Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/129

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OF THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE.


them confess their crime, one of the motives for which, it appeared, was that they had noticed amongst the baggage of M. de la Fayette, some very heavy cases which they supposed contained treasure. The informer was, of course, rewarded as he deserved. None of us went to bed that night; we had to watch over sixty men, bound, and shut up between decks. In the cabin which served as our council-chamber, nothing was to be seen but loaded pistols and drawn swords.

At daybreak we found that a Swedish merchant vessel was close to us. Captain Landais made the master come on board. The poor man's terror at seeing our cabin was ludicrous, the sight of all these deadly weapons made him imagine that his last hour had come. We tried to re-assure him by signs, for he did not know a word of French. For two whole days he was too frightened to either eat or drink, but he ended by finding our dinners very good, and our wine excellent. Captain Landais maintained that the Swede was a legitimate capture, but, when we