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THE MAN WITH THE BLACK FEATHER

must not cherish this confusion of mind. Once upon a time your name was Cartouche, but now it is Theophrastus Longuet. Understand that: you are Theophrastus Longuet. My friend, listen to me carefully, as you would listen to a physician who was going to heal you. For you are ill, my friend, very ill, exactly because you believe you are Cartouche, when you are really Theophrastus Longuet. I appeal to all the simplicity of your soul."

"That's all right," said Theophrastus. "I like simple things myself; so I dislike very much, very much indeed, the way by which one comes to see you, through a labyrinth of passages, with skeletons hanging up in them. What's he doing in your house, by the way, that skeleton, instead of resting quietly on Saint-Chaumont Hill? I recognised him at once. They were dragging him to the charnel-house at the Gallows of Montfaucon the very day of my marriage with my dear wife Marie-Antoinette Neron, when we were having our wedding breakfast at the Chopinettes. Beaulieu and Old Easy-Going were with us. At that epoch, my dear M. Eliphas de Taillepot—".

"Eliphas de Taillebourg," corrected Adolphe in a somewhat shocked tone.