Showing posts with label Mattie. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mattie. Show all posts

Friday, February 19, 2016

Reading, writing, and Downton... the things in my life

Hello lovely readers,

I hope you are all (who ever you are) are having a good week and are excited for the up coming weekend... I am, my mom is town and we are going to be enjoying some pampering, also doing a little bit of shopping and just enjoying some mom and daughter time. But before the weekend begins I just wanted to give you all a quick update on my life...
 I tried reading Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier as it was recommend to me by my friend and while I was intrigued by the story I didn't get past 100 pages. One night I was reading in bed and the book Me Before You was sitting on my book shelf and I kept thinking I want to read that instead. So I began reading it. I will also admit while I have wanted to read this book for a while and when I saw the ad for the upcoming movie I was more intrigued... plus I love Sam Claffin (aka Finnick).
Re-watching trailer I think I am going to need tissues... Yep I am a sap. 

I think I am two or three plot points away from being done, which feels very weird and cool all at the same time. Currently I am trying to type up every thing I have written out in order to get my mind settled on how I want to finish the story. I have it outlined and I know how I want to end in my head putting words on paper feels hard. But as I have been reminded I have to keep pushing myself.
{The Future was Theirs}
I have been thinking more and more about preparing for my second draft and sharing my work. I know this goes against some advice but I am thinking of sharing the story through a blog format. I am not so concerned about being published or the money, and to me that sounds like a headache. For me it is more important to share my story with my friends and family and anyone else who reads this blog. But I am still thinking through this process.
For now I just have to finish the first draft.

Thinking about
Even though I am working on the first draft of my story my brain can't help but wander to my next story.  
A couple of months ago I thought of a story line where a modern day girl finds a journal from the past only to find out that it is hers. Then a few weeks later I quickly jotted down this scene...
He was perched on the bench ready to jump into action, clasping the edge of the seat to make sure he didn't fall off. He eagerly awaited her to arrive on the incoming train.
Later I saw a man sitting on the T wearing a tweed jacket and sweater vest and the name Crispin came to me and wrote this out...
Crispin was wearing his best forest green collar button up with it nearly matching green tie, wool sweater vest with a red and gold diamond pattern, and his tweed jacket that had patches on the elbow. He loved that jacket, it had been his fathers and still smelled of his father's pipe tobacco. Crispin thought if gave him a scholarly look, and when her wore it he stood a bit taller. He been in the library shuffling through papers looking for some some notes on the archaeology diggings in Pakistan. His uncle had referred to it the other day and Crispin was certain his uncle had misquoted the author, however scholarly his uncle pretended to be he was always misquoting someone. Crispin had made it a game to look up the quotes to discreetly and politely correct him. He was shuffling through some papers when he caught out of the corner of his eye a movement in the garden. No one besides the gardener went out there after Aunt Edith passed away and even out of the corner of his eye he recognized this was not Marion, the crotchety old gardener, who was only kept on in respect of Aunt Edith. This movement was a woman who clearly did not want to be noticed. Crispin slammed the files shut and marched to the garden, he wasn't sure if was more curious by the woman's movement in the garden or angry someone would intrude on them. There had been tales of ghostly figures on the property and youngsters had mad it their mission to hunt these out and these escapades had happened more since Aunt Edith's death but never in the day time. Crispin was happy to finally be able to have his say in the matter once he captured the intruder.
{This is not how I pictured Crispin but I like the suit}
Not sure what is going to happen with this but I feel all these plots are intertwined.

I am greatly enjoying watching the last season of Downton Abbey and I am interested in seeing how it will all end. During the first season of Downton I didn't care for Edith at all but over time she has grown on me, she sometimes whines too much, I feel she is becoming more empowered. Now if only Mary could stop picking on her I would be happy. In this season I am feeling more sorry for Thomas or Mr. Barrows but I think if he had just been nicer earlier on more people would be rooting for him, but I do want him to be successful at the end of the series.

I do want Mary to be happy but I honestly don't understand why they made Henry a race car driver of course this was going to be a hang up for Mary after Matthew's death. I am actually surprised how long she has pursued him because of it... but I guess sometimes love is a risk. I think Branson was very wise (as he has always been) in the last episode.

Also I have been binge re-watching Hart of Dixie, which I enjoyed the second time as much as I enjoyed the first time and knowing what was going I enjoyed watching the character development more. I will say right now I wish Lavon and AnnaBeth had ended up together as I thought they were perfect together. 
{AnnaBeth and Lavon}
 Plus she was good friend to both Lemon and Zoe even though they hated each other. Plus her fashion (minus some green eye shadow) was better than Lemon's... I know this shouldn't be the reason why she should be with Lavon but its true.
{One of my favorite outfits}
Overall I am happy with the ending of the show.

Video contains some spoilers up to season 3

 Looking forward to
In March I will be going to visit my sister and family to celebrate my little ginger man's 1st birthday. I cannot believe he will be a year old. 
{Him and I over Christmas}
That is all for now hope you guys have a good weekend. 

Monday, February 15, 2016

The Future was Theirs

{tea and thin mints... help this writer}

Hello lovely readers,

Please forgive me for being so long absent in sharing part of my story. In my previous post, What Happened to January, I wrote about how some things I was going through were mentally blocking me. The biggest way has been in my faith, but also in my writing (which is probably just as much as a part of me as my faith). I have been trying to push myself to write but I have not felt content with my writing. I know a lot of people say to keep writing even if it is not good but I feel I wrote my main character Mattie into a corner and I wasn't sure how to get her out... I am still not sure, but I am trying. Over last weekend I talked to my Grandpa and he reminded me that writing is a practice that must be done daily. So while I am mentally trying to figure out what is going to happen to Mattie I have some pages written that I need to type up. I have always found that when I am stuck if I get some typing done it helps me through the process.

Below is a scene of a party set in 1916 before Marcus returns to the front and Mattie is about to get a surprise... 

She whipped around to see him as he entered when he came into the ball, she couldn't believe what she saw, he slowly made his way in the parlor. The deep chestnut eyes and brown hair that perfectly match, for which she had not seen in nearly six months. Was it really him? No it must be an illusion, but it was so life like. He finally stepped in front of her and she could smell the fresh scent of soap and shaving cream, it was him, he was in the flesh.
            "Mrs. Jenkinson, thank you for the invite," Marcus was the first to speak when they arrived. "I do so hope it is not an imposition that I invited my dear friend Corporal Kelby Foster along with me."
            "No, not at all— I do not think I have ever had a corporal in my house before," she teased with a gentle smile.
            "I assure you, he is better than most officers. He is in the medical corps and just returned from France."
            "You are most welcomed."
            "Thank you ma'am," Kelby bowed his head in gratitude.
            "Mrs. Jenkinson," Mattie was finally able to speak. "May I introduce my brother Marcus Harrington of the Royal Flying Corps and our friend Kelby James Foster."
            "Yes, it is always more pleasant to have more company than less, you are both welcomed here."
            Both men gave her their thanks.
            Mattie wanted to sat so much at the surprise of seeing Kelby, her Kelby, standing in front of her. He had written to say he would get leave but since then no word of his leave had come. Now he was standing front of her. Deep breath.
            "Well I thought Miss Mathilda had bloom about her before her brother appeared, now she has blossomed to be sure," Mrs. Jenkinson teased. "If I was more selfish young man I would sit you next to me and investigate you myself, however that would be unkind to my friend so I will arrange to have you sit next to her."
            Mattie eagerly, maybe a little too eagerly, thanked her. Then Mrs. Jenkinson left the threesome to their devices, Marcus was shortly to follow Mrs. Jenkinson's example stating that he would go and distract mother.
            "What are you doing here?" Mattie burst out when they were alone.
            "Surprising you clearly. I received leave and I wrote to Marcus to arrange a surprise. Has it worked?"
            "Very much so."
            "I am glad — I am only sorry we will have to wait for dinner to be over, until we can dance and I can hold the most beautiful girls in my arms." Mattie blushed at Kelby's sentiments. "I am glad I can see you blush my dearest Rose."
            "Perhaps you may escort me into dinner," Mattie suggested.
            "It would be my honor, though I fear Marcus will not be so happy I capture his favorite sister's attention."
            "Georgie will do him well," Mattie smiled. At that moment Mattie didn't care how selfish it appeared she wasn't going to let him go now that she had him. "How long will you be in town?"
            "A few days actually, Marcus got a room for us at a hotel, so we could have a little freedom in his last week before going to the front."
            "Can your mother spare you?"
            "I have written to her about my plans, I am sure she will understand."
            "Yes but if you have written me, I might have been able to request a few days off."
            "Have no on that account Miss Mathilda, your brother wrote to Sister Bennet to inform them your beloved aunt has passed away. So when you return act as solemn as you can."
            "You lied to Sister Bennet?" Mattie was actually surprised.                         
            "I did no such thing, Marcus did," Kelby was cheeky.
            The gong announced to dinner rung before Mattie could say anything else. Kelby gallantly held out his arm for her to take, he was taller than she remembered, or maybe it was the tuxedo he was wearing. She didn't know he had a tuxedo but she didn't doubt she that Kelby had ways to procure such an article. If she hadn't known otherwise, she would have assumed he was a gentleman. She wanted to take him all in and remember every detail about him from the way a loose strand fell across his brow, to his gentle smile that brought her reassurance, to the way he guided her through the parlor into the dining room. It was all perfect and when she was with him, it was like everything in the world faded away.
            The dinner went splendidly as Mattie sat in between her brother and Kelby. Only once did she notice her mother giving her cross looks but Mattie didn't care. No matter what her mother said to her later it would never take away the fact that Kelby was with her. Over dinner they discussed what they wanted to do in their days in London, Mattie talked of exhibits at the Victoria and Albert but Marcus said that sounded too stodgy and thought of going to Brighton for a bit, of fresh air. "It is October, the water will be frigid," Mattie reminded him.
            "If you are too weak you don't have to go in."
            "Perhaps our guest should decide," Mattie looked at Kelby.
            "I want to do it all, I have never been to London for that matter out of Derbyshire, I went right from Derbyshire to France without truly seeing England."
            "The Victoria and Albert it is," Mattie declared.
            "If you think you can see England in a museum you must be mad."
            After dinner Mrs. Jenkinson pulled Mattie aside, "my dear nephew is going to be jealous to know how much you gave your attention to this Kelby Foster."
            "Please Mrs. Jenkinson, do not say anything he is a long time friend."
            "Yes my dear, I have had many long time friends but none of them have looked at me like me like he looks at you. Do not fret my dear, I will say nothing. Now I have already heard the request for dancing, what do you say to that?" Mrs. Jenkinson gave her a wink.
            "That sounds very pleasant."
            "I thought so too. I will try to keep your mother at the card table."
            Mattie shyly thanked Mrs. Jenkinson.
            "You didn't tell me Kelby was going to come." Georgiana pounced on Mattie when Mrs. Jenkinson walked away.
            "I didn't know myself it was a surprise between Marcus and himself."
            "Now it truly is a shame Sir Brashware is not here. for a good duel would be so fascinating."
            "Georgi, do be serious—a duel would not be fascinating and I doubt it would happen as you know Brashware and I are just friendship as Kelby and I."
            "You are a terrible liar."
            "Georgi, please do not say anything to mother or father."
            "I promise, I am just surprised Daphne has not said anything."
            Mattie had not thought about Daphne, Daphne had no reason to protect. Mattie's secret but she had no reason not to give her younger sister up. As much as they did not see eye to eye, they had both fallen for Foster brother and Mattie hoped that fact would keep Daphne from ruining things for her. Though since Shane's death Daphne had run hot and cold, one day being as gentle as a lamb the next day being angry and hurtful toward Mattie. Daphne had never approved of Mattie becoming a volunteer and Mattie felt there was not much in her life Daphne would approve of.
            Once the gentlemen returned to the party Mrs. Jenkinson announced that she had given into the request for dancing. It was obvious there had been at least three other couple who had wanted to dance and were very pleased with the turn of events.
            "May I have this dance?" Kelby was quick to ask.
            "I don't know as you said earlier my brother may not like losing all my attention towards home."
            "I am sure Miss Georgiana can take care of him."
            "As long as you don't mind Marcus?" Mattie turned to him.
            "No not at all, I have had my sister all to myself for almost eight months."
            "Then I am all yours," Mattie told Kelby.
            The music started a slow waltz and as they took each other's hands Mattie felt a bit of a shock between them.
            "Are you all right?"
            Mattie was puzzled why he asked, she wondered if he felt the shock too. She simply nodded though as to not let her puzzlement known. "No terrified this time?"
            "No, why do you ask?"
            "I remember the last time I hold you like this you were terrified about making a mistake."
            Then it all came back to her, how they had danced in the woods before she first came to London. "Has it really been that long since we have danced together?"
            "Feels like longer. Oh Miss Mathilda how I have missed you."
            "Not now Kelby, I feel the whole room is watching us."
            "You maybe, you are beautiful and I am just a simple man in tux."
            "No you are not, not to me." Mattie looked into his eyes, she saw the same thing she did a year and a half ago , their long future.
            His touch was warm and gentle and the way he  held her during the dance it felt as if their bodies were always meant to be together. "Come out with me to the terrace," he asked as the music stopped.
            Mattie anxiously glanced around the room. She felt a light graze as he let his finger caress her arm, it made her dizzy to feel his touch against her. "No one will know," he whispered and as the couple dispersed off the floor they snuck out to the little terrace garden.
            She had a little shiver.
            "Are you cold?" He generously took of his jacket off from the excitement of seeing you and having you so close.
             "I don't think I am cold so much as shivering from the excitement of seeing you and having you so close."
            He stepped closer to her and she felt he towered over her. "I am glad the surprise was not wasted."
            "No it is wonderful."
            "Good," he brushed her cheek, leaned down, and gave her a kiss. It was soft and gentle, just as they always were, it felt tender and hopeful. Then she felt his fingers stroll down the front of her dress between her bosoms and over her waist, it made every part of her tingle. No one had ever touched her in such a way, and she didn't know if she was entirely comfortable with it.
            "Please Kelby—" she didn't mean to sound as hesitant as she did.
             "What? Do you not like it?" He whispered in her ear."
            She stepped back a bit, "It is not that, but I don't know if it is proper."
            "You are my girl, I am your solider returning from war, it is just a little touching."
            "Please Kelby, we have not seen each other in months, let's not rush things."
            "We have not rushed things for so long. I just want to hold the woman I love."
            "What if we get caught?" Mattie whispered.
            "Caught by who, your mother? Daphne or that Sir Brashware character? I know this is his aunt's house."
            "I have already told you we are just friends." Mattie was on the verge of tears. They were having such a marvelous time together and yet one simple mention of Leopold had ruined it. "I love you, Kelby James Foster. I love you more than anyone else. Is that not enough?"
            "No , of course it's not, he gets to see you every day and I don't. You could be as open as you want with him and yet we have to hide away. It's not fair."
            "That’s not fair, but we will be together forever after this war, nothing with stop us." Mattie was now holding Kelby's face in between her hands to make sure he looked her in the eyes.
            "You promise?"
            He took her hand and kissed  the inside of her palm. He didn't say he was sorry for his stupid jealousy, he didn't have to. They had been together for years even if not always romantically and they would be together for years to come. War was just separating them for a time, but the future was theirs. 

Piano Cover of Ed Sheeran- Thinking out loud

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

NaNoWriMo... check in #3

Hello Lovely Readers,

Frequently how my writing looked
I just wanted to let you know I did not get to 50,000 words for NaNoWriMo and I am okay with that. Before I started this challenge I read some bloggers about how they survived NaNoWriMo and it seemed to me they had no social life and were hanging on to sanity by a thread (okay I might be exaggerating) but I didn't want that to be me so I told myself "what ever I get done, I get done." I said this because I just wanted to focus on my writing this month and it was my first time doing this challenge. Also I still wanted to keep a life...though I'm sure my roommate felt a bit neglected sometimes (sorry).

For this month I set myself little goals, one to type up whatever I have already written out and two to work through some scenes that I was struggling with. I am happy to say I accomplished those goals.

Working through some scenes was hard because I felt mentally blocked and sometimes I would have to tear pages out of my notebook and try again. My mom once told me "crazy is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." I think I went crazy sometimes because I would try over and over rewriting and reworking scenes and even though the words were the same I expected the outcome to be different. I might be a naive writer but I think as a writer you have to do this.

The following scene (set in 1915 between Mattie and Kelby) I think took me five tries to write out before I felt the flow fit into my story:

"Why do men think they can only prove their worth by fighting. I do not think there is a woman alive who thinks in such a way."
"It is is is in our blood, it comes from being cavemen and hunters and gatherers, always fighting to protect our loved ones and resources,"
"Do you really think this war is about resources?"
"No but it is to protect the ones we love," he discreetly rubbed his thumb over the top of her hand.
"You are not going to go are you?"
"Not yet," he pulled back at truth of that statement. He didn't want to go, first he couldn't leave his mother alone with Shane already fighting and second he had no interest in killing men when he was more interested in healing them. However, he knew if war went on much longer he might be recruited, he was of age and in good health.

"Promise me Kelby, promise me you won't go until its absolutely necessary." Mattie had just read Marcus was going to training camp to lose Kelby would be to much.
 "Absolutely necessary, I promise," he took her hand in hers and kissed the inside palm.

"Please Lord don't take him from me as well." Mattie looked into Kelby's eyes and she saw them living a long life together, but maybe that is just what she had wanted to see.

"Now it is a beautiful day, the first in a long while let us not waste it by worrying about a future we cannot know. Do you care for a ride? We can get a nice long one in before sunset, besides we must keep these horses in full form in case they are called for active duty." Kelby tried to make light of the situation but anyone who truly knew him know how it had tore his hear to lose a horse. Last month the army came for Clemson, a horse he had raised since a colt, and that had left Kelby a bit distraught.

Mattie eagerly agreed to the ride, she couldn't remember the last she had been on a horse. The country had been at war for eight months and while the paper was full of half truths and inaccurate numbers, the truth from the front lines were slowly being felt. Everyday they were told they had to make sacrifices for some that meant sugar and for others that meant sons. Any moment that felt similar to the past was a glorious feeling. The sun was so bright and welcoming, it warmed her cheeks and brightened her spirits. She was happy to put away any thoughts of Shane at the front, soon Marcus going to war, and she wanted to believe Kelby would never join them. The felicity of the ride and the beauty of the day made it hard to imagine men were being killed by the hundred in an area of Ypres, not more than six hundred kilometers away.

No one between Cranston and Southerton could imagine the horrors that the Germans were releasing on allied men. The men were praying that their day of battle would soon be over with the setting sun only had new weapon to face. A poison gas floated through the air over no mans land sinking into the trenches that were suppose to protect them from bullets and artillery was now the death of them. The pale yellow toxin burned their eyes, stung their throats, and left them suffocating for air. If they lived through that they suffered severe headaches and feeling lightheaded making them seek comfort on the ground only to breath in more gas. The men who could breath at all was jerky and shallow at best and they would climb out of the trenches against orders but in instinct to survive only to be gunned down by awaiting machine guns. "Its a death trap!" the men yelled as they retreated to a better spot. 
{Poisonous Gas}
I know this scene will need to be edited more but I was so proud of myself for writing a battle scene especially since I have not been battle or in a trench.

So while I did not get to 50,000 words... my last word count was just over 35,000 words I am proud of myself so spending so much time and energy on my story. The work I did makes me feel invigorated to keep going instead of being burned out (as I got the impression from the bloggers). As much I want to keep writing and I spent so much time working away that I didn't give myself much reading time so I for December I now want to find a better balance. AH! it is December! 

Monday, November 23, 2015

NaNoWriMo... check in #2

Hello lovely readers,

In my previous post (link) I shared that I was stuck in a scene. I am happy to report that I was able to get through that scene and move it towards the ending I wanted to get to, so thank you for your support and encouragement. I also wanted to share that I got 25,000 words last week, which feels to be a huge accomplishment. In NaNoWriMo the goal is to get to 50,000 words, I am okay if I don't get to that. Writing wise this month has been more about my story taking shape and getting it to what I want it to be, sometimes that means rewriting scenes, reformatting my outline, or realizing I need to do more research. At heart I am writer and I totally believe in creative license, but I am also a historian so I want my story to be as accurate as possible which for me means going back and adjusting details and frequently staring at my story saying "how am I going to do this?"

Alicia Vikander portraying Vera Brittian
I knew when I started writing a WWI novel I was going to have to do some research, as much as I love the time period it is sadly not discussed much here in the United States, so I am kind of coming to my story with very little knowledge. There were somethings I knew I was going to have to research for example: major battles in WWI, trench life, women in WWI. Then after reading Testament of Youth  I knew I wanted Mattie to become a VAD nurse, and I was happy to add that to my list of research because it gave my story and character direction. Next I realized that I had made Marcus a pilot... okay so what did pilots do in WWI? WWI was the first war to have a new battlefield in the skies. So add that to my list of things to research. These are things I expected to research and embraced it for my stories sake. However, the more I write the more I realize there are factors I haven't thought about.

My copy of Testament of Youth, marking passages I liked

For example I have brought the Harrington family to London during WWI, guess what happens? Zeppelin Attacks. While the Blitz of London in WWII is way more infamous than the attacks London faced in WWI, it still happened and now I have to make sure my character's house doesn't get blown up. Thus far I have found no record of Eaton Square being attacked in WWI (though it is attacked in WWII).

Also I want a character to be in a major battle... for my time line it has to 1915. Big battle in 1915- the second battle of Ypres. Great! People shooting at each other, "I can write that" (I think). I have read a few books about WWI, in preparation for this. But then I had this thought "Oh look... Germans used chlorine gas for the first time in battle. Awesome" Add research on chlorine gas to my list of things to research. I will just say my "The War to End all Wars" board on Pinterest (link) is beginning to look a bit morbid with pictures of disfigured men... and part of me feels bad for posting graphic photos but then my roommate told me "half the population is watching Walking Dead I think they can handle it." Okay good point. I also think this actually happened and I want my story to be genuine and as historically accurate as possible. So I continue on with my research that may or may not make my stomach queasy. If I am feeling that way about reading it, I can't imagine what my character would feel living it... until WWI Mattie lived a pretty sheltered life and now she is thrown into the world.
So while I didn't expect this research I actually don't mind researching it... like I said I want my story to be as authentic as possible though as writer I know I am allowed creative licensing, which I plan to take advantage of with in reason of course. To me I know this is a fictional story and it may never get published to me it is important because real men and women served in this war and I want to make sure my work is a good tribute to their lives and sacrifice.

A review of the movie Testament of Youth
So while I may not get to 50,000 words in my story I think it is important that I make a first draft that I can be proud of and that will hopefully make a better second draft.

Good motivation to keep going {pic}

Monday, November 9, 2015

NaNoWriMo... Check in

Hello Lovely Readers,

Okay I will admit I am kind of cheating on NaNoWriMo as I am using this time to continue work on my story and type up parts I haven't or maybe write scenes I need to get through. I know this chunk of the story will not make sense but this is the scene where I keep getting stuck.  I know what I want to happen by the end of this scene... I want Leopold to surprise her by visiting her and then somehow on impulse just kiss her. I want Kelby to catch them and he calls Mattie on it but she admit that she loves Kelby. But I don't know how to transition to it. Please read and if you have any suggestions let me know. I really want to get this scene done (at least mentally) and be able to move on.


{Catherine Morland}
The whole dinner was in silence Lord Welford felt no need to ask any of them any questions and without any direct questions Daphne and Mattie had no opportunity to speak. Mattie wondered during the meal if she would be ordered to leave in the middle of the night similar to Catherine Morland had been in Northanger Abbey. If anyone was General Tilney in this narrative it would be Lord Welford, tight, rigid, and border line obsessive. Lord Welford did look down on the Harrington by not being of noble birth or heiresses such as his own wife and he not condone his wife's friendship with that child, that child who bore a marking resemblance to Aurora if Aurora had had the chance to grow into maturity.  It pained him to see the same hazel eyes with a sparkle of emerald in them to look at him, and while some would soften with that pain Lord Welford only grew more severe. The matter only grew worse as Parker discussed the many attributes of Miss Daphne, the eldest daughter, and Lord Parker feared his son would make a horrible match with a woman who only had pleasing looks to recommend her.

            "I am sorry for my father's rude  behavior," Parker softly spoke to Daphne after dinner.
            "It is all right Lord Parker. I understand, I am sure it was a shock for him to have us here, we are practically strangers to him."
            "Still there is no excuse."
            "We will leave tomorrow," Daphne lowered her gaze.
            "I wish that wasn't the best option. I know my mother's desire to have your sister be with her, and I swear as soon as he leaves I will welcome you both to this house."
            "You are so considerate Lord Parker."
            Parker took her hands "I wish you didn't feel the need to be so formal with me."
            Daphne stepped back removing her hands from his grip "Please we are not in London. I cannot do this her, what if someone sees us."

            "You mean what if he sees us. Don't look at me so puzzled. I know Daphne, I know all about you and Shane Foster. He can give you nothing. My father won't let me dismiss him as his family has served us well for years, but he is a servant none the less. He can give you nothing, I can give you everything."

            Daphne would never be sure what triggered her or how she even did it but she suddenly felt her hand slap Parker's face. Then she took off running down the hall. He did not come after her. 

            Mattie was sitting by the window when Daphne came in still shaken from what she had just done. In a swift movement Mattie crossed the floor seeing Daphne look so ill. Mattie asked if she was all right and Daphne just trembled in answer. Mattie would never know what transpired that evening, nevertheless, she wrapped Daphne into her arms and guided her to the bed. Finally Daphne cried out "We have to leave."

            "What tonight?"
            "Yes if we can."
            "What happened Daphne? Did Lord Parker say anything?"
            Daphne just repeated that they should leave tonight. 

            After a little while of Daphne crying Mattie got Daphne into bed, still in her dinner gown but trembling far less and her tears had turned into a whimper. Mattie then snuck out to the stable. Kelby was right where he was suppose to be, reading the thickest book had seen besides the family Bible and studying it intensely. He hadn't seen her come in and did not even she was there until she was nearly upon him.

            "Miss Mattie, what is it?" He could tell she was distressed.
            "Daphne thinks it is best we leave tonight."

            He didn't ask her why, he knew if she wanted to say she would have. He simply said "It is not very safe at night.  I do not think Lady Welford would be at ease knowing her guest had left in the middle of the night. Come calm yourself with a cup of tea."
            "Thank you, no. I have to tend to my sister."
            "Is she ill?" 

            Mattie just shook her head not knowing how to truly respond. Something had happened that night though she didn't know what? She worried that Lord Welford had dismissed them in the night as she feared and Daphne was too kind to say. However, she didn't want to question Daphne as  Mattie feared that would only distress Daphne so Mattie didn't know what had happened. Mattie wondered if Daphne had seen Shane since they arrived, it seemed unlikely as she spent most of her time indoors and with Lord Parke around so much she would certainly not seek Shane out. Perhaps she had run into Shane and they had an argument. Mattie didn’t know much about their relationship and how much they had seen of each other and the strain that must be caused by hiding their relationship, and Mattie wondered if this had grown to alter their love. Love is not love with alterations find, no it is an ever fixed mark.  Mattie pushed these thoughts out of her mind, Shakespeare was hardly needed now. 

            "I am sorry we did not get our ride in," she breathed.
            "I will always be here waiting."
            "Thank you Kelby."

           With that she turned and returned to Daphne who had managed to change out of her own dress and into her night gown and was fast asleep. Mattie stayed up waiting staring out the window to watch when Kelby turned out his lantern in the stable.

           The girls left Cranston just after breakfast. Lord Welford did not come to see them off. Mattie felt she had done something horrible wrong and worried if she would ever be back at Cranston Court again. Daphne hardly made eye contact with anyone that morning and felt to be holding her breath until they were in the carriage. "Well I am glad we have left, I have never felt a place so altered as Cranston has become," Daphne said stoically but in truth it was just an act in front of Mattie. She would never let her younger sister know what had passed the previous night and how she felt the weight of that press on her chest.

             Mattie did not question Daphne's act as she was lost in her own thoughts of why Lord Welford had responded so harshly to her friendship with Lady Adelaide. Last night Parker said it was not for him to understand the thoughts and words, but he must have known something. Mattie had seen him discuss things with Daphne maybe he had told her the reasons Lord Welford had acted the way he did and that made her nervous.

           "Thank you Kelby," Mattie said taking his hand as he assisted her from the carriage.
            "My pleasure Miss Mathilda."
            Daphne was already inside and they held hands a little longer than necessary but both did not want to let go.
            "Please write to me if Lady Welford gets worse."
            "I will come for you the moment I can."

            Mattie shook her head "no don't, I know I am not welcomed while Lord Welford is at Cranston."

            Kelby didn't understand what she meant, he let her hand go after that and her walk. It had barely been a week since she returned and already he felt the distance between her.

            Two weeks passed before Mattie heard any word from Cranston, it did not come from Kelby or Mrs. Banks as she suspected but from Lord Parker. He wrote briefly to Daphne saying his mother's health was on the mend and Lord Welford continues is residence. It was not much news, Mattie replied when Daphne concluded the not though she was happy to hear that Lord Parker was paying so much care to his mother's health. By the time Lord Parker had written  Leopold Brashware had already wrote to Mrs. Harrington and she passed his letter onto Mattie.

Miss Mathilda,
            How has it only been three weeks since I have seen you, it feels such an age ago. The memories of our brief time in London keep me going as I have to handle business here. I long to see you and talk to you again. I know you must be out of sorts with your dear friend ill, but I have faith she will be well soon. I have only met Lady Welford a handful of times in my time of knowing Parker but I recognized a certain strength in her that tells me she is a fighter. The same strength I see in you, though you try to hide it.
            I am promised daily by my father's managers that business should wrap up shortly. I pray for it more than believe their words. Managers are paid whether the work hands show up or not and without the workers they have less stress, so it might be in their best interest to keep the strike going. However, it is not in ours and I can tell the delay in work stresses my father.
            I do hope though that work will resume again and I might be so bold as to make a detour to Derbyshire on my way back to London. I will wait for your approval on that notion.
Your friend,

            It wasn't overly affectionate,  probably because Leopold knew this letter would be read by Mrs. Harrington and all things must remain in check under the rules of propriety. Of course this was good since Mattie only asked for friendship from him. She had been silly in London, to think he could care for her in any such ways, she thought it had been the London air that got to her. Life in London had been quite fast pace almost dizzying. She was certain because of it she had lost focus on any true reality.

            She had not replied to his letter until after she heard from Lord Parker. Mattie told him how Lord Parker believed Lady Welford's health was on the mend, although she couldn't confirm  or deny it. She stopped herself from reporting to him what had happened in their short stay at Cranston Court. She advised Brashware that a trip at this moment would be fruitless. Even with Lady Welford being on the mend she was hardly healthy enough to have guest. With the news she heard from Kelby about Dr. Gibson believing it was Lady Adelaide's heart and how she should go to a specialist Mattie didn't think Cranston would not likely host anyone for another year. Mattie did not write that part, fearing that if she expressed those words would make them come true, and it pained her to think of Lady Adelaide so ill. Daphne was right Cranston had altered dramatically, Lady Adelaide was the heart and soul of Cranston and Cranston reflected her ill health.
{Leopold Brashware}

            After Mattie sent off her reply to Leopold she thought life could return to normal. Deep down she thought he would forget her, she felt that she had written a clear but respectful letter of rejection. She didn't state that she wanted to see him and paid no mind to his longing to see her. Mattie wrote wishing him the best in business and in life and stated that she did not know when they would see him again. Though she had little familiarity of how to write to a gentleman she felt her knowledge with literature gave her inspiration enough to write her letter of refusal. Though as she wandered back to Southerton from the post office she examined herself and thought she had been too harsh and she didn't want to reject his friendship and maybe he would read her letter and think that. No he must not think that, but if friendship is all he wanted then he would certainly read it that way. She wondered if she should follow up her letter with a note stating that she was thankful for his friendship. Why does mind go to such thoughts?  When it came to Leopold Brashware Mattie recognized she questioned herself far more than she did with other people. With others she knew where she stood but with him she felt oddly confused by his words and his actions and as much as she didn't want to admit it, it intrigued her, just a bit.