Amy Burley is Jacques Derrida and Franny Glass, in love with the world and the union of opposites; is the Archangel Michael, who knows the Garden is as large as the world and still must let only certain people in. Sam Merlotte is the Wolfman and the Little Match Girl, he is Galahad and Lancelot. Bill Compton is a fairytale all his own, hating the life and the skin that is his, desperate to connect with life, all shame and fear and self-abnegation, self-control; Bill Compton finds the whitest tender bird in the nest and holds her as softly as he can in his hands, to prove to himself and to life and to God that he's worth saving; Bill Compton is the whitest tender bird in the nest, and he holds himself so carefully.
But finding your story is half the battle, because the only constant is change and the only way out is through. Even telling your story is only half the battle, once you've found the words, because bodies don't speak in words. Once you know the story, the story stops being the answer, and we plateau. We begin to rot, until we start running again. We hold onto this salvation because we are exhausted, but the truth is this: Stories don't save us. Stories changeus.
Tara wakes beneath a whore: Le Grande Odalisque, greatest of the Ingres concubines, smiling to herself on the wall like a girl with secret, a girl with a pearl earring. Her body is deformed, distended, idealized into art and away from nature. "Come and find out!" she says, with her back like a swan; "All you have to do is want," she says, like the Last Temptation. Something from Peter & The Wolf is playing, throughout the house; she snuggles down into the featherbed, the tender whiteness of her castle, and smiles to herself like a girl with a secret. A little more wakefulness, a little more light, and she bolts upright: where is she, in what world is her body, in what fantasy is she waking? There's a robe on the chair. She is bathed in light and satin, in luxury both austere and filigreed.
A porcine manservant sets down her tray on the veranda outside: Breakfast is for families. She introduces himself and he pulls out her chair, settling a napkin on her lap. This heaven burst from the madness of the imagination; this heaven a reversal of all she's been denied. Soft where life was hard, bright where life was dark. A man who never loved her, and whom she never loved, who always judged and who paid cash for her follies, traded for something better. Maryann appears and sits down with her. "Okay, this isn't food. This is sculpture. And this place... You're not really just a social worker, are you?" Maryann laughs in her halter dress, saying they're both more than what they appear to be. She offers her coffee, but Tara doesn't drink.