The Cold Time

Roman triumphal arch, Orange, Provence

Aymar looked at the folds of the linen coif, and thought how they would drape if Richilde were to lie on her back.  He suddenly found himself thinking of how Azalais had looked lying beside him that morning in the soft dawn light. Her hair had been pulling from its braids and curled lightly on neck and brow, her knees had been bent, her whole body inclining towards his, one hand furled at her throat, the other lying loosely against his arm.  He found colour rising in his cheeks as he glanced furtively at Richilde, and wondered if he dared carve her memorial like that, if he even dared to think of his lady lying in such glowing abandon. He cleared his throat, and bent his head further, making a first tremulous mark on the parchment before him, deciding that he would do no drawing from life save of Richilde’s face.  Let the monument be stiff and proper, he could say all he wished about how he saw Richilde from the way he replicated the line of her eyebrow.

Copyright Cherry Potts 2010


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