She disappeared, and Eunice stood, panting with excitement and indignation.
Aunt Abby came toward her. The old lady had been a witness of the whole scene—had, indeed, tried several times to utter a word of pacification, but neither of the women had so much as noticed her.
“Go away, Auntie, please,” said Eunice. “I can’t talk to you. I’m expecting Mason at any time now, and I want to get calmed down a little.”
Miss Ames went to her room, and Eunice sat down on the davenport.
She sat upright, tensely quiet, and thought over all Fifi had said—all she had threatened.
“It would have been far better,” Eunice told herself, “for my cause if I had held her friendship. And I could have done it, easily—but—Fifi’s friendship would be worse than her enmity!”
When Mason Elliott came, Detective Driscoll was with him.
The net of the detectives was closing in around Eunice, and though both Elliott and Hendricks—as Fifi had truly surmised —were doing all in their power, the denouement was not far off —Eunice was in imminent danger of arrest at any moment.
“We’ve been talking about the will—Sanford’s will,” Elliott said, in a dreary tone, after the callers were seated, “and, Eunice, Mr. Driscoll chooses to think that the fact that San left practically everything to you, without any restraint in the way of trustees, or restriction of any sort, is another count against you.”
Eunice smiled bravely. “But that isn’t news,” she said; “we all knew that my husband made me his sole—or rather principal —beneficiary. I know the consensus of opinion is that I murdered my husband that I might have his money—and full control of it. This is no new element.”
“No;” said Driscoll, moved by the sight of the now patient, gentle face; “no; but we’ve added a few more facts—and look here, Mrs, Embury, it’s this way. I’ve doped it out that there are five persons who could possibly have committed this—this crime. I’ll speak plainly, for you have continually permitted me—even urged me to do so. Well, let us say Sanford Embury could have been killed by anyone of a certain five. And they size up like this: Mr. Elliott, here, and Mr. Alvord Hendricks may be said to have had motive but no opportunity.”
“Motive?” said Eunice, in a tone of deepest possible scorn.
“Yes, ma’am. Mr. Elliott, now, is an admirer of yours—don’t look offended, please; I’m speaking very seriously. It is among the possibilities that he wanted your husband out of his way.”
Mason Elliott listened to this without any expression of annoyance. Indeed, he had heard this argument of Driscoll’s before, and it affected him not at all.