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The papers were, of course, full of the clever theft from Gilling's, and the police, it appeared, were doing their utmost to track the tricksters but in vain. The Count, under the name of Mr. Claude Fielding, seemed to be very popular in the neighbourhood, though he discouraged visitors. Indeed, no one came there.

Well, now we'll adjourn to Bristol bearing in mind that we're on the track of Peter Chatfield!" Gilling's cheerful optimism was the sort of desirable quality that is a good thing to have, but all the optimism in the world is valueless in face of impregnable difficulty.

They stayed too long, however. Suttung, Gilling's brother, tracked them down and captured them. Suttung was not harmless and simple like Gilling, his brother. He was cunning and he was covetous. Once they were in his hands the Dwarfs had no chance of making an escape. He took them and left them on a rock in the sea, a rock that the tide would cover.

He descended at a tobacconist's in Bond Street, and bought a couple of boxes of cigars, and then made several calls at shops, also visiting two jewellers to obtain, he remarked, a silver photograph frame of a certain size. At Gilling's the third shop he tried he remained inside some little time quite twenty minutes, I should think.

They struck oil at the very next hotel they called at an old-fashioned house in close proximity to the harbour. There was a communicative landlord there who evidently possessed and was proud of a retentive memory, and he no sooner heard the reason of Gilling's call upon him than he bustled into activity, and produced the register of the previous year.

Gilling isn't an invalid curate at all! he's a private detective. Sir Cresswell Oliver and Petherton, the solicitor, sent him down here to watch Greyle the Squire, you know that's Gilling's job. They suspect Greyle have suspected him from the very first but of what I don't know. Not not of this, I think. Anyway, they do suspect him, and Gilling's had his eye on him ever since he came here.

"Remember Miss Chatfield being here!" she exclaimed. "I should think I do remember! I ought to! Bringing mortal sickness into my house and then death and then a funeral and her and her father going away never giving me an extra penny for the trouble!" Gilling's glance at his companion was quiet enough, but it spoke volumes.

Oh, he'll have followed him all right I don't imagine for a moment that Greyle is trying to evade anybody, at this juncture, at any rate." But when four hours later the train drew into King's Cross and Gilling's partner, a young and sharp-looking man, presented himself, it was with a long and downcast face and a lugubrious shake of the head.

"Done! for the first time in my life!" he growled in answer to Gilling's eager inquiry. "Lost him! Never failed before as you know. Well, it had to come, I suppose can't go on without an occasional defeat. But I'm a bit licked as to the whole thing unless your man is dodging somebody. Is he?" "Tell your tale," commanded Gilling, motioning Copplestone to follow him and Swallow aside.

But Gilling was already there, kissing his wife and daughter. I glanced round, but was reassured to see both Bindo and Sir Charles were absentees. Did they know of Gilling's impending arrival? I ran up to the rooms of both my friends, but could not find them. In Bindo's room a dress-coat had been thrown upon the bed. He had changed since I had been up there for the books.