How About a Page One...?
Indeed, how about a Page One...?
I have, against better judgement, started anew...here is the first page of a brand new work, who knows if it'll ever see the light of day...but let me know what you think...
Prologue: Paris, 1951
The politely restrained tumult of the reception was no stranger to the gallery, nor any of those who patronized it. For Aleid Visser, this day would not be another mere assignment for Le Monde—no, today would be a moment of triumph, and one she shared but made no claim to.
Through the corridors, nooks and alcoves of the museum, which dominated the modern scene before the war, a featured artist’s work would have its day. Drawing on the masters, Impressionists and Cubists in particular, the works were vivid, abstract, and direct—all the different sides of their maker were on display, a thing Aleid knew would one day occur.
Liveried waiters carefully passed through the rooms, champagne laden trays in hand; Aleid refrained but for the glass of white wine she shared before the doors opened. Pad and pencil in hand, she navigated through the fellows, patrons, educators, devotees and the few friends. She buttonholed those who rated a quote, spoke easily in her third language to these and worked the room.
Aleid looked across the room. As unobtrusive as possible, Chloe, today a photographer, screwed a bulb into the attachment of her Leica. The diminutive French girl, the ends of her dark bob curled up around her face, scanned the room, and waited for the proper moment. Dark eyes caught Aleid’s; the girl winked and smiled.
Her partner for the day smiled back. The other papers were here, along with the art critics, the latter of whom pored over the works, which hung on walls or stands. Aleid now moved on one of those odd corners, where a number of the nouveau riche crowd were engaged by the lone black man in the building.
Behind dark sunglasses and a suit that did not befit his burgeoning fame, the man was gentlemanly, the gap in the upper front teeth pronounced. He spoke in perfect French, and accommodated those who wished to hear the art of the man, which normally was consigned to paper.
Seeing Aleid approach, the man, politely excused himself and stepped forward out of the crush. “I knew you would be here, Mlle. Visser,” he greeted with a dashing and correct nod, “I assume you wish to hear from me?”
Alied smiled. “If it is not too much to ask,” she replied.
“Mais oui.” The famous author gladly provided critique of the star, who stood near the raised stage. Tall, her brown hair curled about the shoulders of her jacket, a suit meant for a man; but Haven Vos wore anything well. Despite all things, the spirit of the girl was mother to the woman.