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Unformatted text preview: the hat -that very unyielding British hat -- have to
be disposed of elsewhere--they go out
of the window. Later, the real Winnie is
brought across the channel--no one is
looking for a sick, half-doped child being
brought from England to France -- and is
quietly deposited from a car by the side of
the main road. If she has been doped all
along with scopolamine, she will remember
very little of what has occurred.w
Miss Pope was staring at Poirot. She
"But why ? What would be the reason of
such a senseless masquerade ?"
Poirot replied gravely:
"Winnie's luggage! These people wanted
to smuggle something from England into
France--something that every Customs man was on the look-out for--in fact, stolen goods. But what place is safer than
a schoolgirl's trunk ? You are well-known, Miss Pope, your establishment is justly
famous. At the Gare du Nord the trunks
of Mesdemoiselles the little Pensionnaires
are passed en bloc. It is the well-known
English school of Miss Pope! And then,
after the kidnapping, what more natural
than to send and collect the child's
luggage -- ostensibly from the Prefecture
Hercule Poirot smiled.
"But fortunately, there was the school
routine of unpacking trunks on arrival -and a present for you from Winnie -- but
not the same present that Winnie packed at
He came towards her.
"You have given this picture to me.
Observe now, you must admit that it is
not suitable for your select school!"
He held out the canvas.
As though by magic Cranchester Bridge
had disappeared. Instead was a classical
scene in rich, dim colourings.
Poirot said softly: "The Girdle of Hyppolita. Hyppolita
gives her girdle to Hercules — painted by
Rubens. A great work of art — mais tout de
meme not quite suitable for your drawing
Pope blushed slightly.
Hyppolita^s hand was on her girdle—
she was wearing nothing else. . . . Hercules
had a lion skin thrown lightly over one
shoulder. The flesh of Rubens is rich,
voluptuous flesh. . . .
Miss Pope said, regaining her poise:
"A fine work of art. ... All the same —
as you say — after all, one must consider
the susceptibilities of parents. Some of
them are inclined to be narrow ... if you
know what I mean. ..."
It was just as Poirot was leaving the house
that the onslaught took place. He was
surrounded, hemmed-in, overwhelmed by
a crowd of girls, thick, thin, dark and fair.
"Mon Dieu!" he murmured. "Here indeed is the attack by the Amazons!"
A tall fair girl was crying out:
"A rumour has gone round — "
They surged closer. Hercule Poirot was
surrounded. He disappeared in a wave of
young, vigorous femininity.
Twenty-five voices arose, pitched in
various keys but all uttering the same
"M. Poirot, will you write your name in
my autograph book. . . . ?"
THE FLOCK OF GERYON
"T" REALLY do apologise for intruding
| like this, M. Poirot."...
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