James Bond—arch-enemy of SMERSH, subjugator of the master fiends Goldfinger and Dr. No, has been brainwashed by Soviet captors into becoming the tool of Russia’s K.G.B. Secret agent is deliberately setting out to perpetrate an act of treachery against the British Secret. Title: The Man with the Golden Gun Author: Fleming, Ian [Ian Lancaster] ( ) Date of first publication: Edition used as base for. MACMILLAN READERS. UPPER LEVEL. IAN FLEMING. The Man with the Golden Gun. Retold by Helen Holwill. MACMILLAN.
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Fleming, Ian - Bond 13 - The Man with the Golden Gun · Read more James Bond - The Man with the Golden Gun - Ian Fleming palmdoc. Read more . Fleming, Ian - Bond 13 - The Man with the Golden Gun. Read more The man with the golden gun: a James Bond novel. Read more. The Man with the Golden Gun. View PDF. book | A brainwashed James Bond has tried - and failed - to assassinate M, his boss. Now Bond has to prove he.
The attempt is foiled and Bond is rehabilitated, sent almost immediately on another mission that should, in the mind of his boss, prove his loyalty once and for all. That mission leads Bond to Jamaica, where he picks up the trail of the internationally feared assassin-for-hire Scaramanga, and where he is also unexpectedly and happily reunited with his former secretary, Mary Goodnight. Goodnight supplies him with the information and resources he needs to track Scaramanga, whom Bond soon confronts in a brothel run by the spirited Tiffy.
Bond convinces Scaramanga that he is not a police officer, but rather a specialist helping a plantation owner who's having trouble with security around his estate. Scaramanga hires Bond to provide security on his own establishment, The Thunderbird Hotel, during an important business meeting. Upon arrival at the hotel, Bond quickly comes to understand that it is a front for a startling collection of illegal activities—industrial sabotage, drug dealing, money laundering, and more.
Scaramanga demands that Bond assist in making the arrangements for the meeting, which Scaramanga claims is for investors in the hotel but which Bond soon understands is actually for a group of internationally connected gangsters.
As the meeting progresses, one of the gangsters disagrees with Scaramanga and is shot for it. Another is revealed to be an agent for the Russian KGB who knows about Bond's mission and who eventually becomes aware of Bond's true identity.
Bond, with the help of Mary Goodnight, manages to keep that identity secret from Scaramanga, but not for long—soon, he and the other gangsters are making plans to end Bond's life. Their attempt takes place on a train ride to the other side of the island. On the ride, a shoot-out results in one of the gangsters being killed, Scaramanga and Bond both being wounded and jumping off the train in pursuit of each other, and the rest of the gangsters being killed by a bomb set on a bridge by Bond's CIA allies.
Harold L. Peterson writes: "In the vast array of things man has invented to better his condition, few have fascinated him more than the gun. Its function is simple; as Oliver Winchester said, with nineteenth-century complacency, 'A gun is a machine for throwing balls.
And since strength resides in the gun, the man who wields it may be less than strong without being disadvantaged. The flashing sword, the couched lance, the bent longbow performed to the limit of the man who held it. The gun's power is inherent and needs only to be released.
A steady eye and an accurate aim are enough.
Wherever the muzzle points, the bullet goes, bearing the gunner's wish or intention swiftly to the target Perhaps more than any other implement, the gun has shaped the course of nations and the destiny of men.
But we need not linger over these esoterica. The support for my premise is well expressed in Mr. Peterson's sinewy prose and--though I would substitute the printing press for the gun in his concluding paragraph--his points are well taken. The subject, Scaramanga, is, in my opinion, a paranoiac in subconscious revolt against the father figure i. He has other qualities which are self-evident from the earlier testimony. In conclusion, and having regard to the damage he has already wrought upon the personnel of the S.
Then he reached for his pen and, in green ink, scrawled the word Action? Then he sat very still for another five minutes and wondered if he had signed James Bond's death warrant.
Chapter 4. All the money has been spent on lengthening the runway out into the harbour to take the big jets, and little was left over for the comfort of transit passengers. James Bond had come in an hour before on a B. He had taken off his coat and tie and now sat on a hard bench gloomily surveying the contents of the In-Bond shop with its expensive scents, liquor, and piles of overdecorated native ware.
He had had luncheon on the plane, it was the wrong time for a drink, and it was too hot and too far to take a taxi into Kingston even had he wanted to. He wiped his already soaking handkerchief over his face and neck and cursed softly and fluently. A cleaner ambled in and, with the exquisite languor of such people throughout the Caribbean, proceeded to sweep very small bits of rubbish hither and thither, occasionally dipping a boneless hand into a bucket to sprinkle water over the dusty cement floor.
Through the slatted jalousies a small breeze, reeking of the mangrove swamps, briefly stirred the dead air and then was gone. There were only two other passengers in the "lounge," Cubans perhaps, with jippa-jappa luggage. A man and a woman.
They sat close together against the opposite wall and stared fixedly at James Bond, adding minutely to the oppression of the atmosphere. Bond got up and went over to the shop. He bought a Daily Gleaner and returned to his place. Because of its inconsequence and occasionally bizarre choice of news the Gleaner was a favourite paper of Bond's.
Almost the whole of that day's front page was taken up with new ganja laws to prevent the consumption, sale, and cultivation of this local version of marijuana. The fact that de Gaulle had just sensationally announced his recognition of Red China was boxed well down the page.
Bond read the whole paper--"Country Newsbits" and all--with the minute care bred of desperation. Today will bring a pleasant surprise and the fulfilment of a dear wish. But you must earn your good fortune by watching closely for the golden opportunity when it presents itself and then seizing it with both hands. He would be unlikely to get on the scent of Scaramanga on his first evening in Havana. It was not even certain that Scaramanga was there.
This was a last resort. For six weeks, Bond had been chasing his man round the Caribbean and Central America. He had missed him by a day in Trinidad and by only a matter of hours in Caracas. Now he had rather reluctantly taken the decision to try and ferret him out on his home ground, a particularly inimical home ground, with which Bond was barely familiar. At least he had fortified himself in British Guiana with a diplomatic passport, and he was now "Courier" Bond with splendidly engraved instructions from Her Majesty to pick up the Jamaican diplomatic bag in Havana and return with it.
He had even borrowed the famous Silver Greyhound, the British Courier's emblem for three hundred years. If he could do his job and then get a few hundred yards' start, this would at least give him sanctuary in the British Embassy.
Then it would be up to the F. If he could find his man. If he could carry out his instructions. If he could get away from the scene of the shooting.
If, if, if Bond turned to the advertisements on the back page. At once an item caught his eye. It was so typically "old" Jamaica. Containing the substantial residence and all that parcel of land by measurement on the Northern Boundary three chains and five perches, on the Southern Boundary five chains and one perch, on the Eastern Boundary two chains exactly, and on the Western Boundary four chains and two perches be the same in each case and more or less and butting Northerly on No.
THE C. James Bond was delighted. He had had many assignments in Jamaica and many adventures on the island. The splendid address and all the stuff about chains and perches and the old-fashioned abracadabra at the end of the advertisement brought back all the authentic smell of one of the oldest and most romantic of former British possessions.
For all her new-found "independence" he would bet his bottom dollar that the statue of Queen Victoria in the centre of Kingston had not been destroyed or removed to a museum, as similar relics of an historic infancy had been in the resurgent African states. He looked at his watch. The Gleaner had consumed a whole hour for him.
He picked up his coat and briefcase. Not much longer to go! In the last analysis, life wasn't all that dismal. One must forget the bad and remember the good. What were a couple of hours of heat and boredom in this island compared with memories of Beau Desert and Honeychile Wilder and his survival against the mad Dr. James Bond smiled to himself as the dusty pictures clicked across his brain.
How long ago it all was! What had happened to her? She never wrote. The last he had heard, she had had two children by the Philadelphia doctor she had married. He wandered off into the grandly named "Concourse," where the booths of many airlines stood empty and promotion folders and little company flags on their counters gathered the dust blown in with the mangrove breeze.
There was the customary central display stand holding messages for incoming and outgoing passengers. As usual, Bond wondered whether there would be something for him. In all his life there never had been. Automatically he ran his eye over the scattered envelopes, held, under tape, beneath each parent letter. Nothing under "B. He ran a bored eye over the other envelopes. He suddenly froze. He looked around him, languidly, casually. The Cuban couple was out of sight. Nobody else was looking.
He reached out a quick hand, wrapped in his handkerchief, and pocketed the buff envelope that said, "Scaramanga. BOAC passenger from Lima. He locked the door and sat down. The envelope was not sealed. It contained a B. The neat B. Bond uttered a short bark of laughter and triumph. Could it be? It must be! At last the three red stars of a jackpot had clicked into line. What was it his Gleaner horoscope had said? Well, he would go nap on this clue from outer space--"seize it with both hands" as the Gleaner had instructed.
He read the message again and carefully put it back in the envelope. His damp handkerchief had left marks on the buff envelope. In this heat they would dry out in a matter of minutes. He went out and sauntered over to the stand. There was no one in sight. He slipped the message back into its place under "S" and walked over to the Aeronaves de Mexico booth and cancelled his reservation.
He then went to the BOAC counter and looked through the timetable. He was going to need help. He remembered the name of Head of Station J. He went over to the telephone booth and got through to the High Commissioner's Office. He asked for Commander Ross. After a moment a girl's voice came on the line. Bond said, "Could I speak to Commander Ross?
This is a friend from London.
Is there anything I can do? But in fact it's It's James! It's Goodnight! What the hell are you doing here? I heard you were back, but I thought you were ill or something.
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How absolutely marvellous! But where are you talking from?
Now listen, darling. I need help. We can talk later. Can you get cracking? Wait till I get a pencil. Anything that'll go. Large-scale survey map of that area, a hundred pounds in Jamaican money.
Then be an angel and ring up Alexander's the auctioneers and find out anything you can about a property that's advertised in today's Gleaner. Say you're a prospective downloader.
The man with the golden gun: a James Bond novel
Three-and-a-half Love Lane. You'll see the details. Then I want you to come out to Morgan's Harbour, where I'm going in a minute, be staying the night there, and we'll have dinner and swop secrets until the dawn steals over the Blue Mountains.
Can do? But that's a hell of a lot of secrets. What shall I wear? Not too many buttons. Now I'll get on with all this. See you about seven. He ran his handkerchief over his face and neck. He'd be damned! Mary Goodnight, his darling secretary from the old days in the Double-O Section! At Headquarters they had said she was abroad. He hadn't asked any questions.
Perhaps she had opted for a change when he had gone missing. Anyway, what a break! Now he'd got an ally, someone he knew. Good old Gleaner!
He got his bag from the Aeronaves de Mexico booth and went out and hailed a taxi and said "Morgan's Harbour" and sat back and let the air from the open windows begin to dry him. The romantic little hotel is on the site of Port Royal at the tip of the Palisadoes.
The proprietor, an Englishman who had once been in Intelligence himself and who guessed what Bond's job was, was glad to see him. He showed Bond to a comfortable air-conditioned room with a view of the pool and the wide mirror of Kingston Harbour. He said, "What is it this time? Cubans or smuggling? They're the popular targets these days. Got any lobsters? Broiled with melted butter. And a pot of that ridiculously expensive foie gras of yours.
Champagne on the ice? Now I must get a shower and some sleep. That Kingston Airport's murder. At first he didn't know where he was. He lay and remembered. Sir James Molony had said that his memory would be sluggish for a while. The E. Twenty-four bashes at his brain from the black box in thirty days.
After it was over, Sir James had confessed that, if he had been practising in America, he wouldn't have been allowed to administer more than eighteen. At first, Bond had been terrified at the sight of the box and of the two cathodes that would be cupped to each temple. He had heard that people undergoing shock treatment had to be strapped down, that their jerking, twitching bodies, impelled by the volts, often hurtled off the operating table.
But that, it seemed, was old hat. Now there was the longed-for needle with the pentathol, and Sir James said there was no movement of the body when the current flashed through except a slight twitching of the eyelids. And the results had been miraculous. After the pleasant, quiet-spoken analyst had explained to him what had been done to him in Russia, and after he had passed through the mental agony of knowing what he had nearly done to M.
And then had come his physical rehabilitation and the inexplicable amount of gun practice he had had to do at the Maidstone police range.
And then the day arrived when the Chief of Staff had come down and spent the day briefing Bond on his new assignment. The reason for the gun practice became clear. And the scribble of green ink wishing him luck--signed "M.
Two days later he was ready to enjoy the excitement of the ride to London Airport on his way across the world. Bond took another shower and dressed in shirt, slacks, and sandals and wandered over to the little bar on the waterfront and ordered a double Walker's deluxe bourbon on the rocks and watched the pelicans diving for their dinner.
This had been worrying him since he had been given his orders. It was all very fine to be told to "eliminate" the man, but James Bond had never liked killing in cold blood and to provoke a draw against a man who was possibly the fastest gun in the world was suicide. Well, he would just have to see which way the cards fell. The first thing to do was to clean up his cover.
The diplomatic passport he would leave with Goodnight. He would now be "Mark Hazard" of the "Transworld Consortium," the splendidly vague title which could cover almost any kind of human activity. His business would have to be with the West Indian Sugar Company because that was the only business, apart from Kaiser Bauxite, that existed in the comparatively deserted western districts of Jamaica.
And, at Negril, there was also the project for developing one of the most spectacular beaches in the world, beginning with the building of the Thunderbird Hotel. He could be a rich man looking around for a building site. If his hunch and the childish predictions of his horoscope were right, and he came up with Scaramanga at the romantic Love Lane address, it would be a question of playing it by ear.
The prairie fire of the sunset raged briefly in the west and the molten sea cooled off into moonlit gunmetal. A naked arm smelling of Chanel Number 5 snaked round his neck and warm lips kissed the corner of his mouth. As he reached up to hold the arm where it was, a breathless voice said, "Oh, James! I'm sorry. I just had to! It's so wonderful to have you back. He said, "Why didn't we ever think of doing that before, Goodnight?
Three years with only that door between us! What must we have been thinking of? The golden bell of hair fell back to embrace her neck. She hadn't changed. Still only the faintest trace of makeup, but now the face was golden with sunburn from which the wide-apart blue eyes, now ablaze with the moon, shone out with that challenging directness that had disconcerted him when they had argued over some office problem.
Still the same glint of health over the good bones and the broad uninhibited smile from the full lips that, in repose, were so exciting. But now the clothes were different. Instead of the severe shirt and skirt of the days at Headquarters, she was wearing a single string of pearls and a one-piece short-skirted frock in the colour of a pink gin with a lot of bitters in it--the orangey-pink of the inside of a conch shell.
It was all tight against the bosom and the hips. She smiled at his scrutiny. This is standard uniform for a tropical Station. I suppose one of the pearls has a death pill in it. But I can't remember which. I'll just have to swallow the whole string. Can I have a daiquiri please instead? My manners are slipping. I was dazzled. It's so tremendous finding you here.
And I've never seen you in your working clothes before. Now then, tell me the news. Where's Ross? How long have you been here? Have you managed to cope with all that junk I gave you? She sipped it carefully. Bond remembered that she rarely drank and didn't smoke. He ordered another for himself and felt vaguely guilty that this was his third double and that she wouldn't know it and when it came wouldn't recognize it as a double.
He lit a cigarette. Nowadays he was trying to keep to twenty and failing by about five. He stabbed the cigarette out. He was getting near to his target, and the rigid training rules that had been drilled into him at The Park must from now on be observed meticulously.
The champagne wouldn't count. He was amused by the conscience this girl had awakened in him. He was also surprised and impressed. Mary Goodnight knew that the last question was the one he would want answered first. She reached into a plain straw handbag on a gold metal chain and handed him a thick envelope.
She said, "Mostly in used singles. A few fivers. Shall I debit you direct or put it in as expenses? Nice man. Nice wife. Nice children. We've had a lot to do with him, so he'll be friendly. He was in Naval Intelligence during the war, sort of commando job, so he knows the score.
Does a good job--Frome produces about a quarter of Jamaica's sugar output--but Hurricane Flora and the tremendous rains we've been having here have delayed the crop.
Besides that, he's having a lot of trouble with cane burning and other small sabotage--mostly with thermite bombs brought in from Cuba. Jamaica's sugar is competition for Castro, you see. And with Flora and all the rains, the Cuban crop is going to be only about three million tons this year, compared with a Batista level of about seven--and very late because the rains have played havoc with the sucrose content.
Just reading the Gleaner. I don't understand it all, but apparently, because of the damaged crops and increased world consumption, there's a tremendous chess game going on all over the world in sugar--in what they call sugar futures, that's sort of downloading the stuff forward for delivery dates later in the year. Washington's trying to keep the price down, to upset Cuba's economy, and Castro's out to keep the world price up so that he can bargain with Russia.
So it's worth Castro's trouble to do as much damage as possible to rival sugar crops.
He's only got his sugar to sell and he wants food badly. This wheat the Americans are selling to Russia. A lot of that will find its way back to Cuba, in exchange for sugar, to feed the Cuban sugar croppers. I don't think Castro can hold out much longer. The missile business in Cuba must have cost Russia about a billion pounds.
And now they're having to pour money into Cuba, money and goods, to keep the place on its feet. I can't help thinking they'll pull out soon and leave Castro to go the way Batista went. It's a fiercely Catholic country, and Hurricane Flora was considered as the final judgment from heaven. It sat over the island and simply whipped it, day after day, for five days. No hurricane in history has ever behaved like that.
The churchgoers don't miss an omen like that. It was a straight indictment of the regime. You've certainly been doing your homework. It's built into the Station. At least we think it is. The car's outside. You remember Strangways? Well, it's his old Sunbeam Alpine. The Station bought it, and now I use it. It's a bit aged, but it's still pretty fast and it won't let you down. It's rather bashed about, so it won't be conspicuous.
The tank's full, and I've put the survey map in the glove compartment. Now, last question and then we'll go and have dinner and tell each other our life stories. But, by the way, what's happened to your chief, Ross? He went off last week on some job to Trinidad.
It was to try and locate a man called Scaramanga. He's a local gunman of some sort. I don't know much about him. Apparently Headquarters wants him traced for some reason. I just do the donkey work. Well, Commander Ross was due back two days ago and he hasn't turned up. I've had to send off a Red Warning, but I've been told to give him another week. I'd rather have his Number Two. Last question. What about this three-and-a-half Love Lane? Did you get anywhere? That was a fine question to get me mixed up with.
Alexander's was non-committal, and I finally had to go to the Special Branch. I shan't be able to show my face there for weeks. Heaven knows what they must think of you. That place is a, is a, er"--she wrinkled her nose--"it's a famous disorderly house in Sav' La Mar. He teased her with malicious but gentle sadism. For heaven's sake! Must you be so crude? Mary Goodnight had insisted on coming along, "to navigate and help with the punctures. Spanish Town, May Pen, Alligator Pond, Black River, Whitehouse Inn, where they had luncheon--the miles unrolled under the fierce sun until, late in the afternoon, a stretch of good straight road brought them among the spruce little villas, each with its patch of brownish lawn, its bougainvillaea, and its single bed of canna lilies and crotons, which make up the "smart" suburbs of the modest little coastal township that is, in the vernacular, Sav' La Mar.
Except for the old quarter on the waterfront, it is not a typically Jamaican town, or a very attractive one. The villas, built for the senior staff of the Frome sugar estates, are drably respectable, and the small straight streets smack of a most un-Jamaican bout of town planning around the s.
Bond stopped at the first garage, took in petrol, and put Mary Goodnight into a hired car for the return trip. He had told her nothing of his assignment, and she had asked no questions when Bond told her vaguely that it was "something to do with Cuba. He identified Love Lane, a narrow street of brokendown shops and houses that meandered back into the town from the jetty. He circled the area to get the neighbouring geography clear in his mind and parked the car in a deserted area near the spit of sand on which fishing canoes were drawn up on raised stilts.
He locked the car and sauntered back and into Love Lane. There were a few people about, poor people of the fisherman class. Bond bought a packet of Royal Blend at a small general store that smelled of spices.
Mebbe a chain. Big house on de right. He slit open the packet with his thumbnail and lit a cigarette to help the picture of an idle tourist examining a corner of old Jamaica. There was only one big house on the right. He took some time lighting the cigarette while he examined it. It must once have had importance, perhaps as the private house of a merchant. It was of two storeys with balconies running all the way round and it was wooden built with silvering shingles, but the gingerbread tracery beneath the eaves was broken in many places and there was hardly a scrap of paint left on the jalousies that closed off all the upstairs windows and most of those below.
The patch of "yard" bordering the street was inhabited by a clutch of vulturine-necked chickens that pecked at nothing and three skeletal Jamaican black-and-tan mongrels. They gazed lazily across the street at Bond and scratched and bit at invisible flies.
But in the background, there was one very beautiful lignum vitae tree in full blue blossom. Bond guessed that it was as old as the house--perhaps fifty years. It certainly owned the property by right of strength and adornment. In its delicious black shade a girl in a rocking chair sat reading a magazine.
At the range of about thirty yards she looked tidy and pretty. Bond strolled up the opposite side of the street until a corner of the house hid the girl.
Then he stopped and examined the house more closely. Of the two broad windows that bracketed the door, the left-hand one was shuttered, but the right-hand one was a single broad sheet of rather dusty glass through which tables and chairs and a serving counter could be seen. Bond walked across the street and up the steps and parted the bead curtain that hung over the entrance. He walked over to the counter and was inspecting its contents--a plate of dry-looking ginger cakes, a pile of packeted banana crisps, and some jars--when he heard quick steps outside.
The girl from the garden came in. The beads clashed softly behind her. She was an octoroon, pretty, as in Bond's imagination the word octoroon suggested. She had bold, brown eyes, slightly uptilted at the corners, beneath a fringe of silken black hair. Bond reflected that there would be Chinese blood somewhere in her heredity.
She was dressed in a short frock of shocking pink which went well with the coffee and cream of her skin. Her wrists and ankles were tiny.
She smiled politely. The eyes flirted. Could I have a Red Stripe? She gave him a quick glimpse of fine bosoms as she bent to the door of the icebox--a glimpse not dictated by the geography of the place.
She nudged the door shut with a knee, deftly uncapped the bottle, and put it on the counter beside an almost clean glass. She rang the money into the cash register. Bond drew up a stool to the counter and sat down. She rested her arms on the wooden top and looked across at him.
I saw this place was for sale in yesterday's Gleaner. I thought I'd take a look at it. Nice big house. Does it belong to you? It was a pity, because she was a pretty girl, but the teeth had been sharpened by munching raw sugar cane. I'm sort of, well sort of manager. Six bedrooms upstairs. Very clean. It only cost a pound. There's Sarah up there now.
Care to meet up with her? It's too hot. But do you only have one at a time? She's a big girl. If you like them big, she'll be free in half an hour. It'll be cooler then.
The Man with the Golden Gun
What's your name? I told you I just manage the place. They call me Tiffy. How did you come by it? Called them all after flowers. Violet, Rose, Cherry, Pansy, and Lily. Then when I came, she couldn't think of any more flower names so she called me 'Artificial. When he didn't, she went on. My name's Mark. I've been up at Frome doing a job.
I like this part of the island and it crossed my mind to find some place to rent. But I want to be closer to the sea than this. I'll have to look around a bit more. Do you rent rooms by the night? Why not. But you may find it a bit noisy. There's sometimes a customer who's taken some drinks too many.
And there's not too much plumbing. The shingles are in bad shape. Cost you mebbe five hunnerd, mebbe a thousand, to get the roof done.
But why's the place being sold? Trouble with the police? We operate a respectable place.
But in the Gleaner, after Mr. Brown, that's my boss, you read that et ux? And it seems they don't hold with places like three-and-a-half, not even when they're decently run. And their church here, just up the street, seems that needs a new roof like here.
So Mistress Brown figures to kill two birds with the same stone and she goes on at Mr. Brown to close the place down and sell it and with her portion she goin' fix the roof for the Catholics. It seems a nice quiet place.
What's going to happen to you? Live with one of my sisters and mebbe work in one of the big stores--Issa's mebbe, or Nathan's. Sav' La Mar is sort of quiet. Folks have fun here and Love Lane's a pretty street. We're all friends up and down the Lane. It's got sort of, sort of That's what it's got. Like sort of old Jamaica. Like it must have been in the old days. Everyone's friends with each other. Help each other when they have trouble.
You'd be surprised how often the girls do it for free if the man's a good feller, regular customer sort of, and he's short. But it can't be good for business. Not while I'm running it. This is a public service, like water and electricity and health and education and You get me talking so much I've forgot Joe and May. It's their supper. They strutted up and down imperiously, eyeing Bond without fear from bold, golden eyes and went through a piercing repertoire of tinny whistles and trills, some of which required them to ruffle themselves up to almost twice their normal size.
Tiffy went back behind the bar, took two pennies out of her purse, rang them up on the register, and took two ginger cakes out of the flyblown display case.
She broke off bits and fed the two birds, always the smaller of the two, the female, first, and they greedily seized the pieces from her fingers and, holding the scraps to the wooden counter with a claw, tore them into smaller fragments and devoured them. When it was all over, and Tiffy had chided them both for pecking her fingers, they made small, neat white messes on the counter and looked pleased with themselves. Tiffy took a cloth and cleaned up the messes.
She said, "We call them kling-klings but learned folk call them Jamaican grackles. They're very friendly folk. The doctorbird, the humming bird with the streamer tail, is the Jamaican national bird, but I like these best. They're not so beautiful, but they're the friendliest birds and they're funny besides. They seem to know it.
They're like naughty black thieves. James Bond produced twopence and handed it over. Like mechanical toys. Give them a second course from me. This nice gemmun's been nice to Tiffy and he's now being nice to you. So don't you peck my fingers and make messes or mebbe he won't visit us again. There was the noise of creaking boards somewhere overhead and then the sound of quiet footsteps treading stairs.
All of a sudden Tiffy's animated face became quiet and tense. She whispered to Bond: "That's Lindy's man. Important man. He's a good customer here. But he don't like me because I won't go with him. So he can talk rough sometimes. And he don't like Joe and May because he reckons they make too much noise. Tiffy appealed to Bond.
He likes to get people mad. And then Bond had been sitting with his chin propped on his right hand. He now dropped the hand to the counter and sat back.
The Walther PPK inside the waistband of his trousers to the left of his flat stomach signalled its presence to his skin. The fingers of his right hand curled slightly, ready to receive its butt. He moved his left foot off the rail of the stool onto the floor. He said, "That'd be fine. You care to feel his wind? Dusk had crept into the big room and all he could see was a pale, tall outline. The man was carrying a suitcase. He put it down on the floor and came forward.
He must have been wearing rubber-soled shoes for his feet made no sound. Tiffy moved nervously behind the counter and a switch clicked. Half a dozen low-voltage bulbs came to life in rusty brackets around the walls. Bond said easily, "You made me jump. The description in Records was exact, but it had not caught the catlike menace of the big man, the extreme breadth of the shoulders, and the narrow waist, or the cold immobility of the eyes that now examined Bond with an expression of aloof disinterest.
He was wearing a well-cut, single-breasted tan suit and co-respondent shoes in brown and white. Instead of a tie, he wore a high stock in white silk secured by a gold pin the shape of a miniature pistol.
There should have been something theatrical about the getup but, perhaps because of the man's fine figure, there wasn't. He said, "I sometimes make 'em dance. Then I shoot their feet off. Bond said, "That sounds rather drastic. What do you do it for? Seems like you don't know who I am. Didn't the cool cat tell you? She was standing very still, her hands by her sides. The knuckles were white. Bond said, "Why should she? Why would I want to know? The small black hole looked directly at Bond's navel.
What are you doing here, stranger? Kind of a coincidence finding a city slicker at three-and-a-half. Or at Sav' La Mar for the matter of that. Not by any chance from the police? Or any of their friends? He lowered them and turned to Tiffy.
A one-man takeover bid for Jamaica? Or a refugee from a circus? Ask him what he'd like to drink. Whoever he is, it was a good act. Hit a gunman in his vanity He had a quick vision of himself writhing on the floor, his right hand without the power to reach for his own weapon.
Tiffy's pretty face was no longer pretty. It was a taut skull.
She stared at James Bond. Her mouth opened but no sound came from the gaping lips. She liked him and she knew he was dead. The kling-klings, Joe and May, smelled the same electricity. With a tremendous din of metallic squawks, they fled for the open window, like black thieves escaping into the night.
The explosions from the Colt. There was a moment of deafening silence. James Bond didn't move. He sat where he was, waiting for the tension of the deed to relax. It didn't. With an inarticulate scream that was half a filthy word, Tiffy took James Bond's bottle of Red Stripe off the counter and clumsily flung it.
There came a distant crash of glass from the back of the room. Then, having made her puny gesture, Tiffy fell to her knees behind the counter and went into sobbing hysterics. James Bond drank down the rest of his beer and got slowly to his feet. He walked towards Scaramanga and was about to pass him when the man reached out a languid left arm and caught him at the biceps. He held the snout of his gun to his nose, sniffing delicately.
The expression in the dead brown eyes was faraway. He said, "Mister, there's something quite extra about the smell of death. Care to try it? Bond stood quite still. He said, "Mind your manners. Take your hand off me. The flat, leaden gaze seemed to take in Bond for the first time. He released his grip. James Bond went on round the edge of the counter. When he came opposite the other man, he found the eyes were now looking at him with faint, scornful curiosity.
Bond stopped. The sobbing of the girl was the crying of a small dog. Somewhere down the street a sound system--a loudspeaker record player--began braying calypso.
Bond looked the man in the eye. He said, "Thanks. I've tried it. I recommend the Berlin vintage nineteen forty-five. The Easy Grand Bond knelt down beside Tiffy and gave her a couple of sharp slaps on the right cheek. Then on the left.Peterson's sinewy prose and--though I would substitute the printing press for the gun in his concluding paragraph--his points are well taken.
This should run a few electric toothbrushes. Hands very large and powerful and immaculately manicured. The man's a menace. The Secret Service holds much that is kept secret even from very senior officers in the organization. They've been verified by the ClA. It would be most irksome for those in the know to have Bond moving about Headquarters as if nothing had happened.
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