ruinous expense. As for any alarm about its security, the idea had never presented itself. What had stood four centuries might well endure a little longer.
Indeed, in this particular winter, after the finding and losing of the treasure, the Desprez' had an anxiety of a very different order, and one which lay nearer their hearts. Jean-Marie was plainly not himself. He had fits of hectic activity, when he made unusual exertions to please, spoke more and faster, and redoubled in attention to his lessons. But these were interrupted by spells of melancholia and brooding silence, when the boy was little better than unbearable.
"Silence," the Doctor moralised—"you see, Anastasie, what comes of silence. Had the boy properly unbosomed himself, the little disappointment about the treasure, the little annoyance about Casimir's incivility, would long ago have been forgotten. As it is, they prey upon him like a disease. He loses flesh, his appetite is variable and, on the whole, impaired. I keep him on the strictest regimen, I exhibit the most powerful tonics; both in vain."
"Don't you think you drug him too much?" asked madame, with an irrepressible shudder.
"Drug?" cried the Doctor; "I drug? Anastasie, you are mad!"
Time went on, and the boy's health still slowly declined. The Doctor blamed the weather, which was cold and boisterous. He called in his confrère from Bourron, took a fancy for him, magnified his capacity, and was pretty soon under treatment himself—it scarcely appeared for what complaint. He