THE Prince repeated his statement: "Man's greatest wisdom consists in getting along without women." He intended to go on but was interrupted. There was a slight stir of the heavy window curtains. Through their parting was seen below, as in a frame, the intense azure of the Mediterranean. A dull roar reached the dining-room. It seemed to come from the side of the house facing the Alps. It was a faint vibration, deadened by the walls, the curtains, and the carpets, distant, like the working of some underground monster; but there rose above the sound of revolving steel and the puffing of steam a clamor of human beings, a sudden burst of shouts and whistling. "A train full of soldiers!" exclaimed Don Marcos Toledo, leaving his chair. "The Colonel is at it again, always the hero, always enthusiastic about everything that has to do with his profession," said Atilio Castro, with a smile of amusement.