By Harry Harrison, Leslie Charteris

The Saint is on vacation in Naples whilst a brawl interrupts his lunch; a tweedy English vacationer has casually addressed an Italian as Dino Cartelli—provoking the paunchy person so named to set his hulking henchman at the bewildered Briton. The Saint intervenes, and shortly the confrontation is all yet forgotten…until the next morning’s newspaper headlines exhibit that the Englishman has been murdered. quickly the Robin Hood of contemporary crime is pitted opposed to the archevil, centuries-old traditions of the Mafia…

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There's a few doubt one of the witnesses as to precisely what occurred. and also you needs to admit, Signor Templar, that your recognition isn't spotless. ” Simon glanced round on the carabinieri, who stared stolidly again, registering neither approval nor disapproval in their officer’s angle. The Saint had by no means loved any childlike religion within the impartiality of the police, yet he didn't have to be excessively cynical to gain that there has been whatever extra right here than an ordinary suspiciousness of his honesty and decent intentions. And an insubstantial yet chilling draught appeared to contact his backbone because it dawned on him that anything extra risky to him than any knifeman’s blade may well lie underneath the skin of that impersonal hostility. Then another guy got here in, in usual outfits yet with a refined air of authority that invisibly outranked the maresciallo’s gold-encrusted beauty, and the strain that had started to accumulate dissolved as though it had all been an phantasm. He was once a guy of medium construct, flat-bellied, with the grey eyes and curly blond hair which are local simply to northern Italy. His browned good points appeared virtually boyish firstly, until eventually one stumbled on the intermingled strains etched between them through two decades greater than was once instructed by means of their younger contours. yet he walked with an athletic spring in his step which back belied these skin-deep foreshadowings of center age. He stopped in entrance of Tonio, learning him conscientiously, and acknowledged, “I am comfortable to determine an individual has labored in your grotesque face, piece of grime. ” He extra a few extra brilliant epithets which might have invited a duel to the dying in any tavern in Sicily, however the wounded Tonio basically glowered and stored his lips buttoned. not anyone else spoke both because the newcomer became to the maresciallo’s table and flicked throughout the papers on it. “Simon Templar! ” he acknowledged, taking a look up and giggling. “We appear to have landed a major one this time. ” He got here in the direction of Simon and provided his hand. “Let me introduce myself, Signor Saint: my identify is Marco Ponti. i'm the agente investigativo the following, what you will name a police detective. Now you recognize all approximately me, simply because i'm convinced you recognize all approximately detectives. yet I additionally comprehend whatever approximately you. and because you're right here, it's my company to invite what brings you to Sicily? ” “Only a similar sights that convey millions of alternative travelers here,” responded the Saint, enjoyable guardedly. “Which after all didn't contain having considered one of your challenge paisani try and knife me. ” “Ah, bad Italy—and poorer Sicily! Many are in wish the following and switch to crime to fill their stomachs. although in fact that's no excuse. Be guaranteed that justice may be performed. We ask you simply to be on hand to aid your fees. ” “With excitement. yet there appears a few trouble. ” “Difficulty? ” Ponti’s eyebrows lifted elaborately. He became again to the table and riffled during the papers back. “Everything appears in an effort to me—is that now not correct, maresciallo? ” The officer shrugged. “No problems. i used to be in basic terms asking a number of questions.

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