We often move to the objects of supreme curiosity or desire, not in the lines of castle or bishop on the chess-board, but with the knight’s zigzag, at first in the wrong direction, making believe to ourselves we are not after the thing coveted. Put a lump of sugar in a canary-bird’s cage, and the small creature will illustrate the instinct for the benefit of inquirers or sceptics. Byles Gridley went to the other side of the room and took a volume of Reports from the shelves. He put it back and took a copy of “Fearne on Contingent Remainders,” and looked at that for a moment in an idling way, as if from a sense of having nothing to do. Then he drew the back of his forefinger along the books on the shelf, as if nothing interested him in them, and strolled to the shelf in front of the desk at which Murray Bradshaw had stood. He took down the second volume of the Corpus Juris Civilis, turned the leaves over mechanically, as if in search of some title, and replaced it.
He looked round for a moment. Mr. Penhallow was writing hard at his table, not thinking of him, it was plain enough. He laid his hand on the first volume of the Corpus Juris Civilis. There was a document shut up in it. His hand was on the book, whether taking it out or putting it back was not evident, when the door opened and Mr. William Murray Bradshaw entered.
“Ah, Mr. Gridley,” he said, “you are not studying the civil law, are you?” He strode towards him as he spoke, his face white, his eyes fixed fiercely on him.
“It always interests me, Mr. Bradshaw,” he answered, “and this is a fine edition of it. One may find a great many valuable things in the Corpus Juris Civilis.”
He looked impenetrable, and whether or not he had seen more than Mr. Bradshaw wished him to see, that gentleman could not tell. But there stood the two books in their place, and when, after Master Gridley had gone, he looked in the first volume, there was the document he had shut up in it.
Myrtle’s letter—the young men’s pursuit.
“You know all about it, Olive?” Cyprian Eveleth said to his sister, after a brief word of greeting.
“Know of what, Cyprian?”
“Why, sister, don’t you know that Myrtle Hazard is missing,—gone!—gone nobody knows where, and that we are looking in all directions to find her?”