Jérome Sautier & Joaquín Navarro
an extent my whole life had changed. That very day, rather irrevocable decision than fateful
coincidence, I crossed the borderline forever.
I had met him in a Paris nobleman’s house. Joaquín had only recently arrived in Paris. He
looked different, his manners were different, and he spoke French with a hard accent. Where
had this guy come from? Later I found out that he had come from abroad. New Spain. I greeted
him politely. He did not say a word, yet looked me straight into the eyes and returned a smile,
divulging and challenging, disturbing and appealing at the same time. And wherever I moved,
his dark and fiery eyes followed me.
Ever since Joaquín had been my constant companion, my lover and my friend.
With another kind nod Madame Constance encouraged me to answer her question. I thought of
Joaquín, the smell of his skin and the fire in his eyes. His hands and his lips on my body. His
longing and his desire and my devotion and my lust.
A smile played on my lips when I finally looked into Constance’s eyes. “Madame, you want to
know what I’m addicted to in life? I suggest you call it Passionate Devotion, ma chère.”
“Alors, une vie française, n’est-ce pas ?” she responded with a knowing and perfect charming
My life was a pleasant life, others would say. I myself was never content with it. The only son
of a wealthy family I got everything I wanted: money, excellent education, a caring family and
friends. I had enough time for amusements of any kind. And I travelled the world. I had been at
court for a long time and I had quickly advanced in my position, now I was the sovereign’s
attaché in Paris. I had turned my attention to work and I was very successful with it. I mused
on my life and my thoughts turned to Frederic. Again I tried to figure out what had gone wrong
We had met at university. We had attended the same classes. Philosophy. Attending university
to me was an opportunity to learn and widen my horizon and to meet people from all over the
world. The world was a growing world then. It was expanding. The colonies steadily won
influence and Europe ceased to be the centre of cultural life. Former ideals had become
obsolete. The world was turning. And I felt I was a part of it. I became acquainted with the
ideas of the ancient world during classes. I discussed new ideas and concepts of life with my
friends. I sorted out. I combined. I developed my own thoughts and opinions and I changed my
view of the world. I formed a solid basis. And I wanted to transform the world and change
While I was brilliant in establishing a social network of friends with a mutual aim, Frederic
stayed away from them, remained critical. While I turned to neglecting my studies, he was
Chapter 2: Heartache