“Not at the moment,” replied Allerdyke. “So unless what?”
“Unless the thieves—and murderers—were waiting there in Hull for his arrival,” said Fullaway quietly. “That’s possible!”
“Strikes me a good many possibilities are knocking around,” remarked Allerdyke, with more than his usual dryness. “As for me, I’ll want to know a lot about these valuables and their consignment before I make up my mind in any way. I tell you frankly. I’m not running after them—I’m wanting to find the folk who killed my cousin, and I only hope this young woman’ll be able to give me a hand. And the sooner we get to the bottle of hay and begin prospecting for the needle the better!”
But the search for Miss Celia Lennard to which Allerdyke alluded so gloomily was not destined to be either difficult or lengthy. As he and his companion walked along one of the platforms in the Waverley Station in Edinburgh that evening, on their way to a cab, Allerdyke suddenly uttered a sharp exclamation and seized the American by the elbow, twisting him round in front of a big poster which displayed the portrait of a very beautiful woman.
“Good Lord!” he exclaimed. “There she is! See? That’s the woman. Man alive, we’ve hit it at once! Look!”
Fullaway turned and stared, not so much at the portrait as at the big lettering above and beneath it:
THE WORLD-FAMED SOPRANO.
RECENTLY RETURNED FROM MOSCOW
AND ST. PETERSBURG.
Only Visit to Edinburgh this Year.
TO-NIGHT AT 8.
THE FRANTIC IMPRESARIO
Fullaway slowly read this announcement aloud. When he had made an end of it he laughed.
“So your mysterious lady of the midnight motor, your Miss Celia Lennard of the Hull hotel, is the great and only Zelie de Longarde, eh?” he said. “Well, I guess that makes matters a lot easier and clearer. But you’re sure it isn’t a case of striking resemblance?”
“I only saw that woman for a minute or two, by moonlight, when she stuck her face out of her car to ask the way,” replied Allerdyke, “but I’ll lay all I’m worth to a penny-piece that the woman I then saw is the woman whose picture we’re staring at. Great Scott! So she’s a famous singer, is she? You know of her, of course? That sort of thing’s not in my line—never was—I don’t go to a concert or a musical party once in five years.”
“Oh, she’s great—sure!” responded Fullaway. “Beautiful voice—divine! And, as I say, things are going to be easy. I’ve met this lady more than once, though I didn’t know that she’d any other name than that, which is presumably her professional one, and I’ve also had one or two business deals with her. So all we’ve got to do is to find out which hotel she’s stopping at in this city, and then we’ll go round there, and I’ll send in my card. But I say—do you see, this affair’s to-night, this very evening, and at eight o’clock, and it’s past seven now. She’ll be arraying herself for the platform. We’d better wait until—”