Surely he must wake earlier that day! I pursed my lips and blew tenderly, mischievously, on his cheek, lying with my cheek full on the pillow, so that I could watch him. The muscles of his mouth twitched, his inner being appeared to protest. And then began the first instinctive blind movement of the day with him. His arms came forward and found my neck, and drew me forcibly to him, and then, just before our lips touched, he opened his eyes and shut them again. So it occurred every morning. Ere even his brain had resumed activity his heart had felt its need of me. This it was that was so wonderful, so overpowering! And the kiss, languid and yet warm, heavy with a human scent, with the scent of the night, honest, sensuous, and long—long! As I lay thus, clasped in his arms, I half closed my eyes, and looked into his eyes through my lashes, smiling, and all was a delicious blur....
It was the summit of bliss! No! I have never mounted higher! I asked myself, astounded, what I had done that I should receive such happiness, what I had done that existence should have no flaw for me. And what had I done? I know not, I know not. It passes me. I am lost in my joy. For I had not even cured him. I had anticipated painful scenes, interminable struggles, perhaps a relapse. But nothing of the kind. He had simply ceased at once the habit—that was all. We never left each other. And his magnificent constitution had perfectly recovered itself in a few months. I had done nothing.
‘Magda,’ he murmured indistinctly, drawing his mouth an inch away from mine, ’why can’t your dark hair always be loose over your shoulders like that? It is glorious!’
‘What ideas you have!’ I murmured, more softly than he. ’And do you know what it is to-day?’
‘You’ve forgotten?’ I pouted.
‘No; you must tell me. Not your birthday? Not mine?’
‘It’s just a year since I met you,’ I whispered timidly.
Our mouths met again, and, so enlocked, we rested, savouring the true savour of life. And presently my hand stole up to his head and stroked his curls.