The excerpt represents the core issue or deciding factor on which you must meditate, and is drawn from The Duchesse de Langeais by Honore de Balzac:|
"Mme la Duchesse," he began, his voice shaken with emotion,
"does your companion understand French?" The veiled figure
bowed her head at the sound of his voice.
"There is no duchess here," she replied. "It is Sister
Theresa whom you see before you. She whom you call my companion
is my mother in God, my superior here on earth."
The words were so meekly spoken by the voice that sounded in
other years amid harmonious surroundings of refined luxury, the
voice of a queen of fashion in Paris. Such words from the lips
that once spoke so lightly and flippantly struck the General dumb