The Three Musketeers

By Alexandre Dumas

Published by Planet eBook. Visit the site to download free eBooks of classic literature, books and novels. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons AttributionNoncommercial 3.0 United States License.

In which it is proved that, notwithstanding their names’ ending in OS and IS, the heroes of the story which we are about to have the honor to relate to our readers have nothing mythological about them. A short time ago, while making researches in the Royal Library for my History of Louis XIV, I stumbled by chance upon the Memoirs of M. d’Artagnan, printed—as were most of the works of that period, in which authors could not tell the truth without the risk of a residence, more or less long, in the Bastille—at Amsterdam, by Pierre Rouge. The title attracted me; I took them home with me, with the permission of the guardian, and devoured them. It is not my intention here to enter into an analysis of this curious work; and I shall satisfy myself with referring such of my readers as appreciate the pictures of the period to its pages. They will therein find portraits penciled by the hand of a master; and although these squibs may be, for the most part, traced upon the doors of barracks and the walls of cabarets, they will not find the likenesses of Louis XIII, Anne of Austria, Richelieu, Mazarin, and the courtiers of the period, less faithful than in the history of M. Anquetil. But, it is well known, what strikes the capricious mind of the poet is not always what affects the mass of readers. Now, while admiring, as others doubtless will admire, the details
Free eBooks at Planet 3

we have to relate, our main preoccupation concerned a matter to which no one before ourselves had given a thought. D’Artagnan relates that on his first visit to M. de Treville, captain of the king’s Musketeers, he met in the antechamber three young men, serving in the illustrious corps into which he was soliciting the honor of being received, bearing the names of Athos, Porthos, and Aramis. We must confess these three strange names struck us; and it immediately occurred to us that they were but pseudonyms, under which d’Artagnan had disguised names perhaps illustrious, or else that the bearers of these borrowed names had themselves chosen them on the day in which, from caprice, discontent, or want of fortune, they had donned the simple Musketeer’s uniform. From the moment we had no rest till we could find some trace in contemporary works of these extraordinary names which had so strongly awakened our curiosity. The catalogue alone of the books we read with this object would fill a whole chapter, which, although it might be very instructive, would certainly afford our readers but little amusement. It will suffice, then, to tell them that at the moment at which, discouraged by so many fruitless investigations, we were about to abandon our search, we at length found, guided by the counsels of our illustrious friend Paulin Paris, a manuscript in folio, endorsed 4772 or 4773, we do not recollect which, having for title, ‘Memoirs of the Comte de la Fere, Touching Some Events Which Passed in France Toward the End of the Reign of King Louis XIII and the Commencement of the Reign of King Louis XIV.’
4 The Three Musketeers

It may be easily imagined how great was our joy when, in turning over this manuscript, our last hope, we found at the twentieth page the name of Athos, at the twenty-seventh the name of Porthos, and at the thirty-first the name of Aramis. The discovery of a completely unknown manuscript at a period in which historical science is carried to such a high degree appeared almost miraculous. We hastened, therefore, to obtain permission to print it, with the view of presenting ourselves someday with the pack of others at the doors of the Academie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres, if we should not succeed—a very probable thing, by the by— in gaining admission to the Academie Francaise with our own proper pack. This permission, we feel bound to say, was graciously granted; which compels us here to give a public contradiction to the slanderers who pretend that we live under a government but moderately indulgent to men of letters. Now, this is the first part of this precious manuscript which we offer to our readers, restoring it to the title which belongs to it, and entering into an engagement that if (of which we have no doubt) this first part should obtain the success it merits, we will publish the second immediately. In the meanwhile, as the godfather is a second father, we beg the reader to lay to our account, and not to that of the Comte de la Fere, the pleasure or the ENNUI he may experience. This being understood, let us proceed with our history.
Free eBooks at Planet 5

On the first Monday of the month of April, 1625, the market town of Meung, in which the author of ROMANCE OF THE ROSE was born, appeared to be in as perfect a state of revolution as if the Huguenots had just made a second La Rochelle of it. Many citizens, seeing the women flying toward the High Street, leaving their children crying at the open doors, hastened to don the cuirass, and supporting their somewhat uncertain courage with a musket or a partisan, directed their steps toward the hostelry of the Jolly Miller, before which was gathered, increasing every minute, a compact group, vociferous and full of curiosity. In those times panics were common, and few days passed without some city or other registering in its archives an event of this kind. There were nobles, who made war against each other; there was the king, who made war against the cardinal; there was Spain, which made war against the king. Then, in addition to these concealed or public, secret or open wars, there were robbers, mendicants, Huguenots, wolves, and scoundrels, who made war upon everybody. The citizens always took up arms readily against thieves, wolves or scoundrels, often against nobles or Huguenots, sometimes against the king, but never against cardinal or
6 The Three Musketeers

Spain. It resulted, then, from this habit that on the said first Monday of April, 1625, the citizens, on hearing the clamor, and seeing neither the red-and-yellow standard nor the livery of the Duc de Richelieu, rushed toward the hostel of the Jolly Miller. When arrived there, the cause of the hubbub was apparent to all. A young man—we can sketch his portrait at a dash. Imagine to yourself a Don Quixote of eighteen; a Don Quixote without his corselet, without his coat of mail, without his cuisses; a Don Quixote clothed in a woolen doublet, the blue color of which had faded into a nameless shade between lees of wine and a heavenly azure; face long and brown; high cheek bones, a sign of sagacity; the maxillary muscles enormously developed, an infallible sign by which a Gascon may always be detected, even without his cap—and our young man wore a cap set off with a sort of feather; the eye open and intelligent; the nose hooked, but finely chiseled. Too big for a youth, too small for a grown man, an experienced eye might have taken him for a farmer’s son upon a journey had it not been for the long sword which, dangling from a leather baldric, hit against the calves of its owner as he walked, and against the rough side of his steed when he was on horseback. For our young man had a steed which was the observed of all observers. It was a Bearn pony, from twelve to fourteen years old, yellow in his hide, without a hair in his tail, but not without windgalls on his legs, which, though going with his head lower than his knees, rendering a martingale quite unnecessary, contrived nevertheless to perform his
Free eBooks at Planet 7

eight leagues a day. Unfortunately, the qualities of this horse were so well concealed under his strange-colored hide and his unaccountable gait, that at a time when everybody was a connoisseur in horseflesh, the appearance of the aforesaid pony at Meung—which place he had entered about a quarter of an hour before, by the gate of Beaugency—produced an unfavorable feeling, which extended to his rider. And this feeling had been more painfully perceived by young d’Artagnan—for so was the Don Quixote of this second Rosinante named—from his not being able to conceal from himself the ridiculous appearance that such a steed gave him, good horseman as he was. He had sighed deeply, therefore, when accepting the gift of the pony from M. d’Artagnan the elder. He was not ignorant that such a beast was worth at least twenty livres; and the words which had accompanied the present were above all price. ‘My son,’ said the old Gascon gentleman, in that pure Bearn PATOIS of which Henry IV could never rid himself, ‘this horse was born in the house of your father about thirteen years ago, and has remained in it ever since, which ought to make you love it. Never sell it; allow it to die tranquilly and honorably of old age, and if you make a campaign with it, take as much care of it as you would of an old servant. At court, provided you have ever the honor to go there,’ continued M. d’Artagnan the elder, ‘—an honor to which, remember, your ancient nobility gives you the right—sustain worthily your name of gentleman, which has been worthily borne by your ancestors for five hundred years, both for your own sake and the sake of those who belong to you. By
8 The Three Musketeers

the latter I mean your relatives and friends. Endure nothing from anyone except Monsieur the Cardinal and the king. It is by his courage, please observe, by his courage alone, that a gentleman can make his way nowadays. Whoever hesitates for a second perhaps allows the bait to escape which during that exact second fortune held out to him. You are young. You ought to be brave for two reasons: the first is that you are a Gascon, and the second is that you are my son. Never fear quarrels, but seek adventures. I have taught you how to handle a sword; you have thews of iron, a wrist of steel. Fight on all occasions. Fight the more for duels being forbidden, since consequently there is twice as much courage in fighting. I have nothing to give you, my son, but fifteen crowns, my horse, and the counsels you have just heard. Your mother will add to them a recipe for a certain balsam, which she had from a Bohemian and which has the miraculous virtue of curing all wounds that do not reach the heart. Take advantage of all, and live happily and long. I have but one word to add, and that is to propose an example to you— not mine, for I myself have never appeared at court, and have only taken part in religious wars as a volunteer; I speak of Monsieur de Treville, who was formerly my neighbor, and who had the honor to be, as a child, the play-fellow of our king, Louis XIII, whom God preserve! Sometimes their play degenerated into battles, and in these battles the king was not always the stronger. The blows which he received increased greatly his esteem and friendship for Monsieur de Treville. Afterward, Monsieur de Treville fought with others: in his first journey to Paris, five times; from the death of the late
Free eBooks at Planet 9

king till the young one came of age, without reckoning wars and sieges, seven times; and from that date up to the present day, a hundred times, perhaps! So that in spite of edicts, ordinances, and decrees, there he is, captain of the Musketeers; that is to say, chief of a legion of Caesars, whom the king holds in great esteem and whom the cardinal dreads— he who dreads nothing, as it is said. Still further, Monsieur de Treville gains ten thousand crowns a year; he is therefore a great noble. He began as you begin. Go to him with this letter, and make him your model in order that you may do as he has done.’ Upon which M. d’Artagnan the elder girded his own sword round his son, kissed him tenderly on both cheeks, and gave him his benediction. On leaving the paternal chamber, the young man found his mother, who was waiting for him with the famous recipe of which the counsels we have just repeated would necessitate frequent employment. The adieux were on this side longer and more tender than they had been on the other— not that M. d’Artagnan did not love his son, who was his only offspring, but M. d’Artagnan was a man, and he would have considered it unworthy of a man to give way to his feelings; whereas Mme. d’Artagnan was a woman, and still more, a mother. She wept abundantly; and—let us speak it to the praise of M. d’Artagnan the younger—notwithstanding the efforts he made to remain firm, as a future Musketeer ought, nature prevailed, and he shed many tears, of which he succeeded with great difficulty in concealing the half. The same day the young man set forward on his journey,
10 The Three Musketeers

furnished with the three paternal gifts, which consisted, as we have said, of fifteen crowns, the horse, and the letter for M. de Treville— the counsels being thrown into the bargain. With such a VADE MECUM d’Artagnan was morally and physically an exact copy of the hero of Cervantes, to whom we so happily compared him when our duty of an historian placed us under the necessity of sketching his portrait. Don Quixote took windmills for giants, and sheep for armies; d’Artagnan took every smile for an insult, and every look as a provocation—whence it resulted that from Tarbes to Meung his fist was constantly doubled, or his hand on the hilt of his sword; and yet the fist did not descend upon any jaw, nor did the sword issue from its scabbard. It was not that the sight of the wretched pony did not excite numerous smiles on the countenances of passers-by; but as against the side of this pony rattled a sword of respectable length, and as over this sword gleamed an eye rather ferocious than haughty, these passers-by repressed their hilarity, or if hilarity prevailed over prudence, they endeavored to laugh only on one side, like the masks of the ancients. D’Artagnan, then, remained majestic and intact in his susceptibility, till he came to this unlucky city of Meung. But there, as he was alighting from his horse at the gate of the Jolly Miller, without anyone—host, waiter, or hostler— coming to hold his stirrup or take his horse, d’Artagnan spied, though an open window on the ground floor, a gentleman, well-made and of good carriage, although of rather a stern countenance, talking with two persons who appeared
Free eBooks at Planet 11

to listen to him with respect. d’Artagnan fancied quite naturally, according to his custom, that he must be the object of their conversation, and listened. This time d’Artagnan was only in part mistaken; he himself was not in question, but his horse was. The gentleman appeared to be enumerating all his qualities to his auditors; and, as I have said, the auditors seeming to have great deference for the narrator, they every moment burst into fits of laughter. Now, as a halfsmile was sufficient to awaken the irascibility of the young man, the effect produced upon him by this vociferous mirth may be easily imagined. Nevertheless, d’Artagnan was desirous of examining the appearance of this impertinent personage who ridiculed him. He fixed his haughty eye upon the stranger, and perceived a man of from forty to forty-five years of age, with black and piercing eyes, pale complexion, a strongly marked nose, and a black and well-shaped mustache. He was dressed in a doublet and hose of a violet color, with aiguillettes of the same color, without any other ornaments than the customary slashes, through which the shirt appeared. This doublet and hose, though new, were creased, like traveling clothes for a long time packed in a portmanteau. d’Artagnan made all these remarks with the rapidity of a most minute observer, and doubtless from an instinctive feeling that this stranger was destined to have a great influence over his future life. Now, as at the moment in which d’Artagnan fixed his eyes upon the gentleman in the violet doublet, the gentleman made one of his most knowing and profound remarks
12 The Three Musketeers

respecting the Bearnese pony, his two auditors laughed even louder than before, and he himself, though contrary to his custom, allowed a pale smile (if I may allowed to use such an expression) to stray over his countenance. This time there could be no doubt; d’Artagnan was really insulted. Full, then, of this conviction, he pulled his cap down over his eyes, and endeavoring to copy some of the court airs he had picked up in Gascony among young traveling nobles, he advanced with one hand on the hilt of his sword and the other resting on his hip. Unfortunately, as he advanced, his anger increased at every step; and instead of the proper and lofty speech he had prepared as a prelude to his challenge, he found nothing at the tip of his tongue but a gross personality, which he accompanied with a furious gesture. ‘I say, sir, you sir, who are hiding yourself behind that shutter—yes, you, sir, tell me what you are laughing at, and we will laugh together!’ The gentleman raised his eyes slowly from the nag to his cavalier, as if he required some time to ascertain whether it could be to him that such strange reproaches were addressed; then, when he could not possibly entertain any doubt of the matter, his eyebrows slightly bent, and with an accent of irony and insolence impossible to be described, he replied to d’Artagnan, ‘I was not speaking to you, sir.’ ‘But I am speaking to you!’ replied the young man, additionally exasperated with this mixture of insolence and good manners, of politeness and scorn. The stranger looked at him again with a slight smile, and retiring from the window, came out of the hostelry with a
Free eBooks at Planet 13

slow step, and placed himself before the horse, within two paces of d’Artagnan. His quiet manner and the ironical expression of his countenance redoubled the mirth of the persons with whom he had been talking, and who still remained at the window. D’Artagnan, seeing him approach, drew his sword a foot out of the scabbard. ‘This horse is decidedly, or rather has been in his youth, a buttercup,’ resumed the stranger, continuing the remarks he had begun, and addressing himself to his auditors at the window, without paying the least attention to the exasperation of d’Artagnan, who, however placed himself between him and them. ‘It is a color very well known in botany, but till the present time very rare among horses.’ ‘There are people who laugh at the horse that would not dare to laugh at the master,’ cried the young emulator of the furious Treville. ‘I do not often laugh, sir,’ replied the stranger, ‘as you may perceive by the expression of my countenance; but nevertheless I retain the privilege of laughing when I please.’ ‘And I,’ cried d’Artagnan, ‘will allow no man to laugh when it displeases me!’ ‘Indeed, sir,’ continued the stranger, more calm than ever; ‘well, that is perfectly right!’ and turning on his heel, was about to re-enter the hostelry by the front gate, beneath which d’Artagnan on arriving had observed a saddled horse. But, d’Artagnan was not of a character to allow a man to escape him thus who had the insolence to ridicule him.
14 The Three Musketeers

He drew his sword entirely from the scabbard, and followed him, crying, ‘Turn, turn, Master Joker, lest I strike you behind!’ ‘Strike me!’ said the other, turning on his heels, and surveying the young man with as much astonishment as contempt. ‘Why, my good fellow, you must be mad!’ Then, in a suppressed tone, as if speaking to himself, ‘This is annoying,’ continued he. ‘What a godsend this would be for his Majesty, who is seeking everywhere for brave fellows to recruit for his Musketeers!’ He had scarcely finished, when d’Artagnan made such a furious lunge at him that if he had not sprung nimbly backward, it is probable he would have jested for the last time. The stranger, then perceiving that the matter went beyond raillery, drew his sword, saluted his adversary, and seriously placed himself on guard. But at the same moment, his two auditors, accompanied by the host, fell upon d’Artagnan with sticks, shovels and tongs. This caused so rapid and complete a diversion from the attack that d’Artagnan’s adversary, while the latter turned round to face this shower of blows, sheathed his sword with the same precision, and instead of an actor, which he had nearly been, became a spectator of the fight—a part in which he acquitted himself with his usual impassiveness, muttering, nevertheless, ‘A plague upon these Gascons! Replace him on his orange horse, and let him begone!’ ‘Not before I have killed you, poltroon!’ cried d’Artagnan, making the best face possible, and never retreating one step before his three assailants, who continued to shower blows
Free eBooks at Planet 15

upon him. ‘Another gasconade!’ murmured the gentleman. ‘By my honor, these Gascons are incorrigible! Keep up the dance, then, since he will have it so. When he is tired, he will perhaps tell us that he has had enough of it.’ But the stranger knew not the headstrong personage he had to do with; d’Artagnan was not the man ever to cry for quarter. The fight was therefore prolonged for some seconds; but at length d’Artagnan dropped his sword, which was broken in two pieces by the blow of a stick. Another blow full upon his forehead at the same moment brought him to the ground, covered with blood and almost fainting. It was at this moment that people came flocking to the scene of action from all sides. The host, fearful of consequences, with the help of his servants carried the wounded man into the kitchen, where some trifling attentions were bestowed upon him. As to the gentleman, he resumed his place at the window, and surveyed the crowd with a certain impatience, evidently annoyed by their remaining undispersed. ‘Well, how is it with this madman?’ exclaimed he, turning round as the noise of the door announced the entrance of the host, who came in to inquire if he was unhurt. ‘Your excellency is safe and sound?’ asked the host. ‘Oh, yes! Perfectly safe and sound, my good host; and I wish to know what has become of our young man.’ ‘He is better,’ said the host, ‘he fainted quite away.’ ‘Indeed!’ said the gentleman.
16 The Three Musketeers

‘But before he fainted, he collected all his strength to challenge you, and to defy you while challenging you.’ ‘Why, this fellow must be the devil in person!’ cried the stranger. ‘Oh, no, your Excellency, he is not the devil,’ replied the host, with a grin of contempt; ‘for during his fainting we rummaged his valise and found nothing but a clean shirt and eleven crowns— which however, did not prevent his saying, as he was fainting, that if such a thing had happened in Paris, you should have cause to repent of it at a later period.’ ‘Then,’ said the stranger coolly, ‘he must be some prince in disguise.’ ‘I have told you this, good sir,’ resumed the host, ‘in order that you may be on your guard.’ ‘Did he name no one in his passion?’ ‘Yes; he struck his pocket and said, ‘We shall see what Monsieur de Treville will think of this insult offered to his protege.’’ ‘Monsieur de Treville?’ said the stranger, becoming attentive, ‘he put his hand upon his pocket while pronouncing the name of Monsieur de Treville? Now, my dear host, while your young man was insensible, you did not fail, I am quite sure, to ascertain what that pocket contained. What was there in it?’ ‘A letter addressed to Monsieur de Treville, captain of the Musketeers.’ ‘Indeed!’ ‘Exactly as I have the honor to tell your Excellency.’
Free eBooks at Planet 17

‘A weak obstacle is sometimes sufficient to overthrow a great design. he bowed humbly and retired.’ continued the stranger. whatever be the age of him who gives it. half stupefied.’ ‘What.’ ‘That is well. I had better get on horseback. make out my bill and notify my servant. Giving him to understand that the police would deal with him pretty severely for having sought a quarrel with a great lord—for the opinion of the host the stranger could be nothing less than a great lord—he insisted that notwithstanding his weakness d’Artagnan should get up and depart as quickly as possible. and found d’Artagnan just recovering his senses. do as I have directed you. ‘Can he be afraid of this boy?’ But an imperious glance from the stranger stopped him short. Where is he?’ ‘In my wife’s chamber. this young fool—‘ ‘To be sure he does. ‘It is not necessary for Milady* to be seen by this fellow. but a sword thrust is a sword thrust.The host. monsieur. as your Excellency may have observed. will you leave us so soon?’ ‘You know that very well. ‘The devil!’ murmured he. between his teeth. milady. upon the sill of which he had leaned with his elbow. and knitted his brow like a man disquieted. In the meantime. ‘Host. with a coldly menacing expression. re-ascended to his wife’s chamber.’ *We are well aware that this term. as I gave my order to saddle my horse. The latter rose from the front of the window. ‘he annoys me. Go. ‘could you not contrive to get rid of this frantic boy for me? In conscience. however.’ said he. But if he annoys you.’ ‘What the devil!’ said the host to himself. muttering to himself. she is already late. I cannot kill him. arose then. did not observe the expression which his words had given to the physiognomy of the stranger. and a youth is less to be suspected than an older man. who entertained no doubt that it was the presence of the young man that drove the stranger from his hostelry. then. and we do not choose to take upon ourselves to alter it. ‘Can Treville have set this Gascon upon me? He is very young. D’Artagnan. directed his steps toward the kitchen. and with his head bound up in a linen cloth. the host. And the 19 . ‘She will soon pass. began to descend the stairs. where they are dressing his wounds. which respectable people cannot put up with. is only properly used when followed by a family name. He causes a disturbance in your hostelry. everything is in the kitchen. to know what this letter addressed to Treville contains. your 18 The Three Musketeers horse is in the great gateway. but on arriving at Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Have they not obeyed me?’ ‘It is done. on the first flight. and urged by the host. and go and meet her. without his doublet. But we find it thus in the manuscript. I should like. and yet.’ added he.’ ‘His things and his bag are with him? Has he taken off his doublet?’ ‘On the contrary.’ and the stranger fell into a reverie which lasted some minutes. ready saddled for your departure. who was not endowed with great perspicacity.

‘No. indeed. His interlocutor. then. in his turn. ‘and I hope that this time he whom he ought to chastise will not escape him as before. while her coachman applied his whip vigorously to his horses.’ ‘What. but at the moment he opened his mouth. ‘His Eminence. ‘Base coward! false gentleman!’ cried d’Artagnan. seeing the stranger lay his hand on his 21 . She was pale and fair. without chastising this insolent boy?’ asked the lady. drawing near to d’Artagnan.’ ‘And as to my other instructions?’ asked the fair traveler. after throwing two or three silver pieces at the foot of mine host. He perceived then. ‘To return instantly to England. with long curls falling in profusion over her shoulders. at a glance. booby!’ cried the stranger to his servant. blue. knitting his brow. and the man. whose head appeared through the carriage window. rosy lips. springing forward. that this woman was young and beautiful. who had heard all. a cloud of blood passed over his eyes.’ grumbled the host. We have already observed with what rapidity d’Artagnan seized the expression of a countenance. which you will not open until you are on the other side of the Channel. crying still. a faintness seized him. ‘Pay him. and her style of beauty struck him more forcibly from its being totally different from that of the southern countries in which d’Artagnan had hitherto resided. was a woman of from twenty to two-andtwenty years. languishing eyes. ‘the least delay may ruin everything. and to inform him as soon as the duke leaves London. at full gallop. ‘begone then. ‘Coward! coward! coward!’ ‘He is a coward. The two interlocutors thus separated. 20 The Three Musketeers ‘This insolent boy chastises others.’ said Milady. as the heron of the fable did with the snail he had despised the evening before. ‘They are contained in this box. sprang into his saddle.’ ‘Very well. precipitated himself over the threshold of the door. without checking the speed of his horse. drawn by two large Norman horses.the kitchen. Scarcely had he gone ten steps when his ears began to tingle. on your part. galloped after his master.’ cried he. She was talking with great animation with the stranger.’ And bowing to the lady. and hands of alabaster.’ cried the gentleman. had large. I presume?’ ‘Remember. d’Artagnan. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the first thing he saw was his antagonist talking calmly at the step of a heavy carriage. The stranger was about to reply. taking opposite directions. after the servant. before a woman you would dare not fly. and I will depart as quickly on mine. But his wound had rendered him too weak to support such an exertion. orders me—‘ said the lady. and he fell in the middle of the street.’ ‘Will not escape him?’ replied the stranger. and endeavoring by this little flattery to make up matters with the young man. and you—what will you do?’ ‘I—I return to Paris.’ ‘You are right.

‘But. it’s all one. and positively refusing the assistance of any doctor. it had disappeared.’ murmured d’Artagnan. but he had reckoned without his guest. his wife a broom handle.’ said the host. for the third time. this oil. a base coward. and opening and reopening his purse. of whom I am pretty certain for some days to come. de Treville. with which he anointed his numerous wounds. as he had preserved a strict abstinence—while on the 23 . Hence. for some oil. rummaging and rerummaging in his valise. ‘Ah. among other ingredients the list of which has not come down to us. there was one circumstance which created a powerful obstacle to the accomplishment of this threat. ‘but she— she was very beautiful.’ said he. oil. and was almost cured by the morrow. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The host had reckoned upon eleven days of confinement at a crown a day. the host seized a spit. ‘my letter of recommendation! or. but this one remains. and fainted a second time. I will spit you all like ortolans!’ Unfortunately. he found himself purely and simply armed with a stump of a sword about eight or ten inches in length. As to the rest of the blade. it resulted when d’Artagnan proceeded to draw his sword in earnest. as we have related. the only expense the master had incurred. There will be eleven crowns gained. for as to the letter addressed to M.‘Yes. after all. turning out his pockets of all kinds over and over again. and the servants the same sticks they had used the day before. he flew. and with his mother’s recipe in his hand composed a balsam. lowering the point of his spit. On the following morning at five o’clock d’Artagnan arose. into such a rage as was near costing him a fresh consumption of wine.’ faltered d’Artagnan. and the wine. But this deception would probably not have stopped our fiery young man if the host had not reflected that the reclamation which his guest made was perfectly just. ‘I have lost two customers. by the account of the hostler at least. ‘Milady.’ It is to be remembered that eleven crowns was just the sum that remained in d’Artagnan’s purse. and which he had entirely forgotten. had eaten three times as much as a horse of his size could reasonably supposed to have done—d’Artagnan found nothing in his pocket but his little old velvet purse with the eleven crowns it contained. but when he found that he had come to the conviction that the letter was not to be found. asked. ‘My letter of recommendation!’ cried d’Artagnan. the master had slyly put that on one side to make himself a larding pin. replacing his bandages himself. which the host had carefully placed in the scabbard.’ ‘What she?’ demanded the host. that his sword had been in his first conflict broken in two. the holy blood. which was. and descending to the kitchen without help. But when the time came to pay for his rosemary. 22 The Three Musketeers The young man commenced his search for the letter with the greatest patience. some wine. and rosemary—for upon seeing this hotheaded youth become exasperated and threaten to destroy everything in the establishment if his letter were not found. d’Artagnan walked about that same evening. and some rosemary. the yellow horse.

and that you even had a letter for that illustrious gentleman. believed he could make this somewhat hazardous reply without telling of a falsehood. at his wit’s end. Father Joseph. ‘The devil!’ cried the host. ‘When I informed him that your lordship was the protege of Monsieur de Treville.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘Zounds! I think it does indeed!’ cried the Gascon. reckoning upon entering into the king’s service in consequence of this recommendation. he set the first example of commencing an earnest search for the lost letter. There was. and asked me where that letter was. it has been stolen from you. I would rather have lost a thousand pistoles than have lost it.’ continued d’Artagnan. ‘But it’s of no importance. none of the travelers present. with natural assurance.’ continued the host. The fact was that none of his servants.‘where is this letter?’ ‘Yes. who.’ answered d’Artagnan. ‘Bills upon his Majesty’s private treasury. ‘What!’ cried d’Artagnan. and immediately came down into the kitchen. as the cardinal’s familiar was called. where your doublet was. as he knew better than anyone else how entirely personal the value of this letter was. ‘Does the letter contain anything valuable?’ demanded the host. M. but little convinced. he will know how to find it. ‘It contained my fortune!’ ‘Bills upon Spain?’ asked the disturbed host. After the king and the cardinal. ‘In the first place. who reckoned upon this letter for making his way at court. such was the terror inspired by his Gray Eminence. ‘that you suspect that impertinent gentleman?’ ‘I tell you I am sure of it. could have gained anything by being possessed of this paper. and the servants with their sticks. where is this letter?’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘it’s of no importance. A ray of light all at once broke upon the mind of the host as he was giving himself to the devil upon finding nothing. ‘No.’ resumed d’Artagnan. He remained there some time alone. and it must be found. He came down into the kitchen. ‘Do you say. I warn you that that letter is for Monsieur de Treville. to be sure.’ ‘Stolen? By whom?’ ‘By the gentleman who was here 25 . he appeared to be very much disturbed.’ ‘Do you think so?’ answered d’Artagnan. ‘That letter is not lost!’ cried he. but a certain juvenile modesty restrained him. ‘I will comFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Then that’s my thief. The money is 24 The Three Musketeers nothing. after a few minutes of useless investigation. and even by citizens. but his name was never pronounced but with a subdued voice. and was nothing in it likely to tempt cupidity. I would lay a wager he has stolen it.’ He would not have risked more if he had said twenty thousand. de Treville was the man whose name was perhaps most frequently repeated by the military.’ His threat completed the intimidation of the host. and ordering his wife to do the same with her broom handle. where he knew your doublet was. Throwing down his spit. that letter was everything.

confident in the present. carrying his little packet under his 27 . in the paternal estimation. in order to repair to the residence of M. where his owner sold him for three crowns. inquiring of the first Musketeer he met for the situation of the hotel of M. cap in hand. at which hour he rose. near the Luxembourg. to the gate. considering that d’Artagnan had ridden him hard during the last stage. As soon as the earnest money was paid. and then returned toward the Louvre. and Monsieur de Treville will complain to the king.plain to Monsieur de Treville. that is to say. and remounted his yellow horse. provincial as it was. and walked about till he found an apartment to be let on terms suited to the scantiness of his means. Antoine at Paris. After this. in the immediate vicinity of the chamber hired by d’Artagnan—a circumstance which appeared to furnish a happy augury for 26 The Three Musketeers the success of his journey. satisfied with the way in which he had conducted himself at Meung. situated in the Rue des Fossoyeurs. d’Artagnan took possession of his lodging. This sleep. and full of hope for the future. de Treville. d’Artagnan. which bore him without any further accident to the gate of St. who accompanied him. Thus the dealer to whom d’Artagnan sold him for the nine livres did not conceal from the young man that he only gave that enormous sum for him on the account of the originality of his color. This chamber was a sort of garret.’ He then drew two crowns majestically from his purse and gave them to the host. the third personage in the kingdom. de Treville. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. which proved to be in the Rue du Vieux-Colombier. and passed the remainder of the day in sewing onto his doublet and hose some ornamental braiding which his mother had taken off an almost-new doublet of the elder M. Next he went to the Quai de Feraille to have a new blade put to his sword. Thus d’Artagnan entered Paris on foot. brought him to nine o’clock in the morning. he retired to bed and slept the sleep of the brave. and which she had given her son secretly. without remorse for the past. which was a very good price.

after the reduction of Paris. a Poltiot de Mere. with a blind valor. His was one of those rare organizations. Thanks to this double gift and the spotless name that accompanied it. but very little in the way of wealth. that is to say. as he has ended by styling himself in Paris. had borne him to the top of that difficult ladder called Court Favor. it is true. his still more insolent success at a time when blows poured down like hail. which formed the second part of his motto. and he faithfully promised himself that he would not fail to seize it by its three hairs Free eBooks at Planet eBook. he would advise him to choose as a second. He was the friend of the king. which constituted the first. and a prompt hand. or a Vitry. and Treville next—or 29 . the only inheritance he was able to leave his son was his sword and his motto. Many might take for their device the epithet STRONG. himself first. up to this period nothing had been wanting to Treville but opportunity. was accustomed to say that if he had a friend who was about to fight. perhaps. endowed with an obedient intelligence like that of the dog. but still a liking. The father of M. a self-interested liking. and was so faithful to his motto. had really commenced life as d’Artagnan now did. that Louis XIII. and who constantly paid his debts with that of which he never stood in need of borrowing. a Maurevers. and the hand to strike this displeasing personage. de Treville. At that unhappy period it was an important consideration to be surrounded by such men as Treville. whether a Besme. de Treville had served him so faithfully in his wars against the league that in default of money—a thing to which the Bearnais was accustomed all his life. which he had climbed four steps at a time. a quick eye. who honored highly. M. In short. one of the good blades of his kingdom. as his family was still called in Gascony. to whom sight appeared only to be given to see if the king were dissatisfied with anyone. without a sou in his pocket. and intelligence which makes the poorest Gascon gentleman often derive more in his hope from the paternal inheritance than the richest Perigordian or Berrichan gentleman derives in reality from his. de Troisville. as everyone knows. Thus Louis XIII had a real liking for Treville—a royal liking. with ready wit—in default of money. the memory of his father. DE TREVILLE M. Treville was one of these latter. that is to say. we repeat. but he was ever on the watch for it. shrewdness. with the motto FIDELIS ET FORTIS. to assume for his arms a golden lion passant upon gules. de Treville was admitted into the household of the young prince where he made such good use of his sword. before himself. so that when the illustrious companion of the great Henry died. Henry IV. but with a fund of audacity. he authorized him. This 28 The Three Musketeers was a great matter in the way of honor. His insolent bravery.2 THE ANTECHAMBER OF M. or M. but very few gentlemen could lay claim to the FAITHFUL.

one does not find this worthy gentleman blamed even by his enemies. and ready to sacrifice themselves to wash out the smallest insult. half-drunk. what his Ordinaries had been to Henry III. in the public walks. He had his Musketeers therefore. and who. and these two powerful rivals vied with each other in procuring. de Treville employed this powerful weapon for the king. obedient to his least word. imposing. We learn this from the memoirs of a man who was concerned in some few of these defeats and in many of these victories. Treville understood admirably the war method of that 30 The Three Musketeers period. and he had many such among men of the pen as well as among men of the sword. On his part.whenever it came within reach of his hand. not only from all the provinces of France. He paraded his Musketeers before the Cardinal Armand Duplessis with an insolent air which made the gray moustache of his Eminence curl with ire. should have his guard. Each boasted the bearing and the courage of his own people. While exclaiming loudly against duels and brawls. Treville had grasped the weak side of his master. de Treville was praised to the highest note by these men. His soldiers formed a legion of devil-may-care fellows. and the friends of the king—and then for himself and his own friends. or rather in fanaticism. who were to Louis XIII in devotedness. but even from all foreign states. was this worthy gentleman accused of deriving personal advantage from the cooperation of his minions. let us say. perfectly undisciplined toward all but himself. then drawing in the open streets. clanking their swords. de Treville being there to claim them. who adored 31 . or rather this first king of France. sometimes killed. When he saw the formidable and chosen body with which Louis XIII had surrounded himself. twisting their mustaches. became desirous that he. At last Louis XIII made Treville the captain of his Musketeers. they excited them secretly to quarrel. Thus M. Endowed with a rare genius for intrigue which rendered him the equal of the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Loose. It was not uncommon for Richelieu and Louis XIII to dispute over their evening game of chess upon the merits of their servants. For the rest. as if it were the best of all possible sports. the king’s Musketeers. this second. trembled before him like scholars before their master. shouting. M. as Louis XIII had his. In no instance. and taking great pleasure in annoying the Guards of the cardinal whenever they could fall in with them. spread themselves about in the cabarets. the cardinal was not behind the king in this respect. in the memoirs of this period. and it was to this address that he owed the long and constant favor of a king who has not left the reputation behind him of being very faithful in his friendships. which has left so many memoirs. in the first place. or rather M. ruffians as they were. and the public sports. de Treville’s. too. but sure in that case to be both wept and avenged. M. but then certain of not rotting in prison. and his Scotch Guard to Louis XI. deriving an immoderate satisfaction or genuine regret from the success or defeat of their own combatants. in which he who could not live at the expense of the enemy must live at the expense of his compatriots. often killing others. the most celebrated swordsmen.

ascended and descended the office seekers of Paris. and servants in all sorts of liveries. he had become one of the most gallant frequenters of revels. left his personal splendor to each of his favorites. From fifty to sixty Musketeers. It was. there might be reckoned in Paris at that time more than two hundred smaller but still noteworthy leeves. and that was not saying a 33 . particularly at this period. When he had once passed the massive door covered with long square-headed nails. those who were called. resembled a camp from by six o’clock in the morning in summer and eight o’clock in winter. but he could not help observing that they turned round to look at him. had only to place himself at the window to review both his men and arms. Still further. and playing tricks one with another. particularly for a provincial just arriving from his province. one of the softest whisperers of interesting nothings of his day. in spite of sword thrusts which weaken. who had Free eBooks at Planet eBook. who crossed one another in their passage. who ran after any sort of favor—gentlemen from the provinces anxious to be enrolled. In the antechamber. feared. de Bassompierre had been talked of twenty years before. in his office contiguous to this antechamber. into the midst of this tumult and disorder that our young man advanced with a beating heat. received visits. one of the most insinuating lady’s men. with that half-smile of the embarrassed a provincial who wishes to put on a good face. and painful exercises which fatigue. it was necessary to be an officer. de Treville. the compatriots of d’Artagnan had the reputation of not being easily intimidated. Among these two hundred leeves. de Treville. bringing 32 The Three Musketeers and carrying messages between their masters and M. or a pretty woman. while M. his individual value to each of his courtiers. quarreling. Louis XIV absorbed all the smaller stars of his court in his own vast radiance. the BONNES FORTUNES of de Treville were talked of as those of M.ablest intriguers. then. and like the king in his balcony at the Louvre. It is true that this provincial was a Gascon. upon long circular benches. and for the first time in his life d’Artagnan. calling out. The day on which d’Artagnan presented himself the assemblage was imposing. he remained an honest man. In this apartment a continued buzzing prevailed from morning till night. situated in the Rue du VieuxColombier. that of Treville was one of the most sought. When he had passed one group he began to breathe more freely. and this constitutes the zenith of human fortune. a great noble. gave his orders. On one of those immense staircases. a sun PLURIBUS IMPAR. ranging his long rapier up his lanky leg. In addition to the leeves of the king and the cardinal. that is to say. but his father. and that. paraded constantly. he fell into the midst of a troop of swordsmen. and loved. reposed the elect. listened to complaints. upon whose space modern civilization would build a whole house. armed to the teeth and ready for anything. who appeared to replace one another in order always to present an imposing number. In order to make one’s way amid these turbulent and conflicting waves. The captain of the Musketeers was therefore admired. and keeping one hand on the edge of his cap. The court of his hotel.

There. These three others fenced against him with their agile swords. prevented. and in the antechamber. or at least endeavored to prevent. another on the ear. his mistress. naked sword in hand. Arrived at the staircase. and yet he had not gained the goal. to his great astonishment. and Mme. but he soon perceived by certain scratches that every weapon was pointed and sharpened. laughed like so many madmen. his respect for the cardinal was scandalized in the antechamber. d’Aguillon. That great man who was so revered by d’Artagnan the elder served as an object of ridicule to the Musketeers of Treville. stationed upon the top stair. His warm and fickle imagination. for there were still the landing place and the antechamber. Some sang ballads about Mme. But if his morals were shocked on the landing. as well as the private life of the cardinal. it was still worse. and that at each of these scratches not only the spectators. amusing themselves with the following exercise. but amused themselves with stories about women. He had seen in his province—that land in which heads become so easily heated—a few of the preliminaries of duels. In five minutes three were slightly wounded. in the antechamber he trembled. which so many great nobles had been punished for trying to pry into. while others formed Free eBooks at Planet eBook. One of them. d’Artagnan heard the policy which made all Europe tremble criticized aloud and openly. but the daring of these four fencers appeared to him the strongest he had ever heard of even in Gascony. his niece. this pastime really 34 The Three Musketeers astonished him. and even sometimes their mistresses. On the landing d’Artagnan blushed. with stories about the court. The conditions required that at every hit the man touched should quit the game. by the defender of the stair. the three others from ascending. had never dreamed. one on the hand. On the landing they were no longer fighting. who cracked their jokes upon his bandy legs and his crooked back. of half the amorous wonders or a quarter of the feats of gallantry which were here set forth in connection with names the best known and with details the least concealed. to astonish our young traveler. He believed himself transported into that famous country of giants into which Gulliver afterward went and was so frightened. which in Gascony had rendered formidable to young chambermaids. felt ridiculous. or rather as he pretended it was. A circle was formed around them. Cambalet.till that day entertained a very good opinion of himself. However difficult it might be. D’Artagnan at first took these weapons for foils. There were four Musketeers on the bottom 35 . yielding his turn for the benefit of the adversary who had hit him. three turns of favor. who himself remained intact—a piece of skill which was worth to him. but even the actors themselves. and believed them to be buttoned. while ten or twelve of their comrades waited upon the landing place to take their turn in the sport. according to the rules agreed upon. even in moments of delirium. He who at the moment occupied the upper step kept his adversaries marvelously in check.

a little recovered from his first surprise. de Treville. and despite his confidence on the paternal admonitions.’ ‘Ah. The center of the most animated group was a Musketeer of great height and haughty countenance. from which was suspended a gigantic rapier. had now leisure to study costumes and physiognomy.parties and plans to annoy the pages and guards of the cardinal duke—all things which appeared to d’Artagnan monstrous impossibilities. and coughed from time to time affectedly. if he knew I was in the society of such pagans?’ We have no need. Nevertheless. but a fresh allusion soon brought back the conversation to his Eminence. one must lay out one’s inheritance somehow. a sort of gag seemed to close for a moment on all these jeering mouths. that he had put on his cloak. Although he was a perfect stranger in the court of M. and then the laughter recovered its loudness and the light was not withheld from any of his actions. ‘What would you have?’ said the Musketeer. At this demand d’Artagnan gave his name very modestly. and somebody came and 36 The Three Musketeers asked him what he wanted. and d’Artagnan more than anyone. to say that d’Artagnan dared not join in the conversation. and appeared to doubt the thickness of the partition between them and the office of M. ‘Certes. They looked hesitatingly around them. dressed in a costume so peculiar as to attract general attention. promised to transmit in due season. and over this a magnificent baldric. when the name of the king was now and then uttered unthinkingly amid all these cardinal 37 . with an air of protection. worked in gold. What would my good father say. disclosing in front the splendid baldric. de Treville’s courtiers. and begged the servant who had put the question to him to request a moment’s audience of M. I shall be held as an accomplice. de Treville—a request which the other. stretching his five senses so as to lose nothing. ‘don’t try to make us believe you obtained that baldric by paternal genFree eBooks at Planet eBook. therefore. for from the moment I have either listened to or heard them. This Musketeer had just come off guard. I admit. but still it is the fashion.’ thought the terrified d’Artagnan. emphasized the title of compatriot. all admired his embroidered baldric. complained of having a cold. It is a folly. and while he spoke with a lofty air and twisted his mustache disdainfully. no doubt. It was for this reason. with them. these fellows will all either be imprisoned or hanged. A long cloak of crimson velvet fell in graceful folds from his shoulders. a little faded and worn. only he looked with all his eyes and listened with all his ears. ‘This fashion is coming in. Besides. he felt himself carried by his tastes and led by his instincts to praise rather than to blame the unheard-of things which were taking place. Porthos!’ cried one of his companions. which shone like water ripples in the sun. He did not wear the uniform cloak—which was not obligatory at that epoch of less liberty but more independence—but a cerulean-blue doublet. D’Artagnan. who so strongly pointed out to me the respect due to the cardinal. he was at length noticed. and this his first appearance in that place. ‘and I. as he said to those around him.

without addressing anyone in particular.’ The wonder was increased. This affirmation appeared to dispel all doubts with re38 The Three Musketeers gard to the baldric. mild eye. has his letters stolen from him by means of a traitor. laughed without noise. had tricked Monsieur de Laigues. indeed!’ said Porthos. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as the rest of his person. he appeared to dread to lower his hands lest their veins should swell. Habitually he spoke little and slowly. a brigand. he appeared to take great care. ‘that I bought this new purse with what my mistress put into the old one. but said no more about it. you knew it. with an open.erosity.’ said Aramis. ‘And what does he say?’ asked Porthos. ‘and the proof is that I paid twelve pistoles for it. and that this cursed Rochefort. ‘Say no more about it! PESTE! You come to your conclusions quickly.’ ‘It’s true. ‘He relates that he met at Brussels Rochefort. turning toward another Musketeer. with the help of this spy and thanks to this correspondence. and cheeks rosy and downy as an autumn peach. bowed frequently. and while we are still gaping with wonder at the news.’ ‘Say no more about it? That’s YOUR opinion!’ replied Porthos. ‘Is it not true. which were fine and of which. and he pinched the tips of his ears from time to time to preserve their delicate pink transparency. This other Musketeer formed a perfect contrast to his interrogator. Chalais’s throat cut. I bought it with the contents of my own purse. He was a stout man. the AME DAMNEE of the cardinal disguised as a Capuchin.’ said another Musketeer. near the gate St. thanks to his disguise. Let us say no more about it. about in the same manner. ‘but is the matter certain?’ ‘I had it from Aramis. showing his teeth. a rascal-has. but on the contrary speaking to everybody. in a self-sufficient tone. ‘I told you of it yesterday. under the stupid pretext that he wanted to kill the king and marry Monsieur to the queen! Nobody knew a word of this enigma. a black. like a ninny as he is. He answered the appeal of his friend by an affirmative nod of the head. Honor. What! The cardinal sets a spy upon a gentleman.’ ‘A ninny. 39 . His delicate mustache marked a perfectly straight line upon his upper lip. ‘What do you think of the story Chalais’s esquire relates?’ asked another Musketeer. ingenuous countenance. who had just designated him by the name of Aramis. the conversation passed suddenly to another subject. though the doubt continued to exist. of about twoor three-andtwenty. though. You unraveled it yesterday to the great satisfaction of all.’ answered he whom they designated by the name Porthos. It was given to you by that veiled lady I met you with the other Sunday.’ ‘No.’ said Porthos. Aramis?’ said Porthos.’ replied the Musketeer. upon honor and by the faith of a gentleman. and with a rapid change of thought. ‘Yes. ‘Indeed?’ ‘Why. They continued to admire it.

patiently. no one asks for your secret-all the world knows your discretion.’ replied Porthos. don’t be angry. you are as vain as Narcissus. should pass a minute or two very uncomfortably with me. that I continue to study theology for that purpose. from whose usually mild eye a flash passed like lightning. if Monsieur de Treville heard you. ‘He only waits for one thing to determine him to resume his cassock.’ replied Aramis. why the devil don’t you make use of it with respect to her Majesty? Let whoever likes talk of the king and the come and tell us today. be assured. be a Musketeer or an abbe. let us talk about it. gentlemen.’ ‘No jesting upon that subject. since you desire it. you know what is agreed upon between you.’ ‘He will be one. I beg of you. which hangs behind his uniform. good sir. I’ll circulate that 41 .’ replied Aramis. the cousin of Madame de Chevreuse.’ cried Porthos.’ interrupted Porthos. ‘My dear fellow. and how he likes. then. you would repent of speaking thus.’ cried Porthos. Oh. you eat at everybody’s mess. ‘Oh. ‘he will be one. Be one or the other. ‘Let us say no more about it. my good friend. you wear too magnificent a baldric to be strong on that head.’ 40 The Three Musketeers replied Aramis. as he says.’ replied Aramis. ‘Aramis. but the queen is sacred. ‘This Rochefort. you go to Madame de Bois-Tracy’s.’ ‘Sooner. what a delicious abbe you would have made!’ ‘Oh. my dear fellow. I plainly tell you so. the Red Duke! Bravo! Bravo! The Red Duke!’ cried Porthos. and if anyone speaks of her. I will be an Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘Only till the queen has given an heir to the crown of France. a tolerably scandalous meaning. that would be useless.’ ‘Porthos. ‘What is he waiting for?’ asked another. But since you possess that virtue. ‘if I were the esquire of poor Chalais. apparently so simple. ‘Your wit is always leading you beyond bounds. and you pass for being far advanced in the good graces of that lady. it’s only a temporary postponement.’ said Aramis. let it be respectfully. except when it is done by Athos. Ah. this time you are wrong. Porthos?’ cried Aramis. ‘You know what Athos told you the other day. Porthos. ‘I shall be one someday. sooner or later.’ said another Musketeer.’ replied Aramis. As to you. with a significant smile which gave to this sentence. ‘You know I hate moralizing. clapping his hands and nodding his head. Who says this Aramis is not a wit? What a misfortune it is you did not follow your first vocation. but not both. ‘The Red Duke is capital. ‘thank God the queen is still of an age to give one!’ ‘They say that Monsieur de Buckingham is in France.’ ‘Are you going to give me a lesson.’ said Porthos.’’ ‘Well. and you pay your court to her. You go to Madame d’Aguillon’s. You very well know.’ ‘And you—you would pass rather a sad quarter-hour with the Red Duke. Athos and me. good Lord! Don’t trouble yourself to reveal your good luck.

’ cried a servant. with a louder voice at each time. Their appearance. congratulating himself with all his heart at having so narrowly escaped the end of this strange quarrel. but stepping toward the antechamber and making a sign to d’Artagnan with his hand. ‘Monsieur de Treville awaits Monsieur d’Artagnan. the Bearnese accent of which recalled to him at the same time his youth and his country—a double remembrance which makes a man smile at all ages. the admiration of d’Artagnan. when the door Free eBooks at Planet eBook. When the two Musketeers had entered. armed with all his thunders. immediately quitted the group of which they had formed a part. although it was not quite at ease. 3 THE AUDIENCE M. In the meanwhile I am a Musketeer. and who answered to the last of these three names. and he smiled on receiving d’Artagnan’s response. who beheld in these two men demigods.abbe if it suits me. throwing open the door of the cabinet. and amid the general silence the young man crossed part of the length of the antechamber. and advanced toward the cabinet. the door of which closed after them as soon as they had entered. in that quality I say what I please. and entered the apartment of the captain of the Musketeers. everyone became mute. At this announcement. during which the door remained open. he called three times. ‘Athos! Porthos! Aramis!’ The two Musketeers with whom we have already made acquaintance. de Treville was at the moment in rather ill-humor. and at this moment it pleases me to say that you weary me. excited by its 43 42 The Three Musketeers . who bowed to the very ground. nevertheless he saluted the young man politely. and in their leader an Olympian Jupiter. as if to ask his permission to finish with others before he began with him.’ ‘Aramis!’ ‘Porthos!’ ‘Gentlemen! Gentlemen!’ cried the surrounding group. so that he ran through the intervening tones between the imperative accent and the angry accent. at once full of dignity and submission.

The cardinal related yesterday while playing with the king. and with a frowning brow. ‘and his majesty was right. say you? And of what malady?’ ‘It is feared that it may be the smallpox. to which the summons which had been made had doubtless furnished fresh food. ‘Yes. it’s all my fault. because it is myself who selects my men. glancing at me with his tigercat’s eye.’ *A watered liquor. d’Artagnan did not know where he was. in his politest tone and with his most graceful bow. Ah. the whole length of his cabinet. added he. warmly.’ ‘But I hope that you will do us the honor to tell us. yes.’ replied the two Musketeers.’ cried he. and covering them from head to foot with an angry look. when M. and the cardinal named you. and that a party of his Guards (I thought he was going to laugh in my face) had been forced to arrest the rioters! MORBLEU! You must know something about it. 44 The Three Musketeers it is true that the Musketeers make but a miserable figure at court. de Treville had three or four times paced in silence. after a moment’s silence. sir. ‘Do you know what the king said to me. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. killed. Aramis. you were recognized. sir. and wished himself a hundred feet underground. but wounded without doubt. The two Musketeers reddened to the whites of their eyes.was closed behind 45 .’ ‘The smallpox! That’s a great story to tell me. growing warmer as he spoke. this swordplay at the crossways. Where is he?’ ‘Ill—‘ ‘Very ill. had made a riot in the Rue Ferou in a cabaret.’ added Aramis. ‘and what is serious is that it will certainly spoil his face. I will not have this haunting of bad places. who were as upright and silent as if on parade—he stopped all at once full in front of them. perhaps. made from the second pressing of the grape. those DAREDEVILS—he dwelt upon those words with an ironical tone still more displeasing to me—those BRAGGARTS. But it’s all my fault. gentlemen?’ ‘No. for.’ replied Porthos. with an air of condolence very displeasing to me. that the day before yesterday those DAMNED MUSKETEERS. had recommenced. no. You. desirous of taking his turn in the conversation. ‘no.’ ‘The Guards of the cardinal! And why so?’ asked Porthos. ‘and that no longer ago than yesterday evening—do you know. ‘Because he plainly perceives that his piquette* stands in need of being enlivened by a mixture of good wine.’ continued M. when the buzzing murmur of the antechamber. Arrest Musketeers! You were among them—you were! Don’t deny it. de Treville. Porthos. why the devil did you ask me for a uniform when you would have been so much better in a cassock? And you. this quarreling in the streets. yes. we do not. ‘He told me that he should henceforth recruit his Musketeers from among the Guards of Monsieur the Cardinal. upon my honor. do you only wear such a fine golden baldric to suspend a sword of straw from it? And Athos—I don’t see Athos. Porthos! Sick of the smallpox at his age! No. if I knew! S’blood! Messieurs Musketeers. passing each time before Porthos and Aramis.

’ ‘I did not know 47 . from the door of the cabinet to the street gate. one by one. are they?’ continued M. Killed him. did not lose a syllable of what he said. ‘Ah! The king’s Musketeers are arrested by the Guards of the cardinal. they had not felt it was the great love he bore them which made him speak thus. at the bottom of all this. one cannot win all one’s battles! The great Pompey lost that of Pharsalia. and if he refuses me. ‘the truth is that we were six against six. and fell again twice. who are brave. All without had heard. the insulting expressions of the captain to all the people in the antechamber. I will give in my resignation as captain of the king’s Musketeers to take a lieutenancy in the cardinal’s Guards.’ ‘And I have the honor of assuring you that I killed one of them with his own sword. ‘What! Six of his Eminence’s Guards arrest six of his Majesty’s Musketeers! MORBLEU! My part is taken! I will go straight to the lou46 The Three Musketeers vre. nevertheless lost the Battle of Pavia. besides. and before we had time to draw our swords. But we were not captured by fair means. and grasped the hilts of their swords with all their might. the whole hotel was boiling. de Treville’s tone of voice. as is most agreeable to you. and Athos.and above all. D’Artagnan looked for some tapestry behind which he might hide himself. as I have heard say. that he was very angry about something. Ten curious heads were glued to the tapestry and became pale with fury. and left him very quiet on the field of battle. was very little better. to scamper away. MORBLEU! I will turn abbe. Captain. To save yourselves. nothing was to be heard but oaths and blasphemies. as furious at heart as his soldiers.’ At these words. That’s the whole story. Captain. as good as other folks. skillful men who never put themselves in a position to be arrested. de Treville. crossed one another in the air. who was. while their mouths repeated as he went on.’ said Aramis. to laugh at you! I am sure of it—they would prefer dying on the spot to being arrested or taking back a step. Well. he endeavored twice to get up. from M. and Aramis called. or poniarded him. to flee—that is good for the king’s Musketeers!’ Porthos and Aramis trembled with rage. into the bosoms of his auditors. closely applied to the door. they bit their lips till the blood came. sir. On the way we escaped. ‘for mine was broken at the first parry. if. in a somewhat Free eBooks at Planet eBook. so to say. the SANG DIEUS. ‘Well. as we have said. never allow themselves to be arrested. grievously wounded. the murmur without became an explosion. and who. de Treville. two of our party were dead. In an instant. for their ears.’ said Porthos. and Francis the First. I will not have occasion given for the cardinal’s Guards. They could willingly have strangled M. not thinking it worth the trouble to carry him away. For you know Athos. they believed him to be dead. They stamped upon the carpet with their feet. Athos. Porthos. but emphasizing his words and plunging them. As for Athos. de Treville. What the devil.’ replied M. and felt an immense inclination to crawl under the table. quiet. The MORBLEUS. my Captain. And we did not surrender—no! They dragged us away by force. the MORTS TOUTS LES DIABLES. quite beside himself. and had guessed. like so many blows of a stiletto.

M. de Treville seized his right hand and pressed it with all his might. M. s’blood. ‘You have sent for me. Athos!’ And without waiting for the answer of the newcomer to this proof of affection. ‘The cardinal exaggerated. ‘Athos!’ cried the two Musketeers. He would be in despair if that should come to the ears of the king. that the Musketeer should be carried into an adjoining chamber. whatever might be his self-command. grew paler than he was before. so strong was the excitement produced by the arrival of Athos. de Treville was about to reprehend this breach of the rules of etiquette. ‘Athos!’ repeated M. moved to the bottom of his heart by this proof of courage.’ said Athos to M. he not thinking to shut the door against anyone. seeing that after crossing the shoulder it penetrates into the chest. He pushed through the crowd. the whole assemblage rushed into the cabinet. he required. entered the cabinet. sprang toward him. carried away by the enthusiasm of the moment. without perceiving that Athos. EveryFree eBooks at Planet eBook.softened 49 . de Treville. M. approached Athos. ‘mine! The king’s! The best! A surgeon! Or. and behind the surgeon the door closed. generally held so sacred. seeing his captain become appeased. but frightfully pale. who bore their comrade in their arms. ‘I was about to say to these gentlemen. the Musketeer. Your hand. de Treville. and if possible. when he felt the hand of Athos. But all this eager attention might have been useless if the doctor so loudly called for had not chanced to be in the hotel. though kept as a secret. de Treville. for brave men are very dear to the king. as I perceive. at length overcome by it. ‘you have sent for me. Immediately M. de Treville. A burst of satisfaction hailed the last words of the captain. ‘that I forbid my Musketeers to expose their lives needlessly. appeared through the openings of the tapestry. what do you want with me?’ And at these words. I am here. as my comrades inform me. de Treville himself. and I have hastened to receive your orders. de Treville.’ continued Aramis. and as all this noise and commotion inconvenienced him greatly. who. ventured to risk a prayer.’ added he. de Treville opened and pointed the way to Porthos and Aramis. with a tolerably firm step. ‘do not say that Athos is wounded. appeared under the fringe. my brave Athos will die!’ At the cries of M. who had rallied all his energies to contend against pain. sir. fell upon the floor as if he were dead. was known to all. and as the wound is very serious. whose wound. ‘A surgeon!’ cried M. still insensible. belted as usual. it is to be feared—‘ At this instant the tapestry was raised and a noble and handsome head. allowed a 48 The Three Musketeers slight murmur of pain to escape him. Behind this group walked the surgeon. The cabinet of M. became in an instant the annex of the antechamber. and two or three heads. in irreproachable costume. The door had remained open.’ ‘But pray. and the king knows that his Musketeers are the bravest on the earth. in a feeble yet perfectly calm voice. as the first and most urgent thing. and all crowded round the wounded man. sir.

and in an instant recovering all his remembrances of the present and the 51 . I will do something for you. came straight to the point. and consigning the cardinal and his Guards to all the devils. I dare say Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The event which had occurred had in some degree broken the thread of his ideas.’ said he. The surgeon declared that the situation of the Musketeer had nothing in it to render his friends uneasy. ‘but it may not be so far beyond your hopes as you believe. M. and I inform you with regret that no one becomes a Musketeer without the preliminary ordeal of several campaigns. or rather as you appear to believe. The injured man had recovered his senses. and vociferated. Soldiers are big children. I comprehend that such a favor is enormous. ‘But. de Treville made a sign with his hand. as I have said. de Treville grasped the situation.’ continued M.’ ‘It is indeed a favor. de Treville alone remaining with the wounded. By this smile M.’ said he. Our recruits from Bearn are not generally very rich. smiling. cursing. ‘What can I do for the son? Tell me quickly. ‘pardon me my dear compatriot. feeling his desire to don the Musketeer’s uniform vastly increased by the great difficulties which preceded the attainment of it. his weakness having been purely and simply caused by loss of blood. but as I maintain that the orders of the king. but I had wholly forgotten you. Porthos and Aramis re-entered. de Treville. charged with even a greater responsibility than the father of an ordinary family. harangued. it was my intention to request of you. de Treville. ‘on account of my old companion. ‘I respected your father very much. At length. young man. and I have no reason to think matters have much changed in this respect since I left the province.’ replied M. your father. but after all that I have seen during the last two hours. the uniform of a Musketeer. d’Artagnan then repeated his name. should be executed—‘ D’Artagnan could not restrain a smile. Then M. or a service of two years in some other regiment less favored than ours. and tremble lest I should not merit it. An instant after. swearing. and more particularly the 50 The Three Musketeers orders of the cardinal. But his majesty’s decision is always necessary. M. in remembrance of the friendship which you have not forgotten. on turning round.’ D’Artagnan bowed without replying. But what help is there for it! A captain is nothing but a father of a family. certain brilliant actions. my time is not my own. and changing the conversation. and with the tenacity of a Gascon remained in his spoke. fixing upon his compatriot a look so piercing that it might be said he wished to read the thoughts of his heart. ‘Pardon me. young man. and all retired except d’Artagnan. de Treville judged that he had not to deal with a fool.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Monsieur. who did not forget that he had an audience. M. the surgeon and M. found himself alone with the young man. He inquired what was the will of his persevering visitor. ‘on quitting Tarbes and coming hither. de Treville. de Treville himself returned. When all had gone out and the door was closed.

such a one as would be made by the grazing of a ball. He could not refrain from a smile of visible satisfaction. ‘I cannot but perceive how sadly I miss the letter of introduction which my father gave me to pres52 The Three Musketeers ent to you.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘Of complexion and brown hair?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. de Treville loved incense as well as a king. ‘had not this gentlemen a slight scar on his cheek?’ ‘Yes. sir. and would have fought with anyone who dared to tell me I was not in a condition to purchase the Louvre. stranger as he was to all the manners of a court. You will learn horsemanship. sir. or even a cardinal. de Treville possessed at the commencement of his. Our best-born and richest gentlemen sometimes solicit it without being able to obtain it.’ continued M.’ cried d’Artagnan. that’s very well.’ said M. de Treville. and.’ ‘Yes. and all with a warmth and truthfulness that delighted M. but you ought also to endeavor to perfect yourself in the exercises becoming a gentleman. de Treville.’ Flattery was at that period very current. but why should I have done otherwise? A name like yours must be as a buckler to me on my way. young man. ‘that’s all very well. such as I could wish. I will write a letter today to the Director of the Royal Academy. ‘you mentioned my name. Do not refuse this little service. ‘that you should undertake so long a journey without that necessary passport. thank God. ‘I ask alms of no man. Judge if I should not put myself under its protection. to husband the means you have. Thanks to the sale of his horse. just to tell me how you are getting on. I know these 53 . ‘Alas. after meditating a minute. and returning to the adventure of have not brought too large a stock of money with you?’ D’Artagnan drew himself up with a proud air which plainly said. could not but perceive a little coldness in this reception. swordsmanship in all its branches.’ ‘Was he not a fine-looking man?’ ‘Yes. You will make some desirable acquaintances.’ replied M. the sole resource of us poor Bearnese. de Treville.’ ‘Of lofty stature.’ He then related the adventure of Meung. ‘This is all very strange. I myself came to Paris with four crowns in my purse. and M. ‘but it was perfidiously stolen from me. described the unknown gentleman with the greatest minuteness. and from time to time you can call upon me. but this smile soon disappeared. and to say whether I can be of further service to you. then. sir. aloud?’ ‘Yes. I certainly committed that imprudence. ‘You ought. I say.’ ‘I certainly am surprised.’ continued he. however large the sum may be.’ D’Artagnan.’ ‘I had one. then. and dancing. ‘Tell me. he commenced his career with four more crowns than M. de Treville.’ D’Artagnan’s bearing became still more imposing.’ said he. and tomorrow he will admit you without any expense to yourself.

’ ‘Was this woman English?’ ‘He called her Milady.’ ‘It is he. their apparent bickerings are only feints to deceive fools. ‘He departed immediately after having conversed for a minute with her whom he awaited. he would break you like glass. Let us try him. ‘I wish. should become the dupe of all these artifices and fall into the snare after the example of so many others who have been ruined by it. sir. pass by on the other.’ continued Treville. a brave youth. yes. ‘If you see him coming on one side of the street. I will then release you from all your promises—even that of procuring my admission into the Musketeers. quite fit to make his way. I swear. ‘tell me who he is. that you are acquainted with this man? If I ever find him again—and I will find him. as if struck by a sudden suspicion. full of astute intelligence and affected humility. and whence he is. to place near him.’ said he. ‘seek him not—if I have a right to advise you. slowly.’ ‘That will not prevent me. I am not willing that a compatriot. This great hatred which the young traveler manifested so loudly for this man.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ All at once the captain stopped.‘Yes. a handsome cavalier. it must be he!’ murmured Treville. to discover to you the secrets of our policy. told her not to open it except in London. He was moderately reassured however. were it in hell!’ ‘He was waiting for a woman. and afterward to ruin him as had been done in a thousand other instances? He fixed his eyes upon d’Artagnan even more earnestly than before. by the aspect of that countenance. how is it. The king and the cardinal are the best of friends. ‘but he may be one for the cardinal as well as for me. in order to repair the coldness you may have remarked in my reception of 55 . young man!’ cried Treville. for before everything. ‘if ever I find him.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘You know not the subject of their conversation?’ ‘He gave her a box. ‘I know he is a Gascon. sir. that is he. to win his confidence. as the son of an ancient friend—for I consider this story of the lost letter perfectly true—I wish. ‘I believed him still at Brussels. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. who—a rather improb54 The Three Musketeers able thing—had stolen his father’s letter from him—was there not some perfidy concealed under this hatred? Might not this young man be sent by his Eminence? Might he not have come for the purpose of laying a snare for him? This pretended d’Artagnan—was he not an emissary of the cardinal.’ ‘Beware.’ reflected he. and that my earnest endeavors have no other aim than the service of the king.’ said Treville. I say.’ cried d’Artagnan. if you know who this man is.’ ‘In the meantime. Be assured that I am devoted to both these all-powerful masters. whom the cardinal sought to introduce into Treville’s house.’ ‘My friend. and also the cardinal—one of the most illustrious geniuses that France has ever produced. I wish to avenge myself. Do not cast yourself against such a rock.

if you speak to me. he will certainly not have failed—he. and that is my object beyond all others. for you are the only young man to whom I have hitherto spoken as I have done to you.’ replied d’ 57 . and woe be to him who shall attempt to take it from me!’ M. The more this young man was superior to others. Hereafter. ‘You are an honest youth. as naturally you may. and as if he considered the future in his own hands. So much the better for me. ‘I promised you a letter for the director of the Academy.’ ‘That is to say. whether from your family. I feel that I am 56 The Three Musketeers ruining myself by speaking the truth. Therefore. he seated himself at a table in order to write the promised letter of recommendation. My hotel will be always open to you. but did not entirely remove his suspicions. or even from your instincts. de Treville. de Treville to the others. sir. D’Artagnan answered. d’Artagnan. any of these enmities which we see constantly breaking out against the cardinal. but he thought this addition would do no harm. as may be perceived. but without attaching you to my person. as you say. with the greatest simplicity: ‘I came to Paris with exactly such intentions. be assured. you will probably obtain that which you desire. ‘But wait a minute. young man. Well. ‘you shall not wait long.’ continued he.’ It.’ added he. ‘and I will guard it so carefully that I will be sworn it shall arrive at its address. with frankness—for then you will do me the honor to esteem the resemblance of our opinions.‘Now.’ D’Artagnan added M. created admiration. and if you entertain.’ Treville said to himself: ‘If the cardinal has set this young fox upon me.’ And he bowed in order to retire. with the familiarity of a Gascon. my cunning gossip will assure me that he holds his Eminence in horror.’ M. While he was doing this. stopping him. who knows how bitterly I execrate him—to tell his spy that the best means of making his court to me is to rail at him. de Treville was surprised to the greatest degree. being able to ask for me at all hours. having no better emFree eBooks at Planet eBook. in spite of all my protestations. bid me adieu and let us separate. proved otherwise. ‘that you will wait until I have proved myself worthy of it. the more he was to be dreaded if he meant to deceive him. I hope that my frankness at least will make you my friend. young gentleman?’ ‘No.’ said d’Artagnan. I will aid you in many ways. so much frankness. So much penetration. ‘and the most profound respect for his actions. if it be as I suspect. sir. Are you too proud to accept it. the cardinal. But I still trust you will not esteem me the less for it. ‘I have the greatest veneration for the cardinal. but at the present moment I can only do for you that which I just now offered. My father advised me to stoop to nobody but the king. and leaving his young man compatriot in the embrasure of the window. regulate your conduct accordingly.’ said M. de Treville smiled at this flourish. where they had talked together. however. and consequently to take advantage of all opportunities. your relations. and yourself—whom he considered the first three personages in France. but if you have entertained any doubt.

and rush from the cabinet crying. when. he ran head foremost against a Musketeer who was coming out of one of M. following them with his eyes until they disappeared. de Treville. de Treville was highly astonished to see his protege make a sudden spring. and was darting toward the stairs. ‘Under that pretense you run against me! You say. de Treville. approached the young man in order to give it to him.’ said d’Artagnan. my thief!’ replied d’Artagnan. and rising. crossed the antechamber at three bounds.’ and you believe that is sufficient? Not at all my young man.’ Scarcely had he descended the first stair. endeavoring to resume his course.’ added he. made him utter a cry. become crimson with passion. sealed it. who went away. and striking his shoulder violently. ‘You are in a hurry?’ said the Musketeer. or rather a howl. M. But at the very moment when d’Artagnan stretched out his hand to receive it.ployment. he shall not escape me this time!’ ‘And who?’ asked M. which he reckoned upon descending four at a time. ‘Excuse me. as pale as a sheet. amused himself with beating a march upon the window and with looking at the Musketeers. M. ‘unless. THE BALDRIC OF PORTHOS AND THE HANDKERCHIEF OF ARAMIS D’Artagnan. but I am in a hurry. de Treville’s private rooms. ‘this is a cunning mode of escaping. de Treville. ‘He. ‘excuse me. ‘Ah. ‘Excuse me. in a state of fury. the traitor!’ and he disappeared. comFree eBooks at Planet eBook. in his heedless course. ‘The devil take the madman!’ murmured M. seeing that he had failed in his purpose!’ 4 THE SHOULDER OF ATHOS. ‘S’blood. Do you fancy because you have heard Monsieur de Treville speak to us a little cavalierly today that other people are to treat us as he speaks to us? Undeceive yourself. when a hand of iron seized him by the belt and stopped him. one after 59 58 The Three Musketeers . after having written the letter.

But at the street gate. He was particularly anxious to avoid marring the freshness of the magnificent baldric we are acquainted with.’ said d’Artagnan. D’Artagnan. you can find me without running—ME. As he was about to pass. and let me go where my business calls me. and sought to find his way from under the folds of it. and he sprang forward like a dart between them.rade. ‘however far I may come.’ ‘At what hour?’ ‘About noon.’ ‘Perhaps. who. which blinded him. Porthos was talking with the soldier on guard. ‘you are not polite. But d’Artagnan had reckoned without the wind. you are not Monsieur de Treville. you understand?’ ‘And where. ‘MORBLEU. I said ‘Excuse me. so that d’Artagnan rolled himself up in the velvet by a movement of rotation explained by the persistency of Porthos. ‘Ah! If I were not in such haste. Porthos had reasons for not abandoning this part of his vestments. exactly upon the baldric. but at Athos’s last remark he stopped short. ‘I did not do it intentionally. Vainglorious as he was. the wind blew out Porthos’s long cloak.’ ‘About noon? That will do. however. after the dressing performed by the doctor.’ And he set off running as if the devil possessed him. monsieur!’ said he.’ ‘Good!’ cried d’Artagnan. it is not you who can give me a lesson in good manners. but on timidly opening his eyes. I will be there. recognizing Athos.’ said Athos. whose slow pace could not have carried him far. ‘Monsieur Man-in-a-hurry. D’Artagnan thought it would suffice for him. great haste. and if I were not running after someone. letting him go. he pulled it toward him. and this time on my word of honor—I think perhaps too often—that I am in haste. hoping that he might yet find the stranger. Between the two talkers there was just enough room for a man to pass.’ D’Artagnan had already strode down three or four stairs. hearing the Musketeer swear. I pray you?’ ‘Near the Carmes-Deschaux. the baldric was glittering with gold in the front. he found himself with his nose fixed between the two shoulders of Porthos—that is to say. but was nothing but simple buff behind. Without 61 . but had at least half. and d’Artagnan rushed straight into the middle of it. I warn you. ‘I will be there ten minutes be60 The Three Musketeers fore twelve. Porthos could not afford to have a baldric wholly of gold.’ ‘Monsieur. then.’ ‘My faith!’ replied d’Artagnan. it is easy to perceive that you come from a distance. Leave your hold. for instead of quitting his hold on the flap in his hand. One could comprehend the necessity of the cold and the urgency Free eBooks at Planet eBook. for at quarter past twelve I will cut off your ears as you run. wished to escape from the cloak. I repeat to you. and not doing it intentionally.’ It appears to me that this is quite enough.’ said Athos. I beg of you. Alas. was returning to his own apartment.’ ‘Endeavor not to make me wait. like most things in this world which have nothing in their favor but appearances.

turning the angle of the street.’ ‘Chastised.’ said d’Artagnan. but nothing. and made a movement to rush after d’Artagnan. with two of those beings whom he esteemed so greatly that he placed them in his mind and heart above all other men. and yet this morning had already brought him into disgrace with M. ‘but I am in such haste—I was running after someone and—‘ ‘And do you always forget your eyes when you run?’ asked Porthos. PARDIEU! I know full well that you don’t turn your back to yours. each capable of killing three d’Artagnans— with two Musketeers. ‘Monsieur. 63 .’ replied d’Artagnan. then. As hope. ‘Presently. making strong efforts to disembarrass himself of d’Artagnan. in both these duels.’ ‘At one o’clock. however.’ said he. came up again by the Rue de Seine. The outlook was sad. for in proportion as the perspiration broke from his forehead. and the Red Cross.’ 62 The Three Musketeers ‘Very well. He began to reflect upon the events that had passed. they were numerous and inauspicious. went down to the ferry. it may easily be understood that the young man was not very uneasy about Porthos. went away laughing loudly. who was wriggling about his back. D’Artagnan inquired of everyone he met with. even though with terrible wounds. he was gone on his way.’ ‘Ah.’ Whether Porthos understood him or did not understand him. presently. nor in the one which his eager glance pervaded. absolutely nothing! This chase was. Porthos foamed with rage. delighted with his joke.of the cloak. But neither in the street he had passed through. It was scarcely eleven o’clock in the morning. could he see anyone. ‘and thanks to my eyes. his heart began to cool. he made the folFree eBooks at Planet eBook. Monsieur!’ said d’Artagnan. Besides this. he finished by hoping that he might survive.’ replied d’Artagnan. behind the Luxembourg. reappearing under the shoulder of the giant. at one o’clock. is the last thing extinguished in the heart of man. who could not fail to think the manner in which d’Artagnan had left him a little cavalier. in short. however slowly the stranger had walked. and in case of surviving. ‘you must be mad to run against people in this manner.’ ‘It is one that becomes a man accustomed to look his enemies in the face. de Treville. piqued. ‘you stand a chance of getting chastised if you rub Musketeers in this fashion. ‘Bless me!’ cried Porthos.’ And the young man. he had drawn upon himself two good duels with two men. then.’ cried the latter. giving way to his anger. Sure of being killed by Athos. advantageous to him in one sense. ‘the expression is strong. or perhaps had entered some house. I can see what other people cannot see. ‘No. ‘when you haven’t your cloak on.’ ‘Excuse me.

immediately broke off their conversation. that is certainly droll. and from this moment I will endeavor to 64 The Three Musketeers model myself after him. drew the handkerchief from under the foot of the Musketeer in spite of the efforts the latter made to detain it. now. and what a stupid fellow I am! That brave and unfortunate Athos was wounded on that very shoulder against which I must run head foremost. he would certainly have pardoned me. he pretended not to see him. D’Artagnan. He stooped. ‘As to Porthos. like that of a man who begins to mingle with people he is scarcely acquainted with and in a conversation that does not concern him. said. it is true. and as a witness of the rebuke the Musketeers had received was not likely to be at all agreeable. All four. that’s a droll affair!’ And in spite of himself. cursed Gascon that I am. for the least awkward means of retreat. like a ram. without a cause in the eyes of passers-by. on the contrary. if I had not said anything to him about that cursed baldric—in ambiguous words. and with the most gracious air he could assume. had arrived within a few steps of the hotel d’Arguillon and in front of that hotel perceived Aramis. the pain I gave him must have been atrocious. As to Porthos—oh. looking round carefully. He had good cause to do so. walking and soliloquizing. He was seeking in his mind. I get from one hobble into another. monsieur. Aramis is mildness and grace personified. but I am not the less a giddy fool. when he remarked that Aramis had let his handkerchief fall. besides. offended no one. ‘if you escape. and holding it out to him. Look at Aramis. approached the young men with a profound bow. of which there is not much chance. but rather drolly ambiguous. but as he had not forgotten that it was in presence of this young man that M. Ah! That’s strange! Here he is!’ D’Artagnan. ‘I believe.’ continued 65 . faith. certainly not. then. to see that his solitary laugh.lowing reprehensions upon his own conduct: ‘What a madcap I was. as to Porthos. Well. no doubt. but he was not sufficiently broken into the fashions of the gay world to know how to extricate himself gallantly from a false position. D’Artagnan was not so dull as not to perceive that he was one too many. Friend d’Artagnan. To be obliging and polite does not necessarily make a man a coward. I would advise you to practice perfect politeness for the future. This appeared to be a favorable opportunity to repair his intrusion. speaking to himself with all the amenity that he thought due himself. quite full of his plans of conciliation and courtesy. did anybody ever dream of calling Aramis a coward? No. You must henceforth be admired and quoted as a model of it. the young man began to laugh aloud. chatting gaily with three gentlemen. and by mistake. that this is a handkerchief you would be sorry to lose?’ The handkerchief was indeed richly embroidered. Ah. The only thing that astonishes me is that he did not strike me dead at once. Are people to be run against without warning? No! And have I any right to go and peep under their cloaks to see what is not there? He would have pardoned me. and Free eBooks at Planet eBook. had placed his foot upon it. de Treville had been so angry in the morning. however. accompanied by a most gracious smile.

my dear intimate of Bois-Tracy. and then it will be pretty evident that one of us will have lied. He had his foot upon it.’ said he.’ hazarded d’Artagnan. only ornamented with a single cipher. ‘Ah. but the friends of Aramis were not at all convinced by his denial. Now. most discreet Aramis.’ replied Aramis. and as may be supposed.’ said he. 67 . to reclaim it myself. my dear sir. my dear Aramis. and as a proof of what I say. the Guardsmen going one way and Aramis another. Then. for. ‘will you persist in saying. that you are not on good terms with Madame de Bois-Tracy. Then turning toward that one of the guards who had declared himself the friend of BoisTracy. so that decidedly this handkerchief is as likely to have fallen from your pocket as mine. ‘I should be forced. Aramis blushed excessively. In a moment or two the conversation ceased. This time d’Artagnan was not hasty. he pulled out his own handkerchief. upon my honor!’ cried his Majesty’s Guardsman.’ ‘And you were deceived. we will do better than that—let each take a half. here is mine in my pocket. separated. coldly.’ ‘No. and one of them addressed the young Musketeer with affected seriousness. gentlemen. timidly.’ ‘The fact is.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘I did not see the handkerchief fall from the pocket of Monsieur Aramis. ‘You are about to swear upon your honor and I upon my word. when that gracious lady has the kindness to lend you one of her handkerchiefs?’ Aramis darted at d’Artagnan one of those looks which inform a man that he has acquired a mortal enemy. ‘I have reflected. resuming his mild air.’ continued he. the affair had no other sequel. Bois-Tracy is an intimate friend of mine. as you very well know.’ ‘You make the demand badly. ‘Now is my time to make peace with this gallant man. and snatched rather than took the handkerchief from the hand of the Gascon. ah!’ cried one of the Guards. ‘Besides.’ So saying. I refuse it on 66 The Three Musketeers account of the form. that is all. ‘You are deceived.had a coronet and arms at one of its corners. and I cannot allow the property of his wife to be sported as a trophy. ‘If it were as you pretend it is.’ cried the other two Guardsmen. He perceived his mistake.’ replied Aramis.’ ‘Of the handkerchief?’ ‘Yes. ‘the judgment of King Solomon! Aramis. you certainly are full of wisdom!’ The young men burst into a laugh.’ ‘Perfectly just. that I am not less tenderly his friend than you can possibly be. ‘this handkerchief is not mine. ‘and while acknowledging the justice of your reclamation. very little sensible to the reparation. likewise a very elegant handkerchief. Montaran. and the three Guardsmen and the Musketeer. and I thought from having his foot upon it the handkerchief was his. and of fine cambric—though cambric was dear at the period—but a handkerchief without embroidery and without arms. and I cannot fancy why Monsieur has taken it into his head to offer it to me rather than to one of you. after having cordially shaken hands. that of its proprietor.

if you please.’ ‘What. it is true. my good friend—not here. you act wrongly in endeavoring to mortify me. ‘Why did you so maladroitly restore me the handkerchief?’ ‘Why did you so awkwardly let it fall?’ ‘I have said. but indispensable to 69 . monsieur that you are not a fool. monsieur!’ cried d’Artagnan. although coming from Gascony. who was departing without paying any attention to him.’ ‘And I will send you back to your Mass book. ‘Monsieur. you take it with that tone. and with this good feeling drawing near to Aramis. that people do not tread upon handkerchiefs without a reason. which is full of the cardinal’s creatures? How do I know that this is not his Eminence who has honored you with the commission to procure my head? Now. Thank God. having stood on one side during the whole of the latter part of the conversation. ‘I am from Gascony. you may perhaps stand in need of it. ‘Yes. I will teach you how to behave yourself. remote place.’ ‘Ah. in whom the natural quarrelsome spirit began to speak more loudly than his pacific resolutions. What the devil! Paris is not paved with cambric!’ ‘Monsieur. you mean!’ cried d’Artagnan. monsieur. I know. Master Abbe. ‘is not for the sake of seeking a quarrel.’ said Aramis. is a virtue sufficiently useless to Musketeers. monsieur. Do you not perceive that we are opposite the Hotel d’Arguillon. I only fight when I am forced to do so. but this time the affair is serious. and since you know it. I am not a bravo! And being a Musketeer but for a time. if you please.’ ‘I agree.’ 68 The Three Musketeers ‘By US. were it even for a folly. Monsieur does not postpone an interview through prudence?’ ‘Prudence. whether it belongs to you or another. do you. that the handkerchief did not fall from my pocket. ‘permit me to observe to you that you have not acted in this affair as a gallant man ought. Draw. monsieur. at least.’ ‘And thereby you have lied twice. I entertain a ridiculous partiality for my head. it seems to suit my shoulders so correctly. ‘you will excuse me. be at rest as to that. but to kill you quietly in a snug. I wish to kill you. but do not be too confident.’ ‘Monsieur. and Free eBooks at Planet eBook. what I say to you about the matter.’ said d’Artagnan. for I saw it fall. and I repeat. so that when they have begged to be excused once. Master Gascon? Well. there is no occasion to tell you that Gascons are not very patient. ‘and do you suppose—‘ ‘I suppose. they are convinced that they have done already at least as much again as they ought to have done.’ said he. monsieur.said d’Artagnan to himself.’ interrupted Aramis. monsieur. and instantly—‘ ‘Not so. where you will not be able to boast of your death to anybody. and always with great repugnance. I hope.’ ‘Monsieur is a Gascon?’ asked Aramis. Take your handkerchief. and that you knew very well. for here is a lady compromised by you.’ ‘Ah.

’ The two young men bowed and separated. and began to view his situation more clearly. Besides. saying to himself. when a young and vigorous man fights with an adversary who is wounded and weakened—if conquered. if I am 71 70 The Three Musketeers .as I am only a Musketeer provisionally. while d’Artagnan. He hoped. perceiving the appointed hour was approaching. I shall be killed by a Musketeer. At two o’clock I shall have the honor of expecting you at the hotel of Monsieur de Treville. Aramis ascending the street which led to the Luxembourg. as one less courageous and less restrained might have done in his place. to make a friend of Athos. whose Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but without meanness or weakness. took the road to the Carmes-Deschaux. There I will indicate to you the best place and time. if a conqueror. but at least. He went therefore to his appointment with Athos without a second. or our readers must have already perceived that d’Artagnan was not an ordinary man. by means of loyal excuses. he did not make up his mind to die quietly. we must have badly painted the character of our adventure seeker. determined to be satisfied with those his adversary should choose. Now. he doubles the triumph of his antagonist. his intention was formed to make the brave Musketeer all suitable apologies. He reflected upon the different characters of men he had to fight with. I hold it good to be prudent. therefore. ‘Decidedly I can’t draw back.’ 5 THE KING’S MUSKETEERS AND THE CARDINAL’S GUARDS D’Artagnan was acquainted with nobody in Paris. fearing that might result from this duel which generally results from an affair of this kind. he is accused of foul play and want of courage. while repeating to himself that his death was inevitable.

the cardinal. and twelve o’clock was striking. In addition to this. He was. by hitting him in the face. But I will take the left hand—it is my custom in such circumstances. rather than walked. surrounded by barren fields—an accessory to the Preaux-Clercs.’ ‘You confuse me.’ ‘I have no seconds on my part. I regret I did not inform you sooner of this circumstance. but then. relate to everybody a recital which. though it had been dressed anew by M. as Caesar recommended his soldiers do to those of Pompey. I can tell you. ‘since you do me the honor to draw a sword with me while suffering from a wound which is very inconvenient. and the most rigorous casuist with regard to duels could have nothing to say.lordly air and austere bearing pleased him much. who has the honor to be. ‘for having only arrived yesterday in Paris. in some degree. and which was generally employed as the place for the duels of men who had no time to lose. then. then. at which I am astonished. to damage forever the beauty of which he was so proud. ‘a courtesy. a sort of building without a window. he determined to dispatch him in good style or at least. I use either hand easily. I assure you. to whom I was recommended by my father.’ ‘You have truly.’ continued Athos. ‘Yes. would cover Porthos with ridicule. monsieur. he did not entertain much dread of him. for which. as punctual as the Samaritan woman. with a bow that was not deficient in dignity. which he might. bowing again.’ replied Athos. Do not fancy that I do you a favor. He flattered himself he should be able to frighten Porthos with the adventure of the baldric. and you hurt me devilishly. or rather Deschaux. As to the astute Aramis. and Monsieur de Treville. Athos had been waiting about five minutes. Athos. d’Artagnan possessed that invincible stock of resolution which the counsels of his father had implanted in his heart: ‘Endure nothing from anyone but the king.’ ‘Not too much so. ‘Monsieur. his feather even touching the ground.’ Athos reflected for an instant. but these two friends are not yet come. speaking half to himself.’ ‘Well.’ said d’Artagnan. as it is not at all their custom. I as yet know no one but Monsieur de Treville. I shall have the air of a boy-slayer. I am very grateful. When d’Artagnan arrived in sight of the bare spot of ground which extended along the foot of the monastery. I know only him. as it was called at that period. well managed. one of his friends.’ said Athos. who still suffered grievously from his wound. ‘if I kill you.’ ‘Very inconvenient. monsieur.’ said d’Artagnan. a left-handed man is very troublesome to people who are not prepared for it. And it will be even a disadvantage to you. de Treville’s surgeon. toward the convent of the Carmes Dechausses. was seated on a post and waiting for his adversary 72 The Three Musketeers with hat in hand. ‘You know no one but Monsieur de Treville?’ he asked. monsieur. and supposing he should be able to get so far. upon my word. ‘I have engaged two of my friends as 73 . if not killed upon the spot. with his gentlemanly Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ He flew.

Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I am sure that in less than three days this balsam would cure you. we do not live in the times of the great emperor. Ah. but a league off it savors of the gentleman. ‘is your first witness Monsieur Porthos?’ ‘Yes. not that I can accept it. Unfortunately.’ ‘If you are in haste. Athos.’ ‘Well?’ ‘Well. Monsieur. do not inconvenience yourself. and Aramis. at court and in the city. if you please. and I foresee plainly that if we don’t kill each other. in whom every cavalier ought to seek his model. with timidity.’ D’Artagnan turned in the direction pointed to by Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. sir. monsieur!’ said Athos. ‘That did not come from a man without a heart. so please you. I pray you. Porthos. without throwing the least doubt upon his courage. it would still do me a great honor to be your man. however well the secret might be guarded. and perceived Aramis. when you would be cured— well. and three days hence. ‘that’s a proposition that pleases me. monsieur?’ ‘I have a miraculous balsam for wounds—a balsam given to me by my mother and of which I have made a trial upon myself. ‘It is probable you are ignorant of this little fact. or the Three Inseparables? And yet.’ ‘And here is the second. in an accent of greater astonishment than before. ‘What. and that we are called among the Musketeers and the Guards. ‘What!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ In fact. with a gracious nod to d’Artagnan. and our combat would be prevented.’ said d’Artagnan. and it will be more correct. with the same simplicity with which a moment before he had proposed to him to put off the duel for three days. that we were to fight. I love men of your kidney.’ ‘If you would permit me—‘ said d’Artagnan. at the end of the Rue Vaugirard the gigantic Porthos appeared. I say. that disturbs you?’ ‘By no means. ‘and if it 74 The Three Musketeers be your will to dispatch me at once. Ah. we live in the times of the cardinal.’ said Athos. Thus spoke and acted the gallant knights of the time of Charlemagne. monsieur. here is one of 75 . I have plenty of time. I think these fellows will never come. s’blood.’ D’Artagnan spoke these words with a simplicity that did honor to his courtesy. it would be known. how you have hurt me! My shoulder quite burns. We will wait for these gentlemen. I believe. ‘PARDIEU. ‘let us talk of something else.air.’ cried Athos. and at the end of three days.’ ‘There is another word which pleases me. ‘What!’ cried he. as you come from Dax or Pau—‘ ‘From Tarbes. I shall hereafter have much pleasure in your conversation. ‘your second witness is Monsieur Aramis?’ ‘Doubtless! Are you not aware that we are never seen one without the others.

pointing to d’Artagnan with his hand and saluting him with the same gesture.’ said Porthos. this is a clever fellow.’ murmured Athos.’ said d’Artagnan.‘My faith!’ replied d’Artagnan.’ At this word APOLOGIES. d’Artagnan drew his sword. it is with him I am also going to fight.’ said Athos. upon which we could not agree. but on that account only.’ 76 The Three Musketeers ‘And you. gentlemen. and a negative sign was the reply of Aramis.’ said the Gascon. which must much diminish the face-value of your bill. And now. ‘But what are you going to fight about. throwing up his head. Augustine. gentlemen. making a sign to d’Artagnan to keep secret the cause of their duel. with the most gallant air possible. ‘you are well named. ‘Indeed?’ said Athos. Athos.’ replied Aramis. ‘permit me to offer you my apologies. excuse me. stood quite astonished. and at that moment he would have drawn his sword against all the Musketeers in the kingdom as willingly as he now did Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and then turning toward d’Artagnan. Athos indeed saw a second smile on the lips of d’Artagnan. ‘Faith! I don’t very well know. reddening.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘But not until two o’clock. Monsieur Aramis.’ In the meantime. ‘Oh. perceived a faintly sly smile pass over the lips of the young Gascon as he replied. ours is a theological quarrel. the sharp and bold lines of which were at the moment gilded by a bright ray of the 77 . if it should make any noise. ‘But not before one o’clock. will prove at least that your union is not founded upon contrasts. ‘We had a short discussion upon dress. and my adventure. ‘And I also am to fight with this gentleman. ‘Why. ‘Ah. gentlemen. The blood had mounted to the head of d’Artagnan. whose keen eye lost nothing. Athos?’ asked Aramis. He hurt my shoulder. a haughty smile curled the lip of Porthos. a cloud passed over the brow of Athos. ‘And now you are assembled. a passage of St. ‘You do not understand me. with the same calmness. Monsieur Porthos. coming in his turn onto the place. and render yours almost null. ‘what does this mean?’ ‘This is the gentleman I am going to fight with. Porthos had come up.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I asked to be excused in case I should not be able to discharge my debt to all three.’ answered Porthos. ‘Decidedly. Porthos?’ ‘Faith! I am going to fight—because I am going to fight. ‘Yes.’ said Aramis. and—on guard!’ At these words. I repeat. ah!’ said he. Aramis?’ asked Athos. Let us say in passing that he had changed his baldric and relinquished his cloak. waved his hand to Athos. for Monsieur Athos has the right to kill me first.’ said d’Artagnan. And you. gentlemen.

and you will enjoy a little amusement without cost to yourselves.’ ‘Speak for yourself when you are inclined to utter such incongruities. ‘Remember. ‘halloo. ‘For my part. and follow us. and quite worthy of two gentlemen. drawing his sword in its turn. ‘if you disobey. I will therefore fight in my doublet. ‘The cardinal’s Guards!’ cried Aramis and Porthos at the same time. for Jussac was one of the aggressors of the preceding day. ‘it is with great regret that I pronounce the thing impossible. monsieur. come.against Athos.’ ‘That is true.’ said he. ‘Sheathe your swords.’ said Athos. Pass on your way. ‘and whether drawn by myself or another.’ ‘Monsieur. This short interval was sufficient to determine d’Artagnan on the part he was to take. ‘I waited your orders. it is the best thing to do. enough of such compliments!’ cried Porthos. are you? And the edicts? What is become of them?’ ‘You are very generous.’ ‘When you please. for. crossing swords.’ said Jussac. if you please. ‘and yet I cannot take off my doublet. ‘It is very hot. I can assure you that we would make no effort to prevent you. Musketeers? Fighting here. parodying Jussac. and must die on the spot. and I should not like to annoy Monsieur with the sight of blood which he has not drawn from me himself. and Aramis instantly drew near one another. when a company of the Guards of his Eminence. and the spot chosen for the scene of the duel was exposed to its full ardor.’ This raillery exasperated Jussac.’ said d’Artagnan. for I just now felt my wound begin to bleed again. ‘If we were to see you fighting. Leave us alone. then. Porthos.’ ‘Come. then. gentlemen of the Guards. while Jussac drew up his soldiers. Sheathe. ‘We will charge upon you.’ said Athos. But scarcely had the two rapiers clashed.’ ‘Gentlemen. The two combatants had been seen in 78 The Three Musketeers a position which left no doubt of their intentions. full of rancor. de Jussac. I declare I will never appear again before the captain as a conquered man. putting himself on guard. ‘it would afford us great pleasure to obey your polite invitation if it depended upon ourselves. but unfortunately the thing is impossible—Monsieur de Treville has forbidden it.’ ‘There are five of them.’ said Athos. Duty before everything. It was one of those events which Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said Athos. then.’ said Aramis. turned the corner of the convent.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘and we are but three. Porthos. advancing toward them and making a sign to his men to do so likewise. I think what they say is very well said. ‘Halloo!’ cried Jussac. It was a quarter past midday. half aloud. and Aramis. then. we are waiting for our turns.’ interrupted Aramis. we shall be beaten 79 .’ Athos. on my part. commanded by M. I assure you I shall always view with regret the blood of so brave a gentleman. like yourself. The sun was in its zenith. sheathe your swords!’ But it was too late. gentlemen. Monsieur.

‘We should only be three. All this young man perceived. To fight.’ ‘Well. D’Artagnan comprehended their irresolution. My heart is that of a Musketeer. he sprang toward Jussac himself. The heart of the young Gascon beat as if it would burst through his side—not from fear. if you please.’ replied Athos. ‘Ah! You resist. by his gestures and the expression of his countenance.’ said Porthos. ‘allow me to correct your words. monsieur. Porthos had Bicarat. ‘we must do something. but I have the spirit. and Aramis found himself opposed to two adversaries. begone quickly. and changing Free eBooks at Planet eBook. have you decided?’ cried Jussac for the third time.’ replied Jussac.’ said he. Athos.’ said Athos. and that impels me on. ‘Well. gentlemen. ‘And what is your choice?’ asked Jussac.’ ‘Monsieur is full of generosity. Turning towards Athos and his friends. that was to risk his head.’ replied Aramis. ‘d’Artagnan. he did not hesitate a second.’ D’Artagnan did not budge. gentlemen. and d’ 81 . my brave fellow?’ said Athos. God he thanked. ‘It is done. As to d’Artagnan. who doubtless. to his praise we speak it. You said you were but three. ‘You may retire. but to yield!’ said Porthos. Porthos.’ said Athos. gentlemen. but with emulation. but it appears to me we are four. ‘That’s true. he fought like a furious tiger.’ replied d’Artagnan. do you?’ cried Jussac. you are a brave fellow. it was a choice between the king and the cardinal—the choice made.’ ‘But you are not one of us.’ ‘What is your name. Save your skin.’ cried Jussac.’ said Porthos to Aramis. forward!’ cried Athos. ‘and I swear to you by my honor that I will not go hence if we are conquered. young man. that was to make at one blow an enemy of a minister more powerful than the king himself. does that astonish you?’ And the nine combatants rushed upon each other with a fury which however did not exclude a certain degree of method. But all three reflected upon the youth of d’Artagnan. I feel it. we consent to that. ‘We are about to have the honor of charging you.’ resumed Athos. had guessed d’Artagnan’s design. turning ten times round his adversary. then. ‘Try me. lifting his hat with one hand and drawing his sword with the other. he had not the shade of it. ‘Decidedly.’ ‘Withdraw. ‘and yet it will not be the less said we were four men. and dreaded his inexperience. ‘I have not the uniform.’ said Athos. choose your part. Athos fixed upon a certain Cahusac. a favorite of the cardinal’s. ‘Gentlemen. ‘Come.’ 80 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. and yet. ‘Come. come. it must be persisted in. ‘That IS difficult. that was to disobey the law.’ said he.decide the life of a man. pressing the young man’s hand. with the addition of a boy. one of whom is wounded. ‘S’blood. Aramis. monsieur.

for Athos. for fear that d’Artagnan would kill his enemy. the sword. and Bicarat one through his thigh. departed every instant from received rules. he became warm and began to make mistakes. attacking him on all sides at once. young man. and passed his sword through his body. springing forward. but d’Artagnan. and with that look ask assistance. ‘do not kill him. the one to recover. but on his way he met Athos. who during his relief which d’Artagnan had procured him had recovered his breath. Furious at being held in check by one whom he had considered a boy. Aramis had killed one of his adversaries. D’Artagnan perceived that it would be disobliging Athos not to leave him alone. D’Artagnan and Cahusac sprang forward at the same instant. ‘S’blood!’ cried he to d’Artagnan. Jussac. d’Artagnan was at liberty to assist whom he pleased. with a terrible bound he sprang to the side of Cahusac. but the other pressed him warmly. redoubled his agility. D’Artagnan interpreted it. as was then said. Athos. and fought with his left hand. Porthos had received a thrust through his arm. Athos would have died rather than appeal for help. wounded anew by Cahusac. being the more active. aimed a terrible thrust at his adversary. While he was endeavoring to find out which of his companions stood in greatest need. anxious to put an end to this. reached it first and placed his foot upon it.his ground and his guard twenty times. he caught a glance from Athos. active and energetic. sank upon his knee. Monsieur Guardsman. Jussac was. and who. That’s it! Very well done!’ The exclamation was drawn from Athos by seeing the sword of Cahusac fly twenty paces from him. I will slay you!’ Cahusac turned. This contest at length exhausted Jussac’s patience. glided like a serpent beneath his blade. D’Artagnan then cast an anxious and rapid glance over the field of battle. who though wanting in practice had a sound theory. I beg of you. became evidently paler. Disarm him only—make sure of his sword. ‘To me. crying. Bicarat and Porthos had just made counterhits. whose great courage alone supported 83 . and in a few minutes Cahusac fell. nevertheless it required all his skill to defend himself against an adversary who. Cahusac immediately ran to the Guardsman whom Aramis had killed. But neither of these two wounds was serious. and while Jussac was recovering himself. He only changed his sword hand. Jussac fell like a dead mass. It was time. seized his rapier. and able to defend himself. wished to resume the fight. and returned toward d’Artagnan. The glance was of sublime eloquence. 82 The Three Musketeers According to the laws of dueling at that period. Aramis was in a good situation. and yet parrying like a man who had the greatest respect for his own epidermis. but did not give way a foot. D’Artagnan. and had had much practice. a fine blade. but he could look. Nevertheless. but the latter parried it. I have an old affair to settle with him when I am cured and sound again. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and they only fought more earnestly. the other to obtain.

as he passed through the gateway of M. he marched between Athos and Porthos. and carrying away four swords out of five. and between two parries finding time to point to a spot of earth with his sword. pressing them tenderly. Bicarat wished to hold out.’ said he to his new friends. for I only am left. I command you. and required him to surrender. haven’t I?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. he broke his sword across his knee to avoid the necessity of surrendering it. cried out to him to yield. threw the pieces over the convent wall. and returned them to their sheaths.’ And springing backward. and crossed him arms. and d’Artagnan surrounded Bicarat. toward the hotel of M. Bicarat was one of those iron men who never fell dead. jest as he might. but Jussac. and offering him his compliments upon his brother’s having just obtained a company in the regiment of Navarre. Porthos made a thousand flourishes. and forced him to ask for mercy. assisted by Bicarat. de Treville’s hotel.’ ‘But there are four against you. Bicarat was a Gascon. wounded or not. de Treville. 84 The Three Musketeers Bravery is always respected. leave off. even in an enemy. and contented himself with laughing. Then. Aramis. that’s another thing. and one of Aramis’s adversaries who was only wounded.’ said Bicarat. ‘here will Bicarat die. asking Bicarat what o’clock it could be.with a sword thrust through his throat. if you command me. The heart of d’Artagnan swam in delirium. ‘As you are my commander. They then rang the bell. Though alone against all and with a wound in his thigh. At the same instant Aramis placed his sword point on the breast of his fallen 85 . They walked arm in arm. under the porch of the convent. so that in the end it became a triumphal march. ‘at least I have entered upon my apprenticeship. who had risen upon his elbow. The Musketeers saluted Bicarat with their swords. it is my duty to obey. he gained nothing. ‘Here. he turned a deaf ear. as d’Artagnan was. intoxicated with joy. occupying the whole width of the street and taking in every Musketeer they met. ‘If I am not yet a Musketeer.’ cried he. The watch might come up and take all the combatants. parodying a verse of the Bible. as we have said. and they seek my life. There only then remained Porthos and Bicarat. whistling a cardinalist air. D’Artagnan did the same. but.’ ‘Ah. it was necessary to finish. was dead. Cahusac. he bore Jussac. the only one left standing. Athos. The fourth. Nevertheless. they took their road. royalists or cardinalists.

he was not sorry to find an excuse for playing Charlemagne—if we may use a gaming phrase of whose origin we confess our ignorance. The king was winning. fortune changed. Perceiving M.’ ‘Listen to Monsieur de Treville. I have a great mind to take away your commission and give it to Mademoiselle de Chemerault. de Treville was informed that the king was busy and could not receive him at that moment. they are good creatures. that this evening his Eminence is indisposed? Ah.6 HIS MAJESTY KING LOUIS XIII This affair made a great noise. he was in an excellent humor.’ ‘Ah. The king was closeted with the cardinal. I am called Louis the Just. and putting the money which lay before him into his pocket. ‘I will not detain you long. ‘come here. and as he was very avaricious. The king therefore arose a minute after. ‘listen to him! Would not one say he was speaking of a religious community? In truth. de Treville scolded his Musketeers in public. de Treville attended the king’s gaming table. In the evening M. de Treville at a distance— ‘Come here. I had eighty louis before me.’ replied Treville. the poor young men are obliged to defend themselves.’ ‘Wait. who saw at the first glance how things would go. these Musketeers of yours are very devils—fellows to be hanged. and by and by. ‘take my place. so that they who have lost may have nothing to complain of.’ said the king. the major part of which arose from his winnings.’ said he. It was already too late. and M.’ Then turning toward M.’ said the king. by and by we will see. ‘you say it is his Eminence’s Guards who have Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as meek as lambs. ‘on the contrary. monsieur. sire. but as no time was to be lost in gaining the king. M.’ ‘ 87 . M. sire. and for the honor of the corps even. Justice before everything. Ah. my dear Captain. Monsieur de Treville. and congratulated them in private. and as the king began to lose what he had won. then. I must speak to Monsieur de Treville on an affair of importance. to whom I promised an abbey. ‘La Vieuville. de Treville hastened to report himself at the Louvre. But what are they to do? The Guards of Monsieur the Cardinal are forever seek86 The Three Musketeers ing quarrels with them. wait. monsieur. I’ll be their warranty. that I may growl at you. and have but one desire. Monsieur Captain. de Treville and walking with him toward the embrasure of a window. But don’t fancy that I am going to take you on your bare word.’ In fact. ‘Well.’ said he.’ continued he. And that is that their swords may never leave their scabbards but in your majesty’s service. and that with so much emotion. put down the same sum. it is because I confide in that justice that I shall wait patiently and quietly the good pleasure of your Majesty. Do you know that his Eminence has been making fresh complaints against your Musketeers.

’ ‘Why.’ said the king. to see thus two parties in France. and unless a man be endowed with that admirable instinct which causes Louis XIII to be named the Just—‘ ‘You are right. and one wounded man. had made a party of pleasure with a young fellow from Gascony. of glorious memory. yes.sought a quarrel with your Musketeers?’ ‘Yes. who belong to the car88 The Three Musketeers dinal. say you?’ ‘One hardly a young man. in a melancholy tone. Three of my best soldiers. Germain. sire. and forgot their private hatred for partisan hatred. that the Guardsmen sought a quarrel with the Musketeers?’ ‘I say that it is probable that things have fallen out so. this is a victory!’ cried the king. you are right.’ ‘How does he call himself?’ ‘d’Artagnan. then. my dear Captain. They had a youth with them?’ ‘Yes. but who. You say. and who have. You know how difficult it is to discover the truth. Treville. ‘and it is very sad. I dare affirm to the king. and Aramis. however. are the natural enemies of the Guardsmen. Treville. but I leave your Majesty to judge what five armed men could possibly be going to do in such a deserted place as the neighborhood of the Convent des Carmes. who belong to the king and nobody but the king. so that three of the king’s Musketeers—one of whom was wounded—and a youth not only maintained their ground against five of the most terrible of the cardinal’s Guardsmen.’ ‘Four men.’ ‘And how did the thing happen? Let us see. upon seeing my Musketeers they changed their minds.’ said the king. and whose devotedness you have more than once appreciated. Cahusac. as complete as that of the Bridge of Ce. ah! You incline me to think so.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Good Lord! In the most simple and natural manner possible.’ ‘Yes. all radiant. a judge must hear both sides. as they always do. but they were not alone. I say. but absolutely brought four of them to earth. and they had appointed to meet at the Carmes-Deschaux. sire. his service much at heart—three of my best soldiers.’ ‘Ah. whom your Majesty knows by 89 . but I will not swear to it. sire. sire. will come to an end. Athos. sire. believe me. two heads to royalty. I believe.’ ‘I do not accuse them. who certainly did not go there in such a numerous company without some ill intention against the edicts. ‘There is no doubt they went thither to fight themselves. sire. and two other Guardsmen. ‘a complete victory!’ ‘Yes. The party was to take place at St. Porthos. Bicarat. in the civil war. you are right!’ ‘Then. Treville.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Treville. whom I had introduced to them the same morning. your Musketeers. But all this will come to an end. one of them wounded. for your Majesty cannot be ignorant that the Musketeers. he is the son of one of my oldest friends—the son of a man who served under the king your father. behaved himself so admirably on this occasion that I will take the liberty of recommending him to your Majesty. for you know. and a youth. when they were disturbed by de Jussac.

and passed the night in golden dreams. perceiving his youth and that he did not belong to the corps.’ ‘Yes. sire. after all. invited him to retire before they attacked. It is useless to let the cardinal 91 .’ ‘So you may plainly see. The Guards of the cardinal. As the hour to wait upon the king was not till twelve. Treville. he had made a party with Porthos and Aramis to play a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. bring me all four together. it is forbidden to fight. placing his hand upon his hip.’ ‘But this encounter.’ ‘Jussac. and that therefore he would remain with Messieurs the Musketeers.’ Treville smiled. Monsieur d’Artagnan is little more than a boy. That evening the three Musketeers were informed of the honor accorded them. ‘he. one of the first swordsmen in the kingdom?’ ‘Well. D’Artagnan found the Musketeer dressed and ready to go out. As they had long been acquainted with the king. sire. he was dressed as a citizen. he saluted the king respectfully. ‘it was they who attacked?’ ‘That is true. and your Majesty has in him so firm a champion that it was he who gave Jussac the terrible sword thrust which has made the cardinal so angry. sire. Treville. By eight o’clock in the morning he was at the apartment of Athos. ‘as I told you.’ ‘When will your Majesty deign to receive him?’ ‘Tomorrow.’ ‘Shall I bring him alone?’ ‘No.’ ‘That is true. It is a brawl.’ interrupted the king.’ ‘He who wounded Jussac!’ cried the king.’ ‘You understand. at midday. but as it was indeed something to have prevailed upon this child to rebel against his master. sire. Treville—I will see him. a boy! Treville. saw in it his future fortune. Devoted men are so rare. they were not much excited. ‘Sire. come still by the back staircase. but d’Artagnan. by the back staircase. for once he found his master.’ And Louis XIII twisted his mustache proudly.’ ‘I will see this young man. and if 90 The Three Musketeers anything can be done—well.’ ‘Brave young man!’ murmured the king. ‘Well. ‘but never mind.’ resumed Treville. Treville. took leave of him. with his Gascon imagination. that’s impossible!’ ‘It is as I have the honor to relate it to your Majesty. Treville—you know how I delight in accounts of war and fighting. entirely devoted to your Majesty. but he answered that he was a Musketeer at heart. I wish to thank them all at once. Treville—an edict is still an edict. he did remain with them. They called upon him then to retire. Treville.’ said the king. and the proof is that there were five of the cardinal’s Guardsmen against my three Musketeers and Monsieur d’Artagnan. and as he has not the honor of being a Musketeer. there can be no more doubt on that head. we will make it our business. is quite out of the ordinary conditions of a duel. and with this agreement.‘And you say this young man behaved himself well? Tell me how.

’ replied d’Artagnan. still irritated by the defeat of his companions.’ ‘You’re in the wrong there.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. But one of these balls. without doubt?’ ‘I? I am completely ignorant. who. ‘I beg you to follow me.’ said d’Artagnan. and although ignorant of the game. as it then scarcely was.’ ‘Well.’ ‘And you know who I am.’ D’Artagnan turned round as if a serpent had stung him. ‘look at me as long as you like. he accepted. among the spectators was one of his Eminence’s Guardsmen. till twelve. and fixed his eyes intensely upon the Guardsman who had just made this insolent speech. lest it be observed that we go out together. therefore. he found that his wound was yet too recent to allow of such exertion. He believed this opportunity was now come and addressed his neighbor: ‘It is not astonishing that that young man should be afraid of a ball. which he had never played. monsieur. company would be in the way. then. with the same jeering air.’ ‘What is your name?’ ‘Bernajoux. ‘At once.’ ‘Do not hurry yourself.’ resumed the latter. passed so close to d’Artagnan’s face that he thought that if. Unfortunately for d’Artagnan. launched by Porthos’ herculean hand. Now. if you please. nor does it much disquiet at tennis in a tennis court situated near the stables of the Luxembourg. declaring that he would not resume the game until he should be prepared to play with them on more equal terms. although he played with his left hand. ‘I will wait for you at the door.’ ‘And when?’ asked the Guardsman.’ ‘And as since that which you have said is too clear to require any explanation. but at the first effort he made. for if you knew my name. tranquilly. at your service. Monsieur 93 . had promised himself to seize the first opportunity 92 The Three Musketeers of avenging it. in his Gascon imagination. I will follow you. twisting his mustache. it had hit him. my little gentleman! I have said what I have said. and as he declared he was too ignorant of the game to play it regularly they only continued giving balls to one another without counting. passed with d’Artagnan to the opposite side and challenged them. You must be aware that for our undertaking. as upon this audience. which had happened only the day before. perhaps you would not be so pressing. who was very expert in all bodily exercises. monsieur. in a low voice. instead of passing near. his audience would have been probably lost. and were playing together. and went and took his place near the cord and in the gallery. The two Musketeers were already there. alone. not knowing what to do with his time from nine o’clock in the morning. ‘PARDIEU. depended his future life. Athos. for he is doubtless a Musketeer apprentice.’ ‘Go. D’Artagnan remained. as it would have been impossible for him to present himself before the king. he saluted Aramis and Porthos politely. Athos invited d’Artagnan to follow them.

rushed. and Aramis quickly appeared in their turn. So the two swords were crossed close to the hilts. but d’Artagnan seized the moment at which.’ said the Guardsman. in this movement. Porthos. he hoped to intimidate. the name of Bernajoux was known to all the world. they began to cry. which was fixed for midday. two of the friends of the Guardsman. as he had told the Guardsman of his Eminence. all who were in the hotel rushed out and fell upon the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. in whose service he had a relative. when the noise which arose from the street being heard in the tennis court.‘That’s true. he was resolved not to recoil a step. astonished that his name had not produced more effect upon the young man. Never mind. and Athos was watching them with so much attention. de la Tremouille. ‘but unfortunately I have very little time to spare. monsieur. Germain or in the Pre-aux-Clercs. said to his adversary.’ ‘What you say is full of sense. to have only to deal with an apprentice Musketeer. and as the Guardsmen were only two against four. it was his adversary who made the retreating step. An instant after. absolutely spitted himself upon d’Artagnan’s sword. the Guardsman descended in his turn. that they did not even perceive their young companion go out. having an appointment at twelve 95 . and touched his adversary on the shoulder. and the moment the two Guardsmen attacked their young companion. be content. he cast his eyes around. sword in hand. I will do my best. But Athos. He freed his weapon. On guard!’ ‘But. as he did not declare himself conquered. and pressing him warmly. Fresh sharpened by his victory. but Bernajoux cried out that it was nothing. whom. stopped outside the door. however. and fell upon the conqueror. d’Artagnan was ignorant of the seriousness of the last wound his adversary had received. on account of the audience of the king. ‘it appears to me that this place is badly chosen. Porthos and Aramis were so engaged with their game. the sword of Bernajoux deviated from the line. and as d’Artagnan stood firm. ‘My faith! It is fortunate for you. from the court. Indeed. ‘To the rescue! The Hotel de la Tremouille!’ At these cries. As. perhaps. on guard!’ Bernajoux was not a man to have such a compliment paid to him twice. without doubt would soon have completed his work with a third blow.’ said he whom d’Artagnan thus provoked. full of hopes of future favor. On guard. made a lunge. Bernajoux now fell. But d’Artagnan had on the preceding day served his apprenticeship. thanks to 94 The Three Musketeers his great youthfulness. who had seen him go out after exchanging some words with d’Artagnan. and seeing that the street was empty. As d’Artagnan had no time to lose. and that we should be better behind the Abbey St. d’Artagnan immediately made a step backward and raised his sword. drove them back. he did not fall. then. who. d’Artagnan alone excepted. for it was one of those which figured most frequently in the daily brawls which all the edicts of the cardinal could not repress. and rushing blindly upon him. but only broke away toward the hotel of M. In an instant his sword glittered in his hand.’ replied d’Artagnan. and he sprang upon his adversary. although your name is Bernajoux.

The MELEE became general. accompanied by the four young fellows.four companions. de Treville. de 97 .’ M. for the Musketeers were known to be enemies of the cardinal. crying. ‘To the rescue. ‘for I saw the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Thus the soldiers of other companies than those which belonged to the Red Duke. As to the wounded man. and the two will pass off together. who contented themselves with hurling some paving stones against the gates. this hotel was full of soldiers of this company. who on their side cried aloud.’ ‘And the king has seen the cardinal?’ asked M. but to the great astonishment of the captain of the Musketeers. The cardinal’s Guards and M. while the other ran toward the hotel of M.’ asked he. ‘the Master of the Hounds came this morning to inform him that he had marked down a stag. ‘Had his Majesty. those who must be considered the leaders of the enterprise had quit the group and were making their way toward the hotel of M. ‘To the rescue. We will describe the thing to him as a consequence of the affair of yesterday. and they even began to deliberate whether they should not set fire to the hotel to punish the insolence of M. ‘In all probability he has. and set out after dinner. and were beloved on account of the hatred they bore to his Eminence. often took part with the king’s Musketeers in these quarrels. M. de la Tremouille’s people retreated into the hotel. Musketeers!’ This cry was generally heeded. they 96 The Three Musketeers succeeded in calming their friends. Musketeers! To the rescue!’ As usual.’ said he. The proposition had been made.’ replied the valet de chambre. as Aramis had called him. de la Tremouille’s domestics in daring to make a SORTIE upon the king’s Musketeers. but he could not resist his love of sport. who was waiting for them. and each time his companions saw his brow become darker. your Excellency. ‘any intention of holding this hunting party yesterday?’ ‘No. as we have said. D’Artagnan and his companions remembered their audience. already informed of this fresh disturbance. and. Germain. At first the king answered that he would not go. but the gates were too strong. directed his course toward the Louvre. and let us endeavor to see the king before he is prejudiced by the cardinal. the doors of which they closed just in time to prevent their enemies from entering with them. he had been taken in at once. Dessessart who were passing. Excitement was at its height among the Musketeers and their allies. Of three Guardsmen of the company of M. de Treville. when fortunately eleven o’clock struck. de Treville required this intelligence to be repeated to him twice. ‘to the Louvre without losing an instant. Besides. he was informed that the king had gone stag hunting in the forest of St. and as they would very much have regretted that such an opportunity should be lost. and received with enthusiasm. de Treville. two came to the assistance of the four companions. ‘Quick to the Louvre.’ replied the valet. but strength was on the side of the Musketeers. in a very bad state. who hastened to the succor of their comrades. They soon tired of the sport.

’ said M.’ ‘You are too just and reasonable a man. monsieur. to allow the four young men to dispute it. de la Tremouille— already prejudiced by his esquire. as we already know. and seeing the king seldom—was of no party.’ This advice was too reasonable. This time. however. for if no 98 The Three Musketeers friendship existed between them. de Treville. ‘Monsieur. On entering his hotel. he did not. He sent one of his servants to M. He repaired. which is not dangerous. to speak the truth. they told me. monsieur!’ said Treville.’ ‘Make it.’ ‘Well.’ ‘But has the wounded man retained his senses?’ ‘Perfectly. but. and when I asked where he was going. Both were men of courage and honor. ‘To St. I will see the king this evening. Bernajoux was— replied that it was neither for M. and caused himself to be announced. monsieur. was cooler than usual. whose relative. de Treville thought it best to be first in making the complaint. and will believe what he will say. ‘Gentlemen. for him. and to reprimand his people for their audacity in making SORTIE against the king’s Musketeers. whose people the Musketeers had assaulted and whose hotel they had endeavored to burn. and all the fault is with your Musketeers. de la Tremouille with a letter in which he begged of him to eject the cardinal’s Guardsmen from his house. his address. de Treville.’ ‘Does he talk?’ ‘With difficulty.’’ ‘He is beforehand with us.horses harnessed to his Eminence’s carriage this morning. de Treville nor the Musketeers to complain. he has received another right through his lungs. The two nobles saluted each other politely.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. M. ‘we fancy that we have each cause to complain of the other. de la Tremouille. But M. very ill indeed! In addition to the sword thrust in his arm. and moreover came from a man who knew the king too well. Let us adjure him. carry any bias into his social relations. monsieur. I do not advise you to risk doing so. de la Tremouille. in the name of the God before whom he must perhaps appear. de Treville thought of an expedient which might terminate it quietly. there was at least esteem. M.’ ‘I have no objection. more firm in his own opinion. and I am come to endeavor to clear up this affair. and as M. although polite.’ ‘How is Monsieur Bernajoux. M. Now. ‘but I warn you that I am well informed. as the debate between these two nobles might last a long time. de Treville recommended everyone to return home and wait for news. I will take him for judge in his own cause. 99 . each becoming. but as to you. of which the doctor says bad things. I listen. your esquire’s relative?’ ‘Why. immediately to his hotel. This was to go himself to M. Germain. de la Tremouille—a Protestant.’ said M. in general. on the contrary. monsieur. let us go to him.’ replied M. but he can speak. therefore. ‘not to accept the proposal I am about to make to you.

and immediately sent word to the four friends that he awaited their company at dinner. requested M. de Treville wanted. did not prevent the courtiers from ranging themselves along his pathway. Now. he agreed to it. and holding a whip in his hand. when all the doors were thrown open. and he described to the two nobles the affair exactly as it had passed. In royal antechambers it is worth more to be viewed with an angry eye than not to be seen at all. As for M. took leave of M. unwilling that it should be thought that he had influenced the wounded man. instead of claiming the ENTREE by the back stairs. de Treville. on seeing these two noble lords who came to visit him. that the conversation during the whole of dinner turned upon the two checks that his Eminence’s Guardsmen had received. and exhausted by the effort. de la Tremouille to interrogate him himself. Our young men had been waiting about half an hour. walking fast. wearing large boots. That happened which M. endeavored to raise himself up in his bed. which recalled him to life. This disposition. though. At the first glance. then as it was difficult to suggest a more reasonable proposal. as Bernajoux was. Placed between life and death. de la Tremouille reflected for an instant. but as the hour of audience granted by his Majesty was past. 101 . he had no idea for a moment of concealing the truth. The latter. de Treville. and his Majesty was announced. de la Tremouille. Porthos. Then M. Both descended to the chamber in which the wounded man lay. This was all that M. and Aramis personally. He was in hunting costume covered with dust. but as men who had so often had their turn that could very well afford him his. The coming instant would in all probability decide the rest of his life. It may easily be understood. he fell back again almost senseless. de Treville entertained good company. de Treville announced that it was time to go to the Louvre. and Aramis abandoned to him. D’Artagnan on the contrary remained concealed behind them. he passed before them without speaking or looking—indeed. de Treville had foreseen. de la Tremouille approached him. as if he had never seen them before. At his announcement d’Artagnan felt himself tremble to the very marrow of his bones. amid a crowd of courtiers. Louis XIII appeared. His eyes therefore were fixed in a sort of agony upon the door through which the king must enter. it was upon him that all the felicitations fell. The king had not yet returned from hunting. visible as it was in his Majesty. returned to his hotel. not only as 100 The Three Musketeers good comrades. wholly anticardinalist. Toward six o’clock M. therefore.M. The three Musketeers therefore did not hesitate to make a step forward. which Athos. when the eyes of the king fell Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but he was too weak. Porthos. and made him inhale some salts. he placed himself with the four young men in the antechamber. but although the king knew Athos. d’Artagnan judged that the mind of the king was stormy. as d’Artagnan had been the hero of these two fights. He wished Bernajoux a speedy convalescence. M.

monsieur. He knew the king of old.’ This was. did not prevent his asking. After me it will all be over. I am vexed with you!’ This was the chance at which M. smiling. the worst complaint of Louis XIII.’ said Athos. who talks to me about England! Ah! A PROPOS of the cardinal. seated on an armchair. all the pack takes the wrong scent and sets off after a two-year-older. twenty minutes. without directly replying to de Treville’s question. Monsieur de Treville. entered his apartment. after which his Majesty. in fact. I know no one but myself who is acquainted with the noble art of venery. ‘Is it for this I name you captain of my Musketeers. but I think you have still a good number of falcons. de Treville. de Treville did not return. sparrow hawks. with the greatest 103 . bad!’ replied the king.’ ‘Indeed. snares. everything degenerates. and he died day before yesterday. I am an unfortunate king. feigning the most profound astonishment. a quarter of an hour. Ah.’ The four young men waited ten minutes. and I don’t know whether it is the game which leaves no scent. ‘Monsieur So-and-so. ‘Is it thus you perform your charge. let us weary ourselves together. and he knew that all these complaints were but a preface—a sort of excitation to encourage himself— and that he had now come to his point at last. sire. after his Majesty’s health. and seeing that M.-Simon was 102 The Three Musketeers already putting his horn to his mouth to sound the mort— crack. and tiercets. de Treville entered the king’s cabinet boldly. and found his Majesty in a very ill humor. who would sometimes take one of his courtiers to a window and say. and traps. ‘and if at the expiration of ten minutes you do not see me come out. who talks to me about Austria. and people will hunt with gins. or the dogs that have no noses. went away very uneasy as to what was going to happen. however.upon him. ‘Bad. ‘Matters go but badly. ‘and we shall not be made Chevaliers of the Order this time. If I had but the time to train pupils! But there is the cardinal always at hand.’ ‘And not a man to instruct them.’ ‘Wait here ten minutes. I wholly comprehend your disappointment. and when he was near being taken—when St. I shall be obliged to give up hunting. return to my hotel.’ said M. as I have given up hawking. for it will be useless for you to wait for me longer. Monsieur de Treville! I had but one gerfalcon. that they Free eBooks at Planet eBook. de Treville. We started a stag of ten branches. M. he sustained the look with so much firmness that it was the king who dropped his eyes. Falconers are declining. The misfortune is great. grumbling. who talks to me about Spain.’ ‘How! Your Majesty is bored? Have you not enjoyed the pleasures of the chase today?’ ‘A fine pleasure. monsieur?’ continued the king. ‘And in what have I been so unfortunate as to displease your Majesty?’ asked M. This. beating his boot with the handle of his whip. de Treville waited for the king. indeed. monsieur! Upon my soul. ‘I am bored. who does not leave me a moment’s repose. We chased him for six hours.

I say that he has hastily accused your Majesty’s Musketeers. toward whom he is unjust. de Treville. without witnesses. and that he has not obtained his information from good sources.’ 104 The Three Musketeers ‘No. will interrogate him yourself. seeing that it is nothing but a nest of Huguenots.’ ‘His Eminence is not his holiness. sire. quietly. who labors while I amuse myself.’ continued the king. without doubt the rioters are in prison.’ ‘Sire. Porthos.’ cried the king. ‘Ah! This is something new. but so far from that. speak. in time of peace. ‘for I know no one except God who can be so far above your Majesty. you mean to say that he betrays me? You accuse him.’ ‘And against whom?’ cried the king. like so many furies. of my only servant. and endeavor to set fire to Paris. and that this infallibility does not extend to cardinals. ‘Who has told me this fine story. then! You will bind yourself. and that they did not endeavor to burn it?—which would not. monsieur?’ ‘That it is only the Pope who is infallible. sire. monsieur. can you deny all this?’ ‘And who told you this fine story. I speak of the prop of the state. and Aramis. de Treville. ‘by what Monsieur de la Tremouille shall say?’ ‘ 105 . and your youngster from Bearn. now. monsieur? Who should it be but he who watches while I sleep. upon poor Bernajoux. then? Come.’ ‘What do you mean by that. sire?’ asked Treville. sire. sire. calmly. I come to demand it of you.’ ‘What?’ ‘It is that your Majesty will make him come here.’ ‘The accusation comes from Monsieur de la Tremouille. who conducts everything at home and abroad—in France as in Europe?’ ‘Your Majesty probably refers to God.’ ‘You mean to say that he deceives me. ‘Will you tell me that your three damned Musketeers. from the duke himself.’ said M.should assassinate a man. have not fallen. avow freely that you accuse him!’ ‘No. I know the duke to be a royal gentleman. and I refer the matter to him—but upon one condition. Tell me. but which is. and that I shall see your Majesty as soon as you have seen the duke. disturb a whole quarter. ‘on the contrary. of my only friend—of the cardinal. that he is too deeply interested in the question to be a very impartial witness. I say that he is ill-informed. a frightful example. Athos. but I say that he deceives himself. sire.’ replied the king.’ replied M. have been a great misfortune in time of war. ‘undoubtedly my haste accuses you wrongfully. ‘Against calumniators. TETE-A-TETE. perhaps. and you come to tell me justice is done.’ ‘What. without your saying a word? But yet. sire. and have not maltreated him in such a fashion that probably by this time he is dead? Will you tell me that they did not lay siege to the hotel of the Duc de la Tremouille. What do you say to that?’ ‘I might answer.’ ‘You will accept his judgment?’ ‘Undoubtedly.’ said M.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. de Treville.

de Treville found La Chesnaye. then. who never left the door.’ ‘La Chesnaye.‘Any you will submit to the reparation he may require?’ ‘Certainly. then? I sleep no longer. M. depended upon the cast of the dice. who informed him that they had not been able to find M. as he thus became certain that no foreign suggestion could insinuate itself between M. He took them with him. by the faith of a gentleman. sire?’ ‘Tomorrow. monsieur. monsieur. if you and your Musketeers are guilty. Come. ‘La Chesnaye. I sometimes dream. If the king was still irritated against them. who will dispose of them at your good pleasure. ten minutes had scarcely passed away when the door of the king’s closet opened. that’s all. de Treville saw M. no. I beg you to receive them.’ said the king. that is to say. This circumstance pleased M. He had ordered his three Musketeers and their companion to be with him at half past six in the morning. that he had only that moment arrived and that he was at that very hour with the king. without encouraging them or promising them anything.’ ‘Awaken me! Do you think I ever sleep. Arrived at the foot of the back stairs. and M. ‘let someone go instantly and find Monsieur de la Tremouille. M. I wish to speak with him this evening. ‘La Chesnaye!’ Louis XIII’s confidential valet.’ ‘If my Musketeers are guilty. de Treville much. they would only have to be called. and said: ‘Monsieur de Treville. and to Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Till then. monsieur. On arriving at the king’s private antechamber. entered in reply to the call.’ ‘Tomorrow. Tomorrow. and without concealing from them that their luck. and that I was ready to offer you my excuses.’ ‘Your Majesty gives me your word that you will not see anyone between Monsieur de la Tremouille and myself?’ ‘Nobody.’ ‘No. please your Majesty?’ ‘At any hour you will. In fact. I am not called Louis the Just without reason. if the king consented to see them. his Majesty has just sent for me in order to inquire respecting the circumstances which took place yesterday at my hotel. I am ready to obey. de Treville slept still 106 The Three Musketeers worse.’ ‘At what o’clock. de la Tremouille come out. God preserve your Majesty!’ However ill the king might sleep. then. the guilty shall be placed in your Majesty’s hands. he desired them to wait. monsieur—tomorrow. de la Tremouille’s testimony and himself.’ said the 107 .’ ‘But in coming too early I should be afraid of awakening your Majesty. I have told him the truth. Does your Majesty require anything further? Speak. they would depart without being seen. but beware. The duke came straight up to him. then. and even his own. de la Tremouille on the preceding evening at his hotel. Since I have the good fortune to meet you. as early as you like—at seven o’clock. that the fault lay with my people. that he returned too late to present himself at the Louvre. sire.

’ D’Artagnan. Treville. I find that I have not been mistaken.’ ‘Thanks.’ ‘Monsieur the Duke.’ ‘Ah! You have heard what I said? So much the better. my braves. approached. Duke. conducted by La Chesnaye.’ ‘That’s well said. too many! If you go on so. Where are your Musketeers? I told you the day before yesterday to bring them with you. and that I never do see him unless I send for him. that I also wish to be one of his. In particular.’ said the king.’ said M.’ ‘Yes. ‘What the devil!’ continued the 109 . Treville. ‘Ah! It is you. quite contrite and repentant. who understood that it was to him this compliment was addressed. let them come up immediately. I am going to scold you.’ ‘Truly!’ ‘Without reckoning. thanks. and return often.’ said Athos. Come in. it is too many. without disappointment. ‘only tell him. ‘that if he had not rescued me from the hands of Cahusac. sire. sire. the three Musketeers and d’Artagnan. but seven in two days. Monsieur Duke. One now and then I don’t say much about. his Eminence will be forced to renew his company in three weeks.’ said the king. advancing toward the door. so much the better. de Treville. since he wishes to be considered your friend. I repeat. and at nine I expect a visit. for these are things which a king cannot say for himself. who had heard all these compliments through the open door. I should not now have Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ The Musketeers advanced. a mere boy! Do you mean to say that it was he who bestowed that severe thrust at Jussac?’ ‘And those two equally fine thrusts at Bernajoux. assuming a most deprecating air. Treville.’ ‘Quite contrite and repentant! Hem!’ said the king. it is far too many!’ ‘Therefore. there is one yonder of a Gascon look. that it is nearly three years since I have seen him. to offer you their excuses. d’Artagnan following closely behind them. ‘Seven of his Eminence’s Guards placed HORS DE COMBAT by you four in two days! That’s too many. bowing. what I have said of you. Treville. and I thank you that there is still one man in France of whom may be said.hold me always as one of your friends. ‘come in.’ said the duke. Go. ‘Come in. ‘I place no confidence in their hypocritical faces. appeared at the top of the staircase. and I to put the edicts in force in all their rigor. ‘Why you told me he was a young man? This is a boy. Come hither. Tell him all this for me.’ cried the king. sire. but he neglects me.’ The Duke saluted and retired. gentlemen. and with your permission La Chesnaye will bid them come up. At the moment he opened 108 The Three Musketeers the door. ‘but your Majesty may be assured that it is not those—I do not speak of Monsieur de Treville—whom your Majesty sees at all hours of the day that are most devoted to you. ‘I was so confident of your loyalty that I required no other defender before his Majesty than yourself. yes. monsieur. your Majesty sees that they are come. why have you not done so?’ ‘They are below. It is nearly eight o’clock.

and as we have besides decided that a novitiate is necessary before entering that corps. for as I told you. gentlemen. looking at a clock. how they had gone together to the tennis court. may I not?’ ‘Oh. are they not?’ ‘Sire.’ added the king. ‘is a proof of my satisfaction. bring them to me. money from the king. though the Lord owes them this miracle in recompense for the manner in which they supported the pretensions of the king your father. he had been jeered at by Bernajoux who had nearly paid for his jeer with his life and M. de la Tremouille. You have taken your revenge for the Rue Ferou. as the others were retiring.’ said the king. you ought to be satisfied. myself.the honor of making my very humble reverence to your Majesty. from hand to hand. ‘This is all very well. you may retire. the ideas of pride which are in fashion in our days did not prevail. that’s enough. PARDIEU. gentlemen. ‘yes.’ At this epoch. with your hand upon your conscience. happily.’ ‘Oh. D’Artagnan put his forty pistoles into his pocket without any scruple—on the contrary. in a low voice. And now let us see. and even exceeded it. But at this sort of work. and was not the least in the world humiliated. taking a handful of gold from La Chesnaye. Monsieur de Treville. place this young man in the company of the Guards of Monsieur Dessessart.’ ‘Well. ‘there. many doublets must be slashed and many swords broken. well.’ ‘If your Majesty is so. your brother-in-law. this is 110 The Three Musketeers just the account the duke gave me of the affair. I expect someone at nine. ‘we are. Gascons are always poor. thanking his Majesty greatly. now. with the loss of his hotel. and putting it into the hand of d’Artagnan.’ said Treville.’ ‘Which is to say that the Gascons made a king of me. young man. and how. that will be better. I don’t say nay to it. how. I may continue to rely upon it. he had gone to his three friends three hours before the hour of audience. A gentleman received. seeing that I am my father’s son. with one voice.’ said he. Treville. I am. as the king my father would have said. please to understand.’ murmured the king. ‘There. how did all this come to pass?’ D’Artagnan related the adventure of the preceding day in all its details. Treville! I Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Why he is a very devil. go and see if by rummaging all my pockets you can find forty pistoles. Thanks for your devotedness. ‘Here.’ added the king. La Chesnaye. this Bearnais! VENTRE-SAINTGRIS. but keep whole. is it not. Poor cardinal! Seven men in two days. who had nothing to do with the matter. ‘as you have no room in the Musketeers. Ah. and you will be more useful to me. upon the fear he had manifested lest he receive a ball in the face. and if you can find them. and those of his very best! But that’s quite enough. Treville? Well. sire!’ cried the four 111 . I can assert that they have hitherto discovered no gold mines in their mountains. yes. Now. as it is half past eight. ‘we would allow ourselves to be cut to pieces in your Majesty’s service. not having been able to sleep for the joy he felt in the expectation of seeing his Majesty.

and the lackey furnished by Porthos. but I don’t care. The repast had been ordered by Athos. when he waited at the dinner given by his master. Porthos pretended that this occupation was proof of a reflective and contemplative organization. or from asking in the kindest tone. and Aramis to provide himself with a suitable mistress. He was a Picard. whom he found sharing the forty pistoles with d’Artagnan. and he had brought him away without any other recommendation. I am doing what is right. Monsieur Cardinal. The cardinal. and saw him take out a handful of gold Free eBooks at Planet eBook. would not support two servants. Nevertheless. making rings and plashing in the water. though great. how fares it with that poor Jussac and that poor Bernajoux of yours?’ 7 THE INTERIOR OF ‘THE MUSKETEERS” When d’Artagnan was out of the Louvre. This did not prevent the king from being as complacent to him as possible whenever he met him. and consulted his friends upon the use he had best make of his share of the forty pistoles. The repast was carried into effect that very day. ‘Well. He felt a slight disappointment. and the lackey waited at table. for whom he believed himself to be engaged. and that he must enter into the service of d’Artagnan. whom the glorious Musketeer had picked up on the Bridge Tournelle. when he saw that this place was already taken by a compeer named Mousqueton. however. had won Planchet—that was the name of the Picard. who left him and rejoined the Musketeers. He will be furious.enjoy beforehand the face the cardinal will make. was really furious. Porthos to engage a 113 112 The Three Musketeers . The noble carriage of this gentleman.’ The king waved his hand to Treville. Athos advised him to order a good repast at the Pomme-de-Pin. as his Majesty had said. and when Porthos signified to him that the state of his household. so furious that during eight days he absented himself from the king’s gaming table.

Athos. we must render him that justice. Although Athos was scarcely thirty years old. He talked for the pleasure of talking and for the pleasure of hearing himself talk. no one knew whether he had ever had a mistress. and who was named Grimaud. and. had a valet whom he had trained in his service in a thoroughly peculiar fashion. believed he perfectly understood what he wanted. On these days he spoke a little. He preserved this opinion even after the feast. in order not to disturb his habits. His reserve. the chimeras of Planchet faded away. and his silence made 114 The Three Musketeers almost an old man of him. He never spoke of women. Athos then shrugged his shoulders. and the commencement of their intimacy often rendered him unjust toward that gentleman. but had never heard him laugh. Porthos and Aramis. The bed was the only one in the apartment. alleging in this respect the inveterate hatred he had borne to scholars from his childhood. but he talked loudly. which consisted of an antechamber and a bedroom. But with his simple Musketeer’s uniform and nothing but the manner in which he threw back his head and advanced his foot. Grimaud. During the five or six years that he had lived in the strictest intimacy with his companions. His conversation a matter of 115 . no arabesques. accustomed Grimaud to obey him upon a simple gesture or upon a simple movement of his lips. was very disagreeable to him. without putting himself in a passion. flew to execute the order received. Porthos. no embroidery. conveying all that was meant. little caring. He spoke upon all subjects except the sciences. as we have seen. on his part. thrashed Grimaud. without a single romance. although it was easy to perceive that this kind of conversation. except under the most extraordinary occasions. He had. Athos instantly took the place which was his due and consigned the ostentatious Porthos to the second rank. his roughness. and did precisely the contrary. while entertaining a strong attachment to his person and a great veneration for his talents. he believed his fortune made. and was of great personal beauty and intelligence of mind. de Treville and the guardroom of the Louvre with the accounts of his love scrapes. He had not so noble an air as Athos. Sometimes. He never spoke to him. and returned thanks to heaven for having thrown him into the service of such a Croesus. He was very taciturn. then. and no more. and which d’Artagnan from that time made shift to do without. after havFree eBooks at Planet eBook. Planchet slept in the antechamber upon a coverlet taken from the bed of d’ pay for it. but when in the evening he made his master’s bed. who feared his master as he did fire. this worthy signor. with the remnants of which he repaired his own long abstinence. whether anybody listened to him or not. they could remember having often seen him smile. Be it understood we are speaking of Athos. His words were brief and expressive. He not only talked much. in which he only mingled by bitter words and misanthropic remarks. Porthos consoled himself by filling the antechamber of M. no embellishments. whom he endeavored to eclipse by his splendid dress. had a character exactly opposite to that of Athos. He certainly did not prevent others from speaking of them before him.

purses. he was always clothed in black. ‘Like master. blind. within two steps of the Luxembourg. certain family likenesses Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Some fragments of past splendor appeared here and there upon the walls of this modest lodging. He was a Berrichon. and of unimpeachable fidelity. Porthos agreed to the bargain. the thing suited him wonderfully well. sleek. emptied his pockets. consecrated to an employment which would provide for his other wants. when he had an appointment with a duchess. richly embossed. dressed with the greatest elegance. he said it was sealed to its place and should never quit it until its master should himself quit his lodgings. and this portrait had certain resemblances of lines with Athos. the hilt of which alone. employing the leisure his master left him in the perusal of pious works. Mousqueton was a Norman. and which. which belonged by its make to the times of Francis I. and whose wife was suspected of wishing to make Porthos descend from his aristocratic habits. whose pacific name of Boniface his master had changed into the infinitely more sonorous name of Mousqueton. he endeavored even to borrow it of Athos. cast tender glances uselessly at him. with the masters and the valets. For the rest. might be worth two hundred pistoles. without saying anything. but he claimed two hours a day to himself. and thanks to a very intelligent tailor.’ Let us pass. and gold chains. In addition to the sword. peaceable. encrusted with precious stones. who was enormously fond of him. As for Aramis. got together all his jewels. in his moments of greatest distress Athos had never pledged or offered for sale. though in a handsome manner. Athos. from the lawyer’s dame to the baroness. a sword. He had doublets cut out of his old clothes and cast-off cloaks for passed from professional ladies to military ladies. there was a portrait representing a nobleman of the time of Henry III. mild. the hostess of which. aiguillettes. very nicely fitted up. there was question of nothing less with Porthos than a foreign princess. One day. Porthos would have given ten years of his life to possess this sword. superficially at least. from Grimaud to Mousqueton. then. let us pass on to the dwellings occupied by each of them. thirty-five or forty years old. but as to the sword. of whom we believe we have sufficiently explained the character—a character which. and deaf. as became the servant of a churchman. but excellent. Thanks to the hopes which his master entertained of someday entering into orders. And now that we are acquainted. and who wore the Order of the Holy Ghost. like man. in a furnished house. he was dumb. Mousqueton made a very good figure when attending on his master. from the valet of Athos to the valet of Porthos. providing rigorously for 116 The Three Musketeers two a dinner of few dishes. like that of his lackey was called Bazin. and offered them all to Porthos. Athos dwelt in the Rue Ferou. He had entered the service of Porthos upon condition that he should only be clothed and lodged. His apartment consisted of two small 117 . It had long been an object of ambition for Porthos. for example. who made his clothes look as good as new by turning them. An old proverb says. still young and still really handsome. nevertheless.

no doubt. as the others were. he was a young fellow made up of mysteries. and we have already made acquaintance with his lackey. ‘And you. and assorted badly with the rest of the furniture. With regard to d’Artagnan. The only thing to mislead the investigator would have been belief in all the good things he said of himself. Vain and indiscreet. and to Aramis in order to learn something of Porthos. who was by nature very curious—as people generally are who possess the genius of intrigue—did all he 118 The Three Musketeers could to make out who Athos. savored of nobility. and a bedroom. his life was very easily known. Porthos lived in an apartment. As to Porthos. in the Rue du Vieux-Colombier. a casket of magnificent goldwork. was his ancestor. large in size and of very sumptuous appearance. and that a frightful treachery had forever poisoned the life of this gallant man. wished to gain a little insight into the amorous adventures of his interlocutor. which room. Porthos. answering little to questions put to him about others. Unfortunately Porthos knew nothing of the life of his silent companion but what revealed itself. D’Artagnan. shady and impenetrable to the eyes of his neighbors. it was as easy to see through him as through a crystal. a knight of the Order of the King.which indicated that this great noble. As to Aramis. With respect to Aramis. ‘you speak of the baronesses. but he one day opened it before Porthos. and Porthos was convinced that this coffer contained nothing but letters and papers—love letters and family 119 . and having learned from him the report which prevailed concerning the success of the Musketeer with a princess. at one of which Mousqueton was sure to be placed in full livery. It was said Athos had met with great crosses in love. and said. on the ground floor. countesses. ‘That is my abode!’ But he was never to be found at home. a league away. except his real name (as was the case with those of his two comrades). and no one could form an idea of what his sumptuous apartment contained in the shape of real riches. Porthos raised his head and his hand. an eating room. we know how he was lodged. formed a middle ornament to the mantelpiece. who. Besides these. he never invited anybody to go up with him. He addressed himself then to Porthos to gain information respecting Athos and Aramis. Athos always carried the key of this coffer about him. situated. Master Planchet. and princesses of others?’ ‘PARDIEU! I spoke of them because Porthos talked of them himself. he dwelt in a little lodging composed of a boudoir. Every time he passed with a friend before his windows. though having the air of having nothing secret about him. What could this treachery be? All the world was ignorant of it.’ said he. my dear companion. with the same arms as the sword and the portrait. and Aramis really were (for under these pseudonyms each of these young men concealed his family name)— Athos in particular. looked out upon a little fresh green garden. because he had paraded all these fine things Free eBooks at Planet eBook.

following in that respect the very judicious example of 121 . In the meanwhile. you are a Musketeer!’ ‘A Musketeer for a time. Athos and Porthos dragged me into this to occupy me. Nevertheless. believe me. a mistress. So you see. if he lost. or if they had been confided to me.’ cried d’Artagnan. a Musketeer against my will. my dear friend. and that as a rule unfortunately. when everyone. he disappeared completely for several days. under the attraction Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the life of the four young friends was joyous enough. ‘but it seems to me that you are tolerably familiar with coats of arms—a certain embroidered handkerchief. I neither have. who has none any more than I have.’ ‘Yes. he always awakened his creditor by six o’clock the next morning to pay the debt of the preceding evening. but with money in his purse.’ ‘Oh. I had. although his purse was ever at their service. 120 The Three Musketeers ‘then some verses to compose. He formed. ‘and at this moment I have absolutely nothing to do. and Aramis as a Joseph. it interests me very much. I am very much in a hurry. As for myself. as the cardinal says. and that I avoid all mundane opportunities. nor desire to have. and I am taking up your valuable time. d’Artagnan was unable to learn any more concerning his three new-made friends.’ answered Aramis. but a churchman at heart.’ ‘But what the devil! You are not a priest.’ ‘Not at all. there exists no confessor more discreet than myself. at the moment of being ordained. do not forget that I wish to belong to the Church. He had always something or other to do. to which I owe the honor of your acquaintance?’ This time Aramis was not angry. Honore in order to purchase some rouge for Madame de Chevreuse. for instance. and took leave of him. hoping for more certain and extended revelations in the future.before me. On the days when he won he was insolent and ostentatious. a little difficulty with—But that would not interest you. but assumed the most modest air and replied in a friendly tone. Athos played. and when he had played upon honor.’ replied d’Artagnan. Notwithstanding all the pains he took. As to the rest. I was obliged to pick it up in order not to compromise him and the lady he loves. that if I had obtained them from any other source. ‘My dear friend. my friend. Then I must go to the Rue St. I don’t doubt that. Porthos as an Ajax.’ Aramis held out his hand in a cordial manner to his young companion. he looked upon Athos as an Achilles. but I have my breviary to repeat. Porthos had his fits. As to Aramis. which Madame d’Aiguillon begged of me. the resolution of believing for the present all that was said of their past. he never played. after which he reappeared with a pale face and thinner person. But be assured. my dear Monsieur d’Artagnan. He was the worst Musketeer and the most unconvivial companion imaginable. Sometimes in the midst of dinner. The handkerchief you saw had not been given to me. that if you are not in a hurry. therefore. he never borrowed a sou of his companions. but it had been forgotten and left at my house by one of my friends.

Athos counseled d’Artagnan to dismiss the fellow.’ added he. who carry matters in such a magnificent style. with a profound respect. At other times he would return home to write a treatise. swearing that Aramis would never be anything but a village CURE. ‘This is all very easy for you to say. and Aramis contended that a master should never attend to anything but the civilities paid to him. and are a god to your valet. ‘for you.’ answered the three friends. They rose about eight o’clock in the winter. but for me. and requested his friends not to disturb him. the terror. they must be placed at once upon the footing in which you wish them to 123 . After having well beaten him. which so became his noble countenance. Athos. about six in summer. Aramis. fell easily into the habits of his friends. religious man. and consequently never exchange ill words with him. ‘For. and went to take the countersign and see how Free eBooks at Planet eBook. who had no settled habits of his own. always abstracted by your 122 The Three Musketeers theological studies. When the wind of adversity began to blow upon the housekeeping of the Rue des Fossoyeurs—that is to say. At this Athos would smile. and Aramis ridiculous. and for you. arose with a bland smile. and affable toward his master. ‘it is a family affair. I inevitably look for better times. for you.’ D’Artagnan did reflect. he forbade him to leave his service without his permission. as he said. Aramis looked at his watch. who.’ replied d’Artagnan. and took leave of the company. who live like a dumb man with Grimaud. Planchet was equally seized with admiration. to go. Reflect upon it. with his charming. and I am too good a master to allow you to miss such a chance by granting you the dismissal you require. Planchet.of wine and in the warmth of conversation. when the forty pistoles of King Louis XIII were consumed or nearly so—he commenced complaints which Athos thought nauseous. Mousqueton. Porthos. He received thirty sous per day. ‘the future cannot fail to mend. inspire your servant. what I am to do to inspire either the affection. and said no more about going away. It is with valets as with wives. a mild. and Porthos would drink. who am neither a Musketeer nor even a Guardsman. who forbid him to speak. which he did with the conscientiousness that d’Artagnan carried into everything. Your fortune is therefore made if you remain with me. as he came from his province into the midst of his world quite new to him. supported his good fortune nobly. who am without any settled means and without resources—for me. to consult a casuist with whom he had an appointment. Bazin. Porthos indecent.’ This manner of acting roused much respect for d’Artagnan’s policy among the Musketeers. The life of the four young men had become fraternal. and for a month he returned to his lodgings gay as a chaffinch. and resolved to thrash Planchet provisionally. Porthos was of opinion that he should give him a good thrashing first. D’Artagnan. believed they had two or three hours longer to enjoy themselves at table. melancholy smile. d’Artagnan’s valet. or the respect in Planchet?’ ‘This is serious.

and Aramis to mount guard with d’Artagnan when he was on duty. Then it became the turn of Athos. On their side. where everyone considered him a good comrade. although he was not a Musketeer. The company of M. performed the duty of one with remarkable punctuality. Upon this promise d’Artagnan withdrew. de Chevalier Dessessart to admit d’Artagnan as a cadet in his company of Guards. which he would have exchanged for that of a Musketeer at the expense of ten years of his existence. donned his uniform. the three Musketeers were much attached to their young comrade. or pleasure. He was well known at the Hotel of the Musketeers. Sulpice. caused them to be continually running after one another like shadows. never ceased recommending him to the king. with a sigh. business. One fine morning the king commanded M. or from the Rue du Vieux-Colombier to the Luxembourg. In the meanwhile the promises of M. de Treville promised this favor after a novitiate of two years—a novitiate which might besides be abridged if an opportunity should present itself for d’Artagnan to render the king any signal service. and the need they felt of seeing another three or four times a day. The friendship which united these four men. or to distinguish himself by some brilliant action. de Treville’s. le Chevalier Dessessart thus received four instead of one when it admitted d’Artagnan. But M. He went on guard because he always kept company with whoever of his friends was on duty. from the Luxembourg to the Place St. and the 124 The Three Musketeers next day he began service. de Treville went on prosperously. whether for dueling. Porthos. D’Artagnan. M. and the Inseparables were constantly to be met with seeking one 125 . D’Artagnan.things went on at M. who had appreciated him at the first glance and who bore him a real affection. de Treville. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.

by selling some theological books— in procuring a few pistoles. At last it became Aramis’s turn.’ D’Artagnan thus felt himself humiliated in having only procured one meal and a half for his companions—as the breakfast at the priest’s could only be counted as half a repast—in return for the feasts which Athos.8 CONCERNING A COURT INTRIGUE In the meantime. forgetting in his perfectly juvenile good faith that he had fed this society for a month. even when they eat a good deal. Unfortunately he was in a bad vein. he lost all. it was prudent to sow repasts right and left in prosperity. in order to reap a few in time of need. they got together. Porthos succeeded him. the forty pistoles of King Louis XIII. Athos was invited four times. brave. and active men ought to have Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but these advances could not go far with three Musketeers who were already much in arrears and a Guardsman who as yet had no pay at all. Then the inconvenience became distress. At length when they found they were likely to be really in want. He was a man. and Aramis had procured him. eight or ten pistoles. after having had a beginning had an end. and contrived in the same manner that his friends should partake of them. as they had been accustomed to do. followed by their lackeys. At first. de Treville. and to the cornet’s. Porthos. he only found one chocolate breakfast at the house of a priest of his own province. where they devoured as much provision as would have lasted him for two months. He took his army to the priest’s. and he set his mind actively to work. He reflected that this coalition of four young. but as Planchet said. together with twenty-five pistoles for which he had given his word. as a last effort. who as yet knew nobody in the capital. picking up among their friends abroad all the dinners they could meet with. Athos supported the association for a time with his own means. like all other things of this world. and one dinner at the house of a cornet of the Guards. and yet was much sought after. enterprising. with which Porthos went to the gaming table. he was able to provide for the wants of all for a fortnight. for according to the advice of Aramis. As to d’Artagnan. and each time took his friends and their lackeys with him. who made some advances on their pay. who performed it with a good grace and who succeeded—as he said. who performed wonders. who made but little noise. were seen haunting the quays and Guard rooms. Porthos had six 127 . ‘People do not eat at once for all time. The hungry 126 The Three Musketeers friends. Aramis had eight of them. Then. as must have been already perceived. He fancied himself a burden to the society. and thanks to one of those disappearances to which he was accustomed. and after this end our four companions began to be somewhat embarrassed. they had recourse to M.

monsieur?’ asked d’Artagnan. ‘well. monsieur. and he had answered him with the proverb. as if to make a preliminary acquaintance. ‘Well!’ resumed the citizen. the queen’s cloak bearer. No. fencing lessons. with which he did not doubt. he desired to be left alone with him. ‘I have heard Monsieur d’Artagnan spoken of as a very brave young man.’ the reader must not suppose it was night. is her godfather. as with the lever for which Archimedes sought. A man was introduced of simple mien.’ said d’Artagnan. or however distant it may seem.’ ‘The devil!’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. in open day. had asked his master for some dinner. and who is not deficient in either virtue or beauty. speak. or by force. The only thing that astonished d’Artagnan was that his friends had never thought of this. as a sign that he listened. The citizen made a fresh pause and continued. or turning toward a single point—must inevitably. two hours before. ‘and this reputation which he justly enjoys had decided me to confide a secret to him. however well it might be defended. There was a moment of silence.’ ‘And by whom was your wife abducted?’ ‘I know nothing surely. they should succeed in moving the world. ‘d’Artagnan awakened Planchet. He was thinking by himself. who instinctively scented something advantageous. by cunning. four arms threatening the four cardinal points. dines. during which the two men looked at each other.’ said the citizen. never yielding. either subterraneously. four men always supporting one another. ‘He who sleeps. ‘I have a wife who is seamstress to the queen. or that day was hardly come. by mining. monsieur. I was induced to marry her about three years ago.’ ‘Well. and even seriously racking his brain to find a direction for this single force four times multiplied. would have liked to hear the conversation. more or less witty. and requested his visitor to be seated. from their purses to their lives. and befriends her. executing singly or together the resolutions formed in common. although she had but very little dowry. D’Artagnan awakened Planchet and ordered him to open it. and practical jokes. open themselves a way toward the object they wished to attain. after which d’Artagnan 129 . Planchet. my wife was abducted yesterday morning. but I suspect someone. who had the appearance of a tradesman. From this phrase.’ ‘And who is the person whom you suspect?’ ‘A man who has pursued her a long time. monsieur.some other object than swaggering walks. monsieur. it had just struck four. D’Artagnan dismissed Planchet. In fact. because Monsieur Laporte. but the citizen declared 128 The Three Musketeers to d’Artagnan that what he had to say being important and confidential. as she was coming out of her workroom. Planchet.’ And Planchet dined by sleeping. in the trench.’ ‘Speak. four men such as they were—four men devoted to one another. when someone tapped gently at his door. by way of dessert.

‘But allow me to tell you, monsieur,’ continued the citizen, ‘that I am convinced that there is less love than politics in all this.’ ‘Less love than politics,’ replied d’Artagnan, with a reflective air; ‘and what do you suspect?’ ‘I do not know whether I ought to tell you what I suspect.’ ‘Monsieur, I beg you to observe that I ask you absolutely nothing. It is you who have come to me. It is you who have told me that you had a secret to confide in me. Act, then, as you think proper; there is still time to withdraw.’ ‘No, monsieur, no; you appear to be an honest young man, and I will have confidence in you. I believe, then, that it is not on account of any intrigues of her own that my wife has been arrested, but because of those of a lady much greater than herself.’ ‘Ah, ah! Can it be on account of the amours of Madame de Bois-Tracy?’ said d’Artagnan, wishing to have the air, in the eyes of the citizen, of being posted as to court affairs. ‘Higher, monsieur, higher.’ ‘Of Madame d’Aiguillon?’ ‘Still higher.’ ‘Of Madame de Chevreuse?’ ‘Of the—‘ d’Artagnan checked himself. ‘Yes, monsieur,’ replied the terrified citizen, in a tone so low that he was scarcely audible. ‘And with whom?’ ‘With whom can it be, if not the Duke of—‘ ‘The Duke of—‘
130 The Three Musketeers

‘Yes, monsieur,’ replied the citizen, giving a still fainter intonation to his voice. ‘But how do you know all this?’ ‘How do I know it?’ ‘Yes, how do you know it? No half-confidence, or—you understand!’ ‘I know it from my wife, monsieur—from my wife herself.’ ‘Who learns it from whom?’ ‘From Monsieur Laporte. Did I not tell you that she was the goddaughter of Monsieur Laporte, the confidential man of the queen? Well, Monsieur Laporte placed her near her Majesty in order that our poor queen might at least have someone in whom she could place confidence, abandoned as she is by the king, watched as she is by the cardinal, betrayed as she is by everybody.’ ‘Ah, ah! It begins to develop itself,’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Now, my wife came home four days ago, monsieur. One of her conditions was that she should come and see me twice a week; for, as I had the honor to tell you, my wife loves me dearly—my wife, then, came and confided to me that the queen at that very moment entertained great fears.’ ‘Truly!’ ‘Yes. The cardinal, as it appears, pursues he and persecutes her more than ever. He cannot pardon her the history of the Saraband. You know the history of the Saraband?’ ‘PARDIEU! Know it!’ replied d’Artagnan, who knew nothing about it, but who wished to appear to know everything that was going on.
Free eBooks at Planet 131

‘So that now it is no longer hatred, but vengeance.’ ‘Indeed!’ ‘And the queen believes—‘ ‘Well, what does the queen believe?’ ‘She believes that someone has written to the Duke of Buckingham in her name.’ ‘In the queen’s name?’ ‘Yes, to make him come to Paris; and when once come to Paris, to draw him into some snare.’ ‘The devil! But your wife, monsieur, what has she to do with all this?’ ‘Her devotion to the queen is known; and they wish either to remove her from her mistress, or to intimidate her, in order to obtain her Majesty’s secrets, or to seduce her and make use of her as a spy.’ ‘That is likely,’ said d’Artagnan; ‘but the man who has abducted her—do you know him?’ ‘I have told you that I believe I know him.’ ‘His name?’ ‘I do not know that; what I do know is that he is a creature of the cardinal, his evil genius.’ ‘But you have seen him?’ ‘Yes, my wife pointed him out to me one day.’ ‘Has he anything remarkable about him by which one may recognize him?’ ‘Oh, certainly; he is a noble of very lofty carriage, black hair, swarthy complexion, piercing eye, white teeth, and has a scar on his temple.’ ‘A scar on his temple!’ cried d’Artagnan; ‘and with that,
132 The Three Musketeers

white teeth, a piercing eye, dark complexion, black hair, and haughty carriage—why, that’s my man of Meung.’ ‘He is your man, do you say?’ ‘Yes, yes; but that has nothing to do with it. No, I am wrong. On the contrary, that simplifies the matter greatly. If your man is mine, with one blow I shall obtain two revenges, that’s all; but where to find this man?’ ‘I know not.’ ‘Have you no information as to his abiding place?’ ‘None. One day, as I was conveying my wife back to the Louvre, he was coming out as she was going in, and she showed him to me.’ ‘The devil! The devil!’ murmured d’Artagnan; ‘all this is vague enough. From whom have you learned of the abduction of your wife?’ ‘From Monsieur Laporte.’ ‘Did he give you any details?’ ‘He knew none himself.’ ‘And you have learned nothing from any other quarter?’ ‘Yes, I have received—‘ ‘What?’ ‘I fear I am committing a great imprudence.’ ‘You always come back to that; but I must make you see this time that it is too late to retreat.’ ‘I do not retreat, MORDIEU!’ cried the citizen, swearing in order to rouse his courage. ‘Besides, by the faith of Bonacieux—‘ ‘You call yourself Bonacieux?’ interrupted d’Artagnan. ‘Yes, that is my name.’
Free eBooks at Planet 133

‘You said, then, by the word of Bonacieux. Pardon me for interrupting you, but it appears to me that that name is familiar to me.’ ‘Possibly, monsieur. I am your landlord.’ ‘Ah, ah!’ said d’Artagnan, half rising and bowing; ‘you are my landlord?’ ‘Yes, monsieur, yes. And as it is three months since you have been here, and though, distracted as you must be in your important occupations, you have forgotten to pay me my rent—as, I say, I have not tormented you a single instant, I thought you would appreciate my delicacy.’ ‘How can it be otherwise, my dear Bonacieux?’ replied d’Artagnan; ‘trust me, I am fully grateful for such unparalleled conduct, and if, as I told you, I can be of any service to you—‘ ‘I believe you, monsieur, I believe you; and as I was about to say, by the word of Bonacieux, I have confidence in you.’ ‘Finish, then, what you were about to say.’ The citizen took a paper from his pocket, and presented it to d’Artagnan. ‘A letter?’ said the young man. ‘Which I received this morning.’ D’Artagnan opened it, and as the day was beginning to decline, he approached the window to read it. The citizen followed him. ‘‘Do not seek your wife,’’ read d’Artagnan; ‘‘she will be restored to you when there is no longer occasion for her. If you make a single step to find her you are lost.’ ‘That’s pretty positive,’ continued d’Artagnan; ‘but after
134 The Three Musketeers

all, it is but a menace.’ ‘Yes; but that menace terrifies me. I am not a fighting man at all, monsieur, and I am afraid of the Bastille.’ ‘Hum!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I have no greater regard for the Bastille than you. If it were nothing but a sword thrust, why then—‘ ‘I have counted upon you on this occasion, monsieur.’ ‘Yes?’ ‘Seeing you constantly surrounded by Musketeers of a very superb appearance, and knowing that these Musketeers belong to Monsieur de Treville, and were consequently enemies of the cardinal, I thought that you and your friends, while rendering justice to your poor queen, would be pleased to play his Eminence an ill turn.’ ‘Without doubt.’ ‘And then I have thought that considering three months’ lodging, about which I have said nothing—‘ ‘Yes, yes; you have already given me that reason, and I find it excellent.’ ‘Reckoning still further, that as long as you do me the honor to remain in my house I shall never speak to you about rent—‘ ‘Very kind!’ ‘And adding to this, if there be need of it, meaning to offer you fifty pistoles, if, against all probability, you should be short at the present moment.’ ‘Admirable! You are rich then, my dear Monsieur Bonacieux?’ ‘I am comfortably off, monsieur, that’s all; I have scraped
Free eBooks at Planet 135

together some such thing as an income of two or three thousand crown in the haberdashery business, but more particularly in venturing some funds in the last voyage of the celebrated navigator Jean Moquet; so that you understand, monsieur—But’ cried the citizen. ‘What!’ demanded d’Artagnan. ‘Whom do I see yonder?’ ‘Where?’ ‘In the street, facing your window, in the embrasure of that door—a man wrapped in a cloak.’ ‘It is he!’ cried d’Artagnan and the citizen at the same time, each having recognized his man. ‘Ah, this time,’ cried d’Artagnan, springing to his sword, ‘this time he will not escape me!’ Drawing his sword from its scabbard, he rushed out of the apartment. On the staircase he met Athos and Porthos, who were coming to see him. They separated, and d’Artagnan rushed between them like a dart. ‘Pah! Where are you going?’ cried the two Musketeers in a breath. ‘The man of Meung!’ replied d’Artagnan, and disappeared. D’Artagnan had more than once related to his friends his adventure with the stranger, as well as the apparition of the beautiful foreigner, to whom this man had confided some important missive. The opinion of Athos was that d’Artagnan had lost his letter in the skirmish. A gentleman, in his opinion—and according to d’Artagnan’s portrait of him, the stranger must
136 The Three Musketeers

be a gentleman— would be incapable of the baseness of stealing a letter. Porthos saw nothing in all this but a love meeting, given by a lady to a cavalier, or by a cavalier to a lady, which had been disturbed by the presence of d’Artagnan and his yellow horse. Aramis said that as these sorts of affairs were mysterious, it was better not to fathom them. They understood, then, from the few words which escaped from d’Artagnan, what affair was in hand, and as they thought that overtaking his man, or losing sight of him, d’Artagnan would return to his rooms, they kept on their way. When they entered d’Artagnan’s chamber, it was empty; the landlord, dreading the consequences of the encounter which was doubtless about to take place between the young man and the stranger, had, consistent with the character he had given himself, judged it prudent to decamp.

Free eBooks at Planet


As Athos and Porthos had foreseen, at the expiration of a half hour, d’Artagnan returned. He had again missed his man, who had disappeared as if by enchantment. D’Artagnan had run, sword in hand, through all the neighboring streets, but had found nobody resembling the man he sought for. Then he came back to the point where, perhaps, he ought to have begun, and that was to knock at the door against which the stranger had leaned; but this proved useless—for though he knocked ten or twelve times in succession, no one answered, and some of the neighbors, who put their noses out of their windows or were brought to their doors by the noise, had assured him that that house, all the openings of which were tightly closed, had not been inhabited for six months. While d’Artagnan was running through the streets and knocking at doors, Aramis had joined his companions; so that on returning home d’Artagnan found the reunion complete. ‘Well!’ cried the three Musketeers all together, on seeing d’Artagnan enter with his brow covered with perspiration and his countenance upset with anger. ‘Well!’ cried he, throwing his sword upon the bed, ‘this
138 The Three Musketeers

man must be the devil in person; he has disappeared like a phantom, like a shade, like a specter.’ ‘Do you believe in apparitions?’ asked Athos of Porthos. ‘I never believe in anything I have not seen, and as I never have seen apparitions, I don’t believe in them.’ ‘The Bible,’ said Aramis, ‘make our belief in them a law; the ghost of Samuel appeared to Saul, and it is an article of faith that I should be very sorry to see any doubt thrown upon, Porthos.’ ‘At all events, man or devil, body or shadow, illusion or reality, this man is born for my damnation; for his flight has caused us to miss a glorious affair, gentlemen—an affair by which there were a hundred pistoles, and perhaps more, to be gained.’ ‘How is that?’ cried Porthos and Aramis in a breath. As to Athos, faithful to his system of reticence, he contented himself with interrogating d’Artagnan by a look. ‘Planchet,’ said d’Artagnan to his domestic, who just then insinuated his head through the half-open door in order to catch some fragments of the conversation, ‘go down to my landlord, Monsieur Bonacieux, and ask him to send me half a dozen bottles of Beaugency wine; I prefer that.’ ‘Ah, ah! You have credit with your landlord, then?’ asked Porthos. ‘Yes,’ replied d’Artagnan, ‘from this very day; and mind, if the wine is bad, we will send him to find better.’ ‘We must use, and not abuse,’ said Aramis, sententiously. ‘I always said that d’Artagnan had the longest head of the
Free eBooks at Planet 139

four,’ said Athos, who, having uttered his opinion, to which d’Artagnan replied with a bow, immediately resumed his accustomed silence. ‘But come, what is this about?’ asked Porthos. ‘Yes,’ said Aramis, ‘impart it to us, my dear friend, unless the honor of any lady be hazarded by this confidence; in that case you would do better to keep it to yourself.’ ‘Be satisfied,’ replied d’Artagnan; ‘the honor of no one will have cause to complain of what I have to tell.’ He then related to his friends, word for word, all that had passed between him and his host, and how the man who had abducted the wife of his worthy landlord was the same with whom he had had the difference at the hostelry of the Jolly Miller. ‘Your affair is not bad,’ said Athos, after having tasted like a connoisseur and indicated by a nod of his head that he thought the wine good; ‘and one may draw fifty or sixty pistoles from this good man. Then there only remains to ascertain whether these fifty or sixty pistoles are worth the risk of four heads.’ ‘But observe,’ cried d’Artagnan, ‘that there is a woman in the affair—a woman carried off, a woman who is doubtless threatened, tortured perhaps, and all because she is faithful to her mistress.’ ‘Beware, d’Artagnan, beware,’ said Aramis. ‘You grow a little too warm, in my opinion, about the fate of Madame Bonacieux. Woman was created for our destruction, and it is from her we inherit all our miseries.’ At this speech of Aramis, the brow of Athos became
140 The Three Musketeers

clouded and he bit his lips. ‘It is not Madame Bonacieux about whom I am anxious,’ cried d’Artagnan, ‘but the queen, whom the king abandons, whom the cardinal persecutes, and who sees the heads of all her friends fall, one after the other.’ ‘Why does she love what we hate most in the world, the Spaniards and the English?’ ‘Spain is her country,’ replied d’Artagnan; ‘and it is very natural that she should love the Spanish, who are the children of the same soil as herself. As to the second reproach, I have heard it said that she does not love the English, but an Englishman.’ ‘Well, and by my faith,’ said Athos, ‘it must be acknowledged that this Englishman is worthy of being loved. I never saw a man with a nobler air than his.’ ‘Without reckoning that he dresses as nobody else can,’ said Porthos. ‘I was at the Louvre on the day when he scattered his pearls; and, PARDIEU, I picked up two that I sold for ten pistoles each. Do you know him, Aramis?’ ‘As well as you do, gentlemen; for I was among those who seized him in the garden at Amiens, into which Monsieur Putange, the queen’s equerry, introduced me. I was at school at the time, and the adventure appeared to me to be cruel for the king.’ ‘Which would not prevent me,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘if I knew where the Duke of Buckingham was, from taking him by the hand and conducting him to the queen, were it only to enrage the cardinal, and if we could find means to play him a sharp turn, I vow that I would voluntarily risk my
Free eBooks at Planet 141

head in doing it.’ ‘And did the mercer*,’ rejoined Athos, ‘tell you, d’Artagnan, that the queen thought that Buckingham had been brought over by a forged letter?’ *Haberdasher ‘She is afraid so.’ ‘Wait a minute, then,’ said Aramis. ‘What for?’ demanded Porthos. ‘Go on, while I endeavor to recall circumstances.’ ‘And now I am convinced,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘that this abduction of the queen’s woman is connected with the events of which we are speaking, and perhaps with the presence of Buckingham in Paris.’ ‘The Gascon is full of ideas,’ said Porthos, with admiration. ‘I like to hear him talk,’ said Athos; ‘his dialect amuses me.’ ‘Gentlemen,’ cried Aramis, ‘listen to this.’ ‘Listen to Aramis,’ said his three friends. ‘Yesterday I was at the house of a doctor of theology, whom I sometimes consult about my studies.’ Athos smiled. ‘He resides in a quiet quarter,’ continued Aramis; ‘his tastes and his profession require it. Now, at the moment when I left his house—‘ Here Aramis paused. ‘Well,’ cried his auditors; ‘at the moment you left his house?’ Aramis appeared to make a strong inward effort, like
142 The Three Musketeers

a man who, in the full relation of a falsehood, finds himself stopped by some unforeseen obstacle; but the eyes of his three companions were fixed upon him, their ears were wide open, and there were no means of retreat. ‘This doctor has a niece,’ continued Aramis. ‘Ah, he has a niece!’ interrupted Porthos. ‘A very respectable lady,’ said Aramis. The three friends burst into laughter. ‘Ah, if you laugh, if you doubt me,’ replied Aramis, ‘you shall know nothing.’ ‘We believe like Mohammedans, and are as mute as tombstones,’ said Athos. ‘I will continue, then,’ resumed Aramis. ‘This niece comes sometimes to see her uncle; and by chance was there yesterday at the same time that I was, and it was my duty to offer to conduct her to her carriage.’ ‘Ah! She has a carriage, then, this niece of the doctor?’ interrupted Porthos, one of whose faults was a great looseness of tongue. ‘A nice acquaintance, my friend!’ ‘Porthos,’ replied Aramis, ‘I have had the occasion to observe to you more than once that you are very indiscreet; and that is injurious to you among the women.’ ‘Gentlemen, gentlemen,’ cried d’Artagnan, who began to get a glimpse of the result of the adventure, ‘the thing is serious. Let us try not to jest, if we can. Go on Aramis, go on.’ ‘All at once, a tall, dark gentleman—just like yours, d’Artagnan.’ ‘The same, perhaps,’ said he.
Free eBooks at Planet 143

‘Possibly,’ continued Aramis, ‘came toward me, accompanied by five or six men who followed about ten paces behind him; and in the politest tone, ‘Monsieur Duke,’ said he to me, ‘and you madame,’ continued he, addressing the lady on my arm—‘ ‘The doctor’s niece?’ ‘Hold your tongue, Porthos,’ said Athos; ‘you are insupportable.’ ‘‘—will you enter this carriage, and that without offering the least resistance, without making the least noise?’’ ‘He took you for Buckingham!’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘I believe so,’ replied Aramis. ‘But the lady?’ asked Porthos. ‘He took her for the queen!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Just so,’ replied Aramis. ‘The Gascon is the devil!’ cried Athos; ‘nothing escapes him.’ ‘The fact is,’ said Porthos, ‘Aramis is of the same height, and something of the shape of the duke; but it nevertheless appears to me that the dress of a Musketeer—‘ ‘I wore an enormous cloak,’ said Aramis. ‘In the month of July? The devil!’ said Porthos. ‘Is the doctor afraid that you may be recognized?’ ‘I can comprehend that the spy may have been deceived by the person; but the face—‘ ‘I had a large hat,’ said Aramis. ‘Oh, good lord,’ cried Porthos, ‘what precautions for the study of theology!’ ‘Gentlemen, gentlemen,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘do not let us
144 The Three Musketeers

lose our time in jesting. Let us separate, and let us seek the mercer’s wife—that is the key of the intrigue.’ ‘A woman of such inferior condition! Can you believe so?’ said Porthos, protruding his lips with contempt. ‘She is goddaughter to Laporte, the confidential valet of the queen. Have I not told you so, gentlemen? Besides, it has perhaps been her Majesty’s calculation to seek on this occasion for support so lowly. High heads expose themselves from afar, and the cardinal is longsighted.’ ‘Well,’ said Porthos, ‘in the first place make a bargain with the mercer, and a good bargain.’ ‘That’s useless,’ said d’Artagnan; ‘for I believe if he does not pay us, we shall be well enough paid by another party.’ At this moment a sudden noise of footsteps was heard upon the stairs; the door was thrown violently open, and the unfortunate mercer rushed into the chamber in which the council was held. ‘Save me, gentlemen, for the love of heaven, save me!’ cried he. ‘There are four men come to arrest me. Save me! Save me!’ Porthos and Aramis arose. ‘A moment,’ cried d’Artagnan, making them a sign to replace in the scabbard their half-drawn swords. ‘It is not courage that is needed; it is prudence.’ ‘And yet,’ cried Porthos, ‘we will not leave—‘ ‘You will leave d’Artagnan to act as he thinks proper,’ said Athos. ‘He has, I repeat, the longest head of the four, and for my part I declare that I will obey him. Do as you think best, d’Artagnan.’
Free eBooks at Planet 145

At this moment the four Guards appeared at the door of the antechamber, but seeing four Musketeers standing, and their swords by their sides, they hesitated about going farther. ‘Come in, gentlemen, come in,’ called d’Artagnan; ‘you are here in my apartment, and we are all faithful servants of the king and cardinal.’ ‘Then, gentlemen, you will not oppose our executing the orders we have received?’ asked one who appeared to be the leader of the party. ‘On the contrary, gentlemen, we would assist you if it were necessary.’ ‘What does he say?’ grumbled Porthos. ‘You are a simpleton,’ said Athos. ‘Silence!’ ‘But you promised me—‘ whispered the poor mercer. ‘We can only save you by being free ourselves,’ replied d’Artagnan, in a rapid, low tone; ‘and if we appear inclined to defend you, they will arrest us with you.’ ‘It seems, nevertheless—‘ ‘Come, gentlemen, come!’ said d’Artagnan, aloud; ‘I have no motive for defending Monsieur. I saw him today for the first time, and he can tell you on what occasion; he came to demand the rent of my lodging. Is that not true, Monsieur Bonacieux? Answer!’ ‘That is the very truth,’ cried the mercer; ‘but Monsieur does not tell you—‘ ‘Silence, with respect to me, silence, with respect to my friends; silence about the queen, above all, or you will ruin everybody without saving yourself! Come, come, gentlemen,
146 The Three Musketeers

remove the fellow.’ And d’Artagnan pushed the half-stupefied mercer among the Guards, saying to him, ‘You are a shabby old fellow, my dear. You come to demand money of me—of a Musketeer! To prison with him! Gentlemen, once more, take him to prison, and keep him under key as long as possible; that will give me time to pay him.’ The officers were full of thanks, and took away their prey. As they were going down d’Artagnan laid his hand on the shoulder of their leader. ‘May I not drink to your health, and you to mine?’ said d’Artagnan, filling two glasses with the Beaugency wine which he had obtained from the liberality of M. Bonacieux. ‘That will do me great honor,’ said the leader of the posse, ‘and I accept thankfully.’ ‘Then to yours, monsieur—what is your name?’ ‘Boisrenard.’ ‘Monsieur Boisrenard.’ ‘To yours, my gentlemen! What is your name, in your turn, if you please?’ ‘d’Artagnan.’ ‘To yours, monsieur.’ ‘And above all others,’ cried d’Artagnan, as if carried away by his enthusiasm, ‘to that of the king and the cardinal.’ The leader of the posse would perhaps have doubted the sincerity of d’Artagnan if the wine had been bad; but the wine was good, and he was convinced. ‘What diabolical villainy you have performed here,’ said
Free eBooks at Planet 147

‘All for one. 149 . when the officer had rejoined his companions and the four friends found themselves alone. As perhaps our readers are not familiar with the slang of the Rue de Jerusalem. ‘Hold out your hand and swear!’ cried Athos and Aramis at once. It must be observed that as a separate passage led to the first floor. ‘Shame. Four or five men are placed in ambuscade in the first room.’ said Aramis. and when you occupy Monsieur de Treville’s place. Bonacieux. as soon as societies. ‘do YOU approve of what d’Artagnan has done?’ ‘PARBLEU! Indeed I do. ‘Athos has already told you that you are a simpleton. and they are arrested.’ said Athos. gentlemen. in forming. one for all—that is our motto. nobody came thither but the three Musketeers. and as it is fifteen years since we applied this word for the first time to this thing. an individual suspected of any crime is arrested. I am in a maze. is it not?’ ‘And yet—‘ said Porthos. you are a great man. When in a house. Porthos stretched out his hand. and whoever appeared there was taken and interrogated by the cardinal’s people. they had all been engaged in earnest search and inquiries. ‘I not only approve of what he has done. ‘and attention! For from this moment we are at feud with the cardinal. became a mousetrap. grumbling to himself. and I am quite of his opinion. I will come and ask your influence to secure me an abbey. for four Musketeers to allow an unfortunate fellow who cried for help to be arrested in their midst! And a gentleman to hobnob with a bailiff!’ ‘Porthos. those who called on him were exempted from this detention. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. so that at the end of two or three days they have in their power almost all the HABITUES of the establishment. but I congratulate him upon it. and the four friends repeated with one voice the formula dictated by d’Artagnan: ‘All for one. The door is opened to all who knock. the arrest is held secret. without stopping to explain his conduct to Porthos.’ 148 The Three Musketeers 10 A MOUSETRAP IN THE SEVENTEENTH CENTURY The invention of the mousetrap does not date from our days. that police invented mousetraps.’ ‘Well. It is closed after them. allow us to explain to them what is a mousetrap. D’Artagnan. shame. Besides. one for all. The apartment of M. And that is a mousetrap.’ ‘That’s well! Now let us everyone retire to his own home. had invented any kind of police.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Porthos. of whatever kind it may be. then. as if he had done nothing but command all his life. Overcome by example.’ ‘And now.’ said d’Artagnan. in which d’Artagnan lodged.

the king. were almost always framed thus: ‘Has Madame Bonacieux sent anything to you for her husband. de Treville requested Athos. de Treville’s. In the meantime.’ D’Artagnan held onto this idea.’ said d’Artagnan to himself. he did not budge from his apartment. preceded by a minute search operated upon the persons arrested. who had not yet made the bed. the cardinal looked very thoughtful. d’Artagnan restrained himself with great difficulty from taking a part in the scene that was going on below. The interrogatories. they would not question people 150 The Three Musketeers in this manner. ‘It seems like a woman! They search her. he heard all that passed between the inquisitors and the accused. to be observant of his duty to the king. what is it they want to know? Why. the mousetrap continued in operation. begging him to convey his desires to his comrades. in which the interrogatories were made. There were no questions. and listened. except that the last time he had seen the cardinal. considering the habitual reticence of the worthy Musketeer. and likewise d’Artagnan’s vigilance. From his windows he saw all the visitors who were caught. or any other person? Has Monsieur Bonacieux sent anything to you for his wife. and if he has had. de Treville knew nothing. I tell you I belong to the queen!’ cried the unfortunate woman. ‘But I tell you that I am the mistress of the house. But this last circumstance was not striking. ‘Madame Bonacieux!’ murmured d’Artagnan. which. she resists. someone was taken in the mousetrap. which someone appeared to be endeavoring to stifle. from what he had heard. had very much astonished his captain. ‘Now. D’Artagnan flew to his hole. laid himself down on the floor at full length. as the queen since her marriage had slept badly and wept much. as Athos had just left d’Artagnan to report at M. was beginning his task. and then moans. Cries were soon heard. and the redness of the queen’s eyes donated that she had been sleepless or tearful. Then. ‘The devil!’ said d’Artagnan to himself. He converted his chamber into an observatory. they use force—the scoundrels!’ In spite of his prudence. 151 . Athos had even gone so far as to question M. But M. having removed a plank from his floor.but had discovered nothing. but particularly to the queen. de Treville—a thing which. they want to know if the Duke of Buckingham is in Paris. On the evening of the day after the arrest of poor Bonacieux. and the queen. a knocking was heard at the street door. the king uneasy. or for any other person? Has either of them confided anything to you by word of mouth?’ ‘If they knew anything. The door was instantly opened and shut. as nine o’clock had just struck. and nothing remaining but a simple ceiling between him and the room beneath. ‘Can I be Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and as Planchet. whatever might happen. or is likely to have. gentlemen! I tell you I am Madame Bonacieux. was not wanting in probability. As to d’Artagnan. an interview with the queen.

and d’Artagnan. saw the door open. feathers from their wings. Besides. The neighbors who had opened their windows. and breaking of furniture. the door of which doubtless acted upon by a spring. and crockery. in order to be there the sooner. and d’Artagnan remained master of the field of battle. it began to grow late. D’Artagnan was conqueror—without much effort. perhaps all three. not COME out of it. clashing of swords.’ cried Planchet. ‘Pardon. murmuring. ‘You put back the boards.’ ‘But where are you going. He then went straight to the door and knocked. and then. like so many frightened crows. as today. for only one of the officers was armed. sword in hand. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but two or three scratches made by the Gascon’s blade terrified them. which fortunately was not very elevated. gentlemen—par—‘ murmured the voice. and even he defended himself for form’s sake. Then those who dwelt in Bonacieux’s unfortunate house. leaving on the ground and on the corners of the furniture. steps approached. with the coolness peculiar to the inhabitants of Paris in these times of perpetual riots and lucky as to find what everybody is seeking for?’ The voice became more and more indistinct. Ten minutes sufficed for their defeat. those who. he let himself gently down from the first story. and laying hold of the casement. ‘They are binding her. ‘Hold your tongue. springing up from the floor. patches of their clothes and fragments of their cloaks.’ ‘Run and seek Athos. where are you going?’ ‘I am going down by the window. without doing himself the slightest injury. ‘I will go myself and be caught in the mousetrap. and four men. Tell them to take arms. it must be confessed.’ cried d’Artagnan. they are going to drag her away. The victim resisted as much as a woman could resist four men. stools. which could now only be heard in inarticulate sounds. heard loud cries. monsieur. clothed in black. I remember. closed after him. but woe be to the cats that shall pounce upon such a mouse!’ The knocker had scarcely sounded under the hand of the 152 The Three Musketeers young man before the tumult ceased. A moment after. it is by my side! Planchet!’ ‘Monsieur. to come here. and run as I told you.’ ‘Oh. and to run! Ah. Bonacieux. but FLY. people went to bed early in the quarter of the Luxembourg. had gone to their windows to learn the cause of it. surprised by this tumult. together with the nearest neighbors. that is to say. a tumultuous movement shook the partition.’ said d’Artagnan. Porthos and Aramis.’ cried d’Artagnan to himself. ‘My sword! Good. One of the three will certainly be at home. closed them again as soon as they saw the four men in black flee—their instinct telling them that for the time all was over. It is true that the three others had endeavored to knock the young man down with chairs. rushed into the rooms of M. Athos is at Monsieur de Treville’ 153 . the door was opened. stamping of feet. monsieur! Monsieur! You will kill yourself. stupid fellow. sweep the floor. go out at the door.

and a scar on his left temple. ‘I believe that his only crime is to have at the same time the good fortune and the misfortune to be your husband. She was a charming woman of twenty-five or twenty-six years. and a nose slightly turned up. Bonacieux had the sweetest smile in the world. for they are the agents of the cardinal. Monsieur Bonacieux. ‘Oh. that is he. Bonacieux. he is innocence itself!’ And something like a faint smile lighted the still-terrified features of the young woman. d’Artagnan turned toward her. with dark hair. he saw on the ground a fine cambric handkerchief. but his name?’ ‘Ah. Bonacieux. oh.’ ‘But. madame?’ said d’Artagnan. madame. with black hair. the poor woman reclined where she had been left. my God! What has he done? Poor dear man. ‘Ah. yes. those men were more dangerous than any robbers could have been.’ ‘Oh. The hands were white. But what could these men.’ ‘And did my husband know I had been carried off?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ 154 The Three Musketeers ‘Madame.On being left alone with Mme. monsieur!’ said she. and as to your husband. which he picked up. but without delicacy. if you know him. She opened her eyes. permit me to thank you. ‘What has he done. looked around her with terror. ended the signs which might have confounded her with a lady of rank. and was. monsieur. ‘you have saved me. At that moment Mme. and at the corner of which he recognized the same cipher he had seen on the handkerchief which had nearly caused him and Aramis to cut each other’s throat. want with me. Bonacieux the one he had just picked up. There. Bonacieux recovered her senses. and I hope to prove to you that you have not served an ingrate. d’Artagnan was not yet acquainted with such niceties. and a complexion marbled with rose and opal. Happily. the feet did not bespeak the woman of quality. tell me!’ ‘By a man of from forty to forty-five years. ‘I have only done what every gentleman would have done in my place. as was his habit. whom I at first took for robbers. you owe me no thanks. and he therefore placed in the pocket of Mme. While d’Artagnan was examining Mme. saw that the apartment was empty and that she was alone with her liberator. D’Artagnan examined her with a rapid glance. Mme. She extended her hands to him with a smile. he is not here because he was yesterday evening conducted to the Bastille. close to her. yes.’ ‘That is he.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘My husband in the Bastille!’ cried Mme.’ ‘And by whom? Do you know him? Oh. his name? I do not know that. however. a dark complexion. as we have said. monsieur. and why is Monsieur Bonacieux not here?’ ‘ 155 . Bonacieux. half-fainting upon an armchair. From that time. you know then—‘ ‘I know that you have been abducted. admirable teeth. blue eyes. d’Artagnan had been cautious with respect to handkerchiefs with arms on them.

descended the Rue des Fossoyeurs rapidly. Then. Bonacieux. I admit.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Besides. Then my dear Monsieur Bonacieux has not suspected me a single instant?’ ‘So far from it. almost imperceptible.’ said Mme. ‘how did you escape?’ ‘I took advantage of a moment when they left me alone. I hastened hither. as I believed my husband would be at home. ‘And now what are we to do. bah!’ said d’Artagnan. madame. only there is one misfortune. ‘pardon me.’ cried the affrighted Mme.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Ah. without taking the trouble to shut the door after them. and that is that Monsieur Bonacieux is known at the Louvre. therefore. and would be allowed to pass.’ ‘I doubted from the first. Bonacieux. ‘My intention was to inform Monsieur Laporte. madame. in order that Monsieur Laporte might tell us precisely what had taken place at the Louvre in the last three days. I remind you of prudence—besides. we are lost. and did not stop till they came to the Place St. of your love. ‘can go and inform Monsieur Laporte. and as I had known since morning the reason of my abduction.’ continued d’Artagnan.’ ‘But I. and now I think entirely as he does. I must not. I believe we are not here in a very proper place for imparting confidences. ‘I am at quite a loss how to answer you. written to him by the abductor himself. tell you. to a political cause. ‘But whither shall we fly—whither escape?’ ‘Let us first withdraw from this house. afterward we shall see. and who. ‘you have at some wicket of the Louvre a CONCIERGE who is devoted to you.’ ‘No doubt you could. if they find us here. and whether there is any danger in presenting myself there. with the help of the sheets I let myself down from the window. I believe.’ ‘And does he suspect. stole over the rosy lips of the pretty young woman. I wished to inform him. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘To place yourself under his protection?’ ‘Oh. turned into the Rue des FossesMonsieur-le-Prince.‘He was informed of it by a letter. but who knows whether they were at home?’ ‘Yes. and where do you wish me to conduct you?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ The young woman and the young man.’ said Mme. I have sent for three 156 The Three Musketeers of my friends. whereas you are not known there. ‘let us fly! Let us save ourselves. and the gate would be closed against you. poor dear man! I knew very well that he was incapable of defending me.’ At these words she passed her arm under that of d’Artagnan. with some embarrassment. but as he could serve us in other ways. The men I have put to flight will return reinforced. 157 .’ ‘Of what?’ ‘Oh. he was too proud of your prudence. yes! You are right. ‘But. and above all. ‘the cause of this event?’ ‘He attributed it. guardsman as I am. through my husband. Sulpice. no. that is not my secret. Bonacieux.’ A second smile. and urged him forward eagerly.

which was customarily given him as one of the family. ‘You are at home.’ ‘Come. and I will carry away the key. Bonacieux looked earnestly at the young man. Bonacieux. by the faith of a gentleman!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Now.’ said he.’ said she. ‘would you forget it as soon as you used it?’ ‘By my honor. and introduced Mme. after having placed you in his apartment.thanks to a password. and that woman is in his apartment. here it is. in my turn. and ask for Germain.’ ‘Well.’ ‘And what shall I command him?’ ‘To go and fetch Monsieur Laporte. Athos was not within. ‘Then I believe you.’ ‘But I—where shall I go meanwhile?’ ‘Is there nobody from whose house Monsieur Laporte can come and fetch you?’ ‘No.’ ‘I will do. he will be told that I have brought a woman with me.’ ‘But if he should return?’ ‘Oh.’ ‘Present yourself at the wicket of the Louvre. two steps from here. without a promise and voluntarily. all that I can do to serve the king and be agreeable to the queen. the other after an interval. your fortune may perhaps be the result of your devotedness. I can trust nobody. Where does he live?’ ‘Rue Ferou. You appear to be a brave young man. Yes. and if he should. as a friend. Bonacieux into the little apartment of which we have given a description.’ ‘And when he shall have informed him. the queen’s VALET DE CHAMBRE.’ ‘But that will compromise me sadly.’ said d’Artagnan. and then?’ ‘He will ask you what you want. and open it to nobody unless you hear three taps like this. then. and lighter.’ ‘But if he should be at home and see me?’ ‘He is not at home.’ said Mme. He took the key. you know. let me give you my instructions.’ ‘Let us go!’ Both resumed their way. ‘That is well. he won’t return. we are in a situation to overlook ceremony. with an accent so truthful that no one could mistake it. on the side of the Rue de l’Echelle. then. ascended the stairs. Dispose of me.’ He will at once put himself at your 159 .’ ‘Stop. ‘Remain here. besides. let us go to your friend’s house.’ ‘I am all attention. ‘And if I give you this password. ‘we are near Athos’s door. As d’Artagnan had foreseen. Besides. would—‘ Mme.’ and he tapped thrice—two taps close together and pretty hard. and you will answer by these two words. fasten the door inside. and Monsieur Laporte is come?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Who is this Athos?’ ‘One of my friends. ‘Tours’ and ‘Bruxelles.’ 158 The Three Musketeers ‘Of what consequence? Nobody knows you.

M. All the events we have described had taken place within a half hour. solicited a private audience. of the accurate address.’ D’Artagnan found his advice prudent. however. he related to him what he had heard of the projects of the cardinal with regard to Buckingham. by having it twice repeated. Laporte assured himself.’ ‘What?’ ‘You may get into trouble by what has taken place. de Treville’s clock three-quarters of an hour. Bonacieux was. Hardly. ‘why. Laporte was at the lodge. He took to his heels. darting at her the most loving glance that he could possibly concentrate upon her charming little person. ‘I believed it later. no difficulty was made in complying with his request.‘You will send him to me. Germain bowed.’ D’Artagnan bowed to 161 . In a 160 The Three Musketeers court of justice that is called an alibi. ‘Young man. ‘the clock shows it.’ ‘That is well. de Treville. as it was yet only twenty-five minutes past nine. let that care be mine. as Free eBooks at Planet eBook. de Treville that his young compatriot.’ ‘Twenty-five minutes past nine!’ cried M. that’s impossible!’ ‘Look.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said d’Artagnan. it was not too late to wait upon you. but instead of going into the saloon with the rest of the crowd. in two words d’Artagnan informed him where Mme. and a servant went to inform M. He expressed to him the fears he entertained with respect to her Majesty. in order that he may give evidence of your having been with him at half past nine. ten o’clock struck. de Treville was asking d’Artagnan what he could do to serve him. de Treville’s office. he heard the door closed and double-locked. de Treville a long history about the queen. On hearing the password. monsieur. In two bounds he was at the Louvre. As d’Artagnan so constantly frequented the hotel.’ said M. Everything fell out as Mme.’ ‘Well. and all with a tranquillity and candor of which M. and what caused his visit at so late an hour. from having himself. de Treville was the more the dupe. Five minutes after. and was soon at M. ‘Pardon me. ‘a suggestion. as he entered the wicket of L’Echelle. ‘but I thought. and set off at a run. In a few minutes.’ ‘You may. who had profited by the moment he had been left alone to put back M.’ ‘I depend upon your word.’ ‘That’s true. de Treville. and while he descended the stairs. Bonacieux prophesied. but where and how shall I see you again?’ ‘Do you wish to see me again?’ ‘Certainly. having something important to communicate. had he taken ten steps before he returned.’ ‘You believe so?’ ‘Yes. Bonacieux. he asked to be introduced to M. de Treville’s. and be at ease. looking at the clock. monsieur. rather. Have you any friend whose clock is too slow?’ ‘Well?’ ‘Go and call upon him. But what can I do for you?’ Then d’Artagnan told M.’ said he to d’Artagnan.

so rapid is the flight of our dreams upon the wings of imagination. Moreover. that it might not be perceived the next day that it had been put wrong. he ran downstairs and soon found himself in the street. Pretty. de Treville being paid. gazing at the stars of heaven. and the queen. We have observed that young cavaliers received presents from their king without shame. Let us add that in these times Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and this is an irresistible charm to novices in love. who thanked him for his information. D’Artagnan already fancied himself. d’Artagnan left M. accosted by a messenger from the young woman. Bonacieux. recommended him to have the service of the king and queen always at heart. or a diamond. and returned to the saloon. that he strayed thus from his path. but at the foot of the 163 162 The Three Musketeers . mysterious. the pensive d’Artagnan took the longest way homeward. He consequently sprang up again. d’Artagnan remembered he had forgotten his cane. For an apprentice Musketeer the young woman was almost an ideal of love. On what was d’Artagnan thinking. observed something fresh between the cardinal. and certain from that time that he had a witness to prove his alibi. re-entered the office. 11 IN WHICH THE PLOT THICKENS His visit to M. sometimes smiling? He was thinking of Mme. who brought him some billet appointing a meeting. which reflected such a charming gravity over her pleasing features.we have said. it might be surmised that she was not wholly unmoved. d’Artagnan had delivered her from the hands of the demons who wished to search and ill treat her. the king. and sometimes sighing. As ten o’clock was striking. with a turn of his finger set the clock right again. and this important service had established between them one of those sentiments of gratitude which so easily assume a more tender character. de Treville. initiated in almost all the secrets of the court. a gold chain.

he did not forget his friends. following the strange custom of the times. There are in affluence a crowd of aristocratic cares and caprices which are highly becoming to beauty. whence. we must say. without reckoning the hands. a tasty ribbon on the head do not make an ugly woman 165 . neither more nor less than if he had been in Flanders—Spain yonder. handsome. A fine and white stocking. which their mistress fastened to the saddle bow. 164 The Three Musketeers which had been the consequence of it. how disheartening to see the woman one loves long for those thousands of nothings which constitute a woman’s happiness. Bonacieux. Then d’Artagnan. the young man might easily guess that with so weak a man as M. and interest was almost foreign to this commencement of love. but on the contrary strengthens it. and be unable to give her those thousands of nothings. and a vast number of heroes of that gallant period may be cited who would neither have won their spurs in the first place. kind. a pretty slipper on the foot. D’Artagnan. he hoped to become one someday. considered himself at Paris as on a campaign. for the idea that a young. a lace kerchief. that slight varnish. was at the same time a very devoted friend. the hands.’ Such as were rich gave in addition a part of their money. the ephemeral flower. woman here. Then d’Artagnan. more or less furnished. ‘The most beautiful girl in the world can only give what she has. men made their way in the world by the means of women blushing. But. when the woman is rich and the lover is not. and contributions to be levied. Bonacieux was just Free eBooks at Planet eBook. to be beautiful must be idle. In each there was an enemy to contend with. from whom we have not concealed the state of his fortune. the gratitude for it seldom reverts to him. which gain by all this. In the midst of his amorous projects for the mercer’s wife. as if they essayed to conquer the fragility of their sentiments by the solidity of their gifts. without doubt. as the reader. had evaporated to the winds through the little orthodox counsels which the three Musketeers gave their friend. a silken robe. disposed to become the most tender of lovers. and that the latter almost always left them valuable and durable remembrances. that down of the peach. among women particularly. At least. Provincial diffidence. The mercer had said that he was rich. comes the proverb. Such as were only beautiful gave their beauty. nor their battles afterward. We say ALMOST. but the time which in his own mind he fixed upon for this happy change was still far distant. and witty woman is at the same time rich takes nothing from the beginning of love. The pretty Mme. In the meanwhile. that which he cannot offer she offers to herself. without the purse. and although it is generally with her husband’s money that she procures herself this indulgence. at the present moment d’Artagnan was ruled by a feeling much more noble and disinterested.of lax morality they had no more delicacy with respect to the mistresses. but they make a pretty woman beautiful. Without a blush. very well knows— d’Artagnan was not a millionaire. D’Artagnan owned nothing.

or that if he did think of him. when he perceived something like a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Then one could enjoy charming little dinners. of whom his head. or appears to forget him. deadened. breathing the balmy emanations which were borne upon the wind from the Rue de Vaugirard. Porthos. however. This mystery required an explanation. As he found himself in the quarter in which Aramis lived. in company with Athos. wherever it might be. if Aramis had been at home when Planchet came to his abode. First love is accompanied by such excessive joy that unless the joy be allowed to overflow. denying him aloud although he had promised in a whisper to save him. the songs of the tipplers. enjoying themselves in the cabarets scattered along the plain. shaded by a mass of sycamores and clematis which formed a vast arch opposite the front of it. Now. or Chase-Midi. we will not forget 167 . Love is the most selfish of all the passions. by good shutters. if not his heart. and finding nobody there but his other two companions perhaps. ascended the Rue Cherish-Midi. IF d’Artagnan forgets his host. and seemed a desert. and on the other the foot of a mistress. Bonacieux? whom d’Artagnan had pushed into the hands of the officers. D’Artagnan.the woman to walk with in the Plain St. Let our readers reassure themselves. d’Artagnan would become the preserver of his friends. to whom d’Artagnan had often remarked this. The house in which Aramis dwelt was situated between the Rue Cassette and the Rue Servandoni. Besides. he took it into his head to pay his friend a visit in order to explain the motives which had led him to send Planchet with a request that he would come instantly to the 166 The Three Musketeers mousetrap. It was delightful weather. where one touches on one side the hand of a friend. it was only to say to himself that he was very well where he was. and we know where he is. But for the moment. Denis or in the fair of St. under the pretense of not knowing where he has been carried. Germain. Paris for two hours past had been dark. From a distance resounded. And M. and which arose from the gardens refreshed by the dews of evening and the breeze of night. D’Artagnan was passing along a lane on the spot where the Rue d’Assas is now situated. let us do as did the amorous Gascon. We must never look for discretion in first love. we will see after the worthy mercer later. d’Artagnan turned to the left. in extreme difficulties. it will stifle you. and already perceived the door of his friend’s house. Arrived at the end of the lane. was already full. reflecting on his future amours. Eleven o’clock sounded from all the clocks of the Faubourg St. as it was then called. We are compelled to admit to our readers that d’Artagnan thought nothing about him in any way. at least. Bonacieux. so d’Artagnan declared to himself. on pressing occasions. they would not be able to conceive what all this meant. Germain. He likewise thought this was an opportunity for talking about pretty little Mme. and smiling at the stars. D’Artagnan had just passed the Rue Cassette. addressing himself to the beautiful night. and Aramis. he had doubtless hastened to the Rue des Fossoyeurs.

D’Artagnan thought this could not last long. ‘This is all very fine.’ And d’Artagnan. the eyes of the Gascons Free eBooks at Planet eBook. making himself as small as he could. The young woman in the street replied by a single tap.’ The three blows were scarcely struck. and only two windows looking toward the road. went backward. my dear Aramis. the shutter remained closed.’ Meantime the young woman continued to advance. Oh. It may be judged whether d’Artagnan looked or listened with avidity. and tapped. and in addition to the lightness of her step. ah!’ said the 169 . ‘PARIDIEU!’ said d’Artagnan to himself. We shall see the windows open. Ah. stopped. The young woman continued to advance. the other belonging to Aramis himself. ‘Ah. ‘Ah. this woman. but the eyes of the young man were accustomed to the night. whether the cough had been answered by a similar signal which had fixed the irresolution of the nocturnal seeker. this visit was expected. and d’Artagnan at first believed it was a man. Very pretty!’ But to the great astonishment of d’Artagnan. but by the smallness of the form. as if not certain of the house she was seeking. If I should disturb a rendezvous. This something was enveloped in a cloak. and the shutter was opened a little way. and the lady enter by escalade. There were but three hotels in this part of the street. lifted up her eyes to look around her. she resolutely drew near to Aramis’s shutter. Monsieur Hypocrite. counting the houses and windows. I understand how you study theology. yes! But a woman who wanders in the streets at this hour only ventures out to meet her lover. but through windows! Ah. the hesitation of the walk. and continued to look with all his eyes and listen with all his ears. with her bent finger. that would not be the best means of commencing an acquaintance.shadow issuing from the Rue Servandoni. which had betrayed her. ‘PARDIEU.’ murmured d’Artagnan. 168 The Three Musketeers she emitted a little cough which denoted a sweet voice. Still more. He was right. one of which was in a pavilion parallel to that which Aramis occupied. it looks so. dear Aramis. when the inside blind was opened and a light appeared through the panes of the outside shutter. But on my soul. Unfortunately the light had been removed into another chamber. to whose mind the niece of the theologian reverted. ‘not through doors. Further. the light which had shone for an instant disappeared. concealed himself in the darkest side of the street near a stone bench placed at the back of a niche. perhaps she is pretty. and all was again in obscurity. This was neither long nor difficult. D’Artagnan was perplexed. D’Artagnan believed this cough to be a signal. or whether without this aid she saw that she had arrived at the end of her journey. at three equal intervals. and then returned again. he soon discovered that it was a woman. and the indecision of the step. at the end of some seconds two sharp taps were heard inside. Nevertheless. ‘Shall I go and offer her my services?’ thought he. this time I shall find you out. Besides. it would be droll if this belated dove should be in search of our friend’s house. ‘By her step she must be young.

that was to follow her. and which took the form of a handkerchief. the faculty of seeing in the dark. he ran and placed himself close to the angle of the wall. which had reminded him of that which he had dragged from under the feet of Aramis. At length the shutter closed. d’Artagnan had already recognized Mme. which she unfolded quickly. But at the sight of the young man. This method was so simple that d’Artagnan employed it quite naturally and instinctively. it was not Aramis who was conversing with the nocturnal visitor. who had sent for M. he stole from his hiding place. should be running about the streets of Paris at half past eleven at night. that she exposed herself to such hazards? This was a question the young man asked himself. however.have. But was it on her own account. and passed within four steps of d’Artagnan. pulling down the hood of her mantle. Bonacieux uttered a little cry and fled. because the young man entertained no doubt that it was his friend who held this dialogue from the interior with the lady of the exterior. Bonacieux. from which his eye could pierce the interior of Aramis’s room. and what is the most important affair to a woman of twenty-five! Love. but stepping with utmost caution. who detached himself from the wall like a statue walking from its niche. d’Artagnan could not perceive the face of Aramis. Mme. Bonacieux. This immediately recalled to d’Artagnan’s mind the handkerchief which he had found at the feet of Mme. Curiosity prevailed over prudence. but the precaution was too late. but what probability was there that Mme. ‘What the devil could that handkerchief signify?’ Placed where he was. then. like those of cats. D’Artagnan then saw that the young woman took from her pocket a white object. Mme. Bonacieux. There was a very simple means of satisfying himself whither Mme. it was a woman! D’Artagnan. She made her interlocutor observe the corner of this unfolded object. at the risk of being abducted a second time? This must be. D’Artagnan ran after her. We say Aramis. and quick as lightning. Bonacieux! The suspicion that it was she had crossed the mind of d’Artagnan when she drew the handkerchief from her pocket. Laporte in order to be reconducted to the 171 . an affair of importance. The woman who was outside the window turned round. Then some words were spoken by the two women. being in heart neither more nor less than an accepted lover. could only see enough to recognize the form of her vestments. as it is asserted. Upon gaining this advantage d’Artagnan was near uttering a cry of surprise. and exchanged it for that 170 The Three Musketeers which had just been shown to her. Bonacieux was going. and profiting by the preoccupation into which the sight of the handkerchief appeared to have plunged the two personages now on the scene. and at the noise of the steps which she heard resound behind her. or on account of another. whom the demon of jealousy already gnawed. It was not difficult for him to Free eBooks at Planet eBook. At the same instant the woman inside drew a second handkerchief from her pocket. not enough to distinguish her features.

you are charming. you came to seek?’ ‘Not the least in the world. not by fatigue. It was chance that threw me in your way. she uttered a cry of joy. you won’t tell me you don’t know Aramis?’ ‘This is the first time I ever heard his name pronounced. Bonacieux.’ ‘It is the first time. Aramis is one of my best 173 .’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘That does not concern me.’ ‘That is true.’ ‘One of your friends?’ interrupted Mme. she reopened her eyes. for such protestations may be made with the worst intentions in the world. thank God!’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Most willingly. you must have seen that the person to whom I spoke was a woman. then. come. cast a quick glance upon the man who had terrified her so. And now?’ ‘Now escort me.’ ‘—since she lodges with him. and with whom all fear had disappeared from the moment in which she recognized a friend in one she had taken for an enemy.’ ‘Was it with that intention you followed me?’ asked the young woman.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘But who is she?’ ‘Oh. that you ever went to that house?’ ‘Undoubtedly. but the voice was all. crying in a choking voice.’ ‘And you did not know that it was inhabited by a young man?’ ‘No. Besides. she sank upon one knee. whose somewhat bantering character resumed its influence. These protestations were nothing for Mme. but at the same time you are one of the most mysterious women. I saw a woman knocking at the window of one of my friends. ‘No. The unfortunate woman was exhausted.’ said d’Artagnan. if you please. ‘Without doubt. it is you. ‘Kill me. ‘Oh. that is not my secret. I confess it. but this woman is a friend of Aramis—‘ ‘I know nothing of that. adorable. on the contrary.’ 172 The Three Musketeers ‘Aramis! Who is he?’ ‘Come. it is I.’ ‘Do I lose by that?’ ‘No. He came up with her before she had traversed a third of the street. whom God has sent to watch over you. Bonacieux.’ ‘Give me your arm. ‘no.’ ‘My dear Madame Bonacieux. but as he felt by her weight she was on the point of fainting. indeed!’ ‘It was not he. and when d’Artagnan placed his hand upon her shoulder. then. Bonacieux thought she recognized the sound of that voice. ‘it is I. it is you! Thank God.overtake a woman embarrassed with her cloak. Mme. you are. but by terror. you shall know nothing!’ D’Artagnan raised her by passing his arm round her waist.’ ‘By a Musketeer?’ ‘No. then. he made haste to reassure her by protestations of devotedness. and at once perceiving it was d’Artagnan. with a coquettish smile.

the young woman seemed to hesitate.’ ‘Without waiting for my coming out again?’ ‘Yes.’ D’Artagnan offered his arm to Mme. to recognize a door. as she had before done in the Rue 175 . half trembling.’ ‘And you will have nothing to fear on your return?’ ‘I shall have nothing to fear but robbers. by certain signs.’ ‘Why did you deprive yourself of the merit of doing so at once?’ ‘Is there no merit in repentance?’ ‘And do you really repent?’ 174 The Three Musketeers ‘I know nothing about it myself.’ ‘Word of honor?’ ‘By the faith of a gentleman.’ ‘You forget that beautiful handkerchief with the coat of arms.’ ‘Which?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. adieu. and approaching that door. then?’ ‘Perhaps yes.’ ‘You will return alone. however. She seemed.’ ‘But where are you going?’ ‘You will see.’ ‘Well.’ ‘But I will know it!’ ‘How so?’ ‘I will wait until you come out. Arriving there.’ ‘But will the person who shall accompany you afterward be a man or a woman?’ ‘I don’t know yet.’ ‘And you will leave me then?’ ‘Yes. madame.’ ‘Why so?’ ‘I do not want you. Take my arm. I perceive I must do as you wish.’ ‘How are they called who follow others in spite of them?’ ‘They are indiscreet. But what I know is that I promise to do all you wish if you allow me to accompany you where you are going.’ ‘The word is rather hard. and let us go. not the watchfulness of a spy.’ ‘But you have claimed—‘ ‘The aid of a gentleman.‘Where?’ ‘Where I am going. Bonacieux. ‘And now. But the moment is come to keep your word. who willingly took it.’ ‘And that is nothing?’ ‘What could they take from me? I have not a penny about me.’ ‘The word is too mild. because you will leave me at the door. perhaps no.’ ‘In that case.’ said she. a thousand thanks for your honorable company. which has saved me from all the dangers to which. half laughing. alone I was exposed. I have reached my destination. ‘it is here I have business. monsieur.’ ‘Shall I wait for you?’ ‘That will be useless. and both gained the top of Rue de la Harpe.

‘I shall discover them. and you confess that if that word were heard you would be ruined.‘That which I found at your feet. ‘Listen. be more generous. monsieur. and because I am only twenty. in the name of the service you have rendered me and which I never shall forget while I have life.’ said the young woman. in a manner so serious as to make d’Artagnan start in spite of himself. ask my own secrets. ‘That is because love has come suddenly upon me.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘All this will be cleared up at a later period. these secrets must become mine. madame?’ said d’Artagnan. ‘therefore.’ ‘Monsieur. I am sure. I exist no longer for you. with your questions. ‘come.’ ‘Beware of what you do!’ cried the young woman. monsieur. as these secrets may have an influence over your life.’ The young woman looked at him furtively. madame. I only speak that exact truth.’ ‘I invent nothing. and replaced in your pocket. and I will reveal them to you. ‘Oh. Rather. and surveying her with an ardent glance.’ ‘You do not know the man at whose shutter you have just knocked? Indeed. and for the first time. and yet I have told you that I do not know him.’ murmured the young woman.’ resumed d’Artagnan. This I ask of you in the name of the interest with which I inspire you. deeply piqued. Do not seek to assist me in that which I am accomplishing. that house is one inhabited by my friend. We have nothing to fear from those who love us. and that friend is Aramis.’ said the young woman. you believe me too credulous!’ ‘Confess that it is for the sake of making me talk that you invent this story and create this personage. that you have 176 The Three Musketeers repeated that name. madame. shaking her head.’ replied Mme.’ ‘You speak very suddenly of love. ‘This is the second or third time. Confide in me.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Very well.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I create nothing. but those of others—that is quite another thing. ‘you weary me very much. I assure you. Come. any more than if you had never seen me. seizing her hands. imprudent man! Do you wish to destroy me?’ ‘You see very plainly that there is still danger for you. Bonacieux. madame!’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘About three months ago I was near having a duel with Aramis concerning a handkerchief resembling the one you showed to the woman in his house—for a handkerchief marked in the same manner. I am already upon the scent. and I repeat it for the third time. ‘no. meddle in nothing which concerns me. monsieur. place faith in what I tell you. ‘you would there read so much curiosity that you would pity me and so much love that you would instantly satisfy my curiosity. Have you not read in my eyes that there is nothing but devotion and sympathy in my heart?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘If you could see my heart. since a single word makes you tremble. Have no more concern about me.’ ‘And you say that one of your friends lives in that house?’ ‘I say so.’ ‘Hold your tongue. 177 .’ ‘Must Aramis do as much as I. be silent.

who had not relinquished hers. go. beside himself with joy.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘Ah. ‘Ah! I wish I had never seen you!’ cried d’Artagnan. But be of good cheer.’ ‘But you will not follow me. and placing the other upon the knocker of a little door almost hidden in the wall. I was quite sure you were a good and brave young man.’ ‘By five minutes. Bonacieux. Bonacieux. would you not be compromised?’ ‘In what way? The initials are only mine—C. you render me the happiest of men! Do not forget this evening—do not forget that promise. I use your generosity.’ ‘Or Camille de Bois-Tracy. ‘well: I will not say as much as you do. holding out her hand to him.’ said the young man. B. D’Artagnan seized the hand held out to him.’ ‘Monsieur!’ said the young woman.’ ‘No. in the name of heaven. madame—‘ ‘Oh. and that handkerchief were to be seized. ‘Oh. ‘monsieur. supplicating him and clasping her hands together. risk of life in knowing me. madame.’ ‘Then I will not leave you. but in certain circumstances five minutes are five ages. you will not watch me?’ ‘I will return home instantly. ‘and you abuse my love. Constance Bonacieux. because it betrays the depths of the thought and proves that feeling prevails over reason. if you were to be arrested with that handkerchief. I am no further than gratitude. think of those you may yourself run!’ ‘Me?’ ‘Yes.’ said 179 .’ ‘Well! And who told you I had no affair with a lover?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.‘But you. since the dangers I incur on my own account cannot stop you. there midnight sounds! That is the hour when I am expected. what is lost for today may not be lost forever.’ ‘Then today. bowing. I do not engage myself. today. go.’ ‘Madame.’ ‘When one loves. think. with certain people. sorrowfully. ‘I can refuse nothing asked of me thus. when I shall be at liberty. prudent as you are. That depends upon the sentiments with which you may inspire me. depart! There. everything comes round.’ ‘Yes. In the proper time and place I will remember everything. by the courtesy of a gentleman.’ ‘Ah! You are too charming. I will depart. in the name of heaven! I was expected at sharp midnight. there is peril of imprisonment. as to that. and kissed it ardently. that’s all.. and I am late. with 178 The Three Musketeers that ingenuous roughness which women often prefer to the affectations of politeness.’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur! Once again. Now then. Who knows. in a voice almost caressing.’ ‘Be satisfied.’ ‘Silence. that I may not satisfy your curiosity?’ ‘And will you make the same promise to my love?’ cried d’Artagnan. silence! Ah. and pressing the hand of d’Artagnan. Be content. ‘Well!’ resumed Mme. by the honor of a soldier.

he sprang away. Bonacieux. who expects you?’ cried d’Artagnan. madame. ‘What has happened?’ ‘All sorts of misfortunes. they went away. on the contrary. ‘No. when all was over.’ continued d’Artagnan.’ ‘And Porthos and Aramis?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘What?’ ‘In the first place.’ ‘Badly. The last two mounted guard at the door during this examination. he turned. in three days I will tell them who I am. who rummaged every place and took all the papers. A woman with Athos! After all. ‘How badly? What do you mean by that. Bonacieux. I don’t know where—to the Bastille or Fort l’Eveque. and shut again. badly!’ replied a voice which the young man recognized as that of Planchet. soliloquizing aloud.‘It is a man. monsieur. or else he will have returned home.’ ‘Arrested! Athos arrested! What for?’ ‘He was found in your lodging. ‘It is your master that needs his liberty at this moment and not I. He had given his word not to watch Mme. the mercer’s pretty wife had disappeared. since he had so promised. Two remained with the men in black.’ ‘And by whom was he arrested?’ ‘By Guards brought by the men in black whom you put to flight. three light and regular taps. 180 The Three Musketeers as very preoccupied people do. The door had been opened. as at the shutter. d’Artagnan would have returned home. he came up to me and said. while Mme. for. and if his life had depended upon the spot to which she was going or upon the person who should accompany her. no. adieu!’ And as if he only felt strength to detach himself by a violent effort from the hand he held. ‘there was certainly one with Aramis. ‘he will never guess what all this means. and they cannot fail to let me go. monsieur. running. leaving the house empty and 181 . Athos! Noble heart!’ murmured d’Artagnan. Bonacieux knocked. I depart! I believe in you. where he will have learned that a woman had been there. They will believe he is arrested. Adieu. even if that devotion were stupidity. All this is very strange. with a half-smile which was not exempt from a tinge of impatience. and that will give him time. and I would have all the merit of my devotion. D’Artagnan pursued his way. you idiot?’ asked d’Artagnan. Monsieur Athos is arrested. since he knows everything and I know nothing.’’ ‘Bravo. at the end of which were the stairs which led to his chamber. ‘A man!’ ‘The discussion is going to begin again!’ said Mme. and I am curious to know how it will end. I go. He will have fallen asleep waiting for me. When he had gained the angle of the street. Five minutes later he was in the Rue des Fossoyeurs. ‘Poor Athos!’ said he. he had entered the alley. then. they took him for you.’ ‘Why did he not tell them his name? Why did he not tell them he knew nothing about this affair?’ ‘He took care not to do so. ‘I know him well there! And what did the officers do?’ ‘Four conveyed him away. then.

you are not afraid?’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Very well. de Treville was not at his hotel. I am brave when I set about it. de Treville’s. His costume of Guardsman in the company of M. Let them wait for me at the Pomme-de-Pin. for you left word that I awaited them?’ ‘Yes. still further. ‘you do not know me yet. monsieur. as he was going to the Louvre. M. d’Artagnan directed his course toward M. tell them what has happened. he had mechanically put his hand into his pocket. monsieur. They took the bridge. had an interest in not being recognized. coming back to recommend courage to his lackey. The woman had the outline of Mme. As he gained the top of the Rue Guenegaud. ‘But you will remain. I am a Picard. He had not gone twenty steps before he became convinced that the woman was really Mme. one was a man and the other a woman. D’Artagnan resolved to try and enter the Louvre. He felt at that instant all the suspicions of jealousy agitatFree eBooks at Planet eBook. in order to take the New Bridge. and the man held a handkerchief to his face. The woman’s hood was pulled down.’ said Planchet. and came up to the quay. ‘Be easy. Bonacieux. His company was on guard at the Louvre. with the perambulations of the day. Besides. I will run to Monsieur de Treville to tell them all this. He had at first an idea of crossing by the ferry. if they come.‘I could not find them. Besides.’ said d’Artagnan. he saw two persons coming out of the Rue Dauphine whose appearance very much struck him. the house may be watched. D’Artagnan followed 183 . It was necessary to reach M. de Treville. That was d’Artagnan’s road. already a little fatigued however. he was at the Louvre with his company. Dessessart ought to be his passport. and will meet them there. It is all in beginning. He therefore went down the Rue des Petits Augustins. ‘you would rather be killed than desert your post?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘But they may come any moment. I shall use it again upon occasion. monsieur. ‘It appears that the method I have adopted with this boy is decidedly the best. Of the two persons who composed this group. but on gaining the riverside. the man resembled Aramis so much as to be mistaken for him. Both.’ And with all the swiftness of his legs. as this double precaution indicated.’ ‘Well. don’t budge. then. and perceived that he had not wherewithal to pay his passage.’ said Planchet. they did not come. monsieur.’ ‘Then it is understood. Here it would be dangerous. it was im182 The Three Musketeers portant that he should be informed of what was passing. Bonacieux and that the man was Aramis. the woman wore that black mantle which d’Artagnan could still see outlined on the shutter of the Rue de Vaugirard and on the door of the Rue de la Harpe.’ ‘Good!’ said d’Artagnan to himself. and there is nothing I would not do to prove to Monsieur that I am attached to him. the man wore the uniform of a Musketeer.

and redoubled their speed.’ ‘You are right. Blood and anger mounted to his his heart. it is with Madame. Bonacieux. I had your promise as a soldier and your word as a gentleman. I hoped to be able to rely upon that. Bonacieux. that she owed him nothing but a little gratitude for having delivered her from the men in black. ‘You are deceived. who wished to carry her off. Mme. and that she had promised him nothing. by his friend and by her whom he already loved like a mistress. He considered himself an outraged. I ask a hundred pardons! But I love her. then returned so as to meet them exactly before the Samaritaine.’ ‘You pardon me?’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘Ah. monsieur. by all the gods. enlightened by a sudden idea. 184 The Three Musketeers since it is not with me you have anything to do. embarrassed.’ replied the stranger. betrayed. and a quarter of an hour after having made this assertion.’ said Mme. ‘It is not Aramis!’ cried he. and pushed d’Artagnan aside with his hand. ‘Yes. ‘ah. and with the rapidity of lightning. it is not with you that I have anything to do. but you are not—‘ ‘My Lord the Duke of Buckingham. ‘What do you want. D’Artagnan stopped before them. he was resolved to unravel the mystery. and ridiculed lover. annihilated by all that happened. ‘My Lord!’ cried d’Artagnan. recoiling a step. and pardon you. The Musketeer advanced two steps. which proved to d’Artagnan that he was deceived in one of his conjectures. I know her very well. You know what it is to love. Bonacieux had declared to him.’ D’Artagnan.’ said the stranger. he found her hanging on the arm of Aramis. ‘and now you may ruin us all. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and they stopped before him. before the Musketeer and Mme. ‘my Lord! Pardon me. it is not Aramis.’ replied the stranger. monsieur. and by your exclamation I perceive you have mistaken me for another. with crossed arms. my Lord!’ cried Mme. D’Artagnan did not reflect that he had only known the mercer’s pretty wife for three hours. and with a foreign accent. Bonacieux. ‘Allow me. and was jealous. monsieur. monsieur.’ said Mme. however. stupefied.’ ‘My Lord. At the same 185 . stood.’ ‘With Madame! You do not know her. the stranger drew his. madame. monsieur?’ demanded the Musketeer. that she did not know Aramis. to pass on. Bonacieux. cast down. ‘and let us continue our way. D’Artagnan determined upon his course. ‘No. Which was illuminated by a lamp which threw its light over all that part of the bridge. throwing herself between the combatants and seizing the swords with her hands. ‘In the name of heaven. D’Artagnan made a spring backward and drew his sword. in a tone of reproach. He passed them. madame!’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur.’ ‘And I. He felt himself doubly betrayed. then. my Lord. in an undertone. ‘you promised me—‘ ‘Take my arm. The young man and young woman perceived they were watched. Madame.

and then tell me how I can risk my life to serve your Grace?’ ‘You are a brave young man. who. we must leave our three friends to themselves. and the young woman and the handsome Musketeer entered the Louvre by the wicket of the Echelle without any interference. ‘You offer me your services. She took the risk upon herself. as far as the Louvre. Both entered. slay him!’ D’Artagnan placed his naked sword under his arm. As for d’Artagnan. 12 GEORGE VILLIERS. were that evening on Lord. Mme. Meanwhile. Bonacieux would be accused of having introduced her lover into the Louvre. as we have said. Fortunately. She closed the door after her. Her reputation would be lost. carried away as we are by our narrative. Bonacieux pushed a little servants’ door. that was all. and follow the Duke of Buckingham and his guide through the labyrinths of the Louvre. and then followed them. and found themselves in darkness. Bonacieux and the duke entered the Louvre without difficulty.’ said Buckingham. but of what value in the world was the reputation of the little wife of a mercer? Once within the interior of the 187 186 The Three Musketeers . Besides. Follow us at a distance of twenty paces. allowed the duke and Mme. with the same frankness I accept them. The door yielded. The duke counted two stories. and if anything should happen. took the duke by the hand. DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM Mme. holding out his hand to d’Artagnan. but Mme. This space passed. folFree eBooks at Planet eBook. who pressed it respectfully. Bonacieux was acquainted with all the turnings and windings of this part of the Louvre. and after a few experimental steps. Mme. Pardon me. Mme. Bonacieux was known to belong to the queen. Bonacieux to take twenty steps ahead. Germain was in the interests of the queen. the duke and the young woman followed the wall for the space of about twenty-five steps. open by day but generally closed at night. he told them that he had terminated the affair alone in which he had for a moment believed he should need their assistance. de Treville. it is true. put her foot upon the bottom step. appropriated for the people of the household. where he found Porthos and Aramis awaiting him. Without giving them any explanation of the alarm and inconvenience he had caused them. the duke wore the uniform of the Musketeers of M. he immediately repaired to the cabaret of the Pomme-de-Pin. grasped a balustrade. ready to execute the instructions of the noble and elegant minister of Charles I. he had no opportunity to give the duke this proof of his devotion. and if anyone watches us. She then turned to the right. and began to ascend the staircase.

this was not the first time he had risked his life in such attempts. she was in the full splendor of her beauty. Bonacieux. had lived one of those fabulous existences which survive. in the course of centuries. and in making himself loved by dazzling her. Brave. happy and proud at being near the moment he had so long sighed for. saying. and everything remained in suspense. Buckingham. on the very evening of coming to this decision. with just title. Sure of himself. declared to the queen that he would not depart without seeing her. for the handsomest gentleman and the most elegant cavalier of France or England. At thirty-five. left alone. would commit some folly. opened a door. and enterprising. his heart swelling with joy. One of the salient points of his character was the search for adventures and a love of romance. and pushed the duke into an apartment lighted only by a lamp. His 188 The Three Musketeers Musketeer’s uniform became him marvelously. even were this object were so elevated and so dazzling that it would have been madness for any other even to have contemplated it. introduced a key into a lock. descended a flight. but for her arrest. was abducted. ‘Remain here. For two days no one knew what had become of her. It was the queen! Anne of Austria was then twenty-six or twenty-seven years of age. George Villiers. was a snare. as we have said. he passed. and. Buckingham saw this apparition in the glass. he had. he uttered a cry. and placed in communication with Laporte. Duke of Buckingham. if exasperated. The queen had at first positively refused. and she accomplished the perilous enterprise which. Nevertheless. when. twisted his mustache. and a woman appeared. It was thus he had succeeded in approaching several times the beautiful and proud Anne of Austria. The favorite of two kings. which was then his age. my Lord Duke. upon the faith of which he had come to Paris. She had already decided upon seeing him and urging his immediate departure. immensely rich. rash. he went straight to the object he aimed at. He had learned that the pretended message from Anne of Austria. Mme. but instead of regaining England.lowed the course of a long corridor. certain that the laws which rule other men could not reach him. abusing the position in which he had been placed. At this moment a door concealed in the tapestry opened. to astonish posterity. convinced of his own power.’ She then went out by the same door. would have been executed three days earlier. isolated as he was. all-powerful in a kingdom which he disordered at his fancy and calmed again at his caprice. but at length became afraid that the duke. went a few steps farther. walked toward a mirror. restored the undulations to his beautiful hair. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. so that the duke found himself literally a prisoner. George Villiers placed himself before the glass. which the weight of his hat had 189 . someone will come. who was charged with going to fetch the duke and conducting him to the Louvre. he smiled upon himself with pride and hope. we must say that the Duke of Buckingham did not experience an instant of fear. but once free. matters resumed their course. which she locked. that is to say.

admirably set off her face. madame! Yes. nor despair can extinguish.’ said Buckingham. but as profoundly disdainful in its contempt. all the poets of the time singing them as incomparable.’ 190 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. too great an ingratitude.’ ‘Yes. where can you find a love like mine—a love which neither time. a stray look. senseless. you persist in remaining in a city where. since I saw you for the first time. Besides. like that of all princes of the House of Austria. which. the enmity of kingdoms.Her carriage was that of a queen or a goddess. and during those three years I have loved you thus. my Lord. because. as she appeared to him at this moment. insensible to all my sufferings. It is sacrilege to struggle against so many things.’ replied Anne. by remaining. Queen. yes. the sanctity of vows. Never had Anne of Austria appeared to him so beautiful. and truly. but what then! They who love believe easily in love. her hands and arms were of surpassing beauty. it was eminently lovely in its smile. For tell me.’ ‘My Lord. her hair. had become chestnut. which cast the brilliancy of emeralds.’ ‘Speak on. you already know that it is not I who caused you to be written to. madame.’ cried the queen. madame. I see you to tell you that we must never see each other again. in which the most rigid critic could only have desired a little less rouge. and the most fastidious sculptor a little more fineness in the nose. to believe that snow would become animated or marble warm. or carousals. Lastly. dressed in a simple robe of white satin. You talk of sacrilege! Why. Her skin was admired for its velvety softness. from being light in her youth. and accompanied by Donna Estafania— the only one of her Spanish women who had not been driven from her by the jealousy of the king or by the persecutions of Richelieu.’ ‘But you have never told me that you did not love me. amid balls. your Majesty!’ cried the duke. Buckingham remained for a moment dazzled. were perfectly beautiful. ‘Duke. and with much powder. to speak such words to me would be. and before the queen could prevent him. and yet were at the same time full of sweetness and majesty. Buckingham threw himself at her feet. on the part of your Majesty. you run the risk of your life. the sacrilege is the separation of two hearts formed by God for each other. and although her underlip. protruded slightly beyond the other. You were seated upon cushions in the Spanish fashion. nor absence. ‘the sweetness of your voice covers the harshness of your words. fetes. ‘but you know why and how I see you. I have lost nothing by this journey because I see you. ‘I know that I must have been mad. In short. her eyes. Her mouth was small and rosy. kissed the hem of her robe. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. a love which contents itself with a lost ribbon. speak 191 . and make me run the risk of my honor. and which she wore curled very plainly. ‘you forget that I have never said that I love you. or a chance word? It is now three years. Shall I tell you each ornament of your toilet? Mark! I see you now. I see you to tell you that everything separates us—the depths of the sea. Anne of Austria took two steps forward.

a small cap upon your head of the same color as your robe. in short. at the mansion of Madame de Chevreuse. but my love came out from it more ardent and more eternal. are comprised in a moment like that. how lovely the blue heavens and starenameled sky! Ah. it is possible that the influence of the place. for in three years. I will swear it. the fascination of your look—the thousand circumstances.’ ‘Duke. madame! I felt. madame. and I see what you are now—a hundred time more beautiful!’ ‘What folly. on the contrary. which I have described to you. or all the kings of the earth! Eight days after. I open them again. let us speak of it! That is the most happy and brilliant evening of my life! You remember what a beautiful night it was? How soft and perfumed was the air. yes. my glory. hanging sleeves knotted upon your beautiful arms— those lovely arms—with large diamonds. the second. let us speak of it. Queen! Queen! You do not know what felicity from heaven. but calumny seized upon all those follies in which I Free eBooks at Planet eBook. madame. Then you were about to tell me all— the isolation of your life. in the gardens of Amiens. I had risked my life and favor to see you but for a second. That time you had nothing to say to me. your beautiful hair touch my cheek. It is my happiness. you believed that I would not dare to quit the treasure over which my master had charged me to watch. I did not even touch your hand. For that night. I have only seen you four times—the first. madame. Oh. At the first word you dared to utter. but. Every time I see you is a fresh diamond which I enclose in the casket of my heart. yes. what joys from paradise. I was back again. my Lord.’ ‘My Lord. You believed that you would fly from me by returning to Paris. Take my wealth. ‘never speak of that evening. and in that cap a heron’s feather. for such an instant. madame.’ ‘Yes. What to me were all the treasures in the world. This is the fourth which you have let fall and I have picked up. blushing. my wore a robe of green satin embroidered with gold and silver. that night you loved me. And any other love but mine would have sunk beneath this ordeal. that is true. then. the griefs of your heart.’ said the 193 . all the days I have to live. and every time that it touched me I trembled from head to foot.’ ‘Yes. the third. for a night like that. who had not the courage to find fault with the duke for having so well preserved her portrait in his heart. I was able for one instant to be alone with you. You wore a close ruff. and you pardoned me on seeing me so submissive and so repentant.’ ‘Oh. I called for help. my treasure. ‘what folly to feed a useless passion with such remembrances!’ ‘And upon what then must I live? I have nothing but memory. you saw the queen come to the aid of the woman who faltered. which sometimes unite to destroy a woman—were grouped around me on that fatal evening. in bending my head toward you. my fortune. at the first freedom to which I had to reply. You leaned 192 The Three Musketeers upon my arm—upon this.’ murmured Anne of Austria. the charm of the beautiful evening. and I can see you as you then were. Hold! Hold! I shut my eyes.

and she responded to his love. it is even ridiculous for me to name it to you. my Lord. What object. They will not dare to refuse me then. duke. and I will return to Paris. ‘If I am happy in an error. poor Buckingham might have hoped. say that you would love me then! I can believe that it is the dignity of your rank alone which makes you cruel to me. but tell me what woman has a lover more truly in love. and. excited by the cardinal. may leave my life in it—for. All these proofs of love which you would give me are almost crimes. silence!’ cried the duke. madame. you would view all this otherwise. it is true. my Lord. no. madame. have this expedition to Re and this league with the Protestants of La Rochelle which I am projecting? The pleasure of seeing you. perhaps. as you well know. and when you wished to come back as ambassador to France. sword in hand. I am not allowed to see you. what queen a servant more ardent?’ ‘My Lord. but what is that to me. believe me. that would be too great happiness. But this war may bring round a peace. I take no heed of such dreams. to Paris. with an accent of terror which proved how much greater an interest she took in the duke than she ventured to tell. in spite of herself. oh. if you were not queen! Madame. think you. and will see you again. my God!’ cried Anne of Austria. I. I also have had dreams. and France is about to pay for her king’s refusal with a war.’ murmured Anne of Austria. do not have the cruelty to lift me from it. with a smile at once sad and charming. although it may be strange. this peace will require a negotiator. that negotiator will be me. wrongly interpreted. Madame de Chevreuse was less cruel than you. If you loved me. I have for some time had a presentiment that I should shortly die. to terrify you. Madame de Chevreuse fell into disgrace. then. I can believe that you had been Madame de Chevreuse. that I have been drawn into a snare. will have to pay for my happiness with their lives. Thousands of men. overcome.’ ‘Oh. ‘Oh.’ ‘Because you do not love me. my Lord! You have ill understood. Madame de Vernet was driven from me. Thanks for those sweet words! Oh. and will be happy for an instant. ‘I also. I dreamed that I saw you Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the king himself—remember. you invoke in your defense things which accuse you more strongly.’ And the duke smiled. Ah. made a terrible clamor.’ 194 The Three Musketeers ‘Madame de Chevreuse was not queen. the hope you have almost given me. Holland loved her. ‘You would love me. You have told me yourself. provided I see you again! All this is perhaps folly—perhaps insanity. have had presentiments. but you shall every day hear of 195 . if you loved me. But the words you have just spoken. Putange was exiled. I have no hope of penetrating.’ ‘Yes. my lord—the king himself opposed to it. and I should run mad. ‘I do not tell you this.’ said Anne.took no part. thanks!’ ‘Oh. my beautiful sovereign. The king. but I. will have richly paid all—were it my life. I know that well. madame! If you loved me. I did not mean to say—‘ ‘Silence. madame. by the expression of so profound a passion. a hundred times.

lying bleeding, wounded.’ ‘In the left side, was it not, and with a knife?’ interrupted Buckingham. ‘Yes, it was so, my Lord, it was so—in the left side, and with a knife. Who can possibly have told you I had had that dream? I have imparted it to no one but my God, and that in my prayers.’ ‘I ask for no more. You love me, madame; it is enough.’ ‘I love you, I?’ ‘Yes, yes. Would God send the same dreams to you as to me if you did not love me? Should we have the same presentiments if our existences did not touch at the heart? You love me, my beautiful queen, and you will weep for me?’ ‘Oh, my God, my God!’ cried Anne of Austria, ‘this is more than I can bear. In the name of heaven, Duke, leave me, go! I do not know whether I love you or love you not; but what I know is that I will not be perjured. Take pity on me, then, and go! Oh, if you are struck in France, if you die in France, if I could imagine that your love for me was the cause of your death, I could not console myself; I should run mad. Depart then, depart, I implore you!’ ‘Oh, how beautiful you are thus! Oh, how I love you!’ said Buckingham. ‘Go, go, I implore you, and return hereafter! Come back as ambassador, come back as minister, come back surrounded with guards who will defend you, with servants who will watch over you, and then I shall no longer fear for your days, and I shall be happy in seeing you.’ ‘Oh, is this true what you say?’
196 The Three Musketeers

‘Yes.’ ‘Oh, then, some pledge of your indulgence, some object which came from you, and may remind me that I have not been dreaming; something you have worn, and that I may wear in my turn—a ring, a necklace, a chain.’ ‘Will you depart—will you depart, if I give you that you demand?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘This very instant?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘You will leave France, you will return to England?’ ‘I will, I swear to you.’ ‘Wait, then, wait.’ Anne of Austria re-entered her apartment, and came out again almost immediately, holding a rosewood casket in her hand, with her cipher encrusted with gold. ‘Here, my Lord, here,’ said she, ‘keep this in memory of me.’ Buckingham took the casket, and fell a second time on his knees. ‘You have promised me to go,’ said the queen. ‘And I keep my word. Your hand, madame, your hand, and I depart!’ Anne of Austria stretched forth her hand, closing her eyes, and leaning with the other upon Estafania, for she felt that her strength was about to fail her. Buckingham pressed his lips passionately to that beautiful hand, and then rising, said, ‘Within six months, if I am not dead, I shall have seen you again, madame—even if I
Free eBooks at Planet 197

have to overturn the world.’ And faithful to the promise he had made, he rushed out of the apartment. In the corridor he met Mme. Bonacieux, who waited for him, and who, with the same precautions and the same good luck, conducted him out of the Louvre.

There was in all this, as may have been observed, one personage concerned, of whom, notwithstanding his precarious position, we have appeared to take but very little notice. This personage was M. Bonacieux, the respectable martyr of the political and amorous intrigues which entangled themselves so nicely together at this gallant and chivalric period. Fortunately, the reader may remember, or may not remember— fortunately we have promised not to lose sight of him. The officers who arrested him conducted him straight to the Bastille, where he passed trembling before a party of soldiers who were loading their muskets. Thence, introduced into a halfsubterranean gallery, he became, on the part of those who had brought him, the object of the grossest insults and the harshest treatment. The officers perceived that they had not to deal with a gentleman, and they treated him like a very peasant. At the end of half an hour or thereabouts, a clerk came to put an end to his tortures, but not to his anxiety, by giving the order to conduct M. Bonacieux to the Chamber of Examination. Ordinarily, prisoners were interrogated in their cells; but they did not do so with M. Bonacieux. Two guards attended the mercer who made him traverse
Free eBooks at Planet 199


The Three Musketeers

a court and enter a corridor in which were three sentinels, opened a door and pushed him unceremoniously into a low room, where the only furniture was a table, a chair, and a commissary. The commissary was seated in the chair, and was writing at the table. The two guards led the prisoner toward the table, and upon a sign from the commissary drew back so far as to be unable to hear anything. The commissary, who had till this time held his head down over his papers, looked up to see what sort of person he had to do with. This commissary was a man of very repulsive mien, with a pointed nose, with yellow and salient cheek bones, with eyes small but keen and penetrating, and an expression of countenance resembling at once the polecat and the fox. His head, supported by a long and flexible neck, issued from his large black robe, balancing itself with a motion very much like that of the tortoise thrusting his head out of his shell. He began by asking M. Bonacieux his name, age, condition, and abode. The accused replied that his name was Jacques Michel Bonacieux, that he was fifty-one years old, a retired mercer, and lived Rue des Fossoyeurs, No. 14. The commissary then, instead of continuing to interrogate him, made him a long speech upon the danger there is for an obscure citizen to meddle with public matters. He complicated this exordium by an exposition in which he painted the power and the deeds of the cardinal, that incomparable minister, that conqueror of past ministers, that example for ministers to come—deeds and power which
200 The Three Musketeers

none could thwart with impunity. After this second part of his discourse, fixing his hawk’s eye upon poor Bonacieux, he bade him reflect upon the gravity of his situation. The reflections of the mercer were already made; he cursed the instant when M. Laporte formed the idea of marrying him to his goddaughter, and particularly the moment when that goddaughter had been received as Lady of the Linen to her Majesty. At bottom the character of M. Bonacieux was one of profound selfishness mixed with sordid avarice, the whole seasoned with extreme cowardice. The love with which his young wife had inspired him was a secondary sentiment, and was not strong enough to contend with the primitive feelings we have just enumerated. Bonacieux indeed reflected on what had just been said to him. ‘But, Monsieur Commissary,’ said he, calmly, ‘believe that I know and appreciate, more than anybody, the merit of the incomparable eminence by whom we have the honor to be governed.’ ‘Indeed?’ asked the commissary, with an air of doubt. ‘If that is really so, how came you in the Bastille?’ ‘How I came there, or rather why I am there,’ replied Bonacieux, ‘that is entirely impossible for me to tell you, because I don’t know myself; but to a certainty it is not for having, knowingly at least, disobliged Monsieur the Cardinal.’ ‘You must, nevertheless, have committed a crime, since you are here and are accused of high treason.’
Free eBooks at Planet 201

‘Of high treason!’ cried Bonacieux, terrified; ‘of high treason! How is it possible for a poor mercer, who detests Huguenots and who abhors Spaniards, to be accused of high treason? Consider, monsieur, the thing is absolutely impossible.’ ‘Monsieur Bonacieux,’ said the commissary, looking at the accused as if his little eyes had the faculty of reading to the very depths of hearts, ‘you have a wife?’ ‘Yes, monsieur,’ replied the mercer, in a tremble, feeling that it was at this point affairs were likely to become perplexing; ‘that is to say, I HAD one.’ ‘What, you ‘had one’? What have you done with her, then, if you have her no longer?’ ‘They have abducted her, monsieur.’ ‘They have abducted her? Ah!’ Bonacieux inferred from this ‘Ah’ that the affair grew more and more intricate. ‘They have abducted her,’ added the commissary; ‘and do you know the man who has committed this deed?’ ‘I think I know him.’ ‘Who is he?’ ‘Remember that I affirm nothing, Monsieur the Commissary, and that I only suspect.’ ‘Whom do you suspect? Come, answer freely.’ M. Bonacieux was in the greatest perplexity possible. Had he better deny everything or tell everything? By denying all, it might be suspected that he must know too much to avow; by confessing all he might prove his good will. He decided, then, to tell all.
202 The Three Musketeers

‘I suspect,’ said he, ‘a tall, dark man, of lofty carriage, who has the air of a great lord. He has followed us several times, as I think, when I have waited for my wife at the wicket of the Louvre to escort her home.’ The commissary now appeared to experience a little uneasiness. ‘And his name?’ said he. ‘Oh, as to his name, I know nothing about it; but if I were ever to meet him, I should recognize him in an instant, I will answer for it, were he among a thousand persons.’ The face of the commissary grew still darker. ‘You should recognize him among a thousand, say you?’ continued he. ‘That is to say,’ cried Bonacieux, who saw he had taken a false step, ‘that is to say—‘ ‘You have answered that you should recognize him,’ said the commissary. ‘That is all very well, and enough for today; before we proceed further, someone must be informed that you know the ravisher of your wife.’ ‘But I have not told you that I know him!’ cried Bonacieux, in despair. ‘I told you, on the contrary—‘ ‘Take away the prisoner,’ said the commissary to the two guards. ‘Where must we place him?’ demanded the chief. ‘In a dungeon.’ ‘Which?’ ‘Good Lord! In the first one handy, provided it is safe,’ said the commissary, with an indifference which penetrated poor Bonacieux with horror.
Free eBooks at Planet 203

‘Alas, alas!’ said he to himself, ‘misfortune is over my head; my wife must have committed some frightful crime. They believe me her accomplice, and will punish me with her. She must have spoken; she must have confessed everything—a woman is so weak! A dungeon! The first he comes to! That’s it! A night is soon passed; and tomorrow to the wheel, to the gallows! Oh, my God, my God, have pity on me!’ Without listening the least in the world to the lamentations of M. Bonacieux—lamentations to which, besides, they must have been pretty well accustomed—the two guards took the prisoner each by an arm, and led him away, while the commissary wrote a letter in haste and dispatched it by an officer in waiting. Bonacieux could not close his eyes; not because his dungeon was so very disagreeable, but because his uneasiness was so great. He sat all night on his stool, starting at the least noise; and when the first rays of the sun penetrated into his chamber, the dawn itself appeared to him to have taken funereal tints. All at once he heard his bolts drawn, and made a terrified bound. He believed they were come to conduct him to the scaffold; so that when he saw merely and simply, instead of the executioner he expected, only his commissary of the preceding evening, attended by his clerk, he was ready to embrace them both. ‘Your affair has become more complicated since yesterday evening, my good man, and I advise you to tell the whole truth; for your repentance alone can remove the an204 The Three Musketeers

ger of the cardinal.’ ‘Why, I am ready to tell everything,’ cried Bonacieux, ‘at least, all that I know. Interrogate me, I entreat you!’ ‘Where is your wife, in the first place?’ ‘Why, did not I tell you she had been stolen from me?’ ‘Yes, but yesterday at five o’clock in the afternoon, thanks to you, she escaped.’ ‘My wife escaped!’ cried Bonacieux. ‘Oh, unfortunate creature! Monsieur, if she has escaped, it is not my fault, I swear.’ ‘What business had you, then, to go into the chamber of Monsieur d’Artagnan, your neighbor, with whom you had a long conference during the day?’ ‘Ah, yes, Monsieur Commissary; yes, that is true, and I confess that I was in the wrong. I did go to Monsieur d’Artagnan’s.’ ‘What was the aim of that visit?’ ‘To beg him to assist me in finding my wife. I believed I had a right to endeavor to find her. I was deceived, as it appears, and I ask your pardon.’ ‘And what did Monsieur d’Artagnan reply?’ ‘Monsieur d’Artagnan promised me his assistance; but I soon found out that he was betraying me.’ ‘You impose upon justice. Monsieur d’Artagnan made a compact with you; and in virtue of that compact put to flight the police who had arrested your wife, and has placed her beyond reach.’ ‘Fortunately, Monsieur d’Artagnan is in our hands, and you shall be confronted with him.’
Free eBooks at Planet 205

‘By my faith, I ask no better,’ cried Bonacieux; ‘I shall not be sorry to see the face of an acquaintance.’ ‘Bring in the Monsieur d’Artagnan,’ said the commissary to the guards. The two guards led in Athos. ‘Monsieur d’Artagnan,’ said the commissary, addressing Athos, ‘declare all that passed yesterday between you and Monsieur.’ ‘But,’ cried Bonacieux, ‘this is not Monsieur d’Artagnan whom you show me.’ ‘What! Not Monsieur d’Artagnan?’ exclaimed the commissary. ‘Not the least in the world,’ replied Bonacieux. ‘What is this gentleman’s name?’ asked the commissary. ‘I cannot tell you; I don’t know him.’ ‘How! You don’t know him?’ ‘No.’ ‘Did you never see him?’ ‘Yes, I have seen him, but I don’t know what he calls himself.’ ‘Your name?’ replied the commissary. ‘Athos,’ replied the Musketeer. ‘But that is not a man’s name; that is the name of a mountain,’ cried the poor questioner, who began to lose his head. ‘That is my name,’ said Athos, quietly. ‘But you said that your name was d’Artagnan.’ ‘Who, I?’ ‘Yes, you.’ ‘Somebody said to me, ‘You are Monsieur d’Artagnan?’ I answered, ‘You think so?’ My guards exclaimed that they
206 The Three Musketeers

were sure of it. I did not wish to contradict them; besides, I might be deceived.’ ‘Monsieur, you insult the majesty of justice.’ ‘Not at all,’ said Athos, calmly. ‘You are Monsieur d’Artagnan.’ ‘You see, monsieur, that you say it again.’ ‘But I tell you, Monsieur Commissary,’ cried Bonacieux, in his turn, ‘there is not the least doubt about the matter. Monsieur d’Artagnan is my tenant, although he does not pay me my rent—and even better on that account ought I to know him. Monsieur d’Artagnan is a young man, scarcely nineteen or twenty, and this gentleman must be thirty at least. Monsieur d’Artagnan is in Monsieur Dessessart’s Guards, and this gentleman is in the company of Monsieur de Treville’s Musketeers. Look at his uniform, Monsieur Commissary, look at his uniform!’ ‘That’s true,’ murmured the commissary; ‘PARDIEU, that’s true.’ At this moment the door was opened quickly, and a messenger, introduced by one of the gatekeepers of the Bastille, gave a letter to the commissary. ‘Oh, unhappy woman!’ cried the commissary. ‘How? What do you say? Of whom do you speak? It is not of my wife, I hope!’ ‘On the contrary, it is of her. Yours is a pretty business.’ ‘But,’ said the agitated mercer, ‘do me the pleasure, monsieur, to tell me how my own proper affair can become worse by anything my wife does while I am in prison?’ ‘Because that which she does is part of a plan concerted
Free eBooks at Planet 207

between you—of an infernal plan.’ ‘I swear to you, Monsieur Commissary, that you are in the profoundest error, that I know nothing in the world about what my wife had to do, that I am entirely a stranger to what she has done; and that if she has committed any follies, I renounce her, I abjure her, I curse her!’ ‘Bah!’ said Athos to the commissary, ‘if you have no more need of me, send me somewhere. Your Monsieur Bonacieux is very tiresome.’ The commissary designated by the same gesture Athos and Bonacieux, ‘Let them be guarded more closely than ever.’ ‘And yet,’ said Athos, with his habitual calmness, ‘if it be Monsieur d’Artagnan who is concerned in this matter, I do not perceive how I can take his place.’ ‘Do as I bade you,’ cried the commissary, ‘and preserve absolute secrecy. You understand!’ Athos shrugged his shoulders, and followed his guards silently, while M. Bonacieux uttered lamentations enough to break the heart of a tiger. They locked the mercer in the same dungeon where he had passed the night, and left him to himself during the day. Bonacieux wept all day, like a true mercer, not being at all a military man, as he himself informed us. In the evening, about nine o’clock, at the moment he had made up his mind to go to bed, he heard steps in his corridor. These steps drew near to his dungeon, the door was thrown open, and the guards appeared. ‘Follow me,’ said an officer, who came up behind the
208 The Three Musketeers

guards. ‘Follow you!’ cried Bonacieux, ‘follow you at this hour! Where, my God?’ ‘Where we have orders to lead you.’ ‘But that is not an answer.’ ‘It is, nevertheless, the only one we can give.’ ‘Ah, my God, my God!’ murmured the poor mercer, ‘now, indeed, I am lost!’ And he followed the guards who came for him, mechanically and without resistance. He passed along the same corridor as before, crossed one court, then a second side of a building; at length, at the gate of the entrance court he found a carriage surrounded by four guards on horseback. They made him enter this carriage, the officer placed himself by his side, the door was locked, and they were left in a rolling prison. The carriage was put in motion as slowly as a funeral car. Through the closely fastened windows the prisoner could perceive the houses and the pavement, that was all; but, true Parisian as he was, Bonacieux could recognize every street by the milestones, the signs, and the lamps. At the moment of arriving at St. Paul—the spot where such as were condemned at the Bastille were executed—he was near fainting and crossed himself twice. He thought the carriage was about to stop there. The carriage, however, passed on. Farther on, a still greater terror seized him on passing by the cemetery of St. Jean, where state criminals were buried. One thing, however, reassured him; he remembered that before they were buried their heads were generally cut off, and he felt that his head was still on his shoulders. But
Free eBooks at Planet 209

when he saw the carriage take the way to La Greve, when he perceived the pointed roof of the Hotel de Ville, and the carriage passed under the arcade, he believed it was over with him. He wished to confess to the officer, and upon his refusal, uttered such pitiable cries that the officer told him that if he continued to deafen him thus, he should put a gag in his mouth. This measure somewhat reassured Bonacieux. If they meant to execute him at La Greve, it could scarcely be worth while to gag him, as they had nearly reached the place of execution. Indeed, the carriage crossed the fatal spot without stopping. There remained, then, no other place to fear but the Traitor’s Cross; the carriage was taking the direct road to it. This time there was no longer any doubt; it was at the Traitor’s Cross that lesser criminals were executed. Bonacieux had flattered himself in believing himself worthy of St. Paul or of the Place de Greve; it was at the Traitor’s Cross that his journey and his destiny were about to end! He could not yet see that dreadful cross, but he felt somehow as if it were coming to meet him. When he was within twenty paces of it, he heard a noise of people and the carriage stopped. This was more than poor Bonacieux could endure, depressed as he was by the successive emotions which he had experienced; he uttered a feeble groan which night have been taken for the last sigh of a dying man, and fainted.

The crowd was caused, not by the expectation of a man to be hanged, but by the contemplation of a man who was hanged. The carriage, which had been stopped for a minute, resumed its way, passed through the crowd, threaded the Rue St. Honore, turned into the Rue des Bons Enfants, and stopped before a low door. The door opened; two guards received Bonacieux in their arms from the officer who supported him. They carried him through an alley, up a flight of stairs, and deposited him in an antechamber. All these movements had been effected mechanically, as far as he was concerned. He had walked as one walks in a dream; he had a glimpse of objects as through a fog. His ears had perceived sounds without comprehending them; he might have been executed at that moment without his making a single gesture in his own defense or uttering a cry to implore mercy. He remained on the bench, with his back leaning against the wall and his hands hanging down, exactly on the spot where the guards placed him. On looking around him, however, as he could perceive no threatening object, as nothing indicated that he ran any real danger, as the bench was comfortably covered with a
Free eBooks at Planet 211


The Three Musketeers

well-stuffed cushion, as the wall was ornamented with a beautiful Cordova leather, and as large red damask curtains, fastened back by gold clasps, floated before the window, he perceived by degrees that his fear was exaggerated, and he began to turn his head to the right and the left, upward and downward. At this movement, which nobody opposed, he resumed a little courage, and ventured to draw up one leg and then the other. At length, with the help of his two hands he lifted himself from the bench, and found himself on his feet. At this moment an officer with a pleasant face opened a door, continued to exchange some words with a person in the next chamber and then came up to the prisoner. ‘Is your name Bonacieux?’ said he. ‘Yes, Monsieur Officer,’ stammered the mercer, more dead than alive, ‘at your service.’ ‘Come in,’ said the officer. And he moved out of the way to let the mercer pass. The latter obeyed without reply, and entered the chamber, where he appeared to be expected. It was a large cabinet, close and stifling, with the walls furnished with arms offensive and defensive, and in which there was already a fire, although it was scarcely the end of the month of September. A square table, covered with books and papers, upon which was unrolled an immense plan of the city of La Rochelle, occupied the center of the room. Standing before the chimney was a man of middle height, of a haughty, proud mien; with piercing eyes, a large brow, and a thin face, which was made still longer by a ROY212 The Three Musketeers

AL (or IMPERIAL, as it is now called), surmounted by a pair of mustaches. Although this man was scarcely thirtysix or thirty-seven years of age, hair, mustaches, and royal, all began to be gray. This man, except a sword, had all the appearance of a soldier; and his buff boots still slightly covered with dust, indicated that he had been on horseback in the course of the day. This man was Armand Jean Duplessis, Cardinal de Richelieu; not such as he is now represented—broken down like an old man, suffering like a martyr, his body bent, his voice failing, buried in a large armchair as in an anticipated tomb; no longer living but by the strength of his genius, and no longer maintaining the struggle with Europe but by the eternal application of his thoughts—but such as he really was at this period; that is to say, an active and gallant cavalier, already weak of body, but sustained by that moral power which made of him one of the most extraordinary men that ever lived, preparing, after having supported the Duc de Nevers in his duchy of Mantua, after having taken Nimes, Castres, and Uzes, to drive the English from the Isle of Re and lay siege to La Rochelle. At first sight, nothing denoted the cardinal; and it was impossible for those who did not know his face to guess in whose presence they were. The poor mercer remained standing at the door, while the eyes of the personage we have just described were fixed upon him, and appeared to wish to penetrate even into the depths of the past. ‘Is this that Bonacieux?’ asked he, after a moment of siFree eBooks at Planet 213

lence. ‘Yes, monseigneur,’ replied the officer. ‘That’s well. Give me those papers, and leave us.’ The officer took from the table the papers pointed out, gave them to him who asked for them, bowed to the ground, and retired. Bonacieux recognized in these papers his interrogatories of the Bastille. From time to time the man by the chimney raised his eyes from the writings, and plunged them like poniards into the heart of the poor mercer. At the end of ten minutes of reading and ten seconds of examination, the cardinal was satisfied. ‘That head has never conspired,’ murmured he, ‘but it matters not; we will see.’ ‘You are accused of high treason,’ said the cardinal, slowly. ‘So I have been told already, monseigneur,’ cried Bonacieux, giving his interrogator the title he had heard the officer give him, ‘but I swear to you that I know nothing about it.’ The cardinal repressed a smile. ‘You have conspired with your wife, with Madame de Chevreuse, and with my Lord Duke of Buckingham.’ ‘Indeed, monseigneur,’ responded the mercer, ‘I have heard her pronounce all those names.’ ‘And on what occasion?’ ‘She said that the Cardinal de Richelieu had drawn the Duke of Buckingham to Paris to ruin him and to ruin the queen.’
214 The Three Musketeers

‘She said that?’ cried the cardinal, with violence. ‘Yes, monseigneur, but I told her she was wrong to talk about such things; and that his Eminence was incapable—‘ ‘Hold your tongue! You are stupid,’ replied the cardinal. ‘That’s exactly what my wife said, monseigneur.’ ‘Do you know who carried off your wife?’ ‘No, monseigneur.’ ‘You have suspicions, nevertheless?’ ‘Yes, monseigneur; but these suspicions appeared to be disagreeable to Monsieur the Commissary, and I no longer have them.’ ‘Your wife has escaped. Did you know that?’ ‘No, monseigneur. I learned it since I have been in prison, and that from the conversation of Monsieur the Commissary—an amiable man.’ The cardinal repressed another smile. ‘Then you are ignorant of what has become of your wife since her flight.’ ‘Absolutely, monseigneur; but she has most likely returned to the Louvre.’ ‘At one o’clock this morning she had not returned.’ ‘My God! What can have become of her, then?’ ‘We shall know, be assured. Nothing is concealed from the cardinal; the cardinal knows everything.’ ‘In that case, monseigneur, do you believe the cardinal will be so kind as to tell me what has become of my wife?’ ‘Perhaps he may; but you must, in the first place, reveal to the cardinal all you know of your wife’s relations with Madame de Chevreuse.’
Free eBooks at Planet 215

‘But, monseigneur, I know nothing about them; I have never seen her.’ ‘When you went to fetch your wife from the Louvre, did you always return directly home?’ ‘Scarcely ever; she had business to transact with linen drapers, to whose houses I conducted her.’ ‘And how many were there of these linen drapers?’ ‘Two, monseigneur.’ ‘And where did they live?’ ‘One in Rue de Vaugirard, the other Rue de la Harpe.’ ‘Did you go into these houses with her?’ ‘Never, monseigneur; I waited at the door.’ ‘And what excuse did she give you for entering all alone?’ ‘She gave me none; she told me to wait, and I waited.’ ‘You are a very complacent husband, my dear Monsieur Bonacieux,’ said the cardinal. ‘He calls me his dear Monsieur,’ said the mercer to himself. ‘PESTE! Matters are going all right.’ ‘Should you know those doors again?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Do you know the numbers?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘What are they?’ ‘No. 25 in the Rue de Vaugirard; 75 in the Rue de la Harpe.’ ‘That’s well,’ said the cardinal. At these words he took up a silver bell, and rang it; the officer entered.
216 The Three Musketeers

‘Go,’ said he, in a subdued voice, ‘and find Rochefort. Tell him to come to me immediately, if he has returned.’ ‘The count is here,’ said the officer, ‘and requests to speak with your Eminence instantly.’ ‘Let him come in, then!’ said the cardinal, quickly. The officer sprang out of the apartment with that alacrity which all the servants of the cardinal displayed in obeying him. ‘To your Eminence!’ murmured Bonacieux, rolling his eyes round in astonishment. Five seconds has scarcely elapsed after the disappearance of the officer, when the door opened, and a new personage entered. ‘It is he!’ cried Bonacieux. ‘He! What he?’ asked the cardinal. ‘The man who abducted my wife.’ The cardinal rang a second time. The officer reappeared. ‘Place this man in the care of his guards again, and let him wait till I send for him.’ ‘No, monseigneur, no, it is not he!’ cried Bonacieux; ‘no, I was deceived. This is quite another man, and does not resemble him at all. Monsieur is, I am sure, an honest man.’ ‘Take away that fool!’ said the cardinal. The officer took Bonacieux by the arm, and led him into the antechamber, where he found his two guards. The newly introduced personage followed Bonacieux impatiently with his eyes till he had gone out; and the moment the door closed, ‘They have seen each other;’ said he, approaching the cardinal eagerly.
Free eBooks at Planet 217

‘Who?’ asked his Eminence. ‘He and she.’ ‘The queen and the duke?’ cried Richelieu. ‘Yes.’ ‘Where?’ ‘At the Louvre.’ ‘Are you sure of it?’ ‘Perfectly sure.’ ‘Who told you of it?’ ‘Madame de Lannoy, who is devoted to your Eminence, as you know.’ ‘Why did she not let me know sooner?’ ‘Whether by chance or mistrust, the queen made Madame de Surgis sleep in her chamber, and detained her all day.’ ‘Well, we are beaten! Now let us try to take our revenge.’ ‘I will assist you with all my heart, monseigneur; be assured of that.’ ‘How did it come about?’ ‘At half past twelve the queen was with her women—‘ ‘Where?’ ‘In her bedchamber—‘ ‘Go on.’ ‘When someone came and brought her a handkerchief from her laundress.’ ‘And then?’ ‘The queen immediately exhibited strong emotion; and despite the rouge with which her face was covered evidently turned pale—‘
218 The Three Musketeers

‘And then, and then?’ ‘She then arose, and with altered voice, ‘Ladies,’ said she, ‘wait for me ten minutes, I shall soon return.’ She then opened the door of her alcove, and went out.’ ‘Why did not Madame de Lannoy come and inform you instantly?’ ‘Nothing was certain; besides, her Majesty had said, ‘Ladies, wait for me,’ and she did not dare to disobey the queen.’ ‘How long did the queen remain out of the chamber?’ ‘Three-quarters of an hour.’ ‘None of her women accompanied her?’ ‘Only Donna Estafania.’ ‘Did she afterward return?’ ‘Yes; but only to take a little rosewood casket, with her cipher upon it, and went out again immediately.’ ‘And when she finally returned, did she bring that casket with her?’ ‘No.’ ‘Does Madame de Lannoy know what was in that casket?’ ‘Yes; the diamond studs which his Majesty gave the queen.’ ‘And she came back without this casket?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Madame de Lannoy, then, is of opinion that she gave them to Buckingham?’ ‘She is sure of it.’ ‘How can she be so?’
Free eBooks at Planet 219

‘In the course of the day Madame de Lannoy, in her quality of tire-woman of the queen, looked for this casket, appeared uneasy at not finding it, and at length asked information of the queen.’ ‘And then the queen?’ ‘The queen became exceedingly red, and replied that having in the evening broken one of those studs, she had sent it to her goldsmith to be repaired.’ ‘He must be called upon, and so ascertain if the thing be true or not.’ ‘I have just been with him.’ ‘And the goldsmith?’ ‘The goldsmith has heard nothing of it.’ ‘Well, well! Rochefort, all is not lost; and perhaps—perhaps everything is for the best.’ ‘The fact is that I do not doubt your Eminence’s genius—‘ ‘Will repair the blunders of his agent—is that it?’ ‘That is exactly what I was going to say, if your Eminence had let me finish my sentence.’ ‘Meanwhile, do you know where the Duchesse de Chevreuse and the Duke of Buckingham are now concealed?’ ‘No, monseigneur; my people could tell me nothing on that head.’ ‘But I know.’ ‘You, monseigneur?’ ‘Yes; or at least I guess. They were, one in the Rue de Vaugirard, No. 25; the other in the Rue de la Harpe, No. 75.’
220 The Three Musketeers

‘Does your Eminence command that they both be instantly arrested?’ ‘It will be too late; they will be gone.’ ‘But still, we can make sure that they are so.’ ‘Take ten men of my Guardsmen, and search the two houses thoroughly.’ ‘Instantly, monseigneur.’ And Rochefort went hastily out of the apartment. The cardinal being left alone, reflected for an instant and then rang the bell a third time. The same officer appeared. ‘Bring the prisoner in again,’ said the cardinal. M. Bonacieux was introduced afresh, and upon a sign from the cardinal, the officer retired. ‘You have deceived me!’ said the cardinal, sternly. ‘I,’ cried Bonacieux, ‘I deceive your Eminence!’ ‘Your wife, in going to Rue de Vaugirard and Rue de la Harpe, did not go to find linen drapers.’ ‘Then why did she go, just God?’ ‘She went to meet the Duchesse de Chevreuse and the Duke of Buckingham.’ ‘Yes,’ cried Bonacieux, recalling all his remembrances of the circumstances, ‘yes, that’s it. Your Eminence is right. I told my wife several times that it was surprising that linen drapers should live in such houses as those, in houses that had no signs; but she always laughed at me. Ah, monseigneur!’ continued Bonacieux, throwing himself at his Eminence’s feet, ‘ah, how truly you are the cardinal, the great cardinal, the man of genius whom all the world reveres!’
Free eBooks at Planet 221

The cardinal, however contemptible might be the triumph gained over so vulgar a being as Bonacieux, did not the less enjoy it for an instant; then, almost immediately, as if a fresh thought has occurred, a smile played upon his lips, and he said, offering his hand to the mercer, ‘Rise, my friend, you are a worthy man.’ ‘The cardinal has touched me with his hand! I have touched the hand of the great man!’ cried Bonacieux. ‘The great man has called me his friend!’ ‘Yes, my friend, yes,’ said the cardinal, with that paternal tone which he sometimes knew how to assume, but which deceived none who knew him; ‘and as you have been unjustly suspected, well, you must be indemnified. Here, take this purse of a hundred pistoles, and pardon me.’ ‘I pardon you, monseigneur!’ said Bonacieux, hesitating to take the purse, fearing, doubtless, that this pretended gift was but a pleasantry. ‘But you are able to have me arrested, you are able to have me tortured, you are able to have me hanged; you are the master, and I could not have the least word to say. Pardon you, monseigneur! You cannot mean that!’ ‘Ah, my dear Monsieur Bonacieux, you are generous in this matter. I see it and I thank you for it. Thus, then, you will take this bag, and you will go away without being too malcontent.’ ‘I go away enchanted.’ ‘Farewell, then, or rather, AU REVOIR!’ And the cardinal made him a sign with his hand, to which Bonacieux replied by bowing to the ground. He then
222 The Three Musketeers

went out backward, and when he was in the antechamber the cardinal heard him, in his enthusiasm, crying aloud, ‘Long life to the Monseigneur! Long life to his Eminence! Long life to the great cardinal!’ The cardinal listened with a smile to this vociferous manifestation of the feelings of M. Bonacieux; and then, when Bonacieux’s cries were no longer audible, ‘Good!’ said he, ‘that man would henceforward lay down his life for me.’ And the cardinal began to examine with the greatest attention the map of La Rochelle, which, as we have said, lay open on the desk, tracing with a pencil the line in which the famous dyke was to pass which, eighteen months later, shut up the port of the besieged city. As he was in the deepest of his strategic meditations, the door opened, and Rochefort returned. ‘Well?’ said the cardinal, eagerly, rising with a promptitude which proved the degree of importance he attached to the commission with which he had charged the count. ‘Well,’ said the latter, ‘a young woman of about twenty-six or twenty-eight years of age, and a man of from thirty-five to forty, have indeed lodged at the two houses pointed out by your Eminence; but the woman left last night, and the man this morning.’ ‘It was they!’ cried the cardinal, looking at the clock; ‘and now it is too late to have them pursued. The duchess is at Tours, and the duke at Boulogne. It is in London they must be found.’ ‘What are your Eminence’s orders?’ ‘Not a word of what has passed. Let the queen remain in perfect security; let her be ignorant that we know her secret.
Free eBooks at Planet 223

Let her believe that we are in search of some conspiracy or other. Send me the keeper of the seals, Seguier.’ ‘And that man, what has your Eminence done with him?’ ‘What man?’ asked the cardinal. ‘That Bonacieux.’ ‘I have done with him all that could be done. I have made him a spy upon his wife.’ The Comte de Rochefort bowed like a man who acknowledges the superiority of the master as great, and retired. Left alone, the cardinal seated himself again and wrote a letter, which he secured with his special seal. Then he rang. The officer entered for the fourth time. ‘Tell Vitray to come to me,’ said he, ‘and tell him to get ready for a journey.’ An instant after, the man he asked for was before him, booted and spurred. ‘Vitray,’ said he, ‘you will go with all speed to London. You must not stop an instant on the way. You will deliver this letter to Milady. Here is an order for two hundred pistoles; call upon my treasurer and get the money. You shall have as much again if you are back within six days, and have executed your commission well.’ The messenger, without replying a single word, bowed, took the letter, with the order for the two hundred pistoles, and retired. Here is what the letter contained: MILADY, Be at the first ball at which the Duke of Buckingham shall be present. He will wear on his doublet twelve
224 The Three Musketeers

diamond studs; get as near to him as you can, and cut off two. As soon as these studs shall be in your possession, inform me.

Free eBooks at Planet


It was precisely at this moment that M. as soon as he assumed the uniform of the company. It is well known how violent the king’s prejudices were against the queen. but that till that hour he had been at M. The second commissary was as much bewildered as the first had been by the simple and firm declaration of the Musketeer. and among them was M. M. arrived at the palace. Athos was then sent to the cardinal.15 MEN OF THE ROBE AND MEN OF THE SWORD On the day after these events had taken place. de Treville’s. As captain of the Musketeers. These two women gave him more uneasiness than the war with Spain. As to Aramis. or the embarrassment of the finances. Athos had passed through all the examinations we have seen Bonacieux undergo. where he had dined. de Treville. le Duc de la Tremouille. to pay a visit to his friend M. commanded a little reflection. who in affairs of intrigue mistrusted women infinitely more than men. or Mme. and how carefully these prejudices were kept up by the cardinal. de Treville was informed by d’Artagnan and Porthos of the circumstance. The officer who commanded the post of the Red Cross was sent for. de Treville. to Rouen on family business. who had till that time said nothing for fear that d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan. de Chevreuse. was as sure of his aid and support as if he had been his own brother. Athos not having reappeared. he had asked for leave of absence for five days. In his eyes Free eBooks at Planet eBook. One of the grand causes of this prejudice was the friendship of Anne of Austria for Mme. but unfortunately the cardinal was at the Louvre with the king. ‘could attest the fact”. but the name of M. at about ten o’clock in the evening. then. and he named several distinguished gentlemen. We were present at the scene in which the two captives were confronted with each other. He repaired. de la 227 . de Treville had the right of entry at all times.’ added he. Bonacieux. The lowest or the least known of them. upon whom he was anxious to take the revenge which men of the robe like at all times to gain over men of the sword. and was gone. and not d’Artagnan. He added that he did not know either M. interrupted in his turn. should not have the time necessary. it was said. instantly to the office of the LIEUTENANTCRIMINEL. de Treville was the father of his soldiers. the quarrel with England. on leaving the residence of the LIEUTENANT-CRIMINEL and the governor of the Fort l’Eveque without being able to find Athos. ‘Twenty witnesses. M. from this moment declared that his name was Athos. and that of M. that he had come. Athos. 226 The Three Musketeers that he had never spoken to the one or the other. M. and by successive inquiries they learned that Athos was then lodged in the Fort l’Eveque.

the queen’s emissary to the exiled duchess. but still further. the king wished to be called Louis the Just and Louis the Chaste. could not dissemble. sire. what tormented him still more. was about to unravel the most closely twisted thread of this intrigue. Louis XIII had already placed his hand on the knob of the door. ‘You arrive in good time. and throw into the Fort l’Eveque.’ ‘Let your Majesty remember. in the annoying duel Free eBooks at Planet eBook. or rather your Musketeers. to lead away through the open street. led this prince to the commission of the most pitiless cruelty. all upon an order which they have refused to show me. that at the moment of arresting in the very act. cool.’ ‘And I. the cardinal. ‘I have the honor to inform your Majesty. Monsieur Athos. and he made a step toward the queen’s apartment with that pale and mute indignation which. de Treville entered. ‘yes. when he affirmed that he. M. Posterity will find a difficulty in understanding this character. and in 228 The Three Musketeers irreproachable costume.’ said Treville. with all the proofs about her. by falling sword in hand upon the honest men of the law. a Musketeer had dared to interrupt the course of justice violently.’ said Treville. against the uniform—have taken upon themselves to arrest in a house. that the queen had renewed with her one of those mysterious correspondences which at that time was named a CABAL. in her amorous intrigues. of irreproachable conduct. and men of the police—very estimable people. ‘that Monsieur Athos is the Musketeer who. ‘that a party of PROCUREURS. At the first word the cardinal spoke of Mme. when his passions were raised to a certain point. and whom your Majesty knows favorably. coldly. de Treville felt himself something like Samson before the Philistines. ‘I have learned some fine things concerning your Musketeers. de Chevreuse—who. de Chevreuse not only served the queen in her political intrigues. in the same tone. certainly I know that name. de Chevreuse had been in Paris. At this instant M. commissaries. of an almost illustrious reputation. the cardinal had not yet said a word about the Duke of Buckingham. Informed of what had passed by the presence of the cardinal and the alteration in the king’s countenance.’ said the king. Mme. ‘I have some pretty things to tell your Majesty concerning these gownsmen. de Treville’s entrance he turned round. And yet. though exiled to Tours and believed to be in that city.’ ‘What?’ said the king. had come to Paris. de Treville. and outwitted the police—the king flew into a furious passion. mechanically. with 229 . one of my. But when the cardinal added that not only Mme. polite. at the noise of M. which history explains only by facts and never by reason. charged with investigating impartially the whole affair in order to place it before the eyes of the king—Louis XIII could not contain himself.’ ‘Athos. remained there five days. in all this. but very inveterate. but.’ continued M.’ said the king. monsieur. Capricious and unfaithful. who. when in broke out. as it appears.and to his conviction.

A PROPOS. the company of Monsieur Dessessart.’ continued Treville. ‘for all that was done for our service. Monsieur Athos.’ interrupted the king.’ said the cardinal. this gallant man. monseigneur.’ said the cardinal. and that this gallant man.’ said Treville. ‘A written examination attests it. Monsieur de Treville. which signified. Addressing the cardinal.’ ‘Then. has been paraded through the midst of an insolent populace?’ ‘Bah!’ said the king.’ The king looked at the cardinal. a young Bearnais. that he has been placed between two guards like a malefactor.’ ‘Do you not suspect this young man of having given bad Free eBooks at Planet eBook. broke open several doors—‘ The cardinal made the king a sign. while waiting his return.’ said the king. sword in hand. ‘does not tell your Majesty that this innocent Musketeer. ‘Come. had the misfortune to wound Monsieur de Cahusac so seriously. who began to be shaken. ‘it was also for your Majesty’s service that one of my Musketeers. ‘for one hour before.’ said the cardinal. I believe. ‘to a young Bearnais. replying aloud to the mute interrogation of his Majesty. is really a man of the highest 231 .’ said Treville. ‘If his Eminence entertains any suspicion against one of my Musketeers.’ ‘And is the written report of the gownsmen to be placed in comparison with the word of honor of a swordsman?’ replied Treville haughtily. who 230 The Three Musketeers were delegated by myself to examine into an affair of the highest importance. who was innocent. did me the honor after having dined with me to be conversing in the saloon of my hotel. come. ‘and the illtreated people have drawn up the following.’ ‘We all know that. Treville.’ ‘Yes. four commissaries of inquiry. with the greatest phlegm.’ cried Treville. ‘Athos. with his Gascon freedom and military frankness. your Eminence.which you are acquainted with. went to pay a visit to one of his friends absent at the time. ‘Monsieur de Cahusac is quite recovered. a friend of the Musketeer. with the Duc de la Tremouille and the Comte de Chalus. I will confide it to your Majesty. but scarcely had he arrived at his friend’s and taken up a book.’ ‘In the house in which the judicial inquiry was made. ‘there lodges. which I have the honor to present to your Majesty.’ ‘I mean a young man whom you patronize. ‘That was on account of the affair about which I spoke to you. is he not?’ ‘Thank you. who has ten times shed his blood in your Majesty’s service and is ready to shed it again. who happened to be there. it is the same.’ ‘Your Eminence means Monsieur d’Artagnan.’ ‘I defy your Eminence to prove it. has been seized. who.’ continued the impassive cardinal. when a mixed crowd of bailiffs and soldiers came and laid siege to the house. had only an hour before attacked. biting his lips with anger. ‘the justice of Monsieur the Cardinal is so well known that I demand an inquiry. ‘was it so managed?’ ‘Monsieur de Treville.’ continued Treville. then. a cadet in his Majesty’s Guards. hold your tongue.

monseigneur.’ ‘Does your Eminence doubt my word?’ said Treville. how shall we decide?’ said the king. who could not for an instant suspect the loyalty of Treville. ‘Send the case before the judges. and they shall judge. ‘everybody seems to have passed the evening with you. the purest life. It appears. sire.’ replied Treville. Besides.’ said the cardinal. and these judges will decide. ‘But his Majesty has judges. it is their business to judge. Yes. but Athos WAS taken in the house in the Rue des Fossoyeurs. I will answer for it. ‘And the next day. Treville. ‘No.’ said Treville. although I had believed it to be later.’ said the king. and who felt that the victory was escaping him. ‘I should affirm the culpability. will be but little pleased at being exposed to rigorous treatment on account of police affairs. ‘well. and your Majesty has a good memory. that if Free eBooks at Planet eBook. yes.counsel?’ ‘To Athos. and fire enlightens. God forbid. with a brow flushed with 233 . according to your account. at what hour was he with you?’ ‘Oh. for as he came in I remarked that it was but half past nine by the clock.’ ‘Well.’ ‘That house is suspected. ‘only. ‘Police affairs!’ cried the king. your Eminence. de Treville launched it with knowledge of his cause. Monsieur? Meddle with your Musketeers. in that unfortunate encounter which took place near the Convent of the Carmes-Dechausses?’ asked the king. I did not.’ ‘Was it not this d’Artagnan who wounded Jussac one day. ‘it is a sad thing that in the unfortunate times in which we live.’ ‘Well. when the house where he fraternizes is suspected. The house may be suspected. or a Musketeer of my company to fraternize with a Guard of Dessessart’s company?’ ‘Yes. The army. He was desirous of an explosion. sire. for I can affirm.’ ‘That is best. d’Artagnan passed the evening with me. ‘police affairs! And what do you know about them. but I deny that it is so in the part of it inhabited my Monsieur d’Artagnan.’ ‘Only. that there does not exist a more devoted servant of 232 The Three Musketeers your Majesty. but M.’ ‘And I deny it. if I can believe what he says. taking up Treville’s words. or a more profound admirer of Monsieur the Cardinal. ‘perhaps you did not know it?’ ‘Indeed.’ ‘At what hour did he leave your hotel?’ ‘At half past ten—an hour after the event. because in that case the mine throws forth fire.’ said the king. ‘That concerns your Majesty more than me.’ replied the cardinal. it is the same. to a man double his age?’ interrupted Treville. and do not annoy me in this way.’ said the cardinal. who colored with vexation.’ ‘Come.’ said the cardinal. looking at the cardinal. sire. cannot exempt a man from infamy and persecution. ‘No.’ The expression was imprudent.’ ‘Is one friend forbidden to visit another. the most incontestable virtue. as to that I can speak positively. Bernajoux.

sire. It is best to constitute myself at once a prisoner with Athos. and with d’Artagnan. that Athos was at your residence during the event and that he took no part in it?’ 234 The Three Musketeers ‘By your glorious father. there can be no doubt that Monsieur the Cardinal will end by accusing me. without lowering his voice in the least. ‘he can always be found. he will not desert. you see me prepared to surrender my sword—for after having accused my soldiers. I swear it.’ ‘He shall be tried. that is policy. ‘will you swear.’ added he.’ ‘The devil!’ murmured the king.’ said Treville.’ ‘No. who was determined to have the last word. ‘did not have personal motives—‘ The cardinal saw what the king was about to say and interrupted him: ‘Pardon me.’ said he.’ said the cardinal. a hundred. What a noise about a Musketeer! I would arrest ten of them. so much the better. we shall never know the truth.’ ‘And he is in the Fort l’Eveque?’ said the king. sire. will you have done?’ said the king.’ ‘Gascon-headed man.’ ‘Come.’ replied Treville. ‘what must be done?’ ‘Sign an order for his release. therefore. Monsieur the Cardinal. with a joy that was not unmixed with fear. ‘ready to answer. mischance a Musketeer is arrested.’ ‘Athos may always be found. that you are about to accord. even. Besides.’ said Treville. and all will be said.’ said the king.’ said he. ‘If we release the prisoner thus. I will answer for him. sire. ‘let us give them apparent security.’ ‘From the moment they are suspected by your Majesty. ‘Order it as you please. when it shall please the gownsmen to interrogate him. lowering his voice and looking with a suppliant air at the cardinal. France is in danger. ‘Sire. he would have preferred an obstinate resistance on the part of the cardinal to this sudden yieldFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘The right of pardoning only applies to the guilty.’ said the king. ‘Well. be assured of that. ‘If his Eminence. by my father. ‘and my Musketeer is innocent. as Treville says. whom I love and venerate above all the world. for in that case I shall demand of his Majesty permission to plead for him.’ Treville bowed very respectfully. in solitary confinement. you possess the right of pardon. who most probably will be. ‘Yes.’ The king feared an outbreak. I withdraw. in a dungeon. then. and by yourself. sire. ‘I believe with your Majesty that Monsieur de Treville’s guarantee is more than sufficient. He will not desert.’ replied the cardinal. it is justice. ‘either order my Musketeer to be restored to me. all the company. ‘the Musketeers are 235 . It is not mercy.’ said the cardinal. and I would not allow a whisper. or let him be tried.’ This policy of Louis XIII made Richelieu smile.’ ‘Be so kind as to reflect. ‘but the instant your Majesty considers me a prejudiced judge. who is already arrested. like the lowest criminal.’ replied Treville.

and the Condes. no! To conspire against my honor with Madame de Chevreuse. As he was about to leave the presence. IN ORDER TO RING IT. the Huguenots and the Spaniards. I have my own opinion as to that love. LOOKS MORE THAN ONCE FOR THE BELL. for scarcely had the captain of the Musketeers closed the door after him. and at all events it is more difficult to replace a man in the Fort l’Eveque or the Bastille who has got out. what an idea! The queen is too virtuous. But let us be quick—the king may change his mind in an hour.’ M. if your Majesty pleases. we will.’ said the king. KEEPER OF THE SEALS. PARDIEU.’ 236 The Three Musketeers 16 IN WHICH M. ‘there is your Jussac thrust paid for. ‘Buckingham in Paris!’ cried he. Buckingham has been in Paris five days.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the cardinal gave him a friendly smile. He grew pale and red alternately. AS HE DID BEFORE It is impossible to form an idea of the impression these few words made upon Louis XIII.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘No. with your enemies. de Treville made his entrance triumphantly into the Fort l’Eveque.’ As to the rest. no doubt. SEGUIER. The king signed the order for release. than to keep a prisoner there who is in. than his Eminence said to the king. ‘Now that we are at length by ourselves. ‘A perfect harmony reigns.’ ‘Woman is weak. Madame de Longueville.’ ‘He will play me some dog’s trick or other. and said. converse seriously.’ said he to him. but you must not be too confident. ‘One has never the last word with such a man. ‘You have come off well. sire. ‘and why does he come?’ ‘To conspire. and besides. Sire. ‘and as to loving me much.’ said Treville. loves your Majesty too well. and that M. whence he delivered the Musketeer. and the cardinal saw at once that he had recovered by a single blow all the ground he had lost. which must be profitable for the service and honorable to all. and Treville carried it away without delay. sire. whose peaceful indifference had not for a moment abandoned him. The first time he saw d’Artagnan. and only left this morning. There still remains that of Bernajoux. de Treville had good reason to mistrust the cardinal and to think that all was not over. Monsieur Cardinal. between the leaders and the soldiers of your 237 .

A Florentine adventurer.’ ‘How did they act with regard to the Marechale d’Ancre?’ cried the king. while Richelieu.’ ‘Where did he lodge?’ ‘Rue de la Harpe. ‘to him. No. no doubt. I tell you she loves that infamous Buckingham! Why did you not have him arrested while in Paris?’ ‘Arrest the Duke! Arrest the prime minister of King Charles I! Think of it. and that she was writing all day.’ said the cardinal. sire.’ ‘The Marechale d’Ancre was no more than the Marechale d’Ancre. what a fearful scandal!’ ‘But as he exposed himself like a vagabond or a thief. that this morning she wept much.’ ‘That’s it!’ cried the king. Monsieur Cardinal. ‘first her closets were thoroughly searched. one of the greatest princesses in the world.’ said the cardinal. Besides. he should have been—‘ Louis XIII stopped. sire! What a scandal! And if the suspicions of your Majesty. Queen of France—that is to say. ‘that the Duke of Buckingham came to Paris for a project wholly political.‘I not the less maintain. did not lose sight of him?’ ‘No. should prove to have any foundation. ‘nothing. ‘I believe. while the august spouse of your Majesty is Anne of Austria. of course. let her tremble!’ ‘Indeed. according to your Majesty’s command. whom. terrified at what he was about to say. I tell you the queen does not love me. I long ago determined 238 The Three Musketeers to put an end to all these petty intrigues of policy and love. She has near her a certain Laporte. sire? It seems to me that it is neither your Majesty nor myself who can charge himself with such a mission. Madame de Lannoy.’ ‘She is not the less guilty. I have frequently interrogated. you. in the highest state of choler. and I repeat it to your Majesty. Cardinal. I believe. ‘You think then. told me this morning that the night before last her Majesty sat up very late.’ ‘But how to take them. sire.’ ‘And I am sure that he came for quite another purpose. 75.’ said the king. but I have not said against his honor. ‘whatever repugnance I may have to directing my mind to such a treason. is the mainspring of all this. Monsieur Duke! The more she has forgotten the high position in which she was placed.’ ‘Who. I must have the queen’s papers.’ ‘And I—I tell you against both. ‘He should have been—?’ ‘Nothing. what a terrible disclosure. I confess. but if the queen be guilty. I tell you she loves another.’ said the cardinal. the more degrading is her fall. which I still continue to 239 . and then she herself. waited uselessly for the word which had died on the lips of the king. that the queen conspires against the power of the king. stretching out his neck. and that was all.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. your Majesty compels me to think of it. as I do. that she deceives me?’ said the king. But all the time he was in Paris.

with Madame de Chevreuse and the queen?’ ‘Sire. the keeper of the seals. opening the door of communication.’ ‘Your Majesty will not forget that I have done everything in my power to prevent a rupture. I will have those letters. to desire 240 The Three Musketeers him to wait.’ ‘I would. sire.’ ‘What is that?’ ‘That would be to charge Monsieur de Seguier. Donna Estafania.’ ‘Your Majesty’s orders shall be executed. yes. I will have them. perhaps. I warn you. I will go to the queen. beg your Majesty to observe—‘ ‘Do you. it is to him that the queen has been writing all the day. and everybody was listening Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The matter enters completely into the duties of the post. Guemene was reading aloud. but I shall be always happy and proud. send for Monsieur the Keeper of the Seals. Cardinal. I know you are very indulgent toward the queen.’ And Louis XIII. Mme.’ ‘Let him be sent for instantly. Monsieur Cardinal. sighing. then. if she is ignorant that these orders come from the king.’ ‘But they have corresponded.‘Where is that?’ ‘By the side of the Luxembourg. at whatever price it may be. ‘I believed myself secure from such a suspicion. In a corner was the Spanish companion. who had followed her from Madrid. that she may have no doubt on that head. but.’ ‘And you are certain that the queen and he did not see each other?’ ‘I believe the queen to have too high a sense of her duty. and when I came to the Louvre I left orders if he came. and Mme. Monsieur Duke. de Montbazon. I requested him to call. I must have those letters!’ ‘Sire. notwithstanding—‘ ‘Monsieur Duke. too indulgent. Duke. I will go and inform her myself. Mme. Mme.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘My orders?’ ‘Yes. however.’ ‘Very well. to sacrifice myself to the harmony which I desire to see reign between you and the Queen of 241 . passed into the corridor which led from his apartments to those of Anne of Austria.’ replied the cardinal. very well. with this mission. at some future period to speak of that. we shall have occasion.’ ‘Whenever it shall please your Majesty.’ ‘Well. The queen was in the midst of her women—Mme. sire.’ ‘There is but one way.’ ‘He is most likely at my hotel. also join in betraying me. by thus always opposing my will? Are you also in accord with Spain and England. you have heard me. de Guitaut. de Guemene. meantime. but—‘ ‘But what?’ ‘But the queen will perhaps refuse to obey. de Sable.’ ‘Let him be sent for instantly.’ ‘Monsieur Cardinal.

half blushing. canon of Notre Dame. had begun by according to the cardinal that sentiment which Anne of Austria always refused him— Anne of Austria had seen her most devoted servants fall around her. There are many stories related of him. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. M. who will communicate certain matters 242 The Three Musketeers to you with which I have charged him. the follies of adolescence. de Guitant. on the contrary. if the memoirs of the time are to be believed. turned pale under her rouge. announced the visit of the chancellor. Like those unfortunate persons endowed with a fatal gift. to pursue the thread of her own thoughts. desired this reading in order that she might be able. The chancellor entered. exile. he had retired into a convent. Anne of Austria. the poor penitent was unable to shut the door so close as to prevent the passions he fled from entering with him. de Bernet were 243 . had advised him. and there was a profound silence. ‘you are about to receive a visit from the chancellor. He was Des Roches le Masle.’ The unfortunate queen. sire? What can the chancellor have to say to me that your Majesty could not say yourself?’ The king turned upon his heel without reply. and trial even. wishing as much as in him lay to free him from them. All the ladies rose. who had formerly been valet of a bishop. He was incessantly attacked by them. it may be well for our readers to be made at once acquainted with him. who could not pardon her for having repulsed a more tender feeling. On entering this holy place. The cardinal trusted him. her most intimate confidants. and the king entered. ‘Madame. at least for some time. ‘But why this visit. These thoughts. half smiling. and the superior. As to the king. Mme. who had. and among them this. he made no demonstration of politeness. and Laporte did not conceal from his mistress that he expected to be arrested every instant. the king had already gone out by another door. in order to conjure away the tempting demon. only stopping before the queen. pursued by the hatred of the cardinal. who introduced him to his Eminence as a perfectly devout man. deprived of the confidence of her husband. Her friendship was a fatal sign which called down persecution. were not the less sad. As we shall probably meet with him again in the course of our history. de Chevreuse and Mme. and almost at the same instant the captain of the Guards. her dearest favorites. to whom he had confided this misfortune. When the chancellor appeared. It was at the moment when she was plunged in the deepest and darkest of these reflections that the door of the chamber opened. while feigning to listen.’ said he. and therein found his advantage. she brought misfortune upon everything she touched. there to expiate. gilded as they were by a last reflection of love. and could not refrain from her with attention with the exception of the queen. having before her eyes the example of the queen-mother whom that hatred had tormented all her life—though Marie de Medicis. who was constantly threatened with divorce. After a wild youth. The reader hushed herself instantly. This chancellor was a pleasant man.

so that day and night the bell was ringing full swing. give up the keys of my drawers and my desks. invested with the entire confidence of the cardinal—a confidence which he had so well earned—he received the singular commission for the execution of which he presented himself in the queen’s apartments. embraced the cardinal’s party. but within three months the penitent reappeared in the world with the reputation of being the most terrible POSSESSED that ever existed. in addition to complines and matins. stimulated the judges in the affair of Calais. The queen was still standing when he entered. Has not his Majesty just left you. an investigation of my papers—mine! Truly. monsieur. and made a sign to her women to resume their cushions and stools. It is not known whether it was the devil who gave way. Estafania. became president on the place of his uncle. ‘What do you desire. By day they did nothing but ascend and descend the steps which led to the chapel. On leaving the convent he entered into the magistracy. served his Eminence with zeal in his hatred against the queenmother and his vengeance against Anne of Austria. 244 The Three Musketeers chief gamekeeper of France. or the monks who grew tired. in the name of the king. but in this circumstance I am but the instrument which the king employs. monsieur. said. became chancellor. as it appears. at night. the monks would be rendered aware that temptation was besieging a brother. this is an indignity!’ ‘Be kind enough to pardon me. When the chancellor had opened and shut twenty times the drawers of the secretaries. but he well knew that it was not in a piece of furniture that the queen would place the important letter she had written that day. then. and with an air of supreme hauteur. they were further obliged to leap twenty times out of their beds and prostrate themselves on the floor of their cells. then. This advice appeared good to the future chancellor. announcing the extreme desire for mortification which the penitent experienced. and without prejudice to the respect which I have the honor to owe to your Majesty a close examination into all your papers. it became necessary.’ For form’s sake the chancellor paid a visit to the pieces of furniture named. He conjured the evil spirit with abundance of prayers offered up by the have recourse to the bell rope. at length. and all the community would go to prayers. and ring with all his 245 . madame. In proportion as they redoubled the exorcisms he redoubled the temptations.’ ‘How. and has he not himself asked you to prepare for this visit?’ ‘Search. encouraged the attempts of M. But the devil does not suffer himself to be easily dispossessed from a place in which he has fixed his garrison. The monks had no longer an instant of repose. madame. and with what object do you present yourself here?’ ‘To make. which did not prove want of sagacity. but scarcely had she perceived him then she reseated herself in her armchair. de Laffemas. whatever hesitation he might experience—it became necessary. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. At the denunciating sound. monsieur! I am a criminal.

monsieur?’ ‘The king commands it. madame. ‘I will give it to none but the king monsieur. toward Anne of Austria. Seguier looked about at that moment for the rope of the famous bell. I have written a letter today. even on the person of your Majesty. The queen was. that letter is not yet gone.’ said the chancellor. and fixing her eyes upon the chancellor with an expression almost threatening.’ 246 The Three Musketeers ‘How! What do you say?’ ‘That my orders go far.’ ‘Well. madame. ‘and the spies of the cardinal have served him faithfully. with the intention quite patent of not drawing back a foot from the accomplishment of the commission with which he was charged. madame. to search the queen herself. ‘If the king had desired that the letter should be given to him. ‘His majesty is certain that a letter has been written by you during the day. who did not understand. of great beauty. he approached Anne of Austria. The chancellor made a profound reverence. then. drawing herself up to her full height. Then. he would have demanded it of you himself. in whom the imperious blood of Spain and Austria began to rise. madame.’ And the queen laid her beautiful hand on her bosom. But I repeat to you.’ ‘What is that?’ asked the queen. charged me to take it from 247 . to come to the conclusion of the affair. The chancellor advanced. and stretched forth his hands toward the place where the queen had acknowledged the paper was to be found. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the point of not being jealous of anyone else.’ ‘Would you dare to lift your hand to your queen?’ said Anne of Austria. therefore. and as the attendant of an executioner might have done in the chamber of torture. ‘And now it remains for me to make the principal examination. and yet this letter must be somewhere. excuse me. ‘I am a faithful subject of the king. ‘Be kind enough. he knows that it has not yet been sent to its address. it is true!’ said Anne of Austria. I would rather die!’ cried the queen.’ said Anne. and if you do not give it up—‘ ‘Well?’ ‘He has. The letter is here.’ ‘The conduct is infamously violent! Do you know that. that is to say. ‘Then give me that letter. Without doubt the chancellor.I say. The commission might well be called delicate.’ ‘I will not suffer it! No. for whose eyes at the same instant sprang tears of rage. or rather was not willing to understand. madame.’ ‘What horror!’ cried the queen. as we have said. madame. and that I am authorized to seek for the suspected paper. and all that his Majesty commands I shall do. and the king had reached. in his jealousy of Buckingham. to act more compliantly. and said with a very perplexed and embarrassed air. no. I am charged with reclaiming it. but not finding it he summoned his resolution. then. This letter is not in your table nor in your secretary.

‘you see how far my enemies go. or some valiant gentleman whose business is war. who am a churchman. The king went straight to him. which was wanting. there was not a single word about it in all the letter. half fainting. Duke?’ ‘I say. The whole intrigue is political. opened it slowly. Be satisfied. there is that letter!’ cried the queen.’ ‘What say you. bowed to the ground. and on my part. Monsieur de Bassopierre. and not me. then. ‘There.’ said he. on his part. The king took it with a trembling hand. into the arms of her women. by the policy of Richelieu—the eternal object of which was the abasement of the house of Austria—to declare war against France. It was nothing but a plan of attack against the cardinal. on the other hand. I should yield to such powerful instance. The door was scarcely closed upon him. and leaning with her left hand upon a table behind her to keep herself from falling. to insist upon the dismissal of the cardinal. ‘you were right and I was wrong. and as a condition of peace. when he had arrived at the end of it. quite delighted. but as to love. then seeing by the first words that it was addressed to the King of Spain. she with her right hand drew the paper from her bosom and held it out to the keeper of the seals. trembled with an emotion easily to be 249 .’ ‘Monsieur Duke. sire. and read it with the greatest attention. The king. and who am constantly turned aside for my real vocation to look after matters for which I have no aptitude. but. The queen pressed her brother and the Emperor of Austria to appear to be wounded. and that it would be far better that you should appoint there either Monsieur de Conde. monsieur. became very pale. ‘I understand you. sire. even the queen herself. he was told that his Eminence awaited 248 The Three Musketeers the orders of his Majesty in the business cabinet. and there is not the least question of love in this letter. You would be the happier for it at home. ‘There. looked for the address. took the letter. I say that according to all probability I shall not be able to undergo the fatigues of the siege of La Rochelle. as they really were. ‘take it. and retired. In your place. he read it a second time. and I do not doubt you would be the greater for it abroad. when the queen sank.’ said the king. your Majesty. he read it rapidly. in truth. sire. inquired if the cardinal was still at the Louvre. they menace you with two wars if you do not dismiss me.’ The cardinal took the letter. sire? God forbid that the queen should Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and deliver me from your odious presence. with a broken and trembling voice. it would be a real happiness to withdraw from public affairs. there is abundant question of you. that my health is sinking under these excessive struggles and these never-ending labors.’ said he. The chancellor carried the letter to the king without having read a single word of it.’ The chancellor.Anne of Austria took one step backward.’ ‘What do you say. ‘Well. Duke. all who are named in that letter shall be punished as they deserve. became so pale that it might be said she was dying. who.

‘we shall see. to intercede for her with your Majesty. submissive. she is a devoted. Clemency is a royal virtue. set the example. Oh.’ said the king. ‘Never!’ ‘Sire. not the less. sire. and supplicating him to come to a good understanding with the queen. sire.’ ‘The queen is my enemy. her resentment will not hold out against such an attention.’ Thereupon the cardinal. you know how much the queen loves dancing.’ ‘Besides. but upon my honor. and you will find that you derive advantage therein. there is nothing of the kind. besides. was much astonished the next day to see the king make some attempts at reconciliation with her. sire—no grace for the guilty!’ Happily. ‘No grace. was ready to make up all differences with her. I could well understand it.’ ‘It is you. it will be an opportunity for her to wear those beautiful diamonds which you gave her recently on her birthday and with which she has since had no occasion to adorn herself. you know that I do not like worldly pleasures.’ ‘That is true. expected reproaches. Duke. but the queen. since it was you who suspected the queen. who. I entreat you to do so. even against you. on the contrary.’ ‘What! I make the first advances?’ said the king. your Majesty has treated her with a severity—‘ ‘It is thus I will always treat my enemies and yours. Allow me. however high they may be placed. ‘and you were right. then. you are too indulgent toward her.’ ‘On the contrary.’ ‘The queen will only be the more grateful to you. as she knows your antipathy for that amusement. we shall see. bowed 251 . in his joy at finding the queen guilty of a crime which he cared little about. to be her enemy. Monsieur Cardinal. and whatever peril I may incur in acting severely toward them.’ ‘What is that?’ ‘Give a ball. and your Majesty has just acquired a new proof of it.’ said the cardinal.’ ‘Monsieur Cardinal. then. sire. I will answer for it. it would be quite another thing.’ said the king. sire. and irreproachable wife. employ it. Her first movement was repellent. as you always are. who. asking permission of the king to retire. deserves all my anger. and innocent of a fault of which he had great dread. Her Free eBooks at Planet eBook. if she betrayed your Majesty on the side of your honor. And even if she were to be seriously offended. hearing the clock strike eleven.’ ‘We shall see. in what manner can I make advances first?’ ‘By doing a thing which you know will be agreeable to 250 The Three Musketeers her. in consequence of the seizure of her letter. and I should be the first to say. You have committed the first wrong. sire.suffer the least inconvenience or uneasiness on my account! She has always believed me. and come to me first. ‘leave severity to your ministers. Anne of Austria. Monsieur Cardinal.’ ‘Sire. although your Majesty can bear witness that I have always taken her part warmly. who have now incurred hers.’ ‘Let her humble herself. but is not yours.

That will fall in wonderfully well. but the king replied that he must consult the cardinal upon that head. deferred fixing it. but I am unable to leave London for want of money. Richelieu counted on his fingers. the last trace of her resentment disappeared. she says. 253 . but.womanly pride and her queenly dignity had both been so cruelly offended that she could not come round at the first advance. that makes ten days. On the eighth day after the scene we have described. accidents. The king took advantage of this favorable moment to tell her that her had the intention of shortly giving a fete. if not from her heart at least from her countenance. Today is the twentieth of September. as the cardinal had predicted. there are twelve days. The aldermen of the city give a fete on the third of October. every day the king asked the cardinal when this fete should take place. Ten days passed away thus. Now. she at last had the appearance of beginning to forget. Indeed. and a woman’s weakness. ‘have you made your calculations?’ ‘Yes. It will require four or five days for the transmission of the money. and four or five days after I have received them I shall be in Paris.’ Then the cardinal added. four or five days after having received the money. allowing for contrary winds. She asked upon what day this fete would take place. Monsieur Duke. under some pretext. Send me five hundred pistoles. do not forget to tell her Majesty the evening before the fete that you should like to see how her diamond studs become her. four or five days for her to return. sire. and every day the cardinal. ‘She will arrive.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘A PROPOS.’ 252 The Three Musketeers ‘Well.’ said the king. you will not appear to have gone out of your way to please the queen. A fete was so rare a thing for poor Anne of Austria that at this announcement.’ On the same day the cardinal received this letter the king put his customary question to him. overpersuaded by the advice of her women. the cardinal received a letter with the London stamp which only contained these lines: ‘I have them. and said to himself.

It is impossible that your Majesty can make all this ado about a letter written to my brother. leaned her beautiful hand upon a CONSOLE.’ ‘With those studs?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. which. madame?’ ‘Yes. ‘You hear. being better informed than himself. Anne of Austria believed that Louis XIII knew all. ‘You will appear at this ball?’ ‘Yes. Louis XIII was struck with this insistence. Anne of Austria lowered her head. sire. More than once the king had been humiliated by the cardinal. ornamented with the diamond studs which I gave you on your birthday. convinced as he was that the cardinal had some afterthought and was preparing for him one of those terrible surprises which his Eminence was so skillful in getting up. were excellent. in order to honor our worthy aldermen. whose police. without having yet attained the perfection of the modern police.’ The answer was terrible. in a conversation with Anne of Austria. He hoped.17 BONACIEUX AT HOME It was the second time the cardinal had mentioned these diamond studs to the king. then. you do not tell me all that you have in your heart. sire.’ said he. ‘You hear.’ The king. and afterward to come upon his Eminence with some secret which the cardinal either knew or did not know. in either case.’ said the king. likewise. but which. who enjoyed the embarrassment to its full extent. allowed the torrent to flow on without replying. to obtain some information from that conversation. with dignity.’ stammered the queen. and looking at the king with terror in her eyes. but this was not what Louis XIII meant. madame. She became excessively pale. He arrived at this end by his persistence in accusation. ‘Madame. even upon what was going on in his own household. attacked in a manner so direct. and above all. and he thought that this was the moment for expressing the desire which he was not going to have made until the evening before the fete. and according to custom accosted her with fresh menaces against those who surrounded her. What have I done. and that the cardinal had persuaded him to employ this long dissimulation of seven or eight days. did not know what to answer.’ cried Anne of Austria. but without guessing the cause. He went then to the queen. I hear. she was unable to reply by a single syllable. ‘but. you should appear in ceremonial costume. I wish. 254 The Three Musketeers ‘But. tired of these vague attacks. then? Let me know what crime I have committed. That is my answer. ‘there will shortly be a ball at the Hotel de Ville. and began to fancy that this recommendation concealed some mystery. hoping that it would cease of itself. would raise him infinitely in the eyes of his 255 . was characteristic. Louis XIII wanted a discussion from which some light or other might break. which hand appeared then like one of wax.

’ The queen’s 257 . I am lost! My God. ‘I am lost. it was he!’ ‘Well. The queen uttered a piercing cry at finding herself surprised— for in her trouble she did not at first recognize the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. madame—‘ ‘It was he. More closely watched than ever. ‘but I do not precisely recollect the date of the day. Thus. Mme. very shortly. ‘Oh. she had not a soul in the world in whom she could confide. that one of her women had betrayed her. In fact. while contemplating the misfortune which threatened her and the abandonment in which she was left. The queen turned sharply round.’ The queen made a curtsy.’ said he.’ replied the astonished king. her position was terrible. sire. sire.’ ‘Then you will appear?’ ‘Yes. Laporte could not leave the Louvre. She had been engaged in arranging the dresses and linen in a closet when the king entered. sire. Bonacieux. who informed you of this fete?’ ‘Yes. ‘Can I be of service to your Majesty?’ said all at once a voice full of sweetness and pity. she broke out into sobs and tears.’ ‘That is well. Louis XIII felt instinctively that he ought not to reply to this question. In fact. the queen felt certain. the king perceived it. less from etiquette than be256 The Three Musketeers cause her knees were sinking under her. I count upon it. retiring. the queen having put it in an almost dying voice. she could not get out and had heard all. increased. if possible. my God. and what does it signify whether it was he or I? Is there any crime in this request?’ ‘No. The king went away enchanted. madame. Chevreuse was at Tours.’ said the king. and it is he who urges on the king.’ ‘It was the cardinal. ‘that is well. who as yet knows nothing but will soon know everything. and enjoyed it with that cold cruelty which was one of the worst sides of his character.’ murmured the queen. at one of the doors which opened into the queen’s apartment appeared the pretty Mme. it was a friend who spoke thus. ‘Then that is agreed. I will ask the cardinal. ‘and that is all I had to say to you. Buckingham had returned to London.‘Yes. ‘but why do you ask that?’ ‘It was he who told you to invite me to appear with these studs?’ ‘That is to say. madame. without knowing how to tell which. for there could be no deception in the expression of that voice. then. with her head buried between her palpitating arms.’ said the king. my God!’ She knelt upon a cushion and prayed. ‘lost!—for the cardinal knows all.’ ‘But on what day will this ball take place?’ asked Anne of Austria.

madame!’ said the young woman.’ continued Mme. exile!’ ‘Yes. oh.’ ‘ 259 . my honor. I have nothing to save for your Majesty.’ continued Mme. I am ready to die for your Majesty!’ This expression sprang from the very bottom of the heart. Bonacieux. I believe I have discovered a means of extricating your Majesty from your trouble. Can I trust in you?’ ‘Oh. without knowing what he carries. my God!’ murmured the queen. I am betrayed on all sides. ‘I am your Majesty’s.’ ‘But how? Tell me at least the means. body and soul. madame!’ cried the young woman.’ ‘But who.’ ‘My husband had been at liberty these two or three days.young woman who had been given to her by Laporte. without doubt. He will set out upon receiving an order from me. clasping her hands and weeping herself at the queen’s sorrows. those studs. however inferior may be my position. there was no mistaking it.’ cried the queen. my reputation. my God. do me that honor. ‘we must have them back again. I swear that no one is more devoted to your Majesty than I am.’ ‘But I must write. but by the holy name of the Virgin. Those studs which the king speaks of. who? In whom can I trust?’ ‘Place confidence in me. madame. and I will save them all. fear nothing. did you not? Those studs were enclosed in a little rosewood box which he held under his arm? Am I deceived? Is it not so. ‘yes. ‘but how am I to act? How can it be effected?’ ‘Someone must be sent to the duke. yes. there are traitors here. ‘and you will have saved my life. you gave them to the Duke of Buckingham. madame. ‘Do that. you must. you are only the victim of perfidious plots. my 258 The Three Musketeers queen.’ said the queen. my God! I must then place my life.’ The queen took the two hands of the young woman with a burst of emotion. heaven.’ ‘You.’ ‘Oh. and he will carry your Majesty’s letter. ‘upon my soul. it is necessary. ‘but look me in the face. you!’ cried the queen. embraced her tenderly. whose teeth chattered with fright. if they fell into infamous hands.’ cried she. ‘Yes. ‘you Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Two words from the hand of your Majesty and your private seal. yes. my child.’ ‘Yes. that is true. He is a worthy. in your hands?’ ‘Yes. madame?’ ‘Oh. divorce. falling on her knees. ‘Oh. honest man who entertains neither love nor hatred for anybody. He will do anything I wish. to the address which is on it. and. Bonacieux. I have not yet had time to see him again. and I will find a messenger. ‘Well. But I will answer for these two words being delivered to their address.’ ‘That is true. and however far I may be from you. like the first. and seeing nothing but sincerity in her beautiful eyes.’ ‘But these two words would bring about my condemnation. without even knowing it is from your Majesty. gazed at her as if to read her very heart. you will have saved my honor!’ ‘Do not exaggerate the service I have the happiness to render your Majesty. that is indispensable.

concealed the paper in the bosom of her dress. As to the servant. nothing Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The worthy mercer had. and his wife had replied by congratulating him. and pens.’ Mme. she was ignorant of the change that had taken place in him with respect to the cardinal—a change which had since been strengthened by two or three visits from the Comte de Rochefort. and had persuaded him. ‘Yes. without much trouble. Take this ring. let not your Majesty be uneasy. Ten minutes afterward she was at home. It is mine. her native place.’ said she. which. She wrote two lines. Bonacieux.’ ‘You see the address. ‘here is a ring of great value. ‘And now.’ ‘The letter shall be given to himself. but he had. Bonacieux kissed the hands of the queen. in the visit he had made to the cardinal and in the visits Rochefort had made him.’ said the queen. that letter.’ ‘In an hour you shall be 261 . and as everybody knows. and disappeared with the lightness of a bird. that is true. This first moment had been delayed five days.’ The queen ran to a little table. and I am at liberty to dispose of it.’ said the queen. informed his wife of his happy return. Terror had had such an effect upon the poor girl that she had never ceased walking from Paris till she reached Burgundy. de Motteville will not be astonished at this reply. ‘To my Lord Duke of Buckingham. Those who have read the MEMOIRS of Mme. ‘and I will confess to your Majesty that my husband—‘ ‘Your husband has none. under any other circumstances. the King of Spain. Bonacieux could hardly hear what she said. as I have been assured.’ ‘And I have none. time presses. speaking so low that Mme. she had not seen her husband since his liberation. It came from my brother.’ ‘Give me then. madame. paper. we will find means.’ 260 The Three Musketeers ‘Generous girl!’ cried Anne of Austria. immediately upon re-entering his house. raise money with it. As she told the queen. London.’ said the queen. the furniture of which he had found mostly broken and his closets nearly empty—justice not being one of the three things which King Solomon names as leaving no traces of their passage.are right. was putting his house in order. on which were ink. and telling him that the first moment she could steal from her duties should be devoted to paying him a visit. ample subjects for reflection. Bonacieux blushed. ‘we are forgetting one very necessary thing.’ ‘What is that. Nevertheless. Bonacieux. ‘Here. and let your husband set out. either. might have appeared rather long to M.’ said she. Is that what you would say?’ ‘He has some.’ Anne of Austria ran to her jewel case. that is his fault. and gave it to Mme. she had run away at the moment of her master’s arrest. who had become the best friend of Bonacieux. but he is very avaricious. madame?’ ‘Money. sealed the letter with her private seal. ‘But wait a minute. Mme.

but at this period the title of gentleman had great influence with the citizen 263 .’ ‘True. ‘And what does it concern. as you were not guilty of any intrigue. that which brings you home to me? Is it not the desire of seeing a husband again from whom you have been separated for a week?’ asked the mercer. ‘How!’ said Bonacieux. ‘and I have some questions sufficiently serious to put to you. Let us return to the object that brings me here. Bonacieux had just attained that happy period of life.’ ‘Oh. although they had not seen each other for eight days. He was. I have something of the highest importance to tell you.makes time pass more quickly than reflection. and d’Artagnan was a gentleman. Madame Bonacieux presented her cheek to him. knew nothing that could compromise yourself or anybody else. Bonacieux. it must be admitted. a day and night soon pass away.’ ‘Speak. his dear Bonacieux. This was the more so because Bonacieux’s reflections were all rose-colored. as you.’ ‘What. and advanced toward his wife 262 The Three Musketeers with open arms. and other things afterward.’ ‘You speak very much at your ease. I pray you. I attached no more importance to that event than it merited. but. In spite of herself her thoughts constantly reverted to that handsome young man who was so brave and appeared to be so much in love. and Mme. upon something widely different from ambition. madame. On her side Mme. astonished. that first.’ said she. The mercer fancied himself already on the high road to honors and fortune. Besides. but as you were not guilty of any crime. The couple. we repeat. Rochefort called him his friend. handsome.’ said Mme. ‘Yes. and bold.’ said he. Bonacieux manifested real joy. which next to that of the Musketeers was most admired by the ladies. then—my captivity?’ ‘I heard of it the day it happened. Married at eighteen to M. Nevertheless. hurt at the little interest his wife showed in him.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. he spoke of love like a man who did love and was anxious to be loved in return. ‘Do you know that I was plunged during a day and night in a dungeon of the Bastille?’ ‘Oh. and during that time serious events had taken place in which both were concerned. ‘Yes. Bonacieux. ‘Let us talk a little. accosted each other with a degree of preoccupation.’ said Bonacieux. Bonacieux had remained insensible to vulgar seductions. in short. he wore the uniform of the Guards. that’s of no consequence just now. then. Bonacieux had also reflected. There was certainly enough in all this to turn a head only twenty-three years old. piqued to the quick. young. Describe to me your abduction. having always lived among her husband’s friends—people little capable of inspiring any sentiment whatever in a young woman whose heart was above her position—Mme. and never ceased telling him that the cardinal had a great respect for him.

I am aware of them now. I can’t say I had much choice of going or not going. when he had talked for ten minutes with Cardinal Richelieu.’ answered the mercer. The recompense will exceed your 265 .’ ‘I go to London? Go to! You jest! I have no business in 264 The Three Musketeers London. and that a man must be mad to atFree eBooks at Planet eBook. is no longer the same man. and called me his friend. but for whom I expose myself. an illustrious person awaits you.’ ‘But who are those others? I warn you that I will never again work in the dark. Monsieur Cardinal has enlightened me on that head. ‘Yes. and which you will deliver into the proper hands. ‘Much money to be gained?’ said Bonacieux. and upon which our future fortune perhaps depends. protruding his lip. proudly. that is all I promise you. then?’ ‘It is indeed.’ ‘The complexion of our fortune has changed very much since I saw you. I should have been enchanted. and that I will know not only to what I expose myself.’ Mme. and I should not be astonished if in the course of a few months it were to excite the envy of many folks.‘It is a thing of the highest interest. ‘And you responded to his bidding. It is true also. were he even a mercer.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘But others wish that you should go there. Madam Bonacieux. you imprudent man?’ ‘Well. madame. that as I did not then know his Eminence. madame? I am the friend of the great cardinal!’ ‘Of the great cardinal!’ ‘Perhaps you would contest his right to that title. His friend! Do you hear that. and much money to be gained at the same time. but I tell you that the favor of a minister is ephemeral. then.’ ‘An illustrious person sends you. Bonacieux knew that in talking of money to her husband. if I had been able to dispense with the visit. perhaps. There is good and holy action to be performed.’ ‘The cardinal?’ cried Mme.’ ‘What you demand of me is serious.’ ‘What must be done?’ ‘You must go away immediately. But a man. Bonacieux. I will give you a paper which you must not part with on any account. madame?’ ‘I would contest nothing.’ ‘He ill-treated you. monsieur. you. much.’ ‘And whither am I to go?’ ‘To London. for I was taken to him between two guards.’ ‘More intrigues! Nothing but intrigues! Thank you. she took him on his weak side.’ ‘Me?’ ‘Yes. ‘Have you seen the cardinal?’ ‘He sent for me.’ ‘About how much?’ ‘A thousand pistoles. particularly if you follow the instructions I am about to give you. he threatened you?’ ‘He gave me his hand.

who had never seen his wife in a passion. straightforward citizen. and from my friend the Comte de Rochefort. shrugging her shoulders. and foolish. I am for those who save the state. which returned a sound a money. and what the cardinal does is well done.tach himself to a minister. and who. word for word. Bonacieux. eh!’ said Bonacieux. ‘I know you to be cowardly. knowing the weakness of her husband. monsieur. madame.’ ‘Monsieur. you are a cardinalist.’ ‘Eh. both at the danger into which she had nearly cast herself and at the helpless state to which she was reduced. are you?’ cried she. Madame Preacher?’ ‘Whence comes that money?’ ‘You do not guess?’ ‘From the cardinal?’ ‘From him. ‘Ah. madame. his vigilant eye watches over and penetrates to the bottom of the heart. she did not despair of bringing him round to her purpose. but I acknowledge not her power but that of the great man whom I have the honor to serve. in that hope.’ said Bonacieux. Fortunately we have the great cardinal. slapping a plump. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. who had reckoned on her husband. ‘Be satisfied with being a plain. but I never till now believed you infamous!’ ‘Madame. emphatically.’ Bonacieux was repeating. but that abduction had for its object the betrayal of my mistress.’ ‘I am sorry for it.’ said the young woman. ‘And what do you know about the state you talk of?’ said 266 The Three Musketeers Mme. a sentence which he had heard from the Comte de Rochefort. Nevertheless. did not tremble the less. ‘your august mistress is a perfidious Spaniard. I will not allow you to be concerned in plots against the safety of the state. ‘what do you think of this.’ ‘Madame.’ ‘You serve the cardinal?’ ‘Yes. had answered for him to the queen. and more particularly his cupidity. then. round bag. ‘and you serve the party of those who maltreat your wife and insult your queen?’ ‘Private interests are as nothing before the interests of all. and perhaps the life.’ ‘The Comte de Rochefort! Why it was he who carried me off!’ ‘That may be. to draw from me by torture confessions that might compromise the honor.’ said Bonacieux. and who recoiled before this conjugal anger. or to serve the intrigues of a woman who is not French and who has a Spanish heart. but the poor wife. of my august mistress. and turn to that side which offers the most advantages.’ replied Bonacieux. madame!’ ‘And you receive silver from that man?’ ‘Have you not said that that abduction was entirely political?’ ‘ 267 . avaricious. There are powers above his which do not depend upon a man or the issue of an event. and as his servant. it is to these powers we should rally.

’ ‘And you. why do you not go yourself? For in truth. intrigues terrify me. my dear love. ‘hold! I positively refuse. ‘You meddle with politics.’ ‘But what do you require of me. if you avoid them?’ 268 The Three Musketeers ‘Hold. and a violent one.’ said the mercer. madame! You may be overheard. if you do not go this very instant. but he loved his wife. She for a moment contemplated with fright that stupid countenance. who saw she was regaining some little influence over her 269 . for money!’ ‘No. ‘I restore my love.’ ‘Yes. ‘Who calls Richelieu calls Satan. You must depart instantly. like you. too. you sell yourself. impressed with the invincible resolution of a fool that is overcome by fear. when all is considered.’ said he. very far. A man of fifty cannot long bear malice with a wife of twenty-three. MORBLEU. Madame Bonacieux. to the demon. particularly such as. ‘Have me arrested on the part of the queen. then? Let us see. body and soul.’ and she held out her hand to him. I really believe you are a man. that Bastille! Only to think of it makes my flesh crawl. ‘Perhaps.’ ‘Hold your tongue. London is far from Paris. Bonacieux saw that he hesitated. stupid and brutal. I will have you arrested by the queen’s orders. And. He was softened. you are a woman—a miserable woman.’ At once Mme. and on that condition I pardon everything. and I will have you placed in the Bastille which you dread so much. Mme. I have seen the Bastille.’ Bonacieux fell into a profound reflection. a man knows more about politics than a woman. are you? Well. ‘Well. I think I have hitherto been deceived in you. hold your tongue. positively I will not go. have conversed with the cardinal. be it so!’ said she. Bonacieux.’ ‘I have told you. ‘Come! Have you decided?’ said she. I forget everything. My! Whew! That’s a frightful place. you are right. ‘But. Do you know what torture is? Wooden points that they stick in between your legs till your bones stick out! No. and perhaps the commission with which you charge me is not without dangers?’ ‘What matters it. the devil. what do you say?’ ‘I say you are a miserable creature!’ continued Mme. ‘and I—I will appeal to his Eminence. And yet Free eBooks at Planet eBook. They threatened me with torture.’ Bonacieux was cowardly and avaricious. you are right. and she was terrified at having communicated so much. and what is more. He weighed the two angers in his brain—that of the cardinal and that of the queen. I should be ashamed for anyone to know your baseness. do you—and still more. reflect a little upon what you require of me. You are afraid. monsieur. Bonacieux saw that she had gone too far. You must accomplish loyally the commission with which I deign to charge you.’ ‘It’s the same thing. Monsieur Bonacieux. with cardinalist politics? Why. In the long run.’ cried the young woman. to the cardinal.‘madame. that of the cardinal predominated enormously.

say no more about it.’ replied the triumphant Bonacieux.’ said the young woman. and set off at a quick pace. monsieur. ‘Dear Madame Bonacieux. I shall expect you. the more important Bonacieux thought the secret which she declined to confide to him.’ ‘Very well. my God.’ replied Mme. and tell him that the queen was seeking for a messenger to send to London. Madame Bonacieux. sighing. as they must necessarily be much deranged. ‘It is of no use for you to know anything about it. as soon as I have concluded my business with that friend.’ 270 The Three Musketeers ‘Thank you.’ ‘That is because your fancies go too far. I will give it up. I had made an engagement with a friend. and a voice which reached her through the ceiling cried. ‘ is very hard. then?’ ‘Till then.’ said Mme.’ ‘As you please.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Bonacieux. but now it is worse than ever. treats me thus unkindly and will not comply with any of my fancies. ‘that imbecile lacked but one thing to become a cardinalist. whom an instinctive mistrust now impelled to draw 271 . ‘and I mistrust them. my dear Madame Bonacieux. who have promised my poor mistress—ah.’ said he. ‘It was about one of those purchases that interest women— a purchase by which much might have been gained.’ ‘Till then.’ said the young woman. who remembered a little too late that Rochefort had desired him to endeavor to obtain his wife’s secrets. ‘Shall I see you again soon?’ ‘Next week I hope my duties will afford me a little liberty. He resolved then to hasten immediately to the residence of the Comte de Rochefort.’ ‘Well.’ But the more the young woman excused herself. open for me the little door on the alley. Monsieur Bonacieux. my God! She will take me for one of those wretches with whom the palace swarms and who are placed about her as spies! Ah. I never did love you much. ‘Well. who have answered for him to the queen—I.’ ‘At least you should tell me what I should have to do in London. ‘that a man upon whose affection I thought I might depend. and I will come down to you. you are not brave enough to be of any use to me whatever. and if you will wait only a few minutes for me. You are not angry with me?’ ‘Not the least in the world. And I. I will come back and reconduct you to the Louvre. I shall soon return. ‘Pardon me for quitting you. ‘It is well as it is. then. when her husband had shut the street door and she found herself alone.’ said the ex-mercer. I hate you. ‘I shall return very safely to the Louvre all alone. and I will take advantage of it to come and put things in order here. not knowing you would come to see me. as it is growing late.’ replied Bonacieux.’ added she.’ Bonacieux kissed his wife’s hand. Bonacieux. and on my word you shall pay for this!’ At the moment she spoke these words a rap on the ceiling made her raise her head.

however terrible it may be. unfortunately.’ ‘And what did you understand by what we said?’ ‘A thousand things.’ ‘You have. that. Do you know Monsieur de Treville. with chagrin. ‘And what guarantee will you give me. finally. then. your husband is a simpleton and a fool. ‘The whole.’ Mme. you are in trouble. Madame. in the next place. and by which I likewise overheard the more animated conversation which he had with the cardinal’s police. and God knows I am ready to throw myself into the fire for you. but her heart beat with joy and secret hope shone in her eyes. ‘allow me to tell you that you have a bad sort of a husband.’ ‘Do you know Athos?’ ‘No. not personally.’ said d’Artagnan. my God?’ ‘By a mode of proceeding known to myself. reveal your secret to him. no.18 LOVER AND HUSBAND ‘Ah. intelligent. but from having heard the queen speak of him more than once as a brave and loyal gentleman. entering by the door which the young woman opened for him. eagerly. you may not confide it to me. ‘As one confides a letter to the hollow of a tree. I have at least two of the three qualities you stand in need of. overheard our conversation?’ asked 273 . as it gives me a opportunity of placing myself at your service. ‘ought I to confide such a secret to you. and looking at d’Artagnan with disquiet. and ask him whether.’ said d’Artagnan. him! I know him. and here I am. devoted man to make a journey to London for her.’ ‘You were about to confide it to Monsieur Bonacieux. Speak! Command! What is to be done?’ ‘My God. In the first place.’ ‘I see that you require someone to answer for me?’ ‘I admit that would reassure me greatly.’ asked she.’ ‘Porthos?’ ‘No. of which I am very glad. to the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. my God!’ murmured the young woman.’ ‘But how. however valuable. yes. and I cannot reveal it in this manner. Who are these gentleman?’ ‘Three of the king’s Musketeers. that the queen wants a brave.’ ‘Aramis?’ ‘No.’ ‘But this secret is not mine. Bonacieux. ‘if I consent to confide this message to you?’ 272 The Three Musketeers ‘My love for you.’ ‘You do not fear lest he should betray you to the cardinal?’ ‘Oh. monsieur? You are almost a boy. however important. certainly not!’ ‘Well. their captain?’ ‘Oh. Bonacieux made no reply.

while accusing you of my death. Bonacieux hesitated to continue. Bonacieux.’ ‘Oh. Monsieur Dessessart.’ said she.’ ‘I believe it.’ murmured Mme.’ Then the young woman confided in him the terrible secret of which chance had already communicated to him a 274 The Three Musketeers part in front of the Samaritaine. as may be remembered. a furlough is needful. ‘You have. your captain?’ ‘By my soul. sorrowfully.wing of a pigeon. you are right. she found herself in circumstances where everything must be risked for the sake of everything.’ ‘The cardinal’s?’ cried d’Artagnan. restrained for a minute by a last hesitation. seeing that Mme.’ ‘I am a gallant fellow. whom I will request to ask this favor for me of his brother-in-law. I yield to your assurances. you had made me forget all that. ‘I yield to your protestations. ‘Listen. but there was such an ardor in his eyes. to the collar of a dog.’ ‘I am brave. Bonacieux looked at the young man. But I swear to you. after a moment of reflection.’ ‘You say so. ‘I go. every syllable of the conversation beFree eBooks at Planet eBook. perhaps.’ ‘How so?’ ‘I will go this very evening to Treville.’ ‘I am an honorable man. that she felt herself constrained to confide in him. be assured. he having heard.’ Mme. no money?’ ‘PERHAPS is too much. madame. put me to the proof.’ ‘Still another obstacle.’ said d’Artagnan. D’Artagnan was radiant with joy and pride. such persuasion in his voice.’ ‘And yet. ‘take this bag. I am sure of that!’ ‘Then. and my enemies pardon me. The queen might be as much injured by too much reticence as by too much confidence. Besides. opening a cupboard and taking from it the very bag which a half hour before her husband had caressed so affectionately. dear Constance! Yes.’ replied Mme. before God who hears us.’ ‘What?’ asked d’Artagnan. me—you see plainly that I love you. ‘I shall surmount it. This was their mutual declaration of love.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘You say so. breaking into a loud laugh. ‘Then. ‘that if I am taken while accomplishing the orders you give me. you will go!’ said Mme. smiling. This secret which he possessed. Bonacieux. this woman whom he loved! Confidence and love made him a giant.’ said he.’ cried d’Artagnan. Bonacieux.’ ‘And I—I swear to you before God. thanks to the broken boards. ‘As to that. and—let us admit it—the involuntary sentiment which she felt for her young protector decided her to speak. ‘I go at once. ‘and your regiment.’ ‘But another thing. I will die sooner than do anything that may compromise anyone.’ ‘ 275 . I will kill myself. that if you betray me.

‘Be assured you will not find her Majesty ungrateful. d’Artagnan saw those tears. Bonacieux pronounced these words with tears in her 277 . you can open to him. and through a slit in the shutter they saw Bonacieux talking with a man in a cloak. Bonacieux. he threw himself at her feet. we must go out. the young man barricaded the door. with great emotion. ‘and when I am gone.’ ‘Ah. and lent his ear. I give you my word of a gentleman. too.’ said Mme. ‘you will ruin us all!’ ‘But I have sworn to kill that man!’ said d’Artagnan. you permit me to tell you that I do—that is already more happiness than I dared to hope.’ D’Artagnan drew near the window. At sight of this man.’ ‘Then you must come up into my room. whom he had Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘And do you command nothing in your own name?’ ‘In my name. and much disturbed. ‘What!’ ‘Someone is talking in the street. In the name of the queen I forbid you to throw yourself into any peril which is foreign to that of your journey.’ ‘But I ought to be gone. had returned to the man in the cloak. I am already grandly recompensed!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘Silence!’ said Mme. ‘you speak that in a tone that frightens me!’ Mme. and half drawing his sword. Bonacieux.’ said Mme. Bonacieux. my friend!’ D’Artagnan drew back the bolt with precaution. 276 The Three Musketeers ‘With me you will be as safe as in a temple.’ ‘PARDIEU. and both. Bonacieux.’ said he. for greater security. ‘I place full confidence in you. they appear to be speaking of me.’ ‘Oh. glided through the interior door into the passage. ‘it will be a double amusing affair to save the queen with the cardinal’s money!’ ‘You are an amiable and charming young man. ‘in my name I beg you! But listen. ‘You see it makes a very respectable appearance. how am I to justify it if I am here?’ ‘You are right. Bonacieux. Bonacieux. and entered d’Artagnan’s chambers. And the disappearance of his money. and seeing the apartment.’ ‘It is the voice of—‘ ‘Of my husband! Yes. and does not belong to you. Bonacieux had opened his door.’ ‘Let us go. ‘I love you. M.’ replied Mme. ‘What are you going to do?’ cried Mme.’ said Mme. ‘Your life is devoted from this moment.’ cried d’Artagnan. starting. I recognize it!’ D’Artagnan ran to the door and pushed the bolt. Once there. It was the man of Meung. sprang toward the door.tween the mercer and his wife. ‘He shall not come in before I am gone.’ ‘Go out? How? He will see us if we go out. ‘The cardinal’s.’ said she. d’Artagnan started. light as shadows. They both approached the window. softened. ascended the stairs as quietly as possible.

‘I will answer for it.’ ‘Is the young Guardsman at home?’ ‘I do not think he is. passed through the same door that had afforded a passage for the two fugitives.’ ‘How so?’ ‘By knocking at his door. Porthos. Let us return to your apartment.’ D’Artagnan raised the three or four boards which made his chamber another ear of Dionysius. in her conversation with you. and you can see no light shine through the chinks of the shutters.’ replied Bonacieux.’ ‘The traitor!’ murmured Mme. which. do you understand?’ ‘Then the news I brought you is of value?’ ‘The greatest. ‘Never mind. ‘you were Free eBooks at Planet eBook. went upon his knees. ‘that she did not suspect the intentions with which you went out?’ ‘No. his shutter is closed.’ said he. No one answered. Bonacieux. Go.’ said d’ 279 . ‘You are sure there is nobody there?’ said the stranger.’ replied the stranger.’ ‘Then the cardinal will be pleased with me?’ ‘I have no doubt of it.’ ‘She did not name Madame de Chevreuse.’ said Bonacieux. I don’t conceal this from you. ‘And you think that your wife—‘ ‘Has returned to the Louvre.’ ‘Without speaking to anyone but yourself?’ ‘I am sure of it. ‘Never mind. my dear Bonacieux. went up to d’Artagnan’s door. ‘we shall hear bet278 The Three Musketeers ter. she only told me she wished to send me to London to serve the interests of an illustrious personage. spread a carpet on the floor. Bonacieux.’ ‘Ah. Bonacieux to stoop as he did toward the opening. and made a sign to Mme.’ ‘You are sure. the two young people felt their hearts bound within them. As to d’Artagnan. ‘she is too superficial a woman.’ ‘I will ask his servant.’ said Bonacieux. it is well to be certain.’ ‘All the same. or Madame de Vernet?’ ‘No. in order to make a greater display. ‘Silence!’ said d’Artagnan. as you see. had that evening borrowed Planchet. ‘There is nobody within. taking her hand.’ ‘On the contrary. The moment the hand of Bonacieux sounded on the door.’ ‘The great cardinal!’ ‘Are you sure. and knocked. my God!’ whispered Mme. the Duke of Buckingham. ‘we shall hear no more. without thinking of it. she abandoned to him.’ ‘That is an important point. that your wife mentioned no names?’ ‘I think not. We shall be safer there than in the doorway.left alone for an instant. ‘she must have returned to the Louvre.’ continued the man in the cloak. he took care not to give the least sign of existence. ‘She is gone.’ Bonacieux re-entered the house. with a self-sufficient air.

‘Courage. which ill-concealed the sheath of a long sword. prudence. Bonacieux followed him with her eyes. ‘Oh. A few seconds afterward d’Artagnan also went out enveloped in a large cloak. would be safe. and I run directly to the cardinal. ‘How is there still time?’ asked the man in the cloak. and clasping her hands. protect me!’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Bonacieux. I say that I have reflected. addressing this epithet to her husband. my God. who had discovered the disappearance of the moneybag. Bonacieux. Bonacieux. on account of their frequency. but above all. ‘Infamous!’ said Mme. she fell on her knees. and was crying ‘Thieves!’ 280 The Three Musketeers ‘Oh. ‘protect the queen. and as lately the mercer’s house had a bad name. You would then be in present possession of the letter. Mme. Bonacieux.’ ‘Well. I renew the affair. I shall become worthy of her gratitude.’ ‘To her and to you!’ cried d’Artagnan. Bonacieux. but as such cries.’ ‘The ninny!’ murmured Mme. my God!’ cried Mme. and think what you owe to the queen. which is now threatened.’ Bonacieux called a long time.’ said Mme. pressing her hand still more warmly. The state. he went out continuing to call. beautiful Constance. pressing her hand more closely.’ The stranger went 281 .’ cried she. ‘Silence!’ said d’Artagnan. his voice being heard fainter and fainter as he went in the direction of the Rue du Bac. with that long. ‘Be satisfied. and you—‘ ‘And I?’ ‘Well you—the cardinal would have given you letters of nobility. A terrible howling interrupted these reflections of d’Artagnan and Mme. ‘I go to the Louvre. I know that he meant to afford you that agreeable surprise. but shall I likewise return worthy of your love?’ The young woman only replied by the beautiful glow which mounted to her cheeks. ‘my wife adores me.’ ‘Be satisfied. brought nobody in the Rue des Fossoyeurs.’ ‘Did he tell you so?’ ‘Yes. I obtain the letter. ‘Now he is gone. ‘Silence!’ said d’Artagnan. It was her husband. finding that nobody came.a fool not to have pretended to accept the mission. fond look with which he had turned the angle of the street. I ask for Mme. my friend. and there is yet time.’ replied Bonacieux. it is your turn to get out. ‘he will rouse the whole quarter. Bonacieux. go quickly! I will return soon to learn the result of your trip.

‘Yes. it is her Majesty’s. M. without you I can do nothing. He had reflected that in a few minutes the cardinal would be warned by this cursed stranger. or whether he should only ask him to give him CARTE BLANCHE for some secret 283 . on the contrary. then. as I said. de Treville had always been so thoroughly his friend. and money to be gained. for having disturbed you when you know the importance of my business. monsieur. with reason. All the way along d’Artagnan had been consulting with himself whether he should place confidence in M. and hated the cardinal so cordially. and sent word that he wished to see him on something of importance. monsieur.’ ‘What did you say?’ asked M. as your life.’ ‘Is this secret your own?’ ‘No. But M. The heart of the young man overflowed with joy. for him at once more than he would have dared to ask of Providence. had al282 The Three Musketeers ways been so devoted to the king and queen. it brought him into close intimacy with a woman he adored. I am all attention. and then fixing his questioning look upon d’Artagnan. de Treville was in his saloon with his habitual court of gentlemen.’ said d’Artagnan. went straight to his office. then. An opportunity presented itself to him in which there would be at the same time glory to be acquired. This chance did. the worthy captain plainly perceived that something new was on foot. de Treville entered.’ ‘Why.’ said d’Artagnan. and I am afraid you will refuse me the favor I come to ask if you Free eBooks at Planet eBook. D’Artagnan. and he judged. I hope.’ ‘But which I must impart to you. I hope. and by the joy which was painted on his countenance. he had not a moment to lose. for. I am desired to preserve the profoundest mystery.’ ‘Are you authorized by her Majesty to communicate it to me?’ ‘No. glancing round to see if they were surely alone. for you alone can assist me in the mission I have just received from her Majesty.’ ‘It concerns nothing less. that chance has rendered me master of a secret—‘ ‘Which you will guard. D’Artagnan had been there scarcely five minutes when M. who was known as a familiar of the house. lowering his voice. are you about to betray it to me?’ ‘Because. de Treville.’ ‘Speak. monsieur. ‘than the honor. At the first glance. and as a far higher encouragement. then. perhaps the life of the queen. monsieur. that the young man resolved to tell him everything. young man. ‘Did you ask for me. de Treville.19 PLAN OF CAMPAIGN D’Artagnan went straight to M. de Treville. my good friend?’ said M. ‘and you will pardon me. monsieur. who appeared to be his agent. ‘I say. de Treville’s.

Adieu.’ ‘Has anyone an interest in preventing your arrival there?’ ‘The cardinal. on receiving it. and your visit. that is all—to Athos.’ ‘How so?’ ‘You will be assassinated. de Treville.’ continued Treville.’ ‘May you tell me whither?’ ‘To London. you are right. from Monsieur Dessessart. A PROPOS.’ ‘Thanks.’ ‘And I shall die in the performance of my duty. I tell you so. and you know if I can dispose of them.’ ‘Be not know to what end I ask it. to Porthos and Aramis to accompany their friend. and a prosperous voyage.’ ‘Ah.’ ‘And you are going alone?’ ‘I am going alone. calling him back. and Aramis. four must set out. ‘Have the goodness to send mine to Athos’s residence. will thus seem legitimate. young man. to go to the waters of Forges.’ ‘That is true. monsieur.’ D’Artagnan drew up his request. if it should ever be known to the cardinal.’ ‘In that case you will not get beyond Bondy. ‘Have you any money?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘I wish you to obtain for me. leave of absence for fifteen days. D’Artagnan returned. Sending their leave of absence will be proof enough that I authorize their journey.’ ‘Begone. and M. by the faith of de Treville. You are a hundred times too good. ‘in enterprises of this kind.’ 284 The Three Musketeers ‘Without confiding to them the secret which I am not willing to know?’ ‘We are sworn.’ replied d’Artagnan. and they will not be more incredulous than you.’ said M.’ ‘When?’ ‘This very night. whom they are not willing to abandon in such a painful condition. ‘but you know Athos. ‘Believe me. de Treville. then. you can tell them that you have full confidence in me.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘You leave Paris?’ ‘I am going on a mission.’ ‘I can send to each of them leave of absence for fifteen days. find them instantly. assured him that by two o’clock in the morning the four leaves of absence should be at the respective domiciles of the travelers. Besides. I believe. would give the world to prevent my success. monsieur. once for all.’ ‘But your mission will not be accomplished. and tell me what you wish. Perhaps you had a spy at your heels. and let all be done tonight! Ha! But first write your request to Dessessart. I should dread some disagreeable encounter if I were to go home. in order that one may 285 . to implicit confidence and devotedness against all proof. Porthos.’ ‘Keep your secret. whose wound still makes him suffer.

loyal. ‘Three hundred pistoles. Aramis was melancholy and thoughtful.’ ‘To Tours? Yes. ‘I saw her.’ The lackey bowed to the ground and departed. you will tell Monsieur de Treville that Monsieur Aramis is very much obliged to him. then?’ ‘Because she was afraid of compromising you. there is a demipistole for your trouble. ‘Become of whom?’ replied Aramis. ‘I fanFree eBooks at Planet eBook. can you tell me what is become of that woman?’ ‘I presume that she has returned to Tours. This evening. at whose residence he had not been since the famous evening on which he had followed Mme. de Treville. ‘What is that?’ asked Aramis. ‘Pack up all you want for a journey of a fortnight. you restore me to life!’ cried Aramis.’ 286 The Three Musketeers ‘Hold your tongue and take it!’ said d’Artagnan. After the two friends had been chatting a few moments. he had remarked a deep sadness imprinted on his countenance. whom he had always found worthy. Bonacieux. ‘What does all this mean?’ asked Aramis. ‘The woman who was here—the woman with the embroidered handkerchief. he had seldom seen the young Musketeer. my friend. d’Artagnan asked some questions about this prolonged melancholy.’ ‘Listen!’ said Aramis. bringing a sealed packet. and great. His first visit was to Aramis.’ ‘And you know who she is?’ ‘I believe I can guess. and follow me. ‘The leave of absence Monsieur has asked for.’ ‘Why has she not written to me. at least. becoming as pale as death. he had had constant occasion to honor this excellent man. Aramis pleaded as his excuse a commentary upon the eighteenth chapter of St.’ ‘Who told you there was a woman here?’ replied Aramis. that may be. Augustine. which he was forced to write in Latin for the following week. You evidently know her. ‘What is become of her? I suppose you mean—‘ continued d’Artagnan.’ replied the lackey. then!’ D’Artagnan saluted 287 .D’Artagnan tapped the bag he had in his pocket. plenty! That would carry you to the end of the world. Go. Still further. a servant from M. Since his first arrival at Paris. But why did she return to Tours without telling me anything?’ ‘Because she was in fear of being arrested. ‘Since you appear to know so many things.’ ‘Oh. especially.’ ‘But I cannot leave Paris just now without knowing—‘ Aramis stopped. ‘For me! I have asked for no leave of absence. d’Artagnan pressed it with a respect mixed with gratitude. ‘Enough?’ asked M. but every time he had seen him.’ ‘d’Artagnan. ‘And you. de Treville. and which preoccupied him a good deal. Begone. who held out his hand to him. de Treville entered.

Go. ‘To nobody in the world. betrayed. and if you will come thither. ‘Oh.’ ‘Will Bazin go with us?’ asked Aramis.’ ‘Not even to Athos or Porthos?’ ‘I have not breathed a syllable to them. I wish. ‘Perhaps so. in the Musketeers. ‘You have 288 The Three Musketeers not spoken of this lady?’ said he. I wonder. then. you’ll know it someday. Aramis continued his way with d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan. nothing prevents me. You say we are going—‘ ‘To see Athos now. and you are sure of it.’’ Aramis smiled. this leave of absence and that letter mean that you must follow me. then. and three pistols. he followed d’Artagnan. opening uselessly two or three drawers to see if he could not find stray coin. or any that may be more agreeable to you. wondering to himself how this young Guardsman should know so well who the lady was to whom he had given hospitality. I was so delighted to see her again! I could not have believed she would risk her liberty for me. Athos. since she has left Paris. and recuperate yourself as quickly as possible. and that he should know better than himself what had become of her.’ at the same time taking his cloak. ‘PARDIEU!’ said he. for we have lost much time already. as he remembered the tale he had told his friends on a certain evening. and both soon arrived at Athos’s dwelling. Yours affectionate de Treville ‘Well. Are we not their Majesties’ servants?’ At that moment Porthos entered. that you should rest for a 289 . and. and looking at him earnestly. it is best that he should follow us to Athos’s. which I have just received?’ said the astonished Athos. inform Bazin.’ ‘And what is this cause?’ demanded Aramis.’ ‘To the waters of Forges?’ ‘There or elsewhere. ‘Can you explain to me what signify this leave of absence and this letter. Aramis. Only as they went out Aramis placed his hand upon the arm of d’Artagnan. did they grant men leave of absence without their Free eBooks at Planet eBook. said ‘Let us go then. and M.’ ‘Good enough!’ Tranquil on this important point. At all events. ‘Well.cied myself despised. My dear Athos. and yet for what other cause could she have returned to Paris?’ ‘For the cause which today takes us to England. A PROPOS. de Treville’s note in the other.’ ‘In the king’s service?’ ‘Either the king’s or the queen’s. ‘here is a strange thing! Since when. and I am ready to follow you. sword. after having ordered him to join them at Athos’s residence. I beg you to make haste. but at present I must imitate the discretion of ‘the doctor’s niece. When well assured this search was superfluous. as your health absolutely requires it. They found him holding his leave of absence in one hand.’ Aramis called Bazin. and take the waters of Forges.

‘I have. ‘And yet.’ said Athos. and here are three hundred pistoles which came from I don’t know where. Why? You need give yourselves no more uneasiness about this.’ ‘You would be all the wiser. a campaign upon which we are now entering?’ ‘One of a most dangerous kind. ‘Nor I. ‘money is needed. you will have distractions enough. ‘at least I should like to know what for. when are we to go?’ asked Athos. ‘And. calling their lackeys. and placing it on the 291 . He says to you jauntily.’ ‘Yes. gentlemen. his own horse and that of his lackey.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘here are our three leaves of absence which came from Monsieur de Treville. Is life worth the trouble of so many questions? D’Artagnan. ‘Immediately.’ 290 The Three Musketeers ‘Ah! But if we do risk being killed. then. there is fighting going on in Gascony or in Flanders. ‘they have friends who ask it for them. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘To what country?’ demanded Porthos. go and fight.’ replied d’Artagnan. Besides. I am not sorry to quit Paris.’ said Athos. be assured. I am ready to follow you. now.’ ‘And I also. pulling out his treasure from his pocket.’ ‘Is the king accustomed to give you such reasons? No. gentlemen. some one of us will be left on the road.’ ‘d’Artagnan is right. ‘clean my boots.’ ‘Hello. ‘My faith! I don’t know much about it. ‘There are in this bag three hundred pistoles.’ ‘Why so?’ ‘Because. and I have none.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Is this. make yourselves easy. we shall not all arrive at London.’ ‘Ah. ‘it appears there’s something fresh here.’ said Athos.’ ‘Well. ‘I am somewhat of Porthos’s opinion. ‘Gentlemen. as at a barrack.’ ‘To London.’ Each Musketeer was accustomed to leave at the general hotel. gentlemen. we are going—‘ said Aramis. ‘And.asking for it?’ ‘Since.’ said d’Artagnan. and fetch the horses from the hotel.’ ‘But in order to go to London. that is enough to take us to London and back.’ replied d’Artagnan. ah!’ said Porthos.’ ‘Nor I. I had need of distraction.’ said Aramis. Let each take seventy-five. ‘we have not a minute to lose. ‘To London!’ cried Porthos.’ said Porthos.’ said Aramis. I give you notice.’ added Porthos. Grimaud! Planchet! Mousqueton! Bazin!’ cried the four young men. you must trust to me.’ said Athos. ‘Ask d’Artagnan.’ and you go there.’ said Aramis. So let us go and get killed where we are told to go.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘And I also. ‘and what the devil are we going to do in London?’ ‘That is what I am not at liberty to tell you. in all probability. indeed.

let him decide. Each one. ‘Now let us lay down the plan of campaign. in this pocket. we must be consistent. I am free to do so. one of you must take it. it will be another’s turn. if he be killed. They would have an easy bargain of four isolated men. ‘if d’Artagnan approves of it. If anyone wishes to stop us. If we are attacked. A secret may. too. that is all that is required. we will stoutly maintain that we were only anxious to dip ourselves a certain number of times in the sea.’ ‘Agreed!’ shouted the three Musketeers in chorus. Mousqueton. d’Artagnan. as it appears to me. in Planchet’s clothes. I am going to take the waters.’ ‘Well said. but when you do speak. We must.’ said d’Artagnan. it is like St. ‘inasmuch as I am myself ignorant of what instructions I can give you. will carry the letter. stretching out his hand to the bag.’ cried Aramis. and so on— provided a single one arrives. as to d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well. that is all. Athos. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I agree to Athos’s plan. by that of Amiens.’ said d’Artagnan. in the uniform of the Guards. we will defend ourselves. and made his preparations to set out at the time appointed.’ said d’Artagnan. he will go by what route he thinks is best. took his seventyfive pistoles. D’Artagnan. and the survivor. And you.’ ‘Well. This letter is here.’ cried Athos. I have not. We will arm our four lackeys with pistols and musketoons. ‘this is my advice—‘ ‘Speak!’ ‘Four men traveling together would be suspected. ‘my opinion is that it is not proper to allow lackeys to have anything to do in such an affair. is naturally the head of the enterprise. because it is sealed. by chance. as d’Artagnan says.’ and he pointed to the pocket which contained the letter. we will give battle. ‘I decide that we should adopt Athos’s plan.’ ‘Porthos’s plan appears to me to be impracticable. and continue the route. ‘you don’t often speak. Aramis will follow us by that of Noyon. D’Artagnan will give each of us his instructions. ‘that is the most direct line to London. Athos will set out two hours after. and I cannot make three copies of that letter. and we will execute.’ said Athos. I will go by the way of Boulogne to clear the way. Grimaud. I go and take sea waters. John of the Golden Mouth.’ ‘Gentlemen. but it is almost always sold by lackeys. whereas four men together make a troop. and Bazin set off at full speed. and that we set off in half an hour. be betrayed by gentlemen. and you will show your leaves of absence.’ said 293 . I am the bearer of a letter. ‘Besides. ‘If I should be killed. if they send an army out against us. being the bearer of the letter. then.’ 292 The Three Musketeers ‘Bravo. ‘Where do we go first?’ ‘To Calais. travel in company. Porthos?’ ‘I agree to it. your opinion is mine. you will accompany me. while Planchet will follow us like d’Artagnan. Instead of taking the waters of Forges. I will show Monsieur de Treville’s letter.’ said Porthos.Planchet.’ said Porthos. if we are tried.

and apprehended ambushes on every side. with the regimental step of these noble companions of the soldier. was. The black horses of the Musketeers. and the stranger drew his sword. The stranger cried that he acknowledged no other king but his Eminence. He opened the conversation about rain and fine weather. the heart beat. Martin giving half his cloak to a poor man. was seated at the same table. and was break294 The Three Musketeers fasting. The lackeys followed. It was like the eve of a battle.’ All three remounted their horses. As long as it was dark they remained silent. our four adventurers left Paris by the Barriere St. All went well till they arrived at Chantilly. in his turn. they Free eBooks at Planet eBook. while Porthos was promising his adversary to perforate him with all the thrusts known in the fencing schools. At the end of two hours. They needed breakfast. ‘Because. in spite of themselves they submitted to the influence of the obscurity. with the sun gaiety 295 . the stranger proposed to Porthos to drink the health of the cardinal. ‘But why did that man attack Porthos rather than any other one of us?’ asked Aramis. and placed themselves at table. and to hold themselves in readiness to set off again immediately. would drink the health of the king. ‘I always said that this cadet from Gascony was a well of wisdom. as Porthos was talking louder than the rest of us.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Athos. as well to breathe their horses a little as to wait for Porthos. and set out at a good pace. ‘but it can’t be helped.20 THE JOURNEY At two o’clock in the morning. ‘You have committed a piece of folly. as Porthos did not come. At Beauvais they stopped two hours. at the end of five hundred paces. They ordered the lackeys not to unsaddle the horses.’ murmured Athos. and the travelers continued their route. and the travelers returned his politeness. But at the moment Mousqueton came to announce that the horses were ready. the travelers replied. and they felt that the life they were perhaps going to lose. Denis. there is no drawing back. he took him for the chief. and alighted at the door of an AUBERGE. after all. They entered the common hall. who had just arrived by the route of Dammartin. and rejoin us as soon as you can. A gentleman. not any news of him. He drank to their good health. their martial carriage. recommended by a sign representing St. and they were arising from table. ‘There goes one!’ cried Athos. Porthos called him drunk. armed to the teeth. With the first rays of day their tongues were loosened. the appearance of the caravan was formidable. which they reached about eight o’clock in the morning. Kill the fellow. a good thing. would have betrayed the most strict incognito. the eyes laughed. Besides. Porthos replied that he asked no better if the stranger.

Then each of these men retreated as far as the ditch. ‘If Porthos were on his legs. ‘Mine was carried away by a ball. Aramis declared he could proceed no farther. At a league from Beauvais. and Mousqueton another ball which lodged in the fleshy part which prolongs the lower portion of the loins. he would have rejoined us by this time. and galloped by the side of his companions. I swear by—‘ ‘Don’t waste time in swearing.’ said Athos. wounded as he was. the result was that our seven travelers were outnumbered in weapons. I will neither open my mouth nor draw my sword between this and Calais.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Athos. and they were obliged to support him on his horse. not because he was severely wounded. as soon as they were again in motion.resumed their journey. ‘MORBLEU.’ And the travelers buried their rowels in their horses’ flanks. I will answer for it. taking advantage of the road being unpaved in this spot. he judged it to be more serious than it really was. ‘let us gallop. ‘It was an ambuscade!’ shouted d’Artagnan. who thus vigorously stimulated recovered their energies. apostrophized them rather sharply. Aramis received a ball which passed through his 297 . although the horses were so fatigued that it was to be feared they would soon refuse service. Mousqueton’s horse rejoined them. not liking to soil his boots with this artificial mortar. and alighted at Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but not being able to see the wound. appeared to be employed in digging holes and filling up the ruts with mud. which carried him on with the others. ‘reduced to two masters and Grimaud and Planchet! MORBLEU! I won’t be their dupe.’ said d’Artagnan. Athos wished to restrain him. Aramis. but at Crevecoeur. it required all the courage which he concealed beneath his elegant form and polished manners to bear him so far. who.’ They continued at their best speed for two hours.’ ‘They’ll kill poor Porthos when he comes up.’ said Athos. seized the mane of his horse. In fact. The laborers began to jeer the travelers and by their insolence disturbed the equanimity even of the cool Athos. By my faith. but it was too late. and set forward again in the hope of sleeping at Amiens.’ said Aramis. ‘That will serve us for a relay. it is very fortunate 296 The Three Musketeers that the letter was not in it. they fell in with eight or ten men who. They arrived at Amiens at midnight. ‘Don’t waste a charge! Forward!’ Aramis. ‘My opinion is that on the ground the drunken man was not intoxicated. They lifted him off at the door of a cabaret. left Bazin with him. The travelers had chosen crossroads in the hope that they might meet with less interruption. ‘I would rather have had a hat. where the road was confined between two high banks. if our horses will consent. from which each took a concealed musket. in a skirmish was more embarrassing than useful. who urged on his horse against one of them. Therefore Mousqueton alone fell from his horse. besides. He grew more pale every minute.

All these successive accidents were perhaps the result of chance. each on a mattress which might be thrown upon the ground. Planchet mounted by the window and installed himself across the doorway. The night was quiet enough. to bleed one of the host’s horses. while Grimaud went and shut himself up in the stable. The host had the appearance of as honest a man as any on earth. but by an inconceivable error the veterinary surgeon. but unfortunately these charming chambers were at the opposite extremities of the hotel. they demanded who was there. Grimaud had tried to waken the stable 299 . The host was in a lower and back room. had bled Mousqueton’s. it is too gracious. but as Planchet awoke in an instant and cried. Athos went down to pay the reckoning. producing a bundle of straw. The host insisted.’ said Planchet. and the stable boys had beaten him. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. d’Artagnan and Athos refused them. ‘Grimaud can take care of the horses. with his head split by a blow with a pitchfork.’ ‘Nor me either. Toward two o’clock in the morning somebody endeavored to open the door. but they might be the fruits of a plot. This began to be annoying. and he was obliged to do as they wished. They had just prepared their beds and barricaded their door within.’ said d’Artagnan. and were then settling their bill with the host.the AUBERGE of the Golden Lily. He received the travelers with his candlestick in one hand and his cotton nightcap in the other. Planchet went down into the yard. and you will then be certain that nobody can reach you. The host replied that he had no other worthy of their Excellencies. then. gentlemen. ‘you are right. ‘Come. At four o’clock in the morning they heard a terrible riot in the stables. Mousqueton’s horse which had traveled for five or six hours without a rider the day before. ‘Here is my bed. ‘Who goes there?’ somebody replied that he was mistaken. and wished to saddle the horses. but the travelers declared they would sleep in the common chamber. and fully equipped. I will sleep across your doorway. while d’Artagnan and Planchet stood at the street door. ‘If you are willing. and recognizing the voices of their lackeys. He wished to lodge the two travelers each in a charming chamber.’ said Athos. while Planchet was sent to inquire if there were not three horses for sale in the neighborhood. might have been able to pursue the journey. to which Athos was requested to go. and went away.’ replied Planchet. as it appeared. and was informed that they had passed the night in the inn. fresh. strong. These would just have suited them. Athos and d’Artagnan went out. At the door stood two horses. When they opened the window. they saw the poor lad lying senseless. when someone knocked at the yard shutter. He asked where their masters were. opened the shutter. It was indeed Planchet and Grimaud. Mine host’s face does not please me at all. who had been sent for.’ ‘And on what will you sleep?’ said d’Artagnan. but the travelers were firm. but the horses were all used up. undertaking that by five o’clock in the 298 The Three Musketeers morning he and the four horses should be ready.

Besides. forward! You are a brave fellow.Athos entered without the least mistrust. ‘Picards are found out by being used. The host was alone. and ate a morsel from their hands on the stones of the street.’ said the captain of a vessel ready to set sail. and set off at full gallop. There still remained Planchet’s horse.’ ‘Where shall I find the governor?’ ‘At his country house. but he stopped short. who appeared to be in great haste. d’Artagnan! Spur. I am here in my own 300 The Three Musketeers country. ‘Go on. and he appeared to me. going toward him.’ ‘I have that permission.’ ‘As I told you. through the glass door. His boots were covered with dust. buried their spurs in their sides. arrived at St. They made all speed to come up to this gentleman. D’Artagnan and Planchet did not require twice 301 . they unfastened the two horses that were waiting at the door. ‘but this morning came an order to let no one leave without express permission from the cardinal. ‘I saw one fall at each of his two shots. drawing the paper from his pocket. they left their two nags upon the high road. ‘Nothing would be more easy. and he inquired if he could not instantly cross over to England.’ And both. they were within a hundred paces of the city. Omer without drawing bit. ‘Ah. ‘I am taken!’ shouted Athos.’ said the shipmaster. ‘I’ll cut your ears off!’ At the same instant. one of the drawers of which was partly open.’ replied Planchet.’ ‘Brave Athos!’ murmured d’Artagnan. ‘You blackguard!’ cried Athos. seated before his desk. and could not be made to move a step. and that excites me. armed to the teeth. Omer they breathed their horses with the bridles passed under their arms for fear of accident. as they galloped on. and ran toward the quay. after they departed again. At a hundred paces from the gates of Calais. ‘and give me the preference. ‘here it is. and only preceded them by about fifty paces. d’Artagnan’s horse gave out. maybe the same fate awaits us two paces hence. Planchet called his master’s attention to a gentleman who had just arrived with his lackey. and could not by any means be made to get up again. monsieur. and that he would have him and his companions arrested as forgers. At St. the blood flowing from his eyes and his nose. He took the money which Athos offered to him. with free use of the spur.’ ‘Have it examined by the governor of the port.’ said Planchet. with all the power of his lungs. and after turning and turning it over and over in his hands. Planchet.’ ‘And that is situated?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘Do you know what has become of Athos?’ asked d’Artagnan of Planchet. spur!’ and he fired two pistols. four men. leaped upon them. suddenly cried out that it was bad. Forward. entered by side doors. monsieur. and took out two pistoles to pay the bill. to be fighting with his sword with the others. Fortunately. and rushed upon Athos. ‘and to think that we are compelled to leave him. as we have said.’ said the gentleman.

’ said the gentleman.’ Seeing this. D’Artagnan and Planchet followed the gentleman at a distance of five hundred paces. but I was here first. you appear to be in great haste?’ ‘No one can be more so. crying. ‘But this is a needless quarrel you seek with me. and sprang upon d’Artagnan. ‘One for you!’ ‘And one for me—the best for last!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ said the gentleman.’ ‘That’s impossible.’ ‘Let me pass!’ ‘You shall not pass. ‘Go on with your affair. HOLA. emboldened by the first 303 . I will blow out your brains. And. and will not sail second. then. with his lackey. he soon got him on the broad of his back.’ ‘My brave young man. or at least insensible. who had not dropped his sword. and went toward him for the purpose of taking the order. the gentleman drew his sword. my pistols!’ ‘Planchet. fuFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ cried Planchet.’ ‘You jest. and by tomorrow at midday I must be in London. D’Artagnan believed him to be dead.’ ‘I am sorry. In three seconds d’Artagnan had wounded him three times.’ ‘What?’ ‘To let me sail first.’ ‘I never jest. as it seems to me. you may see it from here—at the foot of that little hill. ‘Monsieur. Lubin. I presume.’ ‘The king’s service!’ said the gentleman. ‘I have traveled sixty leagues in forty hours. and placed his knee upon his breast. plunged the point into d’Artagnan’s breast.’ Planchet. but he had too strong an adversary. ‘My own service!’ said d’Artagnan. I wish that order of which you are bearer. and by ten o’clock in the morning I must be in London. and must sail first.’ ‘Well. and being strong and vigorous.’ ‘Very sorry. the wounded man. ‘for as I am in great haste likewise. ‘One for Athos. but the moment he extended his hand to search for it.’ ‘I am sorry for that. sprang upon Lubin. he took the road to the governor’s country house. too. ‘I have finished mine. ‘take care of the lackey.’ called out d’Artagnan.‘At a quarter of a league from the city. one for Porthos. monsieur. I wish to beg you to render me a service. that slated roof.’ ‘PARBLEU! What do you desire it to be?’ ‘What do you want?’ 302 The Three Musketeers ‘Would you like to know?’ ‘Certainly.’ ‘I have performed that same distance in forty hours.’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur. Once outside the city. seeing that I have not one of my own and must have one.’ ‘Very well. d’Artagnan overtook the gentleman as he was entering a little wood. monsieur. Look. I will manage the master. monsieur. exclaiming at each thrust. but I arrived second. and one for Aramis!’ At the third hit the gentleman fell like a log.

‘Stay!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘as long as I hold him in this manner.’ ‘But you are wounded. he can’t cry. who was scarcely twenty-five years of age. It was in the name of Comte de Wardes. ‘Oh. a certain d’Artagnan. that’s nothing! Let us attend to what is more pressing first. nailing him to the earth with a fourth thrust through his body. and as night was approaching.rious. with the intention of going to London. who uttered loud cries and screamed for help with all his might. ‘let us bind him to a tree. it was evident they were 304 The Three Musketeers likely to remain there till the next day.’ said Planchet.’ ‘Perfectly well. ‘Monsieur. D’Artagnan searched his pockets. and then we will attend to my wound.’ ‘Do you know him personally?’ asked the governor. The Comte de Wardes was announced. ‘Most likely. ‘Whom?’ ‘This d’Artagnan. I know him for a Norman. feature for feature. it does not seem very dangerous.’ ‘Describe him to 305 . Then. This time the gentleman closed his eyes and fainted. ‘And now. but as soon as I let go he will howl again. and whom he was leaving in his gore. then. he gave a sigh for that unaccountable destiny which leads men to destroy each other for the interests of people who are strangers to them and who often do not even know that they exist.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ In fact. I’ll be bound. deprived of sense and perhaps dead. ‘Now. ‘I am one of his most faithful servants. besides. it seems. tightly held as he was.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘to the Governor’s. ‘here it is. he gagged him. and Normans are obstinate.’ said the governor.’ And d’Artagnan gave.’ said Planchet. ah! It is quite regular and explicit. monsieur. and as the wounded man and the bound man were at some little distance within the wood. and taking out his handkerchief. and pressed as hard as he could.’ said d’Artagnan. But he was soon aroused from these reflections by Lubin. and took from one of them the order for the passage. a description Free eBooks at Planet eBook. casting a glance on the handsome young man.’ ‘It appears that his Eminence is anxious to prevent someone from crossing to England?’ ‘Yes.’ said he. ‘You have an order signed by the cardinal?’ said the governor. ‘Yes.’ This being properly done.’ ‘Nothing more easy. they drew the Comte de Wardes close to his servant.’ And they both set forward as fast as they could toward the country house of the worthy functionary. Lubin endeavored still to cry out. a Bearnese gentleman who left Paris in company with three of his friends.’ ‘Ah. Planchet grasped him by the throat. and d’Artagnan was introduced.

when d’Artagnan saw a flash and heard a detonation. On the morrow. It was time.’ ‘And by doing so. In a few hours they were in the capital. D’Artagnan did not know London. ‘And that other gentleman? ‘He will not go today. The duke was at Windsor hunting with the king. ‘Let us go. The vessel was quite ready to sail. and by making a long detour avoided the wood and reentered the city by another gate. At ten o’clock the vessel cast anchor in the harbor of Dover. by a lackey named Lubin. as d’Artagnan had thought. they must get to London. but he wrote the name of Buckingham on a piece of paper. D’Artagnan inquired for the confidential valet of the duke. The point of the sword had touched a rib. at break of day. ‘but here. having accompanied him in all his voyages. and departed.’ repeated d’Artagnan. A mattress was laid upon the deck for him. He threw himself upon it. D’Artagnan was worn out with fatigue. and five minutes after they were on board.of the Comte de Wardes. and a postillion rode before them. on perceiving d’Artagnan.’ Delighted with this assurance the governor countersigned the passport and delivered it to d’Artagnan. and everyone pointed out to him the way to the duke’s hotel. ‘Here I am at last!’ But that was not all. In England the post was well served.’ ‘We will keep a sharp lookout for them. ‘Is he accompanied?’ ‘Yes. it was not dangerous. and the captain was waiting on the wharf. D’Artagnan and Planchet took each a post horse.’ said d’Artagnan. they were still three or four leagues from the coast of England. and fell asleep. He thanked the governor. he and Planchet set off as fast as they could. and glanced along the bone. for they had scarcely 306 The Three Musketeers sailed half a league.’ ‘Shall you see him on your return. He had now leisure to look to his wound. he did not know a word of English.’ ‘In that case let us go. bowed. ‘you will deserve well of the cardinal. D’Artagnan lost no time in useless compliments. Fortunately.’ ‘I will not fail. I beg you. Once outside. they had made but little progress. Still further. that I am his humble servant.’ said the 307 . his shirt had stuck to the wound. and if we lay hands on them his Eminence may be assured they will be reconducted to Paris under a good escort.’ said the shipmaster. ‘Well?’ said he. crying. I’ll pay you for us two. It was the cannon which announced the closing of the port. Monsieur the Governor.’ said d’Artagnan. Monsieur Count?’ ‘Without a doubt. The breeze had been so light all night. spoke French perfectly well. and he had lost only a few drops of blood.’ ‘Tell him. ‘Here is my pass countersigned. he told him that he came from Paris Free eBooks at Planet eBook. He leaped with Planchet into the boat. who. and at half past ten d’Artagnan placed his foot on English land.

’ said d’Artagnan. which was the name of this minister of the minister. ‘Patrick.’ ‘A singular introduction!’ ‘You will find that it is as good as another. nothing but a scratch. reached the duke. monsieur. ‘Ah. ‘This letter! From whom comes this letter?’ ‘From her Majesty. wherever he may be. ‘I believe not. The confidence with which d’Artagnan spoke convinced Patrick. the poor lad’s strength was almost exhausted. Buckingham at once remembered the circumstance. what have I read?’ cried the duke. remain here. it was the sword of the Comte de Wardes which made that hole. ‘The young man who one evening sought a quarrel with him on the Pont Neuf.’ ‘I!’ cried Buckingham. as he opened the letter.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘From her Majesty!’ said Buckingham. In twenty minutes they were on the spot named. and himself went as guide to the young Guardsman. and announced to him in the terms directed that a messenger awaited him. becoming so pale that d’Artagnan feared he would faint as he broke the seal.on an affair of life and death. ‘No misfortune has happened to the queen?’ cried Buck308 The Three Musketeers ingham. and tell his Majesty that I humbly beg him to excuse me. throwing all his fear and love into the question. and suspecting that something was going on in France of which it was necessary he should be informed. and rode straight up to d’Artagnan. when he gave me a good thrust in the breast. He ordered two horses to be saddled. speak!’ ‘Take this letter. Come. ‘What is this rent?’ said he. Speak. the instant he came up. ‘ 309 . ‘Whom must I announce to my Lord Duke?’ asked Patrick. Patrick soon caught the sound of his master’s voice calling his falcon. come!’ and both set off towards the capital at full gallop. As for Planchet. nevertheless I believe she runs some great peril from which your Grace alone can extricate her. as I think. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘You are wounded?’ asked Buckingham. d’Artagnan seemed iron. and that he must speak with his master instantly. opposite the Samaritaine. ‘Just heaven. ‘What is it? I should be too happy to be of any service to her. On their arrival at the castle they learned that Buckingham and the king were hawking in the marshes two or three leagues away. Patrick discreetly kept in the background.’ said d’Artagnan. he had been lifted from his horse as stiff as a rush. he put his horse into a gallop. he only took the time to inquire where the messenger was.’ Patrick galloped off. or rather join the king. but an affair of the greatest importance recalls me to London. showing d’Artagnan a place where it had been pierced through. ‘I did not see that. and recognizing from afar the uniform of the Guards.

in crossing the city two or three accidents of this kind happened. But that which astonished him most was that the cardinal. but at the moment when Buckingham crossed the threshold. thanks to the devotion of his three friends. however. and without thinking what became of the animal. threw the bridle on his neck. short but explicit. It was then. and devotedness could be allied with a countenance which indicated not more than twenty years. he had succeeded in coming off with a single sword thrust. 310 The Three Musketeers The horses went like the wind. ‘and if you have the good Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the duke endeavored to draw from d’Artagnan. The duke walked so fast that d’Artagnan had some trouble in keeping up with him. which had pierced the queen’s letter and for which he had repaid M. and arrived at length in a bedchamber which was at once a miracle of taste and of richness. courage. whom he had left scattered and bleeding on the road. but Buckingham did not even turn his head to see what became of those he had knocked down. had not succeeded in arresting him on the road. that d’Artagnan related to him the precaution taken. He kept on his way at the same rate. D’Artagnan did the same. but what d’Artagnan himself knew. With discretion d’Artagnan remained behind. so deeply interested in preventing this young man from setting his foot in England.21 THE COUNTESS DE WINTER As they rode along. he was enabled to form a pretty exact idea of a position of the seriousness of which. de Wardes with such terrible coin. upon the manifestation of this astonishment. the duke looked from time to time at the young man with astonishment. heedless about upsetting those whom he met on the road. the queen’s letter. not all that had happened. with a little more concern. as if he could not comprehend how so much prudence. delivered with the greatest simplicity. ‘Come in!’ cried he. but he had the satisfaction of seeing three or four grooms run from the kitchens and the stables. but it was not so. In fact. On entering the court of his hotel. whose merits he fully appreciated. and sprang toward the vestibule. While he was listening to this recital. d’Artagnan followed him amid cries which strongly resembled 311 . and busy themselves with the steeds. and seeing the hesitation of the young man. he turned round. gave him the clue. for the rest. and how. D’Artagnan imagined that on arriving in town the duke would slacken his pace. He passed through several apartments. By adding all that he heard from the mouth of the young man to his own remembrances. of an elegance of which even the greatest nobles of France had not even an idea. In the alcove of this chamber was a door concealed in the tapestry which the duke opened with a little gold key which he wore suspended from his neck by a chain of the same metal. for the noble creatures. and in a few minutes they were at the gates of London. Buckingham sprang from his horse.

’ Then.’ replied the duke. in all things. d’Artagnan followed the duke. there are only ten. That’s more time than we 313 . The Comtesse de Winter.’ ‘Wait. Patrick!’ cried the duke. ‘The only time I have worn these studs was at a ball given by the king eight days ago at Windsor. perhaps the person who stole them still has them in his hands. and beneath the portrait. One might believe the queen was about to speak. became reconciled to me at that ball. those dear studs with which he was about to part. ‘what has happened to you. All at once he uttered a terrible cry. ‘What is the matter?’ exclaimed d’Artagnan. or do you think they have been stolen?’ 312 The Three Musketeers ‘They have been stolen. But although the jeweler had been mentioned first. anxiously. That reconciliation was nothing but the vengeance of a jealous woman. grating his teeth with rage.’ Encouraged by this invitation.’ ‘Can you have lost them.’ The valet went out with a mute promptitude which showed him accustomed to obey blindly and without reply. Over a species of altar. drawing from the casket a large bow of blue ribbon all sparkling with diamonds. This was simply because he lived in the hotel. ‘Patrick!’ His confidential valet appeared. yes. wait!’ said the duke. ‘There.’ ‘If my Lord suspects they have been stolen. Hold. then. with whom I had quarreled. surmounted by white and red plumes.’ ‘He has agents. Her will be done. ‘Yes. writing orders with his own hand. my Lord?’ ‘All is lost!’ cried Buckingham. But when is this ball to take place?’ ‘Monday next. The woman is an agent of the cardinal. one after the other.fortune to be admitted to her Majesty’s presence. On the altar. he is a terrible antagonist. opening the door of the chapel. and beneath a canopy of blue velvet. throughout the world?’ cried d’Artagnan. and brilliantly lighted with a vast number of candles. ‘and it is the cardinal who has dealt this blow. he began to kiss. becoming as pale as a corpse. see! The ribbons which held them have been cut with scissors. the queen requires them again. The duke approached the altar. it was the secretary who first made his appearance. so perfect in its resemblance that d’Artagnan uttered a cry of surprise on beholding it. and opened the casket. He found Buckingham seated at a table in his bedchamber. tell her what you have seen. my Lord. knelt as a priest might have done before a crucifix. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. was a full-length portrait of Anne of Austria. ‘Oh. ‘two of the studs are wanting. I have never seen her from that day. ‘there are the precious studs which I have taken an oath should be buried with me.’ ‘Monday next! Still five days before us. like that of God. The two found themselves in a small chapel covered with a tapestry of Persian silk worked with gold. was the casket containing the diamond studs. The queen gave them to me. ‘My jeweler and my secretary.’ said he. who closed the door after them.’ said Buckingham.

com 315 . but what signifies that? I obeyed my love.’ ‘But. they will not arrive till after you. what shall I reply?’ ‘That such is my pleasure.’ said Buckingham. ‘look at these diamond studs.’ said the duke. ‘go instantly to the Lord Chancellor. calculated.’ ‘I will give you three thousand pistoles apiece if I can have them by the day after tomorrow. I wish them to be promulgated immediately. it is true. they shall be yours.’ ‘How so?’ ‘I have just placed an embargo on all vessels at present in his Majesty’s ports.’ ‘You are a jewel of a man. Jackson. Mr. O’Reilly. O’Reilly. if the Lord Chancellor interrogates me upon the motives which may have led your Grace to adopt such an extraordinary measure.’ ‘Eight days. I broke my word. ‘He will say. ‘Mr. and he smiled.’ ‘My Lord. Buckingham saw by the expression of the young man’s face what was passing in his mind. and without hesitation said. I would betray my God. and tell him that I charge him with the execution of these orders. what the diamonds were worth.’ ‘How many days would it require to make two studs exactly like them? You see there are two wanting. my Lord. one with another. ‘yes. and tell me what they are worth apiece.’ said he.’ The secretary bowed and retired.’ D’Artagnan was amazed to note by what fragile and unknown threads the destinies of nations and the lives of men are suspended. ‘We are safe on that side. I have not done so.’ The goldsmith cast a glance at the elegant manner in which they were set. and that I answer for my will to no man. He was an Irishman—one of the most skillful of his craft. to the king that I am determined on war.’ replied Buckingham. She asked me not to send the Protestants of La Rochelle the assistance I promised them.’ D’Artagnan looked with stupefaction at a man who thus employed the unlimited power with which he was clothed by the confidence of a king in the prosecution of his intrigues. Jackson.’ replied the secretary. not one dare lift an anchor. and who himself confessed that he gained a hundred thousand livres a year by the Duke of Buckingham.‘Mr. Mr. smiling. but that is not all. his Majesty should have the curiosity to know why no vessel is to leave any of the ports of Great Britain?’ ‘You are right. and without particular permission. I would betray my country. I would betray my king. my Lord. turning toward d’Artagnan.’ said he. in that case. my Lord. ‘Fifteen hundred pistoles each.’ ‘Will that be the answer. Anne of Austria is my true queen. Upon a word from her. ‘If the studs are not yet gone to Paris. and have I not been richly paid for that obedience? It was to that obedience I owe her portrait. 314 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. by chance. leading him into the chapel. He was lost in these reflections when the goldsmith entered. and that this measure is my first act of hostility against France. ‘which he must transmit to his Majesty if. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.

’ ‘Be satisfied. in addition to the price of the studs. my dear Mr. sending her the order for the thousand pistoles. to make you forget the annoyance I cause you. As to the goldsmith. O’Reilly. my Lord. sported with men and millions. who thus open-handed. Buckingham conducted the goldsmith to the chamber destined for him. and point out the tools they must bring. I will tell all that I have seen.’ said he.’ said he to him. but for the sake of having someone to whom he could constantly talk of the queen.’ D’Artagnan could not get over the surprise created in him by this minister.’ The goldsmith knew the duke. and be my witness that I have done all that human power could do. Patrick. were prohibited from going out under any pretext. This point. the ordinance was published in London that no vessel bound for France should leave port. that Buckingham could not tell the new ones from the old ones. On the day after the morrow. Then he placed a sentinel at each door. you are my prisoner. my Lord. ‘Now. and as every inconvenience deserves its indemnification. and the necessary tools. with an order to admit nobody upon any pretense but his VALET DE CHAMBRE. and instantly determined how to act. not even the packet boat with letters. and his assistant. But does your Grace mean to give me the studs without the casket?’ ‘The casket would encumber you. He immediately called d’Artagnan. ‘Here. and which. the duke turned to d’Artagnan. an order for a thousand pistoles.’ ‘Therefore. You will say that I keep it.These studs cannot be trusted to anybody. by eleven o’clock. the two diamond studs were finished. an assortment of diamonds. his most skillful apprentice. In the eyes of everybody this was a declaration of war between the two kingdoms. be assured. ‘Oh. my dear Mr. in 317 . you may even see her if you like. ‘are the diamond studs that you came to bring. was transformed into a workshop. Besides. settled. that is the thing I stand most in need of. the casket is the more precious from being all that is left to me. ‘England is all our own. and charging her to send him. He wished to have the young man at hand—not that he at all mistrusted him. I confess. He knew all objection would be useless.’ Buckingham gave d’Artagnan a chamber adjoining his own.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘At present.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Your captivity shall be mild. We need 316 The Three Musketeers not add that the goldsmith. O’Reilly. What do you wish for? What do you desire?’ ‘A bed. ‘May I be permitted to inform my wife?’ said he. you cannot. so make the best of it. so perfectly alike. my Lord! There is no one but myself can so execute them that one cannot tell the new from the old. he wrote to his wife. and they were so completely imitated. O’Reilly.’ ‘Impossible. my young friend. In one hour after. of which he gave the names and the weight. And if you wish ever to leave my palace. here is. Name to me such of your workmen as you need. at the end of half an hour. it must be done in the palace. and experts in such matters would have been deceived as he was.

‘The Gascons are the Scots of France. it is very probable I should not have done anything of this.’ said the duke.’ ‘Yes. He saw that the duke was searching for a means of making him accept something and the idea that the blood of his friends and himself was about to be paid for with English gold was strangely repugnant to him. my Lord. ‘Proud as a Gascon. ask for the brig SUND. and give this letter to the captain. is particularly attached to their Majesties. and that you were the king of it. ‘and let us make things clear beforehand in order that there may be no mistake. as well as his brother-in-law. to accomplish it. Monsieur de Treville. ‘how shall I ever acquit myself of the debt I owe you?’ D’Artagnan blushed up to the whites of his eyes. if it had not been to make myself agreeable to someone who is my lady. for truly. ‘And we say. there is but one. my Lord. ‘Let us understand each other. word for word. has been for the queen. where certainly you are not expected.’ ‘And now.‘I will perform your commission. ‘Proud as a Scotsman. these Frenchmen have no consideration!’ ‘I had forgotten that England was an island.’ resumed Buckingham.’ ‘You have said. looking earnestly at the young man. at this moment when there is question of war. it is—‘ ‘My Lord. ‘Well. ‘and I even believe that I know that other person. are you going away in that manner? Where. smiling. and not at all for your Grace.’’ replied d’Artagnan. and was retiring. When you have arrived there you will go to a mean tavern.’ ‘We say. however. I am in the service of the King and Queen of France. who.’ ‘The name of that port?’ ‘St.’ replied d’Artagnan. as the queen is yours. and which is ordinarily only frequented by fishermen. I have not named her!’ interrupted the young man. What I have done. I confess to you that I see noth318 The Three Musketeers ing in your Grace but an Englishman. without a name and without a sign—a mere fisherman’s hut. warmly. will not prevent me from executing to the very point my commission or from laying down my life. Valery.’ D’Artagnan bowed to the duke. if there be need of it. then. and how?’ ‘That’s true!’ ‘Fore Gad. And still further. he will convey you to a little port.’ ‘Go to the riverside. ‘and it is to this person I am bound to discharge my debt of gratitude. You cannot be mistaken. ‘That is true.’ said the 319 .’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. my Lord. without your having personally on that account more to thank me for in this second interview than for what I did for you in the first. and form part of the company of Monsieur Dessessart.’’ murmured the Duke of Buckingham. but listen. but I repeat it to your Grace. and consequently an enemy whom I should have much greater pleasure in meeting on the field of battle than in the park at Windsor or the corridors of the Louvre—all which.

’ ‘Have I anything to pay?’ demanded d’Artagnan. as you Frenchmen say.’ D’Artagnan bowed to the duke. my Lord.’ said d’Artagnan. and you will find. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. we will make a good use of your presents. and whom d’Artagnan had thought so handsome. Valery. in order to make war against us. led him to the stable. as you have here. a horse ready saddled. and the jolly sailors were having a carousal. You will find.’ ‘Yes. and pronounced the word ‘Forward!’ The host instantly made him a sign to follow.’ ‘Be satisfied. my Lord. and easily discovered it by the riotous noise which resounded from it. the four horses will follow you thither. four relays on your route. but thanks to the current of the stream and a fair wind. The next day about nine o’clock in the morning. advanced toward the host.’ ‘Well. give the password to the landlord. delivered his letter to the captain. Fifty vessels were waiting to set out. Perhaps we shall soon meet on the field of battle. his vessel passed so quickly that he had little more than a glimpse of her. and from Blangy to Neufchatel. but in the meantime we shall part good friends. If you will give at each of these relays your address in Paris. and you appeared to appreciate them like a judge. who after having it examined by the governor of the port made immediate preparations to sail. These horses are equipped for the field. and you may rely upon me for the others not being inferior to them. went out with him by a door which opened into a yard. D’Artagnan made his way through the crowd. the end justified the means. go to the tavern of the Golden Harrow. D’Artagnan went instantly in search of the 321 . he landed at St. He will give you a horse all saddled. my Lord. ‘Go from hence to Blangy. young man.’ ‘I depend upon your word. War between England and France was talked of as near and certain. and to request your three companions to accept the others—that is. now. and will point out to you the road you ought to take.‘Afterward?’ ‘You will ask for the host. I hope. and made his way as quickly as possible to the riverside. in the same way. Passing alongside one of them. your hand. It is the password. ‘I want to know the route I am to follow. However proud you may be. I accept them. Opposite the Tower of London he found the vessel that had been named to 320 The Three Musketeers him. EN AVANT. but with the hope of soon becoming enemies. where a saddled horse awaited him.’ said d’Artagnan. you will not refuse to accept one of them. You already know two of them. ‘and if it please God. does it not?’ ‘Yes. Besides. d’Artagnan fancied he perceived on board it the woman of Meung—the same whom the unknown gentleman had called Milady. and asked him if he stood in need of anything else. and will repeat to him the word ‘Forward!’’ ‘Which means?’ ‘In French. I promise you that. At Neufchatel. They were those we rode on.

Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘and liberally. and set off at full gallop. ‘Your address at Paris?’ ‘Hotel of the Guards. and set off again at the same pace for Pontoise. but he found the holsters furnished with similar pistols. master!’ ‘A good journey. Begone. Four hours later he was in Neufchatel. when pressing his hand a little more warmly than usual. he found a horse quite ready and awaiting him.’ replied the 323 . ‘That of Rouen. He left his address as he had done before. At Eccuis. gentlemen! Do you want anything?’ D’Artagnan shook his head. in which there is but one tavern—the Shield of France. He was about to remove the pistols from the saddle he had quit to the one he was about to fill.’ ‘Enough. only. and set off at full speed. Valery. At Pontoise he changed his horse for the last time. company of Dessessart. He had 322 The Three Musketeers made nearly sixty leagues in little more than twelve hours. but you will leave the city on your right. M.’ ‘Adieu.’ ‘The same password?’ ‘Exactly.‘Everything is paid. At Neufchatel. and may God guide you!’ ‘Amen!’ cried the young man. as at St. de Treville received him as if he had seen him that same morning. You must stop at the little village of Eccuis. He found as provident a host and a fresh horse. and at nine o’clock galloped into the yard of Treville’s hotel.’ replied the host. He strictly followed the instructions he had received. you will find a horse in the stables quite as good as this. he informed him that the company of Dessessart was on duty at the Louvre. Don’t condemn it from appearances. and that he might repair at once to his post. the same scene was repeated. ‘Which route must I take?’ demanded d’Artagnan. in his turn.

At ten o’clock. consisting of preserves and other delicacies. and from that moment the Sieur de la Coste was charged with the care of all the doors and all the avenues. one French. ensign in the king’s Guards. followed by two officers and several archers of that body.22 THE BALLET OF LA MERLAISON On the morrow. Eight days had been occupied in preparations at the Hotel de Ville for this important evening. who were distributed immediately through the Hotel de Ville. As fast as they entered. bringing with him fifty archers. the city grocer had ornamented the chambers with two hundred FLAMBEAUX of white wax. in front of the silver buffet of the 325 . came to the city registrar. she was received by the city officials. At midnight great cries and loud acclamations were heard. and placed in a box opposite to that which the queen was to occupy. At six in the evening the guests began to come. they were placed in the grand saloon. on the platforms prepared for them. that they should be played all night. named Clement. a piece of luxury unheard of at that period. At ten o’clock in the morning the Sieur de la Coste. and the price for them fixed at double the usual rate. was prepared in the little room on the side of the church of St. the king’s collation. At three o’clock came two companies of the Guards. The company of French guards was composed of half of M. Duhallier’s men and half of M. Jean. said the report. at the doors assigned them. Each of them had ticket attached to it. clothed in their cloth robes and preceded by six sergeants. which was guarded by four archers. As next to the queen. and in which their Majesties were to dance the famous La Merlaison— the favorite ballet of the king. and which were all illuminated with colored lanterns. nothing was talked of in Paris but the ball which the aldermen of the city were to give to the king and queen. she was the most considerable personage of the fete. went to attend upon the king. Immediately the aldermen. and demanded of him all the keys of the rooms and offices of the hotel. upon condition. These keys were given up to him instantly. who was passing through the streets which led from the Louvre to the Hotel de Ville. each holding a FLAMBEAU in his hand. where the provost of the merchants made him the speech of welcome—a compliment to which his Majesty Free eBooks at Planet eBook. captain of the Guards. and twenty violins were ordered. It was the king. the other Swiss. The city carpenters had erected scaffolds upon which the invited ladies were to be placed. whom they met on the steps. 324 The Three Musketeers At eleven o’clock came in his turn Duhallier. At nine o’clock Madame la Premiere Presidente arrived. Dessessart’s men. by which it might be recognized.

’ ‘Do so. by the Grand Prior. who had detained him till eleven o’clock. two by two. by the Comte de la Roche-Guyon. advanced to receive their illustrious guest. and saw the cardinal behind. The king made his way through the crowd without a mask.’ ‘And you were wrong. and a smile of terrible joy passed over his lips. in full dress. talking of affairs of state. At the moment she entered. where they are. with a diabolical smile on his countenance. In each of these closets were placed masquerade dresses. and by the Chevalier de Souveray. His eyes were fixed upon those of the queen. do so. was drawn. was accompanied by his royal Highness. and the pale face of the cardinal appeared. and that at once. All at once the king appeared with the cardinal at one of the doors of the hall. I feared some accident might happen to them.replied with an apology for coming so late. ‘because. these announced the arrival of the queen. The same had been done for the queen and Madame the President. the curtain of a small gallery which to that time had been closed. le Comte de Soissons. fresh acclamations were heard. The cardinal was speaking to him in a low voice. 326 The Three Musketeers The queen remained for a short time to receive the compliments of the city dignitaries and to reply to the salutations of the ladies. in chambers prepared for the purpose. ‘Sire. in the midst of such a crowd as this. with a faltering voice. by the Comte d’Harcourt. madame. have you not thought proper to wear your diamond studs. He went straight to the queen. comprehending nothing of what passed. M. and in an altered voice said. when you know it would give me so much gratification?’ The queen cast a glance around her. Before entering his closet the king desired to be informed the moment the cardinal arrived. by M.’ said the queen. like the king. for within an hour the ballet will commence. Everybody looked and listened with astonishment. and preceded by their sergeants. If I made you that present it was that you might adorn yourself therewith. The nobles and ladies of their Majesties’ suites were to dress. she looked dull and even weary. and thus your Majesty’s wishes will be complied with. the queen did not wear her diamond studs. by the Duc d’Euboeuf. and the king was very 327 . Half an hour after the entrance of the king. A private room had been prepared for the king and another for Monsieur.’ The voice of the king was tremulous with anger. His Majesty. ‘I can send for them to the Louvre. madame. by M.’ replied the queen. by the Comte de Cramail. ‘Sire. The aldermen did as they had done before.’ The queen bent in token of submission. de Baradas. he being dressed as a Spanish cavalier. de Liancourt. and the ribbons of his doublet scarcely tied. I tell you that you were wrong. and followed the ladies who were to conduct her to her room. Everybody noticed that the king looked dull and preoccupied. by the Duc de Longueville. ‘Why. The queen entered the great hall. laying the blame upon the cardinal. and it was remarked that. On his part the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. madame.

had she ten or twelve? At that moment the violins sounded the signal for the ballet. then. The violins began to sound with all their might. distant as they were from the queen. and Monsieur and the other nobles were dressed like him. out of respect. fastened with diamond clasps. They took their places. If the king appeared to be the first gentleman of his kingdom. he devoured with his eyes those studs of which he could not ascertain the number. A cold sweat covered the brow of the cardinal. two more: I shall have fourteen. but the king took advantage of the privilege he had of leaving his lady. ‘for the deference you have shown to my wishes. and I bring them back to you. embroidered with silver. but both of them had spoken so low that everybody. There was a moment of trouble and confusion in the assembly. which I very much doubt. they could not count the studs. madame. a surtout of gray-pearl velvet. So dressed. affecting surprise. The only question was. The king came out first from his room.’ said he. sire. The king danced facing the queen.’ With these words he held out to the queen the two studs the cardinal had given him. The king advanced toward Madame the President. but nobody listened to them. but he had not time to address any question to him—a cry of admiration burst from every mouth. to advance eagerly toward the queen. ‘I thank you.’ replied the latter. The king trembled with joy and the cardinal with vexation. and every time he passed by her. and a 328 The Three Musketeers petticoat of blue satin.’ In fact the king counted them. sire?’ cried the young queen. and placed in his hand a small casket. withdrew several steps. and had sixteen ENTREES. the queen was without doubt the most beautiful woman in France. and the ballet began. and if you only find ten. and the twelve studs were Free eBooks at Planet eBook. This was the costume that best became the king. he really appeared the first gentleman of his kingdom. The queen had 329 . Everybody had remarked that something had passed between the king and queen.’ The king looked at the cardinal as if to interrogate him. The ballet ended amid the applause of the whole assemblage. and everyone reconducted his lady to her place. ‘only. He was in a most elegant hunting costume. although. so that nobody had heard anything. ‘you are giving me. The ballet lasted an hour. count them. if the queen has the studs.king returned to his apartment. On her left shoulder sparkled the diamond studs. The cardinal drew near to the king. and found in it two diamond studs. ‘Nothing. It is true that the habit of a huntress became her admirably. and his Highness Monsieur with the queen. ask her Majesty who can have stolen from her the two studs that are here. on a bow of the same color as the plumes and the petticoat. ‘How. The king opened it. She wore a beaver hat with blue feathers. but I think you want two of the studs. ‘What does this mean?’ demanded he of the cardinal. with whom he was to dance.

together with the warm and perfumed air which reached him from the same aperFree eBooks at Planet eBook. The haste which the young woman was in to convey to the queen the excellent news of the happy return of her messenger prevented the two lovers from exchanging more than a few words. On the evening before. He turned and saw a young woman.’ replied the cardinal. the light and intelligent Mme. The face of this young woman was covered with 330 The Three Musketeers a black velvet mask. but quick as a bird she glided between his hands. the queen resumed her way to the chamber in which she had dressed. but notwithstanding this precaution. which was in fact taken rather against others than against him. and who. and that not daring to offer them myself. and in proportion as the corridors became more deserted. Monsieur Cardinal?’ asked the king in a severe tone. with a smile that proved she was not the dupe of this ingenious gallantry. and d’Artagnan was about to retire. d’Artagnan wished to stop the young woman.’ replied Anne of Austria. with a little imperative gesture full of grace.’ Then saluting the king and the cardinal. and led d’Artagnan into it. ‘that I was desirous of presenting her Majesty with these two studs. and opened a second door concealed by tapestry. were it only for a minute. her finger placed upon her mouth. At length. The opening of this door disclosed a brilliant light. D’Artagnan therefore followed Mme. I adopted this means of inducing her to accept them. The attention which we have been obliged to give. ‘This means. and she disappeared. whither d’Artagnan had sent for her. and where she was to take off her costume. seize her and gaze upon her. during the commencement of the chapter. unknown. and when he wished to speak to her. they had scarcely seen each other for a moment at the apartment of the Swiss guard. and himself. and which forbade him even to make the slightest complaint. The queen had just regained her chamber. Bonacieux moved by a double sentiment—love and curiosity. Bonacieux. he at once recognized his usual guide. after winding about for a minute or two. The king called the cardinal. All the way. who made him a sign to follow her. sire. when he felt his shoulder lightly touched. Mme. but soon a ray of light which penetrated through the chamber. looked on at this scene.all on her Majesty’s shoulder. lost in the crowd gathered at one of the doors. There she made a fresh sign of silence. ‘What does this mean. his Eminence. reminded him that he was under the command of a power which he must blindly obey. D’Artagnan remained for a moment motionless. Germain. has diverted us for an instant from him to whom Anne of Austria owed the extraordinary triumph she had obtained over the cardinal.’ ‘And I am the more grateful to your Eminence. to the illustrious personages we have introduced into it. which was entirely dark. asking himself where he could be. ‘from being certain that these two studs alone have cost you as much as all the others cost his 331 . Bonacieux opened the door of a closet. confounded. the queen. comprehensible only to four persons—the king.

and the clock of St. Besides. surpassingly beautiful in their form and whiteness. and touched it respectfully with his lips. was opened. Begone. The queen appeared cheerful and happy. The queen attributed this joyous feeling to the beauty of the fete. and as it is not permissible to contradict a queen. ‘A note which you will find at home will tell you. without the least resistance or objection. seized the hand. begone!’ At these words she opened the door of the corridor. At length a hand and an arm. Supper was to be served at three. and again 332 The Three Musketeers waited. then the door of the closet in which d’Artagnan was. and d’Artagnan found himself again in complete obscurity. placing her hand upon his lips. although the ballet was danced. and go the same way you came!’ ‘But where and when shall I see you again?’ cried d’Artagnan. The door immediately 333 . whether she smile or weep. he soon distinguished her voice from the others. The young man waited in comparative darkness and listened. Although d’Artagnan did not at all know the queen. After the reward of his devotion. He heard her approach and withdraw from the partially open door. at first by a slightly foreign accent. the evening had scarcely begun. D’Artagnan at once comprehended that this was his recompense. He cast himself on his knees.ture. and pushed d’Artagnan out of the room. ‘You at last?’ cried d’Artagnan. to the pleasure she had experienced in the ballet. and twice or three times he even saw the shadow of a person intercept the light. ‘Silence!’ said the young woman. and Mme. leaving in his an object which he perceived to be a ring. Jean had struck three quarters past two. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. which seemed to astonish the persons who surrounded her and who were accustomed to see her almost always sad and full of care. The sound of voices diminished by degrees in the adjoining chamber. the conversation of two of three ladies in language at once respectful and refined. that of his love was to come. glided through the tapestry. ‘silence. Bonacieux entered. D’Artagnan obeyed like a child. The company was then heard departing. D’Artagnan placed the ring on his finger. indicated clearly that he was in a closet attached to the queen’s apartment. and the word ‘Majesty’ several times repeated. which proved that he was really in love. and next by that tone of domination naturally impressed upon all royal words. it was evident that all was not yet over. everybody expatiated on the gallantry of the aldermen of the city of Paris. Then the hand was withdrawn.

monsieur. and I promise him to follow his instructions exactly. monsieur. and was expressed in these terms: ‘There are many thanks to be offered to you.’ replied d’Artagnan. monsieur.—C. ‘How came Planchet here?’ when he was left ‘stiff as a rush’ in London. he met with no misadventure. although I had the key of your apartment in my pocket. d’Artagnan felt his heart dilated and compressed by that delicious spasm which tortures and caresses the hearts of lovers.’ While reading this letter. my friend.B.’ ‘And where is that letter?’ 334 The Three Musketeers ‘I left it where I found 335 . It is not natural for letters to enter people’s houses in this manner. ‘No one has BROUGHT a letter. Cloud. ‘Has anyone brought a letter for me?’ asked d’Artagnan. *The reader may ask. and although it was three o’clock in the morning and he had some of the worst quarters of Paris to traverse. telling him to sit up for him. His heart. whom he had sent home two hours before from the Hotel de Ville. sprang up the stairs and knocked softly in a manner agreed upon between him and his lackey.23 THE RENDEZVOUS D’Artagnan ran home immediately. Beware. blockhead?’ ‘I mean to say that when I came in. there is certainly some magic underneath. ‘did I not guess truly? Is it not some bad affair?’ ‘You are mistaken. monsieur. swelled by the intoxication of joy. opened the door for him. He found the door of his passage open. Be this evening about ten o’clock at St. and that key had never quit me.’ replied Planchet. In the intervening time Buckingham perhaps sent him to Paris.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I found a letter on the green table cover in your bedroom. ‘but one has come of itself. Everyone knows that drunkards and lovers have a protecting deity. If the window had been open or even ajar.’ ‘What do you mean. and to be transmitted to you. Planchet. d’Estrees. as he did the horses.’ said Planchet. fall from heaven. in front of the pavilion which stands at the corner of the house of M. Bonacieux. no—all was hermetically sealed. It was the first billet he had received. felt ready to dissolve away at the very gate of that terrestrial paradise called Love! ‘Well.’ ‘I am much obliged to Monsieur for the crown he had given me. who had observed his master grow red and pale successively. I should think nothing of it. the young man had darted in to his chamber. but. it was the first rendezvous that had been granted him. there is a crown to drink my health. It was from Mme.’ Meanwhile. but it is not the less true that letters which come in this way into shut-up houses—‘ ‘Fall from heaven. ‘and as a proof. eagerly. Planchet*. and opened the letter.

You are. Then he kissed and rekissed twenty times the lines traced by the hand of his beautiful mistress.’ ‘There!’ said Planchet. ‘My dear Planchet. but at seven o’clock you must hold yourself in readiness with two horses.’ ‘Monsieur does me wrong. Bonacieux was at his door. At length he went to bed.’ resumed d’Artagnan. but the latter made so polite and friendly a salutation that his tenant felt obliged. therefore.’ said d’Artagnan. who at the second summons opened the door. but I thought perhaps you had worn out all your courage the first time. ‘We are going again. you idiot.’ said Planchet.’ ‘Yes. ‘I thought he had seen me at work.’ ‘Well. which the liberality of d’Artagnan had not entirely effaced. ‘I was sure of it—the cursed letter!’ ‘Don’t be afraid. d’Artagnan read and reread his billet.’ ‘It appears that our journey was a remounting journey. his countenance not yet quite freed from the anxiety of the preceding night. to have our hides pierced in all sorts of ways. it appears.’ said d’Artagnan. and had golden dreams. ‘Planchet. perhaps.’ ‘Do you believe you have still a certain amount of it to expend this evening?’ ‘I hope so.‘Then Monsieur is satisfied?’ asked Planchet. fell asleep.’ ‘Perhaps there is but one at this moment. I count on you. monsieur. and go to bed?’ ‘Yes. when it rained bullets and produced a crop of steel traps!’ ‘Well. then. but by this evening there will be four. Left alone.’ ‘At the appointed hour I shall be ready. D’Artagnan’s intention was to go out without speaking to the worthy mercer. your own master till seven o’clock in the evening. ‘I am going out for all day. go. At seven o’clock in the morning he arose and called Planchet. and nodding to Planchet. if you are really 337 . there is nothing in hand but a party of pleasure. I am the happiest of men!’ ‘And I may profit by Monsieur’s happiness. then?’ ‘Exactly so. I prefer traveling alone to having a companion who entertains the least fear. M. he went out.’ 336 The Three Musketeers ‘Ah. shaking his head with an air of doubt. not only to stop. only I beg Monsieur not to be too prodigal of it if he wishes it to last long.’ ‘May the blessings of heaven fall upon Monsieur! But it is not the less true that that letter—‘ And Planchet retired. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘I will go without you.’ ‘Monsieur shall see that upon occasion I have some left.’ ‘You will take your musketoon and your pistols. now! Didn’t I say so?’ cried Planchet.’ ‘There. but to enter into conversation with him. only I believed that Monsieur had but one horse in the Guard stables. Monsieur Planchet. like the charming journey the other day.

M. ‘I confess it. have you not?’ replied M. and so much more the readily. ‘A handsome young fellow like you does not obtain long leaves of absence from his mistress. ‘what has become of you all these days? I have not seen you nor your friends. We went to take Monsieur Athos to the waters of Forges. What the deuce can you exFree eBooks at Planet eBook. but since my arrest and the robbery that was committed in my house. as I see there is no concealing anything from you. and very impatiently. D’Artagnan listened to him with exemplary complaisance. the gratings. The conversation naturally fell upon the incarceration of the poor man.’ ‘Ah!’ said Bonacieux. had darkened the countenance of the worthy man.’ 338 The Three Musketeers ‘Far from here?’ ‘Oh. ‘And Madame Bonacieux. on her part. who was ignorant that d’Artagnan had overheard his conversation with the stranger of Meung.’ ‘Why that question. my dear Monsieur Bonacieux. whom he never ceased to designate. in a tine of perfect good fellowship. 339 . ‘is only that I may know whether I am delaying you. the bolts. an instant before. and we were impatiently waited for at Paris. may you be a true prophet!’ said d’Artagnan. during his account. ‘they took good care not to tell me that.’ ‘You are right. and my wife. the dungeons. by the title of the ‘cardinal’s executioner. I acknowledge. with a trifling alteration in his voice— so trifling. giving to his countenance a most sly air. my dear host?’ asked d’Artagnan. But you. my friends and I have been on a little journey.’ ‘And you have returned. has sworn to me by all that’s sacred that she does not know. Bonacieux. but so slight that d’Artagnan did not perceive it.’ continued M. M.’ and expatiated at great length upon the Bastille. what I say. particularly in the night. no! About forty leagues only. opposite D’Estrees’s pavilion? D’Artagnan approached him with the most amiable air he could assume. the wickets. I am alarmed every time I hear a door open. and I don’t think you could gather all that dust that I saw Planchet brush off your boots yesterday from the pavement of Paris. the instruments of torture. laughing. my dear Bonacieux.’ A slight shade passed over the brow of Bonacieux. ‘Do you intend to sit up for me?’ ‘No.Besides. were we not?’ ‘My faith!’ said the young man. ‘Ah. de Laffemas. Yes.’ replied Bonacieux. where my friends still remain. Cloud. Lord. I was expected. and when he had finished said. ‘No. ‘And we are going to be recompensed for our diligence?’ continued the mercer. Bonacieux. indeed. Bonacieux. that d’Artagnan did not perceive it any more than he had the momentary shade which. how is it possible to avoid a little condescension toward a husband whose pretty wife has appointed a meeting with you that same evening at St. do you know who carried her off?—For I do not forget that I owe to that unpleasant circumstance the good fortune of having made your acquaintance. related to his young tenant the persecutions of that monster.

don’t be alarmed if I return at one. laughing at the joke. He took his way toward the hotel of M. ‘she is detained at the Louvre this evening by her duties. Are there not some Latin verses upon that subject? Stop!’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘Amuse yourself well!’ replied 341 . de Treville. my dear d’Artagnan! A present from an enemy is not a good thing. and the humiliation of his Eminence. had been very short and very little explicative. and knows that I have been to London?’ ‘The devil! You have been to London! Was it from London you brought that beautiful diamond that glitters on your finger? Beware. wait a little! This evening. Pay no attention to it.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘as long as I shall have the luck to enjoy the favor of their Majesties?’ ‘Everything.’ The young man departed.’ ‘Madame Bonacieux is not at liberty this evening. his visit of the day before. which seize me all at once. he 340 The Three Musketeers certainly would not have remarked it. and the mystifier appears to me to have the air of being a certain young Gascon of my acquaintance. you have nothing to occupy yourself with but being happy. my dear host. ‘now let us talk about yourself.’ ‘What have I to fear. for I am so. He had retired at one o’clock under the pretense of being indisposed.’ ‘So much the worse for you. and if he had heard him in the disposition of mind he then enjoyed. but it appears that is not possible. for it is evident that your happy return has something to do with the joy of the king.’ ‘Not yet. this evening will come. and looking into every corner of the apartment to see if they were alone. It is true the cardinal had been particularly ill-tempered. He found Treville in a joyful mood. thank God! And perhaps you look for it with as much impatience as I do. the triumph of the queen. lowering his voice. ‘Nothing. so much the worse! When I am happy. ‘nothing. two or three o’clock in the morning.’ said Treville. you said. But d’Artagnan was too far off to hear him.pect? I am no swordsman. they did not return to the Louvre till six o’clock in the morning. and I have just felt a cold shiver.’ replied Bonacieux. and asked him what was the matter. believe me.’ ‘Well. indeed. The cardinal is not the man to forget a mystification until he has settled account with the mystifier.’ ‘Then I have full occupation. ‘Now. I wish all the world to be so. Since my misfortunes I have been subject to faintnesses. seriously. You must look out for yourself. perhaps this evening Madame Bonacieux will visit the conjugal domicile.’ This time Bonacieux became so pale that d’Artagnan could not help perceiving it. As to their Majesties. it is to be remembered. He had thought the king and queen charming at the ball. my young friend. do not be alarmed if I do not come at all.’ ‘Well.’ replied the husband. in a sepulchral tone. which he thought he alone could comprehend.’ ‘Do you believe that the cardinal is as well posted as yourself.

doubtless. You would meet the queen. The cardinal has a tenacious memory and a long arm.’ ‘This diamond does not come from an enemy. young man. and who had by his ignorance driven his master to despair. 342 The Three Musketeers ‘Oh. young man.’ said d’Artagnan.’ which means. may consider himself in safety in comparison with you. ‘Beware of the enemy who makes you presents.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘yes.’ said M.’ replied d’Artagnan. Stop a minute—ah. ‘the devil! What must I do?’ ‘Above all things be always on your guard. doubtless there is one. ‘I know them by their romantic imagination.’ ‘From the queen! Oh. at least turn the gem inside. ‘and Monsieur de Benserade was quoting it to me the other day. de Treville how the affair came to pass. de Treville. oh!’ said M. nobody saw her. this is it: ‘Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes. and that ring has a terrible one. monsieur. and she would not know who you are?’ ‘No. then.’ ‘There certainly is one. de Treville. the counsel of a friend?’ ‘You will do me honor. who had never been able to cram the first rudiments of that language into his head. ‘Well. de Treville began to disquiet. thrice imprudent!’ ‘No. which may betray him who wears it. and he related to M. you silly fellow. ‘Listen. ‘I mean to say. Everything that savors of mystery charms them. be satisfied. that was all.’ ‘The devil!’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘How?’ ‘Giving me her hand to kiss. for everybody must be aware that a cadet from Gascony does not find such stones in his mother’s jewel case.’ ‘You have kissed the queen’s hand?’ said M. but thanks to this diamond. which is worth a thousand pistoles if it is worth a 343 . monsieur.’ ‘And that in the presence of witnesses! Imprudent. he will give you at least eight hundred pistoles. then.’ replied d’Artagnan. de Treville. he will repay you by some ill turn.‘Yes. So you have seen the arm. that he who sleeps over a mine the match of which is already lighted. ‘Then. ‘Why. I have something to dread?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘it comes from the queen.’ replied the young man. off to the nearest goldsmith’s. good counsel. However much of a Jew he may be. the women.’ ‘Sell this ring. who had a tincture of literature. ‘shall I give you counsel. Pistoles have no name. monsieur.’ said M. and sell that diamond for the highest price you can get from him. By whom did the queen send you this jewel?’ ‘She gave it to me herself. it is indeed a true royal jewel. whom the positive tone of M.’ ‘You think. ‘Her Majesty did me the honor to grant me that favor. looking earnestly at d’Artagnan.’ ‘Where?’ ‘In the room adjoining the chamber in which she changed her toilet. de Treville. a ring which comes from my sovereign? Never!’ said d’Artagnan. the women!’ cried the old soldier. you may depend upon it.

the road to Picardy. rely upon one who has been thirty years at court. if you cross a bridge. but retreat. de Treville. without sound of drum or trumpet. Mistrust everybody. I would take. with a duel on his hands. What the devil! They merit richly that piece of attention on your part. de Treville.‘But of what sort?’ ‘Eh! How can I tell? Has he not all the tricks of a demon at his command? The least that can be expected is that you will be arrested. Do not lull yourself in security. I must acknowledge. Bonacieux had made with him for that very evening.’ ‘What?’ ‘While his Eminence was seeking for me in Paris. did not inspire him with the least suspicion of his pretty hostess. on the contrary—and it is I who say it—see enemies in all directions. and by nailing the Comte de Wardes on the byroad to Calais. and would go and make some inquiries concerning my three companions. if you pass before a house which is being built.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘My mistress above all. one of the cardinal’s men. feel every plank of it with your foot.’ ‘What! Will they dare to arrest a man in his Majesty’s service?’ ‘PARDIEU! They did not scruple much in the case of Athos.’ ‘See there. A woman will sell you for ten pistoles. to the credit of our hero. and let your lackey be armed—if. de Treville of women in general. I left them on my road—Porthos at Chantilly.’ D’Artagnan blushed. that the bad opinion entertained by M. shun it. If anyone seeks a quarrel with you. monsieur. if you stay out late. monsieur. or you will be lost. your brother. I have an 345 . your friend. ‘But. by the by. but.’ ‘In your place.’ ‘Well. you can be sure of your lackey. monsieur. ‘and why her rather than another?’ ‘Because a mistress is one of the cardinal’s favorite means.’ ‘Speak. You are acquainted with the Scriptures?’ D’Artagnan thought of the appointment Mme. mechanically. ‘what has become of your three companions?’ ‘I was about to ask you if you had heard any news of them?’ ‘None. and tomorrow I will set out. your mistress— your mistress above all. were it with a child of ten years old. but we are bound 344 The Three Musketeers to say. young man. now!’ said M. my friend. without shame.’ ‘The advice is good. fight. I would do one thing. ‘and how the devil did you escape?’ ‘By a miracle. he has not one that is more expeditious.’ repeated he. lest one should give way beneath you. Aramis at Crevecoeur. look up. a cousin of Rochefort! Stop. witness Delilah. If you are attacked by day or by night.’ resumed M. detained by an accusation of coining. and Athos at Amiens. be always followed by your lackey.’ ‘There again! De Wardes. monsieur. for fear a stone should fall upon your head. like a butterfly on a tapestry. A PROPOS. At all events. with a ball in his shoulder. with a sword thrust in my breast.

Take my advice and set out this evening. then?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Why so. ‘Do you place confidence in our landlord—Monsieur Bonacieux?’ ‘I? Not the least in the world. de Treville. monsieur. monsieur. touched more than ever by his paternal solicitude for his Musketeers.’ ‘Well. as soon as Monsieur had left and disappeared round the corner of the street. As he passed the Hotel des Gardes. some flirtation or other. monsieur. he had none.’ said Planchet. was busy grooming them. but promise me. each with seventy-five pistoles in his pocket. young man. and. He would have inquired after them of their mistresses. 347 . I am detained in Paris by indispensable business.‘Tomorrow! Any why not this evening?’ ‘This evening. his countenance changed color two or three times!’ ‘Bah!’ ‘Preoccupied as Monsieur was with the letter he had received. We left Paris.’ ‘I promise it. monsieur. shut his door. It is woman who has ruined us. Porthos. and set off at a quick pace in an opposite Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘how glad I am to see you.’ ‘But why this question?’ ‘Because. you do quite right. He called successively at the abodes of Athos. monsieur. he did not observe that.’ ‘Impossible. on perceiving d’Artagnan. if you should not be killed tonight. and had already finished two. is as much as I shall want. and will ruin us.’ ‘Shall I see you again before your departure?’ ‘I think not. monsieur.’ ‘Ah.’ ‘And you found it?’ ‘Traitorous.’ ‘Indeed!’ ‘Still more. ‘Ah. that’s quite another thing.’ ‘Oh. whom the strange fashion in which that letter came into the house had placed on my guard—I did not lose a movement of his features.’ ‘Thanks. That. unless something new should happen.’ ‘Do you need money?’ ‘I have still fifty pistoles. and Aramis. that you will go tomorrow.’ ‘But your companions?’ ‘I don’t think they can be in need of any. still ruins us. Neither of them had returned. and nothing had been heard of either 346 The Three Musketeers the one or the other. Three of the four horses had already arrived. young man. while you were talking with him.’ ‘You have given your word. but he was neither acquainted with Porthos’s nor Aramis’s.’ D’Artagnan left M.’ ‘Ah. Take care. I watched you without listening to you. Their lackeys likewise were absent. as long as the world stands. a pleasant journey. I repeat to you. and as to Athos. but I. he took a glance in to the stables. Planchet. take care. Monsieur Bonacieux took his hat. all astonishment. Planchet?’ asked the young man. monsieur. I think. monsieur.

D’Artagnan had his sword and placed two pistols in his belt. and kept at a distance of ten paces from him. went out by the gate of La Conference and followed the road. the more ill will I have toward Monsieur Bonacieux. ‘Well. The fourth horse had 349 348 The Three Musketeers . being at bottom a prudent youth. he drew softly nearer.’ ‘Monsieur jests. and be assured that we will not pay him our rent until the matter shall be categorically explained to us. what is the matter with us now?’ ‘Don’t you think. 24 THE PAVILION At nine o’clock d’Artagnan was at the Hotel des Gardes. had given them a breakfast of chocolate. Planchet was armed with his musketoon and a pistol. but as soon as the road began to be more lonely and dark. Monsieur Planchet. and no one saw them go out. so that when they entered the Bois de Boulogne he found himself riding quite naturally side by side with his master. then both mounted and departed quietly.’ ‘It seems you are right. much more beautiful then than it is now. As long as he was in the city. at the time of the distress of the four friends. As to d’Artagnan. Cloud. It was quite dark. my friend. I will come and take you. then.’ ‘What would you have. D’Artagnan could not help perceiving that something more than usual was passing in the mind of his lackey and said.’ ‘Then that is Monsieur’s determination?’ ‘Undeniably. Planchet?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. went and dined with the Gascon priest. heaved a profound sigh and set to work to groom the third horse. who. but Monsieur will see. monsieur. D’Artagnan crossed the quays.’ Planchet seeing there was no longer any hope of making his master renounce his project. Planchet.direction. that woods are like churches?’ ‘How so.’ ‘Monsieur does not then renounce his excursion for this evening?’ ‘Quite the contrary. Planchet kept at the respectful distance he had imposed upon himself. we must not dissemble that the oscillation of the tall trees and the reflection of the moon in the dark underwood gave him serious uneasiness. which leads to St. Planchet? What must come is written. Planchet took place behind his master. instead of returning home. the more punctual I shall be in keeping the appointment made by that letter which makes you so uneasy. In fact. be ready here at the hotel. Planchet. all this appears to be a little mysterious. At nine o’clock. he found Planchet all ready.

who had plunged into a bypath. de Treville’s recommendation recurred. Planchet?’ ‘Monsieur. In the meantime d’Artagnan. and knocked at the door. reached a sort of retired lane. so that I have not a sou left in case I should be cold. Planchet. and be in waiting for me at the door by six o’clock in the morning. A high wall. ‘this animal will end by making me afraid. recurring to his besetting idea. and was soon trotting by his side.’ ‘Afraid of being heard! Why. we must not confound prudence with cowardice. you can go into one of those cabarets that you see yonder. Planchet followed the movements of his master as if he had been his shadow. and in such haste was he to warm himself that he went straight to a house set out with all the attributes of a suburban tavern. as soon as he had lost sight of his master. Cloud. Planchet?’ ‘No. Tomorrow morning. ‘Good Lord. we think of what we can.’ ‘But why did you not dare to speak aloud. ‘that Monsieur Bonacieux has something vicious in his eyebrows. I only beg leave to observe to Monsieur that the night will be very cold.’ ‘Well. continued his route and reached St. and on the other was a little garFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ murmured d’Artagnan. and found himself soon in front of the pavilion named. It was situated in a very private spot. monsieur! And you?’ 350 The Three Musketeers ‘I am going a few steps farther.’ ‘Monsieur.’ ‘Here’s half a pistole. my dear Planchet. to whom M. monsieur!’ replied Planchet. ran along one side of this lane.’ ‘And you are very virtuous. monsieur. threw the bridle to Planchet. and that a lackey who has the rheumatism makes but a poor servant. and departed at a quick pace. there is nothing improper in our conversation.‘Because we dare not speak aloud in one or the other. and no one could find fault with it. Planchet—because you are afraid?’ ‘Afraid of being heard? Yes. ‘No. at the angle of which was the pavilion. and something very unpleasant in the play of his lips.’ ‘Ah.’ ‘What the devil makes you think of Bonacieux?’ ‘Monsieur.’ ‘How. I have eaten and drunk respectfully the crown you gave me this morning. ‘Are we going to continue this pace all night?’ asked Planchet. you are at your journey’s end. is not that the barrel of a musket which glitters yonder? Had we not better lower our heads?’ ‘In truth. particularly to a master as active as Monsieur. and not of what we will. prudence is a virtue. but instead of following the main street he turned behind the chateau.’ ‘Monsieur.’ D’Artagnan sprang from his horse. Planchet. how cold I am!’ cried Planchet.’ ‘And Monsieur leaves me here alone?’ ‘You are afraid.’ And he put his horse into a trot.’ ‘Because you are a coward. that chills bring on rheumatism. are you not. if you are cold. folding his cloak around 351 .

d’Artagnan felt a cold shiver run through his veins. the funeral stars of that hell! But for d’Artagnan all aspects were clothed happily. with a touch of vexation. D’Artagnan began now really to fear that something had happened to Mme. Bonacieux. Cloud let fall slowly ten strokes from its sonorous jaws. He clapped his hands three times—the ordinary signal of lovers. which made up the expected hour. it might be imagined that he was a hundred miles from the capital. but the wall had been recently pointed. At that moment he thought of the trees. Wrapped in this sweet idea. attesting the elegance of the rest of the apartment. and as one of them drooped over Free eBooks at Planet eBook. his eyes fixed upon that charming little abode of which he could perceive a part of the ceiling with its gilded moldings. He approached the wall. Cloud sounded half past ten. Perhaps the cold began to affect him. and he took a perfectly physical sensation for a moral impression. Through this window shone a mild light which silvered the foliage of two or three linden trees which formed a group outside the park. Not the least noise was to be heard. He gained the place appointed. all shades were diaphanous. Bonacieux expected him. D’Artagnan leaned against the hedge. and as no signal had been given him by which to announce his presence. and that cottage. except one on the first story. Eleven o’clock sounded. which threw forth such friendly beams. Beyond that hedge. he waited. The belfry of St. not even an echo. vibrated harmoniously to the heart of the young man. without knowing why. and d’Artagnan could get no hold. all ideas wore a smile. at the end of a few minutes the belfry of St. There could be no doubt that behind this little window. but he had not been mistaken. This time. and tried to climb it. and that the appointment was for eleven o’clock. In fact. but nobody replied to him. upon whose leaves the light still shone. the appointment was for ten o’clock. There was something melancholy in this brazen voice pouring out its lamentations in the middle of the night. and placing himself so that a ray of light should fall upon the letter as he held it. but each of those 353 . he drew it from his pocket and read it again. a dark mist enveloped with its folds that immensity where Paris slept—a vast void from which glittered a few luminous points. He went and resumed his post. The appointed hour was about to strike. after having cast a glance behind it. d’Artagnan waited half an 352 The Three Musketeers hour without the least impatience. beginning to be rather uneasy at this silence and this solitude. He then thought. that perhaps the young woman had fallen asleep while waiting for him.den connected with a poor cottage which was protected by a hedge from passers-by. Then the idea seized him that he had read incorrectly. He drew near to the window. of which all the windows were closed with shutters. that garden. His eyes were fixed upon the little pavilion situated at the angle of the wall. the pretty Mme.

on certain occasions.the road. he wished to see if he could find other traces of violence. his respiration was broken and short. took the path he had before taken. a more abundant and more icy sweat rolled in large drops from his forehead. wherever it had not touched the muddy ground. Then d’Artagnan became almost wild. that the young woman had made an appointment with him before the pavilion. the wheels of a carriage. was overturned. which did not ex354 The Three Musketeers tend beyond the pavilion. And yet he said. At length d’Artagnan. Besides. and one which made d’Artagnan tremble from the sole of his foot to the roots of his hair. which appeared to have come from Paris. the boatman had taken over a young woman. The little soft light shone on in the calmness of the night. and some bloody spots staining the cloth and the curtains. He hastened to descend into the street. but entirely on account of her precautions. But all these reasons were combated. who appeared to be very anxious not to be recognized. destroyed. and his keen eyes plunged through the transparent panes into the interior of the pavilion. his heart was oppressed by a horrible anguish. One of the windows was broken. in pursuing his researches. that this pavilion perhaps had nothing in common with Mme. A table. and cries to us so as to be understood unmistakably that some great misfortune is hanging over us. by that feeling of intimate pain which. had made a deep impression in the soft earth. and reaching the ferry. The decanters broken in pieces. interrogated the 355 . split in two. but turned again toward Paris. It was a strange thing. d’Artagnan then perceived a thing that he had not before remarked—for nothing had led him to the examination—that the ground. to reassure himself. strewed the floor. trampled here and hoofmarked there. Bonacieux. About seven o’clock in the evening. wrapped in a black mantle. the door of the chamber had been beaten in and hung. with a frightful beating at his heart. Everything in the apartment gave evidence of a violent and desperate struggle. or perhaps by the jealousy of her husband. It was one of those perfumed gloves that lovers like to snatch from a pretty hand. d’Artagnan was but twenty years old. he thought that from its branches he might get a glimpse of the interior of the pavilion. found near the wall a woman’s torn glove. this calm lamp. This glove. In an instant he was among the branches. fragments of garments. overthrown. The tree was easy to climb. was of irreproachable odor. Besides. the boatman had paid more attention to her and discovered that she was young and pretty. to find that this soft light. which had been covered with an elegant supper. takes possession of our being. D’Artagnan even fancied he could recognize amid this strange disorder. and not in the pavilion. enlightened a scene of fearful disorder. presented confused traces of men and horses. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and consequently had not yet forgotten his schoolboy habits. that she might have been detained in Paris by her duties. on its hinges. and the fruits crushed. As d’Artagnan pursued his investigations. He ran along the high road.

and who had reasons for not being seen.There were then. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. It appeared to him that something might have happened at the pavilion in his absence. and then. went up to the cabin. The gate of the enclosure was shut. Cloud and not elsewhere. not seeing her come. for if I dared tell you what I have seen. I am dying with anxiety. worm-eaten shutter was opened. only it was now still more pale than before. Cloud. d’Artagnan had had time to get a glimpse of the head of an old man. ‘ask me nothing. or rather pushed ajar. that his voice was of a nature to reassure the most fearful. that the appointment was at St. It soon appeared to him that he heard a slight noise within—a timid noise which seemed to tremble lest it should be heard. and pistol pommels of d’Artagnan. ‘In the name of heaven. and satisfy himself that he had not been mistaken. then. explain yourself!’ ‘Oh! Monsieur. and in spite of the barking of a chained-up dog. and the same calm soft light shone through the window.’ ‘You have. He again ran back to the chateau. terror and cajolery. Everything conspired to prove to d’Artagnan that his presentiments had not deceived him. rapid as the movement had been. The old man listened attentively. 356 The Three Musketeers Then d’Artagnan ceased knocking. he had climbed the linden tree. No one answered to his first knocking. Has anything particular happened in the neighborhood? Speak!’ The window was again opened slowly. he shook his head with an air that announced nothing good. He told how he had a rendezvous with a young woman before that pavilion. ‘What do you mean?’ cried d’Artagnan. when d’Artagnan had ended. Bonacieux whom the boatman had noticed. with the omission of names. D’Artagnan took advantage of the lamp which burned in the cabin of the ferryman to read the billet of Mme.’ said the old man. and how. sword belt. A silence of death reigned in the cabin as in the pavilion. before the D’Estrees’s pavilion and not in another street. Bonacieux once again. but as the cabin was his last resource. and yet d’Artagnan did not for an instant doubt that it was Mme. silent and obscure. and could tell its tale. and the same face appeared. and that a great misfortune had happened. At length an old. ‘In the name of heaven!’ cried he. The lane was still deserted. and that fresh information awaited him. but he leaped over the hedge. D’Artagnan related his story simply. which had no doubt seen all. D’Artagnan then thought of that cottage. I have been waiting for someone who has not come. he knocked again. ‘listen to me. and by the light of the lamp had seen the disorder of the chamber. making a sign only that it was all so. and prayed with an accent so full of anxiety and promises. seen something?’ replied d’ 357 . as now. a crowd of young and pretty women who came to St. but closed again as soon as the light from a miserable lamp which burned in the corner had shone upon the baldric. certainly no good would befall me. Nevertheless.

she fell back and they went into the chamber. opened it with a key he had in his hand. who ascended the ladder very carefully. closed the door and disappeared. ‘Ah. but I immediately went out a back door. my worthy gentlemen. who were dressed as cavaliers. Two of the men appeared. and was wondering what it could be. and satisfied himself that the woman was in the carriage. and repeated in a low voice: ‘It was scarcely nine o’clock when I heard a noise in the street. I went and opened the gate and saw three men at a few paces from it. into which the little old man got after her.’ ‘Lend it to us. entirely overcome by this terrible story. monsieur. As I am very poor and am not afraid of being robbed. while all the demons of anger and jealousy were howling in his heart. stout. The leader closed the window. the coachman took care of his horses. the lackey took his place by the coachman. and stealing along in the shade of the hedge. ‘tell me what you have seen. but her cries were soon stifled. and commonly dressed in clothes of a dark color. From that moment I have neither seen nor heard anything. but as soon as she perceived the other two men. The little old man remained at the coach door. The three men brought the carriage up quietly. and I will pledge you the word of a gentleman that not one of your words shall escape from my heart. 358 The Three Musketeers elderly. and took out of it a little man. escorted by the three horsemen. throwing him a pistole. ‘It is she!’ Immediately. he who had spoken to me approached the door of the pavilion. and some saddlehorses. upon Free eBooks at Planet eBook.‘In that case. my good gentleman. from which I could hear and see everything. ‘what do you want?’ ‘You must have a ladder?’ said he who appeared to be the leader of the party. These horses evidently belonged to the three men. which I picked up.’ resumed the old man. remained motionless and mute. Only remember this—if you speak a word of what you may see or what you may hear (for you will look and you will listen. In the shadow was a carriage with two horses.’ At these words he threw me a crown. I gained yonder clump of elder. and go into your house again. came out an instant after by the door. and whispered. The woman screamed. All at once great cries resounded in the pavilion. and he took the ladder. His two companions were already on horseback.’ continued he. After shutting the gate behind them. the one with which I gather my fruit. as if to throw herself out of it. there is a crown for the annoyance we have caused you. I pretended to return to the house. ‘But. looked suspiciously in at the window of the pavilion. the lackey held the saddlehorses. ‘Yes. and all was over. however we may threaten you). but I heard the noise of breaking furniture. the carriage went off at a quick 359 . and cried for help. short.’ The old man read so much truth and so much grief in the face of the young man that he made him a sign to listen. He sprang into his saddle.’ D’Artagnan. and opened it. when on coming to my door. while at the same time the other two men ascended the ladder. in the name of heaven. Then I saw no more. came down as quietly as he had gone up.’ cried I. I found that somebody was endeavoring to open it. bearing the woman in their arms. and carried her to the carriage. and a woman came to the window. I am quite sure. you are lost.

sometimes he feared she had had an intrigue with another. at least. ‘do not take on so. after having swallowed the contents of his bottle. and placing himself in the darkest corner of the room. His mind was torn by doubt. ‘And I renew my promise. d’Artagnan again bent his way toward the ferry. whether well or ill. ‘I should have. to fall into the easiest position in his corner and to sleep. was only twenty years old. I am a gentleman. have some light thrown upon the mysterious affair. and wherever he might be. as we said. Besides. and although he listened with all his ears. then. but who knows what has become of them?’ It was past midnight. He was compelled. ‘Oh.’ said d’Artagnan. determined thus to wait till daylight. and I have given you mine. which could put him upon the least track of her who had been stolen from him. Be easy. with black mustaches. who.’ ‘Some lackey. and at that age sleep has its imprescriptible rights Free eBooks at Planet eBook. grief. and the air of a gentleman.’ ‘But as you spoke to him you must have seen him. d’Artagnan stopped. ‘again he.’ ‘Oh. he would. d’Artagnan went successively into all the cabarets in which there was a light. I’ll answer for it. Bonacieux. and that’s a comfort. At the sixth cabaret. and carters who comprised the honorable society of which he formed a part.’ cried he. perhaps. it came into the young man’s mind that by remaining in the environs of the spot on which this sad event had passed. some hopes of finding her. forever he! He is my demon. but could not find Planchet in any of them. they did not kill her. poor woman. to pass the time as well as to evade suspicion. and that he should find her next day at the Louvre.whom this mute despair certainly produced a greater effect than cries and tears would have done. what have they done with you?’ ‘You have promised to be secret.’ ‘Oh. besides. then. Sometimes he hoped it could not be Mme.’ ‘A tall. asked for a bottle of wine of the best quality. it’s a description you want?’ ‘Exactly so. if I had my three friends here. the next thing was to find Planchet. And the other?’ ‘Which?’ ‘The short one.’ murmured d’Artagnan. dark man. had surprised her and carried 360 The Three Musketeers her 361 . D’Artagnan had appointed six o’clock in the morning for his lackey. he was not a gentleman. be it remembered. ‘who was the man who headed this infernal expedition?’ ‘I don’t know him. amid the oaths. he was right. dark eyes. servants. and the others treated him with small consideration. At the sixth he began to reflect that the search was rather dubious. coarse jokes. ‘Poor woman. D’Artagnan. he heard nothing. and abuse which passed between the laborers. apparently.’ ‘That’s the man!’ cried d’Artagnan. in a jealous fit.’ With a heavy heart. A gentleman has but his word. my good monsieur?’ said the old man. he did not wear a sword.’ ‘Can you guess. but this time again his hopes were disappointed. and despair.

he said. M. This time he had decided to relate all that had passed.which it imperiously insists upon.’ D’Artagnan knew that. He examined himself to see if advantage had been taken of his sleep. de Treville listened to the young man’s account with a seriousness which proved that he saw something else in this adventure besides a love 363 362 The Three Musketeers . de Treville would doubtless give him good advice as to the whole affair. Toward six o’clock d’Artagnan awoke with that uncomfortable feeling which generally accompanies the break of day after a bad night. d’Artagnan alighted at the door of M. de Treville was not in the habit of making promises. ‘Nothing. but quitting Paris. He Free eBooks at Planet eBook. he might be able to draw from her Majesty some intelligence of the poor young woman. he rose. as soon as possible. He was not long in making his toilet. Besides. as M. who. M. and ran quickly up the stairs.’ ‘But what is to be done?’ said d’Artagnan. even with the saddest hearts. These details will guide her on her part. before which d’Artagnan had passed without even a suspicion of its existence. and his pistols in his belt. de Treville saw the queen almost daily. a league off. I will see the queen. as I told you. I will relate to her the details of the disappearance of this poor woman. absolutely nothing. ‘Hum! All this savors of his Eminence. whom they were doubtless making pay very dearly for her devotedness to her mistress. although a Gascon. awaited him at the door of a little blind cabaret. of which she is no doubt ignorant. paid for his bottle. and on your return. Rely on me. his purse in his pocket. The first thing he perceived through the damp gray mist was honest Planchet. When d’Artagnan had finished. de Treville. and having found his diamond ring on his finger. 25 PORTHOS Instead of returning directly home. and that when by chance he did promise. I shall perhaps have some good news to tell you. with the two horses in hand. he more than kept his word. at present. and went out to try if he could have any better luck in his search after his lackey than he had had the night before. M.

my young master? It does not appear to be very clean in the crossroads. Bonacieux wore a mask. ‘you are a model for regular people.bowed to him. so brave and so resolute. and he restrained himself. then. That little stout man. and which might. as we have said. In consequence of this feeling of repugnance. and however well made the mask may be. Both were stained with splashes of mud of the same appearance. On approaching the house. to d’Artagnan that M. It appeared. A terrible inclination seized d’Artagnan to grasp the mercer by the throat and strangle him. then. he has no need to seek happiness elsewhere. treated without ceremony by the men wearing swords who composed the escort. was Bonacieux himself. full of gratitude for the past and for the future. but. ‘Well. M. standing at his threshold. sickly paleness which indicates the insinuation of the bile in the blood. and likewise that that mask was most disagreeable to look upon. Monsieur Bonacieux?’ Bonacieux became as pale as death. d’Artagnan directed his course toward the Rue des Fossoyeurs. ‘we appear to pass rather gay nights! Seven o’clock in the morning! PESTE! You seem to 364 The Three Musketeers reverse ordinary customs. The husband had presided at the abduction of his wife. Then a sudden idea crossed the mind of d’Artagnan. but. pressed his hand kindly. d’Artagnan remarked something perfidiously significant in the play of the wrinkled features of his countenance. All that the prudent Planchet had said to him the preceding evening about the sinister character of the old man recurred to the mind of d’Artagnan. a hypocrite does not shed the tears of a man of good faith. A rogue does not laugh in the same way that an honest man does. All falsehood is a mask. It is true that when a man possesses a young and pretty wife. he was a very prudent youth. ah!’ said Bonacieux. ‘Ah. who looked at him with more attention than he had done before.’ said the young man. However. be accidental. dressed in dark clothes. Bonacieux in morning costume. and it might have been said they had been dipped in the same mud heap. but that same glance fell upon the shoes and stockings of the mercer. he perceived M. does it not.’ said he. he was about to pass without speaking to him. in addition to that yellow. besides. Bonacieux accosted him. ‘you are a jocular companion! But where the devil were you gladding last night. young man. all covered with mud. and the worthy captain. Monsieur Bonacieux. Happiness comes to meet him. de Treville in practice instantly. and grinned a ghastly smile. and come home at the hour when other people are going out. wishing him a pleasant journey. with a little attention we may always succeed in distinguishing it from the true face. in order to superintend the packing of his 365 . short and elderly. Determined to put the advice of M. the revolution which appeared upon his counteFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘No one can reproach you for anything of the kind. In fact. that sort of lackey.’ D’Artagnan glanced down at his boots. as he had done the day before. who on his side felt a lively interest in this young man.

if I don’t stand upon ceremony. and the roads were so bad that I brought back all this mud. as soon as he perceived his master. he had accompanied his wife to the place of her confinement. send him to you to brush your shoes.’ said Bonacieux.’ ‘Monsieur de Cavois. if you like. and cast a rapid glance at the bed. May you not have been philandering a little also. I will make Planchet brush my boots. emptying his 367 . Cloud. ‘Oh! I give you a hundred.’ 366 The Three Musketeers Without waiting for the permission of his host. Monsieur Bonacieux. and asking himself if he had not been a little inconsiderate. ‘Ah. The question. Planchet?’ demanded d’Artagnan.’ The place named by Bonacieux as that which had been the object of his journey was a fresh proof in support of the suspicions d’Artagnan had conceived. while you were at Monsieur de Treville’s. as I cannot possibly do without one. monsieur.’ ‘When?’ ‘About half an hour ago. ‘but yesterday I went to St. which I have not yet had time to remove. If Bonacieux knew where his wife was. I will. monsieur!’ cried Planchet. I give you a thousand times to guess.’ ‘What’s the matter now. you know that is never refused among neighbors. I thought you would never come in. has such a pretty wife as yours. He had only been back an hour or two. your stockings and shoes stand in equal need of a brush. but you are joking. then. Bonacieux had not been abed.nance was so visible that Bonacieux was terrified at it. Monsieur Bonacieux? Oh. Allow me to take a glass of water in your apartment. speak. Bonacieux had named Mande because Mande was in an exactly opposite direction from St.’ ‘Monsieur de Cavois?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘but nothing makes one so thirsty as want of sleep. ‘Ah.’ ‘Who has been here? Come. the obstacle compelled him to keep his place. I will now go up into my apartment. It had not been used. It appears to me that if my boots need a sponge. and he endeavored to draw back a step or two. the visit I received in your absence. Lord! no. ‘Pardon. or else at least to the first relay.’ ‘Oh. d’Artagnan went quickly into the house. ‘Thanks. one might.’ He left the mercer quite astonished at his singular farewell. and when he has done. was how to change this probability into a certainty. by extreme means.’ said d’Artagnan. the devil! That’s unpardonable in a man of your age.’ said d’Artagnan. my dear Monsieur Bonacieux. force the mercer to open his teeth and let his secret escape. and who besides. my worthy man!’ said d’Artagnan. At the top of the stairs he found Planchet in a great fright. Mande to make some inquiries after a servant. but as he was standing before the half of the door which was shut. ‘here is more trouble. ‘that is all I wanted of you. This probability afforded him his first consolation. I am parched with thirst.

to see Monsieur de Cavois to contradict me by saying you were not yet gone. he said. I may be allowed to lie.’ ‘The captain of the cardinal’s Guards?’ ‘Himself. Planchet. Besides. for all his wheedling manner. that nothing may be suspected. as he could see.’ ‘You will understand.’ ‘Be of good heart. monsieur. on the part of his Eminence.‘In person. ‘What did you answer him?’ ‘That the thing was impossible. In a quarter of an hour we set off. who wished you well. monsieur. and then he added in a low voice. pack up our luggage. 369 .’ D’Artagnan went out first. I think provincial air will suit us much better just now than the air of Paris. On my part.’ replied the young man. monsieur. and I answered you would be quite in despair on your return. ‘Tell your master that his Eminence is very well disposed toward him. So then—‘ ‘So then. I am a physiognomist. may I ask.’ ‘Was he so sweet. The falsehood would then lie at my door. ‘Oh.’ ‘That’s the advice I was about to give Monsieur. and to beg you to follow him to the PalaisRoyal. my friend. without being too curious?’ ‘PARDIEU! In the opposite direction to that which you said I was gone. I think you are right with respect to our host.’ ‘Well. you may take my word when I tell you anything. and that his fortune perhaps depends upon this interview. You may join me at the Hotel des Gardes.’’ ‘The snare is rather MALADROIT for the cardinal.’ ‘Ah. smiling. as had been agreed upon. in Champagne. I assure you. and that he is decidedly a frightfully low wretch. are you not as anxious to learn news of Grimaud. By the way. if you wish. seeing that you were not at home. then?’ ‘Indeed. what did he say then?’ ‘That you must not fail to call upon him in the course of the day. Porthos. you shall preserve your reputation as a veracious man. I saw the snare. he was all honey. and where are we going.’ interrupted d’Artagnan. and as I am not a gentleman. monsieur. and Bazin as I am to know what has become of Athos. ‘‘Where has he gone?’ asked Monsieur de Cavois. I will go out with my hands in my pockets. Planchet. I thought there would be still time. Mousqueton.’ ‘Indeed!’ ‘He came. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘‘And when did he set out?’ 368 The Three Musketeers ‘‘Yesterday evening.’* *It was called the Palais-Cardinal before Richelieu gave it to the King. and let us be off.’ I answered. Planchet. ‘you are really a precious fellow.’ said Planchet.’ ‘Did he come to arrest me?’ ‘I have no doubt that he did. monsieur. ‘and I will go as soon as you please. and Aramis?’ ‘Yes.’’ ‘Planchet. ‘‘To Troyes.

He had forgotten not one of the incidents of the first journey. No news had been received of them. was crowned with the most fortunate results.’ replied Planchet. by day than by night. It followed that his hat was forever in his hand. when the latter added the portmanteau to the equipment. only a letter. having been executed with equal punctuality. ‘but we must not despair of the mercy of God. the same at which they had stopped on their first journey. then. never 370 The Three Musketeers forsook him for a single instant. Planchet was more courageous. ‘That’s well. His natural prudence. Nevertheless. our two travelers arrived at Chantilly without any accident. d’Artagnan thought it time to stop. on seeing a young man followed by a lackey with two extra horses.’ ‘Amen!’ said d’Artagnan. if we should have the good fortune to find them living. which procured him some severe reprimands from d’Artagnan.’ ‘Do you think. D’Artagnan was therefore served with miraculous celerity. one having to quit Paris by the Barriere de la Villette and the other by the Barriere Montmartre. Ten minutes afterward Planchet joined him at the stables of the Hotel des Gardes. commended the horses to the care of his lackey. alighted. he directed his steps. without asking information of any kind. D’Artagnan took charge of it. followed Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘Now saddle the other three horses. and he looked upon everybody he met on the road as an enemy. entered a small room destined to receive those who wished to be alone. As they went from the Hotel des Gardes. whether the passengers were really touched by the urbanity of Planchet or whether this time nobody was posted on the young man’s road. monsieur. they separated.’ replied d’Artagnan. all perfumed and of an elegant writing in small characters. toward the residences of his three friends. Martin. Denis—a strategic maneuver which. that we shall travel faster with two horses apiece?’ said Planchet. and desired the host to bring him a bottle of his best wine and as good a breakfast as possible—a desire which further corroborated the high opinion the innkeeper had formed of the traveler at first sight. Perhaps it would not be prudent to ask at once what had become of the Musketeer. for the last time. had saddled his horse himself.’ ‘Which is a great chance.Then. advanced respectfully to the door. The result of these reflections was that d’Artagnan. and d’ 371 .’ said he to Planchet. Now. whether Porthos were or were not in the inn. ‘but with our four horses we may bring back our three friends. and alighted at the tavern of Great St. in order that he might have nothing to reproach himself with. The regiment of the Guards was recruited among the first gentlemen of the kingdom. as they had already traveled eleven leagues. to meet again beyond St. with his shrewd air. it must be admitted. leaving the street at opposite ends. D’Artagnan. had come for Aramis. ‘No. who feared that his excess of politeness would lead people to think he was the lackey of a man of no consequence. in order that there might be no time lost. The host. however. Monsieur Jester. getting into his saddle. D’Artagnan and Planchet entered Pierrefitte together.

monsieur. despite the simplicity of his uniform. my dear host. which d’Artagnan perceiving.’ said the host. I am sure he is in a condition to pay a lackey. It is not Monsieur Porthos that your Lordship means?’ ‘Yes. tell me if anything has happened to him?’ ‘Your Lordship must have observed that he could not continue his 373 . But what shall we drink to. you infuse genuine balm into my blood. ordered two glasses to be brought. that is my companion’s name.’ ‘He has done us the honor to remain here. one of whom. ‘I asked for a bottle of your best wine.’ ‘What! You cannot tell me? Surely you ought to be able to tell me better than any other person. Musketeers. you will be punished in what you have sinned. as it was I who had sent for him. The host desired himself to serve him.’ said the host. he had done you the honor to remain here?’ ‘Yes. Why I was here only ten or twelve days ago. and out of the ten times I have stopped three or four times at your house at least. and let us drink. filling the two glasses. and we are even a little uneasy—‘ ‘On what account?’ ‘Of certain expenses he has contracted. and I wish to see all innkeepers making a fortune. I travel a great deal.’ ‘Well. Now.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and commenced the following conversation. I have passed perhaps ten times through Chantilly.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘that this is not the first time I have had the honor of seeing Monsieur. ‘I remember it perfectly. and we have seen nothing of him. then. so as to avoid wounding any susceptibility? Let us drink to the prosperity of your establishment.’ ‘Porthos is wounded.’ ‘Why. and if you have deceived me. and this very morning the surgeon declared that if Monsieur Porthos did not pay him. particularly on this road. my good host.’ said the host. you shall drink with me.’ ‘Ah. but in our situation we must not say all we know— particularly as we have been warned that our ears should answer for our tongues. had a dispute with a stranger—a man who 372 The Three Musketeers sought a quarrel with him. but whatever expenses he may have incurred. monsieur. We have made considerable advances.’ ‘It seems to me. ‘My faith. In hotels that do not flourish.’ ‘But don’t mistake. and the traveler is a victim to the embarrassments of his host.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Yes. Take your glass. My God. he should look to me. everything is in confusion. to be sure.’ ‘Your Lordship does me much honor.’ ‘What. he promised to rejoin us. then?’ ‘I cannot tell you. monsieur. for seeing that I hate drinking my myself. ‘and I thank you sincerely for your kind wish. by the by. and traveling with four magnificent horses.’ ‘Exactly so.’ ‘Bah. for I don’t know what. could not fail to make a sensation. I was conducting some friends. ‘there is more selfishness in my toast than perhaps you may think—for it is only in prosperous establishments that one is well received. in this house.

It is true he had been playing the day before. day and night.‘Well. monsieur. I confined myself then to begging him to give up his chamber.’ ‘What have you done to him. too.’ ‘That’s Porthos all over. and in a fit of passion might run his sword through you or blow out your brains. ‘I replied that as from the moment we seemed not likely to come to a good understanding with respect to payment. he sent us to all the devils. in the name of wonder?’ ‘Monsieur Porthos may imagine you belong to the house. either within the house or out of 375 . I might easily comprehend that the chamber he did me the honor to occupy in my house was itself very mean for the visit of such a personage. This reply was too flattering to allow me to insist on his departure. while acknowledging the truth of what he said.’ ‘Why should I do that?’ ‘Because. for at the first word on the subject. go up the first flight and knock at Number One. laid it on his table. then. at the end of eight days we presented our account. we perceived that his lackey was saddling 374 The Three Musketeers Monsieur Porthos’s horse. and that as he had said the horse was his. I hoped that he would have at least the kindness to grant the favor of his custom to my brother host of the Golden Eagle. and to be satisfied with a pretty little room on the third floor. ‘Then. and we make out our bills every week.’ ‘Of what kind. he would blow out the brains of the person who should be so imprudent as to meddle with Free eBooks at Planet eBook. it must be so. Nevertheless. my house being the best. monsieur. Only warn him that it is you. monsieur. he should remain where he was. and the foolish fellow lost all he had?’ ‘Even to his horse. and said that at the first word that should be spoken to him about removing. for when the gentleman was about to set out. but without even giving himself the trouble to enter into any discussion with me. which is the handsomest in the hotel. We also informed Monsieur Porthos of what was going on. monsieur. but I know he must be so at present. he took one of his pistols. who can say. I can understand that.’ ‘The devil! Ah.’ murmured d’Artagnan. but he told us we were scoundrels to doubt a gentleman’s word. Take the stairs on your right. When we observed this to him.’ ‘We thought so.’ continued the host. then?’ ‘We have asked him for money. who was one of the greatest ladies in the court. can I see Porthos?’ ‘Certainly. as well as his master’s. but it appeared we had chosen an unlucky moment. some mischief might happen to you.’ ‘That’s it. to whom he proposed a game of LANSQUENET. monsieur? With some gentleman who was traveling this way. It is a demand that Porthos takes very ill when he is not in funds. As our house is carried on very regularly. as this horse belonged to him.’ ‘Playing the day before! And with whom?’ ‘Lord. but Monsieur Porthos replied that. I thought proper to insist. but to this Monsieur Porthos replied that as he every moment expected his mistress. he told us all to trouble ourselves about our own business.

he puts us all under his feet. It appears that he had met with disagreeableness. who had desired us to be so careful of this letter. if I could believe I might trust in your discretion. As he could not leave his chamber. I took advantage of the journey of one of my lads to Paris.’ ‘The fact is. monsieur. he is more nimble than his master. nothing which was not right in the character of a creditor. monsieur. he came back.’ ‘That is possible. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘You?’ 376 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. on his journey. ‘The favorite of a great lady will not be allowed to be inconvenienced for such a paltry sum as he owes you.’ ‘And then?’ ‘Instead of putting the letter in the post. nobody entered his chamber but his servant. I have heard Porthos speak of her. you understand that uneasiness makes us do many things. Since that time. and as he thinks we might refuse what he asked for. monsieur. what I know. and in a very bad condition.’ ‘What! Mousqueton is here. This was before his servant came. monsieur.’ ‘What you know?’ ‘And even what I am sure of. ‘I have always observed a great degree of intelligence and devotedness in Mousqueton.’ ‘Speak! By the word of a 377 . monsieur. I should be a ruined man!’ ‘No. likewise. monsieur.’ ‘And how do you know her?’ ‘Oh. even four times a year. it was necessary to charge us with this commission. she is the old wife of a procurator* of the Chatelet.a matter which only concerned himself.’ ‘Why. was it not?’ ‘Nearly so. for Porthos will pay you.’ ‘Hum!’ said the host. Unfortunately. in a doubtful tone. do you know who this great lady is?’ ‘No. which is never safe. and ordered him to convey the letter to this duchess himself.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well?’ ‘Monsieur Porthos gave us a note for his duchess. too. I. I don’t know her. ordering us to put it in the post. This was fulfilling the intentions of Monsieur Porthos.’ ‘Well.’ ‘And of what are you so sure?’ ‘I would say that I know this great lady. he takes all he wants without asking at all. you shall have no cause to repent of your confidence.’ ‘Well. Five days after your departure.’ ‘What have you done?’ ‘Oh. so that for the sake of his master. yes.’ ‘If I durst say what I believe on that head—‘ ‘What you believe?’ ‘I ought rather to say. then?’ ‘Oh. but suppose I should happen to be brought in contact.’ ‘Do you know who this pretended duchess is? ‘I repeat to you. that’s all. with such intelligence and devotedness—why.

As Monsieur Porthos is a very boastful man. Your friend’s soul must stick tight to his body. you say. and that so rapidly that when Monsieur Porthos came to the PARADE. he assisted him to rise. then?’ ‘Oh.’ ‘So it was with Monsieur d’Artagnan this stranger meant to quarrel?’ ‘It appears so. He immediately fell backward. he would have found Free eBooks at Planet eBook. acknowledged himself conquered. in spite of all his rodomontades quickly threw him on his back. but he has forbidden me so strictly to say so. and not d’Artagnan. and Monsieur Porthos.’ ‘Yes.’ said d’Artagnan. I followed them from curiosity. it will be all the same. I assure you. on the contrary. on the first story. saying that Monsieur Porthos was a weathercock. The stranger placed the point of his sword at his throat.’ ‘And do you know what has become of him?’ ‘No. if she will but loosen her pursestrings. ‘Porthos will pay you with the money of the Duchess Coquenard. procurator’s wife or duchess.’ ‘And did you convey this answer to your guest?’ ‘We took good care not to do that. although she is at least fifty. the stranger made a feint and a lunge. I know all that I wish to know.monsieur. the handsomest in the inn—a chamber that I could have let ten times over. but she positively answered that she was tired of the exigencies and infidelities of Monsieur Porthos.’ *Attorney ‘But how do you know all this?’ ‘Because she flew into a great passion on receiving the letter. who. and have not seen him since. he had already three inches of steel in his breast. still gives herself jealous airs. monsieur! Because he had boasted that he would perforate the stranger with whom you left him in dispute. and that she was sure it was for some woman he had received this wound. and a master stroke. so that I saw the combat without the combatants seeing me.’ ‘And why so. he insists that nobody shall know he has received this wound except the duchess. and disappeared. too. brought him back to the hotel. named Madame Coquenard.’ ‘Has he been wounded. They placed 378 The Three Musketeers themselves on guard. Number One?’ ‘Yes. I assure you. Upon which the stranger asked his name. and that she would not send him a denier.’ ‘Very well.’ ‘Bah! Be satisfied. and learning that it was Porthos.’ ‘And what took place?’ ‘Oh! The affair was not long. then?’ ‘Monsieur.’ ‘It is a wound that confines him to his bed?’ ‘Ah.’ ‘Oh. finding himself at the mercy of his adversary. monsieur.’ ‘Zounds. I never saw him until that moment. whereas the stranger. monsieur.’ ‘Were you there. It struck me as very odd that a princess should live in the Rue aux Ours. whom he endeavored to interest by an account of his adventure. laughing. Porthos’s chamber 379 . mounted his horse. good Lord! What have I said?’ ‘You said that Porthos had received a sword cut.

and whom I meant to finish with the fourth. rising respectfully. whom I had already hit three times. and Mousqueton. Lord. I put my foot on a stone. already. you may be quite at ease. but. over two chafing dishes. be not uneasy. Porthos uttered a loud cry of joy. ‘And what has happened to you. Porthos was in bed. he is not so much of a devil as he appears. and went to give an eye to the two stewpans. according to Pathaud’s account. In addition to this he perceived that the top of a wardrobe and the marble of a commode were covered with empty bottles.’ ‘Has the host told you nothing. rejoicing to the smell. and not at all handsome. yes.’ ‘So that he still expects his money?’ ‘Oh. yielded his place to him. not much! Twenty good pistoles. monsieur! Yesterday he wrote again. you have my word. she will soon be softened. ‘Why. then?’ ‘I asked after 381 . At the top of the stairs. PARDIEU! Is that you?’ said Porthos to d’Artagnan. but it was his servant who this time put the letter in the post. and came up as soon as I could. for I should have left him Free eBooks at Planet eBook. monsieur. At the sight of his friend. Porthos cannot owe you much. ‘you know what has happened to me?’ ‘No.’ Saying these words. from which exhaled a double odor of rabbit and fish stews. it may easily be seen he has been accustomed to live well. if his mistress abandons him. upon the most conspicuous door of the corridor. He denies himself nothing. while a spit loaded with partridges was turning before the fire. looking at d’Artagnan with a certain degree of uneasiness.’ ‘How.’ ‘Do you say the procurator’s wife is old and ugly?’ ‘Fifty at least.’ ‘In that case.’ ‘Monsieur has promised me not to open his mouth about the procurator’s wife. my dear host.’ d’Artagnan knocked. without reckoning the doctor. and was playing a game at LANSQUENET with Mousqueton. he entered the chamber. Besides. So. slipped. and strained my knee. d’Artagnan went upstairs. and on each side of a large chimneypiece. leaving his host a little better satisfied with respect to two things in which he appeared to be very much interested—his debt and his life. my dear Porthos?’ continued d’Artagnan.’ ‘Never mind. ‘Ah. were boiling two stewpans. and not to say a word of the wound?’ ‘That’s agreed. and upon the bidding to come in 380 The Three Musketeers which came from inside. and continue to take all the care of him that his situation requires. to keep his hand what fashion we had executed his commission.’ added he. Excuse my not coming to meet you. ‘You are right welcome. he would kill me!’ ‘Don’t be afraid. I will answer for it. was traced in black ink a gigantic number ‘1.’ Porthos seemed to breathe more freely. he will find friends. on making a thrust at my adversary.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘Truly?’ ‘Honor! Luckily for the rascal. of which he appeared to have the particular inspection.

a man is not privileged in all ways. as it appears. but Mousqueton forages.’ ‘And what has became of him?’ ‘Oh.’ ‘And yet. she must be at her country seat. But you. laughing.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well?’ ‘Well. ‘You know the proverb ‘Unlucky at play. ‘This miserable strain confines me to my bed.’ replied Porthos.’ ‘But your host behaves very well toward you. I am armed to the teeth. let us speak of you. you see. and set off without waiting for the rest. But you are here.’ said d’Artagnan. my dear d’Artagnan?’ ‘What can you expect. my dear fellow. still more pressing than the first. ‘I wrote to her to send me fifty louis or so. my dear d’Artagnan.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘What’s that?’ ‘It is that as I was cruelly bored. I confess I began to be very uneasy on your account. without reckoning my horse. in order to amuse myself I invited a gentleman who was traveling this way to walk up. and. so I yesterday addressed another epistle to her. and we must have an increase of supplies. I have one thing to confess to you.’ ‘Truly?’ ‘No.’ You are too fortunate in your love for play not to take its revenge. with what ill luck 382 The Three Musketeers I play. with the most careless air in the world. I assure you.’ continued d’Artagnan. and I was forced to turn both him and his bill out of the 383 . my dear friend. I don’t know. ‘Not I. happy rogue that you are— have you not your duchess. my faith. So you see. of which I stood absolutely in need on account of my accident. so. my dear Porthos. I shall be about again in a few days.dead on the spot.’ replied Porthos.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. unfortunately!’ said Porthos. But you. He accepted my challenge. being in constant fear of being forced from that position. which he won into the bargain. as it were. ‘my dear Porthos. ‘So. but. and as I had the seventy-five pistoles in my pocket which you had distributed to me. ‘it appears to me that from time to time you must make SORTIES. what has happened to you?’ ‘So that this strain of the knee. and proposed a cast of dice. my dear Porthos. holding my position. directing the sick man’s attention to the full stewpans and the empty bottles. my conquest. and brings in provisions. you see that we have a reinforcement. as you say. What consequence can the reverses of fortune be to you? Have you not. keeps you in bed?’ ‘My God.’ ‘That was my intention. he had enough. that’s all. so that I am here something in the fashion of a conqueror. ‘Only three or four days ago the impertinent jackanapes gave me his bill. my dear d’Artagnan.’ ‘Why did you not have yourself conveyed to Paris? You must be cruelly bored here. my seventy-five pistoles passed from my pocket to his. lucky in love. for she has not answered me.’ And he again pointed to the bottles and the stewpans. who cannot fail to come to your aid?’ ‘Well. Friend Mousqueton.

’ ‘And what did he do the rest of his time?’ ‘Monsieur. when he was within ten paces of him. then.’ ‘Well. which did not at all suit two such delicate stomachs as ours. having made my elder brother a Huguenot. I had recourse to a little of my old trade. While Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Lord. I was brought up in the country. he had been able to have any doubts upon the superiority of our holy religion. monsieur. a quarter of an hour before. and when he saw a Catholic coming alone. the Protestant religion immediately prevailed in his mind. monsieur. and who both knew him again. he carried on a trade which I have always thought satisfactory. ‘you must render me a service. faithful to his principles.‘Mousqueton.’ ‘And what did you do?’ said d’Artagnan. I must allow. For my part. who had taken the precaution to bring each of us up in a different religion. Two hours after.’ said Mousqueton. He lowered his gun in the direction of the traveler. behind the hedges which border the roads. The consequence is that when I saw our laborers. he commenced a conversation which almost always ended by the traveler’s abandoning his purse to save his life. as in leaving the cabaret they took different directions. ‘We let them tell their story out. and I on that of the Huguenot. he felt himself filled 384 The Three Musketeers with such ardent Catholic zeal that he could not understand how. ‘Then. monsieur.’ said d’Artagnan. admiring the foresight of our poor father. ‘Oh. so they united against him and hanged him on a tree. we had done the business of both. that’s all. he was accustomed to walk with his fowling piece on his shoulder. and I shall not be sorry for him to be able to let me enjoy the same advantages with which you gratify your master. and it was he who taught me to lay a snare and ground a line.’ ‘What.’ ‘Which?’ ‘As it was a time of war between the Catholics and the Huguenots. Then they came and boasted of their fine exploit in the cabaret of the next village. Now. monsieur! There is nothing more easy. where my brother and I were drinking. I may be besieged in my turn. as you say.’ replied Mousqueton. with both of whom he had before had business. and my father in his leisure time was something of a poacher. all was 385 . It goes without saying that when he saw a Huguenot coming. One day he was surprised in a lonely road between a Huguenot and a Catholic. and as he saw the Catholics exterminate the Huguenots and the Huguenots exterminate the Catholics—all in the name of religion—he adopted a mixed belief which permitted him to be sometimes Catholic. I am Catholic—my father. with a modest air. of the most unfortunate kind. And you say in his leisure moments the worthy man was a poacher?’ ‘Yes. your father was a very intelligent fellow. my brother went and hid himself on the road of the Catholic. ‘One only needs to be sharp. monsieur?’ ‘You must give your recipe to Planchet.’ ‘And what was the end of this worthy man?’ asked d’Artagnan. sometimes a Huguenot.

unfortunately. but he does not know that he has that 387 . My friend placed a bottle at the distance of thirty paces. d’Artagnan related how Aramis. and while we breakfast. suitable for the sick. will you taste our wine. wholesome food. and we became the more intimate from there being many resemblances of character between us. monsieur. thanks be to God. thank you. Now through this ventilating hole I throw my lasso. how he had left Athos fighting at Amiens with four men who accused him of being a coiner. and as nature has endowed me with some faculties. I practiced this exercise. and how he.’ ‘How yes and no?’ ‘He furnishes it.’ ‘What connection can the New World have with the bottles which are on the commode and the wardrobe?’ ‘Patience. being wounded. monsieur. He only Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Mousqueton. and among them the New World. I slipped a few lines into his fish ponds.’ ‘This Spaniard had in his service a lackey who had accompanied him in his voyage to Mexico. So that now. only this cellar has a ventilating hole.’ said d’Artagnan. I laid a few snare in the runs.’ ‘That is it. at this day I can throw the lasso with any man in the world. monsieur? Our host has a wellfurnished cellar the key of which never leaves him. We loved sporting of all kinds better than anything. ‘arrange the table. d’Artagnan. I have just breakfasted.’ said d’Artagnan. and as I now know in which part of the cellar is the best wine.walking near the wood of Monsieur le Prince. rabbits. This lackey was my compatriot.’ ‘Willingly. ‘who furnishes the wine? Your host?’ ‘That is to say. everything will come in its turn. You see. my friend.’ ‘Explain yourself. monsieur. so that he related to me how in the plains of the Pampas the natives hunt the tiger and the wild bull with simple running nooses which they throw to a distance of twenty or thirty paces the end of a cord with such nicety.’ ‘But the wine. as Monsieur can testify. was obliged to stop at Crevecoeur. Well.’ ‘Well. your conversation is full of instructive things. yes and no. with the appetites of convalescents and with that brotherly cordiality which unites men in misfortune. had been forced to run the Comtes de Wardes through the body in order to reach England. But there the confidence of d’Artagnan stopped. what the New World has to do with the bottles which are on the commode and the wardrobe. and without prejudice say what you think of it?’ ‘Thank you. do you understand. but in face of the proof I was 386 The Three Musketeers obliged to acknowledge the truth of the recital. While Porthos and Mousqueton were breakfasting. it is true. that’s my point for sport. It has so chanced that I met with a Spaniard in my peregrinations who had seen many countries. d’Artagnan will relate to us what has happened to him during the ten days since he left us. we do not want. Now. for partridges. carp or eels— all light. and at each cast he caught the neck of the bottle in his running noose. and while reclining on the banks of his Highness’s pieces of water.’ said Porthos. Mousqueton.

d’Artagnan was not sorry at getting into his grasp beforehand the invisible strings by which he reckoned upon moving them. as he reckoned upon returning by the same route in seven or eight days. he resumed his route with Planchet. the vengeance of his Eminence was terrible. he would call for him on his way. and as he was anxious to obtain news of his two other friends. And yet. Our Bearnais was a prudent lad. de Cavois would have revealed this to him if the captain of Free eBooks at Planet eBook.added that on his return from Great Britain he had brought back four magnificent horses—one for himself. and determined as he was to make his three friends the instruments of his fortune. In his projects of intrigue for the future. then he informed Porthos that the one intended for him was already installed in the stable of the tavern. For himself. Bonacieux who was to have paid him the price of his devotedness. He thought of that young and pretty Mme. Besides. it was necessary he should stay at Chantilly to wait for the answer from his duchess. but without doubt 389 388 The Three Musketeers . he had no doubt she was a victim of the cardinal’s vengeance. Consequently he had appeared to believe all that the vainglorious Musketeer had told him. At this moment Planchet entered. he held out his hand to the wounded man. than from the fear he entertained that some serious misfortune had befallen the poor woman. How he had found grace in the eyes of the minister. and told him he was about to resume his route in order to continue his researches. Martin. to inform his master that the horses were sufficiently refreshed and that it would be possible to sleep at Clermont. Besides. we feel always a sort of mental superiority over those whose lives we know better than they suppose. and. and having again recommended Porthos to the care of Mousqueton. as he journeyed along. a profound sadness weighed upon his heart. already relieved of one of his led horses. Porthos replied that in all probability his sprain would not permit him to depart yet awhile. and paid his bill to the host. but let us hasten to say that this sadness possessed the young man less from the regret of the happiness he had missed. As d’Artagnan was tolerably reassured with regard to Porthos. and one for each of his companions. convinced that no friendship will hold out against a surprised secret. however young he might be. 26 ARAMIS AND HIS THESIS D’Artagnan had said nothing to Porthos of his wound or of his procurator’s wife. if Porthos were still at the Great St. he did not know. and as was well known. D’Artagnan wished that answer might be prompt and favorable. For the rest.

and putting his horse to the trot. and found one of those exterior staircases that are still to be seen in the yards of our old-fashioned taverns. he has not a lady with him.’ D’Artagnan walked quickly in the direction indicated. quite the contrary.’ ‘Just so. monsieur. he shortly pulled up at the door. There only his memory returned to him. at whatever pace his horse pleased. and throwing the bridle to Planchet. but after his illness grace touched him. and knock at Number Five on the second floor. monsieur.’ ‘Monsieur still insists upon seeing him?’ ‘More than ever. ‘is the poor fellow worse. External existence then resembles a sleep of which this thought is the dream.’ ‘That’s it!’ said d’Artagnan. space has no longer distance. monsieur has only to take the right-hand staircase in the courtyard. By its influence. ‘can you tell me what has become of one of my friends. then?’ ‘With the curate of Montdidier and the superior of the Jesuits of Amiens. mild. and arrive at another. springing from his horse. I am in a hurry to see him again. but I doubt whether he can see you at this moment. and well made?’ ‘That is he—wounded in the shoulder. and landscapes are lost. and he at once perceived there was no occasion for dissembling with her. threeor four-and-twenty years 390 The Three Musketeers old. But there Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Pardon. Well.’ ‘Well. We depart from one place. This time it was not a host but a hostess who received him. Nothing makes time pass more quickly or more shortens a journey than a thought which absorbs in itself all the faculties of the organization of him who 391 . His eye took in at a glance the plump.’ ‘With whom is he. monsieur. that is all. where is this dear Aramis? Let me embrace him. Of the interval passed. then?’ ‘No. mountains. He shook his head.’ said d’Artagnan. the six or eight leagues that separated Chantilly from Crevecoeur.the Guards had found him at home. he is still here. ‘My good dame. PARDIEU! My dear dame.’ ‘Why so? Has he a lady with him?’ ‘Jesus! What do you mean by that? Poor lad! No. monsieur. perceived the cabaret at which he had left Aramis. amiable.’ ‘Good heavens!’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘you restore me to life. whom we were obliged to leave here about a dozen days ago?’ ‘A handsome young man. time has no longer measure. It was as a prey to this hallucination that d’Artagnan traveled.’ asked d’Artagnan. cheerful countenance of the mistress of the place. or of fearing anything from one blessed with such a joyous physiognomy. without his being able to remember on his arrival in the village any of the things he had passed or met with on the road. nothing remains in the memory but a vague mist in which a thousand confused images of trees. ‘I had forgotten that he was only a Musketeer for a time. d’Artagnan was a physiognomist.’ ‘Ah. and he determined to take orders.

Bazin. after many years of trial. and he had considered as a warning from heaven the double accident which had happened to him. In their stead d’Artagnan thought he perceived in an obscure corner a discipline cord suspended from a nail in the wall. to defend the door bravely. had alone kept him in the service of a Musketeer—a service in which. He resolved. had disappeared as if by enchantment. and barred his passage with the more intrepidity that. no doubt. his head enveloped in a sort of round flat cap. and on his left the curate of Montdidier. Aramis lifted up his head. as Bazin said. his soul was in constant jeopardy. It may be easily understood that in the present disposition of his master nothing could be more disagreeable to Bazin than the arrival of d’Artagnan. and d’Artagnan went into the chamber. and for fear. In all probability. the sight of him did not Free eBooks at Planet eBook. suffering at once in body and mind. and with the other turned the handle of the door of Number Five. terminate before night. and he awaited with impatience the moment. was seated before an oblong table. in a black gown. which had commenced with the morning and would not. Bazin was stationed in the corridor. But d’Artagnan took very little heed of the eloquent discourse of M. Aramis. All the mundane objects that generally strike the eye on entering the room of a young man. this time his master would not retract. Bazin was then at the height of joy. pistols. The union of physical pain with moral uneasiness had produced the effect so long desired. and as he had no desire to support a polemic discussion with his friend’s valet. At the noise made by d’Artagnan in entering. In fact. Aramis. and as. particularly when that young man is a Musketeer. Bazin found himself near a result of which he had ever been ambitious. when Aramis would throw aside the uniform and assume the 393 . and beheld his friend. plumed hat. and embroideries and laces of all kinds and sorts. but to the great astonishment of the young man. covered with rolls of paper and enormous volumes in folio. that the sight of them might bring his master back to ideas of this world. betrayed by the mistress of the inn. and only admitted the mysterious light calculated for beatific reveries. At his right hand was placed the superior of the Jesuits. the dream of poor Bazin had always been to serve a churchman. he endeav392 The Three Musketeers ored to prove to the newcomer that it would be the height of indiscretion to disturb his master in his pious conference. then. the sudden disappearance of his mistress and the wound in his shoulder. Bazin had laid his hands upon sword. that is to say. had at length fixed his eyes and his thoughts upon religion. The curtains were half drawn. The daily-renewed promise of the young man that the moment would not long be delayed. he said. the defiles of the chamber of Aramis were as well guarded as the gardens of Armida. which might cast his master back again into that vortex of mundane affairs which had so long carried him away. he simply moved him out of the way with one hand. not much unlike a CALOTTE. he could not say that Aramis was absent. always in the future.was no getting at the place of sojourn of the future abbe. The door opened.

your Reverences. The question is this: Monsieur the Principal thinks that my thesis ought to be dogmatic and didactic.’ replied the young man. with unction. he’ll come round. bowing together.’ ‘To himself. ‘Now. ‘now.’ ‘Your thesis! Are you then making a thesis?’ ‘Without doubt.’ said d’Artagnan. dear d’Artagnan.’ thought d’Artagnan.’ ‘So am I delighted to see you.’ continued Aramis. ‘for by what I see. believe me. Then another error seized me on seeing you in company with these gentlemen—I was afraid you were dangerously ill. pointing to d’Artagnan with his hand.’ continued Aramis. who guessed d’Artagnan’s meaning. dear friend.’ ‘The opinion of a swordsman can have very little weight. monsieur. and he gazed. ‘On the 395 . I am led to believe that you are confessing to these gentlemen. with the knowledge of these gentlemen. Monsieur the Curate of Montdidier. ‘Good day. my friend. has just escaped from a serious danger. ‘believe me.produce much effect upon the Musketeer. ‘I disturb you.’ replied they. ‘You disturb me? Oh.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ Aramis colored imperceptibly. who could not believe what the hostess and Bazin had successively told him. and that I had found my way into the apartment of some churchman.’ replied Aramis. ‘your opinion will be very valuable. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ continued d’Artagnan. and I are arguing certain theological questions in which we have been much interested.’ said Aramis. darted at him a glance which might have been thought threatening. which was as white and plump as that of a woman. upon the three persons before him. who is my friend. ‘that’s not bad!’ ‘This gentleman. ‘I have not failed to do so. Monsieur the Principal of Amiens.’ ‘Ah. I shall be delighted to have your opinion. perhaps. I swear. ‘and you had better be satisfied. ‘and by taking part in our discussion may assist us with your intelligence. who began to be uneasy at the turn things were taking. returning their salutation. so completely was his mind detached from the things of this world. permit me to declare I am rejoiced to see you safe and sound. dear d’Artagnan. to himself! But what makes you doubt it?’ ‘I was afraid I had made a mistake in the chamber. half stupefied. and addressing the two ecclesiastics. taking the same graceful position in his easy chair that he would have assumed in bed. I am glad to see you.’ replied the Jesuit. a thesis is always a requisite. and as a proof of what I say. 394 The Three Musketeers ‘Praise God.’ said Aramis.’ The two men in black. and which he held in the air to cause the blood to descend. quite the contrary.’ ‘Ordination!’ cried d’Artagnan. but d’Artagnan took no heed of it. as you have heard. ‘You arrive in good time.’ The two men in black bowed in their turn. ‘although I am not yet sure that it is Aramis I am speaking to. ‘In the examination which precedes ordination. my dear Aramis. and complacently examining his hand.

’ resumed Aramis. Are you there.’ Aramis cast a glance upon d’Artagnan to see what effect all this 397 . in a pleased tone. ‘I am fatigued with reading. ‘but the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and in which I perceive there is matter for magnificent elaboration-’UTRAQUE MANUS IN BENEDICENDO CLERICIS INFERIORIBUS NECESSARIA EST. not the HAND. whose erudition we are well acquainted with. ‘Yes. ‘‘The two hands are indispensable for priests of the inferior orders.’ said he to the Jesuit. please to understand-Moses blessed with the hands. and that in all humility. admirable! PRORSUS ADMIRABILE!’ continued Aramis. ‘See what an exordium!’ cried the Jesuit. on the contrary. and so did the curate. who. Peter. I should find myself.’ replied Aramis. carefully watched the Jesuit in order to keep step with him.’ replied the Jesuit. that the duties of mounting guard and the service of the king have caused me to neglect study a little. what does the Gospel say? IMPONITE MANUS. while the curate. ‘Let us speak French. Monsieur the Principal is desirous that my thesis should be dogmatic. ‘Well.’ ‘Yes. a little put out. and repeated his words like an echo. FACILUS NATANS. of whom the Popes are the successors. ‘Monsieur d’Artagnan will enjoy our conversation better. and not MANUM-place the HANDS. and found his friend gaping enough to split his jaws. I have confessed to these learned ecclesiastics.d’Artagnan. ‘QUEMADMODUM INTER COELORUM IMMENSITATEM.’ ‘Certainly.’ ‘Place the HANDS. about as strong as d’Artagnan with respect to Latin. and then he blessed them with his two hands. evinced no more interest on hearing this quotation than he had at that of M. he held out both his arms while the Hebrews beat their enemies. for the sake of saying something. turned upon d’Artagnan a look full of gratitude.’’ ‘An admirable subject!’ cried the Jesuit. and all this Latin confuses me. with a gesture. ‘PORRIGE DIGITOS-present the fingers. which would be to these hard theological questions what morals are to metaphysics in philosophy.’ D’Artagnan began to be tired. ‘Which means. would rather it should be ideal.’’ D’Artagnan.’ continued the Jesuit. therefore. for my part. while I. now?’ ‘CERTES. As to d’Artagnan. Moses. This is the reason why Monsieur the Principal has proposed to me the following subject. he remained perfectly insensible to the enthusiasm of the two men in black. ‘St.’ repeated the curate. de Treville in allusion to the gifts he pretended that d’Artagnan had received from the Duke of Buckingham.’ repeated the curate. greatly delighted. when they bestow the benediction.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘but which requires a profound study of both the Scriptures and the Fathers. let us see what is to be derived from this gloss. Besides. Now. my father. the servant of God-he was but a servant. 396 The Three Musketeers more at my ease. that he might perfectly understand. ‘Exordium. which has not yet been treated upon. ‘Admirable and dogmatic!’ repeated the curate. in a subject of my own choice.

‘You approach that famous point of free will which is a mortal rock. for heaven’s sake-’ resumed Aramis. that is my conclusion. Peter. which made the table bend beneath its weight.’ resumed the Jesuit. and was becoming as mad as those he saw. And with how many fingers does he bless? With THREE fingers.’ said the curate. Chrysostom in folio. I implore you!’ D’Artagnan felt himself bewildered. ARGUMENTUM OMNI DENUDATUM ORNAMENTO. forced to hold his tongue from not comprehending half the language they employed. whose book will 398 The Three Musketeers sooner or later be burned by the hands of the executioner. my young friend.’ ‘The FINGERS. ‘do not regret the devil. my young friend. a little amazed by the shower of arguments that poured upon his head. ‘The Pope is the successor of St. if it is not to your taste-’NON INUTILE EST DESIDERIUM IN OBLATIONE’. ‘I do not say I regret. ‘for that thesis touches closely upon heresy. and in his enthusiasm he struck a St. unhappy man!’ cried the Jesuit. which would not be orthodox.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. however. I will never pronounce that sentence. ‘A little regret is not unsuitable in an offering to the Lord.’ ‘And that is mine also.’ continued the Jesuit.’’ ‘Stop there!’ cried the Jesuit. shaking his head sorrowfully.’ continued the Jesuit. without allowing him time to speak. ‘St.’ said the curate. He was. no.’ All crossed themselves.’ added the curate. you will be lost. that is. dear d’Artagnan. The Pope. D’Artagnan trembled. ‘DESIDERAS DIABOLUM. ‘But. therefore blesses with the fingers. the rest-ORDINES INFERIORESof the ecclesiastical hierarchy bless in the name of the holy archangels and angels. and the world is the devil. ‘He regrets the devil! Ah. ‘But listen to me. but at the same time I perceive it would be overwhelming for me. ‘CERTES. D’Artagnan thought it was proper to follow this example. ‘How will you prove. It seemed to him as though he were in a madhouse. Peter blessed with the FINGERS. bless with holy water 399 . You face the insinuations of the Pelagians and the semiPelagians. I had chosen this text-tell me. Take care. my young friend.thing is subtle. The most humble clerks such as our deacons and sacristans. There is the subject simplified.’ ‘But. You are inclining toward false doctrines. To regret the world is to regret the devil. There is a proposition almost like it in the AUGUSTINUS of the heresiarch Jansenius.’ resumed Aramis with politeness mingled with a little impatience. ‘I do justice to the beauties of this thesis.’ said Aramis.’ ‘You will be lost. I could make of that subject two volumes the size of this. and one for the Holy Ghost. which resemble an infinite number of blessing fingers. groaning. my Reverend-’ replied Aramis. ‘that we ought to regret the world when we offer ourselves to God? Listen to this dilemma: God is God. and represents the three divine powers. to be sureone for the Father. then. one for the Son.

’ said Aramis. ALTISIMMA VOCE. ‘And then. however. disdainfully. ‘the world still speaks within you in a loud voice. my reverend father.The Jesuit raised his hands toward heaven. ‘it is theology in verse. Father. it would have the success of one of Monsieur Patru’s pleadings.’ cried he.’ ‘Work slowly. ‘now your thesis would please the ladies. ‘There it is. and that great man paid me a thousand compliments.’ ‘Please God!’ cried Aramis. let the sermon be clear. indeed. I quit the world. I can answer for myself. The world is not wanting in attractions. my young friend. ‘A RONDEAU!’ said the 401 .’’ ‘That is true. Tous vos malheurs se verront 400 The Three Musketeers termines. The Jesuit persisted in his opinion. If to God your tears are shed. All your woes will melt in air. my resolution is irrevocable. You who weep!’ d’Artagnan and the curate appeared pleased. with a little look of diffidence.’ ‘Mundane presumption!’ ‘I know myself. the Scripture says positively. ‘we leave you in an excelFree eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘Make a sacrifice unto the Lord. ‘Here it is.’ ‘A RONDEAU!’ said the Jesuit.’ ‘Then you persist in continuing that thesis?’ ‘I feel myself called upon to treat that.’ cried the Jesuit. ‘Repeat it! Repeat it!’ cried d’Artagnan. While dragging on a life of care. ‘and then I made a certain RONDEAU upon it last year. ‘it will make a little change. was not exempt from a shade of hypocrisy: ‘Vous qui pleurez un passe plein de charmes. I will see about the continuation of it. Et qui trainez des jours infortunes. and I tremble lest grace prove not efficacious.’’ ‘Yes.’ hastily interrupted the Jesuit. it is a syllogism. ‘Beware of a profane taste in your theological style. pinching his ear to make it red. then I make a sacrifice. transported.’ ‘The devil!’ said d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan?’ ‘I think so. You follow the world. The Jesuit and the curate quite started from their chairs. ‘Now. Now. for it is religious. Vous qui pleurez!’ ‘You who weep for pleasures fled. ‘No.’ said Aramis.’ said his antagonists. Quand a Dieu seul vous offrirez vos larmes.’ ‘Be satisfied. and the curate did the same.’ ‘Not so. ‘This is the point of departure. mechanically. on seeing that his acolyte was going astray. which I showed to Monsieur Voiture.’ replied Aramis. but pray grant me that it is acting with an ill grace to offer to the Lord only that with which we are perfectly disgusted! Don’t you think so. What says Augustine on this subject: ‘SEVERUS SIT CLERICORUM VERBO. and no other.’ said the curate. as he rubbed his hands to make them white. which.’ said the curate. and tomorrow I hope you will be satisfied with the corrections I shall have made in consequence of your advice.

I will put up with it for the sake of remaining with you. and advanced toward the door. ‘and we have not to fear that one portion of the seed may have fallen upon stone. ‘you see that I am returned to my fundamental ideas. have you not. and I am devilish hungry.’ replied Aramis. let us not theologize. Aramis. As for me. another upon the highway. took the breviary of the curate and the missal of the Jesuit. Aramis conducted them to the foot of the stairs. ‘I mean spinach.’ ‘What do you mean by tetragones?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ said the curate. was beginning to attack the quick. d’Artagnan!’ ‘The devil! Why. If you can be satisfied with my dinner-it consists of cooked tetragones and fruits. ‘Farewell. and that is a serious infraction of the rule-for eggs are meat. bowed to Aramis and d’Artagnan. as that gentle402 The Three Musketeers man said just now. on such a day I can neither eat flesh nor see it eaten. Aramis said. I have almost forgotten the little Latin I have ever known.’ ‘Yes. people jest with death.’ ‘We will dine directly. who for an hour past had been gnawing his nails with impatience. the ground is all sown.’ said the Jesuit.’ ‘And so. my son. and walked respectfully before them to clear their way.’ ‘Oh. only you must please to remember that this is Friday. but never mind. be assured your soul will. who had been standing listening to all this controversy with a pious jubilation. When left alone. whose senses were still in a state of confusion. the two friends at first kept an embarrassed silence. sprang toward them.’ ‘I am grateful to you for the sacrifice.’ ‘Yes. and then immediately came up again to d’Artagnan. but I confess I always thought you jested. Now.’ said Aramis.’ ‘With such things! Oh. my friend. rash youth. ‘till tomorrow. Aramis. You must have had enough for today. who began to feel all his patience exhausted. for death is the door which leads to perdition or to salvation.’ ‘Till 403 . It however became necessary for one of them to break it first. AVES COELI COMEDERUNT ILLAM. Bazin.lent tone of mind. d’Artagnan. Then I confess to you that I have eaten nothing since ten o’clock this morning.’ ‘This feast is not very succulent. since they engender chickens. ‘but if your body be not greatly benefited by it. but if you please. and as d’Artagnan appeared determined to leave that honor to his companion. The two men in black rose. my friend?’ ‘Yes. or that the birds of heaven have eaten the rest. You have often heard me speak of them. ‘You promise to become one of the lights of the Church.’ ‘Plague stifle you and your Latin!’ said d’Artagnan.’ said the Jesuit. these plans of retreat have been formed for a long time.’ ‘Granted. ‘but on your account I will add some eggs. you are decidedly going into the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Heaven grant that this light prove not a devouring fire!’ D’Artagnan. uneasily. efficacious grace has touched you.’ ‘And people are wrong.

turned upon his heel. and interrupted him exactly in the middle of the second couplet.’ ‘Well. ‘Monsieur. You see I am a good sort of a man. and although unknown to the rest of the world. with a jealous eye. then. and re-entered the house.’ ‘Go on. and quickly came up with me.’ ‘I? I know nothing about it. which I must admit was rather free. That evening I had translated an episode of Judith.’ ‘You don’t know I quit the seminary?’ ‘Not at all. He said nothing.’ ‘Do not jest about holy things. I became very pale. reading the LIVES OF THE SAINTS to the mistress of the house. he burst into a laugh. monsieur. close to La Force. listen to me. my officer was there. and my blood is warm.’ ‘And I give you absolution beforehand. my friend. An officer who saw me. for you know that I forced myself when I became a Musketeer. but could find none-I was silent. I re-enter it. Monsieur the Abbe! If you venture again into the house in which I have met you this evening. I sought out the best fencing master in Paris. was reading them a second time with me.’ and I confess to you. Her pose. I was about to become an abbe. in three days I should have been twenty. I felt my legs fail me. according to custom. Then. ‘no one has ever dared to give me any. then. and all was arranged. and at my request the ceremony was postponed for a year.’ ‘I had been at the seminary from nine years old. and seeing it so long coming.’ I really think I must have been frightened. d’Artagnan. 404 The Three Musketeers but when I went out he followed. then. and had just communicated my verses to the lady. to a house which I frequented with much pleasure: when one is young. who gave me all sorts of compliments. One evening I went. I informed my superiors that I did not feel myself sufficiently prepared for ordination.’ ‘I do not enter the Church. ‘does it still displease you that I should frequent a certain house Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said I. I listen. what can be expected?—one is weak. The officer waited for his reply.’ answered 405 . and leaning on my shoulder. and every day for a year I took that lesson. I returned to the seminary. I sought for a reply. I deserted the Church for the world. As I expected. ‘Monsieur the Abbe. and went to a ball given by a lady friend of mine and to which I knew my man was invited. Besides. ‘do you like blows with a cane?’ ‘I cannot say. assumed the costume of a cavalier. my dear d’Artagnan. I hung my cassock on a peg. It was in the Rue des FranceBourgeois. ‘Confess yourselves to one another. entered suddenly and without being announced. The insult was terrible. on the anniversary of the day on which I had been insulted. I felt it live and fester at the bottom of my heart. I went up to him as he was singing a love ditty and looking tenderly at a lady. ‘I am a gentleman born. as you may have remarked. the Scriptures say.’ ‘This is my story. I warn you.’ said he. wounded this officer.Church? What will our two friends say? What will Monsieur de Treville say? They will treat you as a deserter. I made an agreement with him to take a lesson every day. I will dare it myself.

in a jeering tone. not tomorrow morning. a year before.’ ‘We went out. and at the first pass I laid him stark dead.’ ‘I do insist upon it. but immediately.’ The eye of Aramis kindled in spite of himself. rather than yesterday or tomorrow? What has happened to you today. looking at his friend with an air of doubt. I took him to the Rue Payenne. ah! I recollect now. We immediately drew. with the greatest pleasure. a beggar. ‘Now. The king entertained 406 The Three Musketeers great regard for my father. it was supposed that I had accommodated him thus.’ ‘Higher? And who am I. one deeper and more painful—a wound made by a woman.’ continued Aramis.’ ‘Aramis.’ ‘Come. ‘do not talk of such things. And for whom-for some GRISETTE. ‘do not disturb yourselves. and Porthos. my dear d’Artagnan. then.’ ‘And why today. Life is full of humiliFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘The devil!’ cried d’Artagnan. and to dust I return. ‘well. It was a superb moonlight night. he had paid me the compliment I have related to you.’ ‘What.’ ‘This wound? Bah. blushing.’ ‘Ah. monsieur? I do not know you. and suffer love pains? VANITAS VANITATUM! According to your idea. some chambermaid with whom I have trifled in some garrison? Fie!’ ‘Pardon. and I am sure it is not that which gives you the most pain. then?’ said Aramis. allow me time just to kill this gentleman.’ said he. dissembling his emotion under a feigned carelessness. at the very same hour. ‘You have one at heart. if you please. Aramis. You may understand that the moment has come for me to re-enter the bosom of the Church. and as he was found in the Rue Payenne with a great sword wound through his body. an unknown-who hates slavery. to exactly the same spot where.’ ‘I am. whose acquaintance I made about that period. who had in addition to my lessons taught me some effective tricks of fence.’ said I. if you like.’ ‘No. ‘Dust I am. ‘What is your business with me. Athos.’ ‘Tomorrow morning. Aramis!’ cried d’Artagnan. to nourish such ambition? A poor Musketeer. and the uniform was granted. it is now nearly healed. my brain is turned. my dear 407 . ‘as the ladies did not see the singer come back. and I will return and finish the last couplet. and translates Judith into verse. to raise all these melancholy ideas?’ ‘This wound. and finds himself ill-placed in the world. has been a warning to me from heaven. but I thought you carried your eyes higher.of La Rue Payenne? And would you still cane me if I took it into my head to disobey you? The officer looked at me with astonishment.’ said the officer.’ ‘If you absolutely insist. and then said. then. prevailed upon me to solicit the uniform of a Musketeer. what do you want with me?’ ‘I want you to spare time to take a walk with me. ‘the little abbe who reads LIVES OF THE SAINTS. and the matter created some scandal which obliged me to renounce the cassock for a time. ‘Ah.’ said the officer. Ladies. who had fallen at the siege of Arras.

’ said d’Artagnan. She is perhaps a prisoner.’ said d’Artagnan. in his turn heaving a profound sigh.’ ‘And on my part.’ said the young man maliciously. ‘nothing. ‘Fie! Friends are shadows! The world is a sepulcher!’’ ‘Alas.’ resumed Aramis. which. whom I adore. becoming still more melancholy. I wish to speak of you—of our friends. ‘and let us burn this letter. and consequently the women. while I do belong to the earth. Beware of giving anyone the clue to your griefs. that if you learn no news of her. ‘that is my story you are relating!’ ‘How?’ ‘Yes. my dear d’Artagnan. ‘Fie! Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but you have at least this consolation. no doubt.’ said d’Artagnan. Aramis continued. it is a sepulcher and nothing else. silence is the last joy of the unhappy.’ ‘What letter?’ cried Aramis.’ ‘The devil! All this is very sad which you tell me. forever. from Madame de Chevreuse’s chambermaid. pretending to search for it. then. she is perhaps dead!’ ‘Yes. with a 409 . in order to appear smart and attractive. ‘trust me! Conceal your wounds when you have any. perhaps. but I find you so completely detached from everything! To love you cry. ‘all the ties which attach him to life break in the hand of man. tomorrow you will be no more to me than a shadow.’ ‘So you renounce the world. and which was given to me for you. I do not know where she is or whither they have conducted her. you will no longer exist. and sealed her letter with a duchess’s coronet. from some heartbroken waiting woman. my dear Aramis. who was obliged to return to Tours with her mistress. even. ‘And yet. it is because all communication with you is interdicted. some desponding GRISETTE. particularly the golden ties. that you can say to yourself she has not quit you voluntarily.’ ‘What will you? My vocation commands me. while I—‘ ‘Well?’ ‘Nothing. but made no answer. announces to you some fresh infidelity of your GRISETTE or your chambermaid. are but shadows. eagerly. giving to his voice a slight tone of bitterness. the curious suck our tears as flies suck the blood of a wounded hart. and who.’ ‘But from whom is that letter?’ ‘Oh. stole some perfumed paper.’ ‘Alas. a woman whom I love. or rather. As for the world. ‘But fortunately the world is a sepulcher.’ continued he. let us say no more about it. that is a settled thing—a resolution registered!’ ‘Forever! You are my friend today. ‘Well. it carries 408 The Three Musketeers me away. Oh. and love is a sentiment to which you cry.’ replied Aramis. then. ‘A letter which was sent to your abode in your absence. you will find it so yourself. the men. has just been torn from me by force. ‘I wished to speak of you.ations and sorrows.’ said Aramis.’ D’Artagnan smiled.’ ‘What do you say?’ ‘Hold! I must have lost it.

thanks!’ cried Aramis. Aramis made a bound. ‘Thanks. almost in a state of delirium. ‘Now this is the moment to consecrate your existence to the King of kings. take back those horrible vegetables. read it. Let us drink. ‘you are killing me!’ ‘Well. NON INUTILE DESIDERIUM OBLATIONE. and the spinach onto the floor. and four bottles of old Burgundy. a fat capon. she is not faithless. d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan. here it is at last!’ said d’Artagnan.’ Bazin. which had fallen on the floor. At that moment Bazin entered with the spinach and the omelet. ‘This same waiting maid seems to have an agreeable style. come. my dear d’Artagnan. let me embrace you.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Go to the devil with your Latin. mutton leg dressed with garlic. without comprehending the cause of this change. tell me a little of what is going on in the world yonder. or rather devoured it.’ said d’Artagnan. his countenance radiant. Chrysostom. in a melancholy manner. seized the letter.Fie!’’ ‘d’Artagnan. ‘if you persist in 410 The Three Musketeers offering him a civility. ‘Be off. ‘She was forced to return to Tours. Happiness almost stifles me!’ The two friends began to dance around the venerable St. allowed the omelet to slip into the spinach. she still loves me! Come. who looked at his master. carelessly. my friend.’ cried Aramis. ‘Return whence you came.’ said the messenger. and while we do so. and that poor kickshaw! Order a larded hare. as he drew the letter from his pocket. throwing his skullcap in his face. MORBLEU! Let us drink while the wine is fresh! Let us drink 411 . you wretch!’ cried Aramis. kicking about famously the sheets of the thesis.

’ ‘What. he found him at the window.’ The next morning. that any harm can have happened to him?’ asked Aramis.’ said Aramis. is that mine. It would be a pleasure worthy of a prince to travel upon such horses.’ ‘No.’ ‘PESTE! They are three superb animals!’ ‘I am glad they please you. too?’ ‘Without doubt.’ ‘And the rich caparison. and handles his sword so skillfully. for one of those three horses is yours.’ ‘That’s the first time I ever heard of anybody trying to cure gunshot wounds with cat-o’-nine-tails. if you can. and the other horse.’ said Aramis. ‘Do you think. Sleep as soundly as you can tonight. it must have been the king who made you such a present. as the horse which paws the ground is mine. therefore you may be excused. and don’t leave off in a hurry. I have no preference. you must need repose. those rich holsters. you may enjoy that pleasure. Nobody has a higher opinion of the courage and skill of Athos than I have. that saddle studded with silver-are they all for me?’ ‘For you and nobody else. we will take our departure together. then.’ ‘No doubt. that velvet housing. my dear Aramis. now that you speak French. bah! Which?’ ‘Whichever of the three you like. ‘What are you looking at?’ asked d’Artagnan. and illness renders the head weak. ‘My faith! I am admiring three magnificent horses which the stable boys are leading about. ‘Athos is so 413 . I have left off laughing. I fear lest Athos should have been beaten down by serving men. and tomorrow.’ ‘Certainly it was not the cardinal. Those fellows strike hard.’ ‘Well.’ ‘I will try to accompany you. Yesterday I undertook to employ that cord which you see hanging against the wall.’ ‘Till tomorrow.27 THE WIFE OF ATHOS ‘We have now to search for Athos. This is why I wish to set out again as soon as possible. ‘for iron-nerved as you are. and an excellent dinner had made one of them forget his thesis and the other his fatigue. when he had informed him of all that had passed since their departure from the capital.’ ‘Ah. when d’Artagnan entered Aramis’s chamber. d’Artagnan.’ ‘When do you mean to set out?’ 412 The Three Musketeers ‘Tomorrow at daybreak.’ ‘You laugh. ‘though I scarcely feel in a condition to mount on horseback. but don’t trouble yourFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said d’Artagnan to the vivacious Aramis. but pain prevented my continuing the pious exercise.’ ‘Why. belongs to Athos. which is caracoling. so brave. then. but I like better to hear my sword clang against lances than against staves. but you were ill.

make yourself easy. and caused him to Free eBooks at Planet eBook. had kept his eye on him. reflect a little. ‘That last order is useless. no more glosses upon the fingers or upon benedictions. caught him in his arms. Bazin.’ said d’Artagnan. helm on head and partisan in hand.’ interrupted d’Artagnan.’ ‘I choose that which the red-headed boy is leading. what do you say of him? He is a cardinal likewise. almost weeping. pray? You do not avoid going to war by that means. ‘No. ‘there are loaded pistols in your holsters. dull and spiritless. I dare say. On my soul.’ said he. hey?’ Aramis smiled. you see. ‘That’s all right. that is all. while darkening his brow.’ While this dialogue was going on. ‘I will make verses. I have good luck. who. the two young men and the poor lackey descended. ‘You will find me ready to follow you. verses perfumed with the odor of the billet from the attendant of Madame de Chevreuse. He probably had 415 . and assisted him to his chamber. ride him a little every day. I could mount him with thirty balls in my body. And Monsieur de Nogaret de la Valette.’ Bazin sighed. come here this minute. ‘I will go alone in search of Athos. take care of yourself.’ Bazin appeared on the threshold.’ ‘Alas!’ sighed Bazin.’ replied Aramis. and Aramis 414 The Three Musketeers sprang into the saddle with his usual grace and agility.’ ‘You are a man of brass. sprang toward him. D’Artagnan.’ They took leave of each other.’ ‘Monsieur was already such a good theologian.’ ‘It is yours!’ ‘Good heaven! That is enough to drive away all my pains. ‘Come.’ ‘Oh. ‘people of all conditions gain the kingdom of heaven. Monsieur Bazin.’ cried Aramis. d’Artagnan was trotting along in the direction of Amiens. monsieur. and in ten minutes. ‘Hold my stirrup. ‘Yes. handsome stirrups! HOLA. and that will accustom you to his maneuvers. This idea. think only that one of the three is your property. drew several sighs from him.self whence they come. How was he going to find Athos? Should he find him at all? The position in which he had left him was critical. But how do you mean to pass your time till I come back? No more theses. Of what use is it to be a churchman. ‘he might have become a bishop.’ replied Aramis. ‘I know it. Bazin. Ask his lackey how often he has had to prepare lint of him. As to the horse.’ said Bazin. but my poor Bazin. after having commended his friend to the cares of the hostess and Bazin. that will console him. but after a few vaults and curvets of the noble animal his rider felt his pains come on so insupportably that he turned pale and became unsteady in his seat. the cardinal is about to make the next campaign.’ said he. foreseeing such an event. make yourself easy on that head. and perhaps a cardinal.’ ‘Well. my dear Aramis. Teach Bazin prosody. everything is turned topsy-turvy in the world nowadays.

de Treville. who cultivated his with almond paste and perfumed oil. were the despair of Aramis. their coats of arms. was that delicate knowledge of the world and of the usages of the most brilliant society—those manners of a high degree which 417 . Athos was the eldest. Indeed. This Athos. and the poor with God’s Seventh Commandment. as if uncon416 The Three Musketeers sciously to himself. who took a pride in being considered a past master therein. Two or three times. replaced a verb in its right tense and a noun in its case. and the least resembling him in appearance. he had. of which he took little care. Yet he entertained a marked preference for this gentleman. a straight nose. more than the friendship of d’Artagnan. Of all his friends. that bravery which might have been termed blind if it had not been the result of the rarest coolness—such qualities attracted more than the esteem. Athos in his most cheerful days might advantageously sustain a comparison. a chin cut like that of Brutus. Athos knew all the noble families of the kingdom. and had one day when conversing on this great art astonished even Louis XIII himself. His hands. The sound of his voice was at once penetrating and melodious. The noble and distinguished air of Athos. as old men turn toward physical and Free eBooks at Planet eBook. when placed beside M. this creature so beautiful. then. Like all the great nobles of that period. lovers with the rigorous delicacy of our era. to the great astonishment of his friends. was seen to turn insensibly toward material life. Etiquette had no minutiae unknown to him. their alliances. Besides. and then. when Aramis allowed some rudimental error to escape him. who was always retiring. If a repast were on foot. his education had been so little neglected. the elegant and noble courtier. that forced and cynical gaiety. that which was inconceivable in Athos. with piercing eyes. in his least actions. his probity was irreproachable. And yet this nature so distinguished. but his person was so admirably shaped and so well proportioned that more than once in his struggles with Porthos he had overcome the giant whose physical strength was proverbial among the Musketeers. and the origin of them. those flashes of greatness which from time to time broke out from the shade in which he voluntarily kept himself. His head. they attracted his admiration. in his tastes and sympathies. placing every guest exactly in the rank which his ancestors had earned for him or that he had made for himself.formulate to himself a few vows of vengeance. had altogether an indefinable character of grandeur and grace. even with respect to scholastic studies. He knew what were the rights of the great land owners. in an age in which soldiers compromised so easily with their religion and their consciences. He was profoundly versed in hunting and falconry. so rare at this time among gentlemen. that unalterable equality of temper which made him the most pleasant companion in the world. even. If a question in heraldry were started. their genealogy. that he smiled at the scraps of Latin which Aramis sported and which Porthos pretended to understand. Athos rode and fenced to perfection. Athos presided over it better than any other. this essence so fine. was a very extraordinary man. But still further. He was of middle height.

Athos never received any letters. read in the faint glance of his master his least desire. the English. as had often been vaguely said to d’Artagnan. had never revealed anything. ‘poor Athos is perhaps at this moment dead. even in the most complete intoxication. he remained scarcely a man. Then the demigod vanished. whose inquiring disposition we are acquainted with. for unlike Porthos. I am taken’? And when he had discharged Free eBooks at Planet eBook. d’Artagnan. This mysterious shade. He shrugged his shoulders when people spoke of the future. win all this again with the addition of a hundred louis. His head hanging down. Athos when he won remained as unmoved as when he lost. for the sadness generally became more intense toward the fine season of the year. to win in one night three thousand pistoles. without his hands losing their pearly hue. If the four friends were assembled at one of these moments. June and July were the terrible months with Athos. Athos would look for hours together at his bottle. who. was the share Athos furnished to the conversation. his eye dull. as we have said. in his hours of gloom—and these hours were frequent—was extinguished as to the whole of the luminous portion of him. rendered still more interesting the man whose eyes or mouth. rendered still darker. his speech slow and painful. and his brilliant side disappeared as into profound darkness. or at Grimaud. He had been known. an atmospheric influence which darkened his countenance. then. spread over his whole person. without his conversation. ‘On.’ ‘Without reckoning. of which he is ignorant of the result. which wine however. This excess of bilious humor could not be attributed to play. His secret. Athos never had concerns which all his friends did not know. without his beautiful eyebrow being heightened or lowered half a line. a word. to lose them even to the gold-embroidered belt for gala days. and without appearing to be otherwise affected by wine than by a more marked constriction of the brow and by a deeper sadness. in the 418 The Three Musketeers circle of the Musketeers. ceasing to be calm and agreeable. on. For the present he had no anxiety. who accompanied the variations of chance with songs or oaths. and from which he can derive no advantage. D’Artagnan. In exchange for his silence Athos drank enough for four.’ added Planchet to his master’s audibly expressed reflections. for in truth he only drank to combat this sadness. his glass. was in the past. thrown forth occasionally with a violent effort.moral imbecility.’ thought d’Artagnan. as with our neighbors. and dead by my fault—for it was I who dragged him into this affair. It could not be said that it was wine which produced this sadness. Athos. monsieur. accustomed to obey him by signs. however skillfully questions had been put to him. Do you remember how he cried. Neither was it. had not—whatever interest he had in satisfying his curiosity on this subject—been able to assign any cause for these fits of for the periods of their recurrence. and satisfied it immediately. which was cheerful that evening. ‘ 419 . ‘that we perhaps owe our lives to him. of which he did not know the origin.

What have you done with that gentleman against whom you had the audacity. and at half past eleven they were at the door of the cursed inn. ‘What. mute with anger and anxiety.’ replied the latter. He entered the hostelry with his hat pulled over his eyes. monseigneur. ‘I have not that honor. monseigneur. it was I. and be merciful! Sit down. his eyes dazzled by the brilliant style in which d’Artagnan traveled. unhappy wretch as I am!’ ‘That gentleman. ‘for I now recollect you. It was you who rode off at the moment I had that unfortunate difference with the gentleman you speak of. who sent me a reinforcement of six men. for d’Artagnan had assumed a threatening attitude. your countenances—nothing was omitted. ‘Ah. such measures as I thought necessary to get possession of the persons of the pretended coiners.’ ‘Go on.’ ‘Well. I was furnished with a description of your 421 . monseigneur. in the most pitiable voice imaginable. About eleven o’clock in the morning they perceived Ameins. monseigneur. how 420 The Three Musketeers dearly have I paid for that fault.’ ‘Yes. Planchet glared fiercely over the back of his armchair. you don’t know me?’ ‘No.’ resumed the trembling host. though he stood in need of no incitement. or rather twenty mad devils. who quickly understood whence such an exact description had come. who advanced to greet him.’ These words redoubled the eagerness of d’Artagnan.’ ‘I had been warned by the authorities that a celebrated coiner of bad money would arrive at my inn. about twelve days ago.’ ‘Again!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I took then. ‘Ah. and you shall know all. I say. and they proceeded at a rapid pace. go on!’ said d’Artagnan. to make an accusation of passing false money?’ The host became as pale as death. took a seat in the threatening attitude of a judge. who urged his horse.’ ‘Condescend to listen to me. and cracking his whip with his right hand. ‘Here is the story. what has become of him?’ ‘Deign to listen to me. his left hand on the pommel of the sword. Monseigneur. all disguised as Guards or Musketeers. in mercy!’ D’Artagnan. whose ears chafed terribly under the repetition of this word COINERs. and Planchet modeled himself after his master. two words will refresh your memory. monseigneur. what a terrible noise he made with his sword! One might have said that twenty men. your lackeys. in conformity with the orders of the authorities.his two pistols. so you may plainly perceive that you have no mercy to expect if you do not tell me the whole truth. ‘Do you remember me?’ said he to the host. with several of his companions. monseigneur. were fighting. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. D’Artagnan had often meditated against the perfidious host one of those hearty vengeances which offer consolation while they are hoped for. do not mention it!’ cried the host.’ ‘I listen.

he found the door of the cellar stairs behind him. Monsieur your friend (pardon for not calling him by the honorable name which no doubt he bears. but we do not know that name). had quarreled with the officers. ‘appeared to authorize the issue. disguised as stable lads—‘ ‘Miserable scoundrel!’ cried d’Artagnan. As for myself. ‘Athos. he replied that it was nothing but a snare. having disabled two men with his pistols. ‘you were all in the plot. he was no longer a man.’ added the host. one man was killed on the spot. That gentleman. monsieur. we were not in the plot. and you know that an innkeeper must keep on good terms with the authorities. what I should do with my 423 . He told me he knew nothing about the matter. The authorities had terrified me. There happened then that which you know. It appears that I had made a mistake.’ said d’Artagnan. and barricaded himself inside. As we were sure of finding him there. monseigneur. that I had arrested the wrong person. that the orders I had received did not come from him. His lackey.’ resumed the innkeeper.’ ‘But Athos!’ cried d’Artagnan. and two others were severely wounded. and as the door was open. ‘Athos— what has become of Athos?’ ‘While fighting and retreating. that gentleman—where is he? What has become of him? Is he dead? Is he living?’ ‘Patience.’ ‘But once again.’ ‘Good God! To imprison him. I told him very humbly—for I could not conceal from myself the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘you did not really wish to kill. Ah. The dead man and the two wounded were carried off by their comrades. you only wished to imprison him. your friend. as you will soon see. 422 The Three Musketeers we left him alone. but they form my excuse.’ ‘Yes. Monsieur your friend. ‘I took my way straight to the cellar in order to set him at liberty. and stunned me with a blow of the flat side of it. by an unforeseen piece of ill luck. we are coming to it. monseigneur.’ ‘You villain. and that if I had the audacity to mention his name as being concerned in this disturbance he would have me hanged. In the first place he had made rough work of it. he was a devil! To my offer of liberty. monsieur. he imprisoned himself. where is he?’ ‘As I was anxious to repair the wrongs I had done the prisoner.‘Pardon me. Monsieur the Governor was all astonishment. whose impatience was increased by the disregard of the authorities. as I have told Monseigneur. to whom I related all that had passed. and that before he came out he intended to impose his own conditions. for saying such things. as soon as I recovered my senses I went to Monsieur the Governor. and I have heard nothing of either of them since. I swear to you he did.’ ‘Alas. retreated fighting with his sword. then! And I really don’t know what prevents me from exterminating you all. monseigneur? Why. and asked. with an acuteness that did not escape d’Artagnan. and of which your precipitate departure. he took out the key. with which he disabled one of my men. and that he whom I ought to have arrested had escaped. who. monseigneur. defended himself desperately. will you finish?’ cried d’Artagnan.

‘‘In the first place. I should adore you as my patron saint!’ ‘Then he is there? I shall find him there?’ ‘Without doubt you will.’ continued the latter. ‘Here are two Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘So from that time. who replied that I only had what I deserved. monsieur! We keep him in the cellar! You do not know what he is about in the cellar.’ cried the host. you ass! Could you not perceive by our appearance that we were people of quality. fully armed.’ ‘What. without doubt. ‘Where is Athos?’ ‘In the cellar. ‘we have led the most miserable life imaginable. and the spices. the beer. hark! There he is!’ ‘Somebody has disturbed him.’ said d’Artagnan. the bacon. we were disposed to do everything your friend could desire. and that he and his lackey would fire to the last one before he would allow a single soul of us to set foot in the cellar. Then. we are forced to refuse food and drink to the travelers who come to the house. ‘But he must be disturbed. monsieur. you scoundrel! Have you kept him in the cellar all this time?’ ‘Merciful heaven! No. when we asked them what were their intentions.’ ‘But where is Athos now?’ cried d’Artagnan. We every day pass through the air hole some bread at the end of a fork. the master replied that he had forty charges to fire. There is our wine in bottles. the oil.scrape I had got into by laying hands on one of his Majesty’s Musketeers—I told him I was quite ready to submit to his conditions. ‘But. If your friend remains another week in my cellar I shall be a ruined man. monsieur. either. and our wine in casks. I once endeavored to go down with two of my servants. Ah! If you could but persuade him to come out. and not coiners—say?’ ‘Yes. but he flew into terrible rage. totally unable to refrain from laughing at the pitiable face of the host. so that our hostelry is daily going to ruin. Upon this I went and complained to the governor. and his servant in loading his musketoon. that all our provisions are in the cellar. And as we are prevented from going down there.’ said he. ‘I wish my lackey placed with me. for you must know. monsieur.’ ‘So that since that time—‘ replied d’Artagnan. and ordered us to remain quietly in our own bar. and sausages. wounded as he was. for you will please to understand. then his master. monsieur. he persists in remaining there. but alas! It is not of bread and meat of which he makes the greatest consumption. barricaded the door afresh. and that it would teach me to insult honorable gentlemen who took up their abode in my house. then. Monsieur Grimaud (he told us his name.’ ‘And not more than 425 . monsieur. hark. having admitted him. I heard 424 The Three Musketeers the noise he made in loading his pistols. although he does not talk much)—Monsieur Grimaud.’ We hastened to obey this order. monsieur. I should owe you the gratitude of my whole life. and some meat when he asks for it. you are right.’ said the host. monsieur. went down to the cellar.

One might have thought there was in that cellar one of those famished ogres—the gigantic heroes of popular legends. Let me conduct your business and my own. and if he is too far gone in his madness. gentlemen. and he. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. pride prevailed. as you may know. he approached the scene of action. ‘I will take charge of the one at the top.’ cried Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. they had had a long ride. these have asked for the best. you will be riddled. drawing his pistols from his belt. d’Artagnan. and the angrier one descended the five or six steps which led to the cellar.English gentlemen just arrived. and a second kick split the door from bottom to top. and gave a kick against the door enough to split a wall. whom reflection never abandoned. good. ‘that this madman will not allow these good people access to their own wine! Nonsense. and followed by Planchet with his musketoon ready for use. the English like good wine. The two gentlemen were exasperated. heard a great noise on the side next the cellar. think of what you are about. but they found themselves taken between two fires. and preceded by the host wringing his hands.’ ‘Well?’ ‘Well. into whose cavern nobody could force their way with impunity. ‘gentlemen. but at length the two Englishmen felt ashamed to draw back. ‘Stand on one side. my friend and I can play tolerably well. good!’ cried the calm voice of Athos. Ah. but. You will then have our swords. the two English gentlemen looked at each other hesitatingly. ‘I am here.’ ‘If there is any left. and were dying with hunger and thirst. from the other side of the door. we will kill him!’ ‘Softly. ‘I am going to fire!’ ‘Gentlemen. well.’ ‘Ah. cocking his pistols. monsieur. I can assure you. and you will get as many from the cellar.’ ‘Good God!’ cried the hollow voice of Athos. gentlemen!’ said d’Artagnan. you look to the one below.’ exclaimed d’Artagnan. my friend. though with a foreign accent. with which. My wife has perhaps requested permission of Monsieur Athos to go into the cellar to satisfy these gentlemen. Athos! You are running your heads into a very silly affair. in very good French. You shall soon have something to drink. My lackey and I will have three shots at you. ‘Planchet. ‘you will kill nobody. ‘But this is tyranny!’ cried one of them.’ replied Athos.’ ‘Yes. as usual. He rose. and you shall have it.’ cried d’Artagnan. stand on one side. Ah. as before. let us break open the door. these devourers of little 427 . raising his voice in turn. these door breakers!’ The gentlemen had drawn their swords. 426 The Three Musketeers There was a moment of silence. They still hesitated an instant. has refused. and we shall see!’ Brave as they appeared to be. Patience.’ grumbled the jeering voice of Athos. ‘I can hear d’Artagnan. then. ‘we will teach them. in fact. if you please!’ ‘Good. good heaven! There is the hullabaloo louder than ever!’ D’Artagnan. I think. I give you my word. you want battle. ‘let them just come in.

he only drank from the cask.’ replied d’Artagnan. The four crossed the public room and proceeded to take possession of the best apartment in the house.’ ‘Well. The Englishmen.’ ‘Instantly. the broken door was removed. that’s all. they pronounced the host in the wrong. gentlemen. In the meantime. and his head shaking. Like one of those drunken satyrs in the pictures of Rubens. ‘Now. 428 The Three Musketeers D’Artagnan threw himself on his neck and embraced him tenderly. ‘if the lackey has drunk only half as much as the master.’ said d’Artagnan. He then tried to draw him from his moist abode. The history of Athos’s imprisonment was then related to them. and never did a man more strongly set about getting so. ‘open the door. Do you hear it? It is running now.’ And d’Artagnan set the example. sheathed their swords grumblingly. these were the counterscarps and bastions of Athos.’ said Athos. I am dead drunk. which d’Artagnan occupied with authority.’ ‘Mercy!’ cried the host.The host felt a cold sweat creep down his back. which had so long been interdicted to them and where a frightful spectacle awaited them. you shall have all you desire. Gentlemen. provided you replace your pistols in your belt. my dear Athos. and the pale face of Athos appeared.’ said he. who with a rapid glance took a survey of the surroundings. By the Lord. these two cannot have drunk all the cellar. Then. Hark! I don’t think he put the faucet in 429 . my good host! I must at least have drunk for my part a hundred and fifty bottles. ‘go up to your room again. ‘I! Not at all. He was moistened before and behind with a greasy liquid which the host recognized as his best olive oil. and as they were really gentlemen. I am a ruined man. I beg of you. An instant after. which the besieged himself demolished. He would never think of faring in the same manner as his master. and in ten minutes. he made him a sign to uncock his musketoon. I will answer for it. return your swords to their scabbards.’ The Englishmen bowed and went upstairs.’ said d’Artagnan. convinced of these peaceful proceedings. ‘How! ‘If there is any left!’’ murmured he. ‘Be satisfied of that. ‘Now I am alone. ‘You are wounded. In the meantime the host and his wife hurried down with lamps into the cellar.’ ‘Grimaud is a well-bred lackey.’ D’Artagnan burst into a laugh which changed the shiver of the host into a burning fever. Then was heard a great noise of fagots being removed and of the groaning of posts. Beyond the fortifications through which Athos had made Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘What the devil! There must be plenty left. turning toward Planchet. but to his surprise he perceived that Athos staggered.’ ‘Willingly. with the musketoon on his shoulder. Grimaud appeared in his turn behind his master.

and my poor Grimaud here was obliged to dress those you had inflicted on 430 The Three Musketeers him.’ cried the exasperated host. suspended from the joists. heaped up according to all the rules of the strategic art. ‘Triple ass!’ said Athos. while a heap of broken bottles filled the whole left-hand corner of the cellar. they found. destroyed!’ ‘Bah.’ as the ancient poet says. That was your fault. and let us talk. rising. ‘I have been wrong. and I am a poor innkeeper. He had tried his strength to the utmost. ‘we were always 431 . ‘to treat the guests God sends you in a more courteous fashion. but pardon to every sin! You are gentlemen. To grief succeeded rage. ‘you will break my heart. where is it?’ ‘Deposited with the justice.a breach in order to get out.’ ‘Oh. and rushed into the chamber occupied by the two friends. and don’t be afraid. ‘Some wine!’ said Athos. ‘The image of devastation and death. planks.’ said Athos. and the tears will flow from my eyes as the wine flowed from the cask.’ ‘All my oil is lost!’ ‘Oil is a sovereign balm for wounds. ‘At the very moment when I was about to pay you. scarcely ten remained. lost. I confess it. ‘Some wine!’ cried the stupefied host. The host armed himself with a spit. We are not such devils as we appear to be. by this means. Then the lamentations of the host and hostess pierced the vault of the cellar. and empty casks.’ ‘Ah.’ said d’Artagnan. the last drop of its blood. D’Artagnan himself was moved by them.’ said d’Artagnan. swimming in puddles of oil and wine. ‘some wine? Why you have drunk more than a hundred pistoles’ worth! I am a ruined man. was yielding. ‘if you annoy us in this manner we will all four go and shut ourselves up in your cellar.’ ‘You shall pay me for all this. The host drew back and burst into tears. You will have pity on me. Athos did not even turn his head.’ said Athos.’ ‘You pushed me upon a heap which rolled down.’ ‘God? Say the devil!’ ‘My dear friend.’ ‘If you had been contented with drinking. the cock of which was left running.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ The host approached with hesitation. I had placed my purse on the table. d’Artagnan came to his relief with his whip in his hand. and which were composed of fagots. and a tun.’ continued Athos.’ said the host. they said it was bad money. Come hither. if you speak in that way. gentlemen. the bones and fragments of all the hams they had eaten. ‘reigned as over a field of battle.’ Of fifty large sausages.’ ‘That purse contained sixty pistoles. well and good. monsieur. I say. on perceiving the host. ‘Come hither. but he sank down again immediately. but you have broken all the bottles.’ ‘All my sausages are gnawed!’ ‘There is an enormous quantity of rats in that cellar. and we will see if the mischief is as great as you say.’ ‘Yes. ‘This will teach you.

‘Some of that at the bottom. my dear Athos!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘You always say TRIFLES.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘are you selling my horse—my Bajazet? And pray upon what shall I make my campaign.’ ‘Manage the matter as well as you can. then. ‘If he only remains here a fortnight. why. had been left out of the cellar.’ ‘What. tell me.’ ‘What?’ asked the host. since there is another finer and 433 . Take it.’ ‘And now.’ D’Artagnan related his adventure with Mme. d’Artagnan.’ The drink-deadened eye of Athos flashed out.’ ‘Tell me. Bonacieux. ‘while they bring the wine. aside. who have never loved.’ ‘Presently. where is that?’ ‘In the stable. it does not concern me. ‘Another?’ ‘And a magnificent one!’ cried the host.’ said d’Artagnan. and let us drink.’ ‘Come. ‘and that come very ill from you. fortunately for him. my good man. come!’ D’Artagnan related how he had found Porthos in bed with a strained knee. all the rest were broken by my fall.’ ‘Alas. remember this! My ideas are never so clear as when I have had plenty of wine. Athos’s horse. but only Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ cried Athos. the more so as I have not a livre left. upon Grimaud?’ ‘I have brought you another. ‘it is because I am the most unfortunate. and Aramis at a table between two theologians. there might be some hopes. I shall soon re-establish my business. you may take the old one. There are twentyfive bottles of it left. ‘to bring up four bottles of the same sort for the two English gentlemen. only trifles!’ That was his favorite word. ‘Trifles. get me my purse back and keep the sixty pistoles.’ ‘It’s worth eighty.‘Very well. and pays for what he drinks. If it were bad money. this man is a cask!’ said the host. but unfortunately.’ said d’Artagnan. near the laths. ‘here’s to Porthos and Aramis! But you. and when he had finished.’ said Athos.’ ‘How much is it worth?’ ‘Fifty pistoles at most. Bring six of them. what is the matter with you.’ ‘But Monseigneur knows very well that justice never lets go that which it once lays hold of. the host entered with the wine ordered and a ham which. filling his glass and that of his friend. ‘Well.’ ‘Why. ‘That’s well!’ said Athos. said.’ 432 The Three Musketeers ‘And don’t forget. and what has happened to you personally? You have a sad air. As he finished.’ said d’Artagnan. I am all ears. and there ends the matter. what has become of the others. ‘let us inquire further. Speak. d’Artagnan. quite cheerful again.’ said d’Artagnan. those were all good pieces. ‘Presently! And why presently? Because you think I am drunk? d’Artagnan. Athos listened to him without a frown.

‘What do you say?’ ‘I say that love is a lottery in which he who wins.for a moment. d’Artagnan saw that he became pale. might have seduced Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Athos collected himself. there is not a man who has not believed. ‘that’s true! I never had one! Let us drink!’ ‘But then.’ said d’Artagnan. it is.’ ‘Not a bad idea!’ said Athos. who never had one. please to observe. shrugging his shoulders. ‘That’s true. ‘I should like to know what you would say if I were to relate to you a real tale of love!’ ‘Which has happened to you?’ 434 The Three Musketeers ‘Or one of my friends.’ ‘Tender hearts! Pierced hearts!’ said Athos. who was seigneur of the country. believe me. and in proportion as he did so. she intoxicated. why. They came nobody knew whence. interrupting himself with a melancholy smile. ‘one of the counts of my province—that is to say. what matters?’ ‘Tell it. He kept himself upright and dreamed. Athos. They were said. not myself. and there lives not a man who has not been deceived by his mistress.’ ‘Consoled for what?’ ‘For my misfortune. it became as dull and vacant as before. not of the woman. tell it. but when seeing her so lovely and her brother so pious.’ ‘Except you. who was a curate. then. to be of good extraction. she DID love me!’ ‘You child. beautiful as fancy can paint.’ ‘That’s true. philosopher that you are. This somnambulism of drunkenness had something frightful in it. after a moment’s silence. ‘that you are wrong to be so hard upon us tender hearts. ‘for my part I have never loved.’ said Athos. Athos. ‘The two things agree marvelously well. She did not please.’ ‘I am all attention. One of my friends—one of my friends. my dear d’Artagnan.’ said d’Artagnan. He was at that period of intoxication in which vulgar drinkers fall on the floor and go to sleep. My friend.’ said Athos.’ said Athos. She lived in a small town with her brother.’ said d’Artagnan. that his mistress loved him.’ ‘Drink and relate. And if I have any counsel to give. Both had recently come into the country.’ ‘Your misfortune is laughable. you stony 435 . emptying and refilling his glass. ‘I pray for it.’ said d’Artagnan. always lose!’ ‘She seemed to love me so!’ ‘She SEEMED. ‘instruct me. Through the ingenuousness of her age beamed an ardent mind. but of the poet. at twenty-five years of age fell in love with a girl of sixteen. however. as you do. then. ‘Be it then as you desire. wins death! You are very fortunate to have lost. of Berry—noble as a Dandolo or a Montmorency.’ ‘Better if I drink. support me. I stand in need of being taught and consoled. without sleeping. ‘You particularly wish it?’ asked he. did she?’ ‘Oh. quietly. nobody thought of asking whence they came.’ ‘Acknowledge.’ said he.

I inquired after him for the purpose of hanging him likewise. He tore the dress of the countess to pieces. ‘A FLEUR-DE-LIS. it is exquisite. He had on his estates the rights of high and low tribunals. a murder?’ cried d’Artagnan. who had pretended to be a curate for the purpose of getting his mistress married. the priest. ‘Yes.’ Athos emptied at a single draught the glass he held in his hand. put it to his mouth. as pale as a corpse.’ ‘Well?’ asked d’Artagnan. poetical. ‘What do you tell me?’ ‘Truth. at his will—for he was 437 . The fool! The ass! The idiot!’ ‘How so. ‘Horror!’ cried d’Artagnan. timidly. ‘guess what she had on her shoulder.her. ‘But methinks I need wine!’ and he seized by the neck the last bottle that was left. and emptied it at a single draught. Some ham.’ ‘Heavens. and securing her a position. but he was beforehand with me. Athos. and made her the first lady in the province. and loving women. ‘God grant you as much! Let us drink. and as she appeared to be oppressed by her clothes.’ said Athos. he tied her hands behind her. the poor young girl had stolen the sacred vessels from a church. cutting a slice. as he would have emptied an ordinary glass. he married her. ‘She was branded. A worthy man. The count flew to her to help. and speaking very quickly. He has been hanged and quartered. I hope. and hanged her on a tree. ‘He took her to his chateau. ‘But hold out your glass. my God!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘My God.’ said Athos. with a maniacal burst of laughter. raising his head. Who would have come to the assistance of two strangers. which he placed on the young man’s Free eBooks at Planet eBook. d’Artagnan. ‘Taste some of this ham.’ ‘Oh. two unknown persons? Unfortunately he was an honorable man. Then he let his head sink upon his two hands. d’Artagnan. ‘That has cured me of beautiful.’ said Athos. 436 The Three Musketeers ‘No less. and forgetting to continue the fiction of the count. ‘she fell from her horse and fainted. stupefied. The angel was a demon. he ripped them open with his ponaird. ‘Her brother?’ replied Athos. or taken her by force.’ said Athos. if he love her?’ asked d’Artagnan. ‘PARBLEU!’ said Athos.’ ‘Was it ever known who this miserable fellow was?’ ‘He was doubtless the first lover and accomplice of the fair lady.’ ‘And her brother?’ added d’Artagnan.’ said Athos. and in so doing laid bare her shoulder. or we can’t drink. my boy.’ continued Athos. quite stunned by the relation of this horrible adventure. one day when she was hunting with her husband.’ ‘And what did the count do?’ ‘The count was of the highest nobility.’ ‘How can I tell?’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Then she is dead?’ stammered d’Artagnan. ‘Well. in a low voice.’ said Athos. while d’Artagnan stood before him. and in justice it must be allowed that she supported her rank becomingly. ‘Wait. he had quit the curacy the night before. after a considerable pause. my friend.

which was swollen and hot this morning. d’Artagnan. Besides which. the most shrewd and impenetrable of men. ‘and yet this is one of the best!’ 28 THE RETURN D’Artagnan was astounded by the terrible confidence of Athos. yet many things appeared very obscure to him in this half revelation. d’Artagnan. ‘if I recollect well what you Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘No. which was very tremulous. he pretended to sleep.’ While saying this he looked at his friend with an earnestness that embarrassed him. In the first place it had been made by a man quite drunk to one who was half drunk. and he went into his friend’s chamber with a fixed determination of renewing the conversation of the preceding evening. in spite of the incertainty which the vapor of three or four bottles of Burgundy carries with it to the brain. the Musketeer. but he found Athos quite himself again—that is to say. and yet. Allowing his head to sink upon his two hands.’ said Athos. when awaking on the following morning. ‘These young fellows can none of them drink. which had made him bewildered. All this doubt only gave rise to a more lively desire of arriving at a certainty. had all the words of Athos as present to his memory as if they then fell from his mouth—they had been so impressed upon his mind.’ said he. ‘I can tell that by my tongue. I wager that I uttered a thousand extravagances. broached the matter first. and by my pulse.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘What a pity it is there were only four like this in the cellar.’ D’Artagnan could no longer endure this conversation.plate. after having exchanged a hearty shake of the hand with him. looking at him with pity. ‘I was pretty drunk 439 438 The Three Musketeers . I could have drunk fifty bottles more.

then. here is the simple fact. looking intently at Athos. you see how a man may compromise himself when he does not know what he says. That is my failing—a capital failing. I am a good drinker. I have parted with him. ‘I was sure it was so—the hanging of people is my nightmare.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Regret?’ ‘Yes. it was about—stop a minute—yes. I remember as we remember a dream. I must be very drunk.’ 440 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. I have a horse Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘I certainly never will get drunk again. it is too bad a habit. you begin to awaken my regret.’ ‘You are mistaken. Athos said: ‘By the by. it was nothing out of the common way. As I came into the public room.’ said d’ 441 . since I remember nothing of the kind. that everyone has his particular kind of drunkenness. ‘PARDIEU. and when I am thoroughly drunk my mania is to relate all the lugubrious stories which my foolish nurse inculcated into my brain. ‘Yes.’ Athos did not trust this reply.’ ‘How?’ ‘Why. This morning I awoke at six o’clock. ‘you cannot have failed to remark. ‘Well. who was hanged. yes.’ ‘That’s it. ‘that is my grand story of the fair lady. yes.’ And he looked at the young man as if he would read the bottom of his heart. d’Artagnan. I rode him nearly ten leagues in less than an hour and a half. and I did not know what to do with myself. sad or gay. ‘I remember now. and found he was bidding a hundred pistoles for a chestnut nag. and when I relate that. ‘my good gentleman.’ said d’Artagnan. I thought I had told you a most lamentable story.’ ‘By her husband. ‘My faith. becoming almost livid.’ said Athos. My drunkenness is always sad. ‘it is that. with blue eyes. fair lady.’ said I.’ replied the young man. then.’ D’Artagnan remained silent. I saw one of our Englishman bargaining with a dealer for a horse.’ continued d’Artagnan. you surprise me.said. I admit. and he resumed. becoming still paler. but yet attempting to laugh.’ ‘Is it to your mind?’ asked d’Artagnan. and then changing the conversation all at once. Sulpice. ‘It is that.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ replied Athos. but with that exception. my dear friend. shrugging his shoulders as if he thought himself an object of pity. it was about a woman. We were speaking of hanging. and he appeared no more distressed than if he had only made the tour of the Place St. You were still fast asleep. anxious to find out the truth.’ ‘Ah.’ ‘Ah. ‘the story of a tall.’ Athos spoke this in so natural a manner that d’Artagnan was shaken in his conviction. who was a nobleman of your acquaintance. but it is not a horse for hard work.’ ‘Yes.’ replied Athos. his own having died yesterday from bleeding. I was still stupid from our yesterday’s debauch. that was it. you see how it is.’ ‘Ah. I drew near. ‘it appears that I was more drunk than you. I thank you for the horse you have brought me.

‘It vexes me greatly. for I put it in execution that very minute. ‘That horse was to have identified us in the day of battle. just as if I had been drinking. 442 The Three Musketeers ‘I threw.’ ‘Do you think he is worth a hundred pistoles?’ ‘Yes! Will you sell him to me for that sum?’ ‘No. it is quite remarkable enough. my dear friend. but you stopped at the idea. and I lost. I hope?’ ‘No. upon my honor. with it I might regain our horses and their harnesses. but I was hotheaded.’ ‘Really. ‘And as I am a connoisseur in such things. there was still that diamond left which sparkles on your finger. in great anxiety. why the saddle will suffice for that. ‘I was hipped to death.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘I hope. If it is only to be recognized. half dead with fright. this is frightful. but I will play for him. ‘Well. for I am not yet at the end of my story. put yourself in my place. It was a pledge. you don’t know all yet. Well.’ cried Athos. I was not hotheaded then—‘ ‘Well.’ replied d’Artagnan. I swear. and I lost the horse. D’Artagnan looked much disconcerted. Athos. I should make an excellent gambler if I were not too hot-headed. ‘This vexes you?’ said Athos. ‘that you attach so much importance to these animals.’ continued 443 . and even money to pay our expenses on the road.’ ‘What.’ ‘Yes. suppose mine had had the glanders or the farcy?’ D’Artagnan did not smile.’ ‘Ay. when I was telling you silly stories. my horse?’ ‘Your horse. and which I had observed yesterday. but what else could you play for? You had nothing left?’ ‘ sell. I estimated it at a thousand pistoles. having had a few of my own once. you are not in your right senses. my friend. placing his hand eagerly on his ring. we can easily find some excuse for its disappearance. I don’t like English horses. seven against eight.’ ‘Stop a minute. I must confess it does. a point short—you know the proverb.’ ‘Athos.’ ‘What?’ ‘At dice. a remembrance. ah! But please to observe I won back the equipage. too.’ ‘After having lost my own horse.’ ‘But. and still further. that was yesterday. you have done wrong. my dear friend. As to the horse. with all his appointments and furniture. this diamond became our only resource.’ ‘What else have you done.’ ‘My dear lad. your friend’s lackey was leading him. Why the devil! A horse is mortal. Ah.’ replied the Musketeer.’ ‘And the consequence?’ said d’Artagnan. it was proper to tell me that. I lost him then. and not this morning. and a very fine one! I saw him yesterday. ‘you made no mention of my diamond?’ ‘On the contrary. yes.’ said d’Artagnan.’ No sooner said than done. nine against ten—see how near— I formed an idea of staking yours.’ ‘This diamond!’ said d’Artagnan.

as Minerva takes Achilles. then my harness. The Englishman was an original. then.’ ‘And I have no inclination to play. and want to try me!’ said d’Artagnan. In brief. and had been left to brutalize myself in the company of bottles. whom anger began to take by the hair. and nobody observe it? Impossible!’ ‘Go on.’ ‘That was no reason for staking my diamond!’ replied d’Artagnan. in ten throws.’ ‘The devil!’ said d’Artagnan. which are not worth a ducatoon. laughing in spite of himself. ‘I had a plan. consoled.‘Athos. you will kill me with your indifference. go on. you ought.’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well. I said. and then I lost again. divided into ten portions. rising from the table. MORDIEU! I should like to have seen you in my place! I had been fifteen days without seeing a human face. that I again staked the diamond. ‘Hear the end. without revenge. in thirteen throws I had lost all—in thirteen throws. my dear friend. I regained the diamond. you make me shudder. who had likewise remarked it. this diamond into ten parts of a hundred pistoles each. You have not played for a long time.’ ‘Well.’ ‘Athos. now. and with the ten parts of Grimaud. my dear. ‘Grimaud himself. ‘Then the diamond is safe?’ said he.’ ‘But what is the use of harnesses without horses?’ ‘I have an idea about them. then my horse.’ D’Artagnan breathed as if the whole hostelry had been removed from his breast. what next?’ said d’Artagnan. and Grimaud had told me that he had made him proposals to enter into his service. so I left off there. becoming angry again. I regained your harness and then mine. That was a superb throw. timidly. to have a good hand. then. The number thirteen was always fatal to me. finding the luck turned. ‘Patience!’ said Athos. ‘Intact.’ ‘Swear to nothing. in the ILLIAD. and holding his sides with laughter. understand. besides the harness of your Bucephalus and mine. do you think you can wear a star from heaven on your finger. the story of the present day making him forget that of the preceding one. ‘I mentioned your diamond then to my adversary.’ ‘Listen to me. then your horse.’ ‘We divided. That’s where we are. the si444 The Three Musketeers lent Grimaud. closing his hand with a nervous spasm. d’Artagnan. it was on the thirteenth of July that—‘ ‘VENTREBLEU!’ cried d’Artagnan. I had seen him conversing that morning with Grimaud. What the devil. ‘I won back your harness. ‘for upon my honor. ‘You may guess. You have not played for a long time. I staked Grimaud. you make me tremble!’ cried d’Artagnan. if persistence is not a virtue?’ ‘My faith! But this is 445 . Tell me.’ ‘You are laughing at me. I do not jest. my dear fellow!’ said d’Artagnan. Ten parts of a hundred pistoles each. ‘No. what then?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.

‘Certainly. coolly. ‘Yes. ‘That’s a sad throw.’ The Englishman. however. I am particularly anxious to preserve the harnesses.’ said Athos. and was seized with astonishment. never!’ ‘The devil!’ said Athos. in one single throw. the Englishman would not. either against one horse or a hundred pistoles. my dear Athos. D’Artagnan threw the dice with a trembling hand.’ ‘Stake both. He proposed the conditions— the two harnesses. undecided. perhaps. Good Lord. try one throw! One throw is soon made!’ ‘And if I lose?’ ‘You will win.’ said d’Artagnan. hold. once at the house of Monsieur Crequy. ‘The Englishman is overflowing with pistoles.’ ‘That’s a pity.’ ‘Decidedly. ‘I should like better not to risk anything. In your place I would stake the furniture against the horse. in my chateau at—when I had a chateau. ‘Then there is no revenge?’ ‘Our conditions said.’ ‘Then Monsieur takes his horse back again. comrade. I have not seen such a one four times in my life. and turned up the number three. d’Artagnan looked. You appear to think much of your horse. the Englishman and his companion are still here. I remarked that he regretted the horse furniture very much. a third time at Monsieur de Treville’s where it surprised us all. as you are.’ ‘You would do so?’ said d’Artagnan. his paleness terrified Athos. monsieur. ‘On my honor. wit his quiet tone. so sure was he of victory. and was seized with pleasure. you will have the horses fully equipped. He consented. Two aces!’ The Englishman looked. be willing. you will surrender the harnesses. hold!’ said Athos.’ ‘But if I lose?’ ‘Well. He threw them on the table without looking at them. whom he found in the stable.’ ‘But he will not wish for only one harness. 446 The Three Musketeers The opportunity was good.’ ‘Stake your 447 .’ ‘But having lost the horses. ‘I would propose to you to stake Planchet. in spite of himself. ‘that throw of the dice is extraordinary. another time at my own house in the country. where it fell to my lot. ‘No revenge. d’Artagnan turned aside to conceal his ill humor. and where I lost a hundred louis and a supper on it. Never.‘Well. and the fourth time at a cabaret. but as that has already been done. who. Athos went in quest of the Englishman. The Englishman calculated fast.’ ‘This? That’s another matter.’ said the Englishman. PARDIEU! I am not selfish.’ said d’Artagnan. then. the two harnesses were worth three hundred pistoles. so strongly did the confidence of Athos begin to prevail. ‘Hold.’ continued Athos. quite triumphant. ‘four times only.’ ‘Have with you for one throw!’ said d’Artagnan. consented himself with saying. examining the harnesses with a greedy eye.’ you will please to recFree eBooks at Planet eBook. did not even give himself the trouble to shake the dice.

’ ‘Yes. You cannot think of humiliating me by prancing along by my side on that magnificent charger. I wish to speak a word with my friend. and laughed aloud. d’Artagnan. What is the use of one horse for us two? I could not ride behind. D’Artagnan and Athos took the nags of Planchet and GriFree eBooks at Planet eBook.’ Athos drew d’Artagnan aside. my friend. remember.’ ‘That is true. With the hundred pistoles we can live well to the end of the month. a horse stumbles and breaks his knees to the bone. nothing! Go on!’ ‘Your advice.’ ‘I rest? Oh. Tempter. He acquiesced. We should look like the two sons of Anmon. We have undergone a great deal of fatigue.’ ‘Well. while on the contrary. you may be assured that your horse will not be half so serviceable to you for that purpose as good golden louis. at your choice. ‘What is it?’ asked d’ 449 .’ said Athos. what more do you want with me?’ said d’Artagnan. I shall prosecute my search for that unfortunate woman!’ ‘Well. Anybody may see by our bearing that we are people of condition. therefore.’ ‘On what?’ ‘You mean to take your horse?’ ‘Without doubt. no. Athos. do you not?’ ‘No. Take the hundred pistoles. I should take the hundred pistoles. he feared that by resisting longer he should appear selfish in the eyes of Athos. We want money for our return to Paris. who did not at all comprehend the hilarity of his friend.’ ‘But how shall we get back?’ ‘Upon our lackey’s horses.’ ‘You are wrong.’ ‘And there again you are wrong. You know you have staked the harnesses against the horse or a hundred pistoles. the hundred 448 The Three Musketeers pistoles feed their master. This last reason appeared convincing. monsieur. I repeat. and a little rest will do no harm. which the Englishman paid down on the spot. ‘You want me to throw again. Once in Paris. PARDIEU. I would take the hundred pistoles. A horse slips and injures a joint.’ ‘Pretty figures we shall cut on ponies while Aramis and Porthos caracole on their steeds. a horse eats out of a manger in which a glandered horse has eaten. Peace with the landlord. then. then?’ ‘To take the hundred pistoles. ‘with your permission. Besides. For my part. They then determined to depart.’ ‘Say on. then. There is a horse.ollect. who had lost their brother.’ ‘Aramis! Porthos!’ cried Athos. the horse shall be restored to your lackey. take the hundred pistoles!’ D’Artagnan only required one reason to be satisfied. I would wish you to reflect. and chose the hundred pistoles. ‘Nothing. Athos. you are wrong. cost six pistoles.’ ‘A moment. monsieur. I should not hesitate a moment. ‘Well. in addition to Athos’s old horse.’ ‘I am much attached to that horse.

at short stages.’ replied Aramis.’ D’Artagnan and Athos laughed aloud.’ ‘Without a thesis?’ cried d’Artagnan. It has four hundred lines. ‘They have some capital wine here—please to observe that in passing.maud. ‘HOLA. The matter is gallant. I invited them to a dinner the next day. who detested verses almost as much as he did Latin. Bazin! Bring my new saddle and carry it along with those of these gentlemen. and the two lackeys started on foot. d’Artagnan. Athos?’ said the young man. to slake the wagoner’s thirst along the route. and you are sure that your poem will at least have two merits. I beg. on seeing them arrive. pulled up at the inn. My English horse.’ said d’Artagnan. and have your own gallant steeds led along carefully by hand.’ said Aramis. ‘What is this?’ said Aramis.’ ‘My faith. like Sister Anne. has furnished me with a living image of the fragility of the things of the earth. and you. my dear Aramis. they were soon far in advance of their servants. ‘don’t be too angry with me. for their transport.’ ‘And what have you done with your ecclesiastics?’ asked d’Artagnan. Ah. From a distance they perceived Aramis. ‘My dear d’Artagnan. ‘I was reflecting upon the rapidity with which the blessings of this world leave us. and the two lackeys had agreed. is that you. The cart was returning empty to Paris. That is rather difficult. I will read you the first canto. besides. Then the curate forbade me to quit my uniform. and arrived at Creveccoeur. Necessity has no law. and lasts a minute.’ ‘Which means—‘ said d’Artagnan.’ continued Aramis. you fellows are good managers! You ride on our lackey’s horses. ‘Nothing but saddles?’ ‘Now do you understand?’ said Athos. HOLA. ‘without a thesis? I demand the suppression of the thesis. who began to suspect the truth. However ill our two friends were mounted. ‘I have lived very agreeably. and Planchet and Grimaud came out of it with the saddles on their heads. Life itself may be resolved into three words: ERAT. ‘Ah. FUIT. which has just disappeared amid a cloud of dust.’ Free eBooks at Planet 451 . I am the person punished.’ At the same instant a market cart. carrying the saddles on their heads. looking out. EST. that’s exactly like me! I retained my harness by instinct. as that rascally horsedealer has robbed me of fifty louis. I have begun a poem in verses of one syllable. ‘add to the merit of the difficulty that of the brevity. ‘My friends. at the dust in the horizon. and the Jesuit entreated me to get him made a Musketeer. ‘My dear fellow. I did my best to make them drunk. seated in a melancholy manner at his window. Aramis! What the devil are you doing there?’ cried the two friends.’ ‘Since then. at least. which some minutes 450 The Three Musketeers before had appeared upon the Amiens road. but the merit in all things consists in the difficulty. ‘Which means that I have just been duped-sixty louis for a horse which by the manner of his gait can do at least five leagues an hour.

who have just sent me word they could not come. choice wines. Porthos alone made no reply. and seated at a table on which. gravely. ‘You are all mistaken. Porthos?’ said Aramis. my faith.’ 452 The Three Musketeers ‘But this dinner was not intended for you alone. ‘you come in the nick of time. the great simpleton.’ said Porthos. placed Bazin in the cart with his comrades.’ ‘I am recruiting myself. mounted upon his superb animal and seated in his handsome saddle.’ replied Porthos. ‘This horse made my visitors ashamed of theirs.’ ‘And I some lamb chops. Are we not eating a horse.’ said Porthos. Porthos. seats. and superb fruit. They found him up. Aramis discharged his bill. and order double the bottles!’ ‘Do you know what we are eating here?’ said Athos. ‘Ah. was spread enough for four persons. Nothing weakens a man more than these devilish strains. I am eating veal garnished with shrimps and vegetables. I was just beginning the soup.’ said Aramis. ‘My faith. One would think we had tipped the wink. ‘Horse!’ said Aramis. here is a piquant FRICANDEAU and a fillet of beef. PARDIEU!’ said he.’ ‘Then your duchess is still at the waters?’ asked d’Artagnan.‘You will see. my friends. rising. oh!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘PARDIEU!’ replied d’Artagnan. though he was alone. Porthos? And perhaps his saddle. I have kept the harness. at the end of ten minutes. And so. ‘No. and they set forward to join Porthos.’ said Aramis. I am sure he will look like the Great Mogul!’ They made a halt for an hour to refresh their horses. therewith. we return to Paris? Bravo! I am ready. ‘I expected some gentlemen of the 453 . ‘you are eating horse. ‘we are all alike.’ continued Aramis. I received a sword wound which at the end of fifteen or eighteen days produced the same effect. So much the better. This dinner consisted of meats nicely dressed. ‘I am recruiting myself.’ answered Athos. Mousqueton. ‘And.’ ‘Oh. gentlemen. in our affair of the Rue Ferou. Athos?’ ‘Never! Though I remember.’ said Porthos. less pale than when d’Artagnan left him after his first visit. not for a kingdom! I think I can see him now. gentlemen. ‘Still. HOLA. gentlemen. We are going to rejoin that good fellow. and I don’t like to humiliate people. He would not sell his horse.’ ‘No. ‘that it breathes irreproachable passion. horse. with a grimace of disgust. ‘Yes.’ ‘What could I do?’ said Porthos. Besides. You can’t think how I have missed him. and you will dine with me.’ said Porthos. ‘for my part. Did you ever suffer from a strain. To see him so self-satisfied reconciles me with myself. You will take their places and I shall not lose by the exchange. ‘Mousqueton has not caught these bottles with his lasso. the governor of the Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Eating what?’ said d’Artagnan. ‘And I a plain chicken.

that is like a good master.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. at most. that is true.’ ‘What a brute of a host! Why did you give him six pistoles?’ ‘You told me to give them to him. how much remains?’ ‘Twenty-five pistoles.’ said Athos.’ ‘And I.’ ‘You think so?’ ‘PARDIEU!’ ‘Ah. we are all in cash. ‘do you think my strain cost me nothing?— without reckoning Mousqueton’s wound. GAVE. I have ordered Masses for myself.’ ‘And I.’ ‘Gave him?’ cried d’Artagnan. for my part.’ ‘Then I paid the host six.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Well. in the first place I gave you fifty. he shared it vociferously according to his custom.’ said Porthos. but when he was informed of the cause of their hilarity. How much have you left of your hundred pistoles. which will be said. gentlemen.’ ‘Ay.’ said Aramis. and who charged me double on account of that foolish Mousqueton 454 The Three Musketeers having allowed himself a ball in a part which people generally only show to an apothecary. ‘imagined that I had given almost my last sou to the church of Montdidier and the Jesuits of Amiens.province—one of the gentlemen I expected today—seemed to have such a wish for him. I—‘ ‘You? Nothing!’ ‘My faith! So little that it is not worth reckoning with the general stock. and for you. taking some small change from his pocket. ‘My God. ‘Yes. for which I have not the least doubt you will be marvelously benefited. ‘when all my expenses are paid. and the stingy fellow would only give me eighty. thirty crowns left. ay!’ said Athos. ‘it is very clear you acted nobly with regard to the poor lad.’ said Porthos.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Without the saddle?’ said Aramis.’ And then commenced a roar of laughter in which they all joined. I recollect. That has weakened my purse. ‘There is one comfort. gentlemen. ‘I found Aramis’s Spanish wine so good that I sent on a hamper of sixty bottles of it in the wagon with the lackeys. In brief. ‘for the animal was worth at least a hundred and fifty louis.’ ‘You will observe. so I advised him to try never to get wounded there any more.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Aramis.’ said Athos. that is the word. d’Artagnan?’ ‘Of my hundred pistoles? Why. to the astonishment of poor Porthos. that I gave him to him.’ said Athos. for which I had to have the surgeon twice a day. then it appears that we are the Croesuses of the society. yes. exchanging a smile with d’Artagnan and Aramis. I shall 455 .’ ‘And I about ten pistoles. gentlemen. without the saddle. I am too good-natured. ‘Well. ‘And I. ‘that Porthos has made the best bargain of any of us. with whom I had made engagements which I ought to have kept.’ ‘In short.’ ‘It is true.

which informed him that. we shall still have four hundred. but as a procurator—‘ This word PROCURATOR roused Porthos. whom he had left only half an hour before. full of joy. and Grimaud.’ said Athos. ‘but as to d’Artagnan.’ said he. de Treville. ‘On our arrival in Paris. We have made our calculations with Spartan economy. Planchet. d’Artagnan found a letter from M.’ said Porthos. ‘Oh. of the four horses of our lackeys we will make two for the masters.’ said d’Artagnan. be it well understood. and they must immediately prepare their outfits. but whom he found very sad and deeply preoccupied. who reckoned like Archimedes.’ then said Aramis.’ ‘Four times two makes eight. ‘it is eight thousand that we want to complete our outfits. ‘with a thousand livres each— I do not speak as a Spartan. and we each require fifteen hundred livres. ‘It seems to me. then. did honor to the repast. A thousand livres! For my part. that’s something. ‘Stop.’ ‘Aramis?’ ‘Ten pistoles.’ said Athos coolly. from his desire of 456 The Three Musketeers finding Mme. the king had promised that he should enter the company of the Musketeers. Bonacieux—he ran. at his request. d’Artagnan?’ ‘Twenty-five.’ ‘Four times fifteen makes sixty—six thousand livres. which always indicated an event of some gravity. ‘Four hundred and seventy-five livres. we can scarcely say. M. de Treville never jested in matters relating to discipline. ‘it is getting 457 . to seek his comrades. As this was the height of d’Artagnan’s worldly ambition—apart. let us calculate how much we posses in all. for which we will draw lots.’ said d’Artagnan. gentlemen.’ The friends. Bazin. They were assembled in council at the residence of Athos. the remains of which were abandoned to Mousqueton. de Treville had intimated to them his Majesty’s fixed intention to open the campaign on the first of May. On arriving in Paris.’ ‘That makes in all?’ said Athos. ‘I have an idea.’ ‘Well. There!’ ‘Let us dine. ‘And what do you reckon your outfit will cost?’ said d’Artagnan. then. at ease with regard to the future. I declare I want two thousand. and then we will give the turnings out of our pockets to d’Artagnan. who has a steady hand. ‘But our troop horses?’ said Aramis.’ said Porthos. besides the harnesses. the idea of belonging to OURS has driven him out of his senses.‘Now. ‘Well. With the four hundred livres we will make the half of one for one of the unmounted.’ ‘And you. toward Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and will go and play in the first gaming house we come to. The four philosophers looked at one another in a state of bewilderment.’ ‘Porthos?’ ‘Thirty crowns. M. for I have not the shadow of one.

had shut the door. Bonacieux. ‘besides. de Treville had spoken of her to the queen. ‘well. Athos did not leave his chamber.’ said he to his friends. there is that beautiful ring which beams from the finger of our friend. who were all of high rank.which. or rather if nothing has come to find me. but this promise was very vague and did not at all reassure d’ 459 458 The Three Musketeers .’ said Athos. To this preoccupation of his vanity.’ ‘Besides. and with that (explain the contradiction) so vain as almost to rival Porthos. it is true. ‘We have still fifteen days before us. but had promised to have her sought for. The queen was ignorant where the mercer’s young wife was. but our Gascon cadet was. who went to thank Monsieur de Treville. too good a Catholic to kill myself with a pistol bullet. if at the end of a fortnight I have found nothing. What the devil! D’Artagnan is too good a comrade to leave his brothers in embarrassment while he wears the ransom of a king on his finger. would be much more easily equipped than Messieurs the Musketeers. as may have been observed. in his quality of Guardsman. although he. we have already the saddles. of a provident and almost avaricious character. he could obtain no intelligence of her.’ 29 HUNTING FOR THE EQUIPMENTS The most preoccupied of the four friends was certainly d’Artagnan. M. d’Artagnan at this moment joined an uneasiness much less selfish. he made up his mind not to take a single step to equip himself. as I. I will seek a good quarrel with four of his Eminence’s Guards or with eight Englishmen. waiting till d’Artagnan. and I will fight until one of them has killed Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Notwithstanding all his inquiries respecting Mme.

a sort of ripe beauty. D’Artagnan observed. and had thought of it earnestly afterward. As d’Artagnan took some precautions to conceal himself. so that I shall have performed my duty without the expense of an outfit. he was the first to act. Bazin. his feather was a little faded. heaved sighs enough to soften the stones. like the coursers of Hippolytus. They wandered about the streets. considering the number. He entered. his laces were a trifle frayed. as Porthos had first found an idea. Leu. shared the sadness of their masters. scratched the end of her nose. There happened to be a sermon. who had always been inclined to devotion. They might have been supposed to be following tracks. Porthos went and leaned against the side of a which made the church very full of people. It will then be said of me that I died for the king. as much as to 461 . whom the general distress could not induce to break the silence imposed by his master. ‘I shall follow up on my idea. and Grimaud. and could not sit Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Porthos believed he had not been seen. Porthos took advantage of this circumstance to ogle the women. which always announced on his part the most triumphant resolutions. It was plain that this mode of proceeding piqued the lady in the black hood. looking at the pavement as if to see whether the passengers had not left a purse behind them. supported himself against the other side. The eyes of Porthos were furtively cast upon this lady. Thanks to the cares of Mousqueton. Athos had sworn not to stir a foot to equip himself—went out early in the morning. his gold lace was a little tarnished. cannot fail to happen. D’Artagnan. as we have said. and Porthos was still the handsome Porthos. D’Artagnan 460 The Three Musketeers perceived him one day walking toward the church of St. who from time to time blushed. His hat was a little napless. after having twisted his mustache and elongated his imperial. tossing his head and repeating. It may be seen by these disastrous details that desolation reigned in the community. When they met they looked desolately at one another. The three friends—for. He was a man of execution.’ Porthos continued to walk about with his hands behind him. and then immediately the eyes of Porthos wandered anxiously. and returned late at night. On her side the lady. on the bench nearest to the pillar against which Porthos leaned. rather yellow and rather dry. but erect and haughty under her black hood. never quit the churches. said nothing. and then roved about at large over the nave. darted with the rapidity of lightning a glance toward the inconstant Porthos. Mousqueton collected a store of crusts. but in the obscurity of the church these things were not seen. anxious and negligently dressed. which. ‘Have you found anything?’ However. The lackeys on their part. for she bit her lips till they bled. and followed him instinctively. this worthy Porthos. d’Artagnan entered behind him. Planchet watched the flight of flies. still unperceived.’ Aramis. the exterior was far from announcing the distress of the interior. so observant were they wherever they went.

striking her breast so vigorously that everybody. and of Dover. thinking that it was for her Porthos had put himself to this trouble. ‘Ahem!’ under cover of the MEA CULPA. dipped his whole hand in. Amid all this. The procurator’s wife smiled. and perceived that they rested upon the lady with the velvet cushion. retwisted his mustache. When the lady of the red cushion came close to Porthos. of Calais. but was deaf. which really did assassinate the disdained beauty. who saw in her a rival really to be dreaded. but for real love. It was almost imperceptible motions of his eyes. when the procurator’s wife had proved so refractory with respect to her purse. he understood it all. a great effect upon d’Artagnan. Porthos paid no attention. that Porthos was taking his revenge for the defeat of Chantilly. no doubt. Porthos went before her. When she was only about three steps from him. During this time Porthos played close. turned round toward her. whom his persecutor. the procurator’s wife advanced toward the holy 463 . Porthos drew his dripping hand from the font. he turned his head round. The lady with the black hood followed through all their wanderings the looks of Porthos. which amused him greatly. and a female servant who held the emblazoned bag in which was placed the book from which she read the Mass. who thought her much prettier than the lady with the black hood. which was the more probable from the church of St. without losing sight of the lady of the red cushion. Then she cried. a great lady—for she had behind her a Negro boy who had brought the cushion on which she knelt. elongated his imperial a second time. had sa462 The Three Musketeers luted by the name of Milady.still in her seat. but she was cruelly and promptly undeceived. but still further. a great effect upon Porthos. and began to make signals to a beautiful lady who was near the choir. little assassinating smiles. and the maid-servant. The lady with the red cushion produced a great effect— for she was very handsome—upon the lady with he black hood. the man with the scar. D’Artagnan. for true jealousy. and instead of a finger. d’Artagnan remarked also that not one countenance responded to the gallantries of Porthos. and who not only was a beautiful lady. likewise. fingers placed upon the lips. The fair worshipper touched the great hand of Porthos with her delicate fingers. Nevertheless. by induction. made the sign of the cross. Porthos. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. continued to watch the proceedings of Porthos. is there any reality except illusions and chimeras? The sermon over. smiled. There were only chimeras and illusions. who had risen and was approaching. Leu being not far from that locality. seeing this. He guessed that the lady of the black hood was the procurator’s wife of the Rue aux Ours. fixing his eyes steadfastly upon the lady with the red cushion. He guessed. the little Negro. even the lady with the red cushion. followed by her black boy and her woman. who recognized in her the lady of Meung. and left the church.

com 465 .’ said he.This was too much for the procurator’s wife. monsieur. If she had been a great lady she would have fainted. Monsieur Porthos. you don’t offer me any holy water?’ Porthos. as a bark yields to the rudder. ‘but you did not perceive me because you had no eyes but for the pretty lady to whom you just now gave the holy water. ‘will you have the kindness to offer me your arm for five minutes? I have something to say to you. you are a great conqueror. ‘Eh.’ Porthos pretended to be confused. Coquenard had Free eBooks at Planet eBook. madame?’ said Porthos.’ ‘Monsieur Porthos. you are deceived.’ said Porthos. he cast a passing glance at Porthos. enclosed with a turnstile at each end. Monsieur Porthos.’ said Porthos.’ said the procurator’s wife. Monsieur Porthos. ‘that is a duchess of my acquaintance whom I have great trouble to meet on account of the jealousy of her husband. but as she was only a procurator’s wife. but with the eye of a jealous woman. ‘is that you? How is your husband. and children at play. buried in this vile quarter. solely for the sake of seeing me. as a gambler does who laughs at the dupe he is about to pluck. Magloire—a little-frequented passage. yielding to the pressure of the arm of the procurator’s wife. In the daytime nobody was seen there but mendicants devouring their crusts. winking to himself. and the holy water! But that must be a princess. arrived at the cloister St. at the sound of that voice. ‘Ah. eh!’ said he.’ replied the procurator’s wife. ‘you have remarked—‘ ‘I must have been blind not to have seen. Mme. at least—that lady with her Negro boy and her maid!’ ‘My God! Madame.’ ‘And that running footman who waited at the door. drawing himself up proudly. and who sent me word that she should come today to this poor church. 464 The Three Musketeers At that moment d’Artagnan passed in pursuit of Milady. ‘Eh. ‘Ma-madame!’ cried he. ‘she is simply a duchess. ‘ah. ‘Ah. ‘there is one who will be equipped in good time!’ Porthos. reasoning to himself according to the strangely easy morality of that gallant period.’ cried the procurator’s wife. madame.’ ‘Yes. and beheld this triumphant look.’ said Porthos. started like a man awakened from a sleep of a hundred years. our dear Monsieur Coquenard? Is he still as stingy as ever? Where can my eyes have been not to have seen you during the two hours of the sermon?’ ‘I was within two paces of you. ‘how so?’ ‘The signs just now. she doubted not there was an intrigue between this lady and Porthos. she contented herself saying to the Musketeer with concentrated fury. as it appears!’ ‘I. when she was assured that no one who was a stranger to the population of the locality could either see or hear her. and that carriage with a coachman in grand livery who sat waiting on his seat?’ Porthos had seen neither the footman nor the carriage.’ ‘Certainly.

I gave you the preference. the offspring of a noble family. and pressing it strongly. Monsieur Porthos!’ resumed the procurator’s wife. and I will not finish.’ replied Porthos. my dear Porthos. Porthos regretted that he had not at once made the lady of the red cushion a princess.’ ‘Fie. I was abandoned by the surgeons. and of hunger afterward. and if in the time to come you should find yourself in a similar situation. without you ever deigning once to reply to the burning letters I addressed to you. ‘remember the first letter you wrote me. raising her eyes toward heaven. ‘Let us not talk about money.’ The procurator’s wife shed a tear. that I had but to write to her and she would have sent me fifteen hundred. ‘I will repair it.’ said she. it seems to me. but this I know.’ ‘The Comtesse de—‘ ‘Monsieur Porthos. who placed reliance upon your friendship—I was near dying of my wounds at first.seen everything.’ ‘Madame Coquenard.’ responded Porthos. ‘Besides. for I am incapable of compromising a woman.’ The procurator’s wife uttered a groan. who had sacrificed for you the Baronne de—‘ ‘I know it well. with a movement of the shoulders full of good fellowship. if you please. ‘And that is the only reply you make? Alas. as if disgusted. how quickly men forget!’ cried the procurator’s wife. I had but to write to the Duchesse—but I won’t repeat her name.’ ‘Then you no longer love me!’ said the procurator’s 467 . fie!’ said Porthos. I. madame. placing his hand on his heart. ‘Well. Porthos maintained a majestic silence. ‘for I. you have but to apply to me.’ murmured the procurator’s wife. indeed I will. what did I ask of you?’ resumed Porthos. who began to feel that. Monsieur Porthos. with a sigh. madame.’ ‘But. with the physique with which nature has endowed me. I am not in want of good luck. ‘the sum you required me to borrow was rather large.’ ‘Good Lord. I understand. and which I preserve engraved in my 466 The Three Musketeers memory.’ said Porthos. dying. when wounded. and that your Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I know you are not rich.’ ‘Madame Coquenard. ‘I. madame! It remains HERE!’ said Porthos.’ ‘Think of the offense you have committed toward me. it is humiliating. I may say I was your victim. in a beggarly inn at Chantilly. nothing more! After all. ‘I can assure you that you have severely punished me. slowly and sadly. ‘you may imagine. Madame Coquenard.’ ‘But it was my husband who would not hear of lending. ‘Monsieur Porthos. ‘Less quickly than the women. she was wrong. I am not an unreasonable man. ‘Ah. ‘A loan. you are quite the pet of the ladies. to judge by the conduct of the great ladies of the time. madame. be generous!’ ‘You are right.’ ‘Besides.’ said she.

in my opinion. ‘I thought I had.’ said Porthos. ‘Please to know. I will detain you no longer. ‘Something whispers me so. becoming more and more melancholy. or a countess. madame. though I am pretty well off.’ Porthos observed a last struggle between love and avarice. bursting into tears. ‘when we are about to enter upon a campaign—a campaign. Monsieur Porthos?’ said the procurator’s wife. Monsieur Porthos. all sympathy is extinct between us. I shall be fearfully preoccupied with my outfit.’ ‘Ingrate that you are!’ ‘Ah! I advise you to complain!’ said Porthos. ‘the duchess whom you saw at the church has estates near to those of my family.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Come at dinnertime.’ said Porthos. don’t talk of such things!’ cried the procurator’s wife. and this is the last! Do you love me still?’ ‘Ah. No object affects me. at the bottom of my heart.’ continued Porthos. to your beautiful duchess. Oh! If you were a duchess.’ replied the procurator’s wife. a marchioness.’ said Porthos.’ continued he. Madame Coquenard.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. But in fifteen days. you have several lawsuits and no attorney.’ ‘Not so. ‘Come to our house tomorrow. ‘Rather say that you have a new love. you come from Noyon.husband is obliged to bleed his poor clients to squeeze a few paltry crowns from them. it would be unpardonable. ‘but I have been taught my mistake.’ ‘The doubles the offense.’ ‘Have you no friends in Paris. ‘that my strongbox. to obtain the sum necessary for my departure.’ ‘And she is not to be despised. You are the son of my aunt. you know. I beg of you. ‘for if you are rich. is better filled than those of your affected minxes. madame.’ ‘You have some!’ cried the procurator’s wife. the strongbox of a procurator’s wife though it may be. as you know. and I even feel here.’ ‘Now. in the lower part of Brittany. You have misunderstood me. Monsieur Porthos. in a transport that surprised even herself. I am not precisely 469 . ‘Begone. ‘And as. I speak frankly to you.’ said she. we mean to make the journey together. Journeys. then there is no excuse for your refusal. consequently my cousin. in Picardy. ‘you must not take the word literally. in the most melancholy tone he could assume. then.’ The procurator’s wife was piqued. who saw that she had gone too far. once more. this fatal campaign is to open. ‘let us say no more upon the subject. disengaging his arm from that of the procurator’s wife. it would be quite a different thing. Can you recollect all that?’ ‘Perfectly.’ ‘Hold. or as you do not know. appear much shorter when we travel two in company. something which speaks for you. then. in which my presentiments tell me I shall be killed—‘ 468 The Three Musketeers ‘Oh. resuming his melancholy air. Then I must make a journey to see my family. madame.’ ‘When I said rich.

’ ‘You are a woman of precaution. all. dear Monsieur Porthos?’ said she. my forgetful charmer!’ ‘Tomorrow. Yes. ‘We are then reconciled. notwithstanding his seventy-six years.’ ‘Seventy-six years! PESTE! That’s a fine age!’ replied Porthos. He saw her get into her carriage. and Grimaud obeyed as usual. and how their comrade was probably by that time in a fair way to be Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Monsieur Porthos. In the Rue de Seine he met Planchet. any 471 470 The Three Musketeers .’ said Porthos. Treville had placed his stable at d’Artagnan’s service. and d’Artagnan toward the Rue Ferou. He made a sign for Grimaud to bring a glass for d’Artagnan. my angel!’ ‘Tomorrow. the poor man may be expected to leave me a widow. squeezing the hand of the procurator’s wife tenderly. He ordered him to go and saddle two horses in M.’ continued she. then. Planchet proceeded toward the Rue du Colombier. I see. de Treville’s stables—one for himself. in the same manner. my dear Madame Coquenard. Germain. who is rather shrewd. by our marriage contract. It was useless to try to keep pace on foot with a carriage drawn by two powerful horses.‘Very well. D’Artagnan related to Athos all that had passed at the church between Porthos and the procurator’s wife. and was contemplating with ecstasy a cake of the most appetizing appearance. d’Artagnan.’ ‘And be upon your guard before my husband. and one for Planchet—and bring them to Athens’s place. ‘For life. you mean. throwing a significant glance at Porthos. and heard her order the coachman to drive to St. ‘Till we meet again. dear traitor!’ ‘Till we meet again. the survivor takes everything. Once for all. emptying sadly a bottle of the famous Spanish wine he had brought back with him from his journey into Picardy. flame of my life!’ 30 D’ARTAGNAN AND THE ENGLISHMAN D’Artagnan followed Milady without being perceived by her. Athos was at home. simpering. ‘Fortunately. ‘A great age.’ replied Porthos. D’Artagnan therefore returned to the Rue Ferou. who had stopped before the house of a pastry cook.’ ‘All?’ ‘Yes.

wholly unknown to me 472 The Three Musketeers as she is. and if I knew the place in which she is. when I have none. Germain.’ ‘Well. perhaps you are right. so much the worse for her if she is found.’ ‘Hear me. as if he pitied human weakness. ‘I love my poor Constance more than ever. filled his mind constantly. shrugging his shoulders contemptuously. So AU REVOIR. ‘I am only curious to unravel the mystery to which she is attached.’ ‘Well.’ ‘AU REVOIR.’ said d’Artagnan. Madame Bonacieux is lost. with the seigneur in the black cloak and with the scar near his temple. well-bred.’ ‘Handsome. and what are you going to do at St. Athos. get on horseback and come and take a ride with me to St. ‘I? not at all!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘That is to 473 . Germain. At that moment Planchet put his head modestly in at the half-open door. but I am ignorant. ‘I am quite at my ease. I would go to free her from the hands of her enemies.’ said d’Artagnan. Athos. ‘I ride horses when I have any. and wholly unknown to her as I am. you are in love with this lady as you were with Madame Bonacieux. What is to be said? I must divert my attention!’ ‘Amuse yourself with Milady. All along the road.’ ‘My dear fellow. I go afoot. All my researches have been useless. ‘As for me. my dear d’Artagnan.’ ‘How young this d’Artagnan is!’ said Athos. and he made a sign to Grimaud to bring another bottle. which from any other person would have offended him. and told his master that the horses were ready. has an influence over my life. ‘What horses?’ asked Athos. but I imagine that this woman. dear Athos. and took the road to St. Germain.’ replied Athos to this recital.’ said Athos. making a sign to Grimaud to uncork the bottle he had just brought. were it at the end of the world. neither princesses nor queens would be secure from your amorous solicitations.equipped. D’Artagnan and Planchet mounted. and how he had found that lady who.’ said the Musketeer. I wish you may with all my heart. noble lord as you are.’ ‘Well. no. shrugging his shoulders. Bonacieux recurred to the mind of the young man.’ ‘No. if that will amuse you. ‘I ride what I can get. ‘Two horses that Monsieur de Treville lends me at my pleasure.’ said d’Artagnan. I am not so proud as you. it will not be women that will defray the expense of my outfit. ‘I do not know a woman that is worth the trouble of being sought for when she is once lost. and with which I am now going to take a ride to St. Germain?’ then demanded Athos. what Athos had said respecting Mme. you are mistaken. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Then d’Artagnan described the meeting which he had at the church.’ said Athos. I do not know why.’ said Athos. my dear Athos. ‘Instead of shutting yourself up here as if you were under arrest. smiling at the misanthropy of Athos.

‘Eh. Do you think he would recollect you?’ ‘My faith.’ Planchet dismounted and went straight up to 475 . who did not at all remember him. went round the house. d’Artagnan then only half-lied. she was seated. Planchet recognized him first. Milady put her charming blond head out at the window. D’Artagnan leaned upon the neck of his horse. ‘and make out if you can from his conversation whether his master is dead. This person walked along the terrace. d’Artagnan completed his short journey. ‘don’t you remember that face which is blinking yonder?’ ‘No. Germain. At the end of an instant’s observation he heard the noise of a vehicle. it was certainly the man in the black cloak who had carried off Mme. The latter—a pretty girl of about twenty or twenty-two years. ‘I know him now.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘and yet I am certain it is not the first time I have seen that visage. monsieur. and came back to watch the conference from behind a hedge of filberts. which is lying but little. which was ornamented with flowers. monsieur!’ said he. Now. in order that he might see without being seen. Bonacieux the second time. looking to the right and the left to see if he could catch any vestige of his beautiful Englishwoman. Thinking of all this. As he said. has many ends. he was going to try to find out Milady. and from time to time giving a touch of the spur to his horse.’ said Planchet. he saw a face peep out with which he thought he was acquainted. and the two lackeys began to chat with the best understanding possible. while d’Artagnan turned the two horses into a lane. being round. he was ready to go to the end of the world to seek her. it is poor Lubin. He had just passed by the pavilion in which ten years later Louis XIV was born.Although d’Artagnan was not of a very sentimental character. therefore she knew him. He could not be mistaken. so that he did not know which way to turn. and saw Milady’s carriage stop opposite to him. and arrived at St. according to the fashion of the time. which. when from the ground floor of a pretty house. in the opinion of d’Artagnan. on the road to the governor’s country house!’ ‘So it is!’ said d’Artagnan. active and lively. and took her way toward the terrace upon which d’Artagnan had perceived Lubin. the mercer’s pretty wife had made a real impression upon his heart.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Why. as he had carried her off the first. but the world. when he said that by going in search of Milady he at the same time went in search of Constance. he was in such trouble that I doubt if he can have retained a very clear recollection of me. according to the custom of the time. addressing d’Artagnan. He rode up a very quiet street. and gave her orders to her maid. had no window toward the street. Milady had spoken to the man in the black cloak. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ 474 The Three Musketeers ‘PARBLEU. I believe it is not. the true SOUBRETTE of a great lady—jumped from the step upon which. go and talk with the boy. Meantime. the lackey of the Comte de Wardes—he whom you took such good care of a month ago at Calais. Milady was in it.’ ‘Well.

richly dressed. monsieur. so— a pretty little lass. Planchet! you are the king of lackeys. without question. and let us overtake the carriage. having seen all. and he is still very weak. he jumped down from the 477 . he is as well as a man can be with four sword wounds in his body. applied with such force that the little feminine weapon flew into a thousand pieces. Now jump onto your horse.’ Thereupon she ran toward the carriage. ‘For me?’ said d’Artagnan. ‘For you. and read these words: ‘A person who takes more interest in you than she is willing to confess wishes to know on what day it will suit you to walk in the forest? Tomorrow.’ ‘For my master?’ replied Planchet. ‘For your master. this was a blow with her fan. having lost almost all his blood. how is the good Monsieur de Wardes? He is not dead. ‘this is rather warm.’ This did not take long. The maid approached Planchet. ran toward the lane. ‘Yes. and at the end of twenty paces met d’Artagnan. for you. Then. whom she took for Lubin. is that SOUBRETTE!’ D’Artagnan opened the letter. D’Artagnan thought this was the moment to interfere. At the end of five minutes they perceived the carriage drawn up by the roadside. I can’t be more sure. The cavalier laughed aloud.’ 476 The Three Musketeers ‘Oh!’ said d’Artagnan. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but it happened that someone in the house called Lubin. Well. at the Hotel Field of the Cloth of Gold.’ I have no other master but you.D’Artagnan followed the soubrette with his eyes. astonished. The conversation between Milady and the cavalier was so animated that d’Artagnan stopped on the other side of the carriage without anyone but the pretty SOUBRETTE perceiving his presence. and important. then?’ ‘No. Take it quickly. which appeared to exasperate Milady still more. presenting the billet to the young man. monsieur. so that Planchet remained alone. As I said. Planchet. it appears that Milady and I are anxious about the health of the same person. monsieur. jumped upon the step. The conversation took place in English—a language which d’Artagnan could not understand. accustomed to passive obedience.’ ‘Well done. inflicted four upon the dear gentleman. The SOUBRETTE said. ‘are you sure of that?’ ‘PARDIEU. a cavalier. a lackey in black and red will wait for your reply. Planchet turned and returned the billet. and the carriage drove off. and holding out a little billet to him said.’ said Planchet. but by the accent the young man plainly saw that the beautiful Englishwoman was in a great rage. monsieur. and saw her go toward the terrace. She terminated it by an action which left no doubt as to the nature of this conversation. was close to the door. ‘For your master. looking in all directions for the road where d’Artagnan had disappeared. was coming to him. who. Lubin did not know me. and told me our adventure from one end to the other. my faith. which had turned round toward the way it came.

He approached the other door, and taking off his hat respectfully, said, ‘Madame, will you permit me to offer you my services? It appears to me that this cavalier has made you very angry. Speak one word, madame, and I take upon myself to punish him for his want of courtesy.’ At the first word Milady turned, looking at the young man with astonishment; and when he had finished, she said in very good French, ‘Monsieur, I should with great confidence place myself under your protection if the person with whom I quarrel were not my brother.’ ‘Ah, excuse me, then,’ said d’Artagnan. ‘You must be aware that I was ignorant of that, madame.’ ‘What is that stupid fellow troubling himself about?’ cried the cavalier whom Milady had designated as her brother, stooping down to the height of the coach window. ‘Why does not he go about his business?’ ‘Stupid fellow yourself!’ said d’Artagnan, stooping in his turn on the neck of his horse, and answering on his side through the carriage window. ‘I do not go on because it pleases me to stop here.’ The cavalier addressed some words in English to his sister. ‘I speak to you in French,’ said d’Artagnan; ‘be kind enough, then, to reply to me in the same language. You are Madame’s brother, I learn—be it so; but fortunately you are not mine.’ It might be thought that Milady, timid as women are in general, would have interposed in this commencement of mutual provocations in order to prevent the quarrel from
478 The Three Musketeers

going too far; but on the contrary, she threw herself back in her carriage, and called out coolly to the coachman, ‘Go on—home!’ The pretty SOUBRETTE cast an anxious glance at d’Artagnan, whose good looks seemed to have made an impression on her. The carriage went on, and left the two men facing each other; no material obstacle separated them. The cavalier made a movement as if to follow the carriage; but d’Artagnan, whose anger, already excited, was much increased by recognizing in him the Englishman of Amiens who had won his horse and had been very near winning his diamond of Athos, caught at his bridle and stopped him. ‘Well, monsieur,’ said he, ‘you appear to be more stupid than I am, for you forget there is a little quarrel to arrange between us two.’ ‘Ah,’ said the Englishman, ‘is it you, my master? It seems you must always be playing some game or other.’ ‘Yes; and that reminds me that I have a revenge to take. We will see, my dear monsieur, if you can handle a sword as skillfully as you can a dice box.’ ‘You see plainly that I have no sword,’ said the Englishman. ‘Do you wish to play the braggart with an unarmed man?’ ‘I hope you have a sword at home; but at all events, I have two, and if you like, I will throw with you for one of them.’ ‘Needless,’ said the Englishman; ‘I am well furnished with such playthings.’ ‘Very well, my worthy gentleman,’ replied d’Artagnan,
Free eBooks at Planet 479

‘pick out the longest, and come and show it to me this evening.’ ‘Where, if you please?’ ‘Behind the Luxembourg; that’s a charming spot for such amusements as the one I propose to you.’ ‘That will do; I will be there.’ ‘Your hour?’ ‘Six o’clock.’ ‘A PROPOS, you have probably one or two friends?’ ‘I have three, who would be honored by joining in the sport with me.’ ‘Three? Marvelous! That falls out oddly! Three is just my number!’ ‘Now, then, who are you?’ asked the Englishman. ‘I am Monsieur d’Artagnan, a Gascon gentleman, serving in the king’s Musketeers. And you?’ ‘I am Lord de Winter, Baron Sheffield.’ ‘Well, then, I am your servant, Monsieur Baron,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘though you have names rather difficult to recollect.’ And touching his horse with the spur, he cantered back to Paris. As he was accustomed to do in all cases of any consequence, d’Artagnan went straight to the residence of Athos. He found Athos reclining upon a large sofa, where he was waiting, as he said, for his outfit to come and find him. He related to Athos all that had passed, except the letter to M. de Wardes. Athos was delighted to find he was going to fight an Englishman. We might say that was his dream.
480 The Three Musketeers

They immediately sent their lackeys for Porthos and Aramis, and on their arrival made them acquainted with the situation. Porthos drew his sword from the scabbard, and made passes at the wall, springing back from time to time, and making contortions like a dancer. Aramis, who was constantly at work at his poem, shut himself up in Athos’s closet, and begged not to be disturbed before the moment of drawing swords. Athos, by signs, desired Grimaud to bring another bottle of wine. D’Artagnan employed himself in arranging a little plan, of which we shall hereafter see the execution, and which promised him some agreeable adventure, as might be seen by the smiles which from time to time passed over his countenance, whose thoughtfulness they animated.

Free eBooks at Planet


The hour having come, they went with their four lackeys to a spot behind the Luxembourg given up to the feeding of goats. Athos threw a piece of money to the goatkeeper to withdraw. The lackeys were ordered to act as sentinels. A silent party soon drew near to the same enclosure, entered, and joined the Musketeers. Then, according to foreign custom, the presentations took place. The Englishmen were all men of rank; consequently the odd names of their adversaries were for them not only a matter of surprise, but of annoyance. ‘But after all,’ said Lord de Winter, when the three friends had been named, ‘we do not know who you are. We cannot fight with such names; they are names of shepherds.’ ‘Therefore your lordship may suppose they are only assumed names,’ said Athos. ‘Which only gives us a greater desire to know the real ones,’ replied the Englishman. ‘You played very willingly with us without knowing our names,’ said Athos, ‘by the same token that you won our horses.’ ‘That is true, but we then only risked our pistoles; this time we risk our blood. One plays with anybody; but one fights only with equals.’ ‘And that is but just,’ said Athos, and he took aside the
482 The Three Musketeers

one of the four Englishmen with whom he was to fight, and communicated his name in a low voice. Porthos and Aramis did the same. ‘Does that satisfy you?’ said Athos to his adversary. ‘Do you find me of sufficient rank to do me the honor of crossing swords with me?’ ‘Yes, monsieur,’ said the Englishman, bowing. ‘Well! now shall I tell you something?’ added Athos, coolly. ‘What?’ replied the Englishman. ‘Why, that is that you would have acted much more wisely if you had not required me to make myself known.’ ‘Why so?’ ‘Because I am believed to be dead, and have reasons for wishing nobody to know I am living; so that I shall be obliged to kill you to prevent my secret from roaming over the fields.’ The Englishman looked at Athos, believing that he jested, but Athos did not jest the least in the world. ‘Gentlemen,’ said Athos, addressing at the same time his companions and their adversaries, ‘are we ready?’ ‘Yes!’ answered the Englishmen and the Frenchmen, as with one voice. ‘On guard, then!’ cried Athos. Immediately eight swords glittered in the rays of the setting sun, and the combat began with an animosity very natural between men twice enemies. Athos fenced with as much calmness and method as if he had been practicing in a fencing school.
Free eBooks at Planet 483

Porthos, abated, no doubt, of his too-great confidence by his adventure of Chantilly, played with skill and prudence. Aramis, who had the third canto of his poem to finish, behaved like a man in haste. Athos killed his adversary first. He hit him but once, but as he had foretold, that hit was a mortal one; the sword pierced his heart. Second, Porthos stretched his upon the grass with a wound through his thigh, As the Englishman, without making any further resistance, then surrendered his sword, Porthos took him up in his arms and bore him to his carriage. Aramis pushed his so vigorously that after going back fifty paces, the man ended by fairly taking to his heels, and disappeared amid the hooting of the lackeys. As to d’Artagnan, he fought purely and simply on the defensive; and when he saw his adversary pretty well fatigued, with a vigorous side thrust sent his sword flying. The baron, finding himself disarmed, took two or three steps back, but in this movement his foot slipped and he fell backward. D’Artagnan was over him at a bound, and said to the Englishman, pointing his sword to his throat, ‘I could kill you, my Lord, you are completely in my hands; but I spare your life for the sake of your sister.’ D’Artagnan was at the height of joy; he had realized the plan he had imagined beforehand, whose picturing had produced the smiles we noted upon his face. The Englishman, delighted at having to do with a gentleman of such a kind disposition, pressed d’Artagnan in his
484 The Three Musketeers

arms, and paid a thousand compliments to the three Musketeers, and as Porthos’s adversary was already installed in the carriage, and as Aramis’s had taken to his heels, they had nothing to think about but the dead. As Porthos and Aramis were undressing him, in the hope of finding his wound not mortal, a large purse dropped from his clothes. D’Artagnan picked it up and offered it to Lord de Winter. ‘What the devil would you have me do with that?’ said the Englishman. ‘You can restore it to his family,’ said d’Artagnan. ‘His family will care much about such a trifle as that! His family will inherit fifteen thousand louis a year from him. Keep the purse for your lackeys.’ D’Artagnan put the purse into his pocket. ‘And now, my young friend, for you will permit me, I hope, to give you that name,’ said Lord de Winter, ‘on this very evening, if agreeable to you, I will present you to my sister, Milady Clarik, for I am desirous that she should take you into her good graces; and as she is not in bad odor at court, she may perhaps on some future day speak a word that will not prove useless to you.’ D’Artagnan blushed with pleasure, and bowed a sign of assent. At this time Athos came up to d’Artagnan. ‘What do you mean to do with that purse?’ whispered he. ‘Why, I meant to pass it over to you, my dear Athos.’ ‘Me! why to me?’
Free eBooks at Planet 485

‘Why, you killed him! They are the spoils of victory.’ ‘I, the heir of an enemy!’ said Athos; ‘for whom, then, do you take me?’ ‘It is the custom in war,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘why should it not be the custom in a duel?’ ‘Even on the field of battle, I have never done that.’ Porthos shrugged his shoulders; Aramis by a movement of his lips endorsed Athos. ‘Then,’ said d’Artagnan, ‘let us give the money to the lackeys, as Lord de Winter desired us to do.’ ‘Yes,’ said Athos; ‘let us give the money to the lackeys— not to our lackeys, but to the lackeys of the Englishmen.’ Athos took the purse, and threw it into the hand of the coachman. ‘For you and your comrades.’ This greatness of spirit in a man who was quite destitute struck even Porthos; and this French generosity, repeated by Lord de Winter and his friend, was highly applauded, except by MM. Grimaud, Bazin, Mousqueton and Planchet. Lord de Winter, on quitting d’Artagnan, gave him his sister’s address. She lived in the Place Royale—then the fashionable quarter—at Number 6, and he undertook to call and take d’Artagnan with him in order to introduce him. d’Artagnan appointed eight o’clock at Athos’s residence. This introduction to Milady Clarik occupied the head of our Gascon greatly. He remembered in what a strange manner this woman had hitherto been mixed up in his destiny. According to his conviction, she was some creature of the cardinal, and yet he felt himself invincibly drawn toward her by one of those sentiments for which we cannot account.
486 The Three Musketeers

His only fear was that Milady would recognize in him the man of Meung and of Dover. Then she knew that he was one of the friends of M. de Treville, and consequently, that he belonged body and soul to the king; which would make him lose a part of his advantage, since when known to Milady as he knew her, he played only an equal game with her. As to the commencement of an intrigue between her and M. de Wardes, our presumptuous hero gave but little heed to that, although the marquis was young, handsome, rich, and high in the cardinal’s favor. It is not for nothing we are but twenty years old, above all if we were born at Tarbes. D’Artagnan began by making his most splendid toilet, then returned to Athos’s, and according to custom, related everything to him. Athos listened to his projects, then shook his head, and recommended prudence to him with a shade of bitterness. ‘What!’ said he, ‘you have just lost one woman, whom you call good, charming, perfect; and here you are, running headlong after another.’ D’Artagnan felt the truth of this reproach. ‘I loved Madame Bonacieux with my heart, while I only love Milady with my head,’ said he. ‘In getting introduced to her, my principal object is to ascertain what part she plays at court.’ ‘The part she plays, PARDIEU! It is not difficult to divine that, after all you have told me. She is some emissary of the cardinal; a woman who will draw you into a snare in which you will leave your head.’ ‘The devil! my dear Athos, you view things on the dark
Free eBooks at Planet 487

side, methinks.’ ‘My dear fellow, I mistrust women. Can it be otherwise? I bought my experience dearly—particularly fair women. Milady is fair, you say?’ ‘She has the most beautiful light hair imaginable!’ ‘Ah, my poor d’Artagnan!’ said Athos. ‘Listen to me! I want to be enlightened on a subject; then, when I shall have learned what I desire to know, I will withdraw.’ ‘Be enlightened!’ said Athos, phlegmatically. Lord de Winter arrived at the appointed time; but Athos, being warned of his coming, went into the other chamber. He therefore found d’Artagnan alone, and as it was nearly eight o’clock he took the young man with him. An elegant carriage waited below, and as it was drawn by two excellent horses, they were soon at the Place Royale. Milady Clarik received d’Artagnan ceremoniously. Her hotel was remarkably sumptuous, and while the most part of the English had quit, or were about to quit, France on account of the war, Milady had just been laying out much money upon her residence; which proved that the general measure which drove the English from France did not affect her. ‘You see,’ said Lord de Winter, presenting d’Artagnan to his sister, ‘a young gentleman who has held my life in his hands, and who has not abused his advantage, although we have been twice enemies, although it was I who insulted him, and although I am an Englishman. Thank him, then, madame, if you have any affection for me.’
488 The Three Musketeers

Milady frowned slightly; a scarcely visible cloud passed over her brow, and so peculiar a smile appeared upon her lips that the young man, who saw and observed this triple shade, almost shuddered at it. The brother did not perceive this; he had turned round to play with Milady’s favorite monkey, which had pulled him by the doublet. ‘You are welcome, monsieur,’ said Milady, in a voice whose singular sweetness contrasted with the symptoms of ill-humor which d’Artagnan had just remarked; ‘you have today acquired eternal rights to my gratitude.’ The Englishman then turned round and described the combat without omitting a single detail. Milady listened with the greatest attention, and yet it was easily to be perceived, whatever effort she made to conceal her impressions, that this recital was not agreeable to her. The blood rose to her head, and her little foot worked with impatience beneath her robe. Lord de Winter perceived nothing of this. When he had finished, he went to a table upon which was a salver with Spanish wine and glasses. He filled two glasses, and by a sign invited d’Artagnan to drink. D’Artagnan knew it was considered disobliging by an Englishman to refuse to pledge him. He therefore drew near to the table and took the second glass. He did not, however, lose sight of Milady, and in a mirror he perceived the change that came over her face. Now that she believed herself to be no longer observed, a sentiment resembling ferocity animated her countenance. She bit her handkerchief with her
Free eBooks at Planet 489

beautiful teeth. That pretty little SOUBRETTE whom d’Artagnan had already observed then came in. She spoke some words to Lord de Winter in English, who thereupon requested d’Artagnan’s permission to retire, excusing himself on account of the urgency of the business that had called him away, and charging his sister to obtain his pardon. D’Artagnan exchanged a shake of the hand with Lord de Winter, and then returned to Milady. Her countenance, with surprising mobility, had recovered its gracious expression; but some little red spots on her handkerchief indicated that she had bitten her lips till the blood came. Those lips were magnificent; they might be said to be of coral. The conversation took a cheerful turn. Milady appeared to have entirely recovered. She told d’Artagnan that Lord de Winter was her brother-in-law, and not her brother. She had married a younger brother of the family, who had left her a widow with one child. This child was the only heir to Lord de Winter, if Lord de Winter did not marry. All this showed d’Artagnan that there was a veil which concealed something; but he could not yet see under this veil. In addition to this, after a half hour’s conversation d’Artagnan was convinced that Milady was his compatriot; she spoke French with an elegance and a purity that left no doubt on that head. D’Artagnan was profuse in gallant speeches and protestations of devotion. To all the simple things which escaped our Gascon, Milady replied with a smile of kindness. The hour came for him to retire. D’Artagnan took leave of Mi490 The Three Musketeers

lady, and left the saloon the happiest of men. On the staircase he met the pretty SOUBRETTE, who brushed gently against him as she passed, and then, blushing to the eyes, asked his pardon for having touched him in a voice so sweet that the pardon was granted instantly. D’Artagnan came again on the morrow, and was still better received than on the evening before. Lord de Winter was not at home; and it was Milady who this time did all the honors of the evening. She appeared to take a great interest in him, asked him whence he came, who were his friends, and whether he had not sometimes thought of attaching himself to the cardinal. D’Artagnan, who, as we have said, was exceedingly prudent for a young man of twenty, then remembered his suspicions regarding Milady. He launched into a eulogy of his Eminence, and said that he should not have failed to enter into the Guards of the cardinal instead of the king’s Guards if he had happened to know M. de Cavois instead of M. de Treville. Milady changed the conversation without any appearance of affectation, and asked d’Artagnan in the most careless manner possible if he had ever been in England. D’Artagnan replied that he had been sent thither by M. de Treville to treat for a supply of horses, and that he had brought back four as specimens. Milady in the course of the conversation twice or thrice bit her lips; she had to deal with a Gascon who played close. At the same hour as on the preceding evening, d’Artagnan
Free eBooks at Planet 491

retired. In the corridor he again met the pretty Kitty; that was the name of the SOUBRETTE. She looked at him with an expression of kindness which it was impossible to mistake; but d’Artagnan was so preoccupied by the mistress that he noticed absolutely nothing but her. D’Artagnan came again on the morrow and the day after that, and each day Milady gave him a more gracious reception. Every evening, either in the antechamber, the corridor, or on the stairs, he met the pretty SOUBRETTE. But, as we have said, d’Artagnan paid no attention to this persistence of poor Kitty.

However brilliant had been the part played by Porthos in the duel, it had not made him forget the dinner of the procurator’s wife. On the morrow he received the last touches of Mousqueton’s brush for an hour, and took his way toward the Rue aux Ours with the steps of a man who was doubly in favor with fortune. His heart beat, but not like d’Artagnan’s with a young and impatient love. No; a more material interest stirred his blood. He was about at last to pass that mysterious threshold, to climb those unknown stairs by which, one by one, the old crowns of M. Coquenard had ascended. He was about to see in reality a certain coffer of which he had twenty times beheld the image in his dreams—a coffer long and deep, locked, bolted, fastened in the wall; a coffer of which he had so often heard, and which the hands—a little wrinkled, it is true, but still not without elegance—of the procurator’s wife were about to open to his admiring looks. And then he—a wanderer on the earth, a man without fortune, a man without family, a soldier accustomed to inns, cabarets, taverns, and restaurants, a lover of wine forced to depend upon chance treats—was about to partake
Free eBooks at Planet 493


The Three Musketeers

of family meals, to enjoy the pleasures of a comfortable establishment, and to give himself up to those little attentions which ‘the harder one is, the more they please,’ as old soldiers say. To come in the capacity of a cousin, and seat himself every day at a good table; to smooth the yellow, wrinkled brow of the old procurator; to pluck the clerks a little by teaching them BASSETTE, PASSE-DIX, and LANSQUENET, in their utmost nicety, and winning from them, by way of fee for the lesson he would give them in an hour, their savings of a month—all this was enormously delightful to Porthos. The Musketeer could not forget the evil reports which then prevailed, and which indeed have survived them, of the procurators of the period—meanness, stinginess, fasts; but as, after all, excepting some few acts of economy which Porthos had always found very unseasonable, the procurator’s wife had been tolerably liberal—that is, be it understood, for a procurator’s wife—he hoped to see a household of a highly comfortable kind. And yet, at the very door the Musketeer began to entertain some doubts. The approach was not such as to prepossess people—an ill-smelling, dark passage, a staircase halflighted by bars through which stole a glimmer from a neighboring yard; on the first floor a low door studded with enormous nails, like the principal gate of the Grand Chatelet. Porthos knocked with his hand. A tall, pale clerk, his face shaded by a forest of virgin hair, opened the door, and bowed with the air of a man forced at once to respect in
494 The Three Musketeers

another lofty stature, which indicated strength, the military dress, which indicated rank, and a ruddy countenance, which indicated familiarity with good living. A shorter clerk came behind the first, a taller clerk behind the second, a stripling of a dozen years rising behind the third. In all, three clerks and a half, which, for the time, argued a very extensive clientage. Although the Musketeer was not expected before one o’clock, the procurator’s wife had been on the watch ever since midday, reckoning that the heart, or perhaps the stomach, of her lover would bring him before his time. Mme. Coquenard therefore entered the office from the house at the same moment her guest entered from the stairs, and the appearance of the worthy lady relieved him from an awkward embarrassment. The clerks surveyed him with great curiosity, and he, not knowing well what to say to this ascending and descending scale, remained tongue-tied. ‘It is my cousin!’ cried the procurator’s wife. ‘Come in, come in, Monsieur Porthos!’ The name of Porthos produced its effect upon the clerks, who began to laugh; but Porthos turned sharply round, and every countenance quickly recovered its gravity. They reached the office of the procurator after having passed through the antechamber in which the clerks were, and the study in which they ought to have been. This last apartment was a sort of dark room, littered with papers. On quitting the study they left the kitchen on the right, and entered the reception room. All these rooms, which communicated with one another,
Free eBooks at Planet 495

and saluted him courteously. will he not. firm upon his legs. The cousin was received with resignation. ‘We are cousins. ‘ 497 . and took it for a piece of simplicity. must be the blessed coffer. wrapped in a large black doublet. During the last five or six months that this weakness had been felt. and he was obliged to confess to himself. was brisk and dry. Coquenard was not less affected by it on her part. Coquenard. at which he laughed in his large mustache. while passing. M.did not inspire Porthos favorably. 496 The Three Musketeers ‘By the female side. Monsieur Porthos?’ said the procurator. and felt it. The procurator had without doubt been warned of his visit. M. Madame Coquenard?’ This time Porthos received the blow right in his stomach. Porthos.’ said Porthos. I believe?’ said the procurator. to be the only part of his face in which life survived. investigating glance into the kitchen. who advanced toward him with a sufficiently easy air. without being disconcerted. that bustle. Unfortunately the legs began to refuse their service to this bony machine. Then. Mme. and he congratulated himself that the reality was several feet higher than the dream. Coquenard did not carry his genealogical investigations any further. for she added. His little gray eyes shone like carbuncles. and colored a great deal.’ ‘Oh. yet supporting his weight upon the arms of his cane chair. Coquenard. monsieur. although it did not correspond in shape with that which he had seen in his dreams. and consequently to spare to us. it appears. Porthos did not feel the ridicule of this. rising. ‘My cousin will not return if he finds that we do not treat him kindly. in which the whole of his slender body was concealed. since the arrival of Porthos. frequently cast his eyes with great uneasiness upon a large chest placed in front of his oak desk. but withdrawing his anxious look from the chest and fixing it upon Porthos. we are cousins. as he expressed no surprise at the sight of Porthos. he contented himself with saying. M. the worthy procurator had nearly become the slave of his wife. that we must entreat him to give us every instant he can call his own previous to his departure. that he did not see that fire. who knew that a simple-minded procurator was a very rare variety in the species. to the shame of the procurator’s wife and his own regret. with his grinning mouth. The old man. that animation. which when a good repast is on foot prevails generally in that sanctuary of good living. would have declined all relationship with M. my legs. smiled a little. he had cast a rapid. ‘Monsieur our cousin will do us the favor of dining with us once before his departure for the campaign. It appeared likewise that Mme. and appeared. as he had never reckoned upon being received enthusiastically by the husband. my poor legs! where are you?’ murmured Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Words might be heard at a distance through all these open doors. Porthos comprehended that this chest. maliciously. Coquenard had. but otherwise he has so little time to pass in Paris. that was all.

’ ‘What the devil can they smell so extraordinary in this soup?’ said Porthos. Their jaws moved preliminarily with fearful threatenings. pushed along upon his armchair with casters by Mme. The fowl must have been sought for a long time on the perch. ‘Indeed!’ thought Porthos. The clerks.’ M. Madame Coquenard. Coquenard drew the dish toward her. to which it had retired to die of old age. I respect old age. inspired much gratitude in the Musketeer toward the procurator’s wife. bristly skins through which the teeth cannot penetrate with all their efforts.’ And he looked round to see if anybody partook of his opinion. and distributed the crusts without soup to the impatient clerks. This succor. but on the contrary. They passed into the eating room—a large dark room situated opposite the kitchen. in anticipation. After the soup the maid brought a boiled fowl—a piece of magnificence which caused the eyes of the diners to dilate in such a manner that they seemed ready to burst. Mme. Afterward Mme. he saw nothing but eager eyes which were devouring.’ said the procurator. 498 The Three Musketeers Mme. and he tried to smile. ‘Oh. and Porthos perceived through the half-open flap the little clerk who. Coquenard smiled. At this moment the door of the dining room unclosed with a creak. oh!’ said he. and covered with one of those thick. on the surface of which a few crusts swam about as rare as the islands of an archipelago. were of military punctuality. M. The hour of dinner soon arrived. abundant but entirely free from meat. was not admitted to the honors of the magisterial table. as might be expected. ‘One may see that you love your family. Coquenard entered. Coquenard. casting a glance at the three hungry clerks—for the errand boy. not being allowed to take part in the feast. and held their stools in hand quite ready to sit 499 . ‘in my cousin’s place. which came to Porthos at the moment in which he was attacked in his gastronomic hopes. with a smile that was almost tragic. as it appeared. Coquenard was served first. who. skillfully Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘this is poor work. Coquenard filled her own plate.Coquenard. ‘The devil!’ thought Porthos. He had scarcely entered when he began to agitate his nose and his jaws after the example of his clerks. ate his dry bread in the passage with the double odor of the dining room and kitchen. ‘You are certainly treating your cousin very handsomely!’ The poor fowl was thin. but I don’t much like it boiled or roasted. then Porthos. at the sight of a pale liquid. whom Porthos assisted in rolling her husband up to the table. I would not keep such gourmands! They look like shipwrecked sailors who have not eaten for six weeks. had smelled unusual perfumes in the house. that sublime fowl which was the object of his contempt. ‘here is a soup which is rather inviting. and upon a sign from her everyone eagerly took his seat.

your dinner has been a real feast. the black feet of the fowl. raised the wing for Porthos. Coquenard. how I have eaten!’ M. don’t touch them. Porthos fancied they were mystifying him. but the knee of Mme. and retired. and continued to do so. then. He also drank half a glass of this sparingly served wine.’ ‘Devil take me if I taste one of them!’ murmured Porthos to himself. cut off the neck. and sighed deeply. and shuddered when he felt the knee of the procurator’s wife under the table. and the only mutton bone on which there was the least appearance of meat. to swallowing a drink which from the color of the ruby had passed to that of a pale topaz. and their lugubrious looks settled down into resigned countenances.detached the two great black feet. In the place of the fowl a dish of haricot beans made its appearance—an enormous dish in which some bones of mutton that at first sight one might have believed to have some meat on them pretended to show themselves. The young men filled up their third of a glass with water. they arose slowly from the table. as it came in search of his. by the end of the repast. which she placed upon her husband’s plate. ‘Ah. Porthos could hardly keep his countenance.’ There was silence. Lord. Madame Coquenard! Accept my compliments. Coquenard gently advised him to be patient. and then said aloud. accompanied by a smile from Mme. young men! go and promote digestion by working. gravely. on the contrary. The clerks gone. Porthos ate his wing of the fowl timidly. Mme. which with the head she put on one side for herself. who disappeared with it before the Musketeer had time to examine the variations which disappointment produces upon faces. I am no longer hungry. and began to curl his mustache and knit his eyebrows. bowed. a terrible meaning for the clerks. ‘Thank you. ‘Will you eat any of these beans. Cousin Porthos?’ said Mme. and found it to be nothing but 500 The Three Musketeers that horrible Montreuil—the terror of all expert palates. This silence and this interruption in serving.’ said the procurator. M. Coquenard saw him swallowing this wine undiluted. and passed the bottle to Porthos and Mme. which were unintelligible to Porthos. according to the characters and temperaments of those who experience it. ‘Take my 501 . Coquenard had eaten his soup. Mme. had. my cousin. served himself in about the same proportion. Coquenard rose and took from a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Coquenard poured from a very small stone bottle the third of a glass for each of the young men. ‘Go. when they had drunk half the glass. Coquenard. M. Upon a look from the procurator. The time for wine came. This brought them. in that tone which says. folded their napkins more slowly still. they filled it up again. Coquenard distributed this dish to the young men with the moderation of a good housewife. Coquenard. But the clerks were not the dupes of this deceit. and then returned the bird otherwise intact to the servant who had brought it in. The procurator repeated several times.

said Porthos. ‘This is fine!’ said Porthos to himself. Coquenard understood it. and cheese. but wine was wanting. EPULCE EPULORUM. he placed his feet. ‘two thousand livres! Why. groaning. upon the edge of which. Lucullus dines with Lucullus. that is a fortune!’ Porthos made a most significant grimace. ‘it does not exceed two thousand five hundred livres! I even think that with economy I could manage it with two thousand livres.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘the sacrifice is consummated! Ah! if I had not the hope of peeping with Madame Coquenard into her husband’s chest!’ M.’ said she.buffet a piece of cheese. M. and in that same locality. ‘Now. Porthos began to hope that the thing would take place at the present sitting. which was near him. Coquenard. yes. he might make a dinner. besides. bread.’ ‘But yet. ‘I am prettily caught!’ He passed his tongue over a spoonful of preserves. Coquenard. ‘I wished to know the detail. and Mme. ‘a real feast. 502 The Three Musketeers ‘You can come and dine three times a week.’ said Porthos. and hoped that with wine. the bottle was empty.’ said he. Coquenard knit his eyebrows because there were too many good things. The procurator’s wife took Porthos into an adjoining room. then. ‘it is so. and was not satisfied till he was close to his chest. Coquenard did not seem to observe it.’ said the procurator’s wife. felt the want of a siesta. they may amount to—‘. and they began to lay the basis of a reconciliation. ‘Oh. and they require many things useless to the Guardsmen or the Swiss. detail them to 503 . having many relatives in business. after the luxuries of such a repast. and a cake which she had herself made of almonds and honey. ‘but I don’t like to abuse your kindness. The procurator’s wife waited tremblingly. who preferred discussing the total to taking them one by one. I was almost sure of obtaining things at a hundred per cent less than you would pay yourself. but the procurator would listen to nothing.’ ‘But of what.’ ‘Good God!’ cried she. as you know. turning about in his chair. the dish of beans had disappeared. ‘The Musketeers are. madame!’ said Porthos. Coquenard. picked soldiers. does the equipment of your company consist.’ ‘Why. ‘Thanks.’ Porthos looked at the bottle. of many things!’ said Porthos. Monsieur Porthos?’ ‘Oh.’ said Mme. which he called an excess. he would be taken to his room. and stuck his teeth into the sticky pastry of Mme. I must think of my outfit!’ ‘That’s true.’ said Porthos. ‘To how much?’ said she. Coquenard. ‘A positive feast!’ cried M. some preserved quinces. Mme. for still greater precaution. ‘because. ‘I hope it does not exceed—‘ She stopped. He looked to see if the dish of beans was still there. M. no. speech failed her. ‘that unfortunate outfit!’ ‘Alas. Porthos bit his lips because he saw not the wherewithal to dine.

my dear. As to my arms. Coquenard. These conditions being agreed to. 504 The Three Musketeers Madame Coquenard. my friend.’ said Porthos. ‘but that is doing things in lordly style. and the procurator’s wife was obliged to give place to the king. There is one in particular which he prefers in his journeys. The Musketeer returned home hungry and in bad humor. in real innocence. with a sigh. ah!’ said Porthos.’ cried Mme. Thus. the rest of the equipment was successively debated in the same manner. Finally. a mule with feathers and bells.’ added Porthos. I have seen very great Spanish nobles whose whole suite were mounted on mules. don’t let that disturb you. for instance. and which will not amount. and it seemed to me that by getting a pretty mule for Mousqueton—‘ ‘Well. The latter wished to detain him by darting certain tender glances. but the valise I want. ‘Oh. Porthos smiled. Moliere had not written his scene in ‘L’Avare’ then. ‘Ah.’ Madame uttered fresh sighs.’ said the procurator’s wife. ‘is a wellfilled one. haughtily. ‘do you take me for a beggar?’ ‘No. ‘there is a horse for my lackey.‘Ah. ‘that’s well as regards my horse.’ ‘Well. you shall choose the best. madame!’ said Porthos. ‘Then. don’t you in the first place want a horse?’ ‘Yes. then! I can just suit you. agreed for a pretty mule. ‘My husband has five or six valises. These three hundred livres he reckoned upon putting snugly into his pocket.’ said the procurator’s wife. with simplicity. I only thought that a pretty mule makes sometimes as good an appearance as a horse.’ continued he.’ ‘Ah!’ said Porthos. a horse. ‘Certainly it is empty. as they include objects which a Musketeer alone can purchase. hesitatingly. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘A horse for your lackey?’ resumed the procurator’s wife. to more than three hundred livres. It may be remembered that he had the saddle which came from Buckingham.’ ‘Ah. and should furnish the horse and the mule which should have the honor of carrying Porthos and Mousqueton to glory. Coquenard was in the dilemma of Harpagan.’ ‘Be satisfied. it is useless to trouble you about them.’ ‘Three hundred livres? Then put down three hundred livres. dear Monsieur Porthos. but I must have the appointments 505 .’ cried Porthos.’ ‘Your valise is then empty?’ asked Porthos. Mme. ‘you are right. and my valise. But then you understand. ‘that is what you meant to say!’ ‘Yes. ‘There remains the valise. Coquenard. brightening. but Porthos urged the commands of duty. large enough to hold all the world. besides. Porthos took leave of Mme. I have them. and the result of the sitting was that the procurator’s wife should give eight hundred livres in money.’ replied the procurator’s wife.

‘Because. But you need not fear. and can talk.33 SOUBRETTE AND MISTRESS Meantime. then. despite the cries of his conscience and the wise counsels of Athos.’ ‘What the devil do you see so bad in it?’ said d’Artagnan. The little apartment was charming for its taste and neatness. monsieur. as we have said.’ And Kitty. she never goes to bed before midnight. winding staircase. monsieur. very dearly. and above all. ‘Good!’ thought d’Artagnan. ‘Oh.’ replied Kitty. ‘my mistress loves you not at all. ‘She is charged with some message for me from her mistress. ‘here we shall be alone. and as light at heart as a man who awaits a shower of gold.’ said she.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Monsieur Chevalier?’ said she.’ ‘Come.’ And he looked down at the pretty girl with the most triumphant air imaginable. Kitty guessed what was passing in the mind of the young man. speak. what is to be done?’ 506 The Three Musketeers ‘If Monsieur Chevalier would follow me?’ said Kitty. led him up a little dark.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well. and after ascending about fifteen steps. d’Artagnan became hourly more in love with Milady. who had not let go the hand of d’Artagnan. his eyes were directed to that door which Kitty said led to Milady’s chamber. ‘Speak. Monsieur Chevalier. One 507 . but in spite of himself. Monsieur Chevalier. more than I can say. ‘I wish to say three words to you. She will not hear what we say. but this time the pretty Kitty was not contented with touching him as he passed. Kitty! I am mad for her!’ Kitty breathed a second sigh.’ said she. Thus he never failed to pay his diurnal court to her.’ stammered the SOUBRETTE. when he arrived with his head in the air. he found the SOUBRETTE under the gateway of the hotel. my dear child. she is about to appoint some rendezvous of which she had not courage to speak. too secret. and heaved a deep sigh. ‘Alas. it communicates with my mistress’s by that door. and the self-satisfied Gascon was convinced that sooner or later she could not fail to respond. ‘Where you please.’ ‘And whose room is this. ‘that is too bad. my child. opened a door. then. my dear child?’ ‘It is mine.’ D’Artagnan cast a glance around him. ‘I listen. Monsieur Chevalier. ‘You love my mistress. she took him gently by the hand.’ ‘Here? Impossible! That which I have to say is too long. timidly. ‘Come in here.

‘Read the address. in a voice full of compassion. 509 . Count. or rather.’ ‘What ones?’ ‘The first is that my mistress will never love you. ‘You have not answered my first note. ‘For two reasons. little one?’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well. but for the intention only—for the information. monsieur. my pretty dear. ‘can she have charged you to tell me so?’ ‘Oh. is not likely to be at all agreeable.’ and he read. is it not so?’ ‘We have always some difficulty in believing such things. ‘No. Germain presented itself to the mind of the presumptuous Gascon. and pressing anew the young man’s hand.’ said Kitty. you would do much better to assist me in avenging myself on your mistress. my dear Kitty. As quick as thought.’ ‘For another?’ ‘Yes. he tore open the letter. but out of the regard I have for you. yes. ‘what are 508 The Three Musketeers you doing?’ ‘I?’ said d’Artagnan. and supplant my rival. do not allow it to escape. were it only from self-love. Monsieur Chevalier. you don’t believe what I have told you. instead of pitying me. good Lord. I have taken the resolution to tell you so. he was wounded in his SELFlove: he thought that it was in his LOVE. ‘You pity me. seizing the letter. ‘Oh. ‘Oh. his name!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ d’Artagnan became very pale.’ The remembrance of the scene at St. or have you forgotten the glances you favored me with at the ball of Mme. no. ‘For me?’ said d’Artagnan.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘His name.’ ‘Then you don’t believe me?’ ‘I confess that unless you deign to give me some proof of what you advance—‘ ‘What do you think of this?’ Kitty drew a little note from her bosom.’ ‘How do you know that?’ ‘You have cut her to the heart. in spite of the cry which Kitty uttered on seeing what he was going to do. warmly. ‘Poor dear Monsieur d’Artagnan. then.’ ‘You know what it is to be in love?’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Monsieur El Comte de Wardes. for another.’ ‘Much obliged.’ said Kitty. you must agree.’ ‘I will never help you in that.‘HEIN!’ said d’Artagnan. looking at her for the first time with much attention. Monsieur Chevalier.’ ‘And what sort of revenge would you take?’ ‘I would triumph over her. what he was doing.’ said she. de Guise? You have an opportunity now. ‘nothing. for I know what it is to be in love.’ ‘That is to say. Are you indisposed. ‘And why not?’ demanded d’Artagnan. ‘Alas. and with all my heart.

the corridor. and so well. did believe him.’ said he. go directly!’ D’Artagnan rose.’ said Kitty. everyone for herself!’ Then only d’Artagnan remembered the languishing glances of Kitty. my dear Kitty.’ ‘And does that hinder you from letting me know the second reason?’ ‘The second reason. or on the stairs. took his hat. Nevertheless. come here.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Well. Monsieur the Chevalier.’ said he to the young girl.’ replied Kitty. who asked nothing better than to believe him. ‘Kitty. and let me tell you that you are the prettiest SOUBRETTE I ever saw!’ And he did tell her so much. Midnight sounded. he had disdained the soubrette. ‘there is my mistress calling me! Go. He whose game is the eagle takes no heed of the sparrow. ‘very willing. emboldened by the kiss in the first 511 . but absorbed by his desire to please the great lady. he buried himself Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as may plainly be perceived. ‘it is not me you love! It is my mistress you love. and her deep sighs.’ cried Kitty. Time passes quickly when it is passed in attacks and defenses. as if it had been his intention to obey. news on the spot.’ ‘Well. ‘is that in love. The perfidious deceiver was. opening quickly the door of a large closet instead of that leading to the staircase. in intention. my dear. ‘Of that which I am ready to feel toward you. and still further by the expression of the eyes of the young man. then. The young girl had freshness and beauty which many duchesses would have purchased with their coronets. entrance at all hours into Kitty’s chamber. ‘I will read to the bottom of your soul when-ever you like. I beg you!’ ‘I will never confess that but to the man—who should read to the bottom of my soul!’ D’Artagnan looked at Kitty for the second time. yes. to d’Artagnan’s great astonishment. no. those touches of the hand every time she met him.‘I? In what can I have offended her—I who ever since I have known her have lived at her feet like a slave? Speak. the poor girl in order to obtain Milady. that the poor girl. ‘Oh.’ And he gave her a kiss at which the poor girl became as red as a cherry. her constantly meeting him in the antechamber. But this time our Gascon saw at a glance all the advantage to be derived from the love which Kitty had just confessed so innocently. you told me so just now. clapping her hands. ‘Good God.’ ‘And what is that proof?’ ‘Are you willing that I should this evening pass with you the time I generally spend with your mistress?’ ‘Oh.’ said Kitty. the pretty Kitty defended herself resolutely. that I should give you a proof of that love which you doubt?’ ‘What love?’ asked the young girl. establishing himself in an easy chair. and almost at the same time the bell was rung in Milady’s chamber. already sacrificing. ‘come. willy-nilly. ‘are you willing. then. which was contiguous to her mistress’s. or so boldly: the interception of letters ad510 The Three Musketeers dressed to the Comte de Wardes. don’t let that disturb you.

Milady. that you don’t answer when I ring?’ And d’Artagnan heard the door of communication opened violently. who held the life of 512 The Three Musketeers Lord de Winter in his hands and did not kill him. and the conversation turned upon him while Kitty was assisting her mistress. ‘Can he be inconstant before being happy?’ ‘Oh. D’Artagnan. Why. ‘Are you asleep. yes.’ ‘What.’ ‘For Monsieur de Wardes?’ said Kitty. I will be revenged!’ ‘I believed that Madame loved him. ‘your son was the only heir of his uncle. and I don’t know why. ‘Well. ‘go into your own room. madame?’ ‘What will I do with him? Be easy. the mercer’s wife of the Rue des Fossoyeurs? Has he not already forgotten she ever existed? Fine vengeance that. on my faith!’ A cold sweat broke from d’Artagnan’s brow. ‘I should long ago have revenged myself on him if. no. ‘For all this.’ ‘What will you do with him. for not having killed a man whom he had seen load her with kindnesses. with that sharp voice which she took such pains to conceal in conversation. ‘I have not seen our Gascon this evening.’ said Kitty.’ said Kitty.’ ‘Oh. but unfortunately the toilet was finished. Oh. and as the door of communication remained open. but Madame has not conciliated that little woman he was so fond of. he must have been prevented by Monsieur de Treville or Monsieur Dessessart. Milady! has he not come?’ said Kitty.’ ‘I love him? I detest him! An idiot. for Monsieur de Wardes. springing forward to meet her mistress. and tomorrow endeavor again to get me an answer to the letter I gave you.’ said Milady. in a sharp voice. ‘Here am I. Both went into the bedroom. here am I!’ cried Kitty.’ D’Artagnan shuddered to the marrow at hearing this suave creature reproach him.’ ‘Now.’ said Milady. ‘To be sure. shut himself up in the closet without reply. the cardinal had not requested me to conciliate him. ‘Well. and until his majority you would have had the enjoyment of his fortune. who had secured the key. there is one. ‘That will do.’ cried Milady. Kitty.’ continued Milady. She was at length 513 .amid the robes and dressing gowns of Milady. I understand my game. by which I missed three hundred thousand livres’ income.’ ‘What. ‘who appears to me quite a different sort of a man from that poor Monsieur d’Artagnan. Kitty.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I have this one safe. this woman was a monster! He resumed his listening.’ ‘That’s true. there is something between that man and me that he is quite ignorant of: he nearly made me lose my credit with his Eminence. d’Artagnan could hear Milady for some time scolding her maid. ‘What are you doing?’ cried Kitty.

It was a movement of vengeance upon Milady. de Wardes that provoked her thus. the beautiful lioness became milder. but Milady was very cross with her. ‘See how I suffer on your account!’ Toward the end of the evening. on account of the diamond studs. Kitty knew nothing about it. scarcely knowing what to think. be confessed in his justification that the first use he made of his influence over Kitty was to try and find out what had become of Mme. and finding her in a very ill-humor. ‘I don’t like comments. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but as softly as possible.‘Go to bed. D’Artagnan believed it right to say that vengeance is the pleasure of the gods. mademoiselle. and she ordered Kitty to come at nine o’clock in the morning to take a third letter. ‘What!’ said Kitty. he might have been contented with this new conquest. but the poor girl swore upon the crucifix to d’Artagnan that she was entirely ignorant on that head. in a low voice. D’Artagnan came the next day to Milady’s. but this time d’Artagnan was better informed than she was. resistance would make so much noise. begone!’ said Kitty. As he had seen Milady on board a vessel at the moment he was leaving England. He found Kitty at the 515 . Kitty turned the key of the lock. but as he was a youth who did not easily lose his head. however. had no doubt that it was lack of an answer from M. was increased by his not having killed her brother-in-law. 514 The Three Musketeers As to the cause which was near making Milady lose her credit with the cardinal. at least. Milady could not at all comprehend the silence of the Comte de Wardes. She had the less motive to resist. however. he suspected that it was. went up to her chamber. the inveterate hatred of Milady.’ ‘That’s exactly the reason I won’t go. then the noise of two bolts by which Milady fastened herself in. almost without a doubt. ‘what is the matter with you? How pale you are!’ ‘The abominable creature’ murmured d’Artagnan. Kitty came in. It must. as on the preceding evening. she smilingly listened to the soft speeches of d’Artagnan. but the principal features of his character were ambition and pride. Therefore Kitty surrendered. On her side. every word that is uttered in one can be heard in the other. Bonacieux.’ D’Artagnan heard the door close.’ said Milady. Kitty had been accused of negligence and severely scolded. With a little more heart. ‘Or. ‘There is nothing but a wainscot between my chamber and Milady’s. and. and even gave him her hand to kiss. I will go—later. ‘Silence. the profound hatred. silence. blushing.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Oh. and then d’Artagnan opened the closet door. while continuing to pay his court to Milady.’ He drew Kitty to him. But what was clearest in all this was that the true hatred. good Lord!’ said Kitty. D’Artagnan departed. her mistress never admitting her into half her secrets—only she believed she could say she was not dead. The poor girl ventured a glance at d’Artagnan which said. he had framed a little plan in his mind.

d’Artagnan did not return home till five o’clock in the morning. as the reader pleases. I will come and ask mine at eleven o’clock this evening. I know what sort of vengeance! You told me that!’ ‘What matters it to you. As the night before. But now I am forced to believe in the excess of your kindness. Comte de Wardes This note was in the first place a forgery.’ said Kitty. you love her still. you are mistaken. At eleven o’clock Kitty came to him. This time the poor girl did not even argue with d’Artagnan. since not only your letter but your servant assures me that I have the good fortune to be beloved by you. The poor girl promised all her lover desired. D’Artagnan’s plan was very simple. She belonged body and soul to her handsome soldier. Beware that I do not write to you a fourth time to tell you that I detest you. but at that period people did not manage affairs as they do today. it was likewise an indelicacy. D’Artagnan concealed himself in his closet. but passion or thirst. undressed. d’Artagnan from her own admission knew Milady culpable of treachery in matters more important. Milady called. besides. he felt an uncontrollable passion for this woman boiling in his veins—passion drunk with contempt. the young girl who brings you this will tell you how a man of spirit may obtain his pardon. Besides. notwithstanding this want of respect. but I will avenge myself for her contempt. Kitty? You know it is you alone whom I love. She has no occasion to teach me the way in which a man of spirit may obtain his pardon. It was even.D’Artagnan made Kitty promise to bring him that letter on the following morning.’ D’Artagnan took a pen and wrote: Madame. something like an infamous action. I was so seriously indisposed that I could not in any case have replied to 517 . From him whom you have rendered the happiest of men.’ ‘Oh. And yet. Until the present moment I could not believe that it was to me your first two letters were addressed. she gave it to him at once. D’Artagnan opened the letter and read as follows: This is the third time I have written to you to tell you that I love you. To delay it a single day would be in my eyes now to commit a fresh offense. who had not taken her eyes off the young man’s countenance for an instant. ‘No. and could entertain no respect for her. d’Artagnan colored and grew pale several times in reading this billet. She held in her hand a fresh billet from Milady. ‘Oh. If you repent of the manner in which you have acted toward me. according to our present manners. Kitty. sent away Kitty. By Kitty’s chamber Free eBooks at Planet eBook. yes. I do not love her. Things passed as on the night before.’ 516 The Three Musketeers ‘How can I know that?’ ‘By the scorn I will throw upon her. so unworthy did I feel myself of such an honor. she was mad. and shut the door.

handing Kitty the letter sealed. to triumph over her. that it is I who have opened the others which ought to have been opened by de Wardes. This promise completed poor Kitty’s consolation. but something must be left to chance. ‘Listen.’ ‘Ah. He might fail. d’Artagnan had no time for a prolonged love siege. He would take advantage of the first moment of surprise.’ ‘Alas!’ said Kitty. 518 The Three Musketeers she did at last so decide. you do not love me!’ cried Kitty. I well know. ‘and I am very wretched. shame. ‘But I am grateful. ‘for whom have I exposed myself to all that?’ ‘For 519 . and he would be compelled to leave Paris. and terror. my dear girl. which was all d’Artagnan wished. Although she cried freely before deciding to transmit the letter to her mistress.’ said the young man. my sweet girl.’ ‘But what does this note contain?’ ‘Milady will tell you. I swear to you.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘give that to Milady. D’Artagnan replied in such a manner that Kitty remained in her great delusion. and you know she is not the woman to limit her vengeance. Milady may discover that you gave the first billet to my lackey instead of to the count’s.’ To this reproach there is always one response which deludes women. she suspected what the letter contained.he could gain that of her mistress.’ said d’Artagnan. Milady will then turn you out of doors. some way or other. It is the count’s reply.’ Poor Kitty became as pale as death. ‘There. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘you cannot but perceive that all this must end. In eight days the campaign would open. and that when he left the mistress he would ascend with the maid. Finally he promised that he would leave her mistress’s presence at an early hour that evening.

tranquillity. in which Porthos hinted that a lady of elevated rank had condescended to relieve him from his embarrassment. The four friends were reunited. and bid him pray for a poor sinner. Mousqueton entered. Duty likewise on its part took a portion of that precious time which was gliding away so rapidly—only they had agreed to meet once a week. that of d’Artagnan. neither encouraged nor dissuaded him.’ replied Mousqueton. Bazin. according to his 521 . where his presence was urgent.’ he said. He came to request his master to return to his lodgings. saluted his friends. it is for the sake of having someone to blame for having given it. with that mildness of language which was observable in him every time that his ideas were directed toward the Church. Bazin made his appearance at the door. seeing that he.’ Porthos rose. carelessness. that of Aramis.’ ‘Give him alms. in agreement with the vow he had formed. Athos believed that everyone should be left to his own free will. uneasiness. as he piteously said. At the end of a moment’s conversation. did not pass over the threshold of his door. ‘only ask advice not to follow it. An instant after. there had been no fixed meeting between them. ‘A man wishes to see Monsieur at home. He found Athos and Aramis philosophizing. The four countenances expressed four different feelings: that of Porthos. d’Artagnan directed his steps toward the Rue Ferou. or if they do follow it. monsieur.’ replied Bazin. that of Athos. This day of reunion was the same day as that on which Kitty came to find d’Artagnan. but can’t you speak?’ ‘Come. my friend?’ said Aramis. Soon as Kitty left him.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Aramis had some slight inclination to resume the cassock. wherever they might happen to be. Athos. ‘People. and followed Mousqueton. ‘What do you want with me.34 IN WHICH THE EQUIPMENT OF ARAMIS AND PORTHOS IS TREATED OF Since the four friends had been each in search of his equipments. at the residence of Athos. He never gave advice but when it was asked. or rather where they could. ‘Well. ‘A man! What man?’ ‘A mendicant.’ Porthos arrived a minute after d’Artagnan. and 520 The Three Musketeers even then he required to be asked twice. in general. ‘Is it my equipment?’ ‘Yes and no. hope. about one o’clock. They dined apart from one another.

who had nothing important to say to each other. they would have weighed me down like a remorse. you look there for your outfit. What do you think of Monsieur de Treville telling me. d’Artagnan’s confidence stopped there. you court another. You have brought me something?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. We will therefore leave the two 523 . It is the longest road. I have never been seriously uneasy on his account. I understand now: to find one woman. whom the cardinal protects?’ ‘That is to say. ‘A thousand pardons. and there were in the plan which our lover had devised for Milady.’ ‘Not at all. punctilious in points of honor.’ ‘Has he sent no particular message for me?’ ‘Yes. but certainly the most amusing. Is that your name.’ ‘I gave you my reasons. and follow Aramis.’ And rising also. There remained Athos and d’Artagnan. What do you think. which naturally you took care not to adopt. Athos was a gentleman. I have acquired certain knowledge that that woman was concerned in the abduction of Madame Bonacieux. seeing that it is blessed bread to kill an Englishman. certain things that would not obtain the assent of this Puritan. but no doubt this man brings me the news I expected. my boy.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ 522 The Three Musketeers ‘Oh. d’Artagnan?’ said Athos. monsieur?’ ‘My very own. but covered with rags. Upon being informed that the person who wanted to speak to him came from Tours. ‘tell him I am from Tours. he was sure. gentlemen.’ ‘Yes. I visit an Englishwoman—the one I named.’ he said. On entering he found a man of short stature and intelligent eyes. but one consideration restrained him. ‘I know that Porthos was in a fair way. but if I had pocketed his pistoles. he went off at a quick pace. you have truly inconceivable ideas. which were our legitimate property—what do you mean to do?’ ‘I am satisfied with having killed that fellow. But you. that you associated with the suspected English. ay! the fair woman on whose account I gave you advice. ‘You have asked for me?’ said the Musketeer. He was therefore silent. I think you said. or rather went before.‘This mendicant insists upon speaking to you.’ ‘Let it pass. ‘and as to Aramis to tell you the truth. ‘I wish to speak with Monsieur Aramis. my dear Athos— you. my dear Athos. we have seen with what rapidity the young man followed.’ ‘Yes. and as Athos was the least inquisitive of any man on earth. Bazin. who so generously distributed the Englishman’s pistoles. when he did me the honor to call upon me yesterday. If Monsieur Aramis hesitates to come. ‘Go to. he ran without stopping from the Rue Ferou to the Rue de Vaugirard.’ D’Artagnan was on the point of telling Athos all.’ ‘From Tours!’ cried Aramis. ‘I believe these fellows have managed their business. and pretends that you will be very glad to see him.

are thine.’ said Aramis. AU REVOIR. I will do mine elsewhere. Bazin. all. but his quickness was not of much use to him. from which he drew a letter. and he was obliged to obey. and opening his ragged vest.’ said Aramis. taking a small key from his breast and opening a little ebony box inlaid with mother of pearl. had ventured to address a word to him. curious to know who the mendicant could be. and drew 524 The Three Musketeers from amid his rags a hundred and fifty Spanish double pistoles. which he laid down on the table. ‘if these are the prunes that are sent to you from Tours. then he opened the door. kissed the superscription with an almost religious respect. and as Aramis had no longer any reason to exclude him.’ replied the mendicant. ‘this is from my publisher. and forgot that he came to announce d’Artagnan. and perceived a postscript: P. and went out before the young man. who has just sent me the price of that poem in one-syllable verse which I began yonder. Perform your duty in camp. friend d’Artagnan. Bazin was stupefied at the sight of the gold. or rather. Now. kept pace with him as well as he could. all.‘Yes. Bazin gone. curious to know what the mendicant could want with his master. bowed. ‘The devil! my dear Aramis.’ ‘That is right. badly held together by a leather strap. we shall yet have happy days! My love. and arrived almost at the same time he did. but the delightful days of youth are not lost beyond return. he began to rip the upper part of his doublet.’ ‘You are mistaken. Bazin scratched at the 525 . the mendicant cast a rapid glance around him in order to be sure that nobody could either see or hear him. he bade him come in. we are young. always on his guard. stupefied by his letter. ‘dismiss your lackey. my blood. and opened the epistle. beautiful life! Yes. Accept that which the bearer brings you. Look. who kisses tenderly your black eyes.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. yes. my adored mistress!’ And he kissed the letter with passion. You may behave politely to the bearer.S. as d’Artagnan used no ceremony with Aramis. if you show me a certain embroidered handkerchief. make the campaign like a handsome true gentleman. Aramis then reperused the letter. my life! all. At the hint from the mendicant his master made him a sign to retire. I beg you will make my compliments to the gardener who gathers them.’ The mendicant continued to rip his garments. Aramis uttered a cry of joy at the sight of the seal. ‘Adieu. he announced himself. ‘Oh. who. seeing that Bazin forgot to announce him. it is the will of fate that we should be still for some time separated. without even vouchsafing a look at the gold which sparkled on the table. which contained what follows: ‘My Friend. came to Aramis on leaving Athos. and think of me. who is a count and a grandee of Spain! ‘Golden dreams!’ cried Aramis. ‘here it is.’ ‘Here it is.’ said d’Artagnan.’ In fact.

expecting that you will be rich in your turn. ‘I believe you meddle with my conversation.’ said d’Artagnan. who. with great pleasure. and I. my dear.’ Bazin perceived he was wrong. the frightful brute!’ said Aramis. as to the old Burgundy.’ ‘Agreed. Mousqueton?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. As he was perfectly acquainted with the details of gastronomy. for my part.’ said he. the carcass is not worth eighteen livres. ‘It is of an original color. and he. ‘Aramis. he placed the others in the ebony box. I have no objection to that. and shall not be sorry. for. crammed in the letter. ‘I never saw one with such a hide in my life. you may become equal to Monsieur de Voiture and Monsieur de Benserade. my friend. with a most pitiable air. ‘Ah!’ said d’Artagnan with a smile. look at that horse!’ ‘Oh. I confess. The two friends repaired to Athos’s. 526 The Three Musketeers And having put three or four double pistoles into his pocket to answer the needs of the moment.’ said Aramis. become a poet. faithful to his vow of not going out. that’s all I can say. I beg of you.’ said Aramis.’ cried he.’ ‘I can well believe it. monsieur. ‘if you please. d’Artagnan and Aramis made no objection to abandoning this important care to him.’ Aramis blushed to the eyes. his ideas of conversion. but take care or you will lose that letter which is peeping from your doublet.’ said Aramis. You are very fortunate. we will today begin to dine together again. in which was the famous handkerchief which served him as a talisman. But how did this horse come into your bands. It must have been for his hide. from your publisher. as I am rich. ‘Ah. no doubt. A poet is as good as an abbe. you can write as much as you like. your publisher is very generous. and re-buttoned his doublet. ‘My dear d’Artagnan. does Monsieur know this horse?’ said Mousqueton. my yellow horse. I like that. indeed. as by magic. ‘a poem sell so dear as that! It is incredible! Oh. my dear Aramis.’ ‘Bazin. ‘Ah. from whom the letter and the gold had 527 . ‘and that was why I got three crowns for him. inlaid with mother of pearl.’ ‘How. D’Artagnan uttered a cry of surprise. he bowed and went out. ‘Well. Ah! Monsieur Aramis.’ ‘What. CERTES. and which also comes. was driving before him a mule and a horse. have a somewhat hazardous expedition for this evening. which was not quite free from joy. took upon him to order dinner to be brought to them.’ replied d’Artagnan. to fortify myself with a few glasses of good old Burgundy. we will join our friends. my friend. and at the corner of the Rue Bac met Mousqueton. ‘you sell your productions at their weight in gold. ‘upon that very horse I came to Paris.‘Ah. They went to find Porthos.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘It is long since we have had a good dinner.’ ‘My faith!’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur?’ cried Bazin.

and substituted these horrible animals. he returned to Porthos. But don’t let us hinder you. while the two friends went to ring at the bell of the unfortunate Porthos. still driving the two sorry animals before him. and they rang in vain. All that which a man wounded in his self-love could let fall in the shape of imprecations and reproaches upon the head of a woman Porthos let fall upon the bowed head of the procurator’s wife. my master has commanded me to be discreet. The anger which fired the eyes of the Musketeer. Mme. we are looked upon with a rather favorable eye by a lady of quality. terrified his sensitive inamorata. Meanwhile Mousqueton continued on his way. a magnificent Spanish GENET and an Andalusian mule.’ ‘No.’ said the lackey. then. both horse and mule to the knocker of the procurator’s door. who had not eaten anything since the morning.‘Pray. and told him that his commission was 529 .’ ‘Which you are taking back to him?’ said d’Artagnan. He. Magloire. he fas528 The Three Musketeers tened. She had forced us to accept a little souvenir. Mousqueton. your pardon. Coquenard recognized her present. and which he had sold for three crowns. took care not to answer. Arrived there. go and perform your master’s orders.’ said Mousqueton. on their way he confiscated the two magnificent beasts which were being sent to us. seeing he was going. the Duchesse de—but. monsieur. and that d’Artagnan in the yellow horse had recognized the Bearnese pony upon which he had come to Paris. for she guessed the reproaches that awaited her there. Mousqueton?’ ‘Why. Porthos went away after having appointed a meeting with the procurator’s wife in the cloister of St. made such a noise in raising and letting fall the knocker that the procurator ordered his errand boy to go and inquire in the neighborhood to whom this horse and mule belonged. in spite of his efforts to suppress it. he reached the Rue aux Ours. Magloire. Is he at home?’ ‘Yes. and crossing the Pont Neuf. Mousqueton had not concealed from his master that he had met d’Artagnan and Aramis. ‘but in a very ill humor. Coquenard repaired trembling to the cloister of St. The husband heard of the affair. PARDIEU. though I should like to have seen Porthos on my yellow horse. which were beautiful to look upon. The procurator. Get up!’ He continued his way toward the Quai des Grands Augustins. In fact. monsieur. without taking any thought for their future. but she was fascinated by the lofty airs of Porthos. but the visit of Porthos soon enlightened her. ‘Exactly!’ replied Mousqueton. invited him to dinner—an invitation which the Musketeer refused with a majestic air. ‘You may well believe that we will not accept such steeds as these in exchange for those which had been promised to us. In a short time the two unfortunate beasts. ‘say nothing about it. and could not at first comprehend this restitution. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Mme. That would give me an idea of how I looked when I arrived in Paris. having seen them crossing the yard. according to the orders of his master. it is a frightful trick of the husband of our duchess!’ ‘How is that.

‘Stop. Come! We shall be alone. turning on his heel. ‘Monsieur Porthos! Monsieur Porthos!’ cried the procurator’s wife.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said Porthos. ‘Stop. ‘Monsieur Porthos. ‘But. which will last three hours at least. my dear. The procurator’s wife fancied she saw him in a brilliant cloud.’ ‘You pardon me?’ ‘We shall see.’ ‘How so?’ asked the Musketeer.‘Alas.’ ‘Talking with you brings me misfortune. majestically. ‘Listen. but they who so assiduously try to buy things cheap ought to permit others to seek more generous friends. ‘No.’ The procurator’s wife hung upon the arm of Porthos. I see it.’ Porthos. what do you ask?’ ‘Nothing. and is backward in his pay. who cast bags of money at his feet. then. retreated a second 531 . ‘I have been wrong. madame. made a step to retire.’ ‘The devil!’ thought Porthos. I ought not to have driven a bargain when it was to equip a cavalier like you. It is for a consultation. and in the violence of her grief she cried out. upon my word of honor. for that amounts to the same thing as if I asked you for something. ‘if he owed you more than five crowns. he owes money to the office.’ said Porthos. in the name of heaven. seeking to excuse herself.’ And Porthos.’ ‘There is no harm in trying to buy things cheap. but you wished to be frugal. who has sent for him. without reply.’ said she. I am ignorant of all such matters! How should I know what 530 The Three Musketeers a horse is? How should I know what horse furniture is?’ ‘You should have left it to me. ‘it appears I am getting nearer to Monsieur Coquenard’s strongbox at last. madame. ‘I did all for the best! One of our clients is a horsedealer.’ ‘Well. all surrounded by duchesses and marchionesses. Monsieur Porthos!’ cried she. who know what they are. and the two separated saying. he assured me that they were two noble steeds. and consequently to lend at usury. Coquenard is going to the house of the Due de Chaulnes. Now you talk. but I will repair that wrong. Monsieur Porthos. your horsedealer is a thief. This evening M. and can make up our accounts.’ ‘It was wrong. as he walked away. ‘Till this evening. madame. I took the mule and the horse for what he owed us. tell me.’ said the procurator’s wife. Monsieur Porthos. and let us talk.’ ‘In good time.’ said Porthos.

neither in the antechamber. not of coquetry. that his billet had been delivered. she had given Kitty a purse. but of gratitude because of his 533 . but you would be charming if you would only depart. and by way of recompense for the manner in which she had this time executed the commission. Milady in a delirium of joy had told her servant everything. D’Artagnan knew what she wanted. under the caresses of d’Artagnan. Kitty entered to bring some sherbet. nor beneath the great door. This time Kitty was nowhere waiting for him. Our Gascon knew. disgorging three or four gold pieces on the carpet. As d’Artagnan had presumed. She looked at the clock. nor in the corridor. D’Artagnan looked at the two women. As was his custom. The poor girl. She joined her hands with a suppliant air. on receiving his letter. he was touched by this mute sorrow.’ D’Artagnan rose and took his hat. It was necessary that d’Artagnan should find alone the staircase and the little chamber. ‘She loves him devilishly. Returning to her own room. only he represented his action as one of simple vengeance. For the rest this vengeance was very easy. To the great lady she had given a heart vile and venal.35 A GASCON A MATCH FOR CUPID The evening so impatiently waited for by Porthos and by d’Artagnan at last arrived. Milady gave him her 532 The Three Musketeers hand to kiss.’ he murmured. At ten o’clock Milady began to appear restless. one after the other. reseated herself. The young man went to her and took her hands. to change the program which he had laid out in advance. He did not therefore allow her any hope that he would flinch. As little sensitive as was the heart of d’Artagnan. then she sobbed aloud. no doubt. He found her in a charming humor. She heard him enter. ‘You are very amiable. smiled at d’Artagnan with an air which said. but alas! the poor girl was so sad that she did not even notice Milady’s condescension. Kitty had thrown the purse into a corner. lifted her head. Her mistress put on a charming face. D’Artagnan himself was frightened by the change in her countenance. but she did not raise her head. where it lay open. Never had he been so well received. by the first glance of his eye. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. above all to this one. and was forced to acknowledge that in his opinion Dame Nature had made a mistake in their formation. but without venturing to speak a word. and smiled on her graciously. and comprehended that this was a sentiment. but he held too tenaciously to his projects. The young man felt her press his hand. and that this billet had had its effect. d’Artagnan presented himself at Milady’s at about nine o’clock. rose. for Milady. to the SOUBRETTE she had given the heart of a duchess. Then he went out.

’ At this appeal d’Artagnan drew Kitty quietly away. Finally. Hardly had d’Artagnan seen. Milady seemed overcome with joy. D’Artagnan slipped into the wardrobe. If rage or sorrow ever torture the heart. encircled with brilliants. Kitty went to her mistress. ‘I. I also—I love you. still in obscurity. and ordered Kitty to return to her own chamber. my God!’ murmured Kitty. and pressing his hand in her own. D’Artagnan was in a dolorous situation which he had not foreseen. it was a magnificent sapphire.doubtless to conceal her blushes from her lover. my God. and that you may not forget 535 . ‘Yes. and did not leave the door open. ‘No. in her softest voice. the Comte 534 The Three Musketeers de Wardes. and even in the little chamber itself. Besides.’ ‘This woman is full of mysteries. who at that very moment was crying in the next chamber. take this!’ and she slipped a ring from her finger onto d’Artagnan’s. ‘It is I. tomorrow. if he seemed very amorous. no! Keep that ring for love of me. than he slipped out of his concealment. Milady had everything about her darkened. And to all these questions poor Kitty. forced to put on a pleasant face. The first movement of d’Artagnan was to return it. but Milady added. Oh. as the hour for her interview with the count approached. and made Kitty repeat the smallest details of the pretended interview of the soubrette with de Wardes when he received the letter. Presently they heard Milady retire to her room. ‘why do you not enter? Count. ‘you know that I wait for you. in a voice full of emotion. and introduce de Wardes whenever he presented himself. in a trembling voice.’ murmured d’Artagnan Free eBooks at Planet eBook. that the whole apartment was in obscurity. ‘What is that noise?’ demanded Milady. solely because happiness is egotistical. I must have some pledge from you which will prove that you think of me. how he had responded.’ said Milady. it is when a lover receives under a name which is not his own protestations of love addressed to his happy rival. tomorrow.’ she added. and slipped into the chamber. d’Artagnan remembered having seen this ring on the finger of Milady. and he suffered almost as much as poor Kitty. Jealousy gnawed his heart. through a crevice in his closet. ‘you render me a much greater service than you imagine.’ ‘Oh. de Wardes must take his departure. Count.’ said Milady.’ said d’Artagnan in a subdued voice.’ added she. in accepting it. what was the expression of his face. Kitty’s detention was not long. but the partition was so thin that one could hear nearly all that passed between the two women. had ordered Kitty to extinguish all the lights in the apartment. ‘he has not even waited for the hour he himself named!’ ‘Well. Hardly was he concealed when the little bell sounded. at the very moment when Kitty reclosed the door of communication. Before daybreak M. Count. ‘I am happy in the love which your looks and your words have expressed to me every time we have met. responded in a stifled voice whose dolorous accent her mistress did not however remark.

‘Yes. who did not well know how to answer. taking it from his finger. ‘I will avenge you—and cruelly!’ ‘PESTE!’ said d’Artagnan to himself. ‘Your Milady.’ ‘It is beautiful. she gave it me last night.’ said himself. He tried it on his left hand. Here it is.’ murmured Milady. and as they addressed each other in a reciprocally passionate adieu. carefully kept in a casket. ‘You notice my ring?’ said the Gascon.’ ‘That ring comes from Milady?’ cried Athos. ‘Her very self. ‘Oh. whom that monster of a Gascon barely failed to kill. but she added. and as it were. ‘appears to be an infamous creature. though I have not questioned her. the place of the queen’s ring. Athos examined it and became very pale. It was necessary to separate. and by their union constitute a passion so strange. ‘Be tranquil.’ The monster was himself. and only quit him at the staircase. but Milady herself 536 The Three Musketeers reconducted him through the darkness. is it not?’ said d’Artagnan.’ While thus speaking Athos regarded with attention the sapphire set with diamonds which had taken. In one fashion or another you have a terrible enemy on your hands.’ replied d’Artagnan. but then all the ideas of vengeance which he had brought with him had completely vanished. The next morning d’Artagnan ran to find Athos. This woman exercised over him an unaccountable power. ‘magnificent. much. or rather Frenchwoman—for I am convinced she was born in France. diabolical. D’Artagnan at the moment of quitting Milady felt only the liveliest regret at the parting.’ said Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Poor angel. I did not think two sapphires of such a fine water existed. proud to display so rich a gift in the eyes of his friends. on d’Artagnan’s finger. It is a gift from my beautiful Englishwoman. ‘the moment for confidences has not yet come. ‘it reminds me of a family jewel.’ continued Milady. Poor Kitty hoped to speak a few words to d’Artagnan when he passed through her chamber. He therefore told him all. and with what a revengeful purpose he had come. but not the less you have done wrong to deceive her. He would not have believed that two sentiments so opposite could dwell in the same heart. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. it fit his finger as if made for it. At that instant he felt himself ready to reveal 537 .’ It took some time for d’Artagnan to resume this little dialogue. another interview was arranged for the following week. He even opened his mouth to tell Milady who he was. He was engaged in an adventure so singular that he wished for counsel. Have you traded it for your diamond?’ ‘No. he hated and adored her at the same time. ‘Yes.’ said Athos. with a voice in which it was easy to detect strong emotion. Presently it sounded one o’clock. ‘do your wounds still make you suffer?’ ‘Yes.

joined to the cries of his own heart. if I had a son I could not love him better. ‘but no doubt I was mistaken. don’t tell me you are perplexed what to do.’ ‘And you—sold it?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ ‘Shall you have the courage?’ said Athos. Take my advice. not to see Milady again. you will act rightly.’ D’Artagnan took off the ring. ‘I will have done with her. A month of fever could not have changed her more than this one night of sleeplessness and sorrow. I do not know her. ‘I shall. ‘is it not strange?’ and he pointed out to d’Artagnan the scratch he had remembered. On reaching home d’Artagnan found Kitty waiting for him. d’Artagnan. but put it in his pock538 The Three Musketeers et and not on his finger. he wrote the following letter: Do not depend upon me. giving it again to Athos.’ And he returned d’Artagnan the ring without. ‘Look. But stop! let me look at that sapphire again. awaited d’Artagnan’s reply. He took back the ring. ‘d’Artagnan. however. ceasing to look at it. ‘and God grant that this woman. ‘No. pale and trembling.’ replied Athos.’ replied Athos. it appeared as if there were abysses in Milady’s soul whose depths were dark and 539 . it recalls such cruel recollections that I shall have no head to converse with you. intoxicated with joy. madame. who inherited it from her mother.’ said Athos. As I told you. it is an old family jewel. ‘and instantly.’ said Athos.’ said he.’ replied d’Artagnan. my young friend. now his pride was saved and his vengeance satisfied. the one I mentioned to you had one of its faces scratched by accident.’ D’Artagnan became pensive in his turn. made him determine.A shade of anger and vengeance passed across the usually calm brow of this gentleman. ‘Pray.’ said the gentleman. pressing the Gascon’s hand with an affection almost paternal. ‘It is impossible it can be she. who has scarcely entered into your life.’ ‘You are right. She wished to know when her lover would meet her a second night. ‘I gave it away in a night of love. ‘you know I love you. and poor Kitty. Her mistress was mad with love. but a sort of intuition tells me she is a lost creature. As a reply.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said be. ‘How could this ring come into the hands of Milady Clarik? And yet it is difficult to suppose such a resemblance should exist between two jewels. Athos started. with a singular smile. I own that this woman terrifies me. and that there is something fatal about her. Athos?’ ‘From my mother. renounce this woman. ‘But from whom did this ring come to you. ‘either take off that ring or turn the mounting inside. taking his hand.’ ‘Do you know this ring?’ said d’Artagnan. The counsels of his friend. hesitatingly. She was sent by her mistress to the false de Wardes. Don’t ask me for counsel. as it has been given to you. ‘I thought I did. may not leave a terrible trace in it!’ And Athos bowed to d’Artagnan like a man who wishes it understood that he would not be sorry to be left alone with his thoughts.’ ‘In truth. for the next meetFree eBooks at Planet eBook. after a minute.

and she sank into an armchair. she cried. but Milady started up. I shall have the honor to inform you of it. She ground her teeth. she was of the color of ashes. her legs failed her. Since my convalescence I have so many affairs of this kind on my hands that I am forced to regulate them a little.’ responded the maid. starting. and turning with flashing eyes upon Kitty. frightened at the terrible expression which had come over her mistress’s face. and the younger sons of the best families were frequently supported by their mistresses. D’Artagnan gave the open letter to Kitty.’ replied Kitty. or else. but she could only stretch forth her arms. I kiss your hands. Milady opened the letter with eagerness equal to Kitty’s in bringing it. hastened toward her and was beginning to open her dress. and I wished to bring her help. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. She could scarcely believe in her happiness. ‘My God! can he have—‘ and she stopped. and d’Artagnan was forced to renew with the living voice the assurances which he had written. who at first was unable to comprehend it. but who became almost wild with joy on reading it a second time. Comte de Wardes Not a word about the sapphire. ‘What is this letter?’ ‘The answer to Madame’s. She crushed the paper in her hand. She tried to go toward the window for air. I avenge myself!’ And she made a sign for Kitty to leave the room. Was the Gascon determined to keep it as a weapon against Milady. she ran back to the Place Royale as fast as her legs could carry her. 540 The Three Musketeers ‘Impossible!’ cried Milady. Kitty. ‘What do you want with me?’ said she. That which would now be considered as disgraceful to a gentleman was at that time quite a simple and natural affair. let us be frank. ‘I faint? I? I? Do you take me for half a woman? When I am insulted I do not faint.’ Then all at once. And whatever might be—considering the violent character of Milady—the danger which the poor girl incurred in giving this billet to her mistress. pushing her away. The heart of the best woman is pitiless toward the sorrows of a rival. fearing she was ill. When your turn comes. but at the first words she read she became ‘and why do you place your hand on me?’ ‘I thought that Madame was ill. ‘It is impossible a gentleman could have written such a letter to a 541 . she cried. did he not reserve the sapphire as a last resource for his outfit? It would be wrong to judge the actions of one period from the point of view of another. all in a tremble.

He did not dare to write for fear of not being able—to such experienced eyes as those of Milady—to disguise his writing sufficiently. my God!’ said Kitty. he should be immediately admitted. Milady. only this time it was addressed to M. d’ 543 . my dear girl.’ said the Gascon. She renewed the order relative to the Gascon. but in vain. You are going now to pay your court to her again. Milady Clarik ‘That’s all very simple.’ ‘And will you go?’ asked Kitty.36 DREAM OF VENGEANCE That evening Milady gave orders that when M. ‘you must understand it would be impolitic not to accept such a positive invitation. but he did not come. would not be able to understand what could cause the interruption of my visits. d’Artagnan was at the Place Royale. de Wardes.’ Instinct made poor Kitty guess a part of what was to happen. this jealous anger of Milady was his revenge. d’Artagnan came as usual. she was no longer joyous and alert as on the two preceding days. it will be much worse than before. As nine o’clock sounded. The next morning. That evening Milady was still more impatient than on the preceding evening. particularly at the moment you are about to leave them for so long a time. d’Artagnan. but she. when Kitty presented herself at d’Artagnan’s. d’Artagnan smiled. and might suspect something. who sought for an excuse in his own eyes for breaking the promise he had made Athos. and that he would be obedient to her orders. Will it be the same this evening? 542 The Three Musketeers Your very grateful. d’Artagnan reassured her as well as he could. He opened it and read as follows: Dear M. The next day Kitty went to see the young man again. and if this time you succeed in pleasing her in your own name and with your own face. He desired Kitty to tell her mistress that he could not be more grateful for her kindnesses than he was. D’Artagnan asked the poor girl what was the matter with her. My brother-in-law and myself expected you yesterday and the day before. not seeing me come again. drew a letter from her pocket and gave it to him. My credit rises by the fall of that of the Comte de Wardes. and related to him all that had passed on the preceding evening. who could say how far the vengeance of such a woman would go?’ ‘Oh. and not to M. ‘you know how to represent things in such a way that you are always in the right.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I expected this letter. and promised to remain insensible to the seductions of Milady. It is wrong thus to neglect your friends. for as soon as d’Artagnan apFree eBooks at Planet eBook. but as before she expected him in vain. It was evident that the servants who waited in the antechamber were warned. but on the contrary sad as death. This letter was in Milady’s handwriting. as her only reply. ‘Listen to me.

‘Alas!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Bad. ‘I am at home to nobody. stay. no!’ said Milady.’ said d’Artagnan. this fair inconstant.’ replied he. ‘On the contrary. and looked fatigued. very bad. your agreeable company will divert me.’ said Milady.’ ‘Oh.’ The servant went out.’ replied Milady. and will she be disposed to give me myself another sapphire like that which she gave me for de Wardes?’ D’Artagnan rapidly drew his seat nearer to Milady’s. Milady became more communicative. Monsieur d’Artagnan. have only breathed and sighed through you and for you?’ Milady smiled with a strange smile. from the moment I saw you. either from tears or want of sleep. ‘Have I any need to tell you so? Have you not perceived it?’ ‘It may be. On guard!’ Milady assumed the most agreeable air possible. in a quick tone. but so piercing that d’Artagnan heard her in the antechamber. ‘She has never been so kind before. to nobody. Is she going to fall in love with me.peared. before even he had asked if Milady were visible. by chance. ‘Then you love me?’ said she. ‘can you be cruel enough to put such a question to me—to me. ‘let us see what you would do to Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Nothing is impossible. and conversed with more than her usual brilliancy. stand in need of repose.’ ‘Oh. difficulties do not affright me. ‘to true love. D’Artagnan approached her with his usual gallantry. oh!’ thought d’Artagnan. and I will withdraw. but never did a more distressed countenance give the lie to a more amiable smile. who. ‘The devil!’ thought d’Artagnan. At the same time the fever. He was 545 . His love. She asked d’Artagnan if he had a mistress. color to her cheeks.’ ‘Then. ‘I shrink before nothing but impossibilities. ‘observe.’ ‘No.’ said Milady. ‘Show him in. She then made an extraordinary effort to receive him. ‘Well. no doubt. There was a moment at which he felt something like remorse. one of them ran to announce him. which for an instant abandoned her. D’Artagnan cast an inquiring glance at Milady. you. ‘my visit is ill-timed. returned to give luster to her eyes. Milady smiled. awoke again in his heart. but the young woman could not conceal the traces of the fever which had devoured her for two days.’ replied Milady. ‘The note is changed. By degrees. The number of lights had been intentionally diminished. she replied. To the questions which d’Artagnan put concerning her health.’ ‘Nothing. and d’Artagnan felt that he could damn himself for that smile.’ she said. madame?’ ‘Nothing. and vermillion to her lips. D’Artagnan was again in the pres544 The Three Musketeers ence of the Circe who had before surrounded him with her enchantments. but you know the more hearts are worth the capture. with the most sentimental air he could assume. which he believed to be extinct but which was only asleep. She was pale. now. the more difficult they are to be won.

prove this love of which you speak. She scarcely resisted.’ D’Artagnan lifted up his head. after a moment of silence. madame!’ said d’Artagnan.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Milady. between her teeth.’ cried d’Artagnan. Milady remained thoughtful and undecided for a moment.’ said Milady. she said.’ said Milady. in her turn drawing her armchair nearer to d’Artagnan’s chair. ‘after having abused me with such effrontery. ‘from the present 547 .’ said he.’ ‘For everything?’ ‘For everything. who knew beforehand that he had not much to risk in engaging himself thus. hypocritical and dangerous woman. ‘and I shall soon know how to get rid of you—you double idiot. cease to talk of impossibilities. ‘My arm and my life belong to you. smiling. ‘You may. like my love. with emphasis. dear Monsieur d’Artagnan. ‘Avenge me of that infamous de Wardes.’ ‘Then you would employ for me your arm which has already acquired so much renown?’ ‘Instantly!’ ‘But on my part. ‘how should I repay such a service? I know these lovers. madame. my God?—good and beautiful as you are!’ ‘A mortal enemy. ‘since you are as generous as you are loving—‘ She stopped. then. They are men who do nothing for nothing. that is because my happiness appears so impossible to me. ‘Ah. ‘I could interpret one of your looks.’ replied Milady. ‘I am all attention. and covering with kisses the hands abandoned to him. likewise to himself.’ said Milady. really carried away by the passion this woman had the power to kindle in his heart. ‘You have understood me.’ ‘You. and afterward I will laugh at you with him whom you wish me to kill. ‘Well.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Well. ‘Well?’ demanded d’Artagnan.’ said Milady.’ ‘Indeed!’ ‘An enemy who has insulted me so cruelly that between him and me it is war to the death.’ ‘Then. Order. ‘Interested man!’ cried she. ‘I have an enemy. and I have such fear that it should fly away from me like a dream Free eBooks at Planet eBook. May I reckon on you as an auxiliary?’ D’Artagnan at once perceived the ground which the vindictive creature wished to reach. ‘ah.’ said he.’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘Do not overwhelm me with happiness. ‘the only one worthy of you and of me!’ And he drew nearer to her. now let us talk a little seriously.’ ‘You know the only reply that I desire. 546 The Three Musketeers throwing himself on his knees. ‘is that possible.’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘All that could be required of me. I am ready. ‘I am ready.’ said he. you animated sword blade!’ ‘Fall voluntarily into my arms. then. affecting surprise. madame. as if appearing to have formed a resolution.

that I pant to make a reality of it. then!’ ‘I am at your orders. do you love nothing else in me?’ asked 548 The Three Musketeers d’Artagnan. He was not the less intoxicated with joy. The warm pressure made d’Artagnan tremble. ‘how do you know it?’ ‘How do I know it?’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I love your devotedness.’ said Milady. you must.’ said Milady. ‘So much the better! Come. Her lips were cold. What is his name?’ ‘You know him. She made no effort to remove her lips from his kisses. then?’ cried Milady. with a last doubt. ‘Quite certain?’ said Milady. Our Gascon promised this without risk. ‘Oh. I know it. merit this pretended happiness. only she did not respond to them. ‘I love you also. as if by the touch that fever which consumed Milady attacked himself. If de Wardes had at that moment been under his hand.’ ‘It is surely not one of my friends?’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘De Wardes.’ repeated Milady. in her turn. tell me. tell me his name!’ ‘Remember that his name is all my secret. in a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. for he knew all that was meant. you!’ cried he.’ ‘Yet I must know his name. if that were so.’ ‘Well.’ ‘Indeed. seizing both his hands. electrified by love. ‘Only name to me the base man that has brought tears into your beautiful eyes!’ ‘Who told you that I had been weeping?’ said she.’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘Alas. ‘Not if it were my own brother!’ cried d’Artagnan. Milady seized the occasion. I should lose my reason!’ And he folded her in his arms. and endeavoring to read with her eyes to the bottom of his heart. taking his hand. ‘It appeared to me—‘ ‘Such women as I never weep. YOU!’ said she. I say.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘You love me.’ ‘I know it because yesterday Monsieur de Wardes. it appeared to d’Artagnan that he had embraced a statue. ‘Yes. he would have killed 549 . tell me. D’Artagnan felt he had allowed himself to be carried away. and a threatening glance darted from her eyes. ‘Tell me. affecting hesitation in order to make her believe him ignorant. see what confidence I have in you!’ ‘You overwhelm me with joy. ‘If it were one of your friends you would hesitate.’ ‘Yes. He almost believed in the tenderness of Milady. he almost believed in the crime of de Wardes.’ ‘Yes. as if carried away by his enthusiasm. and that he had committed an error. ‘And how do you know it?’ asked Milady. ‘His name is—‘ said she.

what are you thinking about. but not with men. we will then terminate this conversation. God forbid! But would it be just to 550 The Three Musketeers allow me to go to a possible death without having given me at least something more than hope?’ Milady answered by a glance which said.’ And then accompanying the glance with explanatory words. The epithet. she had a thousand precautions to take.’ ‘It appears that these appointments are all made for eleven o’clock. ‘Well. standing there like a statue? Do as I bid you: show the chevalier out. a thousand counsels to give to her defender. ‘Immediately. He is a coward. ‘and when shall I be avenged?’ ‘Tomorrow—immediately—when you please!’ Milady was about to cry out. mademoiselle. I will avenge you of this wretch. favorable yesterday. my brave friend!’ cried Milady.’ said he.’ replied d’Artagnan. tenderly. and this evening at eleven o’clock—you have heard what I said. I must take care.’ ‘Fortune is a courtesan. ‘Well. then. ‘that’s a settled custom. ‘and come back at eleven o’clock. I know something of him.’ said she. ‘That is but too 551 . ‘Go out this way.’ said she.’ said she.’ said he.’ The poor girl almost fainted at hearing these words.’ ‘But it seems you had not much reason to complain of your fortune in your contest with him.’ ‘With women.’ ‘No.’ but she reflected that such precipitation would not be very gracious toward d’Artagnan. dear love.’ She rang the bell and Kitty appeared. ‘But. ‘I must not play the fool. ‘you will be avenged.’ ‘But when I assure you that you may rely on my tenderness?’ ‘I cannot wait till tomorrow. This woman is certainly a great liar. resounded to the very bottom of d’Artagnan’s heart.’ thought d’Artagnan. but you will not be dead. It will be useless for him to find you here. you are an angel!’ exclaimed the young man. ‘you will avenge me.’ ‘Which means that you now hesitate?’ ‘No. ‘Tomorrow. ‘Thanks.’ ‘Wretch!’ cried Milady. ‘Is that all?— speak. perhaps. I do not hesitate. Kitty will conduct you to my chamber.’ ‘Silence! I hear my brother. giving himself the airs of Don Japhet of Armenia. which he kissed tenderly. opening a small private door. ‘Oh. showed a ring which he said he had received from you.saloon where I was. All this was answered by an expression of d’Artagnan’s. in order that he might avoid explanations with the count before witnesses.’ Milady held out her hand to him. she may turn her back tomorrow. ‘Except that which I ask of you.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as he retired as quickly as possible from the reproaches of Kitty. Besides. ‘Well?’ continued she. as may be easily understood. or I shall be dead. ‘Then all is agreed?’ said she.

fury. and opening the door. with her ear on the watch. As the door closed after them Kitty rushed toward it. He. that he was but an instrument of vengeance. wished to delay her lover. on his part. and as this vengeance appeared to him to have a certain sweetness in it. said. A secret voice whispered to 553 . and that she did not love him at all. Jealousy. He wished to subdue this woman in his own name. yielding to that magnetic attraction which the loadstone exercises over iron. because he was not sorry to have an opportunity of reading his own thoughts and endeavoring. which was to be seen through the blinds. darted not the less quickly toward Milady. It was evident that this time the young woman was not in such haste to retire to her apartment as she had been the first. but she reflected that she would be totally lost if she confessed having assisted in such a machination. if possible. turning at every ten steps to look at the light in Milady’s apartment. to fathom those of this woman. But he also was spurred on by a ferocious desire of vengeance. urged her to make a revelation. and prayers. offended pride. at the bottom of his heart. He recalled to his mind the details of the first night.’ All this was of such incredible immodesty. He imagined himself to be drawn into one of those fantastic intrigues one meets in dreams. 552 The Three Musketeers At length the light disappeared. With this light was extinguished the last irresolution in the heart of d’Artagnan. It was no longer a rival who was beloved. he could not make up his mind to renounce it. and with a beating heart and a brain on fire he re-entered the hotel and flew toward Kitty’s chamber. of such monstrous effrontery. but Milady. without committing suicide. and above all. had gained the summit of all his wishes. all the passions in short that dispute the heart of an outraged woman in love. had heard the noise d’Artagnan had made. pale as death and trembling in all her limbs. The poor girl. He walked six or seven times round the Place Royale. ‘Come in. recriminations. D’Artagnan. In an instant d’Artagnan perceived that the best way in which he could act would be to go home and write Milady a long letter. to kill the Comte de Wardes. that d’Artagnan could scarcely believe what he saw or what he heard. in which he would confess to her that he and de Wardes were. it was himself who was apparently beloved. that d’Artagnan would also be lost to her forever. up to the present moment absolutely the same. the second. because by this means he should escape reproaches. and that consequently he could not undertake. What was most clear in the matter was that d’Artagnan loved Milady like a madman. as she endeavored to persuade him to do— and that for two reasons: the first.37 MILADY’S SECRET D’Artagnan left the hotel instead of going up at once to Kitty’s chamber. that he was only caressed till Free eBooks at Planet eBook. This last thought of love counseled her to make this last sacrifice. however.

This coldness toward the only interests that occupied her mind terrified Milady. but pride. dear love!’ replied d’Artagnan. Two hours thus glided away. body and soul!’ ‘Thanks. ‘but now.he had given death. Milady. he merited death. dear Monsieur d’Artagnan?’ ‘You cannot think so. with that large quantity of conceit which we know he possessed. endeavored to turn the conversation. the furious projects she had formed. since you condemn him!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘That is. after all. Seeing d’Artagnan about to leave her. compared himself with de Wardes. abandoning herself to love which she also seemed to feel. but d’Artagnan believed it to be hardly two hours before the daylight peeped through the window blinds.’ ‘And what is that?’ asked 555 . who had never seriously thought of this impossible duel. by pardoning de Wardes. but as you are satisfied of my love. in your turn. bantering tone. passionate mistress. whose questions became more pressing. you must. ‘Are you afraid. satisfy me of yours. who had not the same motives for forgetfulness that d’Artagnan had. and asked himself why. which sounded strangely in the darkness.’ said Milady.’ ‘He shall die. Milady recalled his promise to avenge her on the Comte de Wardes. And then our Gascon. Then d’Artagnan. my brave lover. whose ideas had taken quite another course. ‘I am quite ready.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘he has deceived me. then. and answered gallantly that it was too late to think about duels and sword thrusts.’ ‘And I am yours. she was an ardent. he should not be beloved for himself? He was absorbed entirely by the sensations of the moment. but he could not succeed. and asked the young man if the means which were on the morrow to bring on the encounter between him and de Wardes were already arranged in his mind. was the first to return to reality. and invaded the chamber with its paleness. seriously. whether you really love me?’ ‘I have given you proof of that. it seems to me. We cannot say how long the night seemed to Milady. This reassured her. D’Artagnan fancied himself very cunning when advising 554 The Three Musketeers Milady to renounce. and from the moment he deceived me. Is it not so?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but madness silenced this voice and stifled its murmurs. But at the first word the young woman started. When the transports of the two lovers were calmer. in so firm a tone that it appeared to Milady an undoubted proof of devotion. suppose this poor Comte de Wardes were less guilty than you think him?’ ‘At all events. and exclaimed in a sharp. Milady was no longer for him that woman of fatal intentions who had for a moment terrified him. Milady kept him within the limits she had traced beforehand with her irresistible spirit and her iron will. forgot himself like a fool. ‘but in the first place I should like to be certain of one thing. but self-love. But d’Artagnan.

no! It is not true. in a caressing tone. ‘which would equally avenge you while rendering the combat useless?’ Milady looked at her lover in silence. ‘and I repeat that I am really interested for the count. and such an expert swordsman. I am now at liberty to believe.’ D’Artagnan tried with his sweetest smile to touch his lips to Milady’s. ‘explain yourself. but you love me. my beautiful mistress.’ said the young man. ‘Really. The pale light of the first rays of day gave to her clear eyes a strangely frightful expression. then. ‘what is this confession?’ ‘You gave de Wardes a meeting on Thursday last in this very room. that I may be dangerously wounded—killed even. determined to come to an end. for I really cannot tell what you mean. who embraced her tenderly. I do not hesitate. ‘This confession. but I really pity this poor Comte de Wardes. or rather having been. with eyes which seemed to burn themselves away.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘At least. so guilty toward you as he appears. and with a countenance so unchanged.’ ‘A confession!’ ‘If I had the least doubt of your love I would not make it.’ resumed d’Artagnan. did you not?’ ‘No. ‘do you not entertain a little fear on my account?’ ‘What have I to fear?’ ‘Why. in an anxious tone.’ ‘Impossible!’ cried Milady.’ said she.’ ‘Then if through excess of love I have rendered myself culpable toward you. do I not?’ ‘Entirely. he would have doubted. growing paler. since you have ceased to love him. sharply. ‘and since your love is mine. that if d’Artagnan had not been in such perfect possession of the fact.’ And she looked at d’Artagnan.’ ‘Indeed!’ said Milady.’ ‘Well. ‘I believe you now begin to hesitate. I am a man of honor.’ ‘You?’ asked Milady. ‘you are such a valiant man. and I am satisfied I possess it—for I do possess it. go on. I. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Who told you that I loved him?’ asked Milady.’ said she. but she evaded him.‘Certainly.’ replied d’Artagnan. do you not?’ ‘Without doubt.’ ‘No. ‘ 557 . without too much fatuity.’ ‘And why YOU?’ ‘Because I alone know—‘ ‘What?’ 556 The Three Musketeers ‘That he is far from being. that you love another. you will pardon me?’ ‘Perhaps. I feel as if transformed—a confession weighs on my mind. ‘Yes. but if you love me as much as you say.’ said Milady. in a tone of voice so firm. I think that a man must be so severely punished by the loss of your love that he stands in need of no other chastisement. prefer a method.’ ‘You would not.

com 559 . and his error was not of long duration.’ The imprudent young man expected a surprise. those terribly dilated pupils. and those bleeding lips. ‘that would be useless. and frozen. He 558 The Three Musketeers had doubtless seen all.’ ‘What next? what next?’ ‘De Wardes cannot boast of anything. d’Artagnan recognized. ‘Great God!’ cried d’Artagnan. and his sword coming in contact with his nervous hand. my angel. and presenting the point. He recoiled to the other side of the room as he would have done from a serpent which was crawling toward him. It was almost broad daylight. D’Artagnan detained her by her night dress of fine India linen.’ And she flew to a little inlaid casket which stood upon the dressing table. as she sprang out of bed. ‘you have basely betrayed me. and I have already pardoned you. but d’Artagnan kept it free from her grasp. he was terrified at that wild countenance. But without taking any heed of the sword. Then the cambric was torn from her beautiful shoulders. motionless. But Milady felt herself denounced even by his terror. ‘Ah.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘How is that? You told me yourself that that ring—‘ ‘That ring I have! The Comte de Wardes of Thursday and the d’Artagnan of today are the same person. She turned upon him. sometimes at her breast. Milady repulsed d’Artagnan’s attempted embrace by a violent blow on the chest. and remaining mute. drew from it a small poniard.’ ‘Be satisfied. wretch!’ cried she. She then tried to seize the sword with her hands.‘Do not lie. and still more. Milady endeavored to get near enough to him to stab him. loosing his hold of her dress. with a strong movement. Although the young man was brave. but he was strangely deceived. but she. tried to escape. the FLEUR-DE-LIS—that indelible mark which the hand of the infamous executioner had imprinted. with inexpressible astonishment. and on one of those lovely shoulders. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. those pale cheeks. round and white. The young man now knew her secret. as we know. except himself. smiling. with a golden haft and a sharp thin blade. mixed with shame—a slight storm which would resolve itself into tears. the secret of which all the world was ignorant. while he aimed at making his retreat by the door which led to Kitty’s apartment. opened it with a feverish and trembling band. and did not stop till she felt the sharp point at her throat. and then threw herself with a bound upon d’Artagnan. sometimes at her eyes. Pale and trembling. you are not guilty toward me. her terrible secret—the secret she concealed even from her maid with such care. he drew it almost unconsciously from the scabbard. no longer like a furious woman.’ ‘What do you mean? Speak! you kill me. to implore her pardon. you have my secret! You shall die. but like a wounded panther. compelled her to glide behind the bedstead.

D’Artagnan. But d’Artagnan. in which he placed his naked feet. Milady tumbled fainting into her chamber. In a turn of the hand she muffled him up in a flowered robe. The moment she lost sight of him. With one spring he flew from the chamber of Milady into that of the maid. then first thinking of the costume he found himself in. ‘Quick. a large hood.’ ‘But you can’t go out so. and then conducted him down the stairs. only make haste. he in screening himself behind the furniture to keep out of her reach. quick!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Well. ‘Don’t open!’ The young man fled while she was still threatening him with an impotent gesture. ‘but. She gave him some slippers. she in overturning the furniture in her efforts to get at 561 . and roused the whole hotel. PARDIEU. and a cloak. with a strength apparently above that of a woman. Every blow was accompanied with terrible imprecations. beautiful lady. and quick as lightning. ‘that’s true. d’Artagnan began to recover himself little by little. But dress me as well as you are able. he slammed to the door. At the noise they made. Kitty opened the door. bore some resemblance to a duel. ‘you are naked. very well.’ said he. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. while Kitty pushed the bolts. however. for if we leave her time to turn round. still keeping on the defensive. Kitty. who had unceasingly maneuvered to gain this point. ‘let me get out of the hotel. think. my dear girl. was not at more than three paces from it. As all this. in a low voice. screaming in a formidable way. It was time. as soon as the bolts were fast. Milady had already rung her bell. but finding she could not accomplish this. I will design a second FLEURDE-LIS upon one of those pretty cheeks!’ ‘Scoundrel. The porter was drawing the cord at the moment Milady cried from her window. if you don’t calm yourself. Then Milady attempted to tear down the doorcase.’ 560 The Three Musketeers ‘That’s true.’ said d’Artagnan. drew near to Kitty’s door. and placed all his weight against it. she in her fury stabbed at the door with her poniard. she will have me killed by the servants.Milady during this time continued to strike at him with horrible fury. the point of which repeatedly glittered through the wood.’ said Kitty. infamous scoundrel!’ howled Milady. it’s life and death!’ Kitty was but too well aware of that.

38 HOW. ‘impossible. you hussy?’ D’Artagnan threw off his hood. rubbing his half-open eyes. notwithstanding the early hour. the poor devil perceived he had to deal with a man. ‘what do you want. monsieur. Athos recognized his comrade. he burst into a laugh which was quite excused by the strange masquerade before his eyes—petticoats falling over his shoes. Monsieur d’Artagnan!’ cried Grimaud. the terror which spurred him on. and mustaches stiff with agitation. the poor lad this time found his speech. ‘Grimaud. to answer this noisy summons. my friend!’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘Help! murder! help!’ cried he. for upon my soul. and did not stop till he came to Athos’s door. you strum562 The Three Musketeers pet? What’s your business here. WITHOUT INCOMMODING HIMSELF. don’t you know me? Where is your master?’ ‘You. I thought I heard you permitting yourself to speak?’ ‘Ah. ‘for heaven’s sake. ran up the two flights to Athos’s apartment. ‘Holloa. only made him precipitate his course. ATHOS PROCURES HIS EQUIPMENT D’Artagnan was so completely bewildered that without taking any heed of what might become of Kitty he ran at full speed across half Paris. the cries of some of the patrol who started in pursuit of him. ‘Hold your tongue. and the hooting of the people who. and knocked at the door enough to break it down. my friend? How Free eBooks at Planet eBook. In spite of his habitual silence. Grimaud came. At sight of the mustaches and the naked sword. ‘Don’t laugh. there!’ cried he. The confusion of his mind. that Athos eagerly seized his hand.’ said Athos. don’t laugh. coming out of his apartment in a dressing gown. He then concluded it must be an 563 . it is—‘ ‘Silence!’ Grimaud contented himself with pointing d’Artagnan out to his master with his finger. it’s no laughing matter!’ And he pronounced these words with such a solemn air and with such a real appearance of terror. and d’Artagnan sprang with such violence into the room as nearly to overturn the astonished lackey. sleeves tucked up. were going to their work. and phlegmatic as he was. ‘I am d’Artagnan.’ ‘Grimaud. He crossed the court. crying. you stupid fellow!’ said the young man. and disengaged his hands from the folds of the cloak. ‘Are you wounded.

she is a woman to return you the like. she of whom you told me one day at Amiens. ‘Well.’ ‘Well. Athos.’ ‘Blue and clear eyes.’ Athos uttered a groan. bending his mouth to Athos’s ear. but put on this dressing gown first. I am greatly afraid I have drawn a terrible vengeance on both of us!’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Athos.’ ‘But you say she is English?’ ‘She is called Milady. well!’ and d’Artagnan rushed into Athos’s chamber. ‘Come. closing the door and bolting 565 . as if he had received a ball in his heart. next to the eyetooth on the left?’ ‘Yes. that they might not be disturbed. 564 The Three Musketeers ‘Yes. but she may be French. my dear Athos. I am dying with curiosity and uneasiness!’ ‘Athos. with black eyelids and eyebrows?’ ‘Yes. ‘A tigress. and lowering his voice. come. Athos?’ ‘PARBLEU! whom do you expect to find with me at this hour?’ ‘Well. ‘Well?’ said Athos. mistaking one sleeve for the other. that would be to denounce herself. and let his head sink on his hands. ‘Is the king dead? Have you killed the cardinal? You are quite upset! Come. d’Artagnan!’ ‘Beware. ‘This is a woman of twenty-six or twenty-eight years. in so stifled a voice that d’Artagnan scarcely heard him. D’Artagnan donned the robe as quickly as he could. ‘Milady is marked with a FLEUR-DE-LIS upon her shoulder!’ ‘Ah!’ cried the Musketeer. You tried to kill her.’ ‘She is capable of anything or everything.pale you are!’ ‘No. and not to fail.’ ‘I will see her.’ ‘She will not dare to say anything.’ replied d’Artagnan.’ ‘Tall. and looks as if efforts had been made to efface it by the application of poultices?’ ‘Yes. getting rid of his female garments. Did you ever see her furious?’ ‘No. an unheard-of story. ‘Are you SURE that the OTHER is dead?’ ‘THE OTHER?’ said Athos. a panther! Ah. speak!’ said the latter. Lord de Winter is only her brother-in-law. of a strange brilliancy. ‘Let us see.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘prepare yourself to hear an incredible. well-made? She has lost a tooth.’ said the Musketeer to his friend.’ said Athos. rosy in color. so greatly was he still agitated. and appearing in his shirt. ‘is she not?’ ‘Very.’ ‘Fair. beware. tell me. but I have just met with a terrible adventure! Are you alone.’ ‘The FLEUR-DE-LIS is small.

after it has passed through the hands of that infamous creature? Never. in short. ‘I renounce my plan of seclusion. Athos made him a sign to go to d’Artagnan’s residence.’ ‘In the meantime. ‘I cannot go thither in this guise. perchance. gave it to this wretch. ‘for if I am not mistaken. you can borrow at least a thousand crowns on it. of what consequence is it if she kills me?’ said Athos.’ ‘The jewel is yours. you have the sapphire. and she will certainly not have the politeness to return it to you. I am sure of that. and he rang the bell. Mistrust everything.’ ‘I take back the ring. ‘all this will be only necessary till after tomorrow evening. You must return to the Rue des Fossoyeurs. ‘All this will not advance your outfit. and upon my soul. and set off. take back this ring.’ said Athos.’ ‘In that case. use every precaution.’ ‘Pledge it. Grimaud entered. I would give my life for a hair. to which I see you attach much value. then.’ said Athos. this woman is one of the cardinal’s spies. then. take care! If the cardinal does not hold you in high admiration for the affair of London. If you go out. and it is magnificent. Grimaud replied by another sign that he understood perfectly. Fortunately. he cannot accuse you openly. fool as I was.’ ‘Fortunately. ‘Do you. instead of keeping the ring as a holy relic. my grandfather gave two thousand crowns for it. my dear Athos! Did you not tell me it was a family jewel?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Sell a jewel which came from my mother! I vow I should consider it a profanation. My mother gave it to me. d’Artagnan.’ ‘Sell it.’ said Athos. as he once told me. and once gone—‘ ‘She will follow you to the end of the world. only men to dread. considering everything.’ ‘That’s true. but as. and I. Let her. the day after tomorrow we leave Paris. you have left the best of your apparel with Milady.’ replied d’Artagnan. he entertains a great hatred for you.D’Artagnan then related all—the mad passion of Milady and her menaces of death. I hope. It formed part of the nuptial present he made his 567 . do not go out alone. and bring back some clothes. With that sum you can extricate yourself from your present difficulties. Athos.’ ‘Then. we shall have. my friend. when you eat. ‘You are right. exhaust her vengeance on me alone!’ ‘My dear friend. even your own shadow. for when once with the army. and when you are full of money Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and as hatred must be satisfied. take care of yourself.’ said Athos. particularly when it’s a cardinal’s hatred. if she recognizes you. Athos.’ 566 The Three Musketeers ‘But however near it may be.’ said d’Artagnan. We are going according to all probability to La Rochelle. that ring is defiled. then. ‘Fortunately. I will go with you. think I set any great store by life?’ ‘There is something horribly mysterious under all this. and wherever you go. I will accompany you.

but it is an enchanted 569 . accompanied by 568 The Three Musketeers Planchet. the latter made Grimaud the sign of a man taking aim. d’Artagnan. It is not only a valuable diamond. anxious about his master and curious to know what had happened to him. dear lodger.’ said d’Artagnan. Well.’ ‘I don’t at all understand you. at least. you have promised to save me from her anger. I have thought so. as was the case with Polycrates.again. I will take it.’ ‘To which you attach more value.’ ‘Don’t dream it. but upon one condition. I shall procure it. and take it back cleansed from its ancient stains. whether any fish will be sufficiently complaisant to bring it back to us. that’s all. When the two were ready to go out. d’Artagnan dressed himself. had taken advantage of the opportunity and brought the garments himself. let us pledge the ring. They arrived without accident at the Rue des Fossoyeurs. or I will throw it into the Seine.’ ‘What?’ ‘That there shall be five hundred crowns for you. At this moment Grimaud returned. yes. as it will have passed through the hands of usurers. and prepared to follow his master. Then I thought she would remember it was through my chamber you had penetrated hers. than I do to mine. for in any extreme circumstance it might not only extricate us from some great embarrassment. and that then she would suppose I Free eBooks at Planet eBook. then. What do I want? A horse for Planchet. But what happened after my departure?’ ‘How can I tell!’ said Kitty.’ said he. but even a great danger. Remember. you forget that I have a ring likewise. you can redeem it.’ ‘Yes. and five hundred crowns for me. There exist no imprecations she did not pour out against you. ‘The lackeys were brought by the cries she made. Bonacieux was standing at the door.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘You are a capital companion.’ said be. and looked at d’Artagnan hatefully. it is you who have ruined me!’ ‘Yes. She was mad with passion. to be sure. and darted into the passage. ‘your never-failing cheerfulness raises poor souls in affliction. You shall take half the sum that will be advanced upon it. the latter. but I believe all you say to be true.’ ‘That’s Kitty!’ said d’Artagnan to himself.’ Athos smiled. Let us return to my ring. my girl. ‘there is a very pretty girl waiting for you upstairs. he found the poor girl.’ ‘Well. Sure enough! Upon the landing leading to the chamber. I don’t need the quarter of such a sum—I who am still only in the Guards—and by selling my saddles. Besides. Kitty. and crouching against the door. As soon as she perceived him. and Athos did the same. she cried. and the lackey immediately took down his musketoon. ‘Make haste. Athos. ‘be at ease. ‘You have promised your protection. and you know women don’t like to be kept waiting. and I doubt. it seems. all in a tremble. or rather to yours.

Kitty?’ ‘I do not care where I live. Kitty would not like to live in the Rue aux Ours.’ aid d’Artagnan. ‘I shall always love you.’ ‘Do what you please.’ ‘Yesterday evening?’ ‘Yes. We have something very important to say to him. Kitty will tell nothing. ‘You know the interest we both take in this poor little Madame Bonacieux. go and find Aramis. Help me out of Paris. with an accent like that of a man who perceives he is about to tread upon an adder. ‘You. my God! You remind me of my fright! If he should have known me again!’ ‘How? know you again? Did you ever see that man before?’ ‘He came twice to Milady’s. ‘I also.’ said d’Artagnan. will you. we are enveloped in a network of spies. do you love that woman still?’ ‘No. Besides. to the siege of La Rochelle. Planchet. also. about fifteen or eighteen days ago. help me out of France!’ ‘I cannot take you.’ ‘My dear little love! In my country the ladies do without chambermaids. no. ‘No. 570 The Three Musketeers ‘And I. I shall always love you. I attach great importance to the question I am about to put to you. Monsieur Chevalier. and nobody knows where I am. 571 .’ said d’Artagnan. my dear girl. but you can place me in one of the provinces with some lady of your acquaintance—in your own country. Porthos’s duchess is dressed by her husband’s clerks. Kitty. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said Kitty. Isn’t it so.’ ‘Where the devil will constancy niche itself next?’ murmured Athos.’ ‘Oh.’ ‘My dear Athos. so I took what little money I had and the best of my things. ‘she is the wife of that frightful baboon you saw at the door as you came in. Did you never hear talk of a young woman who was carried off one night?’ ‘There.’ continued d’Artagnan. ‘but why not Porthos? I should have thought that his duchess—‘ ‘Oh. About what time?’ ‘Why. ‘provided I am well concealed. be sure of that. and you are no longer jealous of me—‘ ‘Monsieur Chevalier. however.’ said Athos.’ ‘Meanwhile. and I got away. ‘Poor dear girl! But what can I do with you? I am going away the day after tomorrow. now! Oh.’ ‘That’s it. pressing Athos’s hand. But stop! I can manage your business for you.’ ‘I?’ cried Athos. for instance. just before you came.’ said Kitty. when we are about to separate. Request him to come here directly. Monsieur Chevalier.was your accomplice.’ ‘And yesterday evening he came again.’ ‘I understand. this gentleman here. it is one of my friends who loves her—Monsieur Athos. to be sure!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Besides.’ ‘Exactly so. far off or near. But now answer me. Kitty? You understand.

then.’ ‘Very well. monsieur. ‘and the house door is shut. ‘and leave nobody here but Planchet to bring us news. without thinking to ask for any abatement. my dear d’Artagnan. and gave the billet to Kitty. ‘And now. whom we have sent for!’ ‘That’s true. coloring. but perhaps it was too late. Therefore let us separate. they easily obtained three hundred pistoles on the ring.’ ‘And whenever we find each other. ‘He has gone. d’Artagnan?’ ‘I shall be grateful to you all my life.’ ‘Go down. ‘we must wait for Aramis.’ said d’Artagnan. let us all fly. for a trustworthy maid. Athos was very easy. and Athos and d’Artagnan busied themselves about pledging the sapphire. D’Artagnan would have remonstrated at this.’ said he. ‘this falls out very well.’ said Athos.’ said Athos. Still further.’ At that moment Aramis entered. Kitty?’ ‘I pulled down my hood as soon as I saw him. hardly required three hours to purchase the entire equipment of the Musketeer. I believe. as it would make a magnificent pendant for earrings. Aramis. Aramis reflected for a minute. he would give five hundred pistoles for it. but Athos put his hand upon his shoulder. As the Gascon had foreseen. for one of her friends who resides in the provinces.’ Athos went down and returned immediately. If you can. answer for Mademoiselle-” ‘Oh.’ said Kitty. while d’Artagnan went to conduct Kitty downstairs.’ ‘A minute. Besides. When a thing suited him he paid the price demanded. and the friends gave him to understand that among all his high connections he must find a place for Kitty. my dear girl.’ said Aramis.’ ‘ 573 .’ ‘Then. An instant afterward the three young men separated. the Jew told them that if they would sell it to him.And do you believe he knew you again.’ ‘Dicers’ oaths!’ said Athos. and to say that all the pigeons are at this moment in the dovecot. agreeing to meet again at four o’clock with Athos. ‘you will find me loving you as I love you today. ‘you know that it is not good for any of us to be here. and d’Artagnan understood that it was all very well for such a little Gascon gentleman as himself to drive a bargain. and leaving Planchet to guard the house.’ He placed himself at the table and wrote a little note 572 The Three Musketeers which he sealed with a ring. in whatever place it may be. Aramis returned home. with the activity of two soldiers and the knowledge of two connoisseurs. and then said. The matter was all explained to him. Athos and d’Artagnan. but not for a man who had the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and a noble to his fingers’ ends. ‘Will it be really rendering you a service. We shall meet again in better days. be assured that I shall be entirely devoted to the person who will give me the means of quitting Paris.’ ‘He has gone to make his report. Athos—he mistrusts you less than me—and see if he be still at his door. with a smile. Madame de Bois-Tracy asked me.

but while d’Artagnan was discussing the price with the dealer. and we must learn how to make sacrifices. Grimaud will accompany you with his musketoon. and bring back the two hundred pistoles with 574 The Three Musketeers you. But Athos only replied to this proposal by shrugging his shoulders. He might perhaps have been bought for less.’ ‘Reflect. and found him sound and without blemish. d’Artagnan returned with the two thousand livres. then we shall never be masters of three hundred pistoles to redeem it. that would be a real fortune to us. go.’ ‘What! will you—‘ ‘This ring would certainly only recall very bitter remembrances. two hundred more—a hundred pistoles for you and a hundred pistoles for me. my friend. rising six years. Athos was counting out the money on the table. black as jet. which cost three hundred livres. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The Musketeer met with a superb Andalusian horse. d’Artagnan offered his friend a part of his share which he should return when convenient. Well. Grimaud had a stout. Go. ‘How much did the Jew say he would give for the sapphire if be purchased it?’ said Athos. short Picard cob. d’ 575 . Athos had not a sou left of his hundred and fifty pistoles.’ A half hour afterward. legs clean and elegant. let us go back to the Jew’s again. now. nostrils of fire.’ ‘That is to say. d’Artagnan. They asked a thousand livres for him. He examined him.bearing of a prince. and without having met with any accident. ‘Five hundred pistoles. It was thus Athos found at home resources which he did not expect. Go and tell him the ring is his. Athos!’ ‘Ready money is needful for the present time. But when the saddle and arms for Grimaud were purchased. so that we really should lose two hundred pistoles by the bargain.

’ said Aramis. but if you have any consideration for your own life or that of those who love you. with his mild and careless manner. and look carefully into the carriages that pass.’ said Porthos. ‘and he will advance alone. At the sight of the little letter the heart of d’Artagnan bounded. arms. The other was a large square epistle. for he believed he recognized the handwriting. ‘and that woman desires not to be seen. do not speak a single word.’ said Porthos. on the road to Chaillot. at from six to seven o’clock in the evening. ‘Be. and all!’ ‘And besides. He therefore seized the little epistle. let us enjoy that pleasure.’ ‘Bah!’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘He is right. you compromise her.’ said Athos. ‘That’s a snare. and although he had seen that writing but once.’ said 577 . d’Artagnan. and each countenance only preserved the expression of its own secret disquiet—for behind all present happiness is concealed a fear for the future. ‘on Thursday next. but a pistol shot is easily fired from a carriage which goes at a gallop. you might as well go and ride in the forest of Bondy. They must be enemies.’ ‘And yet. with a pretty seal in green wax on which was impressed a dove bearing a green branch.’ No signature.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘It may be counterfeit. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘they will miss me. ‘I think I recognize the writing.’ ‘We will remain in the background. The one was a little billet. resplendent with the terrible arms of his Eminence the cardinal duke. ‘battle. ‘But if it is a woman who writes. ‘Between six and seven o’clock the road of Chaillot is quite deserted. if they fire we will ride after the carriage.’ ‘Bah. it will be a chance for displaying our new equipments.’ said Athos. ‘As you please.’ said Porthos. Besides. Suddenly Planchet entered. Their anxiety about their outfits had all disappeared. four lackeys. which is not the part of a gentleman. genteelly folded. ‘don’t go.’ replied d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan. bringing two letters for d’Artagnan.’ said Aramis. ‘what the devil! They won’t devour us all four. and exterminate those who may be in it.’ said the letter. we must try our own arms. the memory of it remained at the bottom of his heart. and opened it eagerly. do not make a movement which may lead anyone to believe you have recognized her 576 The Three Musketeers who exposes herself to everything for the sake of seeing you but for an instant.39 A VISION At four o’clock the four friends were all assembled with Athos. remember. horses.’ ‘But suppose we all go.’ ‘Yes.

‘let us see. come out. ‘to be sure we will get you out. gentlemen. and the other for eight. what are his Eminence’s commands. at all suspicious in appearance.’ said Porthos. I declare. CAPTAIN OF THE GUARDS” ‘The devil!’ said Athos.’ ‘To a certainty. 579 .’ said Athos. I will go.’ said Porthos.’ replied Aramis and Porthos.’ replied d’Artagnan. ‘I will run to the hotel. is expected at the Palais-Cardinal this evening. ‘and that will be a pity. ‘it is half past four. ‘Well. ‘you forget that. as if that were the simplest thing in the world. ‘To be sure we will. particularly when he has reason to believe he is not invited to make his compliments.’ said Porthos.’ said d’Artagnan. that the seal denotes that it deserves to be opened.’ said Aramis. the rendezvous. nobody will see us. ‘Well.’ ‘Hum! I would not go at all. and on the morrow a serious misfortune happened to me—Constance disappeared. as we are to set off the day after tomorrow. It is a long time since we have had a skirmish with the Guards of Monsieur the Cardinal.’ ‘But this second letter.’ ‘I am of Aramis’s opinion.’ ‘If you are determined.’ said Athos. with admirable promptness and decision. 578 The Three Musketeers ‘Gentlemen. ‘you were meant to be a general of the army! What do you think of the plan. d’Artagnan. and engage our comrades to hold themselves in readiness by eight o’clock.’ said Athos. d’Artagnan. gentlemen. ‘do so. ‘here’s a rendezvous much more serious than the other.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. For my part.’ ‘Besides. but a prudent gentleman may excuse himself from not waiting on his Eminence. I think it of much more consequence than the little piece of waste paper you have so cunningly slipped into your bosom. Let us get ready. ‘I have already received by Monsieur de Cavois a similar invitation from his Eminence. if we go out too late.‘Gentlemen.’ ‘Let us do better than that.’ and d’Artagnan unsealed the letter and read. but meantime. you would do much better not to risk this Bastille. you see that the lackeys saddle the horses.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘One is for seven o’clock. let us fall upon it.’ said Aramis. and we have scarcely time to be on the road of Chaillot by six. there will be time for both. ‘M. Monsieur de Treville must think us dead. I neglected it. Whatever may ensue. ‘A gallant knight cannot decline a rendezvous with a lady. it appears to me.’ said he. the Place du Palais-Cardinal.’ D’Artagnan blushed. of the king’s Guards. Athos. gentlemen?’ ‘Admirable!’ replied the young men in chorus.’ said d’Artagnan. Let each of us wait at a gate of the palace with three Musketeers behind him. ‘Bah! you will get me out if they put me there. Meantime. if we see a close carriage.’ ‘I will go to the second after attending the first. ‘La Houdiniere. ‘do not let us leave him during the whole evening.’ ‘But the Bastille?’ said Aramis. at eight o’clock. company Dessessart.

‘Or the mysterious benefactress. ‘Three.’ ‘And you selected it yourself?’ ‘With the greatest care. The safety of the horseman. ‘but that is of no consequence. giving you all the time necessary for repaying me such a trifle. but it is already five o’clock. Porthos was resplendent with joy and pride. then. ‘Rich? Richest.’ said d’Artagnan. we can manage famously. ‘you are the best-mounted poet of France or Navarre.’ ‘How much did it cost you?’ ‘Eight hundred livres. ‘and who affirmed.’ said Aramis. ‘That makes no difference. my dear d’Artagnan. I can take one of Monsieur de Treville’s. ‘I know that is the coin in which you were paid for your poems. without informing me whence it came. in that case.‘I have no horse. Mousqueton followed him upon an Auvergne horse. small but very handsome. you know.’ cried Athos. the third was brought to me this very morning by a groom out of livery. then.’ said 581 . and your horse can be brought back with ours.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘which of the two horses will you ride—that which you bought or the one that was given to you?’ ‘That which was given to me.’ ‘One of yours! how many have you. my dear fellow!’ And d’Artagnan chinked the remainder of his pistoles in his pocket. to the hotel of the Musketeers. gravely. assuredly. my dear Aramis. transfer it to me at the price it cost you?’ ‘I was going to make you the offer.’ ‘Well. who would not tell me in whose service he was.’ ‘Here are forty double pistoles. then?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ interrupted d’Artagnan. ‘you can have one of mine. d’Artagnan. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. that I would commit such 580 The Three Musketeers an offense toward—‘ ‘The unknown giver. ‘Certes.’ ‘It is only to poets that such things happen. that he had received orders from his master or mistress to place the horse in my stable. fell from the clouds. ‘Well. so make haste. I suppose?’ ‘No. then?’ said Aramis. taking the sum from his pocket. depends almost always upon the goodness of his horse.’ ‘Or his mistress. coloring.’ A quarter of an hour afterward Porthos appeared at the end of the Rue Ferou on a very handsome genet. You cannot for a moment imagine.’ ‘Very well.’ said Athos.’ ‘You are rich. and who said he had received orders from his master.’ ‘Well.’ said Aramis. ‘Send your saddle. as I said. you don’t want three horses? I cannot comprehend what induced you to buy three!’ ‘Therefore I only purchased two. ‘The third. smiling.’ interrupted d’Artagnan.’ ‘That is not worth while.’ replied Aramis. my dear friend.’ said Athos. ‘The one you bought will then become useless to you?’ ‘Nearly so.’ said d’Artagnan.

‘you have a magnificent horse there.’ replied Porthos. after waiting a quarter of an hour and just as twilight was beginning to thicken. this was d’Artagnan mount. and all four set forward. darted a scrutinizing glance into every carriage that appeared. the day began to decline. D’Artagnan uttered a slight cry of joy. The lackeys followed. d’Artagnan. A presentiment instantly told d’Artagnan that this carriage contained the person who had appointed the rendezvous.’ ‘Yes. ‘it is the one that ought to have been sent to me at first. Coquenard had met Porthos and seen what a superb appearance he made upon his handsome Spanish genet. but the husband has been punished since. Athos upon a horse he owed to a woman. Bonacieux. carriages were passing and repassing. At length. A short gallop brought them to the road of Chaillot. 582 The Three Musketeers D’Artagnan profited by the circumstance to speak to M. Porthos.At the same time. this woman. leading their masters’ steeds. and I have obtained full satisfaction. either to enjoin silence or to send him a kiss. with two fingers placed upon her mouth. de Treville approved of the resolution he had adopted. the young man was himself astonished to find his heart beat so 583 . Aramis on a horse he owed to his mistress. As Porthos had foreseen. or rather this apparition— for the carriage passed with the rapidity of a vision—was Mme. Almost instantly a female head was put out at the window. Athos and d’Artagnan watched their approach from the window. the four friends pleaded an engagement. a carriage appeared. Aramis made his appearance at the other end of the street upon a superb English charger. It is well understood that he did not breathe a word about the other. he stopped them to offer his compliments upon their appointments. By an involuntary movement and in spite of the injuncFree eBooks at Planet eBook. he himself would undertake to find him. holding by the halter a vigorous Mecklenburg horse. the cavalcade produced a good effect. let him be where he might. and if Mme. and d’Artagnan on a horse he owed to his good fortune—the best mistress possible.’ Planchet and Grimaud appeared in their turn. Germain. M. she would not have regretted the bleeding she had inflicted upon the strongbox of her husband. which in an instant drew round them a hundred gapers. ‘The devil!’ cried Aramis. Porthos on a horse he owed to his procurator’s wife. and assured him that if on the morrow he did not appear. but saw no face with which he was acquainted. de Treville of the letter with the great red seal and the cardinal’s arms. who was returning from St. The two Musketeers met at the gate. coming at a quick pace on the road of Sevres. de Treville. At this moment the clock of La Samaritaine struck six. Near the Louvre the four friends met with M. keeping at some distance from his friends. Bazin followed him upon a roan. A bad joke of the husband’s substituted the other. D’Artagnan and Athos put themselves into saddle with their companions. and took leave of M. de Treville.

But d’Artagnan was at the same time impetuous and curious. till it dashed into Paris. D’Artagnan was well known among the honorable corps of the king’s Musketeers. d’Artagnan put his horse into a gallop. my God!’ added he. trembling not for himself but for the poor woman who had evidently exposed herself to great danger by appointing this rendezvous. Nothing could turn him from his purpose. ‘perhaps sooner than you wish. All had plainly seen a woman’s head appear at the window. if it is she we have just seen. There only they explained to them the matter in 585 . And perhaps. Honore. in which it was known he would one day take his place. and that he would learn what his Eminence had to say to him. walking about in expectation of their comrades.’ said Athos. but none of them.tion given. Bonacieux. The carriage pursued its way. why this simple exchange of a glance. ‘they are doubtless transporting her from one prison to another. a man’s head. for whom his love was known? His three companions joined him. why this fugitive rendezvous. but less preoccupied by that pretty face than d’Artagnan. and how shall I 584 The Three Musketeers ever meet her again?’ ‘Friend. It resulted from these antecedents that everyone entered heartily into the purpose for which they met. therefore. knew Mme. But what can they intend to do with the poor creature. on the other side. I think. the vision had disappeared. and as if you had seen nothing. Now. He had made up his mind that he would go to the PalaisCardinal. he was considered beforehand as a comrade. it would not be unlikely that they would have an opportunity of playing either the cardinal or his people an Free eBooks at Planet eBook. you will meet with her again some day or other. ‘remember that it is the dead alone with whom we are not likely to meet again on this earth. inside the carriage. They reached the Rue St. he had fancied he saw a second head. D’Artagnan’s friends reminded him that he had a visit to pay. gravely. The opinion of Athos was that it was indeed she. astounded and not knowing what to think.’ said d’Artagnan. and disappeared. why this lost kiss? If. with that misanthropic tone which was peculiar to him. D’Artagnan then remembered the injunction: ‘If you value your own life or that of those who love you. D’Artagnan remained fixed to the spot. it was not she—which was still quite possible—for the little light that remained rendered a mistake easy—might it not be the commencement of some plot against him through the allurement of this woman. remain motionless. but at the same time bade him observe that there was yet time to retract. and in the Place du PalaisCardinal they found the twelve invited Musketeers.’ Half past seven had sounded. Bonacieux and if she was returning to Paris. as well as I do. and in a few strides overtook the carriage. besides. If it was Mme. ‘If that be the case. The carriage had been twenty minutes behind the time appointed. if your mistress is not dead. still going at a great pace. except Athos. but the window was hermetically closed. You know something of that.’ He stopped.

and for such expeditions these worthy gentlemen were always ready. He placed his letter in the hands of the usher on duty. and waited with his hand on his hip. thanks to a great pride natural to the men of his country. D’Artagnan. D’Artagnan remained standing and examined this man.ill turn. and the third to Porthos. de Wardes. d’Artagnan. entered boldly at the principal gate. was one of the tools of his Eminence. whom he had treated so ill. and then each group went and took their watch near an entrance. and he was very suspicious of the political relations which existed between that woman and the cardinal. but the women will ruin you!’ He came to this melancholy conclusion as he entered the antechamber. ‘But why has he waited till now? That’s all plain enough. crossed a grand saloon. shaking his head. which is not to be doubted. step by step. who recognized d’Artagnan.’ ‘Fortunately.’ added he. and this last offense has made the cup overflow. Athos divided them into three groups. He traversed a corridor. Monsieur de Treville’s company of Musketeers alone cannot maintain a war against the car586 The Three Musketeers dinal. Only. the young man was not without a little uneasiness as he ascended the great staircase. you have excellent qualities. This smile appeared to d’Artagnan to be of bad augury. in an attitude by no means deficient in majesty. they looked upon him with a smile of singular meaning. he was strongly attached to his friends. It appeared to the young man that the Guards. Milady has laid her complaints against me with that hypocritical grief which renders her so interesting. on seeing him depart. and they will not allow me to be carried away without a struggle. and found himself in the presence of a man seated at a desk and writing. on his part. ‘my good friends are down yonder. he did not allow one easily to see what was passing in his mind when that which was passing at all resembled fear—he placed himself haughtily in front of Messieurs the Guards. Nevertheless. The usher introduced him. ‘If de Wardes has related all our affair to the cardinal. chuckled among themselves. Although he felt himself ably supported. The usher returned and made a sign to d’Artagnan to follow him. who led him into the waiting room and passed on into the interior of the palace. and retired without speaking a word. as is probable. and before whom the queen is without power and the king without will. I may consider myself almost as a condemned man. and if he has recognized me. gave the second to Aramis. my friend. and knowing that it was he who had wounded Jussac. His conduct toward Milady bore a strong resemblance to treachery. In this waiting room were five or six of the cardinals Guards. you are prudent. and d’Artagnan knew that while his Eminence was terrible to his enemies.’ said d’Artagnan. assumed the command of one. as our Gascon was not easily intimidated—or rather. Still further. you are brave. who disposes of the forces of all 587 . Free eBooks at Planet eBook. entered a library.

com 589 588 The Three Musketeers . holding his hat in his hand and awaiting the good pleasure of his Eminence. ‘to which do you belong?’ ‘I am the son of him who served in the Religious Wars under the great King Henry. No one had a more searching eye than the Cardinal de Richelieu.’ and raised his head. where something befell you. monseigneur. and d’Artagnan felt this glance run through his veins like a fever. his cheek upon his hand.’ said the cardinal. I don’t very well know what. ‘Monsieur. monseigneur. the father of his gracious Majesty.’ replied the young man. but still something.D’Artagnan at first believed that he had to do with some judge examining his papers. At the end of an instant the poet closed his manuscript. or rather corrected. 40 A TERRIBLE VISION The cardinal leaned his elbow on his manuscript. ‘There are several branches of the d’Artagnans at Tarbes and in its environs. He saw then that he was with a poet. but also without too much humility. and looked intently at the young man for a moment. but he perceived that the man at the desk wrote.’ ‘Monseigneur.’ ‘You came through Meung. without too much assurance. ‘this was what happened Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘That is well. a Tragedy in Five Acts. scanning the words on his fingers. D’Artagnan recognized the cardinal. ‘are you a d’Artagnan from Bearn?’ ‘Yes. upon the cover of which was written ‘Mirame.’ said d’Artagnan. lines of unequal length. It is you who set out seven or eight months ago from your country to seek your fortune in the capital?’ ‘Yes. He however kept a good countenance.’ said the cardinal.

because it is my office to know everything. Monsieur Dessessart. but likewise from a plan I have marked out with respect to you. and he placed you in the company of his brother-in-law. Besides.’ replied his Eminence. ‘In short. but you continued yours.’ ‘How could that be. or elsewhere—that concerns nobody. and quickly turned the stone inward. As a proof. who knows men at first sight. and not those who. with a smile which indicated that he knew the story as well as he who wished to relate it. were you not?’ ‘Yes. and I perceive with pleasure that you preserve the souvenir she gave 591 . ‘That. I wished to know what you were doing.’ ‘Monseigneur.’ D’Artagnan placed his hand upon the queen’s diamond. ‘yes. and he likewise recollected that during the past half hour the poor woman had passed close to him. monseigneur. ‘He went to desire you to come to the palace.’ resumed the cardinal. You must yourself have remarked how much you have been considered in all the circumstances.’ said d’Artagnan. You were walking one day behind the Chartreux.’ D’Artagnan bowed with respect. but in that unfortunate affair at Meung—‘ ‘The letter was lost. remember the date of the day on which I had you bidden to come to me. ‘as I have heard nothing of you for some time past. and you were wrong. On your return you were received by an august personage. but it 590 The Three Musketeers was too late. I know. ‘The day after that.’ continued the cardinal. D’Artagnan trembled. ‘I went—‘ ‘Hunting at Windsor. You have not returned that visit.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Then you took with your friends a journey to the waters of Forges.’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur? Could you incur my displeasure by having followed the orders of your superiors with more intelligence and courage than another would have done? It is the people who do not obey that I punish. without doubt carried away by the same power that had caused her disappearance. which he wore.’ ‘Monseigneur is correctly me—‘ ‘Never mind. I feared I had incurred disgrace with your Eminence. you owe me some thanks. obey—but too well.’ ‘Monseigneur. ‘arose not only from a feeling of natural equity. quite confused. leaving you to hope that one day or other you should enter the Musketeers. ‘You were recommended to Monsieur de Treville. you received a visit from Cavois. and seek in your memory for what happened to you that very night. ‘Since that time many things have happened to you. But Monsieur de Treville is a skilled physiognomist. That is all very simple: you had business in England. never mind!’ resumed the cardinal. like you. when it would have been better if you had been elsewhere. they stopped on the road. Bonacieux took place. I know that.’ That was the very evening when the abduction of Mme.’ continued the cardinal.

‘In fact. but you did not come. do you not? I 593 . if you do not take great heed. for they are strong and well supported. you have done much already. placing his hand upon a bundle of papers. monseigneur. which is still better. what would you say to an ensign’s commission in my Guards.’ continued his Eminence. You do not consecrate your days and nights wholly to the king’s service. that’s true. monseigneur. Now.’ replied d’Artagnan. and your services. the opportunity which I offer you—so much for the world. Come. Yet you have need. but alone as you are. you came to Paris with the ambitious idea of making your fortune.’ And the cardinal pointed with his finger to a chair for the young man. and scarcely entering into the world. and whoever serves in a French corps serves the king.’ ‘Alas. I don’t doubt.’ ‘I am at the age of extravagant hopes.’ said the cardinal. smiling.’ ‘You want a pretext. ‘very easily. nothing is lost by this delay. they will destroy you.’ ‘Your goodness confounds me. who was so astonished at what was passing that he awaited a second sign from his interlocutor before he obeyed. I believe. and will do still more.D’Artagnan became more and more astonished.’ ‘But it appears to me that my Guards—mine—are also his Majesty’s Guards. instead of leading you to ill. I like men of head and heart. to be guided in the adventurous career you have undertaken. ‘and I am conscious of a greatness of soul in your Eminence that makes me mean as an earthworm. for.’ replied d’Artagnan. and I have no reason to be dissatisfied. might be very advantageous to you. and decide. ‘How? You refuse?’ cried the cardinal. Well. if I mistake not. ‘I wished to explain this plan to you on the day you received my first invitation. reflect. I know you to be a man of resolution. you are gentleman enough not to listen standing. ‘You are brave. Sit down there.’ said he. monsieur. you have powerful enemies. that I have received heavy and serious complaints against you. and a company after the campaign?’ 592 The Three Musketeers ‘Ah. monseigneur. your Eminence has ill understood my words. well directed. before me. and you are a man of understanding. with astonishment. the need of protection. but Free eBooks at Planet eBook. with an embarrassed air. As regards yourself.’ ‘You accept it. Monsieur d’Artagnan. Fortunately. ‘you are prudent. d’Artagnan. and you are now about to hear it.’ D’Artagnan colored. Monsieur d’Artagnan. ‘There are no extravagant hopes but for fools. you have this excuse: advancement. ‘I have here a whole pile which concerns you. while I am alone. no doubt. Don’t be afraid.’ ‘Monseigneur.’ ‘Yes. the opening campaign. ‘By men of heart I mean men of courage. But young as you are.’ said d’Artagnan. for it is fit you should know. do you not?’ ‘Monseigneur. ‘I am in his Majesty’s Guards. monseigneur. monseigneur!’ replied the young man.

’ said d’Artagnan. with a smile of disdain. be ill received here and ill regarded there if I accepted what Monseigneur offers me. it alarmed d’Artagnan more than a menace would have done. for I shall be there. but you must be aware that it is quite trouble enough to de594 The Three Musketeers fend and recompense our friends. monseigneur. monseigneur. placing his hand upon his breast and bowing.’ said Richelieu.’ ‘I shall entertain.’ ‘Well. monsieur. monseigneur. ‘I don’t wish you any ill.’ ‘Do you happen to entertain the haughty idea that I have not yet made you an offer equal to your value?’ asked the cardinal. perhaps. as you have said. The siege of La Rochelle is about to be resumed. significantly. well. and let me give you a piece of advice. ‘Monseigneur. therefore. Monsieur d’Artagnan. and on the contrary. and guard your hatreds and your sympathies. pointing with his finger to a magnificent suit of armor he was to wear.’ ‘That is to say.’ replied the Gascon. I think I have not proved myself worthy of your goodness. we shall see each other again after the campaign. speak. and that I did all in my power to prevent this misfortune befalling you. then. might be seen a sort of esteem. The cardinal. He opened his mouth to reply.’ ‘I will try to do so. I shall serve under the eye of your Eminence.’ said the cardinal.’ said Richelieu. for it was a warning. ‘if I shall be able to say to you at another time what I have said to you today.’ ‘Monseigneur—‘ ‘Well. with a noble confidence. then. was seeking to preserve him from some misfortune which threatened him. Monsieur d’Artagnan. whatever may happen. but with a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. however. let it 595 . I will have my eye upon you. I promise you to do so. ‘remain free. for from the moment I withdraw my hand from behind you.’ replied the cardinal. I would not give an obolus for your life.since Monseigneur permits me to speak freely—‘ D’Artagnan paused. and that by an inconceivable fatality my enemies are in the service of your Eminence.’ ‘Then. at present I shall appear to sell myself. We owe nothing to our enemies. and if I have the good fortune to conduct myself at the siege in such a manner as merits your attention. then. I should. then I shall at least leave behind me some brilliant action to justify the protection with which you honor me. through which. ‘Remember at a later period and at a certain moment. ‘Yes. well—we will settle our account!’ ‘Young man. if any mischance should happen to you. you refuse to serve me.’ said the cardinal. ‘that it was I who came to seek you. Everything is best in its time. your Eminence is a hundred times too kind to me. Hereafter. take care of yourself. I shall have the right of giving myself. ‘and on our return.’ This last expression of Richelieu’s conveyed a terrible doubt. I will presume to say that all my friends are in the king’s Musketeers and Guards. with a tone of vexation. ‘an eternal gratitude toward your Eminence for that which you now do for me.

They were parting to meet again when it pleased God. for this voice responded to a secret voice of his soul. de Richelieu had sent for him to propose to him to enter into his guards with the rank of ensign. but d’Artagnan confined himself to telling them that M. but perhaps you have been wrong. decided upon setting out that same evening.haughty gesture the cardinal dismissed him. D’Artagnan went to take leave of M. as his master had come out safe from the Palais-Cardinal.’ cried Aramis and Porthos. which detracted a little from his usual lofty bearing. and in spite of the remonstrances that had been offered to him. But when they were alone he said. so powerful is the influence of a truly great character on all that surrounds it. Each of the captains then led his company to the 597 . ‘You have done that which you ought to have done. he persisted in having the review. Dessessart. At the first sound of the morning trumpet the friends separated. where the king held his review. The review over. Aramis and Porthos inquired eagerly the cause of the strange interview. D’Artagnan descended by the staircase at which he had entered. hoping by setting it at defiance to conquer the disease which began to lay hold upon him. Athos would no more give him his hand—Athos would renounce him. which told him that great misfortunes awaited him. At that time it was believed that the separation of the Musketeers and the Guards would be but momentary. M. then. With a word. a fever had seized him in the midst of the Parliament. not the less. D’Artagnan went out. d’Artagnan. He had. and found Athos and the four Musketeers waiting his appearance. Dessessart and the company of Musketeers of M. with one voice. but at the door his heart almost failed him. and Planchet ran to inform the other sentinels that it was useless to keep guard longer. In such cases extreme preoccupation is only to be combated by extreme carelessness. de Treville. was somewhat riotous. Then the noble and severe countenance of Athos crossed his mind. the Guards set forward alone on their Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and beginning to grow uneasy. while he was holding his Bed of Justice. the Guards to that of M. de Treville contented himself with asking d’Artagnan if he could do anything for him. 596 The Three Musketeers The whole of the next day was spent in preparations for departure.’ D’Artagnan sighed deeply. as may be imagined. d’Artagnan reassured them. and that he had refused. Athos fell into a profound reverie and answered nothing. if he made the compact with the cardinal which he required. but d’Artagnan answered that he was supplied with all he wanted. and he felt inclined to return. de Treville. Returned home with Athos. In fact. de Treville who had been accustomed to associate together. and if it pleased God. ‘And you were right. the evening before. It was this fear that restrained him. That night brought together all those comrades of the Guards of M. the Musketeers hastening to the hotel of M. the king holding his Parliament that very day and proposing to set out the day after. The king was dull and appeared ill. That night.

The two men followed the company. they were heartrending. In the meantime d’Artagnan was defiling with his company. Coquenard. certain that there could be no mistake in the execution of her orders. This time the clerks evinced no inclination to laugh. which allowed Porthos time to go and take a turn in his superb equipment in the Rue aux Ours. The procurator’s wife saw him pass in his new uniform and on his fine horse.march. As long as the procurator’s wife could follow him with her eyes. She loved Porthos too dearly to allow him to part thus. he turned round to look gaily at the Bastille. but as it was the Bastille alone he looked at. He whispered a hope to himself that this beloved relative might be killed in the field. Coquenard’s chamber. she made him a sign to dismount and come to her. she started her horse and disappeared. and on leaving the Faubourg St. Milady replied by a sign that it was he. the Musketeers waiting for the king. To a look of interrogation which they made. his sword knocked proudly against his ample limbs. only on turning the corner of the street he lifted his hat gracefully. which a servant without livery had waiting for them. who. But the real adieux were made in Mme. M. mounted upon a light chestnut horse. Athos sipped the last bottle of his Spanish wine. Coquenard. Then. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Coquenard wished him all sorts of prosperities. he did not observe Milady. Porthos paid his compliments to M. On his part Aramis wrote a long letter. but no evil impressions were taken from her grief as she was known to be very much attached to her relatives. who was to set out that evening for Tours. Porthos was magnificent. mounted two horses properly equipped. his spurs jingled. leaning so far out of the window as to lead people to believe she wished to precipitate herself. such a real ear clipper did Porthos appear. and waved it to her as a sign of adieu. As to Mme. whose little gray eyes sparkled with anger at seeing his cousin all blazing new. was waiting in the next chamber. Antoine. Arriving at the Faubourg St. it was expected by everybody that the campaign would be a severe one. Antoine. she waved her handkerchief to him. one thing afforded him inward consolation. his cuirass glittered. To whom? Nobody knew. designated him with her finger to two ill-looking men who came close up to the ranks to take notice of him. Nevertheless. The Musketeer was introduced to M. Kitty. about whom she was constantly having serious disputes with her husband. Porthos received all these attentions like 598 The Three Musketeers a man accustomed to such 599 . Coquenard and bade him farewell. she could not restrain her tears.

particularly that of the diamond studs. particularly as many details of this siege are connected in too important a manner with the story we have undertaken to relate to allow us to pass it over in silence. by the anterior developments of this story. but at all events. Bassompierre. thanks to the devotedness of the three Free eBooks at Planet eBook. interesting and even necessary that we should say a few words about it. that we shall be fools enough to take La Rochelle. in charging at the head of several other Protestant nobles like himself. the chronicler is forced to recognize the lesser motives of the amorous man and jealous rival. The cannonade of the Isle of Re presaged to him the dragonnades of the Cevennes. we have seen. Englishmen.41 THE SEIGE OF LA ROCHELLE The Siege of La Rochelle was one of the great political events of the reign of Louis XIII. Richelieu. and then pass on to the private plans which perhaps had not less influence upon his Eminence than the others. who was at once Protestant and Catholic— Protestant by conviction and Catholic as commander of the order of the Holy Ghost. Was this love a simple political affair. and one of the great military enterprises of the cardinal. Spaniards. and soldiers of fortune of every sect. The political plans of the cardinal when he undertook this siege were extensive. therefore.’ And Bassompierre was right. the taking of La Rochelle was the preface to the revocation of the Edict of Nantes. which belong to history. to destroy this last bulwark of Calvinism—a dangerous leaven with which the ferments of civil revolt and foreign war were constantly mingling. said. who had a distinguished command at the siege of La Rochelle. who was a German by birth and a Frenchman at heart—in short. La Rochelle. was. It is. the cardinal completed the work of Joan of Arc and the Duc de Guise. had loved the queen. Bassompierre. that Buckingham had the advantage over him. and by closing it against England. whose branches diverged freely over all parts of Europe. which had derived a new importance from 600 The Three Musketeers the ruin of the other Calvinist cities. Of the important cities given up by Henry IV to the Huguenots as places of safety. had. then. there only remained La Rochelle. We have hinted that by the side of these views of the leveling and simplifying minister. or was it naturally one of those profound passions which Anne of Austria inspired in those who approached her? That we are not able to say. flocked at the first summons under the standard of the Protestants. then. Let us unfold them first. gentlemen. our eternal 601 . It became necessary. adventurers of all nations. as everyone knows. and in two or three circumstances. Thus Bassompierre. its port was the last in the kingdom of France open to the English. ‘You will see. and Italian malcontents. and organized themselves like a vast association. Moreover. the focus of dissensions and ambition.

and he had. and that this little girl was afterward Mme. that our friend d’Artagnan formed a part. de Sevigne. separated from his good friends—Athos. 603 . but on rising from his Bed of Justice on the twenty-eighth of June. which was no more than an unpleasant circumstance. sent as a vanguard. he wished to enter it as a conqueror. The king. he was forced to stop at Villeroy. as we have said. was simply a kind look from Anne of Austria. effected his landing. found himself. It was of this detachment. notwithstanding. was moved by interests exactly like those of the cardinal. whenever the king halted. Richelieu’s object. was to follow as soon as his Bed of Justice had been held. in pretending to maintain the honor of England. the Musketeers halted. and Aramis. that in humiliating England in the eyes of Europe he humiliated Buckingham in the eyes of the queen. It resulted from this that the real stake in this game. It was. which was determined. but his illness becoming more serious. This event had hastened the resolutions of the cardinal. he had sent Monsieur to direct the first operations. On his side Buckingham. Porthos. but to avenge himself on a rival. would have certainly become a cause of serious uneasiness if he had been able to guess by what unknown dangers he was surrounded. and till the king and he could take the command of the siege of La Rochelle. who was as yet purely and simply in the Guards. as his weapon for combat. Arriving unexpectedly in sight of the Isle of Re with ninety vessels and nearly twenty thousand men. that in triumphing over England he triumphed over Buckingham—in short. he had surprised the Comte de Toiras. This separation. not only to get rid of an enemy of France. and threw a hundred men into a little fort called the fort of La Pree. for the time at least. then. He. that the Baron de Chantal left a little orphan girl eighteen months old. The Comte de Toiras retired into the citadel St. but this vengeance must be grand and striking and worthy in every way of a man who held in his hand. Richelieu knew that in combating England he combated Buckingham. Buckingham could not under any pretense be admitted into France as an ambassador. after a bloody conflict. however. the forces of a kingdom. which two most powerful kingdoms played for the good pleasure of two amorous men. cruelly mystified him. The first advantage had been gained by Buckingham. It followed that d’Artagnan. anxious to set out. Buckingham also was pursuing a private vengeance. and had ordered all the troops he could dispose of to march toward the theater of war.Musketeers and the courage and conduct of d’Artagnan. who commanded for the king in the Isle. of the tenth of the month of Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Martin with his garrison. Allow us to observe in passing that in this fight perished 602 The Three Musketeers the Baron de Chantal. He was. he felt himself attacked by fever. arrived without accident in the camp established before La Rochelle.

This was evidently an ambuscade. on the opposite side of the road. As to love. continued to besiege. His reflections were not very cheerful. as it was known. What he had clearly gained in all this was the diamond. he had acquired the protection and good will of the queen. two or three days before. by the last ray of the setting sun. he had made—he. these reflections had led him further than he intended. without his being able to discover what had become of 605 . less to be 604 The Three Musketeers feared. This enemy was Milady. From the time of his arrival in Paris. of a man before whom trembled the greatest men of the kingdom. We say the gravel he trod under his feet. but. He determined. Martin and the fort of La Pree. Bonacieux had disappeared. in his projects of ambition. he perceived the extremity of another musket. Dessessart. he thought he saw the barrel of a musket glitter from behind a hedge. the citadel St. and yet he had not done so. Everything was in the same state. the only woman he could have loved was Mme. Bonacieux. had formed but few friendships among his comrades. Bonacieux. not to be despised. to make it someday a pledge for the gratitude of the queen—had not in the meanwhile. for d’Artagnan made these reflections while walking solitarily along a pretty little road which led from the camp to the village of Angoutin. took up their quarters at the Minimes. For a mind so perspicuous as that of d’Artagnan. since he could not part with it. either in love or fortune. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. wished to keep it. that is to say. worth five or six thousand livres. beginning with the king. under the command of M. humble as he was—an enemy of the cardinal. to direct his course as clear from it as he could when. possessed with ambition to enter the Musketeers. he thought. as we know. Then he had made himself another enemy. D’Artagnan had a quick eye and a prompt understanding. and the day was beginning to decline when. The Duke of Buckingham and his English. and that he who bore it had not concealed himself behind a hedge with any friendly intentions. this indulgence was a light by which he caught a glimpse of a better future. He comprehended that the musket had not come there of itself. therefore. he had been mixed up with public affairs. As to fortune.September of the year 1627. he instinctively felt. and Mme. and even this diamond—supposing that d’Artagnan. from behind a rock. protected badly—as witness Chalais and Mme. That man had the power to crush him. Now. d’Artagnan. but nevertheless. and he felt himself isolated and given up to his own reflections. but his own private affairs had made no great progress. and her protection. which he wore on his finger. masters of the Isle of Re. and hostilities with La Rochelle had commenced. but without success. The Guards. about a fort which the Duc d’Angouleme had caused to be constructed near the city. In exchange for all this. but the favor of the queen was at the present time an additional cause of persecution. more value than the gravel he trod under his feet.

and he heard the whistling of a ball pass over his head. The ball was not a musket ball—it was an arquebus ball. as the ball was not of the regular caliber. he had escaped so rapidly that he had not had leisure to notice 607 . examined the hole made by the ball. had no other hat. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the first who fired. his Eminence had rarely recourse to such means. courage was out of the question here. he perceived the gun barrel.’ He immediately. This might be a kind remembrance of Monsieur the Cardinal. and carried it ten paces from him. because it would be an enemy the less.The young man cast a glance at the first musket and saw. day dawned without darkness having brought any accident. This event might have three causes: The first and the most natural was that it might be an 606 The Three Musketeers ambuscade of the Rochellais. therefore. He sat down without saying a word to anybody. and at the same instant the ball from the other musket tore up the gravel on the very spot on the road where he had thrown himself with his face to the ground. It might be a vengeance of Milady. but as soon as he perceived that the orifice of the barrel was motionless. however. For people toward whom he had but to put forth his hand. that was most probable. thanks to the ray of the sun. ‘where are you? And that you should fail me!’ D’Artagnan passed a very bad night. The accuracy of the aim had first given him the idea that a special weapon had been employed. with a certain degree of inquietude. It may be observed that at the very moment when. Besides. imagining that a man was approaching his bed for the purpose of stabbing him. my poor friends!’ murmured d’Artagnan. Nevertheless. As he. he picked up this as he ran. D’Artagnan took his hat. and shook his head. with the swiftness of the young men of his country. Three or four times he started up. At the same instant the gun was fired. This could not. be a military ambuscade. he was thinking with astonishment on the forbearance of his Eminence with respect to him. took to his heels and ran toward the camp.’ said he to himself. But d’Artagnan again shook his head. so renowned for their agility. and arrived at his quarters very pale and quite out of breath. that it was leveled in his direction. and this enemy might have a well-furnished purse in his pocket. but whatever might be his speed. and began to reflect. ‘If there is a third shot. having had time to reload. ‘I am a lost man. He tried in vain to remember the faces or dress of the assassins. then. D’Artagnan sprang up with a bound. fired a second shot. ‘Ah. d’Artagnan had fallen into an ambush. No time was to be lost. and this time so well aimed that it struck his hat. who might not be sorry to kill one of his Majesty’s Guards. D’Artagnan was not one of those foolhardy men who seek a ridiculous death in order that it may be said of them that they did not retreat a single step. he threw himself upon the ground.

the two Guards marched abreast with him. In fact the Rochellais had made a sortie during the night. as well as the others. for fear he might be mistaken. and I made you a sign in order that you might hold yourself in readiness. then all the superior officers approached him to pay their compliments. He thought that. and d’Artagnan took his place in the midst of his comrades. he left the ranks. who wished for nothing better than an opportunity to distinguish himself under the eye of the lieutenant general. and the two soldiers followed behind. how the enemy guarded this bastion. the drums beat to arms. The guards were under arms. and the men will not be wanting.’ said M. the object then was to examine the place near enough to verify the reports. ‘Monsieur is about to ask for some men of good will for a dangerous mission. Dessessart. after the taking of the bastion. and had retaken a bastion of which the royal army had gained possession two days before. beginning to be afraid.’ ‘As to the man to be depended upon.But d’Artagnan well suspected that that which was deferred was not relinquished. but this gesture being repeated. on turning round. and followed the trench. and he continued to advance. It was not known whether. monsieur. I have him under my hand. by reconnoitering. the Rochellais had evacuated it or left a garrison in it. pointing to d’Artagnan. Dessessart made him a sign to approach. The matter was to ascertain. they had stayed behind. At the turning of the counterscarp they found themselves within about sixty paces of the bastion. D’Artagnan remained all day in his quarters. assigning as a reason to himself that the weather was bad. M. being unwilling to take the first chance from those who had the priority. There. screened by the lining of the trench. it appeared to d’Artagnan that 609 . They arrived thus. At the end of a few minutes Monsieur raised his voice. Monsieur has but to make his intentions known. He waited for a fresh gesture on the part of his superior. Monsieur passed along the front of the line. d’Artagnan perceived that the two soldiers had disappeared. the number was deemed sufficient. The Duc d’Orleans visited the posts. 608 The Three Musketeers and said. led by a man who can be depended upon. They saw no Free eBooks at Planet eBook. captain of the Guards.’ ‘Thanks. but one which will do honor to those who shall accomplish it. ‘I want for this mission three or four volunteers. Dessessart. D’Artagnan declined all others. ‘and as to the four or five volunteers. and two other soldiers having joined them. At nine o’clock the next morning.’ ‘Four men of good will who will risk being killed with me!’ said d’Artagnan. D’Artagnan set out with his four companions. Two of his comrades of the Guards immediately sprang forward. and advanced to receive orders. raising his sword. At the expiration of a minute or two. my captain!’ replied d’Artagnan. till they came within a hundred paces of the bastion.

and stooped to raise him and assist him in regaining the lines. D’Artagnan had not been deceived. after having passed within two inches of d’Artagnan. they fired upon A longer stay in this dangerous spot would have been useless imprudence. d’Artagnan. these two men had only followed for the purpose of assassinating him. The sword of the Guardsman slipped along the barrel of the now-useless weapon. One ball struck the head of the already-wounded guard. The three composing our forlorn hope were deliberating whether they should proceed any further. but at this moment two shots were fired. who darted off toward the bastion. On arriving at the angle of the trench which was to serve them as a rampart. He resolved this time to know with whom he had to deal. He quickly saw two heads appear above an abandoned 610 The Three Musketeers work within thirty paces of him. Fortunately. they should be accused by him. and fell upon the body of his comrade as if he were dead. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the wretch had nothing to defend himself with but his discharged arquebus. they neglected to reload their guns. for this attack could not have come from the bastion. and a dozen balls came whistling around d’Artagnan and his companions. therefore their first idea was to join the enemy. The assassins comprehended that if they fled toward the camp without having killed their man. who fell. who in falling had taken care not to let go his 611 . struck by a ball which broke his shoulder. The conflict was not long. when all at once a circle of smoke enveloped the giant of stone. and passed through the thigh of the assassin. and used it as he would a club. which was hidden by the angle of the trench. continued his way toward the camp. A ball had passed through his breast. but by this movement he left a passage free to the bandit. One of them took his gun by the barrel. As the Rochellais who guarded the bastion were ignorant of the intentions of the man they saw coming toward them. and commenced a retreat which resembled a flight. the bastion was guarded. they came up to him with the purpose of making sure. deceived by d’Artagnan’s trick. they were the heads of the two soldiers. The young man turned quickly round. The other. They knew all they wished to know. and the other flattened itself against a rock. As he might be only wounded and might denounce their crime. and the bastion seemed abandoned. When they were within ten paces of him. He aimed a terrible blow at d’Artagnan. and with them he remembered the assassins of two evenings before. sprang up close to them. D’Artagnan and his two companions turned their backs. who avoided it by springing to one side. The idea of the two soldiers who had abandoned him occurred to his mind. Meantime d’Artagnan had thrown himself upon the other soldier. D’Artagnan was not willing to abandon his companion thus. one of the Guardsmen fell. hoping that the young man’s death would be placed to the account of the enemy. attacking him with his sword. who was safe and sound. and he fell.

I swear by my faith as an honest man—‘ and at these words d’Artagnan made so fierce a gesture that the wounded man sprang up. or else whatever may be my repugnance to soiling my sword a second time with the blood of a wretch like you. ‘By that letter which my comrade has in his pocket.’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘I will go—I will go!’ D’Artagnan took the soldier’s arquebus. ‘she thinks I am worth something. as you are.D’Artagnan immediately placed the point of his sword at his throat. ‘That you will go and fetch me the letter your comrade has in his pocket. but who is called Milady. then. How can I go and fetch that letter under the fire of the bastion?’ ‘You must nevertheless make up your mind to go and get it. and I grant you my pardon. ‘Oh. ‘that is only another way of killing me. made him go on Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘What is that?’ said the soldier. and whom you perhaps believe dead but who is not!’ cried the bandit. ‘Stop. come!’ said the young man. ‘Pardon.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘Well. or I swear you shall die by my hand. pardon. do not kill me!’ cried the bandit.’ ‘ 613 . regaining strength by force of terror. throwing himself upon his knees and leaning upon his hand—for he began to lose his strength with his blood. but upon one condition. A hundred louis? Well. no more hesitation. monsieur.’ ‘But. withholding his arm.’ ‘Is your secret of enough importance to me to spare your life for it?’ asked the young man. and that I believed that woman dead?’ asked d’Artagnan.’ ‘Pardon. that was a temptation for two wretches like you. as you are.’ ‘But how did you become concerned in this villainous affair?’ ‘He proposed to me to undertake it with him. and called her so.’ ‘But if you don’t know this woman. and who may hope for everything. So no more delay. uneasy at perceiving that all was not over. ‘Yes. he even has in his pocket a letter from that person. ‘And how do you know there is a young woman whom I love. as I have heard him say.’ ‘And how much did she give you for this fine enterprise?’ ‘A hundred louis. stop!’ cried he. my officer. and not with me. It was with him she agreed. pity! In the name of that young lady you love. how do you know her name?’ ‘My comrade knows her. who attaches great importance to you. and I agreed. if you think existence worth anything to a man of twenty. and I will tell you all.’ cried the bandit. I understand why you 612 The Three Musketeers accepted it. ‘speak quickly! Who employed you to assassinate me?’ ‘A woman whom I don’t know. ‘that I must have that letter. being handsome and brave.’ ‘You see. laughing.

He confessed that he had undertaken with his comrade—the same who was killed— to carry off a young woman who was to leave Paris by the Barriere de La Villette. and how well she must be acquainted with the affairs of the court.’ said the wounded man. ‘But what were you to do with that woman?’ asked d’Artagnan. which lay twenty paces from him. He left the box and dice where they fell.’ said he. He consequently kept it as a piece of evidence. with a dice box and dice. try.’ And with a light step. they had missed the carriage by ten minutes. and eagerly opened the pocketbook. A slight shock. a last cry. the dull noise of three balls which penetrated the flesh.before him. It was a frightful thing to see this wretch. If you do. D’Artagnan regained the trench. leaving a long track of blood on the ground he passed over. that which he had sought at the risk of his life: ‘Since you have lost sight of that woman and she is now in safety in the convent. ‘that’s the place—Milady’s own residence!’ Then the young man tremblingly comprehended what a terrible thirst for vengeance urged this woman on to destroy him. Stay where you are. threw the purse to the wounded man. since she had discovered all.’ No signature. A leather pocketbook. observing the movements of the enemy and taking advantage of the accidents of the ground. trying to drag himself along without being seen to the body of his accomplice. and urged him toward his companion by pricking him behind with his sword. he began to interrogate the wounded man. or to carry him away. and that you shall pay very dearly for the hundred louis you have from me. d’Artagnan succeeded in reaching the second soldier. with anguish. Among some unimportant papers he found the following letter. and lifted the assassin onto his shoulders at the moment the enemy fired. covered with a cold sweat. Then he began to search. a purse. ‘I will show you the difference between a man of courage and such a coward as you. which you should never have allowed her to reach. ‘We were to have conveyed her to a hotel in the Place Royale. and threw the corpse beside the wounded man. and casting upon him a look of contempt. but having stopped to drink at a cabaret. pale with approaching death. not to miss the man. you know that my hand stretches far. an eye on the watch. completed the pos614 The Three Musketeers sessions of the dead man. D’Artagnan preferred the second means. and being in safety behind the angle of the trench. Terror was so strongly painted on his face. yes!’ murmured d’Artagnan. and search him in the trench. There were two means of gaining his object—to search him on the 615 . in which was evidently a part of the sum which the bandit had received. who was as pale as death. making a buckler of his body. that d’Artagnan took pity on him. There could be no doubt she owed this Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I will go myself. ‘Stop. as well as all who loved him. ‘Yes. at least. Nevertheless it was plain the letter came from Milady. proved to d’Artagnan that the would-be assassin had saved his life. a convulsion of agony.

and the letter he had received from the young woman. that the queen must have discovered the prison in which poor Mme. d’Artagnan believed that he might be tranquil. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as one of his two enemies was killed and the other devoted to his interests.’ said the man. Lean upon me. abridged the testimonials of his gratitude. and a convent was not impregnable. D’Artagnan explained the sword wound of his companion by a sortie which he improvised. were now explained. But amid all this he perceived. He turned toward the wounded man. He described the death 616 The Three Musketeers of the other soldier.’ The wounded man sank upon his knees. as every great action bears its recompense with it. This tranquillity proved one thing—that d’Artagnan did not yet know Milady. who had no longer a motive for staying so near the enemy. and holding out his arm to him. and that she had freed her from that prison. The Guardsman who had returned at the first discharge announced the death of his four companions. Besides this. I will not abandon you thus. and let us return to the camp. and Monsieur paid him his compliments upon it. Then also. This recital was for him the occasion of veritable triumph. They were therefore much astonished and delighted in the regiment when they saw the young man come back safe and sound. ‘Come. The whole army talked of this expedition for a day. This idea completely restored clemency to his heart. to again kiss the feet of his preserver. said. the brave exploit of d’Artagnan resulted in the restoration of the tranquility he had lost. who could scarcely believe in such magnanimity. and her passage along the road of Chaillot like an apparition. Bonacieux. ‘but is it not to have me hanged?’ ‘You have my word.’ ‘Yes. with a feeling of real joy.information to the 617 . In fact. ‘for the second time I give you your life. as Athos had predicted. and the perils they had encountered. it became possible to find Mme.’ said he. who had watched with intense anxiety all the various expressions of his countenance. Bonacieux was explaining her devotion. but d’Artagnan.

as always happens after a past danger. dated from Villeroy: M. lost his days in wavering. and did not dare to attempt any great enterprise to drive the English from the Isle of Re. sent the twelve bottles of wine to the refreshment room of the Guards. who were all eager for his post. d’Artagnan. ‘They think of me in their pleasures. Planchet.42 THE ANJOU WINE After the most disheartening news of the king’s health. But one morning at the commencement of the month of November everything was explained to him by this letter. did but little. or by Schomberg. a report of his convalescence began to prevail in the camp. Meantime. as on their side the French were besieging La Rochelle. Godeau. and that was at not hearing any tidings from his friends. monsieur. as I thought of them in my troubles. Purveyor of the Musketeers ‘That’s all well!’ cried d’Artagnan. and with this view called in the assistance of the lackey of one of his master’s guests. and another the next. Porthos. after having had an entertainment at my house and enjoying themselves very much. like an intelligent man. Monsieur. and as he was very anxious to be in person at the siege. so the meeting was fixed for the day after that. by Bassompierre. One of the two Guardsmen was engaged that evening. Well. and am. Martin and the fort of La Pree. as the dinner was fixed for midday d’Artagnan sent Planchet at nine in the morning to assist in preparing everything for the entertainment. as we have said. on the day appointed. but I accomplish the order they have given me by forwarding to you a dozen bottles of my Anjou wine. They are desirous that you should drink to their health in their favorite wine. D’Artagnan. to invite them to enjoy with him this present of delicious Anjou wine which had been sent him from Villeroy. and Aramis. I have done this.’ And d’Artagnan went among those Guardsmen with whom he had formed greater intimacy than with the others. it was said that as soon as he could mount a horse he would set forward. with which they are much pleased. particularly when the danger seems to have vanished. named Fourreau. a rigid man. and then. very proud of being raised to the dignity of landlord. with strict orders that great care should be taken of it. thought he would make all ready. I will certainly drink to their health with all my heart. 619 . Free eBooks at Planet eBook. but I will not drink alone. where they still besieged the citadel St. who knew that from one day to the other he might expect to be removed from his command by the Duc d’Angouleme. created such a disturbance that the provost of the 618 The Three Musketeers castle. with great respect. on his return. Your very humble and obedient servant. He only felt one uneasiness. D’Artagnan. Athos. has ordered them to be confined for some days. had become more tranquil.

impatient. the king. in order to repair to their posts.’ ‘Well. it is the wine that was sent by your order. connoisseurs in wine as we are. ‘you could not have arrived in better time.’ ‘The wine you prefer. ‘No. towel on arm. The hour of the banquet being come. and you. belonging to no corps. Cries of ‘Live the king! Live the cardinal!’ resounded on every side. Planchet waited. you must content yourselves with that. either of the besieged or the English. pardieu! there is yours.’ ‘We sent you wine?’ ‘You know very well—the wine from the hills of Anjou. ‘Pardieu!’ cried d’Artagnan. and M.’ replied d’Artagnan. and the drums were beaten in all directions. and the dishes were arranged on the table. Fourreau uncorked the bottles. Of this wine. which was a little shaken by its journey.and the false soldier who had tried to kill d’Artagnan and who. we have sent you some Anjou wine?’ said Porthos. ah!’ said Porthos. whom he introduced to his friends. that you sent me. carefully into decanters. and had that moment arrived with all his household and a reinforcement of ten thousand troops. or rather of Planchet. Porthos?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Brisemont poured the lees into a glass. turning to the two Guards. took their places. gentlemen?’ added the young man. ‘Well. the dinner cannot have had time to get cold! Can it. saluted with an expressive 620 The Three Musketeers gesture his three friends. de Treville. had come by forced marches.’ ‘Yes. who detected him at once.’ ‘Is there any drinkable wine in your tavern?’ asked Athos. and d’Artagnan desired him to drink it. whose eyes soon discovered him. Aramis?’ said Athos. The guests having eaten the soup. ‘Not exactly. as has been 621 . were about to lift the first glass of wine to their lips.’ said Aramis. and all ran out. D’Artagnan. In short. ‘it appears we are feasting!’ ‘I hope. for the poor devil had not yet recovered his strength. The Guardsmen. my dear friend. ‘Yes. sprang to their swords. astonished. not less forward than they. I know what brand you are talking about. ‘Our wine!’ said Athos. imagining this to be caused by some unexpected attack.’ ‘On our account?’ said the three Musketeers. ‘there are no women at your dinner.’ ‘And so. the first bottle being a little thick at the bottom. when all at once the cannon sounded from Fort Louis and Fort Neuf. in the absence of champagne and chambertin. ‘Ah. the two guards arrived. which was the name of the convalescent. But scarcely were they out of the room before they were made aware of the cause of this noise. and Brisemont. placed in line with his company. His Musketeers proceeded and followed him. The ceremony of reception over. D’Artagnan. after d’Artagnan had saved his life. the four friends were soon in one another’s arms. ‘Did you send this wine. did likewise. poured the wine. had entered into the service of d’Artagnan.

were trying to give him succor.’ ‘A false letter altogether. Athos?’ ‘No!’ ‘If it was not you. who never used thee and thou but upon very particular occasions. while Porthos broke the bottles and Aramis gave orders. ‘we have not been disciplined. and he expired amid horrible tortures. and if it is good. on perceiving d’Artagnan. and you poison me!’ ‘I!’ cried d’Artagnan. ‘I swear to you that the wine was poisoned and that I was going to drink of it as you did. ‘I am acquainted with it. Brisemont. ‘ah! this is frightful! You pretend to pardon me.‘No. ‘don’t let us drink wine which comes from an unknown source. and you.’ said Porthos. and a convulsive trembling shook all his limbs. I say you wished to avenge yourself on me. and he presented the note to his comrades.’ ‘My faith! never mind where it comes from. I swear to you. ‘what has happened?’ ‘Look you. ‘do not think so. let us drink it.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘This is not his writing!’ said Athos. grant that he may one day suffer what I suffer!’ ‘Upon the Gospel.’ ‘I do not believe you. wretch? What do you say?’ ‘I say that it was you who gave me the wine.’ ‘No. and I say that it is horrible!’ ‘Do not think so.’ ‘d’Artagnan.’ said Porthos. a little too late.’ said d’Artagnan. 623 . ‘how could you believe that we had made a disturbance?’ D’Artagnan grew pale. to send me some wine?’ ‘No! And yet you say he has sent you some as from us?’ ‘Here is his letter. the three Musketeers and the two Guards following him. my friends!’ cried d’Artagnan. as pale as death. ‘Did none of you charge your purveyor. ‘I. your purveyor. ‘Our purveyor!’ ‘Yes. Godeau. ‘Frightful! frightful!’ murmured Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. I say that it was you who desired me to drink it. ‘Ah!’ cried he.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘You are right. Godeau—the purveyor of the Musketeers. ‘let us taste it.’ cried the soldier. but God is above! God will punish you! My God. I protest—‘ ‘Oh. ‘Thou alarmest me!’ said Athos. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The first object that met the eyes of d’Artagnan on entering the room was Brisemont. stretched upon the ground and rolling in horrible convulsions. before we left Villeroy I settled the accounts of the regiment. D’Artagnan rushed toward the refreshment room. in a reproachful tone. Planchet and Fourreau.’ said Aramis.’ said Athos. throwing himself down by the dying man.’ said d’Artagnan. it was your purveyor. but it was plain that all assistance was useless—all the features of the dying man were distorted with agony. ‘a horrible sus622 The Three Musketeers picion crosses my mind! Can this be another vengeance of that woman?’ It was now Athos who turned pale.

‘In the first place. the evil would only recoil upon us. more dead than alive. monsieur. and if talked about. sirrah! you were going to drink my wine?’ ‘To the health of the king.’ Athos shook his head. she is your wife. ‘Yes. my friends. whose teeth chattered with 625 . leaving to Planchet and Fourreau the duty of paying mortuary honors to Brisemont. ‘let us leave this chamber.’ said Athos. ‘I perceive that plainly.’ ‘Alas!’ said Fourreau. not only mine but that of these gentlemen. I was going to drink a small glass of it if Fourreau had not told me I was called. ‘ah. particularly when they have died a violent death.’ said d’Artagnan. but I should think the other must be dead.’ said d’Artagnan. I hanged her so effectually. ‘I wanted to get him out of the way that I might drink myself. ‘The fact is. they looked at one another with an air which plainly expressed that each of them perceived the gravity of their situation. ‘I commit the corpse of this poor devil to your care. addressing the Guardsmen.’ 624 The Three Musketeers ‘Planchet.’ ‘Nevertheless. my dear friend. ‘Oh. yes. Let him be interred in holy ground. The host gave them another chamber.’ ‘Yes. When the young Guardsman and the three Musketeers were without witnesses. ‘Well. ‘you come once more to save my life. but do you really believe it is she?’ ‘I am sure of it.’ continued he. it is true. ‘But in either case. that this is war to the death. ‘I request you will be silent with regard to this adventure. with a sword hangFree eBooks at Planet eBook. and perceiving that the four friends desired to be alone. what an escape I have had!’ ‘How. I beg of you.’ It was d’Artagnan who now shook his head in his turn.’ And the four friends quit the room. retired. I confess I still doubt. but he repented of it.’ said d’Artagnan to Athos. addressing the Guardsmen. Great personages may have had a hand in what you have seen.’ said d’Artagnan. monsieur!’ stammered Planchet. ‘only reflect how much the two descriptions resemble each other. I tell you. and put off the party till another day. so accept my excuses. monsieur. one cannot remain thus.’ ‘Athos.’ ‘But the fleur-de-lis on her shoulder?’ ‘She is some Englishwoman who has committed a crime in France. ‘you may easily comprehend that such a feast can only be very dull after what has taken place. ‘you see.’ The two Guardsmen courteously accepted d’Artagnan’s excuses. Porthos and Aramis were posted as to the situation. the dead are not agreeable company.’ repeated d’Artagnan.’ replied he.’ ‘Ah. He committed a crime. and has been branded in consequence. In a few words. and served them with fresh eggs and some water. which Athos went himself to draw at the fountain.that a confessor should be sent for. Gentlemen.’ ‘Gentlemen. what is to be done?’ said the young man.

I will denounce you as branded. never to do anything against you.’ ‘But how?’ ‘Listen! You must try to see her.’ ‘I am only temporarily a Musketeer.’ ‘Hush!’ said Porthos. ‘God has preserved us hitherto. your duchess. ‘But I think I have it.’ said Athos.’ ‘That’s true.’ ‘Very well.’ said Porthos. ‘Don’t you say.’ ‘Yes. if you please?’ ‘Why. ‘You say she is in a convent?’ replied Porthos. I promise you on my part—‘ ‘Good.’ ‘Well.’ ‘Well. we’ll carry her off from that convent. Say to her: ‘Peace or war! My word as a gentleman never to say anything of you. As soon as the siege is over. God will preserve us still. by the faith of a gentleman.’ ‘And how so.’ said Athos. ‘I beFree eBooks at Planet eBook. by your marchioness. I will apply to the hangman. I will apply to the king. humbly. dear d’Artagnan. in a low voice. opportunity is the martingale of man.’ ‘What?’ asked d’Artagnan.’’ ‘I like the means well enough. we are men. but she. ‘it appears to me that the means are very simple. I will bring you to trial. I had forgotten you were in love.’ said Athos. time brings round opportunity.’ said d’Artagnan. your princess. and everything considered.’ ‘Bah!’ said Athos. as I would a mad dog. at least. when we know how to wait. The more we have ventured the more we gain. I will move the courts against you.’ ‘Madame Bonacieux! Ah. my dear Aramis. ‘Yes. we all know that your views have a religious tendency.’ ‘Yes. but. ‘It is some time since we heard from his mistress. ‘What she?’ asked Athos. that it is the queen who has made choice of the convent for her?’ ‘I believe so.’ ‘But we must first learn what convent she is in. ‘But take no notice. and have an explanation with her. ‘good! Yes. on your side. that’s true!’ said Athos. we know all about that.’ said Porthos. ‘Constance. placing a finger on his lips. we. She must have a long arm. but to wait surrounded by assassins and eternally over his head. dear friend.’ ‘In that case Porthos will assist us. ‘but where and how to meet with her?’ ‘Time. a solemn oath to remain neutral with respect to me.’ said Aramis.’ asked he. 627 . Besides. If not. I will kill you at the corner of some wall. and as soon as the siege of La Rochelle is terminated. ‘We must extricate ourselves from this position. ‘have you not learned by the 626 The Three Musketeers letter you found on the wretched corpse that she is in a convent? One may be very comfortable in a convent. I will apply to the chancellor.’ cried Athos.’ said Aramis. ‘My poor friend. in an undertone. it is our lot to risk our lives. and if you are acquitted.

supported the Duc d’Angouleme. the four friends. separated.’ ‘Then. might press but feebly the English and Rochellais. from Perigny to Angoutin. and afterward to press the siege of La Rochelle. Bassompierre and Schomberg from deserting the army. a separate command had to be given to each. he was delayed by the dissensions which broke out between MM. D’Artagnan returned to less important affairs.’ ‘You. whom the king. a Huguenot at heart. 43 THE SIGN OF THE RED DOVECOT Meanwhile the king. ‘I take upon myself to obtain intelligence of her. coloring. the Duc d’Angouleme on the east. although scarcely arrived was in such a haste to meet the enemy that he commanded every disposition to be made to drive the English from the Isle of Re. who. MM. but the 629 628 The Three Musketeers .’ said Aramis. showed his hatred for Buckingham. and M. had named lieutenant general. she must know nothing of the matter. de Schomberg on the south. Bassompierre and Schomberg. ‘You! And how?’ ‘By the queen’s almoner. And on this assurance. his brothers in religion. Bassompierre and Schomberg were marshals of France. between Leu and Dompierre. at his instigation. Aramis?’ cried the three friends. who feared that Bassompierre. but notwithstanding his earnest wish. Bassompierre took up his quarters on the north of the city. with the promise of meeting again that evening. where they had to prepare their lodging.’ said Aramis. to whom I am very intimately allied. with more reason than the cardinal.lieve her to be a cardinalist. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and claimed their right of commanding the army under the orders of the king. against the Duc d’Angouleme. and the three Musketeers repaired to the king’s quarters. who had finished their modest repast. The result was that to prevent MM. from Dompierre to Perigny.

of the vast resources of his genius were at work night and day. England. very rough at this period of the year all along the sea coast. therefore. would be obliged to raise the siege. This league was directed against France. beaten in all encounters. The English. four pieces of cannon. and the shore. The result was that even if the king’s troops remained quietly in their camp. and sixty flags. good living in order to be good soldiers. Buckingham. we will content ourselves with saying in two words that the expedition succeeded. As soon as this organization was established. de Chevreuse and consequently the queen. for one is not a despotic minister without responsibility. Simon. two hundred and fifty captains. were obliged to re-embark. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. The cardinal was left free to carry on the siege. strongly compromised Mme. de Toiras gave information that everything was preparing in the enemy’s camp for a fresh assault. roberges. and gave the necessary orders for a decisive action. Still further. at least at the present. and suspended with great pomp in the arches of Notre Dame. but on the contrary only to describe such of the events of it as are connected with the story we are relating. Te Deums were chanted in camp. and Lorraine. sometimes at Jarrie. Still further.The quarters of Monsieur were at Dompierre. But as M. the cardinal’s quarters were upon the downs. the sea. they set about driving the English from the Isle. at the bridge of La Pierre. only eating salt meat and bad biscuit. it was evident that some day or other. The English. de Schomberg. among whom were five colonels. So that Monsieur watched Bassompierre. the king judged that it would be best to put an end to the affair. this response was but momentary. The juncture was favorable. papers were found which confirmed this alliance and which. in a simple house without any entrenchment. and defeated in the passage of the Isle of Loie. As it is not our intention to give a journal of the siege. who require. which he had been forced to abandon more precipitately than he expected. the quarters of the king were sometimes at Estree. All. from the point of l’Aiguillon to the trenches. three lieutenant colonels. the king. engaged in listening to the least report heard in any of the great kingdoms of Europe. But it must be acknowledged. and afterward throughout France. It was upon the cardinal that all the responsibility fell. who only continued in the Isle from obstinacy. had many invalids in their camp. the Duc d’ 631 . was at every tide literally covered with the wrecks of pinnacles. Spain. to the great astonishment of the king and 630 The Three Musketeers the great glory of the cardinal. An envoy of the Duke of Buckingham. destroyed every day some little vessel. without having. anything to fear on the part of the English. above everything. and feluccas. named Montague. in Buckingham’s lodging. which were taken to Paris by Claude de St. M. repulsed foot by foot. was taken. and proof was obtained of a league between the German Empire. twenty gentlemen of rank. leaving on the field of battle two thousand men. as the cardinal asserts in his memoirs. and the cardinal.

they saw at a turning of the road two horsemen who. and peasants with blackened hands but with fine limbs. Now. to whom his most inveterate detractors have never denied personal bravery. where they had as yet but partisans. on perFree eBooks at Planet eBook. day and night. There were monks who wore the frock with such an ill grace that it was easy to perceive they belonged to the church militant. These attempts did not prevent the cardinal. were not under very strict orders and led a joyous life. hated him as a child hates his master. in the little house of the bridge of La Pierre. and France. who had not much to do with the siege. one evening when d’Artagnan. sometimes to confer with the king. and more particularly the hatred. The was the more easy for our three companions in particular. for being friends of M. was not able to accompany them. perhaps. Spanish policy and Austrian policy would have their representatives in the cabinet of the Louvre. but we 632 The Three Musketeers must not believe everything ministers say. Athos. even while obeying him like a child. succeeded one another. the right of using reprisals. All this must be prepared against. becoming every instant more numerous. with him. and waited. Richelieu—the French minister. and he. which Athos had discovered two days before upon the route to 633 . for fear of an ambuscade. and Aramis. women a little inconvenienced by their costume as pages and whose large trousers could not entirely conceal their rounded forms. if wanted. with their hands upon their pistol butts. If the league which threatened France triumphed. and sometimes to have an interview with a messenger whom he did not wish to see at home. On their part the Musketeers. as we have stated. Porthos. when. from making nocturnal excursions. There were also less agreeable visits—for two or three times reports were spread that the cardinal had nearly been assassinated. the national minister—would be ruined. and would abandon him to the personal vengeance of Monsieur and the queen.The cardinal was acquainted with the activity. nor everything their enemies say. following the road which led to the camp and quite on their guard. de Treville. they obtained from him special permission to be absent after the closing of the camp. closed in. who was in the trenches. He would then be lost. sometimes to communicate to the Duc d’Angouleme important orders. It is true that the enemies of the cardinal said that it was he himself who set these bungling assassins to work. mounted on their battle steeds. and as the moon broke from behind a cloud. in which the cardinal had established his residence. in order to have. of Buckingham. savoring of the man of quality a league off. all his influence would be lost. They immediately all three halted. enveloped in their war cloaks. were returning from a drinking place called the Red Dovecot. they fancied they heard the sound of horses approaching them. occupying the middle of the road. In an instant. about a quarter of a league from the village of Boisnau. Courtiers. The king.

‘It is some superior officer making his night rounds. ‘That is not an answer. ‘give me. ‘Monsieur the Cardinal!’ cried the stupefied Musketeer. more and more convinced that he who interrogated them had the right to do so. The cardinal made a sign to his attendant.’ The cardinal fixed his piercing eyes on this courageous speaker. letting his cloak fall. ‘What company?’ ‘Company of Treville.’ ‘King’s Musketeers.’ said Athos.’ said Athos. I beg you. monsieur. but for my security. and if they follow us we shall be certain they will tell nobody. and leaving his face uncovered. for the third time. or you may repent of your disobedience. ‘I am not willing it should be known I have left the camp. he who had spoken second. we can keep a secret. ‘Who goes there? Answer.’ replied Athos. ‘but now listen to this.’ said the cardinal. Your companions are no doubt Messieurs Porthos and Aramis. advancing a few paces in front of the others. One of the two riders. stopped in their turn. ‘These three Musketeers shall follow us. who began to be annoyed by this inquisition. ‘Your 635 .’ said he. and Athos.’ said the Musketeer. ‘Athos.’ ‘Your name?’ said the officer. ‘What do you wish. gentlemen!’ said a clear voice which seemed accustomed to command.’ The three companions advanced rather humbly—for all were now convinced that they had to do with someone more powerful than themselves—leaving Athos the post of speaker. appearing to deliberate whether they should continue their route or go back.’ said Athos. ‘Who goes there?’ ‘Who goes there. in the same commanding tone. ‘Your name?’ cried his Eminence.’ ‘Your name?’ repeated the cavalier a second time. ‘You have a quick ear. cried in a firm voice. ‘but we were ignorant with whom we had to do. Thank God. and you may see that we were good guard. yourselves?’ replied one of the horsemen.’ ‘We are gentlemen.’ ‘Beware of what you are about. and advanced alone. The hesitation created some suspicion in the three friends. the proof that you have the right to question me. ‘require our parole. in an undertone. and give an account of what you are doing here at this hour. Monsieur Athos. ‘But yourself.ceiving them. who drew near. was ten paces in front of his companion. It is not from mistrust that I request you to follow me.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. who covered a part of his face with his cloak. and give yourself no uneasiness. or we charge.’ ‘Advance.’ said Athos. my officer. monseigneur. Athos made a sign 634 The Three Musketeers to Porthos and Aramis also to remain in the rear. ‘Answer in your turn.’ said Athos. gentlemen?’ ‘Who are you?’ said the same voice.

with some hesitation. I drew my sword in my turn. Monsieur Porthos?’ ‘I. ‘Come. but I took him who offended me round the body. treacherously. knowing that dueling is prohibited—I seized a bench. and gave one of those brigands such a blow that I believe his shoulder is broken.‘Yes. and threw him out of the window. And pray what was this quarrel about?’ ‘These fellows were drunk. ‘three men placed hors de combat in a cabaret squabble! You don’t do your work by halves. the honor to accompany me.’ ‘I. your Eminence. and we have even had a quarrel at the Red Dovecot with four of those faces. ‘I know you. knitting his brow. and it seemed to me that he was borne away with his two companions.’ said Athos. you know I have the right of giving absolution. Aramis.’ ‘But you are not the men to allow sword wounds to be inflicted upon you thus. gentlemen?’ said the cardinal. we have seen several ill-looking faces on the road. but not enough to prevent him.’ said the cardinal. upon my honor. from mounting to the assault tomorrow. for you might learn it from others. do me.’ ‘Ah. I endeavored to appease my comrades. likewise. then. ‘I know you. It appears that in falling.’ ‘A quarrel. ‘My friend. here. ‘you know I don’t like quarrelers. ‘he broke his thigh. about to enter into orders. has received a slight sword wound in the arm. ‘and you. ‘and you. I only know for a certainty that he fell. monseigneur.’ said the cardinal. being of a very mild disposition. gentlemen!’ said the cardinal. while the two Musketeers who had remained behind advanced hat in hand.’ ‘The devil.’ ‘What have been the results of your quarrel?’ said the cardinal. and upon a false account believe us to be in fault. 636 The Three Musketeers gentlemen. be frank. monseigneur?’ said Athos. ‘and knowing there was a lady who had arrived at the cabaret this eveFree eBooks at Planet eBook. and what for. ah!’ said the cardinal. you have settled accounts with somebody! Confess. if your Eminence orders an escalade. Then I admit my patience failed me. and as he came back to the charge.’ ‘And that is the reason why I have the honor to inform your Eminence of what has happened. when one of these wretches gave me a wound with a sword. ‘I did not even draw my sword. if we should meet him.’ said the cardinal.’ ‘Very well. as your Eminence may see. and being. and that confidence may be placed in you. he let it pass through his body. ‘your Eminence is right in taking us with you. I fancied I felt that in throwing himself upon me.’ continued 637 . but I know you are brave and loyal gentlemen. gentlemen.’ The three Musketeers bowed to the necks of their horses. I know you are not quite my friends. and then I shall have an escort to excite envy in his Majesty. and I am sorry you are not so. you and your two friends. across my left arm.’ said Athos. Monsieur Aramis?’ ‘Monseigneur. ‘Well. Monsieur Athos.’ said Athos. of which Monseigneur perhaps is not aware.

gentlemen. They soon arrived at the silent. which was likewise the way to Paris. and put his horse in motion. ‘You did not see her? Ah. ‘You have told me the truth. was this lady alone?’ ‘The lady had a cavalier shut up with her. A man. I do not doubt it for a single instant.’ said he. A saddled horse was fastened to the window shutter. ‘And now.’ said the cardinal. Athos bowed.’ ‘‘Judge not rashly’. keeping from eight to ten paces in advance of his 638 The Three Musketeers four companions. without doubt.’ ‘Monseigneur. In the meantime. and as I am going to the Red Dovecot myself.’ said 639 . but. Monsieur Athos. and to save our heads we would not be guilty of a falsehood. ‘and for what purpose?’ ‘To do her violence. and exchanged some rapid words with the cardinal. ‘Enter. I shall know if you have told me the truth. Ten paces from the door the cardinal made a sign to his esquire and the three Musketeers to halt. they wanted to force her door. gentlemen. the three Musketeers fastened the horses to the shutters. enveloped in a cloak.’ replied the cardinal. that’s well. ‘Have you any chamber on the ground floor where these gentlemen can wait near a good fire?’ said the cardinal. ‘and it will not be my fault if our encounter this evening be not advantageous to you. very well.’ The three Musketeers passed behind his Eminence. and set off in the direction of Surgeres. ‘we are gentlemen. addressing the Musketeers.’ The cardinal alighted. with a certain degree of anxiety. quickly. and had consequently sent intruders out of the way.’ ‘Therefore I do not doubt what you say.ning. and in a peculiar manner.’ replied the cardinal. ‘We did not see her. ‘but as notwithstanding the noise. who again enveloped his face in his cloak. ‘That will do. my gentlemen. the cardinal was only an officer coming to visit a lady.’ said Athos. No doubt the host knew what illustrious visitor was expected. ‘You did well to defend the honor of a woman. gentlemen. ‘I have this. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. the three Musketeers did likewise. ‘I know what I wish to know. The cardinal knocked three times.’ ‘Force her door!’ said the cardinal. The cardinal threw the bridle of his horse to his esquire. this cavalier did not show himself. after which he mounted his horse. ‘Advance. monseigneur. The host stood at the door.’ said Athos. in which an old stove had just been replaced by a large and excellent chimney.’ continued the cardinal.’ ‘And was this lady young and handsome?’ asked the cardinal. follow me.’ replied the cardinal. For him. haughtily. solitary inn. ‘I have had the honor of informing your Eminence that these men were drunk. follow me. it is to be presumed that he is a coward. says the Gospel. came out immediately. ‘to change the conversation.’ said Athos. The host opened the door of a large room.’ said he.’ added he.

who was that someone? That was the question the three Musketeers put to one another. the other extremity passing into the chamber above. Then. Now. Milady. 44 THE UTILITY OF STOVEPIPES It was evident that without suspecting it. the cardinal.and be kind enough to wait for me. and distinguished some words that appeared to merit so great an interest that he made a sign to his friends to be silent.’ said the cardinal. Porthos called the host and asked for dice. Athos went close to it. Porthos and Aramis placed themselves at the table and began to play. Athos passed and repassed before the pipe of the stove.’ 640 The Three Musketeers Free eBooks at Planet eBook. seeing that none of their replies could throw any light on the subject. ascended the staircase like a man who has no need of having his road pointed out to him. without asking further information. ‘the affair is important. Athos walked about in a contemplative mood. ‘Listen.’ And while the three Musketeers entered the ground floor room. our three friends had just rendered a service to someone the cardinal honored with his special protection. which at length fixed his attention. and actuated solely by their chivalrous and adventurous character. Sit down. I shall not be more than half an hour. broken in halves. and let us talk it over. and every time he passed and repassed he heard a murmur of 641 . remaining himself bent with his ear directed to the opening of the lower orifice. While thinking and walking.

’ ‘Well. in the same tone. about which the duke always suspected me. ‘Arrived in London. He will set sail tomorrow morning. who loved their ease. deign to unfold it to me in terms clear and precise. and as I desire to continue to merit the confidence of your Eminence. and you will tell him I am acquainted with all the preparations he has made. monseigneur.’ ‘Will he believe that your Eminence is in a position to accomplish the threat thus made?’ ‘Yes. when you have received my instructions. in order Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘A small vessel with an English crew. this time. and to engrave them in her memory when they should be spoken. since at the first step he takes I will ruin the queen. ‘All this negotiation must be carried on openly.’ ‘I will follow your Eminence’s instructions to the letter.’ replied the cardinal. Athos took advantage of this moment to tell his two companions to fasten the door inside. ‘You will go to London.’ ‘You will go to Buckingham in my behalf. after half an hour. but that they give me no uneasiness. I only wait till you give them. Two men. brought a chair for each of themselves and one for Athos. The two Musketeers. ‘I listen to your Eminence with greatest attention.’ replied a female voice which made the Musketeer start. frankly and loyally. but to present yourself frankly and loyally as a negotiator.’ ‘Yes. at fort of the Point. his Grace distrusts me.’ said Milady.’ continued the cardinal.’ ‘I must be able to present these proofs for his appreciation. then. upon the interview which the duke had at the residence of Madame the Constable with the queen on the evening Madame the Constable gave a masquerade. you can go away in your turn. All three then sat down with their heads together and their ears on 642 The Three Musketeers the alert.’ ‘I must beg your Eminence to observe.’ said the cardinal.’ ‘Frankly and loyally. ‘that since the affair of the diamond studs.‘Milady!’ murmured Athos. you will seek Buckingham. ‘Yes. ‘it is not necessary to steal his confidence. whom you will find at the door on going out.’ repeated Milady. for I have the proofs. will serve you as escort.’ There was an instant of profound silence between the two interlocutors. awaits you at the mouth of Charente. and to make them a sign to come and listen with 643 .’ ‘I must go thither tonight?’ ‘Instantly! That is to say. that I may not commit an error. It was evident that the cardinal was weighing beforehand the terms in which he was about to speak. You will allow me to leave first. And you will tell him I will publish the report of Bois-Robert and the Marquis de Beautru.’ ‘Without doubt. whose captain is on my side. You will tell him. with an unspeakable expression of duplicity. Now let us return to the mission with which you wish to charge me. and that Milady was collecting all her intellectual faculties to comprehend the things he was about to say.

here. which the Chevalier de Guise was to have worn.’ said the cardinal.’ ‘It is possible. that Montague is in the Bastille. in 1610.’ ‘But. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Milady. wittily turned.’ ‘I will tell him that. the letter of Madame de Chevreuse.’ said Milady.’ ‘Well. as all the world knows. If he becomes certain that this war will cost the honor.’ ‘That’s it. with a persistence that proved she wished to see clearly to the end of the mission with which she was about to be charged. of the lady of his thoughts. the night at the Louvre. forgotten and left behind him in his lodging a certain letter from Madame de Chevreuse which singularly compromises the queen.’ said Richelieu: ‘when. the arrest of Montague. that he may not doubt the correctness of my information. the duke does not give way and continues to menace France?’ ‘The duke is in love to madness.’ ‘Is that all. ‘That is not probable. in the precipitation with which he quit the Isle of Re.’ ‘Tell him further that I hold Montague in my power. or rather to folly. appears at the Louvre every time any great event is impending. inasmuch as it 644 The Three Musketeers proves not only that her Majesty can love the enemies of the king but that she can conspire with the enemies of France. with great bitterness. You recollect perfectly all I have told you. that I will have a little romance made of it. ‘that’s 645 . he has only undertaken this war to obtain a look from his lady love. as he says.’ ‘Then add that his Grace has. but that torture may make him tell much of what he knows. and perhaps the liberty. and even what he does not know.’ said Milady.that he may not doubt. it is true. that no letters were found upon him. for example. I will answer for it he will look twice.’ replied Richelieu. monseigneur?’ ‘Tell him also that I am acquainted with all the details of the adventure at Amiens. ‘if he persists?’ ‘If he persists?’ said the cardinal. that he came there in the costume of the Great Mogul. ‘if. with a plan of the garden and portraits of the principal actors in that nocturnal romance.’ ‘If your Eminence would quote to me some one of these events in history. monseigneur?’ ‘All the details of his coming into and going out of the palace—on the night when he introduced himself in the character of an Italian fortune teller—you will tell him.’ ‘And yet. in spite of all these reasons. he was to pass for the phantom of the White Lady who. that he had under his cloak a large white robe dotted with black tears.’ resumed she to whom the cardinal addressed this flattering compliment. ‘Like the ancient paladins. death’s heads. ‘perhaps I should partake of your confidence as to the future. and that he purchased this exchange for the sum of three thousand pistoles.’ ‘Exactly. You have an excellent memory.’ said Milady. and resumed: ‘If he persists—well. the evening at Amiens. and crossbones—for in case of a surprise.’ ‘Well. ‘If he persists—‘ His Eminence made a pause. then I shall hope for one of those events which change the destinies of states. do you not?’ ‘Your Eminence will judge: the ball of Madame the Constable.

’ ‘That is just. he must likewise have sown the seeds of hatred by his eternal infidelities.’ ‘No doubt. monseigneur. and observe—it just occurs to me that the Puritans are furious against Buckingham. and their preachers designate him as the Antichrist. but she would then be the accomplice of an assassination. would save France. monseigneur?’ replied Milady. handsome. and if he has fostered his amours by promises of eternal constancy. in the tone with which he would have put a question of no importance. young.’ said Milady. who has cause of quarrel with the duke. then. I presume. and clever. Well. was about. The duke has had many affairs of gallantry.’ said Milady. that is all.’ ‘You think. I should use less precautions than I take.’ ‘Well?’ said Milady. I quote a fact. fanatics who ask nothing better than to become martyrs.’ continued the cardinal. in all times and in all countries. such a woman. that the fire at the Palace of Justice was not caused by chance?’ asked Richelieu.’ ‘Were the accomplices of Ravaillac or of Jacques Clement ever known?’ ‘No. being simply called Milady Clarik. ‘such a woman may be 647 .’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘I think nothing.’ ‘But in the first place. in an indifferent tone. of glorious memory.’ ‘He will be found.’ ‘Yes. who would place the knife of 646 The Three Musketeers Jacques Clement or of Ravaillac in the hands of a fanatic. did there not happen an event which saved Austria? Why should not the king of France have the same chance as the emperor?’ ‘Your Eminence means. to invade Flanders and Italy. for perhaps they were too high-placed for anyone to dare look for them where they were. the knife stab in the Rue de la Feronnerie?’ ‘Precisely. this woman I have described must be found who is desirous of avenging herself upon the duke. King Henry IV. ‘Does not your Eminence fear that the punishment inflicted upon Ravaillac may deter anyone who might entertain the idea of imitating him?’ ‘There will be. or the Queen Marie de Medicis.’ ‘Well.’ said Richelieu.’ said the cardinal. Ay. ‘Well. ‘Then the miserable fanatic must be found who will serve as an instrument of God’s justice. particularly if religious divisions exist in those countries. at the same time. in order to attack Austria on both sides. Only I say that if I were named Madame de Montpensier. ‘the only thing to be sought for at this moment is some woman. ‘What do you require.’ ‘She is found. The Palace of Justice would not be burned down for everybody. coolly. ‘I.for a cause similar to that which moves the duke. then?’ ‘I require an order which would ratify beforehand all that I should think proper to do for the greatest good of France.

carried away by her anger. the limit of my mission—I shall have nothing to do but to pray God to work a miracle for the salvation of France. she was there. to announce to his Grace. monseigneur.’ ‘To a convent?’ said the duke.’ ‘But I will know!’ ‘And your Eminence will tell me in what convent that woman is?’ ‘I can see nothing inconvenient in that. now I have an enemy much more to be dreaded by me than this little Madame Bonacieux. and portraits of the actors who figured in them. but her in whose name it was written. monseigneur. ‘then it will be time to claim the order which you just now required.‘Well. that Montague is in the Bastille. and even things he has forgotten. found in his Grace’s lodging. ‘He is the evil genius of both of us.’ said the cardinal. without appearing to remark the change of the duke’s tone toward her—‘now that I have received the instructions of your Eminence as concerns your 648 The Three Musketeers enemies. dryly. on the part of your Eminence.’ ‘Your Eminence is right. ‘and I have been wrong in seeing in the mission with which you honor me anything but that which it really is—that is. Then. the secret has been well 649 .’ ‘Who are they?’ replied the duke. ‘Well. your Eminence knows him well. ‘And now.’ ‘Who is that?’ ‘Her lover.’ replied the cardinal. that you possess a certain letter from Madame de Chevreuse. if he persists.’ ‘And to which?’ ‘I don’t know. is it not.’ replied Milady. ‘Yes. which singularly compromises not only her who wrote it. to a convent. enemies against whom you owe me all your support.’ said the cardinal. and that the torture may make him say things he remembers. ‘In the first place.’ ‘That is to say. for I made them by serving your Eminence.’ ‘She is in the prison of Nantes.’ replied Milady. that you are acquainted with the different disguises by means of which he succeeded in approaching the queen during the fete given by Madame the Constable. with a plan of the gardens in which those adventures took place. and I shall have nothing else to do?’ ‘That is it. ‘Yes. that you have ordered a little romance of a satirical nature to be written upon the adventures of Amiens. there is a little intrigante named Bonacieux. notwithstanding all this—as that is. as I have said.’ cried Milady. Monseigneur will permit me to say a few words to him of mine?’ ‘Have you enemies.’ said Milady. that you have proofs of the interview granted at the Louvre by the queen to a certain Italian astrologer who was no other than the Duke of Buckingham. then?’ asked Richelieu. ‘but the queen has obtained an order from the king by means of which she has been conveyed to a convent. That is it. It is he who in an encounter with your Eminence’s Guards Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘What is his name?’ ‘Oh.

your emissary.’ ‘Be prudent. because certain expressions of our host have given me reason to think the road is not safe.’ said the cardinal. don’t be uneasy about that. in a low voice. monseigneur. took his horse. or else in writing it.’ ‘He is a bold fellow. he went out without any mystery. but I must be gone.’ ‘I don’t know what you mean. I will give you the other. which proved that the cardinal was employed in seeking the terms in which he should write the note. and tell him that I am gone on the lookout. but afterwards?’ ‘When once in the Bastille. and I will send him to the Bastille. ‘and if the cardinal asks for you. a duelist. get me that proof.’ said the duke.’ ‘I must have. there is no afterward!’ said the cardinal. and a traitor. ah!’ said the 651 . and some ink.’ replied Milady.’ ‘I mean that miserable d’Artagnan. man for man. ‘Here they are. then. has sworn my death. a quill. give me one. it becomes the simplest thing in the world. I will say two words about it to the cardinal’s esquire likewise. ‘Well. ‘I will have ten. ‘Be easy on that head. took his two companions by the hand. ‘you know I am cool enough.’ There was a moment of silence. As to Athos. and why do you not let us listen to the end of the conversation?’ ‘Hush!’ said Athos.’ ‘You must be gone!’ said Porthos. nor do I even desire to know what you mean. it is he who. ‘Ah. besides. Life for life. you will speak first.’ said Porthos. ‘I know of whom you speak.’ replied Athos. The rest concerns myself. ‘if it were as easy for me to get rid of my enemy as it is easy to get rid of yours. a scoundrel!’ ‘Give me paper. and led them to the other end of the room. and who caused the affair of the diamond studs to fail. ‘a fair exchange.’ said the cardinal. ‘And it is exactly because he is a bold fellow that he is the more to be feared. then. monseigneur. and see nothing out of the way in giving you what you demand with respect to so infamous a creature— the more so as you tell me this d’Artagnan is a libertine. monseigneur. who had not lost a word of the conversation. ‘but I wish to please you.’ 650 The Three Musketeers ‘An infamous scoundrel. Athos. it is he who gave three desperate wounds to de Wardes.’ ‘Ah.’ Porthos and Aramis resumed their places by the stovepipe.’ ‘A proof?’ cried Milady.’ said Aramis. and if it were against such people you require impunity—‘ ‘Monseigneur.’ ‘So far good. speaking in a low voice. which was tied with those of his friends to the fastenFree eBooks at Planet eBook. knowing it was I who had Madame Bonacieux carried off. ‘what do you want.decided the victory in favor of the king’s Musketeers.’ ‘Well. what answer can we make?’ ‘You will not wait till he asks.’ replied the cardinal. pardieu!’ continued he. I don’t prevent you from listening. ‘We have heard all it was necessary we should hear. ‘a proof of his connection with Buckingham. Athos.

com 653 . and retraced his route with the same precautions he had used incoming. The cardinal made an approving gesture. He cast a rapid glance around the room. Monsieur Porthos?’ ‘I have won five pistoles of Aramis. in four words convinced the attendant of the necessity of a vanguard for their return. ‘Monseigneur. it was not long before the cardinal came down. like a forlorn hope.ings of the shutters. ‘What has become of Monseigneur Athos?’ asked he.’ replied Porthos.’ ‘And you. These were the two men who were to conduct Milady to the fort of the Point. which made him believe the road was not safe. and superintend her embarkation.’ ‘To horse. for it is getting late. the road to the camp. holding the cardinal’s horse by the bridle. At a short distance a group of two men and three horses appeared in the shade. ‘he has gone as a scout. then. gentlemen. and took.’ ‘Well. on account of some words of our host. and perceived that one of his men was missing. what have you done. carefully examined the priming of his pistols. now will you return with me?’ ‘We are at your Eminence’s orders. and found Porthos playing an earnest game of dice with Aramis. drew his sword. 45 A CONJUGAL SCENE As Athos had foreseen.’ The attendant was at the door. He opened the door of the room in which the Musketeers were. The attendant confirmed to the cardinal what the two Musketeers had already said with respect to Athos. Let us leave him to follow the road to the camp protect- 652 The Three Musketeers Free eBooks at Planet eBook.

and her eyes flashed lightning. which recalled frightful remembrances. hell has almost made you another face. made a circuit. with his hat pulled down over his eyes. madame. as the cardinal said. did you not. but when out of sight he turned his horse to the right. You have once before thrown yourself in my path.’ continued Athos. ‘has forgotten to give a piece of very important information to the lady. madame?’ said he.’ ‘The Comte de la Fere!’ murmured Milady. The host recognized him. He entered the chamber and closed the door behind him. he advanced 654 The Three Musketeers toward Milady. ‘Who are you. ‘Yes. enveloped in his cloak. ‘I perceive you know me.’ said Athos.’ replied Athos. under the influence of inexpressible terror. ‘Yes. he returned at a gallop to the inn. ‘My officer. Milady was frightened. well. and through the open door perceived Milady putting on her hat. mute and immovable as a statue.’ Milady.’ Athos availed himself of the permission. ‘Your power is great. I know. I thought I had crushed you. hung down her head with a suppressed groan. but it has neither effaced the stains from your soul nor the brand from your body. Milady made one step forward. hell has given you another name. Athos was standing before the door. but either I was deceived or hell has resuscitated you!’ Milady at these words. ‘it is certainly she!’ And letting fall his cloak and raising his hat. madame. On seeing this figure. ‘You believed me to be dead. gained the landing.’ said the host. ‘So far. Athos remained sitting. Milady turned round.’ murmured Athos. hell has resuscitated you. ascended the stairs with his lightest step. and has sent me back to repair his forgetfulness. as I believed Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘the Comte de la Fere in person. who comes expressly from the other world to have the pleasure of paying you a 655 . and let us talk. and drawing back till the wall prevented her from going any farther. For a hundred paces he maintained the speed at which he started. ‘You certainly are a demon sent upon the earth!’ said Athos. At the noise he made in pushing the bolt. Milady. ‘she is still in her chamber. Sit down. and having lost sight of them. becoming exceedingly pale.’ ‘Go up. and then drew back as if she had seen a serpent. and came back within twenty paces of a high hedge to watch the passage of the little troop. which was opened to him without hesitation. ‘Hell has made you rich. Having recognized the laced hats of his companions and the golden fringe of the cardinal’s cloak. but you also know that with the help of God men have often conquered the most terrible demons. and return to Athos.’ said Athos. he waited till the horsemen had turned the angle of the road. sat down without uttering a word.ed by his esquire and the two Musketeers. ‘Do you know me. ‘Humph.’ Milady arose as if moved by a powerful spring. and what do you want?’ cried she.

your actions from your entrance to the service of the cardinal to this evening. wished to have him killed in his turn by two assassins. made an engagement with Cardinal Richelieu to cause the Duke of Buckingham to be assassinated. and he shall die!’ ‘He shall die!’ replied Milady.’ ‘Monsieur d’Artagnan has cruelly insulted me. Besides.’ said Athos. in a less dangerous situation than the one in which he was now placed. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. it was you who. The sight of this creature. or shall have committed. opened the door to Monsieur d’Artagnan. ‘he has insulted you. He thought how one day. to make your victim believe that the wine came from his friends. it was you who have but now in this chamber.’ said Milady. shall be the last. faint voice. His desire for blood returned. Was it not so you were called when your honored brother married us? Our position is truly a strange one. though a remembrance is sometimes devouring. or I swear to you by the head of my father the crime which you shall have endeavored to commit. finding the balls had missed their mark.’ continued Athos. whom you sent in pursuit of him. ‘she first. wished to have him killed by his rival. he is an Englishman. and because a remembrance is less oppressive than a living creature. ‘what brings you back to me. madame?’ said Athos. recalled awful remembrances. in a hollow tone.’ said Milady. seated in this chair I now fill. and he afterward. sent poisoned wine with a forged letter. ‘Listen! It was you who cut off the two diamond studs from the shoulder of the Duke of Buckingham. laughing.’ ‘But. ‘We have only lived up to the present time because we believed each other dead. it was you who. as the name Milady Clarik concealed Anne de Breuil. I have not lost sight of you. ‘You must be Satan!’ cried she.’ A smile of incredulity passed over the pale lips of Milady. believing that de Wardes had deceived you. and what do you want with me?’ ‘I wish to tell you that though remaining invisible to your eyes. laughing. he arose in his turn. ‘Monsieur d’Artagnan shall die!’ ‘Indeed! Is it possible to insult to be? And the name of Athos as well concealed the Comte de la Fere. who had nothing of the woman about her. he had already endeavored to sacrifice her to his honor. it was you who. In 656 The Three Musketeers short. it was you had the Madame Bonacieux carried off. day by day. when this rival had discovered your infamous secret.’ Milady was livid. But do not touch with the tip of your finger a single hair of d’Artagnan. ‘But at all events listen well to this. burning his brain and pervading his frame like a raging fever. Assassinate the Duke of Buckingham. or cause him to be assassinated—I care very little about that! I don’t know him. who is a faithful friend whom I love and defend. it was you who. and cocked it. reached his hand to his belt. in a 657 . in exchange for the promise he has made you to allow you to assassinate d’Artagnan. ‘Perhaps.’ ‘You know what I have done?’ ‘I can relate to you.’ Athos was seized with a kind of vertigo. drew forth a pistol. in love with de Wardes and thinking to pass the night with him.

’ With another man. returned the pistol to his belt. and took the right hand. ‘Who goes there?’ cried he. He had no doubt it was the cardinal and his escort. and held it toward Athos. approached the lamp to be assured that it was the paper. ‘You have one second to decide. ‘Yes.’ said Porthos. and placed himself across the road. I think. Milady saw by the contraction of his countenance that the trigger was about to be pulled. to the fort of the Point. Gentlemen. to conduct that woman. she appeared like a horrid image of terror.’ ‘Monsieur Athos. folFree eBooks at Planet eBook. stretched out his arm so that the weapon almost touched Milady’s forehead. and then. In one of those halts he heard the steps of several horses on the road. and read: Dec.’ As these words agreed wholly with the order they had received. but she knew Athos. Nevertheless. drew out a paper.’ said she. ‘receive my thanks for the good guard you have kept.’ said Athos.’ said he. he leaped lightly into the saddle and set out at full gallop. endeavored to cry out. With regard to Athos. ‘it is he. Milady might have preserved some doubt. 3.’ said he. about two hundred paces from the camp. 1627 It is by my order and for the good of the state that the bearer of this has done what he has done. you know. but her swollen tongue could utter no more than a hoarse sound which had nothing human in it and resembled the rattle of a wild beast. or upon my soul. pale as a corpse. and never to leave her till she is on board. monseigneur. take the gate on the left. urging his horse to the utmost and stopping occasionally to listen. ‘Take it. ‘That is our brave Musketeer. ‘King and Re. she remained motionless. with her hair in disorder. they bowed their heads in sign of assent. rubbed his horse down with some heath and leaves of trees. Motionless against the dark tapestry. only instead of following the road. without losing time. I will blow your brains out. ‘now that I have drawn your teeth. she reached her hand quickly to her bosom.’’ Saying these words. The watchword is. the cardinal saluted the three friends with an inclination of his head. 659 . He immediately made a new point in advance.’ said Richelieu. in a voice the more terrible from having the supreme calmness of a fixed resolution. ‘Madame. Richelieu ‘And now. we are arrived. unfolded it.’ said the cardinal. as soon as he perceived the horsemen.’ said he. ‘you will this instant deliver to me the paper the cardinal signed. ‘and be accursed!’ Athos took the paper. Athos slowly raised his pistol. bite if 658 The Three Musketeers you can.Milady. resuming his cloak and putting on his hat. At the door he found the two men and the spare horse which they held.’ And he left the chamber without once looking behind him. he went across the fields. ‘Gentlemen. ‘Monseigneur’s order is.

In consequence. comprehending the slight frown of the Musketeer. ‘Oh. at seven o’clock she was at the fort of the Point. Milady.’ ‘How did you fare?’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. and relate everything to him. on finding the two men that awaited her. She had had for an instant an inclination to be reconducted to the cardinal. ‘Hush!’ said Athos. coolly. or else. I believe?’ ‘Yes. ‘I hope what you have to tell me is worth the trouble. but a revelation on her part would bring about a revelation on the part of Athos. 660 The Three Musketeers 46 THE BASTION SAINT-GERVAIS On arriving at the lodgings of his three friends.’ And the three friends did not exchange another word till they reached their quarters. and at nine. raised anchor. ‘you went to breakfast the day before yesterday at the inn of the Parpaillot. as soon as the cardinal was out of hearing. why were you not there.’ ‘We were in a place where it was not very cold. to discreetly set off to accomplish her difficult mission with her usual skill. ‘Well!’ said Porthos and Aramis together. I warn 661 .’ said he.’ said Athos.’ said Athos.’ ‘Aramis. to come to him and claim her vengeance. all things being accomplished to the satisfaction of the cardinal. at eight o’clock she had embarked. he signed the paper she required!’ ‘I know it.’ replied Porthos. ‘well. except to give the watchword to the sentinels. the vessel. but then Athos would tell that she was branded. ‘Pardieu. Only they sent Mousqueton to tell Planchet that his master was requested. the instant that he left the trenches. after having traveled all night. She thought it was best to preserve silence. ‘It appears there is something fresh aboard. d’Artagnan found them assembled in the same chamber. gentlemen. Porthos was twisting his mustache. as Athos had foreseen. to come to the quarters of the Musketeers. I will not pardon you for making me come here instead of getting a little rest after a night spent in taking and dismantling a bastion. gentlemen? It was warm work. She might say that Athos had hanged her. which with letters of marque from the cardinal was supposed to be sailing for Bayonne. bound in blue velvet. and steered its course toward England. Ah. giving his mustache a twist which was peculiar to him. oh!’ said d’Artagnan. Aramis was saying his prayers in a charming little Book of Hours. and then. made no difficulty in following them. Athos was meditating.lowed by his attendant—for that night he himself slept in the camp. ‘since here it is.

Dragoons. succeeded one another with a rapidity which might answer the purpose of the host very well.’ said Athos: ‘we shall get into some pretty quarrel or other. who does you the honor to ask you a question? Relate what has passed during the night. and they had nothing but meat. and daylight began to appear.’ ‘But that is not quite what I mean to ask you. and that you did not get much the best of the Rochellais. with a glass of brandy in his hand.’ said Athos.’ said a light-horseman. Athos. the hour was badly chosen for a private conference. yes. tell us what sort of a night you have had. which in blowing up made a very pretty breach.’ ‘Why.’ ‘What. ‘Well. but agreed badly with the views of the four friends. Unfortunately. then.’ replied Athos.’ said Athos. I ate but little. D’Artagnan. came to take a drop at the inn. the poor lad had nearly come to the pass of forgetting how to speak. took Athos’s arm. and who perceived immediately. Without reckoning that as the bastion was not built yesterday all the rest of the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. Guardsmen. since these gentlemen desire to know it. ‘I see how it will be.’ said Aramis. ev662 The Three Musketeers eryone shook off the drowsiness of night. according to custom. light-horsemen. Swiss. ‘I hear you gentlemen of the Guards have been in the trenches tonight. Porthos followed. The morning drum had just been beaten. monsieur. introduced a barrel of powder under one of the angles. ‘I want to know if you were left alone. ‘Yes. who was accustomed to his friend’s manner of acting. and went into a room in which the host said they would not be disturbed.’ D’Artagnan looked at Athos to know if he ought to reply to this intruder who thus mixed unasked in their conversation. They arrived at the drinking room of the Parpaillot. resuming his pious reading. and we have no need of one just now. and to dispel the humid morning air. which he sipped slowly. I know what you mean: we shall do very well at the Parpaillot. or a sign from him. Yes. Athos made him a sign to come with them.’ ‘Let us go to the Parpaillot. bowing. obeyed in silence. The day before yesterday was a fish day. chatting with Aramis. and went out without saying anything. It was seven o’clock in the morning. ‘that the dyke which the cardinal is making drives them all out into the open sea. and jokes of their companions. who was drinking rum out of beer glass. Musketeers. and nobody interrupted you. as you may have 663 .‘For my part. for here the walls are like sheets of paper. ‘no fish at a seaport?’ ‘They say. by a word. ‘don’t you hear Monsieur de Busigny.’ D’Artagnan. healths. I think there were not many intruders. Thus they applied very curtly to the salutations. Aramis. The three friends ordered breakfast. ‘we have had that honor. that the circumstances were serious.’ said d’Artagnan. Grimaud.’ ‘Have you not taken a bastion?’ said a Swiss. and we will describe ours afterward.’ ‘Ah. We even have. a gesture. On their way they met Grimaud.

Monsieur Athos. an unlimited dinner for eight.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Yes.’ said d’Artagnan. made a sign of the head in proof that he acquiesced in the proposition.’ said Athos. Gervais. ‘stop a bit.’ ‘Yes. de Busigny.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘The bastion St. a vager!’ cried the Swiss.’ said Athos. 665 . who.’ Porthos and Aramis looked at each other.’ ‘We are much more likely to be killed. ‘that they will send pioneers this morning to repair the bastion. ‘Gentlemen.’ ‘Balzempleu!’ said the Swiss. will go and breakfast in the bastion St.building was badly shaken. in the ear of Athos.’ said Athos. ‘if we do not go. had acquired a habit of swearing in French.’ said Athos. ‘so let us fix the stake. ‘and we are four. ‘The breakfast for these gentlemen is ready. with his saber run through a goose which he was taking to be cooked. I hope. ‘That shoots me.’ said the dragoon.’ ‘I take it. ‘a wager!’ ‘Ah. and we will remain there an hour.’ said the Swiss. and myself. We lost five men.’ said the host. ‘goose grease is kood with basdry. ‘that’s a fair bet. Will that do?’ ‘Capitally. that I may not lose a drop of the fat of this estimable bird. by the watch. gentlemen. pointed to a large basket which lay in a corner. ‘What is it?’ said the light-horseman. I will bet you. ‘Stop a bit. added the botFree eBooks at Planet eBook. Messieurs Porthos. packed up the viands. ‘that my three companions. bring it.’ said the dragoon. whatever the enemy may do to dislodge us.’ ‘My faith.’ said the light-horseman. Monsieur de Busigny. Aramis. ‘from behind which the Rochellais annoyed our workmen. ‘Now for the wager! We listen. ‘Perfectly. You cursed host! a dripping pan immediately. turning round upon his chair and twisting his mustache. Athos called Grimaud. ‘Well. notwithstanding the admirable collection of oaths possessed by the German language. ‘But. de Busigny.’ replied d’Artagnan. moderately so.’ said M. and made a sign to him to wrap the viands up in the napkins. ‘But it is probable. ‘you are going to get us all killed without mercy. and the Rochellais eight or ten.’ said the Swiss. Grimaud understood that it was to be a breakfast on the grass. that’s probable. they began to comprehend.’ replied M.’ ‘Was that affair hot?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘You are four gentlemen. took the basket. the wager!’ said the light-horseman.’ ‘And what bastion is it?’ asked a dragoon. I am in it. 664 The Three Musketeers and d’Artagnan. The host obeyed.’ said Athos. placing his saber like a spit upon the two large iron dogs which held the firebrands in the chimney. ‘Well. The fourth auditor. Gervais. who during all this conversation had played a mute part.’ ‘There!’ said the dragoon.’ ‘You was right.

As long as they were within the circle of the camp. so that at the end of a quarter of an hour the cardinal would have been informed by his spies that we were holding a council.’ said Athos. pointing to the bastion.’ ‘A desert would not have been amiss. ‘What matter. were anxious to know how they would come out of it. ‘But where are you going to eat my breakfast?’ asked the host. ‘will you be so kind as to set your watch with mine. But when once they passed the line of circumvallation and found 666 The Three Musketeers themselves in the open plain. studded with diamonds. ‘half past seven. and he threw two pistoles majestically on the table.’ said d’Artagnan. only add two bottles of champagne. ‘And now.’ ‘Where we should have been seen all four conferring together. Gervais.’ The host had not quite so good a bargain as he at first hoped for.’ said Porthos.’ And bowing to all the astonished persons present. ‘Monsieur de Busigny. ‘they will not come and disturb us. monsieur!’ said the light-horseman. my dear Athos.’ said he.’ said Aramis. besides. you see plainly enough we are going to the bastion. ‘by which you perceive I am five minutes faster than you. or permit me to regulate mine by yours?’ ‘Which you please. but he made amends by slipping in two bottles of Anjou wine instead of two bottles of champagne. if you are paid for it?’ said Athos.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘But what are we going to do there?’ ‘You know well that we go to breakfast there. ‘Shall I give you the change. who was completely ignorant of what was going forward. they were followed by the curious. followed by Grimaud. ‘that we could have found some retired place on the downs or the seashore. thought it was time to demand an explanation.’ said Athos. and then took the basket on his arm.’ said Athos. Here at least. ‘do me the kindness to tell me where we are going?’ ‘Why. who carried the basket.’ ‘There is no desert where a bird cannot pass over one’s Free eBooks at Planet eBook. drawing from his fob a very handsome watch. my officer?’ said the host. who keep coming in. d’ 667 . ‘but it behooved us to find it.’ ‘Thirty-five minutes after seven. saluting you. ignorant of where he was going but in the passive obedience which Athos had taught him not even thinking of asking. and it was impossible to talk five minutes in that inn without being annoyed by all those importunate fellows.’ ‘It appears to me. with that prudence which allied itself in him so naturally with excessive bravery. and the difference will be for the napkins. the young men took the road to the bastion St.tles. hearing of the wager. who. and addressing you. ‘Athos is right: ANIMADVERTUNTUR IN DESERTIS. the four friends did not exchange one word. ‘No.’ ‘But why did we not breakfast at the Parpaillot?’ ‘Because we have very important matters to communicate to one another.

friend Porthos.’ replied Athos.’ ‘Well. Grimaud put his basket on the ground and sat down with a shake of the head. then. for seeing that they continued to advance toward the bastion—something he had till then doubted—he pulled his master by the skirt of his 669 . and as many Rochellais. Grimaud no doubt shared the misgivings of the young man. All that Grimaud gained by this momentary pantomime was to pass from the rear guard to the Free eBooks at Planet eBook. We have made a wager—a wager which could not have been foreseen.’ Porthos nodded in sign of agreement. and I believe that bird. If we are not. pursue our enterprise. or not. ‘you know well that the balls most to be dreaded are not from the enemy. twelve cartridges. and nobody will hear us—for I guarantee the walls of the bastion have no ears. Grimaud obeyed.’ said Grimaud. fish. from which. Athos pointed to the bastion. and instead of four musketoons and twelve balls. to remain an hour in the bastion. where a rabbit cannot come out of its burrow. in defending ourselves. cocked it. Moreover. we cannot retreat without shame.’ ‘But for such an expedition we surely ought to have brought our muskets. besides. their cartridges. ‘Where are we going?’ asked he. Athos then made him a sign to take up his basket and to walk on first. ‘but we shall indubitably attract a ball.’ ‘Well. if we are. in the same silent dialect. ‘we shall leave our skins there.’ said d’Artagnan. and their flasks.’ replied Athos. my dear. we shall have all the time to talk. and rabbit each becomes a spy of the cardinal.’ Athos raised his eyes and his finger toward heaven. by a gesture. Athos took a pistol from his belt. where a fish cannot leap out of the water. were they? It appears the conquerors had something else to do. in order to win it.’ ‘Well?’ ‘Well. ‘But.’ 668 The Three Musketeers ‘What then?’ ‘The bodies were not plundered. Better. ‘truly you are a great man. ‘d’Artagnan said that in the attack of last night eight or ten Frenchmen were killed. Athos!’ said Aramis. ‘have you not heard what d’Artagnan said?’ ‘What did he say?’ demanded Porthos. We are going.head. Grimaud was on his legs again as if by a spring. Why should we load ourselves with a useless burden?’ ‘I don’t find a good musket. and a powder flask very useless in the face of an enemy.’ ‘Oh. You see that everything is to our advantage. looked to see if it was properly primed.’ ‘Yes. we will talk of our affairs just the same. and placed the muzzle close to Grimaud’s ear. we shall find their muskets. we shall cover ourselves with glory. D’Artagnan alone did not seem convinced. and of which I defy anyone to divine the true cause. we shall have fifteen guns and a hundred charges to fire.’ ‘You are stupid. Either we shall be attacked.

gentlemen?’ ‘Twelve. dear friend. French and Rochellais. ‘they may serve ‘pray let Grimaud search them and throw them over the walls. the Swiss. let us begin by collecting the guns and cartridges together. ‘Gentlemen.’ said Athos.’ ‘Well. placed it on the end of his sword.’ ‘Judge not rashly. then. ‘How many shots?’ ‘A hundred.’ said Athos.’ ‘These bodies serve us?’ said Porthos. the bastion was only occupied by a dozen corpses.’ added he. ‘while Grimaud spreads the table. 47 THE COUNCIL OF THE MUSKETEERS As Athos had foreseen. More than three hundred soldiers of all kinds were assembled at the gate of the camp.’ said Porthos.’ replied Athos. and in a separate group might be distinguished M.’ ‘Yes. the four friends turned round.’ ‘But we could throw them into the ditch.’ replied Aramis. ‘You are mad.’ cried d’Artagnan. These gentlemen. whither Grimaud had preceded them. de Busigny. ‘that’s Grimaud’s business. All the spectators returned him his salute. say the gospel and the cardinal. ‘How many 671 670 The Three Musketeers . who had assumed the command of the expedition. and waved it in the air. and the fourth bettor. after which all four disappeared in the bastion.’ ‘Heaven forfend!’ said Athos.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘after having assured ourselves they have nothing in their pockets. We can talk while performing that necessary task. ‘cannot hear us. pointing to the bodies. accompanying this courtesy with a loud hurrah which was audible to the four. the dragoon. Athos took off his hat. Arrived at the bastion.

as you may see through the loopholes.’ said Athos. ‘Yes. ‘a charming woman.’ ‘That’s the last folly to be committed. and all will be over. and a bottle of wine. The four friends seated themselves on the ground with their legs crossed like Turks.’ said Athos. and indicated to Grimaud.’ ‘What! by demanding my head of the cardinal?’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘You saw your wi—‘ 672 The Three Musketeers ‘Hush!’ interrupted Athos.’ said Athos. Athos allowed him to take a loaf. ‘I have induced you to take a charming promenade. his hand trembled so. who entertained kind views toward our friend d’Artagnan. ‘And now to table.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Villainous host!’ cried he. and yesterday by demanding his head of the cardinal. to alleviate the tediousness of the duty. ‘You forget. and yonder are five hundred persons.‘That’s quite as many as we shall want. but at the name of Milady. ‘he has given us Anjou wine instead of champagne.’ said Athos.’ ‘But the secret!’ said d’Artagnan. by pointing to a turret that resembled a pepper caster. ‘I heard her with my own ears. gentlemen. ‘for by this time she must have quit the shores of France. you forget that these gentlemen are not initiated into my family affairs like yourself. Athos replied. Let us load the guns.’ ‘I hope at the same time to procure you amusement and glory. I hope you are going to let me into your secret.’ continued he. ‘But after all. and fancies we know no better! Yes. ‘who is Milady?’ ‘A charming woman!’ said Athos. Only.’ asked Porthos. that is true as the Gospel. ‘that I saw Milady last night. ‘The secret is.’ said Aramis. ‘And now.’ said d’Artagnan. my dear. ‘Not so bad yet.’ replied Athos. that he was obliged to put the glass on the ground again for fear of spilling the contents.’ The four Musketeers went to work.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Then.’ ‘In that case I am lost. here is a delicious breakfast. two cutlets. at the inn of the Red Dovecot. ‘Within two leagues of this place. taking us for heroes or madmen—two classes of imbeciles greatly resembling each other. who.’ D’Artagnan breathed again. sipping a glass of sparkling wine. that that was well. I may as well blow my brains out.’ said Porthos. that he was to stand as sentinel. has given her some offense for which she tried to revenge herself a month ago by having him killed by two musket shots.’ D’Artagnan was lifting a glass to his lips. on his part. ‘it is useless to struggle longer. ‘as there is no longer any fear of being overheard. pale with terror.’ ‘I also. ‘seeing Free eBooks at Planet eBook. I have seen Milady. always by gestures. letting his arm fall with discouragement. or even tailors. a week ago by trying to poison him.’ ‘Where?’ demanded d’ 673 . and as they were loading the last musket Grimaud announced that the breakfast was ready.

Grimaud? Considering the gravity of the occasion. whose secret I have discovered.’ ‘I doubt that. he said. to my health! although I am very much afraid that your good wishes will not be of great service to me. ‘that only makes four. which he put down close to him. Pardieu! if we may believe the signs Grimaud is making. astonished at this apparition. 674 The Three Musketeers Porthos.’ ‘That’s because they don’t see us. ‘Pardieu!’ said Athos.’ said Aramis. the cardinal. then. then de Wardes. took the musket next to him.’ said 675 . he received orders to place himself behind the four friends in order to reload their weapons.’ ‘Of how many persons?’ ‘Twenty men. my stranger of Meung. I permit you to speak. with his musket in one hand and his hat in the other. I beg. First. swallowing the contents of his glass. stopped fifty paces from the bastion: ‘Gentlemen.’ ‘Good! We have just time to finish this fowl and to drink one glass of wine to your health. next Milady. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. as say the followers of Mohammed. my friend. mattocks.’ replied d’Artagnan. a few friends and myself are about to breakfast in this bastion. Grimaud had only to make them a sign to go away.’ ‘He is a bad priest.’ said Athos.’ Then. ‘God is great. you know nothing is more disagreeable than being disturbed when one is at breakfast. d’Artagnan. and shovels. who. ‘Well. then. ‘you will be shot.’ said Porthos. and I am convinced they would have left us in peace.’ said Athos.’ ‘What sort of men?’ ‘Sixteen pioneers. Athos arose carelessly. if you really have business here. ‘who has pity for heretics. and we are four—one for one. bowing courteously and addressing the soldiers and the pioneers.’ ‘How far distant?’ ‘Five hundred paces. Aramis and d’Artagnan followed his example. ‘I must confess I feel a great repugnance to fire on these poor devils of civilians. there are four soldiers and a brigadier. ‘with such enemies. we are about to have to do with a very different number of people. but be laconic. ‘Aramis is right. in addition to the pioneers. to whom I have given three sword wounds. Besides. and the future is in his hands. armed with muskets. and drew near to one of the loopholes. ‘it was hardly worth while to distribute ourselves for twenty fellows armed with pickaxes.’ ‘To your health!’ repeated Porthos and Aramis. to wait till we have finished or repast. Now. or to come again a short time hence. unless. What do you see?’ ‘A troop. We request is the only one for which there is no remedy.’ said d’Artagnan. finally.’ ‘Bah!’ said Athos.’ ‘But I can never escape. Mounting on the breach.’ ‘Well. As to Grimaud. four soldiers.’ ‘In truth.’ But Athos heeded not his advice. I will warn them. ‘My faith. What is it. ‘for they are advancing very resolutely. unless. whose vengeance I have balked.’ ‘What the devil are you going to do?’ cried d’Artagnan.

‘you care little if she kills Buckingham or causes him to be killed? But the duke is our friend. Grimaud. a sortie!’ cried Athos. gentlemen. will go on with our breakfast. yes.’ ‘Take care. Where were we?’ 676 The Three Musketeers ‘I recollect you were saying.’ And Athos threw fifteen paces from him an empty bottle from which he had poured the last drop into his glass. ‘don’t you see they are aiming?’ ‘Yes. take our brigadier’s half-pike. and plant it on top of our bastion. and resume our conversation. Whither goes she?’ added he.’ ‘The duke is English. ‘How?’ replied d’Artagnan. tie a napkin to it. ‘As to that. gentlemen. but not one touched him. Four shots replied to them almost instantaneously. the duke fights against us. ‘With what view?’ ‘With the view of assassinating. or causing to be assassinated. the Duke of Buckingham. ‘Now. at the same instant four shots were fired. ‘I will not abandon BuckFree eBooks at Planet eBook. who will be sure not to hit me. Now you have done. ‘another musket!’ Grimaud immediately obeyed. ‘I beg you to believe that I care very little about it.’ said Athos.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Athos.’ In fact.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘Reload the muskets. ‘that after having demanded my head of the cardinal. ‘But this is infamous!’ cried he. An instant afterward. a second discharge followed the first. and the balls were flattened against the wall around Athos. On their part. strongly interested in the route Milady followed. three soldiers fell dead. that these rebels of Rochellais may see that they have to deal with brave and loyal soldiers of the king.’ said Athos. ‘Grimaud.’ said Athos. ‘and we. Athos!’ cried d’Artagnan. turned again toward the bastion. Let her do what she likes with the duke. ‘She goes into England. and come and drink with us to the health of the King of France. A thunder of applause saluted its appearance.’ D’Artagnan uttered an exclamation of surprise and indignation. I care no more about him than an empty bottle. but much better aimed than those of the aggressors. and convinced that the fugitives would not stop till they reached the city. gained the field of battle. ‘A moment. Milady had quit the shores of France. Grimaud. the rest of the troop took to flight. you form the salutary resolution to quit the side of the rebels. and one of the pioneers was wounded. The brigadier and two pioneers fell dead.’ said Athos. ‘but they are only civilians—very bad 677 . picked up the four muskets of the privates and the half-pike of the brigadier. bearing with them the trophies of their victory. the three friends had reloaded their arms. the white flag was floating over the heads of the four friends.which would be far better. still on the breach. half the camp was at the barrier. And the four friends rushed out of the fort.’ Grimaud obeyed without replying.

‘And this carte blanche. ‘Here it is. ‘I do not jest. and for fear he should feel lonely.’ said Athos. named Athos.’ said Aramis. at the same time. if such be your pleasure. was the getting from this woman a kind of carte blanche which she had extorted from the cardinal. ‘God desires the conversion and not the death of a sinner. and by means of which she could with impunity get rid of you and perhaps of us.’ ‘My dear Athos. I will not say without trouble.’ ‘Then it was to go to her that you left us?’ said Aramis. ‘Richelieu” ‘In fact. ‘On the contrary.’ said d’Artagnan. does it remain in her hands?’ ‘No. ‘Exactly. ‘and we will return to that subject later. ‘Do you know. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘And you have that letter of the cardinal?’ said d’Artagnan. The cardinal will remember that these are the same men who have often crossed his path.ingham thus. Aramis and Porthos. 3. whose trembling he did not even attempt to conceal. ‘that to twist that damned Milady’s neck would be a smaller sin than to twist those of these poor devils of 679 . D’Artagnan unfolded it with one hand. for if I did I should tell a lie.’ said Porthos.’ ‘And what will she do now?’ asked the young man. and he took the invaluable paper from the pocket of his uniform. quietly. to read: Dec.’ said Porthos. 1627 678 The Three Musketeers It is by my order and for the good of the state that the bearer of this has done what he has done. carelessly. has taken her safe-conduct from her by force.’ said d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan. holding out his plate to Aramis.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Amen!’ said Athos. ‘it must be preserved carefully. very handsome saddles. who was cutting up a fowl. he will send us to keep him company in the Bastille. ‘she is probably going to write to the cardinal that a damned Musketeer. who at the moment wore on his cloak the lace of his own.’ ‘That paper must be torn to pieces.’ ‘But this creature must be a demon!’ said Porthos. my dear. but what for the moment engaged my attention most earnestly.’ said Athos. I shall no longer count the number of times I am indebted to you for my life. ‘Besides. ‘this carte blanche. ‘it is an absolution according to rule.’ said Athos. He gave us some very fine horses.’ replied Athos. it passed into mine. ‘Why.’ ‘Go to! It appears to me you make dull jokes.’ said Aramis. who have committed no other crime than singing in French the psalms we sing in Latin?’ ‘What says the abbe?’ asked Athos. and I am sure you will understand me. who fancied he read in it his sentence of death. I would not give up this paper if covered with as many gold pieces. and then some fine morning he will arrest d’Artagnan.’ ‘And moreover. she will advise him in the same letter to get rid of his two friends.

she is far off.’ said d’Artagnan. but did not stop them.’ replied Athos. ‘no divided attention. but the march of those who remained was not slackened.’ ‘That’s very simple. and the cardinal. ‘And I mine.’ said d’ 681 . they jumped into the ditch.’ said Athos. but they were not pioneers. Arrived at the foot of the bastion. ‘Decidedly. ‘But when you held her in your power.’ said Athos.’ ‘I cover mine.’ ‘Impossible. for three reasons.‘I say I am entirely of Porthos’s opinion. Athos. I beg. we must fire upon them. ‘The first. who fancies himself a great soldier. ‘And I mine.’ said Athos. you were born to be a general. ‘What is it?’ said the Musketeers. With every three shots at least two men fell. ‘I have an idea.’ said Porthos.’ said d’Artagnan. that we have not finished breakfast. This time a small troop advanced. we will allow the besiegers to get as far as the ditch. ‘Fire. then. too. there were still more than a dozen of the enemy. is nothing beside you.’ ‘Well.’ said Porthos.’ ‘She worries me in England as well as in France. ‘And I. as if they had been aware of the numerical weakness of the friends. consisting of from twenty to twenty-five men. the second. The four muskets made but one report. and then we will push down upon their heads that strip of wall which keeps its perpendicular by a miracle. let each one pick out his man.’ said Aramis. with a sad smile which d’Artagnan alone understood. but always aimed with the same accuracy. We must fire as long as we have loaded guns.’ ‘You think so. and seized their muskets. ‘we must form a plan of battle. that it yet wants ten minutes before the lapse of the hour. but four men fell. ‘Fortunately. ‘To arms!’ cried Grimaud. ‘I don’t think the sides are equal. Porthos?’ replied the Musketeer. and preFree eBooks at Planet eBook. then. A last discharge welcomed them.’ said d’Artagnan. The young men sprang up. and the third. hang her?’ said Porthos. ‘As soon as the ene680 The Three Musketeers my are within musket shot. strangle her.’ replied Athos. If they continue to advance. ‘for I confess she would worry me if she were here. ‘It is only the dead who do not return. they were soldiers of the garrison. that we still have some very important things to say.’ replied Aramis. ‘Shall we return to the camp?’ said Porthos. why did you not drown her. we must fire again. Nevertheless. the Rochellais continued to advance in quick time. The drum immediately beat. ‘She worries me everywhere. and the little troop advanced at charging pace. If those who remain of the troop persist in coming to the assault.’ said Aramis.’ ‘Bravo!’ cried Porthos. Then the shots were repeated without regularity.’ ‘Gentlemen.

I will get access to her without her suspecting me.’ said d’Artagnan. ‘I will ask leave of absence of Monsieur de Treville. At that period Buckingham was an ally. my friends. in my turn.’ ‘Inform the queen!’ said Athos. and not an enemy. yes!’ said Porthos and d’Artagnan. I know a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. What you would now do amounts to treason. at the same time. ‘My idea?’ said d’Artagnan. coolly. ‘Yes. To the wall. ‘finish them at a blow. fled along the hollow way.’ D’Artagnan perceived the force of this reasoning. limping away.’ ‘You shall not do that. I will go and find Buckingham. to the wall!’ And the four friends. I have the true idea. I remember. These were all who were left of the little troop. Aramis. with his usual coolness. d’Artagnan. ‘Oh. three or four of these unfortunate men. seconded by Grimaud. Milady does not know me. ‘My faith.’ said Athos. on some pretext or other which you must invent. d’Artagnan has not told us his idea yet. ‘We must inform the queen.’ said Aramis. and our wager is won. ‘Gentlemen. ‘I will take that upon 683 . Then a fearful crash was heard. ‘we are coming nearer to it now. listen to me. but we will be fair players.’ ‘Well. reseated himself before the remains of the breakfast.’ And the Musketeer. ‘and how? Have we relations with the court? Could we send anyone to Paris without its being known in the camp? From here to Paris it is a hundred and forty leagues. but at that period we were not at war. ‘I am not far from approving the idea of Monsieur Porthos. 682 The Three Musketeers ‘And why not? Have I not been there once?’ ‘Yes. ‘we have been here an hour.’ In fact. and when I catch my beauty. Besides. covered with dirt and blood.’ said Athos. ‘Now. ‘No. and at length regained the city. I will go to England a second time. pushed with the barrels of their muskets an enormous sheet of the wall. ‘Kill a woman? No. and detaching itself from its base. ‘But. from the first to the last?’ said Athos. fell with a horrible crash into the ditch.’ cried Porthos. coloring.’ said Athos. before our letter was at Angers we should be in a dungeon.’ said Athos.’ replied Athos.’ ‘As to remitting a letter with safety to her Majesty. my faith.’ ‘Ah. I am not very clever at pretexts. who felt much deference for the young Musketeer. and was silent.’ said he. you said you had an idea.’ ‘Let us see your idea. which bent as if pushed by the wind. I will strangle her. Athos looked at his watch.’ ‘For shame!’ said Aramis.’ ‘Silence for Monsieur Porthos’s idea!’ said Aramis. ‘Well. it appears so!’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Porthos. ‘I think I have an idea. ‘there go three or four. a cloud of dust mounted toward the sky—and all was over! ‘Can we have destroyed them all.pared to scale the breach.

and their guns in their hands. and I would hold out before an army if we had taken the precaution to bring a dozen more bottles of wine.’ ‘Without reckoning. as I think you told me. the great man!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ ‘I should like. ‘what Porthos says is full of sense. ‘That is useless. and I also believe that he has not a very warm affection for his sister-in-law. to comprehend. all the police. Ah. this demon.’ objected Porthos. ‘You don’t think of holding out against a whole regiment. ‘That’s all that is necessary. the drum draws near. pointing to the bodies which lay under the wall of the bastion. consequently a quarter of an hour’s journey from the city to hither. yes! Athos’s idea!’ cried Aramis and d’Artagnan. ‘take those gentlemen.’ said Athos.’ ‘There is no harm in that.’ ‘You comprehend?’ said Porthos. and you and your clever person will be arrested. ah! but what’s going on in the city yonder?’ said Athos. ‘Well. ‘I do not reject it altogether. at the same time. all the Capuchins. stop! I have it.’ ‘Gentlemen. gentlemen.clever person at Tours—‘ Aramis stopped on seeing Athos smile. ‘They are beating the general alarm. will know your letter by heart. ‘that the queen would save Monsieur de Buckingham. That is more than time enough for us to devise a plan. ‘And do you comprehend.’ ‘Allow me to give Grimaud some indispensable orders. and that nobody but one of ourselves is trustworthy. Athos?’ said d’Artagnan. do you?’ said Porthos. ‘I comprehend now.’ ‘Ah.’ said d’Artagnan. d’Artagnan?’ ‘Yes. ‘You see. ‘now for my idea.’ ‘Oh.’ Athos made a sign for his lackey to approach. they are going to send a whole regiment against us. it would be Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ ‘Upon my word. the right idea has just occurred to me. I know him very well. but would take no heed of us. Grimaud?’ said Aramis. ‘This Milady.’ said Athos. that two hours after the messenger has set out. set them up against the wall.’ said Athos. this woman. and the sound of the drum plainly reached them. put their hats upon their heads.’ said Porthos. ‘I feel myself quite in a humor for it. all the black caps of the cardinal. has a brother-in-law.’ said d’Artagnan.’ said Athos. ‘Grimaud. however. ‘It is a quarter of an hour’s journey from here to the city. If he detested her.’ said Athos.’ ‘ 685 . ‘Why not?’ said Musketeer. ‘but I wish to remind Aramis that he cannot quit the camp. 684 The Three Musketeers ‘Let it come. If we go from this place we shall never find another so suitable. Grimaud made a sign in the affirmative.’ The four friends listened. do you not adopt this means. this creature.’ ‘Tell us.

‘that does honor to your imagination. ‘you require too much.’ ‘But I think it would be still better. and this very day we will write the 686 The Three Musketeers letters. I am of d’Artagnan’s opinion. He must place his sister in one of these. Grimaud?’ Grimaud made a sign in the affirmative. ‘I see black points and red points moving yonder. and you will understand afterward. others seemed to be taking aim. our lackeys may. See the sneaks come.’ said Porthos. yes. or of the Repentant Daughters. there’s just the man we want. Porthos!’ said Aramis.’ ‘A moment. ‘Bravo!’ said Athos. and the remainder appeared merely to be sword in hand. ah! have you finished.’ ‘My faith. give Grimaud time to clear away the breakfast. a moment. and who to London?’ ‘I answer for Bazin.’ ‘All very well. ‘It is he whom we must warn. ‘I have nothing to say against a Free eBooks at Planet eBook. ‘the black points and the red points are visibly enlarging.’ ‘Well.’ ‘We will give them money?’ replied Athos.’ said Athos. ‘Ay. ‘till she comes out. Athos? It is a veritable army!’ ‘My faith.’ ‘Where is he now?’ ‘He returned to London at the first sound of war.’ ‘Silence. ah!’ said Aramis.all the better. ‘but I should like to understand. ‘And I for Planchet. We will have him informed that his sister-in-law is on the point of having someone assassinated. some establishment like that of the Magdalens. There is in London.’ ‘Yes. ‘Give the lackeys money.’ said Athos.’ ‘To be sure they may.’ said Aramis. Ah. and a cloud came over the brows which but lately had been so cheerful. ‘if we cannot leave the camp.’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Let us decamp first.’ said Aramis.’ said Aramis. and I beg leave to tell you that this is the bottom of my sack.’ said Athos. ‘there they are. and they will start. d’Artagnan. Some carried arms. ‘What is her brother-in-law’s name?’ ‘Lord de Winter. without drum or trumpet. and pointed to a dozen bodies which he had set up in the most picturesque attitudes. ‘I would like to know what Grimaud is about. we have no time to lose in regaining our camp.’ said Porthos.’ ‘Ah. I hope. Why did you talk of a regiment. ‘In that case we are as well off as we wish. my faith!’ said Athos.’ ‘And yet.’ said Porthos. and we shall be in peace. ‘Have you any money?’ The four friends looked at one 687 . ‘Look out!’ cried d’Artagnan.’ replied Athos.’ ‘Ah.’ said d’Artagnan. gentlemen. but who is to carry the letter to Tours. I have given you all I have. and beg him not to lose sight of her. ‘to inform the queen and Lord de Winter at the same time.’ said d’Artagnan.

’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said the astonished Porthos. gentlemen?’ cried Athos.’ ‘Certainly not! They will then fancy it is an ambuscade. We bet upon one hour. ‘Have you forgotten anything?’ said Aramis. and this time the balls came rattling among the stones around the four friends. At the end of an instant they heard a furious fusillade. That renders it useless to get a pleurisy by too much haste. shrugging his shoulders. on seeing the four friends return at such a step. d’Artagnan? It bleeds.’ ‘Oh. let us be off!’ Grimaud was already ahead. but what is the matter with your hand. Grimaud and his basket were far in advance.’ replied Athos. the French. seemingly. The balls passed and whistled all around him. mounted the platform. regulated their pace by his. ‘how many have we killed of them—a dozen?’ ‘Or fifteen. ‘These Rochellais are bungling fellows. on the other cries of enthusiasm. and whistling sharply in their ears. ‘The white flag. On both sides loud cries arose—on the one side cries of anger. by passing through it. I comprehend now.’ ‘And in exchange for all that not even a scratch! Ah. whatever 688 The Three Musketeers remarks his companions made. saw him returned with joy. ‘What the devil shall we do now. and bore off the flag. we shall be out of the range of their balls. ‘But the dead cannot return their fire. uttered cries of enthusiasm. not one struck him. But Athos might be said to bear a charmed life.retreat. who anxiously awaited him. and I see nobody!’ ‘They are firing at the corpses. A second discharge followed the first. with the basket and the dessert. ‘What’s that?’ asked Porthos. ‘That’s lucky. and three balls. they will deliberate. The four friends followed. who appeared to expose himself for pleasure’s sake. but as the Rochellais had arrived within musket 689 . it would be stupid to be killed. Cries were heard from the camp. ‘now we have found everything except money.’ But Athos continued to march majestically. gentlemen. made the napkin really a flag. morbleu! We must not leave a flag in the hands of the enemy. Athos waved his flag. they opened a terrible fire upon this man. At length a fresh discharge was heard. and we have stayed an hour and a half. and they. and by the time they have found out the pleasantry. and saluting those of the camp. ten paces behind him. turning his back on the guards of the city. Nothing can be said.’ And Athos ran back to the bastion. out of the range of the balls. Athos.’ said Athos.’ ‘How many did we crush under the wall?’ ‘Eight or ten. finding their remarks useless. On their part. ‘what are they firing at now? I hear no balls whistle.’ said Athos. come along!’ cried d’Artagnan. The Rochellais had at last taken possession of the bastion. even if that flag be but a napkin. let us be off. his friends. ‘Come along. ‘Come down! come down!’ Athos came down.

Your advice. his opinion has been given. The queen saving Monsieur de Buckingham. they are coming to meet us.‘Oh. then. his captain of the Guards. gaily. ‘that his ring not coming from a mistress.’ ‘That comes of wearing diamonds. d’Artagnan may sell it. do we plague ourselves about money. to be sure. More than two thousand persons had assisted. and all their comrades followed the dragoon and the Swiss. ‘My faith. ‘A spent ball?’ ‘Not even 691 . disdainfully. ‘Well thought of. blushing as usual.’ replied Athos. but the four friends were out of reach.’ ‘Why.’ ‘Undoubtedly. as at a spectacle. then. Let us sell the diamond. I think. then. The affair was described to the messenger with all the effervescence of enthusiasm. ‘as there is a diamond. We shall be carried in triumph. Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said Aramis. when there is a diamond?’ ‘Stop a bit!’ said Aramis. it was time that idea came into Porthos’s head. Nothing was heard but cries of ‘Live the Musketeers! Live the Guards!’ M. then?’ We have said that Athos loved d’Artagnan like a child. and this somber and inflexible personage felt the anxiety of a parent for the young man.’ replied d’Artagnan. let us sell it. in this fortunate but wild undertaking of the four friends—an undertaking of which they were far from suspecting the real motive. de Busigny was the first to come and shake Athos by the hand.’ said d’Artagnan.’ In fact.’ ‘What is it. Why the devil. her friends. as we have said. the whole camp was in motion. my master. ‘Well. ‘Only grazed a little. The tumult at length became so great that the cardinal fancied there must be some riot. The queen saving us. this time you have an idea.’ said d’Artagnan. there was no end to the inextinguishable laughter at the Rochellais. and sent La Houdiniere. ‘my fingers were caught between two stones—that of the wall and that of my ring—and the skin was broken.’ ‘The stronger reason why it should be sold. ‘it is the queen’s diamond.’ cried Porthos. There was nothing but felicitations. ‘there is a diamond. The dragoon and the Swiss followed him. and consequently not being a love token. gentlemen. it’s nothing. nothing more just. is—‘ ‘To sell the diamond.’ The fusillade continued. What says Monsieur the Abbe? I don’t ask Porthos. therefore. Here we are at the camp. nothing more moral. and acknowledge that the wager was lost.’ said d’Artagnan. not a word more of this affair.’ said Athos.’ replied Aramis. and embraces. and the Rochellais only fired to appease their consciences. ‘let us sell the diamond. drawing himself up at Athos’s compliment. We are observed. to inquire what was going on. her lover. pressures of the hand. Porthos.’ 690 The Three Musketeers ‘My dear Aramis.’ said Porthos.’ ‘But. ‘Ah. you speak like theology personified. and say no more about it.

M. D’Artagnan refused.’ That same evening M. ‘pray let that napkin be sent to me. M.’ ‘Monseigneur. Gervais. This was the price of the queen’s diamond. ‘you had a triumphant idea! As you said. as this change would entail expenses for equipment. The three friends were likewise greatly delighted. and will give it to your company as a standard. he begged him to have the diamond he put into his hand valued. related it in all its details to his Eminence. and while breakfasting they held it for two hours against the enemy. ‘That’s well. de Treville. but thinking the opportunity a good one. on seeing La Houdiniere return. which was the talk of the whole camp.’ ‘What are their names?’ ‘Messieurs Athos. The next day. ‘My faith. then. Porthos. de Treville. ‘three Musketeers and a Guardsman laid a wager with Monsieur de Busigny that they would go and breakfast in the bastion 693 .’ said M. take him.’ ‘Which we can resume now without anybody suspecting us. monseigneur. we have acquired glory. I will have three fleur-de-lis embroidered on it in gold. and Aramis. Monsieur d’Artagnan is not with me. as he wished to turn it into money. We know that the dream of his life had been to become a Musketeer. Free eBooks at Planet eBook. it is only fair that they should serve in the same company. and have killed I don’t know how many Rochellais. who had received the account of the adventure from the mouths of the heroes of it. monseigneur. with the help of God. de Treville announced this good news to the three Musketeers and d’Artagnan.‘Well?’ asked the cardinal. Dessessart.’ said the cardinal.’ That evening d’Artagnan went to present his respects to M. Dessessart’s valet came to d’Artagnan’s lodging. D’Artagnan was beside himself with joy. these four men must be on my side. we shall henceforth pass for cardinalists.’ ‘Still my young scapegrace. Monsieur de Treville. Positively. Dessessart. M. inviting all four to breakfast with him next morning.’ replied the latter.’ 692 The Three Musketeers ‘Well. de Treville of the exploit of the morning. he serves under Monsieur Dessessart. ‘that will be unjust to the Guardsmen.’ ‘Did you inquire the names of those three Musketeers?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Still my three brave fellows!’ murmured the cardinal. made him offers of help. for. and gave him a bag containing seven thousand livres. and were enabled to carry on a conversation of the highest importance. not forgetting the episode of the napkin. who esteemed d’Artagnan. and inform him of his promotion.’ said the cardinal. ‘And the Guardsman?’ ‘d’Artagnan. ‘Well. ‘when four men are so much attached to one another.’ said d’Artagnan to Athos.’ The same evening the cardinal spoke to M.

D’Artagnan alone had discovered nothing—he. D’Artagnan would have been at the height of his wishes if he had not constantly seen Milady like a dark cloud hovering in the horizon. at the appointed hour.48 A FAMILY AFFAIR Athos had invented the phrase. the diamond. 694 The Three Musketeers D’Artagnan passed the day in exhibiting his Musketeer’s uniform in every street of the camp. they are two qualities out of the four. ‘Unfortunately. family affair. These four virtues disputed the prize for a length of time. Porthos boasted of the strength of Mousqueton. d’Artagnan had entire faith in the bravery of Planchet. so take Grimaud. D’Artagnan already wore his uniform—for being nearly of the same size as Aramis. he had discovered a purchaser for his diamond. who never spoke a word but when his master unlocked his mouth.’ ‘Take Mousqueton. confiding in the address of Bazin.’ said Aramis. Planchet is brave and shrewd. family affair. Ah! no. Athos talked of the discretion of Grimaud. There only remained three things to decide—what they should write to Milady’s brother. a family affair concerned nobody.’ said Athos. Porthos had discovered the means. and which should be the lackeys to carry the letters.’ ‘Take Planchet. and there finish their plans. and reminded them of the manner in which he had conducted himself in the ticklish affair of Boulogne. Aramis had discovered the idea. In the evening. we were mistaken. ‘I know it well. and gave birth to magnificent speeches which we do not repeat here for fear they should be deemed too long. he sold his friend a complete outfit. and as Aramis was so liberally paid by the publisher who purchased his poem as to allow him to buy everything double. ‘he whom we send must possess in himself alone the four qualities united. Finally. Therefore Athos had invented the phrase. the lackeys. A family affair was not subject to the investigation of the cardinal. ‘the principal question is not Free eBooks at Planet eBook. de Treville’s was as gay and cheerful as possible. Aramis. what they should write to the clever person at Tours.’ ‘But where is such a lackey to be found?’ ‘Not to be found!’ cried Athos. Everyone offered his own. but it must be also said that the very name of Milady paralyzed him. People might employ themselves in a family affair before all the world.’ ‘Gentlemen. ordinarily the most inventive of the four. made a pompous eulogium on his candidate. The breakfast at M. After breakfast. the four friends met. who was big enough to thrash four men of ordinary size. it was agreed that they should meet again in the evening at Athos’s 695 .’ ‘Take Bazin.

who stickled for propriety. complying with the recommendation. answer for him twice.’ ‘Not at all. yes! Dear friend to an Englishman. quite short.’ replied Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. they will be pressed. ‘There can be no doubt we would all be broken on the wheel. for in case of failure.’ cried d’Artagnan. Monsieur Abbe. my dear friend. Once taken. To reach England’— Athos lowered his voice—‘all France. heads are in question.’ said Athos. parbleu. must be crossed. that we only write to him to entreat that as soon as Milady arrives in London he will put it out of her power to injure us. as you yourself said.’ ‘You may even say. they will confess everything. and then.’ ‘Well. ‘but for the master—for the masters. the most strong. when pressed. ‘well commenced! Bravo.’ said Aramis. that we only write to him concerning a family affair. instead of answering for him once. if we write to Lord de Winter about affairs of vast importance. perhaps. who was an optimist when things were concerned. A passport for embarkation must be obtained. who was anxious the matter should be accomplished. What the devil! we are not children. Monsieur.’ continued d’Artagnan. Aramis. Athos. then. not to fail. nearly in these terms. ‘for we not only require to be well served in order to succeed.’ resumed Aramis. and the party must be 696 The Three Musketeers acquainted with English in order to ask the way to London. I will write to him.’ said Athos. It would be.’ interrupted Athos. or the most brave. and on the road fear will prevent them from acting.’ ‘Well. I think the thing very difficult. but for God’s sake.’ ‘Doubtless. covered with spies and creatures of the cardinal. My know which of our four lackeys is the most discreet. ‘My Lord. d’Artagnan! Only with that word you would be quartered instead of being broken on the wheel. ‘we must speculate upon the faults of people. do you remember the little goat pasture of the Luxembourg?’ ‘Good. and a pessimist when men were in question. ‘—of intrigues and secrets of state. ‘Monsieur and dear friend—‘ ‘Ah. assuming in advance a critical look. do not forget. Are our lackeys sufficiently devoted to us to risk their lives for us? No.’ replied Athos. and not upon their virtues. ‘They will promise everything for the sake of the money.’ ‘Why. of the horrors of the cardinal—‘ ‘Speak lower!’ said Athos. then. but moreover. you are a great moralist.’ ‘What Aramis says is very sensible. not for our lackeys—‘ ‘Speak lower.’ ‘Let us see. I will say.’ said Athos. ‘on the contrary. the principal thing is to know which loves money the best. the most clever. ‘That’s wise—not for the lackeys. Really. good God! you will be deceived just the same. we may say. add to his natural devotedness a good sum of money.’ ‘My faith. the Luxembourg! One might believe this is an alFree eBooks at Planet eBook. I think it very 697 . ‘I would almost answer for Planchet. no doubt.

‘but let me be properly acquainted with the subject. ‘you are insupportable.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. then. you will never make anything but a very bad secretary. ‘But.’ ‘Lower! SACRE BLEU!’ said Athos. I warn you. and having been—‘ d’Artagnan stopped. ‘d’Artagnan and I. ‘Repudiated by her husband. ‘Bah!’ cried Porthos. ‘Impossible! What do you say—that she wanted to have her brother-in-law killed?’ ‘Yes.’ continued d’Artagnan.’ replied Athos. ‘Draw up this note for us. who by it understood he was at liberty to speak. but by our Holy Father the Pope. Or rather. I have obtained proof of it by listening to her conversation with the cardinal. ‘Well.’ continued Aramis. I and d’Artagnan. your sister-in-law is an infamous woman.’ These three yeses had been pronounced by Athos.’ said d’Artagnan. made a sign of assent to d’Artagnan. ‘pass the pen to Aramis.’ said Athos. so be it. who writes theses in Latin. but pass the pen over to Monsieur Abbe.’ said Athos. being already married in France. each with a sadder intonation. A benefit reproached is an offense committed. ‘Well. to observe the chronological order. this is what you have to say.’ said Porthos. ‘the details escape me.’ ‘I ask no better. as if seeking for the word. I renounce the task. for I shall prune you in my turn. That’s his province.lusion to the queen-mother! That’s ingenious. who wished to have you killed that she might inherit your wealth. Handle the musket and the sword. ‘Yes. Aramis. we will put simply. do you remember a certain little enclosure where your life was spared?’ ‘My dear d’Artagnan. My Lord. my faith.’ said d’Artagnan: ‘My Lord. ‘He still lives. 698 The Three Musketeers D’Artagnan and Athos looked at each other for some time in silence.’ ‘Ay. with that ingenious air of confidence which every poet has in himself.’ ‘And you will do right. cut it short.’ ‘And her husband found out that she had a fleur-de-lis on her shoulder?’ cried Porthos. ‘Yes. ay!’ said Porthos. my dear fellow. ‘And who has seen this fleur-de-lis?’ inquired Aramis.’ ‘The devil!’ said d’Artagnan. ‘And does the husband of this frightful creature still live?’ said Aramis. You will come off splendidly at those two exercises. At length Athos. Where your life was spared! For shame! that’s unworthy. after serious reflection and becoming more pale than usual.’ ‘Well. but she could not marry your 699 . A man of spirit is not to be reminded of such services.’ ‘And me also. If the letter must be written under your censure.’ ‘She was married?’ asked Aramis. I have heard here and there that this sister-in-law was a hussy. and looked at Athos. ‘Because she had been branded.’ said Aramis.

com 701 . ‘and it is a rather difficult matter.’ ‘Well. as if each word had been scrupulously weighed. now that will do wonderfully well. he thinks it his duty to respond to that friendship by sending you important information. ‘d’Artagnan has given us an excellent program. with the letter. ‘we do not think of the queen.’ said Athos.’ ‘The devil! You are right.’ said Athos. I don’t suppose that our friend d’Artagnan has added any of his own to the amount.’ said Athos. ‘what must I say?’ ‘Oh. read her past history 700 The Three Musketeers on her left shoulder. for she has great and terrible projects.’ There was a moment of cold silence.’ ‘But. Your relative left La Rochelle for England during the night. he remained unmoved. and even if it should fall into the hands of the cardinal.’ ‘Well. That is the least we owe her. ‘but that concerns Aramis.’ said Aramis. Let us take some heed of the welfare of her dear Buckingham. during which everyone was affected according to his nature. I will write. in louis of twelve francs. I have the price”. But as the lackey who goes may make us believe he has been to London and may stop at Chatellerault. you have the pen of a secretary of state. we shall not be compromised. Have you the diamond?’ continued Athos.’ replied the latter. you may succumb. Watch her arrival.’ Free eBooks at Planet eBook. that’s simple enough!’ replied Athos. blushing. and d’Artagnan threw the bag upon the table. ‘I have what is still better. reflected for a few moments.’ said Athos.’ Aramis accordingly took the quill. If you require to know positively what she is capable of. ‘How much in that little bag?’ ‘Seven thousand livres. whom you believe to be your heir because you are ignorant that before she contracted a marriage in England she was already married in France. which is the present. As to Athos. ‘That poor little diamond was worth seven thousand livres?’ ‘It appears so.‘Are you quite sure of it?’ ‘I am he. ‘My dear Aramis. Twice you have nearly been the victim of a near relative. and then with a voice soft and slow.’ ‘That’s true.’ ‘Seven thousand livres!’ cried Porthos.’ said d’Artagnan. in all this. with an agreement that he shall have the other half in exchange for the reply. As you have several times since declared yourself the friend of that person. Never mind! Be silent. ‘This time. The chancellor himself would be puzzled how to write such a letter. and the letter must be written at once. wrote eight or ten lines in a charming little female hand. let us give him only half the sum promised him. But the third time. ‘Write a second letter for that clever personage who lives at Tours. and yet the chancellor draws up an official report very readily. Lord de Winter will now be upon his guard if the letter should reach him. ‘since here they are. gentlemen. Athos. At the sound of the gold Aramis raised his eyes and Porthos started. first breaking the silence. he read the following: ‘My Lord. The person who writes these few lines had the honor of crossing swords with you in the little enclosure of the Rue d’Enfer.

’ ‘Go on. I cannot recollect whether it was by steel or by poison. Aramis. more particularly as he has already been to London with 703 . Michon. he does not despair of becoming Pope in his turn. Besides. my dear cousin. I have dreamed he was dead. Milady had him one day turned out of doors. and I will be bound that sooner than relinquish any possible means of vengeance. ‘This clever person is your relative. and took up his pen and wrote: ‘To Mlle. ‘Now. I request. ‘you are the king of poets.’ said Aramis.’ ‘Very well. if you please. and places confidence in nobody but him. de Buckingham will be prevented from setting out by some great event.’ ‘Capital!’ cried Athos. my dear Aramis. then!’ Aramis continued: ‘My dear Cousin. gentlemen. I will even venture to say that I am certain M.’ The three friends looked at one another and laughed. then. which he immediately submitted to the approbation of his friends. and probably of times to come. that Planchet may be chosen. Be assured. Planchet has an excellent memory. Well. they were caught. that Bazin alone can carry this letter to Tours.’ 702 The Three Musketeers ‘That is easily done. any other person would fail. with sundry blows of a good stick to accelerate his motions. ‘you will please to understand. He would extinguish the sun if the sun incommoded him.’ said d’Artagnan. gentlemen. but grant me Planchet. of seeing me soon return. or if taken. My cousin knows nobody but Bazin. and you are as true as the Gospel. There is nothing now to do but to put the address to this letter. I have dreamed that the unlucky Englishman was dead. then. You can understand that a man who has such views will never allow himself to be taken. ah!’ said Athos. whom God preserve for the happiness of France and the confusion of the enemies of the kingdom. he will allow himself to be beaten to death. Now. It is probable that the succor of the English fleet will never even arrive in sight of the place. he knows that Sixtus the Fifth became Pope after having kept pigs. If your arrangements at Tours are your arrangements. is on the point of putting an end to the hectic rebellion of La Rochelle. or at least a cardinal. His Eminence. and you know my dreams never deceive me.Aramis resumed his pen. You speak like the Apocalypse. Give these happy tidings to your sister. ‘I consent to Bazin with all my heart.’ ‘Ah. as he means to enter the Church at the same time as myself. and knows how to speak correctly: London. those of London are mine. the cardinal. Bazin is ambitious and learned. ‘My dear cousin. He folded the letter fancifully. seamstress. to your cousin. Tours. and my masFree eBooks at Planet eBook. and wrote the following lines. His Eminence is the most illustrious politician of times past. Bazin has read history. sir. only of this I am sure. then?’ ‘Cousin-german. will undergo martyrdom rather than speak.’ said Aramis. reflected a little. of times present.

‘you have eight days to get an interview with Lord de Winter.’ said Athos. and who answers for you. wherever you may be. Everything considered.’ said Aramis.ter. I will find you. We will each take a thousand livres to be employed as seems good.’ ‘Then. Planchet and Bazin shall go. you risk your master’s head.’ said Planchet. ‘and if I am taken I will swallow it. but then you will not be able to fulfill your commission. If. monsieur!’ Planchet began to weep. and Bazin. rolling his large eyes. with his usual careless generosity. ‘You will give me a copy this evening. also. monsieur!’ ‘And I. ‘See.’ ‘Well.’ ‘Ah.’ said Aramis. his voyage would upset him quite. ‘you speak like Nestor. Yesterday’s affair must have shaken him a little. The matter had been named to him by d’Artagnan.’ continued he. if you babble. that if by your fault any evil happens to d’Artagnan.’ ‘ 705 . and instructions were given him. then. melodius voice. as if to say.’ said Athos.’ said Athos. addressing Planchet. the wisest among the Greeks. ‘and be a good lad.’ D’Artagnan looked at his friends. D’Artagnan took his hand. ‘you must buy me a watch. ‘it is agreed. I will skin you alive. monsieur. then the glory. for the purpose of ripping up your belly.’ said d’Artagnan.’ ‘In that case. and seven hundred livres for coming back.’ ‘Take this. giving him his own. ‘these Free eBooks at Planet eBook.’ said Porthos. ‘And I. both going and returning. you have eight days to return—in all sixteen days. Lord d’Artagnan. no money—even if it be but five minutes past eight. and then the danger. as everyone knows. We will not venture to say whether it was from terror created by the threats or from tenderness at seeing four friends so closely united. three hundred livres for going. who was.’ said Planchet.’ ‘Ah. if you get drunk. and I am particular. ‘remember that I will roast you at a slow fire. humiliated by the suspicion.’ ‘Oh.’ said he. terrified at the calm air of the Musketeer. who in the first place pointed out the money to him. monsieur!’ said Planchet. Planchet. he is accustomed to my ways. ‘remember. which I