Twenty Years After Chapter 55 Page 10

first to enter, gazed a moment in silence on that pale and noble face, framed in its long and now untidy, matted hair, the blue veins showing through the transparent temples, his eyes seemingly swollen by tears.

Athos sighed deeply; the sigh woke the king, so lightly did he sleep.

He opened his eyes.

“Ah!” said he, raising himself on his elbow, “is it you, Comte de la Fere?”

“Yes, sire,” replied Athos.

“You watch while I sleep and you have come to bring me some news?”

“Alas, sire,” answered Athos, “your majesty has guessed aright.”

“It is bad news?”