The Yellow Claw eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 339 pages of information about The Yellow Claw.

“What!” cried Dunbar, “you are going to risk yourself alone in that place again?”

“I have paid a very heavy fee,” replied the Frenchman with his odd smile, “and it entitles me to a second visit; I shall pay that second visit on Tuesday night, and my danger will be no greater than on the first occasion.”

“But Soames may betray you!”

“Fear nothing; I have measured my Soames, not only anthropologically, but otherwise.  I fear only his folly, not his knavery.  He will not betray me.  Morbleu! he is too much a frightened man.  I do not know what has taken place; but I could see that, assured of escaping the police for complicity in the murder, he would turn King’s evidence immediately"...

“And you gave him that assurance?”

“At first I did not reveal myself.  I weighed up my man very carefully; I measured that Soames-pig.  I had several stories in readiness, but his character indicated which I should use.  Therefore, suddenly I arrested him!”

“Arrested him?”

“Pardieu!  I arrested him very quietly in a corner of the bar of ’Three Nuns’ public house.  My course was justified.  He saw that the reign of his mysterious Mr. King was nearing its close, and that I was his only hope"...

“But still he refused"...

“His refusal to reveal anything whatever under those circumstances impressed me more than all.  It showed me that in Mr. King I had to deal with a really wonderful and powerful man; a man who ruled by means of fear; a man of gigantic force.  I had taken the pattern of the key fitting the Yale lock of the door of my room, and I secured a duplicate immediately.  Soames has not access to the keys, you understand.  I must rely upon my diplomacy to secure the same room again—­all turns upon that; and at an hour after midnight, or later if advisable, Soames has agreed to let me out.  Beyond this, I could induce him to do nothing—­nothing whatever.  Cochon!  Therefore, having got out of the locked room, I must rely upon my own wits—­and the Browning pistol which I have presented to Soames together with the duplicate key"...

“Why not go armed?” asked Dunbar.

“One’s clothes are searched, my dear Inspector, by an expert!  I have given the key, the pistol, and the implements of the house-breaker (a very neat set which fits easily into the breast-pocket) to Soames, to conceal in his private room at the establishment until Tuesday night.  All turns upon my securing the same apartment.  If I am unable to do so, the arrangements for the raid will have to be postponed.  Opium smokers are faddists essentially, however, and I think I can manage to pretend that I have formed a strange penchant for this particular cubiculum"...

“By whom were you introduced to the place?” asked Dunbar, leaning back against the table and facing the Frenchman.

“That I cannot in honor divulge,” was the reply; “but the representative of Mr. King who actually admitted me to the establishment is one Gianapolis; address unknown, but telephone number 18642 East.  Make a note of him, that Gianapolis.”

Project Gutenberg
The Yellow Claw from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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