“For an instant I imagined that Bannister had taken the unpardonable liberty of examining my papers.
I am prepared to swear, and so is Bannister, that it was smooth and unstained.
Holmes, do you mean to tell me that, all the time I was talking to Bannister in this room, we had the man prisoner if we had only known it?”
Soames, let us have a look at your servant, Bannister.”
“We are investigating this unhappy business, Bannister,” said his master.
Upon one of these little staircases–not that at the head of which Lord George appeared from time to time, but the other–Gashford stood with his elbow on the bannister, and his cheek resting on his hand, with his usual crafty aspect.
Without the delay of an instant, he threw himself headlong over the bannisters into the lobby below.
“They’re grand,” said he; and then, as I was going, “Keep to the wall,” he added; “there’s nae bannisters. But the stairs are grand underfoot.”
Minding my uncle’s word about the bannisters, I kept close to the tower side, and felt my way in the pitch darkness with a beating heart.