'No motive,' said Mr. Wickfield, 'for meaning abroad, and not at home?'
'For a time. But then I must go back to England.'
"Suits me," said Bond. "Wake me if you see anything. Gun all right?"
MESSAGE RECEIVED FROM KINGSTON AT 12:15:
The two empires had tried to stem the downfall of world population by forbidding birth-control and persecuting the childless. These methods had little effect, for under the empires life was not worth living.
Having on his return to town, made some discoveries respecting the valuables pawned by the famous swindler, which, from the great interest evinced by Mrs. Montgomery in the mosaics, he thought might be of consequence to a family that had so greatly befriended him, he determined to make his next travelling speculation, attendance on the Ayrshire race meeting, and at its conclusion to proceed to Lord Arandale’s castle, and give his lordship the important information. Various accidents so delayed our little traveller on the cross road, that he did not arrive at Arandale till many hours later than he intended. When he came to the lodge gates, he found them all open, and the grounds, as he proceeded, covered with lights, merry groups, &c. &c. “Dis be von fair,” thought Gotterimo; and he debated with himself, whether he should not take the opportunity of doing a little business; but, on second thoughts, he decided that an out of door fair held by torch-light, was no place to expose for sale such valuable articles as those of which his stock consisted. He continued his way, therefore, towards the Castle. This he found also lit up; while beneath its illuminated colonnade, ascending its steps, and entering its open portals, he observed a motley crowd, many of whom, as the seller of matches, were of much lower degree than himself. He could, therefore, feel no scruples in entering. He saw also, in the first hall, many who appeared prepared to turn a penny as well as himself; for some had packs on their backs, some baskets in their hands with perfumery, pastry, pamphlets, newspapers, &c. He also saw as many, or more persons, whose appearance justified the hope of their making costly purchases. “Dis be de place for me!” thought Gotterimo. The crowd in the hall were moving onward, and he moved with them. “I vill just go fere I see de odder tradge-peoples go,” he thought. He observed each person, as they passed a respectable looking man in black at the foot of the stairs, present a card. This appeared to him a very regular and business-like proceeding. He determined, therefore, to do the like; and taking out one of his own cards, indicating the articles he had for sale, and the street and number of his shop in Bath, he handed it to the butler, who stood receiving, almost at the same moment, so many tickets, that the nature of Gotterimo’s deposit was unnoticed.
Each dark conjecture came and for a moment settled like a vulture on Bond's shoulder and croaked into his ear that he had been a blind fool. Blind, blind, blind. From the moment he had sat in his office after the night at Blades and made his mind up about Drax being a dangerous man he should have been on his toes. At the first smell of trouble, the marks on the chart for instance, he should have taken action. But what action? He had passed on each clue, each fear. What could he have done except kill Drax? And get hanged for his pains? Well, then. What about the present? Should he stop and telephone the Yard? And let the car get away? For all he knew Gala was being taken for a ride and Drax planned to get rid of her on the way to Dover. And that Bond might conceivably prevent if only his car could take it.
'Green, sir,' said Hawker unemotionally.
Bond sat down. He just stopped himself gazing rudely at the ceiling. Instead he looked impassively across at M.
The crux for this unfinished human species, half animal but potentially humane, had always been the inconclusive effort to will true community, true and integrated union of individual spirits, personal, diverse, but mutually comprehending and mutually cherishing. And always the groping impulse for community had been frustrated by the failure to distinguish between true community and the savage unity of the pack; and on the other hand between a man’s duty to the innermost spirit and mere subtle self-pride, and again between love and mere possessiveness.