Lieu­tenant Sch­midt’s Ideal Lady

The London Magazine - - SHEENAGH PUGH - Sheenagh Pugh

1. The Lady at the Kiev Race­course

A new cen­tury not long be­gun: a young man, un­hap­pily mar­ried and be­tween trains, is at a loose end on a sul­try Kiev af­ter­noon.

He goes to the races: sees a lady in the crowd, the most beau­ti­ful lady imag­in­able. Her black eyes, her hair,

He thinks she might be Span­ish; he pic­tures her on a warm shore he has only seen from the deck of his ship. She is swept away on the tide of race­go­ers; he never meets her,

never hears her voice. This does not dis­please him: he is a man who lives in fancy and will sim­ply love her for ever. That night, he takes the train to Sev­astopol.

2. The Lady on the Night Train to Sev­astopol

Now you must know, the train was lit by can­dles held in lanterns, as the man­ner was, and they swayed so with the wheels’ rock­ing,

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