By Captain W. E. Johns



IV.                   THE WRITING ON THE WALL  (Pages 49 - 65)


Air Commodore Raymond had originally told Algy, Bertie and Ginger that Biggles had said that he would write cryptic messages on a stone wall in Monaco at the Quai de Plaisance in the harbour or if in Nice, at the wall near Jock's Bar.  His signature on any such message would be a blue triangle.  The reason for this was that should he fail and another agent be sent to follow up, at least that person could profit from what he had learned.  Ginger was now at the Quai de Plaisance and was looking for any messages from Biggles.  Here he finds a message in bold blue writing with the blue triangle that simply says "CHEZ ROSSI.  PERNOD".  It doesn't take Ginger long to find a bar-restaurant called the Chez Rossi and inside he find a message written on the back of a Pernod sign.  "Villa V - Heil Hitler.   Mario is a waiter, par excellence" again written in blue with the blue triangle.  The waiter at the Chez Rossi is called Mario.  Ginger decides to watch him.  Later than evening, Mario comes out of the Chez Rossi and Ginger follows him to the Villa Valdora.  Next, Ginger sees Mario climbing out of a window and running away.  To find out what is going on, Ginger climbs in the window and finds a man dead with a telephone in his hand - stabbed in the back!  Suddenly the police arrive, the man had managed to call the police before he died, and Ginger flees from the scene.  The police chase after him and shots are fired.  Ginger is wounded in the leg.  Running wildly, Ginger finds himself in the Rue Mariniere, where Henri Ducoste said his mother and sister lived.  Making his way to their house at number 6, he manages to get inside before he faints.