Chapter LIV

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The procession with the Stanleys, the Walkers, the Campbells, the Scotts and the Thomas' began as we reached the burial site which had been exclusively built for the Stewarts

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The procession with the Stanleys, the Walkers, the Campbells, the Scotts and the Thomas' began as we reached the burial site which had been exclusively built for the Stewarts. Mother had been in charge of making a beautiful memorial where my grandfather, grandmother and father were buried now and where my sister's coffin would have its proper place inside too. Daniel left as soon as the procession was over to be with mother back home and I hoped this would help mother never think on such a crime against her life for there was already too much to weep for.

The local family priest came to bury another member of the family with a few warm Christian words of encouragement he made it quite kind since children were of little consequence in society.

"Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven. And so may this little girl Joan remind us how precious her life is to the Lord, and the time she spent on Earth for the joy of her earthly family now may it be the same in heaven, Amen."

As the priest finished his message my sister's coffin was led inside the small building. I wished I could see it, how happy my father would be to receive her once again but all I saw was black, smoky air, a priest, and the coffin.

"Amen," I saw the oppression settle in.

The friends who attended came and offered their condolences while I stood outside the memorial with a black veil over my face by Martha's side who would not leave me.

"Martha may I be alone for a while in the memorial please?"

"Shall I wait for you outside?"

"No that's quite alright, thank you for all you've done the past few days but I shall be fine today, Edna is waiting for me, you may go be with your family."

"Then I will see you tomorrow to say goodbye before you go back to the country."

"Thank you," Martha kissed my cheek and I waved her goodbye stepping in the middle of the darkness where my family had met its end.

"Alice," Mr. Howard drew close as if he had waited for everyone to be gone and stepped inside the memorial of my family.

"I... Uh... Thought you gone sir," I said feeling not passion, not anger, nor delight, everything was frozen at the present encounter of Mr. Howard, everything had been put aside for this occasion.

"I had to ask, how are you? The last time we saw each other you fainted and you were already frail of health so..." He altered between questions and statements not knowing which to say.

"Well I cannot afford to be frail of health; my mother needs to be looked after and I will not pass on the responsibility."

"Of course but who will care for you? Mr. Henry?"

"God, and his angels, they have kept me alive though the purpose behind this I have yet to find out," I looked over at each name, each life gone but had each mission been completed?

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