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The Quest of the Sacred Slipper Sax Rohmer

The White Beam

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"The hands," resumed Mostyn slowly, "of those who hitherto have ventured to touch it have been" - he hesitated - "cut off."

"Your career in the Force would be finished if it happened to you, my lad," said Bristol shortly.

"I suppose they'd look after me," said the man, with grim humour.

"They would if you met with - an accident, in the discharge of your duty," replied the inspector; "but I haven't ordered you to do it, and I'm not going to."

"All right, sir," said the man, with a sort of studied truculence, "I'll take my chance."

I tried to stop him; Mostyn, too, stepped forward, and Bristol swore frankly. But it was all of no avail.

A sort of chill seemed to claim my very soul when I saw the constable stoop, unconcernedly pick up the slipper, and replace it in the broken case.

It was out of a silence cathedral-like, awesome, that he spoke.

"All you want is a new pane of glass, sir," he said - "and the thing's done."

I anticipate in mentioning it here; but since Constable Hughes has no further place in these records I may perhaps be excused for dismissing him at this point.

He was picked up outside the section house on the following evening with his right hand severed just above the wrist.

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The Quest of the Sacred Slipper
Sax Rohmer

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