The Zeppelin's Passenger HTML version

Chapter 17
Punctually at 12 o'clock the next morning, Lessingham presented himself at the hotel in
Dover Street and was invited by the hall porter to take a seat in the lounge. Philippa
entered, a few minutes later, her eyes and cheeks brilliant with the brisk exercise she had
been taking, her slim figure most becomingly arrayed in grey cloth and chinchilla.
"I lost Helen in Harrod's," she announced, "but I know she's lunching with friends, so it
really doesn't matter. You'll have to take care of me, Mr. Lessingham, until the train goes,
if you will."
"For even longer than that, if you will," he murmured.
She laughed. "More pretty speeches? I don't think I'm equal to them before luncheon."
"This time I am literal," he explained. "I am coming back to Dreymarsh myself."
He felt his heart beat quicker, a sudden joy possessed him. Philippa's expression was
obviously one of satisfaction.
"I'm so glad," she assured him. "Do you know, I was thinking only as I came back in the
taxicab, how I should miss you."
She was standing with her foot upon the broad fender, and her first little impulse of
pleasure seemed to pass as she looked into the fire. She turned towards him gravely.
"After all, do you think you are wise?" she asked. "Of course, I don't think that any one at
Dreymarsh has the least suspicion, but you know Captain Griffiths did ask questions, and
- well, you're safely away now. You have been so wonderful about Dick, so wonderful
altogether," she went on, "that I couldn't bear it if trouble were to come."
He smiled at her.
"I think I know what is at the back of your mind," he said. "You think that I am coming
back entirely on your account. As it happens, this is not so."
She looked at him with wide-open eyes.
"Surely," she exclaimed, "you have satisfied yourself that there is no field for your
ingenuity in Dreymarsh?"
"I thought that I had," he admitted. "It seems that I am wrong. I have had orders to
"Orders to return?" she repeated. "From whom?
He shook his head.