"The Russian Government has instructed its Minister at Peking to make the most vigorous representations on the subject." Reuter. Finally, in a Personal Column, I found the following: "HO-NAN. Have abandoned visit. I had just pasted it into my book when Nayland Smith came in and threw himself into an arm-chair, facing me across the table. I showed him the cutting.
"Naturally; since he was done to death in my presence," I replied; for the words awoke memories of one of Dr. Fu-Manchu's most ghastly crimes, always associated in my mind with the cry of a night-hawk. "The divine afflatus should never be neglected," announced Nayland Smith didactically, "wild though its promptings may seem." I saw little of Nayland Smith for the remainder of that day.
With his left foot upon the first stair, Nayland Smith stood, his lean body bent perilously backward, his arms rigidly thrust out, and his sinewy fingers gripping the throat of an almost naked man a man whose brown body glistened unctuously, whose shaven head was apish low, whose bloodshot eyes were the eyes of a mad dog!
He has noticed nothing. Pull up the window on your side, Petrie, and look out behind. Good! We've started." The cab moved off with a metallic jerk, and I turned and looked back through the little window in the rear. "Someone has got into another cab. It is following ours, I think." Nayland Smith lay back and laughed unmirthfully.
Smith threw his hat upon the settee, stripped off the great-coat, and pulling out his pipe began to load it in feverish haste. "Well," I said, standing amid the litter cast out from the trunk, and watching him eagerly, "what's afoot?" Nayland Smith lighted his pipe, carelessly dropping the match-end upon the floor at his feet. "God knows what is afoot this time, Petrie!" he replied.
The old lady admitted the existence of the tradition which Nayland Smith had in some way unearthed, but assured us that never, in her time, had the uneasy spirit declared himself. As for Homopoulo, hitherto so irreproachably imperturbable, I had rarely seen a man in such a state of passive panic.
Inspector Weymouth put down his coffee cup and bent forward slightly. "He knows something," he said in a low voice, "and they are aware that he knows it!" "And what is this he knows?" Nayland Smith stared eagerly at the detective. "Every man has his price," replied Weymouth, with a smile, "and Burke seems to think that you are a more likely market than the police authorities."
I walked quietly from the room, occupied with my own bitter reflections. "You say you have two items of news for me?" said Nayland Smith, looking across the breakfast table to where Inspector Weymouth sat sipping coffee. "There are two points yes," replied the Scotland Yard man, whilst Smith paused, egg-spoon in hand, and fixed his keen eyes upon the speaker.
Fu-Manchu, we had relied upon its floor being as secure as that of any other studio, we had failed to sound every foot of it ere trusting our weight to its support.... "There is such a divine simplicity in the English mind that one may lay one's plans with mathematical precision, and rely upon the Nayland Smiths and Dr. Petries to play their allotted parts.
Beyond doubt the silken fragment had belonged to the beautiful servant of Dr. Fu-Manchu, to the dark-eyed, seductive Kâramanèh. Nayland Smith was watching me keenly. "You recognize it yes?" I placed the piece of silk upon the table, slightly shrugging my shoulders.