"No, no," Bellward replied heatedly, " I tell you it is madness. We must not delay a minute. For Heaven's sake, leave the girl alone and let's save ourselves."
"What?" cried Strangwise, "and abandon Minna!"
"Minna is well able to look after herself," answered Bellward in a sulky voice, "it's a question of sauve qui peat now... every man for himself!"
"No!" said Strangwise firmly, "we'll wait for Minna, Bellward. You exaggerate the danger. I tell you I was at the garden wall within a few seconds of our friend laying you out, and I saw no sign of him in his garden. It was a physical impossibility for him to have got over the wall and back into the house in the time. And in his garden there's nowhere to hide. It's as bare as the Sahara!"
"But, good Heavens!" cried Bellward, throwing his hands excitedly above his head, "the man can't dissolve into thin air. He's gone back to the house, I tell you, and the police will be here at any minute. You know he's not in our garden; for you searched every nook and corner of it yourself. Okewood may be too clever for you, Strangwise; but he's not a magician!"
"No," said Strangwise sternly, he is not." And he added in a low voice:
"That's why I am convinced that he is in this house!"
Desmond felt his heart thump against his ribs.