Somewhere far away a door cracks open. A key turns in the lock. A hand slips under the cover. My breath quickens. My body arches forward. My mouth is aroused by an inquisitive tongue. Eyes tight shut I give way to the dream.
“Sorry to interrupt this divine intermezzo, Irene. I’ve come to tell you Leopold will be waiting for you at the Rotary. By some miracle Mary was chatting in the street and let the entrance door open. I slipped in without being noticed. Now I’ll reverse the procedure and ring at your door.”
Egon releases me from his embrace, kisses my hand and disappears in the bathroom. He comes back as neat as a new pin, puts on his over-coat and melts away as cunningly as he has emerged.
As if by magic he made time move on and I have to hurry not to be late. My cheeks are peaches and cream. My eyes are gleaming bright. I am a girl born to seduce. My grandmother’s worry I could lose Leo to a more attractive rival is unnecessary. When Mary rushes in bringing me the exciting news of Herr von Zwettler’s visit, she catches me in front of the mirror.
“Oh Liebchen, you’re as pretty as a picture in that new party dress! What a shame you can’t be tidier with your expensive things! Look at that pretty robe of yours lying under the bed like trampled by wild horses!” To my relief she throws it into the dirty-linen-basket without giving it a closer look.