Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/133

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OF THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE.


The naval officers received us well, but we could not make a long stay at Brest. Everyone of us wished to turn his steps tqwards home. The Marquis de la Fayette, who no longer philosophized now that he was safe on dry land, went to the Hotel de Noailles. His arrival was the news of the day, both at Paris and Versailles. The Queen of France did him the honour to bring Madame de la Fayette in her own carriage. She was surprised to meet her husband, for she had not been apprised of his return.

As for me, I took the diligence and made my way first to Clermont, and then to the paternal mansion, the Chateau of Pontgibaud. Gratitude took precedence of natural aflfection, however, for as the places happened to be on my road, I first went to Nantes, and thanked M. de la Ville-Hélis, and then to La Rochelle to thank M. Seigneur for past services. I did not want to surprise my father by arriving unexpectedly, and therefore took care to write and announce my return. Along with my own very respectful letter, I en-