Modesty Blaise stubbed out her cigarette. she leaned back in the deep corner of the chesterfield and put her hands behind her head. Tarrant saw that her eyes were open but unseeing, focused on some far-distant point. With gentle pleasure, void of desire, he dwelt on the smooth swell of her breasts beneath the silk blouse.
She had a magnificent body. Tarrant knew, for he had seen it once. Pictures flickered suddenly in his memory.
A studio in old Cannes...Willie's knife hissing across the room to bite deeply into a gunman's arm...Modesty lying with thumbs cruelly bound, speaking the word that held back the second knife, poised for a death throw...Willie lifting her, and the slashed housecoat falling away to her waist.
The scenes were printed on Tarrant's memory in color, and for this he was grateful. Few pictures in the files of his memory had retained the quality of color. He was grateful, too, that the urgent fire of younger days smoldered only gently within him now. He could look at his memory picture of her with a pleasure untinged by desire. And he could look at her now, not regretting that the smooth mat tan of her body was hidden from him, but enjoying the different pleasure of light and shade and the way the silk molded itself to her shape.
-excerpt from SABRE-TOOTH (1966) by Peter O'Donnell
This morning while sitting here at my — HA!!! — desk at the design gulag my mind began to wander, searching through its sometimes-muzzy files of stored experiences and settling upon the very fond memory of a certain lady I had the good fortune to have dated a few years back. She's funny, just as ribald as I am, mouth-wateringly curvy as hell, and the memory of her spectacular nudity coupled with a truly lovely and charming smile has keep me in a good mood on otherwise lousy days more than once. My memories of her have no connection to horrible violence, but I do understand how Sir Gerald Tarrant's reverie of a beautiful woman could be enjoyed with a non-carnal appreciation. That's not to say that I wouldn't welcome some more up close and personal time with the woman in question, but let's just say that memories are a bitch and just leave it at that.