Page:Stories by Foreign Authors (French II).djvu/146

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"Oh, never mind. I am sorry it was n't sooner, though. Get everything ready now.'

"But, Ma'm'selle Adèle, why should I tell you all this? I'd better mind my work."

"Oh! go on, Louise, go on!"

"Well, then, ma'm'selle, if you believe me, those two doctors—neither of 'em kin, or even friends till then—went to work and made all the preparations, while my husband went off to borrow lights. The biggest one tied a mattress on the table, and the assistant spread out the bright little knives.

"You, who have not been through it all, ma'm'-selle, can 't know what it is to have your own little one in your lap, to know that those things are to be used upon him, to pierce his tender flesh, and, if the hand that guides them be not sure, that they may kill him.

"When all was ready, Doctor Faron took off his cravat, then lifted my child from my arms and laid him on the mattress, in the midst of the lamps, and said to my poor man:

"'You will hold his head, and your wife his feet. Joseph will pass me the instruments. You've brought a breathing tube with you, my son?'

"'Yes, sir.'

"My husband was as white as a sheet by this; and when I saw him about to take his place with