Categories > Books > Les Miserables > The Inspector's Wife

"Fantine" or "The Catalyst For The Next Events"

by sophies_quill 0 Reviews

Category: Les Miserables - Rating: PG-13 - Genres:  - Characters:  - Published: 2011/12/20 - Updated: 2011/12/20 - 782 words

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May we just go back a couple of months before Sophia finds out about her pregnancy?

One bitterly cold January evening, the Saturday after the Javerts returned from Paris, if I am being correct, Sophia was at the market, collecting the few loaves of bread which the baker had left for her. She heard a commotion from further down the street. Curious, she walked towards it, and saw some drunken men putting snow down the dress of a prostitute- Fantine. Fantine had been a worker at the brick factory, but had been fired after it was revealed she was a single mother, and the child lived with an innkeeper and his wife- the Thénardiers. So she did the only thing a woman with a child but no husband could to: prostitution.
“I have a sous…I have a sous to spend on you,” laughed Bamatabois, as his two friends held Fantine. Sophia saw her husband standing nearby, at his normal spot.
“Let’s give your tits a bit of colour!” He stuffed snow down Fantine’s only dress and she screamed.
“Now...how..about something to drink?”
“Something to drink!” Bamatabois’ first friend laughed as the dandy forced snow down Fantine’s throat.
“Now go down you tart!” Sophia watched in horror as Fantine attacked him.
This is not going to end well! she thought as her eyes flickered to Javert.

Cries of “she’s mad!” and “she’s attacking him!” from the dandy’s friends were heard by Beauvais and Javert.
“Sir,” Beauvais said to Javert softly, “this is a disturbance...may I?”
Javert was scowling, “I’ll take care of this.” He walked over to the disturbance, saw Sophia at the corner but pretended not to react.
“That’s enough!” he barked. Fantine, now on the floor crying, looked up at him pleadingly.
“It’s not my fault...they star-!” she begun but Javert whacked her across the cheek with his cane.
“Go home!” he yelled to Bamatabois and his friends, “and be quick about it.”

Sophia was not sure whether he was addressing her as well as Bamatabois and his companions. Beauvais went around the corner to meet Sophia, touching her on the shoulder.
“Come with me, Madame,” he said softly. He took her by the elbow and led her to Valjean’s home. He knocked on the door, and Valjean saw them both.
“Captain...Madame Javert...” he said.
“You asked me to tell you if he went too far...well I’ve kept my mouth shut long enough!” Beauvais told him.
“Why are you here, Madame?”
“You are going to be here a while, Monsieur le Maire,” Sophia said quietly. So she and Beauvais told him about what had happened, as well as what had happened when the Inspector had unknowingly arrested her. They did not spare any details- about how after he had hit Beauvais; he raped Sophia and threw her in the gaol.

When Javert returned home, fuming, Sophia was waiting for him in bed. She heard the door slam and he came into the bedroom.
“Darling?” she asked softly. He looked at her and unbuttoned his shirt. He took off the rest of his clothes and put on his nightshirt.
“Darling, are you alright?” she asked once he was in bed, turning his head to face him. He was still scowling.
“Do I look it?” he retorted darkly. She kissed him on the mouth.
“I know you won’t want me to ask questions, so....”she told him, “do you want to try for a baby tonight?” He sighed and as much as he wanted to focus on making love to his wife, he couldn't; being his wife and a woman, Sophia could sense it. There was clearly something on his mind.
“Bugger it,” he said, sitting up. She sighed and kissed his shoulder.
“My darling, don’t worry...it comes with age.” She pulled him back down onto the bed and held him in her arms as they slept...

It was April now, and Fantine had died of an illness, most likely tuberculosis and Javert had departed from Montreuil-sur-Mer to catch Valjean, who took the late prostitute’s child, Euphrasie or "Cosette". Sophia, now growing fat with hopefully her firstborn, awaited news from her husband, received a letter late April from her husband:

Sophia,
I am writing to you from Paris. We lost Valjean. He disappeared near by a convent-cum-boarding school with the prostitute’s child. But I have been offered a place with the Paris police as the Deputy...do not worry, ma chérie, I will find us some accommodation, and when I do, I will send for you.
Etienne Javert
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