"What!" he stammered, "you know?""I thought you must have been in haste to go and tell a person ofyour acquaintance why, when you saw me yesterday, you uttered anexclamation of surprise."This time Maxence lost all countenance.
"What," he said, "you know too?"M. de Tregars smiled.
"I know a great many things, my dear M. Maxence," he replied; "andyet, as I do not wish to be suspected of witchcraft, I will tellyou where all my science comes from. At the time when your housewas closed to me, after seeking for a long time some means ofhearing from your sister, I discovered at last that she had forher music-teacher an old Italian, the Signor Gismondi Pulei. Iapplied to him for lessons, and became his pupil. But, in thebeginning, he kept looking at me with singular persistence. Iinquired the reason; and he told me that he had once had for aneighbor, at the Batignolles, a young working-girl, who resembledme prodigiously. I paid no attention to this circumstance, andhad, in fact, completely forgotten it; when, quite lately, Gismondotold me that he had just seen his former neighbor again, and, what'smore, arm in arm with you, and that you both entered together theHotel des Folies. As he insisted again upon that famous resemblance,I determined to see for myself. I watched, and I stated, de visa,that my old Italian was not quite wrong, and that I had, perhaps,just found the weapon I was looking for."His eyes staring, and his mouth gaping, Maxence looked like a manfallen from the clouds.
"Ah, you did watch!" he said.
Tips, opportunities to make money：What is the most money online software downloadM. de Tregars snapped his fingers with a gesture of indifference.
"It is certain," he replied, "that, for a month past, I have beendoing a singular business. But it is not by remaining on my chair,preaching against the corruption of the age, that I can attain myobject. The end justifies the means. Honest men are very silly,I think, to allow the rascals to get the better of them under thesentimental pretext that they cannot condescend to make use of theirweapons."But an honorable scruple was tormenting Maxence.
"And you think yourself well-informed, sir?" he inquired. "Youknow Lucienne?""Enough to know that she is not what she seems to be, and whatalmost any other would have been in her place; enough to be certain,that, if she shows herself two or three times a week riding aroundthe lake, it is not for her pleasure; enough, also, to be persuaded,that, despite appearances, she is not your mistress, and that, farfrom having disturbed your life, and compromised your prospects,she set you back into the right road, at the moment, perhaps, whenyou were about to branch off into the wrong path."Marius de Tregars was assuming fantastic proportions in the mind ofMaxence.
"How did you manage," he stammered, "thus to find out the truth?""With time and money, every thing is possible.""But you must have had grave reasons to take so much trouble aboutLucienne.""Very grave ones, indeed.""You know that she was basely forsaken when quite a child?""Perfectly.""And that she was brought up through charity ""By some poor gardeners at Louveciennes: yes, I know all that."Maxence was trembling with joy. It seemed to him that his mostdazzling hopes were about to be realized. Seizing the hands ofMarius de Tregars,"Ah, you know Lucienne's family!" he exclaimed. But M. de Tregarsshook his head.
"I have suspicions," he answered; "but, up to this time, I havesuspicions only, I assure you.""But that family does exist; since they have already, at threedifferent times, attempted to get rid of the poor girl.""I think as you do; but we must have proofs: and we shall find some.
You may rest assured of that."Here he was interrupted by the noise of the opening door.
The old servant came in, and advancing to the centre of the roomwith a mysterious look,"Madame Ia Baronne de Thaller," he said in a low voice.
Tips, opportunities to make money：How to make money on online shopping mallMarius de Tregars started violently.
"Where?" he asked.
"She is down stairs in her carriage," replied the servant. "Herfootman is here, asking whether monsieur is at home, and whethershe can come up.""Can she possibly have heard any thing?" murmured M. de Tregarswith a deep frown. And, after a moment of reflection,"So much the more reason to see her," he added quickly. "Let hercome. Request her to do me the honor of coming up stairs."This last incident completely upset all Maxence's ideas. He nolonger knew what to imagine.