“You are all right now,” Jasper replied. “You certainly have been raving at a great rate.”
“Have I?” the old man queried, and he lapsed into a momentary silence. “Peculiar feelings come over me at times. The fresh air of night has done me much good. I shall walk a short way with you along the road.”
David was now a pleasant companion, and Jasper enjoyed talking to him. He enquired about the progress of the work at the falls and asked numerous questions. Not once did he refer to the dark forebodings which had possessed him at the Haven, and Jasper believed that he had forgotten about them.
“I think I shall return now,” he said after they had walked some distance.
“Shall I go back with you?” Jasper asked.
“Not at all. I shall enjoy the walk alone. You are tired and should get home at once. So, good night. I hope to see you again soon.”
Jasper stood and watched him until the darkness swallowed him up. Then he made his way along the road to his own lonely house. He was very tired, but he found it difficult to get to sleep. The strange words which David had uttered kept running constantly through his mind. When he did at last fall into a fitful slumber, he was beset by a dreadful monster, which was slowly crushing him to pieces while he was unable to do anything to save himself.
He was aroused from this nightmare by a loud pounding upon the door. At first he imagined it was some one coming to his relief. Half dazed he groped his way across the room, threw open the door and peered out into the night.
“Who’s there?” he demanded.
“It’s only me,” came a voice which he recognised at once as Betty’s. “Oh, Mr. Jasper, have you seen Mr. David?” she asked.
“Seen Mr. David!” Jasper exclaimed in surprise. “I haven’t seen him since I left him last night on the road near the Haven. Didn’t he go home?”
“No, he didn’t, and that’s the reason I’m here. I waited up for him and when he didn’t come back, I started out to find him.”
“You stay there a minute,” Jasper ordered, as he closed the door and turned back into the room. Lighting a lamp, he was astonished to find that it was near midnight. It took him but a few moments to dress, and then he again threw open the door and stepped out into the night.
By the light streaming through the doorway Jasper could see that Betty’s face was very pale. She was greatly agitated as well, and her teeth chattered as she spoke.
“You have been running hard,” Jasper remarked. “You had better come in and rest awhile.”
“No, no,” the girl protested. “Don’t let us wait a minute. We must find Mr. David!”
“Are you sure he isn’t home?” Jasper asked.
“Yes, I am sure he isn’t there.”
“But he may have slipped in and you didn’t hear him.”