‘Now, sir,’ continued Morrel, ‘these days no one can disappear by violent means without some enquiries being made as to the cause of her disappearance, even were she not a young, beautiful, and adorable creature like Valentine. M. le Procureur du Roi,’ said Morrel, with increasing vehemence, ‘no mercy is allowed; I denounce the crime; it is your place to seek the murderer.’
‘Oh! Well, then,’ said Monte Cristo, ‘I am not particular about these five notes, pay me in a different form; I wished, from curiosity, to take these, that I might be able to say that without any advice or preparation the house of Danglars had paid me five millions without a minute’s delay: it would have been so remarkable. But here are your bonds; pay me differently;’ and he held the bonds towards Danglars, who seized them . . . Suddenly he rallied, made a violent effort to restrain himself, and then a smile gradually widened the features of his disturbed countenance.
‘Who am I?’ repeated Monte Cristo. ‘Listen: I am the only man in the world who has the right to say to you, — “Morrel, your father’s son shall not die to-day.”’ And Monte Cristo, with an expression of majesty and sublimity, advanced with his arms folded towards the young man . . . ‘Because I am he who saved your father’s life when he wished to kill himself, as you do to-day, —because I am the man who sent the purse to your young sister, and the Pharaon to old Morrel, —because I am the Edmond Dantès who nursed you, a child, on my knees.’
‘[A]s M. Danglars says, you are rich and perfectly free. In my opinion, a withdrawal from Paris is absolutely necessary after the double catastrophe of Mademoiselle Danglars’ broken contract and M. Danglars’ disappearance . . . You only have to remain in Paris for about a fortnight, telling the world you are abandoned . . . Then you can quit your house, and everyone’s mouth will be filled with praises of your disinterestedness[.]’
The dread with which the baroness, pale and motionless, listened to this, was equaled by the calm indifference with which Debray had spoken.
Are we not two despairing creatures? What is life to you? — Nothing. What is life to me? — Very little without you, mother; for, believe me, but for you I should have ceased to live on the day I suspected my father and renounced his name. Well, I will live, if you promise me still to hope; and if you grant me the care of your future prospects, you will redouble my strength . . . [I]n six months I shall be an officer or dead. If I am an officer, your fortune is certain, for I shall have money enough for us both, and, moreover, a name we shall both be proud of[.]