Unformatted text preview: ce. My
inquiries, they will be conducted very
discreetly, very quietly. You can be assured,
Lady Hoggin, that Shan Tung will be
perfectly safe. That I will guarantee."
Both ladies seemed relieved by the
magic word. Poirot went on: "You have
here the letter?"
Lady Hoggin shook her head.
"No, I was instructed to enclose it with
"And you did so ?"
"H'm, that is a pity." Miss Carnaby said brightly:
"But I have the dog lead still. Shall I
get it ?"
She left the room. Hercule Poirot profited
by her absence to ask a few pertinent
"Amy Carnaby ? Oh! she's quite all right.
A good soul, though foolish, of course. I
have had several companions and they have
all been complete fools. But Amy was
devoted to Shan Tung and she was terribly
upset over the whole thing — as well she
might be—hanging over perambulators
and neglecting my little sweetheart! These
old maids are all the same, idiotic over
babies! No, Ym quite sure she had nothing
whatever to do with it."
"It does not seem likely," Poirot agreed.
"But as the dog disappeared when in her
charge one must make quite certain of her
honesty. She has been with you long ?"
"Nearly a year. I had excellent references
with her. She was with old Lady Hartingfield
until she died — ten years, I believe.
After that she looked after an invalid sister for a while. She is really an excellent
creature — but a complete fool, as I said."
Amy Camaby returned at this minute,
slightly more out of breath, and produced
,. i 27
the cut dog lead which she handed to
Poirot with the utmost solemnity, looking
at him with hopeful expectancy.
Poirot surveyed it carefully.
"Mais oui^ he said. "This has undoubtedly
The two women still waited expectantly. He said:
"I will keep this."
Solemnly he put it in his pocket. The
two women breathed a sigh of relief. He had
clearly done what was expected of him.
It was the habit of Hercule Poirot to leave
Though on the face of it it seemed
unlikely that Miss Carnaby was anything
but the foolish and rather muddleheaded
woman that she appeared to be, Poirot
nevertheless managed to interview a somewhat
forbidding lady who was the niece of the late Lady Hartingfield.
"Amy Camaby ?" said Miss Maltravers. "Of course, remember her perfectly. She
was a good soul and suited Aunt Julia down
to the ground. Devoted to dogs and excellent
at reading aloud. Tactful, too, never
contradicted an invalid. What's happened
to her ? Not in distress of any kind, I hope.
I gave her a reference about a year ago to
some woman -- name began with H -- s9
Poirot explained hastily that Miss Camaby
was still in her post. There had been, he said, a little trouble over a lost dog.
"Amy Camaby is devoted to dogs. My
aunt had a Pekinese. She left it to Miss
Carnaby when she died and Miss Camaby
was devoted to it. I believe she was quite
heartbroken when it died. Oh yes, she's a...
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