“Good God!” Sergeant Major General exclaimed again. “A giant eye! What can it mean?”
Kirk Bill narrowed his eyes thoughtfully while rubbing his chiseled chin. (Also thoughtfully). “This brings to mind another case of mine,” he said. “Do you remember the Case of the Golden Meerkat, my dear Major General?”
“No,” said Major General, round-eyed.
“Oh yes, you were unconscious for most of it, due to an unfortunate encounter with a zebra,” said Kirk Bill. “Well, in that case, which as you do not recall was concerned with a zoo, I had an opportunity to match my strength against a Russian assassin who was disguised as an assistant snake-wrangler. It was not relevant to the case at the time, but I recall he had a tattoo on his left forearm that looked exactly like this drawing.”
“Good God,” Sergeant Major General ejaculated. “Do you think he murdered Lord Worzleham?”
“Impossible, my dear friend,” said Kirk Bill, his fine-timbered voice ringing. “I killed the assassin in unarmed combat, after first learning the identity of his target. But I never discovered who was his master.”
“Then – “ Sergeant Major General began.
“Yes! It is likely that the same evil mastermind that masterminded the theft of the Golden Meerkat also masterfully masterminded the murder of Lord Worzleham!” Kirk Bill whirled about, striking a confident pose in a shaft of sunlight coming through a nearby window, which threw his aquiline nose and strong cheekbones into pleasing chiaroscuro.
Sergeant Major General could not help but admire such a fine figure of a man. Also, he admired the cut of Kirk Bill’s pants, which molded to his legs in the manner à la mode, and resolved yet again to ask the name of Kirk Bill’s tailor.
“But how will we find this evil mastermind?” asked Sergeant Major General.
“I believe I may be of assistance there,” said a throbbing voice from the vicinity of the divan. Both men turned, startled, Kirk Bill raising a sculpted eyebrow quizzically. Miss Worzleham had recovered, though she was still pale. She kept her eyes firmly averted from the increasingly unattractive remains of her father.
“Father came back from a business meeting last night in a terrible state,” she said. “He was some hours in his study. He would not come out to take his supper. At one point I swear I heard him weeping.”
“With whom did he meet?” asked Kirk Bill, moving quickly to her side and holding her elbow in case she was unable to support it herself.
“I do not know their name,” said Miss Worzleham, “but I know where they met . At an -” Here the lady paused, obviously distressed. Her voice lowered. “An opium den”.
“Good God!” said Sergeant Major General.
“Do you know its name?” asked Kirk Bill, in his gentlest voice, which incidentally was a pleasing tenor when raised in song.
“Yes,” she said. “It is called – THE EYE OF THE TIGER”.
TO BE CONTINUED