فصل 11

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Chapter eleven

Conference

When Inspector Kelsey returned to the police station, Adam Goodman was waiting for him. The young gardener looked sulky and rude, but when he was alone with Inspector Kelsey his behaviour changed. He was quiet and polite as he showed the Inspector his identification.

‘So that’s who you are,’ said Kelsey. ‘What are you doing working at a girls’ school?’ Adam explained that he was here to watch Princess Shaista and see if anyone contacted her.

Kelsey listened with interest. ‘So the girl was telling the truth?’ he said with surprise. ‘I didn’t believe her. But you say that there are jewels - jewels worth a million pounds! You must admit it’s hard to believe.’ He paused. ‘So who do these jewels belong to?’

‘The lawyers would argue about that for years,’ said Adam. ‘They may belong to Prince Ali Yusuf’s family, or he may have left them to someone else. The truth is, whoever finds the jewels will just keep them - and there are a lot of people looking for them.’

‘But why is Meadowbank involved? Because of Princess Shaista?’

‘That’s right,’ said Adam. ‘Princess Shaista is Ali Yusuf’s cousin. Someone may try to contact her or give her the jewels. We know there’s a well-known secret agent staying in a local hotel. She just finds out useful information - nothing against the law. But we’ve been told that there’s another woman in the area - a woman who was a dancer in Ramat when the revolution started. She works for a foreign government, but we don’t know where she is or even what she looks like.’

Kelsey shook his head. ‘This all sounds unbelievable,’ he said. ‘Secret agents, jewels, murder - they don’t happen in real life!’

‘I know what you mean,’ said Adam. ‘It doesn’t seem possible - but it is happening. And it’s happening here.’

There was a silence, and then Inspector Kelsey asked, ‘What do you think happened last night?’

‘I don’t know,’ Adam said slowly. ‘Why was Miss Springer in the Sports Pavilion at night? Did she go there to meet someone? Did she follow someone there? Or did she see a light and go and investigate?’

‘Everyone says that Miss Springer was very sure of herself,’ said Kelsey. ‘And that she was nosey. I think that she either went to investigate - or to meet someone from the school. Miss Rich, one of the teachers, says that there’s someone here who doesn’t belong - a cat among the pigeons.’

‘A cat among the pigeons,’ repeated Adam. ‘That’s a good description.’

‘If there is a cat among the pigeons,’ said Kelsey, ‘it’s more likely to be one of the three new staff. Miss Springer is dead, so that leaves either Miss Shapland or Mademoiselle Blanche.’ He looked towards Adam. ‘Any ideas?’

‘I saw Mademoiselle Blanche coming out of the Sports Pavilion one day,’ said Adam. ‘She looked guilty. But I think it’s more likely to be Miss Shapland. She’s cool and intelligent.’ Kelsey smiled. ‘Ann Shapland was suspicious of you,’ he said. ‘She saw you coming out of the Sports Pavilion and said you were rude to her.’ He paused. ‘We need to find out what’s happening at Meadowbank,’ he said. ‘I think I’ll tell Miss Bulstrode who you are. She’s an impressive woman - and she won’t tell anyone.’ Adam nodded. ‘Yes,’ he said. ‘Tell her who I am.’

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