“Yes, the written order,” said Porthos, who now began to comprehend what D’Artagnan was aiming at, “we ask only for that.”
However inclined Mordaunt was to have recourse to violence, he understood the reasons D’Artagnan had given him; besides, completely ignorant of the friendship which existed between the four Frenchmen, all his uneasiness disappeared when he heard of the plausible motive of the ransom.
He decided, therefore, not only to fetch the order, but the two thousand pistoles, at which he estimated the prisoners. He therefore mounted his horse and disappeared.
“Good!” thought D’Artagnan; “a quarter of an hour to go to the tent, a quarter of an hour to return; it is more