in the house for, — has somebody stolen your breeches? "
" Breugnon," they said in a frightened whisper, "did you see any one in the streets?"
"Whom did you expect to see, idiots?"
"The brigands; they are burning everything in Beyant."
" Why don't you go and stop them then, you fools?"
" We have to stay here to protect our houses."
" The best way to protect your own houses is to go out and fight for other people's; don't you see that when the brigands have burnt down the rest of the houses, they will take yours? Your time will come, never fear! "
" Master Racquin told us that the best thing we could do was to keep quiet till order was re- estabHshed by the Duke of Nevers."
" A lot of water will run under the bridges be- fore the Duke leaves his own business to look after ours; we shall all be burned to a cinder by that time. Come, come! We ought to fight for our skin, if it is worth anything."
They kept on for some time making objections, chirping like birds from window to window, declar- ing that the enemy was numerous and powerful, and that we were weak and had no one to lead us;