Chapter 11

We're back to the police station. I'm not sure I've read all of this chapter. I think I actually haven't. Even so, I expect we'll get to see more dry recitation of events with no indication that Christopher gives half a rat's bathtub.

His father shows up, and he specifies that it was at 1:12 am and that he didn't see him until 1:28 "but I knew he was there because I could hear him".

He was shouting, "I want to see my son," and "Why the hell is he locked up?" and "Of course I'm bloody angry."

Then I heard a policeman telling him to calm down. Then I heard nothing for a long while.

At least someone is upset about things.

At 1:28, they let him out to see his father, who is standing in the corridor.

He held up his right hand and spread his fingers out in a fan. I held up my left hand and spread my fingers out in a fan and we made our fingers and thumbs touch each other. We do this because sometimes Father wants to give me a hug, but I do not like hugging people so we do this instead, and it means that he loves me.

That's fair. Not liking hugs is common. I like them, but I don't initiate.

The policeman has Christopher and his father follow him to a room with a table and three chairs, and they sit down. Christopher sees the tape recorder on the table and asks if he'll be interviewed and recorded, and the policeman says "I don't think there will be any need for that".

He was an inspector. I could tell because he wasn't wearing a uniform. He also had a very hairy nose. It looked as if there were two very small mice hiding in his nostrils.

What is that supposed to look like? Is it the whiskers on the mice that do it? I'm getting this mental image of a nose with two mouse heads peeking out.

There's a footnote on this passage, which says:

This is not a metaphor, it is a simile, which means that it really did look like there were two very small mice hiding in his nostrils, and if you make a picture in your head of a man with two very small mice hiding in his nostrils, you will know what the police inspector looked like. And a simile is not a lie, unless it is a bad simile.

Shut up about lies, will you? What even is a "bad simile"? That's subjective. I'm inclined to think the mice are an example of such, however. I don't know what the police inspector looks like after reading the passage and its footnote. I can picture a hairy nose, but picturing mice inside it throws the whole thing off, and the rest of him hasn't been described at all beyond that he's not wearing a uniform. Shouldn't Christopher consider himself a liar by his own nonsensical standard? He's said so many sloppy things like this that he ought to be pointing out his own "lies".

Maybe the inspector consists entirely of a nose. That would explain why I should know what he looks like just from seeing his nose described.

He said, "I have spoken to your father and he says that you didn't mean to hit the policeman."
I didn't say anything because this wasn't a question.
He said, "Did you mean to hit the policeman?"
I said, "Yes."

Shouldn't his instinct have been to contradict the incorrect claim regardless of whether it was a question?

He squeezed his face and said, "But you didn't mean to hurt the policeman?"

He squeezed his face? What does that mean? Did he squeeze it with his hand, or did he make a facial expression? Am I supposed to magically infer what expression it was?

I thought about this and said, "No. I didn't mean to hurt the policeman. I just wanted him to stop touching me."
Then he said, "You know that it is wrong to hit a policeman, don't you?"
I said, "I do."

He's making himself sound cold and calculating again. He knew what he did was wrong, but he did it on purpose anyway with a clear goal in mind. Cold and calculating is so not me. I'd be suspicious of him, too.

He was quiet for a few seconds, then he asked, "Did you kill the dog, Christopher?"
I said, "I didn't kill the dog."
He said, "Do you know that it is wrong to lie to a policeman and you can get in a very great deal of trouble if you do?"

I'm going to guess that the last line implies that Christopher is lying about the dog. As above, I understand the suspicion. The page ends here, so I don't know yet what happens next. It's only page 17, and there are evidently a lot more of them. How bad is this book going to get? Do I want to know?


Christopher says that he does. The policeman asks him if he knows who killed the dog, and he says he doesn't. The policeman asks him if he's telling the truth, and he says, "Yes. I always tell the truth." Such assertions are worthless as evidence, but these two seem to be unaware of that.

And he said, "Right. I am going to give you a caution."
I asked, "Is that going to be on a piece of paper like a certificate I can keep?"

Taking things literally, I see.

He replied, "No, a caution means that we are going to keep a record of what you did, that you hit a policeman but it was an accident and that you didn't mean to hurt the policeman."
I said, "But it wasn't an accident."

I'd respond that way too, except that I wouldn't have hit the policeman in the first place. I was taught to be nonviolent.

His father says "Christopher, please", and the policeman "closed his mouth and breathed out loudly through his nose". I wonder what that does to the mice. I also wonder why it isn't called sighing. Then the policeman tells him that if he gets in trouble again they'll take out his record and "take things much more seriously" because of the caution. He asks Christopher if he understands, and he says he does. Then Christopher and his father are released, and Christopher picks up a plastic bag with his pocket stuff in it, which he lists again in case we forgot. They go to his father's car and drive home. So much for the escape plan. It wouldn't have worked anyway, since it was spelled out.

I'm not sure what to say about this chapter. It's more of the same, just as I predicted. It's barely even from Christopher's point of view -- nothing's going on in his head at all. It's just events and dialogue. It could be worse, though. He could be going on and on about Edward's perfect face.

< Chapter 10 | Chapter 12 >

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This page was last modified on 30/06/2016 (dmy).