Chapitre 18. The Siege of the Arnorian Monde - printable version

Andurillo Pseudonimo was making a splendid progress in Annuminasian society, so ready to receive strangers and treat them, not according to what they are, but according to how they wish to appear. All it demands of a stranger is that he more or less speak the Parler Commun, dress properly, smoke pipe-weed, ingest mushrooms, be a fine riddler, and pay in mithrile. Andurillo fulfilled all these requirements admirably, so that he was addressed as "monsieur le comte" and reputed to be the heir of Bilbon ("first and second cousin, owing to some extremely unsavoury affair," said Mme. de Villefaramir). So matters stood when the Count of Monte Fato undertook to introduce the young Pseudonimo to the baroness of Sacqueville-Danglars.

To the baroness, the name of Monte Fato inspired dread; but when the Count himself appeared, his brilliant Eye, his open countenance, his gallantry, and the splendour of his Ring removed the least impression of fear; it seemed to the baroness impossible that so charming a man could nourish secret designs against her.

When the Count entered Mme. de Sacqueville-Danglars's boudoir with Andurillo, his presence produced its usual effect (a couple of thunderbolts, followed by sunshine), and the baroness received Monte Fato with a smile. Pseudonimo was dressed in black like a hero out of the novel of Gloeinthe.

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