I was met in the bare unpainted hall by a dropsical man of nearly sixty, holding a dim candle, a wax-myrtle dip wrapped on a corncob. He had a retreating chin, a throat-latch beard and a roving eye; stepped with one foot and slid with the other, spoke in a dejected voice, and had very poor use of his right hand. I followed him to the rear corner chamber, the one nearest the stable, feeling that, poor as the choice was, I should rather have him for my robber and murderer than those villains down at the quarters. I detained him in conversation while I drew off my boots and threw my jacket upon the back of a chair in such a way as to let my despatch be seen. The toss was a lucky one; the document, sealed with red wax, stuck out arrogantly from an inside pocket. Then, asking lively questions the while as if to conceal a blunder and its correction, I moved quickly between him and it and slipped the missive under a pillow of the fourpost bedstead..