By Rex Stout
While a robust govt legit scheduled to talk to a bunch of millionaires turns up useless, the enterprise international clamors for an answer, and Nero Wolfe takes the case.
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Extra resources for The Silent Speaker (Nero Wolfe Mysteries)
Strange to say, no NIA could alibi a BPR, or vice versa. Even Mrs. Boone, the widow, for instance-no NIA was quite positive that she had not left the reception room during that period or that she had gone straight from there to the dais in the ballroom. The BPR’s were equally unpositive about Frank Thomas Erskine, the NIA president. There was no evidence that the purpose had been to keep Boone from delivering that particular speech. The speech had been typical Boone, pulling no punches, but had exposed or threatened no particular individual, neither in the advance text distributed to the press nor in the last-minute changes and additions.
I was in Washington until eleven o’clock Tuesday evening. ” “Nevertheless,”Frank Thomas Erskine said firmly and judicially, “Mr. ” “One of several,” Breslow asserted. “There are others. We all know what they are, so why not out with them? The talk about Boone and his secretary, Phoebe Gunther, has been going on for months, and whether Mrs. Boone was going to get a divorce or not. And lately a reason, a mighty good reason from Phoebe Gunther’s standpoint, why Boone had to have a divorce no matter how his wife felt about it.
The catch was above expectations, for in the delegation of four we got not one Erskine but two. Father and son. Father was maybe sixty and struck me as not imposing. He was tall and bony and narrow, wearing a dark blue ready-made that didn’t fit, and didn’t have false teeth but talked as if he had. He handled the introductions, first himself and then the others. Son was named Edward Frank and addressed as Ed. The other two, certified as members of the NIA Executive Committee, were Mr. Breslow and Mr.
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