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Chapters 10 and 11
Gringoire decides to follow La Esmeralda, but he loses sight of the gypsy as the streets grow darker and more deserted. He then hears her scream. He rounds a corner and sees her struggling with two assailants. One is Quasimodo; the other is his master, the priest Frollo. Gringoire tries to help the gypsy, but Quasimodo hits him with a solid blow, knocking him to the ground. Fortunately for La Esmeralda, Phoebus, the captain of the archers of the King’s Ordinance, comes along and rescues her; his men then arrest Quasimodo. Claude Frollo escapes unnoticed. La Esmeralda thanks Phoebus and disappears.
As Gringoire recovers from Quasimodo’s blow, he is still in pain and feels cold. While he is trying to gather his strength, a group of mischievous boys comes along and sets fire to the Paillasse right next to Gringoire. He feels he must depart immediately.
These chapters set the scene for the eventual relationship between La Esmeralda and her rescuer, the handsome Phoebus. It also establishes the evil intent of Frollo, who obviously was not acting in a priestly manner in his attack on La Esmeralda. When Quasimodo is arrested by Phoebus and his men, Frollo turns his back on him and walks away, establishing him as a coward. In contrast, Gringoire elevates himself during the attack by his heroic attempt to save La Esmeralda.