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Unformatted text preview: the end she volunteered the information
'M. Poirot!' she said. 'Now, what do you think of that?' I thought a good many things of it, but I was
careful not to say them to Caroline.
'Why did he come?' I asked.
'To see me, of course. He said that, knowing my brother so well, he hoped he might be permitted to
make the acquaintance of his charming sister - your charming sister, I've got mixed up - but you know
what I mean.' 'What did he talk about?' I asked.
'He told me a lot about himself and his cases. You know that Prince Paul of Mauretania - the one who's
just married a dancer?' 'Yes?' 'I saw a most intriguing paragraph about her in Society Snippets the other
day, hinting that she was really a Russian Grand Duchess - one of the Czar's daughters who managed to
escape from the Bolsheviks. Well, it seems that M. Poirot solved a baffling murder mystery that
threatened to involve them both. Prince Paul was beside himself with gratitude.' 'Did he give him an
emerald tie pin the size of a plover's egg?' I inquired sarcastically.
'He didn't mention it. Why?' 'Nothing,' I said. 'I thought it was always done. It is in detective fiction
anyway. The super-detective always has his rooms littered with rubies and pearls and emeralds from
grateful Royal clients.' 'It's very interesting to hear about these things from the inside,' said my sister
It would be - to Caroline. I could not but admire the ingenuity of M. Hercule Poirot, who had selected
unerringly the case of all others that would most appeal to an elderly lady living in a small village.
'Did he tell you if the dancer was really a Grand Duchess?' I inquired.
'He was not at liberty to speak,' said Caroline importantly.
I wondered how far Poirot had strained the truth in talking to Caroline - probably not at all. He had
conveyed his innuendoes by means of his eyebrows and his shoulders.
'And after all this,' I remarked, 'I suppose you were ready to eat out of his hand?' 'Don't be coarse,
James. I don't know where you get these vulgar expressions from.' 'Probably from my only link with the
outside world - my patients. Unfortunately, my practice does not lie amongst Royal princes and
interesting Russian emigres.' Caroline pushed her spectacles up and looked at me.
'You seem very grumpy, James. It must be your liver. A blue pill, I think, tonight.' To see me in my own
home, you would never imagine that I was a doctor of medicine. Caroline does the home prescribing
both for herself and me.
'Damn my liver,' I said irritably. 'Did you talk about the murder at all?' 'Well, naturally, James. What else
is there to talk about locally? I was able to set M. Poirot straight upon several points. He was very
grateful to me. He said I had the makings of a born detective in me - and a wonderful Psychological
insight into human nature.' Caroline was exactly like a cat that is full to overflowing with rich cream. She
was positively purring.
'He talked a lot about the little grey cells of the brain, and...
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