The Wandering Jew — Complete eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,533 pages of information about The Wandering Jew Complete.

Little Rose-Pompon, with her pinched-up cocked-hat stuck on one side, her hands in the pockets of her trousers, her bust a little inclined forward, and undulating from right to left, advanced to meet Ninny-Moulin; the latter danced, or rather leaped towards her, his left leg bent under him, his right leg stretched forward, with the toe raised, and the heel gliding on the floor; moreover, he struck his neck with his left hand, and by a simultaneous movement, stretched forth his right, as if he would have thrown dust in the eyes of his opposite partner.

This first figure met with great success, and the applause was vociferous, though it was only the innocent prelude to the step of the Storm-blown Tulip—­when suddenly the door opened, and one of the waiters, after looking about for an instant, in search of Sleepinbuff, ran to him, and whispered some words in his ear.

“Me!” cried Jacques, laughing; “here’s a go!”

The waiter added a few more words, when Sleepinbuff’s face assumed an expression of uneasiness, as he answered.  “Very well!  I come directly,”—­and he made a step towards the door.

“What’s the matter, Jacques?” asked the Bacchanal Queen, in some surprise.

“I’ll be back immediately.  Some one take my place.  Go on with the dance,” said Sleepinbuff, as he hastily left the room.

“Something, that was not put down in the bill,” said Dumoulin; “he will soon be back.”

“That’s it,” said Cephyse.  “Now cavalier suel!” she added, as she took Jacques’s place, and the dance continued.

Ninny Moulin had just taken hold of Rose Pompon with his right hand, and of the Queen with his left, in order to advance between the two, in which figure he showed off his buffoonery to the utmost extent, when the door again opened, and the same waiter, who had called out Jacques, approached Cephyse with an air of consternation, and whispered in her ear, as he had before done to Sleepinbuff.

The Bacchanal Queen grew pale, uttered a piercing scream, and rushed out of the room without a word, leaving her guests in stupefaction.

[11] These atrocious words were actually spoken during the Lyons Riots.

CHAPTER IV.

THE FAREWELL

The Bacchanal Queen, following the waiter, arrived at the bottom of the staircase.  A coach was standing before the door of the house.  In it she saw Sleepinbuff, with one of the men who, two hours before, had been waiting on the Place du Chatelet.

On the arrival of Cephyse, the man got down, and said to Jacques, as he drew out his watch:  “I give you a quarter of an hour; it is all that I can do for you, my good fellow; after that we must start.  Do not try to escape, for we’ll be watching at the coach doors.”

With one spring, Cephyse was in the coach.  Too much overcome to speak before, she now exclaimed, as she took her seat by Jacques, and remarked the paleness of his countenance:  “What is it?  What do they want with you?”

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The Wandering Jew — Complete from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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