Living Alone eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 127 pages of information about Living Alone.

“No,” said Miss Ford.

“’Ave you no memory of last Seturday night?”

“No,” said Miss Ford.

“I have,” said the witch.

The policeman bridled.  “I was addressing this ’ere lady, Miss M.M.  Ford.  Can you at least tell me, meddem, ’ow long you and the ’Iggins family ’ave been acquainted?”

“No,” said Miss Ford.

“Eighteen years,” said Lady Arabel.

The fumes from the fireplace were very strong indeed, but nobody called attention to them.

“I’m sorry, ...” said Miss Ford presently, very slowly, “that ...  I ... can’t help you.  I have ... been having ... nerve-storms ... since ... last ...  Saturday....”

The policeman fixed his ominous gaze upon her for quite a minute before he wrote something in his notebook.

“Is Private Richard ’Iggins in town to-night?” he asked of Lady Arabel in a casual voice.

“I suppose so,” she replied.  “But he has such a dretful habit of disappearing....”

The policeman turned to the Mayor.

“Now, sir,” he said.  “Could you help me at all in——­”

“Look here,” said the witch, rising.  “If you would only come along to my house in Mitten Island I can truly give you all the information you need.  In fact, won’t you come to supper with me?  If some one will kindly lend me half-a-crown I will go on ahead and cook something.”

Mr. Tovey mechanically produced a coin.

“Here, Harold,” called the witch, and holding Harold’s collar she stepped out on to the balcony, mounted, and flew away.

She left a room full of noise behind her.

The policeman, who was intoxicated with the strange fumes, said:  “Hell. 
Hell.  Hell.”

Lady Arabel called in vain:  “Angela, Angela, don’t be so dretfully rash.”

Mr. Tovey, now afflicted with a lock of hair in each eye, seized the policeman by the shoulder thinking to prevent him from jumping out of the window.  “You fool,” he shouted.

The Mayor slapped his thigh with a loud report.  “Lawdy,” he yelled.  “She’s a sport.  She will ’ave ’er joke.”

Miss MacBee laughed hysterically and very loudly.

Mr. Darnby Frere said “My word” rather cautiously several times, and rubbed the bridge of his nose.  He rather thought everybody was pulling his leg, but could not be sure.

Only Miss Ford sat silent.

CHAPTER IX

THE HOUSE OF LIVING ALONE MOVES AWAY

When Sarah Brown and Richard, followed by the Dog David, reached the Mitten Island Ferry, after travelling slowly by moonlight, they were surprised to see a great crowd of people banked up on the Island, and one man in the uniform of a policeman, standing alone on the mainland.  About ten yards from land the ferryman sat in his boat, rowing gently to keep himself stationary in the current.

“You’ll ’ave to come to shore now,” said the policeman, in the tone of one exhausted by long argument. “’Ere’s some more parties wanting to cross.”  He turned to Richard.  “Look ’ere, mate,” he said.  “I’m ’ere in the discharge of my dooty, and this ferryman is obstructin’ me.”

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Living Alone from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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