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his name. They sold the furniture piecemeal
to enable them to live. Then it was that
Madame de Jarante first showed symptoms
of her mental disorder. She could not believe
in the disaster that had overtaken her; and.
to save her from complete insanity, her father
and children found it necessary to commence
the system of deception which they had ever
afterwards been compelled to carry on.
Victor gave many details of the extraordinary
means they took for this purposealways
successfully. His mother invariably kept
her room. Only within the last few weeks,
however, had she shown signs of bodily decay.
Assistance had not been called in, simply
on account of their poverty.

"And what, may I now inquire," said the
doctor, deeply, interested, "are the grounds
of the hopes of better times which you seem
to entertain ? "

"I am certain," replied Victor, "that my
father is not dead. He will return, there is
no doubt, and restore us to our former
position. All that I ask is that my mother's life
shall be preserved until then."

Doctor Dubois did not entertain the same
confidence. "Little stress," he said, "must be
laid on presentiments of that kind. Meanwhile,
your mother must not be allowed to
want for anything. You must borrow money
of some friend."

"We have no friends," said the young

"Then I shall write a prescription,"
muttered the doctor, as he seized pen and

What he wrote was as follows:

MONSIEUR I am in want of money immediately,
please send me three hundred francs by the bearer.
                                                    ALPHONSE DUBOIS.

"There," said he, getting up, "take that
to its address to-morrow morning, and do
not let me hear from you again until you
have used what you receive. I will come
again to-morrow evening."

So saying, the doctor bustled away to
escape the thanks of Victor, and crossed the
court in so great a hurry that he forgot to put
up his umbrella.

In the evening Doctor Dubois returned to
the hotel, and felt his heart warmed by the
evidences of greater comfort he beheld. He
now ventured to prescribe medicine, and,
succeeded eventually in restoring his patient's
health. There was no change, however, in
her mental condition. She still believed
herself to be surrounded by wealth; only she
thought her children were more attentive
than before. The little comforts they now
gave her excited not surprise but gratitude
The doctor continued his visits and his
loans! "You shall pay me all back with
interest," he said, when Victor hesitated to

"Good works are never lost," remarked
Bobonne, falling in with her master's humour.

One evening in the following summer,
when the physician happened again to be
making ready for a comfortable evening
with his feet in the same slippers; with the
usual plate of nuts and almonds before him
and an uncorked bottle of Beaune, with which
he took alternate draughts of Seltzer water;
with the same black velvet skullcap thrust
to the back of his head, and the same
morning-gown thrown back in graceful folds.
Bobonne had just come in with the coffee
and the evening paper. The bell rang again.
Doctor Dubois again exclaimed "Diable"
and "Peste." It was Victor as before.

"Come," he exclaimed, "to save us from,
the consequences of excess of joy!"

"They are never very serious," quoth the
doctor, without moving. "What is the

"My father has returned."

Bobonne instantly understood the
significance of these words, was the first to
urge her master to be up and doing, and
lost no time in handing him his hat. "As
for your coffee, my dear doctor, I will keep
that warm for you," she said, in a tone of
affectionate familiarity which was new to

Doctor Dubois learned,as he walked towards
the hotel, that Monsieur de Jarante had
suddenly appeared without giving any warning
whatever. His wife became insensible on
beholding him, and Victor had instantly
rushed away for medical assistance. When
they reached the hotel, all danger seemed to
have passed, and the returned traveller was
listening with astonishment, anger, and
contrition to the story of the sufferings of his
family. For his own part, he had met with
many perils and fatigues, which had
disgusted him at last with a wandering life.
He had been shipwrecked on a remote
island, scalped, and escaped with his life
only, by a miracle. He admitted that he
had been neglectful. His future life,
however, should atone for the past.

He naturally resumed possession of his
fortune, and established the legality of his
marriage, and the legitimacy of his
children. Madame de Jarante at length
understood all that happened to her, and
might have returned into the society which
had so readily cast her off; but, instead of
seeking pleasure, she occupies herself in
relieving the poor; in which benevolent
occupation she is much assisted by Doctor
Dubois. Her son and daughter both
married well; and, although M. de Chesnel
recently died in the fulness of years, the
whole family now enjoys a happiness which
it had never before known.

It may as well be mentioned that Doctor
Dubois went the other day, with rather a
confused look, to ask Victor to stand godfather
to a son and heir which Bobonnewe beg
her pardonwhich Madame Dubois, had
presented him with.