It was impossible to tell Doctor No's age: as far as Bond could see, there were no lines on the face. It was odd to see a forehead as smooth as the top of the polished skull. Even the cavernous indrawn cheeks below the prominent cheekbones looked as smooth as fine ivory. There was something Dali-esque about the eyebrows, which were fine and black, and sharply upswept as if they had been painted on as makeup for a conjurer. Below them, slanting jet black eyes stared out of the skull. They were without eyelashes. They looked like the mouths of two small revolvers, direct and unblinking and totally devoid of expression. The thin fine nose ended very close above a wide compressed wound of a mouth which, despite its almost permanent sketch of a smile, showed only cruelty and authority. The chin was indrawn towards the neck. Later Bond was to notice that it rarely moved more than slightly away from centre, giving the impression that the head and the vertebra were in one piece.
Bond went through the restaurant door. Several of the interior tables were occupied by those who had had enough sun. He went across the room and out through the now open french windows. The man Fritz, who appeared to be the maitre d'hotel, came towards him through the crowded tables. His eyes too were cold with hostility. He held up a menu. 'Please to follow me.'
He calls himself a "mast-fed lawyer" and it is true that his opportunities for reading continued to be most restricted. Davis said in regard to Lincoln's work as a lawyer: "He had a magnificent equipoise of head, conscience, and heart. In non-essentials he was pliable; but on the underlying principles of truth and justice, his will was as firm as steel." We find from the record of Lincoln's work in the Assembly and later in Congress that he would never do as a Representative what he was unwilling to do as an individual. His capacity for seeing the humorous side of things was of course but a phase of a general clearness of perception. The man who sees things clearly, who is able to recognise both sides of a matter, the man who can see all round a position, the opposite of the man in blinders, that man necessarily has a sense of humour. He is able, if occasion presents, to laugh at himself. Lincoln's capacity for absorbing and for retaining information and for having this in readiness for use at the proper time was, as we have seen, something that went back to his boyhood. He says of himself: "My mind is something like a piece of steel; it is very hard to scratch anything on it and almost impossible after you have got it there to rub it out."
Then he sat very still for another five minutes and wondered if he had signed James Bond's death warrant.
And then let him beware of creating tedium! Who has not felt the charm of a spoken story up to a certain point, and then suddenly become aware that it has become too long and is the reverse of charming. It is not only that the entire book may have this fault, but that this fault may occur in chapters, in passages, in pages, in paragraphs. I know no guard against this so likely to be effective as the feeling of the writer himself. When once the sense that the thing is becoming long has grown upon him, he may be sure that it will grow upon his readers. I see the smile of some who will declare to themselves that the words of a writer will never be tedious to himself. Of the writer of whom this may be truly said, it may be said with equal truth that he will always be tedious to his reader.
It was, therefore, of his own free will, that poor Ormond had resigned at once, the rank, the wealth, and the home, in which he had from infancy lived, believing them his birth-right. His twin sister, who was in courtesy called Miss Ormond, had received a very superior education, to fit her for the situation of governess.
"I was one of the best shots in the Brandenburg Division," said Drax conversationally. "Tie her to that chair, Krebs. Then the man."