"Certainly, m'lord," said Sir Matthew. Alex handed a pile of photographs to the usher, who gave two to the judge before distributing the remainder to the jury, to Pearson and finally to the witness.



Craig stared at the photos in disbelief. They were not the ones Gerald Payne had taken when Cartwright had been out on his evening run. If he had not admitted to knowing about the scar the defense would have crumbled, and the jury would have been none the wiser. He realized that Sir Matthew had landed a blow, but he was still on his feet, and would not fall for a sucker punch a second time.



"My lord," said Sir Matthew, "you will see the scar that the witness referred to is on Mr. Cartwright's left thigh, just above the knee. It has faded with the passing of time, but still remains clear to the naked eye." He turned his attention back to the witness. "You will recall, Mr. Craig, that Chief Inspector Fuller stated under oath that this was the evidence on which he relied before taking the decision to arrest my client." Craig made no attempt to contradict him. Sir Matthew didn't press him, as he felt the point had been well established. He paused, to allow the jury more time to study the photographs, as he needed the scar to be indelibly fixed in their minds before he asked a question that he was confident Craig could not have anticipated.



"When did you first phone Chief Inspector Fuller?"



Once again there was a silence, as Craig, like everyone else in the court other than Alex, tried to work out the significance of the question.



"I'm not sure I understand," he replied eventually.



"Then allow me to refresh your memory, Mr. Craig. You phoned Chief Inspector Fuller on October twenty-third last year, the day before you met him at an undisclosed location to hand over the photographs showing Danny Cartwright's scar. But when was the first occasion you came into contact with him?"



Craig tried to think of some way he could avoid answering Sir Matthew's question. He looked toward the judge, hoping for guidance. He received none.



"He was the policeman who turned up at the Dunlop Arms when I called 999 after I had witnessed Danny Cartwright stabbing his friend to death," he eventually managed.



"His friend," said Sir Matthew quickly, getting it on the record before the judge could intervene. Alex smiled at his father's ingenuity.



Mr. Justice Hackett frowned. He knew he could no longer prevent Sir Matthew pursuing the question of the original trial now that Craig himself had unwittingly brought the subject into play. "His friend," repeated Sir Matthew looking at the jury. He expected Arnold Pearson to leap up and cut him short, but there was no movement from the other end of counsel's bench.



"That's how Bernard Wilson was described in the court transcript," said Craig with confidence.



"Indeed he was," said Sir Matthew, "and I shall be referring to that transcript later. But for now I would like to return to Chief Inspector Fuller. On the first occasion you met him, following the death of Bernard Wilson, you made a statement."



"Yes, I did."



"In fact, Mr. Craig, you ended up making three statements: the first, thirty-seven minutes after the stabbing had taken place; the second, which you wrote later that night because you couldn't sleep; and a third seven months later, when you appeared in the witness box at Danny Cartwright's trial. I am in possession of all three of those statements, and I must admit, Mr. Craig, that they are admirably consistent." Craig didn't comment as he waited for the sting in the tail. "However, what I am puzzled by is the scar on Danny Cartwright's left leg, because you said in your first statement"-Alex handed his father a single sheet of paper, from which he read-"I saw Cartwright pick up the knife from the bar and follow the woman and the other man out into the alley. A few moments later I heard a scream. That was when I ran out into the alley and saw Cartwright stabbing Wilson in the chest again and again. I then returned to the bar and immediately phoned the police." Sir Matthew looked up. "Do you wish to make any amendments to that statement?"



"No," said Craig firmly, "that is exactly what happened."



"Well, not quite exactly," said Mr. Redmayne, "because police records show that you made your call at eleven twenty-three, so one is bound to ask what you were doing between-"



"Sir Matthew," interrupted the judge, surprised that Pearson hadn't leaped to his feet to intervene, but remained resolutely seated in his place, arms folded. "Are you able to show that this line of questioning is relevant, remembering that the only offense left on the charge sheet concerns your client escaping from custody?"



Sir Matthew waited long enough for the jury to become curious about why he had not been allowed to finish his previous question before he responded. "No, I am not, m'lord. However, I do wish to pursue a line of questioning that is relevant to this case, namely the scar on the defendant's left leg." He once again made eye contact with Craig. "Can I confirm, Mr. Craig, that you did not witness Danny Cartwright being stabbed in the leg, which left him with the scar shown so clearly in the photographs, which you handed over to the chief inspector and was the evidence he relied upon to arrest my client?"



Alex held his breath. It was some time before Craig eventually said, "No, I did not."



"So please indulge me for a moment, Mr. Craig, and allow me to put forward three scenarios for your consideration. You can then tell the jury, from your vast experience of the criminal mind, which of them you consider to be the most likely."



"If you feel a parlor game will in any way assist the jury, Sir Matthew," sighed Craig, "please be my guest."



"I think you will find that it's a parlous game that will assist the jury," said Sir Matthew. The two men stared at each other for some time before Sir Matthew added, "Allow me to suggest the first scenario. Danny Cartwright grabs the knife from the bar just as you suggested, follows his fiancee into the alley, stabs himself in the leg, pulls out the knife, and then stabs his best friend to death."



Laughter broke out in the court. Craig waited for it to die down before he responded.



"That's a farcical suggestion, Sir Matthew, and you know it."



"I'm glad that we have at last found something on which we can agree, Mr. Craig. Let me move on to my second scenario. It was in fact Bernie Wilson who grabbed the knife from the bar, he and Cartwright go out into the alley, he stabs Cartwright in the leg, pulls out the knife and then stabs himself to death."



This time even the jury joined in the laughter.



"That's even more farcical," said Craig. "I'm not quite sure what you imagine this charade is proving."



"This charade is proving," said Sir Matthew, "that the man who stabbed Danny Cartwright in the leg was the same man who stabbed Bernie Wilson in the chest, because only one knife was involved-the one picked up from the bar. So I agree with you, Mr. Craig, my first two scenarios are farcical, but before I put the third one to you, allow me to ask you one final question." Every eye in the courtroom was now on Sir Matthew. "If you did not witness Cartwright being stabbed in the leg, how could you possibly have known about the scar?" Everyone's gaze was transferred to Craig. He was no longer calm. His hands felt clammy as they gripped the side of the witness box.