CHAPTER 6: THE CURIOUS DEATH OF MONSIEUR NOGARET
Months passed, and the small village of St Anne draped itself in the yellow of summer, the orange of autumn, the white of winter and the green of the new spring like a child trying on her mother’s dresses and then discarding them as she loses interest. Little changed in the village. News of the war with the English came in peaks and troughs. One day a terrible defeat, destruction imminent, the next a glorious victory, London in three weeks. But this distant war did not even cause the slightest real ripple in the still lake that was St Anne. Of notable events perhaps the greatest was the death of Doctor Toureil’s wife. The woman who he had so often berated, teased and insulted, had in her last days watched her husband work like a scourged slave to save her, toiling with bottles and jars, resorting to ever more outlandish and bizarre cures to halt the disease that he knew had no interest in ceasing its rampage through her body.