Posted on 2013-07-09
She sighed, then moved toward the fireplace. All over. The letter that promised her freedom also put an end to her every hope, every dream, since she was ever so little. She could not say she was jealous, or even begrudging, no, not even disappointed. She had just lived so very long with one expectation that it seemed her life hinged upon it. She held the paper in her hand over the fire, then snatched it back with a jerk. Why should her life hinge on that? There were many more fish in the sea, regardless of what her mother thought. She was not quite so sickly, so ugly, as her mother liked to believe. She was hardly stupid. Why should one man's marriage mean that hers would never occur? She re-read what she had written in her graceful, flowing script.
I discovered something new today, my dearest. My little curricle goes much faster than I thought possible. And for those few moments, flying along the lane, the breeze ruffling my hair, I knew bliss, tasted it, even, as the breeze kissed my lips. I fell in love with something new. You laugh, I am sure. My list of loves grows with every letter I write to you--you, who are highest on that list, as my husband--but books, flowers, hot tea, and horses are joined today by speed. Indeed, a strange love to add to my list. But that was what this was begun as, was it not? Telling of my loves, to my one love, my husband-to-be, someday.
There it stopped, one in a series that spanned several years, and hundreds of letters. Letters, that, in her heart-of-hearts, she had always thought would go to him. Maybe not. He would find happiness with another, and her best wishes to both of them. She would find happiness with someone else, someday. She glanced back down again at her signature.
Your Loving Wife, Anne
She took the letter back to her writing desk, and tucked it into the cedar box that held the rest. Surely someone would come and claim her, and them. She picked up her pen once again. A letter of congratulations would not be amiss.
Dear Cousin Darcy..................The End