The secret adversary, p.1
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       The Secret Adversary, p.1

         Part #1 of Tommy & Tuppence series by Agatha Christie
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The Secret Adversary


  Produced by Charles Keller, and David Widger

  THE SECRET ADVERSARY

  By Agatha Christie

  TO ALL THOSE WHO LEAD MONOTONOUS LIVES IN THE HOPE THAT THEY MAY EXPERIENCE AT SECOND HAND THE DELIGHTS AND DANGERS OF ADVENTURE

  CONTENTS

  PROLOGUE

  CHAPTER I.   THE YOUNG ADVENTURERS, LTD.

  CHAPTER II.   MR. WHITTINGTON’S OFFER

  CHAPTER III.   A SET BACK

  CHAPTER IV.   WHO IS JANE FINN?

  CHAPTER V.   MR. JULIUS P. HERSHEIMMER

  CHAPTER VI.   A PLAN OF CAMPAIGN

  CHAPTER VII.   THE HOUSE IN SOHO

  CHAPTER VIII.   THE ADVENTURES OF TOMMY

  CHAPTER IX.   TUPPENCE ENTERS DOMESTIC SERVICE

  CHAPTER X.   ENTER SIR JAMES PEEL EDGERTON

  CHAPTER XI.   JULIUS TELLS A STORY

  CHAPTER XII.   A FRIEND IN NEED

  CHAPTER XIII.   THE VIGIL

  CHAPTER XIV.   A CONSULTATION

  CHAPTER XV.   TUPPENCE RECEIVES A PROPOSAL

  CHAPTER XVI.   FURTHER ADVENTURES OF TOMMY

  CHAPTER XVII.   ANNETTE

  CHAPTER XVIII.   THE TELEGRAM

  CHAPTER XIX.   JANE FINN

  CHAPTER XX.   TOO LATE

  CHAPTER XXI.   TOMMY MAKES A DISCOVERY

  CHAPTER XXII.   IN DOWNING STREET

  CHAPTER XXIII.   A RACE AGAINST TIME

  CHAPTER XXIV.   JULIUS TAKES A HAND

  CHAPTER XXV.   JANE’S STORY

  CHAPTER XXVI.   MR. BROWN

  CHAPTER XXVII.   A SUPPER PARTY AT THE _SAVOY_

  CHAPTER XXVIII.     AND AFTER

  PROLOGUE

  IT was 2 p.m. on the afternoon of May 7, 1915. The _Lusitania_ had beenstruck by two torpedoes in succession and was sinking rapidly, whilethe boats were being launched with all possible speed. The women andchildren were being lined up awaiting their turn. Some still clungdesperately to husbands and fathers; others clutched their childrenclosely to their breasts. One girl stood alone, slightly apart fromthe rest. She was quite young, not more than eighteen. She did not seemafraid, and her grave, steadfast eyes looked straight ahead.

  “I beg your pardon.”

  A man’s voice beside her made her start and turn. She had noticed thespeaker more than once amongst the first-class passengers. There hadbeen a hint of mystery about him which had appealed to her imagination.He spoke to no one. If anyone spoke to him he was quick to rebuff theoverture. Also he had a nervous way of looking over his shoulder with aswift, suspicious glance.

  She noticed now that he was greatly agitated. There were beads ofperspiration on his brow. He was evidently in a state of overmasteringfear. And yet he did not strike her as the kind of man who would beafraid to meet death!

  “Yes?” Her grave eyes met his inquiringly.

  He stood looking at her with a kind of desperate irresolution.

  “It must be!” he muttered to himself. “Yes--it is the only way.” Thenaloud he said abruptly: “You are an American?”

  “Yes.”

  “A patriotic one?”

  The girl flushed.

  “I guess you’ve no right to ask such a thing! Of course I am!”

  “Don’t be offended. You wouldn’t be if you knew how much there was atstake. But I’ve got to trust some one--and it must be a woman.”

  “Why?”

  “Because of ‘women and children first.’” He looked round and lowered hisvoice. “I’m carrying papers--vitally important papers. They may make allthe difference to the Allies in the war. You understand? These papershave _got_ to be saved! They’ve more chance with you than with me. Willyou take them?”

  The girl held out her hand.

  “Wait--I must warn you. There may be a risk--if I’ve been followed. Idon’t think I have, but one never knows. If so, there will be danger.Have you the nerve to go through with it?”

  The girl smiled.

  “I’ll go through with it all right. And I’m real proud to be chosen!What am I to do with them afterwards?”

  “Watch the newspapers! I’ll advertise in the personal column of the_Times_, beginning ‘Shipmate.’ At the end of three days if there’snothing--well, you’ll know I’m down and out. Then take the packet tothe American Embassy, and deliver it into the Ambassador’s own hands. Isthat clear?”

  “Quite clear.”

  “Then be ready--I’m going to say good-bye.” He took her hand in his.“Good-bye. Good luck to you,” he said in a louder tone.

  Her hand closed on the oilskin packet that had lain in his palm.

  The _Lusitania_ settled with a more decided list to starboard. In answerto a quick command, the girl went forward to take her place in the boat.

 

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