Before leaving the building Frank found out where Strelinski was at work. He was engaged in translating a mass of Russian documents. He rose from his seat with an exclamation of delight when he saw Frank, who, after a short chat, asked him to come that evening to his hotel. He there learned that the Pole was getting on very well. His knowledge of German as well as of Russian had been very valuable to him; his salary had already been raised, and he was now at the head of a small department, having two of his countrymen and three Germans under him, and his future in the office was quite assured.
As soon as the magistrate had concluded his talk with Mr. Henderson, and the latter had gone off to carry out the arrangements, Colonel Chambers turned to the captain and said, "Have you seen any of the London papers, Downes?"
Captain Lister and the young cornet gazed at Frank as if they doubted his sanity.
"Certainly," Frank agreed; "he ran up to the hedge and then turned. Why should he have done that?"
"Who on earth are we going to see here?" he asked, as they approached the mansion.
"I am told that you are desirous of giving lessons in languages."
The greater portion of the trap was overhung by bushes, which grew so thickly around the part which sank that the probability was small indeed that anyone would tread upon it. Julian saw, too, that under the handle was a bolt that, when fastened, would hold the trap firmly down. No doubt the man in his haste had forgotten to fasten it before he descended. Looking down, Julian saw a circular hole like a well, evidently artificially made in the chalk; a ladder was fastened against one side.下载
After having finally arranged these matters, he started north with Frank, furnished with an order to postmasters on the road to supply them instantly with relays of horses. Travelling night and day without a stop, they arrived at Smolensk on the day before the French attacked the place. Sir Robert had expected to find the Emperor here, but learnt that he was still at St. Petersburg. Being personally acquainted with all the Russian generals he was received with the greatest courtesy, and at once placed himself at the disposal of the commander-in-chief, while Frank was introduced to the members of the staff.
"Everyone round me was too interested in what was going on to notice anything else; and you may be sure that I did not look that way again, for I knew well enough that if the guerilla had noticed them he would shoot me at once rather than run any risk of being baulked of his vengeance. So it was not until they began to enter the village that anyone noticed the new arrivals. A mounted officer, followed by four troopers, dashed down ahead and rode up to us, scattering the crowd right and left. I saw at once by his uniform that he was an English officer, and knew that I was saved. I fancy I must have been weak, for I had had nothing to eat the day before, and had been tied up all night. For a time I think I really fainted. When I recovered some soldiers had cut my bonds, and one was pouring some spirits down my throat. The English officer was giving it hot to El Chico.
Julian at once placed his gun against the wall, and, taking her hand, walked forward to the peasants.