Ten Years Later
This brilliant and animated company, the members of which were inspired by various
feelings, arrived at Le Havre four days after their departure from Paris. It was about five
o'clock in the afternoon, and no intelligence had yet been received of Madame. They
were soon engaged in quest of apartments; but the greatest confusion immediately
ensued among the masters, and violent quarrels among their attendants. In the midst of
this disorder, the Comte de Guiche fancied he recognized Manicamp. It was, indeed,
Manicamp himself; but as Malicorne had taken possession of his very best costume, he
had not been able to get any other than a suit of violet velvet, trimmed with silver.
Guiche recognized him as much by his dress as by his features, for he had very
frequently seen Manicamp in his violet suit, which was his last resource. Manicamp
presented himself to the count under an arch of torches, which set in a blaze, rather
than illuminated, the gate by which Le Havre is entered, and which is situated close to
the tower of Francis I. The count, remarking the woe-begone expression of Manicamp's
face, could not resist laughing. "Well, my poor Manicamp," he exclaimed, "how violet
you look; are you in mourning?"
"Yes," replied Manicamp; "I am in mourning."
"For whom, or for what?"
"For my blue-and-gold suit, which has disappeared, and in the place of which I could
find nothing but this; and I was even obliged to economize from compulsion, in order to
get possession of it."
"It is singular you should be astonished at that, since you leave me without any money."
"At all events, here you are, and that is the principal thing."
"By the most horrible roads."
"Where are you lodging?"
"I am not lodging anywhere."