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laid apart oil a shelf, and throwing back his miller's
coat, became judicial. The traveller was, as
it were, upon his trial, standing in the dock.

"Vot' passeport?" says the miller inquisitor.

I said, "Yes."

"Etes s'jet 'tannique?"

There was no use denying that I was a
Britisli subject, for he had gleaned the fact
from the document before him. I said I was
s'jet 'tannique. At this moment I heard the
loud bassoon, that is to say, the winding horns of
the little guards. I made a distracted plunge
backward, but was stayed by the fireman and
his helmet obstructing the doorway.

"And this is your passeport?" continued
the miller policeman.

As was before stated, it was idle to think of
repudiating the document.

"Well, then," said the inquisitor, gathering
himself up to pass sentence, "you being 'jet
'tannique, and this being your passeport—"

"Montez, montez, messieurs!" from outside,
from the little green men.

"Monsieur, I implore you, let me go; the
train is about to depart."

"Your passeport," continued procurator fiscal,
giving judgment from his hutch, "is not in rule.
on must return by the next convoy to Brussels,
and procure another."

The spiked fireman, tapping me on the shoulder,
withdrew me from the hutch. There was a cheerful
"tra-la" from unresponsive horns, and the
train began to move. I rushed forward
desperately; for I had seen the faces of Miss Blonde
and Miss Brunette gliding by, and they saw me,
in the depths of my humiliation, tapped on the
arm by spiked fireman, and detained ingloriously
as his prisoner.

I was frantic. I threatened the Herr Director
with our minister, and the Times, alluding to the
well-known journal. He became polite, strange
to say; showed me that mine was a French
consular passport, not a British one; that another
could be easily procured at Brussels (I laughed
scornfully), and that all would yet go well.

I had to pace that often-anathematised
apology for a platform under strict fireman surveillance
for nearly three hours. Then a return
train came up a slow one and it was near
midnight before I was set down again in
Brussels: a miserable broken spirit, panting for

I waited on "our minister" betimes, about as
early as was inconvenient, and told him the simple
story of my wrongs. I found him a cold, dry,
baked, juiceless man. I obtained the usual
redress, and the customary show of sympathy.
If the passport was not "in rule," why, it ought
to have been. He regretted much it was out of
his power, &c. If I wished, he could embody the
substance of my case in a statement for the
information of the home government, who, he was
sure, &c. I quitted this functionary in disgust;
and, by an early train was again flying into
Prussia. Towards evening the train was once
more stopped by green brigands crawling up the
sides, and again rifled of its papers. By dusk,
guttural tongues were shouting, "Aachen!
Aachen!" and I was presently scouring the streets
in the peculiar vehicle of the place, making for
the Grand Monarch. I should find them at tea
come upon them with surprise. Miss Brunette
would give a sort of suppressed little cry of
delight, and Mr. Blandman, putting forth his
hand, would wring me cordially, and give me a
British welcome. I should like them to be a little
dull at the moment; a little tired, anxious for
change, when I suddenly appear at the door.

They were gonegone since this morning; the
Grand Monarch would not tell me whither
somewhere out upon the wide world, with the
name of their dwelling-place unspoken. I
became a prey to black despair, and remained
there five weeks, drinking the waters. I bought
a Bohemian glass goblet, and quaffed sulphurous
draughts, to the confusion of all Prussians.
I went to the weekly balls of the place, and
scoffed openly at the two officials sole garrison
of the place who danced and glissaded like
dancing-masters, doing all the steps, and who
wore the ridiculous old exploded British undress
uniform of thirty years back, scales and all.
There was another creature in scales, too, ob-
trusive in his attentions to fashionable English
ladies, but who proved on inquiry to be an arch-
policeman with an eye-glass, whom you could
see any morning up in his squalid office, where
droves of submissive rustics who wished to
travel a few miles, sat, and petitioned for
license, and were bullied according to form.
Yet I was glad I tarried in the city of sulphur,
for I saw yet another of their little tyrannies.
As I sat one morning, partaking of breakfast,
and spelling the dreary print, yet amusing from
its dreariness, entitled the Comische Zeitung
there drew near to me once more the green
man of the spiked helm. He boded me no good
I was sure. He had no business with me, he
said, gruffly, "but with that."
"With what?"
"That therethe Zeitung!"
"Pardon, I have not done with it."
In the name of the king! he demanded the
Zeitung. He had come to seize that journal.
He took with him the wretched print, and was
going round the town to seize every other copy.
There had been a harmless article on some
election then pending, which was unpleasing
to the government.


THE streets are smothered in the snow,
The chill-eyed stars are cleaving keen
The frozen air, and, sailing slow,
The white moon stares across the scene.

She waits beside the fading fire,
The gasping taper nickers low,
And drooping down, and rising higher,
Her shadow wavers to and fro.

No foot disturbs the sleeping floor,
No motion save the wintry breath
That, stealing through the crannied door,
Creeps coldly as a thought of death.