"Certainly not, if that's the way you feel about it," snapped Dean.
After that they rode along together in silence, each busy with thoughts of their own. Dean was cursing himself for having let his enthusiasm to be of service to his government lead him into such circumstances. He felt that his chauffeur's position handicapped him in his relations with Jane, to whom he had been strongly attracted from the beginning. The son of a distinguished American diplomat, he had been educated for the most part in Europe. Friends of his father, when he had offered his services to the government, had convinced him that his knowledge of German and French would make him most useful in the secret service. Reluctantly he had consented to take up the work, and as he had gone further and further into it and had realized the vast machinery for surreptitious observation and dangerous activity that the German agents had secretly planted in the United States, he had become fascinated with his occupation--that is, until he met Jane Strong.
His association with her under present circumstances was fast becoming unbearable. Even though he was aware that she knew he was no ordinary chauffeur, he loathed the necessity of having to wear his mask in the presence of her family. He wanted to be free to come to see her, to send her flowers and to go about with her. For him to take any advantage of their present intimate relations to court her seemed to him little short of a betrayal of his government, yet at times it was all he could do to keep from telling her that he adored her. Love's sharp instincts, too, had made him realize that Jane was already beginning to be attracted by the handsome young German whom they were seeking to entrap, and the knowledge of this fact filled him with helpless rage and jealousy.
Jane, too, angered and insulted at first by Dean's outburst, had been endeavoring to analyze her own conduct. Candor reluctantly compelled her to admit that each time she met Frederic Hoff she had found herself coming more and more under his spell. He had a wonderful personality, talked entertainingly and ever exhibited an innate gallantry toward women in general, and herself in particular, which Jane had found delightfully interesting. Though she had undertaken wholeheartedly to try to get evidence against him, she was forced to admit to herself now that she was secretly delighted that there had been nothing damaging found as yet, so far as he was concerned, beyond the one fact that he had been in British uniform.
In vain she marshalled the circumstances about him, trying to make herself hate him. He was a German, she told herself. He was an enemy of her country. He lived with a man who had been proved to be a spy. He surreptitiously associated with American naval officers. The dictograph told her that nightly his uncle and he in the seclusion of their home toasted America's arch enemy, the German Kaiser. More than likely, too, her reason told her, he was a murderer. She ought to hate, to loathe, to despise him, and yet she didn't. She liked him. Whenever he approached she could feel her heart beating faster. She looked forward after each meeting with him to the time when she would see him again. What, she wondered, could be the matter with her? Assuredly she was a good patriotic American girl. Why couldn't she hate Frederic Hoff as she knew he ought to be hated?