As her personal relations with Frederic Hoff and her feelings toward him had in no way affected her sense of duty she felt that it was unnecessary for her to report the declaration of love he had made to her. Surely an affair that involved only the heart was her own property so long as she faithfully reported anything and everything that might lead to the exposure of the Hoffs' plots. She could not see that it was any of Chief Fleck's business, nor her country's either, if Frederic Hoff had fallen in love with her. At any rate it would be utterly impossible for her to make any statement about her own feelings toward him. Even in her own heart and mind she was not quite sure what they were. From the first his forceful personality had had great charm for her. His obvious interest in her she had found delightful and flattering. When she recalled how gallantly he had insisted on remaining to rescue Dean and herself, even before he knew her identity, she was filled with admiration for him. Yet always matched against all that she found lovable in him was the knowledge that he was a German, a traitor, a spy, perhaps a murderer, and at times she felt that she hated him with a hatred that never could be overcome.
"Well," said Fleck, studying her countenance, "what have you to tell us?"
"How is Dean?" she asked. "Will he live?"
Fleck and Carter exchanged glances. Was she, they wondered, really concerned in the handsome young chauffeur's welfare, or had she merely put the question to gain time in framing what she was going to say?
"I just left him," said Carter, in response to an almost imperceptible nod from the chief; "he's all right except for a scalp wound and a broken arm."
"I'm glad," said the girl impulsively.
"What happened to him?" asked Carter.
"Don't you know? The Hoffs' automobile hit us and overturned the motorcycle."
"The Hoffs' car!" cried Fleck and Carter together.
"Yes, I thought you knew."
"Tell us everything," demanded Fleck. "Where did it happen? Did they run you down purposely?"
"I don't think so; in fact I am sure they didn't. It was entirely accidental."
"Where did it happen? All Dean could remember was that you had picked up their trail about ten miles south of West Point. He could not tell how the accident occurred. He didn't even mention the Hoffs or seem to suspect that they were anywhere near at the time."
"I don't think he saw their car at all," Jane explained. "I caught just a glimpse of it before we were crashed into. We were on a mountain road going down a steep hill when their motor shot out of a deep cut just as we were passing."