Brimsdown considerably at first, but as he pondered over the matter he began to see the reason. Robert Turold was so close to the summit of his ambition that he had not thought it necessary to take precautions. He was a strong man, and strong men rarely think of death.
He was standing in the centre of the room examining an unusual trinket a gold hoop like a bracelet, with numbers and the zodiac signs engraved on the inner surface. Mr. Brimsdown had discovered it in a Kingsway curiosity shop a week before. It was a portable sun-dial of the sixteenth century.
The tremulous urgent words stared out from the surface of the grey paper in all the piteous futility of an appeal made too late. Glancing up, Mr. Brimsdown's eye rested on the shelf where the deed box of Robert Turold reposed, and he mechanically reflected that it would be necessary to have the word "Deceased" added to the white-lettered inscription on the black surface. Mr. Brimsdown sighed.
Brimsdown imagined nearly £50,000 in fact. It was at Robert Turold's suggestion that Mr. Brimsdown undertook to invest the sum at better rates of interest, and thus, before a year had passed, the whole of Robert Turold's business affairs were in the hands of the solicitor. On one point Mr. Brimsdown was clear.
My relations with him were not of that nature." This reply was delivered with a sincerity which it was impossible to doubt. In palpable disappointment Barrant turned to a renewed scrutiny of the letter, which he held open in his hand. "It is very strange," he muttered. "Not the least strange part of it is that I cannot ascertain who posted it," said Mr. Brimsdown, glancing earnestly at the letter.
He had shown himself a craven and kept out of the way, leaving his wife to her own resources. The appearance of Mr. Brimsdown was as timely to her as the arrival of a heaven-sent pilot in a storm. "Thank you," she murmured incoherently. "Such a dreadful end. Poor dear Robert." She sobbed into her handkerchief. "A deplorable loss to his family and England," assented the lawyer.
That lawyer who was here to-day what's his name, Brimstone, Brimsdown? has his suspicions, unless I'm very much mistaken." Charles turned pale. "What makes you think that?" he asked. "By the way he watched both of us." "That accounts for his attitude when I saw him afterwards," said Charles in a startled voice. "Afterwards where?" "I went after him to tell him that Sisily was innocent."
Brimsdown recalled the name with a start of surprise. He found it difficult to recognize, in the faded woman before him, the pretty daughter of his old client, Sir Roger Pleasington, whose debts and lawsuits had been compounded by death ten years before.
"That would not prevent my brother disposing of his property as he thought fit," remarked Austin coldly. "I am aware of that," replied Mr. Brimsdown guardedly. He refrained from stating what was obvious to him, that Robert Turold had intended his fortune for the upkeep of the title when gained, and for no other purpose.
Brimsdown hearkened to the whisper, and stood there in silence, while the minutes slipped by which might have bridged the gap. There was a quick step in the passage outside, and the door opened to admit Detective Barrant. He looked inquiringly from one to the other, and addressed himself to the lawyer. "Are you Mr. Brimsdown?" he asked. "That is my name," the lawyer replied.