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Chapter 34

  • **IN WHICH PHILEAS FOGG AT LAST REACHES LONDON**
  • Phileas Fogg was in prison. He had been shut up in the Custom House, and h_as to be transferred to London the next day.
  • Passepartout, when he saw his master arrested, would have fallen upon Fix ha_e not been held back by some policemen. Aouda was thunderstruck at th_uddenness of an event which she could not understand. Passepartout explaine_o her how it was that the honest and courageous Fogg was arrested as _obber. The young woman's heart revolted against so heinous a charge, and whe_he saw that she could attempt to do nothing to save her protector, she wep_itterly.
  • As for Fix, he had arrested Mr. Fogg because it was his duty, whether Mr. Fog_ere guilty or not.
  • The thought then struck Passepartout, that he was the cause of this ne_isfortune! Had he not concealed Fix's errand from his master? When Fi_evealed his true character and purpose, why had he not told Mr. Fogg? If th_atter had been warned, he would no doubt have given Fix proof of hi_nnocence, and satisfied him of his mistake; at least, Fix would not hav_ontinued his journey at the expense and on the heels of his master, only t_rrest him the moment he set foot on English soil. Passepartout wept till h_as blind, and felt like blowing his brains out.
  • Aouda and he had remained, despite the cold, under the portico of the Custo_ouse. Neither wished to leave the place; both were anxious to see Mr. Fog_gain.
  • That gentleman was really ruined, and that at the moment when he was about t_ttain his end. This arrest was fatal. Having arrived at Liverpool at twent_inutes before twelve on the 21st of December, he had till a quarter befor_ine that evening to reach the Reform Club, that is, nine hours and a quarter;
  • the journey from Liverpool to London was six hours.
  • If anyone, at this moment, had entered the Custom House, he would have foun_r. Fogg seated, motionless, calm, and without apparent anger, upon a woode_ench. He was not, it is true, resigned; but this last blow failed to forc_im into an outward betrayal of any emotion. Was he being devoured by one o_hose secret rages, all the more terrible because contained, and which onl_urst forth, with an irresistible force, at the last moment? No one coul_ell. There he sat, calmly waiting—for what? Did he still cherish hope? Did h_till believe, now that the door of this prison was closed upon him, that h_ould succeed?
  • However that may have been, Mr. Fogg carefully put his watch upon the table,
  • and observed its advancing hands. Not a word escaped his lips, but his loo_as singularly set and stern. The situation, in any event, was a terrible one,
  • and might be thus stated: if Phileas Fogg was honest he was ruined; if he wa_ knave, he was caught.
  • Did escape occur to him? Did he examine to see if there were any practicabl_utlet from his prison? Did he think of escaping from it? Possibly; for onc_e walked slowly around the room. But the door was locked, and the windo_eavily barred with iron rods. He sat down again, and drew his journal fro_is pocket. On the line where these words were written, "21st December,
  • Saturday, Liverpool," he added, "80th day, 11.40 a.m.," and waited.
  • The Custom House clock struck one. Mr. Fogg observed that his watch was tw_ours too fast.
  • Two hours! Admitting that he was at this moment taking an express train, h_ould reach London and the Reform Club by a quarter before nine, p.m. Hi_orehead slightly wrinkled.
  • At thirty-three minutes past two he heard a singular noise outside, then _asty opening of doors. Passepartout's voice was audible, and immediatel_fter that of Fix. Phileas Fogg's eyes brightened for an instant.
  • The door swung open, and he saw Passepartout, Aouda, and Fix, who hurrie_owards him.
  • Fix was out of breath, and his hair was in disorder. He could not speak.
  • "Sir," he stammered, "sir—forgive me—most—unfortunate resemblance— robbe_rrested three days ago—you are free!"
  • Phileas Fogg was free! He walked to the detective, looked him steadily in th_ace, and with the only rapid motion he had ever made in his life, or which h_ver would make, drew back his arms, and with the precision of a machin_nocked Fix down.
  • "Well hit!" cried Passepartout, "Parbleu! that's what you might call a goo_pplication of English fists!"
  • Fix, who found himself on the floor, did not utter a word. He had onl_eceived his deserts. Mr. Fogg, Aouda, and Passepartout left the Custom Hous_ithout delay, got into a cab, and in a few moments descended at the station.
  • Phileas Fogg asked if there was an express train about to leave for London. I_as forty minutes past two. The express train had left thirty-five minute_efore. Phileas Fogg then ordered a special train.
  • There were several rapid locomotives on hand; but the railway arrangements di_ot permit the special train to leave until three o'clock.
  • At that hour Phileas Fogg, having stimulated the engineer by the offer of _enerous reward, at last set out towards London with Aouda and his faithfu_ervant.
  • It was necessary to make the journey in five hours and a half; and this woul_ave been easy on a clear road throughout. But there were forced delays, an_hen Mr. Fogg stepped from the train at the terminus, all the clocks in Londo_ere striking ten minutes before nine.
  • Having made the tour of the world, he was behind-hand five minutes. He ha_ost the wager!