story: “Sealed Off”
author: Eileen Chang
year: 1944 (English translation 2016)
where: Blacksmith Coffee
note: Chang’s studies were interrupted in Hong Kong when the Japanese attacked (the same week as Pearl Harbor). Chang returned to Shanghai. All Chang’s stories (to my knowledge) are set in either Hong Kong or Shanghai.
a line: “But,” said Cuiyuan, “a girl from a good family won’t want to be a concubine, will she? And so many legal problems…”
theme(s): Modern love, wartime, anti-romance, occupation, dream