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The Three Eyes   By: (1864-1941)

The Three Eyes by Maurice Leblanc

First Page:

THE THREE EYES

[Illustration: Bérangère stopped.... (The Three Eyes) Frontispiece]

The Three Eyes

BY MAURICE LEBLANC

TRANSLATED BY ALEXANDER TEIXEIRA DE MATTOS

AUTHOR OF " The Secret of Sarek ."

[Illustration]

FRONTISPIECE BY G. W. GAGE

A. L. BURT COMPANY Publishers New York

Published by arrangement with The Macaulay Company

Copyright, 1921, by THE MACAULAY COMPANY

All rights reserved

PRINTED IN U. S. A.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER PAGE I BERGERONNETTE 9 II THE "TRIANGULAR CIRCLES" 23 III AN EXECUTION 39 IV NOËL DORGEROUX'S SON 51 V THE KISS 66 VI ANXIETIES 86 VII THE FIERCE EYED MAN 99 VIII "SOME ONE WILL EMERGE FROM THE DARKNESS" 113 IX THE MAN WHO EMERGED FROM THE DARKNESS 132 X THE CROWD SEES 148 XI THE CATHEDRAL 161 XII THE "SHAPES" 174 XIII THE VEIL IS LIFTED 192 XIV MASSIGNAC AND VELMOT 214 XV THE SPLENDID THEORY 227 XVI WHERE LIPS UNITE 247 XVII SUPREME VISIONS 262 XVIII THE CHÂTEAU DE PRÉ BONY 275 XIX THE FORMULA 293

THE THREE EYES

CHAPTER I

BERGERONNETTE

For me the strange story dates back to that autumn day when my uncle Dorgeroux appeared, staggering and unhinged, in the doorway of the room which I occupied in his house, Haut Meudon Lodge.

None of us had set eyes on him for a week. A prey to that nervous exasperation into which the final test of any of his inventions invariably threw him, he was living among his furnaces and retorts, keeping every door shut, sleeping on a sofa, eating nothing but fruit and bread. And suddenly he stood before me, livid, wild eyed, stammering, emaciated, as though he had lately recovered from a long and dangerous illness.

He was really altered beyond recognition! For the first time I saw him wear unbuttoned the long, threadbare, stained frock coat which fitted his figure closely and which he never discarded even when making his experiments or arranging on the shelves of his laboratories the innumerable chemicals which he was in the habit of employing. His white tie, which, by way of contrast, was always clean, had become unfastened; and his shirt front was protruding from his waistcoat. As for his good, kind face, usually so grave and placid and still so young beneath the white curls that crowned his head, its features seemed unfamiliar, ravaged by conflicting expressions, no one of which obtained the upper hand over the others: violent expressions of terror and anguish in which I was surprised, at moments, to observe gleams of the maddest and most extravagant delight.

I could not get over my astonishment. What had happened during those few days? What tragedy could have caused the quiet, gentle Noël Dorgeroux to be so utterly beside himself?

"Are you ill, uncle?" I asked, anxiously, for I was exceedingly fond of him.

"No," he murmured, "no, I'm not ill."

"Then what is it? Please, what's the matter?"

"Nothing's the matter . . . nothing, I tell you."

I drew up a chair. He dropped into it and, at my entreaty, took a glass of water; but his hand trembled so that he was unable to lift it to his lips.

"Uncle, speak, for goodness' sake!" I cried. "I have never seen you in such a state. You must have gone through some great excitement."

"The greatest excitement of my life," he said, in a very low and lifeless voice. "Such excitement as nobody can have ever experienced before ... Continue reading book >>




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