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THE BLACK WOLF'S BREED

"By whose orders," he demanded with some show of haughty indignation, "do you hold me a prisoner with this disorderly rabble?"

"Marshal Vauban's," the sentry replied, unmoved.

The man shrank back perceptibly; as I took a longer sight of him the familiarity of voice and figure recurred more strongly. I stood still to look. He turned his face. Broussard! I almost spoke the name. Yes, beyond all peradventure it was Broussard, disguised, but still Broussard.

What a world of vain speculation this opened on the instant, speculation to which no answer came. How much and what had I told him during our voyage? How had he treasured it and where repeated it? For I had now no other thought than he was the spy who brought Yvard the packet designed for Spain.

"Come my lord, are you dreaming?" the princess broke in impatiently. I had quite forgotten her.

"No madame, I crave your patience, and beg attention a moment."

I then asked hurriedly whether she knew the young officer in charge of our escort, and whether she would trust him to see her to a place of safety. She knew the lad as a gentleman of birth and reputed honour, so with the guard and the marshal's orders felt herself safe. Despite the effort to speak coolly my whole frame and voice quivered with excitement at prospect of winding up the entire affair by one more stroke of luck. Seeing which my lady icily inquired: