Note: The novel is available either for translation or for screening

(the author's comment)

This novel can be seen as a modern version of the Faust, Margareta and Mefistofeles story. The respective names in the novel are Mattes, Teresa and Trawkin (Prince of Evil, whose shape and name keep changing - from Silver-Smooly Trawkin to Simeon-Semuel Trawnick to S.S. Trawenberg to van Trawenck, etc.)

The protagonists of the novel move almost in the same orbit as the protagonists in Goethe's Faust and Bulgakov's Master and Margarita . Good and evil characters are unchangeable – what changes is the story and the places.

(A brief synopsis)

Mattes and Teresa have been in love with each other since childhood; they are, so to say, one soul inhabiting two bodies. Until Silver-Smooly Trawkin (the first impersonation of the Black Gentleman) makes his appearance and drives a wedge in between the lovers with his manipulations. He infects the beautiful woman with a nameless (unattainable) dream: the couple is on an outing when he shows her the ruins of an empty dilapidating palace. While Mattes is busy repairing his car, young and beautiful Teresa wanders around the empty palace, admiring the magnificent rooms, cracked sculptures and mould-covered murals… For one moment, Teresa sees all this decaying structure in a brilliant light so that the palace is restored to its one-time splendour, amidst it all, the Lady of the House (Teresa) is moving around.

From this moment on Teresa is obsessed with the dream. (She tells Mattes about her dream, and he loves her too much to laugh at her. He even gets carried away by it and begins to think how to find means to buy the dilapidating structure, to renovate it and settle there for good).

They seek out the owner of the palace, who turns out to be a gentleman called von Trawenberg (the next impersonation of the Black Gentleman). Teresa and Mattes are caught in a vicious circle, they cannot find a way out unless they set off on an unknown journey…)

“The empty palace” (Teresa and Mattes don't find it when they revisit the place) costs a fortune. They will have to earn a lot of money.

TERESA MELIHOR, Head of a secret chemical warfare laboratory at the Ministry of Defence, is dealing with poisonous gases that have an immediate effect; while making an experiment on rats, Teresa has a brilliant idea…

MATTES MELIHOR, an engineer who works at innovative lock systems, is trying out his new invention, the so-called psycholock (the lock opens when a person of a clean conscience comes in, it closes when a person of a guilty conscience comes in). One day the psycholock is tested in the National Bank building (if successful, Mattes will receive a fairly large sum of patent money, then he could go and buy Teresa the palace).

The psycholock system works: the bank doors close…when Teresa Melihor, who has poisoned the tellers and the security guards, wants to leave the bank carrying a sack of money.

“Congratulations, Mr. Melihor, your psycholock functioned perfectly,” the pleased voice of Trawkinian, Director of the Patent Office (another shape and name for the Prince of Evil) is heard over the phone.

The vicious circle has closed. For the unholy actions Fortune has two faces – the other is Unfortune. This is what the novel is about.