Open main menu

Page:Gaston Leroux--The man with the black feather.djvu/300

This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
276
THE MAN WITH THE BLACK FEATHER

"'It is a sentiment which does you much honour, M. Mifroid,' said M. Longuet. 'But there is no need, and indeed it would be impossible, that we should both become cannibals.'

"I was extremely disgusted, naturally, that M. Longuet should have been guilty of such an egregiously old-fashioned act as to be unable even to make an unexpected visit to the Catacombs, through a hole in the street, without bringing a ham with him; but I picked up the other ten electric lamps. I did not let my natural annoyance find vent in words; I only said to him, 'How on earth do you come to be walking about Paris with a ten-pound ham?'

"'I am going to write my memoirs,' said M. Longuet. 'And since quiet is necessary to the writing of one's memoirs, and I feared that you gentlemen of the Police would do your best to rob me of that peace, if I gave you the chance, I was going to shut myself in a little hiding-place I know of with this ham, these electric lamps, and some more necessary provisions which I had not yet bought, in order to write uninterrupted. The paper and pens I have already purchased; and they are in my hiding-place.'

"The excuse was valid, and there was nothing to be said. I set off down the passage.