Part 8 out of 31
daughter, "leave me; I wish to speak with this gentleman."
And he glanced towards the clerk of Thomson & French, who
had remained motionless in the corner during this scene, in
which he had taken no part, except the few words we have
mentioned. The two women looked at this person whose
presence they had entirely forgotten, and retired; but, as
she left the apartment, Julie gave the stranger a
supplicating glance, to which he replied by a smile that an
indifferent spectator would have been surprised to see on
his stern features. The two men were left alone. "Well,
sir," said Morrel, sinking into a chair, "you have heard
all, and I have nothing further to tell you."
"I see," returned the Englishman, "that a fresh and
unmerited misfortune his overwhelmed you, and this only
increases my desire to serve you."
"Oh, sir!" cried Morrel.
"Let me see," continued the stranger, "I am one of your
"Your bills, at least, are the first that will fall due."
"Do you wish for time to pay?"
"A delay would save my honor, and consequently my life."
"How long a delay do you wish for?" -- Morrel reflected.
"Two months," said he.
"I will give you three," replied the stranger.
"But," asked Morrel, "will the house of Thomson & French
"Oh, I take everything on myself. To-day is the 5th of
"Well, renew these bills up to the 5th of September; and on
the 5th of September at eleven o'clock (the hand of the
clock pointed to eleven), I shall come to receive the
"I shall expect you," returned Morrel; "and I will pay you
-- or I shall he dead." These last words were uttered in so
low a tone that the stranger could not hear them. The bills
were renewed, the old ones destroyed, and the poor
ship-owner found himself with three months before him to
collect his resources. The Englishman received his thanks
with the phlegm peculiar to his nation; and Morrel,
overwhelming him with grateful blessings, conducted him to
the staircase. The stranger met Julie on the stairs; she
pretended to be descending, but in reality she was waiting
for him. "Oh, sir" -- said she, clasping her hands.
"Mademoiselle," said the stranger, "one day you will receive
a letter signed `Sinbad the Sailor.' Do exactly what the
letter bids you, however strange it may appear."
"Yes, sir," returned Julie.
"Do you promise?"
"I swear to you I will."
"It is well. Adieu, mademoiselle. Continue to be the good,
sweet girl you are at present, and I have great hopes that
heaven will reward you by giving you Emmanuel for a
Julie uttered a faint cry, blushed like a rose, and leaned
against the baluster. The stranger waved his hand, and
continued to descend. In the court he found Penelon, who,
with a rouleau of a hundred francs in either hand, seemed
unable to make up his mind to retain them. "Come with me, my
friend," said the Englishman; "I wish to speak to you."
The Fifth of September.
The extension provided for by the agent of Thomson & French,
at the moment when Morrel expected it least, was to the poor
shipowner so decided a stroke of good fortune that he almost
dared to believe that fate was at length grown weary of
wasting her spite upon him. The same day he told his wife,
Emmanuel, and his daughter all that had occurred; and a ray
of hope, if not of tranquillity, returned to the family.
Unfortunately, however, Morrel had not only engagements with
the house of Thomson & French, who had shown themselves so
considerate towards him; and, as he had said, in business he
had correspondents, and not friends. When he thought the
matter over, he could by no means account for this generous
conduct on the part of Thomson & French towards him; and
could only attribute it to some such selfish argument as
this: -- "We had better help a man who owes us nearly
300,000 francs, and have those 300,000 francs at the end of
three months than hasten his ruin, and get only six or eight
per cent of our money back again." Unfortunately, whether
through envy or stupidity, all Morrel's correspondents did
not take this view; and some even came to a contrary
decision. The bills signed by Morrel were presented at his
office with scrupulous exactitude, and, thanks to the delay
granted by the Englishman, were paid by Cocles with equal
punctuality. Cocles thus remained in his accustomed
tranquillity. It was Morrel alone who remembered with alarm,
that if he had to repay on the 15th the 50,000 francs of M.
de Boville, and on the 30th the 32,500 francs of bills, for
which, as well as the debt due to the inspector of prisons,
he had time granted, he must be a ruined man.
The opinion of all the commercial men was that, under the
reverses which had successively weighed down Morrel, it was
impossible for him to remain solvent. Great, therefore, was
the astonishment when at the end of the month, he cancelled
all his obligations with his usual punctuality. Still
confidence was not restored to all minds, and the general
opinion was that the complete ruin of the unfortunate
shipowner had been postponed only until the end of the
month. The month passed, and Morrel made extraordinary
efforts to get in all his resources. Formerly his paper, at
any date, was taken with confidence, and was even in
request. Morrel now tried to negotiate bills at ninety days
only, and none of the banks would give him credit.
Fortunately, Morrel had some funds coming in on which he
could rely; and, as they reached him, he found himself in a
condition to meet his engagements when the end of July came.
The agent of Thomson & French had not been again seen at
Marseilles; the day after, or two days after his visit to
Morrel, he had disappeared; and as in that city he had had
no intercourse but with the mayor, the inspector of prisons,
and M. Morrel, his departure left no trace except in the
memories of these three persons. As to the sailors of the
Pharaon, they must have found snug berths elsewhere, for
they also had disappeared.
Captain Gaumard, recovered from his illness, had returned
from Palma. He delayed presenting himself at Morrel's, but
the owner, hearing of his arrival, went to see him. The
worthy shipowner knew, from Penelon's recital, of the
captain's brave conduct during the storm, and tried to
console him. He brought him also the amount of his wages,
which Captain Gaumard had not dared to apply for. As he
descended the staircase, Morrel met Penelon, who was going
up. Penelon had, it would seem, made good use of his money,
for he was newly clad. When he saw his employer, the worthy
tar seemed much embarrassed, drew on one side into the
corner of the landing-place, passed his quid from one cheek
to the other, stared stupidly with his great eyes, and only
acknowledged the squeeze of the hand which Morrel as usual
gave him by a slight pressure in return. Morrel attributed
Penelon's embarrassment to the elegance of his attire; it
was evident the good fellow had not gone to such an expense
on his own account; he was, no doubt, engaged on board some
other vessel, and thus his bashfulness arose from the fact
of his not having, if we may so express ourselves, worn
mourning for the Pharaon longer. Perhaps he had come to tell
Captain Gaumard of his good luck, and to offer him
employment from his new master. "Worthy fellows!" said
Morrel, as he went away, "may your new master love you as I
loved you, and be more fortunate than I have been!"
August rolled by in unceasing efforts on the part of Morrel
to renew his credit or revive the old. On the 20th of August
it was known at Marseilles that he had left town in the
mailcoach, and then it was said that the bills would go to
protest at the end of the month, and that Morrel had gone
away and left his chief clerk Emmanuel, and his cashier
Cocles, to meet the creditors. But, contrary to all
expectation, when the 31st of August came, the house opened
as usual, and Cocles appeared behind the grating of the
counter, examined all bills presented with the usual
scrutiny, and, from first to last, paid all with the usual
precision. There came in, moreover, two drafts which M.
Morrel had fully anticipated, and which Cocles paid as
punctually as the bills which the shipowner had accepted.
All this was incomprehensible, and then, with the tenacity
peculiar to prophets of bad news, the failure was put off
until the end of September. On the 1st, Morrel returned; he
was awaited by his family with extreme anxiety, for from
this journey to Paris they hoped great things. Morrel had
thought of Danglars, who was now immensely rich, and had
lain under great obligations to Morrel in former days, since
to him it was owing that Danglars entered the service of the
Spanish banker, with whom he had laid the foundations of his
vast wealth. It was said at this moment that Danglars was
worth from six to eight millions of francs, and had
unlimited credit. Danglars, then, without taking a crown
from his pocket, could save Morrel; he had but to pass his
word for a loan, and Morrel was saved. Morrel had long
thought of Danglars, but had kept away from some instinctive
motive, and had delayed as long as possible availing himself
of this last resource. And Morrel was right, for he returned
home crushed by the humiliation of a refusal. Yet, on his
arrival, Morrel did not utter a complaint, or say one harsh
word. He embraced his weeping wife and daughter, pressed
Emmanuel's hand with friendly warmth, and then going to his
private room on the second floor had sent for Cocles.
"Then," said the two women to Emmanuel, "we are indeed
It was agreed in a brief council held among them, that Julie
should write to her brother, who was in garrison at Nimes,
to come to them as speedily as possible. The poor women felt
instinctively that they required all their strength to
support the blow that impended. Besides, Maximilian Morrel,
though hardly two and twenty, had great influence over his
father. He was a strong-minded, upright young man. At the
time when he decided on his profession his father had no
desire to choose for him, but had consulted young
Maximilian's taste. He had at once declared for a military
life, and had in consequence studied hard, passed
brilliantly through the Polytechnic School, and left it as
sub-lieutenant of the 53d of the line. For a year he had
held this rank, and expected promotion on the first vacancy.
In his regiment Maximilian Morrel was noted for his rigid
observance, not only of the obligations imposed on a
soldier, but also of the duties of a man; and he thus gained
the name of "the stoic." We need hardly say that many of
those who gave him this epithet repeated it because they had
heard it, and did not even know what it meant. This was the
young man whom his mother and sister called to their aid to
sustain them under the serious trial which they felt they
would soon have to endure. They had not mistaken the gravity
of this event, for the moment after Morrel had entered his
private office with Cocles, Julie saw the latter leave it
pale, trembling, and his features betraying the utmost
consternation. She would have questioned him as he passed by
her, but the worthy creature hastened down the staircase
with unusual precipitation, and only raised his hands to
heaven and exclaimed, "Oh, mademoiselle, mademoiselle, what
a dreadful misfortune! Who could ever have believed it!" A
moment afterwards Julie saw him go up-stairs carrying two or
three heavy ledgers, a portfolio, and a bag of money.
Morrel examined the ledgers, opened the portfolio, and
counted the money. All his funds amounted to 6,000, or 8,000
francs, his bills receivable up to the 5th to 4,000 or
5,000, which, making the best of everything, gave him 14,000
francs to meet debts amounting to 287,500 francs. He had not
even the means for making a possible settlement on account.
However, when Morrel went down to his dinner, he appeared
very calm. This calmness was more alarming to the two women
than the deepest dejection would have been. After dinner
Morrel usually went out and used to take his coffee at the
Phocaean club, and read the Semaphore; this day he did not
leave the house, but returned to his office.
As to Cocles, he seemed completely bewildered. For part of
the day he went into the court-yard, seated himself on a
stone with his head bare and exposed to the blazing sun.
Emmanuel tried to comfort the women, but his eloquence
faltered. The young man was too well acquainted with the
business of the house, not to feel that a great catastrophe
hung over the Morrel family. Night came, the two women had
watched, hoping that when he left his room Morrel would come
to them, but they heard him pass before their door, and
trying to conceal the noise of his footsteps. They listened;
he went into his sleeping-room, and fastened the door
inside. Madame Morrel sent her daughter to bed, and half an
hour after Julie had retired, she rose, took off her shoes,
and went stealthily along the passage, to see through the
keyhole what her husband was doing. In the passage she saw a
retreating shadow; it was Julie, who, uneasy herself, had
anticipated her mother. The young lady went towards Madame
"He is writing," she said. They had understood each other
without speaking. Madame Morrel looked again through the
keyhole, Morrel was writing; but Madame Morrel remarked,
what her daughter had not observed, that her husband was
writing on stamped paper. The terrible idea that he was
writing his will flashed across her; she shuddered, and yet
had not strength to utter a word. Next day M. Morrel seemed
as calm as ever, went into his office as usual, came to his
breakfast punctually, and then, after dinner, he placed his
daughter beside him, took her head in his arms, and held her
for a long time against his bosom. In the evening, Julie
told her mother, that although he was apparently so calm,
she had noticed that her father's heart beat violently. The
next two days passed in much the same way. On the evening of
the 4th of September, M. Morrel asked his daughter for the
key of his study. Julie trembled at this request, which
seemed to her of bad omen. Why did her father ask for this
key which she always kept, and which was only taken from her
in childhood as a punishment? The young girl looked at
"What have I done wrong, father," she said, "that you should
take this key from me?"
"Nothing, my dear," replied the unhappy man, the tears
starting to his eyes at this simple question, -- "nothing,
only I want it." Julie made a pretence to feel for the key.
"I must have left it in my room," she said. And she went
out, but instead of going to her apartment she hastened to
consult Emmanuel. "Do not give this key to your father,"
said he, "and to-morrow morning, if possible, do not quit
him for a moment." She questioned Emmanuel, but he knew
nothing, or would not say what he knew. During the night,
between the 4th and 5th of September, Madame Morrel remained
listening for every sound, and, until three o'clock in the
morning, she heard her husband pacing the room in great
agitation. It was three o'clock when he threw himself on the
bed. The mother and daughter passed the night together. They
had expected Maximilian since the previous evening. At eight
o'clock in the morning Morrel entered their chamber. He was
calm; but the agitation of the night was legible in his pale
and careworn visage. They did not dare to ask him how he had
slept. Morrel was kinder to his wife, more affectionate to
his daughter, than he had ever been. He could not cease
gazing at and kissing the sweet girl. Julie, mindful of
Emmanuel's request, was following her father when he quitted
the room, but he said to her quickly, -- "Remain with your
mother, dearest." Julie wished to accompany him. "I wish you
to do so," said he.
This was the first time Morrel had ever so spoken, but he
said it in a tone of paternal kindness, and Julie did not
dare to disobey. She remained at the same spot standing mute
and motionless. An instant afterwards the door opened, she
felt two arms encircle her, and a mouth pressed her
forehead. She looked up and uttered an exclamation of joy.
"Maximilian, my dearest brother!" she cried. At these words
Madame Morrel rose, and threw herself into her son's arms.
"Mother," said the young man, looking alternately at Madame
Morrel and her daughter, "what has occurred -- what has
happened? Your letter has frightened me, and I have come
hither with all speed."
"Julie," said Madame Morrel, making a sign to the young man,
"go and tell your father that Maximilian has just arrived."
The young lady rushed out of the apartment, but on the first
step of the staircase she found a man holding a letter in
"Are you not Mademoiselle Julie Morrel?" inquired the man,
with a strong Italian accent.
"Yes, sir," replied Julie with hesitation; "what is your
pleasure? I do not know you."
"Read this letter," he said, handing it to her. Julie
hesitated. "It concerns the best interests of your father,"
said the messenger.
The young girl hastily took the letter from him. She opened
it quickly and read: --
"Go this moment to the Allees de Meillan, enter the house
No. 15, ask the porter for the key of the room on the fifth
floor, enter the apartment, take from the corner of the
mantelpiece a purse netted in red silk, and give it to your
father. It is important that he should receive it before
eleven o'clock. You promised to obey me implicitly. Remember
"Sinbad the Sailor."
The young girl uttered a joyful cry, raised her eyes, looked
round to question the messenger, but he had disappeared. She
cast her eyes again over the note to peruse it a second
time, and saw there was a postscript. She read: --
"It is important that you should fulfil this mission in
person and alone. If you go accompanied by any other person,
or should any one else go in your place, the porter will
reply that he does not know anything about it."
This postscript decreased greatly the young girl's
happiness. Was there nothing to fear? was there not some
snare laid for her? Her innocence had kept her in ignorance
of the dangers that might assail a young girl of her age.
But there is no need to know danger in order to fear it;
indeed, it may be observed, that it is usually unknown
perils that inspire the greatest terror.
Julie hesitated, and resolved to take counsel. Yet, through
a singular impulse, it was neither to her mother nor her
brother that she applied, but to Emmanuel. She hastened down
and told him what had occurred on the day when the agent of
Thomson & French had come to her father's, related the scene
on the staircase, repeated the promise she had made, and
showed him the letter. "You must go, then, mademoiselle,"
"Go there?" murmured Julie.
"Yes; I will accompany you."
"But did you not read that I must be alone?" said Julie.
"And you shall be alone," replied the young man. "I will
await you at the corner of the Rue de Musee, and if you are
so long absent as to make me uneasy, I will hasten to rejoin
you, and woe to him of whom you shall have cause to complain
"Then, Emmanuel?" said the young girl with hesitation, "it
is your opinion that I should obey this invitation?"
"Yes. Did not the messenger say your father's safety
depended upon it?"
"But what danger threatens him, then, Emmanuel?" she asked.
Emmanuel hesitated a moment, but his desire to make Julie
decide immediately made him reply.
"Listen," he said; "to-day is the 5th of September, is it
"To-day, then, at eleven o'clock, your father has nearly
three hundred thousand francs to pay?"
"Yes, we know that."
"Well, then," continued Emmanuel, "we have not fifteen
thousand francs in the house."
"What will happen then?"
"Why, if to-day before eleven o'clock your father has not
found someone who will come to his aid, he will be compelled
at twelve o'clock to declare himself a bankrupt."
"Oh, come, then, come!" cried she, hastening away with the
young man. During this time, Madame Morrel had told her son
everything. The young man knew quite well that, after the
succession of misfortunes which had befallen his father,
great changes had taken place in the style of living and
housekeeping; but he did not know that matters had reached
such a point. He was thunderstruck. Then, rushing hastily
out of the apartment, he ran up-stairs, expecting to find
his father in his study, but he rapped there in vain.
While he was yet at the door of the study he heard the
bedroom door open, turned, and saw his father. Instead of
going direct to his study, M. Morrel had returned to his
bed-chamber, which he was only this moment quitting. Morrel
uttered a cry of surprise at the sight of his son, of whose
arrival he was ignorant. He remained motionless on the spot,
pressing with his left hand something he had concealed under
his coat. Maximilian sprang down the staircase, and threw
his arms round his father's neck; but suddenly he recoiled,
and placed his right hand on Morrel's breast. "Father," he
exclaimed, turning pale as death, "what are you going to do
with that brace of pistols under your coat?"
"Oh, this is what I feared!" said Morrel.
"Father, father, in heaven's name," exclaimed the young man,
"what are these weapons for?"
"Maximilian," replied Morrel, looking fixedly at his son,
"you are a man, and a man of honor. Come, and I will explain
And with a firm step Morrel went up to his study, while
Maximilian followed him, trembling as he went. Morrel opened
the door, and closed it behind his son; then, crossing the
anteroom, went to his desk on which he placed the pistols,
and pointed with his finger to an open ledger. In this
ledger was made out an exact balance-sheet of his affair's.
Morrel had to pay, within half an hour, 287,500 francs. All
he possessed was 15,257 francs. "Read!" said Morrel.
The young man was overwhelmed as he read. Morrel said not a
word. What could he say? What need he add to such a
desperate proof in figures? "And have you done all that is
possible, father, to meet this disastrous result?" asked the
young man, after a moment's pause. "I have," replied Morrel.
"You have no money coming in on which you can rely?"
"You have exhausted every resource?"
"And in half an hour," said Maximilian in a gloomy voice,
"our name is dishonored!"
"Blood washes out dishonor," said Morrel.
"You are right, father; I understand you." Then extending
his hand towards one of the pistols, he said, "There is one
for you and one for me -- thanks!" Morrel caught his hand.
"Your mother -- your sister! Who will support them?" A
shudder ran through the young man's frame. "Father," he
said, "do you reflect that you are bidding me to live?"
"Yes, I do so bid you," answered Morrel, "it is your duty.
You have a calm, strong mind, Maximilian. Maximilian, you
are no ordinary man. I make no requests or commands; I only
ask you to examine my position as if it were your own, and
then judge for yourself."
The young man reflected for a moment, then an expression of
sublime resignation appeared in his eyes, and with a slow
and sad gesture he took off his two epaulets, the insignia
of his rank. "Be it so, then, my father," he said, extending
his hand to Morrel, "die in peace, my father; I will live."
Morrel was about to cast himself on his knees before his
son, but Maximilian caught him in his arms, and those two
noble hearts were pressed against each other for a moment.
"You know it is not my fault," said Morrel. Maximilian
smiled. "I know, father, you are the most honorable man I
have ever known."
"Good, my son. And now there is no more to be said; go and
rejoin your mother and sister."
"My father," said the young man, bending his knee, "bless
me!" Morrel took the head of his son between his two hands,
drew him forward, and kissing his forehead several times
said, "Oh, yes, yes, I bless you in my own name, and in the
name of three generations of irreproachable men, who say
through me, `The edifice which misfortune has destroyed,
providence may build up again.' On seeing me die such a
death, the most inexorable will have pity on you. To you,
perhaps, they will accord the time they have refused to me.
Then do your best to keep our name free from dishonor. Go to
work, labor, young man, struggle ardently and courageously;
live, yourself, your mother and sister, with the most rigid
economy, so that from day to day the property of those whom
I leave in your hands may augment and fructify. Reflect how
glorious a day it will be, how grand, how solemn, that day
of complete restoration, on which you will say in this very
office, `My father died because he could not do what I have
this day done; but he died calmly and peaceably, because in
dying he knew what I should do.'"
"My father, my father!" cried the young man, "why should you
"If I live, all would be changed; if I live, interest would
be converted into doubt, pity into hostility; if I live I am
only a man who his broken his word, failed in his
engagements -- in fact, only a bankrupt. If, on the
contrary, I die, remember, Maximilian, my corpse is that of
an honest but unfortunate man. Living, my best friends would
avoid my house; dead, all Marseilles will follow me in tears
to my last home. Living, you would feel shame at my name;
dead, you may raise your head and say, `I am the son of him
you killed, because, for the first time, he has been
compelled to break his word.'"
The young man uttered a groan, but appeared resigned.
"And now," said Morrel, "leave me alone, and endeavor to
keep your mother and sister away."
"Will you not see my sister once more?" asked Maximilian. A
last but final hope was concealed by the young man in the
effect of this interview, and therefore he had suggested it.
Morrel shook his head. "I saw her this morning, and bade her
"Have you no particular commands to leave with me, my
father?" inquired Maximilian in a faltering voice.
"Yes; my son, and a sacred command."
"Say it, my father."
"The house of Thomson & French is the only one who, from
humanity, or, it may be, selfishness -- it is not for me to
read men's hearts -- has had any pity for me. Its agent, who
will in ten minutes present himself to receive the amount of
a bill of 287,500 francs, I will not say granted, but
offered me three months. Let this house be the first repaid,
my son, and respect this man."
"Father, I will," said Maximilian.
"And now, once more, adieu," said Morrel. "Go, leave me; I
would be alone. You will find my will in the secretary in my
The young man remained standing and motionless, having but
the force of will and not the power of execution.
"Hear me, Maximilian," said his father. "Suppose I was a
soldier like you, and ordered to carry a certain redoubt,
and you knew I must be killed in the assault, would you not
say to me, as you said just now, `Go, father; for you are
dishonored by delay, and death is preferable to shame!'"
"Yes, yes," said the young man, "yes;" and once again
embracing his father with convulsive pressure, he said, "Be
it so, my father."
And he rushed out of the study. When his son had left him,
Morrel remained an instant standing with his eyes fixed on
the door; then putting forth his arm, he pulled the bell.
After a moment's interval, Cocles appeared.
It was no longer the same man -- the fearful revelations of
the three last days had crushed him. This thought -- the
house of Morrel is about to stop payment -- bent him to the
earth more than twenty years would otherwise have done.
"My worthy Cocles," said Morrel in a tone impossible to
describe, "do you remain in the ante-chamber. When the
gentleman who came three months ago -- the agent of Thomson
& French -- arrives, announce his arrival to me." Cocles
made no reply; he made a sign with his head, went into the
anteroom, and seated himself. Morrel fell back in his chair,
his eyes fixed on the clock; there were seven minutes left,
that was all. The hand moved on with incredible rapidity, he
seemed to see its motion.
What passed in the mind of this man at the supreme moment of
his agony cannot be told in words. He was still
comparatively young, he was surrounded by the loving care of
a devoted family, but he had convinced himself by a course
of reasoning, illogical perhaps, yet certainly plausible,
that he must separate himself from all he held dear in the
world, even life itself. To form the slightest idea of his
feelings, one must have seen his face with its expression of
enforced resignation and its tear-moistened eyes raised to
heaven. The minute hand moved on. The pistols were loaded;
he stretched forth his hand, took one up, and murmured his
daughter's name. Then he laid it down seized his pen, and
wrote a few words. It seemed to him as if he had not taken a
sufficient farewell of his beloved daughter. Then he turned
again to the clock, counting time now not by minutes, but by
seconds. He took up the deadly weapon again, his lips parted
and his eyes fixed on the clock, and then shuddered at the
click of the trigger as he cocked the pistol. At this moment
of mortal anguish the cold sweat came forth upon his brow, a
pang stronger than death clutched at his heart-strings. He
heard the door of the staircase creak on its hinges -- the
clock gave its warning to strike eleven -- the door of his
study opened; Morrel did not turn round -- he expected these
words of Cocles, "The agent of Thomson & French."
He placed the muzzle of the pistol between his teeth.
Suddenly he heard a cry -- it was his daughter's voice. He
turned and saw Julie. The pistol fell from his hands. "My
father!" cried the young girl, out of breath, and half dead
with joy -- "saved, you are saved!" And she threw herself
into his arms, holding in her extended hand a red, netted
"Saved, my child!" said Morrel; "what do you mean?"
"Yes, saved -- saved! See, see!" said the young girl.
Morrel took the purse, and started as he did so, for a vague
remembrance reminded him that it once belonged to himself.
At one end was the receipted bill for the 287,000 francs,
and at the other was a diamond as large as a hazel-nut, with
these words on a small slip of parchment: -- Julie's Dowry.
Morrel passed his hand over his brow; it seemed to him a
dream. At this moment the clock struck eleven. He felt as if
each stroke of the hammer fell upon his heart. "Explain, my
child," he said, "Explain, my child," he said, "explain --
where did you find this purse?"
"In a house in the Allees de Meillan, No. 15, on the corner
of a mantelpiece in a small room on the fifth floor."
"But," cried Morrel, "this purse is not yours!" Julie handed
to her father the letter she had received in the morning.
"And did you go alone?" asked Morrel, after he had read it.
"Emmanuel accompanied me, father. He was to have waited for
me at the corner of the Rue de Musee, but, strange to say,
he was not there when I returned."
"Monsieur Morrel!" exclaimed a voice on the stairs. --
"It is his voice!" said Julie. At this moment Emmanuel
entered, his countenance full of animation and joy. "The
Pharaon!" he cried; "the Pharaon!"
"What -- what -- the Pharaon! Are you mad, Emmanuel? You
know the vessel is lost."
"The Pharaon, sir -- they signal the Pharaon! The Pharaon is
entering the harbor!" Morrel fell back in his chair, his
strength was failing him; his understanding weakened by such
events, refused to comprehend such incredible, unheard-of,
fabulous facts. But his son came in. "Father," cried
Maximilian, "how could you say the Pharaon was lost? The
lookout has signalled her, and they say she is now coming
"My dear friends," said Morrel, "if this be so, it must be a
miracle of heaven! Impossible, impossible!"
But what was real and not less incredible was the purse he
held in his hand, the acceptance receipted -- the splendid
"Ah, sir," exclaimed Cocles, "what can it mean? -- the
"Come, dear ones," said Morrel, rising from his seat, "let
us go and see, and heaven have pity upon us if it be false
intelligence!" They all went out, and on the stairs met
Madame Morrel, who had been afraid to go up into the study.
In a moment they were at the Cannebiere. There was a crowd
on the pier. All the crowd gave way before Morrel. "The
Pharaon, the Pharaon!" said every voice.
And, wonderful to see, in front of the tower of Saint-Jean,
was a ship bearing on her stern these words, printed in
white letters, "The Pharaon, Morrel & Son, of Marseilles."
She was the exact duplicate of the other Pharaon, and
loaded, as that had been, with cochineal and indigo. She
cast anchor, clued up sails, and on the deck was Captain
Gaumard giving orders, and good old Penelon making signals
to M. Morrel. To doubt any longer was impossible; there was
the evidence of the senses, and ten thousand persons who
came to corroborate the testimony. As Morrel and his son
embraced on the pier-head, in the presence and amid the
applause of the whole city witnessing this event, a man,
with his face half-covered by a black beard, and who,
concealed behind the sentry-box, watched the scene with
delight, uttered these words in a low tone: "Be happy, noble
heart, be blessed for all the good thou hast done and wilt
do hereafter, and let my gratitude remain in obscurity like
your good deeds."
And with a smile expressive of supreme content, he left his
hiding-place, and without being observed, descended one of
the flights of steps provided for debarkation, and hailing
three times, shouted "Jacopo, Jacopo, Jacopo!" Then a launch
came to shore, took him on board, and conveyed him to a
yacht splendidly fitted up, on whose deck he sprung with the
activity of a sailor; thence he once again looked towards
Morrel, who, weeping with joy, was shaking hands most
cordially with all the crowd around him, and thanking with a
look the unknown benefactor whom he seemed to be seeking in
the skies. "And now," said the unknown, "farewell kindness,
humanity, and gratitude! Farewell to all the feelings that
expand the heart! I have been heaven's substitute to
recompense the good -- now the god of vengeance yields to me
his power to punish the wicked!" At these words he gave a
signal, and, as if only awaiting this signal, the yacht
instantly put out to sea.
Italy: Sinbad the Sailor.
Towards the beginning of the year 1838, two young men
belonging to the first society of Paris, the Vicomte Albert
de Morcerf and the Baron Franz d'Epinay, were at Florence.
They had agreed to see the Carnival at Rome that year, and
that Franz, who for the last three or four years had
inhabited Italy, should act as cicerone to Albert. As it is
no inconsiderable affair to spend the Carnival at Rome,
especially when you have no great desire to sleep on the
Piazza del Popolo, or the Campo Vaccino, they wrote to
Signor Pastrini, the proprietor of the Hotel de Londres,
Piazza di Spagna, to reserve comfortable apartments for
them. Signor Pastrini replied that he had only two rooms and
a parlor on the third floor, which he offered at the low
charge of a louis per diem. They accepted his offer; but
wishing to make the best use of the time that was left,
Albert started for Naples. As for Franz, he remained at
Florence, and after having passed a few days in exploring
the paradise of the Cascine, and spending two or three
evenings at the houses of the Florentine nobility, he took a
fancy into his head (having already visited Corsica, the
cradle of Bonaparte) to visit Elba, the waiting-place of
One evening he cast off the painter of a sailboat from the
iron ring that secured it to the dock at Leghorn, wrapped
himself in his coat and lay down, and said to the crew, --
"To the Island of Elba!" The boat shot out of the harbor
like a bird and the next morning Franz disembarked at
Porto-Ferrajo. He traversed the island, after having
followed the traces which the footsteps of the giant have
left, and re-embarked for Marciana. Two hours after he again
landed at Pianosa, where he was assured that red partridges
abounded. The sport was bad; Franz only succeeded in killing
a few partridges, and, like every unsuccessful sportsman, he
returned to the boat very much out of temper. "Ah, if your
excellency chose," said the captain, "you might have capital
"Do you see that island?" continued the captain, pointing to
a conical pile rising from the indigo sea.
"Well, what is this island?"
"The Island of Monte Cristo."
"But I have no permission to shoot over this island."
"Your excellency does not require a permit, for the island
"Ah, indeed!" said the young man. "A desert island in the
midst of the Mediterranean must be a curiosity."
"It is very natural; this island is a mass of rocks, and
does not contain an acre of land capable of cultivation."
"To whom does this island belong?"
"What game shall I find there!"
"Thousands of wild goats."
"Who live upon the stones, I suppose," said Franz with an
"No, but by browsing the shrubs and trees that grow out of
the crevices of the rocks."
"Where can I sleep?"
"On shore in the grottos, or on board in your cloak;
besides, if your excellency pleases, we can leave as soon as
you like -- we can sail as well by night as by day, and if
the wind drops we can use our oars."
As Franz had sufficient time, and his apartments at Rome
were not yet available, he accepted the proposition. Upon
his answer in the affirmative, the sailors exchanged a few
words together in a low tone. "Well," asked he, "what now?
Is there any difficulty in the way?"
"No." replied the captain, "but we must warn your excellency
that the island is an infected port."
"What do you mean?"
"Monte Cristo although uninhabited, yet serves occasionally
as a refuge for the smugglers and pirates who come from
Corsica, Sardinia, and Africa, and if it becomes known that
we have been there, we shall have to perform quarantine for
six days on our return to Leghorn."
"The deuce! That puts a different face on the matter. Six
days! Why, that's as long as the Almighty took to make the
world! Too long a wait -- too long."
"But who will say your excellency has been to Monte Cristo?"
"Oh, I shall not," cried Franz.
"Nor I, nor I," chorused the sailors.
"Then steer for Monte Cristo."
The captain gave his orders, the helm was put up, and the
boat was soon sailing in the direction of the island. Franz
waited until all was in order, and when the sail was filled,
and the four sailors had taken their places -- three
forward, and one at the helm -- he resumed the conversation.
"Gaetano," said he to the captain, "you tell me Monte Cristo
serves as a refuge for pirates, who are, it seems to me, a
very different kind of game from the goats."
"Yes, your excellency, and it is true."
"I knew there were smugglers, but I thought that since the
capture of Algiers, and the destruction of the regency,
pirates existed only in the romances of Cooper and Captain
"Your excellency is mistaken; there are pirates, like the
bandits who were believed to have been exterminated by Pope
Leo XII., and who yet, every day, rob travellers at the
gates of Rome. Has not your excellency heard that the French
charge d'affaires was robbed six months ago within five
hundred paces of Velletri?"
"Oh, yes, I heard that."
"Well, then, if, like us, your excellency lived at Leghorn,
you would hear, from time to time, that a little merchant
vessel, or an English yacht that was expected at Bastia, at
Porto-Ferrajo, or at Civita Vecchia, has not arrived; no one
knows what has become of it, but, doubtless, it has struck
on a rock and foundered. Now this rock it has met has been a
long and narrow boat, manned by six or eight men, who have
surprised and plundered it, some dark and stormy night, near
some desert and gloomy island, as bandits plunder a carriage
in the recesses of a forest."
"But," asked Franz, who lay wrapped in his cloak at the
bottom of the boat, "why do not those who have been
plundered complain to the French, Sardinian, or Tuscan
"Why?" said Gaetano with a smile.
"Because, in the first place, they transfer from the vessel
to their own boat whatever they think worth taking, then
they bind the crew hand and foot, they attach to every one's
neck a four and twenty pound ball, a large hole is chopped
in the vessel's bottom, and then they leave her. At the end
of ten minutes the vessel begins to roll heavily and settle
down. First one gun'l goes under, then the other. Then they
lift and sink again, and both go under at once. All at once
there's a noise like a cannon -- that's the air blowing up
the deck. Soon the water rushes out of the scupper-holes
like a whale spouting, the vessel gives a last groan, spins
round and round, and disappears, forming a vast whirlpool in
the ocean, and then all is over, so that in five minutes
nothing but the eye of God can see the vessel where she lies
at the bottom of the sea. Do you understand now," said the
captain, "why no complaints are made to the government, and
why the vessel never reaches port?"
It is probable that if Gaetano had related this previous to
proposing the expedition, Franz would have hesitated, but
now that they had started, he thought it would be cowardly
to draw back. He was one of those men who do not rashly
court danger, but if danger presents itself, combat it with
the most unalterable coolness. Calm and resolute, he treated
any peril as he would an adversary in a duel, -- calculated
its probable method of approach; retreated, if at all, as a
point of strategy and not from cowardice; was quick to see
an opening for attack, and won victory at a single thrust.
"Bah!" said he, "I have travelled through Sicily and
Calabria -- I have sailed two months in the Archipelago, and
yet I never saw even the shadow of a bandit or a pirate."
"I did not tell your excellency this to deter you from your
project," replied Gaetano, "but you questioned me, and I
have answered; that's all."
"Yes, and your conversation is most interesting; and as I
wish to enjoy it as long as possible, steer for Monte
The wind blew strongly, the boat made six or seven knots an
hour, and they were rapidly reaching the end of their
voyage. As they drew near the island seemed to lift from the
sea, and the air was so clear that they could already
distinguish the rocks heaped on one another, like cannon
balls in an arsenal, with green bushes and trees growing in
the crevices. As for the sailors, although they appeared
perfectly tranquil yet it was evident that they were on the
alert, and that they carefully watched the glassy surface
over which they were sailing, and on which a few
fishing-boats, with their white sails, were alone visible.
They were within fifteen miles of Monte Cristo when the sun
began to set behind Corsica, whose mountains appeared
against the sky, showing their rugged peaks in bold relief;
this mass of rock, like the giant Adamastor, rose dead
ahead, a formidable barrier, and intercepting the light that
gilded its massive peaks so that the voyagers were in
shadow. Little by little the shadow rose higher and seemed
to drive before it the last rays of the expiring day; at
last the reflection rested on the summit of the mountain,
where it paused an instant, like the fiery crest of a
volcano, then gloom gradually covered the summit as it had
covered the base, and the island now only appeared to be a
gray mountain that grew continually darker; half an hour
after, the night was quite dark.
Fortunately, the mariners were used to these latitudes, and
knew every rock in the Tuscan Archipelago; for in the midst
of this obscurity Franz was not without uneasiness --
Corsica had long since disappeared, and Monte Cristo itself
was invisible; but the sailors seemed, like the lynx, to see
in the dark, and the pilot who steered did not evince the
slightest hesitation. An hour had passed since the sun had
set, when Franz fancied he saw, at a quarter of a mile to
the left, a dark mass, but he could not precisely make out
what it was, and fearing to excite the mirth of the sailors
by mistaking a floating cloud for land, he remained silent;
suddenly a great light appeared on the strand; land might
resemble a cloud, but the fire was not a meteor. "What is
this light?" asked he.
"Hush!" said the captain; "it is a fire."
"But you told me the island was uninhabited?"
"I said there were no fixed habitations on it, but I said
also that it served sometimes as a harbor for smugglers."
"And for pirates?"
"And for pirates," returned Gaetano, repeating Franz's
words. "It is for that reason I have given orders to pass
the island, for, as you see, the fire is behind us."
"But this fire?" continued Franz. "It seems to me rather
reassuring than otherwise; men who did not wish to be seen
would not light a fire."
"Oh, that goes for nothing," said Gaetano. "If you can guess
the position of the island in the darkness, you will see
that the fire cannot be seen from the side or from Pianosa,
but only from the sea."
"You think, then, this fire indicates the presence of
"That is what we must find out," returned Gaetano, fixing
his eyes on this terrestrial star.
"How can you find out?"
"You shall see." Gaetano consulted with his companions, and
after five minutes' discussion a manoeuvre was executed
which caused the vessel to tack about, they returned the way
they had come, and in a few minutes the fire disappeared,
hidden by an elevation of the land. The pilot again changed
the course of the boat, which rapidly approached the island,
and was soon within fifty paces of it. Gaetano lowered the
sail, and the boat came to rest. All this was done in
silence, and from the moment that their course was changed
not a word was spoken.
Gaetano, who had proposed the expedition, had taken all the
responsibility on himself; the four sailors fixed their eyes
on him, while they got out their oars and held themselves in
readiness to row away, which, thanks to the darkness, would
not be difficult. As for Franz, he examined his arms with
the utmost coolness; he had two double-barrelled guns and a
rifle; he loaded them, looked at the priming, and waited
quietly. During this time the captain had thrown off his
vest and shirt, and secured his trousers round his waist;
his feet were naked, so he had no shoes and stockings to
take off; after these preparations he placed his finger on
his lips, and lowering himself noiselessly into the sea,
swam towards the shore with such precaution that it was
impossible to hear the slightest sound; he could only be
traced by the phosphorescent line in his wake. This track
soon disappeared; it was evident that he had touched the
shore. Every one on board remained motionless for half an
hour, when the same luminous track was again observed, and
the swimmer was soon on board. "Well?" exclaimed Franz and
the sailors in unison.
"They are Spanish smugglers," said he; "they have with them
two Corsican bandits."
"And what are these Corsican bandits doing here with Spanish
"Alas," returned the captain with an accent of the most
profound pity, "we ought always to help one another. Very
often the bandits are hard pressed by gendarmes or
carbineers; well, they see a vessel, and good fellows like
us on board, they come and demand hospitality of us; you
can't refuse help to a poor hunted devil; we receive them,
and for greater security we stand out to sea. This costs us
nothing, and saves the life, or at least the liberty, of a
fellow-creature, who on the first occasion returns the
service by pointing out some safe spot where we can land our
goods without interruption."
"Ah!" said Franz, "then you are a smuggler occasionally,
"Your excellency, we must live somehow," returned the other,
"Then you know the men who are now on Monte Cristo?"
"Oh, yes, we sailors are like freemasons, and recognize each
other by signs."
"And do you think we have nothing to fear if we land?"
"Nothing at all; smugglers are not thieves."
"But these two Corsican bandits?" said Franz, calculating
the chances of peril.
"It is not their fault that they are bandits, but that of
"Because they are pursued for having made a stiff, as if it
was not in a Corsican's nature to revenge himself."
"What do you mean by having made a stiff? -- having
assassinated a man?" said Franz, continuing his
"I mean that they have killed an enemy, which is a very
different thing," returned the captain.
"Well," said the young man, "let us demand hospitality of
these smugglers and bandits. Do you think they will grant
"How many are they?"
"Four, and the two bandits make six."
"Just our number, so that if they prove troublesome, we
shall be able to hold them in check; so, for the last time,
steer to Monte Cristo."
"Yes, but your excellency will permit us to take all due
"By all means, be as wise as Nestor and as prudent as
Ulysses; I do more than permit, I exhort you."
"Silence, then!" said Gaetano.
Every one obeyed. For a man who, like Franz, viewed his
position in its true light, it was a grave one. He was alone
in the darkness with sailors whom he did not know, and who
had no reason to be devoted to him; who knew that he had
several thousand francs in his belt, and who had often
examined his weapons, -- which were very beautiful, -- if
not with envy, at least with curiosity. On the other hand,
he was about to land, without any other escort than these
men, on an island which had, indeed, a very religious name,
but which did not seem to Franz likely to afford him much
hospitality, thanks to the smugglers and bandits. The
history of the scuttled vessels, which had appeared
improbable during the day, seemed very probable at night;
placed as he was between two possible sources of danger, he
kept his eye on the crew, and his gun in his hand. The
sailors had again hoisted sail, and the vessel was once more
cleaving the waves. Through the darkness Franz, whose eyes
were now more accustomed to it, could see the looming shore
along which the boat was sailing, and then, as they rounded
a rocky point, he saw the fire more brilliant than ever, and
about it five or six persons seated. The blaze illumined the
sea for a hundred paces around. Gaetano skirted the light,
carefully keeping the boat in the shadow; then, when they
were opposite the fire, he steered to the centre of the
circle, singing a fishing song, of which his companions sung
the chorus. At the first words of the song the men seated
round the fire arose and approached the landing-place, their
eyes fixed on the boat, evidently seeking to know who the
new-comers were and what were their intentions. They soon
appeared satisfied and returned (with the exception of one,
who remained at the shore) to their fire, at which the
carcass of a goat was roasting. When the boat was within
twenty paces of the shore, the man on the beach, who carried
a carbine, presented arms after the manner of a sentinel,
and cried, "Who comes there?" in Sardinian. Franz coolly
cocked both barrels. Gaetano then exchanged a few words with
this man which the traveller did not understand, but which
evidently concerned him. "Will your excellency give your
name, or remain incognito?" asked the captain.
"My name must rest unknown, -- merely say I am a Frenchman
travelling for pleasure." As soon as Gaetano had transmitted
this answer, the sentinel gave an order to one of the men
seated round the fire, who rose and disappeared among the
rocks. Not a word was spoken, every one seemed occupied,
Franz with his disembarkment, the sailors with their sails,
the smugglers with their goat; but in the midst of all this
carelessness it was evident that they mutually observed each
other. The man who had disappeared returned suddenly on the
opposite side to that by which he had left; he made a sign
with his head to the sentinel, who, turning to the boat,
said, "S'accommodi." The Italian s'accommodi is
untranslatable; it means at once, "Come, enter, you are
welcome; make yourself at home; you are the master." It is
like that Turkish phrase of Moliere's that so astonished the
bourgeois gentleman by the number of things implied in its
utterance. The sailors did not wait for a second invitation;
four strokes of the oar brought them to land; Gaetano sprang
to shore, exchanged a few words with the sentinel, then his
comrades disembarked, and lastly came Franz. One of his guns
was swung over his shoulder, Gaetano had the other, and a
sailor held his rifle; his dress, half artist, half dandy,
did not excite any suspicion, and, consequently, no
disquietude. The boat was moored to the shore, and they
advanced a few paces to find a comfortable bivouac; but,
doubtless, the spot they chose did not suit the smuggler who
filled the post of sentinel, for he cried out, "Not that
way, if you please."
Gaetano faltered an excuse, and advanced to the opposite
side, while two sailors kindled torches at the fire to light
them on their way. They advanced about thirty paces, and
then stopped at a small esplanade surrounded with rocks, in
which seats had been cut, not unlike sentry-boxes. Around in
the crevices of the rocks grew a few dwarf oaks and thick
bushes of myrtles. Franz lowered a torch, and saw by the
mass of cinders that had accumulated that he was not the
first to discover this retreat, which was, doubtless, one of
the halting-places of the wandering visitors of Monte
Cristo. As for his suspicions, once on terra firma, once
that he had seen the indifferent, if not friendly,
appearance of his hosts, his anxiety had quite disappeared,
or rather, at sight of the goat, had turned to appetite. He
mentioned this to Gaetano, who replied that nothing could be
more easy than to prepare a supper when they had in their
boat, bread, wine, half a dozen partridges, and a good fire
to roast them by. "Besides," added he, "if the smell of
their roast meat tempts you, I will go and offer them two of
our birds for a slice."
"You are a born diplomat," returned Franz; "go and try."
Meanwhile the sailors had collected dried sticks and
branches with which they made a fire. Franz waited
impatiently, inhaling the aroma of the roasted meat, when
the captain returned with a mysterious air.
"Well," said Franz, "anything new? -- do they refuse?"
"On the contrary," returned Gaetano, "the chief, who was
told you were a young Frenchman, invites you to sup with
"Well," observed Franz, "this chief is very polite, and I
see no objection -- the more so as I bring my share of the
"Oh, it is not that; he has plenty, and to spare, for
supper; but he makes one condition, and rather a peculiar
one, before he will receive you at his house."
"His house? Has he built one here, then?"
"No; but he has a very comfortable one all the same, so they
"You know this chief, then?"
"I have heard talk of him."
"Favorably or otherwise?"
"The deuce! -- and what is this condition?"
"That you are blindfolded, and do not take off the bandage
until he himself bids you." Franz looked at Gaetano, to see,
if possible, what he thought of this proposal. "Ah," replied
he, guessing Franz's thought, "I know this is a serious
"What should you do in my place?"
"I, who have nothing to lose, -- I should go."
"You would accept?"
"Yes, were it only out of curiosity."
"There is something very peculiar about this chief, then?"
"Listen," said Gaetano, lowering his voice, "I do not know
if what they say is true" -- he stopped to see if any one
"What do they say?"
"That this chief inhabits a cavern to which the Pitti Palace
"What nonsense!" said Franz, reseating himself.
"It is no nonsense; it is quite true. Cama, the pilot of the
Saint Ferdinand, went in once, and he came back amazed,
vowing that such treasures were only to be heard of in fairy
"Do you know," observed Franz, "that with such stories you
make me think of Ali Baba's enchanted cavern?"
"I tell you what I have been told."
"Then you advise me to accept?"
"Oh, I don't say that; your excellency will do as you
please; I should be sorry to advise you in the matter."
Franz pondered the matter for a few moments, concluded that
a man so rich could not have any intention of plundering him
of what little he had, and seeing only the prospect of a
good supper, accepted. Gaetano departed with the reply.
Franz was prudent, and wished to learn all he possibly could
concerning his host. He turned towards the sailor, who,
during this dialogue, had sat gravely plucking the
partridges with the air of a man proud of his office, and
asked him how these men had landed, as no vessel of any kind
"Never mind that," returned the sailor, "I know their
"Is it a very beautiful vessel?"
"I would not wish for a better to sail round the world."
"Of what burden is she?"
"About a hundred tons; but she is built to stand any
weather. She is what the English call a yacht."
"Where was she built?"
"I know not; but my own opinion is she is a Genoese."
"And how did a leader of smugglers," continued Franz,
"venture to build a vessel designed for such a purpose at
"I did not say that the owner was a smuggler," replied the
"No; but Gaetano did, I thought."
"Gaetano had only seen the vessel from a distance, he had
not then spoken to any one."
"And if this person be not a smuggler, who is he?"
"A wealthy signor, who travels for his pleasure."
"Come," thought Franz, "he is still more mysterious, since
the two accounts do not agree."
"What is his name?"
"If you ask him he says Sinbad the Sailor; but I doubt if it
be his real name."
"Sinbad the Sailor?"
"And where does he reside?"
"On the sea."
"What country does he come from?"
"I do not know."
"Have you ever seen him?"
"What sort of a man is he?"
"Your excellency will judge for yourself."
"Where will he receive me?"
"No doubt in the subterranean palace Gaetano told you of."
"Have you never had the curiosity, when you have landed and
found this island deserted, to seek for this enchanted
"Oh, yes, more than once, but always in vain; we examined
the grotto all over, but we never could find the slightest
trace of any opening; they say that the door is not opened
by a key, but a magic word."
"Decidedly," muttered Franz, "this is an Arabian Nights'
"His excellency waits for you," said a voice, which he
recognized as that of the sentinel. He was accompanied by
two of the yacht's crew. Franz drew his handkerchief from
his pocket, and presented it to the man who had spoken to
him. Without uttering a word, they bandaged his eyes with a
care that showed their apprehensions of his committing some
indiscretion. Afterwards he was made to promise that he
would not make the least attempt to raise the bandage. He
promised. Then his two guides took his arms, and he went on,
guided by them, and preceded by the sentinel. After going
about thirty paces, he smelt the appetizing odor of the kid
that was roasting, and knew thus that he was passing the
bivouac; they then led him on about fifty paces farther,
evidently advancing towards that part of the shore where
they would not allow Gaetano to go -- a refusal he could now
comprehend. Presently, by a change in the atmosphere, he
knew that they were entering a cave; after going on for a
few seconds more he heard a crackling, and it seemed to him
as though the atmosphere again changed, and became balmy and
perfumed. At length his feet touched on a thick and soft
carpet, and his guides let go their hold of him. There was a
moment's silence, and then a voice, in excellent French,
although, with a foreign accent, said, "Welcome, sir. I beg
you will remove your bandage." It may be supposed, then,
Franz did not wait for a repetition of this permission, but
took off the handkerchief, and found himself in the presence
of a man from thirty-eight to forty years of age, dressed in
a Tunisian costume -- that is to say, a red cap with a long
blue silk tassel, a vest of black cloth embroidered with
gold, pantaloons of deep red, large and full gaiters of the
same color, embroidered with gold like the vest, and yellow
slippers; he had a splendid cashmere round his waist, and a
small sharp and crooked cangiar was passed through his
girdle. Although of a paleness that was almost livid, this
man had a remarkably handsome face; his eyes were
penetrating and sparkling; his nose, quite straight, and
projecting direct from the brow, was of the pure Greek type,
while his teeth, as white as pearls, were set off to
admiration by the black mustache that encircled them.
His pallor was so peculiar, that it seemed to pertain to one
who had been long entombed, and who was incapable of
resuming the healthy glow and hue of life. He was not
particularly tall, but extremely well made, and, like the
men of the south, had small hands and feet. But what
astonished Franz, who had treated Gaetano's description as a
fable, was the splendor of the apartment in which he found
himself. The entire chamber was lined with crimson brocade,
worked with flowers of gold. In a recess was a kind of
divan, surmounted with a stand of Arabian swords in silver
scabbards, and the handles resplendent with gems; from the
ceiling hung a lamp of Venetian glass, of beautiful shape
and color, while the feet rested on a Turkey carpet, in
which they sunk to the instep; tapestry hung before the door
by which Franz had entered, and also in front of another
door, leading into a second apartment which seemed to be
brilliantly illuminated. The host gave Franz time to recover
from his surprise, and, moreover, returned look for look,
not even taking his eyes off him. "Sir," he said, after a
pause, "a thousand excuses for the precaution taken in your
introduction hither; but as, during the greater portion of
the year, this island is deserted, if the secret of this
abode were discovered. I should doubtless, find on my return
my temporary retirement in a state of great disorder, which
would be exceedingly annoying, not for the loss it
occasioned me, but because I should not have the certainty I
now possess of separating myself from all the rest of
mankind at pleasure. Let me now endeavor to make you forget
this temporary unpleasantness, and offer you what no doubt
you did not expect to find here -- that is to say, a
tolerable supper and pretty comfortable beds."
"Ma foi, my dear sir," replied Franz, "make no apologies. I
have always observed that they bandage people's eyes who
penetrate enchanted palaces, for instance, those of Raoul in
the `Huguenots,' and really I have nothing to complain of,
for what I see makes me think of the wonders of the `Arabian
"Alas, I may say with Lucullus, if I could have anticipated
the honor of your visit, I would have prepared for it. But
such as is my hermitage, it is at your disposal; such as is
my supper, it is yours to share, if you will. Ali, is the
supper ready?" At this moment the tapestry moved aside, and
a Nubian, black as ebony, and dressed in a plain white
tunic, made a sign to his master that all was prepared in
the dining-room. "Now," said the unknown to Franz, "I do not
know if you are of my opinion, but I think nothing is more
annoying than to remain two or three hours together without
knowing by name or appellation how to address one another.
Pray observe, that I too much respect the laws of
hospitality to ask your name or title. I only request you to
give me one by which I may have the pleasure of addressing
you. As for myself, that I may put you at your ease, I tell
you that I am generally called `Sinbad the Sailor.'"
"And I," replied Franz, "will tell you, as I only require
his wonderful lamp to make me precisely like Aladdin, that I
see no reason why at this moment I should not be called
Aladdin. That will keep us from going away from the East
whither I am tempted to think I have been conveyed by some
"Well, then, Signor Aladdin," replied the singular
amphitryon, "you heard our repast announced, will you now
take the trouble to enter the dining-room, your humble
servant going first to show the way?" At these words, moving
aside the tapestry, Sinbad preceded his guest. Franz now
looked upon another scene of enchantment; the table was
splendidly covered, and once convinced of this important
point he cast his eyes around him. The dining-room was
scarcely less striking than the room he had just left; it
was entirely of marble, with antique bas-reliefs of
priceless value; and at the four corners of this apartment,
which was oblong, were four magnificent statues, having
baskets in their hands. These baskets contained four
pyramids of most splendid fruit; there were Sicily
pine-apples, pomegranates from Malaga, oranges from the
Balearic Isles, peaches from France, and dates from Tunis.
The supper consisted of a roast pheasant garnished with
Corsican blackbirds; a boar's ham with jelly, a quarter of a
kid with tartar sauce, a glorious turbot, and a gigantic
lobster. Between these large dishes were smaller ones
containing various dainties. The dishes were of silver, and
the plates of Japanese china.
Franz rubbed his eyes in order to assure himself that this
was not a dream. Ali alone was present to wait at table, and
acquitted himself so admirably, that the guest complimented
his host thereupon. "Yes," replied he, while he did the
honors of the supper with much ease and grace -- "yes, he is
a poor devil who is much devoted to me, and does all he can
to prove it. He remembers that I saved his life, and as he
has a regard for his head, he feels some gratitude towards
me for having kept it on his shoulders." Ali approached his
master, took his hand, and kissed it.
"Would it be impertinent, Signor Sinbad," said Franz, "to
ask you the particulars of this kindness?"
"Oh, they are simple enough," replied the host. "It seems
the fellow had been caught wandering nearer to the harem of
the Bey of Tunis than etiquette permits to one of his color,
and he was condemned by the bey to have his tongue cut out,
and his hand and head cut off; the tongue the first day, the
hand the second, and the head the third. I always had a
desire to have a mute in my service, so learning the day his
tongue was cut out, I went to the bey, and proposed to give
him for Ali a splendid double-barreled gun which I knew he
was very desirous of having. He hesitated a moment, he was
so very desirous to complete the poor devil's punishment.
But when I added to the gun an English cutlass with which I
had shivered his highness's yataghan to pieces, the bey
yielded, and agreed to forgive the hand and head, but on
condition that the poor fellow never again set foot in
Tunis. This was a useless clause in the bargain, for
whenever the coward sees the first glimpse of the shores of
Africa, he runs down below, and can only be induced to
appear again when we are out of sight of that quarter of the
Franz remained a moment silent and pensive, hardly knowing
what to think of the half-kindness, half-cruelty, with which
his host related the brief narrative. "And like the
celebrated sailor whose name you have assumed," he said, by
way of changing the conversation, "you pass your life in
"Yes. I made a vow at a time when I little thought I should
ever be able to accomplish it," said the unknown with a
singular smile; "and I made some others also which I hope I
may fulfil in due season." Although Sinbad pronounced these
words with much calmness, his eyes gave forth gleams of
"You have suffered a great deal, sir?" said Franz
Sinbad started and looked fixedly at him, as he replied,
"What makes you suppose so?"
"Everything," answered Franz, -- "your voice, your look,
your pallid complexion, and even the life you lead."
"I? -- I live the happiest life possible, the real life of a
pasha. I am king of all creation. I am pleased with one
place, and stay there; I get tired of it, and leave it; I am
free as a bird and have wings like one; my attendants obey
my slightest wish. Sometimes I amuse myself by delivering
some bandit or criminal from the bonds of the law. Then I
have my mode of dispensing justice, silent and sure, without
respite or appeal, which condemns or pardons, and which no
one sees. Ah, if you had tasted my life, you would not
desire any other, and would never return to the world unless
you had some great project to accomplish there."
"Revenge, for instance!" observed Franz.
The unknown fixed on the young man one of those looks which
penetrate into the depth of the heart and thoughts. "And why
revenge?" he asked.
"Because," replied Franz, "you seem to me like a man who,
persecuted by society, has a fearful account to settle with
"Ah," responded Sinbad, laughing with his singular laugh
which displayed his white and sharp teeth. "You have not
guessed rightly. Such as you see me I am, a sort of
philosopher, and one day perhaps I shall go to Paris to
rival Monsieur Appert, and the little man in the blue
"And will that be the first time you ever took that
"Yes; it will. I must seem to you by no means curious, but I
assure you that it is not my fault I have delayed it so long
-- it will happen one day or the other."
"And do you propose to make this journey very shortly?"
"I do not know; it depends on circumstances which depend on
"I should like to be there at the time you come, and I will
endeavor to repay you, as far as lies in my power, for your
liberal hospitality displayed to me at Monte Cristo."
"I should avail myself of your offer with pleasure," replied
the host, "but, unfortunately, if I go there, it will be, in
all probability, incognito."
The supper appeared to have been supplied solely for Franz,
for the unknown scarcely touched one or two dishes of the
splendid banquet to which his guest did ample justice. Then
Ali brought on the dessert, or rather took the baskets from
the hands of the statues and placed them on the table.
Between the two baskets he placed a small silver cup with a
silver cover. The care with which Ali placed this cup on the
table roused Franz's curiosity. He raised the cover and saw
a kind of greenish paste, something like preserved angelica,
but which was perfectly unknown to him. He replaced the lid,
as ignorant of what the cup contained as he was before he
had looked at it, and then casting his eyes towards his host
he saw him smile at his disappointment. "You cannot guess,"
said he, "what there is in that small vase, can you?"
"No, I really cannot."
"Well, then, that green preserve is nothing less than the
ambrosia which Hebe served at the table of Jupiter."
"But," replied Franz, "this ambrosia, no doubt, in passing
through mortal hands has lost its heavenly appellation and
assumed a human name; in vulgar phrase, what may you term
this composition, for which, to tell the truth, I do not
feel any particular desire?"
"Ah, thus it is that our material origin is revealed," cried
Sinbad; "we frequently pass so near to happiness without
seeing, without regarding it, or if we do see and regard it,
yet without recognizing it. Are you a man for the
substantials, and is gold your god? taste this, and the
mines of Peru, Guzerat, and Golconda are opened to you. Are
you a man of imagination -- a poet? taste this, and the
boundaries of possibility disappear; the fields of infinite
space open to you, you advance free in heart, free in mind,
into the boundless realms of unfettered revery. Are you
ambitious, and do you seek after the greatnesses of the
earth? taste this, and in an hour you will be a king, not a
king of a petty kingdom hidden in some corner of Europe like
France, Spain, or England, but king of the world, king of
the universe, king of creation; without bowing at the feet
of Satan, you will be king and master of all the kingdoms of
the earth. Is it not tempting what I offer you, and is it
not an easy thing, since it is only to do thus? look!" At
these words he uncovered the small cup which contained the
substance so lauded, took a teaspoonful of the magic
sweetmeat, raised it to his lips, and swallowed it slowly
with his eyes half shut and his head bent backwards. Franz
did not disturb him whilst he absorbed his favorite
sweetmeat, but when he had finished, he inquired, -- "What,
then, is this precious stuff?"
"Did you ever hear," he replied, "of the Old Man of the
Mountain, who attempted to assassinate Philip Augustus?"
"Of course I have."
"Well, you know he reigned over a rich valley which was
overhung by the mountain whence he derived his picturesque
name. In this valley were magnificent gardens planted by
Hassen-ben-Sabah, and in these gardens isolated pavilions.
Into these pavilions he admitted the elect, and there, says
Marco Polo, gave them to eat a certain herb, which
transported them to Paradise, in the midst of ever-blooming
shrubs, ever-ripe fruit, and ever-lovely virgins. What these
happy persons took for reality was but a dream; but it was a
dream so soft, so voluptuous, so enthralling, that they sold
themselves body and soul to him who gave it to them, and
obedient to his orders as to those of a deity, struck down
the designated victim, died in torture without a murmur,
believing that the death they underwent was but a quick
transition to that life of delights of which the holy herb,
now before you had given them a slight foretaste."
"Then," cried Franz, "it is hashish! I know that -- by name
"That is it precisely, Signor Aladdin; it is hashish -- the
purest and most unadulterated hashish of Alexandria, -- the
hashish of Abou-Gor, the celebrated maker, the only man, the
man to whom there should be built a palace, inscribed with
these words, `A grateful world to the dealer in happiness.'"
"Do you know," said Franz, "I have a very great inclination
to judge for myself of the truth or exaggeration of your
"Judge for yourself, Signor Aladdin -- judge, but do not
confine yourself to one trial. Like everything else, we must
habituate the senses to a fresh impression, gentle or
violent, sad or joyous. There is a struggle in nature
against this divine substance, -- in nature which is not
made for joy and clings to pain. Nature subdued must yield
in the combat, the dream must succeed to reality, and then
the dream reigns supreme, then the dream becomes life, and
life becomes the dream. But what changes occur! It is only
by comparing the pains of actual being with the joys of the
assumed existence, that you would desire to live no longer,
but to dream thus forever. When you return to this mundane
sphere from your visionary world, you would seem to leave a
Neapolitan spring for a Lapland winter -- to quit paradise
for earth -- heaven for hell! Taste the hashish, guest of
mine -- taste the hashish."
Franz's only reply was to take a teaspoonful of the
marvellous preparation, about as much in quantity as his
host had eaten, and lift it to his mouth. "Diable!" he said,
after having swallowed the divine preserve. "I do not know
if the result will be as agreeable as you describe, but the
thing does not appear to me as palatable as you say."
"Because your palate his not yet been attuned to the
sublimity of the substances it flavors. Tell me, the first
time you tasted oysters, tea, porter, truffles, and sundry
other dainties which you now adore, did you like them? Could
you comprehend how the Romans stuffed their pheasants with
assafoetida, and the Chinese eat swallows' nests? Eh? no!
Well, it is the same with hashish; only eat for a week, and
nothing in the world will seem to you to equal the delicacy
of its flavor, which now appears to you flat and
distasteful. Let us now go into the adjoining chamber, which
is your apartment, and Ali will bring us coffee and pipes."
They both arose, and while he who called himself Sinbad --
and whom we have occasionally named so, that we might, like
his guest, have some title by which to distinguish him --
gave some orders to the servant, Franz entered still another
apartment. It was simply yet richly furnished. It was round,
and a large divan completely encircled it. Divan, walls,
ceiling, floor, were all covered with magnificent skins as
soft and downy as the richest carpets; there were
heavy-maned lion-skins from Atlas, striped tiger-skins from
Bengal; panther-skins from the Cape, spotted beautifully,
like those that appeared to Dante; bear-skins from Siberia,
fox-skins from Norway, and so on; and all these skins were
strewn in profusion one on the other, so that it seemed like
walking over the most mossy turf, or reclining on the most
luxurious bed. Both laid themselves down on the divan;
chibouques with jasmine tubes and amber mouthpieces were
within reach, and all prepared so that there was no need to
smoke the same pipe twice. Each of them took one, which Ali
lighted and then retired to prepare the coffee. There was a
moment's silence, during which Sinbad gave himself up to
thoughts that seemed to occupy him incessantly, even in the
midst of his conversation; and Franz abandoned himself to
that mute revery, into which we always sink when smoking
excellent tobacco, which seems to remove with its fume all
the troubles of the mind, and to give the smoker in exchange
all the visions of the soul. Ali brought in the coffee. "How
do you take it?" inquired the unknown; "in the French or
Turkish style, strong or weak, sugar or none, cool or
boiling? As you please; it is ready in all ways."
"I will take it in the Turkish style," replied Franz.
"And you are right," said his host; "it shows you have a
tendency for an Oriental life. Ah, those Orientals; they are
the only men who know how to live. As for me," he added,
with one of those singular smiles which did not escape the
young man, "when I have completed my affairs in Paris, I
shall go and die in the East; and should you wish to see me
again, you must seek me at Cairo, Bagdad, or Ispahan."
"Ma foi," said Franz, "it would be the easiest thing in the
world; for I feel eagle's wings springing out at my
shoulders, and with those wings I could make a tour of the
world in four and twenty hours."
"Ah, yes, the hashish is beginning its work. Well, unfurl
your wings, and fly into superhuman regions; fear nothing,
there is a watch over you; and if your wings, like those of
Icarus, melt before the sun, we are here to ease your fall."
He then said something in Arabic to Ali, who made a sign of
obedience and withdrew, but not to any distance. As to Franz
a strange transformation had taken place in him. All the
bodily fatigue of the day, all the preoccupation of mind
which the events of the evening had brought on, disappeared
as they do at the first approach of sleep, when we are still
sufficiently conscious to be aware of the coming of slumber.
His body seemed to acquire an airy lightness, his perception
brightened in a remarkable manner, his senses seemed to
redouble their power, the horizon continued to expand; but
it was not the gloomy horizon of vague alarms, and which he
had seen before he slept, but a blue, transparent, unbounded
horizon, with all the blue of the ocean, all the spangles of
the sun, all the perfumes of the summer breeze; then, in the
midst of the songs of his sailors, -- songs so clear and
sonorous, that they would have made a divine harmony had
their notes been taken down, -- he saw the Island of Monte
Cristo, no longer as a threatening rock in the midst of the
waves, but as an oasis in the desert; then, as his boat drew
nearer, the songs became louder, for an enchanting and
mysterious harmony rose to heaven, as if some Loreley had
decreed to attract a soul thither, or Amphion, the
enchanter, intended there to build a city.
At length the boat touched the shore, but without effort,
without shock, as lips touch lips; and he entered the grotto
amidst continued strains of most delicious melody. He
descended, or rather seemed to descend, several steps,
inhaling the fresh and balmy air, like that which may be
supposed to reign around the grotto of Circe, formed from
such perfumes as set the mind a dreaming, and such fires as
burn the very senses; and he saw again all he had seen
before his sleep, from Sinbad, his singular host, to Ali,
the mute attendant; then all seemed to fade away and become
confused before his eyes, like the last shadows of the magic
lantern before it is extinguished, and he was again in the
chamber of statues, lighted only by one of those pale and
antique lamps which watch in the dead of the night over the
sleep of pleasure. They were the same statues, rich in form,
in attraction, and poesy, with eyes of fascination, smiles
of love, and bright and flowing hair. They were Phryne,
Cleopatra, Messalina, those three celebrated courtesans.
Then among them glided like a pure ray, like a Christian
angel in the midst of Olympus, one of those chaste figures,
those calm shadows, those soft visions, which seemed to veil
its virgin brow before these marble wantons. Then the three
statues advanced towards him with looks of love, and
approached the couch on which he was reposing, their feet
hidden in their long white tunics, their throats bare, hair
flowing like waves, and assuming attitudes which the gods
could not resist, but which saints withstood, and looks
inflexible and ardent like those with which the serpent
charms the bird; and then he gave way before looks that held
him in a torturing grasp and delighted his senses as with a
voluptuous kiss. It seemed to Franz that he closed his eyes,
and in a last look about him saw the vision of modesty
completely veiled; and then followed a dream of passion like
that promised by the Prophet to the elect. Lips of stone
turned to flame, breasts of ice became like heated lava, so
that to Franz, yielding for the first time to the sway of
the drug, love was a sorrow and voluptuousness a torture, as
burning mouths were pressed to his thirsty lips, and he was
held in cool serpent-like embraces. The more he strove
against this unhallowed passion the more his senses yielded
to its thrall, and at length, weary of a struggle that taxed
his very soul, he gave way and sank back breathless and
exhausted beneath the kisses of these marble goddesses, and
the enchantment of his marvellous dream.
When Franz returned to himself, he seemed still to be in a
dream. He thought himself in a sepulchre, into which a ray
of sunlight in pity scarcely penetrated. He stretched forth
his hand, and touched stone; he rose to his seat, and found
himself lying on his bournous in a bed of dry heather, very
soft and odoriferous. The vision had fled; and as if the
statues had been but shadows from the tomb, they had
vanished at his waking. He advanced several paces towards
the point whence the light came, and to all the excitement
of his dream succeeded the calmness of reality. He found
that he was in a grotto, went towards the opening, and
through a kind of fanlight saw a blue sea and an azure sky.
The air and water were shining in the beams of the morning
sun; on the shore the sailors were sitting, chatting and
laughing; and at ten yards from them the boat was at anchor,
undulating gracefully on the water. There for some time he
enjoyed the fresh breeze which played on his brow, and
listened to the dash of the waves on the beach, that left
against the rocks a lace of foam as white as silver. He was
for some time without reflection or thought for the divine
charm which is in the things of nature, specially after a
fantastic dream; then gradually this view of the outer
world, so calm, so pure, so grand, reminded him of the
illusiveness of his vision, and once more awakened memory.
He recalled his arrival on the island, his presentation to a
smuggler chief, a subterranean palace full of splendor, an
excellent supper, and a spoonful of hashish. It seemed,
however, even in the very face of open day, that at least a
year had elapsed since all these things had passed, so deep
was the impression made in his mind by the dream, and so
strong a hold had it taken of his imagination. Thus every
now and then he saw in fancy amid the sailors, seated on a
rock, or undulating in the vessel, one of the shadows which
had shared his dream with looks and kisses. Otherwise, his
head was perfectly clear, and his body refreshed; he was
free from the slightest headache; on the contrary, he felt a
certain degree of lightness, a faculty for absorbing the
pure air, and enjoying the bright sunshine more vividly than
He went gayly up to the sailors, who rose as soon as they
perceived him; and the patron, accosting him, said, "The
Signor Sinbad has left his compliments for your excellency,
and desires us to express the regret he feels at not being
able to take his leave in person; but he trusts you will
excuse him, as very important business calls him to Malaga."
"So, then, Gaetano," said Franz, "this is, then, all
reality; there exists a man who has received me in this
island, entertained me right royally, and his departed while
I was asleep?"
"He exists as certainly as that you may see his small yacht
with all her sails spread; and if you will use your glass,
you will, in all probability, recognize your host in the
midst of his crew." So saying, Gaetano pointed in a
direction in which a small vessel was making sail towards
the southern point of Corsica. Franz adjusted his telescope,
and directed it towards the yacht. Gaetano was not mistaken.
At the stern the mysterious stranger was standing up looking
towards the shore, and holding a spy-glass in his hand. He
was attired as he had been on the previous evening, and
waved his pocket-handkerchief to his guest in token of
adieu. Franz returned the salute by shaking his handkerchief
as an exchange of signals. After a second, a slight cloud of
smoke was seen at the stern of the vessel, which rose
gracefully as it expanded in the air, and then Franz heard a
slight report. "There, do you hear?" observed Gaetano; "he
is bidding you adieu." The young man took his carbine and
fired it in the air, but without any idea that the noise
could be heard at the distance which separated the yacht
from the shore.
"What are your excellency's orders?" inquired Gaetano.
"In the first place, light me a torch."
"Ah, yes, I understand," replied the patron, "to find the
entrance to the enchanted apartment. With much pleasure,
your excellency, if it would amuse you; and I will get you
the torch you ask for. But I too have had the idea you have,
and two or three times the same fancy has come over me; but
I have always given it up. Giovanni, light a torch," he
added, "and give it to his excellency."
Giovanni obeyed. Franz took the lamp, and entered the
subterranean grotto, followed by Gaetano. He recognized the
place where he had awaked by the bed of heather that was
there; but it was in vain that he carried his torch all
round the exterior surface of the grotto. He saw nothing,
unless that, by traces of smoke, others had before him
attempted the same thing, and, like him, in vain. Yet he did
not leave a foot of this granite wall, as impenetrable as
futurity, without strict scrutiny; he did not see a fissure
without introducing the blade of his hunting sword into it,
or a projecting point on which he did not lean and press in
the hopes it would give way. All was vain; and he lost two
hours in his attempts, which were at last utterly useless.
At the end of this time he gave up his search, and Gaetano
When Franz appeared again on the shore, the yacht only
seemed like a small white speck on the horizon. He looked
again through his glass, but even then he could not
distinguish anything. Gaetano reminded him that he had come
for the purpose of shooting goats, which he had utterly
forgotten. He took his fowling-piece, and began to hunt over
the island with the air of a man who is fulfilling a duty,
rather than enjoying a pleasure; and at the end of a quarter
of an hour he had killed a goat and two kids. These animals,
though wild and agile as chamois, were too much like
domestic goats, and Franz could not consider them as game.
Moreover, other ideas, much more enthralling, occupied his
mind. Since, the evening before, he had really been the hero
of one of the tales of the "Thousand and One Nights," and he
was irresistibly attracted towards the grotto. Then, in
spite of the failure of his first search, he began a second,
after having told Gaetano to roast one of the two kids. The
second visit was a long one, and when he returned the kid
was roasted and the repast ready. Franz was sitting on the
spot where he was on the previous evening when his
mysterious host had invited him to supper; and he saw the
little yacht, now like a sea-gull on the wave, continuing
her flight towards Corsica. "Why," he remarked to Gaetano,
"you told me that Signor Sinbad was going to Malaga, while
it seems he is in the direction of Porto-Vecchio."
"Don't you remember," said the patron, "I told you that
among the crew there were two Corsican brigands?"
"True; and he is going to land them," added Franz.
"Precisely so," replied Gaetano. "Ah, he is one who fears
neither God nor Satan, they say, and would at any time run
fifty leagues out of his course to do a poor devil a
"But such services as these might involve him with the