My Lady's Money
THE instant Isabel was out of hearing, Old Sharon slapped Moody on the
shoulder to rouse his attention. "I've got her out of the way," he said, "now listen
to me. My business with the young angel is done--I may go back to London."
Moody looked at him with astonishment.
"Lord! how little you know of thieves!" exclaimed Old Sharon. "Why, man alive, I
have tried her with two plain tests! If you wanted a proof of her innocence, there it
was, as plain as the nose in your face. Did you hear me ask her how she came to
seal the letter--just when her mind was running on something else?"
"I heard you," said Moody.
"Did you see how she started and stared at me?"
"Well, I can tell you this--if she had stolen the money she would neither have
started nor stared. She would have had her answer ready beforehand in her own
mind, in case of accidents. There's only one thing in my experience that you can
never do with a thief, when a thief happens to be a woman--you can never take
her by surprise. Put that remark by in your mind; one day you may find a use for
remembering it. Did you see her blush, and look quite hurt in her feelings, pretty
dear, when I asked about her sweetheart? Do you think a thief, in her place,
would have shown such a face as that? Not she! The thief would have been
relieved. The thief would have said to herself, 'All right! the more the old fool talks
about sweethearts the further he is from tracing the robbery to Me!' Yes! yes! the
ground's cleared now, Master Moody. I've reckoned up the servants; I've
questioned Miss Isabel; I've made my inquiries in all the other quarters that may
be useful to us--and what's the result? The advice I gave, when you and the