Accident is a short story by Agatha Christie, first published in The Sunday Despatch in 1929 under the title The Uncrossed Path. In 1934 Accident was included in a collection of short stories, The Listerdale Mystery, published only in the UK. And in 1948 it appeared in another collection, The Witness For The Prosecution and Other Stories, published only in the US.
Captain Haydock, an old sea captain, had learned to leave alone the things that did not concerned him. His friend Inspector Evans had a different philosophy, ‘Acting on information received’ had been his motto. Even now, when he had retired from the force, and settled down in the country cottage of his dreams, his professional instinct was still active. Evans had identified a local woman, Mrs Merrowdene, with Mrs Anthony a former heroine of a cause célèbre. Nine years ago she was tried and acquitted of murder Mr Anthony who was in the habit of taking arsenic. Was it his or his wife’s mistake? Nobody could tell, and the jury, very properly, gave her the benefit of the doubt. But Evans regarded his duty to prevent another crime.
This short story is an absolute gem of detective fiction, another proof of Agatha Christie’s genius. It will sure make the delights of everyone, whether or not true fans of the gender.
This short post is my humble contribution to the Agatha Christie Challenge Blog Carnival hosted by Kerrie, don’t miss the next issue, due on 24 July 2011.