times, and just as often dismisses the idea a second later. Of course
I must do no such thing! That way I might as well forget my
appointment here. I must put her out of my head. She has no need
of me, and anyway, who says she is waiting for me? Very probably
she is married and I might as well forget all my crazy notions.
Pacing up and down the room, he returns each time to the
window where dawn is slowly lightening the sky. At one point he
slides behind his worktable and selects a fresh sheet of paper, but
his thoughts are too much in chaos to write two consecutive notes.
He goes back to bed and tries to rest again instead. I have to forget
her, stop thinking about her. It was all so long ago, after all, so very
Breathing deeply and clearing his mind, he stares for some
time up at the great timbers bearing the ceiling. I have to see her! The
decision overwhelms him. Leaping from bed, he pulls on some
clothes while outside the ﬁrst thrushes serenade a new day.
It will be hours before the market gets going, and even
then it is far from certain he will ﬁnd her there.
Three days! Three days have gone by without Antonio seeing her
again. Every morning he has stood at the lookout post, beside the
well, on the corner of the arcade, and wandered between the market
stalls. It seems she might be deliberately avoiding him and he
begins to ask himself if this has indeed been nothing more than a
prolonged dream. Just as he is about to return once more
disappointed to the cool refuge of the court, he recognises the
familiar ﬁgure. He goes straight up to her, but deep in his heart he
is afraid, terriﬁed that she will evaporate into mist again and he
will awaken in his bed.
But this time it is no dream, and the warmth of her skin
when he takes her arm is real, and as she turns to look at him her
image does not shatter into a thousand tiny pieces. But she appears
taken aback; she has obviously not expected to meet him like this.
He speaks hastily, ‘I have to speak to you.’ She frowns and
then seems to recover herself.
197-248 Chapter 5.indd 212 22-11-2007 14:11:16