SCENE vin PART SECOND
I should infer, dear Monsieur Talleyrand, Only two persons in the world regret My having come to Tilsit.
Madame, two ? Can any!—who may such sad rascals be ?
You, and myself, Prince. (Gravely.) Yes! myself and you.
TALLEYRAND'S face becomes impassive, and he does not reply. Soon the QUEEN prepares to leave, and NAPOLEON rejoins her.
NAPOLEON (taking a rose from a vase)
Dear Queen, do pray accept this little token As souvenir of me before you go ?
He offers her the rose, with his hand on his heart. She hesitates, but accepts it.
QUEEN (impulsively, with waiting tears) Let Magdeburg come with it, sire ! O yes !
NAPOLEON (with sudden frigidity)
It is for you to take what I can give, And I give this—no more.1
She turns her head to hide her emotion, and withdraws. NAPOLEON steps up to her, and offers his arm. She takes it silently, and he perceives the tears on her cheeks. They cross towards the ante-room, away from the other guests.
1 The traditional present of the rose was probably on this occasion, though it is not quite matter of certainty.