"The housebreaker had a rattish charm. He’d been a bad student, I thought. I still had the teacher’s eye: scan the room and see who’s going to be trouble. I opened the door to the basement stairs, pulled the dusty beaded chain that lit the bulb, and there he was, just looking at me."
"The older woman, her piano instructor, had strange habits which grew in number and deepened during their time together, small quirks of the hand or eyes, and something she did with her silvering hair; she tore at it, chewed it..."