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The Unbreakable Alibi: An Agatha Christie Short Story

The Unbreakable Alibi: An Agatha Christie Short Story
The Unbreakable Alibi: An Agatha Christie Short Story Agatha Christie A classic Agatha Christie short story, available individually for the first time as an ebook.In order to help a young man impress the woman he wants to marry, the Beresfords are enlisted to crack her near impossible alibi and claim of being in two places at once. Tommy and Tuppence set out to uncover the truth… The Unbreakable Alibi A Short Story by Agatha Christie Copyright (#ulink_7a88d203-3671-5b41-adcc-38d8cfb4a376) Published by HarperCollinsPublishers Ltd 1 London Bridge Street London SE1 9GF www.harpercollins.co.uk (http://www.harpercollins.co.uk) First published 2008 Copyright © 2008 Agatha Christie Ltd. Cover design © HarperCollinsPublishers 2013 Agatha Christie asserts the moral right to be identified as the author of this work A catalogue copy of this book is available from the British Library This novel is entirely a work of fiction. The names, characters and incidents portrayed in it are the work of the author’s imagination. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or localities is entirely coincidental All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. By payment of the required fees, you have been granted the nonexclusive, nontransferable right to access and read the text of this e-book on-screen. No part of this text may be reproduced, transmitted, downloaded, decompiled, reverse engineered, or stored in or introduced into any information storage and retrieval system, in any form or by any means, whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of HarperCollins e-books. HarperCollinsPublishers has made every reasonable effort to ensure that any picture content and written content in this ebook has been included or removed in accordance with the contractual and technological constraints in operation at the time of publication. Ebook Edition © SEPTEMBER 2013 ISBN: 9780007526796 Version: 2017-04-15 Contents Cover (#u2b59aa41-716c-5a0b-9cf3-4b190fac169d) Title Page (#u5053dd09-4ea1-55e6-9c3f-a858876f8def) Copyright (#ulink_7f6215f0-9eff-55cf-a250-796e4fd5b3f1) The Unbreakable Alibi (#ulink_b9134ce0-06a4-52bd-941e-24b0aae903f7) Related Products (#litres_trial_promo) About the Publisher (#litres_trial_promo) The Unbreakable Alibi (#ulink_a14bc6cb-dd73-5231-97c5-208e65474bf1) ‘The Unbreakable Alibi’ was originally the last Tommy and Tuppence story, appearing in Holly Leaves (published by Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News), 1 December 1928. Inspector French was created by Freeman Wills Croft (1879–1957). Tommy and Tuppence were busy sorting correspondence. Tuppence gave an exclamation and handed a letter across to Tommy. ‘A new client,’ she said importantly. ‘Ha!’ said Tommy. ‘What do we deduce from this letter, Watson? Nothing much, except the somewhat obvious fact that Mr – er – Montgomery Jones is not one of the world’s best spellers, thereby proving that he has been expensively educated.’ ‘Montgomery Jones?’ said Tuppence. ‘Now what do I know about a Montgomery Jones? Oh, yes, I have got it now. I think Janet St Vincent mentioned him. His mother was Lady Aileen Montgomery, very crusty and high church, with gold crosses and things, and she married a man called Jones who is immensely rich.’ ‘In fact the same old story,’ said Tommy. ‘Let me see, what time does this Mr M. J. wish to see us? Ah, eleven-thirty.’ At eleven-thirty precisely, a very tall young man with an amiable and ingenuous countenance entered the outer office and addressed himself to Albert, the office boy. ‘Look here – I say. Can I see Mr – er – Blunt?’ ‘Have you an appointment, sir?’ said Albert. ‘I don’t quite know. Yes, I suppose I have. What I mean is, I wrote a letter –’ ‘What name, sir?’ ‘Mr Montgomery Jones.’ ‘I will take your name in to Mr Blunt.’ He returned after a brief interval. ‘Will you wait a few minutes please, sir. Mr Blunt is engaged on a very important conference at present.’ ‘Oh – er – yes – certainly,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. Having, he hoped, impressed his client sufficiently Tommy rang the buzzer on his desk, and Mr Montgomery Jones was ushered into the inner office by Albert. Tommy rose to greet him, and shaking him warmly by the hand motioned towards the vacant chair. ‘Now, Mr Montgomery Jones,’ he said briskly. ‘What can we have the pleasure of doing for you?’ Mr Montgomery Jones looked uncertainly at the third occupant of the office. ‘My confidential secretary, Miss Robinson,’ said Tommy. ‘You can speak quite freely before her. I take it that this is some family matter of a delicate kind?’ ‘Well – not exactly,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. ‘You surprise me,’ said Tommy. ‘You are not in trouble of any kind yourself, I hope?’ ‘Oh, rather not,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. ‘Well,’ said Tommy, ‘perhaps you will – er – state the facts plainly.’ That, however, seemed to be the one thing that Mr Montgomery Jones could not do. ‘It’s a dashed odd sort of thing I have got to ask you,’ he said hesitatingly. ‘I – er – I really don’t know how to set about it.’ ‘We never touch divorce cases,’ said Tommy. ‘Oh Lord, no,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. ‘I don’t mean that. It is just, well – it’s a deuced silly sort of a joke. That’s all.’ ‘Someone has played a practical joke on you of a mysterious nature?’ suggested Tommy. But Mr Montgomery Jones once more shook his head. ‘Well,’ said Tommy, retiring gracefully from the position, ‘take your own time and let us have it in your own words.’ There was a pause. ‘You see,’ said Mr Jones at last, ‘it was at dinner. I sat next to a girl.’ ‘Yes?’ said Tommy encouragingly. ‘She was a – oh well, I really can’t describe her, but she was simply one of the most sporting girls I ever met. She’s an Australian, over here with another girl, sharing a flat with her in. Clarges Street. She’s simply game for anything. I absolutely can’t tell you the effect that girl had on me.’ ‘We can quite imagine it, Mr Jones,’ said Tuppence. She saw clearly that if Mr Montgomery Jones’s troubles were ever to be extracted a sympathetic feminine touch was needed, as distinct from the businesslike methods of Mr Blunt. ‘We can understand,’ said Tuppence encouragingly. ‘Well, the whole thing came as an absolute shock to me,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones, ‘that a girl could well – knock you over like that. There had been another girl – in fact two other girls. One was awfully jolly and all that, but I didn’t much like her chin. She danced marvellously though, and I have known her all my life, which makes a fellow feel kind of safe, you know. And then there was one of the girls at the “Frivolity.” Frightfully amusing, but of course there would be a lot of ructions with the matter over that, and anyway I didn’t really want to marry either of them, but I was thinking about things, you know, and then – slap out of the blue – I sat next to this girl and –’ ‘The whole world was changed,’ said Tuppence in a feeling voice. Tommy moved impatiently in his chair. He was by now somewhat bored by the recital of Mr Montgomery Jones’s love affairs. ‘You put it awfully well,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. ‘That is absolutely what it was like. Only, you know, I fancy she didn’t think much of me. You mayn’t think it, but I am not terribly clever.’ ‘Oh, you mustn’t be too modest,’ said Tuppence. ‘Oh, I do realise that I am not much of a chap,’ said Mr Jones with an engaging smile. ‘Not for a perfectly marvellous girl like that. That is why I just feel I have got to put this thing through. It’s my only chance. She’s such a sporting girl that she would never go back on her word.’ ‘Well, I am sure we wish you luck and all that,’ said Tuppence kindly. ‘But I don’t exactly see what you want us to do.’ ‘Oh Lord,’ said Mr Montgomery Jones. ‘Haven’t I explained?’ ‘No,’ said Tommy, ‘you haven’t.’ ‘Well, it was like this. We were talking about detective stories. Una – that’s her name – is just as keen about them as I am. We got talking about one in particular. It all hinges on an alibi. Then we got talking about alibis and faking them. Then I said – no, she said – now which of us was it that said it?’ ‘Never mind which of you it was,’ said Tuppence. Конец ознакомительного фрагмента. Текст предоставлен ООО «ЛитРес». Прочитайте эту книгу целиком, купив полную легальную версию (https://www.litres.ru/agata-kristi/the-unbreakable-alibi-an-agatha-christie-short-story/?lfrom=334617187) на ЛитРес. Безопасно оплатить книгу можно банковской картой Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, со счета мобильного телефона, с платежного терминала, в салоне МТС или Связной, через PayPal, WebMoney, Яндекс.Деньги, QIWI Кошелек, бонусными картами или другим удобным Вам способом.
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