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The girl is thirteen-year-old Azucena, one of thousands of villagers who lived on the slopes of a mountain in Latin America. A volcanic eruption has created enough heat to melt the ice on the mountain slopes, leading in turn to tremendous mudslides that have buried entire towns and killed more than twenty thousand people. The narrator, who is never named, watches pictures of the devastation on the television news, described by her lover, Rolf Carlé, the first television reporter on the scene.
Carlé and his assistant film the first attempts to rescue the girl, but when volunteers are unable to throw a rope to her, he wades up to his waist in the mud to tie the rope under her arms himself. He smiles a charming smile and assures her that she will soon be out. But when the volunteers begin to pull on the rope, Azucena screams in pain; the mud has created such a strong suction around her that she cannot be pulled free. She can feel some kind of debris holding her legs, and while others suggest that it must be the rubble from her crushed house, she insists that it is the bodies of her dead brothers and sisters. The narrator has watched Carlé countless times as he has covered important stories, and she has always admired his ability to be strong and detached in the face of terrible events.
This time, however, she can tell by watching his eyes and hearing his voice that his objectivity is slipping, and that he is responding emotionally to Azucena. Azucena had touched a part of Rolf that he himself has no access to, a part he had never shared with his own wife. He wanted to console his wife but it was Azucena who had given him consolation. It was Azucena who had him thinking of all the bad tragedy that had happen to him when he was around her age. He never wanted to face it, but Azucena thought him a lesson. And so he faced it. Azuencea fought for 3 days and 2 nights under this hard mud with Rolf by her side fighting for life while Rolf was conforting her.
While that, the last day right before she passed away was when she said “That in all 13 years of her life no boy had ever loved her and it was pity to leave the world without knowing love..” And Then Rolf told her one thing that made her happy. He said and assured her ” He loved her more than he could ever love anyone, more than he love his mother, more than he love his sister, more than all the women who had slept in his arms”. With that the young innocent girl closed her eyes forever
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