Northlight by Adam Hall (Elleston Trevor)

By Adam Hall (Elleston Trevor)

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She didn't look up; she wasn't afraid of laughter, only of eyes in the shadow of peaked caps, only of questions. ' 'Of course. ' 'Yes. ' She gave it to me, and I wrote it down. The laughter broke out again, and I saw the heads of three sailors passing the window, their breath steaming. ' 'No. ' 'No. ' She shrugged. 'That's what we always mean when we say "anyone". But nobody has questioned me. ' 'At the embassy. ' Then the tears were in her eyes and creeping down her face, though she made no sound, but just looked down and let them come, and let me brush them away with my finger while we sat like that for a time, listening to the sailors laughing on the platform outside and the first rumbling of a train nearing the station.

I'd already shown them to the guard at the desk outside but I couldn't refuse. He studied them, taking his time. 'Clive Gage,' he said into the telephone. ' He waited, occupying himself by gazing at my papers, turning them to the light with his eyes narrowing slightly: I think he was simply trying to frighten me, but he did it well. Please tell me what is happening . The prime minister had a reputation for phoning people before they could phone her. As far as me know, ma'am, Karasov is still somewhere in Murmansk.

He let that go. 'I think it depends a great deal on whether you go back and vilify us as usual in your popular press. ' His smile had died away and as I left the office he was simply staring at me through narrowed lids, and as I touched the door handle a frisson passed through my nerves because I was suddenly sure it wouldn't turn, that the door was locked. But that feeling is quite normal, when you walk out of a KGB building. On the way to the hotel through the unearthly night glow from the sky it occurred to me that I'd missed something.

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