"I am Baron Marshal, the father of this lady whom you have dared to offend!"
Belleville laughed still louder than before.
"Aha! that is a beautiful fairy tale! You who are as hideous as a baboon, and have borrowed the eyes of the cat!--you the father of the lovely Galatea Marshal!--tell that tale to other ears--I do not believe in such aberrations of Nature. I repeat my question: who are you? what is your name?"
"I repeat to you, I am Baron Marshal, the father of this lady."
"You are more credulous, sir, than I am, if you believe that," said Belleville, coarsely.
"Perhaps I am less credulous than you suppose," said Marshal, quietly. "It would, for example, be difficult for me to believe that you are a nobleman. I can assure you, however, that I am not only noble, but a man of honor."
Belleville was in the act of giving a passionate answer, when the doors of the supper-room were thrown open, and a sea of light irradiated the room.
At this moment, the queen and her ladies entered from the card-room, and, at her appearance, every word, every sound was hushed. Silently, and with a conciliatory smile, the queen passed through the saloon, and seated herself at the table; she then gave the sign to the grand-master, that her guests should be seated. And now the servants, in golden liveries, flew from side to side bearing silver plates, containing the rare and fragrant viands which the inventive head of Baron Pollnitz had ordered for the favored guests of her majesty the Queen of Prussia.