"There's rather an unhappy and most inconvenient entanglement in my household," he began. "My nephew, the young Grand Duke, is tangled up and ensnarled with a certain lady in England whom he wishes to marry. It is unfortunate that she is of too high a social status to be entirely ignored or roughly bought off. Still, she is not eligible for admission into our house. For more than political reasons, it is impossible that she enter into an alliance with us." His eyes flashed. "This lady has lately threatened to make trouble through my persistent refusal to countenance her desired relationship." He frowned. "She has in her possession compromising letters and documents which my nephew was foolish enough to give her. These must be returned to my hands. Monetary questions need not be considered for a moment. Pressure and influence have been tried on both my nephew and the lady. But of no avail. The means I leave to you. But force and publicity must at all cost be avoided. I can give you very little help as to procedure and information. What do you think of the chances?"

It has ever been my way to he conservative in :

"I hope your Highness will pardon me, but I find it often undesirable to voice my thoughts until I have reached a certain stage of my investigations."

This appeared to impress him and he rose saying:

"I am entirely in your hands. Communicate direct with my chamberlain, or if necessary to use cable, I shall arrange with your chief in Berlin for forwarding facilities. Be good enough to wait and I shall send you my secretary." Slapping me on the shoulder, "You'll not regret it, helping us out of this quandary."

Neither did I. The Grand Duke stalked out. A flunky appeared and conducted me to a private little dining-room where cold game and wine were served and at the end of which the secretary came in and handed me an envelope with the Grand Duke's compliments and a request to start at once on my mission. Assuring him I would be on the road that same night, I returned to Berlin. I got Stammer of the Wilhelmstrasse on the telephone and requested a preliminary two months' leave of absence. I then caught the Hook of Holland Express en route for London.

Upon opening the Grand Duke's letter I had found it contained three bank notes of 1000 marks each and a draft for 500 pounds on the English, Scottish and Colonial Bank, with a note saying that any future request would be honored at three days' notice to the same bank. Thus I would have all the money I wanted in London.