The Outlaw of Torn

By Edgar Rice Burroughs

Page 16

search of Til, whom he now thoroughly mistrusted and feared. The
words of De Montfort, which he had overheard at the dock, convinced him
that here was one more obstacle to the fulfillment of his revenge which
must be removed as had the Lady Maud; but in this instance there was
neither youth nor beauty to plead the cause of the intended victim, or
to cause the grim executioner a pang of remorse.

When he found the old hag, she was already dressed to go upon the
street, in fact he intercepted her at the very door of the building.
Still clad as he was in the mantle and wimple of an old woman, Til
did not, at first, recognize him, and when he spoke, she burst into
a nervous, cackling laugh, as one caught in the perpetration of some
questionable act, nor did her manner escape the shrewd notice of the
wily master of fence.

"Whither, old hag?" he asked.

"To visit Mag Tunk at the alley's end, by the river, My Lord," she
replied, with more respect than she had been wont to accord him.

"Then, I will accompany you part way, my friend, and, perchance, you can
give me a hand with some packages I left behind me in the skiff I have
moored there."

And so the two walked together through the dark alley to the end of the
rickety, dismantled dock; the one thinking of the vast reward the King
would lavish upon her for the information she felt sure she alone could
give; the other feeling beneath his mantle for the hilt of a long dagger
which nestled there.

As they reached the water's edge, De Vac was walking with his right
shoulder behind his companion's left, in his hand was gripped the keen
blade and, as the woman halted on the dock, the point that hovered just
below her left shoulder-blade plunged, soundless, into her heart at the
same instant that De Vac's left hand swung up and grasped her throat in
a grip of steel.

There was no sound, barely a struggle of the convulsively stiffening old
muscles, and then, with a push from De Vac, the body lunged forward into
the Thames, where a dull splash marked the end of the last hope that
Prince Richard might be rescued from the clutches of his Nemesis.




CHAPTER V

For three years following the disappearance of Prince Richard, a bent
old woman lived in the heart of London within a stone's throw of the
King's palace. In a small back room she lived, high up in the attic of
an old

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