Wednesday, February 8, 2012
The One Best Bet - Samuel Hopkins Adams
Theme for the Week: Queen’s Quorum Titles
Story: The One Best Bet
Author: Samuel Hopkins AdamsSource: Average Jones (Queen’s Quorum #48), available at Project Gutenberg here.
Story Number: 39
A.V. R. E. Jones, nicknamed Average Jones, has taken up the hobby of following up queer advertisements in the daily newspapers. On this occasion, he gets to investigate it even before it hits the newspaper. A man walks into the newspaper office and requests the editor to remove the last line in a particular add which was to run in the next day’s newspaper. The editor sends him away saying that it’s too late to do anything about it. When Jones follows him fifteen minutes later, he finds him to have committed suicide. When Jones and the editor decide to investigate the concerned ad, they realize that it’s an announcement to assassinate the Governor during a rally which was to be held on the same day. A politician who is objecting to the Governor’s bill is the mastermind behind the plan.
The next half of the story involves Average Jones figuring out how the gang is gone carry out this execution. He visits the scene where the rally is gone culminate, investigates the surrounding shops and notices that there is a bullet hole in the glass window of one of the shops with the bullet making its entry at an awkward angle. He figures out where the bullet must have been deflected from to pierce this glass window and from this point, applying various Euclid’s theorems, he arrives at the vantage position from where an assassin can take a potshot at the Governor during the rally. He then puts in a few advertisements in the newspaper and uses them to scare away the assassins and bait the mastermind.