A room, an upstairs room, bare and undefined, except for the bolted door at which we three waited nervously for our liberator. A young woman. Her father. Myself. She young and fair; he hooded, worn, weary. I - who was I? This was another age. The Elizabethan. There would come a knock on the door, certain words were to be spoken, we would slide back the bolt and He would take Her away to safety. The scraping came at last outside, the bolt was drawn back, a man in grey also young and fair entered that almost abstract place ... with a large antique pistol in his left hand. He raised it at my chest. I lifted my arm, pushing his arm up. In his other hand was a small dirk, with which he lunged at me ...

This visitation almost certainly came because yesterday, in a bookshop, I picked up a new biography of Christopher Marlowe and read the first paragraph, in which it is suggested that Kit's execution was ordered by Elizabeth herself. A great reckoning in a little room, then? But who were we? Who was I?

No comments: