|About the Book|
The manager of the new Imperial Restaurant on the Thames Embankment went into his luxurious private office and shut the door. Having done so, he first scratched his chin reflectively, and then took a letter from the drawer in which it had reposed forMoreThe manager of the new Imperial Restaurant on the Thames Embankment went into his luxurious private office and shut the door. Having done so, he first scratched his chin reflectively, and then took a letter from the drawer in which it had reposed for more than two months and perused it carefully. Though he was not aware of it, this was the thirtieth time he had read it since breakfast that morning. And yet he was not a whit nearer understanding it than he had been at the beginning. He turned it over and scrutinized the back, where not a sign of writing was to be seen- he held it up to the window, as if he might hope to discover something from the water-mark- but there was nothing in either of these places of a nature calculated to set his troubled mind at rest. Then he took a magnificent repeater watch from his waistcoat pocket and glanced at the dial- the hands stood at half-past seven. He immediately threw the letter on the table, and as he did so his anxiety found relief in words. Its really the most extraordinary affair I ever had to do with, he remarked. And as Ive been in the business just three-and-thirty years at eleven a.m. next Monday morning, I ought to know something about it. I only hope Ive done right, thats all. As he spoke, the chief bookkeeper, who had the treble advantage of being tall, pretty, and just eight-and-twenty years of age, entered the room. She noticed the open letter and the look upon her chiefs face, and her curiosity was proportionately excited. You seem worried, Mr. McPherson, she said tenderly, as she put down the papers she had brought in for his signature.