They both repeated his name, and the man said, 'Sorry, Commissario. I didn't
hear your rank when you came in. I hope you didn't mind being called officer.'
'Not at all,' Brunetti said with a smile. They shook hands, and Brunetti stood
and watched them until they had disappeared beyond the corner of the church.
When he returned to the place where the man had been killed, he found a
uniformed officer standing beside one of the stanchions. He saw Brunetti
approach and saluted. 'You alone here?' Brunetti asked. He noticed that all of
the sheets and the few bags that had remained had disappeared and wondered if
the police had taken them back with them.
'Yes, sir. Santini said to tell you he didn't find anything.' Brunetti assumed
this meant not only shell casings, but any traces of whoever might have killed
He looked at the enclosed area and only then noticed an oval mound of sawdust in
the centre. Without thinking, he asked, nodding towards it with his chin,
'It's the, er, blood, sir,' the man answered. 'Because of the cold.'
The image this conjured up was so grotesque that Brunetti refused to consider
it; instead, he told the officer to call the Questura at midnight and remind
them that he was to be relieved at one. He asked the young man if he wanted to
go and have a coffee before the bar closed and then stood and waited for him.
When the uniformed man was back, Brunetti told him that, if he saw any of the
other vu cumprà, he was to tell them that their colleague was dead and ask them
to call the police if they had any information about him. He made a particular
point of telling the officer to make it clear to them that they would not have
to give their names or come to the Questura and that all the police wanted from
them was information.
Brunetti used his telefonino to call the Questura. He gave his name, repeated
what he had just told the crime scene officer, emphasizing that callers were not
to be asked their names, and instructed that all calls relating to the shooting
were to be recorded. He called the Carabinieri and, unsure of his authority,
asked their cooperation in treating any relevant calls they might receive with
the same discretion, and when the maresciallo agreed, asked if they would record
their calls as well. The maresciallo observed he was very doubtful that any
information would be volunteered by the vu cumprà but nevertheless agreed to do
There seemed little else for Brunetti to do, so he wished the young officer a
good evening, hoped it would get no colder, and, having decided it would be
faster to walk, turned towards Rialto and home.
Research shows that 90% of Americans value public libraries(Dec 11 2013) According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, about 90% of Americans aged 16 and older said that the closing of their local public library would have an...