“Dorothy!” he cried, as she sped past him. “Think what you are saying!”
“Good-by! Go! I hate you!” she cried, and was gone. For a moment he stood as if turned to stone. Then there came a rush of glad life to his heart and he could have shouted in his jubilance.
“God, she loves me! I was not too late! She shall be mine!” He dashed into the house, but the closing of a door upstairs told him she was beyond his reach. The hall was empty; Mrs. Garrison was nowhere to be seen. Filled with the new fire, the new courage, he clutched his hat from the chair on which he had thrown it and rushed forth into the night.
At the top of the steps he met Prince Ugo. The two men stopped stockstill, within a yard of each other, and neither spoke for the longest of minutes.
“You call rather late, prince,” said Phil, a double meaning in his words.
“Dog!” hissed the prince.
“Permit me to inform you that Miss Garrison has retired. It will save you the trouble of ringing. Good-night.”
He bowed, laughed sarcastically, and was off down the steps. Ravorelli’s hand stole to an inside pocket and a moment later the light from the window flashed on a shining thing in his fingers. He did not shoot, but Quentin never knew how near he was to death at the hand of the silent statue that stood there and watched him until he was lost in the shadows. Then the prince put his hand suddenly to his eyes, moaned as if in pain, and slowly descended the steps.
A FEW MEN AND A WOMAN
A stealthy figure joined his highness at the foot of the steps, coming from the darkness below the veranda. It was Courant. What he said to the prince when they were safely away from the house caused the Italian’s face to pale and his hands to twitch with rage. The French detective had heard and understood the conversation of the man and woman on the porch, and he had formed conclusions that drove all doubt from the mind of the noble lover.
Quentin looked up and down the street for his cab. It was not in sight, but he remembered telling the man to drive to the corner below. The rainstorm that had been threatening dry and dusty Brussels all day was beginning to show itself in marked form. There were distant rumbles of thunder and faint flashes of lightning, and now and then the wind, its velocity increasing every minute, dashed a splattering raindrop in one s face. The storm for which the city had been crying was hurling itself along from the sea, and its full fury was almost ready to break. The few pedestrians were scurrying homeward, the tram cars were loaded and many cabs whirled by in the effort to land their fares at home before the rain fell in torrents. Phil drank in the cool, refreshing breeze and cared not if it rained until the streets were flooded. At the corner stood a cab, the driver softly swearing to himself. He swung down and savagely jerked open the door.