Page:The Intrusion of Jimmy.djvu/104

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ears. His excursion with Jimmy, the master cracksman, in New York had been the highest and proudest memory of his life; and, now that they had met again in London, he had looked forward to a long and prosperous partnership in crime. He was content that his own share in the partnership should be humble. It was enough for him to be connected, however humbly, with such a master. He had looked upon the richness of London, and he had said with Blucher, "What a city to loot!"

And here was his idol shattering the visions with a word.

"Have another drink, Spike," said the lost leader, sympathetically. "It's a shock to you, I guess."

"I t'ought, boss—"

"I know, I know. These are life's tragedies. I'm very sorry for you. But it can't be helped. I've made my pile, so why continue?"

Spike sat silent, with a long face. Jimmy slapped him on the shoulder.

"Cheer up," he said. "How do you know that living honestly may not be splendid fun? Numbers of people do it, you know, and enjoy themselves tremendously. You must give it a trial, Spike."

"Me, boss! What, me, too?"

"Sure. You're my link with— I don't want to have you remembering that address in the second month of a ten-year stretch at Dartmoor Prison. I'm going to look after you, Spike, my son, like a