You're not going to get into any trouble. You just stay 
where you are," insisted Alderson. 
He motioned to Butler, who, however, now that he 
had embarked on his grim task, was thinking that he 
had made a mistake. Aileen was a grown woman with 
a will of her own. What could he do? What good would 
it do him to tap personally on the door or force his way 
in and make her come out, unless he intended to kill 
Cowperwood? If she were made to come down here, 
that would be enough. She would then know that he 
knew all. He did not care to quarrel with Cowperwood, 
he now decided, in any public way. He was afraid to. 
He was afraid of himself. 
"Let her go," he said, grimly, doggedly. "You watch 
her. Tell the girl to come down-stairs to me." 
Mrs. Davis, realizing on the moment that this was 
some family tragedy, and hoping in an agonized way that 
she could slip out of it peacefully, started at once with 
Alderson and his assistants at his heels. They ascended 
the stairs, and, reaching the door of the room occupied 
by Cowperwood and Aileen, she tapped lightly. At the 
first knock Aileen blanched and leaped to her feet. She 
was usually not so nervous; but to-day, for some reason, 
she anticipated trouble. Cowperwood's eyes instantly 
hardened, losing that color of mirth which had filled them 
"Don't be nervous," he said, "it's nothing, I fancy. 
The servant wants to give you something. I'll go." 
He started, but Aileen interfered. "Wait," she said. 
Meanwhile the tap came again. Then she went to the 
door and opened it the least bit. 
" Mrs. Montague," exclaimed Mrs. Davis, in an ob- 
viously nervous, forced voice, "there's a gentleman down- 
stairs who wishes to see you!" 
"A gentleman to see me!" exclaimed Aileen, astonished 
and paling. " Are you sure?" 
"Yes; he says he wants to see you. There are several