Behind a Mask (Chapter 7, page 1 of 16)

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Chapter 7

"She will tell Sir John, will she? Then I must be before her, and hasten
events. It will be as well to have all sure before there can be any
danger. My poor Dean, you are no match for me, but you may prove
annoying, nevertheless."

These thoughts passed through Miss Muir's mind as she went down the
hall, pausing an instant at the library door, for the murmur of voices
was heard. She caught no word, and had only time for an instant's
pause as Dean's heavy step followed her. Turning, Jean drew a chair
before the door, and, beckoning to the woman, she said, smiling still,
"Sit here and play watchdog. I am going to Miss Bella, so you can nod
if you will."

"Thank you, miss. I will wait for my young lady. She may need me when
this hard time is over." And Dean seated herself with a resolute face.

Jean laughed and went on; but her eyes gleamed with sudden malice, and
she glanced over her shoulder with an expression which boded ill for the
faithful old servant.

"I've got a letter from Ned, and here is a tiny note for you," cried
Bella as Jean entered the boudoir. "Mine is a very odd, hasty letter,
with no news in it, but his meeting with Sydney. I hope yours is better,
or it won't be very satisfactory."

As Sydney's name passed Bella's lips, all the color died out of Miss
Muir's face, and the note shook with the tremor of her hand. Her very
lips were white, but she said calmly, "Thank you. As you are busy,
I'll go and read my letter on the lawn." And before Bella could speak,
she was gone.

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