Love in Idleness

by Charlotte Mendelson

Disturbingly written, very honest, very thought provoking. Recently finished at university, Anna moves to London. Dreadfully lonely and sexually frustrated, she becomes obsessed with 'the family secret'.


At the back of the bar is a spiral staircase, a DNA swirl in tortured bronze. She should try upstairs, but what if at the very same moment he is fighting through the lower room? A blink of his long lashes may momentarily hide the stairs, and again he will miss her, and again will lose their chance for bliss. Instead, she will scoot up quickly and then, in the time it would take for him to walk slowly through the bar, she will race back down and weave out towards the front, where he will catch her as he emerges, despondent.


The New Penguin Book of Gay Short Stories by David Leavitt
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