"I should have gotten rid of you on the night of your engagement! Then you would never stand in my way again!"
"You?" My voice squeaked through the pressure.
"You look so surprised."
"Cynthia," I tried to tap her to let me go but it was no use.
"Oh look we have another friend in common, you know she has been waiting for this moment for a long time," Cynthia threw me over and I hit the body of a tall woman and when I looked up it was Lydia.
"Hi Alice, I have longed to see you my dear," Lydia kicked me to the floor and when I looked back Cynthia took one last wrathful look before leaving the room.
"Oh your friend is gone she excused herself for us to get to know each other finally, or rather for you to know me, so let us go have a chat somewhere more private..."
The moment of my death, it had crossed my mind so many times, when I expected to die of a broken heart, when I wished to have died in the place of my father, or of my little sister but never like this, at the hands of someone else's past. And then I could think back on Mr. Howard confessing his love, I could see his eyes clearly and the times he kept me at a distance carefully examining me, we were so alike it was no surprise we did not get along for our flaws are mostly reflected on the person we fight with the most. Thinking back to his rejection and how obvious it would have been to understand it if I knew he had long dismissed the female species as creatures of vanity rather than feeling, loving humans. If I would have known then his view was so distorted I would have avoided taking him through his worst nightmare, the thing which changed him many years ago. Then Cynthia never would have won him over with stories which presented her as the victim of vain self-centered girls, who Mr. Howard would soon think on as the dead and vain Lady Alice Stewart.
Lydia towered over me pulling me down to a basement as my body thumped and rolled down the few stairs I could feel the blood emerge from a cut on top of my eyebrow and my hands were tightened by rope behind my back.
"Here you shall be invisible to eye like me."
"Lydia please do not harm me..." I tried to make out her face but everything went on spinning so I shut my eyes.
"Harm you? Oh no dear I mean to say a final goodbye to you by the end of this conversation..."
"Yes first I want you to know in this war for taking my place you were always going to lose..."
"Take your place? I never meant to take anyone's place. If anyone is trying to usurp a place it is Cynthia? She is the one who..."
"I know but you tried to take my place in Sebastian's life, in my son's life and I know very well Cynthia believes she will too, that she can control me, she gave me money to get rid of you, you know? She thinks I will board a boat to America tomorrow morning."
"Of course not, I would never ever leave my family, my beautiful family, Sebastian and Joseph are everything to me, but before I take care of Cynthia I have to be done with you and then I will finally take my place as Lady Lydia Howard of Bridgeston."
Lydia was insane for I would not think Mr. Howard would ever want her back after so many years had gone by, her goal was pure figment of her imagination.
"You have no reason to get rid of me Lydia so why would you do this? You have nothing to gain."
"You think I would let the woman who was almost the ruin of my family roam around freely? Never, which is why I must do this for their own good; they deserve revenge after you tried to separate us."
"Lydia I did not try to separate you, if anything you could only hate me for loving the same man you do."
"You do not love him! You know nothing of love! I know love! All these years I have kept him safe from the likes of you, silly women who want the admiration he has for me, the money he has to offer. I have kept him safe for the moment we will finally be together and although you little maids have tried to take him away from me I am still here, not them and not you anymore, not for much longer like the others."
"Yes the others."
"The other maids? You were the one? What have you done Lydia? What have you done to him!" I was immediately angered at the thought of his perpetual sadness, loneliness, perturbed state of mind came from her actions to ensnare him for herself.
"Don't you raise your voice at me!"
"You must let him go, he will never be happy unless you do, you must forget him Lydia like I will!"
"Never, my love is the only true love! I will never give him up unlike you! You and all the others could never equal up to the love I have offered him, the love only I can offer!"
"No, no, this is not love."
"Not love! Not love! I shall make you beg!" Lydia kicked me twice.
It was no wonder the maids disappeared, the chills the house gave me were very real though I never thought it was warning me of my future death or the death of others before me at the hands of his jealous ex-fiancée Miss Lydia.
"Then I beg, I have no reasons to stay, if I go all will be well, I have nothing pending on earth, my brother is taken care of and he will care for my mother, Mr. Henry and Lady Walker will never see my money, Martha is about to be married, Joseph is happy and I will never have to suffer for not being with Mr. Howard so yes I beg you, be done with it please."
"No you are doing this wrong! Beg! Beg for your life Alice!" She kicked me once more on the ribs, "beg, ask for help or I will slowly kill you like this!"
"Help, someone help," I faked the begging because her kicks hurt me too much, I wish it had been something quicker.
"Beg!" She punched me and I did beg.
"Too bad no one will hear you; I am quite good the expert at choosing a place where I can say goodbye in peace..."
A little bottle came out of from her dress; was that poison? Would she poison me?
"What is that?" I looked but soon her hand was on my nose to open my mouth and make me drink whatever it was. The concoction was going into my mouth as I tried to spit the liquid back out to her face.
"Come Alice be a nice little miss and drink this then I will let you go home."
"No, if you want to kill me then you will do it with your bare hands, do not be a coward, get your hands dirty."
"Fine then let your last wish be granted!" I had made her angry and waited for the kicking, the hurting with my body rolled up on the floor and nothing happened but a thump as Lydia fell on top of me.
"Shhh... Shhh... You will be alright, everything will be alright..." My savior said taking me up in their arms though I had never seen the man in my life.
"Who are you! Let me go! Let me go!"
"I am here to make sure you are safe, so please just calm down, everything will be fine, just fine," and then exhausted and in pain I drifted off...
There was light taking me by the hand, there was such peace such as I had never known and when I walked towards it the water rose up filling everything until I was all but head in into a mirrored white sea and in the silence underneath such lightness I could flutter up to the sky above and be gone nothing held me down.
Copyright: All Rights Reserved to A. Sena Gomes.
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The Greatest JourneyHistorical Fiction
Miss Alice Stewart is a poor girl, recently fatherless with a mother and two younger siblings to take care when she finds a job in service as a maid with her aunt Mrs. Green. Soon the family she works for loses money and lets go of her, in need of w...