Bareilles' face was ghastly. "Take M. le Capitaine's sword," he said to them.
The Captain's jaw fell, and, stepping back a pace, he looked from one to another. But all were silent; he found every eye upon him, and, doubtful and taken by surprise, he unbuckled his sword and flung it with an oath upon the floor.
"To the garden with him!" Bareilles continued, hoarsely. "Quick! Take him! I will send you your orders."
They laid hands on the man mechanically, and, unnerved by the suddenness of the affair, the silence, and the presence of so many strangers,--ignorant, too, what was doing or what was meant, he went unresisting. They marched him out heavily; the door closed behind them; we stood waiting. The glittering table, the lights, the arrested dicers, all the trivial preparations for a carouse that at another time must have given a cheerful aspect to the room, produced instead the most sombre impression. I waited, but, seeing that Bareilles did not move, I struck the table with my gauntlet. "The order!" I said, sharply; "the order!"
He slunk to a table in a corner where there was ink, and scrawled it. I took it from his hand, and, giving it to Boisrueil, "Take it," I said, "and the three men on the landing, and see the order carried out. When it is over, come and tell me."
He took the order and disappeared, La Font after him. I remained in the room with Parabere, Bareilles, and the dicers. The minutes passed slowly, no one speaking; Bareilles standing with his head sunk on his breast, and a look of utter despair on his countenance. At length Boisrueil and La Font returned. The former nodded.
"Very well," I said. "Then let us sup, gentlemen. Come, M. de Bareilles, your place is at the head of the table. Parabere, sit here. Gentlemen, I have not the honour of knowing you, but here are places."
And we supped; but not all with the same appetite. Bareilles, silent, despairing, a prey to the bitterest remorse, sat low in his chair, and, if I read his face aright, had no thought but of vengeance. But, assured that by forcing him to that which must for ever render him odious--and particularly among his inferiors --I had sapped his authority at the root, I took care only that he should not leave us. I directed Colet to unsaddle and bivouac in the garden, and myself lay all night with Parabere and Bareilles in the room in which we had supped, Boisrueil and La Font taking turns to keep the door.
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