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Editor and Proprietor.
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THE NARROW ESCAPE!
A DETECTIVE STORY.
IT was a closo and sultry afternoon to
wards tho end of July. The Dover ex
press was about to start from tlio London
Bridge terminus of the Ron the astern Rail
way, and there was tho usual bustle and
clatter attendant upon such an occurrence.
f Amongst the intending passengers might
ho seen on the platform a stout, silver-haired
theory-looking, elderly gentleman, whose
spotless broadcloth anjl massive gold chain
(to which was attached a valuable repeater)
and, above all whoso conscious air of re
sponsibility proclaimed tho man of sub
stance, lie was, in fact, tho senior part
ner of a wealthy and wollknown firm of
Kentish brewers, and was taking with him
to Sandwich a largo sum of money, which
ho had come to London on purposo to col
lect. This passenger appeared to possess
that sort of amiablo inquisitivencss and
restlessness which is a not uncommon attri
bute of gentlemen who havo passed the
Rubicon of a certain age. His llrst care
was to secure a copy of the latest edition of
tho Time, his next to recruit himself with
a biscuit and a glass of old sherry at tho re
freshment bar, and finally to walk up and
down the platform, at a somewhat brisk
pace, being evidently unwilling to sit down
within the narrow limits of a railway car
riage until it becamo a matter of positive
necessity that ho should do so.
While he thus exercised himself, tho eye
of the worthy old gontloman was suddenly
caught by a largo staring printed bill on
the wall, and adjusting his gold-rimmed
fsDectacles. ho nroceeded to peruse it. It
ran thus :
"Murder! 2000 Reward! The above
is hereby ottered by Her Majesty's Govern
ment to any person or persons who shall
give such information as may lead to tho
apprehension and conviction of Charles
Wintringham (alia Carlo Bortolaoci), sus
pected and accused of committing divers
barbarous murders, for the purpose of com
mitting robbery, on the various lines of
railway throughout tho United Kingdom
The said Charles W. (alia Carlo B.) is 23
years of age, and is short of stature, of fair
complexion, has blue eyes, and good tooth
His bands and feet are remarkably small
and well shaped, and his manner winning,
persuasive, and courteous. Whoever will
give such information as may lead to the
apprehension, will receive the full reward.'
It was also particularly statod thatC. W
bad a mole beneath bis chin.
" Bless mo !" ejaculated the brewer ;
"what an Adonis ! But, dear me, murder
ing people in railroad carriages how re
markably nervoiiB I feel, to bo sine. Here,
A guard who happened to be near, scen
ting a probable half-crown, immediately ad
IVov XSloomfiold, Xxi. TsiiLiisu
" Guard, I must havo a carriage to
" Train will bo very full, sir. Where are
you for, sir?"
"Sandwich," was the reply.
" Change at Minster for Sandwich and
Deal," said the guard, instinctively repeat
ing tho well-known formula.
"Yes, yes, I know about that, I should
think, by this time," interrupted the old
gentleman, impatiently. "The question is,
can I have a carriage, or not?" said ho,
producing a sovereign from his pocket,
and showing it surreptitiously to tho
The eyes of tho official brightened up
"Follow mo sir," said he, "and I'll see
what can bo done."
Tho old gentleman followed his conduc
tor, and tho result was, as it usually is,
that tho golden key, which unlocks every
door, unlocked for the brewer tho door of
the reserved first-class carriage.
"There, sir," said the guard, locking him
in ; " now you're all right. But I forgot ;
you must chango at Ash ford for Minster,
as this is a Dover carriage."
"Oh, I know that, "said tho old gontlo
man. " I know tho line well."
"All right, sir," said tho guard. "No
"Oh, certainly not," said tho other,
"Much obliged to you."
Putting his hand to his cap, tho guard
Tho old gentleman unfolded his Time,
and began to look through tho latest doings
on tho stock exchange and in tho hop mar
ket. The moment for the departure of tho
train had almost arrived ; tho noise from
tho engine getting up its steam was almost
deafening ; late passengers rushed to and
fro, and bewildered porters strove in vain to
satisfy their demands. Suddenly the smil
ing, obsequious face of tho guard appeared
at tho window of tho carriage in which the
brewer sat alone in bis glory.
" Oh, I beg pardon, sir," said he. "I
really beg pardon ; but could you allow one
person in there with you?"
"Certainly not," said the old gentleman,
looking up testily from his paper. " What
did I pay my sovereign for?"
"But you sec, sir," said tho guard, dep-
recatingly, "this is a lady who
Oh, a lady ! Well in that case"
began the old man, somewhat mollified.
1 would not intrude upon the gentleman
against his will," said a low sweet voico.
" I would rather lose tho train."
"Indeed, madame," said tho brewer,
looking at the lovely fare before him, "I
shall be honored. Open the door, guard."
Tho triumphant guard unlocked the door
and tho fair visitor, with a gracious bow to
her elderly companion, took her seat. In
another instant tho official had received a
second golden douceur, doors slammed to
with a crash, tho engine, released from its
enforced restraint, gave a shriek, and the
train dashed out of tho station on its mis
sion across the lovely county of Kent.
Involuntarily the brewer stole a glance
at bis beautiful companion, bhe was
dressed in a costly toilet, which set off her
slight and elegant figure to great advan
tage. Her features were singularly lovely,
and her divrk hair formed an exquisito con
trast to horblue eyes and fair complexion,
"If we were 30 years younger," thought
the brewer, "I should wheugh !"
Presently, after those numberless and
nameless civilities had been exchanged be
tween the lady and hor companion which
are almost inevitable when well-bred per
sons are travelling together, they com
menced conversing together like old ac
quaintances. The gentleman appeared
much pleased and gratified with the atten
tion which bis companion paid to all ho said
whilst the lady on her part threw off the air
of timidity and distrust which had at first
sat so well upon her.
" It is very pleasant traveling by the ex
press ;" remarked the brewer; "ono is not
jolted as by the ordinary trains."
"No, it is as you say, extremely pleas
ant," said his companion. "Besides, an
accident rarely happens to the express."
" Oh, madam, pray do not speak of acci
dents," said the brewer.
" You are nervous, sir?" said the lady.
'Somewhat so, I confess, and besides
"Besides? " sho said inturrupting.
" Well, there are other accidents besides
thoso which may happen to the train itself,"
"What accidents, sir?" asked the lady,
with an air of interest.
" Well, madam, since tho affair of Mul
ler and Mr. Briggs "
'Oh, I understand," said the lady, with
a light and musical laugh ; you are afraid
of being murdered, sir."
"Il'm well "
"Oh, pray do not make excuses, sir,"
said the lady ; I can understand that per
sons may bo cowardly, when "
" Cowardly, madam !" said tho poor old
gentleman, somewhat disconcerted.
" Certainly," she replied, laughing more
than ever ; " is it not so, to fear that you
are to become a second Mr. Briggs ? Such
occurrences do not take placo now."
" Not take placo !" cried tho brewer,
opening his eyes ; "why on that very plat
form I was reading "
"Oh, oh ! yes, I read it myself," said tho
'You did?" said the old gentleman'.
" Assuredly," was tho reply ; " why
" You see, then, that such things do
take place, madam."
" AY ell, perhaps so," sho admitted ; " but
they are exceptional, sir."
" I might prove one of tho exceptions,"
"So you might, sir," returned the lady,
with a faintly ironical smile.
" You see, then, that there is ground for
nervousness, on the part of an old man,"
said tho brewer.
" Ah that is why you wore locked in this
carriage," said tho lady.
"Exactly," ho replied.
"Oh, I comprehend," sho continued.
"On my part, I am not nervous at all."
"You are not?" he cried.
" No. Why should I bo so, when I have
you to protect me ! bne smiled again
ironically, and the old gentleman bowed.
Tho conversation then turned on differ
ent subjects. Presently, December and
May partook of tho sandwich together, and
by-and-by, tho train stopped at Tunbridge
Here a tall, military-looking, and rather
a handsome man was seeking to find a
place in tho train, llo must proceed, bo
said, at once, on business of great impor
tance, for ho was already late, having come
thus far on his way to Dover by a previous
train, which had unfortunately gone with
out him,whilst ho had been taking a hasty
meal at the refreshment bar.
"I must and will proceed," he said calm
ly, but firmly, to the guard, who in vain
protosted that tho train was already quite
" The company are bound to take me
on !" be cried.
"There's no room, sir," said the guard.
"We will see. Ha !" he ejaculated, look
ing into the carriage in which-sat the brew
er and his companion, "here is room," he
added ; and lie frowned at the guard.
" You cannot go in there, sir !" said the
latter in great confusion.
," Not go in! Well, we will see," said
he ; and ho coolly took a key from his
pocket, and u nloeked the door of the car
riage stepping briskly in.
The guard stared in amazement.
"He has got a key!" he ejaculated to
himself. "Oh, he must be a director 1
Beg pardon, sir !"
But there was no time for explanation,
for the train was already on its way.
The brewer frowned, andlookod cross at
- jy 18, 1870.
this fresh addition to tho company. Not
so the lady, who at tho voice and sight of
the new-comer had at first turned slightly
pale. She merely gave a passing glance at
him, and recommenced the perusal of Hen
ry Danton. As for tho stranger, ho settled
himself down in the opposite seat to her,
and taking from his pocket a late edition of
the Standard, became apparently absorbed
in the columns.
It may hero be mentioned that the brew
er, who had at first been seated opposite to
his fair traveling companion, had latterly,
for tho purpose of indulging in his usual
afternoon nap. changed his seat to tho fur
ther corner of tho carriage. His first seat,
then, being vacant, was appropriated by the
On, on rushed tho train, through corn
fields and hop grounds, at a steady, even
pace, which prevented its rapidity from be
ing felt. Now somo open-mouthed rustic
stood at a half-opened gate staring after
the smoking, puffing engine as it tore along ;
now somo covey of frightened partridges
rose from tho edge of the embankment, or
a startled colt galloped away from the vi
cinity of the (in its eyes) resistless monster
that appeared to bo approaching him. And
still on, steadily on, without oscillation or
curve, sped tho Dover express.
The military man, or at least ho -who ap
peared to bo such, was steadily regarding
his opposite neighbor over the top of his
newspaper, while apparently engaged in
reading. Sho, unconscious of tho scrutiny,
was absorbed in the fortunes of tho scoundrel-hero
of her novel ; and tho old brewer
snored audibly in the further corner.
The face of tho military looking man ex
pressed perplexity and doubt. Ho was a
personage from fiO to 00 years of age, with
an upright carriage, crisp, short, curling
black hair, intermixed with gray, and pecu
liarly intelligent and piercing black eyes.
For some miles ho appeared to bo debating
with himself, and occasionally, with an air
of indecision put his hand into his coat-tail
"The opportunity is good," he muttered ;
"and yet "
At last, when tho train was within a few
miles of Ashford, ho appeared to have made
up his mind.
"I will risk it," ho said to himself;
"yes, I will risk it."
Click, click !
The military man had suddenly with
drawn his hand from his pocket, in which
it had so long been fumbling, and the old
brewer woke up with a terrified start. Tho
fair lady of this story, with a palo but reso
lute look on her faeo, was sitting hand
"What what is this?" gasped the brew
er, only half awake, and turning in bewil
dered amazement to the military stranger.
"Who are you, sir?"
" Inspector T , of tho detective foree,"
was the reply.
"And that lady," said the old gentle
man ; " what has sho done?"
" Are you sure sho is a lady?" inquired
the inspector, with a quiet smile.
"Oh, who could doubt that?" said tho
" I doubt it, sir?" was tho quick reply;
"and well for you I did, for I have decided
ly saved your life."
"Saved my life!" cried the brewer, in
" Yes," said the detective.
" But how," inquired tho brewer.
"Look at that lady, as you call her,"
said the oihecr. " Did you ever see any
ono like her?"
"I?" stammered the old gontloman.
"Or read of any one liko her," continued
"Never," cried tho other.
" You have not read those handbills all
down the lino, then ?" said Inspector T.
"What handbills?" inquired the brewer,
"Why, concerning recent murders in
"Yes, I have read them," he replied.
"Well ?"said the officer.
" I cannot seo how that concerns thin
Even tho prisoner smiled at such obtitse-
"Look, then," said the inspector, remov
ing the prisoner's bonnet,, and with a mass
of dark braided hair, beneath which showed
a curly golden head. " Does a light break
in upon you now ?"
"Oh, oh I" murmured tho poor brewer
growing deadly palo. " So that this lady
is, then, it appears "
" Charles Wintringdom, alia Carlo Bor
tolacci," said the detective.
"Good heavens !" exclaimed tho old gen
"You see, then, the danger you have es
caped," continued the officer. " You were
positively asleep." .
"Ah, ah !" said tho brewer, shuddering.
" How can I ever repay you?"
"Oh, I have only done my duty," return
ed tho inspector. "This vouna- rascal
(who could ever suppose such a face could
cover the heart of a demon ?) was doubtless
about to escape to the continent."
A slight contraction of the prisoner's
face told the detective that ho had surmised
"Which," continued tho inspector, "but
for an accident, ho would have done."
The criminal elevated his eyebrows ; tho
old man looked inquiringly at tho detec
" Yes," continued tho latter. I say, but
for an accident ; for, in fact, I suspected
his design, and had taken tho first train for
Dover. By a misapprehension of the time,
on my part, I was left behind at Tunbridge,
while taking somo refreshments. So that
it is a mere chance I encountered my pris
oner in this train."
Tho young man ground his teeth in des
" But how did you know him ?" asked
"Ah ! you think it was impossible to de
tect him in that disguise," said tho officer.
" Well, I will admit ho makes as pretty
a girl as I ever saw in my life. I will tell
how I detected him. In tho first place, 1
was struck by his sweet low voice, too deep
for a woman, in my opinion."
"Ah!" said tho brewer.
"Then I observed other littlo things,"
continued the other ; " I havo had long ex-,
perience in such matters, you know, sir.
And at last"
"Yes, yes, at last?" interupted tho
" Well, ho untied his bonnetstrings, on
account of tho heat, and I saw "
"Well, well?" again interrupted tho old
Tho inspector pointed significantly to tho
" Ah !,, said tho old gentleman, again
turning palo, "the mole?"
" Precisely so. You have hit it," said
the inspector. "But here wo are."
Tho train had stopped at Ashford.
Here tho inspector removed his prisoner,
to await a return to London.
As for the worthy old brewer, after slid
ing a 5 note into the detective's band, he
changed his carriage to proceed to Minster,
feeling himself quite a hero of romance.
EST Jimmy M was one of the bright
boys, although but seven or eight years
old, had evfticed a love of wealth, and
looked forward to the time when he should
bo a rich man. One morning, at breakfast,
his aunt informed him that during tLu
night a pair of twins had been added to
the family, which already consisted of thret
besides Jimmy The boy dropped his kuifo
and exclaimed J .
" Gracious 1 Ait Mary, if father and
mother keeps on at this rate there won't
be fifty dollars to divide ariongst us?"
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