The Queen of the Nile was the name Rita wanted to give to the novel she would one day write. There was a time when I told her that I was almost sure that a book with that title already existed, but she replied with one of her decisive sentences: but I assure you that it is not as good as mine will be. It was at that time that she became an assiduous visitor to the Public Library, for she was entirely devoted to the collection of everything relating to ancient Egypt. Her conversations about pharaohs, pyramids, mummies and magic potions were frequent. Her clothing, her clothes, her make-up, everything she did was related to the novel she would soon publish. However, when I met her two years later in Chile, the book was still a draft with only two pages finished and full of erasures. Look at what I have written, she said, you can't deny that it is an interesting beginning. I took the two pages scribbled in fuchsia-colored ink, but what I read puzzled me so much that I could not continue: Mr. Bridge folded his arms and didn't silence the other boys' laughter when I cradled my hand and cried over the grass on my knees. And does this have anything to do with ancient Egypt, I asked. Sure, she replied very calmly. You just don't know anything about literature. It's about some boys who go with their father, who is a renowned archaeologist, to Cairo and they are the ones who live the best adventures.
A little over a year ago I met the Queen of the Nile again. She was accompanied by two children and a man named Bridge. They are my two sons, she explained, and he is my husband; if you need anything from the Public Library, you can contact me, Bridge has been working there for years and is allowed to check out any document. I didn't know you were married, I told her just to keep quiet. You never sent me the novel you wrote, I said next in a reproachful tone. She smiled and launched one of her arguments that need no reply: After I had these two children, there was no time for anything, they absorbed my whole life. There is no longer a moment of peace; right now we are looking for the dog that escaped from Bridge Jr.'s hands, burst the leash and ran under those vehicles. Suddenly we heard Osiris, the youngest of her children, looking towards the residential buildings across the street and calling out, Mom, the dog is in the window. They ran off to retrieve their pet and I continued on my way.