The Vicomte De Bragelonne eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 556 pages of information about The Vicomte De Bragelonne.
He landed without having seen anything; and learnt from the first soldier interrogated by him, that M. du Vallon had not yet returned from Vannes.  Then, without losing an instant, D’Artagnan ordered his little bark to put its head towards Sarzeau.  We know that the wind changes with the different hours of the day.  The breeze had veered from the north north-east to the south-east; the wind, then, was almost as good for the return to Sarzeau, as it had been for the voyage to Belle-Isle.  In three hours D’Artagnan had touched the continent; two hours more sufficed for his ride to Vannes.  In spite of the rapidity of his passage, what D’Artagnan endured of impatience and anger during that short passage, the deck alone of the vessel, upon which he stamped backwards and forwards for three hours, could testify.  He made but one bound from the quay whereon he landed to the episcopal palace.  He thought to terrify Aramis by the promptitude of his return; he wished to reproach him with his duplicity, and yet with reserve; but with sufficient spirit, nevertheless, to make him feel all the consequences of it, and force from him a part of his secret.  He hoped, in short — thanks to that heat of expression which is to secrets what the charge with the bayonet is to redoubts — to bring the mysterious Aramis to some manifestation or other.  But he found, in the vestibule of the palace, the valet de chambre, who closed his passage, while smiling upon him with a stupid air.

“Monseigneur?” cried D’Artagnan, endeavoring to put him aside with his hand.  Moved for an instant the valet resumed his station.

“Monseigneur?” said he.

“Yes, to be sure; do you not know me, imbecile?

“Yes; you are the Chevalier d’Artagnan.”

“Then let me pass.”

“It is of no use.”

“Why of no use?”

“Because His Greatness is not at home.”

“What!  His Greatness is not at home? where is he, then?”

“Gone.”

“Gone?”

“Yes.”

“Whither?”

“I don’t know; but perhaps he tells monsieur le chevalier.”

“And how? where? in what fashion?”

“In this letter, which he gave me for monsieur le chevalier.”  And the valet de chambre drew a letter form his pocket.”

“Give it me, then, you rascal,” said D’Artagnan, snatching it from his hand.  “Oh, yes,” continued he, at the first line, “yes, I understand;” and he read:  —

“Dear Friend, — An affair of the most urgent nature calls me to a distant parish of my diocese.  I hoped to see you again before I set out; but I lose that hope in thinking that you are going, no doubt, to remain two or three days at Belle-Isle, with our dear Porthos.  Amuse yourself as well as you can; but do not attempt to hold out against him at table.  This is a counsel I might have given even to Athos, in his most brilliant and best days.  Adieu, dear friend; believe that I regret greatly not having better, and for a longer time, profited by your excellent company.”

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The Vicomte De Bragelonne from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.