reporters; and as for those important missions about which

time:2023-12-03 08:05:18 source:Light Hands Net author:music

The professor of chances smiled superior. "Those things decide each individual race, and the best men win, because it happens to be the only race that is never sold. But go further back, and you find it is chance. It is pure chance that sends the best men up to Cambridge two or three years running, and then to Oxford. With this key, take the facts my system rests on. There are two. The first is that in thirty and odd races and matches, the university luck has come out equal on the river and at Lord's: the second is, the luck has seldom alternated. I don't say, never. But look at the list of events; it is published every March. You may see there the great truth that even chances shun direct alternation. In this, properly worked, lies a fortune at Homburg, where the play is square. Red gains once; you back red next time, and stop. You are on black, and win; you double. This is the game, if you have only a few pounds. But with five hundred pounds you can double more courageously, and work the short run hard; and that is how losses are averted and gains secured. Once at Wiesbaden I caught a croupier, out on a holiday. It was Good-Friday, you know. I gave him a stunning dinner. He was close as wax, at first--that might be the salt fish; but after the _rognons 'a la brochette,_ and a bottle of champagne, he let out. I remember one thing he said: Monsieur, ce que fait la fortune de la banque ce n'est pas le petit avantage qu'elle tire du refait--quoique cela y est pour quelquechose--c'est la te'me'rite' de ceux qui perdent, et la timidite' de ceux qui gagnent.'"

reporters; and as for those important missions about which

"And," says Vizard, "there is a French proverb founded on _experience:_

reporters; and as for those important missions about which

"C'est encore rouge qui perd, Et encore noir. Mais toujours blanc qui gagne.'"

reporters; and as for those important missions about which

Severne, for the first time, looked angry and mortified; he turned his back and was silent. Vizard looked at him uneasily, hesitated a moment, then flung the remainder of his cigar away and seemed to rouse himself body and soul. He squared his shoulders, as if he were going to box the Demon of play for his friend, and he let out good sense right and left, and, indeed, was almost betrayed into eloquence. "What!" he cried, "you, who are so bright and keen and knowing in everything else, are you really so blinded by egotism and credulity as to believe that you can invent any method of betting at _rouge et noir_ that has not been tried before you were born? Do you remember the first word in La Bruy'ere's famous work?"

"No," said Ned, sulkily. "Read nothing but newspapers."

"Good lad. Saves a deal of trouble. Well, he begins 'Tout est dit'--'everything has been said;' and I say that, in your business, 'Tout est fait'--'everything has been done.' Every move has been tried before you existed, and the result of all is that to bet against the bank, wildly or systematically, is to gamble against a rock. _Si monumenta quoeris, circumspice._ Use your eyes, man. Look at the Kursaal, its luxuries, its gardens, its gilding, its attractions, all of them cheap, except the one that pays for all; all these delights, and the rents, and the croupiers, and the servants, and the income and liveries of an unprincipled prince, who would otherwise be a poor but honest gentleman with one _bonne,_ instead of thirty blazing lackeys, all come from the gains of the bank, which are the losses of the players, especially of those that have got a system."

Severne shot in, "A bank was broken last week."

"Was it? Then all it lost has returned to it, or will return to it to-night; for gamblers know no day of rest."


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