“Thank God that is over,” she said.
I suddenly realized that my face was dripping with perspiration, and I mopped it feverishly with my handkerchief.
“I would never have believed,” I began stammeringly; “I never thought—why, it’s a miracle—it’s—”
“Yes, a miracle,” repeated Mrs. Magnus. “Though there have been many instances of the dead returning.”
“Have there?” I asked. “Well, of course, I have heard of them, but I never thought them worthy of belief. But now—”
We had reached the foot of the stairs, and I got my coat down from the rack and struggled into it. I found that I had mechanically picked up my bag as I left the room overhead.
“I want to thank you, Mr. Lester,” said Mrs. Magnus, facing me, “for coming here to-night. You have been of the greatest help to me.”
“Certainly,” I agreed. “Very happy—a great privilege.”
I felt that I was talking nonsense, but what, in Heaven’s name, is a man to say who has just been through an experience like that? But Mrs. Magnus seemed to understand.
“Thank you,” she said, and gave me her hand. Then she opened the street door, and a moment later I found myself groping my way down the steps. Once down, I paused for a deep breath; then I started up the street. But I had scarcely taken a dozen steps when a hand fell upon my arm and drew me into the shadow of a doorway.
For an instant, with the thought of spirits still upon me, I tried to shake away the hand; then, as I started around at my assailant, I saw that it was Godfrey.
“Well, Lester,” he said, “did you leave the fifty thousand?”
I nodded; I was even yet scarcely capable of connected speech.
Godfrey looked at me curiously.
“You look like you’d seen a ghost,” he said.
He laughed amusedly.
“How is the old boy?”
“Look here, Godfrey,” I said, “this isn’t a thing to speak of in that tone. There’s something sacred about it.”
His face sobered as he looked at me. It grew serious enough to suit even my mood.
“So you were imposed on, too,” he said at last.
I didn’t like the words, nor the tone in which they were uttered.
“No, I wasn’t imposed on,” I said tartly. “I must be getting along, Godfrey. I haven’t anything to tell you.”
“Not just yet,” he said. “Come over here across the street, Lester, where I can have an eye on the Magnus house. Don’t you see—if I was wrong this morning, then you were right.”
“If she told you the truth, some one is trying to do her out of fifty thousand dollars.”
“She’s given it to her husband,” I said. “She thinks he’s going to use it as you said.”
“Given it to her husband?”