January 6, 2012
She picked up a quill and pulled a piece of paper from out of the desk. The pen felt overwhelmingly heavy in her hand. Now she could feel the eyes of each of the ladies-in-waiting on her back. Why did she have to make this reply in front of everyone? Why couldn’t she be left to her own privacy? She sucked up her pride and put pen to paper. There was no point in waiting any longer.
“I thank you for your kind letter singing my praises. Queen Anne tells me you are from Falmouth and it warms my heart to hear of a fellow Cornishman at court.
“To hear that you will only write truth is of noble intentions, the only kind I will accept.
“You say that you have felt a connection between us for many a year and that I may not know you but you know me. How so, good sir? I care not for what your station may have been in the past, for clearly you are now a lord and courtier, and as you say, worthy of my heart.
“Good sir, reveal all you can to me, as much as the Queen will allow, and perhaps I will warm to your affections.
Faustua accidentally left a large blot over the I in Marazion and shook her head at the blunder, but nothing could be done. Folding the missive, she was about to seal it when the Queen chirped up from her bed. “No, no, Baroness, I must read it first!”
Faustua exhaled deeply, like a punished schoolgirl, and felt her feet drag as she walked to the bed to hand the letter to the Queen. The Queen read quickly and giggled. “If this is your idea of a reply, Baroness, your courtship will take forever!” She tossed it back at Faustua and it fell on the floor. “Seal it and give it back to me. I will make sure it goes where it is supposed to.”
Faustua stooped to pick up the letter and quickly sealed the poor letter. No, it was not as romantic as the one she had received, but it was all she could muster in a situation where she firmly did not want to participate. Handing it back to the Queen, up it went her sleeve, and Faustua felt the need to cheer herself up. “A game of cards, ladies?” she proposed. Thankfully all agreed.
Unfortunately Faustua could not keep count of what cards were played. Instead her mind drifted back and forth to the letter she received. What man had known her for years and she had not noticed?
January 6, 2012
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