Chapter 3

Early this morning, a strange sensation of sadness got me out of bed and pushed me to wander in the lighthouse, looking for Madam Lechêne. I stared at each window for a long time, aspirated by the grey and moving waves’s landscape, until I understood that I was too infected by this curious trouble that my governess called Melancholia. 

Melancholia, what a strange beast. So odd and uncatchable, that it’s almost impossible for me to describe it. I will however try to achieve this laborious task. In L’Encyclopedie raisonnée des sciences, des arts et des métiers, Mister Diderot and Mister D’Alembert if I only quote these two gentlemen, consider Melancholia as “the usual feeling of our imperfection”. Of our imperfection? How both could be so smug? Which audacity could exite their two enormous tired brains the day they wrote such nonsense? Which bad mushroom did they ate that morning, before they dip in their feathers in black ink? A lycoperdon? A boletus manicus, or maybe a psilocybe?

Well Melancholia would rather be for me…an arthropod. Perfectly, an insect! Or maybe a swarm of insects, for example blue flies, going all over their host’s arteries and looking for the heart, the central muscle where they will form an entrenched cloud. The rustle of their translucid wings and the rhythm of their black city, slowing down the organ’s beats and deliciously tickling it to wake up an intoxicating sensation of frozen time and sad happiness in the infected soul.

Madam Lechêne had a very particular relationship with her disease. Some evenings, she could have long conversations with it. I could not see her, of course, because she was hidden in her room’s half-light, but I could hear her whispering passionate sentences, similar to a dying woman’s prayers. Sometimes, with my ear shamefully glued to her door, I could distinguish some vague answers coming to her, before a long silence took place, cradled by some distant lamentations of a black headed gull.
Sick or not, Melancholia or not: I’m hungry. If Camille doesn’t come in the next few days, I will be soon running out of food. The sky is low, heavy, cloudy and silent. It announces autumn and I really don’t want to be forgotten by the only person who visits us here at the lighthouse.If that was the case, I don’t know what could I do…You see? No you obviously not. You certainly are saying to yourself: “ Come on little girl, you just have to put on your prettiest dress, get out of this gloomy place and walk until you reach the nearest fishermen’s village!”

However, you may ignore that I never got out of the lighthouse. Never. Until today, I had all what I needed here: my governess, my books, my hoop, my notebook and Camille who is the best friend to play with me and my dollhouse.

But if Camille never comes back either ? Would I dare to borrow this narrowed secret way behind the comtoise clock, which Madam Lechêne had forbidden me to visit, unless if! And these are her words: Unless if a great tragedy struck us. A great tragedy? What a great tragedy can look like? Should I consider my governess’s disappearing as a great misfortune? I do not know, and to be honest, I prefer not thinking about it…By the way, speaking of secret ways, I remember that I found this trap door under Madam Lechêne’s bed yesterday. What if we go get an eye on it?

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