Louchébem Nights (1)

Glinting like jewels in oil, sparkling like oily jewels, refined to just that certain distance beyond the borderline between the decadent and the tiresome, those nights in Louchébem!

Smirking dukes and haughty thieves, fat handsome widows and tubercular eldest heirs of stallkeepers, gaunt merchants and jolly fat barristers, first wives and second cousins and third sons; the roguish, wealthy, the aristocratic, the yawning-and-wishing-it-were-a-seemly-hour-to-be-going-home-already!

Irreproachably sinful, barbarically splendid, dutifully wicked, arch beyond the bounds of good taste and common decency!

If only half of the whispers of servants and urchins were true, how exquisite the shades, the sounds, the scandals of those sacred Louchébem nights!

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