Page:Pierre.djvu/518

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
504
PIERRE

'Where is she? ' cried Fred Tartan, fiercely, to him; 'she 's not at the murderer's rooms ! I sought the sweet girl there, instant upon the blow ; but the lone dumb thing I found there only wrung her speechless hands and pointed to the door ;—both birds were flown ! Where is she, turnkey ? I've searched all lengths and breadths but this. Hath any angel swept adown and lighted in your granite hell ? '

'Broken his wind, and broken loose, too, ain't he ? ' wheezed the turnkey to the officer who now came up.

'This gentleman seeks a young lady, his sister, some way innocently connected with the prisoner last brought in. Have any females been here to see "him ? '

'Oh, ay, two of 'em in there now ' ; jerking his stumped thumb behind him.

Fred darted toward the designated cell.

'Oh, easy, easy, young gentleman '—jingling at his huge bunch of keys—' easy, easy, till I get the picks—I'm housewife here.—Hallo, here comes another.'

Hurrying through the same archway toward them, there now rapidly advanced a second impetuous figure, running on in advance of a second officer.

'Where is the cell ? ' demanded Millthorpe.

'He seeks an interview with the last prisoner,' explained the second officer.

'Kill 'em both with one stone, then,' wheezed the turnkey, gratingly throwing open the door of the cell. 'There's his pretty parlour, gentlemen; step in. Reg'lar mouse-hole, arn't it?—Might hear a rabbit burrow on the world's t'other side;—are they all 'sleep? '

'I stumble ! ' cried Fred, from within ; ' Lucy ! A light ! a light !—Lucy ! ' And he wildly groped about the cell, and blindly caught Millthorpe, who was also wildly groping.