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THE MAN WITH THE BLACK FEATHER

her well-earned repose after a somewhat exhausting conference with the most illustrious of the Pneumatics, when suddenly her window, which opens on to a balcony, was flung open violently, and a man of little more than middle height, still young, and extremely vigorous (this detail is in the police report), but with his hair entirely white, sprang into the room. He had in his hand a shining, nickel-plated revolver.

"'Do not be frightened, madame,' he said to the terrified lady. 'I am not going to harm you. Regard me as your most humble servant. My name is Louis-Dominique Cartouche; and my only ambition is to sup with you. By the throttle of Madame Phalaris! I've got a devil of a twist on me!' And he laughed.

"Mme. de B… (we will call her Mme. de B…) thought she had to do with a madman. But it was only a man resolved to sup with her, since, he said, he had been for a long time fascinated by her grace and charm. Yet this man was far more dangerous than a madman. For it was necessary to give way to him, owing to his nickel-plated revolver.

"'You are going to ring for your servants, and order them to bring an excellent supper,' said the man coolly. 'Do not give them any