D’Artagnan continues on to the inn where he last saw Aramis. When he arrives, D’Artagnan learns that Aramis has spent the past several days with some men of the cloth and is planning to become a priest. This is bad news for d’Artagnan, so he heads to his friend’s room to figure out what is going on. On the way there, he is blocked by Bazin who doesn’t want d’Artagnan to see his master. Bazin has always dreamed of being a man of the church and doesn’t want d’Artagnan to ruin his chance. However, d’Artagnan completely ignores Bazin and pushes him aside.
Again, the novel falls into a predictable pattern. In this case, one chapter is devoted to each musketeer as d’Artagnan discovers what has become of them. Although it’s mostly been played for laughs up to this point, it seems that Aramis is finally taking his commitment to the Catholic Church seriously. However, d’Artagnan’s presence is sure to throw a wrench in his plan, much to Bazin’s dismay.
When d’Artagnan enters Aramis’s room, he sees his friend with two priests. Together, the men are discussing Aramis’s thesis, a document he must write to become a priest himself. The two priests and Aramis have a lengthy discussion about the thesis, which confuses d’Artagnan. D’Artagnan has no idea what the men are talking about and much of what they say is in Latin, which d’Artagnan does not know.
Unlike many of the musketeers who were born noblemen, d’Artagnan has little formal education. D’Artagnan is only slightly embarrassed by this fact; he finds the priests more annoying and pretentious than anything else. Meanwhile, Aramis proves that he is an intelligent man who is at least somewhat serious about his desire to be a priest.
When the priests leave them alone, d’Artagnan asks Aramis why he’s abandoning his life as a musketeer. Aramis responds by saying that his wound has made him reevaluate his life and that he now desires a life in the church. D’Artagnan is skeptical of this claim and suggests that he is actually just upset because of a woman. At first Aramis protests, but then d’Artagnan produces a letter that he found at Aramis’s house before he left Paris. The letter is perfumed and clearly from a woman. When Aramis sees the letter, his mood instantly changes and he completely changes his mind about becoming a priest, much to Bazin’s chagrin.
The woman in Aramis’s life is presumably the same person who d’Artagnan saw Madame Bonacieux talking to earlier in the novel, which means she is connected to the queen. Although d’Artagnan does not know who the woman is, he is confident that she exists and is affecting Aramis’s mindset. As it turns out, d’Artagnan is correct and in mere moments he deflates Aramis’s desire to convert. It’s another example of the disruptive power of romance in a musketeer’s life.