I almost smiled. There was something sweet about the whole situation, if she was telling the truth. Mrs. Babić’s free newspapers, which were intended for the eyes of a war criminal, might vicariously make Mrs. Babić a war profiteer. This struck me as funny, and I had to stifle a smile. It was even funnier to think of General Borojević hiding under an assumed name borrowed from his favourite singer, Toma Zdravković. It made some poetic sense that he might identify with Toma’s hit song, ‘I Touched the Bottom of Life,’ but I couldn’t wrap my head around why anyone in their right mind, and in present- day Brčko (at least the Brčko I’d read about in my research), would want to be called by the Croatian name, Tomislav. Maybe Nedelko figured this would make him less suspicious, since who would imagine hunting for a guy called Tomislav for having burned down a Croatian village?
‘Do you happen to know where Mr. Zdravković can be found now?’ ‘Why do you want to know?’
Mrs. Babić put on her suspicious face again, and I remembered that my cover story had nothing to do with Mr. Zdravković, but was about returning a wallet.
‘No reason, I just... I knew him... by sight... ’
Her look told me that I was back in her book as a druggy begonia burglar. She examined me with a scrutiny and