Negotiations were also opened with Bernadotte, who seemed willing to support his cause, but was really playing for his own hand.
Bernadotte, who had helped him to the Consulate, played Napoleon false to win the crown of Sweden; Soult, like Murat, coveted the Spanish throne after that of Portugal, thus anticipating the treason of 1813 and the defection of 1814; many persons hoped for an accident which might resemble the tragic end of Alexander and of Caesar.
The defection of the military and civil aristocracy, which brought about Napoleons abdication, the refusal of a regency, and the failure of Bernadotte, who wished to resuscitate the Consulate, enabled Talleyrand, vicepresident of the senate and desirous of power, to persuade the Allies to accept the Bourbon solution of the difficulty.
Of the generals, some, like Jourdan, were honest republicans; others, like Bernadotte, believed themselves capable of governing France.
Equally memorable was his famous ride, through the enemy's lines on the night of the 16th-17th of October 1813, to convey to Blucher and Bernadotte the wishes of the two empefors that they should participate in the battle of Leipzig on the following day, at a given time and place.