This ebook is made available at no cost and with very few restrictions. With the lazy precision of Fate, this, Ian Fleming's longest narrative of. Author: Fleming, Ian [Ian Lancaster] () Date of first publication: Edition used as base for this ebook: London: Pan Books, eBooks-Library publishes Ian Fleming (Ian Lancaster Fleming) and other eBooks from all genres of literature, both fiction and non-fiction, historical documents.
|Language:||English, Spanish, Dutch|
|Distribution:||Free* [*Register to download]|
Read "James Bond Novels Collection,Part Part " by Ian Fleming available from Rakuten Kobo. Sign up today and get $5 off your first. From the first book, Casino Royale, to the last, You Only Live Twice, readers will appreciate the genius and remarkable abilities of Bond's creator, Ian Fleming. Most of the the one and two star reviewers of this book were sadly disappointed, expecting that the glitzy movie version of Bond would be found in Fleming's.
Play's going to be pretty high--opening'll go up to half a million, I should think. M knew all this already, knew the odds at baccarat as well as Bond. That was his job--knowing the odds at everything, and knowing men, his own and the opposition's. Bond wished he had kept quiet about his misgivings.
Up to twenty-five million, the same as him. We'll start you on ten and send you another ten when you've had a look round. You can make the extra five yourself. Have a talk to Q about rooms and trains, and any equipment you want. The Paymaster will fix the funds. It's their territory and as it is we shall be lucky if they don't kick up rough. I'll try and persuade them to send Mathis. You seemed to get on well with him in Monte Carlo on that other Casino job. CIA have got one or two good men at Fontainebleau with the joint intelligence chaps there.
Anything else? Try and bring it off. We're going to look pretty foolish if you don't. And watch out. This sounds an amusing job, but I don't think it's going to be. Le Chiffre is a good man. Well, best of luck. Two heads are better than one and you'll need someone to run your communications.
I'll think it over. They'll get in touch with you at Royale. You needn't worry. It'll be someone good. He left the room hoping that the man they sent would be loyal to him and neither stupid, nor, worse still, ambitious. He had arrived at Royale-les-Eaux in time for luncheon two days before. There had been no attempt to contact him and there had been no flicker of curiosity when he had signed the register 'James Bond, Port Maria, Jamaica'.
M had expressed no interest in his cover. Charles would make the story stick. Bond had spent the last two afternoons and most of the nights at the Casino, playing complicated progression systems on the even chances at roulette. He made a high banco at chemin-de-fer whenever he heard one offered. If he lost, he would suivi once and not chase it further if he lost the second time.
In this way he had made some three million francs and had given his nerves and card-sense a thorough work-out. He had got the geography of the Casino clear in his mind. Above all, he had been able to observe Le Chiffre at the tables and to note ruefully that he was a faultless and lucky gambler.
Bond liked to make a good breakfast. After a cold shower, he sat at the writing-table in front of the window. He looked out at the beautiful day and consumed half a pint of iced orange juice, three scrambled eggs and bacon and a double portion of coffee without sugar. He lit his first cigarette, a Balkan and Turkish mixture made for him by Morlands of Grosvenor Street, and watched the small Waves lick the long seashore and the fishing-fleet from Dieppe string out towards the June heat-haze followed by a paper-chase of herring-gulls.
He was lost in his thoughts when the telephone rang. It was the concierge announcing that a Director of Radio Stentor was waiting below with the wireless set he had ordered from Paris. Bond watched the door, hoping that it would be Mathis. When Mathis came in, a respectable business-man carrying a large square parcel by its leather handle, Bond smiled broadly and would have greeted him with warmth if Mathis had not frowned and held up his free hand after carefully closing the door.
There are no mountains for forty miles in any direction. Mathis paid no attention. He placed the set, which he had unwrapped, on the floor beside the unlit panel electric fire below the mantelpiece.
They are touring Europe. Let us see what the reception is like. It should be a fair test. Bond noticed that he had turned the volume on to full and that the red light indicating the long waveband was illuminated, though the set was still silent.
Mathis fiddled at the back of the set. Suddenly an appalling roar of static filled the small room. Mathis gazed at the set for a few seconds with benevolence and then turned it off and his voice was full of dismay.
After a few adjustments the close harmony of the French came over the air and Mathis walked up and clapped Bond very hard on the back and wrang his hand until Bond's fingers ached. Bond smiled back at him. Up there,' he pointed at the ceiling, 'at this moment, either Monsieur Muntz or his alleged wife, allegedly bedridden with the grippe, is deafened, absolutely deafened, and I hope in agony.
Mathis sat down on the bed and ripped open a packet of Caporal with his thumbnail. Bond waited. Mathis was satisfied with the sensation his words had caused. He became serious. They must have been on to you for several days before you arrived. The opposition is here in real strength. Above you is the Muntz family. He is German. She is from somewhere in Central Europe, perhaps a Czech. This is an old-fashioned hotel.
There are disused chimneys behind these electric fires. Just here,' he pointed a few inches above the panel fire, 'is suspended a very powerful radio pick-up. The wires run up the chimney to behind the Muntzes' electric fire where there is an amplifier. In their room is a wire-recorder and a pair of earphones on which the Muntzes listen in turn.
That is why Madame Muntz has the grippe and takes all her meals in bed and why Monsieur Muntz has to be constantly at her side instead of enjoying the sunshine and the gambling of this delightful resort. The rest we confirmed by unscrewing your electric fire a few hours before you got here. Their grooves showed minute scratches. He walked over to the radio, which was still transmitting close harmony to its audience of three, and switched it off.
Are they not a wonderful team? Just what I was looking for to take back to Jamaica.
Bond frowned at him. Could the Russians have broken one of our ciphers?
If so, he might just as well pack up and go home. He and his job would have been stripped naked. Mathis seemed to read his mind. A pretty flap we caused, I can tell you. She is very beautiful'--Bond frowned--'very beautiful indeed. Back and front,' he added.
All new machines, even French ones, are apt to have teething troubles in the first day or two. And occasionally at night,' he added with an exaggerated wink. Bond was not amused. She is as serious as you could wish and as cold as an icicle. She speaks French like a native and knows her job backwards.
Her cover's perfect and I have arranged for her to team up with you quite smoothly. What is more natural than that you should pick up a pretty girl here? As a Jamaican millionaire,' he coughed respectfully, 'what with your hot blood and all, you would look naked without one. It's about ten miles down the coast road. He has his two guards with him. They look pretty capable fellows. One of them has been seen visiting a little "pension" in the town where three mysterious and rather subhuman characters checked in two days ago.
They may be part of the team. Their papers are in order--stateless Czechs apparently--but one of our men says the language they talk in their room is Bulgarian. We don't see many of those around. They're mostly used against the Turks and the Yugoslavs. They're stupid, but obedient.
The Russians use them for simple killings or as fall-guys for more complicated ones. Which is mine to be? Come to the bar of the Hermitage before lunch. I'll fix the introduction.
Ask her to dinner this evening. Then it will be natural for her to come into the Casino with you. I'll be there too, but in the background. I've got one or two good chaps and we'll keep an eye on you. Oh, and there's an American called Leiter here, staying in the hotel. Felix Leiter. He's the CIA chap from Fontainebleau. London told me to tell you. He looks okay.
May come in useful. Mathis switched it off and they exchanged some phrases about the set and about how Bond should pay for it. Then with effusive farewells and a final wink Mathis bowed himself out.
Bond sat at the window and gathered his thoughts. Nothing that Mathis had told him was reassuring. He was completely blown and under really professional surveillance. An attempt might be made to put him away before he had a chance to pit himself against Le Chiffre at the tables.
The Russians had no stupid prejudices about murder. And then there was this pest of a girl. He sighed. A capungo is a bandit who will kill for as little as forty pesos, which is about twenty-five shillings—though probably he had been paid more to attempt the killing of Bond—and, from the look of him, he had been an instrument of pain and misery all his life.
Yes, it had certainly been time for him to die; but when Bond had killed him, less than twenty-four hours before, life had gone out of the body so quickly, so utterly, that Bond had almost seen it come out of his mouth as it does, in the shape of a bird, in Haitian primitives.
What an extraordinary difference there was between a body full of person and a body that was empty! Now there is someone, now there is no one. This had been a Mexican with a name and an address, an employment card and perhaps a driving licence. Then something had gone out of him, out of the envelope of flesh and cheap clothes, and had left him an empty paper bag waiting for the dustcart.
And the difference, the thing that had gone out of the stinking Mexican bandit, was greater than all Mexico.
Bond looked down at the weapon that had done it. The cutting edge of his right hand was red and swollen. It would soon show a bruise. Bond flexed the hand, kneading it with his left. He had been doing the same thing at intervals through the quick plane trip that had got him away.
It was a painful process, but if he kept the circulation moving the hand would heal more quickly. Will all passengers please proceed to gate number seven. All aboard, please. Bond glanced at his watch. At least another ten minutes before Transamerica would be called.