"When we were taking coffee in the drawing-room that night after dinner, I told Arthur and Mary my experience, and of the precious treasure which we had under our roof, suppressing only the name of my client. Lucy Parr, who had brought in the coffee, had, I am sure, left the room; but I cannot swear that the door was closed. Mary and Arthur were much interested and wished to see the famous coronet, but I thought it better not to disturb it.
"'Where have you put it?' asked Arthur.
"'In my own bureau.'
"'Well, I hope to goodness the house won't be burgled during the night.' said he.
"'It is locked up,' I answered.
"'Oh, any old key will fit that bureau. When I was a youngster I have opened it myself with the key of the box-room cupboard.'
"He often had a wild way of talking, so that I thought little of what he said. He followed me to my room, however, that night with a very grave face.
"'Look here, dad,' said he with his eyes cast down, 'can you let me have 200 pounds?'
"'No, I cannot!' I answered sharply. 'I have been far too generous with you in money matters.'
"'You have been very kind,' said he, 'but I must have this money, or else I can never show my face inside the club again.'
"'And a very good thing, too!' I cried.
"'Yes, but you would not have me leave it a dishonoured man,' said he. 'I could not bear the disgrace. I must raise the money in some way, and if you will not let me have it, then I must try other means.'
"I was very angry, for this was the third demand during the month. 'You shall not have a farthing from me,' I cried, on which he bowed and left the room without another word.
"When he was gone I unlocked my bureau, made sure that my treasure was safe, and locked it again. Then I started to go round the house to see that all was secure–a duty which I usually leave to Mary but which I thought it well to perform myself that night. As I came down the stairs I saw Mary herself at the side window of the hall, which she closed and fastened as I approached.