The Mad King

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 52

life, from his birth in Beatrice to his coming to Lutha upon
pleasure. He showed Herr Kramer his watch with his monogram upon it,
his seal ring, and inside the pocket of his coat the label of his
tailor, with his own name written beneath it and the date that the
garment had been ordered.

When he had completed his narrative the old man shook his head.

"I cannot understand it," he said; "and yet I am almost forced to
believe that you are not the king."

"Direct me to the sanatorium," suggested Barney, "and if it be
within the range of possibility I shall learn whether the man who
lies there is Leopold or another, and if he be the king I shall
serve him as loyally as you would have served me. Together we may
assist him to gain the safety of Tann and the protection of old
Prince Ludwig."

"If you are not the king," said Kramer suspiciously, "why should you
be so interested in aiding Leopold? You may even be an enemy. How
can I know?"

"You cannot know, my good friend," replied Barney. "But had I been
an enemy, how much more easily might I have encompassed my designs,
whatever they might have been, had I encouraged you to believe that
I was king. The fact that I did not, must assure you that I have no
ulterior designs against Leopold."

This line of reasoning proved quite convincing to the old
shopkeeper, and at last he consented to lead Barney to the
sanatorium. Together they traversed the quiet village streets to the
outskirts of the town, where in large, park-like grounds the
well-known sanatorium of Tafelberg is situated in quiet
surroundings. It is an institution for the treatment of nervous
diseases to which patients are brought from all parts of Europe, and
is doubtless Lutha's principal claim upon the attention of the outer
world.

As the two crossed the gardens which lay between the gate and the
main entrance and mounted the broad steps leading to the veranda an
old servant opened the door, and recognizing Herr Kramer, nodded
pleasantly to him.

"Your patient seems much brighter this morning, Herr Kramer," he
said, "and has been asking to be allowed to sit up."

"He is still here, then?" questioned the shopkeeper with a sigh that
might have indicated either relief or resignation.

"Why, certainly. You did not expect that he had entirely recovered
overnight, did you?"

"No," replied Herr Kramer, "not exactly. In fact, I did not know
what I should expect."

As the two passed him on their way to the room in which

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