فصل 11 - 01

مجموعه: کارآگاه مارپل / کتاب: انگشت محرک / فصل 33

فصل 11 - 01

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متن انگلیسی فصل

CHAPTER ELEVEN

The next day I went mad. Looking back on it, that is really the only explanation I can find.

It was time for my monthly visit to my London doctor, Marcus Kent. To my surprise Joanna decided to stay behind. Usually she was keen to come and we would stay there for two days. This time, however, I intended to return the same day.

The station of Lymstock is half a mile outside Lymstock itself, and as I was driving there I saw Megan wandering along the road. So I stopped. ‘Hello, what are you doing?’

‘Just out for a walk.’

‘Not your usual sort of healthy walk.’

‘Well, I wasn’t going anywhere particular.’

‘Then you’d better come and wave goodbye to me at the station.’ I opened the door of the car and Megan jumped in.

When we arrived, I parked the car and went in to buy my ticket. ‘Would you lend me some money so that I can get some chocolate out of the machine?’ Megan asked.

‘Here you are,’ I said, handing her a coin.

She went off to the chocolate machine, and I looked after her with a feeling of annoyance. She was wearing muddy shoes, and thick stockings and a shapeless woollen top. I said as she came back, Why do you wear those awful stockings?’

‘What’s the matter with them?’

‘Everything. And why do you…’

At this minute the train arrived, so I got in and leaned out of the window to continue the conversation. Megan asked me why I was so cross.

‘I’m not cross.’ I lied. ‘I just hate you not caring about how you look.’

‘I can’t look nice, anyway, so what does it matter?’

‘My goodness,’ I said. ‘I’d like to take you to London and buy you a completely new set of clothes.’

‘I wish you could,’ said Megan.

The train began to move. I looked down into her sad face. And then, as I have said, madness came upon me. I opened the door, took Megan’s arm and pulled her into the train.

‘What on earth did you do that for?’ she asked.

‘Because’ I said, ‘I’m going to show you what you can look like if you try.’

‘Oh!’ said Megan in an excited whisper.

The ticket collector came along and I bought her a return ticket. We arrived in London with half an hour to spare before my appointment at my doctor’s. So we took a taxi straight to Joanna’s dressmaker, Mary Grey, who is a clever and very pleasant woman.

I said to Megan. ‘I’ll say you are a relation of mine.’

‘Why?’

‘Don’t argue,’ I said.

I took Mary Grey aside. ‘I’ve brought a young relation along. Joanna was going to accompany her but was prevented at the last minute. She said I could leave it all to you. You see what the girl looks like now?’

‘I certainly do,’ said Mary Grey.

‘Well, I want her dressed perfectly from head to foot. Stockings, shoes, underwear, everything! By the way, the man who does Joanna’s hair is near here, isn’t he?’

‘Antoine? Round the corner. I’ll arrange that too. I shall enjoy it.’ Mary looked at Megan. ‘She’s got a lovely figure.’

‘You are a true professional,’ I said. ‘She looks completely shapeless to me. Right, I’ll come back and collect her at about six.’

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