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An acceptable level of arrogance

A Kathryn Blake fragment . . .

“You don’t think he’d lie to you?”

She laughed.

“You really don’t have a very high opinion of me, do you? Of course he’d lie to me, and he has – probably more often than I know.”

“What, then? You’re confident that you can read him like a book?”

“Always supposing that the book was written in German. He can shut me out completely, but I know when he’s doing it, and he wasn’t. He can fake it well enough for strangers – ”

“He’s noted for it.”

“ – but I’ve seen him at ease, and I know what his natural reactions look like. He wasn’t faking anything. He was letting me see every reaction, even the ones he’d have rather I’d not seen, because he knew it was the only way to convince me. He was telling the truth, and he wanted me to know it.”

“For old time’s sake?”

Again the question was almost a sneer, but she met him coldly.

“Of course not. Because it would make me more manageable.”

“He must have known that it would also allow you to recover faster, become a real threat to him much sooner.”

“It was a risk he seemed willing to take.”

“A touch arrogant, don’t you think?”

“I told you before, Mr Sands, we’re mirrors, he and I. He’s every bit as arrogant as I am, and for the same reason. He’s good.”

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