“It will eat lobster pie,” suggested Isagani, whom Pecson’s speech bored.
“And that’s what we ought to be doing. Enough of speeches!”
As the Chinese who should have served the courses did not put in his appearance, one of the students arose and went to the rear, toward the balcony that overlooked the river. But he returned at once, making mysterious signs.
“We’re watched! I’ve seen Padre Sibyla’s pet!”
“Yes?” ejaculated Isagani, rising.
“It’s no use now. When he saw me he disappeared.”
Approaching the window he looked toward the plaza, then made signs to his companions to come nearer. They saw a young man leave the door of the pansiteria, gaze all about him, then with some unknown person enter a carriage that waited at the curb. It was Simoun’s carriage.
“Ah!” exclaimed Makaraig. “The slave of the Vice-Rector attended by the Master of the General!”
Very early the next morning Basilio arose to go to the hospital. He had his plans made: to visit his patients, to go afterwards to the University to see about his licentiateship, and then have an interview with Makaraig about the expense this would entail, for he had used up the greater part of his savings in ransoming Juli and in securing a house where she and her grandfather might live, and he had not dared to apply to Capitan Tiago, fearing that such a move would be construed as an advance on the legacy so often promised him.
Preoccupied with these thoughts, he paid no attention to the groups of students who were at such an early hour returning from the Walled City, as though the classrooms had been closed, nor did he even note the abstracted air of some of them, their whispered conversations, or the mysterious signals exchanged among them. So it was that when he reached San Juan de Dios and his friends asked him about the conspiracy, he gave a start, remembering what Simoun had planned, but which had miscarried, owing to the unexplained accident to the jeweler. Terrified, he asked in a trembling voice, at the same time endeavoring to feign ignorance, “Ah, yes, what conspiracy?”
“It’s been discovered,” replied one, “and it seems that many are implicated in it.”
With an effort Basilio controlled himself. “Many implicated?” he echoed, trying to learn something from the looks of the others. “Who?”
“Students, a lot of students.”
Basilio did not think it prudent to ask more, fearing that he would give himself away, so on the pretext of visiting his patients he left the group. One of the clinical professors met him and placing his hand mysteriously on the youth’s shoulder—the professor was a friend of his—asked him in a low voice, “Were you at that supper last night?”
In his excited frame of mind Basilio thought the professor had said night before last, which was the time of his interview with Simoun. He tried to explain. “I assure you,” he stammered, “that as Capitan Tiago was worse—and besides I had to finish that book—”