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Chapter 99: The Law. (continued)
"So much the worse, or rather, so much the better; it has been so ordained that he may have none to weep his fate."
"But this is trampling on the weak, sir."
"The weakness of a murderer!"
"His dishonor reflects upon us."
"Is not death in my house?"
"Oh, sir," exclaimed the baroness, "you are without pity for others, well, then, I tell you they will have no mercy on you!"
"Be it so!" said Villefort, raising his arms to heaven.
"At least, delay the trial till the next assizes; we shall then have six months before us."
"No, madame," said Villefort; "instructions have been given. There are yet five days left; five days are more than I require. Do you not think that I also long for forgetfulness? While working night and day, I sometimes lose all recollection of the past, and then I experience the same sort of happiness I can imagine the dead feel; still, it is better than suffering."
"But, sir, he has fled; let him escape -- inaction is a pardonable offence."
"I tell you it is too late; early this morning the telegraph was employed, and at this very minute" --
"Sir," said the valet de chambre, entering the room, "a dragoon has brought this despatch from the minister of the interior." Villefort seized the letter, and hastily broke the seal. Madame Danglars trembled with fear; Villefort started with joy. "Arrested!" he exclaimed; "he was taken at Compiegne, and all is over." Madame Danglars rose from her seat, pale and cold. "Adieu, sir," she said. "Adieu, madame," replied the king's attorney, as in an almost joyful manner he conducted her to the door. Then, turning to his desk, he said, striking the letter with the back of his right hand, "Come, I had a forgery, three robberies, and two cases of arson, I only wanted a murder, and here it is. It will be a splendid session!"
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