Albert and Franz go to the Count the next day, as Albert insists on thanking him again for his kindness of the previous night. When Albert asks the Count if there is anything he can do to thank him in kind, the Count says that, indeed, there is one thing—Albert can introduce the Count around in Parisian society. With Franz looking on, more or less silently, Albert and the Count agree to meet at 10:30 am on May 21 in Paris.
Franz, and not Albert, seems to be concerned by the Count’s manner, and by his strangely punctual and detailed request of 10:30 am on May 21. Albert, for his part, is still in awe of the Count, and grateful to him for freeing him from Vampa. Thus Albert believes himself loyal to the Count – that he is repaying a debt he owes to the Count for helping him in a time of need. This seems to be the Count’s endgame regarding the Vampa kidnapping—inserting the Count directly into Albert’s life in Paris.
Afterward, Albert asks Franz in private why he seems not to like or to trust the Count. Franz, who has only hinted at his dislike before, tells his friend about the night at Monte Cristo, the hashish, and then of how strange it was to find that the Count knew Vampa and his brigands. Franz worries that no one knows the Count’s true identity, and he wonders where his seemingly infinite wealth comes from.
Finally, Franz admits to his friend the connections he’s been able to make between the Count’s various identities – including that of Sinbad the Sailor, and his Dracula-like appearance, as remarked upon by the Countess G. Franz is suspicious of the Count because of these shifts in identity; he believes that the Count is not to be trusted, because he appears not to stay the same person from one situation to the next.
To this Albert replies that the Count never asked where his (Albert’s, or Franz’s) money and wealth have come from; he accepts that the Count simply wants to help the son of a family presumably unknown to him, the Morcerfs, and he’s grateful for it. Albert makes plans to head back to Paris in the coming weeks, and Franz, after having warned his friend, tells him to be careful when he meets back up with the Count in May; Franz will stay in Italy, continuing to travel, for another year or two.
Albert remarks on his own parentage as though his nobility is a settled fact, but of course, the reader knows that his father, Fernand, is the same man Caderousse plotted with, and whom Caderousse identified as having purchased his title while fighting French wars abroad. But Albert, as of now, is unaware of his father’s only recently “ennobled” heritage.