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By John Crowley

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Why yes," Cloud said, again seeming newly struck with the idea. " "They must be dressed by now," Mrs. Drinkwater said. " An Imaginary Bedroom The screen door was old and large, its wood pierced and turned a bit to summery effect, and the screen potbellied below from years of children's thoughtless egress; when Smoky pulled its porcelain handle, the rusty spring groaned. He stepped across the sill. He was inside. The vestibule, tall and polished, smelled of cool trapped night air and last winter's fires, lavender sachets in brass-handled linen closets, what else?

A Sea Island As a man well might who had grown up anonymous, Smoky had always thought that women choose or do not choose men by criteria he knew nothing of, by caprice, like monarchs, by taste, like critics; he had always assumed that a woman's choice of him or of another was foregone, ineluctable and instant. So he waited on them, like a courtier, waited to he noticed. Turns out, he thought, standing late that night on the Mouse stoop, turns out not so; they—she anyway—is flushed with the same heats and doubts, is like me shy and overcome by desire, and her heart raced like mine when the embrace was at hand, I know it did.

Make-believe. When he was a kid, when he and others found some buried thing—neck of a brown bottle, tarnished spoon, a stone even that bore half an ancient spike-hole—they could convince themselves it was of great age. It had been there when George Washington was alive. Earlier. It was venerable, and immensely valuable. They convinced themselves of this by a collective act of will, which at the same time they concealed from each other: like make-believe, but different. " she said. "It was all meant to be.

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Little, Big (Fantasy Masterworks 05) by John Crowley


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