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|The Secret Adversary||Agatha Christie|
VI A Plan of Campaign
|Page 1 of 5||
A veil might with profit be drawn over the events of the next half-hour. Suffice it to say that no such person as "Inspector Brown" was known to Scotland Yard. The photograph of Jane Finn, which would have been of the utmost value to the police in tracing her, was lost beyond recovery. Once again "Mr. Brown" had triumphed.
The immediate result of this set back was to effect a rapprochement between Julius Hersheimmer and the Young Adventurers. All barriers went down with a crash, and Tommy and Tuppence felt they had known the young American all their lives. They abandoned the discreet reticence of "private inquiry agents," and revealed to him the whole history of the joint venture, whereat the young man declared himself "tickled to death."
He turned to Tuppence at the close of the narration.
"I've always had a kind of idea that English girls were just a mite moss-grown. Old-fashioned and sweet, you know, but scared to move round without a footman or a maiden aunt. I guess I'm a bit behind the times!"
The upshot of these confidential relations was that Tommy and Tuppence took up their abode forthwith at the Ritz, in order, as Tuppence put it, to keep in touch with Jane Finn's only living relation. "And put like that," she added confidentially to Tommy, "nobody could boggle at the expense!"
Nobody did, which was the great thing.
"And now," said the young lady on the morning after their installation, "to work!"
Mr. Beresford put down the Daily Mail, which he was reading, and applauded with somewhat unnecessary vigour. He was politely requested by his colleague not to be an ass.
"Dash it all, Tommy, we've got to DO something for our money."
"Yes, I fear even the dear old Government will not support us at the Ritz in idleness for ever."
"Therefore, as I said before, we must DO something."
"Well," said Tommy, picking up the Daily Mail again, "DO it. I shan't stop you."
"You see," continued Tuppence. "I've been thinking----"
She was interrupted by a fresh bout of applause.
"It's all very well for you to sit there being funny, Tommy. It would do you no harm to do a little brain work too."
"My union, Tuppence, my union! It does not permit me to work before 11 a.m."
"Tommy, do you want something thrown at you? It is absolutely essential that we should without delay map out a plan of campaign."
"Well, let's do it."
Tommy laid his paper finally aside. "There's something of the simplicity of the truly great mind about you, Tuppence. Fire ahead. I'm listening."
"To begin with," said Tuppence, "what have we to go upon?"
"Absolutely nothing," said Tommy cheerily.
"Wrong!" Tuppence wagged an energetic finger. "We have two distinct clues."
"What are they?"
"First clue, we know one of the gang."
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