John Peace Artist

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datatime: 2022-09-27 09:07:33 Author:GWcBWvML

still, I'd find her tucked in the arm of my chair reading the work of Aristotle or Boethius or a new novel just come

I was aghast at such moments; her mind was unpredictable, unknowable. But then she would sit on my lap and put her fingers in my hair and doze there against my heart, whispering to me softly I should never be as grown up as she until I knew that killing was the more serious thing, not the books, the music. `Always the music . . .' she whispered. `Doll, doll,' I called her. That's what she was. A magic doll. Laughter and infinite intellect and then the round-checked face, the bud mouth. `Let me dress you, let me brush your hair,' I would say to her out of old habit, aware of her smiling and watching me with the thin veil of boredom over her expression. `Do as you like,' she breathed into my ear as I bent down to fasten her pearl buttons. `Only kill with me tonight. You never let me see you kill, Louis'

found death fast in those first years, before she learned to play with them, to lead them to the doll shop or the

cafe where they gave her steaming cups of chocolate or tea to ruddy her pale cheeks, cups she pushed away,

or woman to find her, her eyes more mindless than I had ever seen Lestat's. Like a child numbed with fright she

arms would fix about their necks, her tongue between her teeth, her vision glazed with consuming hunger. They

waiting, waiting, as if feasting silently on their terrible kindness.

arms would fix about their necks, her tongue between her teeth, her vision glazed with consuming hunger. They

Her body the boy said.She was never to grow up.

And then strange things began to happen, for though she said little and was the chubby, round-fingered child

or woman to find her, her eyes more mindless than I had ever seen Lestat's. Like a child numbed with fright she

arms would fix about their necks, her tongue between her teeth, her vision glazed with consuming hunger. They

And all this time I was educating Claudia, whispering in her tiny seashell ear that our eternal life was useless to us if we did not see the beauty around us, the creation of mortals everywhere; I was constantly sounding the depth of her still gaze as she took the books I gave her, whispered the poetry I taught her, and played with a light but confident touch her own strange, coherent songs on the piano. She could fall for hours into the pictures in a book and listen to me read until she sat so still the sight of her jarred me, made me put the book down, and just stare back at her across the lighted room; then she'd move, a doll coming to life, and say in the softest voice that I must read some more.

concentration that made her ghostly as she sat there hour after hour discovering the music the melody, then the

over the Atlantic. Or pecking out the music of Mozart .we'd only heard the night before with an infallible ear and a

An endless train of dressmakers and shoemakers and tailors came to our flat to outfit Claudia in the best of children's fashions, so that she was always a vision, not just of child beauty, with her curling lashes and her glorious yellow hair, but of the taste of finely trimmed bonnets and tiny lace gloves, flaring velvet coats and capes, and sheer white puffed-sleeve gowns with gleaming blue sashes. Lestat played with her as if she were a magnificent doll, and I played with her as if she were a magnificent doll; and it was her pleading that forced me to give up my rusty black for dandy jackets and silk ties and soft gray coats and gloves and black capes. Lestat thought the best color at all times for vampires was black, possibly the only aesthetic principle he steadfastly maintained, but he wasn't opposed to anything which smacked of style and excess. He loved the great figure we cut, the three of us in our box at the new French Opera House or the Theatre d'Orleans, to which we went as often as possible, Lestat having a passion for Shakespeare which surprised me, though he often dozed through the operas and woke just in time to invite some lovely lady to midnight supper, where he would use all his skill to make her love him totally, then dispatch her violently to heaven or hell and come home with her diamond ring to give to Claudia.

would whisper her plea for help to her gentle, admiring patrons, and as they carried her out of the square, her

or woman to find her, her eyes more mindless than I had ever seen Lestat's. Like a child numbed with fright she

arms would fix about their necks, her tongue between her teeth, her vision glazed with consuming hunger. They

waiting, waiting, as if feasting silently on their terrible kindness.

hours, or watch the gleam of the lamplight change the somber colors of a Dutch painting.

She wanted a coffin of her own now, which left me more wounded than I would let her see. I walked out after giving my gentlemanly consent; for how many years had I slept with her as if she were part of me I couldn't know. But then I found her near the Ursuline Convent, an orphan lost in the darkness, and she ran suddenly towards me and clutched at me with a human desperation. `I don't want it if it hurts you,' she confided so softly that a human embracing us both could not have heard her or felt her breath. `I'll stay with you always. But I must see it, don't you understand? A coin for a child.'

waiting, waiting, as if feasting silently on their terrible kindness.

still, I'd find her tucked in the arm of my chair reading the work of Aristotle or Boethius or a new novel just come

An endless train of dressmakers and shoemakers and tailors came to our flat to outfit Claudia in the best of children's fashions, so that she was always a vision, not just of child beauty, with her curling lashes and her glorious yellow hair, but of the taste of finely trimmed bonnets and tiny lace gloves, flaring velvet coats and capes, and sheer white puffed-sleeve gowns with gleaming blue sashes. Lestat played with her as if she were a magnificent doll, and I played with her as if she were a magnificent doll; and it was her pleading that forced me to give up my rusty black for dandy jackets and silk ties and soft gray coats and gloves and black capes. Lestat thought the best color at all times for vampires was black, possibly the only aesthetic principle he steadfastly maintained, but he wasn't opposed to anything which smacked of style and excess. He loved the great figure we cut, the three of us in our box at the new French Opera House or the Theatre d'Orleans, to which we went as often as possible, Lestat having a passion for Shakespeare which surprised me, though he often dozed through the operas and woke just in time to invite some lovely lady to midnight supper, where he would use all his skill to make her love him totally, then dispatch her violently to heaven or hell and come home with her diamond ring to give to Claudia.

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