“Nevertheless, I may not regret that I had the strength to leave you at Naples. The beautiful dream of our life together would have been disturbed too soon by the rude reality. My duty calls me from one place to another, and as long as this war lasts I am not my own master for an hour. We must have patience, Edith. Even this campaign cannot last for ever, and if Heaven has decreed that I shall come out of it alive, we shall meet again, never more to part.
“You may not be able to answer this letter, for communication with Frau Amelungen is interrupted. But I know you will answer me if it is possible, and I am happy to think that, by letting you know I am alive, I have given you a pleasure, soon, I hope, to be followed by the still greater happiness of meeting again. Let us wait patiently and confidently for that hour!”
He sealed the letter and put it in his pocket, in order to hand it over to Brandelaar on the following day. He then waited for the reappearance of Penurot, who had promised to be back at midnight. But although he waited nearly an hour over the time in the tavern, he waited in vain. The terms in which Herr Amelungen’s natural son had spoken of the people he intended to look for that evening made the Major anxious about his fate. Before returning to his quarters, he paid a visit to the town police office, requesting that a search might be made in the less reputable sailors’ taverns near the harbour for M. Camille Penurot, of whose appearance he gave a careful description.
As there was no news of him on the following morning, Heideck felt almost certain that the affair had turned out disastrously for Penurot. However, for the moment, he could not stop to investigate the young man’s whereabouts.
He was informed by the Lieutenant-Colonel that Brandelaar, whose vessel actually lay off Ternenzen, had been arrested with his crew, examined, and liberated during the course of the night, as had been agreed between the two officers.
Heideck now set out for Ternenzen to give Brandelaar the information for Admiral Hollway that had been collected at his office, together with the private information that was of such importance to him.
At last, having paid Brandelaar a thousand francs on account, Heideck also gave him the letter to Edith, with careful instructions as to its delivery. The skipper, whose zeal for the cause of Germany was now undoubtedly honourable, repeatedly promised to carry out his orders conscientiously and to the best of his power.
On returning to Antwerp at noon, Heideck found a communication at his office from the police to the effect that Camille Penurot’s body had been found in one of the harbour basins, stabbed in several places in the breast and neck. A search for the assassins had been immediately set on foot, but up to the present no trace of them had been discovered.