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as, clad in the gray uniform of the hospital,
and supported by a stick, he took a brief
mid-day promenade.

We made him cheering Sunday visits,
Madame Panpan, Louis, the little Henri, and
I, and infringed many a rule of the hospital
in regard to his regimen. There was a
charcutier living close to the outer walks, and
when nothing else could be had, we
purchased some of his curiously prepared
delicacies, and smuggled them in under various
guises. To him they were delicious morsels
amid the uniform soup and bouillon of the
hospital, and I dare say did him neither good
nor harm.

Poor Madame Panpan! apart from the
unceasing exertions which her difficult
position demanded of her; apart from the
harassing days, the sleepless nights, and
pecuniary deficiencies which somehow never
were made up; apart from the shadow of
death which hovered ever near her; and the
unvarying labours which pulled at her
fingers, and strained at her eyes, so that her
efforts seemed still devoted to one ever
unfinished corset,—there arose another trouble
where it was least expected; and alas! I was
the unconscious cause of a new embarrassment.
I was accused of being her lover.
Numberless accusations rose up against us.
Had I not played at pat-ball with Madame
in the Bois de Boulogne? Yes, pardi! while
Pampan lay stretched upon the grass a laughing
spectator of the game; and which was
brought to an untimely conclusion by my
breaking my head against the branch of a
tree. But had I not accompanied Madame
alone to the Champs Elysées to witness the
jeu-de-feu on the last fête of July? My good
woman, did I not carry Louis pick-a-back the
whole way? and was not the crowd so dense
and fearful, that our progress to the Champs
Elysées was barred at its very mouth by the
fierce tornado of the multitude, and the
trampling to death of three unhappy mortals,
whose shrieks and groans still echo in my
ear? and was it not at the risk of life or
limb that I fought my way along the Rue de
la Madeleine, with little Louis clinging round
my neck, and Madame hanging on to my
coat-tail? Amid the swaying and eddying of
the crowd, the mounted Garde Municipale
came dashing into the thickest of the press,
to snatch little children, and even women,
from impending death, and bear them to a
place of safety. And if we did take a bottle
of Strassburger beer on the Boulevards, when
at length we found a freer place to breathe
in, faint and reeling as we were, pray where
was the harm, and who would not have done
as much? Ah, Madame! if you had seen, as
I did, that when we reached home the first
thing poor Madame Panpan came to do, was
to fall upon her husband's neck, and in a
voice broken with sobs, and as though her
heart would break, to thank that merciful
God who had spared her in her trouble, that
she might still work for him and his
children! you would not be so ready with
your blame.

But there was a heavier accusation still.
Did you not, sir, entertain Madame to supper
in the Rue de Roule? with the utmost
extravagance too, not to mention the omelette
soufflée with which you must needs tickle
your appetites, and expressly order for the
occasion? And more than that: did you not
then take coffee in the Rue St. Honoré, and
play at dominoes with Madame in the salon?
Alas, yes! all this is true, and the cause
still more true and more sad; for it was
under the terrible impression that Madame
Panpan and her two childrenfor they were
both with us you will remember, even little
Henrihad not eaten of one tolerable meal
throughout a whole week, that these
unpardonable acts were committed on the Sunday.
An omelette soufflée, you know, must be
ordered; but as for the dominoes, I admit that
that was an indiscretion.

Père Panpan drooped and drooped. The
cord of his gymnasium swung uselessly
above his head; he tottered no more
along the corridors of the hospital. He
had ceased to be the pet of the medical
profession. His malady was obstinate
and impertinent; it could neither be
explained nor driven away; and as all the
deep theories propounded respecting it, or
carried into practical operation for its
removal, proved to be mere elaborate fancies,
or useless experiments, the medical profession
happily for Panpanretired from the
field in disgust.

"I do believe it was the button! " exclaimed
Panpan, one Sunday afternoon, with
a strange light gleaming in his eyes. Madame
replied only with a sob. " You have seen
many of them? " he abruptly demanded of

Of what?"


"There are a great many of them made in
England," I replied. Where were we wandering?

Panpan took my hand in his, and, with a
gentle pressure that went to my very heart,
exclaimed: " I do believe it was the brass
button after all. I hope to God it was not
an English button!"

I can't say whether it was or no. But, as
to poor Père Panpan, we buried him at

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