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The Man in the Iron Mask
by Alexandre Dumas
Events / Chapter Thirty-Two: Captive and Jailers
The Man in the Iron Mask Chapter Thirty-Two: Captive and Jailers Summary
The governor prepares to receive his guests. Athos asks D'Artagnan for an explanation when they have a moment of privacy. D'Artagnan explains that they attached because they thought the two visitors were in collusion with the prisoner. Athos reveals that he knows the deal regarding the prisoner. D'Artagnan is upset that his friends know the royal secret because it jeopardizes their safety. The governor returns. He is still suspicious, but Athos and Raoul are careful not to let their cover slip. D'Artagnan tells the governor that the Spaniards are here to take in the sights. The governor tells them they are more than welcome to do so. In privacy, Athos and Raoul tell D'Artagnan that their visit is a good-bye visit, because Raoul will soon be fighting in Africa. Athos reveals to D'Artagnan in secrecy that Raoul will die of a broken heart. Athos admits that he cannot bear to see his son die. D'Artagnan is convinced that Raoul might yet be saved, and goes to chat with the man. Raoul asks if D'Artagnan could possibly forward a letter to Mademoiselle de la Valliere. D'Artagnan tells Raoul that La Valliere was following her heart in becoming the King's mistress. Raoul's grief is not assuaged. D'Artagnan tells Raoul that if he goes to see La Valliere, and looks at her with the "eyes of a jealous man," he will stop loving her because he will realize that she can never belong to him. Raoul replies that he can never see her again then, because he wants to love her forever. He shows D'Artagnan the letter he has written to La Valliere. D'Artagnan suggests shortening the letter to: "Mademoiselle: Instead of cursing you, I love you, and I die." Raoul agrees with D'Artagnan's editorial suggestions, and asks D'Artagnan to make sure the letter makes its way to La Valliere after he is dead. On their way back, they spy a vessel being tossed about the Mediterranean. D'Artagnan confesses it was the carriage case used to transport the man in the iron mask. Athos suggests that D'Artagnan burn it to eradicate all evidence. As they walk back to the fort, the prisoner is returning from chapel. He is clothed in black and masked with steel. The prisoner screams that he would like to be called Accursed.
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