by Captain W. E. Johns



IV.   SUSPICIONS  (Pages 38 – 47)


Worrals takes Frecks automatic and goes out to meet the plane.  Dick and Andrew recognise the plane and say the two men in it are called Shardwell and Gronk.  Shardwell is the tall one.  When they get out, Worrals tells them straight “I don’t like you.  I don’t like your face, your manner, or anything about you.  You’re on private property.  Kindly get off it.  I hope I’ve made myself clear”.  Further words are exchanged and when Shardwell reaches for his gun, Worrals pulls hers first.  “You’ll be sorry you came here” says Shardwell.  So will you,” returned Worrals imperturbably.  The two men get in their Junkers and leave.  Uncle Dick tells Worrals and Frecks how they know the two men.  They had trekked down to Cape Town and had some samples assayed and they think word must have got out as Shardwell and Gronk flew out and tried to buy their concession off them.  Dick suspects they are working for someone else.  When all offers were turned down, the two baddies turned nasty and now Dick and Andrew find they can’t get any native porters.  Bill’s arrival with a plane saved them.  “Bill’s disappearance must have suited these thugs so well that we are bound to suspect they had a hand in it” says Worrals.  Worrals wonders why Dick and Andrew haven’t just been murdered.  Andrew says the concession is a valuable property and the title deeds are filed in Cape Town.  The whole thing would pass to their next-of-kin.  “If Shardwell couldn’t buy, he’d have to go on killing people indefinitely”.  Worrals wonders what has happened to Mahomet.  Dick knows him and says he was on a twelve month contract and “a fine chap – certainly not the sort of fellow to leave his post”.  Worrals describes the African native they saw and Dick says it sounds like Wongorobo, a headman of the Ovambo tribe.  Worrals is convinced that Bill’s disappearance is not an accident.  Worrals needs time to think.