Et, comme par mégarde, elle approcha sa joue fraîche, si proche du grillage que Cornélius put la toucher de ses lèvres. Rosa poussa un petit cri d'amour et disparut. The health of Cornélius improved rapidly, to the great disappointment of Gryphus, who feared some plot, and had the prisoner and his cell searched. Nothing of importance was found. Rosa came each evening.
His love for Cécile, granddaughter of a gentle country doctor, is rapidly making a man of him, when his mother enters again into his life and the poor boy dies miserably in a hospital, killed by despair rather than by disease. This is perhaps the most powerful of Daudet's novels; it is certainly the most harrowing.