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Written in Ash Read 4475 times

Ara

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Re: Written in Ash
« Reply #30 on: October 27, 2016, 04:09:44 pm »
Elinor giggled at Isabelle’s words—charming thing that she was. She spun from her but kept their fingers laced, pulling her from the barn and toward the homestead with a skip. “Hurry along, Tobias, we can’t keep our aunt and uncle waiting on dinner!” She called and her smile was big because she could still feel the agony rippling off of him.

When they were half between the house and the barn, Elinor lifted their laced hands to kiss Isabelle’s knuckles. “Vixen,” she whispered with a laugh. “He knows torment now and I fear it will only grow with the evening. He will have restless, terrible sleep thinking of your and James.” She smiled wider, freely in their stolen moment when anyone that caught sight of them would see only the carefree cheer of good women. “It is good of us, to put him out of his misery. Tomorrow he will be free and, I dare say, grateful.”

The dinner table was full. It was father’s favorite night of the month, when they gathered and used up every chair and stool, cramming around that big table covered in food and plates. Her father was a sensible, goodly man. The kind that believed hard work cleared the mind and that family was God’s greatest gift. He was a big man with a bigger smile and tonight it beamed bright because two of his children would finally marry and grow new branches on his great family tree.

Elinor sat beside Isabelle, as they had since they were children. More than once she caught James looking at Isabelle longer than normal, his cheeks a slight pink when he turned his gaze away. Oh, he had heard the rumors too. It was good then, that something truly wicked would strike Patience tonight, because given much more time their mothers would likely have them engaged as well.

Tobias barely ate, an oddity for a young man that worked so hard, but he too saw those curious glances and studied the clever blush on Isabelle’s cheeks. How it pained him, to imagine her affection for another. He hadn’t given it much thought before, hadn’t dared to, but now he couldn’t stop thinking. His Isabelle. That was how he thought of their beloved cousin in his deepest thoughts and Elinor heard it ringing like a bell. His Isabelle. Oh, what horrible things she could push him to do if need be.

Francis was in excessive good nature and commented loudly on each delicious portion that Elinor had made. He complimented his mother just to make her point out that it had been his sister who made it so that he, in turn, could mention what a shame it would be for them when she was no longer here to make it. He did it was a blade to his tongue, lashing out with an aim to hurt Elinor but she felt the blows for what they were, ripples off his own heart. She worried only slightly for the woman he one day loved, because she would know ripples that felt like waves.

They ate and ate and talked and listened and laughed. No one noticed that Isabelle and Elinor didn’t touch the apple pie Elinor had baked. It was a family favorite, apples plucked from a favorite tree at the edge of the Thomas fields.

Watching the table, with all of them gathered, Elinor almost felt wicked. They were all so foolish, so sure of their lives, so certain how things would go next. None of them were prepared for what tomorrow would bring or how that night would change Patience forever. But Elinor was certain, without flinching, without care, that she would destroy ever man, woman, and child in their quant village if it brought her and her beloved even a single day of glorious happiness.



Jill the Ripper

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Re: Written in Ash
« Reply #31 on: October 31, 2016, 01:12:53 pm »
The sun set on their meal and the village and Isabelle could taste it, as everyone ate - the dark wave that was coming for them all, like the tidal beasts that thrashed her father's boats in the ocean. 

She let James help her into her parent's cart, after she and Elinor kissed each other goodbye.  His cheeks were pink and he smiled before dropping his gaze, bashful.  Tobias, helping her father connect the horses to the cart, watched it all, and so Isabelle played her part, letting her fingers linger in James's.  He really was a gentle creature - it would be a shame to leave him with his own quiet sadness, after tonight's events changed all their lives.  And he would bare it quietly, too, fading once more into the background without the bloom of love to shine attention on him.   But still, he was also of a sweet nature - surely that would not be allowed to go wasted?  Mayhap she and Elinor could bring him to a woman deserving of him, after they freed Elinor herself. 

It did not take long for their pies to work their secrets through those that ate of them; and thanks to her beloved, every family in town should have supped on them.  Who could have resisted the fresh pastry, the sugary apples - and all from Elinor Thomas, so charmed, so happy and helpful.  The loving way they would've been delivered around town - a thoughtful gesture, even amid her own happiness - would be a charm of it's own, working it's way into the townspeoples' hearts, opening them up to the treat.   

How this town would fall around Elinor's feet, at her despair, the tragic Queen - and Isabelle would be at her side, fierce for her, as justice was found for her beloved's fiance's horrific murder. 

She could almost taste the laughs they would hide, Nicolas's blood in their mouths.

The candle burned low when Isabelle was sure that all in Patience slumbered.  She could feel it, like a heavy veil, all those dreams calling out to her: but there was only one she wanted, tonight. 

Barefoot, clad only in the white soft cotton of her nightgown, Isabelle left the house silently, though no one would hear her.  She stood outside and could feel the whispering of the trees, the wind touching her hair, unbound.  In the moonlight she closed her eyes, and let her feet take her forward as she found the dream she wanted, calling out to her.   

It tasted like cream and desire.   Isabelle let her head lull back, aware of her hair, thick around her shoulders as she whispered from her own thoughts and mind and into Sarah Carson's.   The dream Isabelle had crafted was sweet and heady, rich;  she weaved the clean smell of Nicholas, the warmth of his sun-dried shirt to wrap around Sarah, dressed in silks and crowned in flowers.  She would follow it, hearing his voice, until it lead her to him, sleeping sweetly in a bower of primroses, where she would reach out and touch him, feel what a man felt like.   

Isabelle called out to Elinor in that silent, soul-driven way they shared.  It is time.   


« Last Edit: October 31, 2016, 02:35:08 pm by Ara »

Ara

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Re: Written in Ash
« Reply #32 on: November 03, 2016, 03:45:35 pm »
She had walked the road from her family’s ranch up into Patience a thousand times. She could walk it blind, without counting her steps, and still stop right in front of any house she sought. The breeze rolled over her, pulling at her dark hair, loosely braided back from her face and uncovered. It pulled at nightgown, white but swallowed and saturated by the dark of night. Thick clouds moved across the sky, and the moon hid away, turned from what must be done with a weak heart. But Elinor’s heart was not weak.

For a while, she was certain she had faded away completely, into the shadows. She was certain she had become a part of them, moving through the night without sound.

She left the path and the long grass against her naked shins reminded her that she was still flesh. She was still wrapped in skin and rooted in bones. Freer than the blackberry bushes but not quite as free as the wind. She came around the back side of Lorell house, stepped over the little fence around the flower beds she’d helped Prudence plant, and came to the big window Mr. Lorell always left open. She sat on the ledge and turned, slipping inside that sleeping house like death itself. Mr. Lorell was fast asleep there, in the bed in the corner with the curtain drawn along it. He had given the bedrooms to his children, a truly doting father.

She checked on Prudence, standing at her door and listening to her heart thudding away and her little puffs of air. And then she went to Nicholas’ door. She opened it without fear of waking anyone. She could feel them all plunged so deep into sleep. She could kill them all and wake not a soul. She could scream and scream and no one would hear it.

Elinor came to the side of his bed in the pitch, felt it against her shins, and reached out with long fingers to take the matches from his bedside table. She struck one and the room exploded with light, chasing back all those sinister shadows—all but one. She lit the candle and let that light grow strong in the room around them. Nicholas slept soundly in only his shift, covers drawn to his chest. His hair was against his cheek and his pink lips parted in sleep. She reached out, touching his cheek briefly. He could have been hers. She could have saved him, protected him, made him important. Nicholas. Sweet, good, Nicholas. But not her Nicholas. A shame he didn’t have someone like her to guard him. She decided then, fingertips in his hair, that she would make her own parents pay for what they’d cost him by promising him a bride he could not have. Not his fault—but not hers either.

Her dark eyes closed and she drug in a breath when she felt Isabelle, like God speaking to her, whispering with endless power and love. She nodded and moved down the length of the bed, pulling the quilt that covered him along with her. It had been sewn by his mother, it would be a shame to ruin it. No reason to bloody two of the woman’s creations in one night. She folded it and draped it over the arm of a chair before leaving the room to the front door. The latch moved easily, loud and iron, and she pushed the door into a wide open swing.

Her Isabelle was there in the night with a flame and it was enough to make Elinor smile. Isabelle carrying a little flame was like the ocean holding a cup of water. Elinor curtsied to her sister in wickedness in her nightgown before sinking back into the house with terrible invitation. She took a knife from the kitchen table and led the way to his bedroom.