The danger drew them nearer together. They forgot all in this embrace.
——"Ah! Françoise," Dominique went on, in a caressing voice, "to-day is Saint-Louis's day, our wedding day, that we have waited for so long. Nothing has been able to separate us, since we are here, all alone, faithful to our tryst. . . . It's our wedding morning now, isn't it?"
——"Yes, yes," she repeated, "our wedding morning."
They exchanged a kiss, trembling. But of a sudden she broke loose, the terrible reality rose up before her.
——"You must run away, you must run away," she stammered out. "Let us not lose a minute."
And, as he stretched out his arms once more to take her in the darkness, she again tutoyéed him,—
——"Oh! I beg you, listen to me. . . . If you die, I shall die. In an hour it will be daylight. I wish you to go at once."
Then, rapidly, she explained her plan. The iron ladder ran down to the wheel: there, he could take the paddles and get into the boat which was in a recess. After that it would be easy for him to reach the other bank of the river and escape.
——"But there must be sentinels there?" he said.
"Only one, opposite, at the foot of the first willow."