Support the Monkey! Tell All your Friends and Teachers
it but a wilderness of misery and ruin!” “Hah!” said the Marquis,
glancing round the luxurious room.
“To the eye it is fair enough, here; but seen in its integrity, under
the sky, and by the daylight, it is a crumbling tower of waste,
mismanagement, extortion, debt, mortgage, oppression, hunger,
nakedness, and suffering.” “Hah!” said the Marquis again, in a
“If it ever becomes mine, it shall be put into some hands better
qualified to free it slowly (if such a thing is possible) from the
weight that drags it down, so that the miserable people who cannot
leave it and who have been long wrung to the last point of
endurance, may, in another generation, suffer less; but it is not for
me. There is a curse on it, and on all this land.” “And you?” said
the uncle. “Forgive my curiosity; do you, under your new
philosophy, graciously intend to live?” “I must do, to live, what
others of my countrymen, even with nobility at their backs, may
have to do some day-work.” “In England, for example?” “Yes. The
family honour, sir, is safe from me in this country. The family
name can suffer from me in no other, for I bear it in no other.” The
ringing of the bell had caused the adjoining bed-chamber to be
lighted. It now shone brightly, through the door of communication.
The Marquis looked that way, and listened for the retreating step
of his valet.
“England is very attractive to you, seeing how indifferently you
have prospered there,” he observed then, turning his calm face to
his nephew with a smile.
“I have already said, that for my prospering there, I am sensible I
may be indebted to you, sir. For the rest, it is my Refuge.” “They
say, those boastful English, that it is the Refuge of many. You know
a compatriot who has found a Refuge there? A Doctor?” “Yes.”
“With a daughter?” “Yes.” “Yes,” said the Marquis. “You are
fatigued. Good night!” As he bent his head in his most courtly
manner, there was a secrecy in his smiling face, and he conveyed
an air of mystery to those words, which struck the eyes and ears of
his nephew forcibly. At the same time, the thin straight lines of the
setting of the eyes, and the thin straight lips, and the markings in
the nose, curved with a sarcasm that looked handsomely diabolic.
“Yes,” repeated the Marquis. “A Doctor with a daughter. Yes. So
commences the new philosophy! You are fatigued. Good night!” It
would have been of as much avail to interrogate any stone face
outside the chateau as to interrogate that face of his. The nephew
looked at him, in vain, in passing on to the door.
“Good night!” said the uncle. “I look to the pleasure of seeing you
again in the morning. Good repose! Light Monsieur my nephew to