Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Back in the Chimes Street Apartment

Denise is propped up in bed, young Caloub is gone somewhere. Denise is writing in her journal, the Baron de Charlus gives her a visit.

“Some coffee?”

“No thanks.”

“It’s time you got down to work,” the Baron says.

“If it isn’t already too late,” Denise says.

“When I woke up this morning, I knew I was free of Caloub. Not even his face is fading from my mind. His pale complexion, his troublesome manhood. His high cheekbones…”

“Really my dear,” the Baron says. “So when are you going to marry him?”

“Probably any day now,” Denise says with a shrug.

“Maybe you love him more than you think?”

“Perhaps,” Denise agrees. Caloub is all Denise can think about.

“He’ll probably cheat on you too, you know.”

“He’s going to Egypt with Forcheville and the Verdurins.”

“Are you paying for his trip?”

“Yes. And to think I’ll probably waste years of my life… that I’ll probably want to simply die… that he’ll be the lost love of my life… this troublesome youth I don’t even like. Who isn’t even really my type.”

“Life,” the Baron says, “is like an artist’s studio, full of half-finished sketches. We sacrifice everything to fantasies, that vanish one after another. We betray our ambitions, our dreams…”

“Our friends, as well?”

“Friendship isn’t that much, Denise. But, my dear, those who scorn it can still be the best of friends.”

They both smirk, then smile knowingly at each other.

“I love life. I loved the arts. Now I treasure all those old feelings. They’re like a collection. I open up my own heart as if it were a display cabinet. One by one I look over all my loves… loves that others never had. I tell myself it’ll be sad to leave all of that behind.”

“Try to live in the moment, my dear,” says Charlus.

They hear a loud clunking noise coming up the stairs.

“Oh, there’s Caloub…” Denise says.

Charlus smiles, standing up to leave. Inadvertently, he steps on a tube of K-Y beside the bed. It slowly squeezes out in an obscene thick oozing gob of jizz-like goop, just as Caloub slithers thru the door.

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