How miserably hypocritical, you might say, but no sooner am I offered a chance to flee Hell than I yearn to stay. Few families hold their relations as closely as do prisons. Few marriages sustain the high level of passion that exists between criminals and those who seek to bring them to justice. It’s no wonder the Zodiac Killer flirted so relentlessly with the police. Or that Jack the Ripper courted and baited detectives with his – or her – coy letters. We all wish to be pursued. We all long to be desired.

The cook says, ‘As a young lass, I thought nothing as important as the love of a brave and ‘andsome man; now I’m an old crone, I know full well that it is, but only when he’s moneyed enough to keep you. The young may think they can live on sweet embraces but they won’t fill your belly – or not as you may be intending at any rate!

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