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Zacharias - Part VI
by Theodore K. Nasos
2016-08-09 12:12:42
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An odd ransom

Nothing really happened for the next three days. Sir John and I continued organizing his files and the only thing that could be filed as strange was one evening and while sitting silently in the study drinking our evening tea, Sir John said quietly: “the answer usually lays in the simplest thing.” Apart of that there was nothing to say that any of us was thinking about Zaharias his wife or his two sons.

Chief Inspector Bennett seemed also busy with a series of robberies we only read in the evening news since they kept him away from our company. That said it was Chief Inspector Christopher Bennett the first to call on the fourth day early in the morning and with me having just arrived and taking off my coat.

“Put it back on, dear friend, we are going.” Sir John said to me coming out of his study in real hurry. Knowing that he wouldn’t stop to answer whatever I did, I put back on my coat and followed him outside where a cab was waiting for us. In less than twenty very quiet minutes with me looking at Sir John waiting for answers, Sir John looking outside ignoring me and a cab-driver with a death wish we were back in the motel sitting once more with Mrs Taylor and her son. Bennett was standing by the door obviously nervous.

“I checked his place before coming here and there is nothing strange there. Still he’s missing and his battler had no idea if he had return the night before or if he had been away all night.” Bennett said.

Sir John was staring a piece of paper at his hands. Oddly he was still wearing his gloves.

“Dear Mrs Taylor, you have until Friday to find 2,000 of the old queen’s golden pounds or your husband’s son is dead.” Sir John read out loud and nobody of us said anything.

“I have 1,500 old queen’s pounds with me and I’m sure I can find another 500 till Friday,” Mrs Taylor said holding tightly her son.

“I have put two constables at the house, one inside one outside, but all the research we did, we didn’t find anything to say that there was a fight or any kind of strange in there. They must have kidnaped him somewhere outside.” Bennett added obviously frustrated with the situation.

“Right, right,” Sir John murmured like he was on his own in the room. “We cannot do anything else here, I think the best thing we can do at the moment is let Mrs Taylor to find the rest of the gold and us to try to trace where the young man might be.”


zahar01_400“I don’t get. There is something here I miss but I cannot point it out.” Bennett said when we stood outside the motel, just the three of us planning what would be the next move.

“Christopher,” Sir John said calmly, “put a constable here as well in case the kidnapers think to take another of Mrs Taylor’s sons and then try to trace what the young man did last night. In the meantime we are going back to my study. I think I like to read this note again in a more quiet environment. And saying that he moved towards the cab that was still waiting for us leaving Bennett and I watching him leave. He didn’t even bother wait for me.

“Thanks Sir John…” I started complaining when I arrived back but Sir John shushed me with a move of his hand. He was sitting in one of his huge leather armchairs, the note in one hand and a glass of cognac in the other. A bit early to have a drink but somehow Sir John seemed to needed it. I felt more confident with a cup of strong coffee which thankfully was put in my side with a couple of cucumber sandwiches from Sir John’s maid.

What a marvellous woman. She always knew what needed before you even realize. One day when I will have my own place and my own … “There is something odd about this not,” Sir John interrupted my thoughts about my future maid. He shook his head. “Whoever this kidnapper is, seems to know too well Mrs Taylor’s finances. Actually seems to know too well everything.”

I didn’t get it and obviously my face betrayed me.

“Of course you can see it. Why not 5,000 or even better, 10,000. Why only 2,000? I mean even you could pay this amount if necessary.” I flashed immediately. Sir John and I never spoke about my finances but truth said that even though my yearly allowance was much smaller I could always ask my father or my Aunty for the missing extra and they would sent it no questions asked. But how Sir John did knew it was a new mystery for me.

“And I have to add that I was not surprised at all that Mrs Taylor could find the money immediately. Not a special effort to be done. Actually it must have been the exact amount she had with her since she would have to think motel payments and spending money for her and her son. Most likely she has more than the whole amount but she didn’t want to admit it.”

I had to admit that everything Sir John had said made sense. “Oh I’m afraid the answer is very simple and out of habit we make it difficult. Actually I bet the kidnaper has invested in exactly that, that we cannot see the simplicity of the answer.” Sir John shook his head and opening the wide French doors he stepped outside in the garden.


Part I - Part II - Part III - Part IV - Part V -Part VI -


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