By John Dickson Carr
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Extra resources for Panic in Box C
The actor swept her a great bow. 'Accept my assurance, madam! It shall be done in slow motion; nobody's going to get hurt. ' returned Knox. ' inquired Barry Plunkett, holding up the main-gauche. ' said Mr Plunkett, and tossed the dagger to him. Knox caught it and transferred it to his left hand. Next he caught the sword, which was rather heavy but beautifully balanced. Barry Plunkett whipped out his own sword and dagger. 'Magister,' he said, `you're right. You're absolutely right! In the sixteenth century, before thrusts became legal at the beginning of the seventeenth, swordplay was largely an acrobatic business.
There was no sling, such as the others have. ' `They are,' returned Judge Cunningham. `But the important thing, Philip, is the mechanism. The sixteenth century cord, rotted, all but snapped when it was gingerly drawn to firing position. Would the trigger work? It would - not work when, I tried it with an unstrung bow; age and disuse have clogged it past hope. ' said judge Cunningham, inexplicably moved. 'I do not say, mark you, that this is a thing absolutely impossible. And yet, if a thousandth unpredictability made the trigger release its cord, what would happen?
Judson Lafarge hurried Judy up the stairs on the right, Knox, pausing only long enough to glance at Margery Vane's portrait, ran to the left-hand side and took the steps three at a time. He was more than halfway up when an impression, only half registered during a glance at something else, took form in his mind. He raced downstairs faster than he had come up. He went to Margery Vane's portrait and looked at the wall below it. His first half-impression had been correct. The crossbow below the portrait was gone.
Panic in Box C by John Dickson Carr