ee men had carefully taken from the carriage and were preparing to carry upstairs. Poor Gouache was hardly recognisable for the smart soldier who had crossed the bridge of Sant' Angelo half an hour earlier. His uniform was all stained with mud, there was blood upon his pale face, and his limbs hung down, powerless and limp. But as the young girl looked at him, consciousness returned, and with it came the sense of acute suffering. He opened his eyes suddenly, as men often do when they revive after being stunned, and a short groan escaped from his lips. Then, as he realised that he was in the presence of a lady, he made an effort as though to release himself from the hands of those who carried him, and to stand upon his feet.
"Pardon me, Madame," he began to say, but Faustina checked him by a gesture.
Meanwhile old Montevarchi had carefully scrutinised the young man's face, and had recognised him, for they had often met in society.
"Monsieur Gouache!" he exclaimed in surprise. At the same t