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which the Emperor of the French would make peace with me? What does
he demand?"

"Your majesty, his demands are so exorbitant that I scarcely dare to
repeat them."

"Never mind," said the emperor, dryly. "If I could listen quietly to
the plan regarding my brothers, I believe I shall be able to bear
the rest. Speak, therefore. What are the terms on which Napoleon
would conclude peace?"

"He demands the cession of all the provinces actually occupied by
the French armies; the surrender of the fortresses still occupied by
our troops in these provinces, with their magazines, arsenals,
stores, and supplies; the surrender of the fortresses of Gratz and
Brunn; and large contributions in kind, to be collected by M. Daru,
the French intendant-general."

"He intends to spoliate Austria as mercilessly as he formerly
plundered Hamburg and the whole of Northern Germany," said the
emperor, shrugging his shoulders. "And does not Bonaparte demand any
money this time? Will he content himself with provinces, fortresses,
and contributions in kind? Will he extort no money from us?"

"Your majesty, he demands an enormous sum. He demands the immediate
payment of two hundred and thirty-seven millions of francs."
[Footnote: See Schlosser's "History of the Nineteenth Century," vol.
viii., p. 115.]

"Well, well, he will take less than that," exclaimed the emperor.

"Then your majesty will graciously negotiate with him on his terms
of peace?" asked Count Bubna, joyously. "Bearing in mind only the
welfare of your monarchy, you will not reject his rigorous demands
entirely, and not allow the armistice to lead to a resumption of
hostilities, which, under the present circumstances, could not but
involve Austria in utter ruin?"

"I shall think of it," said the emperor; "at all events, I have
already shown my desire for peace by sending my ministers, Counts
Stadion and Metternich, to Altenburg, to negotiate there with
Bonaparte's minister Champagny. I shall not recall them, but allow
them to continue the negotiations. They are skilled diplomatists,
and men of great sagacity. The labors of diplomatists generally make
slow headway; hence, it will be good for us to lend them a little
secret assistance. While the plenipotentiaries are negotiating
publicly at Altenburg in Hungary, I will secretly begin to negotiate
with the emperor himself; and you, Count Bubna, shall be my agent
for this purpose."

"Your majesty," exclaimed Count Bubna, in a tone of surprise rather
than joy, "your majesty reposes in me so much confidence - "

"Which, I hope, you will appreciate, and strive to render yourself
worthy of," interrupted the emperor. "I count on your skill, your
zeal, and, above all, your discretion. You will take new proposals
of peace to-morrow, on my part, to the headquarters of the Emperor
Napoleon, at Schoenbrunn. But no one must learn of your mission,
and, least of all, my two ministers who are negotiating at
Altenburg."

"Sire, I shall keep as silent as the grave."

"A bad comparison, Bubna, for new life is to blossom for Austria
from your secret negotiations. Well, go now and repose; we will
afterward confer again in regard to this matter, and I will explain
my views to you. But say, Bubna, do you really think that Bonaparte
was in earnest about his dreams, and that, in case he should defeat
us again, he would seriously think of carrying into effect his plans
regarding the Archdukes Ferdinand and John?"

"I am afraid, your majesty, he was in earnest."

"The Emperor Napoleon, then, hates me intensely?"

"He believes that your majesty hates him intensely. He told me once
frankly that only your majesty's personal hatred had brought about
this war, and that he was afraid this hatred would frustrate all
peace negotiations. I ventured to contradict him, but be shook his
head vehemently and exclaimed, 'The Emperor Francis hates me so
intensely, that I believe he would lose his crown and empire sooner
than ally himself with me in a cordial manner, even though he should
derive the greatest advantages therefrom. Do you think, for
instance, that the Emperor Francis, if I wished to become his son-
in-law, would give me the hand of his daughter, even though I should
relinquish half the war contribution, and restore to him all the
provinces occupied by my armies?'"

"What? Did Napoleon really say that?" asked the emperor, with
unusual, almost joyful vivacity. "But," he added, gloomily, "this is
nothing but one of Napoleon's dreams. He has a wife, and the Empress
Josephine is so young and gay yet that she does not think of dying."

"But the Emperor Napoleon, I have been told, thinks a great deal of
getting a divorce from her."

"The pope, whom he keeps imprisoned, will never grant it to him,"
exclaimed the emperor.

"I think he will not even apply to him for it, your majesty. The
Emperor Napoleon never had his union with the Empress Josephine
consecrated by the Church, and the dissolution of a civil marriage
does not require the pope's consent. The emperor can dissolve it by
virtue of his own authority."

"That is a very convenient arrangement for M. Bonaparte," said
Francis, smiling. "Well, go now, count, and repose. I am very
content with your services, and I think I shall be so hereafter
also. Adieu. I shall send for you again."

He nodded kindly to the count, and stood still smilingly at his
writing-table in the middle of the cabinet, until the door of the
anteroom closed behind Count Bubna. But thereupon his face assumed a
gloomy, bitter expression, and he lifted up his clinched fist with a
menacing gesture.

"My brothers!" he cried, in an angry voice; "always my brothers!
They are always eager to push me aside. I am always to be kept in
the shade, that their light may shine more brightly. Ah, we shall
see who is Emperor of Austria, and to whom the Tyrol belongs; we
shall see who is the master, and who has to obey. As yet I am
emperor, as yet I have to decide on war and peace. And I will
decide. I will humiliate them and compel them to be obedient, these
boastful archdukes, who always preach war and are worsted in every
battle! Oh, they are stirring up rebellion, and stretching out their
hands for my property! But one stroke of my pen will shatter their
crowns, stifle their rebellion, and reduce them to submissiveness. I
will make peace with Napoleon, and the seditious Tyrol shall be
quieted without being bestowed upon the Archduke John. I would
rather have it restored to Bavaria than that it should be conferred
on my brother. That would be a just retribution for the seditious
peasants; they have set a bad example, and should be punished for
it. I do not want any conspirators among my subjects. Let Bavaria
see how she will get along with the rebellious Tyrolese! I shall
withdraw my hand from them. I want peace. I will remain Emperor of
Austria despite all my brothers!"


CHAPTER XXXV.

A DAY OF THE EMPEROR'S LIEUTENANT.


The imperial palace at Innspruck was still the residence of
Sandwirth Andreas Hofer, commander-in-chief of the Tyrol, and
lieutenant of the Emperor Francis. He had lived there since the 15th
of August; but as simply, quietly, and modestly as he had lived when
he was a horse-dealer and innkeeper, so he lived now when he was
ruler of the Tyrol, and the emperor's lieutenant. Instead of
occupying the large state apartments of the imperial palace, as his
friends had often asked him to do, Andreas had selected the plainest
and humblest rooms for his quarters, and his style of living was as
simple and modest as his dwelling-place. Vainly his suite tried to
persuade him to hold levees and receive guests at his festive table.
Andreas rejected all such suggestions with proud and withal humble
indignation.

"Do you think I took this arduous task upon myself to play the
aristocratic gentleman, and revel in luxury?" he replied to those
who asked him to adopt such a course. "I did not become the
emperor's lieutenant to display vain and empty splendor, but to
serve my dear Tyrol and preserve it to the emperor. I am only a
simple peasant, and do not want to live like a prince. I am
accustomed to have bread, butter, and cheese for breakfast, and I do
not know why I should change this now, merely because I am no longer
at home with my dear wife, but here at Innspruck at the emperor's
palace. I am also accustomed to dine very plainly, and am therefore
opposed to any expensive repasts being got up for me here. I do not
like the meats prepared by the cooks of the aristocracy; and while I
do not want anything but bread, butter, cheese, and wine, I shall
send to Niederkircher's tavern for my dinner. But it must never cost
more than half a florin. I will invite guests, for I like to have
merry people about me; but the guests must not come for the sake of
the repast, but for that of our pleasant conversation. I shall send
to Niederkircher for the dinner of all my guests, and he must send
enough, lest any of them should remain hungry. But there must never
be more than six guests, for it would be too bad if I, who intend to
preserve the Tyrol to the emperor, were to cost him a great deal of
money here. In order to prevent mistake, Niederkircher must send in
his bill every morning for me to examine; the financial secretary
shall pay it every week, and send me the receipt." [Footnote: The
expenses of Hofer and his whole suite, during their six weeks'
sojourn in the city of Innspruck, cost the public exchequer only
five hundred florins.]

Andreas Hofer remained in these days of his splendor as active,
industrious, and simple as he always had been. The welfare of his
beloved country engrossed all his thoughts, and he was desirous of
devoting his whole strength to it. He issued a number of useful and
liberal decrees, which, it is true, Ennemoser, Doeninger, Kolb, or
other friends of his had drawn up, but which he had approved and
signed.

Andreas Hofer gave public audiences every morning like a real
prince, and the sentinels placed in front of the imperial palace and
at the door of the commander-in-chief had received stringent orders
not to refuse admittance to the audience-room to any one, but allow
all to come in, how poorly soever they might be dressed. Andreas
listened to every one with kind patience and cordial sympathy, and
always took care to help console the distressed, make peace, and
conciliate; and every one who needed comfort and assistance hastened
to apply to the always helpful commander-in-chief.

To-day again many persons were in the audience-room, waiting
impatiently for the moment when the door should open, and when
Andreas Hofer should make his appearance on the threshold, greet all
with a pleasant nod of his head, and then beckon to him who was
nearest to the door to enter his cabinet.

But the hour fixed for the audience had struck long ago, and the
commander-in-chief, who was usually so punctual and conscientious,
had not yet opened the door of his audience-room. He had already
been half an hour in his cabinet, and Doeninger sat at the desk,
ready to write down the names of all applicants for audience, and
add a brief statement of their wishes and petitions. But Andreas was
still pacing the room, his hands behind his back; and although he
had already laid his hand twice on the door-knob, he had stepped
back as if in terror, and continued striding up and down.

"Commander-in-chief," said Doeninger, after a long pause, during
which he had watched Hofer's irresolute bearing smilingly, "there is
something that disquiets you, is there not?"

"Yes, Cajetan," sighed Andreas. "As you have found it out, I will no
longer deny that there is something that disquiets me."

"And what is it, commander-in-chief? Will you not communicate it to
your faithful and discreet Cajetan?"

"Yes, I will, my dear Cajetan," said Hofer. "I am afraid I did
something very stupid yesterday, and I am ashamed of it."

"Ah, you allude to the lawsuit which you decided yesterday,"
exclaimed Doeninger.

"You see, no sooner did I say that I did something very stupid, than
you at once knew what I meant; what I did must, therefore, have been
very stupid indeed. Yes, I alluded to the lawsuit, Cajetan, for I am
afraid I did not decide it, but made it only more complicated."

"On the whole, there was nothing to be decided," said Doeninger,
dryly. "The lawsuit was already decided; the supreme court had given
judgment in favor of the plaintiff and awarded to him the sum of one
thousand florins, which was at issue, and sentenced the defendant to
pay that sum and the costs. But the defendant - "

"It was no man, Cajetan," interrupted Andreas; "it was a woman, and
that was the worst of it. I cannot bear to see women weep. They know
so well how to touch my heart by their tears and lamentations, that
I long to help them. Lord Jesus, how that woman, the defendant in
the lawsuit, wept! And was it the poor woman's fault, Cajetan, that
her deceased husband was head over ears in debt, that he borrowed
one thousand florins from a friend, and meanly affixed his wife's
name without her knowledge to the note which he gave for it?"

"But that is just the trouble, commander-in-chief; not only did she
know it, but she herself put her name under the note. I myself asked
the judges about it yesterday. They say that the woman is known to
be avaricious, greedy, and mean, and they would not have given
judgment against her if there had not been sworn evidence to the
effect that she herself signed the note. They add that she is rich
enough to pay back the thousand florins which her husband certainly
borrowed from his friend."

"I cannot believe it," exclaimed Andreas. "She wept and lamented so
very unaffectedly; during my whole wedded life I have not seen my
wife weep so much as the woman wept during that quarter of an hour
yesterday; and I think one that can weep so much must be innocent.
Hence, I did what I had a perfect right to do; I wrote to the judges
and reversed their decision."

"Well, commander-in-chief, if you think you were justified in what
you did, why does it disquiet you?"

"It does," said Andreas Hofer, "because I think now that the
plaintiff, who lost his suit, may feel very sore over it, and blame
me for depriving him of what he thought was due to him; and I
shudder to think he maybe in the other room, and intend to reproach
me with ruining him and taking from him what the judges had already
awarded to him."

"And, Andy, because you would not like to see one man, you keep the
others waiting outside."

"You are right, Cajetan. I ought not to do that; I am a selfish,
cowardly fellow," cried Andreas, contritely. "I will no longer keep
them waiting, but admit them at once."

And he went with a hasty step to the door of the audience-room,
threw it open, and stepped upon the threshold. The large room was
crowded with persons of every age and rank; all thronged toward the
door, and every one was desirous of being the first to greet the
commander-in-chief, and to be invited by him into his cabinet.

Andreas Hofer bowed kindly to all; his eyes fell on an old man with
silver-white hair, who was striving to penetrate to him, and cast
beseeching glances on him.

"My old friend," said Andreas, mildly, "it is true you are not
nearest to the door, but you are the oldest person in the room, and
therefore it is right for me to listen to you first. Come in, then,
and tell me what you want of me."

The old man, leaning on his cane, hastened forward and entered the
cabinet, the door of which Andreas Hofer himself closed behind him.

"Now tell me, my aged friend, who are you, and what I can do for
you."

"Much, very much, commander-in-chief," replied the old man, in a
tremulous voice. "You can grant me justice. My name is Friedel
Hofmeier, and I am the unfortunate man who gained his lawsuit
yesterday, and who was to get his thousand florins back, but from
whom you took them again by virtue of your supreme authority."

"Cajetan, it is as I said," sighed Andreas, turning with a doleful
air to Doeninger, who sat at the desk, pen in hand, and bowed to the
commander-in-chief with a shrug.

"I come to you, the emperor's lieutenant, to demand justice," added
the old man. "Your decree was unjust and contrary to law. The judges
had decided in my favor, and by reversing their judgment, you treat
with harshness and cruelty an old man who stands on the brink of the
grave, and deprive my poor grandchild of its whole inheritance."

"May God and the Holy Virgin preserve me from committing such a
crime," murmured Andreas Hofer, crossing himself devoutly. "Ah, my
friend, why did you not come to me ere this, and tell me all about
it? I should have gladly assisted you in recovering what was due to
you."

"And yet it is your fault that I cannot recover what is due to me."
cried the old man, mournfully. "Why should I have come hither ere
this, and robbed you of your precious time? I confided in my good
and just cause; I knew that the good God would not abandon me, and
that He would not take from me, after losing innocently most of my
property by the cruelty of the enemy, who burned down my house and
outbuildings, the last remnant of my little fortune, the thousand
florins which I lent to my friend, and which his rich wife engaged
in her own handwriting to pay back ten years after date. The ten
years had expired; the good God did not abandon me; for He caused
the judges to grant me justice and adjudge the thousand florins to
me."

"And I took them from him again," murmured Andreas Hofer, with tears
in his eyes; "and it is my fault that he will die with a grief-
stricken heart. Cajetan, I have ruined the old man; tell me, advise
me how to make amends for it."

"You reversed the decision of the judges," said Doeninger, slowly;
"you possess the power of reversing all decisions."

Andreas Hofer was silent for a moment, and gazed thoughtfully into
vacancy, as if to fathom the meaning of an obscure oracle; all at
once his face brightened, and a joyous smile played round his lips.

"I know it now, Cajetan," he exclaimed. "I have the power to reverse
all decisions, and therefore my own also."

Cajetan Doeninger nodded with silent satisfaction. The old man
clasped his hands and gazed at Hofer with an expression of ardent
gratitude.

"Will you really do so, Andreas Hofer?" he asked tremblingly. "Will
you reverse your own decree for the sake of justice?"

"Yes, I will," exclaimed Hofer, joyfully; "and I will do it
immediately. Cajetan, take up your pen and write what I am going to
dictate to you. There I now write as follows: 'I, the undersigned,
confess by these presents that I committed a mistake yesterday, and
violated the laws. To confess mistakes and avow faults is no
disgrace; hence, I do so now, and beg pardon of the good God and the
judges for doing wrong. I hereby reverse the decision which I made
yesterday. Friedel Hofmeier is to receive the thousand florins which
the supreme court adjudged to him, and the decision of the judges is
to be valid, notwithstanding my decree issued yesterday.' Now give
me the pen and let me sign the document."

"Oh, dear commander-in-chief," exclaimed the delighted old man,
"what a noble and kind-hearted man you are, and - "

"Hush!" interrupted Andreas, looking up from the paper; "if I make a
mistake now, the whole document will be invalid, and we must
commence anew. Now I tell you it is hard work to write one's name
with such a pointed pen on the paper, and my name, moreover, has
such a long-tailed title. Therefore, keep quiet and let me write.
There, it is done now - 'Andreas Hofer, commander-in-chief of the
Tyrol.' Now, my dear old friend, your document is valid. Take it to
the city hall, and permit me to congratulate you on having recovered
your thousand florins. Say nothing about it now, but hasten to the
city hall. There are outside a great many persons who wish to see
me."

He handed the paper to the old man, and conducted him to the door,
which he himself opened for him. He was about to follow him, when he
suddenly drew back and closed the door after him.

"Cajetan," he whispered, anxiously, "I saw something dreadful!"

"What was it, commander-in-chief?"

"Cajetan, I saw the woman whom Friedel Hofmeier sued, and to whom I
gave the decree yesterday. Cajetan, I was not afraid when we were on
Mount Isel and at Brixen, but I am afraid of that woman and her
dreadful lamentations. I do not know what to do, Doeninger, if she
should have found out what I have done, and come in here to reproach
me with it."

"We shall not admit her, commander-in-chief," said Doeninger,
laughing.

"But, Cajetan, I made a vow never to refuse admittance to any one,
and not, as many princes do, to allow distressed persons to wait in
my anteroom and send them away without listening to them and
comforting them."

"But you heard, Andreas, that the woman is not in distress, for she
is rich and very avaricious. She told you the most impudent
falsehoods; hence, she must not be admitted; for, if you allow her
to come in again, she would lie as she did yesterday."

"You are right, Cajetan, she must not come in; and now, my friend,
pray go and admit the next applicant, but not that bad woman."

Doeninger went to the door, and, opening it, beckoned to the person
standing nearest to it.

A young woman, dressed plainly, but very neatly, came in, and
remained at the door, in visible confusion and grief.

"Well, madame," said Andreas to her, "do you come to tell me that
all is right, and that your husband and you, his pretty young wife,
live together in happiness and content? Well, it was heavy work to
reconcile you two, and persuade you to remain together and love each
other, as it behooves a Christian couple. It cost me a whole
forenoon, but I do not regret it, for I accomplished my task, and
reconciled you, and all was right again between you. And I made you
promise to return in two weeks and tell me how you got along with
each other. The two weeks are up to-day, and here comes the pretty
young wife to tell me that Andreas Hofer did his work well, and that
her husband is now faithful, tender, and good. Is he not?"

"Alas, he is not!" sobbed the young wife, bursting into tears.
"Tony, my husband, never stays at home in the evening; he returns
only late at night, scolds me for weeping and upbraiding him with
his bad conduct, and yesterday - yesterday he wanted even to beat
me!"

"What a bad man!" cried Andreas, vehemently. "Why did he want to
beat you, then? What had you done?"

"I had locked the street-door, and would not let him have the key
when he wanted to leave the house."

"H'em! that was a little too severe," said Hofer, hesitatingly. "Why
should a young man be prevented from going out a little? He cannot
always stay at home."

"But he shall not go out without me, and he would not take me with
him. I had requested him to do so, and he had refused; therefore, I
locked the house and would not permit him to leave it. He shall not
go out without me, for he is such a fine-looking man, that all the
pretty women of Innspruck admire him in his handsome national dress,
and ogle him when he passes by."

"Well, let them admire and ogle him," exclaimed Andreas, smiling.
"What do you care for it, provided your husband does not ogle them?"

"But he does, commander-in-chief; he runs after the pretty women, he
goes to the theatre and the concerts to see them, and speak and
flirt with them. Believe me, dearest commander-in-chief, he deserts
me, he is faithless, and all your fine and pious exhortations were
in vain. He loves me no longer, and I love him so dearly, and would
like to be always with him and never desert him. But he says it
would be inconvenient to him, and make him ridiculous, if he should
always appear together with his wife, like a convict with his
jailer."

"What a bad, hard-hearted man!" cried Andreas, indignantly.

"He is hard-hearted, indeed," sobbed the young wife. "He scolds me
for my love, and when I like to be with him all the time, he says my
jealousy is disagreeable to him, and there is nothing more
abominable than a jealous wife!"

"Well, he may be right so far as that is concerned," said Doeninger,
busily engaged in cutting his pen.

"What did you say, Cajetan?" asked Hofer, turning to him.

"I did not say anything, but thought aloud," said Doeninger, trying
his pen.

Hofer was silent for a moment, and gazed into vacancy. "Yes, my dear
woman," he then said boldly, "your husband may not be altogether
wrong in complaining of your jealousy. I really believe that you are



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