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Cinq Mars — Volume 3 by Alfred de Vigny
page 2 of 79 (02%)
education had taught him concerning the lives of illustrious men, in
order to compare it with his present situation; oppressed by his regrets,
his dreams, predictions, fancies, and all that imaginary world in which
he had lived during his solitary journey-he breathed freely upon finding
himself thrown into a real world almost as full of agitation; and the
realizing of two actual dangers restored circulation to his blood, and
youth to his whole being.

Since the nocturnal scene at the inn near Loudun, he had not been able to
resume sufficient empire over his mind to occupy himself with anything
save his cherished though sad reflections; and consumption was already
threatening him, when happily he arrived at the camp of Perpignan, and
happily also had the opportunity of accepting the proposition of the Abbe
de Gondi--for the reader has no doubt recognized Cinq-Mars in the person
of that young stranger in mourning, so careless and so melancholy, whom
the duellist in the cassock invited to be his second.

He had ordered his tent to be pitched as a volunteer in the street of the
camp assigned to the young noblemen who were to be presented to the King
and were to serve as aides-de-camp to the Generals; he soon repaired
thither, and was quickly armed, horsed, and cuirassed, according to the
custom of the time, and set out alone for the Spanish bastion, the place
of rendezvous. He was the first arrival, and found that a small plot of
turf, hidden among the works of the besieged place, had been well chosen
by the little Abbe for his homicidal purposes; for besides the
probability that no one would have suspected officers of engaging in a
duel immediately beneath the town which they were attacking, the body of
the bastion separated them from the French camp, and would conceal them
like an immense screen. It was wise to take these precautions, for at
that time it cost a man his head to give himself the satisfaction of
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