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Amiens The Letter



FORTUNE had not smiled upon La Fleur; for he had been unsuccessful in his feats of chivalry,--and not one thing had offered to signalise his zeal for my service from the time he had entered into it, which was almost four-and-twenty hours. The poor soul burned with impatience; and the Count de L-'s servant coming with the letter, being the first practicable occasion which offered, La Fleur had laid hold of it, and, in order to do honour to his master, had taken him into a back parlour in the Auberge and treated him with a cup or two of the best wine in Picardy; and the Count de L-'s servant, in return, not to be behind - hand in politeness with La Fleur, had taken him back with him to the Count's hotel. La Fleur's provenancy (for there was a passport in his very looks) soon set every servant in the kitchen at ease with him; and, as a Frenchman, whatever be his talents, has no sort of prudery in


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showing them, La Fleur, in less than five minutes,
had pulled out his fife, and, leading off the dance
himself with the first note, set the fille de chambre,
the maitré d'hotel, the cook, the scullion, and all the
household, dogs and cats, besides an old monkey, a
dancing! I I

there never

a merrier kitchen since the flood.

Madame de L-, in passing from her brother's apartments to her own, hearing so much jollity below stairs, rung up her fille de chambre to ask about it; and hearing it was the English gentleman's servant who had set the whole house merry with his pipe, she ordered him up.

As the poor fellow could not present himself empty, he had loaden'd himself, in going up stairs, with a thousand compliments to Madame de L-, on the part of his master; added a long apocrypha of enquiries after Madame de L-'s health ; told her that Monsieur his master was au desespoire for her re-establishment from the fatigues of her journey; and, to close all, that Monsieur had received the letter which Madame had done him the honour - And he has done me the honour, said Madame de L-interrupting La Fleur, to send a billet in return.

Madame de L- - had said this with such a tone

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