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CHAPTER VI It was not Paulette, explained Leclerc, he would be distressed to leave her, but she would be safe and surrounded by her family. It was his young sister, now at school at Mme. Campans, whom he could not leave unprotected, perhaps for ever. I ask you, General, how can I?

The years of separation while he was in America were most trying, and her sister, Louise de Noailles, shared her anxiety, as the Vicomte de Noailles and Comte de Sgur joined the Americans in 1779.

Even among the revolutionists there was sometimes a strange mixture of good and evil. The Auvergnat deputy Soubrany was proscribed by his friends, and met Frron in the street, who said When the storm had subsided the peasants were crying and lamenting over the destruction of their crops, and all the large proprietors in the neighbourhood came most generously to their assistance. One rich man distributed forty thousand francs among them. The next year he was one of the first to be massacred.

The Duc de Chartres came and joined them at Tournay, where Mademoiselle dOrlans was taken dangerously ill with a bilious fever. She recovered slowly, but in January, 1793, letters from France brought the news of the execution of Louis XVI., of the infamous part played by Philippe-galit, and of the imminent danger of M. de Sillery.

CHAPTER III Another of her introductions was to Prince von Kaunitz, the great Minister of Maria Theresa, whose power and influence had been such that he was called le cocher de lEurope; [41] and whose disinterested single-minded patriotism was shown in his answer, when, having proposed a certain field-marshal as president of the council of war, the Empress remarked

When Mme. de Bouzolz had a baby, she nursed her devotedly, and took the deepest interest in the child. But the height of bliss seemed to be attained when soon after she had a daughter herself, with which she was so enraptured and about which she made such a fuss, that one can well imagine how tiresome it must have been for the rest of the family. She thought of nothing else, would go nowhere, except to the wedding of her sister, Mme. du Roure, with M. de Thsan; and when in the following spring the poor little thing died after a short illness, she fell into a state of grief and despair which alarmed the whole family, who found it impossible to comfort her. She would sit by the empty cradle, crying, and making drawings in pastel of the child from memory after its portrait had been put away out of her sight. But her unceasing depression and lamentation so worried M. de Beaune that, seeing this, she left off talking about it, and he, hoping she was becoming [198] more resigned to the loss, proposed that she should begin again to go into society after more than a year of retirement. She consented, to please him, for as he would not leave her his life was, of course, very dull. But the effort and strain of it made her so ill that the next year she was obliged to go to Bagnres de Luchon. M. de Beaune, who was certainly a devoted father-in-law, went with her. Her mother and eldest sister came to visit her there; her husband travelled three hundred leagues, although he was ill at the time, to see how she was getting on, and in the autumn she was much better, and able to go to the wedding of her favourite sister, Rosalie, with the Marquis de Grammont.