That a secret society, based upon the lines of similar institutions so notorious on the Continent during the last century, could ever have existed in the London of our day may seem impossible. Such a society, however, not only did exist, but through the instrumentality of a woman of unparalleled capacity and genius, obtained a firm footing. A century ago the Brotherhood of the Seven Kings was a name hardly whispered without horror and fear in Italy, and now, by the fascinations and influence of one woman, it began to accomplish fresh deeds of unparalleled daring and subtlety in London. By the wide extent of its scientific resources, and the impregnable secrecy of its organisations, it threatened to become, a formidable menace to society, as well as a source of serious anxiety to the authorities of the law.
ud of our young friend here, and hope that the voyage will complete his cure, and fit him for the high position he is destined to occupy."
The voyage flew by. Fietta was an intelligent man, and his scientific attainments were considerable. But for my knowledge of the terrible past my fears might have slumbered, but as it was they were always present with me, and the moment all too quickly arrived when suspicion was to be plunged into certainty.
On the day before we were due at Malta, the wind sprang up and we got into a choppy sea. When I had finished breakfast I went to Cecil's cabin to see how he was. He was just getting up, and looked pale and unwell.
"There is a nasty sea on," I said, "but the captain says we shall be out of it in an hour or so."
"I hope we shall," he answered, "for it makes me feel squeamish, but I daresay I shall be all right when I get on deck. Dr. Fietta has given me something to stop the sickness, but it has not me had much effect."
"I do not know a