"Some day the Revolution will be the justification of the terror."
"Fear lest the terror be the calumny of the Revolution."
And Gauvain added,—
"Liberty, Equality, Fraternity, these are dogmas of peace and harmony. Why make them appear frightful? What is it that we wish for? To subject the people to one common Republic. Well, let us not make them afraid. What is the good of intimidation? People are no more attracted by scare-crows than birds are. It is not necessary to do evil in order to accomplish good. The throne is not overturned to leave the scaffold standing. Death to kings and life to nations! Let us knock off the crowns, let us spare the heads! The Revolution is concord and not fright. Gentle ideas are not subserved by pitiless men. Amnesty is in my opinion the most beautiful word in human speech. I will shed blood only while risking my own. Besides, I only know how to fight, and I am only a soldier. But if one cannot pardon, it is not worth while to conquer. During battle, let us be the enemies of our enemies, and after the victory, their brothers."
"Take care!" repeated Cimourdain, for the third time, "Gauvain, you are more to me than a son. Take care!"
And he added, thoughtfully,—
"In times like ours, pity may be one form of treason."
Hearing these two men talk was like hearing the conversation of the sword and the axe.
In the meantime, the mother was looking for her little ones.
She went straight ahead. How did she live? Impossible to tell. She herself did not know. She walked days and nights; she begged, she ate grass, she slept on