Doubt? ASK ME

     “You are disillusioned,” Ausable told him. “But take cheer, my young friend. Presently you will see a paper, a quite important paper for which several men and women have risked their lives, come to me. Some day soon that paper may well affect the course of history. In that thought is drama, is there not?”
     As he spoke, Ausable closed the door behind him. Then he switched on the light.

     And as the light came on, Fowler had his first authentic thrill of the day. For halfway across the room, a small automatic pistol in his hand, stood a man.

     Ausable blinked a few times.

     “Max,” he wheezed, “you gave me quite a start. I thought you were in Berlin. What are you doing here in my room?”
     Max was slender, a little less than tall, with features that suggested slightly the crafty, pointed countenance of a fox. There was about him — aside from the gun — nothing especially menacing.

     “The report,” he murmured. “The report that is being brought to you tonight concerning some new missiles. I thought I would take it from you. It will be safer in my hands than in yours.”
Ausable then stated that whatever Fowler believed had become untrue. On the other side, he said something to calm him down. He told Fowler to take a cheer and said he would show him an important paper.

Ausable also stated that the paper was something special, and many men and women have put their lives in danger for the sake of the report. He might have said that to create curiosity in Fowler. He then requested Fowler to come inside the room. Ausable then stated that the document had the potential to change the course of history at some point in the future. After telling that, he asked whether he didn't feel any suspense in what he said or it didn't feel like something serious. Here, Ausable attempted to arouse an interest in the documents and the importance of visiting him.

While speaking with Fowler, Ausable closed the door standing behind him. Later, he switched on his room light. Then the narrator said that when he switched on the light, Fowler had faced a thrilling experience of the day. The narrator made the statement because Fowler had visited Ausable to get some interesting stories. But when he met him, he felt disappointed. When the light was on, some thrilling experiences were waiting for Fowler. It was nothing, but they noticed a man standing half away across the room, holding a pistol in his hand.

After seeing the man, Ausable blinked his eyes a few times. After doing that, Ausable called out the man's name. It was Max. He asked Max what he was doing there and said he thought Max was in Berlin. Later, he asked him what he was doing in his room.

The narrator then describes the character of Max to his readers. Max was a thin guy. He doesn't look very tall. While looking at the features of Max, he had the resemblance of a fox. The narrator might have described Max as a fox because of his cunningness. Then the narrator says that while looking at him, he had only a gun in his hand. Apart from the gun, there was nothing that seemed strange or panicking. The narrator might have made the statement because, as it was Max, Ausable thought he would not harm them.
Max had a gun in his hand

After hearing Ausable's statement, Max murmured, "The report". He said that he knew that Ausable would get a report regarding some new missiles tonight. He also said that he would take it from him. Moreover, he stated that the report would be safe in his hand compared to him. This was the reason Max came to Ausable's room.

Meanings of the difficult words:

DisillusionDisappointed and unhappy because of discovering the truth about something or someone that you liked or respected
Authentic Being what it is claimed to be; genuine
Blink To close and open the eyes quickly, once or several times
Pistol A small gun that is held in and fired from one hand
Automatic A machine or device can operate independently of human control
SlenderThin or delicate
MenacingSuggesting the presence of danger; threatening
Countenance A person's face or facial expression
MissileA flying weapon that has its own engine and can travel a long distance before exploding at the place at which it has been aimed
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2007). The Midnight Visitor- Robert Arthur (pp. 14-19). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.