A Versailles Christmas-Tide eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 59 pages of information about A Versailles Christmas-Tide.

Illustrations

The Summons
Storm Warning
Treasure Trove
The Red Cross in the Window
Enter M. le Docteur
Perpetual Motion
Ursa Major
Meal Considerations
The Two Colonels
The Young and Brave
Malcontent
The Aristocrat
Papa, Mama, et Bebe
Juvenile Progress
Automoblesse oblige
Sable Garb
A Football Team
Mistress and Maid
Sage and Onions
Marketing
Private Boxes
A Foraging Party
A Thriving Merchant
Chestnuts in the Avenue
The Tree Vendor
The Tree Bearer
Rosine
Alms and the Lady
Adoration
Thankfulness
One of the Devout
De l’eau Chaude
The Mill
The Presbytery
To the Place of Rest
While the Frost Holds
The Postman’s Wrap
A Lapful of Warmth
The Daily Round
Three Babes and a Bonne
Snow in the Park
A Veteran of the Chateau
Un, Deux, Trois
Bedchamber of Louis XIV
Marie Leczinska
Madame Adelaide
Louis Quatorze
Where the Queen Played
Marie Antoinette
The Secret Stair
Madame sans Tete
Illumination
L’Envoi

CHAPTER I

THE UNEXPECTED HAPPENS

[Illustration:  The Summons]

No project could have been less foreseen than was ours of wintering in France, though it must be confessed that for several months our thoughts had constantly strayed across the Channel.  For the Boy was at school at Versailles, banished there by our desire to fulfil a parental duty.

The time of separation had dragged tardily past, until one foggy December morning we awoke to the glad consciousness that that very evening the Boy would be with us again.  Across the breakfast-table we kept saying to each other, “It seems scarcely possible that the Boy is really coming home to-night,” but all the while we hugged the assurance that it was.

The Boy is an ordinary snub-nosed, shock-headed urchin of thirteen, with no special claim to distinction save the negative one of being an only child.  Yet without his cheerful presence our home seemed empty and dull.  Any attempts at merry-making failed to restore its life.  Now all was agog for his return.  The house was in its most festive trim.  Christmas presents were hidden securely away.  There was rejoicing downstairs as well as up:  the larder shelves were stored with seasonable fare, and every bit of copper and brass sparkled a welcome.  Even the kitchen cat sported a ribbon, and had a specially energetic purr ready.

Into the midst of our happy preparations the bad news fell with bomb-like suddenness.  The messenger who brought the telegram whistled shrilly and shuffled a breakdown on the doorstep while he waited to hear if there was an answer.

“He is ill.  He can’t come.  Scarlet fever,” one of us said in an odd, flat voice.

“Scarlet fever.  At school.  Oh! when can we go to him?  When is there a boat?” cried the other.

Copyrights
Project Gutenberg
A Versailles Christmas-Tide from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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