Upon returning to their apartment, she screams in horror and makes a great commotion at finding her husband’s body lying on the floor. She then calls the police, and within the hour they are investigating. Agreeing that he was killed by a heavy, blunt object, they begin a search for the murder weapon and are quite puzzled at being unable to find it. After a few hours, Mary comments that she had forgotten to turn the oven off in all the confusion and suggests that the officers might wish to eat the now-cooked leg of lamb. Without a second thought they all set to eating and discussing the case, never realizing that the meat they are avidly devouring is in fact the missing murder weapon. Meanwhile, Mary sits in the living room and giggles softly to herself in amusement at the way in which she has tricked the police.
Dahl’s technique reaches a hilarious crescendo in the dinner scene, in which the police officers eat the leg of lamb and discuss the possibility of finding the blunt instrument used to kill Patrick. The officers’ complacence, their belief that as soon as they finish eating they will easily be able to track down the murder weapon, and their actual behavior as unwitting accessories to their friend’s murder reveal the polarities on which the story is built. On the surface, the story depicts a world that is orderly, rational, and easily understood, but beneath this world are strange forces that can invest even the most innocent and everyday scenes with grotesque meaning.