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seeing you than you had of seeing me."

So saying, M. Dupont bowed with some-
thing like mock politeness to the half-caste,
and got into the carriage, which drove off
rapidly, leaving Faringhea in a state of the
utmost surprise and anger.



THE morning after Dupont's mission to
Prince Djalma, the latter was walking
with hasty and impatient step up and
down the little saloon, which communi-
cated, as we already know, with the green-
house from which Adrienne had entered
when she first appeared to him. In re-
membrance of that day, he had chosen to
dress himself as on the occasion in ques-
tion; he wore the same tunic of white
cashmere, with a cherry-colored turban,
to match with his girdle; his gaiters, of
scarlet velvet, embroidered with silver,


displayed the fine form of his leg, and
terminated in small white morocco slip-
pers, with red heels. Happiness has so
instantaneous, and, as it were, material an
influence upon young, lively, and ardent
natures, that Djalma, dejected and de-
spairing only the day before, was no longer
like the same person. The pale, transpar-
ent gold of his complexion was no longer
tarnished by a livid hue. His large eyes,
of late obscured like black diamonds by a
humid vapor, now shone with mild radi-
ance in the center of their pearly setting;
his lips, long pale, had recovered their
natural color, which was rich and soft as
the fine purple flowers of his country.

Ever and anon, pausing in his hasty
walk, he stopped suddenly, and drew from
his bosom a little piece of paper, carefully
folded, which he pressed to his lips with
enthusiastic ardor. Then, unable to re-
strain the expression of his happiness, lie
uttered a full and sonorous cry of joy, and
with a bound he was in front of the plate-
glass which separated the saloon from the
conservatory, in which he had first seen
Mdlle. de Cardoville. By a singular power
of remembrance, or marvelous hallucina-
tion of a mind possessed by a fixed idea,
Djalma had often seen? or fancied he saw,


the adored semblance of Adrienne appear
to him through this sheet of crystal. The
illusion had been so complete, that, with
his eyes ardently fixed on the vision he
invoked, he had been able, with the aid
of a pencil dipped in carmine, to trace,
with astonishing exactness, the profile
of the ideal countenance which the de-
lirium of his imagination had presented
to his view.* It was before these deli-
cate lines of bright carmine that Djalma
now stood in deep contemplation, after
perusing, and reperusing, and raising
twenty tunes to his lips, the letter he
had received the night before from the
hands of Dupont. Djalma was not alone.
Faringhea watched all the movements of
the prince, with a subtle, attentive, and
gloomy aspect. Standing respectfully in
a corner of the saloon, the half-caste ap-
peared to be occupied in unfolding and
spreading out Djalma's sash, light, silky
Indian web, the brown ground of which
was almost entirely concealed by the ex-
quisite gold and silver embroidery with
which it was overlaid.

The countenance of the half-caste wore

* Some collectors of curiosities possess such
sketches, the product of Indian art, distinguished
by their primitive simplicity.


a dark and gloomy expression. He could
not deceive himself. The letter from Mdlle.
de Cardoville, delivered by Dupont to
Djalma, must have been the cause of the
delight he now experienced; for, without
doubt, he knew himself beloved. In that
event, his obstinate silence toward Faring-
hea, ever since the latter had entered the
saloon, greatly alarmed the half-caste, who
could not tell what interpretation to put
upon it. The night before, after parting
with Dupont, he had hastened, in a state
of anxiety easily understood, to look for
the prince, in the hope of ascertaining the
effect produced by Mdlle. de Cardoville's
letter. But he found the parlor door closed,
and when he knocked, he received no an-
swer from within. Then, though the
night was far advanced, he had dispatched
a note to Rodin, in which he informed him
of Dupont's visit and its probable inten-
tion. Djalma had indeed passed the night
in a tumult of happiness and hope, and a
fever of impatience quite impossible to de-
scribe. Repairing to his bed-chamber only
toward the morning, he had taken a few
moments of repose, and had then dressed
himself without assistance.

Many times, but in vain, the half-caste
had discreetly knocked at the door of Djal-


ma s apartment. It was only in the early
part of the afternoon that the prince had
rung the bell to order his carriage to be
ready by half-past two. Faringhea hav-
ing presented himself, the prince had given
him the order without looking at him, as
he might have done to any other of his
servants. Was this suspicion, aversion,
or mere absence of mind on the part of
Djalma? Such were the questions which
the half-caste put to himself with growing
anguish ; for the designs of which he was
the most active and immediate instrument
might all be ruined by the least suspicion
in the prince.

"Oh! the hours the hours how slow
they are!" cried the young Indian, sud-
denly, in a low and trembling voice.

"The day before yesterday, my lord,
you said the hours were very long," ob-
served Faringhea, as he drew near Djalma
in order to attract his attention. Seeing
that he did not succeed in this, he ad-
vanced a few steps nearer, and resumed :
"Your joy seems very great, my lord; tell
the cause of it to your poor and faithful
servant, that he also may rejoice with

If he heard the words, Djalma did not
pay any attention to them. He made no


answer, and his large black eyes gazed
upon vacancy. He seemed to smile ad-
miringly on some enchanting vision, and
he folded his two hands upon his bosom,
in the attitude which his countrymen as-
sume at the hour of prayer. After some
instants of contemplation, he said: "What
o'clock is it?" but he asked this question
of himself, rather than of any third per-

"It will soon be two o'clock, my lord,"
said Faringhea.

Having heard this answer, Djalma seated
himself, and hid his face in his hands, as
if completely absorbed in some ineffable
meditation. Urged on by his growing
anxiety, and wishing at any cost to at-
tract the attention of Djalma, Faringhea
approached still nearer to him, and, al-
most certain of the effect of the words he
was about to utter, said to him in a slow
and emphatic voice: "My lord, I am sure
that you owe the happiness which now
transports you to Mdlle. de Cardoville."

Hardly had this name been pronounced,
than Djalma started from his chair, looked
the half-breed full in the face, and ex-
claimed, as if only just aware of his pres-
ence, "Faringhea! you here ! what is the
matter V"


"Your faithful servant shares in your
joy, my lord."

"What joy?"

"That which the letter of Mdlle. de
Cardoville has occasioned, my lord."

Djalma returned no answer, but his eye
shone with so much serene happiness that
the half-caste recovered from his appre-
hensions. No cloud of doubt or suspicion
obscured the radiant features of the prince.
After a few moments of silence, Dj'alma
fixed upon the half-caste a look half-veiled
with a tear of joy, and said to him, with
the expression of one whose heart over-
flows with love and happiness : ' ' Oh ! such
delight is good great like heaven! for
it is heaven which "

"You deserve this happiness, my lord,
after so many sufferings."

"What sufferings! Oh! yes. I for-
merly suffered at Java; but that was years

"My lord, this great good fortune does
not astonish me. What have I always
told you? Do not despair; feign a violent
passion for some other woman, and then
this proud young lady "

At these words Djalma looked at the
half-caste with so piercing a glance that
the latter stopped short; but the prince


said to him with affectionate goodness,
"Go on! I listen."

Then, leaning his chin upon his hand,
and his elbow on his knee, he gazed so in-
tently on Faringhea, and yet with such
unutterable mildness, that even that iron
soul was touched for a moment with a
slight feeling of remorse.

"I was saying, my lord," he resumed,
"that by following the counsels of your
faithful slave, who persuaded you to feign
a passionate love for another woman, you
have brought the proud Mdlle. de Cardo-
ville to come to you. Did I not tell you it
would be so?"

"Yes, you did tell me so," answered
Djalma, still maintaining the same
position, and examining the half-caste
with the same fixed and mild atten-

The surprise of Faringhea increased;
generally, the prince, without treating him
with the least harshness, preserved the
somewhat distant and imperious manners
of their common country, and he had never
before spoken to him with such extreme
mildness. Knowing all the evil he had
done the prince, and suspicious as the
wicked must ever be, the half - caste
thought for a moment that "his master's


apparent kindness might conceal a snare.
He continued, therefore, with less assur-
ance, "Believe me, my lord, this day, if
you do but know how to profit by your
advantages, will console you for all your
troubles, which have indeed been great
for only yesterday, though you are gener-
ous enough to forget it, only yesterday
you suffered cruelly but you were not
alone in your sufferings. This proud
young lady suffered also!"

"Do you think so?" said Djalma.

"Oh! it is quite sure, my lord. What
must she not have felt, when she saw you
at the theater with another woman! If
she loved you only a little, she must have
been deeply wounded in her self-esteem;
if she loved you with passion, she must
have been struck to the heart. At length,
you see, wearied out with suffering, she
has come to you."

"So that, any way, she must have
suffered and that does not move your
pity?" said Djalma, in a constrained, but
still very mild voice.

"Before thinking of others, my lord, I
think of your distresses; and they touch
me too nearly to leave me any pity for
other woes," added Faringhea, hypocriti-
cally, so greatly had the influence of Ro-


din already modified the character of the

"It is strange!" said Djalma, speaking
to himself, as he viewed the half-caste with
a glance still kind, but piercing.

"What is strange, my lord?"

"Nothing. But tell me, since your ad-
vice has hitherto prospered so well, what
think you of the future?"

"Of the future, my lord?"

"Yes; in an hour I shall be with Mdlle.
de Cardoville. "

"That is a serious matter, my lord. The
whole future will depend upon this inter-

"That is what I was just thinking."

"Believe me, my lord, women never love
any so well as the bold man who spares
them the embarrassment of a refusal."

"Explain more fully."

"Well, my lord, they despise the timid
and languishing lover, who asks humbly
for what he might take by force."

"But to-day I shall meet Mdlle. de Car-
doville for the first time."

"You have met her a thousand times in
your dreams, my lord; and depend upon
it, she has seen you also in her dreams,
since she loves you. Every one of your
amorous thoughts has found an echo in


her heart. All your ardent adorations
have been responded to by her. Love has
not two languages, and, without meeting,
you have said all that you had to say to
each other. Now, it is for you to act as
her master, and she will be yours entirely."

"It is strange very strange!" said
Djalma, a second time, without remov-
ing his eyes from Faringhea's face.

Mistaking the sense which the prince
attached to these words, the half-caste re-
sumed: "Believe me, my lord, however
strange it may appear, this is the wisest
course. Remember the past. Was it by
playing the part of a timid lover that you
have brought to your feet this proud young
lady, my lord? No, it was by pretending
to despise her, in favor of another woman.
Therefore, let us have no weakness. The
lion does not woo like the poor turtle-dove.
What cares the sultan of the desert for a
few plaintive howls from the lioness, who
is more pleased than angry at his rude and
wild caresses? Soon submissive, fearful,
and happy, she follows in the track of her
master. Believe me, my lord try every-
thing dare everything and to-day you
will become the adored sultan of this
young lady, whose beauty all Paris ad-


After some minutes' silence, Djalma,
shaking his head with an expression of
tender pity, said to the half-caste, in his
mild, sonorous voice: "Why betray me
thus? Why advise me thus wickedly to
use violence, terror, and surprise, toward
an angel of purity, whom I respect as my
mother? Is it not enough for you to have
been so long devoted to my enemies, whose
hatred has followed me from Java?"

Had Djalma sprung upon the half-caste
with bloodshot eye, menacing brow, and
lifted poniard, the latter would have been
less surprised, and perhaps less frightened,
than when he heard the prince speak of his
treachery in this tone of mild reproach.

He drew back hastily, as if about to
stand on his guard. But Djalma resumed,
with the same gentleness, "Fear nothing.
Yesterday I should have killed you ! But
to-day happy love renders me too just, too
merciful for that. I pity you, without any
feeling of bitterness for you must have
been very unhappy, or you could not have
become so wicked."

"My lord!" said the half-caste, with
growing amazement.

"Yes, you must have, suffered much,
and met with little mercy, poor creature
to have become so merciless in your hate,


and proof against the sight of a happiness
like mine. When I listened to you just
now, and saw the sad perseverance of your
hatred, I felt the deepest commiseration
for you."

"I do not know, my lord but " stam-
mered the half-caste, and was unable to
find words 'to proceed.

"Come, now what harm have I ever
done you?"

"None, my lord," answered Faringhea.

"Then why do you hate me thus? why
pursue me with so much animosity? Was
it not enough to give me the perfidious
counsel to feign a shameful love for the
young girl that was brought hither, and
who quitted the house disgusted at the mis-
erable part she was to play?"

"Your feigned love for that young girl,
my lord," replied Faringhea, gradually re-
covering his presence of mind, "conquered
the coldness of "

- "Do not say that," resumed the prince,
interrupting him with the same mildness.
"If I enjoy this happiness, which makes
me compassionate toward you, and raises
me above myself, it is because Mdlle. de
Cardoville now knows that I have never
for a moment ceased to love her as she
ought to be loved, with adoration and rev-


erence. It was your intention to have
parted us forever, and you had nearly suc-

"If you think this of me, my lord, you
must look upon me as your most mortal
enemy. '

"Fear nothing, I tell you. I have no
right to blame you. In the madness of my
grief, I listened to you and followed your
advice. I was not only your dupe, but
your accomplice. Only confess that, when
you saw me at your mercy, dejected,
crushed, despairing, it was cruel in you to
advise the course that might have been
most fatal to me.*'

"The ardor of my zeal may have de-
ceived me, my lord."

"I am willing to believe it. And yet
again to-day there were the same evil coun-
sels. You had no more pity for my hap-
piness than for my sorrow. The rapture
of my heart inspires you with only one de-
sire that of changing this rapture into

"I, my lord!"

"Yes, you. It was your intention to
ruin me to dishonor me forever in the
eyes of Mdlle. de Cardoville. Now, tell
me why this furious hate? what have I
done to you?"


"You misjudge me, my lord and "
"Listen to me. I do not wish you to be
any longer wicked and treacherous. I wish
to make you good. In our country they
charm serpents, and tame the wildest
tigers. You are a man, with a mind to
reason, a heart to love, and I will tame
you too by gentleness. This day has be-
stowed on me divine happiness; you shall
have good cause to bless this day. What
can I do for you? what would you have
gold? You shall have it. Do you desire
more than gold? Do you desire a friend,
to console you for the sorrows that made
you wicked, and to teach you to be good?
Though a king's son, I will be that friend
in spite of the evil ay, because of the
evil you have done me. Yes; I will be
your sincere friend, and it shall be my de-
light to say to myself: 'The day on which
I learned that my angel loved me, my hap-
piness was great indeed for, in the morn-
ing, I had an implacable enemy, and, ere
night, his hatred was changed to friend-
ship.' Believe me, Faringhea, misery
makes crime, but happiness produces vir-
tue. Be happy."

At this moment the clock struck two.
The prince started. It was time to go on
his visit to Adrienne. The handsome


countenance of Djalma, doubly embel-
lished by the mild, ineffable expression
with which it had been animated while he
was talking to the half-caste, now seemed
illumined with almost divine radiance.

Approaching Faringhea, he extended his
hand with the utmost grace and courtesy,
saying to him, "Your hand!"

The half-caste, whose brow was bathed
with a cold sweat, whose countenance was
pale and agitated, seemed to hesitate for
an instant; then, overawed, conquered,
fascinated, he offered his trembling hand
to the prince, who pressed it, and said to
him, in their country's fashion, "You have
laid your hand honestly in a friend's; this
hand shall never be closed against you.
Faringhea, farewell! I now feel myself
more worthy to kneel before my angel."

And Djalma went out, on his way to
the appointment with Adiienne. In spite
of his ferocity, in spite of the pitiless hate
he bore to the whole human race, the dark
sectary of Bowanee was staggered by the
noble and clement words of Djalma, and
said to himself, with terror, "I have taken
his hand. He is now sacred for me."

Then, after a moment's silence, a thought
occurred to him, and he exclaimed, "Yes
but he will not be sacred for him who,


according to the answer of last night, waits
for him at the door of the house. ' '

So saying, the half-caste hastened into
the next room, which looked upon the
street, and, raising a corner of the curtain,
muttered anxiously to himself, "The car-
riage moves off the man approaches.
Perdition! it is gone, and I see no more."



BY a singular coincidence of ideas, Adri-
enne, like Djalma, had wished to be dressed
exactly in the same costume as at their in-
terview in the house in the Rue Blanche.
For the site of this solemn meeting, so im-
portant to her future happiness, Adrienne
had chosen, with habitual tact, the grand
drawing - room of Cardoville House, in
which hung many family portraits. The
most apparent were those of her father and
mother. The room was large and lofty,
and furnished, like those which preceded
it, with all the imposing splendor of the
age of Louis XIV. The ceiling, painted
by Lebrun, to represent the Triumph of
Apollo, displayed his bold designing and
vigorous coloring, in the center of a wide
cornice, magnificently carved and gilded,


and supported at its angles by four large
gilt figures, representing the Seasons.
Huge panels, covered with crimson dam-
ask, and set in frames, served as the back-
ground to the family portraits which
adorned this apartment. It is easier to
conceive than describe the thousand con-
flicting emotions which agitated the bosom
of Mdlle. de Cardoville as the moment ap-
proached for her interview with Djalma.
Their meeting had been hitherto prevented
by so many painful obstacles, and Adri-
enne was so well aware of the vigilant and
active perfidy of her enemies, that even
now she doubted of her happiness. Every
instant, in spite of herself, her eyes wan-
dered to the clock. A few minutes more,
and the hour of the appointment would
strike. It struck at last. Every reverber-
ation was echoed from the depth of Adri-
enne's heart. She considered that Djalma's
modest reserve had, doubtless, prevented
his coming before the moment fixed by her-
self. Far from blaming this discretion,
she fully appreciated it. But, from that
moment, at the least noise in the adjoining
apartments, she held her breath, and list-
ened with the anxiety of expectation.

For the first few minutes which followed
the hour at which she expected Djalma,


Mdlle. de Cardoville felt no serious appre-
hension, and calmed her impatience by the
notion (which appears childish enough to
those who have never known the feverish
agitation of waiting for a happy meeting),
that perhaps the clocks in the Rue Blanche
might vary a little from those in the Rue
d'Anjou. But when this supposed varia-
tion, conceivable enough in itself, could no
longer explain a delay of a quarter of an
hour, of twenty minutes, of more, Adii-
enne felt her anxiety gradually increase.
Two or three times the young girl rose,
with palpitating heart, and went on tip-toe
to listen at the door of the saloon. She
heard nothing. The clock struck half-past

Unable to suppress her growing terror,
and clinging to a last hope, Adrienne re-
turned toward the fireplace and rang the
bell. After which she endeavored to com-
pose her features, so as to betray no out-
ward sign of emotion. In a few seconds
a gray-haired footman, dressed in black,
opened the door, and waited in respectful
silence for the orders of his mistress. The
latter said to him, in a calm voice, "An-
drew, request Hebe to give you the smell-
ing-bottle that I left on the chimney-piece
in my room, and bring it me here." An-


drew bowed; but just as he was about to
withdraw to execute Adrienne's order,
which was only a pretext to enable her to
ask a question without appearing to attach
much importance to it in her servant's
eyes, already informed of the expected
visit of the prince, Mdlle. de Cardoville
added, with an air of indifference, "Pray,
is that clock right?"

Andrew drew out his watch, and re-
plied, as he cast his eyes upon it, "Yes,
mademoiselle. I set my watch by the
Tuileries. It is more than half -past three. ' '

"Very well thank you!" said Adrienne

Andrew again bowed ; but, before going
out, he said to Adrienne, "I forgot to tell
you, lady, that Marshal Simon called about
an hour ago; but, as you were only to be
at home to Prince Djalma, we told him
that you received no company."

"Very well," said Adrienne. With an-
other low bow, Andrew quitted the room,
and all returned to silence.

For the precise reason that, up to the
last minute of the hour previous to the
time fixed for her interview with Dalma,
the hopes of Adrienne had not been dis-
turbed by the slightest shadow of doubt,
the disappointment she now felt -was the


more dreadful. Casting a desponding look
at one of the portraits placed above her,
she murmured, with a plaintive and de-
spairing accent, "Oh, mother!"

Hardly had Mdlle. de Cardoville uttered
the words than the windows were slightly
shaken by a carriage rolling into the court-
yard. The young lady started, and was
unable to repress a low cry of joy. Her
heart bounded at the thought of meeting
Djalma, for this time she felt that he was
really come. She was quite as certain of
it as if she had seen him. She resumed
her seat, and brushed away a tear sus-
pended from her long eyelashes. Her
hand trembled like a leaf. The sound of
several doors opening and shutting proved
that the young lady was right in her con-
jecture. The gilded panels of the drawing-
room door soon turned upon their hinges,
and the prince appeared.

While a second footman ushered in
Djalma, Andrew placed on a gilded table,
within reach of his mistress, a little silver
salver, on which stood the crystal smelling-
bottle. Then he withdrew, and the door
of the room was closed. The prince and
Mdlle. de Cardoville were left alone to-

VOL. 5 H




THE prince had slowly approached Mdlle.

Online LibraryEugène SueThe wandering Jew ; (Volume 5) → online text (page 8 of 26)