If you were female instead of male, we would lead you to get you on the right track

One morning Guzmán was still in bed, reading Las Moradas , by Santa Teresa, when the white ventruda entered the room with a large lavender envelope, scented with violet. The letter said:

Dear Alberto: come by my hotel the sooner the better. I have to tell you one thing that will make you very happy. Great, boy, great. A case of vocation; but what a vocation. Do you want to come have lunch with me? Your friend ,

Rosina .

He got up and yelled from the door for hot water to shave. Soon an old nun appeared with the pot of hot water.

“Good morning, Sister Cruz.”

“Good morning God give us.” Have you slept well? What time did we come last night? This youth … You will tell me when you grow old and the moment of death approaches …

“Well, well, Sister Cruz.” Don’t make my day bitter by giving me sad ideas for breakfast.

“What were you reading there?” Any book stained, as if he saw it. ”Sor Cruz came over to peer at the nightstand. A book of Santa Teresa. Oh my GOD! Does a heretic read these things? Except to make fun …

“You have a bad idea of ​​me, Sister Cruz.”

“And a little letter.” Some wretch … Oh my God. Such a pity deserve. Well I know from experience. And some are good, good to spare. Blame it on you libertines. Alreadyp. 327 My namesake has said it: «Foolish men you accuse …»

“When are you leaving, Sister Cruz?”

“Tomorrow, on the eight o’clock train.” Antonia doesn’t want to let us go; but there is no other remedy. The superior has written to us. So the day after tomorrow we are already in our convent of Pilares. I have a desire that I do not see to find myself in my cell, and to deal with those unhappy collected. If you were female instead of male, we would lead you to get you on the right track.

“If you want to take me as I am … Don’t think so, I’d like to.”

“Sir, how daring.” It would be the devil in the convent. And that poor Lolita … Don’t you think she’d be better off with us?

—Pss. Leave it to you. If she is comfortable … God can be served everywhere and anyway, ”Alberto said.

“Jesus, what abominations!” I’m leaving, I don’t want to hear from you, ”and Sister Cruz came out laughing benevolently.

Antonia’s relationships were innumerable, complex, and with all classes of society. As a result of having had Amparito, she had been gathered in the convent of adoration nuns in Pilares and the affection of the nuns had been captured. One of the collected ones, Antonia’s companion and close friend, had professed in the order, under the name of Sister Sacramento, who, together with Sister Cruz, was now staying at Antonia’s house, passing through Madrid. Whenever a nun from the Pilares convent came to court, she stayed at Antonia’s house.

Alberto left the house, not without having put Las Moradas in his pocket , because it was his habit to always carry a book with him, and he went straight to the Alcázar hotel. Rosina came out to greet him in his hair dresser and gave him a greeting kiss.

p. 328″It won’t hurt if I kiss you, eh?”

“Not that it was silly,” Guzmán replied, affectionately returning the gift.

“Not that anymore.” I kiss you like you would kiss a brother. I love you very much, but how you love one of the family. I’m sure that if Fernando saw me kiss you, he wouldn’t take it the wrong way. Sit down. I’m going to finish dressing. Are you staying for lunch with me? Alberto nodded. Maybe Veronica will come too. What an excellent girl! We are the best friends. It has happened to us as with that drama that El Galeoto is called : the public has made us friends. What if she is the best dancer and I am the best cupleist, and what if we are the only ones, and give it and give it; Well, I was curious to know her and her the same, and here you have us starting a pinion. Especially since her season and mine ended; Well, son, don’t leave my side. He seems to adore me.

-Good. What was the thing that the sea of ​​grace was going to do to me?

“Well, you’re not at all anxious!” Calm down, calm down, because until lunchtime I won’t say this mouth is mine.

“There is little left now, so we will have calm.”

“What about Teofilo?”

“At home he will be sleeping …

“I always said he was a great man.” You see, now everyone recognizes it like that. ”Rosina changed her expression. You already know that Teófilo and I have been close friends for a little while.

“Yes, I was showing off.”

“Now he seems to hate me.” What do you think?

—What you; that he is in love with you.

-Forgives. For this time, your cleverness seems to me to have failed. You will know of other things; but what is of what refers to me directly, I do notp. 329 come with nonsense. If you try to flatter me, I warn you that it is not out there. Fernando is my fate and with him I have to live what remains of my life. So I don’t care whether Teofilo is in love or not; But, the truth is, I’m not amused that he hates me and treats me with disdain. I didn’t do anything wrong to him. What I did was what I couldn’t help doing. ”The woman’s face took on a meditative expression.

Since she had returned to Madrid, Rosina had not seen herself alone with Teófilo, but always surrounded by many other people. Teofilo, although with the most raging passion ever, had resolved to avoid Rosina and make her understand that he despised her, which, up to that point, he had more than succeeded. Rosina considered love for her man, Fernando, as the permanent need of her life, the nest, the tree, the earth, the base on which to perch and rest. Fernando was for her the fullness of her femininity, of her sex. But, at the same time, she needed Teofilo’s love, she longed for him as a complement and enhancement of the other love. A bird does not know that it suffers the tyranny of the earth until its wings become numb or it loses them; then, along with the nostalgia for flight, she comes to know that the earth is the element that dominates her, just as air is the element that allows itself to be dominated. Well, something similar happened to Rosina. In relation to Fernando she felt dwarfed, annulled, given without agency to him. Recalling now the utmost compliance and dedication that Teofilo had done to her from his powers in another time, and the joyous and haughty exaltation that she had received from that love, she burned with longing to revive the emotions of that time.

Veronica arrived when Rosina finished dressing. Rosina had lunch served to them in the same room.

p. 330″What, have you heard from Fernando?” Asked Veronica.

-Not today.

“Does he write to you every day?”

—Quia. It does not cope well with black; but, well, write as often as you can. Of course, it forces me to put a daily telegram and a postcard at least. He is very jealous.

“Sure, if he loves you.” Daughter, how lucky you are! You can already reciprocate well, because a boyfriend like that doesn’t get caught every day. I do not know how there are women who miss their men if they really love them and with fatigue. Of course, I am not saying this for you; with you there is no case.

—What must there be … And even less having you by my side, who are always with the same song.

“And now,” Guzmán started to say, “is it possible to know what the sea of ​​grace was going to do to me?”

-Not yet. Desktop.


At the end of lunch, Guzmán reiterated the question.

“Yes, now I’m going to tell you about it.” And I do not know how. Is incredible. If the heroine weren’t around here, you would think she was trying to take your hair. Well, I start my story, that is, my story. I was in bed this morning when the maid comes in saying that a young woman was asking for me. What happens. And the young woman is here, dressed in black, very scared and very cute, yes, gentlemen. “Miss Rosa,” he says to me, and it looked like he was going to cry. “Don’t you know me?” What was I going to know her! “I am Margara, the daughter of Brig .” This Brig is a fisherman and swimmer from my town. “But, baby, how have you grown and how beautiful you are,” I told her. She turned very red. I asked him why he had come to Madrid. At first he did not dare to say anything; but it was cheering up, anip. 331leaving little by little and he told me what was wrong with him. You will see. She says that in Arenales she had become very unhappy. Many young men courted her; but none of them liked her. During the summers, the summer gentlemen would not let her live, chasing her non-stop, you can already guess with what intention. She swears that no man has touched her so far, and I believe it. It took two hours or very close to telling me a thousand trifles. I abbreviate. The thing was that he began to get a great dislike for everything he saw in town; she moved away from her friends and shut herself up to cry. Hey you, don’t be rude and close that book.

“I hear you, Rosina.” I have had an inspiration. This book will help us understand the issue at hand. You see, that maiden felt, as this book says, longings and heartbreaking tears and sighs and great impulses .

“All that and much more, because she herself says she can’t explain it.”

Guzmán turned a few pages and read:

– It is extremely difficult to imply.

“Very difficult.” You will see in what stops.

“I presume,” Guzmán said.

“We’ll see about that.” She says that she thought she was dying of sadness, that she had no interest in anything, that she did not know what she wanted, that a pain entered her gut like fire and then she was completely exhausted, that she seemed to be surrounded by bad enemies and sometimes she had to scream and, wow …

“It makes grief grow to such a degree that the one who has it proceeds to shout loudly ,” Guzmán interrupted, reading. He continued: ” It seems like a fire that is smoking and it was represented to be in this way the feelings that they suffer in purgatory.” And so, even if it lasts a short time, it leaves the body very disjointed and the pulses so open… ” Guzmán gleaned from the book and read in pieces.

p. 332—But are you kidding me with all those tricks that you invent yourself?

“Go on, Rosina.”

“If you’re quiet.” So, apparently, he went to work like a beast to forget about everything. In this way it seems that something was satisfied; but that other strange thing, an I don’t know what I felt in my heart, always continued.

– The happy ones – Guzmán read – are born from the same work that we do and it seems we have won them with our work. Tastes widen the heart. That girl wanted to become a nun and she comes to ask for your dowry.

Rosina laughed badly.

“How did you find out?” He asked, laughing incessantly.

-What world! Veronica exclaimed.

“It’s not difficult to figure it out,” added Guzmán.

“You’re cool.” So, nun, huh? Well, son, quite the opposite.

“On the contrary?” Veronica asked, her jaw dropped. Then friar.

“Yes,” Rosina replied, “from San Ginés, two go to bed and three wake up.” She wants to be a cocotte , like me, and reign in the world and its suburbs, because she figures that being a cocotte and an empress is the same thing.

“Well, you know,” Veronica commented.

“You leave me stunned,” Guzmán confessed. And how was it? Hasn’t he explained to you?

—Well, the newspapers arrived in Arenales with my portraits and the drums that they have given me, and all those nonsense that tell about my triumphs in Russia and in Beijing and where Christ gave the three voices, and note that the girl thinks : «I’m going to be another like Rosina.» And without further ado, he runs away from his house and stands here for me. It said, with delicious inp. 333genuineness: «It is my vocation. I suddenly understood that it was my calling. ” You see: vocation of cocotte …


“Now what are you going to do with her?” Give her back to her family? Guzmán asked.

“Yeah, yeah.” That’s what I tried; but you have to see how the dead fly got. He didn’t tell me, but I knew him in his eyes that he thought I was envious. I told him that out of a million women who get lost, only one, and sometimes none, ever lives the good life. In vain, guys: she err that err. What do we do? What do you think?

“Spank her four times and send her invoiced to town,” Veronica advised ardently.

-I have a project. Let’s see what you think, ”Guzmán spoke.

“Come on from there, being yours will be good,” said Veronica.

-It is this. At night we take that girl and we take her from house to house, through all the houses of bad living, from those of the lowest category to those of a certain rank. We will enlist a few friends, admittedly brutes, and we will have them drink and develop their brutality to the maximum power. We will look for those dens where it is not possible to enter without the soul grieving and we will show Márgara, didn’t you say her name is Márgara ?, which is most likely going to find her bones there if she persists in continuing that vocation that he claims to have …

“And are we going too?” Rosina asked, somewhat alarmed.

“Why not, silly?” We put on a shawl …

“I don’t have a shawl.”

“I’ll lend it to you.” You’ll see, we’re even going to have fun.

p. 334″As well as entertaining …” Alberto observed. So what do you think?

“To me, pearls,” Veronica declared.

“Yeah, I think it’s a good idea too.” So … ah! You have to meet Margara. ”Rosina got up and rang the bell. When the waitress appeared, Rosina added, “Let that girl come here this morning.”

Margara introduced herself. She was tall rather than short, very gentle: a harmonious air of natural nobility in all her person and movements. Very dark, almost tanned; dark hair; the small eyes, hard and persevering in looking; thin, tight lips and tiny rodent teeth; sweet fluff down the jaw and on the lip. It was not beautiful; she was worse than beautiful: devilishly inciting.

“I only have to see your face to understand that you like him enormously,” Rosina said softly to Guzmán. And then, out loud, “She’s pretty, right?” Well, if you could see what meats, what toughness, ”and he began to press her breasts and thighs. Touch. It is marble.

Verónica went to test and corroborated Rosina’s judgment, which, addressing Guzmán, invited him to verify it from personal experience.

“Play, man, and don’t be a cousin.” If that’s okay with her, right, Margara?

Margara did not reply. Guzmán had to experience Márgara’s specific toughness.

“Yes, it looks like a statue,” Guzmán declared, alluding not only to the tight flesh, but to the dignified and cold immobility in which the girl remained.

Everything was agreed for the night and Guzmán said goodbye.

At midnight the gang, made up of Rosina, Verónica and Márgara, left the Alcázar hotel, bareback andp. 335with shawls, and Angelón Ríos, Travesedo, Guzmán, Celedonio Grajal and Felipe Artaza, the latter two well known in the world of debauchery and revelry for the much money they had, for the ostentatious way of spending it, for the excessive fondness to the bacchic and venust pleasures, by the heroic resistance and verve in both exercises, and, in short, by countless elegant and ingenious feats, such as throwing a courtesan woman into the Retiro pond, beating a guard, doing I smash furniture in a restaurant, smash my car through a store window, and then repair damages with boastful largesse. They constituted two types, or rather, archetypes of the modern hero, who is forced and constrained by the prosaic nature of contemporary life to employ the effortless spirit in little lucid undertakings and far inferior to his impetus and arrests. However, as the common people always tend to admire the heroic character and make their deeds more expensive, turning them into lively oral narration, which sometimes rises to creating the legend, Grajal and Artaza had their popular heroic deed that was highly celebrated by students, tacky and provincials in the gatherings of the cafes.

They all headed, first of all, to Socorrito’s house, a house with five dollars. They were very well received by the owner, who had in both heroes sources of very abundant yields. In addition, Socorrito had heard Rosina sing and seen Verónica dance, and she admired them a lot, as she herself declared immediately, although, as a Sevillian, she believed that cante jondo and flamenco dance, the traditional thing in a word, are superior to modernist dances and cuplés.

Visitors passed into the dining room, adorned with walnut furniture and gilt hardware. La Socorrito called the girls who were free. The Socop. 336Little was a young, graceful, and spirited woman. She wore an Andalusian scarf, made of Veronese green crepe, over her bust; the hairstyle fallen in braids, waving, and flowers under the bun. He boasted of taking advantage of the salt monopoly; he underlined the sentences with winks and malicious smiles, as if each word of his had extraordinary comic value. Three of the girls came to the dining room: Talones , Lorito and Pepita, neither pretty nor ugly, dressed discreetly, like middle-class ladies. When they saw so many people, and in particular three people of the same sex, they ran off not a little and sat down in a self-conscious attitude, from which they could not get them out of the go, nonsense and rubbing of Angelón, Grajal and Artaza.

Artaza ordered champagne, and Socorrito came out to look for him. As soon as he had left, when Talones said, alluding to the owner:

“It’s warmer and funnier.” Then I threw every hit.

Between the three pupils they began to praise Socorrito. He had been – and still kicked, said La Lorito – beloved of one of the González Fitoria brothers, the celebrated authors of comedies.

“Do you think,” Pepita asked, looking at Rosina, “that the Fitoria comedies are theirs?” Quia!

“Well, whose are they?” Travesedo asked.

-Whose? Come on, then, Socorrito. All, but like this, all the jokes and blows they put in the comedies are from Socorrito. Yes, we will know … This woman has an angel … We look at her jokes and say: these jokes will come out in the first comedy that the Fitorias premiere. Then, at the premiere, because we never miss premieres (Socorrito takes us), whoosh, the jokes from the last semester, one by one.

p. 337-It’s possible? Travesedo asked skeptically.

The three pupils, with the seriousness that the case required, swore by the health of the respective mothers that this was the pure truth and that they were witnesses of the greatest exception.

Angelón laughed in torrents.

“Even if it wasn’t true, he has the sea of ​​grace,” Travesedo said. And to think that the Fitoria are the favorite authors of the corny girls and the uncultivated bourgeois classes … Admirable. If one could say in a theater: watermelon and public petty, pachydermic matrons, amenorrheic maidens and idiotic litris children; the gifts that you laugh with so much pleasure are the gifts of a pimp, gleaned by the authors in the dunghill of a mancebía. Of course, that cannot be.

Socorrito returned with some bottles of champagne. Soon a new pupil arrived; He came with a street coat and a mantilla. She was almost a child, of uncommon beauty. Her name was Remedios and she danced in a movie theater every night.

“Come sit here, bauble, precious,” Artaza yelled, slapping his thighs. Remedios, after taking off her coat, went to sit on Artaza’s legs, with carelessness more innocence than corruption.

After drinking the champagne, the visitors left. Rosina, Márgara and Guzmán made a separate shortlist.

“What do you think of that girl who arrived at the last minute?” Asked Rosina.

“She’s beautiful, gorgeous,” said Margara.

“Well, you see how and where it is.” Who do you think is prettier, her or you?

“She, she is much prettier,” said Margara, with fierce conviction.

p. 338

“Well, you see, daughter.” And you can’t complain that you lack opportunities to show off and hunt down rich men.

Rosina continued to preach and make dark paintings of the life that women lead in a treatment house, and how all the money they earn stays between the owner’s nails and in the end almost all of them end up in a hospital, and then on .

In this, those who were in the van crossed with Theophilus. Angelón forced the poet, want you not to, to join the gang.

The second place they visited was the Alfonsa house, a house of hard, where the pupils provided the patron with unnatural and perverse voluptuousness.

On the threshold of the house there was a large marble slab, with black letters, that read: ALFONSA.

They all went into the receiving room, a rectangular room, wallpapered in red, with red couches around it. On the couches, and most of them seated in the Turkish style, there were up to seven women, highly painted, with very complex and oily headdresses, dressed like masks, lowered to the navel and showing their legs. All of them had a meek and quiet look, of cows. There was a black one. Others were Portuguese and two French. There was no Spanish. Some were quite cute, notably Lilí , a Frenchwoman, who was crocheting at the time, without showing any interest in the newcomers. Grajal suggested that the girls make living pictures.

-What’s that? Rosina asked.

They explained it to him. There was a need to pay five pesetas for each of those seven women. The attendant examined the silver pieces received, putting on glasses of sturdy horn armor. The women left and came back very soon, naked.p. 339you give. In the center of the room, on some mats that the manager had introduced for this purpose, the seven women, naked, began to make simulations of lesbian love and another portion of nauseating monstrosities. Rosina, Verónica and Márgara, red with shame because of their own sex, got up and left, followed by the men.

On the street, Rosina charged again, making healthy considerations that Margara listened to with sullen silence.

From the Alfonsa’s house they went to a house on Calle del Horno de la Mata, for two pesetas. As they entered those gloomy and fetid breasts of Madrid, groups of extremely poor prostitutes were frequenting, stationed from time to time to appease passers-by.

The trekking pilgrims entered a huge mansion, where, as they had been told, each of the floors was a low-stipend house. They knocked, haphazardly, on a door. Open the peephole; they asked who; then there were shouts from inside: Casianaaa … Opulence …But they did not open. Two duros that Grajal put through the peephole forced the doors of the den. An indefinable and lamentable creature served as porter; the hair was feminine, and the manly face, shaggy; To find his eyes a long investigation was necessary; the body, stunted; flat chest. This eerie creature led the visitors into a spacious bedroom, where there was a curved white wooden double bed, some chairs, and a sink. Shortly after, the owner made her appearance; she was fat and old and dirty.

“What bone did you break around here?” He asked with an insolent voice and a suspicious gesture.

“Well, you see,” Angelon answered. We come to pay a visit to your palace. Show us girls.

p. 340″They’re doing the street.”

“Then bring champagne,” Artaza ordered.

“Bad lightning strike you.” Do you want to stay with me?

Artaza put a five-dollar bill in the hands of the woman, who instantly tamed herself.

“Opulence, bring cider and beer.” Do you want beer? And go out into the street, let the girls come.

When the so-called Opulence , which was the indefinable creature, came out, Travesedo, obeying the requirements of his inquisitive character, asked why they had nicknamed this woman that way. The owner explained. Opulence, apparently, though not to the same degree as Socorrito, was also talkative and judgmental. That ambiguous and stuffy body contained a great dose of practical wisdom, which sprouted coined in a proverbial way. His favorite sentence was: “Where there is no opulence there is no wiggle”, and that’s where the remoquete came from. Opulence returned with the drink, and at that point Grajal had the whim of seeing her naked.

“Do you want to undress in front of us?” Grajal asked.

“Undress me?” Opulencia exclaimed, showing his tenacious eyes of a poisonous insect on the surface.

“Yes, undress you.” I give you three pesetas.

“Undress me?” Opulence repeated, forcing himself to acknowledge the proposition.

“She’ll be afraid her boyfriend knows,” the owner observed.

-Her boyfriend? Rosina asked in wonder.

“Yes, my boyfriend, my darling, my kid if you want,” Opulence said quickly, arms akimbo. His expression was perfectly zoological. It was absurd to suppose that a human spirit was hiding behind that face.

-How old you? Alberto asked.

“Twenty,” replied the owner.

p. 341

Veronica couldn’t help exclaiming:

“That for the cat.”

“Yes, twenty, twenty, twenty,” said Opulence, raising his voice.

“Can you count?” Alberto asked.

“Tell what?”

-Count numbers.

“No, but I’m twenty.”

—Well, to mine; I give you two hard, do you want to undress?

Opulence consulted the owner with his eyes. He made up his mind on a sudden impulse.

-What God! Two smashers are two smashers. Where there is no opulence there is no wiggle.

Right there and quickly she was naked. He was shedding his femented garments, which fell to the ground, forming a hedge around his feet; the skirt, the plaid petticoat, and other more interior garments, of an archaeological white, with relics of the sexual history of Opulencia. At the same time, the intimate atmosphere of that wretched body expanded in the air like a rocky spindle difficult to bear with integrity. When she was left naked, with no other attire than lizard-colored stockings, fastened with twine like garters, and bare boots, Opulence jumped over the fence that the clothes placed at her feet and showed herself, with unconscious impudence, to the admiration of the bystanders. The skeleton could be seen, badly covered by the brown skin, glued to the bone. Her breasts were unbelievably flabby, tapered and blackish, like coffee strainers. From the juncture of her thighs sprouted a hairy skein, thick and protruding, like the end of an ox tail. It seemed the macabre creation of one of those medieval painters, haunted by the terror of death and the devil. Angelón, Grajal and Artazap. 342They lavished sarcastic compliments on her, which Opulence admitted with stupid complacency, and they induced her to make sculptural attitudes, to which she meekly lent herself. Grajal took a huge capon cat that was there and gave it to Opulencia, saying:

-A) Yes; you put it like that. This leg further back. Eyes raised to heaven. Ordago. You are now Diana the Huntress.

-Enough! Travesedo pleaded.

“Enough, enough, for God’s sake!” Veronica added, with tears in her eyes.

-As you wish. You can dress, Opulence, ”Grajal spoke.

As Opulencia dressed, new women emerged: Coral , pockmarked and eyes muddy with the pus of a purulent ophthalmia; Leopolda , a Segovian, as he said, young and pretty; Araceli , lame and with the face of a seal; the Aragonese , with a prominent chest, a downcast expression and the skin covered with a hard reddish crust, like a dermoskeleton. All of them showed painful stupidity, and hardly any hint of rationality was discovered. They asked the men in which cinema or cafe they sang, assuming they were singers or ventriloquists, and the women in which house they were as pupils.

I heard a child cry: his laments were desperate, piercing. The Aragonese went out and returned little by little, giving the bottle to a baby of a few months, all sore, blind. The child resisted taking the bottle and cried in exasperation.

-It’s your son? Asked Veronica.

-Yes. Take it, dammit, now we’ll go to the pharmacy, ”the mother grumbled, forcing the rubber nipple into the child’s mouth.

-What’s wrong with it? Asked Rosina.

“Syphilis,” the mother replied.

p. 343

“So you …” Veronica suggested.

-I do not. What have you believed? The child took it, when I was pregnant, from a syphilitic pig who took care of me. But I am as healthy as you. Hey, ninchi, “he added, turning to Artaza,” give me two balls for the medicine.

Artaza gave them to him.

In that abject contest of women lost without remission, the elusive charm of Márgara, the latent verve of Veronica and the beautiful serenity of Rosina stood out with sad contrast.

The visitors went out into the street, after having left some cash donation, and walked in silence for a long time. Angelón was the first to say:

—Così va il mondo.

“And we don’t have to fix it, so we’re going to finish the night at the Bombilla,” Artaza suggested.

Theophilus had his soul raptured and his brain asleep. All his passion for Rosina ruled him more tyrannically than ever. It affected disdainful coldness and perfect indifference; but his heart broke at times and he lost control of himself. He thought of leaving, but he lacked willpower.

Rosina, for her part, took it for granted that Teofilo’s coldness and contempt were real and not distorted. This conviction, merging with the depressive sensations experienced during the night, devastated his chest, causing him to want to cry, which he silenced with a superimposed, fictitious and extreme joy. Since Artaza liked Rosina not a little and had been chasing her for some time, she determined to pretend that she was more than reciprocated and to make Teófilo understand that if he didn’t take care of her, she would take less care of him. And so he welcomed the prop. 344Artaza’s position, and spoke, clinging flatteringly to his arm:

“You are a man, Felipín.” A la Bombilla, and you and I will dance, very tight, a polquita de organillo.

Other antagonisms were concealed in the rest of the gang that threatened to explode due to the expansive virtue of wine. They were between Angelón and Travesedo, Verónica’s courtiers, and between Grajal and Guzmán, fired with desires for Márgara.

They all went to La Bombilla in two cars and got off at Juan’s house. It was late, and a very seasoned juncture for dinner. They ordered dinner in a reserved cabinet on the mezzanine, which overlooked the courtyard. The food was copious and succulent, abundantly watered by different kinds of wines. Between courses they would sometimes go out, in pairs, to dance to the sound of the organ. Hidden antagonisms were exacerbated with progressively accelerated movement. The first to conflagrate was that of Angelón and Travesedo, who came to blows with angry boldness. It cost God and help to unlock them. At the end of the fight, Travesedo had lost his sense of sight, with the destruction of his glasses, and was bleeding from his nostrils; Angelón had a half-pocked eye and was bleeding from one ear. Between Grajal, Artaza, Guzmán and Verónica managed to appease them and until they shook hands, throwing hairs into the sea. Later, the two combatants, followed, just in case, by Artaza, Guzmán and Verónica, went up to a room to mitigate the injuries, wash and repair the damage to the suit. They calmed down, and thanks to the good offices of Verónica they put down their obfuscation and requested a dispensation for the scandal and fright they had caused. Time passed and Guzmán, who did not have them all with him because of the persistent absence of Márgara and Grajal, left the room and descended to the downstairs cabinet. The GA They calmed down, and thanks to the good offices of Verónica they put down their obfuscation and requested a dispensation for the scandal and fright they had caused. Time passed and Guzmán, who did not have them all with him because of the persistent absence of Márgara and Grajal, left the room and descended to the downstairs cabinet. The GA They calmed down, and thanks to the good offices of Verónica they put down their obfuscation and requested a dispensation for the scandal and fright they had caused. Time passed and Guzmán, who did not have them all with him because of the persistent absence of Márgara and Grajal, left the room and descended to the downstairs cabinet. The GAp. 3. 4. 5binete was empty. Guzmán went out and looked at other neighboring cabinets. In one of them he found Grajal and Márgara on a chaise longue , panting and fighting hand in hand. By the disorder of the clothes and other indications, Guzmán came to understand that some serious act had been consummated. Grajal stood up, so he saw Guzmán appear, arranged and arranged some parts of her dress, smoothed her hair with her hands, and left the room smiling and winking at Guzmán. He closed the door from the inside and went to sit next to Márgara, who fell on top of him, crying. Guzmán took her in his arms, kissed her forehead, her eyes, her mouth, hard and fresh.

When they left the cabinet it was daylight. Artaza, Grajal, Angelón, Travesedo and Verónica were in the shelter of a gazebo of muffled dusty green, having garlic soups with eggs. They received Guzmán and Márgara with spicy banter.

“And Rosina and Teofilo?” Guzmán asked, unaware of the malice.

“They gave it to us with cheese,” Angelon replied.

“She is the bitterest bitch that has ever given birth to a mother,” Artaza decreed. All night giving me coba and at the slightest carelessness, boom, he deals with the lilial poet.

“But when was it?”

-When? When we were upstairs chasing down these gangsters, who are to blame for everything. The wine goes straight to the ball, ”Artaza spoke, with an angry grin. You, at last, have not wasted the night. Have garlic soups, or, as the lilial poet says in his drama, have garlic soups. Recoime with the poets, who do not even know. Come on children, go for garlic soups, there is nothing like that after a spree.

At seven in the morning that morning meal ended. Grajal, Artaza, Angelón, Travesedop. 346 and Verónica returned together in a car to Madrid.

When left alone, Guzmán asked Márgara:

-What do you want to do? Do you want to stay in Madrid or go back to your town?

“To my people at once,” Margara replied.

-Right away. Soon a train is leaving. Let’s walk, the station is close.

They hit the road and started walking toward the North Station. There was the sour roar of martial horns and the tapping of some miserable handlebar piano. The sun, leaping over the heights of the Moncloa, put a blow of cruel fire on the lean backs of the Madrid city, from whose flank the Manzanares River poured like a thread of poor and corrupt blood. A train whistled. Sister Cruz and Sister Sacramento were on the station platform.

“Those nuns are friends of mine.” Do you want to make the trip with them? Alberto said.

-Where to? Asked Margara, her eyes grim.

“They go to Pilares.”


“Take this money.”

-I do not need it.

-Yes; you need it to eat on the trip.

Margara accepted it without giving thanks.

Sister Cruz and Sister Sacramento received Márgara with frank friendliness. Alberto helped the three women to settle into a third-class apartment and waited until the train left.

Two months later, Antonia received a letter from her friend, Sister Sacramento, in which there was a paragraph that read: «Tell Mr. de Guzmán that the girl who recommended us on the train came with us directly to the convent, as a pick-up. In a very short time he will profess Her piety is exemplary, and in this house we regard her as an angel rather than a woman. “