She sat, watching-on the glistening pavement of a dark alley-the shadow of an unknown torment.
He stood in the middle of her living room, looking slowly around him; this was her apartment, the one place in the city that had been the focus of two years of his torment, as the place he could not think about and did, the place he could not enter-and was now entering with the casual, unannounced right of an owner.
Like the file of a bankrupt, it kept registering losses, while the rare additions of new supplies seemed like the malicious chuckles of some tormentor throwing crumbs at a starving continent.
She knew also that this was his rebellion against the world around them, against its worship of degradation, against the long torment of his wasted days and lightless struggle-this was what he wished to assert and, alone with her in the half-darkness high in space above a city of ruins, to hold as the last of his property.
It does not matter who then becomes the profiteer on his renounced glory and tormented soul, a mystic God with some incomprehensible design or any passer-by whose rotting sores are held as some inexplicable claim upon him-it does not matter, the good is not for him to understand, his duty is to crawl through years of penance, atoning for the guilt of his existence to any stray collector of unintelligible debts, his only concept of a value is a zero: the good is that which is non-man.