I hurried to say as the smile died out of Judge Wade's face and he looked at Billy intently. "How like John Moore the youngster is," he said, and his voice was so cold to Billy that it hurt me, and I was afraid Billy would notice it. Coldness in people's voices always makes me feel just like ice-cream tastes. But Billy's answer was still more rude.
Every word of Wade's drove home to this boy the primal meaning of sudden death. It inspired him with an unutterable fear. That was what clamped his brow in a sweaty band and upreared his hair and rolled his eyeballs. His magnified intelligence, almost ghastly, grasped a hope in Wade's apparent vacillation and in the utterance of the name of Columbine.
The most exquisite and finest of these columbines hid in the shaded nooks, star-sweet in the silent gloom of the woods. Wade's last few whispered words to Moore had been interpreted that the hunter desired to be buried among the columbines in the aspen grove on the slope above Sage Valley. Here, then, had been made his grave. One day Belllounds sent Columbine to fetch Moore down to White Slides.
Looking along its raised edge, which I had used as a pillow, I noticed for the first time crude strange characters or letters cut in the stone. That night I asked my father the history of the slab. He said he had brought it from the Stoner Creek farm near Wade's Mill, where it had been plowed up in cultivating over a small Indian mound.
"I think we'd be grade A fools ourselves to pass up the chance to get Wade's help. The man insane or not figured out a way of stabilizing and storing atomic hydrogen for his rockets. If he could do that in the shape he was then in...! "I'd say we'd be smart to keep the competition in the family." Mr. Morey leaned back in his chair and smiled up at Arcot. "You've got a good case there. I'll buy it.
Wade's face suddenly contorted with fury. "If you won't...." His grip on the rifle tightened significantly. "No, Gordon, no! Oh, please, not that!" the girl pleaded. "Sure, I'll fight," Moran answered, a gleam of joy in his eyes. He gloried in the tremendous strength of a body which had brought him victory in half a hundred barroom combats.
Robert Wade, that's our chief manager, that the Fidelity Company would make their written reports twice a month to him, while the lawyer's gone." "I must have these reports!" cried Braun, forgetting the raised pitch of his voice, but the Venus and Tannhauser coterie around were all now fondly busied with each other. "I can get them! I have a key to Wade's own desk," glibly mouthed the young spy.
In a brief flash of retrospection Bernald saw the earlier books dwindle and fall into their place as mere precursors of this fuller revelation; then, with a leap of helpless rage, he pictured Howland Wade's pink hands on the new treasure, and his prophetic feet upon the lecture platform. "IT won't do oh, he let him down as gently as possible; but it appears it simply won't do."
"I will hide my every movement from you, my marble-faced old sleuth. You are the heir of Ferris' infamy." And yet, as Clayton descended in the elevator, he realized that he had no claim whatever upon Robert Wade's friendship. "He has not betrayed me," murmured the now defiant cashier. "He is only the human 'transmitter' in Hugh Worthington's 'long-distance telephone' of villainy."
Moran looked up quickly, struck by the significance of the remark. If it were true, and it probably was, then Wade's ranch also would be deserted. He half opened his mouth, as though to confide in his companion, when he evidently concluded to keep his own counsel. "All right," he said simply. "I guess there's still plenty of time. I've got a good horse at the lower end of the street.