BOOK THE FIRST: THE CUP AND THE LIP
Chapter 12: The Sweat of an Honest Man's Brow (continued)
'I'll take this man myself, sir,' said Mr Inspector to Lightwood.
Then to Riderhood, 'Is he at home? Where is he? What's he
doing? You have made it your business to know all ahout him, no
Riderhood said what he did know, and promised to find out in a
few minutes what he didn't know.
'Stop,' said Mr Inspector; 'not till I tell you: We mustn't look like
business. Would you two gentlemen object to making a pretence
of taking a glass of something in my company at the Fellowships?
Well-conducted house, and highly respectable landlady.'
They replied that they would be happy to substitute a reality for
the pretence, which, in the main, appeared to be as one with Mr
'Very good,' said he, taking his hat from its peg, and putting a pair
of handcuffs in his pocket as if they were his gloves. 'Reserve!'
Reserve saluted. 'You know where to find me?' Reserve again
saluted. 'Riderhood, when you have found out concerning his
coming home, come round to the window of Cosy, tap twice at it,
and wait for me. Now, gentlemen.'
As the three went out together, and Riderhood slouched off from
under the trembling lamp his separate way, Lightwood asked the
officer what he thought of this?
Mr Inspector replied, with due generality and reticence, that it was
always more likely that a man had done a bad thing than that he
hadn't. That he himself had several times 'reckoned up' Gaffer, but
had never been able to bring him to a satisfactory criminal total.
That if this story was true, it was only in part true. That the two
men, very shy characters, would have been jointly and pretty
equally 'in it;' but that this man had 'spotted' the other, to save
himself and get the money.
'And I think,' added Mr Inspector, in conclusion, 'that if all goes
well with him, he's in a tolerable way of getting it. But as this is
the Fellowships, gentlemen, where the lights are, I recommend
dropping the subject. You can't do better than be interested in
some lime works anywhere down about Northfleet, and doubtful
whether some of your lime don't get into bad company as it comes
up in barges.'