THE INSURGENCE of CHAN SANTA CRUZ
BOOK NINE: BOOK of the JAGUAR PRIEST
CHAPTER TWENTY NINE
Upon every instance that Octaviano Solis resolved to put an end to his travails by hiring some leprero to send the witch on her way to Hell, he was brought up short by the Tatoob's innocent infatuation. Silvestro was as proud of his spectacles as he was of Carranza's watch, which Maria wound for him, and he often removed the one, put on the other to observe the ceaseless sweep of passing minutes. Saturday they spent the morning at a haberdasher's and, when the Colonel next saw his charge, Silvestre had exchanged the uniform for a cutaway and striped pants... the attire of a diplomat, a millionaire or jefe politico, down, even, to the cashmere overcoat, boutonniere, silver-knobbed walking stick and top hat. Amazingly, the General did not inspire ridicule from the capitaleños, but, rather, their admiration. Even the august patrons of the Club New York and their more worldly cousins in the Jockey Club directed their gaze towards Silvestro and their nods were of approval.
Notice finally had arrived of a package for the Tatoob, and the Colonel handed him a package wrapped in paper. "Here is your portrait. Open it."
Within, mounted on thick, brown cardboard, were the photographs taken at the airstrip. These had a curious effect upon Silvestro; he raised his hand to his own face and felt at his cheeks and nose as if to reassure himself they were still there. Hesitantly he asked whether Solis could have a mirror brought to their table, and spent some anxious moments pondering his reflection. At length he seemed content nothing was missing as he smiled, but placed the photographs inside his coat and would not take them out again.
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