Again Blake laughed. "The principle on which it offers you a living?"
"Oh, come," said Billy, "that's rather rough! You know very well what I mean. 'Tisn't always in the serious reports you get the color of a fact, just as the gossip of a dinner-table is often more enlightening than a cabinet council."
"I was thinking of this Petersburg affair."
"What? The everlasting Duma business?" McCutcheon drew in a long breath of smoke.
Billy looked superior, as befitted a man who dealt in subtler matters than mere politics. "Not at all," he said. "The disappearance of the Princess Davorska."
Here Blake made a murmur of impatience. "Oh, Billy, don't!" he said. "It's so frightfully banal."
McCutcheon took his cigar from his mouth. "The woman who disappeared on the eve of her marriage?"
"Yes," broke in Blake, "disappeared on the eve of her marriage to elop