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1*'- a (Copyright, 1908, by W. G. Chapman.) [Copyright In Great Britain and the United States, by Wm. Be Queux ] __ THE MAN WITH THE CLAWS. ESSIEURS, faites vos jeux!” Above the jingle of coin, the rustle of notes, the click of the tiny ivory ball, and the hum of many voices, that monotonous stri dent cry which has en ticed so many to ruin and so few to fortune, rings ever in the ears of those who fall be neath the fascination of that most exacting of mistresses. Dame the great gilded sa lons, where the light of day is ex cluded by curtains of black and crim son muslin, where the senses are be wildered by an apparent disregard of wealth, and where the atmosphere is heavy with that faint odor of per spiration and perfume, it is the same invitation to play rising above all other sounds, year in, year out, Sun days and week days—“Messieurs, faites vos jeux!” To frequenters of Monte Carlo I re quire little introduction. They know me, perhaps, as a familiar figure of lather funereal aspect, in frock coat and black tie, strolling aimlessly about, sometimes watching the play at this table or at that, but more often keeping close observation on one or other of the players who, like moths around a candle, are attracted to the tapis-vert by golden expectations. 1 am an observer by profession, having graduated under Mons. Goron, chief of the Paris Surete, and afterwards served a term as croupier at the rou lette tables, whence I rose to be chef •de partie, and afterwards became ap pointed to the office I now hold. As chief of the surveillance depart ment, my office is no sinecure, for, rrutn to ten, tne Eercie aes Etrangers c!e Monaco is the sink of Europe. An interesting procession of malefactors and criminals of the upper class seems to filter through our salons year by year, in blissful ignorance of the fact that, when they mount the carpeted steps from the Place, they are simply walking into an international police bureau. Little do they dream that, if warrants are out for their arrest, it is more than probable that in one of the large albums in my private room be hind the bureau, where they present their fictitious visiting cards to obtain their carte d’ admission, there reposes a well-executed counterfeit present ment of themselves, together with a ■brief and pointed statement of their offense. In these heavy albums, each devoted to a separate country, I have a truly cosmopolitan collection. Nearly •every region on the face of the earth •contributes its quota to my gallery of •celebrities, for whenever a delinquent is known to have obtained a consider able sum of money by his crime his description or his photograph is at •once forwarded to me, for the fatal fascination which the roulette wheel exercises upon those guilty of the more serious offenses is truly astonish ing. Yet, when once they are recog nized, either by myself or my as sistants, they have as little chance of escape as they have of winning a zero —or the ami de la maison, as we know it familiarly—on their first throw. To discuss the morality of this, the most picturesque spot on the whole Littoral, or to hold a brief for or against the tables, is not my intention. To describe it as a hell within a para dise will perhaps suffice. Much has already been written about wild gaming and its dire results—much that is true, but more that is false. Yet. now for the first time, will be shown in these reminiscences the manner in which the administration of the Cercle des Etrangers renders as sistance to the police of Europe. As may readily be imagined, a good •many romances in real life pass be neath the notice of one whose days are spent at a spot where drama is •continuously being played, and where it is not infrequently varied by tragedy. Truly, ours is a strange world—the world of Monte Carlo. High play, or a run of luck, always interests me, tired as I am of the eternal stakes of single five-franc pieces; and it was this eagerness to watch heavy risks which one after noon attracted me to that roulette table which stands at the further end, to the right of the entrance to the trente-et-quarante rooms. It was the height of the Riviera season, a bright, balmy day in early February, a few days before Carnival; the sea outside was turquoise, the sky cloudless, and the gardens were looking their best and brightest, but, as usual, utterly neglected by those eager crowds. A glance around the tables showed me that something unusual was in prog ress. The croupiers — who are changed each hour—chanced to be al! young men, and with such a party the game was always fast and furious They made it their boast that when ever these six came together they played twice as quickly as the "fogies’ did. “Messieurs, faites vos jeux!” rose sharply as I approached the chair o the chef de partie, and at the same instant the croupier reversed the ree and black wheel, and with a twist o the thumb launched the i.vory ball oi its way along the circular ledge. The excited players threw their sil ver and gold on the number i, the dozens, the rouge, the noir and the Impair. Then they waited breath lessly. Suddenly, just as the ball was losing its impetus, a tall, dark-bearded, rath er handsome man, with a pair of black, piercing ej'es, which seemed to gleam with an almost unnatural bril liance, thrust his gloved hand into his pocket, and carelessly tossed some notes upon the table without counting them, at the same time exclaiming: “Remiere douzaine!” In an instant the croupier spread them open, saying: “Trois mille francs premiere dou zaine.” Scarcely had these words been ut tered when there arose the inevitable warning: “Rein ne va plus!” For a single second there was a dead silence as all eyes watched the tiny ball, while it fell with a rattle and final click into one of the small sockets on the cylinder, and ere it had touched the number the croupier announced in the same sharp voice: “N’euf! Rouge, Impair et manque!”’ and with his ral.e commenced to draw in the losses. The man who had flung down hm notes so carelessly muttered some thing to himself as if counting, and took the six thousand francs he had won, handing hack the tnree thousand he had staked, saying: “Premiere cofomre.” Again the invitation to p:Tay rose above all other sounds, and loungers attracted from other tables crossed to watch the sensational stakes. I asked one of the blue-coated attendants whether the player had been winning, and the reply was that he had lost only once, and that he had played al ways with the- same stakes—three thousand francs Then, returning to the table, I stocni next him. TIlP mnmont tho oixnr./vnM.'r. were placed on the small square at the end of the table beneath the-num ber 36, gold and silver were showered upon it by those- determined to follow the play of this favorite of Fortune. The wheel was spun, the- ball ejected, and a few moments later, in the breathless tension which followed, arose the words#: “Dix-huitr Rouge, pair et manque!” Again the stranger had won. The smaller stakes were paid first, then the croupier handed him six notes, each for a thousand francs. This time he placed all the notes in his pocket, together with the three thousand ho had staked, and producing a note for a hundred francs, tossed it on zero. The chance was too smad to suit the majority of the players, and only a couple of five-franc pieces were placed beside- it. ' Rein ne va plus!” sounded almost before the stakes could be placed on. The ball gave a little jump, then fell with a sharp click, click—click. "Trente-deux!” cried the croupier, loudly, with that roll of the “r” which frequenters of Monte Carlo know so. well. The stranger, with a muttered word!, which sounded very much like an oath, turned away, having lost for- the first time, but richer by many thousand francs than half an hour before. Those around the table envied him his luck; and many, mostly of the English tour ist class, admired his self-control in leaving immediately after his first loss. If every one did so, there would be fewer ruined fortunes, and the bank would profit less. With both hands deep in his pock ets, and a disconsolate look on his face—an expression rather as | though lie had lost heavilv than gained—he strolled away into the trente-et-quarante room beyond. Whether it was tire curious look of suppressed excitement in his eyes that caused me to keep his dejected figure in sight I know not, yet by some intuition I felt that about this man— who was certainly not an habitue of the rooms—there was something mys terious. One fact was strange. When he had drawn from his vest pocket the hundred-franc note, he had taken out with it a third-class return railway ticket. Men as well dressed do not usually travel to Monte Carlo third class. Again, as I watched him cross the polished floor, I saw that although his coat and vest were well cut, and that he wore a heavy gold albert, yet his trousers were frayed at the bot toms, baggy at the knees, and alto gether disreputable. A dozen times as I strolled back wards and forwards the length of the rooms, lounging here and there, I caught his full face and profile. It was that of a man strong-willed, excited beneath a calm exterior, and debating within himself whether he should continue playing. The face was not the original ol any in my collection. From table to table he strolled, pausing to glance at the play, until he passed out into the great atrium, at that moment filled with the crowd emerging from the concert room. As I went out by the entrance dooi ' I whispered to Grenat, the head door i keeper, pointing him out, and ordering [ him, if he again entered, to look al : his card, and at once send his name i to me. Leisurely the stranger made his ■ way to the end of the hall, entered the s small bar and ordered a glass oi lemonade. By the manner in which he ordered it 1 at once knew that he was acquainted with the Casino, for every stranger orders whisky or brandy, in ignorance that no intoxi cants are sold. Having swallowed it at a gulp he turned and made his way back into the rooms. “Well,” I asked Grenat, a few mo ments later, "what’s his name?” “Emile Tessier,” was the reply. At once I entered the bureau of the administration, and from the register discovered that a card of admission had that afternoon been issued to one Emile Tessier, who had given his na tionality as French, and his address at the Hotel lies Itritanniques at Men tone. Again I went into the gaming rooms, where I found him standing watching one of the center roulette tables, j Through the remainder of that aft-' IT WAS THE SUCCESSFUL PLAYER. ernoon he lounged leisurely about the rooms, sometimes interested in the play, but never risking anything liigh ! er than a live-france piece, until near ly seven o'clock, when he obtained his hat and coat and left the Casino. As soon as I saw his intention I also obtained my hat, and took a short cut through the gardens to the stops lead ing down to the railway station. At the top of the steps I overtook an old decrepit man, hunchbacked and shab by, who leant heavily on his stout stick, and was about to descend. He had been speaking with a man, whose dark figure I saw disappearing in the direction of the Casino. Beneath the light I glanced at the deformed man’s face It was the successful player! In the darkness of the gardens he had as sumed his ragged overcoat, turned his soft felt hat into another shape, and, with an altered expression of heavy care and inexpressible sorrow, had effected a transformation that was little short of marvelous. Indeed, were it not for the fact that I heard him cough, and recognized it as the cough of the man who had won so many thousands at the tables, even I should have failed to identify him. In that instant I became convinced that my suspicions were not un founded, and, further, that the mystery was deeper than I had imagined. At the station, instead of remaining on the platform for Mentone, he crossed the line and entered the omni bus train for Nice, while I also mounted into a first-class compart ment, determined to see where he really lived, my curiosity being now thoroughly aroused. That there was some deep purpose in this complete a thousand francs upon a transversale of the last six numbers. "Trente-deux! Rouge, pair et passe!” cried the croupier, almost next instant. I watched his face. Although he had won, no smile of satisfaction played about his thin lips. His was a gray, ashen countenance from which all hope and all desire seemed to have fled. His winnings, five thousand francs, were pushed towards him, but he twisted the notes together and thrust them into the outside pocket of his jacket with as little care as though they were circulars. His manner had changed from the previous day. He was now pale to the lips, whereas he had been ruddy and healthy looking, and his pallor was heightened by his white silk cravat secured by a gold ring. Again and again he played with unvarying success, until with sudden resclve he transferred all his winnings to an inner pocket, and then tossed a single five-franc piece upon the cen ter dozen. The ball fell upon number eight. He lost. Then, with some muttered words Of discontent, he turned away. It seemed as though, having won thou sands of francs, he begrudged the loss of a single silver coin. I did not follow him, for the mys tery irritated me, and I had already several other important matters on hand. Nearly a week passed before I saw him again. He was playing at the table where we had first met, and his personal appearance had considerably improved. This time I resolved to speak to him; therefore I went to my room, slipped on a smart tweed coat who had seen a good deal of the world, but at dinner still another fact struck me as curious. He always wore gloves, and to-day they were light gray suede ones. Even now, while eating, he retained one glove—the left hand one. “I suffer from acute rheumatism,” he explained, noticing my surprise that he did not remove the glove. “I met with a severe accident while cycling three years ago, and my hand has never been the same since. The doctor orders me to wear a glove al ways, for the least cold affects it.” “Fortunate that it was your left hand,” I answered, while at that in stant our eyes met, and I fancied I de tected in his a curious look of sus pielon. “Does it pain you now?” I asked. “Yes. It gives me some bad twinges now and then. This afternoon, while playing, I was in great pain.” This answer was exactly what I wished him to give. “I happen to be a medical man, al though I don’t practice,” I said. “After dinner I’ll have a glance at it, if you like.” “Oh, you’re very kind,” he replied, with a smile. “Certainly. You’ll be doing me a great service if you can recommend any treatment that will allay the pain. I feel it right up my arm to the shoulder.” “Well, I’ll see what its appearance Is,” I said, and we continued eating our filet vantadour. As the meal progressed, I became more impressed by the fact that it was merely my friend’s eccentricity that had attracted me. While he seemed to entertain some absurd —^——— disguise I felt confident, but what it was I could not imagine. When he got out at Nice he had taken off his overcoat, and, carrying it over his arm, walked erect in nat ural attitude. I followed him down the Avenue de la Gare, across the Place Massena, and on to the Promenade, where he disappeared into the Hotel des Anglais. He had given an incor rect address, and it was strange that a first-class hotel should care to take j in a man who wore such shabby trus ers. After 20 minutes or so I in quired at the bureau of the hotel, and discovered that the stranger who had thus aroused my curiosity was known as Alons. Tessier, and that in the reg ister he had inscribed himself as a landed proprietor, living near Bay onne. I took my dinner leisurely at the Helder, afterwards returning to Alonte Carlo, utterly mystified. Next day I had many affairs to at tend to and completely forgot the curious incident, until about four o’clock in the afternoon, whew a cough behind me sounded familiar, and there I saw the mysterious stranger stand ing at tile right-hand roulette table just within the entrance. Attired gayly in a suit of light gray, with a pink carnation in his lapel, he was watching the play intently, it was strange how that cougli attracted me. I reasoned with myself, but could not account for it. True, I had only flsst heard ft on the previous day, yet it now seemed curiously familiar. From his nervous action I saw thar he intended playing; therefore, in order to watch him more intently, I whispered a word to the chef de par tie, and took his place on the high chair behind the croupier. The ball was already in motion when the stfranger placed a note for and vest, which I kept In readiness for emergencies, and lounged back to the table, taking up my stand behind him. When he played I also put down my modest five-franc pieces until he dis cerned that I was following his play, and glanced back at me inquiringly. “M'sieur has good fortune,” 1 ob served, quickly. “Yes,” he answered, with a laugh. “But my luck has changed. See, I’ve just lost,” and he nodded towards a five-franc piece beneath the croupier’3 rake. Together we turned away. “M'sieur is to be congratulated," I said. "It is remarked iu tho rooms that he never loses.” "I lose sometimes,” he answered, with a dry, harsh laugh. “I've just lost.” "But it Is only five francs, whereas while l have been standing with m’sieur lie has won twenty-eight thou sand francs,” I observed. "You count it—eh?” he snapped. ** I rlitn't A Imuc: iu o l/iuu (t might hare been a maximum instead of a minimum.” "But you have won, awri you should be content." ”1 am.” he answered. “JTve just lost five francs on twenty-nine; a number which wins always if I state upon it; therefore 1 play no more.” I offered him a cigarette' as we strolled up a rad down over the tes solated pavement of the atriiun, and endeavored to obtain from him some facts regarding himself, but toj all my artful inquiries lie carefully remained dumb. I had assumed the character of st garrulous tourist and gabbled on about myself; off course, tellinif him a fictitious story. lit was near the dinner hour, and at my invitation we dined at the Hotel de- Paris opposite;. My mysterious friend was, 1 found' an educated man IP prejudices, he also appeared to b« ut terly careless of the future, for when I asked him where he was going he looked at me blankly across the table and answered that he hadn’t the least idea. ‘‘I drift about," he added. "I have drifted about Europe all my life." “1 haven't traveled very much,” I said. “I came along here from Biar ritz. I)o you know it?" “No," he answered, “f've never been south of Bordeaux.” These words were an admission that the entry in the register of the Hotel des Anglais at Nice was false. 1 had felt, convinced that he did not come from Bayonne because of his north ern accent. Ho was concealing his identity. After dinner we strolled across the brightly lit Place to the cafe, and sat outside to take our liqueurs and listen to the band. It was there he drew off his glove, not, however, without a slight hesitation, and exhibited to me a withered claw like hand. It was in deed hideous. | did not wonder that be preferred1 to keep it gloved. The flesh had wizened and dmrl upon fin gers and pains until it had' assumed a dark-brown color, while she bones slume white beneath the skin, a veritable skeleton hand with long un t rimmed nails, Che hand of a demon ratllwr than that of a human) being. Even in my ignorance of the prac tice’«f medicine f saw that such a ter rible' disease was not the result of rheumatism, and expressed that opinion. But' my friend merely shook his head and pulled on the glove’ again, saving:: "You're not the first doctor who> has told mu’ that. Yet two great special ists in Paris agreed' as to the cause and treatment. I must admit, how ever, that I've been none the better for it,” and he smiled, coughing that curious Hacking cough. “Shall you play again?" I asked, as Wp rose and desepndpd into thu "No,” lie answered, glancing up at the illuminated clock of the Casino.. ”1 shall return.” "To Nice?” “Yes. I'm at the- Anglais. When . you're over look me up.” Then, with mutual civilities, we- ex changed cards, shook hands, and parted. His eagerness to depart during the last few moments struck me as strange: therefore returning into the Casino I slipped on another suit, and when his train left the station for Nice I was in another compartment engrossed in the Petit Journal. It chanced to be a yellow rapide, and I had to exercise considerable tact to evade recognition, as, with growing restlessness, he walked along the cor ridors from end to end, peering into each carriage as if in search of some one. "Is this train from Ventimille?” I heard him inquire of the guard, to whicii the man gave an affirmative answer, it seemed as though he ex pected some one to arrive from the Italian frontier. On arrival at Nice he walked quick ly down the Avenue de la Gare until he came to the Cafe de la Regence, where he entered, seating himself at a table in a far corner and ordering a bock. While drinking it I saw that his keen eyes were fixed intently on the table. The instant he left I took his seat, and there ^ipon the marble top I saw some writing in pencil. It was evidently a message, but he had half effaced it by dipping his finger in the droppings of the beer and care lessly smearing it across. Yet the two scribbled words in French I was enabled to read were sufficient to whet my curiosity. They were as follows: "Choucrouttmann crocodile.” To the uninitiated they possessed no meaning, but my experience in Paris had given me a good knowledge of thieves’ argot, and I translated tnem as "German money lender.” For a few minutes I sat staring at the writing and thinking. Then a sud den thought dawned upon me. and by thp npvt train T travpTp#! hnr»lr tn Monte Carlo, where I spent half an hour over my cosmopolitan portrait gallery. The words upon that table had some very mysterious meaning. Again I went to Nice by the eleven o'clock rapide, that train which is al ways filled with home-going gamblers, and at once took a cab to the central police office, in order that the observa tion should be continued upon the mysterious stranger at his hotel. As I entered, however, I was surprised to meet Dumont, the well-known Paris detective. “Well,” I exclaimed, greeting him heartily, for we were excellent friends. “What brings you down here?” “A case,” he answered. “I’ve been here a week, but am returning to morrow. My man was believed to have come down here for an airing after committing a murder, but I've been unable to trace him. He's a hunchback.” “A hunchback!” I exclaimed, re flecting for jn instant. “And he mur dered a German money lender?” “Yes. How did you know?” in quired Dumont, amazed. Iiut I kept my own counsel, and merely answered: “You’ll find your man at the Hotel des Anglais, number 106. Some of the fraternity—an accessory, probably^ has warned him to-night that you’re here, so you’d better lose no time.” Halft an hour later Dumont arresfed the mysterious player just as he was In the act of packing his bag, and ere I returned that night 1 learned that this man, whose real name was Bou det, and who was fond of posing as a hunchback, was one of the most desperate characters in Paris. With extraordinary ingenuity he had en ticed to his lodgings at Passy a Ger man usurer and murdered him, secur ing some thirty thousand francs which his victim had carried in his wallet. His hand, it appeared, had been In jured by an accident with acids, with which he had experimented at the time when the anarchists were com mitting so many outrages. The evidence at the trial was of an extremely sensational character, for it was proved that he was known in a certain circle in Paris as “The Man with the Claws,” being leader of an International gang of malefactors, some of whose names he divulged to the police on the morning his head fell on the Place de la Roquette. S/ L TRIES TO KILL DAVID. Sunday School Leuon for Aug. 16, 1908 j Specially Arranged for This Paper • SCUIPTCUE TEXT.—1 Samuel 18:6-16. Memory verses, 14-1G. GOLDEN TEXT.—"The Lord God Is a sun and shield.”—PsaLns 84:11. TIME.—B. C. 1062 (Usslier), soon after the vfctnry over Goliath. PLACE.—The capital, probably at Gl beah, five or six miles north of Jerusa lem. Comment and Suggestive Thought. David's victory over Goliath had sev eral issues which affected his whole life. 1. It led to the blessed friendship which bound together the hearts of David and Jonathan "as with hooks of steel” (vs. 1-4). 2. It led to David's advancement to the head of the army, and his training In the arts of war, for th»? defense of his country (v. 5). 3. It led to> his long and difficult training in dealing with men of alii Wads, to self-control and wisdom. This is- put last in the story, because of its connection with Saul, which requires considerable detail (vs. 6-9). V. 9. "And Saul eyed David1,” “kept his eye on David . . . in suspicion and dislike.”—Int. Crit. Com. We often speak of jealousy as "the green-eyed monBter,” and no emotions show them selves more unmistakably in the eye. Envy and Jealousy. 1. They are most unhappy vices. Of all the pas sions jeaJousy is that which exacts the hardest service and pays the bitterest wages.—Colton, in Lacon. 2. They are the fruit of selfishness, of making self one’s god, one's su preme- object of love. 3. The cure of jealousy is to seek first the kingdom of God, and test evrything, not by its effect on our selves, hut by its power to aid or to UIUUCI UUU S lYlIlgUUlll. XIC UlOb O this will rejoice in its coming, even though it be through others. So John said of Jesus, “He must Increase, but I must decrease.” 4. Therefore overcome evil with good; overcome it in its very begin nings, for there is nothing which grows so rapidly. V. 10. “The evil spirit from God came upon Saul,” made use of this malady which opens wide the door for such influences, and all evil passions of the king find easy expression. “And he prophesied,” that is he went through the frenzies and terrible strug gles and convulsions which charac terized a certain form of prophesying among the heathen (very different from anything done by the Biblical prophets). An eye-witness, in describing the Egyptian dervishes, says of the devo tees that “some writhe in agony, some swoon, some are in fits, while still with foaming lips they strive to mur mur the praise of Allah.”—Gordon Cumming. It survives among the fakirs of In dia and sheiks, or dervishes, of Mo hammedanism. They "rave” (margin of r. v.), they foam, and throw them selves into many an unnatural posture. They become dangerous, not only to others, but also to themselves when so frenzied; still, lookers-on regard them as performing religious exercises or prophesying.—Shweir, Mount Leb anon, Syria. First Attempt to Murder David, v. 11. “Saul cast the javelin,” or short spear. Twice did David escape by his agility. Second Attempt to Kill David, v. 13. Saul sent David away and made him a colonel of a regiment: Ostensibly, to promote David, and conquer the king’s enemies. Really that David might be slain by the Philistines. The result was to bring out David's virtues more conspicuously. After this Saul tried to make David disaffected, by refusing to keep his promise to make him his son-in-law; ana again uiruugn me love oi ms daughter for David. A Hero in Trial. — Vs. 14-16. (1.) V. 14. “David behaved himself wisely,” prudently, skillfully, with all the wisdom of goodness and love. There was no treachery in him. He learned self-control and grew in wis dom and knowledge and grace. (2.) One of the sources of this wis dom was in his singleness of heart, his devotion to right and duty at any cost, absolute unselfishness. “The wisest course in time of danger is to do faithfully our daily duty, and leave our case with God.” (3.) “And the Lord was with him.” The Lord is with everyone as far as lie is willing to receive him. and yields to his guidance. All past experience in serving and loving God, every act of faithfulness and love, every good habit formed, every victory over selfishness, every sincere prayer, every act of con secration to God, in all the past life, is a preparation for receiving and using the presence of God. The better instruments we become, the more per fectly can we and will we be guided by our Heavenly Father, Into all truth, into the wisest actions, into the fuflfcst life. (4.) When we are wise and faith ful and the Lord Is with us, then all things, all trials, all difficulties, all sorrows, all opportunities, all influ ences, good or bad, are compelled to work together for good. (5.) V. 16. “All Israel and Judah loved David. ’ And this was preparing the way for a successful reign when the time came. David was social, not conceited, went among the people as one of them. The power to win love Is one of God’s greatest gifts. But only the loving, the unselfish, the pure in heart and purpose, can wield it in the fullness of its glory and power. Guess David Would. Four-year-old Joe Is very fond of Bible stories, and evidently follows the example of his best-loved hero as to meditation ’’in the night watches.” He wakened his mother one night, after midnight, with the question— “Mamma, where is David now?" “In heaven, I guess. Joe." “Will I go lo heaven when I die?” “I hope so. Joe.” Mamma, the little voice was very eager now, "do you *>w when I get there David will Just let mo hold his sling-shot a little while? Delineator.