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On the backside of the handbag she continuously incorporates, there is a minuscule previous field packed with cotton. She infrequently opens it. by myself, at evening, stretched out lower than her darkish covers. within the candlelight of her one candle that creates a halo of sulfur and makes the wall on her correct vacillate. She remains like this for a very long time, absorbed via an identical emotion, what's resting within the cotton. occasionally she takes the article and piously brings it to her lips. yet she does not kiss it. She easily areas it on her tongue and retains itlike that, enveloped in saliva, her mouth closed. while she feels triumph over by way of sleep, she brings her face on the subject of the open field and tenderly spits out the thing. Then she falls asleep. you may say that the Scorpion Fish belongs to a gaggle. they might say a Circle. Of sailors. The Scorpion Fish is on the middle of the Circle. Their area begins on the resort Dieu, an enormous barracks the place the wounded navigators who've been discharged are cared for. whilst 86 THE CIRCLE they depart this construction, they're usually in part disfigured or with a member amputated. now not allowed to visit sea. A meager repayment condemns them to wander during this city whose customs and language convinced of them have no idea. So the Circle welcomes them. They turn into individuals of this shut and strict kinfolk. such a lot reside in previous trawlers that they have got patched up in a rented slip on the finish of the pier. They sleep there filled into minuscule berths. Rocked by means of the domesticated waves of a stretch of water that has not anything to do with the open sea. however, it is there and purely there that they're capable of finding sleep. even with the tight quarters, based on the season, the chilly. whilst the snow and the frost harden the clean water reserves, they could locate safe haven within the sailor's dormitory for a number of nights. yet others, without take care of, occupy the beds of those large dormitories complete time. and so they understand that the immobile ground, just like the vastness of this position, will throw them, haggard and part asleep, into screams of terror. a majority of these sailors worry the empty area that surrounds the landlocked beds. Like they worry the steadiness of a flooring that's parallel to their our bodies. inspite of the chilly, in addition they like to loaf around the stations, to occupy a few hallway, to throw themselves right into a bar at break of day and slowly drink whole bowls of burning sizzling black espresso that a few woman sweetens for them. If there is continuously a woman round the reason for this is that the individuals of the Circle are identified not just for his or her tenderness with girls but additionally for his or her sexual prowess. throughout the day, all alongside the pier, braziers cook dinner fish or little items of meat. occasionally even spider crabs. PALLAKSCH, PALLAKSCH The Scorpion Fish is on the heart of the Circle of Sailors. you'll even say that she is the single female aspect well-known as important sufficient to belong to their group. in the summertime she accompanies a few of them on fishing journeys. is helping the others with their canning paintings for the eating places within the port. Listens to them. specifically listens to them.