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city; I felt no consolation in the thought “ And his son wears the uniform of that I was unknown and unsuspected. those who slew him !" The heavy weight of the indignant “ Ofa French soldier, madam, proud accusation almost crushed me. Its false- of the service he belongs to ; glorying hood I knew, and yet, could I dare to to be one of the first army in Europe. disprove it? Could I bazard the conse- “An army without a cause is a ban. quences of an avowal, which all my ditti, sir. Your soldiers, without loyalty, subsequent pleadings could never obli- are without a banner.” terate. Even were my innocence es- “We have a country, madam.” tablished in one point, what a position “I must protest against this discusdid it reduce me to in every other. sion going further,” said the General
These struggles must have manifested blandly, while in a lower tone he whis. themselves strongly in my looks, for the pered something in her ear. Marquise, with all her self-occupation, Very true, very true," said she ; remarked how ill I seemed. “I see, “ I had forgotten all that. Mons. de sir," cried she, “ that all the ravages of Tiernay, you will forgive me this war have not steeled your heart against warmth. An old woman, who has lost true piety; my tale has moved you nearly everything in the world, may strongly." I muttered something in have the privilege of bad temper acconcurrence, and she went on. “ Hap- corded her.
We are friends now, I pily for you, you were but a child when hope,” added she, extending her hand, such scenes were happening! Not, in- and, with a smile of most gracious deed, that childhood was always un- meaning, beckoning to me to sit bestained in those days of blood ; but you side her on the sofa. were, as I understand, the son of a Once away from the terrible theme Garde du Corps, one of those loyal men of the Revolution, she conversed with who sealed their devotion with their much agreeability; and her niece havlife. Were you in Paris then ?" ing reappeared, the conversation be
“ Yes, madam," said I, briefly. came animated and pleasing. Need I “ With your mother, perhaps ?" say with what interest I now regarded
“I was quite alone, madam ; an or- Mademoiselle; the object of all my phan on both sides."
boyish devotion; the same whose “What was your mother's family- pale features I had watched for many name?"
an hour in the dim half light of the Here was a puzzle ; but at a hazard I little chapel; her whose image was resolved to claim her who should sound never absent from my thoughts waking best to the ears of La Marquise. “La or sleeping; and now again appearing Lasterie, madam,” said I.
before me in all the grace of coming “ La Lasterie de La Vignoble -a womanhood! most distinguished house, sir. Pro- Perhaps to obliterate any impresvençal, and of the purest blood. Au- sion of her aunt's severity--perhaps it guste de La Lasterie married the
was mere manner--but I thought there daughter of the Duke de Miriancourt, was a degree of anxiety to please in a cousin of my husband's, and there was her bearing towards me. She spoke, another of them who went as ambas- too, as though our acquaintance was to sador to Madrid."
be continued by frequent meetings, I knew none of them, and I supposed and dropped hints of plans that imI looked as much.
plied constant intercourse. Even ex“Your mother was, probably, of the cursions into the neighbourhood she elder branch, sir;" asked she. spoke of; when, suddenly stopping,
I had to stammer out a most lament- she said, “ But these are for the season able confession of my ignorance. of spring, and before that time, Mons.
"Not know your own kinsfolk, sir ; de Tiernay will be far away.' not your nearest of blood !" cried she, " Who can tell that?" said I. «I in amazement. “ General, have you would seem to be forgotten by my heard this strange avowal ? or is it comrades." possible that my ears have deceived “ Then you must take care to do me?'
that which may refresh their memory," “ Please to remember, madam,' said said she pointedly; and, before I could I, submissively, “the circumstances in question her more closely as to her which I passed my infancy. My father meaning, the General had risen to take fell by the guillotine,"
“ Madame La Marquise was somewhat more tart than usual,” said he to me, as we ascended the cliff'; “but you have passed the ordeal now, and the chances are, she will never offend you in the same way again. Great allowances must be made for those who have suffered as she has. Familyfortune-station - even country — all lost to her; and even hope now dashed by many a disappointment."
Though puzzled by the last few words, I made no remark on them, and he resumed
“She has invited you to come and see her as often as you are at liberty ; and, for my part, you shall not be restricted in that way. Go and come as you please, only do not infringe the
hours of the fortress; and, if you can, concede a little now and then to the prejudices of the old lady, your intercourse will be all the more agreeable to both parties."
“I believe, General, that I have little of the Jacobin to recant,” said I, laughing.
“I should go farther, my dear friend, and say, none,” added he. “ Your uniform is the only tint of blue’about you." And thus chatting, we reached the fortress, and said good night.
I have been particular, perhaps tiresomely so, in retailing these broken phrases and snatches of conversation ; but they were the first matches applied to a train that was long and artfully laid.
"A SORROW PUL PARTING."
The General was as good as his word, and I now enjoyed the most unrestricted liberty ; in fact the officers of the garrison said truly, that they were far more like prisoners than I was. As regularly as evening came, I descended the path to the village, and, as the bell tolled out the
vespers, crossing the little grass plot to the cottage. So regularly was I looked for, that the pursuits of each evening were resumed as though only accidentally interrupted. The unfinished game of chess, the half read volume, the newly begun drawing, were taken up where we had left them, and life seemed to have centered itself in those delightful hours between sunset and midnight.
I suppose there are few young men who have not, at some time or other of their lives, enjoyed similar privileges, and known the fascination of intimacy in some household, where the affections became engaged as the intellect expanded ; and, while winning another's heart, have elevated their own. But to know the full charm of such intercourse, one must have been as I was- a prisoner—an orphan-almost friendless in the world -a very "waif” upon the shore of destiny. I cannot express the intense pleasure these evenings afforded me. The cottage was my home, and more than my home. It was a shrine at which my heart worshipped-for I was in love Easy as the confession is to make now,
tortures would not have wrung it from me then!
In good truth, it was long before I knew it; nor can I guess how much longer the ignorance might have lasted, when General Urleben suddenly dispelled the clouds, by informing me that he had just received from the minister-of-war at Vienna a demand for the name, rank, and regiment of his prisoner, previous to the negociation for his exchange.
“You will fill up these blanks, Tiernay," said he, “and within a month, or less, you will be once more free, and say adieu to Kuffstein." Had the
dismis sal from the service, I shame to own it would have been more welcome! The last few months had changed all the character of my life, suggested new hopes and new ambitions. The career I used to glory in had grown distasteful; the comrades I once longed to rejoin were now become almost repulsive to my imagination. The Marquise had spoken much of emigrating to some part of the new world beyond seas, and thither my fancy alike pointed. Perhaps my dreams of a future were not the less rose-coloured, that they received no shadow from anything like a
« fact.” The old lady's geographical knowledge was neither accurate nor extensive, and she contrived to invest this land of promise with old associations of what she once heard of Pondicherry-with certain
features belonging to the United States. that same morning I had received the A glorious country it would, indeed, General's message regarding my situahave been, which, within a month's tion, and I was burning with anxiety voyage, realised all the delights of the to tell it, and yet knew not exactly tropics, with the healthful vigour of the how. Laura, too, seemed full of her temperate zone, and where, without
own thoughts, and leaned pensively an effort beyond the mere will, men over the balustrade and gazed on the amassed enormous fortunes in a year or two. In a calmer mood, I might, in- " What are you thinking of so deed must, have been struck with the riously?" asked I, after a long pause, wild inconsistency of the old lady's “ or long, long ago," said she, sighimaginings, and looked with somewhat ing, “ when I was a little child. I reof scepticism on the map for that spot member a little chapel like that yonder, of earth so richly endowed; but now I only that it was not on a rock over a believed everything, provided it only river, but stood in a small garden; and ministered to my new hopes. Laura, though in a great city, it was as lonely evidently, too, believed in the “Canaan" and solitary as might be—the Chapelle of which, at last, we used to discourse de St. Blois.” as freely as though we had been there. “ St. Blois, Laura," cried I; "oh, Little discussions would, however, now tell me about that !" and then vary the uniformity of this Why you surely never heard of it creed, and I remember once feeling before," said she, smiling. “ It was in almost hurt at Laura's not agreeing a remote quarter of Paris, nigh the with me about zebras, which I assured outer Boulevard, and known to but a her were just as trainable as horses, but
few! It had once belonged to our which the Marquise flatly refused ever family; for in olden times there were to use in any of her carriages. These chateaux and country houses within were mere passing clouds; the regular that space, which then was part of atmosphere of our wishes was bright Paris, and one of our ancestors was and transparent. In the midst of these buried there! How well I remember delicious day-dreams, there came one it all! The dim little aisle, supported day a number of letters to the Marquise on wooden pillars; the simple altar, by the hands of a courier on his way to with the oaken crucifix, and the calm, Naples. What their contents I never gentle features of the
Cure." knew, but the tidings seemed most “ Can you remember all this so well, joyful, for the old lady invited the Laura?" asked I, eagerly, for the theme General and myself to dinner, when was stirring my very heart of hearts. the table was decked out with white “ All-everything—the straggling lillies on all sides; she herself, and weed-grown garden, through which we Laura also, wearing them in bouquets passed to our daily devotions—the conon their dresses.
gregation standing respectfully to let The occasion bad, I could see, some- us walk by, for my mother was still the thing of a celebration about it. Myste- great Marquise D'Estelles, although rious hints to circumstances I knew my father had been executed, and our nothing of were constantly inter- estates confiscated.
They who had changed, the whole ending with a known us in our prosperity, were as solemn toast to the memory of the respectful and devoted as ever; and “ Saint and Martyr;" but who he was, poor old Richard, the lame Sacristan, or when he lived, I knew not one that used to take my mother's bouquet single fact about.
from her, and lay it on the altar; how That evening-I cannot readily for- everything stands out clear and disget it—was the first I had ever an op- tinct before my memory! Nay, Mauportunity of being alone with Laura ! rice, but I can tell you more, for Hitherto the Marquise had always been strangely enough, certain things, merely beside us ; now she had all this corres- trifles in themselves, make impressions pondence to read over with the Gene- that even great events fail to do. There ral, and they both retired into a little was a little boy, a child somewhat older boudoir for the purpose, while Laura than myself, that used to serve the and myself wandered out upon the ter- mass with the Pére,and he always came race, as awkward and constrained as to place a footstool or a cushion for my though our situation had been the most mother. Poor little fellow, bashful and provoking thing possible. It was on diffident he was, changing colour at
every minute, and trembling in every balcony, and quitted the room. It was limb; and when he bad done his duty, the first time, as I have said, that we and made his little reverence, with his had ever been alone together, and it hands crossed on his bosom, he used was also the first time she had ever to fall back into some gloomy corner expressed herself strongly on the subof the church, and stand watching us ject of party,
What a moment to with an expression of intense wonder have declared her opinions, and when and pleasure! Yes, I think I see his her reminiscences, too, had recalled our dark eyes glistening through the gloon, infancy! How often was I tempted to ever fixed on me! I am sure, Maurice, interrupt that confession, by declaring that little fellow fancied he was in love myself, and how strongly was I rewith me!"
pelled by the thought that the avowal " And why not, Laura ; was the might sever us for ever. While I was thing so very impossible ? was it even thus deliberating, the Marquise, with so unlikely ?"
the General, entered the room, and “Not that,” said she archly, “but Laura followed in a few moments. think of a mere child; we were both The supper that night was a pleasant mere children ; and fancy him, the one to all save me. The rest were gay poor little boy, of some humble house, and high-spirited. Allusions, underperhaps ; of course he must have been stood by them, but not by me, were that, raising his eyes to the daughter of caught up readily, and as quickly rethe great . Marquise ;' what energy sponded to. Toasts were uttered, and of character there must have been to wishes breathed in concert, but all was have suggested the feeling ; how dar- like a dream to me. Indeed my heart ing he was, with all his bashfulness !” grew heavier at every moment. My
“You never saw him afterwards ? " coming departure, of which I had not “ Never !"
yet spoken, lay drearily on my mind, “Never thought of him, perhaps ?"
while the bold decision with which “I'll not say that,” said she, smiling, Laura declared her faith showed tbat “I have often wondered to myself, if our destinies were separated by an imthat hardihood I speak of had borne passable barrier. good or evil fruit. Had he been dar. It may be supposed that my deing or enterprising in the right, or had pression was not relieved by discoverhe, as the sad times favoured, been only ing that the General had already anbold and impetuous for the wrong!.” nounced my approaching departure,
“And how have you pictured him and the news, far from being received to your imagination," said I, as if with anything like regret, was made merely following out a fanciful vein of the theme of pleasant allusion, and thought.
even congratulation. The Marquise "My fancy would like to have con- repeatedly assured me of the delight ceived him a chivalrous adherent to our the tidings gave her, and Laura smiled ancient royalty, striving nobly in exile happily towards me, as if echoing the to aid the fortunes of some honoured sentiment. house, or daring, as many brave men Was this the feeling I had counted have dared, the heroic part of La Ven- on ? were these the evidences of an dée.
My reason, however, tells me, affection, for which I had given my that he was far more likely to have whole heart? Oh, how bitterly I retaken the other part."
viled the frivolous ingratitude of wo“To which you will concede no fa- man! how heavily I condemned their vour, Laura ; 'not even the love of heartless, unfeeling nature. In a few glory.”
days, a few hours, perhaps, I shall be "Glory, like honour, should have as totally forgotten here, as though I its fountain in a monarchy,” cried she had never been, and yet these are the proudly. “The rude voices of a multi- people who parade their devotion to a tude can confer nomeed of praise. Their fallen monarchy, and their affection for judgments are the impulses of the mo- an exiled house! I tried to arm myment. But why do we speak of these self with every prejudice against roythings, Maurice? nor have I, who can alism. I thought of Santron and his but breathe my hopes for a cause, the selfish, sarcastic spirit. I thought o just pretension to contend with you, all the stories I used to hear of cowardly who shed your blood for its opposite." ingratitude, and noble infamy, and
As she spoke, she hurried from the tried to persuade myself that the blandishments of the well-born were but ism she could have felt; how gloriously the gloss that covered cruel and unfeel. she would have adorned the society of a ing natures.
regenerated nation. I thought of her For very pride sake, I tried to assume as she was, and could have hated mya manner cool and unconcerned as their self for the devotion with which my own. I affected to talk of my depar- heart regarded her! ture as a pleasant event, and even hinted I never closed my eyes the entire at the career that Fortune might here- night. I lay down and walked about after open to me. In this they seemed alternately, my mind in a perfect fever to take a deeper interest than I antici- of conflict. Pride, a false pride, but pated, and I could perceive that more not the less strong for that, alone susthan once the General exchanged looks tained me. The General had announced with the ladies most significantly. I to me that I was free. Be it so; I will fear I grew very impatient at last. I no longer be a burden on his hospitality. grieve to think that I fancied a hundred La Marquise hears the tidings with annoyances that were never intended pleasure. Agreed, then--we part withfor me, and when we arose to take out regret! Very valorous resolutions leave I made my adieux with a cold they were, but come to, I must own, and stately reserve, intended to be with a very sinking heart and a very strongly impressive and cut them to the craven spirit. quick.
Instead of my full uniform, that I heard very little of what the Gene- morning I put on balf dress, showing ral said as we ascended the cliff. I that I was ready for the road ; a sign, was out of temper with him, and my- I had hoped, would have spoken unutself, and all the world ; and it was terable things to La Marquise and only when he recalled my attention to Laura. the fact, for the third or fourth time, Immediately after breakfast, I set that I learned how very kindly he meant out for the cottage. All the way, as I by me in the matter of my liberation, went, I was drilling myself for the infor while he had forwarded all my pa- terview by assuming a tone of the coolpers to Vienna, he was quite willing to est and easiest indifference. They set me at liberty on the following day, shall have no triumph over me in this in the perfect assurance that my ex- respect, muttered I. Let us see if I change would be confirmed.
cannot be as unconcerned as they are ! “You will thus have a full fortnight To such a pitch had I carried my zeal at your own disposal, Tiernay,” said he, for flippancy that I resolved to ask “since the official answer cannot ar- them whether they had no commission rive from Vienna before that time, and I could execute for them in Paris or you need not report yourself in Paris elsewhere. The idea struck me as exfor eight or ten days after."
cellent, so indicative of perfect selfHere was a boon now thrown away! possession and command. I am sure I For my part, I would a thousand times must have rehearsed our interview at rather have lingered on at Kuffstein least a dozen times, supplying all the than have been free to travel Europe stately grandeur of the old lady and all from one end to the other. My out- the quiet placitude of Laura. raged pride, however, put this out of By the time I reached the village I was the question. La Marquise and her quite strong in my part, and as I crossed niece had both assumed a manner of sin- the Platz I was eager to begin it. This cere gratification, and I was resolved energetic spirit, however, began to not to be behindhand in my show of waver a little as I entered the lawn bejoy! I ought to have known it, said I fore the cottage, and a most uncomagain and again. I ought to have fortable throbbing at my side made known it. These antiquated notions me stand for a moment in the porch of birth and blood can never co-exist before I entered. I used always to with any generous sentiment. These make my appearance unannounced, remnants of a worn-out monarcby can but now I felt that it would be more never forgive the vigorous energy that dignified and distant were I to summon has dethroned their decrepitude! I a servant, and yet I could find none. did not dare to speculate on what a girl The household was on a very simple Laura might have been under other scale, and in all likelihood the labours auspices; how nobly her ambition would of the field or the garden were now have soared ; what high-souled patriot- employing them. I hesitated what to