The dog pricked up his ears, which was surprising because so far he hadn’t seemed all that bright. Vanya and I turned to look. At the edge of the clearing a man in a white woollen suit was just visible against the snow, returning our stares and clasping a rifle. For half a minute or so nobody moved or spoke. Vanya’s gun was out of reach, leaning against a tree stump. All around us the forest gaped. Apart from the crackle of twigs we were burning to ward off frostbite, silence reigned – and all waited to see if there would be blood.