The Midnight Visitor is a detective story written by Robert Arthur. The story is about a quick-witted secret agent Ausable. One day, he and his writer friend Fowler had gone out to spend an evening together. As the two men talked, Ausable told him that Fowler must have imagined him to be a secret agent who dealt with espionage and danger and envisioned mysterious figures in the night, the crack of pistols and drugs in the wine. On the contrary, when Fowler met Ausable, he found the latter to be a chubby-looking spy who spoke French and German moderately with an American accent, ever since he moved from Paris to Boston twenty years ago.
Soon, both of them headed towards Ausable’s room, he unlocked the door and switched on the light. When they entered the room, Fowler was startled to see a man holding a small automatic pistol halfway across the room. Ausable immediately recognized the other man to be Max, a secret agent. Max had come to demand the report related to missiles that Ausable was expecting. Meanwhile, Fowler was in a state of shock and this was by far the most audacious experience for him to meet a secret agent in such a manner.
In the meantime, Ausable began his hypothetical story of the balcony beneath the window of the room to divert Max’s attention. Just then, somebody knocked at the door and continued until the thumping became louder and more frequent. Ausable said that the police might have come to visit him as they did regularly. Max was confused, and while he pointed his gun toward the other two men in the room, he said he would wait on the balcony until the police left.
Max warned that he would shoot them if they didn’t listen to him. Saying so, he jumped out of the window and suddenly there was a scream. Meanwhile, Ausable opened the door and the waiter brought some wine that he had ordered. The waiter kept the wine bottle, glasses, and tray on the top of the table and left. Fowler was surprised to see all this and asked him about the police. To this, Ausable lied about the police as he was trying to intimidate Max. Fowler again asked that Max must be waiting on the balcony, to which Ausable said there was no balcony attached to his window. He cooked up the entire story about the balcony to convince Max to believe him, which he blindly did.
This story exhibits how quick-witted Ausable took advantage of the dangerous situation and successfully made Max nervous. Distraught Max jumped out of the window and fell to his death unknowingly. Although Ausable didn’t look like a well-groomed spy like we see in movies, he was an ingenious secret agent. He outwitted Max and successfully saved himself and his friend, Fowler from a life-threatening situation.
Conclusion of The Midnight Visitor
The chapter – The Midnight Visitor illustrates the fact that one should not panic in a critical situation, but rather stay focused to take a wise step in averting the problems with a good presence of mind. We are hoping this CBSE Class 10 English Footprints Without Feet Prose Summary of The Midnight Visitor has helped students to get a detailed insight into the chapter.