Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Prisoner of Zenda -Chapters 11-15

Chapter 11 – A Kind of Tea Party
      Rassendyll received a letter from Antoinette de Mauban asking him to meet her at her summer house at midnight. Rassendyll went to the summer house with Sapt. Rassendyll asked Sapt to wait at the front gate while he went into the summer house alone.She told him that the Duke planned to kill the King and throw the King’s body in the New Town. Then the Duke planned to put the blame on the King’s friend. He then planned to marry the princess. She also told him that the King was imprisoned in Zenda Castle.
     When Rassendyll was talking to Antoinette de Mauben, suddenly the Duke’s men arrived at the scene. They made an offer that the Duke was willing to pay fifty thousand pounds if Rassendyll leave Ruritania. Rassendyll escaped using the tea table as a shield from the gunshots.

Chapter 12 – The Marriage Will Shortly Take Place
     The people were angry  with the King, as he would not fix a date for his wedding. As a result, Duke Michael was becoming more popular among the people.
       Sapt told Rassendyll that a dance  had been arranged in the Princess’s honour. Rassendyll was also told that he had to ask the Princess to marry him that night.
        The most important people in the country were present at the party. In front of the guests, Rassendyll took the Red Rose of Ruritania from his neck and put it on the Princess’s neck. The guests cheered and clapped when seeing this.
        After dinner, Rassendyll went to the garden with Princess Flavia and declared his love for her. When he found out that the Princess only began to love the King after the day of Coronation he was very touched. He wanted to tell Princess Flavia the truth before he could do so, he was interrupted by Sapt. All of them then returned to the crowded dance hall.

Chapter 13 – Love or Honour?
     The morning after the ball, Rassendyll, Sapt, Fritz and ten men were ready to leave for Zenda to rescue the King . Sapt spread the news that the King was going for a boar-hunting trip in the forest near Zenda                      
     Before leaving, Rassendyll told Marshall Strakencz that if the King was killed, the latter had to call out the Army and rule till Princess Flavia was crowned Queen.
     The Princess turned as white as a sheet when she heard that Rassendyll was going to ‘hunt’ Black Michael. Rassendyll told her that if he did not return, she would be the Queen and rule the country. The Princess gave her promise and then she cried like a child.

Chapter 14 – Rassendyll Revisits the Inn in Zenda
     Duke Michael sent three of his Famous Six to visit Rassendyll. They were the Ruritanians; Lauengram, Kaufstein, and Rupert of Hentzau. Rupert , the leader, was the youngest of the three. He was 23 years old and also the most wicked but he was a merry fellow and completely fearless.
     After they were gone, Rassendyll went to Zenda with Fritz. He would save the King by a trick. Rassendyll went to the Inn and asked the girl in the Inn to help him. She should tell Johann Holf that ‘the King’ would want to see him at the bridge outside Zenda at ten o’clock at night.
     Sapt was waiting for them when they reached the castle of Tarlenheim. He was worried because Bernenstein who was Rassendyll’s height was nearly killed by the Famous Six. Rassendyll knew that the bullet was meant for him.

Chapter 15 – Rassenzdyll Narrowly Escapes Death
     That morning, Rupert of Hentzau, the  most wicked of the Six came to see Rassendyll at the Castle. He gave the message from Black Michael. Black Michael promised Rassendyll a hundred thousand pounds if he leave Ruritania but Rassendyll rejected the offer. Rassendyll also found out that the King was still alive.
     Before leaving, Rupert flashed a dagger and struck Rassendyll’s left shoulder. Rassendyll fainted and when he came to himself he was in bed. Johann was brought to him and told him that the King was imprisoned in the Old Castle , in the room at the end of the drawbridge. The king was guarded by three of the Six in the next room. If there would be an attack on the Castle, one of them would kill the king at once and throw the body into the moat and nobody would find his body.

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