When evening came, she was not the less eager to take part in a sortie with her usual comrades and a troop of about five hundred men. William de Flavy, commandant of the place, got ready some boats on the Oise to assist the return of the troops. All the town-gates were closed, save the bridge-gate. The sortie was unsuccessful.
But, a short reprieve having been obtained, the mob, determined to defeat it, assembled in the night preceding the seventh day of September, whereon he was to have been executed pursuant to the sentence, and, in a very riotous manner, seized and disarmed the city-guard, and possessed themselves of the town-gates, to prevent the admission of troops quartered in the suburbs.
"Nada nothing," cried the captain to an inquiring lady on a balcony, and the town-gates were closed after the volunteers had returned and tramped to the Plaza with the proud bearing of citizens who had done their duty. How that heroic Tomas did strut!
Byelovzorov took leave; I went away with him. Zinaida did not try to detain me. The next day I got up early, cut myself a stick, and set off beyond the town-gates. I thought I would walk off my sorrow. It was a lovely day, bright and not too hot, a fresh sportive breeze roved over the earth with temperate rustle and frolic, setting all things a-flutter and harassing nothing.
The Town-gates are hermetically shut; plenty of emotion bottled in the 100,000 hearts within. Which happened accordingly; Majesty alighting duly at said Garden-House, near by the Schweidnitz Gate, I fancy almost before break of day. The issue of this Breslau transaction is known, or could be stated in few words; nor is the manner of it such as would, for Breslau's sake, deserve many.
It lays down the rule that one class shall not wear beaver hats or carry canes that another class shall steal the town-gates on a particular night of the year or publish scurrilous pamphlets. Each member of the class must do certain things or must refrain from them, not because he wishes to, but because he is a member of the class.
Suddenly I looked with an incredible suspicion at the old man, smoking imperturbably at my side. "'Tis indeed a change for Brody," he said, with a laugh that was half a sob. A faintness blotted out the whole strange scene the town-gates, the eager faces, the gesticulating figures, the houses, the frightened woman at my side. It was the greatest surprise of my life.
If we could have landed at once, I might, perhaps, have reached the town itself this evening; as the harbour is, however, always over-crowded with vessels, the captain is often compelled to wait for an hour before he can find a place to moor his craft. By the time I could disembark it had already grown quite dark, and the town-gates were shut. I was thus obliged to pass the night on board.
This plot the wicked wretches, said Luther, had devised against me, to the end I should not appear; for if I had contracted the time, and staid away three days, then my safe-conduct had been expired, and then they would have locked the town-gates, and without hearing, I should have been condemned and made away.
Traugott stood like a statue; then he ran off through the streets away out of the town-gates into the open country, into the woods, loudly lamenting, "Oh! miserable wretch that I am! It was she she, herself; I have sat beside her scores and hundreds of times have breathed her breath pressed her delicate hands looked into her beautiful eyes heard her sweet words and now I have lost her!