Dom Casmurro

by Machado de Assis

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CXX - The Cars

The next morning I came out free from the abominations of the evening; I called them allucinations, I had coffee, I went through the newspapers and went to study some cars. Capitú and Cousin Justina left for Mass at nine in Lapa. The figure of Sancha disappeared entirely in the middle of the allegations of the adverse party, which I read in the records, false allegations, inadmissible, without support in the law or praxes. I saw that it was easy to win the suit; I consulted Dalloz, Pereira and Souza ...

Once I looked at Escobar's portrait. It was a beautiful photograph taken a year earlier. He was standing, a button-up frock coat, his left hand on the back of a chair, his right at his chest, his gaze far away to the viewer's left. He had grace and naturalness. The frame I sent him did not cover the dedication, written underneath, not on the back of the card: "To my dear Bentinho, your dear Escobar 20-4-70." These words strengthened my thoughts that morning, and they beat everything the memories of the evening. At that time my sight was good; I could read them from the log where I was. I turned to cars.


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