Page:Stories by Foreign Authors (French II).djvu/62

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57
THE ATTACK ON THE MILL.

[[Category:]]——"Why have you taken up arms? . . . All this can't be any of your business."

Dominique did not answer. At this moment, the officer caught sight of Françoise, standing upright and very pale, listening; her slight wound put a red bar across her white forehead. He looked at the young people, one after the other, seemed to understand, and contented himself with adding,—

——"You don't deny that you were firing?"

——"I fired as long as I was able," Dominique answered quietly.

This confession was needless, for he was black with powder, covered with sweat, spotted with some drops of blood that had run down from the scratch on his shoulder.

——"Very well," the officer repeated. "You will be shot in two hours."

Françoise did not cry out. She clasped her hands together and raised them in a gesture of mute despair. The officer noticed this gesture. Two soldiers had led Dominique away into the next room, where they were to keep him in sight. The young girl had dropped down upon a chair, her legs giving way under her; she could not cry, she was choking. Meanwhile the officer kept looking at her closely. At last he spoke to her.

——"That young man is your brother?" he asked.