Page by Page Books
Read Books Online, for Free
Under the Andes Rex Stout

A Royal Visitor

Page 1 of 8

Table Of Contents: Under the Andes

Next Page

Previous Chapter

Next Chapter

More Books

If it had not been for the manifest danger, I could have laughed aloud at what I read in the eyes of the king. Was it not supremely ridiculous for Desiree Le Mire, who had been sought after by the great and the wealthy and the powerful of all Europe, to be regarded with desire by that ugly dwarf? And it was there, unmistakably.

I sang out a sharp warning, but it was unnecessary; Desiree had already caught sight of the royal visitor. She pushed Harry from her bodily. He sprang to his feet in angry surprise; then, enlightened by the confusion in her face, turned quickly and swore as he, too, saw the intruder.

How critical the situation was I did not know, despite Desiree's assertions. His eyes were human and easily read; they held jealousy; and when power is jealous there is danger.

But Desiree proved herself equal to the occasion. She remained seated on the granite couch for a long minute without moving; confusion left her eyes as she gazed at us apparently with the utmost composure; but I who knew her could see that her brain was working with the rapidity of lightning. Then her glance passed to the figure at the doorway, and with a gesture commanding and truly royal in its simplicity, she held her hand forth, palm down, to the Inca king.

Like an obedient trained monkey he trotted across the intervening space, grasped her soft white hand in his monstrous paw, and touched his lips to her fingers.

We have hundreds more books for your enjoyment. Read them all!

That was all, but it spoke volumes to one who could divine the springs of action. I remember that at the time there shot through my mind a story I had heard concerning Desiree in Paris. The Duke of Bellarmine, then her protector, had one evening entered her splendid apartment on the Rue Jonteur--furnished, of course, by himself--and had found his divinity entertaining one Jules Chavot, a young and beautiful poet. Whereupon he had launched forth into the most bitter reproaches and scornful denunciations.

"Monsieur," Desiree had said, with the look of a queen outraged, when he had finished, "you are annoying. Little Chavot amuses me. You are aware that I never refuse myself anything which I consider necessary to my amusement, and just now I find you very dull."

And the noble duke, conquered by that glance of fire and those terrible words, had retired with humble apologies, after receiving a gracious permission to call on the following day!

In short, Desiree was irresistible; the subjection of the Inca king was but another of her triumphs, and not the most remarkable.

And then I looked at Harry, and was aware of a new danger. He was glaring at the Inca with eyes which told their own story of the fire within, and which were waiting only for suspicion to become certainty. I called to him:

"Harry! Hold fast!"

He glanced at me, gave a short laugh, and nodded.

Then came Desiree's voice, in a low tone of warning:

"On your knees!"

Page 1 of 8 Previous Chapter   Next Page
Who's On Your Reading List?
Read Classic Books Online for Free at
Page by Page Books.TM
Under the Andes
Rex Stout

Home | More Books | About Us | Copyright 2004