The play starts in the house of Gerrard. He is a playwright. We find that Gerrard is talking to someone on the telephone. He is going somewhere. So after the talk is over, he starts packing a travelling bag. Suddenly a man enters silently from the right. He is similar to Gerrard in appearance. He has a revolver in his hand. This intruder is a criminal. He orders Gerrard to put up his hands. Gerrard obeys him but is not afraid. He talks pleasantly to the intruder. The intruder warns to stop being smart and answers his questions. Gerrard says he cannot feel comfortable while his hands are up. The intruder asks him to sit in a chair.
From their conversation, we come to know about the intruder and also Gerrard. We come to know that Gerrard’s full name is Vincent Charles Gerrard. He lives there alone. He has a car also. He is a sort of mystery man. Sometimes he is here and the very next day he is nowhere to be seen. He gives his orders on the phone and never meets tradesmen.
Then the intruder tells Gerrard about himself. He is a criminal. He specializes in a jewel robbery. He has killed a policeman. Now the police are after him. lie knows that he bears a resemblance to Gerrard. Then he tells his plan to Gerrard. He has decided to kill Gerrard and live there under the identity of Gerrard. From the intruder’s way of talking, Gerrard guesses that he is a foolish, boastful man. It would not be difficult to get rid of this man.
Gerrard makes up a story. He says that he is also a criminal and a murderer. The police are also in search Of him. That is why he lives in a mysterious way. He often disappears from there. He tells the intruder that it would be a folly to kill him. He killed him, he would be hanged, if not as himself, then as Gerrard. The intruder begins to think. This is an opportunity for Gerrard. He offers to take the intruder to a safe place in his car. He asks him to hurry up as the police may come there any time. The intruder is taken in. Gerrard opens a door and asks the intruder to enter it. He tells him that the door goes to the garage and they will escape in his car. Just the intruder turns his head to step in, Gerrard pushes him and knocks the revolver out of his hand. Then he shuts the door and locks it. In fact, the door does not lead to any garage. It is the door of his cupboard. The intruder shouts from inside to let him out. But Gerrard picks up the phone and tells the police to come. In this way, Gerrard saves his life by a clever trick.
Gerrard is a typical English gentleman who is an actor-playwright. He is well-educated, fearless and full of humor. The play opens with Gerrard answering a phone call which is from a client whom he promises to deliver the props for rehearsal. He is busy packing for travel in this connection when an intruder, flashily dressed in an overcoat and a soft hat and carrying a revolver in his hand, surprises him from behind. But Gerrard keeps his cool and tries to figure out who the intruder is when the latter threatens him with dire consequences if his questions are not answered. However, the intruder declares that he is not there to tell him about himself but to know the personal details of Gerrard. The intruder tells Gerrard that he is a robber who specialises in the theft of jewels and that he plans to use Gerrard’s house and car for his schemes. The intruder then announces that he is going to kill Gerrard and later assume his identity as there is a good resemblance between the two of them. In this way, he can evade the police and lead a peaceful life. The intruder further surprises Gerrard by telling him that he has noticed his (Gerrard’s) manner of speech and has taken care to adopt a resemblance to him in looks too. He needs to change his identity because the cops are searching him for having killed one of their colleagues. He also tells Gerrard how he has come to know about him by overhearing a conversation between two people. But it is Gerrard who has the last laugh when he fools the intruder into believing that he too is running from the law and is about to flee. He completely befools the intruder by making him check for himself if everything is safe outside before they escape. He makes him peep into a dark cupboard giving the impression that it leads to the garage. The moment the intruder peeps in, Gerrard pushes him into the cupboard, knocking the revolver out of his hand. While the intruder keeps rattling the door and shouting, “Let me out of here!”, Gerrard gets down to business. Very coolly he answers a phone call, apologizing that he wouldn’t be able to deliver stage props in time for rehearsal. At the same time, he requests the caller to send the sergeant to his place. All this while he guards the cupboard with the intruder’s revolver. Gerrard is so amused by this incident that he decides to use it as the plot for his next play.