It was then the opinion of many philosophers that it would be more difficult to get her down then it had been to draw her up. But I convinced them to the contrary by taking my aim so exactly with a twelve-pounder, that I brought her down in an instant.
I considered, that if I should break the balloon with a cannon-ball while she remained with the vessel over the land, the fall would inevitable occasion the destruction of the hull, and which, in its fall, might crush some of the multitude; therefore I thought it safer to take my aim when the balloon was over the sea, and pointing my twelve-pounder, drove the ball right through the balloon, on which the inflammable air rushed out with great force, and the “Royal George” descended like a falling star into the very spot from whence she had been taken. There she still remains, and I have convinced all Europe of the possibility of taking her up.
The Baron makes a speech to the National Assembly, and drives out all the members—Routs the fishwomen and the National Guards—Pursues the whole rout into a Church, where he defeats the National Assembly, &c., with Rousseau, Voltaire, and Beelzebub at their head, and liberates Marie Antoinette and the Royal Family.
Passing through Switzerland on my return from India, I was informed that several of the German nobility had been deprived of the honours and immunities of their French estates. I heard of the sufferings of the amiable Marie Antoinette, and swore to avenge every look that had threatened her with insult. I went to the cavern of these Anthropophagi, assembled to debate, and gracefully putting the hilt of my sword to my lips—“I swear,” cried I, “by the sacred cross of my sword, that if you do not instantly reinstate your king and his nobility, and your injured queen, I will cut the one half of you to pieces.”
On which the President, taking up a leaden inkstand, flung it at my head. I stooped to avoid the blow, and rushing to the tribunal seized the Speaker, who was fulminating against the Aristocrats, and taking the creature by one leg, flung him at the President. I laid about me most nobly, drove them all out of the house, and locking the doors put the key in my pocket.
I then went to the poor king, and making my obeisance to him—“Sire,” said I, “your enemies have all fled. I alone am the National Assembly at present, and I shall register your edicts to recall the princes and the nobility; and in future, if your majesty pleases, I will be your Parliament and Council.” He thanked me, and the amiable Marie Antoinette, smiling, gave me her hand to kiss.
At that moment I perceived a party of the National Assembly, who had rallied with the National Guards, and a vast procession of fishwomen, advancing against me. I deposited their Majesties in a place of safety, and with my drawn sword advanced against my foes. Three hundred fishwomen, with bushes dressed with ribbons in their hands, came hallooing and roaring against me like so many furies. I scorned to defile my sword with their blood, but seized the first that came up, and making her kneel down I knighted her with my sword, which so terrified the rest that they all set up a frightful yell and ran away as fast as they could for fear of being aristocrated by knighthood.