his is Thursday. Sir Walter Cardwell returns to England next Wednesday, you say. I have therefore five clear days. At present I hold out no hope whatever. It is not a pleasant business, and were Richley not a blackmailer, the vilest of all vile people, nothing would induce me to have anything to do with it, for frankly I cannot sympathise with Mrs. Reid. But leave me now, please; my time is short."
Little did I estimate the resources of that marvellous woman. The following afternoon a messenger brought me a note. It ran as follows:--
"Go down to Lakewood and bring Mrs. Reid back to town. Have her at my house at three o'clock to-morrow without fail. Tell her husband it is a medical consultation, and that relief is in store for her. Don't fail."
I could scarcely believe the evidence of my own eyes as I read this note. A subtle scheme was in train, I had not the slightest doubt.
On the following day I reached Lakewood by an early train. Reid was fortunately out when I arrived, but his