Most people would have screamed. Mrs Hathall made no sound. She had seen death many times before, but she had never before seen a death by violence. Heavily, she plodded across the room and descended the stairs to where her son waited. `There's been an accident', she said. `Your wife's dead.' Chief Inspector Wexford could discover no motive, no reason and no suspect - all he had were his intuitive suspicions. Probably he was reading meaning where there was none; probably Angela Hathall really had picked up a stranger, and that stranger had killed her. But why such doubt? Was Wexford becoming cynical and untrusting - or was this simply one of the most ingenious crimes he had ever tackled?