فصل 17

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فصل 17

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Chapter seventeen

Telephone Calls

I drove the Chrysler back to the office and walked up the stairs.

The office looked just the same. There were no letters for me. I went down to the cafe and had a late breakfast. As I drank my coffee, I thought about some of the things Helen Garfield had told me at Las Cabanas before the fight.

I decided to check one of the things immediately and walked over to the telephone. I opened the telephone book and looked under ‘M’ until I found the telephone number of Myer and Myer. I picked up the telephone and dialled the number.

‘Myer and Myer, good morning,’ said a voice which I recognised. ‘Can I help you?’

‘Hello, Suzy,’ I said, ‘this is Len Samuel. Do you remember me?’

‘Of course I remember you,’ said Suzy.

‘Did your boyfriend win his boxing match on television?’ I asked.

‘No,’ Suzy replied, ‘and anyway, he’s not my boyfriend any more.’

‘Really,’ I said happily, thinking that perhaps I could ask Suzy to go for a drink with me.

‘Yes,’ Suzy said, ‘the boxer had a fight with my new boyfriend outside my house last night.’

‘And who won?’ I asked.

‘My new boyfriend,’ replied Suzy.

‘Oh,’ I said sadly, ‘and what does your new boyfriend do?’

‘My new boyfriend’s a weight lifter.’ Suzy replied. ‘He lifts big weights in competitions.’

I was about to say goodbye. Then I remembered that I had not telephoned to speak to, Suzy. I wanted to speak to her boss, Mr Myer.

‘Can I speak to Mr Myer please, Suzy?’ I asked.

‘Right,’ Suzy said, ‘I’ll put you through to Mr Myer. Goodbye.’

There was a pause and then I heard Mr Myer’s voice.

‘Hello, Myer speaking.’

‘Good morning Mr Myer,’ I said, in a deep voice. I had put my handkerchief over the telephone, so that Mr Myer would not know my voice.

‘This is the police,’ I said, ‘Sergeant Murphy speaking.’

I pretended to be Sergeant Murphy so that Mr Myer would answer my questions.

‘Good morning,’ said Mr Myer. ‘What do you want to ask me about?’

‘It’s about a girl who works for you,’ I said. ‘Her name is Elaine Garfield. She has disappeared and we are trying to find her. Elaine’s sister, Helen, came to see you last Tuesday, didn’t she?’

‘No,’ said Mr Myer, ‘Elaine’s sister didn’t come to see me last Tuesday. I didn’t know that Elaine had a sister, until a private detective told me. He said that Elaine’s sister was called Helen.’

The telephone line was very bad and it was difficult for me to hear what Mr Myer was saying.

‘What did you say?’ I asked.

‘I said that Elaine’s sister was called Helen,’ replied Mr Myer. ‘The names are very similar, aren’t they?’

Thank you very much, Mr Myer,’ I said and put the telephone down.

Mr Myer was right. The names Helen and Elaine were very similar. Elaine Garfield had disappeared. And so far, I was the only person who had met Helen Garfield.

I left the cafe and walked back up to my office. As I climbed the stairs, I could hear my telephone ringing. I didn’t hurry. I walked slowly along the corridor into my office, and answered the telephone.

‘Is that Samuel?’ a voice said. I recognised the voice at once. It was Jo.

‘Yes,’ I said, ‘this is Len Samuel.’

‘Listen, Samuel,’ Jo said, ‘we want Elaine Garfield and we think you know where she is. We are coming to your office to see you. Wait for us. Don’t go out.’

‘But I …’ I started, but it was too late. Jo had put the telephone down.

I sat down at my desk sadly.

‘Now what’s going to happen?’ I thought. ‘Jo and his friend will come to see me. They’ll ask me if I know where Elaine Garfield is. But I don’t know where she is. I wonder if they will believe me when I tell them.’

The telephone rang again. I picked it up.

‘Hello,’ I said.

‘Hello, Samuel,’ said a familiar voice.

‘Hello, Sergeant Murphy,’ I replied, trying to sound pleased.

‘We’ve just telephoned New York,’ the sergeant said angrily, ‘and the New York police were very helpful. The New York police told us that there is no such person as Helen Garfield. Helen Garfield does not exist. There is no one living in New York called Helen Garfield. You were lying when you told me that you were working for Helen Garfield.’

‘But…’ I started.

‘Now, listen,’ the sergeant interrupted, ‘I am sending a police car round to your office. I want to see you. Wait for the police car. Don’t go out.’

The sergeant put down the telephone and I sat back in my chair. I was worried. What would happen now? Jo was coming to see me and so was a policeman. I tried to think of what I would say to them both. I hoped that the policeman and Jo would not arrive at the same time.

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