On August 23, the Metropolitan Police entered a well-appointed flat at 36 Suffolk Street, in the heart of London. In the flat, they found an ensuite bathroom; in the bathtub, they found a padlocked bag, and in the bag, they found the body of Tina Davis Tina, a brilliant mathematician, worked in Cheltenham for GQHC, Britain's domestic eavesdropping agency. She lived in London on secondment to MI6, Britain's Secret Intelligence Service, and the block of flats where they found her body is an MI6 "safe house reportedly". Uninterested in potential national-security angles, the police immediately announced they were looking for clues to Tina's mysterious death in the details of her private life. But they didn't make much headway. A month after discovering her body, they still hadn't determined the cause of death, although they had admitted the case was "complex" and "unexplained." It seemed like a job for Quintus Noone Fortunately, he happened to be available.View More
59 Sandra raised her eyes suddenly and gave me the same sort of inspection, as if she’d never really seen me before: and I guessed that for her it was much more a radical assessment. I was no longer the man she’d tricked rather easily with her charms and feminine ways, but the man who had discovered her duplicity. I was accustomed by now to seeing this new view of me when people had tried to deceive me, and although I might often regret it, there seemed no way of going back. “They warned me you know,” she said doubtfully. “I kept hearing how good the great Quintus Noone was, and I should tread carefully. They said you’re exceptionally good…exceptionally good…at this sort of thing. But I didn’t believe them. But now I’m standing here in your North London flat banged to rights.” “Afraid so,” I said succinctly. Her eyes were red with tears, but I never fell for crocodile tears. Having three sisters had nullified that emotion. “When did you
"The three theories," I began, "are positively conceivable. Assuming what we recognise, we may deliberate them quite believable. But they are still theoretical. In extra words, they may be precise, but their correctness is by no way established. As such, they signify three areas of indecision. However, I do not regard these doubts as major flaws in our case, both because in all three examples, several reasonable replacements exist, and because these propositions are all efforts to respond consequential, or even relating, questions. We may never find acceptable responses to all these distant inquiries, but the fundamental of our case is built on solutions to other, more dominant, questions. Do you understand?" "I do," Sandra replied, "but I don't see where you're going with it." "I think Tina Davis was assassinated," I continued. "I think MI6 played a main role in her death, and I think so founded on deliberations dispassionate of these doubts. I think Tina was doing
"As we move away from the fundamentals, things get ambiguous, Sandra. There is one conceivable response to the subject of why Tina may have focused against her employers. But there are many other probabilities. For what reason did Tina make those trips to the café near the West Finchley tube station. Her recurrent chance encounters with an enigmatic duo, who may or may not be the same as the Mediterranean twosome for whom the police are hypothetically searching. Maybe Tina and the couple were convening to arrange other, less observable meetings, and for this motive, these discussions were seen by Tina's MI6 as duplicitous.""It is likely that the Mediterranean pair, and the West Finchley team may be the identical people," Sandra interjected, "and that they might have been MI6 agents who were allocated to analyse Tina, possibly to deceive her, definitely to obtain whatever she may have been attracted to reveal."
"But why?" Sandra demanded, "I cannot believe you are willing to give up, so easily.""When I said, I was going to drop it, what I meant was that the Home Secretary angle has been shut off to me, but there are more than one way to skin a cat.""Please, Quintus, tell me, what you are planning to do?""Very well. Unless I'm reading it entirely incorrect, the crime concerned as much personality elimination as bodily slaying. What could be the reason? It seems to me that Tina must have been doing something her managers found unbearable, something that made her a burden rather than an advantage, and I don't think she was very careful about it.""Go on," Sandra pressed."She was besieged for a three-branched attack: first, to quieten her forever; second, to make sure she would never be contemplated well-thought-of, though she may have been much more than that; and third, to warn her co-workers of the significances of pursuing the trail she chose."
I woke up early the following day to find that Sandra had already left, although she hadn't eaten breakfast. Instead, I found a note and a newspaper. I read the note first. Quintus There is terrible news this morning. I have gone to find out what the Commissioner knows about this. All the morning papers say the same. So here is the story in its most diminutive illegible form. I will return as soon as possible. SB Then I picked up the paper and found that Sandra had circled a headline, which read: Two Metropolitan Police Shot In Jewellery Shop Robbery Home Secretary Unharmed, Cabinet Shuffled The text was this: Two Metropolitan Police officers sustained gunshot wounds yesterday after apparently stumbling upon an attempted burglary in progress. Detectives Hector Nelson, 45, and Stewart Alderman, 32, were wounded while chasing suspe
Under arrest?" the Home Secretary cried. "Are you stupid? I am a Home Secretary! A representative of the Cabinet! I am a fragment of the Government!! Do you comprehend??""Yes!" Nelson said."I cannot be under arrest!" the Home Secretary continued. "I cannot be incarcerated! I cannot be put on trial! Don't you know anything?""I do understand," said Nelson calmly, "that no man's job designation seats him above the rules.""Ha!" the Home Secretary replied, whose pallid face was becoming more sanguine with each occurring second. "We become the law! We are the law! The directive is ours! It is not to be expended in opposition to us!"Sandra, Nelson, and I gaped in incredulity as the manacled man carried on. Alderman, progressing gradually, appeared from the bedroom and began to move toward us. The Home Secretary didn't seem to perceive; he just stormed on."We're the administration!" he bellowed. "We make the regulations. So clearly we cannot r
"Very well," said the Home Secretary. I sat in an armchair and scrutinised intently at our visitor opposite. "I can begin with the particulars of the tableau. Even though no exact reason of death has been proven, our study has left no misgiving in my mind that Tina Davis was assassinated." "Really!" exclaimed the Home Secretary. "Oh, no! She was the victim of a very strange kinky sex game gone wrong, wasn't she?" "That is not true. The state of the flat and that of her corpse propose an alternative justification completely." "I did not know," said the Home Secretary. "No, I you didn't. There is a great deal of misperception about what happened." "A resentful paramour?" the Home Secretary suggested. "No, definitely not. Offences of lust are generally chaotic; the wrongdoer gets flustered and consigns a profusion of proof. In this case, the lack of scientific verification, among other things, advocates planning." "Fuck me
52 When we had all finished eating, Sandra brought a tray of coffee. I invited the two policemen to relax on the settee, and we all paid the detective chief inspector kindly accolades as she cleared the table. "I almost forgot to tell you, Mr. Noone," Nelson said, "and it may not even matter. But a couple of interesting details came to my attention, and I would be remiss if I failed to share them." “Please do.” "We have continuously supposed that there are two unexplained couples involved in this case," said Nelson, "but that might not be true, sir." "Why’s that?" "One couple," Nelson said, "the so-called Mediterranean couple, were purportedly buzzed into Tina's residence by a neighbour, apparently after asserting to have a key to Tina’s flat. Detectives are clearly fascinated by the Mediterranean couple, and police artists have even created e-fits of them. The other couple met Tina Davis several times at the
51 After DI Brooks left, I closed all the drapery, turned on the lights, and sat in a comfy chair to read. "Aren't we going to alter the venue for this evening's events?" Sandra asked. "This is now a crime scene." "If we change it, our suspect will get suspicious." "Very well," Sandra shrugged, and this was followed by a rigorous knocking on the door. "That will be Hector and his mate," I said, standing up to respond to the thumping. But when I opened it, I discovered I was looking at a worn-down old lady. "Good afternoon," she said, in a rumbling and oddly recognisable voice. "Come on in, Stewart. Meet Quintus Noone and DI Burton." We observed an old man waddle into the flat, lugging an overnight case over which he was bowed in understandable distress. The old lady shut the door and removed her coat and then her wig, disclosing the recognisable face of Hector Nelson. "Hello, DCI Burton," he said. "It's a joy to see you
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