“Have you seen D’Artagnan?”
“We got separated in the crowd and I could not find him again.”
“Oh!” said Athos, satirically, “I saw him. He was in the front row of the crowd, admirably placed for seeing; and as on the whole the sight was curious, he probably wished to stay to the end.”
“Ah Comte de la Fere,” said a calm voice, though hoarse with running, “is it your habit to calumniate the absent?”
This reproof stung Athos to the heart, but as the impression produced by seeing D’Artagnan foremost in a coarse, ferocious crowd had been very strong, he contented himself with replying:
“I am not calumniating you, my friend.