have not all your life followed the trade which you do now?”
“No, my lord.
I have pursued it for six years only.”
“And previously, where were you?”
“In the Bastile.”
“And before you went to the Bastile?”
“I will tell you, my lord, on the day when you are willing to hear my confession.”
“Good! At whatsoever hour of the day or night you may present yourself, remember that I shall be ready to give you absolution.”
“Thank you, my lord,” said the mendicant in a hoarse voice. “But I am not yet ready to receive it.”
“Very well. Adieu.”
“Adieu, your holiness,” said the mendicant, opening the door and bending low before the prelate.