Sunday, January 17, 2010

It has taken me a while to get my head wrapped around being back up North and away from my native Shire. Sometimes when I look back at my writing I cannot believe how much I take it for granted. In the Shire I am warm and taken care of. Up North, though I am not truly wanting for anything there is just a lack of poise that comes naturally to us Southerners.

But really, I have been back a fair few days and I do need to keep you up to date.

I had a letter wai
ting for me up North from Duke. It is a simple letter hoping that my journey was uneventful and that the letter finds me in good health. A small account of what he has been up to since being back in Scotland, sounds like he is trying to change a fair amount at the manor and I'm not sure how well that will go down with the cotters and greasmen. But no mention of my imploring letter filled with jealous vibes to which I am very thankful. I am not going to see him for months; I should just put him out of my head.

Of course, in being back up North I have had to cope with the humiliation of the affair. It is, apparently not so much of a scandal that I had thought; everyone had already thought our relationship was built on the physical and that it had been consummated months beforehand, therefore this just seems like another rumour of the same vein or another confirmation of previous affairs.

Harlequin gave me a
hug, consoled me and helped me understand the situation before I had to face the public for which I am very grateful. He also gave me the courage to go and face him.

We passed each other in the great corridor two days ago. We were quite alone minus a few guards at their various posts. My heart stopped when I saw him. Can you believe that the last time I saw him I was creeping out of his room in the wee hours of the morning praying that he would not wake up and that I would not get caught?

He stopped when he saw me and was ever so gracious and polite, giving me the appropriate stance for my status. But before I could speak he took me aback with his blasé, 'I hoped I would bump into you, I have something of yours,' and produced my gold and sapphire ring. At the time obviously I had to hide my embarrassment at his simple acknowledgement of our affair, and I did. I think. I accepted the ring and asked after his Christmas and New Year at home with his family, and his
wife. Apparently he had a lovely time but was glad to be back, he missed the Northern dramas that made him feel young. I had to leave him then. I refuse to get caught up in his wily charms again, so I guess it is better if we do not socialise in the same way as before.

I saw him again this morning while at church in the Cathedral. We exchanged little more than a fleeting glance and a courteous bow, trying to be no more excessive than how we acted before Christmas and it seemed to work. We received no looks that could be perceived as out of the ordinary. I need to close this chapter on him. I need to remind myself of the guilt I felt while at home and concentrate on that. Or so the priest told me at confession.

It is lovely being back at the Manor with all my Northern friends. They are so rowdy in comparison to my Ladies in the Shire, but I know that our scrapes in this new year will become memories that we will treasure forever.

D. S.

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