As I laid still in the calming ambience of the flickering candle light, the sound of Thomas’ voice suddenly echoed into the room.
“I love you, but I have committed myself to another.” He coldly let out. The sound of this sentence repeatedly haunted me as I gasped for air.
Suffocated by the darkness, I dozed into an unconscious, yet conscious state. I tried to gather my memories but yet again was unable to recall watching him walk away. I was awakened by the sudden blinding light of dawn. I quickly scrummaged to refocus on the being that undeniably possessed my soul.
I was mesmerised by his demeanour and the way in which he possessed the desperate glances from every maiden at the ball. Yet he decided that I was worthy of his affection. That I, Jessica Nomad, was the subject of his kindred and the muse of his art work? It was an understanding of mine that there was a side of him that only I was privileged enough to encounter.
In the distance a figure began to appear. Thomas? I called out in hopes that he’d heard my silent cries. As the figure came closer, a screech like voice became apparent. It was my mother. How could I have not heard the creek of the door opening or recognised her physique that brushed against the doorway. My mother was beautiful in every way, so beautiful in fact that it made me uncomfortable. She had perfectly placed dark hair with rosy cheeks and always had an exquisite dress to compliment her curvy body. Other women would often converse about how such a woman with grace and beauty could produce such a plain Jane.
“JESSICA. My dear. You’ve been laying in this bed for the last three days. You’ve refused to eat and you’re becoming unkept. What would your father think if he saw you pining over some boy that is beneath you? You are betrothed to Sir William and the wedding is in a week. I’ve done all the preparations. We must join your father in Surrey, gather your things we will be moving no later than dusk.” She spoke with an uncomfortable posture.
I was so engrossed in my thoughts that I hadn’t noticed the days rolling by. As I tried to speak, the words were trapped with a sudden sigh.
“But, but mother, I have expressed to you that I am not ready for marriage. My heart does not lie with Sir Williams.” I managed to mumble out.
“Jessica, we’ve discussed this. Love is a medievil concept that you must get out of your head. You said you loved that boy and look where things ended up. Every woman in society has a suitor provided for her and you are lucky that Sir Williams is taken by you. He is a respectable man and could have had anyone he desired. Your sister married with elegance and without a word of trouble.” She replied heartlessly.
I laid hoping that my subconscious was jousting me and I was to awaken with the vision of my true love beside me. I shook my head in dismay to believe that this is reality – that my life was signed away to Sir Williams. I mean he is an older gentleman and I would have all the housemaids at my disposal. But why would he have chosen me? Although we possess a title, we are far from rich and my mother is an outright opportunist. Could I really marry a man I had met only twice before?
“Come along dear, we have a long journey ahead. Please join us downstairs when you are presentable.” She demanded, interrupting my thoughts.