Antony broke in hastily with his thanks and acceptance.
“That’s good. Perhaps Beverley will stay on, if he’s a friend of yours. He’s a good fellow.”
Antony felt quite sure, from what Cayley had said and had hesitated to say, that Mark had been the last to see his brother alive. It didn’t follow that Mark Ablett was a murderer. Revolvers go off accidentally; and when they have gone off, people lose their heads and run away, fearing that their story will not be believed. Nevertheless, when people run away, whether innocently or guiltily, one can’t help wondering which way they went.
“I suppose this way,” said Antony aloud, looking out of the window.
“Who?” said Cayley stubbornly.
“Well, whoever it was,” said Antony, smiling to himself. “The murderer. Or, let us say, the man who locked the door after Robert Ablett was killed.”
“Well, how else could he have got away? He didn’t go by the windows in the next room, because they were shut.”
“Isn’t that rather odd?”
“Well, I thought so at first, but—” He pointed to the wall jutting out on the right. “You see, you’re protected from the rest of the house if you get out here, and you’re quite close to the shrubbery. If you go out at the French windows, I imagine you’re much more visible. All that part of the house—” he waved his right hand—“the west, well, north-west almost, where the kitchen parts are—you see, you’re hidden from them here. Oh, yes! he knew the house, whoever it was, and he was quite right to come out of this window. He’d be into the shrubbery at once.”
Cayley looked at him thoughtfully.
“It seems to me, Mr. Gillingham, that you know the house pretty well, considering that this is the first time you’ve been to it.”
“Oh, well, I notice things, you know. I was born noticing. But I’m right, aren’t I, about why he went out this way?”
“Yes, I think you are.” Cayley looked away—towards the shrubbery. “Do you want to go noticing in there now?” He nodded at it.
“I think we might leave that to the police,” said Antony gently. “It’s—well, there’s no hurry.”
Cayley gave a little sigh, as if he had been holding his breath for the answer, and could now breathe again.
“Thank you, Mr. Gillingham,” he said.
The Brother from Australia
Guests at the Red House were allowed to do what they liked within reason—the reasonableness or otherwise of it being decided by Mark. But when once they (or Mark) had made up their minds as to what they wanted to do, the plan had to be kept. Mrs. Calladine, who knew this little weakness of their host’s, resisted, therefore, the suggestion of Bill that they should have a second round in the afternoon, and drive home comfortably after tea. The other golfers were willing enough, but Mrs. Calladine, without actually saying that Mr. Ablett wouldn’t like it, was firm on the point that, having arranged to be back by four, they should be back by four.