Beware of the dog by Peter Corris

By Peter Corris

Aussie inner most eye Cliff Hardy narrowly escapes a fireball that kills enthusiasts and lands him at the path of deception that ends up in a hell guarded through a snarling puppy and packed with a family's darkest secrets and techniques. Reprint. NYT.

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Who was that man? ’ I tossed the toy to her. She caught it deftly, still favouring one leg. ’ ‘I followed you. I parked just a little way down the street. Shouldn’t you have noticed me? ’ I shoved the key in the lock. ’ Her voice changed, taking on the severe, serious tone she’d finally adopted in the interview. ‘Mr Hardy. ’ I had the door open. ’ ‘I can’t help wondering what was in that parcel you posted. ’ * * * * 4 The cat with no name greeted me as I came through the door. It followed me down the hall into the kitchen and stood over me until I opened a tin of food for it.

Her nicely-shaped face fell into lines of disappointment. ’ ‘Come on. At a guess you were the smartest one there. ’ I glanced down at the backpack she had on the ground between her boots. It was stuffed with books and folders. ’ ‘I am,’ she said fiercely. ‘That’s the trouble. ’ I must have started to edge away at that point. There’s something about the intensity of people who want to be doctors of philosophy that disturbs me. ’ She grabbed five fingers’ worth of leather sleeve. ‘You can! You can.

I leaned back against the car with my head throbbing. Criminal neglect to leave the gun inside the car, especially after you knew she’d seen your every move. And what to do about it? The right thing to do was to notify the police, but I didn’t think I could face the humiliation and the complications. I could see the grins on the faces of the cops in the Glebe station. Then would come the serious stuff—the warnings, the threats to lift my licence. It was serious—an unstable woman running loose with a loaded pistol.

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