Zelle and Vadime are in the grounds of the army hospital. Vadime wears a patch over one eye and walks with a limp. The gas has affected his breathing and he priodically needs to fill his lungs by taking long breaths in between sentences.
Zelle: As soon as I got your message I knew there was no time to lose. I arranged the papers and took the first train. I managed it all so efficiently. You would have been so proud of me my love.
Vadime: I am proud of you my darling … You amaze me. Your courage, your beauty, your …( Coughs) … your ….( Zelle kisses him softly on the lips. )
Zelle: Where would I be without you?
Vadime: When this war is over I will take you home to my Russia. You must see the golden domes of Moscow, the white palaces of Saint Petersburg….the little villages all wrapped up in snow where the people will welcome you as one of their own and warm you with their pride.
Zelle: I’ll come to Russia on one condition.
Vadime: Ah so now you think you can bargain with me eh?
Zelle: The condition is … that you live with me in Paris first. Imagine an apartment of our very own overlooking the Seine. Watching lovers walk along it’s banks while we sit and dangle our feet in the water. Cool and …
Vadime: Fresh? ( Kisses her passionately.) Oh how I wish we could be somewhere alone … just the two of us.
Zelle: Soon my darling… soon … I’ll find us an apartment immediately on my return and you can come and visit me there. No more hotels. No more lovers. We’ll hide ourselves away from everyone. It will be our little secret. Oh how I love you.
The voices of soldiers can be heard in the background chanting the name of Mata Hari.
Vadime: (smiles.) Our little secret then.
The soldiers continue to chant
Zelle: ( Kisses Vadime.) You hear that? I must go to them. Come my brave soldier. With you in the audience I shall dance not with my feet but with my soul. Come … ( They exit arm in arm.)
‘Eye Of The Dawn’ ©Renee Dallow 6/3/2013