Sahwah, sitting on the rock beside the water, gazing off into space with her chin in her hand, suddenly became aware of a champing sound directly in her ear, accompanied by the noise of tearing. She raised her head, and there was Kaiser Bill right beside her tearing something to pieces. She put out her hand and snatched the thing away so quickly that it was gone before Kaiser Bill knew what had happened; then, realizing that to stay in the neighborhood after such a daring act was decidedly perilous, Sahwah sprang up into the branches of a great old willow tree that leaned invitingly near, drew herself up out of his reach and from her safe vantage point made triumphant grimaces down at him. Kaiser Bill, baffled, dashed his head against the tree several times in fury, then rushed into the woods.
Left to herself, Sahwah examined the thing she had rescued, and then it was that she recognized the artist’s sketching portfolio. Her first feeling was regret that she hadn’t let Kaiser Bill go on eating it Then she felt ashamed of such vicious thoughts and began looking over the portfolio to see how badly it was damaged. It was a sorry wreck, she decided, after a moment’s inspection. Most of the seams were burst open and the soft leather which lined the stiffer outside was torn away in a dozen places. It was empty of sketches, these having been scattered along the path in the progress of Kaiser Bill’s capers. Sahwah fingered the torn lining and wondered if the artist would make them pay for the damage. While she was wondering her fingers found something under the lining, and she drew out several sheets of paper, written over in a close hand. Under these were dozens of other sheets, thin as tissue, but very tough and strong, covered with lines and angles and circles and letters in complicated designs. She rummaged still further under the lining and drew out a black ribbon about an inch wide. On it in gold letters was stamped S.M.S. Eitel Friederich. After that out came a narrow envelope of exceedingly heavy correspondence paper addressed in a beautifully shaded handwriting to “Lieutenant Waldemar von Oldenbach, S.M.S. Eitel Friederich.” Sahwah turned it over in her hands. It was sealed on the other side with a wafer of gold wax, the seal being a coronet The envelope was open at the top, disclosing a letter inside. Sahwah looked at it curiously, but did not open it. It was the superscription on the envelope and the gold letters on the black ribbon that were holding her attention. Sahwah knew from reading the papers that the S.M.S. Eitel Friederich was one of the German warships caught in American ports at the outbreak of the war and interned. The ribbon had evidently come from the ship, but what was it doing here under the lining of Eugene Prince’s portfolio? Why was he carrying around a ship’s ribbon from an interned German vessel? Who was Waldemar von Oldenbach? Evidently a lieutenant on the Eitel Friederich,