The girl’s pale hand creeps into motion, stirring the white béchamel inside the copper pot.
Her other hand, unladled and yet poised, begs deference from a humble little brown jug-like pot layered within by a thin sheet of gold leaf. The most ancient of pots. A Jomon, filled with a perfect brown sauce mixed with tomato. Espagnole, of course. What else? This she stirs with a plump red rose in its exquisite prime, dripping fat droplets of silvery wet dew that puddle on the film of the thickening sauce without becoming saucy each time she dips and stirs. A secret little smile, just as large as the little pot, graces his lips.
He feels another sudden itch in his nose, despite the fact it’s long since dripped away down his spectacularly bare and Swiss cheesed chest. He sneezes then, and the girl changes tack, following her nature to another pair of pots being heated.
One pot is not a pot at all, he notes, reviewing its lines carefully, like a hospital sturgeon, is a blackened cast iron sautee pan, full of pale, yellow-white fish sauce, an elegant and long-ripened Veloute seasoned with little specks of herbs and spices.