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are, too well founded, to preserve yourself to your daughter; it is to fly with her. The sale of your mother's jewels will procure you a sum more than sufficient for your wants, and you may await in peaceful security the moment when the marquis, returning to the voice of nature, will agree to receive you again to his arms, without insisting on the frightful sacrifice which you cannot make without committing the blackest perjury, and sacrificing at the same time the future happiness of your child."

"Good God, Louise! what is it you propose to me? to fly my father's house! to render myself infamous in the eyes of the world! Never!"

"Lost, unfortunate Adrienne, you have but a choice of evils. Placed in a position in which your duties must clash, it is those that ought to be most sacred which you are first called upon to fulfil. What duty can be so sacred as that of keeping your solemn oath, preserving your Celine from the evils with which your marriage must overwhelm her? Can the voice of ambition stifle in your heart all the sentiments of nature? and will you sacrifice your child, as you have already sacrificed its father, on the altar of your pride?"


This reproach drew a torrent of tears from the eyes of Adrienne. “Cruel, unjust Louise!" cried she; "I thought that in thee I had at least one friend who knew my heart; and it is thou who inflictest upon me the deepest, deadliest wound. But the time will come when I shall force thee to acknowledge thy injustice." Touched with her tears, Louise embraced and wept with her, and reproached herself for having said a word that could afflict her; but still urged the necessity of flight, if their fears should prove well founded. Adrienne would not listen to her advice; she remained firm in resolving rather to retire to a convent; and the next day her resolution was put to the proof.

The marquis told her that during two years he had abstained from speaking to her on the subject nearest to his heart, that of her marriage; because he wished to give her a proof of his tenderness in suffering time to erase her remembrance of those sorrows that had crowded her early youth. But the moment had arrived in which an opportunity presented itself of obtaining the great object of his life, by establishing her in a manner the most worthy of her virtue. He then stated the proposals of the duke, and concluded by saying he expected from her a ready and cheerful acquiescence in the same.

"My father," said Adrienne, in a calm but firm tone, "my happiness, and the life of him whom I loved above my own existence, have been

sacrificed to your will; but in the moment in which I lost him, my heart pronounced a solemn vow never to know another love. This vow is registered in heaven, and force or persuasion will be alike unavailing to induce me to break it."

"What!" interrupted the marquis, boiling with rage, "dare you resist my authority! dare you force me to employ the rights which the law gives me upon you!"

Those rights have their limits; from taking refuge in a convent, and you force me to it."

there is no law that can prevent me such is the resolution I will adopt if

These words raised the marquis's wrath to the utmost. He raved, he stormed, but without effect. He vowed that unless she yielded to his will, he would procure a lettre de cachet, and immure her in the Bastile for life. He locked her in her apartment with a declaration that she should never leave it, nor see any one but Mademoiselle d'Anvers, and himself, till she had given her consent to marry the duke.

This last step, which she had not foreseen, rendered her desperate; because it deprived her of the opportunity of seeing her child, and exposed her to the unremitting persecutions of her governess; who, always fearful that some chance would betray the knowledge that she had of the birth of Celine, and that she should thus be exposed to the wrath of the marquis, had incessantly tormented the unhappy Adrienne to prevent the possibility of such an event, by sending her daughter to the foundling hospital. In vain did she try, by testifying all the horror with which this barbarous proposal inspired her to impose silence on the hypocritical and selfish governess; who alive only to her own interest, gave her no peace; and now gladly seized upon the double opportunity of tormenting her on account of the proposed narriage, and of her child.

It was in vain that Louise, and even de Villars applied for permission to see her. The marquis was inexorable, and the baroness, while she affected openly to condemn his conduct, secretly applauded his vigour. She even afiected to have had much trouble in obtaining from him permission to enter the apartment of his daughter, to whom she made the most hypocritical professions of sorrow for the marquis's conduct; advising her, however, to yield to a will which she had no possible means of resisting; and assuring her that she would charge herself with the future destiny of Celine, whom she would treat in every respect as her own child.

Adrienne dared not show to the perfidious woman the abhorrence and mistrust with which her heart was filled, but she declared that she never would consent to the marriage, nor would she yield the care of her child to

her. The baroness, who could not wholly conceal her rage, dropped some expressions which revealed to Adrienne that she took a deeper interest in the marriage than she chose to avow ; and she retired to strengthen the marquis's resolution of treating his daughter with the utmost severity.

The mind of Adrienne was a prey to horrors of every sort. All the affections of her heart were buried in the tomb of Frederic; love was for her, from the moment of his death, but an empty name, a sensation which it was impossible for her ever to feel again. Thus, had it depended upon her own will, she would, independent of her maternal ties, have remained constant to his memory; but as she was situated, she believed it impossible to do it without destroying her own fame, and ruining the prospects of her child.

She was certain, from the desire which the baroness had expressed to have the infant, that she would not scruple to carry her off, for the purpose of making use of her at a future period, to destroy her reputation. It was true, she had a hold upon the baroness herself; for she was not ignorant of the existence of her letter to Frederic; but this hold might not be strong enough to restrain her, aided too, as she no doubt would be, by the vile Jacques, whose threats of vengeance still rung in the ears of the unfortunate Adrienne.

One means, and one only, of escaping the dangers that threatened her, appeared to offer itself; and after many conflicts of mind, she determined to take it. Ah, had not pride steeled alike her heart, and her conscience, she would have found other means,-she would not have dared, by the blackest perjury, to draw the wrath of heaven upon her already too guilty head! but she saw only her fame, and to that idol she was ready to make the most frightful sacrifices.

Still a glimmering of hope remained,-an application to the duke might induce him to decline her hand. If it did not, if the frightful sacrifice of a marriage with him was indeed necessary for her fame, her part was taken to make it.

Here again the evil genius of Adrienne was at work; the baroness had foreseen that she might take that step, aud she took her measures accordingly. She represented to the duke, that Adrienne's notions were so strangely peculiar on the subject of love, that she would die sooner than acknowledge that she felt a preference for any man; that she had repeatedly persisted it was her intention never to marry, and that he might be certain that in giving him her hand, she would do all that was possible to make it appear that she yielded only to the will of her father.

She wrote to her father, desiring to be permitted to see the duke; a

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request which the marquis would have refused, until she had promised to give him her hand, but for the baroness. He consented at her intercession, and the duke hastened to obey a summons which filled him with the most flattering hopes.

The grave and cold air with which Adrienne received him, soon checked his transports; but when she announced to him that she threw herself upon his generosity to desist from his pursuit-it being her firm intention never to marry, he recollected immediately the baroness's warning. A long conversation ensued, and having ascertained from her own lips, that she had really no particular objection to him, nor preference for another, he concluded as the baroness had hoped and expected, that her refusal, serious and solemn as it appeared, was in reality only the effect of the pride and singularity of her character. Impressed with this belief, he said all that was possible to propitiate her. He assured her that his conduct should be such as to force from her her esteem, and that he would be content with that if he could not succeed in inspiring a warmer sentiment. At that moment the marquis, who together with the baroness was so stationed as to overhear the conversation, entered and put an end to it. The destiny of the unfortunate Adrienne was thus sealed, and she yielded to the will of her imperious father.

The joy of the baroness was scarcely less than that of the marquis. She had, in fact, a double project to accomplish by this marriage-that of possessing herself of the child, which Adrienne rightly judged she meant one day to use as an instrument for the destruction of its mother's reputation; and that of removing to Paris, where she had no doubt of being invited by the duke. Adrienne had resolved to destroy both these projects; but, in order to do it, it was nescessary to dissemble. Alas! dissimulation was now become habitual to her; and she whom nature had formed open, generous, and unsuspecting, had learned to stoop to the meanness of falsehood, and had become familiar with deceit.


She promised, then, to confide the destiny of the little Celine to the baroness, and she announced her determination to Mademoiselle d'Anvers, who received it as she expected, with every mark of disapprobation. baroness," said she, "will bring her up in an elegant style, and then grow tired of her; for she is the most fickle of women; and the consequence will be, that she will either abandon her, or reveal the secret of her birth. In the first case, the girl herself will be lost; in the second, your reputation must be destroyed."

“But,” cried Adrienne, "supposing that you are right, what else can I do? I dare not refuse the baroness."

"But you can deceive her.


"Very easily, since you have agreed with her that I am to take Celine to Paris, in order that she may there be given to a trusty person, who will convey her to the baroness's estate in Languedoc. I can, without the possibility of discovery, place her in the foundling hospital; and inform the baroness that she is dead of convulsions.".

This was the very point to which Adrienne was desirous to bring the governess, and she suffered herself by degrees to appear to yield to her arguments. Not that she was inhuman enough to entertain, even for a moment, the idea of abandoning her child;-she would have died rather. Her object was, to deceive alike the governess and the baroness, and rid herself for ever of the danger of being betrayed by either. She knew that she could depend upon the friendship of Louise to withdraw the child from the foundling hospital, and to place it where it would be well taken care of, and where she could sometimes see it. As to the future destiny of that unfortunate child, she had no fears on that head. She knew that she should be able to save annually a sum which would in time amount to a handsome fortune. This she destined for the portion of Celine, whom she doubted not of being able to marry well, though not splendidly; since she meant to bestow on her an excellent education.

And she dared to form these resolutions, forgetful of the solemn oaths by which she had bound herself to live only for that child, whom she was about to abandon to the care of strangers. She dared to stifle the voice of conscience, by repeating that she was doing her duty. Guilty and unfortunate woman! why, why didst thou not attend to the warning voice that even yet would have saved thee?

Louise heard with equal horror and astonishment her intention to espouse the duke, and strove by every argument that friendship, reason, or religion could suggest, to turn her from it; but in vain; her resolution was immov. ably fixed; and the heart-stricken Louise could only pray that Heaven might avert from her the punishment which her perjury deserved.

Jacques was with his regiment in a distant province, greatly to the joy of Mademoiselle de Touranges, who equally dreaded and abhorred the sight of him; and not a little to the satisfaction of the baroness, who had long been tired of the trouble it gave her to restrain him in proper bounds. Adrienne asked, and obtained permission for Louise to accompany her to Paris, whither she was to go as soon as her nuptials were celebrated; for the marquis wished that his son-in-law should commence without a moment's delay, his operations for procuring him the portfolio of minister, which he flattered himself with being at last on the point of grasping.

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