Page:The Intrusion of Jimmy.djvu/173

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157
A MARRIAGE ARRANGED

ship, the instinctive trust, the sense of dependence—they no longer perplexed her; they were signs which she could read.

And he was crooked!

McEachern proceeded. Relief made him buoyant.

"I did, my dear. I can read them like a book. I've met scores of his sort. Broadway is full of them. Good clothes and a pleasant manner don't make a man honest. I've run up against a mighty high-toned bunch of crooks in my day. It's a long time since I gave up thinking that it was only the ones with the low foreheads and the thick ears that needed watching. It's the innocent Willies who look as if all they could do was to lead the cotillon. This man Pitt's one of them. I'm not guessing, mind you. I know. I know his line, and all about him. I'm watching him. He's here on some game. How did he get here? Why, he scraped acquaintance with Lord Dreever in a London restaurant. It's the commonest trick on the list. If I hadn't happened to be here when he came, I suppose he'd have made his haul by now. Why, he came all prepared for it! Have you seen an ugly, grinning, red-headed scoundrel hanging about the place? His valet. So he says. Valet! Do you know who that is? That's one of the most notorious yegg-men on the other side. There isn't a policeman in New York who doesn't know Spike Mullins. Even if I knew nothing of this Pitt, that would be enough. What's an innocent man going round the country with Spike