He held the bottle to her mouth in silence, loving, loathing, pitying, and condemning. "Now. Don't stop me. Don't interrupt only listen." She lay still for a few minutes, gathering the last of her energy. Presently she began. "Dad, O'Guire that is, was driven to stealing. Mother too. All the other little ones died but me. Dad trained me.
He refused to meet or see her, but he could not help hearing of her, and what he heard only served to stimulate his resentment, for her name, Nora Burke, recalled memories of his Irish rival O'Guire, while the bitterness of his surrender to the charms of Kitty Lambton was revived when he understood that Mrs. Burke also belonged to the fascinating type of woman.
"Unless what?" "You helped Mrs. O'Guire and her children, if she has any." His mouth went into its old hard lines, and he sat silent for a time. "It's no good talking about that," he said presently. "The best thing I can do for them is not to think about them I'd be after them again if I do if I could find them. Help them? No. I'd rather give the money to the Government to build gaols.
Kitty Lambton was her name when he was after her; it was a man named O'Guire she married to get away from the old soured rascal, though he was young at the time, and mayhap a sour young man at that. Would you say she was wrong? Would you?" "I suppose every woman has a right to please herself in such a matter," he replied evasively.
Detail was lacking in the current legend as to what immediately happened thereafter, for when Dudgeon came back to Waroona Downs he was silent on the subject, and only rumours filtered through of Lambton and his wife going down, each heart-broken, to a pauper's grave, while O'Guire and his wife barely eluded the final act of vengeance by escaping over sea.
"What is your real name?" "Nora O'Guire. I am Kitty Lambton's youngest daughter. I told you her story." "And Patsy?" "He was my father." "Was?" "Yes. He is at the house dead Dudgeon shot him." "Who was it robbed the bank?" "Dad and I." "And Eustace?" "No. He was innocent." A shudder of horror passed over him.
Another was there also, a young man about Dudgeon's age, an Irishman named O'Guire, a dashing, reckless fellow who made up in sharpness of wit and trickery what he lacked in moral stability and scruples. Indirectly, he was the pivot on which the course of Dudgeon's life turned from the normal. The direct cause was Kitty Lambton.
So Kitty had looked when he met her for the first time after her flight with O'Guire; so she had looked the last time he had seen her when she had pleaded for mercy to her dying parents and he had taunted her and mocked her till she turned and left him with curses as deep-voiced as any he himself could have uttered. "This is Mrs. Burke, the purchaser of Waroona Downs, Mr.
Write to the police in London and ask about Nora O'Guire there are lots of other names, but they know me under all as Nora O'Guire. Then mother died. She made me swear not to rest till we had revenged her on Dudgeon. We came out, Dad and I, came out to find him. I bluffed the bank." "But the deeds you had with you were they forgeries?" "No. I stole them.
Why should this resolute woman recall her as Kitty Lambton and not as Kitty O'Guire?