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li Citizeness Julie JL fjl
IiSyhen the tumbrils set forth from the prison
Vy of SaInt Lazare at sunset of the evening of
July 27, 1794, the sad procession was fol-
R)ved at a distance by a young woman of about
'(twenty-two, who threw frequent anxious, but fur
reive glances along the rows of occupants. Once
Br twice she stepped into a deserted doorway,
Hastily to brush her eyes with a handkerchief;
furtively, too. For in those days an indiscreet
(ear meant accusation the moutons, spies of the
Robespierre regime, were many and accusation
ilways meant death.
1 The parade of the doomed had gained the
boundaries of the Faubourg Saint Antoine when
an interruption occurred. Inconceivable interrup
tion! It was not to insult, to revile the con
demned. Even this, the roughest, most blood
thirsty section of Paris, had sickened at last of
the rain of blood. A cry of mercy arose from the
throats of the gathering loungers, and the trem
bling girl drew closer, half a hope budding in her
heart, to ascertain what had caused this miracu
ffl A brawny blacksmith, leather apron dangling,
1 had grasped the foremost horse by the bit, and
1 was swearing that death should not come to the
LJ prisoners. "By heaven, it shall not be!" he
vowed. And the throng surfeited of the sangui
V pary tide flowing through their quarter for many
U a month past, thickened quickly about the carts,
Ire-echoing the cry of the blacksmith.
Flushed with sudden hope, the condemned
were already rising in response to the sympathy
S of their would-be deliverers. One of the mob, an
I old fellow of soldierly bearing, waved his red bon
j net, shouting: ,
Ik "Live Loiserolles, my brave general!"
And a white-headed old gentleman, of vener
is able aspect, was standing, hands tied behind his
back, bowing smilingly to the greeting.
k3 But hardly had this April light of hope touched
I them, when it was shadowed again. Hoofs clat
tered, a band of horsemen burst upon the scene,
at their head a stout man waving a saber. It was
Henriot, scouring the streets, recruiting the forces
of Robespierre in the crisis which had come upon
their party. He bent his heavy brows In wrath.
"It shall not be!" he roared. "Who says so?
Bah! On with you," addressing the drivers.
jfl "These are the enemies of the republic. They
;s must die. Vive la republlque!"
i "Vive la republlque!" faintly responded the
l cowed mob. For it was in the days of the Terror.
k They began to scatter. The fatal carts rumbled
All The young woman had regained the sidewalk.
ki Unconcealed tears bedimmed her great brown
ji eyes as they mistily sought a last glimpse of
jl the disappearing features of the old gentleman,
ra a who had bowed to the name of Loiserolles. Her
ff lips moved in whispered prayer: "Heaven re
Cj ceive thee, venerable man, Toble sire of a worthy
i I son; thou hast, indeed then, given thy life for
1 For she did not know until now the truth of
I the story, told afterwards to all the world by a
1 great historian in these few words:
i I "In the prison of Saint Lazare, the night before
J I last, hurrying to the grate to hear the death-list
I, I read, he caught the name of his son. The son
Z I was asleep at the moment. 'I am Loiserolles,'
3 I cried the old man; at Tinvllle'a bar an error in
I the Christian name is little; small objection was
!', The young woman hesitated, as if she would
follow still farther the mournful cortege, but
finally turned back. She took her way at first
with slow and faltering step. A ferret-eyed niou
ton, in red cap and shaggy spencer, eyed her
j parrowly, seeing in all modest, comely, earnest-
eyed young women a possible Charlotte Corday
or Ceclle Renault. She began to hurry.
Night was coming on a sultry July evening,
with overhanging clouds, forehlnt of gathering
storm. Lights began to glimmer in the shops,
lamps to swing from the street corners. She had
all but attained the friendly darkness that en
shrouded the entry of her lodging-place, fronting
on the Place de Greve, when she heard her name
sroken and felt a heavy hand upon her shoul
der. Turning with frightened eyes, she shrank
It was a ferret-eyed, red-haired, shaggy-topped
young butcher, still aproned for hjs trade, that ac
costed her. Above the average height, his great
frame, thick chest, wide, rounded, enormously
muscled shoulders made him appear shorter of
stature than he really was. He was the incar
nation of strength; of strength without soul, the
strength of brutes.
"Aha, Citizeness Julie!" he cried, "where have
you been since the Vendemaire. 1 have searched
all Paris for you?"
She still shrank, a light of loathing in her
eyes. Evident detestation of this gross uiauuro
permeated her uttermost being. She could not
conceal her dislike.
"I have been In hiding," she answered slowly.
"In hiding from whom? Not from the Ci-devant
Loiserolles, I'll be bound."
She did not answer; but vibrant hate shot
from her glowing eyes.
"Ah, well," he continued, heavily playful, "he'll
not trouble the republic much longer. Soon he'll
sneeze in the sack. Was it from the guillotine,
too, thou wert hiding, my pretty aristrocrat?"
"No," she repeated, as slowly as before, "from
something I dread far more, detest far more
from you." And avoiding him, with a scornful
laugh, she darted to the entry of her lodging
place and flow up the narrow stairway.
He stood for a minute glaring 'after her, brows
bent, gnawing his nails, pondering glowerlngly a
figure of utmost menace. But at length he turned
away, shaking his head.
"Tonight," he growled, "there is other work.
Her I will attend to after." And he swung heav
ily away, toward the Faubourg of Saint Antoine.
She whom he had addressed as Citizeness
Julie, arrived, hand on heart, panting, at the head
of the fifth flight of stairs, where perched her
tiny apartment. She lit a candle. A table, a
three-legged stool, and a straw pallet comprised
the furniture. There was a pannikin of milk and
part of a loaf on the table. She drew up the
stool and attempted to eat. But the events of the
past hour had robbed her of appetite. She ciioKed
down a morsel of broad, swallowed a mouthful of
milk, and pushed the rest away. With a deep sigh
she laid herself on the pallet, but with wakeful
eyes. But at last, about midnight, came the rain,
cooling the sultry night. Its measured beat upon
the roof lulled her at last to rest.
It was from this sleep, troubled and fitful, that
she was awakened by a tumult from without.
Springing to the window, she gazed out. The rain
had ceased; a slight breeze fanned her cheek.
The scene below was starred with ruddy torches
that lit up the Place de Greve, revealing two
contending forces, face to face. Fronting each
was a row of cannon, mouth to mouth almost;
behind each cannon a gunner, match in hand.
From this side and from that; now here, now
there, arose at Intervals the coarse bark of "Vive
la republlque!" Approaching by the various ways
that led Into the square could be heard the om
inous rumble of drums and the murmured chant
of the Marsellaise; and in the far distances the
bell in one church tower, then another, pealing
Mr ' 1
It was a scene pregnant with meaning. It was vmW i H
Barras against Henriot, Talllen against Robes- a ' ' H
pierre, the convention against the municipality; '' H
it was mercy against the guillotine; it was hope i H
and charity against the terror. . fH
There they stood, the two forces; slowly surg- if !H
ing one toward the other, as yet without clash. H
The triumph of one meant the death of Robes- ff 1 M
pierre and his associates, but it meant, also, the f"1? M
end of the terror the liberation of twelve thou- L : i M
sand unfortunates, now in prison awaiting death M
like so many sheep, and among them Loiserolles.
Throwing a shawl about her shoulders, she $ I M
ran lightly down the stairs, and plunged toward 1 H
the center of action. Physically, she found her- " H
self on that side which contended for Robespierre. bH
And up in front, next the cannon, clearly one ' H
among the captains, she saw the young butcher of H
the Faubourg Saint Antoine. 4 : ' H
Intensity throbbed in the very air. Momen- J H
tarily something might break. Something must ' ' H
give ultimately. Were it the forces of the mu- f H
nicipality well and good. Otherwise, God help ' H
the prisoners. H
It was a time of quick thought and of action I H
that followed quickly. No sooner had she seen H H
the butcher than her mind was mane up. Snatch- t H
ing from her bodice a letter, she heicr rt aloft. H
"A message from the municipality," she cried, "a H
message for Henriot." She did not know, but ' H
neither did they, that Henriot was at that mo- v H
ment drinking in a house fronting on the square. k jH
So her ruse won what she most desired quick f.fl
passage to the front. Men heard her voice, looked U H
into her face, and made way with sudden re- H
Behold her, then, finally arrived beside the iLfl
butcher who regarded her with amazement. 4 H
"What dost thou here?" he remarked in tnat 1 H
bull throat of his. f H
"Listen!" she admonished. "Incline thy head i H
that I may whisper. How many of these follow I H
thee?" indicating with a sweep of the hand his H
Still more amazed, he replied with evident H
pride in his leadership: "Nine score; of the most f H
determined." ! H
"Thou wouldst wouldst have me still?" 11 H
Wonderment still widened in his small, burn- I Hl
ing eyes. "But, I would," he finally answered. jH
"Then I am thine; but on one condition only: '11
withdraw, thou." H
He was stupefied. "Withdraw?" H
"I have said it." M
"But, my leadership?" H
"Thy leadership or me. Choose." iH
"My followers what excuse PH
"Listen," she interrupted with an imperative 'IhH
A horseman in black had advanced from the il
opposite side, and was reading a proclamation. fiH
It was Barras. ! !
"Citizens," he concluded, "before coming to Ll
bloodshed, before bringing down upon our heads Hl
the catastrophe of civil war, reflect once more 'fH
on the decree of the convention, which declares i:j H
outlaw, Robespierre and all rebels. H
"There," she hissed, rather than whispered 4 .H
into his ear, "there is thy excuse!" Still he hesi- i H
tated, peering keenly into her candid eyes. j
"Thy promise?" HH
"It shall be kept," she answered proudly. i M
He turned to the mob. "Citizens," he roared I
in that bovine bass of his, "I for one, am going. I SH
I am not outlaw; I shall not be outlaw. Vive M
la republlque!" Turning, he gripped Julie by the I H
hand. "Come," he said. g 1fl
He was not mistaken in the faith of his fol-
lowers. To his parting words there was an an- H
swering shout of "Live the republic!" from nigh
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