Chapter 146835465

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Chapter NumberVI
Chapter Title
Chapter Urlhttp://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article146835465
Full Date1891-06-18
Page Number1
Corrections0
Word Count1985
IllustratedN
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleThe Narracoorte Herald (SA : 1875 - 1954)
Trove TitleO'Neil M'Darragh, the Irish Detective; or, The Strategy of a Brave Man
article text

IRoseUst.

O'Ml I'Darragh,

THE IRISH DETECTIVE ;

Or, THE STRATEGY OF A

BRAVE MAN.

By OLD SLEUTH.

CHAPTER VI.—(Continued.)

Taming about, the cautious man retraced hia eteps tor about two hundred yards, and then, drawing his knife. cut a mark upon a

tree.

Thus, moving along backward towards the road fxom whence be bad started, he marked "hie route upon a different tree, until the open

road was reached.

On the border of this he was very particu lar in making his marks, when, at length, he once more started for the tavern.

He reached the latter without encountering any farther adventures, and man aged also, to crawl back into the room from which he had stolen forth some three hours previously.

Jle arrived juet in time to escape observa tion, ay dawn was just fcrpakirg, and the folks about the tavsrn were beginning to move around.

Lutein "the forenoon the same Irishman who had had the struggle with Indian Jrefc

entered the bar-room.

" Well, did yea have a good breakfast?" ,

asked the landlord.

"J did; a-bully one; .and I was mighty1 hungry, too, sir." • ? .

'-.Well, we did the best we could for yon, coming down at such a late hour. You're a . good sleeper." _• . ^

"Hisine friend--bv.lasir:ight been around

this mornin'asked Pat.

Who do yon mean— Indian. Jack?"

•? 'Xis that hall-breed chap who got so mad about nothing at all,"

" He has not bean around; and, -as a friend of yours, I would advise you to get. cut of this place as quiak as you caD, before

hecomes around."

'?And why should I do the same, me

friend ?"

" Bejiuse you have, got that half Indian down on you; I tell yon he is a d&Dgerous chap, and sooner cr later he willdo you some great harm, if he doeB not murder you en

tirely."

" "What reason have you to think .he would

murder me?"

" Bsaausa we know him to be a had and dangerous man ; in fact, one of the most re vjugeful and dangerous scamps in the

country."

*' What is his business 1" ?"It is hard to tell."

'? Does he lay around the township the

whole yeEE ?"

" No ; some times he is away half a year at a time, and then ha willfnrn up.ssdeyery tirae he turns cp a crime is o'ommitted."

" His he ever Oeen prcv;n to have had anjr hand in any of the crimes that have been

committed ?"

?? No—and that is the worst ci it ; he has been tracked for weeks at a time by detectives but they could never Uaae anything home to him. Oaca they arrested him for having a hand in the robbery of a large hoass some miles from here—but be got out of it."

•' Has he been away any time previous to the disappearance of II ar-y Trends:! f "

" What . do you know about Hurry Trend ali J" asked the landlord, quickly.

" Didn't I hear yees talk about the matther here last night ?-" £ -

"Oh, yes; I forgot,"

" Well, how was is—had ho been around here previous to the disappearance of that young man?"

" He had' not been around here for sii months." _ •* *1

" And what did ye say 'was the name of-j the young lady to whomthis young Trendall j was to be married J" j

" Her name is Marian Edelin, and she is

the richest and most lovely girl here j aboute." j

" And her father—what kind of a man was

he ?" ~ |

" One of the fiuest and most popular j gentlemen that ever lived in this part of the

?ounfry." j

" And how about the man ye say is guar- ! dian to this Mies Edelin ? He was a brother,

was he not ?"

" Mies Edelin'e guardian ianot a hiood re- i

lation."

"And Mrs. Turner—what koiiid ov a cratnuris she ?" '

" You mast go and askthosewho have the time to bother themselves about other people's business like youreelf 2"

" Ah 1 thanks," said the Irishman, with a good-natured faugh, adding a moment later; . „

" Would it be showing too much curiosity if I should ask howmpoh me bill 1b for the lodgings and breakfast 2"

The matter of payment Wfits speedily settled, and after some further talk, the Irishman went away; not, however, with out expressing himself concerning the township of P-r , and the surrounding

country.

At the railway station, also, he tookparti cnlatpaina to Bay that it was the meanest vicinity he was ever in, and that he guessed that every man did hiB own work as there was

a mighty poor chance for a needy man to get

- a job.

At length the train bound for the city stopped at the station, and the talkative

Irishman got aboard.

In thus making himself conspicuous N'Neil

had a special object.

He knew that^ It would be circulated all over the township that a detective had been

around.

He had discovered that he would have to spend a considerable time In P- and determined to return in a guise which would be above suspicion.

He was quite satisfied that Indian Jack had penetrated his disguise, and he thought

ihat ills landlord of the inn also had Lub j

suspicion. j

The train reached the city, and M Darragh | was passing out of the station, when his eyes fell upon .a familiar figure.

An exclamation fell irom his lips, and at the same, moment he approached a young lady, elegantly dressed, who was just getting ioto. a train.

" I say; miss, could I spake to you for a

moment?"

" Tnq lady thus addressed turned, and her j eyes fell upon an Irishman, clad in the garb

of a new churn.

Flashing Ker banc" so me eyes on the party who addressed her, -the lady aeked, in a slightly indignant tone:

" What do you want 2"

. am just from P——, Miss Marian Bde lin, and hev*news for ye that ye would loike

to hesr."

*"?' The girl oast a suspicious glance cpon the ;

man and said:

"Yon are a stranger to me,"

O'Neil managed to catoh her eye direotly,

and made a certain signal. i

-The-girPs face instantly became expressive

of great surprise, as she turned and followed ; the Irishman, who had thns boldly addressed j

her.

M Dorragh led the way a short distance | along the platform, when toe said, in a low, quick tone:

" Bsturn to the city. I will oall upon yon at once. We must not bs seen talking to gether."

" But I am expected at Bidge Grove."

"Nev?r mind; yon- must not go there till j 1 have seen yon. It is to yonr interest to j follow my instructions. Good day. I dare

not linger near yon longer." , ... _&5.Q'Neil spoke he walked rapidly away, !

was ispeofilly Ic^t to view.

J T.wo^houra later tw;o persons were standing m the same parlour where .the deteotive had first appeared to Eachel Dawson, or rather Mies Marian Edeiin, in his disguise as an old

man.;

M'Darragh once more stood before Miss Edeiin in tke same disgnise.

. " You have been to P-—?" said the lady, excitedly. •

" I have."

" Did you gain any information?"

"I think that your lover still lives, and I know that his desertion of you was hot voluntarily."

" It i3 unnecessary to tell me that. I have told you before I would not believe in his falsehood unless the admission came from his own lips. Neither ?circumstanoss nor base charges from any source would ever shake my confidence in his honour and fealty." 0 M 2

" Mrs. Turner was here to see you shortly after I left you yesterdayf" <

" ¥es, she was here."

"And wanted you to return by a certain

train?"

The girl displayed great surprise, as she

exclaimed :

"-Wtoy. you must have overheard our con versEtion, as yon appear to know all that

occurred."

"No; I was not within many miles of this house at the time Mrs. Turner wae here. But come, tell me sometning about that lady."

" I knowbut little about her, although I

have "lived under the seme roof with her for more than two years."

"Do you know what her maiden name

was?"

"I do not. My guardian married her suddenly, and brought her home. I did not know that he even contemplated getting married until the day his bride was presented

tb ine."

"Then you know nothing about her?"

'•Nothing whatever ; only what I have seen di her since she has been my guardian 's wife." ,

. " 1 am very glad that she is not a nearer connection."

:?*Do you know augbt concerning her?" asked Miss Edeiin.

" Yes, I know considerable concerning her past life."

" What was her maiden name ?"

" I will teil you some day; but let me ask you one question—did you ever suspect that 1 your guardian's wife had anything to do with

the disappearance of Trended'?"

"Never."

j. OTTeil. was silent for a moment, but at last

he said:

"..Would it shock you to learn that that" woman means you harm?"

" Yon must have been exceedingly busy during tbe few hours you were at P replied the girl, ' . . .

" How so?"

"You have obtained suoh a quantity of

information."

" Well, I chanced to etrike the right train ' of circumstances to learn considerable news; and among other things I have learned that when.Hrs. Turner tella you to do one thing you must do exactly contrary to what she ! teH8 you." |

Miss Edeiin looked perplexed.

Noticing this fact, O'Neil jEftid: ! "You must have mare confidence in me, ! my dear young lady than anyone eke until your lover i3 found. When I restore him to you X will resign my claim."

Mi3s Edeiin walked toward the window, '

sad chanced to glance out into the street. As she did so fcet eyes rested upon some thing which caused her to turn exceedingly pale. O 2

Moving quickly back to where the detec tive was sitting, she exclaimed in iow,excitsd

tones: - '

" The party of whom we have just been speaking is here."

" Mrs. Turner?" "Yes."

| M'Darrcgh ran his eyes over the room at

the same fnoment the tinkle of the doer-bell *was"heard.. . . -

" I will go into the back parlour," naid he. _

While speaking, the detective went toward the rear parlour door, and a second before Mrs. Turner was ushered into the presence of Marian toe had disappeared from view.

We have not given cur leaders a descrip

tion of Mrs. Turner.

She was a woman certainly above thirty, but how near forty it would be impossible for any but the keenest observer to have told. 1

Her eyes were of a very peculiar colour.

Romeiitaes they would ftppesr ss though j j;t Hack, then again they assumed a light,

brownish hue.

Her complexion was decidedly dark, her features fine and regular, and altogether she was a remarkably handsome woman ; and yet there was something either in the geneal contour or in one or mere particular feature which made her appear unlike a realiy refined

person.

Her beauty did not do away with an ill-de fined impression of vulgarity in presence and demeanour. How canning,daring, and heart

less she was our. readers will learn as our story progresses.

As we have intimated, when the woman entered Marian's presence she greeted the letter with a hearty embrace—and O'Neil was watching her.