THE UNKNOWN MR. KENT
smiled and seated himself after an ostentatious and exasperating grin at the chancellor, who promptly turned purple with rage.
"You will pardon me," said Kent, drily, as he pulled a chair into a position where he could di- rectly face Provarsk, "if in our conversation I seem to be assuming; but His Majesty has gra- ciously granted me certain privileges of speech and action which he will sanction. Is that not true, Sire?"
The king, reverting to that strange, curious look of expectancy, said it was, and Provarsk shielded his mouth with his finger tips as if to conceal a smile.
"Provarsk," said Kent, decisively, "you're whipped; all the way down the line."
"For the moment, yes, I suppose," the usurper admitted, gracefully. He smiled at the American in rather an amused, friendly way.
"The king has decided," continued Kent, pla- cidly, "that you are a man of some talent, and has therefore concluded to make none other than you chancellor of his kingdom."
For once Provarsk was so completely surprised that his looks betrayed him. He leaned forward in his chair and stared at the American, doubt- fully. Baron Von Glutz cleared his throat ex- plosively, and was nearly speechless with wrath.
"This is going too far!" he exclaimed; but was