The Ear in the Wall HTML version

4. The Anonymous Letter
"What do you make of that?" inquired Carton half an hour later as he met us breathlessly
at the laboratory.
He unfolded a letter over which he had evidently been puzzling considerably. It was
written, or rather typewritten, on plain paper. The envelope was plain and bore no marks
of identification, except possibly that it had been mailed uptown.
The letter ran:
Although this is an anonymous letter, I beg that you will not consider it such, since it will
be plain to you that there is good reason for my wishing to remain nameless.
I want to tell you of some things that have taken place recently at a little hotel in the West
Fifties. No doubt you know of the place already--the Little Montmartre.
There are several young and wealthy men who frequent this resort. I do not dare tell you
their names, but one is a well-known club- man and man about town, another is a banker
and broker, also well known, and a third is a lawyer. I might also mention an intimate
friend of theirs, though not of their position in society--a doctor who has somewhat of a
reputation among the class of people who frequent the Little Montmartre, ready to furnish
them with anything from a medical certificate to drugs and treatment.
I have read a great deal in the newspapers lately of the disappearance of Betty Blackwell,
and her case interests me. I think you will find that it will repay you to look into the hint I
have given. I don't think it is necessary to say any more. Indeed it may be dangerous to
me, and I beg that you will not even show this letter to anyone except those associated
with you and then, please, only with the understanding that it is to go no farther.
Betty Blackwell is not at this hotel, but I am sure that some of those whose wild orgies
have scandalized even the Little Montmartre know something about her.
Yours truly,
Kennedy looked up quickly at Carton as he finished reading the letter.
"Typical," he remarked. "Anonymous letters occasionally are of a friendly nature, but
usually they reflect with more or less severity upon the conduct or character of someone.
They usually receive little attention, but sometimes they are of the most serious character.
In many instances they are most important links in chains of evidence pointing to grave