Maurice embraces you; I shall go to Paris without him: he is drawn on the jury for the 2 September till...no one knows. It is a tiresome task. Aurore is very cunning with her arms, she offers them to you to kiss; her hands are marvels and they are incredibly clever for her age.
Au revoir, then, if I can only pull myself out of the state I am now in. Insomnia is the devil; in the daytime one makes a lot of effort not to sadden others. At night one falls back on oneself.
Dear old fellow,
I am worried at not having news of you since that illness of which you spoke. Are you well again? Yes, we shall go to see the rollers and the beaches next month if you like, if your heart prompts you. The novel goes on apace; but I shall besprinkle it with local color afterwards.
While waiting, I am still here, stuck up to my chin in the river every day, and regaining my strength entirely in this cold and shady stream which I adore, and where I have passed so many hours of my life reviving myself after too long sessions in company with my ink-well. I go definitely to Paris, the 16th; the 17th at one o’clock, I leave for Rouen and Jumieges, where my friend Madame Lebarbier de Tinan awaits me at the house of M. Lepel-Cointet, the landowner; I shall stay there the 18th so as to return to Paris the 19th. Will it be inconvenient if I come to see you? I am sick with longing to do so; but I am so absolutely forced to spend the evening of the 19th in Paris that I do not know if I shall have the time. You must tell me. I can get a word from you the 16th in Paris, 97 rue des Feuillantines. I shall not be alone; I have as a travelling companion a charming young literary woman, Juliette Lamber. If you were lovely, lovely, you would walk to Jumieges the 19th. We would return together so that I could be in Paris at six o’clock in the evening at the latest. But if you are even a little bit ill still, or are plunged in ink, pretend that I have said nothing, and prepare to see us next month. As for the winter walk on the Norman coast, that gives me a cold in my back, I who plan to go to the Gulf of Juan at that time.
I have been sick over the death of my friend Rollinat. My body is cured, but my soul! I should have to stay a week with you to refresh myself in your affectionate strength; for cold and purely philosophical courage to me, is like cauterizing a wooden leg.
I embrace you and I love you (also your mother). Maurice also, what French! One is happy to forget it, it is a tiresome thing.
What, no news?
But you will answer me since I ask you a service. I read this in my notes: “National of 1841. Bad treatments inflicted on Barbes, kicks on his breast, dragged by the beard and hair in order to put him in an in-pace. Consultation of lawyers signed: E. Arago, Favre, Berryer, to complain of these abominations.”