Page:The Intrusion of Jimmy.djvu/316

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"Go on," he said.

"I suspected that there was some game on, and it struck me that this would be the day for the attempt, the house being upside down, in a manner of speaking, on account of the theatricals. And I was right. I kept near those jewels on and off all day, and, presently, just as I had thought, along comes this fellow. He'd hardly got to the door when I was on him."

"Good boy! You're no rube."

"We fought for a while, but, being a bit to the good in strength, and knowing something about the game, I had the irons on him pretty quick, and took him off, and locked him in the cellar. That's how it was, sir."

Mr. McEachern's relief was overwhelming. If Lord Dreever's statement was correct and Jimmy had really succeeded in winning Molly's affection, this would indeed be a rescue at the eleventh hour. It was with a Nunc-Dimittis air that he felt for his cigar-case, and extended it toward the detective. A cigar from his own private case was with him a mark of supreme favor and good-will, a sort of accolade which he bestowed only upon the really meritorious few.

Usually, it was received with becoming deference; but on this occasion there was a somewhat startling deviation from routine; for, just as he was opening the case, something cold and hard pressed against each of his wrists, there was a snap and a click,