“Almost as bad as Anita.”
“Who’s Anita?”
“American girl I met years ago.
“Go on. What happened with you and Anita?”
“She was with some archeological dig working out from a little village north of Tuz Golu, and ’er name was Anita. She was a very literary girl, and crazy about Ernest Hemingway. Seemed to take a liking to me, so I went back to the village with ’er for a few days. Thought I’d pick up a bit of culture.”
“Just culture?”
“Well, no. She was renting a couple of rooms in one of the village ’ouses, and I moved in with ’er. So as well as literary culture and archeological culture, I used to enjoy what she called sexual congress with ’er. She said Graham Greene always called it that in ’is books, sexual congress. I ’ad a job not to laugh. Then there was the Hemingway bit. You know For Whom the Bell Tolls, and the way he goes on about it being so terrific for the hero and the gypsy girl that the earth moves when they ’ave sexual congress, only Hemingway doesn’t call it that?”
“I thought nobody got the earth-moving bit more than … was it three times?”
“Something like that. Anita was always trying for it, anyway. Very industrious in bed, she was. Well, about the third night, it ’appened. The earth moved for both of us.”
“No, honest, Princess. It really ’appened. … Next thing was, the roof fell in on us. We’d ’ad an earthquake, and the earth was moving for just about everybody within five miles, whether they were ’aving sexual congress or not. … It was only a bad tremor, an’ nobody was killed, but we were pinned down on the bed by a wooden joist, and smothered with plaster. Anita ’ad ’er eyes closed, and she didn’t catch on at first, she reckoned it was all ’er fault that the earth moved and the roof fell in, because she was so terrific with the Kama Sutra stuff. She kept ’ollering —” his voice took on a strong, twanging falsetto, “ ‘Gahd, Willie, I’m sahrry!’ ”
(Dragon’s Claw, chapter 9)