And, here, in his office, Rémi begins to weep, drunk on nostalgia and gin. And, here, in his office, I sit across from him, his desk between us, but, really, something else entirely.

For I wish to console him, to relay to him my comprehension so that he may unfurl his burden further and experience full release; but then he would become aware of my betrayal, of my actions having gone directly against his explicit instructions; and the balance tips, and I say nothing, and I humbly nod; and maybe I even weep with him, maybe I even tell him a story of my own youth; but no; the silence is enough, no longer pregnant, now having borne from its womb a semblance of catharsis, cooing and shuffling and waving its tenuous little limbs around; and we sit there, in his office, immersed, and wait until the moment passes before we pour ourselves new glasses.