15. That's The Question
"How many times has he seen you?"
"So that he knows your face and figure?"
"I'm afraid so. He cannot help remembering the man who faced him in his own
"Damned unfortunate; but one must expect some sort of a handicap in a game
like this. Before I'm done with him, he'll look me full in the face and wonder if he's
ever seen me before. I wasn't always a detective. I was a carpenter once, as you
know, and I'll take to the tools again. As soon as I'm handy with them I'll hunt up
lodgings in Hicks Street. He may suspect me at first, but be won't long; I'll be
such a confounded good workman. I only wish I hadn't such pronounced
features. They've stood awfully in my way, Mr. Gryce. I don't like to talk about my
appearance, but I'm so confounded plain that people remember me. Why
couldn't I have had one of those putty faces which don't mean anything? It would
have been a deuced sight more convenient."
"You've done very well as it is."
"But I want to do better. I want to deceive him to his face. He's clever, this same
Brotherson, and there's glory to be got in making a fool of him. Do you think it
could be done with a beard? I've never worn a beard. While I'm settling back into
my old trade, I can let the hair grow."
"Do. It'll make you look as weak as water. It'll be blonde, of course."
"And silky and straggling. Charming addition to my beauty. But it'll take half an
inch off my nose, and it'll cover my mouth, which means a lot in my case. Then