- And so - all twenty cases? - Strictly speaking - twenty four. Yes. Has invented Nothing.
- But after all it is strange.
- Still. Otherwise I and the novel did not begin to write.
- And you never tried to explain somehow all it? Well, though somehow? - It is final, tried... - Stanislav has pricked up the
ears. Questions too were innocent. And idle even. Here something was not so. It seems, the major was going to strike the
- Also what? - And - anything.
- Absolutely anything? - The major pressed.
- But after all there can not be all it mere chance! - probably. But to me has bothered to puzzle over it.
- You the scientist.
- Well also what? Is your work - to puzzle.
Stanislav has grinned.
- My work - to puzzle over system problems. To me for it money plotjat.
And here, all having moved forward and absolutely having ceased to smile, Veniamin Ivanovich has told sat down golosom: -
However, you should break a head and is free too. All people about whom I now with you spoke, - have died. And all of
them have died very similar - approximately the same as your cannibal with an axe: they were killed by a splinter of which was
not. And all of them, anyhow, are connected with you, Stanislav Zinovevich. Everything, without an exception. Understand,
what turns out? There is a ten the people, died strange death what usually do not die, their cause of death - a riddle,
actually, they have not died, they were lost, and all of them, to a greater or lesser extent, - ALL! - are connected with you.
- What means are connected? - Stanislav perplexed has asked. Such he did not expect.
- Means: or they are your acquaintances, personal, or - acquaintances of your good acquaintances. All without an exception.
- And all has killed a splinter? - You write: there was NO SPLINTER! - well, whether it is not enough that there has seemed to
me. Was, probably, and I...
- There was no splinter, Stanislav Zinovevich. In that all and a piece. Was not! Last words Veniamin Ivanovich has told
almost in a whisper. Its person has again stopped. It has leant back on a back of a chair and has begun to make nervous
manipulations suddenly: has linked fingers and it is loud zahrustel them, it is then strong poter cheek palms, a nose as if
suddenly combed, a neck - on either side of, and has again linked fingers. At it the kind of the person has suddenly become,
is deep in all disappointed and even the despaired. Stanislav looked at it silently. Both of them were silent, and long enough.
Then the tape recorder has quietly clicked, and the red spark has gone out. Veniamin Ivanovich hasty also has greedy
seized it, has taken the cartridge, has turned, has put back. The red spark has lighted up again.