Page:Hopkinson Smith--armchair at the inn.djvu/254

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prowling or sniffing at the crack of our door; at daylight the rifle-shots!

“We had started to work for our release by that time, and by persistent begging got a sheet of paper, and, with the help of my companion, I wrote a letter to ‘his Excellenza,’ as the guard called his nibs, informing him that we were English tourists who had taken passage for sheer love of adventure, and demanding that our case be brought to the attention of the English consul.

“One week passed and then a second before we were informed by the head jailer that there was no English consul, and that if there had been it would have made no difference, as we had been taken with arms in our hands, and that but for some inquiries put on foot by his Excellenza we would have been shot long ago.

“So the hours and days dragged on and we had about started in to make our wills when, one morning after our slop coffee had been pushed in to us, the bolts were slid back and the nattiest-looking young fellow you ever laid your eyes on stepped inside. He was about twenty-four, was dressed from head to foot in a suit of white duck, and looked as if he had just cleared the deck of the royal yacht. With