The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
How we cite our quotes:
And then I didn't know what to say because I had Father's cashpoint card in my pocket and it was illegal to steal things, but he was a policeman so I had to tell the truth, so I said, "I have a cashpoint card," and I took it out of my pocket and I showed it to him. And this was a white lie. (191.47)
What does he mean that he has to tell the truth because he's a policeman? We thought he always told the truth! Since when is he prepared to lie otherwise? And, wait, why does he have to tell the truth to policemen – because he got a caution for hitting a policeman and is worried about getting in trouble? Or is there something else about the policeman that prevents him from lying? It certainly can't be that, because he ends up lying to him anyway. Sure, he passes it off as "a white lie," but, hey, that still has "lie" in the title, doesn't it?