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When his daughter had yielded up her last sigh, my lord did not say a word; his calmness was frightful; he closed the eyes of the princess, kissed her forehead again and again, took piously the remains of the little rose-bush, and left the cell.
"I followed him; he returned to the house without the cloister, and showing me the letter that he had begun to write to your royal highness, and to which he in vain attempted to add some words, for his hand trembled convulsively, he said to me:
"It is impossible for me to write. I am distraught, my mind is gone. Write to the grand d.u.c.h.ess that I no longer have a daughter!"
I have executed the orders of my lord. Permit me, as his oldest servant, to beseech your royal highness to hasten your return as soon as the health of the Count d'Orbigny will permit it. The presence of your royal highness alone can calm the despair of the prince. He wishes to watch every night by his daughter till the day when she shall be buried in the grand ducal chapel. I have accomplished my sad task, madame; be so kind as to excuse the incoherence of this letter, and accept the expression of respectful devotion with which I have the honor to be your loyal highness's very obedient servant,
The night before the funeral service of the Princess Amelia, Clemence arrived at Gerolstein with her father. Rudolph was not alone the day of the funeral of Fleur-de-Marie.