And Be a Villain
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Radio talk show host Madeline Fraser's worst nightmare comes true when one of her on-air guests collapses at the mike after drinking a glass of the sponsor's beverage.
Half past eight. And keep me informed?” She said she would. After I had hung up I buzzed Wolfe on the house phone to tell him we had made a sale. It soon became apparent that we had also bought something. It was only twenty-five to six, less than three-quarters of an hour since I had finished with Deborah Koppel, when the doorbell rang. Sometimes Fritz answers it and sometimes me—usually me, when I’m home and not engaged on something that shouldn’t be interrupted. So I marched to the hall and
indigestion.” “Good God!” Nathan Traub cried, his smooth low-pitched voice transformed into a squeak. “I can’t help it, Nat,” Miss Fraser told him firmly, “but it does.” “And that,” Wolfe demanded, “is your desperate and fatal secret?” She nodded. “My Lord, could anything be worse? If that got around? If Leonard Lyons got it, for instance? I stuck to it the first few times, but it was no use. I wanted to cut that from the program, serving it, but by that time the Hi-Spot people were crazy
identity of the murderer—and by the way, here’s an interesting point: though I was already close to certitude, it was clinched for me only two hours ago, when Mr. Goodwin told me that there were sixteen eager candidates for the sponsorship just abandoned by Hi-Spot. That removed my shred of doubt.” “For God’s sake,” Nat Traub blurted, “let the fine points go! Let’s have it!” “You’ll have to be patient, sir,” Wolfe reproved him. “I’m not merely reporting, I’m doing a job. Whether a murderer gets
collapsed. It wasn’t the same at all, except in my fancy. I asked Wolfe: “This will do, won’t it?” He nodded and went back to Tully Strong. “So you have not one reason for reluctance, but several. Even so, you can’t possibly stick it. It has been clearly demonstrated to Mr. Cramer that you are withholding important information directly pertinent to the crimes he is investigating, and you and others have already pushed his patience pretty far. He’ll get his teeth in you now and he won’t let go.
your handling of the Fraser case, now that it’s over. I am pleased and thought you should know it. I have been, and still am, a little annoyed, but I am satisfied that you are not responsible. I have good sources of information. I congratulate you on keeping your investigation within the limits I prescribed. That has increased my admiration of you.” “I like to be admired,” Wolfe said curtly. “But when I undertake an investigation I permit prescription of limits only by the requirements of the