Ten Years Later HTML version
A Surprise for Raoul.
Madame's marriage was celebrated in the chapel of the Palais Royal, in the presence of
a crowd of courtiers, who had been most scrupulously selected. However,
notwithstanding the marked favor which an invitation indicated, Raoul, faithful to his
promise to Malicorne, who was so anxious to witness the ceremony, obtained
admission for him. After he had fulfilled this engagement, Raoul approached De Guiche,
who, as if in contrast with his magnificent costume, exhibited a countenance so utterly
dejected, that the Duke of Buckingham was the only one present who could contend
with him as far as pallor and discomfiture were concerned.
"Take care, count," said Raoul, approaching his friend, and preparing to support him at
the moment the archbishop blessed the married couple. In fact, the Prince of Conde
was attentively scrutinizing these two images of desolation, standing like caryatides on
either side of the nave of the church. The count, after that, kept a more careful watch
At the termination of the ceremony, the king and queen passed onward towards the
grand reception-room, where Madame and her suite were to be presented to them. It
was remarked that the king, who had seemed more than surprised at his sister-in-law's
appearance, was most flattering in his compliments to her. Again, it was remarked that
the queen-mother, fixing a long and thoughtful gaze upon Buckingham, leaned towards
Madame de Motteville as though to ask her, "Do you not see how much he resembles
his father?" and finally it was remarked that Monsieur watched everybody, and seemed
quite discontented. After the reception of the princess and ambassadors, Monsieur
solicited the king's permission to present to him as well as to Madame the persons
belonging to their new household.
"Are you aware, vicomte," inquired the Prince de Conde of Raoul, "whether the
household has been selected by a person of taste, and whether there are any faces
worth looking at?"
"I have not the slightest idea, monseigneur," replied Raoul.
"You affect ignorance, surely."
"In what way, monseigneur?"
"You are a friend of De Guiche, who is one of the friends of the prince."