Then there was a loud clatter of rising feet, oaths, threats, and even a knife or two drawn; and, in the midst of it all, the ominous click of a pistol, and then dead silence; for it was Ransome who had produced that weapon. "Come, no nonsense," said he. "Door's guarded, street's guarded, and I'm not to be trifled with."
He then handed his pistol to the officer outside with an order, and, stepping back suddenly, collared Messrs. Holland and Cheetham with one movement, and, with a powerful rush, carried them out of the house in his clutches. Meantime the policeman had whistled, there was a conflux of bobbies, and the culprits were handcuffed and marched off to the Town Hall.
"Five years' penal servitude for that little lot," said Ransome.
"And now, Mr. Bolt, I have answered your question to the best of my ability."
"You have answered it like a man. Will you do as much for us?"
"I'll do my best. Let me examine the place now that none of them are about."
Bolt and Ransome went together, but Little went home: he had an anxiety even more pressing, his mother's declining health. She had taken to pining and fretting ever since Dr. Amboyne brought the bad news from Cairnhope; and now, instead of soothing and consoling her son, she needed those kind offices from him; and, I am happy to say, she received them. He never spent an evening away from her. Unfortunately he did not succeed in keeping up her spirits, and the sight of her lowered his own.
At this period Grace Carden was unmixed comfort to him; she encouraged him to encroach a little, and visit her twice a week instead of once, and she coaxed him to confide all his troubles to her. He did so; he concealed from his mother that he was at war with the trade again, but he told Grace everything, and her tender sympathy was the balm of his life. She used to put on cheerfulness for his sake, even when she felt it least.