The Open Window by Saki, 1914
The magic trick:
Hinging the narrative twist on a seemingly unimportant character
This is a classic short story in the O. Henry tradition. The final sentence twists your entire perception of the text. I especially like the way the plot hinges on the characterization of what would initially seem to be a side character. And that’s quite a trick on Saki’s part.
She broke off with a little shudder. It was a relief to Framton when the aunt bustled into the room with a whirl of apologies for being late in making her appearance.
“I hope Vera has been amusing you?” she said.
“She has been very interesting,” said Framton.
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