I like to see you so angry! It's grand to know that a man who has governed prisoners has got such a pitying heart. Let the tell you one thing, sir. You will be more angry than ever, when you see my sweet girl to-morrow. And mind this--it is Helena's devouring vanity, Helena's wicked jealousy of her sister's good fortune, that has done the mischief. Don't be too hard on Philip! I do believe, if the truth was told, he is ashamed of himself."
I felt inclined to be harder on Philip than ever. "Where is he?" I asked.
Miss Jillgall started. "Oh, Mr. Governor, don't show the severe side of yourself, after the pretty compliment I have just paid to you! What a masterful voice! and what eyes, dear sir; what terrifying eyes! I feel as if I was one of your prisoners, and had misbehaved myself."
I repeated my question with improvement, I hope, in my looks and tone: "Don't think me obstinate, my dear lady. I only want to know if he is in this town."
Miss Jillgall seemed to take a curious pleasure in disappointing me; she had not forgotten my unfortunate abruptness of look and manner. "You won't find him here," she said.
"Perhaps he has left England?"
"If you must know, sir, he is in London--with Mr. Dunboyne."
The name startled me.
In a moment more it recalled to my memory a remarkable letter, addressed to me many years ago, which will be found in my introductory narrative. The writer, an Irish gentleman named Dunboyne, confided to me that his marriage had associated him with the murderess, who had been recently executed, as brother-in-law to that infamous woman. This circumstance lie had naturally kept secret from everyone, including his son, then a boy. I alone was made an exception that the general rule, because I alone could tell him what had become of the poor little girl, who, in spite of the disgraceful end of her mother, was still his niece. If the child had not been provided for, he felt it his duty to take charge of her education, and to watch over her prospects in the future. Such had been his object in writing to me; and such was the substance of his letter.
Miss Jillgall's keen observation noticed the impression that had been produced upon me. "Mr. Dunboyne's name seems to surprise you," she said.