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had been extracted—the Indian might have played me false.

I determined to find out.

How should I prove it? A fowl; the very thing.

Accordingly, I rang for my valet, and requested him to go out and buy me a live fowl.

He looked at me for a moment, but being a well trained servant, asked no questions, but departed on his errand, and returned in a little while with the fowl.

I took it into the laboratory where I had the snakes, and allowed one of them to bite it.

Then placing it in a box, I lighted a cigar and went for a short stroll.

On entering in about a half-an-hour I opened the door, and found the fowl dead.

So far satisfactory.

The next thing to do was to discover the antidote.

I proceeded systematically to work.

First I eagerly devoured every book I could find that in any way related to poisons.

And then, having killed one of the snakes, extracted its poison bags, carefully analysed the contents, and compared it with other poisons.

I bought up all the stray dogs and cats.