King Charles I of England tries to conceal the death of the Duke of Buckingham from the Rochellais for as long as possible. He orders the ports closed as soon as the death was announced, but two ships manages to leave before then—the first, bearing Milady’s flag. (We’ll hear more about the second ship later.)
(She had set sail as soon as she heard the canon sound!)
Meanwhile, at camp in La Rochelle, King Louis XIII of France is getting bored of the siege and wants to go back to Paris. He takes twenty Musketeers with him; among them are Porthos, Aramis, Athos, and D’Artagnan.
Aramis receives a letter from his seamstress friend that contains an authorization from the Queen for the bearer to remove Constance Bonacieux from the convent.
The men are overjoyed that they can finally rescue Constance!
Upon reaching Paris, the King thanks Tréville and gives permission to grant leaves of absences. The first of these goes to our young heroes, who promptly take off for Béthune.
Just as the men are dismounting to stop at an inn, a horseman rides past whom D’Artagnan recognizes as the man from Meung! The Musketeer wants to chase after his mystery man, but is held back by his friends. Athos also points out that the man is traveling in the opposite direction.
Suddenly, a servant comes running out of the inn after the man from Meung, calling that he had dropped a slip of paper. D’Artagnan pays the servant for the note, which has the word, "Armentières" written on it in Milady’s handwriting.