Summary: At Teabing’s estate, Fache and Collet are having trouble gathering any solid evidence about what has transpired. Vernet calls to change his story, admitting that the fugitives were at his bank and stole something from it. Upon learning that the fugitives have taken a private plane from Le Bourget Airfield, Fache makes preparations to pursue them. He reluctantly leaves Collet in charge of the ongoing investigation.
Analysis: This chapter is brief and procedural, functioning to move Fache’s plotline closer to that of Sophie, Langdon and Teabing. No thematic and little character development occurs; the only notable material of deeper significance is Collet’s sense that “dire repercussions” of Fache’s “sour mood” at losing the fugitives are yet to come (p. 321). The thought may be foreshadowing, but it is surely a glimpse into both police officers’ states of mind. Both officers, as argued above, are motivated by a desire for power. Now that the attempt to catch Sophie and Langdon has been botched, Collet stands powerless—and yet Fache, ostensibly still powerful as Collet’s superior officer, is just as powerless. He is still reacting to the fugitives’ actions, rather than working pro-actively. He is not in control of the situation—and he knows it and doesn’t like it!