I protested. "Was it necessary that you shoot——"
"Not necessary, but desirable," he interrupted. "I know what's in your thought. Friend Trowbridge. Me, I can fairly see that Anglo-Saxon mind of yours at work. 'He shot a woman?' you accuse, and are most greatly shocked. Pourquoi? I have also shot the female of the leopard and the tiger when occasion called for it. I have set my heel upon the heads of female snakes. Had it been a rabid bitch I shot in time to save two lives you would have thought I did a noble service. Why, then, do you shudder with smug horror when I eliminate a blood-mad female woman? These two sent countless innocents to Siberia and death when they worked for the Tsarist government. As agents of the Soviets they fed their blood-lust by a hundred heartless killings. They murdered the great savant Pavlovitch in cold blood, they would have done the same for Nikakova and Serge had I not stopped them. Tenez, it was no vengeance that I did; it was an execution."
Aksakoff and Nikakova crossed the room and knelt before him, and in solemn turn took his right hand and raised it to their brows and lips. To me it seemed absurd, degrading, even, but they were Russians, and the things they did were ingrained as their thoughts. Also—I realized it with a start of something like surprize—Jules de Grandin was a Frenchman, emotional, mercurial, lovable and loving, but—a Frenchman. Therefore, he was logical as Fate. He lived by sentiment, but of sentimentality he had not a trace.
It was this realization which enabled me to stifle my instinctive feeling of repugnance as he calmly called police headquarters and informed them that the murderers of Doctor Pavlovitch were waiting at my house—"for the wagon of the morgue."
The Diary of Alonso Typer
By WILLIAM LUMLEY
What terrible fate befell the intrepid investigator who dared to brave the dread occult evil that lurked beyond the iron door in that old mansion?
Editor's note: Alonzo Hasbrouck Typer of Kingston, New York, was last seen and recognized on April 17, 1908, around noon, at the Hotel Richmond in Batavia. He was the only survivor of an ancient Ulster County family, and was fifty-three years old at the time of his disappearance.
Mr. Typer was educated privately and at Columbia and Heidelberg universities. All his life was spent as a student, the field of his researches including many obscure and generally feared borderlands of human knowledge. His papers on