A Secret Grave 10: The Woman in the Lincoln Town Car

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Graydon's painting

Graydon Parrish, Arrangement in Subtle Tones: Elsie, 2009, oil on panel, 17 1/2 in. x 12 1/2 in. Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Gift of Richard Hartgrove and Gary Cooper, 2010 Photo credit: Rick Hall

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I watched as the Lincoln Town Car pulled to a stop beneath some trees and a black man in a dark suit stepped out from the driver’s side and trotted around to open the door for his passenger in the back seat. This turned out to be a very young woman in jeans, a headscarf and dark glasses. From the little I saw of her face, I could tell she was stunningly beautiful with the looks and bearing of a Vogue model – high cheek bones, tall slender body, graceful runway walk. Within seconds of her arrival, Victor was there at her side and she threw herself into his arms and – was I imagining this? – started sobbing. He held her tightly for a minute, then drew a handkerchief from the pocket of his linen suit, removed her glasses and began dabbing at her face. She was even more beautiful than I’d thought, a beauty that was surreal, not granted to most humans. He put his arm around her – they must’ve been about the same height, 5’10” or so – and walked her toward his building. Once they were out of my line of vision, I pulled my cell phone from my bag and called Margot.

“I just had my first session with Goodlove,” I said in a shaky voice.

“Yeah? What’d you think?”

“I’m not sure I understand what he did. I went into a kind of trance.”

Margot laughed. “Sounds about right. Did you talk a blue streak?”

“Yeah. What’s that about?”

“A side effect of the treatment. Seems to occur every time. What else happened?” I told her about the woman I’d just seen in the parking lot and how she’d wept in Victor’s arms. “Oh yes, Rachel somebody or other. There are always oddballs going in and out of there. That’s one of the things I like about it.”

Coming from careful, conservative Margot, this was a surprise.

“He asked me to call him Victor. How much do you actually know about him?”

It turned out Margot knew quite a bit. Once her daughter was cured of alopecia, she herself had begun going to Victor several times a month for weight loss treatments. She learned that people from all over the country consulted him on a variety of issues, but that his main claim to fame was that he seemed to be tapped into a regenerative force that made clients feel – and  perhaps even appear – far younger than they actually were. “You mean like the fountain of youth?” I asked.

“Yes, exactly. He was trained as a dermatologist but discovered he had this gift of being able to heal people with the touch of his hand and decided to incorporate it into his practice. Pretty weird, hunh?”

I had to agree with that.

“Plus he’s developed all these herbs and tinctures that he uses to treat disorders like anxiety, insomnia, issues with food, drugs, alcohol.” She lowered her voice almost to a whisper. “I’ve lost ten pounds in the past six weeks. Painlessly. No struggle or sense of deprivation. You have no idea what a big deal that is.”

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renoir 2

Renoir – Woman With a Yellow Turban

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Margot went on to tell me that Victor occasionally gave talks about his work and the products he used.  It was a good way to meet his other clients. If I liked, she would take me to the next one.

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To be continued…

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Cover Photo ~ Incognito, Bea Serendipity, https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

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