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CHAPTER 16: A DEADLOCK (continued)
And the pair were gone; their steps grew faint in the corridor; when we could no longer hear them, Rattray closed the door and quietly locked it. Then he turned to me, stern enough, and pointed to the door with a hand that shook.
"You see how it is?"
"They want to kill you!"
"Of course they do."
"It's your own fault; you've run yourself into this. I did my best to keep you out of it. But in you come, and spill first blood."
"I don't regret it," said I.
"Oh, you're damned mule enough not to regret anything!" cried Rattray. "I see the sort you are; yet but for me, I tell you plainly, you'd be a dead man now."
"I can't think why you interfered."
"You've heard the reason. I won't have murder done here if I can prevent it; so far I have; it rests with you whether I can go on preventing it or not."
"With me, does it?"
He sat down on the side of the bed. He threw an arm to the far side of my body, and he leaned over me with savage eyes now staring into mine, now resting with a momentary gleam of pride upon my battered head. I put up my hand; it lit upon a very turban of bandages, and at that I tried to take his hand in mine. He shook it off, and his eyes met mine more fiercely than before.
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