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By Leslie Charteris

When the Saint is going for a drink in a brand new York nightclub—Cookie’s Cellar—he discovers the quite beautiful nightclub singer Avalon Dexter; despite the fact that, he quickly meets the fewer gorgeous Cookie herself.

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Oh, sure. He’s regularly striking round the joint. Cookie brought him the opposite evening. He’s considered one of her pets. ” “So I amassed. Is it Love, or is he treating her? I may still imagine a bit deep digging into her brain would truly be whatever. ” “You stated it, brother. I wouldn’t are looking to move in there with no an armoured diving go well with. ” He cocked a quiet eye at her. “She’s a complain, isn’t she? ” “She is. ” “Everybody’s back-slapper and strong egg, with a middle of rubbish and scrap iron. ” “That’s approximately it. yet humans like her. ” “They may. ” He sipped his drink. “She gave me relatively a humorous feeling. It sounds so melodramatic, yet she’s the 1st lady I ever observed who made me suppose that she used to be thoroughly and frighteningly evil. It’s a type of psychic feeling, and that i acquired all of it on my own. ” “You’re now not kidding. she will be able to be scary. ” “I can see her wearing a whip in a white-slave buying and selling submit, or working a toddler farm and strangling the little bastards and burying them within the again backyard. ” Avalon laughed. “You mightn’t be to date mistaken. She’s been round city for years, yet no one turns out to understand a lot approximately her historical past prior to that. She can have performed all these issues ahead of she discovered a more secure manner of creating an identical funds. ” Simon brooded for a short while. “And yet,” he acknowledged, “the waiter was once telling me approximately all of the public-spirited paintings she does for the sailors. ” “You suggest Cookie’s Canteen? …Yes, she makes nice personality with that. ” “Is it a type of Seamen’s Missions? ” “No, it’s all her personal. She fingers out espresso and cake and sandwiches, and there’s a juke field and hostesses and leisure. ” “You’ve been there, i assume. ” “I’ve sung there or 3 times. It’s on 50th road close to 9th Avenue—not precisely a ritzy neighbourhood, however the boys move there. ” He placed a frown and a grin jointly, and acknowledged, “You suggest she doesn’t make whatever out of it? Has she bought a weak spot for philanthropy among poisonings, or does it repay in exposure, or does she dote on these positive, virile uninhibited sailor boys? ” “It may be all of these. or even she’s acquired one final leathery little piece of judgment of right and wrong tucked away someplace, and it looks after that and makes her think particularly high quality. Or am I being a wee bit romantic? I don’t comprehend. And what’s extra, I don’t need to care any further, thank God. ” “You’re particularly satisfied approximately it? ” “I’m satisfied besides. I met you. construct me one other drink. ” He took their glasses over to the aspect desk the place the offers have been, and poured and combined. He felt greater than ever that the night have been illumined by way of a fortunate famous person. He may well positioned informal questions and be casually flippant approximately every thing, yet he had realized quite a bit in a couple of hours. And Cookie’s Canteen loomed in his strategies like an excellent sizeable milestone. earlier than he was once complete with it he would need extra severe solutions approximately that irreconcilable benevolence. He may recognize even more approximately it and it's going to need to make feel to him. And he had a gentle and fascinating feeling that he had already taken greater than step one at the unmarked path that he was once searching for.

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