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Hotel Pastis 茴香酒店 (连载11)

(2011-04-01 16:25:39)
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分类: 英语阅览室

Hotel <wbr>Pastis <wbr>茴香酒店 <wbr>(连载11)

 

Hotel <wbr>Pastis <wbr>茴香酒店 <wbr>(连载11)

                

Jojo lit a cigarette, and blew smoke at a dog who was looking for sugar-lumps under the table. ‘It was funny, but it wasn’t a joke. Listen to this: they’ve just put in a new security system at the Caisse d’Epargne- electronic eyes, pressure pads on the floor, metal detectors at the door, the works. One of the big companies from Lyon put it in. Millions, it cost.’

   The General was puzzled. It was always a pleasure to hear about a bank having to spend millions of francs, but he’d heard things at  funerals that had made him laugh more. ‘What was so funny ? Did the bank’s cheque bounce?’

  Jojo grinned, and wagged his finger. ‘Better than that. What happened was they moved the strong-room – all of the coffres-forts – right to the back of the bank for extra security. Five-centimetre steel bars on the door, triple locks…’ Jojo paused for effect ‘… but no electronic eyes. Not one.’

 Ah bon?’

  ‘No. And why? Because clients going through their strong-boxes don’t want to be on TV in the manager’s office while they’re counting their cash.’

   The General shrugged. ‘C’est normal, non?’

   ‘But the best of it’- Jojo sipped his pastis and looked round the other tables before leaning forward – ‘the best of it is that the new strong-room is exactly over the old river drain. But exactly.’

  ‘The old river drain?’

  ‘That arch we just looked at. That’s where it comes out. Twenty, twenty-five metres up that, and you’re under the floor of the strong-room. A little plastique and boum! You’re through.’

 Formidable. And then you can dance on the pressure pads until the flics arrive.’

  Jojo shook his head, and grinned again. He was enjoying this. ‘No, that’s the other funny thing. There aren’t any pressure pads. The floor isn’t wired. They reckoned the door was enough. Jean-Louis couldn’t believe it.’

   The General pulled unconsciously at his moustache, a habit his wife said made his look lopsided. Isle-sur-Sorgue, he knew, was a rich little town, full of antique dealers who did most of their business in cash . A few hours looking through their strong-boxes wouldn’t be wasted. He felt the first stirrings of interest. More than interest, he had to admit. It was the old tickle of excitement he always used to feel when he was planning a job. That was his skill. Planning. That was why the others called him the General, because he could use his head.

  Jojo looked at him lide a cuckoo waiting for a worm, his eyes bright and dark in his lean brown face. ‘Alors? What do you think?’

   ‘How do we know it’s true? The whole thing stinks.’ The General looked round for a waiter. ‘But we might as well have another drink.’

  Jojo smiled. He was like that, the General. A real pessimist, always looking for problems.  But he hadn’t said no.  

  As the crowds thinned and started to make their way home for lunch, the two men talked on and the square became quiet except for the striking of the church clock. (to be continued)

 

 乔仔点了根烟,把烟呼向一只在桌底下找砂糖吃的狗。“很幽默,不过,他们说的并不是笑话。听我说:他们刚在‘储蓄银行’安装了保安系统——电眼、地板上的感应条、门上的金属探测器及相关设备。那是由里昂一家大公司来安装的。花了好几百万。”

    将军都给弄糊涂了。听见银行得花好几百万法郎,一向是件令人开心的事,但是他在葬礼上听到的事情让他笑得更凶。“那有什么?难道银行跳票了?”

    乔仔露齿而笑,摇摇他的手指。“比这更妙!他们为了安全的考虑,把放置保险箱的房间挪到银行背面。门上安装了五厘米厚的铁栏杆,还有三道锁……”乔仔为了加强效果,还暂停了一会。“……但是没有电眼。一个也没有。”

    “哦,真的?”

    “为什么?因为客户去看保险箱数钞票时,可不喜欢被拍到银行经理办公室的电视里。”

    将军耸耸肩。“这很正常,不是吗?”

    “但是最棒的是,”乔仔啜了口茴香酒,看看其他桌的客人后,倾身向前,“最棒的是,保险箱的房间正巧在旧的下水道上面。不偏不倚。”

    “旧的河流下水道?”

    “就是我们刚刚看的拱门,那是下水道的出口。只要往上二十或二十五米,就到了保险箱所在的地面底下。只要一点炸药,就可以由地板进入房间。”

    “太了不起了!然后你就在感应条上狂舞,直到条子赶到!”

    乔仔摇摇头,而后微笑。他正融入这样的快感之中。“不,这又是另外一个有意思的地方。那儿根本没有感应条。地板上根本没安装线路。他们以为门已经够坚实了。尚-路易简直无法置信。”

    将军不自觉地扯着自己的胡子。他老婆说,他的这个习惯让他看起来失去了平衡。据他所知,依斯勒一上一索格是个富裕的小镇,多的是古董经纪商,他们多半以现金交易。花几个小时察看保险箱也不嫌浪费。他开始觉得有点兴趣。他必须承认,自己具有高度的兴趣。这种刺激感,通常是他在计划行动时拥有的感觉。规划绸缪,即是他的本事。这也就是为什么其他人叫他将军的缘故,因为他会用脑袋。

    乔仔像只等待小虫的杜鹃鸟,看着将军,他的眼睛在他消瘦黝黑的脸上显得明暗分明。“怎么样?你觉得如何?”

    “我们怎么知道这些全是真的?整件事听起来不可思议。”将军四处张望,寻找服务生的踪影。“我们最好再喝一杯。”

    乔仔笑了笑。他跟将军一般,是个无可救药的悲观主义者,总是为自己找难题。不过,将军也没说不。

    等人群渐渐散去,回家吃午饭,这两个人继续聊天说地,整个广场显得安静异常,只剩教堂洪亮的钟声。(to be continued) 



 



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