xcerpt: "Toni’s name was Antoine Marcel, but he was never called by it but once in his life, and that was at his baptism, when he was eight days old. He had a shock of black hair and a snub nose, and the tan and freckles on his face were an inch thick, but he had a pair of black eyes so soft and bright and appealing that they might have belonged to one of the houris of Paradise. His wide mouth was full of sharp, white teeth, and when he smiled, which was very often, his smile began with his black eyes and ended with his white teeth. At ten years of age Toni was a complete man of the world—of his world, that is. This consisted of a gay, sunny little old garrison town, Bienville by name, in the south of France. He had his friends, his foes, his lady-love, and also he had arranged his plan of life. He knew himself to be the most fortunate person in all Bienville. In the first place, his mother, Madame Marcel, kept the only candy shop in the town, and Toni, being the only child of his mother, and she a widow, enjoyed all the advantages of this envied position. He had no father such as other boys had—Paul Verney, for example, the advocate’s son—to make him go to school when he would rather lie on his stomach in the meadow down by the river, and watch the butterflies dancing in the sun and the foolish bumblebees stumbling like drunkards among the clover blossoms."