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1. FATHER GORIOT (continued)
"Of course it shall!" Eugene answered indignantly; "he shall at any rate take one thing that may represent his daughters into the grave with him."
When the hearse came, Eugene had the coffin carried into the house again, unscrewed the lid, and reverently laid on the old man's breast the token that recalled the days when Delphine and Anastasie were innocent little maidens, before they began "to think for themselves," as he had moaned out in his agony.
Rastignac and Christophe and the two undertaker's men were the only followers of the funeral. The Church of Saint-Etienne du Mont was only a little distance from the Rue Nueve-Sainte-Genevieve. When the coffin had been deposited in a low, dark, little chapel, the law student looked round in vain for Goriot's two daughters or their husbands. Christophe was his only fellow-mourner; Christophe, who appeared to think it was his duty to attend the funeral of the man who had put him in the way of such handsome tips. As they waited there in the chapel for the two priests, the chorister, and the beadle, Rastignac grasped Christophe's hand. He could not utter a word just then.
"Yes, Monsieur Eugene," said Christophe, "he was a good and worthy man, who never said one word louder than another; he never did any one any harm, and gave nobody any trouble."
The two priests, the chorister, and the beadle came, and said and did as much as could be expected for seventy francs in an age when religion cannot afford to say prayers for nothing.
The ecclesiatics chanted a psalm, the Libera nos and the De profundis. The whole service lasted about twenty minutes. There was but one mourning coach, which the priest and chorister agreed to share with Eugene and Christophe.
"There is no one else to follow us," remarked the priest, "so we may as well go quickly, and so save time; it is half-past five."
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