I want you, Hank. I’m much more of an animal than you think. I wanted you from the first moment I saw you – and the only thing I’m ashamed of is that I did not know it. I did not know why, for two years, the brightest moments I found were the ones in your office, where I could lift my head to look up at you. I did not know the nature of what I felt in your presence, nor the reason. I know it now. That is all I want, Hank. I want you in my bed – and you are free of me for all the rest of your time. There’s nothing you’ll have to pretend – don’t think of me, don’t feel; don’t care – I do not want your mind, your will, your being or your soul, so long as it’s to me you will come for that lowest one of your desires. I am an animal who wants nothing but the sensation of pleasure which you despise – but I want it from you. You’d give up any height of virtue for it , while I – I haven’t any to give up. There’s none I seek or wish to reach. I am so low that I would exchange the greatest sight of beauty in the world for the sight of your figure in the cab of a railroad engine. And seeing it, I would not be able to see it indifferently. You don’t have to fear that you’re now dependent on me. It’s I who will depend on any whim of yours. You’ll have me any time you wish, anywhere, on any terms. Did you call it the obscenity of my talent? It’s such that it gives you a safer hold on me than on any other property you own. You may dispose of me as you please – I’m not afraid to admit it – I have nothing to protect from you and nothing to reserve. You think that this is a threat to your achievement, but it is not to mine. I will sit at my desk, and work, and when the things around me get hard to bear, I will think that for my reward I will be in your bed that night. Did you call it depravity? I am much more depraved than you are: you hold it as your guilt, and I – as my pride. I’m more proud of it than anything I’ve done, more proud than of building the Line. If I’m asked to name my proudest attainment, I will say: I have slept with Hank Rearden. I had earned it.