etter come along, Homo,” he said, “we may have to bluff this out.”
Van Heerden was waiting for him in the hall and invited him no farther.
“You are perfectly at liberty to take away your wife,” said van Heerden; “she will probably explain to you that I have treated tiffany uk her with every consideration. Here she is.”
Oliva was descending the stairs with slow, deliberate steps.
“I might have been very angry with you,” van Heerden went on, with that insolent drawl of his; “happily I do not find it any longer necessary to marry Miss Cresswell. I was just explaining to this gentleman”–he pointed to the pallid young curate in the background–“when your voices reached me. Nevertheless, I think it only right to tell you that your marriage is not a legal one, though I presume you are provided with a special licence.”
“Why is it illegal?” asked Beale.
He wondered if Parson Homo had been recognized.
“In the first place because it was not conducted in the presence of witnesses,” said van Heerden.
It was Homo who laughed.
“I am afraid that would make it illegal but for the fact that you witnessed the c tiffany co careers eremony by your own confession, and so presumably did your fat friend behind you.”
Mr. Milsom scowled.
“You were always a bitter dog to me, Parson,” he said, “but I can give you a reason why it’s illegal,” he said triumphantly. “That man is Parson Homo, a well-known crook who was kicked out of the Church fifteen years ago. I worked alongside him in Portland.”
Homo smiled crookedly.
“You are right up to a certain point, Milsom,” he said, “but you are wrong in one essential. By a curious oversight I was never unfrocked, and I am still legally a priest of the Church of England.”
“Heavens!” gasped Beale, “then this marriage is legal!”
“It’s as legal as it can possibly be,” said Parson Homo complacently.
Chapter 21 Beale Sees White
“In a sense,” said Lawyer Kitson, “it is a tragedy. In a sense it is a comedy. The most fatal com tiffany co bracelet edy of errors that could be imagined.”
Stanford Beale sat on a low chair, his head in his hands, the picture of dejection.
“I don’t mind your kicks,” he said, without looking up; “you can’t say anything worse about me than I am saying about myself. Oh, I’ve been a fool, an arrogant mad fool.”
Kitson, his hands clasped behind his back under his tail coat, his gold-rimmed pince-nez perched on his nose, looked down at the young man.
“I am not going to tell you that I was against the idea from the beginning, because that is unnecessary. I ought tiffany co outlet fake to have put my foot down and stopped it. I heard you were pretty clever with a gun, Stanford. Why didn’t you sail in and rescue the girl as soon as you found where she was?”
“I don’t think there would have been a ghost of a chance,” said the other, looking up. “I am not finding excuses http://scheaptiffanyuk.blogspot.com/ , but I am telling you what I know. There were four or five men in the house and they were all pretty tough citizens–I doubt if I would have made it that way.”
“You think he would have married her?”
“He admitted as much,” said Stanford Beale, “the parson was already there when I butted in.”
“What steps are you taking to deal with this man van Heerden?”
Beale laughed helplessly.
“I cannot take any until Miss Cresswell recovers.”
“Mrs. Beale,” murmured Kitson, and the other went red.
“I guess we’ll call her Miss Cresswell, if you don’t mind,” he said sharply, “see here, Mr. Kitson, you needn’t make things worse than they are. I can do nothing until she recovers and can give us a statement as cheap tiffany to what happened. McNorton will execute the warrant just as soon as we can formulate a charge. In fact, he is waiting downstairs in t tiffany co jewelry sale he hope of seeing—-” he paused, “Miss Cresswell. What does the doctor say?”
“She’s sleeping now.”
“It’s maddening, maddening,” groaned Beale, “and yet if it weren’t so horrible I could laugh. Yesterday I was waiting for a ‘hobo’ to come out of delirium tremens. To-day I am waiting for Miss Cresswell to recover from some devilish drug. I’ve made a failure of it, Mr. Kitson.”
“I’m afraid you have,” said the other dryly; “what do you intend doing?”
“But does it occur to you,” asked Kitson slowly, “that this lady is not aware that she has married you and that we’ve got to break the news to her? That’s the part I don’t like.”
“And you can bet it doesn’t fill me with rollicking high spirits,” snapped Beale; “it’s a most awful situation.”
“What are you going to do?” asked the other again.
“What are you going to do?” replied the tiffany sale exasperated Beale, “after all, you’re her lawyer.”
“And you’re her husband,” said Kitson grimly, “which reminds me.” He walked to his desk and took up a slip of paper tiffany and co . “I drew this out against your coming. This is a certified cheque for L400,000, that is nearly two million dollars, which I am authorized to hand to Oliva’s husband on the day of her wedding.”
Beale took it from the other’s fingers, read it carefully and tore it into little pieces, after which conversation flagged. After awhile Beale asked:
“What do I have to do to get a divorce?”
“Well,” said the lawyer, “by the English law if you leave your wife and go away, and refuse to return to her she can apply to a judge of the High Court, who will order you to return within fourteen days.”
“I’d come tiffany co back in fourteen seconds if she wanted me,” said Beale fervently.
“You’re hopeless,” said Kitson, “you asked how you could get a divorce. I presume you want one.”
“Of course I do. I want to undo the whole of this horrible tangle. It’s absurd and undignified. Can nothing be done without Miss Cresswell knowing?”
“Nothing can be done without your wife’s knowledge,” tiffany uk sale said Kitson.
He seemed to take a fiendish pleasure in reminding the unhappy young man of his misfortune.
“I am not blaming you,” he said more soberly, “I blame myself. When I took this trust from poor John Millinborn I never realized all that it meant or all the responsibility it entailed. How could I imagine that the detective I employed to protect the girl from fortune hunters would marry her? I am not complaining,” he said hastily, seeing the wrath rise in Beale’s face, “it is very unfortunate, and you are as much the victim of circumstances as I. But unhappily we have not been the real victims.”
“I suppose,” said Beale, looking up at the ceiling, “if I were one of those grand little mediaeval knights or one of those tiffany co terminal 5 gallant gentlemen one reads about I should blow my brains out.”
“That would be a solution,” said Mr. Kitson, “but we should still have to explain to your wife that she was a widow.”
“Then what am I to do?”
“Have a cigar,” said Kitson.
He took two from his vest pocket and handed one to his companion, and his shrewd old eyes twinkled.
“It’s years and years since I read a romantic story,” he said, “and I haven’t followed the trend of modern literature very closely, but I think that your job is to sail in and make the lady love you.”
Beale jumped to his feet.
“Do you mean that? Pshaw! It’s absurd! It’s ridiculous! She woul tiffany co engagement rings d never love me.”
“I don’t see why anybody should, least of all your wife,” said Kitson, “but it would certainly simplify matters.”
“Marry her all over again,” said Kitson, sending a big ring of smoke into the air, “there’s no law against it. You can marry as many times as you like, providing you marry the same woman.”
“But, suppose–suppose she loves somebody else?” asked Beale hoarsely.
“Why then it tiffany co 925 will be tough on you,” said Kitson, “but tougher on her. Your business is to see that she doesn’t love somebody else.”
A look of infinite weariness passed across Kitson’s face. He removed his glasses and put them carefully into their case.
“Really, as a detective,” he said, “you may be a prize exhibit, but as an ordinary human being you wouldn’t even get a consolation prize. You have got me into a mess and you have got to get me out. John Millinborn was concerned only with one thing–the happiness of his niece. If you can make your wife, Mrs. Stanford
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etter come along, Homo,” he said, “we may have to bluff this out.”