To Bond there had been nothing fantastic, nothing impossible about Goldfinger since he had heard the details of Operation Grand Slam. The theft of a Stratocruiser, as Goldfinger had explained it, was preposterous, but no more so than his methods of smuggling gold, his purchase of an atomic warhead. When one examined these things, while they had a touch of magic, of genius even, they were logical exercises. They were bizarre only in their magnitude. Even the tiny manoeuvre of cheating Mr Du Pont had been quite brilliantly contrived. There was no doubt about it, Gold-finger was an artist - a scientist in crime as great in his field as Cellini or Einstein in theirs.
'And now, Mr Bond of the British Secret Service, we made a bargain. What have you to tell me? Who put you on to me? What did they suspect? How did you manage to interfere with my plans?' Goldfinger sat back, placed his hands across his stomach and looked at the ceiling.
Bond gave Goldfinger a censored version of the truth. He mentioned nothing about SMERSH or the location of the postbox and he said nothing about the secrets of the Homer, a device that might be new to the Russians. He concluded, 'So you see, Goldfinger, you only just got away. But for Tilly Masterton's intervention at Geneva, you'd have been in the bag by now. You'd be sitting picking your teeth in a Swiss prison waiting to be sent to England. You underestimate the English. They may be slow, but they get there. You think you'll be pretty safe in Russia? I wouldn't be too sure. We've got people even out of there before now. I'll give you one last aphorism for your book, Goldfinger: “Never go a bear of England.”'
THE PLANE throbbed on, high above the weather, over the great moonlit landscape. The lights had been turned out. Bond sat quietly in the darkness and sweated with fear at what he was going to do.
An hour before, the girl had brought him dinner. There was a pencil hidden in the napkin. She had made some tough remarks for the benefit of Oddjob and gone away. Bond had eaten some scraps of food and drunk a good deal of bourbon while his imagination hunted round the plane wondering what he could conceivably do to force an emergency landing at Gander or somewhere else in Nova Scotia. As a last resort, could he set fire to the plane? He toyed with the idea, and with the possibility of forcing the entrance hatch open. Both ideas, seemed impracticable and suicidal. To save him the trouble of pondering over them, the man whom Bond had seen before at the BO AC ticket counter, one of the Germans, came through and stopped by Bond's chair.
He grinned down at Bond. 'BOAC takes good care of you, isn't it? Mister Goldfinger thinks you might have foolish notions. I am to keep an eye on the rear of the plane. So just sit back and enjoy the ride, isn't it?'
When Bond didn't answer, the man went on back to the rear section.
Something was nagging at Bond's mind, something connected with his previous thoughts. That business about forcing the hatch. Now what was it that had happened to that plane, flying over Persia back in '57? Bond sat for a while and stared with wide, unseeing eyes at the back of the seat in front of him. It might work! It just conceivably might!
Bond wrote on the inside of the napkin, 'I'll do my best. Fasten your seat belt. XXX. J.'
When the girl came to take his tray Bond dropped the napkin and then picked it up and handed it to her. He held her hand and smiled up into the searching eyes. She bent to pick up the tray. She kissed him quickly on the cheek. She straightened herself. She said toughly, 'I'll see you in my dreams, Handsome,' and went off to the galley.
And now Bond's mind was made up. He had worked out exactly what had to be done. The inches had been measured, the knife from his heel was under his coat and he had twisted the longest end of his seat belt round his left wrist. All he needed was one sign that Oddjob's body was turned away from the window. It would be too much to expect Oddjob to go to sleep, but at least he could make himself comfortable. Bond's eyes never left the dim profile he could see reflected in the Perspex oblong of the window of the seat in front, but Oddjob sat stolidly under the reading light he had prudently kept burning, his eyes staring at the ceiling, his mouth slightly open and his hands held ready and relaxed on the arms of his chair.
One hour, two hours. Bond began to snore, rhythmically, drowsily, he hoped hypnotically. Now Oddjob's hands had moved to his lap. The head nodded once and pulled itself up, shifted to get more comfortable, turned away from the piercing eye of light in the wall, rested on its left cheek away from the window!
Bond kept his snores exactly even. Getting under the Korean's guard would be as difficult as getting past a hungry mastiff. Slowly, inch by inch, he crouched forward on the balls of his feet and reached with his knife hand between the wall and Oddjob's seat. Now his hand was there. Now the needle-sharp tip of the dagger was aimed at the centre of the square inch of Perspex he had chosen. Bond grasped the end of his seat belt tightly in his hand, drew the knife back two inches and lunged.
Bond had had no idea what would happen when he cut through the window. All he knew from the Press reports of the Persian case was that the suction out of the pressurized cabin had whirled the passenger next to the window out through the window and into space. Now, as he whipped back his dagger, there was a fantastic howl, almost a scream of air, and Bond was sucked violently against the back of Oddjob's seat with a force that tore the end of the seat belt from his hand. Over the back of the seat he witnessed a miracle. Oddjob's body seemed to elongate towards the howling black aperture. There was a crash as his head went through and his shoulders hit the frame. Then, as if the Korean's body was toothpaste, it was slowly, foot by foot, sucked with a terrible whistling noise through the aperture. Now Oddjob was out to his waist. Now the huge buttocks stuck and the human paste moved only inch by inch. Then, with a loud boom, the buttocks got through and the legs disappeared as if shot from a gun.