|The Tale of the|
"So what do we actually know?" mused Mike.
"Well, we know that the statue was never found. The thief Barquith had obviously hidden it too well. He'd told Haworth where the statue was, but used a code he knew Haworth couldn't break. Even great minds like Rutherford, Newman and Turing couldn't get to the bottom of it! But I think Mr. B knows far more than he's letting on. Maybe he's working with some other criminals and the note we found was meant to for them. The note said to search in the Museum - if we can get there quickly we might beat Mr. B's gang!" said Ellie, and then she stopped, her mouth falling open as a sudden realisation came over her.
"Come on Ellie - the rain is horrendous! Let's get inside!" said Mike.
"Mike, we've always called him Mr. B - but what's his real name? You don't think... No, it can't be... He's not Barquith... He'd have to be ancient!"
"Of course he isn't, he's probably a Brown, a Barrett or a Bruce!" said Mike. "Let's get inside before we're drenched!"
The Museum was full of visitors, all eager to shelter from the rain. Mike and Ellie went upstairs to where the Museum's extensive Egyptology section was housed. They browsed around the mummies, admiring the intricate jewellery and pottery, before turning into the main hall. Towering over them were Egyptian statues and columns, and - at the far end of the room - the most spectacular exhibit: the sarcophagi of the ancient Egyptian brothers Khnum-Nakht and Nekht-Ankh.
"This must be it!" said Ellie. "Mike, can you distract the guard while I have a good look behind?"
Mike went over to distract the guard. "Why does that carving say Kknvm-Nakht?" he asked, and the guard explained that in the classical latin alphabet U and V were written as the same letter, as were I and J. As the guard droned on, Ellie bent down on her hands and knees to peer into the small crack between the first sarcophagus and the wall. Inside, she could just make out the corner of a manuscript. She reached in and carefully pulled it out.
"Time to go, Mike!" she said. "I think we've got what we came for!"
In a shadowy corner, the tall white-haired gentleman had been watching. He gave a wry smile, turned, and left.