I open the ink pad and roll her thumb over the ink, then onto the bottom of
the paper. Vikorn, a consummate professional, has neatly ended her report
without the need for a second page.
"Anything I've left out?"
"No," I say in awe. The statement is a masterly mosaic of several standard
stories from the Game, artfully interwoven with great economy of language. Still
more remarkable in a cop who carries his legal scholarship so lightly, he has
laid the foundations for an impregnable defense to a charge of murder or even
manslaughter: she used only such force as was necessary to save her life and did
not deliver the fatal blow; when she saw how badly he was wounded, she attempted
without success to save his life; and she expressed sorrow and respect by her
sensitive placing of his severed member in a position of honor. The dead
farang's standard-issue hatred of the opposite sex arising from bitter personal
experience of his own countrywomen provides a motive for his aggression and his
sexual preferences. "I think you've covered everything."
"Good. Give her a copy when she wakes up, and make sure she memorizes it. If
there's anything she wants to change, tell her she can't."
"D'you want to visit the scene of the crime?"
"Not really. Anyway, it wasn't a crime, so don't prejudice justice by
calling it that. Self-defense is not illegal, especially when by a woman on a
Saturday night in Krung Thep."
"Still, I think you'd better come," I say. He grunts irritably but stands up
anyway and jerks his chin in the general direction of the street.
A Man Called Intrepid author dies aged 89(Dec 03 2013) William Stevenson, a journalist and author who drew on his close ties with intelligence sources to write two best-selling books in the 1970s, A Man Called...