By Simon Raven
All his lifestyles, Richard Fountain has recognized in basic terms good fortune. he's good-looking, with an enviable list for faculty, military and collage. A destiny occupation as a skilled archaeologist turns out guaranteed. that's, till he travels to Greece and meets Chriseis. Chriseis is gorgeous, mesmerising and mysterious – additionally evil. A spellbound Richard is lured into her darkish global of vice, vampirism and formality, excessive up within the Cretan mountains. while his rescuers eventually achieve him, he has replaced past all reputation and is apparently destined for a sad finish. the ultimate act at a double funeral presents a tumultuous climax to a surprising tale.
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Extra resources for Doctors Wear Scarlet
To go beyond this was to proceed entirely in the dark: to search for mysteries was to hunt alone and without a scent. It was all a matter of feeling, of intuition on my part. Evidence, save possibly for the brief and savage bout with Westerby, there was absolutely none. And since, to be candid, intuition has never been my strong point, and since Richard’s career now seemed to proceed in an entirely normal fashion, I began to think, towards the end of my last quarter, that perhaps I had been wrong after all, that probably there was nothing there other than what purported to be there – a healthy, intelligent, reserved child of the kind which always did well at schools.
You could hardly have had a better indication than those poems of how far Richard seemed to have succumbed to Walter’s juicy spiritual compromises, his sly intellectual equivocations. ) But I promised you I would try to show how I became aware, at Cambridge, that there might be something odd, something violently twisted even, about Richard; and it is at this stage I can best do it. As I say, I have nothing really concrete; but these poems…it is something Richard told me about them which may show you what I am trying to get at.
Or was simply too busy for confidences. But whatever the case might have been, only two things are certain – and those contradictory. Firstly, my own growing and almost obsessive suspicion that here was a being, not only outstandingly talented, but, in some fashion, marred by a gigantic yet undetectable flaw, deformed by some hideous twist of the spirit. And secondly, the fact that this suspicion was based on no concrete reason whatever. Outwardly Richard remained just an able and rather pompous little boy, straight-eyed and clean-minded, conventional in utterance and unexceptionable in manner – if a good deal too stiff-necked to be immediately pleasing.