"You must not cross-examine counsel," said he. "But, if it will be any comfort to you, I'll say this much, there was just a shadow of doubt, and Tollemache certainly let a chance slip. If I had defended your friend, I would have insisted on a postponement of the trial until this Arthur Wardlaw" (looking at his note-book) "could be examined, either in court or otherwise, if he was really dying. Is he dead, do you know?"
"I thought not. Sick witnesses are often at death's door; but I never knew one pass the threshold. Ha! ha! The trial ought to have been postponed till he got well. If a judge refused me a postponement in such a case, I would make him so odious to the jury that the prisoner would get a verdict in spite of his teeth."
"Then you think he was badly defended?"
"No; that is saying a great deal more than I could justify. But there are counsel who trust too much to their powers of reasoning, and underrate a chink in the evidence pro or con. Practice, and a few back-falls, cure them of that."
Mr. Hennessy uttered this general observation with a certain change of tone, which showed he thought he had said as much or more than his visitor had any right to expect from him; and she therefore left him, repeating her thanks. She went home, pondering on every word he had said, and entered it all in her journal, with the remark: "How strange! the first doubt of Robert's guilt comes to me from the lawyer who caused him to be found guilty. He calls it the shadow of a doubt."
That very evening, Mr. Freshfield had the courtesy to send her by messenger the name and address of the solicitor who had defended Robert Penfold, Lovejoy & James, Lincoln's Inn Fields. She called on them, and sent in her card. She was kept waiting a long time in the outer office, and felt ashamed, and sick at heart, seated among young clerks. At last she was admitted, and told Mr. Lovejoy she and her father, General Rolleston, were much interested in a late client of his, Mr. Robert Penfold; and would he be kind enough to let her see the brief for the defense?
"Are you a relation of the Penfolds, madam?"
"No, sir," said Helen blushing.