- زمان مطالعه 11 دقیقه
- سطح ساده
دانلود اپلیکیشن «زیبوک»
این فصل را میتوانید به بهترین شکل و با امکانات عالی در اپلیکیشن «زیبوک» بخوانید
متن انگلیسی فصل
Who killed Claudia Engel?
Everyone in the room looked at Harriet Johnson.
‘I…’ began Johnson. Her face turned dark red. She stopped and then started again.
‘I was taking my laptop out to my car,’ she said. ‘This was our last day here. I knew I didn’t need my laptop again, so I went to put it in my car. But it was my laptop. You have to believe me.’
‘Excuse me, Shep.’ It was Fox who spoke. ‘When we asked to see everyone’s laptop, Ms Johnson’s was in her room.’
‘Yes, yes,’ said Johnson. ‘I know. I brought it back. When I knew we had to stay longer because of… because of Claudia, I went and got it. I thought I could do some work.’
Shepherd looked at Johnson for a few seconds. ‘Tell me, Ms Johnson,’ she began, her voice hard, ‘tell me everything that you did after ten thirty last night.’
For a moment Johnson didn’t speak. She looked at McNab, then at Shepherd.
‘And don’t tell me you just went to your room and went to bed,’ said Shepherd, ‘because I won’t believe you.’
Johnson looked down at her hands for a moment and then up at Shepherd.
‘I went to James’s room,’ she said. ‘I wanted to ask him something about a problem we’re having with sales in North America. I needed to send an email to the States before I went to bed. But James wasn’t there. He didn’t come to the door.’
Johnson looked at McNab. ‘I’m sorry, James,’ she said. ‘Well, Mr McNab?’ asked Shepherd. ‘Where were you?’ Now McNab’s face went red.
‘I was probably in the shower,’ he answered. ‘I told you I had a shower before I went to bed.’
‘You didn’t go out?’ said Shepherd. ‘You didn’t use the door at the back of the hotel?’
‘No,’ he replied.
Shepherd looked round the room at everyone. Her fingers started playing with the envelope on the table in front of her. The envelope was open and there was writing on the front of it. She looked back at James McNab.
‘Maybe what you’re saying is true; maybe it’s not,’ said Shepherd. ‘I don’t know yet, but one way or another I’m going to find out.’ She looked round the room again. ‘And I do know this. Claudia Engel’s laptop is important. Her killer knows it’s important too. There’s something on her computer - an email, a letter, something like that - something that will tell me who the killer is.’
Nobody spoke. The room was very quiet.
‘I also think Ms Engel knew she was in danger,’ said Shepherd, looking in turn at each of the people sitting in front of her. She turned the envelope over so that everyone could see the writing on the front. There were two words: ‘Claudia Engel’.
‘She left this at the hotel reception yesterday afternoon,’ said Shepherd, opening the envelope and turning it over. A memory stick fell out onto the table in front of her. ‘Do you know what’s on this?’ she asked and then answered the question herself. ‘Everything that was on her computer. Claudia put everything important from her laptop onto this memory stick and gave it to reception to keep safe. It could take me some time to find what I’m looking for - the important email or letter - but I will find it.’
Again nobody spoke. Shepherd watched everyone carefully. Johnson’s hand went to her mouth. Chowdury looked like he had a lot of questions to ask. Fleming was sitting back in his chair looking from Shepherd to the MMI people and back again. But it was McNab who looked most uncomfortable.
Shepherd watched him carefully.
At that moment the door opened. A police officer gave DC Fox a piece of paper. Fox passed the paper to Shepherd, who looked at it, then smiled at Webb. Webb looked at her questioningly. Shepherd looked round the room again.
‘You’ll be interested to know that one of my officers has had a look at the door at the back of the hotel,’ she said. ‘He’s found quite a few fingerprints on it from a number of different hands. We’ve also found the piece of wood used to hit Ms Engel, and we’re looking for fingerprints on that. But then, of course, I’m sure the murderer wore gloves…’
She stopped speaking for a moment and watched McNab. All the colour left his face.
‘… or maybe not,’ finished Shepherd.
McNab’s mouth opened and closed. He started to speak, then stopped, then started again.
‘Yes, Mr McNab?’ said Shepherd quietly.
‘I had to,’ he said. ‘I just had to. She wanted too much. She always wanted too much. She earned good money, but she wanted double.’
And you didn’t want to pay that,’ said Shepherd.
‘I couldn’t,’ said McNab. ‘I couldn’t, but she didn’t believe me. “Double, or else…” she said.’
‘Or else what?’ asked Shepherd.
‘She said, “I’ll start a new company. The two new bands will come to me; in time most of your old bands will come to me too. You’re finished, James.” That’s what she said.’ McNab’s voice became stronger. ‘I started MMI fifteen years ago. I built the company. I couldn’t let her end it all. Not someone like her.’
‘So you invited her for a walk on the beach,’ said Shepherd.
‘Yes,’ said McNab. ‘I told her I was sure we could agree something. I went out through the back door so no-one saw us together. Then I met her outside the front of the hotel.’
He pushed his fingers through his hair and spoke again. ‘I told her I wanted to talk about it. I tried one last time. I said I’d give her fifty percent more money. “Double or nothing,” she said. She laughed at me. That made me so angry. She turned her back on me to look out to sea. There was a piece of wood on the beach. I hit her with it. Just once. She fell. It was all over.’
‘Then you took her room key, went to her room and took the laptop,’ said Shepherd.
‘Yes,’ said McNab. ‘I went in and out through the back door again. I took the laptop out to that old garage behind the hotel. I broke it up into pieces with a large stone and hid it.’ His head went down.
‘Fox,’ said Shepherd. ‘Get another officer and take Mr McNab to the police station.’ She looked at the other people in the room. ‘OK. You all need to put in writing what you’ve done over the last twenty-four hours. Then you’re free to go.’
Fifteen minutes later Shepherd and Webb were sitting in the bar. There was a half-empty glass of red wine in front of Shepherd, and an orange juice in front of Webb. Shepherd’s fingers were playing with the memory stick.
‘When did I say I wanted someone to look at the back door?’ she asked.
‘You didn’t,’ replied Webb.
‘Good for you,’ said Shepherd. ‘I like having a sergeant who uses his brain.’
‘Well, I knew the killer didn’t have much time to decide how to kill Engel,’ said Webb. ‘I just thought it would be a good idea to look for fingerprints on the back door. I mean, nobody has gloves with them in September anyway.’
‘It’s lucky for us too that Claudia Engel put everything onto the memory stick and left it at reception,’ said Webb. ‘And that you thought to ask them about it.’
‘It’s not lucky at all,’ said Shepherd.
‘What do you mean?’ asked Webb.
‘It’s not her memory stick,’ said Shepherd. ‘I borrowed it from reception just before I talked to that lot.’
‘But the writing on the envelope…’ said Webb.
‘Engel wrote her name at reception when she arrived two days ago. I thought I did quite a good job of making it look the same.’
‘But…’ began Webb. ‘You mean…’
‘That’s right,’ she said. ‘McNab believed we knew everything, but actually we didn’t.’
Shepherd took a drink of her wine.
‘So what was on her computer?’ asked Webb. ‘What was so important?’
‘I have no idea,’ said Shepherd and laughed. ‘If we’re lucky, McNab will tell us. But if he doesn’t, that’s OK too. He’s told us that he killed Engel. That’s the important thing. And from the look on his face he didn’t bring any gloves with him. So we’ll probably have his fingerprints too.’
Webb drank some of his orange juice and looked at Shepherd. She really wasn’t the usual kind of police inspector.
‘We found the murderer…’ Shepherd looked at her watch ‘… in under twelve hours. I call that a good day’s work. Well done us!’
‘Right,’ said Shepherd, standing up and finishing her drink. ‘I’m going to give this memory stick back to reception. Mine’s another glass of red wine.’
مشارکت کنندگان در این صفحه
تا کنون فردی در بازسازی این صفحه مشارکت نداشته است.
🖊 شما نیز میتوانید برای مشارکت در ترجمهی این صفحه یا اصلاح متن انگلیسی، به این لینک مراجعه بفرمایید.