rage, and then with a smile he looked down at the crowd below.
"Peterson," he called out affably, 'there's a pal of yours up here—dear old Henry. And he's very annoyed at my concert. Would you just speak to him, or would you like me to be more explicit? He is so annoyed that there might be an accident at any moment, and I see that the police have arrived. So—er—"
Even at that distance he could see Peterson's eyes of fury, and he chuckled softly to himself. He had the whole gang absolutely at his mercy, and the situation appealed irresistibly to his sense of humour.
But when the leader spoke, his voice was as sauve as ever: the eternal cigar glowed evenly at its normal rate.
"Are you up on the roof, Lakington?" The words came clearly through the still summer air.
"Your turn, Henry," said Drummond. "Prompter's voice off—'Yes, dear Peterson, I am here, even upon the roof, with a liver of hideous aspect.'"
For one moment he thought he had gone too far, and that Lakington, in his blind fury, would shoot him then and there and chance the consequences. But with a mighty effort the man controlled himself, and his voice, when he answered, was calm.
"Yes, I'm here. What's the matter?"
"Nothing," cried Peterson, "but we've got quite a large and appreciative audience down here, attracted by our friend's charming concert, and I've just sent for a large ladder by which he can come down and join us. So there is nothing that you can do—nothing." He repeated the word with a faint emphasis, and Hugh smiled genially.