“So that was the matter with you that day, was it?” Mrs. Peterson asked as she paused in her knitting.
“Yes, that was it, and poor little Betty thought I had something in my head like ‘Mr. David,’ ho, ho!”
“But why didn’t you tell us who Sydney Bramshaw really was?” Lois asked.
“At first I thought I would. But then I decided to await developments, and see what the fellow was doing around here, and why he was sailing under another name. If I told what I knew it would have been gabbled all over the place in no time, and the chap would have been looked upon with suspicion. He seemed to be harmless enough, and so I thought I might as well hold my tongue for a while anyway. But since he’s gone and you’ve asked me point blank about him, I can’t see any harm in telling what I know.”
“Would it surprise you, Captain, to learn that Melburne Telford, alias Sydney Bramshaw, is David Findley’s nephew?” Mr. Westcote asked.
“His nephew!” the captain exclaimed. “Old David’s nephew!”
“Yes, that’s who he is, and David and Simon Dockett were brothers.”
“Good heavens!” the captain ejaculated. “What’s the meaning of it all, I’d like to know?”
“Let me tell you,” Mr. Westcote replied. “It is only right that you should know.”
As briefly as possible he related the story of the two sealed papers, the captain and his wife listening with the keenest interest. He told also of Bramshaw’s suspicious actions.
“And do you mean to tell me that old David was murdered by his nephew?” the captain asked in amazement when the story was finished.
“It looks very much like it, doesn’t it?”
“It certainly does. My, my, who’d have thought such a thing!” and the captain leaned back overcome by what he had just heard.
Before the visitors left, Mrs. Peterson spread a little table with a spotless cloth, and brought forth some of her fresh bread, cake and preserves.
“It is no trouble, I assure you,” she replied in answer to Lois’ remonstrance. “You must have a cup of tea before you leave, and I thought it would be nice out here on the verandah.”
“That looks good to me,” Mr. Westcote remarked as he drew his chair up to the table. “I haven’t eaten a bite since morning. I was all ready to go to the restaurant when Dobbins came to see me, and then you girls arrived. If this keeps up much longer I shall be a skeleton. But I must not remain too long,” he added, as he consulted his watch. “I must be back in the city before the C. P. R. leaves.”
“May I stay with Lois?” Margaret asked.
“Why yes, if you will not be in the way.”
“She must stay,” Lois replied. “I could not get along without her now. You will keep us informed, I hope, of how you make out.”
“Yes, I shall write to-night, and if anything of great importance turns up I shall let you know at once.”