The Amazing Interlude HTML version
Sara Lee Kennedy was up at dawn the next morning. There was a very serious matter to
decide, for Henri's plan had included only such hand luggage as she herself could carry.
Sara Lee carefully laid out on the bed such articles as she could not possibly do without,
and was able to pack into her suitcase less than a fourth of them. She had fortunately
brought a soft wool sweater, which required little room. Undergarments, several blouses,
the sweater and a pair of heavy shoes--that was her equipment, plus such small toilet
outfit as is necessary when a young woman uses no make-up and regards cold cream only
as a remedy for chapped hands.
The maid found her in rather a dismal mood.
"Going across, miss!" she said. "Fancy that!"
"It's a secret," cautioned Sara Lee. "I am really not sure I am going. I am only trying to
The maid, who found Sara Lee and the picture of Harvey on her dressing table both
romantic and appealing, offered to pack. From the first moment it was evident that she
meant to include the white dress. Indeed she packed it first.
"You never know what's going to happen over there," she asserted. "They do say that
royalties are everywhere, going about like common people. You'd better have a good
frock with you."
She had an air of subdued excitement, and after she had established the fact that not only
the white frock but slippers and hose also would go in she went to the door and glanced
up and down the passage. Then she closed the door.
"There was queer goings-on here last night, miss," she said cautiously. "Spies!"
"Oh, no!" cried Sara Lee.
"Spies," she repeated. "A man and a woman, pretending to be Belgian refugees. They
took them away at daylight. I expect by now they've been shot."
Sara Lee ate very little breakfast that morning. All through England it was confidently
believed that spies were shot on discovery, a theory that has been persistent--and false,
save at the battle line--since the beginning of the war. And Henri's plan assumed new
proportions. Suppose she made her attempt and failed? Suppose they took her for a spy,
and that tomorrow's sun found her facing a firing squad? Not, indeed, that she had ever
heard of a firing squad, as such. But she had seen spies shot in the movies. They
invariably stood in front of a brick wall, with the hero in the center.