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Ferragus
Honore de Balzac

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FERRAGUS 

A fine thing is the task of a spy, when performed for one's own
benefit and in the interests of a passion.  Is it not giving ourselves
the pleasure of a thief and a rascal while continuing honest men? But
there is another side to it; we must resign ourselves to boil with
anger, to roar with impatience, to freeze our feet in the mud, to be
numbed, and roasted, and torn by false hopes.  We must go, on the faith
of a mere indication, to a vague object, miss our end, curse our luck,
improvise to ourselves elegies, dithyrambics, exclaim idiotically
before inoffensive pedestrians who observe us, knock over old apple-
women and their baskets, run hither and thither, stand on guard
beneath a window, make a thousand suppositions.  But, after all, it is
a chase, a hunt; a hunt in Paris, a hunt with all its chances, minus
dogs and guns and the tally-ho! Nothing compares with it but the life
of gamblers.  But it needs a heart big with love and vengeance to
ambush itself in Paris, like a tiger waiting to spring upon its prey,
and to enjoy the chances and contingencies of Paris, by adding one
special interest to the many that abound there.  But for this we need a

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