"Metro Accident and Home." The thin man still leaned, relaxed, against the counter, but the gray face was now tense. "Why? What's it to you, mister? Suppose you quit with the double-talk and say what's on your mind."
Why did he have to say such a thing, put the idea into the mind of God, of Fate, of whoever was controlling tonight? One should never send out black thoughts. They live on, like sound-waves, and get into the stream of consciousness in which we all swim. If God, Fate, happened to be listening in, at that moment, on that particular wavelength, it might be made to happen. The hint of a death-thought might be misunderstood. It might be read as a request!
"Good. Well, bring me in the signals, would you. There's been a lot of tune wasted today on all these domestic excitements." Carrying the brown folder, M. went through the door into his office. Miss Moneypenny brought in the signals and stood dutifully beside him while he went through them, occasionally dictating a comment or a query. She looked down at the bowed, iron-grey head with the bald patch polished for years by a succession of naval caps and wondered, as she had wondered so often over the past ten years, whether she loved or hated this man. One thing was certain. She respected him more than any man she had known or had read of.
Bond shouted, "Wait, you bastard!" But, by the time Leiter had limped back into the room, Bond, no effort left in him to fire off the volley of four-letter words that were to be his only answer to his friend, had lapsed into unconsciousness.
'Now' - Franklin turned to Bond - 'when this officer took a look into the laboratory up there he saw rack upon rack of test-tubes containing what he describes as "a cloudy liquid". How would it be if those were viruses, Fowl Pest, anthrax, God knows what all? The report mentions that the laboratory was lit with a dim red light. That would be correct. Virus cultures suffer from exposure to bright light. And how would it be if before this Polly girl left she was given an aerosol spray of the right stuff and told that this was some kind of turkey elixir - a tonic to make them grow fatter and healthier. Remember that stuff about "improving the breed" in the hypnosis talk? And suppose she was told to go to Olympia for the Show, perhaps even take a job for the meeting as a cleaner or something, and just casually spray this aerosol here and there among the prize birds. It wouldn't be bigger than one of those shaving-soap bombs. That'd be, quite enough. She'd been told to keep it secret, that it was patent stuff. Perhaps even that she'd be given shares hi the company if the tonic proved the success this man Blofeld claimed it would. It'd be quite easy to do. She'd just wander round the cages - perhaps she was even given a special purse to carry the thing in - lean up against the wire and psst! the job would be done. Easy as falling off a log. All right, if you'll go along with me so far, she was probably told to do the job on one of the last two days of the show, so that the effects wouldn't be seen too soon. Then, at the end of the show, all the prize birds are dispersed back to their owners all over England. And that's that! And' - he paused -'mark you, that was that. Three million birds dead and still dying all over the place, and a great chunk of foreign currency coughed up by the Treasury to replace them.5
16 THE LOVESOME SPOT
The formula for effective communication has threedistinct parts:
How it happened, no one knows. The only explanation is that some mysterious X Factor gave us—the weaker, dumber, skinnier creatures—a life-or-death edge over the Ice Age All-Stars. It wasn’tstrength. It wasn’t weapons. It wasn’t intelligence.
One remarkable institution was almost universal, namely the village ‘meeting’, a gathering of all the villagers for the planning of their communal life. The ‘meeting’ took a great variety of forms in different lands; but nearly always it centred on a building which combined many of the characters of a village hall, a church, and a public house. By some freak of the evolution of language it was known in all countries as the ‘poob’. In it the village met every evening to yarn, play games, sing, drink their synthetic elixirs, smoke their synthetic tobaccos. It was also the communal eating-house where friends could meet over a meal, where many of the more sociable villagers fed every day, where the guests of the village were entertained, where village banquets were held. In it also the villagers met for concerts and lectures. In it at regular intervals they held their formal ‘meetings’ to discuss communal business and settle disputes. There they also held their sacred ceremonies, such as marriages, funerals, initiations into citizenship, commemorations of great events, local, national, or cosmopolitan.