Looking by Camilla Trinchieri

December 9, 2015 | By | 1 Reply More

A lizard, gray-green against the ochre wall. It’s a bright wall. The morning sun has been warming it for several hours already. The lizard closes its wrinkled eyes to the heat, throat pulsating with pleasure.

I am off screen, the spectator fascinated and repulsed at the same time. My English girlfriend is with me. We both attend fourth grade at the Overseas School in Rome. It’s the early 1950s, in the era when Italy will shine in the Helsinki Summer Olympics.

She has brought me here. It is my first and only visit to Judy’s weekend villa in Circeo, a seaside getaway for the rich and the poor alike. She has made me stop to look at the creature. She considers lizards beautiful and tells me that if I only look long enough, examine the animal close up, I will no longer be afraid.

I do as she asks because Judy intrigues me. She is beautiful, with blonde hair and charcoal eyebrows etched above large brown eyes. She likes to eat fresh garlic in class, sucking on the clove as if it were a Charm.

The memory shifts to night. She and I are in bunk beds. Judy wears a frilly nylon nightgown; I wear a serviceable pajama. Her mother opens the door to wish us goodnight. The father has not been seen. Judy’s mother is beautiful in a long black negligee, although I notice her jawline is blurry. When she pushes her chin back, it slips into a soft pouch of skin. She has loosened her hair which she wore in a bun this morning. She is blonde like Judy, and her hair now falls just short of her breasts. She leaves the door open as she comes forward. In the background I see the chauffeur, still in uniform. He is clearly waiting, almost basking in the heat of something to come. I look at Judy’s mother, and I think I can see her nipples through the silk of her negligee. I am fascinated and thrilled.

I am seeing lust for the first time.

And deception.

Camilla Trinchieri is a multi-published author of mystery, psychological thrillers and creative non-fiction. Born in Prague in a diplomatic family she lived in Europe and then the United States before returning to Rome after college.

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Category: Italy, Our Stories Too, Prose, United States of America

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  1. Mali Warshofsky says:

    What a delightful childhood story! Love the surprise at the end, seeing lust and deception, the first breach of innocence. And I thought at first that this was a story about a lizard..so beautifully written. observing people, the foundation of good writing! I always enjoy reading your stories.

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