Thursday, August 18, 2011

Quote of the Day

"Well," said Susan, "it was in the paper. There seems to be a gang at work smuggling thousands of watches into the country."
"It's all perfectly clear to me," said Bill. "Someone, let's call him Mr. X-"
"Oh, yes," interrupted Susan, "I love a Mr. X-"
"Well, Mr. X," went on Bill, "smuggles in these watches, takes them to the house next door - in an Ivor Williams van, I shouldn't wonder, then packs them into the chest of drawers. Along comes a van and a couple of men who carry out the chest of drawers - Susan saw them-"
"Yes," said Susan eagerly, "I saw that chest of drawers going out and in, I told you!"
"-They take the watches to the shop, or to the person who is going to sell them, then bring back the chest of drawers for a refill. If anyone looks inside the van, there is only an empty chest of drawers in it, being delivered; and no one is going to pay the slightest attention to a chest of drawers being taken from a furniture store - I've seen men taking furniture in an dout of that house hundreds of times and never paid any attention. It was only bad luck for the gang that Susan was lying in bed with nothing to do and noticed that it was the same chest of drawers going in and out."
"Then is the gang Ivor Williams?" said Charlotte, more puzzled than ever.
"Gracious no," said Bill, shocked. "Ivor Williams are only being used as a - what's the word? A cover? Yes, a cover."
"Well, you seem to have worked it all out very successfully, young Bill," said Midge. "But who is Mr. X?"
"How should I know?" said Bill.
"But I know that," said Susan. "Mr. X is Miss Plum."

From SUSAN PULLS THE STRINGS, Chapter 9, Susan in Disgrace. This was readers' first exposure to what would become a staple of the Susan stories: Susan working out from very scanty evidence that the most unlikely person is a master criminal. She makes her wild accusation only to be in hot water with Aunt Lucy. However, she often turns out to be right.