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of them so very small, as to cut us off from every idea of the lady and the maid lying together, which, in either of them, could it have been feasible, my lying beside them, though a thing not to be wished, yet there was nothing in it so terrible, which the imagination might not have passed over without tor

ment.

As for the little room within, it offered little or no consolation to us; it was a damp cold closet, with a half dismantled window-shutter, and with a window which had neither glass or oil paper in it to keep out the tempest of the night. I did not endeavour to stifle my cough when the lady gave a peep into it ; so it reduced the case in course to this alternative= that the lady should sacrifice her health to her feelings, and take up with the closet herself and abandon the bed next mine to her maid or that the girl should take the closet, etc., etc.

=

The lady was a piemontoise of about thirty, with a glow of health in her cheeks. The maid was a lyonnoise of twenty, and as brisk and lively a French girl as ever moved There were difficulties every way and the obstacle of the stone in the road, which brought us into the distress, great as it appeared whilst the peasants were removing it, was but a pebble to what lay in our way now I have only to add, that it did not lessen the weight which hung upon our spirits, that we were both too delicate to communicate what we felt, to each other, upon the occasion.

We sat down to supper; and had we not had more generous wine to it than a little inn in Savoy could have furnished, our tongues had been tied up, till necessity herself had set them at liberty but the lady, having a few bottles of Burgundy in her voiture, sent down her fille de chambre for a couple of them;

so that by the time supper was over, and we were left alone, we felt ourselves inspired with a strength of mind sufficient to talk, at least, without reserve, upon our situation. We turned it every way, and deba= ted, and considered it in all kinds of lights, in the course of a two hours negociation; at the end of which, the articles were settled finally betwixt us, and stipulated for, in form and manner of a treaty of peace and, I believe, with as much religion and good faith on both sides, as in any treaty which has yet had the honour of being handed down to posterity. They were as follow:

First. As the right of the bed-chamber is in mon= sieur and he thinking the bed next to the fire to be the warmest, he insists upon the concession on the lady's side of taking up with it.

Granted on the part of madame; with a proviso, That as the curtains of that bed are of a flimsy transparent cotton, and appeared likewise too scanty to draw close, that the fille de chambre shall fasten up the opening, either by corking pins, or needle and thread, in such manner as shall be deemed a súfficient barrier on the side of monsieur.

2dly. It is required on the part of madame, that monsieur shall lie the whole night through in his robe de chambre.

Rejected: inasmuch as monsieur is not worth a robe de chambre; he having nothing in his portmanteau, but six shirts, and a black silk pair of breeches.

The mentioning the silk pair of breeches made an entire change of the article for the breeches were accepted as an equivalent for the robe de chambre; and so it was stipulated and agreed upon, that I should lie in my black silk breeches all night.

3dly. It was insisted upon and stipulated for, by the lady, that after monsieur was got to bed, and the

candle and fire extinguished, that monsieur should not speak one single word the whole night.

Granted; provided monsieur's saying his prayers, might not be deemed an infraction of the treaty.

There was but one point forgot in this treaty, and that was the manner in which the lady and myself should be obliged to undress and get to bed there was but one way of doing it, and that I leave to the reader to devise; protesting, as I do it, that, if it is not the most delicate in nature, it is the fault of his own imagination against which this is not my first complaint.

Now when we were got to bed, whether it was the novelty of the situation, or what it was, I know not; but so it was, I could not shut my eyes; I tried this side and that, and turned and turned again, till a full hour after midnight; when nature and patience both wearing out O my God! said I =

You have broke the treaty, monsieur, said the lady, who had no more slept than myself. I begged a thousand pardons = but insisted it was no more than an ejaculation = she maintained it was an entire infraction of the treaty = I maintained it was provi= ded for in the clause of the third article.

The lady would by no means give up the point, though she weakened her barrier by it; for in the warmth of the dispute, I could hear two or three corking pins fall out of the curtain to the ground.

Upon my word and honour, madame, said I, stretching my arm out of bed, by way of assevera= tion=

=(I was going to have added that I would not have trespassed against the remotest idea of decorum for the world) =

= But the fille de chambre hearing there were words between us, and fearing that hostilities would

ensue in course, had crept silently out of her closet, and, it being totally dark, had stolen so close to our beds, that she had got herself into the narrow pas▾ sage which separated them, and had advanced so far up as to be in a line betwixt her mistress and me= So that when I stretched out my hand I caught hold of the fille de chambre's=

THE END.

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