Although it is nearly lunch-time, the terrace is not yet crowded; you came a little early today. The chauffeur dropped you off, went to park the car further away and came back to sit at a discreet distance. He is also watching you, without appearing to do so.
Your friend will not be long, as she never misses this Friday meeting. I bless these careless habits that enable me to find you easily. You show no impatience as you wait. That is another of your qualities. You let the time pass serenely, in the shade of a large plain tree.
The wind catches a lock of your hair. You shake your head with a gracious gesture and turn towards me; I hold my breath, imagining crazily that you might catch sight of me and smile.
But I am not one of those people who gets noticed; my existence is gray and lacks any depth. Sometimes I regret this and dream of what my life might have been at the side of a woman like you. But I am not part of your world.
They bring you a glass of white wine. I see your lips part, taste the bouquet and tremble.
I like watching you. You have a way of moving that disturbs men. I could almost be jealous of it.
Your husband must be terribly rich and influential to have put such a price on your pretty head. Whatever his reasons, now I have to press the trigger and cross you off my list of dreams.
The puff of air disturbs the atmosphere then dies in a few brief seconds, in the time it takes for people to become aware of the drama. Then the terrace starts to erupt. Your sunglasses are on the ground, trodden on by a panicked customer. That irritates me. I don’t like waste.
I adjust my own, close the bag and make a quick getaway.
Translated by Wendy Cross