Bea B. remained seated for a long time in front of the empty counter, watching, and running her fingers along the edge of the plastic table. Monsieur X smoked several cigarettes, stubbing each one out in the publicity-ashtray. There was no need to talk; soon no doubt, one would never talk again. On would no longer murmur all those phrases into another person’s ear, inhaling a faint whiff of the odour of skin and hair. One would never again say, in a strange husky voice:
‘I… I love you, I’
‘You are so beautiful, oh so beautiful’
‘Make love to me’
‘I - I never - never - want to be alone again’
There would be no more need to flee. Because everything would be so soothing, here, everything would be so pleasant that there would no longer be anything else to hope for.
[War, Le Clézio, J. M. G.]