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Lisette was dreadfully afraid of him, for although [141] he liked her, and was always extremely polite and pleasant to her, she never felt that she could trust him.He now proposed to enter his fathers regiment, and Pauline said she would go with them. As they were in great want of money she sold her diamonds, worth more than 40,000 francs, for 22,000, and they went first to Aix-la-Chapelle, where she remained while her husband and his father proceeded to the camp at Coblentz.

The Empress Elizabeth, whose own life was a constant succession of love intrigues, disapproved nevertheless of this open and public scandal, particularly when her nephew was reported to be about to divorce his wife in order to marry his mistress.

You stay here and rest, Montbel, he continued. I will come back in a few minutes.When at length she arrived in St. Petersburg she found the city in a frenzy of delight. They danced in the streets, embracing each other, and exclaiming

Lisette now settled down into that Roman life [95] which in those days was the most enchanting that could be imagined. M. Le Brun being no longer able to take possession of her money, she had enough for everything she wanted, and in fact during the years of her Italian career she sent him 1,000 cus in reply to a piteous letter, pleading poverty; and the same sum to her mother.Many an abbess, many a chatelaine spent time and money amongst the rich and poor; and there were seigneurs who helped and protected the peasants on their estates and were regarded by them with loyalty and affection. To some extent under the influence of the ideas and prejudices amongst which they had been born and educated, yet they lived upright, honourable, religious lives, surrounded by a mass of oppression, licence, and corruption in the destruction of which they also were overwhelmed.

Pauline never cared much for society, and her tastes were not sufficiently intellectual to enable her to take much part in the brilliant conversation or to enter with enthusiasm into the political ideas and principles discussed at the various houses to which she went with Mme. de Bouzolz, who did not trouble herself about philosophy or ideas; and M. de Beaune, who was a strong Conservative, and held revolutionary notions in abhorrence.She had now only her niece, Henriette, with her, and they set out again upon their travels. M. de Valence, after serving the revolutionists, had been proscribed by them, and was living in exile at Utrecht. There, accordingly, they joined him, and set up a joint mnage, first there, afterwards at Altona and at Hamburg.

It is satisfactory to know that the brutal, dastardly conduct of the Versailles populace was at any rate punished, in a way they probably had not thought of. The departure of the King and court ruined the place, before so prosperous. The population shrunk to a third of its former numbers.However they were none of them in the same danger that she would have been had she remained at Paris. None of them were at all conspicuous, and as far as any one could be said to be tolerably safe in France under the new reign of Liberty, Equality, and Fraternity, they might be supposed to be so.

After a few days at Parma, Lisette went on to Modena, Bologna, and Florence, under the escort of the Vicomte de Lespignire, a friend of M. de Flavigny, whose carriage kept close behind her own. As M. de Lespignire was going all the way to Romea journey not very safe for a woman with only a governess and childthis was an excellent arrangement; and they journeyed on pleasantly enough through Italy; the calm, sunny days, the enchanting scenes through which they passed, the treasures of art continually lavished around them, the light-hearted courtesy of the lower classes, the careless enjoyment and security of their present surroundings, contrasting strangely with the insolence and discomfort, the [92] discontent and bitterness, the gloom and terror from which they had so recently escaped.Then you followed the Bourbons into exile?

Que deviendront nos grands seigneurs?The poor Countess! I am representing her reading a romance with the arms of the King. She is the only person who holds to the King now.

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But, except in cases of absolute political necessity and at the entreaty of him, who was now not only her uncle and adopted father, but her king, the Duchesse dAngoulme would receive no one who had in any way injured her mother. She would have nothing to do with Mme. de Stael, and would not even receive Mme. Campan, because she did not believe she had been always thoroughly loyal to her; though in that many people said she was mistaken. Mme. Campan, in her memoirs, professes the greatest affection and respect for her royal mistress, and during the Empire, she always kept in her room a bust of the Queen.

On the other hand things were much better than when, nine years ago she had driven out of Paris to Raincy on the eve of her long exile. The powerful arm of Napoleon had swept away the most horrible government that has ever existed in civilised times or countries; people now could walk about in safety, and live without fear.To this she looked forward with some trepidation, being dreadfully afraid of Mme. de Puisieux, who at first did not like her, and was extremely stiff. She drove down to Versailles in her carriage alone with her, Mme. de Puisieux saying very little, but criticising the way she did her hair. They slept at Versailles, in the splendid apartment of the Marchal dEtre, who was very kind and pleasant to Flicit, and with whom she felt more at home. The next day she was obliged to spend such an enormous time at her toilette that by the time they started she was nearly tired out. Her hair was dressed three times over; everything was [376] the object of some tiresome fuss, to which policy obliged her to submit in silence.[109]

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