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London's Second City is shaken by a terrorist's bomb and a woman's body is found in a damaged building. The face is unrecognizable, the fingertips have been removed, but the handbag by the corpse appears to belong to Stella Pinero, the wife of John Coffin, Chief Commander of the Second City Police.
brought up to room temperature if needed for use. The terrorist may be a college graduate or relatively uneducated. But he or she will almost certainly be a person of some intensity. This might become apparent in conversation. Certain keywords like ‘state’ or ‘nation’ or ‘police’ might provoke reaction in the untutored terrorist. The trained one will know how to join in the majority view. On the surface. Any relationship will be on the surface. Truth need not come into it. You will not know
lived comes in the same precinct, so I’ve been in and out checking on this and that.’ She was carefully vague. One did not give too much away. ‘It was just a guess that this body had anything to do with the doctor’s story.’ ‘We don’t know for sure that it has,’ said Archie, ‘but it makes a good guess. Miss Pinero was able to add something.’ Phoebe stared at him alertly, and then turned towards Inspector Lodge, who was looking down at the paper-clad corpse. ‘Not my man, anyway,’ he said.
tunnel, and the study of the two bombs. Coffin had risen early, leaving a note for Stella and taking Augustus with him. After giving the dog a quick walk in the park across the road, he had put him in the car to wait while he talked to the police on duty outside the theatre complex. The body had been taken away, but the forensic squad were still at work and looked like being there for some time. ‘Apparently happy, with a base of sadness,’ was Paul Masters’ judgement that day on his chief. He
noted. Everyone was uneasy in this bloody case. He turned to Sir Fred. ‘Thanks for coming, thanks for telling me, but as you can see I am not going on holiday to the South of France. I am not getting out.’ ‘Never thought you would.’ ‘It may be taken out of my hands, of course. I see that. But the story about my wife knowing a suspected terrorist was passed on to me some time ago, so I have had time to think about it. Stella did not kill either di Rimini or Pip Eton. And for that matter,
word. ‘What did you mean when you said to her: “You know what to say”?’ Stella studied her hands. ‘Ah well, you see, I had told my husband that I passed on clothes that I no longer wore to Maisie for a charity shop. That was not quite true.’ ‘What was true?’ He was aware of DC Behr quietly taking notes. ‘I sold them. Some of my clothes were expensive and not much worn, and you know the theatre … we never have any money, a lot of us sell clothes, shoes and handbags even … Maisie did it for me.