|Newspaper Title||Evelyn Observer, and South and East Bourke Record (Vic. : 1882 - 1902)|
|Trove Title||O'Neil McDarragh, The Irish Detective; Or, The Strategy of a Brave man|
r1a3oveiots O'Noil WI'Darragh, 2'HW lI RISIIDEI' CTIVE ; Or,; THE STRATEGY OF A BRAVE MAN. .BY OLD SLEUTH CAPTERII XV.--(OoNTINUED,) Upcn making himsolf and businese known to t ho proprietor of the manaion,. the latter ?aldl . " " ' I am glad you have come, sir, although Ilhe busineou in hand would not be worth .erions attention, were It not for the mystery cenneated with the affair. In fact, I would willingly give almost any amount as a re. w\ad, to have the matter fully and eatie. ointorily cleared up.' 'You nay that it is an important matter, hot you forgot that you havenot stated any - of the olrcumstances to me.' 'I supposed your hiefot had told you all nabnt the singular affair.' 'No, air; in our business we never receive Instrlntions beyond the simple command, go, fled, disoover, orinvestiguto this, that, or eonmething : we aroleft to hear the facts and construe them ourselves.' 'Oh, I bog yeaour pardon I' oexclaimed Mr. Patton, the gentlemen, as he explained: ' For a wook or ten days past, a remarkable thief Ihne gained acocess to thin house. I say remarkable thief, fronm the fact tLht the rob her,whovar holei, has certainly behn in thin honso halfa .dozen times, and hIis presenae has never been discovered, and we have only learned of ilia visits through miossing articles .5.ljilhwere Iknown to have been in our poases "'5t" n doring tile previous days.' 'Did you watch for him ?' No, sir.' What were the articles stolen ?' 'There, ir, is where the mystery comes in; tln singllar thief, with opportunity to cenry efvaluablo articles, has only pilfered pictures of females.' Tihe detective gazed at tho gentlemonin nmazement. In faot, he really did believe that he was listening to a story from a rich old monoa manniao Mr. Patton observed the doubting look uopn the offier's eace, and said : .My friend, you must accept my story just as I stolate it, and believe me when I add a still more remarkable incident. I went to Sydney and purhaseod a number of photo. graphs. Among the lot was only one picture of a handsome female, the photograph of ome acntress. I placed all the plitures on the parlour table, and beside them a porto ,smonaie with some money in. For two nights a wetched. The third night I did not watch, smid that night thie photograph of the female w0.1 stolen and all the others were left, and the pooket-book containing the money lay untoullhed in plain night, just where I had placed it.' The detective hegan to grow greatly in. lerested in tile affir, and at once he set his ine mental powers in motion, by asking a few brief and pointed questions : Hlow many sorvants have you ?' P Four that sleep in the house.' All females 2' OM 69 Yen, sir.' HIavo you any male nervants? SYes, air; three men connected with my stahble. and a gardener.' ' None of them sloeep in the house?' 'No.' SDo they sloeep on the premises at all?' Yes, sir ; in the apartment over thostalls in my stable.' SAre they all married men 2' S' All but one.' SAre you certaie that those robberies have alvyes taken place at night,' Yeso, sir.' SYou say one of the men eorvante is un. married?' ' Yous.' i Ieowold a man i lne ?' 'A youth of seventeen.' 's ha ever employed in the foodue during the day ?' ' Ye.' Thedetective was thoughtful a moment, nod at length said: ' I think we will have no dililoulty in un. ravelling thise mystery.' SI trust your confidence will be verified; Shut in thoe outset, allow meo to tell you that I think you will find it a more difliault mat. ter than you antioipate.' IM'Darragh felt int thhe had struck a very almple ease, and Ilhought that it would not take hlim long to clar tiup tie seeming mystery, In answer to the remarle of the owner of the houne, the detective said: ' I do not think that there will le any diil. eulty in nolvingi the myntoryi but tolead directly to the matter, I must nkil you to in trodueome to your heonoholl no a bhuinei n luent. Your servant inor any on else o must have no idea of mny true charnater., ' That is all easily nrranged,' caid Mr. Patton. One more quostionu. lIa tile news of your mysterious losses gone abroad, ' No, air. 'lown do you know that your uorvante have not told thli strange story ?' WVe hlave not made conildants of our soar. vants l they know nothing about the roll. hory, no 1 linve hadI tIlium all unider the trlntent survoelllanea,' S'Cihat is fortunate, and makes my invertl' atloens all the oasler,' The detective wan handsomnely dressend, his nlaliners were ipollehod and altogether he ,ves a Ivery pleasing person. hi the ocvsolnlt rt I lie llnenrtahlo, the deatsltve weaniltrodtlucl to Mr s, fatten and lier diuiohltr, 'Jih I 1hl'1,, 111 l0 lrnyeilg In Seuropo, and ete Wp II'hfurnlted,
They found the olranger, lr. tl lDrragih, equally well informed, uud before the meul woaafiinished, they were perfectly charmed with the gentleman who had boon introduced as a business friend of tile head of the hours. Atlrogth the hour arrived for the ladies to letiro, and the detective and MIr Patton were alone in theo parlor. 'Iow do you inteond to proceed in the matter of the robbery ' asked the host. 'I shall watch tofnight.' 'In the housol' ' In and out; you must leave me a key.' A short time elapsed and Mir. Patton re. tired, and the detective was left alone. For fully an hour tile detective eat and communed with himself. At length, rising to his feet, and orossing thle room, he extin ninhed the light, and stenling on tiptoe to the library wheroho had left his travelling bag, he prepared himranelf for business. Our hnro felt confidant in his own mind that there was no great mystery in the teem. ingly eingular robberies, 110 had made his mind up jusl where to li and look for the thief, nod had no doubt that his oespieioos would be verified. Having arrayed himself for the adventure he had in hand, tile dtecotive stole from the haous and hid himself in the shrubbery near the otablc. There was a faint glimmer of light in the upper window of the stable, and that fact appeared already as a eonfirmation of his theory, as the hour was after midnmght, What other object woulda stableman have for a light, unless he were poring overcome thrilling work of fiction and pleasing an a-. citable imaginalion ?' Tire detectlive appi? aheorc thoe rabhlo itli having lain concealed awhile, and studied how he might ecouro a position from whence he might peer through that window through whieh came the glimmer of light. He sawra tree near by, and being a good climber he ascended the tree. His purpose was accomplished. Theirco wns near the stable, and from the position he could see plainly within. Ho could see no one, nor could hae discover the burning lamp from whence the ray of light came, A moment he was perplexed, then with a low laugh, he descended from the tree, oIe had been the victim of an optical illu The supposed glimmer turned out to be merely a refleclion from one of the upper windows of the dwelling, The deteotive walked round and round, feeling rather foolish at meeting with no better roward for his cunning, The night wae hot, and the heavens were spangled with myriads of stare, The detective arrived at the conclusielon that he would re-enter the house, and enjoy a little sleep upon the library lounge, feeling smeured that a step, however light and stoelthy, would arouso him. ," Ie had often ventured to sleep before when on the watch, and had never failed to wake at the proper time. lIin senses wero well trained and his hear. iog, even when asleep, wonderfully acutel like an old hunter, he was not at all dazed when suddenly awakened. HIe did not anticipate, however, that he would be disturbed, still, it was part of his training to be on the watch at all times, and he went toward the house. lie had gone but a few stepes hen a strange apprarition crossed his path.