A vast glazed mahogany cabinet filled the wall behind Karl

Krinsky’s desk. Its lower shelves were given over to books,

the majority of them relating to the Etruscans. A large

section was devoted to anthropological texts. These were in a

variety of languages — Italian, French, English and Dutch — and were

decades old. The upper shelves of the cabinet were home

to all manner of strange objects, mostly of an archaeological

nature: clay figurines, bronze implements, bits of pottery, fragments of

stone sculpture and the like. On the very top shelf

were two skulls — pallid pools of gloom behind the glass.

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Paraphrases from the novel The Savage Garden by Mark Mills.

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