Page:A French Volunteer of the War of Independence.djvu/235

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OF THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE.


in the story, he listened to the distant echo of the storm.

Of the unlucky M. de la Fayette we both spoke in a befitting manner; he, because he had always followed him; I, out of gratitude for past favours, and we often also spoke of his share in the American War, in which we had both been actors, and both under his orders. In the course of conversation, M. de la Colombe related to me the history of one of the adventures of our general—a story which my departure for America on my third visit, had prevented my ever hearing before.

"You have heard," he said to me, "how M. de la Fayette quitted, in 1792, the army which he commanded, and came to Paris, and how, after having failed to carry out his good intentions, he returned to Maubeuge, with the sad conviction that he would not be able to do any good, or prevent any evil, either in Paris, or with the army. You know that finding himself in this difficulty he deserted his party, and, with some of his officers, presented himself at the Austrian advanced post, and de-