The Lady of Blackwood Chpt 4
Chapter 4 Hole
Two evenings after his meeting with Florence, Marcus hurried through the kitchen of Blackwood Castle. The maidservants, Elizabeth and her crutches among them, entreated him to stay a while.
"Afraid I cannot, my ladies", he said and quickly departed via the back door.
Their giggles and whispers reached his ears. They always became silly that way when he was around and he had long since learned that it was best to avoid the uncomfortable situation altogether.
Following a cobblestone road uphill, he eventually came to a deserted place behind the Castle where a young lad was labouring by the light to three lamps.
"Graeme tells me you're feeling much better", the Count said more to alert the boy to his presence than for any other reason.
Joseph was clearly startled, as evidenced by the dropped shovel, but he quickly bowed and said, "Yes, my lord", before he retrieved it and resumed digging.
"I see the swelling has gone down. How is the pain?"
"The doctor prescri
The Lady of Blackwood Chpt 3
Chapter 3 - Florence
The coach came to such an abrupt stop that Marcus was flung from his seat. Indignant he stepped out of the coach and demanded an answer from his coach man, but the answer came in the form of a dog that lay cowering at his feet.
"Run in front of the horses, my lord. Barely missed it."
An unfamiliar voice said, "Please don't hurt him, my lord." A young woman crossed the road and came toward Marcus, hands spread placatingly.
"He bolted when I opened the gate for Mrs. Thompson and was nearly trampled by your horses and fine beasts they are but thanks to your coach driver's incredible reflexes Mrs. Thompson's dog was spared and with him Mrs. Thompson herself, for I believe that she would have had a heart attack if things turned out differently for Puggles." She bowed with gratitude to Graeme.
"I thank you, sir."
"No problem at all, miss."
Marcus barely heard the exchange. The girl's fine body reminded him of a willow by the river in the evening bree
The Lady of Blackwood Chpt 2
Chapter 2 - Blackwood Road
Two weeks later Count Marcinius of Blackwood raced down the Blackwood road in his coach, bound for town.
"Faster, Graeme, Miss Elizabeth will be waiting."
"Yes, my lord", the coachman answered and let his whip fly.
Sweat formed on the horses' black coats. Their breaths came fast and in the cool late afternoon, vapour formed in the air, leaving trailing white clouds. Count Marcus sat inside the coach, not feeling the cold and contemplatively watched the hillside trees flash by. He was in a brooding mood, which was normal for him. He was thinking of Elizabeth and of the reason they had to fetch her now.
She had been a maidservant of his since she was a child. Her mother, a poor beggar, had left her with him in the hopes that Elizabeth would have a better life that that of a beggar. The Count had offered the mother work and board, but she had declined, saying something about being "too old for new things". He understood, but he felt that life was all abou
The Lady of Blackwood Chpt 1
Chapter 1 - Sacrifice
There was a valley and in the valley was a town and in the town lived a woman. The name of the valley is not important and neither is the name of the town. However without the woman this story would not be. Her name was Florence and she was the daughter of Wendell Moore.
As a widower of modest income Wendell as of late noticed that Florence has come of age, specifically the right age for marriage. It would be good for her, he thought, to find a husband to console her after her mother's death. (Even though it had been a decade since that unfortunate event that took Mrs. Moore from the living.) And, thought he, a bride price wouldn't hurt.
Thus, he spread the word about town, informing his clients, friends and even enemies that his daughter sought a husband. Imagine Florence's surprise when young men (and some older) showed up at their home, bearing gifts, flowers and compliments. She was used to the last, but the sheer volume of attention stunned her. Forcin