In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende

In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende

Author:Isabel Allende
Language: eng
Format: epub, mobi
Publisher: Atria Books
Published: 2017-11-02T04:00:00+00:00

Lucia, Richard, Evelyn

Upstate New York

Stuck in their motel room smelling of creosote and Chinese food, Lucia, Richard, and Evelyn could have found the final hours of Sunday endless, but in fact they flew by as they told each other about their lives. The first to succumb to sleep were Evelyn and the Chihuahua. The young Guatemalan girl took up a tiny amount of space in the bed she had to share with Lucia, but Marcelo sprawled over all the rest, stretched out with his legs stiff in front of him.

“I wonder how the cats are,” Lucia said to Richard around ten, when they too finally began to yawn.

“They’re fine. I called my neighbor from the Chinese restaurant. I don’t want to use my cell phone because they can trace the call.”

“Who’s going to be interested in what you say, Richard! Besides, you can’t tap cell phones.”

“We’ve already discussed that, Lucia. If they find the automobile—”

“There are billions of calls crossing in space,” she interrupted him. “And thousands of vehicles disappear every day. People abandon them, they get stolen, they’re dismantled for spare parts or are turned into scrap, they’re smuggled to Colombia—”

“And they’re also used to dump dead bodies at the bottom of a lake.”

“Is your conscience bothering you?”

“Yes, but it’s too late for me to change my mind. I’m going to take a shower,” announced Richard, heading for the bathroom.

Lucia looks really good with her crazy hair and those snow boots, he thought as the boiling water scalded his back, the perfect remedy for the day’s fatigue and the flea bites. They might argue over details, but they got on well; he liked her combination of sharpness and affection, the way in which she flung herself fearlessly into life, that expression of hers somewhere between amused and mischievous, her lopsided smile. In comparison he was a zombie stumbling into old age, but she brought him back to life. He told himself it would be good for them to grow old together, hand in hand. His heart began to pound when he imagined what Lucia’s weird hair would look like on his pillow, her boots beside his bed and her face so close to his that he could lose himself in her Turkish princess’s eyes. “Forgive me, Anita,” he murmured. He had been alone a long time and had forgotten that rough tenderness, that empty feeling in the pit of the stomach, the rushing blood and sudden surges of desire. Can this be love? he thought. If it is, I wouldn’t know what to do. I’m caught. He chalked it up to his fatigue; doubtless his mind would clear in the light of day. They were going to get rid of the car and of Kathryn Brown; they were going to say goodbye to Evelyn Ortega, and after that Lucia would return to being simply the Chilean woman in the basement. But he didn’t want that moment to arrive. He wanted all the clocks to stop so that they would never have to part.


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