“Yet, sir, from what I heard, Berger and Noyez worked together. If Berger be informed that Noyez has been captured is it not likely that Berger will then tell of this accused man’s work?”
“Excellent suggestion! We shall soon know!” exclaimed General Bazain, touching a bell.
A LOT MORE OF THE REAL THING
Through the orderly who answered, three staff officers were summoned. To these the general gave his orders in undertones in a corner of the room. As the three hastened out not one of them sent as much as a glance in the direction of the unhappy Noyez.
Seating himself in his chair General Bazain, after courteously excusing himself, closed his eyes as though to sleep. The arresting party and Noyez withdrew to the adjoining room.
More than an hour passed ere the three staff officers returned and hastened into the division commander’s office. Fifteen minutes after that Dick and his friends, with the prisoner, were again summoned.
“It has been simpler than we thought,” General Bazain announced wearily. “Berger, when questioned and informed of Noyez’s arrest, confessed that Noyez was the superior spy under whom he worked.”
“It is a lie, my general!” exclaimed Noyez, in a choking voice, as he strode forward, only to be seized and thrust back.
“It is the truth!” retorted General Bazain, rising and glaring at the accused man. “Berger not only confessed, but he told where, in your dug-out, Noyez, could be found the secret compartment in which you hid the book containing the key to the code you sometimes employed in sending written reports to the enemy. And here is the code book!”
General Bazain tossed the accusing little notebook on the desk.
At sight of that Noyez fell back three steps, then sank cowering into a chair, covering his eyes with his hands.
“You comprehend that further lying will avail you nothing!” the division commander went on sternly. “Lieutenant De Verne!”
“Noyez, stand up. Lieutenant De Verne, I instruct you to remove from the uniform of Noyez the insignia of his rank and every emblem that stands for France! That done, you will next cut the buttons from Noyez’s tunic!”
Standing so weakly that it looked as if he must fall, Noyez submitted to the indignity, silent save for the sobs that choked his voice.
“Call in the guard, and have the wretch removed from my sight!” General Bazain ordered. “Yet, Noyez, I will say that it seems to me incredible that any Frenchman could have been so ignoble as you have proved yourself to he.”