Wednesday, November 12, 2014


"Okay, I'll have water," Ante commented, nodding in Katinka's direction to signal that Bjorn was right. Katinka on her side got the message, and returned moments later from the kitchen with a pitcher of water and two glasses which she put on the table.

"Will that be all?" Katinka asked, looking first at Ante and then at Bjorn. "How about another beer for you?"
"No thank you," Bjorn replied. "I'm fine. I'll go over to water, just like my friend here."

Then, just as Katinka was about to leave the men alone again, Ante asked her if she happened to know Einar.

"Einar, the carpenter?" Katinka asked.
"Yeah, well, the carpenter apprentice."
"Sure. He's half the reason I'm here."
"Really?" Ante asked delighted. "You're like good friends, the two of you?"
"No, not really. But... well... he sort of discovered this place for us."
"Einar discovered Lundby?"
"Kind of."

Ante looked blankly at Katinka, expecting some explanation.

"He was the first one to run away," Katinka explained.
"Well, once we saw that no one went after him, we thought that we could do the same. He kept updating his Facebook page with stuff he was doing, and it looked really cool."
"Like what."
"Like working for those Italians, and living on his own, and stuff like that."
"So you're like Facebook friends, are you?"
"Yeah, that too. But we were at the same... well... jail, you know."
"Correctional facility. Isn't that the right word?"
"Yeah... But you know, it's a jail. That's what it is."
"So you've killed someone too?" Ante asked cheekily.
"No, no. I kept running away from my foster parents, and... well... they ended up giving up on me and sent me up here where there wasn't anywhere I could run away to."
"Until this whole Lundby thing," Ante suggested.
"So, by now that jail must be empty, or what?" Ante asked, fascinated by Katinka's story.
"Well, they shut it down. That's the last thing I heard."
"Yeah. They moved everyone to Alta. But even that is not far enough away from Lundby."
"Is that so?"
"Yeah. People keep finding their way to this place. It's more difficult, but it still happens."

Bjorn was as fascinated as Ante, and could not help being reminded of the TV program about the Guardian Angels.

"So, you're not a big fan of the child protection services, are you?" Bjorn asked.
"No, not at all."
"But some kids really need help, right?"
"Sure! I was abandoned as a kid. So yeah..."
"And yet you're against them. That doesn't make any sense, does it?"
"Well... I just didn't like my foster parents. That's all."

Bjorn felt that they had been holding on to Katinka quite enough, and stopped asking questions. But Ante was evidently not completely satisfied.

"You heard about that murder in Asker?" he asked quite shamelessly. "At that institution."
"Yes. What about it?"
"Nah, I was just wondering what you make of it."
"Well, she was mad, wasn't she?"
"And what about Einar? Is he mad too?"
"Oh... I see what you mean. No, he's not mad. Just a little aggressive at times."
"A little?"
"It was an accident. I'm quite sure of it."
"That's what he keeps saying."
"You're not going to arrest him, are you?"
"No, no. But we had the pleasure of meeting him. He seems like a nice guy."
"And he is."
"So you're one of those camping out down at the new apartment building, together with Einar?" Ante asked, paying no attention to Katinka's growing impatience with his inquiry.
"No. I'm not. I live here. But it's really none of your business, is it?"
"No. I'm sorry," Ante replied, finally getting the message that his inquiry was less than pleasant for the young girl. But unable to restrain his curiosity he pushed on anyway. "So you live here alone?" he asked.
"No. I live here with Roger."
"The chef?"
"He's not your boyfriend is he?" Ante asked, concerned.
"Well... Actually he is," Kartinka answered, straightening up a notch to look more mature.
"Oh my!" Ante exclaimed. "But he could be your father. How old are you?"

Katinka hesitated a moment.

"I'm seventeen," she said, convincing neither Bjorn nor Ante. Then she turned and headed straight for the kitchen, clearly upset by Ante's intrusive questioning.

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