Porpentine's Murder

"Back came the Englishman, with his gangrenous face. A fat friend followed him out of the hotel.
'Bide time,' the fare called mirthfully.
'Ha, ho. I'm taking Victoria to the opera tomorrow night.'
Back in the cab: "There is a chemist's shop near the Crédit Lyonais.' Weary Gebrail gathered the reins." (p.85)
"The corridor runs by the curtained entrances to four boxes, located to audience right at the top level of the summer theatre in the Ezbekiyeh Garden. A man wearing blue spectacles hurries into the second box from the stage end of the corridor. The red curtains, heavy velvet, swing to and fro, unsynchronized, after his passage. The oscillation soon damps out because of the weight. They hang still. Ten minutes pass.
Two men turn the corner by the allegorical statue of Tragedy. Their feet crush unicorns and peacocks that repeat diamond-fashion the entire length of the carpet. The face of one is hardly to be distinguished beneath masses of white tissue which have obscured the features and changed slightly the outlines of the face. The other is fat. They enter the box next to the one the man with the blue spectacles is in. Light from outside, late summer light now falls through a single window, turning the statue and the figured carpet to a monochrome orange. Shadows become more opaque. The air between seems to thicken with an indeterminate color, though it is probably orange. Then a girl in a flowered dress comes down the hall and enters the box occupied by the two men. Minutes later she emerges, tears in her eyes and on her face. The fat man follows. They pass out of the field of vision.
The silence is total. So there's no warning when the red-and-white-faced man comes through his curtains holding a drawn pistol. The pistol smokes. He enters the next box. Soon he and the man with the blue spectacles, struggling, pitch through the curtains and fall to the carpet. Their lower halves are still hidden by the curtains. The man with the white-blotched face removes the blue spectacles; snaps them in two and drops them to the floor. The other shuts his eyes tightly, tries to turn his head away from the light.
Another has been standing at the end of the corridor. From this vantage he appears only as a shadow; the window is behind him. The man who removed the spectacles now crouches, forcing the prostrate one's head toward the light. The man at the end of the corridor makes a small gesture with his right hand. The crouching man looks that way and half rises. A flame appears in the area of the other's right hand; another flame; another. The flames are colored a brighter orange than the sun.
Vision must be the last to go. There must also be a nearly imperceptible line between an eye that reflects and an eye that receives. The half-crouched body collapses. The face and its masses of white skin loom ever closer. At rest the body is assumed exactly into the space of this vantage." (pp.93-94)
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