Hastings walks into the sitting room and pours himself a drink. He's worried about his friend and this case has thrown him for a loop. "Captain Hastings, are you alright?" Miss Lemon asks as she comes into the room behind him.
"Don't ask me, Miss Lemon, it's better that you don't know the details of this particular case. Do me a favour, Miss Lemon. Put some of those cream cookies with the jam in them that Poirot likes on the tray. If he says he's not hungry leave them there for him. He hasn't eaten since breakfast." Hastings says the concern evident in both his request and his voice.
"Of course, Captain Hastings. You're a good friend to Monsieur Poirot. You're always looking out for him." Miss Lemon says kindly.
"I try. He looks out for me all the time, so I feel it's only fair if I look after and look out for him every once in a while." Hastings says calmly.
"Do you know what this case is about, Captain Hastings? It seems to have affected Monsieur Poirot most profoundly." Miss Lemon says as she scoops tea leaves into the teapot.
He's not the only one this case has affected, Hastings thinks. "I'm sworn to secrecy, Miss Lemon. Poirot made me promise him that you would never know anything about this case for fear it might hurt your delicate female sensibilities. He cares about you, you know. There are details about certain gruesome cases that he takes out of the stories he tells you because he doesn't want to frighten or worry you." Hastings reveals to his friend.
"He is a dear man. Sometimes I worry about the mental and emotional toll these cases take on him. He needs a good woman in his life to take him away from all of this." Miss Lemon muses as the tea steeps.
"I don't think after all the murder cases between spouses he's seen that he'll ever be in a serious relationship. The closest he came that I ever saw was with Countess Rossakoff and I never understood why that didn't work out. She went to America, but I don't know why. You are the closest woman to him now and forever and when he was in Belgium it was his mother he was closest to." Hastings says quietly. He's not sure he should have said anything, but Miss Lemon would find out eventually.
"Oh, but he's so sweet. You'd think a very special woman would be able to persuade him to change his opinion on marriage. He needs to have a life outside of these gruesome cases." Miss Lemon is shocked. She bustles around finishing getting the tea tray ready not making eye contact with Hastings.