Just for a moment an odd restlessness came to him – a rippling of his previous placidity. He felt, There’s something – something I haven’t got – something I want – I want – I want…. The golden green light, the softness in the air – with them came a quickened pulse, a stirring of the blood, a sudden impatience. A girl came through the trees toward him – a girl with pale, gleaming hair and a rose-flushed skin. He thought, How beautiful – how unutterably beautiful. Something gripped him; he stood quite still, as though frozen into immobility. The world, he felt, was spinning, was topsy-turvy, was suddenly and impossibly and gloriously crazy! The girl stopped suddenly, then she came on. She came up to him where he stood, dumb and absurdly fish-like, his mouth open.
Mr. Satterthwaite looked at him uncomprehendingly for a minute or two. Then he began suddenly to quiver all over like an aspen leaf.
“What is this place?” he whispered. “What is this place?”
“I told you earlier to-day. It is my lane.”
“A Lovers Lane,” murmured Mr. Satterthwaite. “And people pass along it.”
“Most people, sooner or later.”
“And at the end of it what do they find?”
Mr. Quin smiled. His voice was very gentle. He pointed at the ruined cottage above them.
“The house of their dreams–or a rubbish heap–who shall say?”
Stepmothers! It was rotten to have a stepmother, everybody said so. And it was true! Not that Arlena was unkind to her. Most of the time she hardly noticed the girl. But when she did, there was a contemptuous amusement in her glance, in her words. The finished grace and poise of Arlena’s movements emphasized Linda’s own adolescent clumsiness. With Arlena about, one felt, shamingly, just how immature and crude one was.
I think the Adams girl did it,’ said Japp, rising. ‘A fine bit of work on your part, M. Poirot, to tumble to that. But there, of course, you go about to theatres and amusing yourself. Things strike you that don’t get the chance of striking me. Pity there’s no apparent motive, but a little spade work will soon bring it to light, I expect.’
‘There is one person with a motive to whom you have given no attention,’ remarked Poirot.
For what he was looking at was a highly artificial murder scene. By the side of the pool was the body, artistically arranged with an outflung arm and even some red paint dripping gently over the edge of the concrete into the pool. It was a spectacular body, that of a handsome fair-haired man.
“I talked a bit about you, and this girl was standing around listening. When you said an unattractive Ophelia it clicked somehow. I thought,
“now who does that remind me of?’ And then it came to me: “Of course.
The girl at the party that day.’ I rather think she belonged there (…)”
As I passed the well-remembered door, which must always be associated in my mind with my wooing, and with the
dark incidents of the Study in Scarlet, I was seized with a keendesire to see Holmes again,
and to know how he was
employing his extraordinary powers.
There they were well down to it, their faces serious, the bids coming quickly.
And the raised voice was his official voice, so different that all the heads at the
bridge table turned to him, and Anne Meredith’s hand remained poised over an
ace of spades in dummy.
“I’m sorry to tell you all,” he said, “that our host, Mr. Shaitana, is dead.”
“It was a hot, airless morning towards the end of June. Poirot had a particular routine when opening his morning correspondence. He picked up each letter, scrutinized it carefully and neatly slit the envelope
open with his papercutter“.
“Eh bien, mon ami,” said Poirot, lighting one of his tiny cigarettes, ” we must map out a plan of campaign. Already I have made rough survey of the house, but I am of opinion that any clue will be found in this room. We shall have to g othrough the documents in the desk with meticulous care.(…)”
The door opened and Temple announced Lady Mary Lytton Gore and Mr. and Mrs. Babbington and Miss Lytton Gore. Mr. Satterthwaite supplied Miss Wills with her cocktail and then sidled into the neighborhood of Lady Mary Lytton Gore. He had a weakness for titles. Also, apart from snobbishness, he liked a gentlewoman, and that Lady Mary most undeniably was.Three Act Tragedy by Agatha Christie