فصل 06

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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Chapter six

A Call Upon Mr Vyse

On Monday morning Miss Buckley came to see us. She smiled, but I thought that she looked even more tired than before. She held a telegram, which she handed to Poirot. ‘There,’ she said, ‘I hope that will please you!’

Poirot read it aloud. ‘Arrive 5.30 today. Maggie.’

Nick took off her hat and said: ‘Oh, well, it’s all great fun, isn’t it?’

‘Is it, Mademoiselle?’ asked Poirot gently.

She tried to control her sudden tears. ‘No,’ she said. ‘It - it isn’t, really. I’m afraid - terribly afraid. And I always thought I was brave.’

‘You are, my child, you are. Both Hastings and I, we admire your courage.’

‘Yes, indeed,’ I added warmly.

‘No,’ said Nick, shaking her head. ‘I’m not brave. It’s - it’s the waiting. Wondering if anything’s going to happen. And how it will happen! This morning, I simply couldn’t come through the garden. I feel as if my bravery has gone all of a sudden. It’s this thing coming on top of everything else.’

‘What do you mean, Mademoiselle? “On top of everything else”?’

There was a small pause before she replied, ‘I don’t mean anything in particular. It’s just what the newspapers call “the strain of modern life”.’ She sat in a chair, and when she spoke again, it was in a dreamy voice. ‘I love End House. I’ve always wanted to put on a play there. It’s got an atmosphere of drama about it. And now I feel as if a drama is being acted there. Only I’m right in it! I am, perhaps, the person who - dies in the first act.’ Her voice shook.

‘Now, now, Mademoiselle.’ Poirot’s voice was cheerful. ‘This will not do. This is hysteria.’

She looked at him sharply. ‘Did Freddie tell you I was hysterical? You mustn’t always believe what Freddie says. There are times, you know, when - when she acts strangely.’

There was a pause, then Poirot asked what seemed to be a totally irrelevant question: ‘Tell me, Mademoiselle has anyone ever offered to buy End House?’

‘No.’

‘Would you consider selling it?’

‘No - well, unless it was such a huge amount of money that it would be foolish not to. I don’t want to sell it, though, because I’m very fond of it.’

‘I understand.’

Nick got up and moved slowly towards the door. ‘By the way, there are fireworks down at the harbor tonight. Will you come up for dinner at eight o’clock? The fireworks begin at nine thirty. You will see them really well from the garden.’

‘Many thanks,’ I said.

‘There is nothing like a party for making you feel better,’ said Nick and with a little laugh she went out.

‘Poor child,’ said Poirot. He reached for his hat.

‘Are we going out?’ I asked.

‘Of course - we have legal business to deal with, mon ami.’

‘Oh, of course. I understand.’

‘Someone with your brilliant mind could not fail to do so, Hastings.’

Mr Charles Vyse was a tall, pale young man. Poirot said that he had some questions on a legal matter and wanted Mr Vyse’s advice.

‘I am very grateful,’ said Poirot when Mr Vyse had given that advice for the legal matter Poirot had invented. ‘As a foreigner, you understand, I do not understand English law.’

It was then that Mr Vyse asked who had sent Poirot to him.

‘Miss Buckley,’ said Poirot. ‘I tried to see you on Saturday morning - about half past twelve - but you were out.’

‘Yes, I left early on Saturday.’

‘Tell me, Monsieur Vyse, is there any chance that Miss Buckley will sell End House?’

‘No. My cousin has a great love for the house. Nothing would make Nick sell it.’

A few minutes later we were out in the street again.

‘Well, my friend,’ said Poirot. ‘Would you have described Mademoiselle Buckley’s attitude towards End House as one of “great love”?’

‘In no way,’ I said.

‘So one of the two is lying,’ said Poirot, thoughtfully. ‘And he was not in his office at half past twelve on Saturday.’

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