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IN THE HOUSE OF BERTRAND

"But why? Why do you fear? Surely these soldiers are sufficient to afford protection."

The half veiled scorn of her manner cut me to the quick, but I determined not to be drawn aside from my purpose. My face still a-flush at her suggestion of cowardice, I replied earnestly:

"Mademoiselle la Princesse—"

"Ah, you know me?"

I nodded.

"And yet are willing to relinquish the honour of my escort?"

"It is duty, Mademoiselle la Princesse; stern and imperative duty."

"Sh!" Placing her finger to her lips, "address me simply as Madame."

"Madame, you wrong me; I would not desert you while in danger; now I may give you into safer hands with honour. A most urgent matter demands my presence there," pointing inside, "it may cost my life. Had I better not acquaint M. de Verrue with your character? He will then be more circumspect?" She thought a space.

"No, you may tell him I am a woman—tell him of the stupid folly which led me here to-night and brought a brave gentleman into danger—but not my name."

She would have thanked me further, but I was all impatience to be inside, seeing which she graciously bade me go. I bethought me then of the packet yet in my bosom, and knowing all those within were to be searched I took a hasty resolution, born of my confidence in the