Excerpt from Elephant and Castle: A Reconstruction
It was less exciting than any butcher's shop, but Slightly more dis tasteful because of the faked twilight and the soaked bedclothes blood soaking into brown earth was somehow never quite so unpleasing to look at. This, I suppose, denotes some atavistic squeamishness in my make-up, since the Object under examination did nothing to set my thoughts to pity or anything of that kind - it had far less semblance to a living human body than a stone image, and later on, when I saw a photograph of the woman alive, I could not see the smallest resem blance. What was rather curious, though, was that from this white mask, partly hidden by matted hair, I was able to derive the certainty that she had once possessed some beauty. Had she been a woman of ordinary prettiness there would have been nothing left to show. I also remem ber noticing the night-dress, which had Venetian rose point at the top. That and the face seemed to go together, and I thought it a pity thatlace of such perfect workmanship had been ruined by staining. The tecs, who are always as resourceful as sailors, had got in a bottle of some thing to ease their labours and they good-naturedly offered me a noggin, but the teacup had not been washed properly and I didn't want it.
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