The Black Robe
Stella Asserts Herself
Two days after Father Benwell had posted his letter to Rome, Lady Loring
entered her husband's study, and asked eagerly if he had heard any news of
Lord Loring shook his head. "As I told you yesterday," he said, "the proprietor
of the hotel can give me no information. I went myself this morning to the
bankers, and saw the head partner. He offered to forward letters, but he
could do no more. Until further notice, he was positively enjoined not to
disclose Romayne's address to anybody. How does Stella bear it?"
"In the worst possible way," Lady Loring answered. "In silence."
"Not a word even to you?"
"Not a word."
At that reply, the servant interrupted them by announcing the arrival of a
visitor, and presenting his card. Lord Loring started, and handed it to his wife.
The card bore the name of "Major Hynd," and this line was added in pencil:
"On business connected with Mr. Romayne. "
"Show him in directly!" cried Lady Loring.
Lord Loring remonstrated. "My dear! perhaps I had better see this gentleman
"Certainly not--unless you wish to drive me into committing an act of the
most revolting meanness! If you send me away I shall listen at the door."
Major Hynd was shown in, and was duly presented to Lady Loring. After
making the customary apologies, he said: "I returned to London last night,
expressly to see Romayne on a matter of importance. Failing to discover his
present address at the hotel, I had the hope that your lordship might be able
to direct me to our friend."
I am sorry to say I know no more than you do," Lord Loring replied.
"Romayne's present address is a secret confided to his bankers, and to no
one else. I will give you their names, if you wish to write to him.
Major Hynd hesitated. "I am not quite sure that it would be discreet to write
to him, under the circumstances."
Lady Loring could no longer keep silence. "Is it possible, Major Hynd, to tell
us what the circumstances are?" she asked. "I am almost as old a friend of
Romayne as my husband--and I am very anxious about him."