The Second Chance

Chapter 3: The Duel at the break of dawn

Time passed by quickly, and soon the day for the duel was coming near…the Duke de Guéménée wanted to make sure that he would win. He was willing to do anything for that matter, because he couldn´t let the female High Commander Oscar François de Jarjayes, with her arrogant servant André, to embarrass him anymore.

So he now was consulting Duke de Orleáns upon the means to succeed in that…De Orleáns had suggested a place perfect for the duel; in front of the Cathedral de Chartres…There, in a very specific place and at very specific time…

De Guéménée:“…so, you think that the place is perfect?”

De Orleáns:“Yes, the rays of the rising sun will temporarily make her blind…”

De Guéménée:“All right, then…”

De Orleáns:“But, since she embarrassed you so completely…just to make sure…I had done some changes to the one of the pistols. I´ll make sure that she will get it.”

De Guéménée:“What changes?”

De Orleáns laughed:“Don´t you worry about that! All you need to know is that when the pistol is fired, it will damage the hand of the person, who is holding it. So, if she gets a chance to fire it from the first place, she will not be able to shoot you.”

De Guéménée:“But wouldn´t it look suspicious?”

De Orleáns:“Well, accidents do happen! And the pistols aren´t always so reliable!”

They both started to laugh…There would be no way that Oscar François de Jarjayes would win this fight…

Later at de Jarjayes´ manor…

The night before the duel Oscar was sitting on a lawn in their garden, when André came to her. He knew that something was bothering Oscar. Perhaps she was nervous because of the duel that was taking place the next day…

He asked her straight…She confided in André that she was a bit scared, but not only because of the duel that was taking place in the next morning, but also because of the future events. What if she was unable to change to course of events? She was also thinking about the horrible fate that awaited her best friend. She couldn´t tell him, so she had to try to save him from his fate…by herself…somehow. She would think about it another time, because right now she had to concentrate on the duel tomorrow…

André:“…So that´s what I heard. Oscar, if something goes wrong…”

Oscar:“Now, don´t tell me that you are afraid?”

André:“No. I know that you´ll win.” he wanted to make her at ease.

Oscar:“I´m not worried about that.”

André knew that something was bothering her, he could tell that. He always knew…But, since she didn´t want to talk about it, he changed the subject. He didn´t want to force her to talk about it, if she didn´t want to…He just wanted to make her feel easier…

André:“Do you remember, Oscar? When you were seven, we buried our treasures under that oak tree…A big lead top and a red knife. Do you think that they´re still there?”

Oscar:“I don´t know.”

André:“Let´s leave by the back gate tomorrow morning. If my grandma finds out, she´ll make a fuss.”

Oscar:“Gerodère is my assistant. You don´t have to come.” She said that even if she knew that he would come there anyway, he always did accompany her…

André:“I´ll see you off halfway.” then he got up and was about to continue, to talk when Oscar spoke…

Oscar:” However evil the Duke might be, I am still afraid of taking a human life... André, if I die, keep the treasures buried under the oak tree; a lead top, red knife and the stuffed bear…”

André:“…”

Oscar smiled:“Please, stay with me for a little while longer, just a little…One´s life is too short and it´s over before one can realize it.”

So, they stayed there for a while…Just a bit while longer…

Then, the morning came…Everybody that was involved in the duel…Oscar, Duke de Guéménée, Duke de Orleáns, Gerodère… were in front of the Cathedral de Chartres… André was standing further away…The duel was about to start…Both Oscar and the Duke had taken their pistols and were taking paces…

Seven…Eight…Nine…

When Oscar stepped her ninth step, she could see the ray of the sun in front of her that would make her blind at the crucial moment…She knew what to do, after all, she had done it once before…

…Ten…

She turned around and protected her eyes with her right hand. That gave the Duke enough time to fire his pistol before she could…the Duke pointed his pistol towards her and pulled the trigger…

…Bang!... Something went wrong…The pistol in his hand dropped and the Duke yelled…Something had happened to his hand. It was injured. Oscar´s plan had worked; she had been somewhat suspicious about the Duke and had André follow him. André had found out about the dangerous pistol and had swapped the pistols just in time.

Now, it was her time to shoot…“This is for trying to kill both André and Pierre.” she thought and fired the gun. This time she aimed at his left hand. Now the Duke had both of his hands injured and he was furious.

De Guéménée:“This is all you doings!” He shouted at Oscar and accused her of damaging his pistol.

Oscar:“How could I have done that?! It was your pistol in the first place! You had done something…” she started to be very angry and would have continued her accusations, if André wouldn´t have gone to stop her.

André: “Calm down, Oscar” he whispered in her ear:“He´s not worth it.”

Oscar:“You are right…” she calmed down and smiled to André.

Soon the queen arrived at the scene and scolded Oscar for involving in the duel with the Duke… But that wasn´t going to make the Duke satisfied…He wanted revenge. He swore that someday he would get both Oscar François and her servant André to pay…He would wait until the time would be right for his revenge and then…Oscar would regret the day she was born in…

Unfortunately, the Duke would not be the only one, who would consider Oscar as a threat. Oscar would soon get in the way of Madame de Polignac…Marie Antoinette´s personal favorite, who would be willing to do anything to get her way. Although, Oscar wanted to do the right thing and save people…But what was the price she would have to pay by altering the wheels of time? Or could she even do it? Were things she saw happening, going to happen anyway? No matter what she did? By saving the little boy´s life, she had gained a powerful enemy…At least; there was one significant question on her mind; why she had seen her future in beforehand?

To be continued…

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