FIRST PERIOD: THE LOSS OF THE DIAMOND (1848)
13. CHAPTER XIII
His voice was not quite in such a perfect state of discipline as his face.
When he said "Ah!" he said it in the tone of a man who had heard something
which he expected to hear. He half angered and half frightened me--why, I
couldn't tell, but he did it.
"Must the search be given up?" I asked.
"Yes," said the Sergeant, "the search must be given up,
because your young lady refuses to submit to it like the rest.
We must examine all the wardrobes in the house or none.
Send Mr. Ablewhite's portmanteau to London by the next train,
and return the washing-book, with my compliments and thanks,
to the young woman who brought it in."
He laid the washing-book on the table, and taking out his penknife,
began to trim his nails.
"You don't seem to be much disappointed," I said.
"No," said Sergeant Cuff; "I am not much disappointed."
I tried to make him explain himself.
"Why should Miss Rachel put an obstacle in your way?" I inquired.
"Isn't it her interest to help you?"
"Wait a little, Mr. Betteredge--wait a little."
Cleverer heads than mine might have seen his drift. Or a person
less fond of Miss Rachel than I was, might have seen his drift.
My lady's horror of him might (as I have since thought)
have meant that she saw his drift (as the scripture says)
"in a glass darkly." I didn't see it yet--that's all
"What's to be done next?" I asked.
Sergeant Cuff finished the nail on which he was then at work,
looked at it for a moment with a melancholy interest, and put up
"Come out into the garden," he said " and let's have a look at the roses."