I couldn’t make any excuses of the power of champagne taking over my thoughts.This wasn’t the ghost of my gentle giant Papa coming to comfort me.But of my past.Lady Forster? Once such a close friend and confidante.We told each other everything once upon a time.I simply can not grasp the fact that she’s married and to Sir Holmes? Last time I saw Lara,it was the evening of my engagement she looked so troubled.Different,she said how extremely needy Sir Holmes had become.
‘Gisele,I fear I’m second best for I’m moulded as clay,in an image that Sir Holmes is longing to be.His perfect english rose….you.I know you’re of french blood but you’re this perfect little creature the woman’s love his frightened to let go of.I see a change in him,he’s becoming ever so possessive dark and so moody.
I’m the one to blame,I pushed Lara into making a life changing decision I asked her to give Declan a chance.A part of me felt greatful that I had met him,but I no longer love him.Thats of the past context.A part of me felt envious I never thought Lara would be a perfect substitute to replace yours truly.
The days Sir Holmes and I spent exchanging notes,our last kiss under the archway.The sound of his melodic laugh,laying in his arms under the stars dreaming about tomorrow.All of that lost,fading away like dust.Instead of saying,begging him. ‘Please don’t say you love me Sir Holmes,do not promise me marriage as it might not last.I was under pressure of an unwanted marriage.I gave him dreams,but fools rush in.With a blink of an eye,I stole his dreams and happiness away from him.Left him yearning for more.The power of love,and not the long lingering love.The five seconds of that long lingering love or the fluttering butterflies.The power of love was of a beautiful child.Captured by my sweet and gentle Ava.
‘No,not at all.’ I quickly brushed myself down and composed myself.I can not allow my feelings to run away with me.After all,I had a captive audience.
‘Has cat got your tongue?’
‘I do not understand?’
‘What is there to understand? Can you not grasp the conceopt of here and now? You and I,recognised a fondness for one another.Kissed upon a heavenly night,you stomped all over my heart.After that,I rebuilt my character ruffled my feathers and became a handsome phoenix rising from the ashes…’
‘Do not insult my intelligence Sir Holmes,I do not need you to paint a picture.I can see things quite clearly.’
‘I never intended to hurt you.’
‘Darling,I shall take it from here.Shall I? Gisele Sir Holmes,made an honest woman out of me at long last.Why does that seem wrong? Why must you question everything? Aren’t you happy for finding true love at last?’
‘I’m so happy for you Lara,I truly am.I do not speak of jealously,I’ve just been taken by surprise that’s all.’
‘Declan,he was sweet and awfully romantic Gisele.’
‘Is that because you’re with child? Forgive me,for pointing this out but I find it hard to believe Sir Holmes could love another other than my sister Gisele,and I can’t help noticing you’re carrying an awful lot of weight quite a hefty weight since our last encounter…’
‘I’m so sorry Lara.Forgive my sister Holly,at times she allows her mouth to run away with her.’
‘Thank you Gisele,sister dearest.But I can speak for myself.’
‘Yes,that is what I’m afraid of.’
Letitia decided that it was the right moment for her to cut in. ‘Holly dear,be a darling and take the children to see their Gran’Mama?’
‘What? And miss all of the fun? Don’t be so absurd,for once I’m centre stage amongst it all.I refuse to miss a single second Letty.’
‘Is it true that you’ve learnt to play your Mama’s piano forte Ava,Esme?’ Asked Marianna.
‘A little.’ replied Ava quietly.
‘She practices every day.’I added.
‘Well,no time like the present.Come along,go and show your Aunt Holly.I can imagine judging by the look upon her face she’s dying to hear you play? Isn’t that right Holl?’ smiled Marianna ever so smugly.
Yes,she has twinkle twinkle down to a fine art.Don’t you angel?’
‘Yes Mama.Please Aunt Holly.’ Ava looked up towards Holly with her puppy dog eyes.
‘Yes please Aunt Holly.How can you refuse such an angelic face?’
‘Oh if I must!’ protested Holly. ‘Come now Esme and Ava.’
‘Thank you.’ I mouthed to Marianna.
Holly gestured them towards the estate.
‘I’m ever so sorry….Holly can be a tad forward at times.Well?’
‘Don’t be absurd,surely you’re not suggesting the only reason Sir Holmes professed his intention of marriage.Is because I’m with child?’
‘And even if Lady Lara were? None of this concerns you Lady Henry.’
‘Ever the closed book Sir Holmes?’
‘I’ve changed Lady Henry.’
‘I doubt that very much Sir Holmes.’
‘Lady Chadwick is present? I’m ever so hurt? I always thought you reguarded me a close confidante? There must be a simple explanation? Why my invitation must have got lost in the post?’
‘You have got to understand Lara.It was my greatest intention to write a letter enclosing an invitation.But ever since our return from Verona.Time rushed by,couldn’t catch my breathe.It’s been a whirlwind,a canvas of colour schemes,moods.Tones for this beautiful grande place.I got caught up and lost in the frenzy and excitement of things.I’m sorry.Lady Holmes,I apologise for being such a bad friend…’
‘You can stop this tragic talk of being a bad friend,right this second Lady Henry.For your darling husband Lord Henry,he took it upon himself and wrote a warm and ever so touching correspondence.Enclosing an invitation.’
Lord Benjamin came closer to my side.
‘Light of my life?’
‘Care to explain?’
‘Yes,ah indeed.’ I whispered. ‘Do tell me Benjamin darling.You missed an important detail? When where you going to tell me you had invited Lara?’
‘I was going to get around to it.’
‘What? And spare my blushes not of embarassment,but of humility.Of discovering Lara and Declan had married?’
‘I wasn’t aware of that?’
‘I’m sorry but I know Lara extremely well,I mean she didn’t write to you did she not? Ben?’
‘Then I can not believe she would miss out such a happy ending of her marriage to Sir Holmes.I know Benjamin,I’m perfectly well that I’m a fellow female specimen,it’s all in the detail.Tell me truthfully,did you read her reply Ben?’
‘Believe me my love,I’ve been pretty preoccupied with the estate recently.I was going to get around to it,you have my word.’
‘Indeed you were my love.’ I patted his shoulder.
Lord Henry looked towards Declan.
‘Lord Henry?’ He raised his hat as he addressed him.
‘Don’t rise to the bait my love.He’s not a love rival.’
‘I believe you Gisele,but it’s him I do not trust.’
‘Sir Holmes,raising your hat isn’t really necessary? It’s not as though you’re trying to start a courtship with my husband?’
‘No,but it’s the gentleman thing to do Gisele.’
‘I’d rather prefer if you would address me as Lady Henry….you’ve lost you’re right to call me that.After all I’m no longer you’re lady love.’ I blushed a little.
‘My Lady,why do you blush? Tell me are you embarassed of your husband?’
‘No not at all.Don’t be so prepostorous.’
‘Lord Henry and Sir Holmes are like two stags fighting for the prized female?’ said Evangaline.
Yes indeed Evangaline was right,Lord Henry and Sir Holmes locked horns as though they had something to prove to me? One fears he’s a coward,for allowing me to walk away from him.Not truly fighting for what he believed in.Why he threw the white hankerchief down.The other fighting to keep hold of his new wife.Living in constant fear her attentions will be asserted elsewhere.But both having something in common,acting like two proud,dominant and oh so arrogant male stags.Fighting for the affections of the blushing beautiful bright young fawn.Oh how Lady Isabelle must delight this Lady Rosaline looked on in sheer jealously and lust,pining for Lord Rickman.
‘My Rosaline you’ve gone a deep shade of green.’ teased Evangaline.
‘My stomache is slightly delicate.’gagged Lady Rosaline.
My mind wandered oh how I miss Louisa.Ever since Oliver’s midnight flit she isolated herself in Serenity Estate.
Holly gazed out of the window.I suspect curiosity killed the cat as far as she is concerned.
‘Holly Delessop! Come away!’ ordered Lady Antoinette.
‘Mama,I’m merely spectating!’
‘Holly I repeat,come away from the window at once! This is your mother addressing you!’
‘You’re not too old to receive a good thrashing!’
‘I can not believe I am stuck in here,listening to Ava attempt to play twinkle twinkle and three blind mice.Must I say,it was ever so sweet at first.But to hear it over and over in a constant loop.It’s indeed torture!’
‘Please,I beg of you my ears are bleeding! I’d much prefer I were to be put in the stocks and had a public flogging!’
‘She’s just a child!’
‘Please Mama,my head aches.’
‘Humour her Holly,you’re always saying how little you see you’re nieces.Life is so precious,there will come a time when Ava and Esme will grow and it will be us vying for their attention.’
‘That’ll never happen,they adore their Aunt Holly.’
‘Silly little pranks won’t win their affection,stop slouching!’
Ava stopped playing.
Holly breathed a sigh of relief. ‘It’s a miracle! Praise the lord for he is good! My prayers have indeed been answered.’
‘Hush Holly….Bravo! Bravo Ava!’
‘I’m going to play in the nursery with Esme.’
‘Don’t be long my child.’
‘I won’t Gran’Mama.’ Ava kissed Lady Antoinette upon the cheek.
‘Such a good child.’
Lady Antoinette watched as her grand daughter Ava ran up the grande staircase.
‘Sir Holmes and Lady Forster Holly you say?’
‘It’s true,I saw the ring with my own two eyes.’
‘I shall not believe it.By he’s a restless soul! Gisele,Louisa and now her? Lara of all people? I shall not believe it!’ enquirered Lady Antoinette.
‘That’s what I heard Mama.’
‘What else did they speak of? Come on dear Girl,I need to know all.’
‘That is all I’m afraid.’
‘Honestly child….I always thought Sir Holmes would die hankering after my Gisele.How did my daughter take it?’
‘Well as god is my witness,my sister why she took the news surprisingly well.She never bat an eye lid.’
‘Trying to keep up the pretence I imagine? I know my daughter.No good will come of this!’
Indeed it were,I was left in the grounds with Sir Holmes.Is this my personal test of trust by Lord Henry.See if I can restrain myself from the throwes of passion.After all he did once drive me wild,I did love him once upon a time.
‘Sir Holmes,how many times must I say this to you…I’d like to be addressed in a polite gentleman way,why we’re merely acquaintances.Refer to me Lady Henry,you’re just a guest in this house.A stranger nothing more,nothing less.I do not want anything from you.’
‘Gisele,how could we possibly be strangers.Please do not be like this?’
‘Haven’t I been punished enough Sir Holmes?’
‘A written warning would have been nice Sir Holmes.I’d much rather you did that,than turn up at my door with your new femme fatale.You’re new Lady Wife.’
‘I owe you nothing.’
‘I thought she was too possesive? Too needy?’
‘You know I can not answer that.’
‘Cant or won’t Sir Holmes? I’m sorry I took our love for granted.Day of all days,I could do without you being here.I’m inside my own personal hell,for one Lord Henry’s prim and proper parents despise me.Say I’m no good for their precious son.I hear their whispers,he’s certainly no angel.Lady Isabelle Chadwick is going out of her way to make a mockery of today.’
‘You’re beautiful when you’re angry.’
‘Angry yes…frustrated maybe? But my looks are fading….I’ve gone past the stage of being beautiful.Tell me do you love Lara?’
‘Time is precious.’
‘Stop avoiding the question Sir Holmes.You either love her or you dont?’
‘Allow me to finish,time is ever so precious and day by day it’s slipping away.You wouldn’t committ and allow me to love you.There came a time the day I met Lara,I initially thought yes she’s tolerable I suppose,we didn’t experience that instant spark the chemistry that was between us.She’s so beautiful,but I could never love her.At first I thought it was to get back at you.Use someone like you did to me?’
‘I never used you Sir Holmes.’
….As time went on,I spent some time with Lady Forster and I began to see the good qualities Lara she’s confident,extremely beautiful too beautiful to be associated with the likes of yours truly.She doesn’t carry the dark past like you.No one wants to be lonely in their lifetime Gis.I believed I could have waited a life time,an eternity to stand by your side once more.I counted my lucky stars after it ended with Lord Rickman believed I could have a chance with you once more.Because of you my heart weakened,hearing your head inside my head was my own personal torture.Then I awoke to my senses,I couldn’t be that weak and feeble man.I wasn’t Carl,refused to allow the love of a good lady kill me.Here I am,standing in front of you proud a married gentleman of the world.With nothing to prove to you,I’m happy to say that I am am one of the few who survived the look of the bewitching nymph that once were Lady Gisele Tara Anastacia Delessop.
Sir Holmes attempted to walk away from me.
‘Wait.Sir Holmes,you must understand I did love you? Once upon a time.’
I couldn’t conscentrate on dinner,I sat there in silence,mouthful after mouthful.Felt nothing but guilt.I casually gazed in Sir Holmes direction.Perhaps if Declan and I were still together? Then would I ever had Esme and Ava? And William? Questioning his existance was like a dagger had pierced my soul.Maybe my beautiful sweet son would still be here if I wasn’t so worried and stressed over my secret affair with Benjamin If I hadn’t been planning on running away then I would never have given birth to him early.And if my paths never crossed with Earl Jack’s path.Carl would be here sat beside me with his wife and perhaps with a beautiful daughter.As I know in my heart,he would have eventually found it within his heart and forgiven me for being unfaithful.The thought of never meeting my kindred spirit Lord Henry pained me so.He’d offered me the moon and the stars if he could,there’s no denying I loved him.I loved him with every breathe of my body….till my heart ached.
After my encounter with Sir Holmes we where all gathered in the drawing room.Holly was ever so bored and I could sense she intended in looking for trouble.
‘What was all that business with Sir Holmes?’
‘It’s all in hand.’I smiled sweetly.
‘Don’t tell me you have your wicked way with him in the gardens? Gisele Tara Anastacia for shame! Haven’t you learnt?’
‘Once upon a time I would have delighted in nothing more than that.’
Mama was making herself at home.
‘Gisele? I say! This is quite a remarkable place if I do say so myself.Peonia rosa screams all of the ambience and qualities a family home aught to be.My daughter is Lady is this remarkable place,it’s like all of my dreams have come true.’ She looked over in Lady Isabelle trying her damn hardest to gloat.
‘Thank you Mama.’
‘It’s such a tragedy,your Aunt Helene and Grace were unable to attend.’
‘Yes isn’t it just? I long to see them.Why I shall have to write and pay them a visit with the children some times.’
Lady Chadwick ignored Lady Delessop’s snide remarks allowed it to go over her head.I wish I could take her cruel cold hearted comments with a pinch of salt.Once more she turned to addressed Tom once more.
‘Ah! Mr Davernport,I believe Peonia rosa vision is of your own design.’
‘Yes my Tom is genious.’ smiled Reinette proudly. ‘Why,he looked painstakingly hard everything was to be the correct scale.To Gisele’s hunger she may appear on the outside as only interested in poetry and books.But she has quite an eye for design and architechture….keeping true to herself.’
‘Enough! Mrs Davernport I’ve heard quite enough from you.Allow your husband to speak.’
‘Why Lady Chadwick the two faced….’
‘Gisele is such a dark horse? Embarking with dangerous liasions with the architect quite the scandal!’ whispered Holly under her breathe.
‘Gisele,pray tell me are you going for the medieval castle look from Arthurian days? This is not the typical italian decor…..doesn’t live up to my expectations.Or are cobwebs part of the fixture? Tut tut.’
‘Oh,I’m sorry didn’t anyone mention it? Cobwebs why they are the height of italian fashion.It gives peonia rosa an earthly rustic appearance.Keep up Lady Chadwick.’
‘Don’t bite.’ whispered Lord Henry soothingly as though I were his prized feline.Jealously leads to anger and hate,pride before a fall.’
‘There just sayings it means nothing.’
‘It’s all about pride.’
‘As I said before Antoinette,if your daughter took pride in her house,like she did with her prized horse then we wouldn’t be here discussing this would we? Sheer vanity gets you no where in this life time.We all shrivel up and die,like those roses in your front garden.’
I casually clutched onto my tea cup.I didn’t want to appear a coward in my household,and certainly not in front of my daughters.I let out a quiet growl.
‘My Benjamin,has been tirelessly busy with the girls.Ensuring that it was to my standards for your arrival.’
‘So I see….’
‘Ava and Esme are rather pleased with their craftsmanship and quite right to.’
‘Child Labour for shame!’
‘The children are a dream,unlike your lump of a daughter.They simply delight in helping.We are teaching them a much needed valuable life lesson.For their are times that you may have to put some hard graft in to reap rewards.No daughter of mine,is to grow into mature young ladies ever worried about damaging their beautiful finger nails.Constantly sitting on their idol backsides longing for their love to find them.Nor will they will transform into idol,empty minded shells of woman kind.Rude,obnoxious rich girls.Thinking their above their servants.They value Nancy and the rest of the staff here at Peonia rosa.Esme and Ava,are not to be demanding and expect everything to be handed on a silver platter plate.They are to be polite and courteous appreciated their possessions.
‘I taught my daughter well.’ smiled Lady Antoinette fondly.
My that’s a turn out for the books? Lady Antoinette,defending her daughter.For once,she never uttered the words.The words that make me feel as though I’m five years old again and I’m helping Martha clean the fireplace.
‘For shame Gisele! This this servants work.’ Her eyes piercing with fury. ‘Look at your hands dear girl,covered in coal! Yes I taught my daughters value and respect the world around them.But this here….is servants work? Martha what are you doing girl.Allowing a five year old girl? Honestly what is the true purpose of them,if your doing the work yourself.Your beautiful nails and fingers….your dress will be ruined! They will no longer be musicians hands,fit to play the piano so gracefully as you do.Why cleaning the fireplace,it is beneath the Delessop’s code to work.’ And this went so on even after Papa’s death.
Yes some may find pride in loves labour of work,but not you.Lord William,your papa.He himself will be turning in his grave.If he ever got the slight impression that his daughter had did something so horrid and beneath her position.Why it’s a good whipping you deserve! Beat it out of you.It’s because you’re friendship with this Tom has made you crave to live a simple life.A commoner.’
‘Mama you’re behaving my friendship with Tom is as though I’ve clutched my inheritance from Papa’s cold dead hands?’
Lady Chadwick soon brought me back to my attention.
‘Lady Gisele,you must have servants to do all of the household chores for you?’
I felt ever so humiliated I made my excuses and retreated into the day room.When I refer to that I mean the lounge.Day room sounds like a room you confine yourself in,trying to put right all of your regrets as you await for the shadow of death to approach you.There was a knock upon the door.
‘Leave me alone!’
‘It is I.Princess Sophia.’
‘Sophia what are you doing here?’
‘Asking for your permission to be allowed in here.I will get down on my knees and beg….’
‘That isn’t necessary,tell me are you alone?’
‘Are you suggesting I do the pinky swear? On my life I Sophia,husband of Daniel King,solemnly swear that I come alone.Just allow me in,the servants they are staring.’
I slowly opened the door greeting my friend with tear stained cheeks. ‘Now,we wouldn’t like that now would we?’
I gestured her to come inside.
‘Gisele,why you hide in here?’
‘Don’t tell me Mama sent you to check up on me? How typical of her.’
‘Lady Antoinette has no idea,believe me.’
‘Whenever I feel afraid,I go to my favourite place….surrounded by the things I love.What I hold most dear.Not of the bible,but of the beautiful woven words of the bard Mr William Shakespeare.This is my only sanctuary.Sophia,I look to you and I envy you how in tune you are with your husband.How you find the inner strength to battle with Lady Chadwick,finding your inner poise….’
‘Battling with Lady Isabelle,comes with the territory of marrying Daniel.I’ve grown to tolerate it.’
‘I mean why does she dislike me so? Lord Rickman is free of me,her wretched daughter is welcome to have her wicked way and have beautiful intelligent children.I no longer desire him,the scars I carry of that marriage.Why is she so bitter and twisted….’
‘You know what she’s like Gisele? Constantly looking down at you,pointing that mishapen nose up in disgust.But in the past,you’ve always given the acid tongued dragon her come uppance.Where is the fight? The girl who had the spirit,the courage to stand by what she believed in.To bring her down from within her estate?’
‘If only I knew?’
‘I fear the old Gisele died once you married Lord Benjamin.You’re ashamed of the past and of your former actions.I give you that,but be true to your heart to who you are.Lord Henry doesn’t want a canvas copy of Helen of Troy.The goddess of perfection.He loves the fire that ignites your soul,that brought you together.Your Papa,he himself your knight in shining armour isn’t here to be rescue his little princess any more.Would he be proud,if you layed down and surrendered to her? No he admired you,for standing you’re grand fighting for what you truly believed in.Live by the Delessop’s code.Live and die by the sword.Battle with the shield.I have every faith in you.Now as for Lady Rosaline,she’s jealous of the qualities you possess.Sincerity,sweet kind soul,patience.Pure love running through your veins.Driven by your precious beautiful daughters your love to do for them burns ever so brightly.Love of a good gentleman,he worships you.Surrendering is portraying yourself as weak and feeble.In doing so you’re failing them.Lady Henry,I ask no I demand you go back in with your finest gown and diamonds.Dazzle them with your charm and wit.Make Lord William proud of you.’
‘Thank you Sophia,you have proven your worth and duty of a true friend.Stood by me through the dark times.How are things between you and Daniel?’
‘Well ever since I deprived him of having an heir to his fortune? The love and affection that was once between us has gradually faded away like the dust which we are about to become.’
‘I do not understand,I was always under the impression you and Daniel loved one another? The solid fairytale marriage I onced looked to and envied?’
‘Looks can be deceptive Gisele.Daniel and I are awfully fond of one another.But sadly we are only remaining together for Nicole’s sake.Excuse me,I’m afraid I’ve said too much.’
Sophia slipped away from my side,time after time Sophia has held my hand,brushed away my hair,Remained a rock and dried my tears away when I was a little girl lost.As my world crumbled around me,Sophia picked up the pieces and repaired my broken heart.Like a true friend she’d really stood by me and all the while my poor divine Sophia was suffering in silence.I always looked to my Daniel and Sophia’s marriage as elegant and graceful,defined all odds and married.Against Lady Chadwick’s fury and ill feeling towards Sophia,remained steadfast and strong.I detected Sophia was upset that her secretly had been exposed,agreed that I shall speak no more of this and vowed to take this secret to my grave.
Night time fell all around us,Lord Henry did me proud placing twinkling fairylights which complimented the shining beauty of the stars.The brightest star my William,shining ever so brightly upon his Mama.Tonight I opted for a beautiful pink satin gown,which had a white ribbon around it’s waist.Giving my guests the impression of sweet serenity and true inner beauty.It was time for the recital,gone was the moment of laughter which taked place during the cricket.The seriousness of the croquet game,the dancing in the ball room seemed so long ago.But my feet held the tell tale signs of the bruises Daniel gave me,as the stood upon my feet.As held me in his arms,I tried to revisit the time when he proposed to me the eve of my twenty first times were so much easier then.We never had to fill in the awkward silences,I can not believe he was deceiving me for ever so long.I sat in the audience,looking on as my sweet little flower Ava nervously played her signature ballad ‘twinkle twinkle.’ As I looked on,I felt a mixture of emotions proud and so nervous Mama.Time went on I wish I could trade places with her,I truly felt for her tonight.As I indeed once upon a time had the pain of being marched up on the stage by my Mama.I was taught to play on demand no matter how I felt.’The show must go on,you can curl your bottom lip and pout all you like petit Gisele.You simply can not let your Papa or I down.’ Papa had the opposite,the caring gentle nature. ‘Gisele you look to me with your gentle puppy dog eyes,you’re a shining star.I’m so proud of you Miss Delessop.’
Ava was then followed by a violin interlude,led by the ever so smug Lady Rosaline.Esme chose to do an excert from the Nutcracker.
‘Miss Esme,she moves with such elegance vigour and grace?’ smiled Lady Lara. ‘Gisele,you must be ever so proud?’
‘I am of both of my daughters.’ I beamed.
I was a Mama even to William Tristan in his death,no one will ever strip that priviledge away from me.Despite having a damaged Mama in their midst,constantly blighted by her past.My daughters have overcome this,and blossomed into pretty little things.
Lord Henry clasped onto my hand gently.
‘Sing for me my Angel.’
‘This Nightingale has died.’
‘Sing for me my beautiful song bird.’
‘I do not wish to steal away my girls thunder.’
‘Reawaken her like a phoenix from the ashes.A requiem for your dear Papa?’
I slowly walked towards the stage,about to face my audience.Because of Ben,I have a purpose in my life live and breathe music once more.Lady Darcie,had a hidden vendetta of her own.She looked on in sheer disgust at this beautiful display.
‘So this is the family my son married into? The great and powerful Dynasty of Delessops?’
‘Hush Mama!’ whispered Lord Henry.
‘Why are you defending these small minded people Benjamin? They Lord it over everyone,claim to be of pure royalty blood? Not of new money? But behind the walls,hide such secrets of scandal and deceit? Her youngest sister Lucille,whored herself off to willing officers.Died due to her own stupidity.Holly,is no better she may have beauty.But tell me where is her intellect? She’s beneath shallow.Evangaline appears sweet,but do not be fooled my dear boy.As for your darling wife Gisele.She’s masquerading as a beautiful sweet innocent.Kind and charming young Lady.The pure white swan,all that is good…lures my son into a false sense of security.Allowing,unsuspecting gentlemen such as yourself to woo her with beautiful flowers and sentiments.She’s a dangerous courtesan,I mean marrying a lady of french aristocracy.Bringing foreign blood into the Henry Dynasty? For shame! I mean soiety says Sir Carl,her one and only true love.Died at the hands of her former so called abusive lover Earl Merrells? I say Carl confessed he couldn’t get enough of her.Implied on seducing her there and then,she couldn’t take his unearthly obsession and pulled the trigger herself.Killing an innocent man in cold blood.As for Esme and Ava,I’m ashamed you associate yourself with her ferrall children.They are probably infested with all kinds of diseases.My heart is aching,I feel for you Benjamin.I say you’ve had an extremely lucky escape Arthur.Your brother has danced with death,made a deal with the devil since he said I do.I mean a summer fete and gala? What is she trying to prove? Standing there,she doesn’t portray herself of innocence and trust.Trust lust and betrayal.’
‘Can I stop you for one moment please.Lady Evangaline,is a kind respectable young woman.She mirrors confidence,but that’s not her truth.Why she’s wronged by the cruelness of society.That once protected her,and took her under it’s wing as a child.When in fact she’s a dream.As for my Gisele,you know nothing of her.’
‘You’re trapped in a marriage.Louisa is….’
‘Ah yes the english rose you once referred to? I’m sorry if you cannot accept Louisa and I are no longer together.But I walked into my second marriage with my eyes fully open and aware of what I was getting myself into.Gisele is beyond close to perfect and neither am I.You have gone out of your way to judge her on idol gossip.You’ve spent five minutes with Lady Isabelle Chadwick and she’s already poisoned your mind against the truth.As for my beautiful girls,there not ferral.Since I promised to you I do,I promised to love honour and protect my wife and her children.There my world and your grand children.’
‘Not in blood?’
‘Not in blood maybe.But I adore them,Lady Darcie if you can not accept them.Then I believe your heart is indeed made out of glass.’