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CHAPTER 7: In Which Rouletabille Sets Out on an Expedition Under the Bed (continued)
"You are a wizard!" said Daddy Jacques, trying to laugh and not quite succeeding. "How do you know that the handkerchief is blue with red stripes?"
"Because, if it had not been blue with red stripes, it would not have been found at all."
Without giving any further attention to Daddy Jacques, my friend took a piece of paper from his pocket, and taking out a pair of scissors, bent over the footprints. Placing the paper over one of them he began to cut. In a short time he had made a perfect pattern which he handed to me, begging me not to lose it.
He then returned to the window and, pointing to the figure of Frederic Larsan, who had not quitted the side of the lake, asked Daddy Jacques whether the detective had, like himself, been working in The Yellow Room?
"No," replied Robert Darzac, who, since Rouletabille had handed him the piece of scorched paper, had not uttered a word, "He pretends that he does not need to examine The Yellow Room. He says that the murderer made his escape from it in quite a natural way, and that he will, this evening, explain how he did it."
As he listened to what Monsieur Darzac had to say, Rouletabille turned pale.
"Has Frederic Larsan found out the truth, which I can only guess at?" he murmured. "He is very clever - very clever - and I admire him. But what we have to do to-day is something more than the work of a policeman, something quite different from the teachings of experience. We have to take hold of our reason by the right end."
The reporter rushed into the open air, agitated by the thought that the great and famous Fred might anticipate him in the solution of the problem of The Yellow Room.
I managed to reach him on the threshold of the pavilion. "Calm yourself, my dear fellow," I said. "Aren't you satisfied?"
"Yes," he confessed to me, with a deep sigh. "I am quite satisfied. I have discovered many things."
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