Page:The Fall of Maximilan's Empire.djvu/74

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offered, and begged them to convey the announcement of it to General Benavides. He still retained sufficient authority, he said, to make a peaceful surrender possible, and it was his desire now to be relieved of the charge of the city and fortifications.

The consuls were getting rather tired of being humbugged so often, and felt rather dubious as to the success of their mission; but spurred on by the fear of a general insurrection in the city, and anxious to render such good offices as the interests of suffering humanity demanded, they once more went down to the fleet, and were set on shore abreast of the camp. General Benavides, preserving his equanimity, ratified completely the terms that he had proposed, and which were now so eagerly asked by the Imperialist, and ceased firing from his batteries. The city forts, strange to say, opened again with more than usual activity for a short while at sunset. This may have been through some mistake or misunderstanding; or it may have been intentional, for effect, to show that their powers of resistance were not at an end; or, lastly, it may very possibly have been due to the inability of the officers to enforce their orders. Bureau expressed himself as much pleased, but said he would require a little time to win the officers over to his wishes. This was apparently true, and no objection was made; but most unfortunate was that enforced delay, for, during the interim, on the 3d of June, an entirely new coloring