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two letters and a telegram

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That night, Jack pulled an atlas from his bookshelf. He poured himself a whiskey – not nearly as fine as hers – and opened it to Victoria. He turned from page, to page, to page, plotting distances with his fingers.

The next day, at the office, he sat restless at his desk. He shuffled folders, drummed his feet, and frowned. Finally, with a sigh, he flipped a sheet of notepaper, scrawled with fragmentary details from his phone calls, to its unmarked side. He started writing.

see chapter two for text version

Jack chased down the name of Singapore’s most aristocratic hotel, and addressed the letter accordingly. The post was by ship, but she wouldn’t make good time across the East Indies and it just might reach her.

Two weeks later, he received a telegram.

SAW FATHER OFF, BOOKED PASSAGE HOME ON RMS ORION, ARRIVING OCTOBER 14. DO URGE MR. AND MRS. COLLINS TO STAY ON AT WARDLOW. AND KNOW YOU’RE ALWAYS WELCOME FOR A VISIT. I CAN'T REFUSE YOU ANYTHING.
      THE HONOURABLE MISS PHRYNE FISHER


On the appointed date (and he’d verified the liner’s progress nearly every day), Jack donned his coat and hat and straightened a particularly daring tie. He checked for mail by habit as he crossed his threshold, and dizzied when he found a letter waiting. She'd known his address all along, the minx.

see chapter two for text version

Jack locked the door and headed for the pier – and if he drove rather faster than his custom, one could surely pardon the infraction.