The story “The Midnight Visitor” written by Robert Arthur, revolves around three major characters Ausable, Max and Fowler, where the first two are rivals and the third one is a young writer. The episode actually highlights the investigation and secret missions of two agents- Ausable and Max. Ausable is seen as a tangled and inactive man while Max is shown as active and strong but the story ends up proving Ausable as the real hero and mentally alert persona.

Fowler Meets Ausable

Ausable lives on the sixth floor of a building in a small room. A young writer, Fowler, enters in his room to meet him. After the meeting, Fowler is disappointed to see the sloth look of Ausable as he expected a heroic appearance to be made by him. He has actually come to gather imperative contents and materials for his book on secret agents.

After encountering Ausable, Fowler was unable to believe the reality as Ausable was not fitting into any of the description of agents as depicted in movies. Ausable was a sloppy fat man. Ausable himself felt that Fowler was downhearted after meeting him.

An Intruder Appears

When Ausable switched on the light, he found that apart from Fowler, there was another man standing in front of him. The man was Max. He was holding a pistol in his hand. Max informed Ausable that he has come there to snatch an important paper and told that he has used a master key to enter the door.

Instead of becoming aggressive and tensed, Ausable was cool and standing silently. Ausable informed Max that this is not for the first time, that a man has entered into his room without permission. In fact last month too, an unknown man had intruded through the balcony just below the window of his room.(Balcony here is an illusion, not reality).

Knock at the Door

Suddenly, there was a knock at the door. Ausable smiled and calmly told that there must be a policeman whom he himself has called for the protection of an important report. He threatened Max by saying that the police would enter soon as the door was unlocked and they would not wait to shoot.

All these words ultimately end up making Max scared and confused. When the knock became louder Max twists his body and points his gun at Ausable and Fowler. He put his other leg over the windowsill. As the door opens, Max, without looking back and making sure that there was police, jumps out in desperation and falls on the ground (because there was no balcony around).

In this way, Max iss killed without any enemy and without having any intention of self-harm. The door finally opens and a waiter appears with a tray, a bottle and two glasses.

Fowler is Impressed

So, here, the readers get aware of the fact that there was no police in reality. Instead there was a waiter, whom Ausable himself had called. Fowler was stand still and asked Ausable about Max, who jumped out on the balcony. Ausable assured Fowler by telling that there was no balcony below the window and it was just an illusion. Fowler was highly impressed by the intelligence and brilliance of Ausable.

Further Reading