When Mildred went to bed her stomach hurt from laughter, her heart ached from happiness. Then she remembered that while Veda had kissed her, that first moment when she had entered the house, she still hadn’t kissed Veda. She tiptoed into the room she had hoped Veda would occupy, knelt beside the bed as she had knelt so many times in Glendale, took the lovely creature in her arms and kissed her, hard, on the mouth.

I went to the animals’ fair, The birds and the beasts were there, The old baboon By the light of the moon Was combing his auburn hair; The monkey he got drunk, And fell on the elephant’s trunk, The elephant sneezed     And fell on his knees- And what became of the monkety-monk?

Up close, she could see the sharp, cold, look that she constantly shot at Mr. Treviso, particularly when there was a break, and she was waiting to come in. It shattered illusion for Mildred. She preferred to remain at a distance, to enjoy this child as she seemed, rather than as she was.

Veda began it, but when she finished it, or whether she finished it, Mildred never quite knew. Little quivers went through her and they kept going through her the rest of the night, during the supper party, when Veda sat with the white scarf wound around her throat, during the brief half hour, while she undressed Veda, and put the costume away; in the dark, while she lay there alone, trying to sleep, not wanting to sleep.

This was the climax of Mildred’s life.