At New Scotland Yard, Jack was unsuccessful in finding anything that meant anything in the pile of papers, pictures, and maps found in the suspect’s apartment.
His friend Ian finally suggested, “Why don’t we wrap up here and go across to Finnegan’s Wake for some lunch?”
Jack looked at his watch. It was already after two. There was a 6:00 P.M. flight he could catch home. “Sounds good,” he said. I’ll call Regan on my way to the airport, he thought.
At a corner table in the pub, they ordered pints of beer and shepherd’s pie.
“So you don’t want to stay and make a night of it here, Jack?” Ian asked him. “We could go out and have some fun.”
Jack shook his head and smiled. “Thanks, Ian, but I’ve got to get back.”
“Something tells me it’s not for business,” Ian said with a glint in his eye.
Jack took a sip of his beer. “Not really business, no.” He told Ian about his relationship with Regan and what she was doing that weekend at the Settlers’ Club. “It’s funny, there’s somebody running a butler school out of an apartment there. I mentioned it to the maid in my hotel here, and she said there’s a lot of competition among the butler schools here.”
Ian rolled his eyes. “It’s more than friendly competition. We have one guy we’re keeping an eye on. Thorn Darlington. He runs the biggest butler school, and he’s trouble.”
“He thinks he’s the only one in this country, or the world for that matter, who should teach butlers how to serve tea. Most other schools that have opened over here have shut down. Usually under suspicious circumstances. The owner of one died in a late-night car crash. Another school burned down when a grease fire started in the kitchen. Yet another school’s students all came down with food poisoning. A few of them nearly died. Needless to say, it was impossible for the school to find anyone new who would enroll there. But Darlington’s school always remains untouched.”
“You think he was involved in the incidents?”
“Let’s just say his name is written all over them, but we can’t prove anything. We’ve heard he wants to open a butler school in New York now.”
Jack frowned. “The butler school at the club is across the hall from the apartment where Regan is staying.”
“I’d be interested to hear about it,” Ian said. “Who knows whether this Thorn Darlington has gotten wind of it?”
Jack suddenly felt uncomfortable. “I’m glad I’m getting back today.”
“If my girl were in a situation like that, I’d certainly want to get back there.”
“It’s not that she can’t take care of herself…” Jack began.
Ian held up his hand. “I understand-when you love somebody…”
“Love somebody? I didn’t say…”
“You didn’t have to. Now I’ll get the bill and go back to the office and run a check on Thorn Darlington’s recent activities. You go get your things from the hotel, and I’ll have a car pick you up in a half-hour to take you to the airport. I’ll give the driver any information I have on Darlington.”
“Not at all. Next time you come over, bring this Regan Reilly. I’d like to meet her.”
“I will,” Jack said. More than ever, he felt restless, eager to get back home.