Disorder wasn’t the word for it. When I arrived at the Carstairs residence for a long anticipated dinner, my hostess was distraught. She was upstairs, and her husband, James Carstairs, greeted me, an alarmed expression on his face.
“It’s her favorite canary,” he said. “Or rather, it was her favorite canary, a real chirpy one. Rufus was his name. Don’t ask me why.”
He led me into the music room, which looked out onto the garden. A metal canary cage had been knocked off its table and lay on its side on the floor. The little door was opened, the latch sprung. There was no trace of the canary.