The Vicomte De Bragelonne eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 556 pages of information about The Vicomte De Bragelonne.

“The end of what?”

“Of the confession, monsieur.”

“But I have ended.”

“Oh, no; your eminence is mistaken.”

“Not that I know of.”

“Search diligently.”

“I have searched as well as possible.”

“Then I shall assist your memory.”

“Do.”

The Theatin coughed several times.  “You have said nothing of avarice, another capital sin, nor of those millions,” said he.

“What millions, father?”

“Why, those you possess, my lord.”

“Father, that money is mine, why should I speak to you about that?”

“Because, you see, our opinions differ.  You say that money is yours, whilst I — I believe it is rather the property of others.”

Mazarin lifted his cold hand to his brow, which was beaded with perspiration.  “How so?” stammered he.

“This way.  Your excellency had gained much wealth — in the service of the king.”

“Hum! much — that is, not too much.”

“Whatever it may be, whence came that wealth?”

“From the state.”

“The state; that is the king.”

“But what do you conclude from that, father?” said Mazarin, who began to tremble.

“I cannot conclude without seeing a list of the riches you possess.  Let us reckon a little, if you please.  You have the bishopric of Metz?”

“Yes.”

“The abbeys of St. Clement, St. Arnould, and St. Vincent, all at Metz?”

“Yes.”

“You have the abbey of St. Denis, in France, magnificent property?”

“Yes, father.”

“You have the abbey of Cluny, which is rich?”

“I have.”

“That of St. Medard at Soissons, with a revenue of one hundred thousand livres?”

“I cannot deny it.”

“That of St. Victor, at Marseilles, — one of the best in the south?”

“Yes father.”

“A good million a year.  With the emoluments of the cardinalship and the ministry, I say too little when I say two millions a year.”

“Eh!”

“In ten years that is twenty millions — and twenty millions put out at fifty per cent. give, by progression, twenty-three millions in ten years.”

“How well you reckon for a Theatin!”

“Since your eminence placed our order in the convent we occupy, near St. Germain des Pres, in 1644, I have kept the accounts of the society.”

“And mine likewise, apparently, father.”

“One ought to know a little of everything, my lord.”

“Very well.  Conclude, at present.”

“I conclude that your baggage is too heavy to allow you to pass through the gates of Paradise.”

“Shall I be damned?”

“If you do not make restitution, yes.”

Mazarin uttered a piteous cry.  “Restitution! — but to whom, good God?”

“To the owner of that money, — to the king.”

“But the king did not give it all to me.”

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The Vicomte De Bragelonne from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.