Shop H.E. Bates Online
ID
b321
Title
"The Lap of Luxury."
Genre
Story
Page Count
21
Word Count
5600
Publication Year
1976
Topics
Pilots, War

A year after the end of war, two former pilots, Maxie and Roger, revisit to France to trace Maxie's escape route Maxie from a prisoner of war camp. They go different ways and Roger is taken in by a lovely, rich widow. After nearly a year, his leisurely life ends with the arrival of the woman's true lover; while not her husband, this ending resembles a similar scenario in "The Tiger Moth," a story that also features a character named Maxie (who keeps a shell as a good-luck charm, just as this Maxie carries a rabbit's foot). In the 1964 story "Afternoon at the Chateau" Bates also portrays two soldiers revisiting the France, and one is named, as in this story, Maxie. This posthumously-published tale may have been an unedited draft, as the character of Maxie is nearly unnecessary, and the arrival of the lover appears unfinished. In The Yellow Meads of Asphodel (1976).