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datatime: 2022-11-27 16:12:06 Author:bstroZQa

"Her windows command the greenhouse. She saw us go in. I was obliged to tell her who you were."

He looked puzzled, then he smiled. "Ah, I see, sir. You are, of course, a detective. By the way he rang his bell."

"Who told her anything about my visit?"

"Her windows command the greenhouse. She saw us go in. I was obliged to tell her who you were."

"Her windows command the greenhouse. She saw us go in. I was obliged to tell her who you were."

"Some kind of gambler. I hardly recall. Norris would know. My butler."

"Some kind of gambler. I hardly recall. Norris would know. My butler."

"I'm afraid I'm rather an impatient man, Mr. Marlowe. What are your charges?"

"Who told her anything about my visit?"

"I see." He shrugged his wide sharp shoulders in the faded red bathrobe. "A moment ago you said pay him. Now you say it won't get me anything."

I stood up and lifted my coat off the back of the damp wicker chair and went off with it among the orchids, opened the two doors and stood outside in the brisk October air getting myself some oxygen. The chauffeur over by the garage had gone away. The butler came along the red path with smooth light steps and his back as straight as an ironing board. I shrugged into my coat and watched him come.

"I'm sure you will. And now I must excuse myself. I am tired." He reached out and touched the bell on the arm of his chair. The cord was plugged into a black cable that wound along the side of the deep dark green boxes in which the orchids grew and festered. He closed his eyes, opened them again in a brief bright stare, and settled back among his cushions. The lids dropped again and he didn't pay any more attention to me.

"I'm afraid I'm rather an impatient man, Mr. Marlowe. What are your charges?"

"Can I make a deal with this guy, if I think he's within hooting distance of being on the level?"

"I have that privilege."

"Somebody's counting on that. It's the easiest way to fool them. That or the police. Geiger can collect on these notes, unless you can show fraud. Instead of that he makes you a present of them and admits they are gambling debts, which gives you a defense, even if he had kept the notes. If he's a crook, he knows his onions, and if he's an honest man doing a little loan business on the side, he ought to have his money. Who was this Joe Brody you paid the five thousand dollars to?"

"It's a question of a little money against a lot of annoyance. There has to be something behind it. But nobody's going to break your heart, if it hasn't been done already. And it would take an awful lot of chiselers an awful lot of time to rob you of enough so that you'd even notice it."

"It's a question of a little money against a lot of annoyance. There has to be something behind it. But nobody's going to break your heart, if it hasn't been done already. And it would take an awful lot of chiselers an awful lot of time to rob you of enough so that you'd even notice it."

"I mean it might be cheaper and easier to stand for a certain amount of squeeze. That's all."

"I have pride, sir," he said coldly.

"It's a question of a little money against a lot of annoyance. There has to be something behind it. But nobody's going to break your heart, if it hasn't been done already. And it would take an awful lot of chiselers an awful lot of time to rob you of enough so that you'd even notice it."

"I mean it might be cheaper and easier to stand for a certain amount of squeeze. That's all."

I said: "I can take this Geiger off your back, General, if that's what you want. Whoever he is and whatever he has. It may cost you a little money, besides what you pay me. And of course it won't get you anything. Sugaring them never does. You're already listed on their book of nice names."

His blue eyes gave me a smooth level look. "She has a misconception of the purpose of your visit, sir."

"I'll take him out," I said. "He'll think a bridge fell on him."

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