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"No," I rejoined, "the first step would be the last." The Clockwork man nodded quickly, as though recollecting something. Then he moved his right hand spasmodically upwards and inserted it between the lapels of his jacket, somewhere in the region of his waistcoat. He appeared to be trying to find something. Presently he found what it was he looked for, and his hand moved again with a sharp, deliberate action. The noise stopped at once. "The silencer," he explained, "I forgot to put it on. It was such a relief to be working[Pg 17] again. I must have nearly stopped altogether. Very awkward. Very awkward, indeed." "Guess I'm the first Yankee y' ever caught, ain't I?" His smile was superior, but congratulatory. "Then we both drifted to England, neither of us knowing where the other was. I met Leon quite by accident. He said he had found his wife, and that she seemed to be rolling in money. She managed to lure him to the Corner House, where she kept him prisoner. But he got some money from her, and part of that he promised me. I never got it, as you know, and you can guess the reason why.