Someone I Loved
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More information to be announced soon on this forthcoming title from Penguin USA.
knew how to swear in every language. She couldn’t say exactly where she lived. She owned nothing, just memories. And friends. She loved her work, translating thoughts and juggling with words. She was in Hong Kong at the moment because all she had to do to find work was hold out her hand. She loved that city where the skyscrapers spring up overnight and where you can eat in a cheap joint a few steps down the road. She loved the energy of the place. She had spent a few years in France when she was
long neck, her dark eyes, and her little brown dress in that Austrian dining room, shrugging her shoulders.” “After all, it was intentional, all of that beauty and grace. She knew very well what she was doing that evening: she was making herself unforgettable. Perhaps I’m mistaken, but I don’t think so . . . It was her swan song, her farewell, her white handkerchief waving at the window. She was so perceptive, she must have known it . . . Even her skin 144 A n n a G av a l d a was softer. Was
place. There was a magnificent smile on her face. ‘Thank you, you said the words that I was expecting. I came all this way to hear you say those two words. I took a bit of risk.’ I stuttered; I wanted to get up, but the table leg was . . . She made a gesture: ‘Don’t move.’ Her eyes shone. ‘I got what I wanted. I couldn’t bring myself to leave you. I can’t spend my life waiting for you, but I . . . Nothing. I needed to hear those two words. I needed to Someone I Loved 147 see your cowardice.
G av a l d a had been tortured, who had watched their loved ones die and their houses burn to the ground. They came home and ran for the bus, talked about the weather, and married their daughters off. It’s incredible, but that’s the way it is. Life is stronger than anything. And who are we to be so self-important? We bustle about, talk in loud voices, and for what? And then what happens, afterward? “What happened to little Sylvie, for whom Paul died in the next room? What happened to her? “The
what about me? I thought. What can I chase away with a stick? • • • “Chloé?” “Yes.” “I want to tell you . . . I hope . . . Or rather, I’d like . . . Yes, that’s it, I’d like . . . I’d like you to feel you’re still welcome at the house because . . . I know how much you love it. You’ve done so many things here. In the bedrooms, the garden . . . Until you came, there was no garden, did you know that? Promise me that you’ll come back. With or without the girls . . .” I turned toward him. “No,