A Strange Disappearance
I shook my head with a slight gesture and remained looking out.
He brought his cane down on the floor with a thump. "What do you mean by
sitting there staring out of the window like mad and not answering when I ask you
a decent question?"
Still I made no reply.
Provoked beyond endurance, yet held in check by that vague sense of danger in
the air,--which while not amounting to apprehension is often sufficient to hold
back from advance the most daring foot,--he stood glaring at me in what I felt to
be a very ferocious attitude, but made no offer to move. Instantly I rose and still
looking out of the window, made with my hand what appeared to be a signal to
some one on the opposite side of the way. The ruse was effective. With an oath
that rings in my ears yet, he lifted his heavy cane and advanced upon me with a
bound, only to meet the same fate as his father at the hands of the watchful
detectives. Not, however, before that heavy cane came down upon my head in a
way to lay me in a heap at his feet and to sow the seeds of that blinding head-
ache, which has afflicted me by spells ever since. But this termination of the affair
was no more than I had feared from the beginning; and indeed it was as much to
protect Mrs. Blake from the wrath of these men, as from any requirements of the
situation I had assumed the disguise I then wore. I therefore did not allow this
mishap to greatly trouble me, unpleasant as it was at the time, but, as soon as
ever I could do so, rose from the floor and throwing off my strange habiliments,
proceeded to finish up to my satisfaction, the work already so successfully