The Apartment Next Door (Chapter 7, page 1 of 13)


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Chapter 7

It is amazing how much information on any given subject any one--even a wholly inexperienced person like Jane Strong--can acquire within a few days when one's mind is set resolutely to the task. It is much more amazing how much one can learn when aided and abetted by an experienced chauffeur, or more properly speaking a mysterious and cultured secret service operative, masquerading as an automobile driver.

Who Thomas Dean was, why he was in the secret service, and what his real name was, were questions that kept perpetually puzzling Jane. In the presence of her father and mother, so skilful an actor was he that it was hard to believe him anything but what he appeared to be, a respectful, intelligent and prompt young man who knew the traffic regulations and the anatomy of automobiles. When he and Jane were by themselves he invariably threw off his mask to some extent. He became the director instead of the directed, though never letting anything of the personal relation creep in. That he was college-bred, Jane felt certain. He spoke both German and French much better than she did. He occasionally used words that no ordinary chauffeur would be likely to know the meaning of. Sharing the secret of such a mission as theirs, they quickly found themselves on a friendly basis, yet the girl hesitated whenever her curiosity prompted her to try to find out anything that would reveal his identity. There was always present the feeling that any exhibition of undue curiosity on her part would be a disappointment to her employer. The chief disapproved of curiosity except on one subject--what the Germans were doing.

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