Tribune's headline was short and sweet:
Maid Cleans House,
Steals Priceless Millet Painting
Late last night Arthur Cole Lechter's ninety-four room mansion
on Bay Front Blvd. was robbed. The items taken include cash, jewelry and
a priceless painting by François Millet. His maid, a Fiona Featherduster,
is the chief suspect.
leaned back in my chair and let out a long dry whistle. I'd been duped,
clean and simple. And Miss Featherduster hadn't even paid me for my troubles.
told the police what I knew. I guess they believed me, because they didn't
come back. Not even a week later, when I received a postcard from Miss Featherduster:
"Dear Detective Pintura," it began. "I do
so appreciate your help in identifying my painting. I guess I can't call
it my painting anymore, since an art dealer in Milan took it off
my hands for a very agreeable sum of money."
"I still remember what you said about Millet--that
he only portrayed the lives of honest, hard-working folk. What do you think
he'd say if he knew his painting had helped me leave that life behind me
"P.S. Gauguin was right--Tahiti is beautiful.
Thanks so much for the suggestion!"
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