THE HEART OF DANGER
cream
    and
    red of the wallpaper of the room that had been his friend's. Most
    days
    in summer he had waded the ford in the stream or his friend had come
    the same way to him, and most days in winter when the stream was high
    he had gone across the plank bridge or his friend had come that way
    to
    him. And now he knew that his friend was an Ustase enemy, and he
    knew
    49

    that the parents of his friend and all in the village across the stream
    had planned to slit the throats of their Serb neighbours ... He knew
    it
    because he had been told it by his father. He had wondered, often,
    if
    his friend would have come in the night with all the other Ustase
    enemies, and carried a knife, and cut his throat. It was too much
    of a
    betrayal for him to care to find another friend. Marko's game died.
    A
    car screamed down the lane towards their house. The car braked and
    scattered mud in front of the house, and his father was jumping from
    the car while it still moved and was running towards the big door.
    The
    dog was barking and running after his father and into the house.
    Marko
    came from the orchard, hurrying. He whistled for the dog to come
    to
    him. The dog had no name now, but it came to the whistle. There
    were
    five men in the car and they were crashing magazines into their
    weapons. The dog was his. He had saved the life of his dog. The
    dog
    had belonged to the family of his friend who was now an Ustase enemy.
    It had been before the battle for the village across the stream that
    his friend had gone with his family, all packed with cases and bedding
    into the Yugo car. He had watched it from behind the apple trees.
    He
    had been behind the apple trees because for a week the snipers had
    fired across the narrow stream, and his mother would have beaten him
    if
    she had known he was at the back of the house. They had left the
    dog.
    He had seen how the dog had run after the weighed-down Yugo car, and
    he
    had heard his friend's father curse the dog for running beside the
    wheels, and the dog had run after the car until they were gone from
    his
    sight. It had been a week after the battle that he had heard the
    dog
    barking in the night from beside his friend's house, and his father
    had
    said that he would go shoot the dog in the morning, and he had cried
    for the dog in a way that he had not cried for his friend .. . His
    father had crossed the stream and brought the dog home, and his father
    had said that there was no point in giving the dog a new name because
    50

    it would not respond, and they could not use the old name of the dog
    because it was an Ustase name. He had hold of the dog's collar when
    his father exploded from the big door of the house. His father
    carried
    his army pack and a small radio and his rifle. There was the roar
    of
    the car leaving. Marko ran to the gate onto the lane. Up the lane, in
    the square of the village, he saw more cars gathered, and he heard
    more
    shouting. His mother had hold of his shoulder. He should be inside the house. He should not be out of the house. His mother told him
    that his father had gone to lead the search for Ustase spies, who
    had
    crossed over the Kupa river, who were in the forest and the hills
    above
    Rosenovici village. All the rest of the afternoon Marko stood at
    the
    window of his bedroom and he gazed across the narrow stream into the
    curtain of trees that covered the hillside. She paid the taxi off
    fast, thrust the note at the driver and did not wait for the change.
    The drizzle was back, and the wet clung to Charles's shoulder.
    Typical
    of him to wait on the pavement for her. She reeled off her excuses,
    the weather, late train, no taxis .. . She saw his expression, set
    hard
    and annoyed. "Sorry, sorry .. ." He marched up the wide office steps.
    "I saw your Mister Penn. I told him his figures were ludicrous ..
    ."
    "And .. . ?" '.. . I told him they were extortionate." "And ..
    . ?"
    "He said that was his rate." "And .. . ?" "He said that if I didn't like

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