Friday, 13 July 2007



Where were the pearls? Obviously, not in the Burrow, as Wooffie had been wearing them when he was taken through the lock, and they had vanished when Ben and I found him. Clearly they were somewhere on the lower reaches of the river, below the lock. But who had taken them?

While Poirot and Anticant debated what to do next, Farmer Wook suddenly called out to me “Saddle my trusty mare. I’ll go look for the goddarned things and bring the culprits to book. What you need here is a retired chief constable and deputy sheriff!”

I did as I was bid, and the intrepid Farmer leaped into the saddle and cantered off in the direction of the lock. In a surprisingly short time, he returned triumphantly waving aloft Dame Barbara’s pearls. “When I got to the lock”, he said, “the lock keeper’s wife hailed me and said her husband had just returned home with the pearls, which he found lying under a thorn bush a couple of miles downstream. She had no idea how they got there.”

So all’s well that ends well. But the mystery of how the pearls came to be entwined round Wooffie’s neck remained unsolved and was the subject of keen debate. Our baffled discussion was interrupted by Dame Barbara’s maid, who summoned the company to the State Chamber, where Dame Barbara reclined in the four-poster wearing a magnificent frilly tulle negligee.

In an unaccustomedly bashful tone she said: “I have a confession to make. While totally absorbed in my authorial labours, I became aware of Wooffie nestling at my feet. He looked so sweet that I clasped my rope of pearls around his neck. I regret to say that I then fell asleep. When I awoke, Wooffie had gone, and I have only just now recollected the incident. I would like to apologise to all concerned for any distress caused by my unjust suspicions. There – I feel better now! Please fetch me two large pink gins from the Snug, Ben.”

Farmer Wook said “Well, I’ll be danged.”

A crestfallen M. Poirot feigned relief that he would not have to carry out his customary masterly interrogation of all the suspects, and triumphantly reveal the culprit. He had, he said, formed some strong suspicions of some of the Snug regulars, but would perforce keep his thoughts to himself.

So ended my eventful first day at the Burrow.


Emmett said...

SORRY...You can't have anything nice, as they say....


zola a social thing said...

That bloody Beadle has escaped agin.
Look out for strange fellow, with knees together, prancing around.
Public Warning - Critical.