- Humming, he climbed the stairs. He let himself into the shop and opened the display case that held the old fiddle.
It was another crime. Nevertheless, he carried it downstairs to his bench. He did not want to think too much, so he worked quickly: pulling the old sound post out and adding a new one, returning the violin to the store’s display case. Downstairs, the old bit of dowel was rough against his fingers. Cedar, maybe from the same post in the longhouse on the Fraser, light and ancient and marked by the original luthier’s rough knife. Fragrant when he warmed it with his hands, but no potent aromatics, just a deep and redolent dust.
Then he fitted it, and it hid so perfectly in his violin, maybe no one would know the terrible thing he had done, the secret history he had stolen like all the other secret histories that constituted his violin. He knew, though, all the courses that materials took, from Nigeria, from the islands, from demolished bungalows in east Van, from vacant lot rabbits, and from Stanley Park.