The Yellow Dog

The Yellow Dog by Georges Simenon Read Free Book Online

Book: The Yellow Dog by Georges Simenon Read Free Book Online
Authors: Georges Simenon
no, not like
pou
. Now wait – I’m going to give you the headlines … Will this go on page one? … Absolutely! Tell the boss it’s got to
go on the front page …’
    Feeling lost, Leroy kept looking at Maigret as if to get his bearings. In a corner, the lone travelling salesman was preparing his next day’s route with the help of the regional directory. Now and then he would call over to Emma.
    â€˜Chauffier’s … is that a big hardware outlet? … Thanks.’
    The vet had removed the bullet and set the dog’s hindquarters in a cast. ‘These animals, it takes a lot to kill them!’
    Emma had spread an old blanket over straw on the blue granite floor of the porch that gave on to both the courtyard and the cellar stairway. The dog lay there, all alone, inches from a scrap of meat he never touched.
    The mayor arrived by car. He was a very well-groomed elderly man with a small white goatee; his gestures were curt. His eyebrows rose as he entered and noticed the atmosphere of a guardroom – or, more precisely, a field headquarters.
    â€˜Who are these gentlemen?’
    â€˜Reporters from Paris.’
    The mayor was very touchy. ‘Wonderful! So tomorrow the whole country will be talking about this idiotic business! … You still haven’t found out anything?’
    â€˜The investigation is still going on!’ growled Maigret, as if to say, ‘None of your business!’
    For the atmosphere was really tense. Everyone’s nerves were on edge.
    â€˜And you, Michoux, you’re not going home?’ The mayor’s look of contempt made clear that he thought the doctor a coward.
    â€˜At this rate,’ he said, turning back to Maigret, ‘there’ll be full-scale panic within the next twenty-four hours … What we need – as I told you before – is an arrest, no matter who.’ He emphasized his last
words with a glance at Emma. ‘I know I have no authority to give you orders … As for the local police, you’re ignoring them completely … But I’ll tell you this: one more crime, just one, and we’ll have a catastrophe on our hands. People are expecting
trouble. Shops that on any other Sunday stay open till nine at night have already closed their shutters … That idiotic piece in the
Brest Beacon
terrified the public …’
    The mayor, who had not taken his bowler off his head, now pulled it down farther as he left, saying, ‘I’ll thank you to keep me informed, inspector … And I remind you that whatever happens now is your
responsibility.’
    â€˜A beer, Emma!’ Maigret snapped.
    There was no way to keep the reporters from descending on the Admiral Hotel, or from installing themselves in the café, telephoning and filling the place with their noisy commotion. They demanded ink, paper. They interrogated Emma, whose poor face
looked constantly alarmed.
    Outside, the night was dark, with a beam of moonlight that heightened the melodrama of the cloudy sky instead of brightening it. And there was the mud, which clung to every shoe, since paved streets were still unknown in Concarneau.
    â€˜Did Le Pommeret tell you he was coming back?’ Maigret suddenly asked Michoux.
    â€˜Yes. He went home for dinner.’
    â€˜His address?’ asked a reporter who had nothing else to do.
    The doctor gave it to him, as the inspector shrugged and pulled Leroy off into a corner.
    â€˜Did you get the original manuscript of this morning’s article?’
    â€˜I just got it. It’s in my room … The handwriting is disguised. It must have come from someone who thought they’d know his writing.’
    â€˜No postmark?’
    â€˜No. The envelope was dropped in the newspaper’s box. It says “Extremely Urgent” on it …’
    â€˜Which means that at eight this morning, at

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