List Of Contents | Contents of The Wandering Jew v3, by Eugene Sue
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The moment Adrienne asked the doctor if his carriage was below,
D'Aigrigny started.  A look of intense satisfaction flashed across his
countenance, and he could hardly repress the violence of his delight,
when, darting, a rapid and significant glance at the doctor, he saw the
latter respond to it by trace closing his eyelids in token of
comprehension and assent.

When therefore the princess resumed, in an angry tone, addressing herself
to Adrienne: "Madame, I forbid you leaving the house!"--D'Aigrigny said
to the speaker, with a peculiar inflection of the voice: "I think, your
highness, we may trust the lady to the doctor's care."

The marquis pronounced these words in so significant a manner, that the
princess, having looked by turns at the physician and D'Aigrigny,
understood it all, and her countenance grew radiant with joy.

Not only did this pass with extreme rapidity, but the night was already
almost come, so that Adrienne, absorbed in painful thoughts with regard
to Agricola, did not perceive the different signals exchanged between the
princess, the doctor, and the abbe.  Even had she done so, they would
have been incomprehensible to her.

Not wishing to have the appearance of yielding too readily, to the
suggestion of the marquis, Madame de Saint-Dizier resumed: "Though the
doctor seems to me to be far too indulgent to mademoiselle, I might not
see any great objection to trusting her with him; but that I do not wish
to establish such a precedent, for hence forward she must have no will
but mine."

"Madame," said the physician gravely, feigning to be somewhat shocked by
the words of the Princess de Saint-Dizier, "I do not think I have been
too indulgent to mademoiselle--but only just.  I am at her orders, to
take her to the minister if she wishes it.  I do not know what she
intends to solicit, but I believe her incapable of abusing the confidence
I repose in her, or making me support a recommendation undeserved."

Adrienne, much moved, extended her hand cordially to the doctor, and said
to him: "Rest assured, my excellent friend, that you will thank me for
the step I am taking, for you will assist in a noble action."

Tripeaud, who was not in the secret of the new plans of the doctor and
the abbe in a low voice faltered to the latter, with a stupefied air,
"What! will you let her go?"

"Yes, yes," answered D'Aigrigny abruptly, making a sign that he should
listen to the princess, who was about to speak.  Advancing towards her
niece, she said to her in a slow and measured tone, laying a peculiar
emphasis on every word:  "One moment more, mademoiselle--one last word in
presence of these gentlemen.  Answer me!  Notwithstanding the heavy
charges impending over you, are you still determined to resist my formal

"Yes, madame."

"Notwithstanding the scandalous exposure which has just taken place, you
still persist in withdrawing yourself from my authority?"

"Yes, madame."

"You refuse positively to submit to the regular and decent mode of life
which I would impose upon you?"

"I have already told you, madame, that I am about to quit this dwelling
in order to live alone and after my own fashion."

"Is that your final decision?"

"It is my last word."

"Reflect! the matter is serious.  Beware!"

"I have given your highness my last word, and I never speak it twice."

"Gentlemen, you hear all this?" resumed the princess; "I have tried in
vain all that was possible to conciliate.  Mademoiselle will have only
herself to thank for the measures to which this audacious revolt will
oblige me to have recourse."

"Be it so, madame," replied Adrienne.  Then, addressing M. Baleinier, she
said quickly to him: "Come, my dear doctor; I am dying with impatience.
Let us set out immediately.  Every minute lost may occasion bitter tears
to an honest family."

So saying, Adrienne left the room precipitately with the physician.  One
of the servants called for M. Baleinier's carriage.  Assisted by the
doctor, Adrienne mounted the step, without perceiving that he said
something in a low whisper to the footman that opened the coach-door.

When, however, he was seated by the side of Mdlle. de Cardoville, and the
door was closed upon them, he waited for about a second, and then called
out in a loud voice to the coachman: "To the house of the minister, by
the private entrance!"  The horses started at a gallop.



Night had set in dark and cold.  The sky, which had been clear till the
sun went down, was now covered with gray and lurid clouds; a strong wind
raised here and there, in circling eddies, the snow that was beginning to
fall thick and fast.

The lamps threw a dubious light into the interior of Dr. Baleinier's
carriage, in which he was seated alone with Adrienne de Cardoville.  The
charming countenance of the latter, faintly illumined by the lamps
beneath the shade of her little gray hat, looked doubly white and pure in
contrast with the dark lining of the carriage, which was now filled with
that, sweet, delicious, and almost voluptuous perfume which hangs about
the garments of young women of taste.  The attitude of the girl, seated
next to the doctor, was full of grace.  Her slight and elegant figure,
imprisoned in her high-necked dress of blue cloth, imprinted its wavy
outline on the soft cushion against which she leaned; her little feet,
crossed one upon the other, and stretched rather forward, rested upon a
thick bear-skin, which carpeted the bottom of the carriage.  In her hand,
which was ungloved and dazzlingly white, she held a magnificently
embroidered handkerchief, with which, to the great astonishment of M.
Baleinier, she dried her eyes, now filled with tears.

Yes; Adrienne wept, for she now felt the reaction from the painful scenes
through which she had passed at Saint-Dizier House; to the feverish and
nervous excitement, which had till then sustained her, had succeeded a
sorrowful dejection.  Resolute in her independence, proud in her disdain,
implacable in her irony, audacious in her resistance to unjust
oppression, Adrienne was yet endowed with the most acute sensibility,
which she always dissembled, however, in the presence of her aunt and
those who surrounded her.

Notwithstanding her courage, no one could have been less masculine, less
of a virago, than Mdlle. Cardoville.  She was essentially womanly, but as
a woman, she knew how to exercise great empire over herself, the moment
that the least mark of weakness on her part would have rejoiced or
emboldened her enemies.

The carriage had rolled onwards for some minutes; but Adrienne, drying
her tears in silence, to the doctor's great astonishment, had not yet
uttered a word.

"What, my dear Mdlle. Adrienne?" said M. Baleinier, truly surprised at
her emotion; "what! you, that were just now so courageous, weeping?"

"Yes," answered Adrienne, in an agitated voice; "I weep in presence of a
friend; but, before my aunt--oh! never."

"And yet, in that long interview, your stinging replies--"

"Ah me! do you think that I resigned myself with pleasure to that war of
sarcasm?  Nothing is more painful to me than such combats of bitter
irony, to which I am forced by the necessity of defending myself from
this woman and her friends.  You speak of my courage: it does not
consist, I assure you, in the display of wicked feelings--but in the
power to repress and hide all that I suffer, when I hear myself treated
so grossly--in the presence, too, of people that I hate and despise--
when, after all, I have never done them any harm, and have only asked to
be allowed to live alone, freely and quietly, and see those about me

"That's where it is: they envy your happiness, and that which you bestow
upon others."

"And it is my aunt," cried Adrienne, with indignation, "my aunt, whose
whole life has been one long scandal that accuses me in this revolting
manner!--as if she did not know me proud and honest enough never to make
a choice of which I should be ashamed!  Oh! if I ever love, I shall
proclaim it, I shall be proud of it: for love, as I understand it, is the
most glorious feeling in the world.  But, alas!" continued Adrienne, with
redoubled bitterness, "of what use are truth and honor, if they do not
secure you from suspicions, which are as absurd as they are odious?"  So
saying, she again pressed her handkerchief to her eyes.

"Come, my dear Mdlle. Adrienne," said M. Baleinier, in a voice full of
the softest unction, "becalm--it is all over now.  You have in me a
devoted friend."  As he pronounced these last words, he blushed in spite
of his diabolical craft.

"I know you are my friend," said Adrienne: "I shall never forget that, by
taking my part to-day, you exposed yourself to the resentment of my aunt-
-for I am not ignorant of her power, which is very great, alas! for

"As for that," said the doctor, affecting a profound indifference, "we
medical men are pretty safe from personal enmities."

"Nay, my dear M. Baleinier!  Mme. de Saint-Dizier and her friends never
forgive," said the young girl, with a shudder.  "It needed all my
invincible aversion, my innate horror for all that is base, cowardly, and
perfidious, to induce me to break so openly with her.  But if death
itself were the penalty, I could not hesitate and yet," she added, with
one of those graceful smiles which gave such a charm to her beautiful
countenance, "yet I am fond of life: if I have to reproach myself with
anything, it is that I would have it too bright, too fair, too
harmonious; but then, you know, I am resigned to my faults."

"Well, come, I am more tranquil," said the doctor, gayly; "for you smile-
-that is a good sign."

"It is often the wisest course; and yet, ought I smile, after the threats
that my aunt has held out to me?  Still, what can she do? what is the
meaning of this kind of family council?  Did she seriously think that the
advice of a M. D'Aigrigny or a M. Tripeaud could have influenced me?  And
then she talked of rigorous measures.  What measures can she take; do you

"I think, between ourselves, that the princess only wished to frighten
you, and hopes to succeed by persuasion.  She has the misfortune to fancy
herself a mother of the Church, and dreams of your conversion," said the
doctor, maliciously, for he now wished to tranquillize Adrienne at any
cost; "but let us think no more about it.  Your fire eyes must shine with
all their lustre, to fascinate the minister that we are going to see."

"You are right, dear doctor; we ought always avoid grief, for it has the
disadvantage of making us forget the sorrows of others.  But here am I,
availing myself of your kindness, without even telling you what I

"Luckily, we shall have plenty of time to talk over it, for our statesman
lives at some distance."

"In two words, here's the mystery," answered Adrienne.  "I told you what
reasons I had to interest myself in that honest workman.  This morning he
came to me in great grief, to inform me that he was compromised by some
songs he had written (for he is a poet), and that, though innocent, he
was threatened with an arrest; and if they put him into prison, his
family, whose sole support he is, would die of hunger.  Therefore he came
to beg me to procure bail for him, so that he might be left at liberty to
work: I promised immediately, thinking of your interest with the
minister; for, as they were already in pursuit of the poor lad, I chose
to conceal him in my residence, and you know how my aunt has twisted that
action.  Now tell me, do you think, that, by means of your
recommendation, the minister will grant me the freedom of this workman,
bail being given for the same?"

"No doubt of it.  There will not be the shadow of a difficulty--
especially when you have explained the facts to him, with that eloquence
of the heart which you possess in perfection."

"Do you know, my dear Dr. Baleinier, why I have taken the resolution
(which is perhaps a strange one) to ask you to accompany me to the

"Why, doubtless, to recommend your friend in a more effective manner."

"Yes--but also to put an end, by a decisive step, to the calumnies which
my aunt will be sure to spread with regard to me, and which she has
already, you know, had inserted in the report of the commissary of
police.  I have preferred to address myself at once, frankly and openly,
to a man placed in a high social position.  I will explain all to him,
who will believe me, because truth has an accent of its own."

"All this, my dear Mdlle. Adrienne, is wisely planned.  You will, as the
saw says, kill two birds with one stone--or rather, you will obtain by
one act of kindness two acts of justice; you will destroy a dangerous
calumny, and restore a worthy youth to liberty."

"Come," said Adrienne, laughing, "thanks to this pleasing prospect, my
light heart has returned."

"How true that in life," said the doctor, philosophically, "everything
depends on the point of view."

Adrienne was so completely ignorant of the forms of a constitutional
government, and had so blind a confidence in the doctor, that she did not
doubt for an instant what he told her.  She therefore resumed with joy:
"What happiness it will be! when I go to fetch the daughters of Marshal
Simon, to be able to console this workman's mother, who is now perhaps in
a state of cruel anxiety, at not seeing her son return home!"

"Yes, you will have this pleasure," said M. Baleinier, with a smile; "for
we will solicit and intrigue to such purpose, that the good, mother may
learn from you the release of her son before she even knows that he has
been arrested."

"How kind, how obliging you are!" said Adrienne.  "Really, if the motive
were not so serious, I should he ashamed of making you lose so much
precious time, my dear M. Baleinier.  But I know your heart."

"I have no other wish, than to prove to you my profound devotion, my
sincere attachment," said the doctor inhaling a pinch of snuff.  But at
the same time, he cast an uneasy glance through the window, for the
carriage was just crossing the Place de l'Odeon, and in spite of the
snow, he could see the front of the Odeon theatre brilliantly
illuminated.  Now Adrienne, who had just turned her head towards that
side, might perhaps be astonished at the singular road they were taking.

In order to draw off her attention by a skillful diversion, the doctor
exclaimed suddenly: "Bless me! I had almost forgotten."

"What is the matter, M. Baleinier?" said Adrienne, turning hastily
towards him.

"I had forgotten a thing of the highest importance, in regard to the
success of our petition."

"What is it, please?" asked the young girl, anxiously.

M. Baleinier gave a cunning smile.  "Every man," said he, "has his
weakness--ministers even more than others.  The one we are going to visit
has the folly to attach the utmost importance to his title, and the first
impression would be unfavorable, if you did not lay great stress on the

"Is that all, my dear M. Baleinier?" said Adrienne, smiling in her turn.
"I will even go so far as Your Excellency, which is, I believe, one of

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