flask, Dard. If you please, ladies, I must have him homewithout delay.""Oh yes, but I want him to have a surgeon," cried Josephine. "Andwe have no horses nor people to send off as we used to have.""But you have me, mademoiselle," said Edouard tenderly. "Me, whowould go to the world's end for you." He said this to Josephine,but his eye sought Rose. "I'm a famous runner," he added, a littlebumptiously; "I'll be at the town in half an hour, and send asurgeon up full gallop.""You have a good heart," said Rose simply.He bowed his blushing, delighted face, and wheeled Dard to hiscottage hard by with almost more than mortal vigor. How softly, hownobly, that frolicsome girl could speak! Those sweet words rang inhis ears and ran warm round and round his heart, as he straightenedhis arms and his back to the work. When they had gone about ahundred yards, a single snivel went off in the wheelbarrow. Fiveminutes after, Dard was at home in charge of his grandmother, hisshoe off, his foot in a wet linen cloth; and Edouard, his coat tiedround the neck, squared his shoulders, and ran the two short leaguesout. He ran them in forty minutes, found the surgeon at home, toldthe case, pooh-poohed that worthy's promise to go to the patientpresently, darted into his stable, saddled the horse, brought himround, saw the surgeon into the saddle, started him, dined at therestaurateur's, strolled back, and was in time to get a good look atthe chateau of Beaurepaire just as the sun set on it.Jacintha came into Dard's cottage that evening.
"So you have been at it, my man," cried she cheerfully and ratherroughly, then sat down and rocked herself, with her apron over herhead. She explained this anomalous proceeding to his grandmotherprivately. "I thought I would keep his heart up anyway, but you seeI was not fit."Next morning, as Riviere sat writing, he received an unexpectedvisit from Jacintha. She came in with her finger to her lips, andsaid, "You prowl about Dard's cottage. They are sure to go and seehim every day, and him wounded in their service.""Oh, you good girl! you dear girl!" cried Edouard.She did not reply in words, but, after going to the door, returnedand gave him a great kiss without ceremony. "Dare say you know whatthat's for," said she, and went off with a clear conscience andreddish cheeks.
Dard's grandmother had a little house, a little land, a littlemoney, and a little cow. She could just maintain Dard and herself,and her resources enabled Dard to do so many little odd jobs forlove, yet keep his main organ tolerably filled."Go to bed, my little son, since you have got hashed," said she.--"Bed be hanged," cried he. "What good is bed? That's a silly oldcustom wants doing away with. It weakens you: it turns you intotrain oil: it is the doctor's friend, and the sick man's bane. Manya one dies through taking to bed, that could have kept his life ifhe had kept his feet like a man. If I had cut myself in two I wouldnot go to bed,--till I go to the bed with a spade in it. No! sit uplike Julius Caesar; and die as you lived, in your clothes: don'tstrip yourself: let the old women strip you; that is their delightlaying out a chap; that is the time they brighten up, the oldsorceresses." He concluded this amiable rhapsody, the latter partof which was levelled at a lugubrious weakness of his grandmother'sfor the superfluous embellishment of the dead, by telling her it wasbad enough to be tied by the foot like an ass, without settling downon his back like a cast sheep. "Give me the armchair. I'll sit init, and, if I have any friends, they will show it now: they willcome and tell me what is going on in the village, for I can't getout to see it and hear it, they must know that."Seated in state in his granny's easy-chair, the loss of which afterthirty years' use made her miserable, she couldn't tell why, leSieur Dard awaited his friends.They did not come.The rain did, and poured all the afternoon. Night succeeded, andsolitude. Dard boiled over with bitterness. "They are a lot ofpigs then, all those fellows I have drunk with at Bigot's andSimmet's. Down with all fair-weather friends."The next day the sun shone, the air was clear, and the sky blue.
"Ah! let us see now," cried Dard.Alas! no fellow-drinkers, no fellow-smokers, came to console theirhurt fellow. And Dard, who had boiled with anger yesterday, was nowsad and despondent. "Down with egotists," he groaned.About three in the afternoon came a tap at the door."Ah! at last," cried Dard: "come in!"The door was slowly opened, and two lovely faces appeared at thethreshold. The demoiselles De Beaurepaire wore a tender look ofinterest and pity when they caught sight of Dard, and on the oldwoman courtesying to them they courtesied to her and Dard. The nextmoment they were close to him, one a little to his right, the otherto his left, and two pair of sapphire eyes with the mild lustre ofsympathy playing down incessantly upon him. How was he? How had heslept? Was he in pain? Was he in much pain? tell the truth now.
Was there anything to eat or drink he could fancy? Jacintha shouldmake it and bring it, if it was within their means. A prince couldnot have had more solicitous attendants, nor a fairy king lovelierand less earthly ones.He looked in heavy amazement from one to the other. Rose bent, andwas by some supple process on one knee, taking the measure of thewounded foot. When she first approached it he winced: but the nextmoment he smiled. He had never been touched like this--it wascontact and no contact--she treated his foot as the zephyr theviolets--she handled it as if it had been some sacred thing. By thehelp of his eye he could just know she was touching him. Presentlyshe informed him he was measured for a list shoe: and she would runhome for the materials. During her absence came a timid tap to thedoor; and Edouard Riviere entered. He was delighted to seeJosephine, and made sure Rose was not far off. It was Dard who letout that she was gone to Beaurepaire for some cloth to make him ashoe. This information set Edouard fidgeting on his chair. He sawsuch a chance as was not likely to occur again. He rose withfeigned nonchalance, and saying, "I leave you in good hands; angelvisitors are best enjoyed alone," slowly retired, with a deepobeisance. Once outside the door, dignity vanished in alacrity; heflew off into the park, and ran as hard as he could towards thechateau. He was within fifty yards of the little gate, when sureenough Rose emerged. They met; his heart beat violently.
"Mademoiselle," he faltered."Ah! it is Monsieur Riviere, I declare," said Rose, coolly; all overblushes though.
"Yes, mademoiselle, and I am so out of breath. MademoiselleJosephine awaits you at Dard's house.""She sent you for me?" inquired Rose, demurely."Not positively. But I could see I should please her by coming foryou; there is, I believe, a bull or so about.""A bull or two! don't talk in that reckless way about such things.She has done well to send you; let us make haste.""But I am a little out of breath.""Oh, never mind that! I abhor bulls.""But, mademoiselle, we are not come to them yet, and the faster wego now the sooner we shall.""Yes; but I always like to get a disagreeable thing over as soon aspossible," said Rose, slyly."Ah," replied Edouard, mournfully, "in that case let us make haste."After a little spurt, mademoiselle relaxed the pace of her ownaccord, and even went slower than before. There was an awkwardsilence. Edouard eyed the park boundary, and thought, "Now what Ihave to say I must say before we get to you;" and being thusimpressed with the necessity of immediate action, he turned to lead.Rose eyed him and the ground, alternately, from under her longlashes.At last he began to color and flutter. She saw something wascoming, and all the woman donned defensive armor.
"Mademoiselle.""Monsieur.""Is it quite decided that your family refuse my acquaintance, myservices, which I still--forgive me--press on you? Ah! MademoiselleRose, am I never to have the happiness of--of--even speaking toyou?""It seems so," said Rose, ironically."Have you then decided against me too?""I?" asked Rose. "What have I to do with questions of etiquette? Iam only a child: so considered at least.""You a child--an angel like you?""Ask any of them, they will tell you I am a child; and it is to thatI owe this conversation, no doubt; if you did not look on me as achild, you would not take this liberty with me," said the young cat,scratching without a moment's notice.
"Mademoiselle, do not be angry. I was wrong.""Oh! never mind. Children are little creatures without reserve, andtreated accordingly, and to notice them is to honor them.""Adieu then, mademoiselle. Try to believe no one respects you morethan I do.""Yes, let us part, for there is Dard's house; and I begin to suspectthat Josephine never sent you.""I confess it.""There, he confesses it. I thought so all along; WHAT A DUPE I HAVEBEEN!""I will offend no more," said poor silly Edouard. "Adieu,mademoiselle. May you find friends as sincere as I am, and more toyour taste!""Heaven hear your prayers!" replied the malicious thing, casting upher eyes with a mock tragic air.Edouard sighed; a chill conviction that she was both heartless andempty fell on him. He turned away without another word. She calledto him with a sudden airy cheerfulness that made him start. "Stay,monsieur, I forgot--I have a favor to ask you.""I wish I could believe that:" and his eyes brightened.
Rose stopped, and began to play with her parasol. "You seem," saidshe softly, "to be pretty generous in bestowing your acquaintance onstrangers. I should be glad if I might secure you for a dear friendof mine, Dr. Aubertin. He will not discredit my recommendation; andhe will not make so many difficulties as we do; shall I tell youwhy? Because he is really worth knowing. In short, believe me, itwill be a valuable acquaintance for you--and for him," added shewith all the grace of the De Beaurepaires.Many a man, inferior in a general way to Edouard Riviere, would havemade a sensible reply to this. Such as, "Oh, any friend of yours,mademoiselle, must be welcome to me," or the like. But the proposalcaught Edouard on his foible, his vanity, to wit; and our foiblesare our manias. He was mortified to the heart's core. "She refusesto know me herself," thought he, "but she will use my love to makeme amuse that old man." His heart swelled against her injustice andingratitude, and his crushed vanity turned to strychnine.
"Mademoiselle," said he, bitterly and doggedly, but sadly, "were Iso happy as to have your esteem, my heart would overflow, not onlyon the doctor but on every honest person around. But if I must nothave the acquaintance I value more than life, suffer me to be alonein the world, and never to say a word either to Dr. Aubertin, or toany human creature if I can help it."The imperious young beauty drew herself up directly. "So be it,monsieur; you teach me how a child should be answered that forgetsherself, and asks a favor of a stranger--a perfect stranger," addedshe, maliciously.Could one of the dog-days change to mid-winter in a second, it wouldhardly seem so cold and cross as Rose de Beaurepaire turned from thesmiling, saucy fairy of the moment before. Edouard felt as it werea portcullis of ice come down between her and him. She courtesiedand glided away. He bowed and stood frozen to the spot.He felt so lonely and so bitter, he must go to Jacintha for comfort.He took advantage of the ladies being with Dard, and marched boldlyinto the kitchen of Beaurepaire.
"Well, I never," cried Jacintha. "But, after all, why not?"He hurled himself on the kitchen table (clean as china), and toldher it was all over. "She hates me now; but it is not my fault,"and so poured forth his tale, and feeling sure of sympathy, askedJacintha whether it was not bitterly unjust of Rose to refuse himher own acquaintance, yet ask him to amuse that old fogy.Jacintha stood with her great arms akimbo, taking it all in, andlooking at him with a droll expression of satirical wonder.
"Now you listen to a parable," said she. "Once there was a littleboy madly in love with raspberry jam.""A thing I hate.""Don't tell me! Who hates raspberry jam? He came to the storecloset, where he knew there were jars of it, and--oh! misery--thedoor was locked. He kicked the door, and wept bitterly. His mammacame and said, 'Here is the key,' and gave him the key. And whatdid he do? Why, he fell to crying and roaring, and kicking thedoor. 'I don't wa-wa-wa-wa-nt the key-ey-ey. I wa-a-ant the jam--oh! oh! oh! oh!'" and Jacintha mimicked, after her fashion, themingled grief and ire of infancy debarred its jam. Edouard wore apuzzled air, but it was only for a moment; the next he hid his facein his hands, and cried, "Fool!""I shall not contradict you," said his Mentor."She was my best friend. Once acquainted with the doctor, I couldvisit at Beaurepaire.""Parbleu!""She had thought of a way to reconcile my wishes with this terribleetiquette that reigns here.""She thinks to more purpose than you do; that is clear.""Nothing is left now but to ask her pardon, and to consent; I amoff.""No, you are not," and Jacintha laid a grasp of iron on him. "Willyou be quiet?--is not one blunder a day enough? If you go near hernow, she will affront you, and order the doctor not to speak to you.""O Jacintha! your sex then are fiends of malice?""While it lasts. Luckily with us nothing lasts very long. Now youdon't go near her till you have taken advantage of her hint, andmade the doctor's acquaintance; that is easy done. He walks twohours on the east road every day, with his feet in the puddles andhis head in the clouds. Them's HIS two tastes.""But how am I to get him out of the clouds and the puddles?"inquired Riviere half peevishly.
"How?" asked Jacintha, with a dash of that contempt uneducatedpersons generally have for any one who does not know some littlething they happen to know themselves. "How? Why, with the nearestblackbeetle, to be sure.""A blackbeetle?""Black or brown; it matters little. Have her ready for use in yourhandkerchief: pull a long face: and says you--'Excuse me, sir, Ihave THE MISFORTUNE not to know the Greek name of this merchandisehere.' Say that, and behold him launched. He will christen you thebeast in Hebrew and Latin as well as Greek, and tell you her historydown from the flood: next he will beg her of you, and out will comea cork and a pin, and behold the creature impaled. For that is howmen love beetles. He has a thousand pinned down at home--beetles,butterflies, and so forth. When I go near the rubbish with myduster he trembles like an aspen. I pretend to be going to cleanthem, but it is only to see the face he makes, for even a domesticmust laugh now and then--or die. But I never do clean them, forafter all he is more stupid than wicked, poor man: I have nottherefore the sad courage to make him wretched.""Let us return to our beetle--what will his tirades about itsantiquity advance me?""Oh! one begins about a beetle, but one ends Heaven knows where."Riviere profited by this advice. He even improved on it. In duecourse he threw himself into Aubertin's way. He stopped the doctorreverentially, and said he had heard he was an entomologist. WOULDhe be kind enough to tell him what was this enormous chrysalis hehad just found?"The death's head moth!" cried Aubertin with enthusiasm--"thedeath's head moth! a great rarity in this district. Where found youthis?" Riviere undertook to show him the place.
It was half a league distant. Coming and going he had time to makefriends with Aubertin, and this was the easier that the oldgentleman, who was a physiognomist as well as ologist, had seengoodness and sensibility in Edouard's face. At the end of the walkhe begged the doctor to accept the chrysalis. The doctor coquetted."That would be a robbery. You take an interest in these thingsyourself--at least I hope so."The young rogue confessed modestly to the sentiment of entomology,but "the government worked him so hard as to leave him no hopes ofshining in so high a science," said he sorrowfully.The doctor pitied him. "A young man of your attainments and tastesto be debarred from the everlasting secrets of nature, by thefleeting politics of the day."Riviere shrugged his shoulders. "Somebody must do the dirty work,"said he, chuckling inwardly.The chrysalis went to Beaurepaire in the pocket of a grateful man,who that same evening told the whole party his conversation withyoung Riviere, on whom he pronounced high encomiums. Rose's saucyeyes sparkled with fun: you might have lighted a candle at one andexploded a mine at the other; but not a syllable did she utter.
The doctor proved a key, and opened the enchanted castle. One fineday he presented his friend in the Pleasaunce to the baroness andher daughters.They received him with perfect politeness. Thus introduced, and ashe was not one to let the grass grow under his feet, he soonobtained a footing as friend of the family, which, being now advisedby Josephine, he took care not to compromise by making love to Rosebefore the baroness. However, he insisted on placing his financialtalent at their service. He surveyed and valued their lands, andsoon discovered that all their farms were grossly underlet. Luckilymost of the leases were run out. He prepared a new rent roll, andshowed it Aubertin, now his fast friend. Aubertin at his requestobtained a list of the mortgages, and Edouard drew a balance-sheetfounded on sure data, and proved to the baroness that in able handsthe said estate was now solvent.
This was a great comfort to the old lady: and she said to Aubertin,"Heaven has sent us a champion, a little republican--with the faceof an angel."Descending to practice, Edouard actually put three of the farms intothe market, and let them at an advance of twenty per cent on theexpired leases. He brought these leases signed; and the baronesshad scarcely done thanking him, when her other secret friend,Monsieur Perrin, was announced. Edouard exchanged civilities withhim, and then retired to the Pleasaunce. There he found bothsisters, who were all tenderness and gratitude to him. By this timehe had learned to value Josephine: she was so lovely and so good,and such a true womanly friend to him. Even Rose could not resisther influence, and was obliged to be kind to him, when Josephine wasby. But let Josephine go, and instead of her being more tender, asany other girl would, left alone with her lover, sauciness resumedits empire till sweet Josephine returned. Whereof cometh anexample; for the said Josephine was summoned to a final conferencewith the baroness and Monsieur Perrin."Don't be long," said Rose, as Josephine glided away, and (takingthe precaution to wait till she was quite out of hearing), "I shallbe so dull, dear, till you come back.""I shall not though," said Edouard.
"I am not so sure of that. Now then.""Now then, what?""Begin.""Begin what?""Amusing me." And she made herself look sullen and unamusable allover."I will try," said Riviere. "I'll tell you what they say of you: