to the air of secrecy which pervaded the scene, while the moonlight

threw out shadows and drew crazy perspectives and showed up silhouettes

of men positively falling from their seats with fatigue. Some one was

twirling a French soldier's cap on a bayonet, we heard smothered yawns,

the words "_Russland_," "_Vaterland_," and finally the infantry

whistling in unison as they limped along.

_August 30th, Sunday._

At two o'clock in the morning the whole family was aroused by a

thundering rap from the butt of a gun on the big front entrance. The

poor old butler, who has been in service thirty-five years, was aghast

to open the door and find the Burgomaster, in white kid gloves, standing

between two Prussian soldiers, with fixed bayonets. They demanded

Monsieur J. (for the second time) as hostage. What could have happened

among the people, we could only guess. Had they been rash enough to

protest against strength and did they want to share the fate of the

pitiful Vise?

The forenoon brought us no news; after lunch we walked in the broiling

sun to the little railroad station at Kinklepois, to see Monsieur J.

(he had aged ten years over night) where he was under guard with several

others, including _Monsieur le Vicaire_ of A. and _Monsieur l'Abbe_ of

K. We sat around the table in the Concierge's tiny dining room and

listened to some amusing anecdotes told by the Vicar, while the gentle

old Abbot sent out to the vicarage for a bottle of his good old

Burgundy. To be sure, no one was much in the mood to be amused, but it

lessened the tension of the moment; the least unusual sound from the

street--and it was full of soldiers and horses--brought the tale to a

sudden end and we listened with blanched faces for perhaps--the worst.

_August 31st, Monday._

Monsieur J. was released as hostage at seven o'clock P. M. and

returned to the fold. This evening, as all was still, we played a little

game of Bridge, as in the old days when life was a pleasant dream.

Suddenly a dozen rifle shots, in quick succession, rang out in the air

and the cards fell from our nerveless fingers as a stray ball rattled

against the iron shutters of our windows. Instinctively we crouched into

sheltered corners and waited; another volley and another followed, until

finally Monsieur S. whispered in a hoarse voice, "A la cave." The

household, including the servants, delighted to be any place where we

were not, made a lightning dash, Indian file, for the cellar. Quite

unperturbed and loath to leave her cozy, warm kitchen, the old, fat cook

was the last to waddle down the stairs, repeating her usual "They cannot

hurt me. I am Dutch." She was the calmest of us all, for those

intermittent shots and the possibility of retrieving lost balls had

raised a tremor of excitement as well as our hasty descent into the

realms of Bacchus, in common words--the wine cellar. By the thin rays of

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