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.DOMINGO VILLARWater-blue EyesTranslated from the Spanish by Martin SchifinoTo Beatriz, my love, whose eyes bring me closer to the sea.ContentsTitle PageDedicationDarkTuningAmbiguityArtistFindThe BarCoweringPoisonSolventObstinacySweatingThe cortègeDipOut of TuneBluntnessLegendSenseExcuseAbsenceEncouragementRefugeImpressionTraceRelationshipRainTwistGapMotiveIn the ClearAbout the AuthorCopyrightDarkThe line of lights on the coast, the glimmer of the city, the white spray where the waves broke… It made no difference that it was dark and the rain was lashing against the windows.Whoever was visiting his flat for the first time invariably mentioned the view, as if compelled.Luis Reigosa picked a CD from the shelf, put it on the hi-fi and poured the drinks into wide glasses, the rims of which he’d previously rubbed with lemon peel.He couldn’t have known they’d be the last he’d ever pour.They listened to the roar of the wind as they went into the bedroom with their arms around each other.From the living room, Billie Holliday reached out to them with ‘The man I love’:Some day he’ll come alongThe man I loveAnd he’ll be big and strongThe man I loveTuning‘City police three, Leo nil.’Leo Caldas put down his uncomfortable headphones, lit up a cigarette and looked out of the window.Some children were chasing pigeons in the garden, under the attentive gazes both of their mothers, who were chatting in a circle, and of the birds waiting for them to get close before taking flight.He put his headphones back on when a call came in – a woman wanting to lodge a complaint against the pub beneath her house.The noise, she said, sometimes kept her up until dawn.She complained about the shouting, the music, the beeps of the horns, the parallel parking, the drunken singing, the brawls, the walls sprayed with urine, and the broken glass strewn on the pavement – which constituted a hazard for her child.Caldas let her get it off her chest, knowing he’d be unable to offer anything but comforting words.That kind of thing was not within the competence of his department, but of the city police.‘I’ll send a memo to the city police asking them to gauge the decibels and to make sure closing times are being observed,’ he said, writing the address of the pub in his notebook.He wrote underneath: ‘City police four, Leo nil.’The theme tune of the show played out until Rebeca placed another sign scribbled with black letters against the glass.Leo Caldas took a quick drag on his cigarette and balanced it on the edge of the ashtray.‘Good afternoon, Angel,’ Santiago Losada, the presenter, greeted the listener who was waiting on the other end of the line.‘Let us welcome pain if it is cause for repentance,’ the man said, enunciating each word clearly.‘Sorry?’ the presenter replied, as surprised as Caldas at the strange statement.‘Let us welcome pain if it is cause for repentance,’ the man repeated, in the same slow voice as before.‘Excuse me, Angel.You’re live on Patrol on the Air,’ Losada reminded him.‘Do you have any questions for Inspector Caldas?’The man hung up, leaving the presenter without a reply and cursing under his breath.‘People love to hear themselves on the radio,’ apologised Losada, as the ads came on.Leo Caldas smiled and thought that Losada deserved to be cut down to size every now and again.‘Some more than others,’ he muttered.On another call, an elderly man living on the outskirts of the city complained that, at a set of traffic lights near his house, the green light didn’t stay on long enough for him to walk across the road.Leo took down the location of the traffic lights in his notebook.He would let the city police know.‘Five-nil, without counting the crazy guy’s call.’The inspector’s mobile phone was on silent, but on the table its screen lit up, warning him that he had some missed calls.He saw there were three, all from his subordinate Estévez, and decided not to respond to them.He was tired and didn’t want to drag out the day more than strictly necessary.They’d meet later at the police station, or, with a little luck, the following morning.He took a long drag to finish his cigarette, stubbed it out into an ashtray and popped his headphones back on to listen to Eva, who told him that certain supernatural apparitions, indeed abominable spectres, unfailingly visited her house every night.Leo wondered whether Losada should contemplate creating a segment called Madness on the Air to accommodate all the visionaries who phoned in so often.When the presenter underlined the name and number of the woman in his diary, he thought Losada just might.A few calls later, programme number 108 of Patrol on the Air came to an end.Leo Caldas read the final score in his black-covered notebook: ‘City police nine, crazies two, Leo nil.’AmbiguityThe inspector walked into the police station and proceeded down the aisle between two rows of desks.He had often felt, striding between the lined-up computers, that he was in a newsroom rather than in a police station.Estévez stood up when he saw him appear, and lugged his six-foot-five bulk right behind him.Caldas opened the frosted-glass door of his office and took a look at the papers stacked on his table.He prided himself on being able to locate anything among the apparent chaos of jottings and documents, though he knew this to be only a half-truth.He slumped into his black leather chair, exhausted after a long day’s work, and sighed; he barely knew where to begin [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]