I am the dreamer.

From within my folded hands, from behind my cast-down eyes, I make pictures. Can you glimpse what I am weaving for you? See the horse with his arching neck, his mane of starlight. He has a gentle, noble face beneath his pricked-up ears. He is decorated with planets all along his coat, but he stands very still in quiet obedience.

See the girl whom he allows to perch on his back. She is somehow languid as she leans back into the arms of her paramour. He holds her almost swooningly as he reaches up on tiptoe to clasp her. Her dark hair sweeps his cheek, his lips graze against her mouth. They are so entwined that they exist only for each other.

Do you want to know their story? What happened today, before the pointed canvas rooves behind them in the garden - garden? Or forest? Or field? - before those curved and decorated shapes sank into the darkness, their edges silvered by the moon? Did these two young people fall in love today? Or is it an old affair, a desperation, forbidden, weighed down by other ties? Has it been building little by little so that only now has the pressure burst into an embrace, or is it new, instant, impulsive?

Well, I will tell you. And then you can guess whether they are saying hallo to their lives, or goodbye.

She is called Silvana. Her husband is ringmaster - not simply of the circus, also of her. He, the young man now intertwined with her, is called Flavio. He saw her for the first time today, and she filled his soul on the instant. He came with a message from his employer: a summons. Let the Starlight Circus come to such-and-such a castle tonight, to set up in the grounds, and bring their magic and their gaiety to a private party! Even for the performers, there would be quails eggs to eat, and soft asparagus in shining butter, and candied fruit in sugar-edged jewel colours. And there would be applause - much of it - and, of course, money!

So the performance is over. Now, it is afterwards, and Silvana and Flavio meet by secret arrangement.

Is it a goodbye? Or an elopement?

It shall be as you choose. So, which?
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