Bring him down and we'll take him there in my car. You come too, of course, and Al, and help load him into the ambulance. Then Al can come back, if you don't want to trust him, and you go on with us, back to the city." "Where you goin' to take him?" asked Mac Alarney, warily. "You can't hide him from them in town." "Who's talking about hiding him!" Blaine demanded, with contemptuous impatience.
"Just a minute, and we'll look at the two notes, the one you found in Brunell's room in the deserted cottage, and the other which came to me in the cigarette box meant for Paddington, from Mac Alarney. Then we'll be able to see how they were worked out. And you'll see that though they look extremely meaningless and confusing, they are in reality extremely simple."
"That third man who came for me last night the one with the French accent and the cough and the rest who are in this kidnaping plot? Will you get them, too?" "Ross and Suraci are enough to guard Mac Alarney and Al on their way to the lock-up," the detective responded quietly. "The others will go on up to the sanitarium and clean the place out. They'll get French Louis, all right.
They did not take into account the possibility that their henchman, Paddington, might fail, or turn traitor; that Mac Alarney might talk to save his own hide; that Jimmy Brunell's forgeries might be traced to their source; that the books in the office of the Recorder of Deeds might divulge interesting items to those sufficiently concerned to delve into the files of past years!
Come where I can talk to you, quick!" Then, as if catching sight of the car in which Mac Alarney had come, for the first time his eyes widened and he seemed struggling to suppress an outburst of mirth. "Great guns! Is that your car, yours? Do you mean to tell me it was you I was playing with, back there on the road? When I flashed the light in your face I was sure you were Donnelley!"
As he uttered the name of the Chief of Police, Mac Alarney involuntarily stepped backward, and a wave of startled apprehension swept the amazement from his face, to be succeeded in turn by the primitive craftiness of the brute instinct on guard. "And what may you be wanting here, Mr. Blaine?" he demanded, warily. "To beat the police to it!"
It's three-fingered Mac Alarney, by the Lord!" Blaine started from his chair. "Why did I not think of him before! Doctor, you have rendered to me and to my client an invaluable service, which shall not be forgotten. Mac Alarney is a retired prize-fighter, in close touch with all the political crooks and grafters in the city.
Its single passenger flung himself out and bounded up to the door. "What in h l does this mean?" he bellowed. "Didn't you hear my horn?" He stopped abruptly in sheer amazement, for Blaine had turned, with beaming face and outstretched hand. "Mac Alarney!" he exclaimed. "Thank the Lord you've come! This thick-skulled boob wouldn't give me time for a word, and every minute is precious!
The large double doors had been thrown wide open and Mac Alarney, the burly Al, and the two operatives appeared, bearing between them a limp, unconscious, blanket-swathed form. As they eased it into the back seat of the limousine, Blaine flashed his electric pocket light upon the sleeping face. "I knew I wasn't mistaken!" he whispered exultantly to Mac Alarney and the Doctor.
The inert body of his patient was laid carefully beside him, and he glanced out of the ambulance door in time to see Mac Alarney dismiss his burly assistant, and turn to enter the vehicle. His foot was already upon the lowest step, when the Doctor saw Blaine raise his hand to his lips.