The Gold of the Gods
19. The Burglar Powder
It was not until after dinner that we heard again from Norton. He had evidently spent the
time faithfully hanging about the Prince Edward Albert, but Whitney had not come in,
although the Senora and Alfonso were about.
"I saw them leaving the dining-room," he reported to us in the laboratory directly
afterward, "just as Whitney came in. They could not see me. I took good care of that. But,
say, there is a change in Whitney, isn't there? I wonder what caused it?"
"It's as noticeable as that?" asked Kennedy. "And did she notice it?"
"I'm sure of it," replied Norton confidently. "She couldn't help it. Besides, after he left her
and went into the dining-room himself she and Alfonso seemed to be discussing
something. I'm sure it was that."
Kennedy said nothing, except to thank Norton and compliment him on his powers of
observation. Norton took the praise with evident satisfaction, and after a moment excused
himself, saying that he had some work to do over in the Museum.
He had no sooner gone than Kennedy took from a drawer a little packet of powder and an
atomizer full of liquid, which he dropped into his pocket.
"I think the Prince Edward Albert will be the scene of our operations, to-night, Walter,"
he announced, reaching for his hat.
He seemed to be in a hurry and it was not many minutes before we entered. As he passed
the dining-room he glanced in. There was Whitney, not half through a leisurely dinner.
Neither of the de Moches seemed to be downstairs.
Kennedy sauntered over to the desk and looked over the register. We already knew that
Whitney and the Senora had suites on the eighth floor, on opposite sides and at opposite
ends of the hall. The de Moche suite was under the number 810. That of Whitney was
"Is either 823 or 827 vacant?" asked Kennedy as the clerk came over to us.
He turned to look over his list. "Yes, 827 is vacant," he found.
"I'd like to have it," said Kennedy, making some excuse about our luggage being delayed,
as he paid for it for the night.
"Front!" called the clerk, and a moment later we found ourselves in the elevator riding up.