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of my ill-concealed disapproval, "but found nothing in the way of identification. You see," he apologized, "these things are necessary here, in affairs of this nature, if a fellow would preserve the proper connection between his head and his body."

He rolled up his whiskers, laid aside a yellow wig, and I could see he was as Serigny had described. He was not as tall as I, but strongly built, and some two good years my senior.

"Captain, if you will allow me I will take these traps of yours to our apartments. You lodge with me."

I was nettled that I should have spoken so freely to a stranger, and felt ill-disposed to be pleasant, but he soon drove away any lingering animosity.

When we had settled in our rooms, which adjoined, de Greville threw himself across his couch and said:

"Look here, de Mouret, we have a hard task before us, and you may as well know it. M. de Serigny tells me he has instructed you himself, but details he would leave to me. What's your name?"

"Placide," I replied as simply as a lad of ten.

"Well, I'm Jerome. We are to stand together now, and men engaged in business like ours have no time for extra manners."

His bon camaraderie was contagious, and I gladly caught it. "Agreed, Jerome; so be it. Go on."

"First we must locate our friend Carne Yvard, the very fiend of a fellow, who stops at nothing. Then to catch him with the papers, take them, cost what it will.