Study Guide

The Count of Monte Cristo Chapter 2

By Alexandre Dumas

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Chapter 2

Father and Son

  • Dantès bounds up the stairs and into his father's apartment.
  • He's in the middle of telling him all the news – how the captain died, how he's going to be the new captain and make lots more money, how life's going to be a lot more comfortable from now on – when he notices that his dad is looking worn out.
  • Dantès looks around, realizing only then that the apartment is bare – there's not even anything to eat or drink.
  • Turns out dear old Dad used most of his 200 franc allowance from Edmond to pay back a debt to Caderousse, their neighbor; he's spent the last three months living on next to nothing.
  • Dantès is heartbroken – he hates to see his father suffer, and he's in the middle of explaining this to his dad when who should appear but Caderousse.
  • Caderousse and Dantès exchange some less than pleasant pleasantries; Caderousse is particularly excited when he sees some coins (a portion of Dantès' pay) dumped out on the table.
  • Dantès reveals that Morrel has invited him to dinner. His father is disappointed to hear that Edmond has turned down the offer, but he understands better when he mentions a certain Mercédès. He sends his son off to see her.
  • Before he can go, however, Caderousse warns Dantès that a girl like Mercédès will attract many followers; Dantès doesn't really pay attention to this.
  • Outside the apartment, Caderousse meets up with Danglars and tells him what he's learned upstairs; he also tells him that he's seen Mercédès hanging around with one particularly big Catalan dude.
  • Danglars thinks about this for a bit – no doubt rubbing his hands together and grinning menacingly – before suggesting that he and Caderousse go hang out at a tavern down by Mercédès' place, you know, to see how the big reunion goes.

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