"I will be reasonable," Monty whined. "I will go to sleep, my friend, and worry you no more when I have had just one sip of that brandy! It is the finest medicine in the world for me! It will keep the fever off. You do not want money you say! Come, is there anything in this world which I possess, or may possess, which you will set against that three inches of brown liquid?"
Trent was on the point of an angry negative. Suddenly he stopped - hesitated - and said nothing Monty's face lit up with sudden hope.
"Come," he cried, "there is something I see! You're the right sort, Trent. Don't be afraid to speak out. It's yours, man, if you win it. Speak up!"
"I will stake that brandy," Trent answered, "against the picture you let fall from your pocket an hour ago."
For a moment Monty stood as though dazed. Then the excitement which had shone in his face slowly subsided. He stood quite silent, muttering softly to himself, his eyes fixed upon Trent.
"Her picture! My little girl's picture! Trent, you're joking, you're mad!"
"Am I?" Trent answered nonchalantly. "Perhaps so! Anyhow those are my terms! You can play or not as you like! I don't care."
A red spot burned in Monty's cheeks, and a sudden passion shook him. He threw himself upon Trent and would have struck him but that he was as a child in the younger man's grasp. Trent held him at a distance easily and without effort.