فصل 11 - 02

مجموعه: کارآگاه مارپل / کتاب: انگشت محرک / فصل 34

فصل 11 - 02

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دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»

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II

Marcus Kent was pleased with my progress. ‘It’s wonderful what country air, no late nights, and no excitement will do for a man.’

‘The first two are true,’ I said. ‘But don’t think that the country is free from excitement. We’ve had a lot.’

‘What sort of excitement?’

‘Murder,’ I said.

Marcus Kent whistled. ‘Some country love story? Farm boy kills his girl?’

‘Not at all. A clever, determined killer.’

‘I haven’t read anything about it. When did they arrest him?’

‘They haven’t, and it’s a she!’

‘Whew! I’m not sure that Lymstock’s the right place for you, Burton.’

I said firmly, ‘Yes, it is. And you’re not going to get me out of it.’

‘Oh, all right. It certainly hasn’t done you any harm. What about having dinner with me this evening? You can tell me all about this murder.’

‘Sorry. I’m already doing something.’

‘With a lady, eh? You’re definitely getting better.’

‘I suppose you could call her that,’ I said, rather amused at the idea of Megan described in that way.

I was at the dressmaker’s at six o’clock and Mary Grey came to meet me. ‘You’re going to have a shock! I’ve done some good work.’

I went into the main room. Megan was standing looking at herself in a long mirror. I hardly recognized her! Tall and stylish with lovely legs in fine silk stockings. Her hair had been cut and it shone, also like silk. She did not wear make-up, or if she did it was so light that it did not show.

And there was something about her that I had never seen before, a new innocent pride in the way she looked at me with a small shy smile. ‘I do look - rather nice, don’t I?’

‘Nice?’ I said. ‘Nice isn’t the word! Come on out to dinner and if every man doesn’t turn round to look at you I’ll be surprised.’ Megan was not beautiful, but she was unusual and she had personality. She walked into the restaurant ahead of me and, as the waiter hurried towards us, I felt a strange pride. We had cocktails first. Then we ate. And later we danced. For some reason I hadn’t thought Megan would dance well. But she did. Her body and feet followed the rhythm perfectly.

‘Gosh!’ I said. ‘You can dance!’

‘Well, of course I can. We had dancing class every week at school.’

‘It takes more than dancing class to make a dancer,’ I said.

It was a perfect evening and I was still behaving in a rather mad way. Megan brought me back to reality when she said, ‘Shouldn’t we be going home?’

‘Goodness!’ I said, and knew that the last train had gone. So I ordered a taxi to come round as soon as possible.

It was very late when we arrived at Lymstock. Symmington’s house was dark and silent. On Megan’s advice, we went round to the back and threw stones at Rose’s window.

Eventually she came down to let us in. ‘Well now, Miss Megan, I thought you’d gone to bed.’

I said that bed was where Megan should go now.

‘Good night,’ she said, ‘and thank you. It’s been the loveliest day I’ve ever had.’

So I was also driven home and as the car left, the front door opened and Joanna said, ‘It’s you at last, is it?’

‘Were you worried about me?’ I asked, going inside. ‘Worried about you? No, of course not. I thought you had decided to stay in London and have fun.’

‘I have had fun - of a kind.’ I smiled and then began to laugh. Joanna asked what I was laughing at and I told her all about the fun I’d had with Megan.

‘But Jerry, you can’t do things like that - not in Lymstock. It will be all round the town tomorrow.’

‘I suppose it will. But Megan’s only a child.’

‘She isn’t. She’s twenty. You can’t take a girl of twenty to London and buy her clothes without a most awful scandal. Goodness, Jerry, you’ll probably have to marry the girl.’ Joanna was half-serious, half-laughing.

It was at that moment that I made a very important discovery. ‘I don’t mind if I do,’ I said. ‘In fact - I’d like it.’

A strange expression appeared on Joanna’s face. As she went towards the stairs she said, ‘Yes, I’ve known that for some time…’

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