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Pierre Michon is considered by some to be one of the great masters of contemporary French prose. In 2002, he was awarded the Prix Décembre for Corps du Roi and Abbés, published by Éditions Verdier. Michon's Vies miniscules (Gallimard, 1984) was awarded the Prix France Culture. His other works include The Origin of the World (Mercury House, 2002) and Masters and Servants (Mercury House, 1997). The two stories appearing here appeared originally in Mythologies d'hiver (Éditions Verdier).