Chapter 39421905

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Chapter NumberVII
Chapter TitleMISS FIRMAN.
Chapter Url
Full Date1888-02-08
Page Number4
Word Count436
Last Corrected0000-00-00
Newspaper TitleCairns Post (Qld. : 1884 - 1893)
Trove TitleHand and Ring
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"I confess with nil humility thut at times tho line

of demarcation between truth uud Uctiou U reiidered

so imleäuite uud indistinct, thut I cannot always de- termine, with unerring certaiuty, whether an event really happened to me, or H nether I only dreamed lt."-LOX ll FELLOW.

Mr. Byrd, upon waking «ext morn- ing, found himself disturbed hy a great perplexity. Were the words then ringing m his ears, real words, which

lio had overheard spoken outside his door some time during the past night, or were they merely empty utterances of a moro than usually vivid dream ?

He could not tell, ile could remem-

ber tho very tone of the voice in which ho fancied them to have been spoken -a tone which he liad no dillioulty in recognizing a» that of thc landlord of thc hotol : could oven roeall tho faint sound* of bustle which accompanied thom, ns though the porson using them hud been allowing another person through the hall ; but beyond that, all was indistinct and dream-like.

The words were these:

" G-lad to see you back, sir. This mur- der following so close to your visit must have been a great surprise. A sad occurrence that, sir, and a very mys- terious one. Hope you have some in- formation to give."

" If it is a remembrance and such

words were uttered outside my door last night," argued the young detec- tive to himself, " the guest who called them forth can he no other titan the tall and florid gentleman whom I en- countered in thc bar-room. But is it a remembrance, or only a chimera of my own overwrought brain struggling with a subject it will not let drop ? As Shakespeare says, ' That is the ques-

tion ! ' "

Fortunately, it was not one which it

behove him to decide. So for the

twentieth time he resolved to put the subject by and resolved to think of it

no more.

But perplexities of this kind are not so easily dismissed, and more than once during his solitary and hurried break- fast, did he ask himself whether, in case thc words were real, he had not found in the landlord of this very hotel the one witness the coroner was seeking.

A surprise awaited him after break- fast, iu the sudden appearance at his room door of thc very gentleman last

alluded to.

" Ha, Byrd," said he, with cheerful vivacity : " here is a line from the superintendent which may prove inter- esting to you."