The Beloved Rogue

1   
France in 1432 --
  war-torn and weary --
the banners of Burgundy
and England over her
   fairest towns.

2
Joan of Arc's fight to
 save France has
ended in failure and 
death. At Vauxcelles,
near Paris, another 
patriot is about to 
  become a martyr.

3
Francois de Montcorbier -
 dying as he has lived -
      for France.

4
The wife of the martyr.

5
Daybreak.

6
"God grant that the spirit
 of my husband live in
 the heart of my child."

7
The child, Francois Villon, 
 who was destined to be
 the first great poet of 
         France.

8
Paris, twenty-five years
 later. Again Burgundy
 seeks to enslave France -
by craft -- not by war.

9
Charles, Duke of Burgundy,
  who covets the throne
       of France.

10
In a palace tower, the
 court astrologer awaits
 the nightly visit of
       the king.

11
Louis XI of France --
  superstitious - crafty -
  cruel - a slave of the
stars.

	...Conrad Veidt

12
"War - or submission?
 What do the stars
     command?"

13
"Majesty, they warn you
 that war would be fatal.
 Welcome Charles of
 Burgundy as a friend."

14
"Am I always to yield
 to Burgundy -- never
    to crush him?"

15
"Sire, the Duke of Burgundy
 is already within the walls
         of Paris."

16
"Inform the Court. We
 go forth to welcome
 our beloved cousin."

17
All Fools' Day is celebrated
  as usual in Paris --
  A King of the Revels
has just been elected, but -
     where is he?

18
"Francois Villon!"

19
"Francois Villon!"

20
"FRANCOIS VILLON!"

21
"Francois, hide -- the
   patrol is coming!"

22
Francois Villon -- poet,
  pickpocket, patriot --
  loving France earnestly,
Frenchwomen excessively,
French wine exclusively.

	...JOHN BARRYMORE

23
Little Jehan and Nicholas,
 companions of the poet,
understand everything 
about him -- except his 
        poetry.

24
"We can't get wine 
  without money, 
    Francois."

25
"I'll show you how to 
 turn water into wine!"

26
"White wine - your best
  is none too good."

27
"Without offense - may 
     I taste it?"

28
"That's water, you
 offspring of an ox!"

29
"Francois - Francois
       Villon!"

30
"You have been elected
 King of Fools. Let us
 deck you in your royal
         robes."

31
An ink-bottle for his crown,
 Francois Villon - King of
 Fools - rules the streets
 of Paris for a night.

32
"Fellow jack-asses --
 and ladies! Lend me
  your long ears!"

33
"I owe this exalted position
 to the husbands of Paris.
 For one night, they want 
  to be sure where I am!"

34
"Serve love and ladies day 
       and night,
   You'll get no profit nor
       delight,
But only broken heads and 
       sighs!
  Light love makes asses 
       of the wise --"

35
"Happy is Paris, where fools
 reign once a year - while
 everywhere else the fools
   reign all the time!"

36
"Let me mount yon 
      mount!"

37
"To horse, gentlemen!"

38
"In the name of 
 Burgundy, disperse 
   this rabble!"

39
"In the name of Villon,
 divorce him from his 
        horse!"

40
"Behold Charles of Burgundy
 who would be king - how
 tenderly he loves the citizens 
         of Paris!"

41
"Little Beppo's body is
  less deformed than 
   Burgundy's soul."

42
"THE KING!"

43
Tristan l'Hermite is the
  busiest man in France,
  He is the executioner!

44
"I have been grossly 
 insulted by this buffoon!"

45
Charlotte, ward of 
   the King.

46
"Who are you, fellow?"

47
"The king of fools, as
 you are king of the 
 wise, Sire. My name is 
   Francois Villon."

48
"Master Villon, you are
 the best writer of verse 
       in Paris --"

49
"Your Majesty's taste 
    is exquisite."

50
"- and the most insolent 
    rogue in France!"

51
"Cousin Charles, his fate 
    is in your hands."

52
"If a fool insulted Your
 Majesty in my dominions,
 I would have his life."

53
"Paris is your life. I
 sentence you to exile.
 If you are found within 
 the walls of Paris, you
          hang!"

54
"Sire, a favor granted
 to my loyal henchman,
 Count Thibault, would
  please me mightily."

55
"Majesty, I ask the hand 
 of your ward, Charlotte
  of Vauxcelles, in 
       marriage."

56
"Your marriage will
 please our dear cousin
 of Burgundy. I will
   hear no more!"

57
"Count Thibault will
 escort you at once
 to your domain of
 Vauxcelles, where you 
 will prepare for the 
      ceremony."

58
The hostel of the Lame
 Flea, just outside the 
 Walls of Paris, shelters
 Villon in his exile.

59
"I've used every rhyme for
 'France' except 'dance' -
 and there's no dancing 
      in this poem!"

60
"Louis the Little, come, be big -
   Bid the cursed Burgundians
       dance --
 On the gallows they should jig
   If Villon were King of France!"

61
"There's the weekly 
 cartload of delicacies 
 that Cousin Charles 
 sends to Cousin Louis."

62
"The poor of Paris are
 starving. Villon will be
 generous - with Louis'
         food."

63
Meanwhile, Charlotte and
 Thibault, still within the
 walls of Paris, battle 
their way to Vauxcelles.

64
"We'll find shelter at this 
    inn until morning."

65
The King's catapult --
 ready to stone foe or
 friend into submission.

66
"Tonight, the royal 
 catapult shall shower
 Paris with bread, beef,
      and brandy!"

67
"God and His saints
 might send us bread -
 but only Villon would
   think of brandy!"

68
"If I'm dead - I'm glad."

69
"I've left the chamber of many
      a dame
   In a haste that was free from 
      discussion,
 But never before, in a lady's
      boudoir,
   Have I landed with such a
      concussion."

70
"I had always supposed,
 dear lady, the way to
 heaven was difficult
 and slow -- till this
        moment."

71
"You have an odd taste 
   in prayer books."

72
"Villon is a great poet -
    an immortal --"

73
"- and one must sorrow
 that a man of such 
 genius should be a
   drunken clown."

74
"Yes, I have always 
 told him he drank 
     too much."

75
"You know him?"

76
"I've known him since 
 he was born, and I
 expect to be with 
 him when he dies."

77
"It's Burgundy's friend
 Thibault. The King
 ordered me to marry 
 him - but I'd rather
       die --"

78
"I am looking for
     my hat."

79
"Something in your 
 attitude suggests I
   am in the way."

80
"It is barely possible
        I am."

81
"Wine - for the heroic
       victor!"

82
"The King commands -
 no charge - to Francois 
        Villon!"

83
"Idiot! You've interfered
 with the King's plan to
 marry Thibault to
 Charlotte! Escape - or -"

84
"My friend, as barber to
 the king, you may tell
 Louis that his wits are 
 getting duller than your
       razors --"

85
"-- this marriage will give
 Vauxcelles, gateway to Paris,
 into the hands of Charles
       of Burgundy!"

86
"Take me with you!"

87
"Fear not, Mademoiselle -
 no tomcat knows the roof-
   tops so well as I."

88
"Safe at last. This is
 my Mother's roof. It is
 a long time since I've 
    been under it."

89
"Slide, gentle lady - and
 I will catch you - with-
 out catching a glimpse."

90
"This lady of the Court
 is in danger, Mother. I
 have brought her to
 you for protection."

91
"Your fiancée!"

92
"I always knew that my 
 son would marry a
 great lady - a beautiful
        lady."

93
"You were very gentle -
 not to disillusion my
 Mother - and I thank 
         you."

94
"It is rather for me to
 thank you for gentleness,
           sir."

95
"Mademoiselle, I wonder
 if you realize that your
 eyes have swept my 
 heart clean again --"

96
"-- and kindled a 
 fire there that shall
    outlast me."

97
"A man who sings so 
 divinely must be better
 at heart than he
 pretends to the world."

98
"Every man has two 
 souls - one for the 
 world, and one for 
 the woman he loves."

99
"You may spend the 
 night with my mother.
 I will be safer at the 
  Court of Miracles."

100
"Francois, why do you 
 leave this way? Why 
 are you so threadbare?"

101
"It is one of my many 
 disguises - in the service 
      of the King."

102
The Court of Miracles -
  where blind beggars 
  see - lame beggars
walk - deaf beggars hear -
dumb beggars speak -
while gallows-birds sing in
       the rafters.

103
"Majesty, the stars 
 show no danger in 
   this marriage."

104
"Sire, the razor slipped 
 when I heard that even 
 the stars are false."

105
"Burgundy in Vauxcelles
 will have one foot in 
        Paris!"

106
"Too late! If I could only
  stop this marriage --"

107
"I feared to tell your
 Majesty -- but the
 marriage is already 
       stopped."

108
"I presumed to act for
 your Majesty - at the
   risk of my life."

109
"Single-handed, I held
 back Thibault and his
 soldiers while Villon
 made off with Charlotte."

110
"Villon in Paris? After
   I banished him?"

111
"Villon has done me a 
 good turn. It were well
 for him to die before 
 he does me a bad one."

112
"Order Villon's arrest. A 
 spirit so youthful must
 be spared the pains of
        old age."

113
"Francois -- I was
 dreaming of you! I saw
 my boy at the right
 hand of the king - the
  saviour of France."

114
"Mother, your son is
 most unworthy to
 live so high in your
     dreams."

115
"Your father died to 
 save France. You shall
 live to save France."

116
"Mother - the King has
 invited me to a most
 exclusive function."

117
"I am ready. I realize
 that the success of the
 affair depends on my
       presence."

118
"Be thankful for your
 own escape, and plead
 no more for this rogue."

119
"Master Villon, you disobeyed
   me. You hang tomorrow.
   What say you to that?"

120
"Princes to death are all foretold,
    Even as the humblest of 
       their array;
 Whether they sorrow or whether 
       they scold,
    The wind carries their like 
       away!"

121
"And can you tell me, 
 my prophet, at what 
 hour the wind will 
  carry you away?"

122
"Yes, Sire, I can!"

123
"Majesty, it is written
   that my death is
     appointed --"

124
"- twenty-four hours -"

125
"-- before your own."

126
"My lords, a great prophet
 is in our midst. Let no
    harm befall him."

127
Francois Villon - friend
  of his Majesty, the
  King of France.

128
"Only one!"

129
"At first, he was only
 going to hang me --
 but now he keeps my 
    wine away."

130
"Give Villon all the
 wine he wants - or I'll
 bring my little brother
  over to thrash you!"

131
"Louis refused to let me 
 send for you until I 
 told him I was dying of 
     loneliness."

132
"You begged Louis for
 my life - and yet you
 refuse to speak to me."

133
"Perhaps I prefer listening 
 to the poet Villon - rather
 than the courtier Villon."

134
"And perhaps Mademoiselle
 prefers listening to her 
 pride - rather than her 
         heart!"

135
"Either way - there
     is danger."

136
"Charlotte, since you
 came into my life, my
 eyes have seen but
 one image - my heart
 has heard one voice -"

137
"Master Villon has not a
 reputation for fidelity!"

138
"You are my love, my
     only love!"

139
"Francois  - Francois...."

140
"How do you think
 they will mingle at our
 wedding-feast - your
 high-born rogues and
 my low-born rogues?"

141
"This is why I wished
 not to listen to you.
 Charlotte of Vauxcelles
 may not marry a man
 without lands and a 
     great name."

142
"A great name? I am
 Francois Villon!"

143
"My songs will keep
 your beauty alive when
 the pride of your class
 is forgotten in dust!"

144
"Master Villon, the King
      awaits you."

145
"The chill of the evening
 and the garden - you
 must keep well for 
      my sake."

146
"Sire, Charlotte is abducted!
 I saw Burgundy's men carry
          her away!"

147
"The time is not ripe to
  break with Burgundy."

148
"I AM KING! Out of
 my sight - back to 
    your rags!"

149
"Charles of Burgundy
 sponsors a marriage at
 Vauxcelles. By our ancient
 right we, the Guild of
 Beggars, go thither to the
      Free Feast!"

150
"Sire, I followed Villon,
   but he escaped me."

151
"It is rumored that 
 Villon is arousing the 
 beggars to rescue 
     Charlotte."

152
VAUXCELLES.

153
"Charlotte is safely
 guarded in the tower-
      chamber."

154
"If I am not back within 
 the hour, come after
 me. If I die - avenge me!"

155
"Master Villon - it were
 better for you, had you
 fallen to your death -
 and not into the arms
    of my soldiers."

156
"Charlotte in her tower 
 shall enjoy a last 
 rendezvous with her 
        poet."

157
"This happy marriage,
 good people of Paris,
 plants the banners of
 Burgundy where Louis
 may see them every
      morning!"

158
"The ceremony shall
 take place almost
    immediately."

159
"But first you shall witness
 another ceremony. See
 what happens to a man 
 who opposes my destiny."

160
"There he is! I'll have
 him brought low - for
    our amusement."

161
"Before you die, Master
 Villon, behold the
 triumph of Burgundy!"

162
"Behold the triumph of
 treachery. But France
 shall find a saviour -"

163
"We, whose fathers drove
 out the English Lion, will
 not let the Wolf of
 Burgundy devour France!"

164
"See what happens to
 the man who defies the
 future King of France!"

165
"HOLD!"

166
"See what happens to
 the man who defies 
 the present King of 
       France!"

167
"Master Villon, I leave 
 his sentence in your 
        hands."

168
"Let him plead for
 mercy before my Court
     of Fools!"

169
"Sire, I leave Vauxcelles
 to you. With your 
 gracious consent, I will
 seek happiness with 
   the man I love."

170
"The man you love is 
 only a commoner --"

171
"Sire, there was once a 
 commoner who out-
 witted the greatest 
 King that France ever 
         had."

172
"Who was the
  commoner?"

173
"I saved my life, Sire,
 by telling you it was
 bound up with your
         own."

174
"Master Villon, your pen
 has done more for
 France than any sword.
 I shall treasure it."

175
"Only one!"

THE END

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