A Flight into Texas
Here was an opportunity. If Dodge could only be forced to testify to this perjury before a
court, Hummel could undoubtedly be convicted of a crime that would not only disbar him from the legal profession, but would put him in jail. More
The only man that stood between him and the iron bars of Blackwell's Island was Charles F. Dodge--the man whom he had patted on the knee in his office and called a "Mascot," when quite in the nature of business he needed a little perjury to
assist a wealthy client. Hummel in terror called into play every resource upon which, during forty years of practice, his tiny tentacles had fastened. Who shall say that while he made a show of enjoying himself nightly with his accustomed lightheartedness in the Tenderloin, he did not feel confident that in the end this peril would disappear like the others which had from time to time threatened him during his criminal career? But Hummel was fully aware of the tenacity of the man who had resolved to rid New York of his malign influence. His Nemesis was following him. In his dreams, if he ever dreamed, it probably took the shape of the square-shouldered District Attorney in the shadow of whose office building the little shyster practiced his profession. Had he been told that this Nemesis was in reality a jovial little man with a round, ruddy face and twinkling blue eyes he would have laughed as heartily as it was in his power to laugh. Yet such was the fact. A little man who looked less like a detective than a commercial traveler selling St. Peter's Oil or
some other cheerful concoction, with manners as gentle and a voice as soft as a spring zephyr, who always took off his hat when he came into a business office, seemingly bashful to the point of self-effacement, was the one who snatched Charles F. Dodge from the borders of Mexico and held him in an iron grip when every influence upon which Hummel could call for aid, from crooked police
officials, corrupt judges, and a gang of cutthroats under the guise of a sheriff's posse, were fighting for his release.
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