"We do not claim merit for not relieving ourselves from this painful situation by an act of a doubtful nature, viz. by an acquiescence in the intentions of the General Commanding-in-Chief the expeditionary forces; who, having declared us officers of Peru, offered, through his aides-de camps, Colonel Paroissien and Captain Spry, honours and estates to those who would further his views.
For years she had had a desire to cast herself down at a confessional-box, but she had not done so because of one of the questions in the Petit Paroissien which she used: "Avez-vous péché, par pensée, parole, ou action, contre la pureté ou la modestie?" And because also of the preliminary injunction: "Maintenant essayez de vous rappeler vos péchés, et combien de fois vous les avez commis."
Consequent upon my refusal to comply with his wishes the Protector shortly afterwards, unknown to me, despatched Colonel Paroissien and Garcia del Rio to Chili with a long series of the most preposterous accusations, in which I was represented as having committed every species of crime, from piracy to petty robbery; calling on the Chilian Government to visit me with the severest punishment.
"And never missed it for a single Sunday of fête-day since," continued Madame, "except last year, when she had the measles." "Do you go there every Sunday?" asked Madelon of the child. "Yes, every Sunday and fête-days. Would you like to see my new Paroissien? My god-father gave it to me on my last birthday." "And is it always like to-day, with all the singing, and music, and people?"
On my arrival at Valparaiso, I found that San Martin's agents, Paroissien and Garcia del Rio, had produced his accusations against me to the Government at Santiago, though without effect, as I had taken care to keep it apprised of everything which had transpired, exercising the most scrupulous care in furnishing accounts of monies and stores taken from the Spaniards, but especially as regarded the public money of the Peruvian Government appropriated at Ancon.
Annoyed beyond measure at my having taken such steps to restore order in the squadron by doing justice to the officers and men, the Protector, on the very day, September 26th, on which he told me by letter to "make what use I pleased of the money," sought to revenge himself by sending on board the ships of the squadron his two aides-de-camp, Colonel Paroissien and Captain Spry, with papers for distribution, stating that "the squadron of Chili was under the command of the Protector of Peru, and not under that of the Admiral, who was an inferior officer in the service; and that it was consequently the duty of the Captains and Commanders to obey the orders of the Protector and not mine."
The roof of the choir is curiously constructed of wood, of chestnut, say the authorities, as no spiders are found. The high altar, as reconstructed by Poncelet Paroissien in 1550, was a very beautiful affair if old prints, usually none too reliable as to detail, are regarded. It was, however, destroyed during the middle of the eighteenth century.
Paroissien then addressed me with the most high-flown promises, assuring me of the Protector's wish, notwithstanding all that had occurred, to confer upon me the highest honours and rewards, amongst others the decoration of the newly-created order of "the Sun," and telling me how much better it would be for me to be First Admiral of a rich country like Peru, than Vice-Admiral of a poor province like Chili.
At one o'clock in the morning their boat came alongside, when Paroissien solicited an interview, Spry remaining in the boat, having his own reasons for not wishing to attract my attention.
She remained the same wicked, charming old Sadducee as before: her morocco-bound paroissien might appear on festivals and occasions; she still slept as often as not of nights with "Candide" under her pillow. Mary Masters, as a shy and serious maiden, fresh from a country parsonage, remembered well the astonishment, mingled with something not unlike awe, with which she had first heard them talk.