I'm staring back at an empty reflection in the ladies' room at La Coupole, it's not the first time but something feels different. Saturday night and a sane amount of Champagne (four glasses, give or take), Henry sits at the bar with his shimmering Saint Laurent tie undone just enough to make it seem like an accident. He talks so loud I can hear him from downstairs, the two girls that joined us giggle like they've never heard his Hemingway jokes.
In the mirror I
see someone that looks like me, thin but poised in her black velveteen
dress and leather gloves. She's frail but composed, nothing like myself
the way I've felt since I left New York. I lean forward to touch her
pale celadon skin, the glass is warmer than I thought it would be. Is
this how other people see me?
We follow one the girls back to her
hotel, she tastes like war and has a fleur-de-lis tattoo on her inner
thigh. In the morning we have breakfast together, she drinks apple juice
and talks about L.A. Confidential as if she's only seen the film.