4. The Duke Intervenes
The Duke rose, came to the window, and looked at the broken pane. He stepped out on to the
terrace and looked at the turf; then he came back into the room.
"This looks serious," he said. "That pane has not been broken at all. If it had been broken, the
pieces of glass would be lying on the turf. It has been cut out. We must warn your father to
look to his treasures."
"I told you so," said Germaine. "I said that Arsene Lupin was in the neighbourhood."
"Arsene Lupin is a very capable man," said the Duke, smiling. "But there's no reason to
suppose that he's the only burglar in France or even in Ile-et-Vilaine."
"I'm sure that he's in the neighbourhood. I have a feeling that he is," said Germaine stubbornly.
The Duke shrugged his shoulders, and said a smile: "Far be it from me to contradict you. A
woman's intuition is always--well, it's always a woman's intuition."
He came back into the hall, and as he did so the door opened and a shock-headed man in the
dress of a gamekeeper stood on the threshold.
"There are visitors to see you, Mademoiselle Germaine," he said, in a very deep bass voice.
"What! Are you answering the door, Firmin?" said Germaine.
"Yes, Mademoiselle Germaine: there's only me to do it. All the servants have started for the
station, and my wife and I are going to see after the family to-night and to-morrow morning.
Shall I show these gentlemen in?"
"Who are they?" said Germaine.
"Two gentlemen who say they have an appointment."
"What are their names?" said Germaine.
"They are two gentlemen. I don't know what their names are. I've no memory for names."
"That's an advantage to any one who answers doors," said the Duke, smiling at the stolid
"Well, it can't be the two Charolais again. It's not time for them to come back. I told them papa
would not be back yet," said Germaine.
"No, it can't be them, Mademoiselle Germaine," said Firmin, with decision.
"Very well; show them in," she said.
Firmin went out, leaving the door open behind him; and they heard his hob-nailed boots clatter
and squeak on the stone floor of the outer hall.
"Charolais?" said the Duke idly. "I don't know the name. Who are they?"
"A little while ago Alfred announced two gentlemen. I thought they were Georges and Andre
du Buit, for they promised to come to tea. I told Alfred to show them in, and to my surprise
there appeared two horrible provincials. I never--Oh!"
She stopped short, for there, coming through the door, were the two Charolais, father and son.
M. Charolais pressed his motor-cap to his bosom, and bowed low. "Once more I salute you,
mademoiselle," he said.
His son bowed, and revealed behind him another young man.
"My second son. He has a chemist's shop," said M. Charolais, waving a large red hand at the
The young man, also blessed with the family eyes, set close together, entered the hall and
bowed to the two girls. The Duke raised his eyebrows ever so slightly.