“Of course, sir, a tisane is perfect for this time of day.” Selkirk’s training meant no hint of a smile crossed his face as he walked slowly towards the kitchen, allowing Mr. Tompkins to be alone with the book for a decent amount of time.
Tompkins knew Selkirk knew what he was doing, but Tompkins also knew that Selkirk had the book to hand as soon as it became appropriate to introduce the subject. He must suspect someone but would let Tompkins find out who. Tompkins sat down on a blue sofa with a view of a George Stubbs painting, but had eyes only for the contents of the ledger. He delved into the centre and was astounded to see the number of visitors The Dapper One had received in the past month alone. However, Tompkins felt sure that the visitors he was looking for would have arrived after the death of Stalky Stark.
He scanned the appropriate page and as expected saw names he knew. Spinky Mills was in there along with Toby, Hugo, Roddy, Smudge, a Mr. Steeple, and Dr. Black. Miss Scarlett’s name also featured as well as Rev Green’s on the same day, though not at the same time. Mr. Steeple was not a name he recognised.
“Spinky visited Dapper Dan after Stalky Stark’s demise. Who was here at the same time as those two fine fellows?” Tompkins asked himself. There was a time for when people had arrived and when they departed. Someone was diligent. Tompkins suspected Selkirk had filled in the departure time as he would always be available should Dapper Dan require him.
When Selkirk returned with the Goji Berry tisane, Tompkins had written down a few pertinent facts.
“Ah, goji berries, one of my favourites,” said Tompkins inhaling deeply and rubbing his hands.
Selkirk had placed the Meissen tea cup on a silver salver. He put this on the table to the right of Tompkins as he knew his visitor was right-handed.