This winter was very cold, so it said in the radio and the newspapers warned from being exposed to the icy wind that blue day and night over the plains of the Elbe – valley. Eva called the clouds ‘malicious’ as if they were living beings out to harm the people. “Look, how they are formed, “ she said to Michael when they were on a short walk to have the children breeze fresh air. “ like the faces of demons. And the storm makes them change , you see ? Now they are grinning like the faces in Leonardo da Vinci’s scrap book, you remember ? And now they are mean and aggressive like the pictures on the propaganda posters which are hanging out on all the corners of the city. The sky is like a mirror where we can see our world. But people don’t look at the sky any more. They look only down, hoping to find something valuable there.” That was a different Eva, Michael thought, different from the sunny and cheerful woman he was used to have on his side. But he loved this other side as well. She will be a very good mother, he thought, thinking and caring and protecting the children, if necessary. He had two days left, then he had to head back to the North, to the small tongue of land with its fortifications and anti aircraft canons and guns.