List Of Contents | Contents of The Wandering Jew, V11, by Eugene Sue
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so.  But I had betrayed you, my lord, and there is no happiness for a
traitor, even though he repent.  In my turn, I have been shamefully

Then, seeing the surprise of the prince, the half-caste added, as if
overwhelmed with confusion: "Do not mock me, my lord! The most frightful
tortures would not have wrung this confession from me; but you, the son
of a king, deigned to call the poor slave your friend!"

"And your friend thanks you for the confidence," answered Djalma.  "Far
from mocking, he will console you.  Mock you! do you think it possible?"

"Betrayed love merits contempt and insult," said Faringhea, bitterly.
"Even cowards may point at one with scorn--for, in this country, the
sight of the man deceived in what is dearest to his soul, the very life-
blood of his life, only makes people shrug their shoulders and laugh."

"But are you certain of this treachery?" said Djalma, mildly.  Then he
added, with visible hesitation, that proved the goodness of his heart:
"Listen to me, and forgive me for speaking of the past!  It will only be
another proof, that I cherish no evil memories, and that I fully believe
in your repentance and affection.  Remember, that I also once thought,
that she, who is the angel of my life, did not love me--and yet it was
false.  Who tells you, that you are not, like me, deceived by false

"Alas, my lord! could I only believe so!  But I dare not hope it.  My
brain wanders uncertain, I cannot come to any resolution, and therefore I
have recourse to you."

"But what causes your suspicions?"

"Her coldness, which sometimes succeeds to apparent tenderness.  The
refusals she gives me in the name of duty.  Yes," added the half-caste,
after a moment's silence.  "she reasons about her love--a proof, that she
has never loved me, or that she loves me no more."

"On the contrary, she perhaps loves you all the more, that she takes into
consideration the interest and the dignity of her love."

"That is what they all say," replied the half-caste, with bitter irony,
as he fixed a penetrating look on Djalma; "thus speak all those who love
weakly, coldly; but those who love valiantly, never show these insulting
suspicions.  For them, a word from the man they adore is a command; they
do not haggle and bargain, for the cruel pleasure of exciting the passion
of their lover to madness, and so ruling him more surely.  No, what their
lover asks of them, were it to cost life and honor, they would grant it
without hesitation--because, with them, the will of the man they love is
above every other consideration, divine and human.  But those crafty
women, whose pride it is to tame and conquer man--who take delight in
irritating his passion, and sometimes appear on the point of yielding to
it--are demons, who rejoice in the tears and torments of the wretch, that
loves them with the miserable weakness of a child.  While we expire with
love at their feet, the perfidious creatures are calculating the effects
of their refusals, and seeing how far they can go, without quite driving
their victim to despair.  Oh! how cold and cowardly are they, compared to
the valiant, true-hearted women, who say to the men of their choice: `Let
me be thine to-day-and to-morrow, come shame, despair, and death--it
matters little!  Be happy! my life is not worth one tear of thine!"

Djalma's brow had darkened, as he listened.  Having kept inviolable the
secret of the various incidents of his passion for Mdlle. de Cardoville,
he could not but see in these words a quite involuntary allusion to the
delays and refusals of Adrienne.  And yet Djalma suffered a moment in his
pride, at the thought of considerations and duties, that a woman holds
dearer than her love.  But this bitter and painful thought was soon
effaced from the oriental's mind, thanks to the beneficent influence of
the remembrance of Adrienne.  His brow again cleared, and he answered the
half-caste, who was watching him attentively with a sidelong glance: "You
are deluded by grief.  If you have no other reason to doubt her you love,
than these refusals and vague suspicions, be satisfied!  You are perhaps
loved better than you can imagine."

"Alas! would it were so, my lord!" replied the half-caste, dejectedly, as
if he had been deeply touched by the words of Djalma.  "Yet I say to
myself: There is for this woman something stronger than her love--
delicacy, dignity, honor, what you will--but she does not love me enough
to sacrifice for me this something!"

"Friend, you are deceived," answered Djalma, mildly, though the words
affected him with a painful impression.  "The greater the love of a
woman, the more it should be chaste and noble.  It is love itself that
awakens this delicacy and these scruples.  He rules, instead of being

"That is true," replied the half-caste, with bitter irony, "Love so rules
me, that this woman bids me love in her own fashion, and I have only to

Pausing suddenly, Faringhea hid his face in his hands, and heaved a deep-
drawn sigh.  His features expressed a mixture of hate, rage, and despair,
at once so terrible and so painful, that Djalma, more and more affected,
exclaimed, as he seized the other's hand: "Calm this fury, and listen to
the voice of friendship! It will disperse this evil influence.  Speak to

"No, no! it is too dreadful!"

"Speak, I bid thee."

"No! leave the wretch to his despair!"

"Do you think me capable of that?" said Djalma, with a mixture of
mildness and dignity, which seemed to make an impression on the half-

"Alas!" replied he, hesitating; "do you wish to hear more, my lord?"

"I wish to hear all."

"Well, then! I have not told you all--for, at the moment of making this
confession, shame and the fear of ridicule kept me back.  You asked me
what reason I had to believe myself betrayed.  I spoke to you of vague
suspicions, refusals, coldness.  That is not all--this evening--"

"Go on!"

"This evening--she made an appointment--with a man that she prefers to

"Who told you so?"

"A stranger who pitied my blindness."

"And suppose the man deceived you--or deceives himself?"

"He has offered me proofs of what he advances."

"What proofs?"

"He will enable me this evening to witness the interview.  `It may be,'
said he, `that this appointment may have no guilt in it, notwithstanding
appearances to the contrary.  Judge for yourself, have courage, and your
cruel indecision will be at an end.'"

"And what did you answer?"

"Nothing, my lord.  My head wandered as it does now and I came to you for

Then, making a gesture of despair, he proceeded with a savage laugh:
"Advice?  It is from the blade of my kand-jiar that I should ask counsel!
It would answer: `Blood! blood!'"

Faringhea grasped convulsively the long dagger attached to his girdle.
There is a sort of contagion in certain forms of passion.  At sight of
Faringhea's countenance, agitated by jealous fury, Djalma shuddered--for
he remembered the fit of insane rage, with which he had been possessed,
when the Princess de Saint-Dizier had defied Adrienne to contradict her,
as to the discovery of Agricola Baudoin in her bed-chamber.  But then,
reassured by the lady's proud and noble bearing, Djalma had soon learned
to despise the horrible calumny, which Adrienne had not even thought
worthy of an answer.  Still, two or three times, as the lightning will
flash suddenly across the clearest sky, the remembrance of that shameful
accusation had crossed the prince's mind, like a streak of fire, but had
almost instantly vanished, in the serenity and happiness of his ineffable
confidence in Adrienne's heart.  These memories, however, whilst they
saddened the mind of Djalma, only made him more compassionate with regard
to Faringhea, than he might have been without this strange coincidence
between the position of the half-caste and his own.  Knowing, by his own
experience, to what madness a blind fury may be carried, and wishing to
tame the half-caste by affectionate kindness, Djalma said to him in a
grave and mild tone: "I offered you my friendship.  I will now act
towards you a friend."

But Faringhea, seemingly a prey to a dull and mute frenzy, stood with
fixed and haggard eyes, as though he did not hear Djalma.

The latter laid his hand on his shoulder, and resumed: "Faringhea, listen
to me!"

"My lord," said the half-caste, starting abruptly, as from a dream,
"forgive me--but--"

"In the anguish occasioned by these cruel suspicions, it is not of your
kandjiar that you must take counsel--but of your friend."

"My lord--"

"To this interview, which will prove the innocence or the treachery of
your beloved, you will do well to go."

"Oh, yes!" said the half-caste, in a hollow voice, and with a bitter
smile: "I shall be there."

"But you must not go alone."

"What do you mean, my lord?" cried the half-caste.  "Who will accompany

"I will."

"You, my lord?"

"Yes--perhaps, to save you from a crime--for I know how blind and unjust
is the earliest outburst of rage."

"But that transport gives us revenge!" cried the half-caste, with a cruel

"Faringhea, this day is all my own.  I shall not leave you," said the
prince, resolutely.  "Either you shall not go to this interview, or I
will accompany you."

The half-caste appeared conquered by this generous perseverance.  He fell
at the feet of Djalma, pressed the prince's hand respectfully to his
forehead and to his lips, and said: "My lord, be generous to the end!
forgive me!"

"For what should I forgive you?"

"Before I spoke to you, I had the audacity to think of asking for what
you have just freely offered.  Not knowing to what extent my fury might
carry me, I had thought of asking you this favor, which you would not
perhaps grant to an equal, but I did not dare to do it.  I shrunk even
from the avowal of the treachery I have cause to fear, and I came only to
tell you of my misery--because to you alone in all the world I could tell

It is impossible to describe the almost candid simplicity, with which the
half-breed pronounced these words, and the soft tones, mingled with
tears, which had succeeded his savage fury.  Deeply affected, Djalma
raised him from the ground, and said: "You were entitled to ask of me a
mark of friendship.  I am happy in having forestalled you.  Courage! be
of good cheer!  I will accompany you to this interview, and if my hopes
do not deceive me, you will find you have been deluded by false

When the night was come, the half-breed and Djalma, wrapped in their
cloaks, got into a hackney-coach.  Faringhea ordered the coachman to
drive to the house inhabited by Sainte-Colombe.



Leaving Djalma and Faringhea in the coach, on their way, a few words are
indispensable before continuing this scene.   Ninny Moulin, ignorant of
the real object of the step he took at the instigation of Rodin, had, on
the evening before, according to orders received from the latter, offered
a considerable sum to Sainte-Colombe, to obtain from that creature
(still singularly rapacious) the use of her apartments for whole day.
Sainte-Colombe, having accepted this proposition, too advantageous to be
refused, had set out that morning with her servants, to whom she wished,
she said, in return for their good services, to give a day's pleasure in
the country.  Master of the house, Rodin, in a black wig, blue
spectacles, and a cloak, and with his mouth and chin buried in a worsted
comforter--in a word, perfectly disguised--had gone that morning to take
a look at the apartments, and to give his instructions to the half-caste.
The latter, in two hours from the departure of the Jesuit, had, thanks to
his address and intelligence, completed the most important preparation
and returned in haste to Djalma, to play with detestable hypocrisy the
scene at which we have just been present.

During the ride from the Rue de Clichy to the Rue de Richelieu, Faringhea
appeared plunged in a mournful reverie.  Suddenly, he said to Djalma to a
quick tone: "My lord, if I am betrayed, I must have vengeance."

"Contempt is a terrible revenge," answered Djalma.

"No, no," replied the half-caste, with an accent of repressed rage.  "It
is not enough.  The nearer the moment approaches, the more I feel I must
have blood."

"Listen to me "

"My lord, have pity on me!  I was a coward to draw back from my revenge.
Let me leave you, my lord!  I will go alone to this interview."

So saying, Faringhea made a movement, as if he would spring from the

Djalma held him by the arm, and said: "Remain!  I wilt not leave you.  If
you are betrayed, you shall not shed blood.  Contempt will avenge and
friendship will console you."

"No, no, my lord; I am resolved.  When I have killed--then I will kill
myself," cried the half-caste, with savage excitement.  "This kandjiar
for the false ones!" added he, laying his hand on his dagger.  "The
poison in the hilt for me."


"If I resist you, my lord, forgive me!  My destiny must be accomplished."

Time pressed, and Djalma, despairing to calm the other's ferocious rage,
resolved to have recourse to a stratagem.

After some minutes' silence, he said to Faringhea : I will not leave you.
I will do all I can to save you from a crime.  If I do not succeed, the
blood you shed be on your own head.  This hand shall never again be
locked in yours."

These words appeared to make a deep impression on Faringhea.  He breathed
a long sigh, and, bowing his head upon his breast, remained silent and
full of thought.  Djalma prepared, by the faint light of the lamps,
reflected in the interior of the coach, to throw himself suddenly on the
half-caste, and disarm him.  But the latter, who saw at a glance the
intention of the prince, drew his kandjiar abruptly from his girdle, and
holding it still in its sheath, said to the prince in a half-solemn,
half-savage tone: "This dagger, in a strong hand, is terrible; and in
this phial is one of the most subtle poisons of our country."

He touched a spring, and the knob at the top of the hilt rose like a lid,
discovering the mouth of a small crystal phial concealed in this
murderous weapon.

"Two or three drops of this poison upon the lips," resumed the half-
caste, "and death comes slowly and peacefully, in a few hours, and
without pain.  Only, for the first symptom, the nails turn blue.  But he
who emptied this phial at a draught would fall dead, as if struck by

"Yes," replied Djalma; "I know that our country produces such mysterious
poisons.  But why lay such stress on the murderous properties of this

"To show you, my lord, that this kandjiar would ensure the success and
impunity of my vengeance.  With the blade I could destroy, and by the
poison escape from human justice.  Well, my lord! this kandjiar--take it-
-I give it up to you--I renounce my vengeance--rather than render myself
unworthy to clasp again your hand!"

He presented the dagger to the prince, who, as pleased as surprised at

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