Trafika Europe 2 - Polish Nocturne
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153

like Mom and Boss. Maybe Petri had left the phone on the

counter because it didn’t contain any secrets anyway.

Almost by accident I opened the picture gallery. The first

shot showed a snow-covered mountain scene. The next was

considerably darker. It showed a gravestone. A swan flying

away, and the words,

Paula Johanna Salo, 1985–2012.

Santa Claus must indeed have magic powers.

4.

Although I didn’t have to, I went in to work on Saturday

too. The temperature had dropped to minus 14° Fahrenheit

during the night, and pale stars still strove to be seen on the

horizon when I awoke at six. Petri had not given his last

name, but I’d get that from the Stockmann employee

directory. I had two guesses: Virtanen or Salo. The night

before I had pleaded exhaustion and when I left I had given

a false Facebook address with the name Kanerva

Hakkarainen.

I pulled on a sweat suit and walked to Stockmann. The sun

had not shown itself for weeks, but now it rose over the

Vanhankaupunginselkä Bay to the east, red as a Christmas

tree ornament. The world was silver white, dogs lifted their

paws quickly in the snow and tried to fluff out their fur

against the biting cold. I tightened my parka hood, pulled