EA A Father’s Choice Part 16

Sorry Lynn this chapter is not exactly what you were expecting. I decided that it would be best to take a much different route. Although, your comment did get me to thinking that yours might have been the better path, but I guess I am just stuck on the road less traveled by..

Part 16

She took a different then usual way back to her room. She was almost positive that Henry would follow her, and try his best to comfort her. She did not want to see him or either of her parents right now. From the looks on their faces, she knew that all of them had known long before she was told and she resented them for that.

Once she arrived at her room, she began to pack her things. Her father, she corrected her thoughts, the King had offered her the opportunity to stay in the palace, but she was not going to allow herself to be a guest in her own home. She packed all of her clothes, books, and other things that she either wanted to keep or knew would fetch a good price. Tomorrow, she would leave the palace.

Her plan was simple. She would sell whatever she could and then she would use that money to find herself a place. She was a gifted cook and excellent seamstress she was sure she would be able to find a job. A smile graced her face. She would finally be able to know what it was like to be a real person and to be able to tell if people really liked her or if they liked her title. In a way, she was almost glad that this had happened.

Suddenly there was a knock on her door. She called out, “Come in Henry.” Sure enough, Henry came walking in the door. “I knew you would be here sooner or later.”

Henry took a moment to observe the scene. “Might I ask what you are doing? To me, it looks like you are packing, but I do not believe that you are actually leaving. Surely you know that you are welcome here.”

“Just because I am welcome does not mean that I wish to stay. I know that this might not make sense to you, but this is really for the best. It will give me a chance to live a normal life, and for once I will be able to know if people like me for who I am not what I am. Sure there will be a few people who will treat me different because of who I use to be.”

“Danielle, I can not let you go. If you left, I do not know what I would do. The castle would not be the same without you. I would have to bare father all on my own. I am sure you do not wish this on me.”

Danielle smiled slightly. She then gave him a hug. “You shall be fine. Just pretend that I have gone off to finishing school again. You have always been so much stronger than me and I am positive that you will be able to make it through this.” Danielle thought for a moment of a way that she might be able to please him. “I shall not leave a forwarding address because I do not want to constantly be bothered by palace matters. Instead, I will give an address to Jacqueline and she will make sure that all of my letters to you make it to you.”

Henry took a good hard look at Danielle. She was much stronger than anyone had ever thought. The old Danielle would have cried for a few days and then stayed at the palace. This Danielle was much stronger. She did what she knew was right even if she did want to stay here. Henry felt that it was his turn to hug her. “Even if I do not support your decision to leave I am proud of you. It takes a great amount of courage to do what you are doing. No matter what happens to you I shall always be here for you. Remember that.”

The hug went on for a good ten minutes. The rest of the night Henry helped her organize her belongs while they talked. She was going to sell almost all of her dresses except for the one she wore when she worked outdoors. She also planned to sell most of her jewelry and other belongings. The few things that she planed to keep were some books, letters, and other mementos.

When the sun rose from its slumber, Danielle headed out to town and sold the belongings. She was able to fetch a good price and ended up with quiet a large sum. Little did she know that her brother was following her ever step and was buying back ever item she sold. He was determined that some day soon she would want them again.

Once they were back at the palace, she made her plans to known to her ‘parents’. She was going to leave that afternoon and refused to accept any help from them. Their initial reaction was not a good one. Francis forbid her to leave while Marie just cried and begged her not to go. Nevertheless, she stood firm. She pointed out to them that they no longer had any control over her life and that she was finally going to do as she pleased.

Henry stood by her and promised her that he always would. He knew that as much as he wanted Danielle to stay things would be better if she did not. It would let her live on her own and let him try to cure the crush that he dared not to mention to her.

Danielle was able to follow her plan and was gone by two in the afternoon.

***********************************

With the money she had collected through out the day, she was able to purchase a horse. It was not a white stallion like she was use to at the place, but it was a sturdy creature that would serve her purpose well. Her first stop was Jacqueline’s home. She would not allow herself to leave without at least saying goodbye to her dear friend.

After that, she rode until it was nightfall. It was only then that Danielle aloud herself to cry. She had put up a strong front before, but now that she was given time to think all she wanted to do was cry. Everything she knew and loved was quickly growing in distance and yet she road on, and would continue to ride one.

At nightfall, she found herself in a small town that she did not know the name of. She found an inn to rest and eat at. She would be off again first thing in the morning. Her destination she was unsure of. All she knew was that she planned to stop for good when she was far enough away that few people would recognize her as well as a place that looked inviting.

The next day she arose early and rode again until nightfall. While ridding, she was given a lot of time to think. With each passing moment, she began to miss her home more and more. She began to wonder if she had done the right thing by leaving. Her head told her that she had but her heart longed to be among those things that were familiar.

On the third day she rode again, she decided that whatever city or town she was near at lunchtime would become her new home. The city was of a reasonable size. It was not so small that each person was related to each other because of inbreeding, but it was not large either. No one seemed to give her a second look, and for that she was grateful.

Quickly, she walked into the marketplace and started to inquire if anyone need a new cook or seamstress. Many people were willing to hire, but not someone whose background was a mystery to them. Danielle refused to tell them where she came from. She did not want the Royal Guard here to try to drag her back home. However, it also was not in Danielle’s nature to lie. As a result, she told them nothing.

She decided a change in plans was in order. She went to a small inn and had lunch as she thought over her options. Living alone was not going to be as easy as she had once thought, but she was still determined to do so. She decided that she could go into her own little business. No one knew fashion better then her and she could turn a nice little profit out of it.

After lunch, she began her searched for a house/shop to buy. It took her almost all day but she found the shop that was just the right size she needed. It took her a week to buy everything she needed to get started. She had to furnish her small second floor apartment, and buy some supplies to start making some dresses. She placed a sign in her window offering to make or fix a dress for any dame in town.

Being the smart girl that she was, she knew that there would not be an immediate rush of people. No one ever trusts the new person in town. Nevertheless, she started to make dress hoping that someone would admire her work in her window. For a month, people walked by her window with out giving her a second glance. Shortly, she would run out of money from all the things she sold, and would not be able to make it home again.

In her letters to Henry, she was always very selective in what she wrote to him. She did not want to give him any ideas as to where she was, but she also wanted him to think that she was doing well. His opinion of her meant more to her then before.

[ Edited by Kristen on 2002/6/10 9:58:21 ]

To Have and To Hold Chaps 23 – 24

Chapter 23

“What do you think you are doing with her?” Henry asked, when he reached the top.

Danielle looked at him. “Henry, please, he is..”

“And what exactly do you mean by that?” Jean Claude asked.

.”You know exactly what I mean. Keep your filthy hands off of her.”

“Henry, listen…”

Monique had followed Henry up to the top of the hill.

“What are you talking about?” Jean Claude asked, getting angry now. “And who the hell are you to her?”

“I am her best friend,” Henry said, “that’s all you need know. The rest is none of business.”

“Leave my step brother alone, you bully,” Monique cried, pushing Henry out of the way. “He hasn’t done anything.”

“Hasn’t he? He has gotten Danielle up here to do whatever he wants to do with her.”

He turned to Jean Claude. “Step brother?” he asked. “Monique is Danielle’s cousin? So I ask again: who is Danielle to you?”

“Henry, please, listen to me,” Danielle cried, “Jean Claude has done nothing. I was the one…”

Henry still wasn’t listening. “Jean Claude?” he asked. “Is that your name? Well, you just better listen to me, and stay the hell away from her.”

Jean walked over to him and grabbed him by the collar. “And her best friend? Seems like a little more to me than that.”

Henry’s face got red. He brushed over Jean Claude’s hand as if it were a fly. “It is none of your business right now. Now you tell me what you are doing up here with her or else I will…
Jean Claude interuppted. “Or else what? What will you do to me?”

“YOUR HIGHNESS, PLEASE!” Danielle screamed. She was angry and her voice was filled with tears. “I brought him up here to show him the beautiful view.”

Henry turned. She knew that would get his attention.

“Your Highness?” Jean Claude repeated, only softer.

Monique nodded. “He is Henry, the future King of France, my brother and will be officially crowned Prince when he reaches his eighteenth birthday.”

But Henry wasn’t paying attention to them. He was looking at Danielle with an angry frown.

“And you let me go on like that?”

“I tried to tell you, Henry, you just weren’t listening.”

Henry looked at her, then at Jean Claude. He smiled. “So you are her cousin, is that it?”

Jean Claude nodded. “Only by marriage, Your Highness,” he said.

Henry shook his head. “No, it’s too formal and it’s not official yet. I am just Henry to all of you.”

He looked at Danielle. “You and your family are expected at five, Danielle. I will see you then.”

Henry turned on his heel and walked back down the hill. Danielle just stared after him.

Chapter 24

Henry pulled out the journal when he returned to the castle. He was going to read it, but he was too angry and he threw the book on the bed and stood up. He walked over to the window and looked out before deciding that he wanted to sit outside on the turret. He often went there to think and when he wanted to be alone. No one usually found him up here.

How could Danielle shame him like that in front of everyone, especially Monique? Who did she think she was anyway? And what was he trying to do, living up to his parent’s ideal woman for him? Well, maybe Danielle wasn’t the answer after all. Perhaps his parents had been wrong. Monique had changed, that was obvious.

It was also obvious that Danielle liked this Jean Claude or who ever he was to her. She took him up to their private spot, told him things that he was not supposed to know. She shared their ultimate secrets with him. That wasn’t right. He didn’t do that with Monique, did he?

Perhaps I did, Henry thought as he mulled over what happened this afternoon. Maybe I should apologize to Danielle. I really do not know why she dragged him up there. I didn’t even give her a chance to speak or ask me questions. I just jumped to conclusions. I should straighten this whole thing out with her before she comes here. How would it look, everyone friendly except Danielle and I. Why, that’s exactly what that Jean wants. He wants her. Well, so do I and I refuse to give her up; I have feelings for her and…

Henry stopped. Why should he be the one to apologize to her? He always went to her, didn’t he? Well, for once, if she cared for him, she would go to him. Yes, that was the only way, if she went to him. He was convinced that this was right. And why couldn’t he be interested in Monique. She was only twelve. They had plenty of time before the two of them were supposed to marry. What would anyone care?
And what if he was to call the whole thing off?

He suddenly got tired and sat down, leaning his body up against the cold stone wall.

And he instantly fell asleep.

“Henry, our guests have arrived. Please come down.”

Henry woke up and turned. He hadn’t heard his mother coming up the stairs for him. She always knew where he went to hide.

“I will be down directly, Mother,” he said.

Marie nodded. “Anything wrong?” she asked.

Henry smiled. “No Mother, not just yet, but if anything does happen I will be sure to tell you. Do not worry.”

But Henry knew better than that. He knew that she would worry and ask him more questions.

EA A Father’s Choice Part 15

Part 15

Auguste did not want to take his visit to the palace too soon because there was no guarantee the he would be invited again. He waited until he could barely stand being in his own house and then came. It was two weeks later.

His coming to visit elated Henry. He quickly ushered the guest into the library, and ordered some refreshments to be served to them there. He then continued by telling one of the guards to find his sister and tell her that they had company in the library, and that her presence was requested. During all this, his guest perused the shelf. “It is quiet a collection you have here.”

Henry smiled, “Indeed it is. It has been many generations in the making and yet it never seems to have the book I am looking for. I fear that my family’s collection seems to lack in the more modern books. I guess my father is to blame for that one.”

Auguste pulled out a book, “Yes, but there are so many great other. You do not need a modern book while you have so many great ones by Plato.” He places the book back on the shelf.

“You and my sister shall get on capitally. She is a most ardent fan of Plato. I am sure that you have meet her before seeing as she is best friends with Jacqueline.”

“We have met briefly, but you know how young girls are. When together, it is hard to understand them. They seem to have no trouble understanding each other as they both talk at the same time and both at the speed of a hundred words per minute.”

Henry let out a slight laugh. “I believe that I have seen many of girls do just that including them. What is even worse is when they attack me. I could have been visiting with a girl for an hour and all I know is that her name is Catherine and she speaks too quickly for me to understand.”

Right then, Danielle walks in with a servant carrying in refreshments behind her. A smile quickly graces her face, “Auguste, we are glad that you have finally came to see us. Both my brother and I had doubts that you would after we had waited a week in a half for you to come. I simply do not know how you could have managed; I certainly know that I could not have.”

“Yes, well strange as it may sound the longer you live with them the easier it becomes. I have become use to their habits and have become pretty good at staying out of their way.”

“I know it must have not been easy on you to have your wife die, but you did a very good thing in marrying the Baroness. I shudder to think what would have become of Jacqueline otherwise.” Danielle got a smile out of Auguste with that comment. “To be perfectly honest with you, I have always been a bit jealous of Jacqueline. I know it is wrong, but I simply can not help it.”

Auguste looked at her curiously, “Might I inquire why?”

“As I assume you are aware, my father and I do not get along. He is trying to make me into a perfect lady which is not who I am. If it were not for Henry, I do not know how I would have bared all of my lessons. None of which had to deal with subjects that I truly wanted to learn about.”

“Your father is a good man. He simply is trying to do what is best for you. I do not blame him because I want the best for Jacqueline too. Sure, we both have different ideas as to what is right for our children, but our children know that we are doing the best we can.”

This provoked Henry to speak again. He had been spending his time observing them. “Bravo. I could not have said it better myself. I guess it takes a father to understand a father. Now then, let us changed the subject to a more lighter matter.” After that, they discussed some books and other things of that sort. Auguste ended up spending a few hours in their presence and promised that he would soon return with some new books for the Royal pair to read.

******************************

Auguste continued his visits. As sad as it might sound, he was much too happy to escape from his home. Both Henry and Danielle enjoyed his company, but it was obvious that Danielle enjoyed it more. Probably because he was exactly what she thought a father should be, and also because he seemed to have an unlimited supply of knowledge to provided her with.

A week before Danielle’s seventeenth birthday, he had to go out of town. Well, he did not exactly have to go out of town, but he chose to. He did not want to be around when she was told the truth because he feared that he would tell her who he truly was. He gave her a gift a fine new book that was filled with things that would interest her, and then was gone for a fortnight.

He was gravely missed, but the pain was easily dealt with because the Marquis and his wife had returned home. They lightened the mood of a very serious castle.

Danielle was excited about her birthday and was unable to see why everyone seemed to be so tense. As usual, a ball was to be held in her honor. She kept herself occupied by picking out a dress, and helping the cooks in the kitchen. It was something that she always secretly did.

Marie was tense because of Francis. She was unsure how he would tell Danielle the truth, but could only hope that he would not insist on telling her at the same time that he told the whole kingdom.

The night was quickly upon them, and everyone prepared himself or herself for the event. The evening started smoothly. Everyone was enjoying themselves either by dancing, socializing, or something along those lines. Francis had made it a point to stay out the way. Soon he would take action by giving Danielle a toast. One that he would never forget.

Danielle took ever offer to dance that came her way. She did not discriminate against anyone because of his lack of title or anything else for that matter. She was here tonight to simple enjoy herself. Many eyes followed her that evening. One of which was her brother. He dare not dance with her although it was sometimes his custom. He simple just enjoyed watching her from afar.

Eventually, Danielle grew tired of dancing and took a seat by her mother to try and refresh herself. Neither one of them talked much, but simple enjoyed being able not to have to talk. Soon Danielle was whisked away by a new partner. She planned to dance as much of the night as possible. Marie simple watched Danielle and hoped that she would always remember this night for the good and bad.

As the hour advanced, Francis knew that he could no longer put off his announcement. Everyone who was planning on coming to the ball was there and those who always left early would soon be gone. He beckoned for Marie and Henry to join him. He them stood up and cleared his throat. Almost immediately, everyone became silent. Both Marie and Henry drew in sharp breaths for they knew of the coming danger.

Francis ignored them. “I would like to make an announcement to the people of France, but mainly my daughter if she would please step forward.” Danielle walked through the crowd and up to her father. “For many years, we have disagreed. I have always been trying to make you become something that you are not. There is a reason that you could not have known for why I behaved as such, but I must now tell you.”

“If I could have thing my way, you would never have been told, but it is part a deal I made. Although, I doubt that them man I made it with would even know the difference.” Here Francis drew in a deep breath as he watched Danielle’s face fill with worry. “On the night of your birth, your mother gave birth to a child. That child was the true princess of France. Unfortunately for her, she died that night leaving me despairing over the loss of my child. In the garden that night, a man left a child on our doorstep and asked that someone raised the child as our own. That child was you.”

There was a sudden gasp among the courtiers at this news, but Danielle kept her eyes locked on her father. What he said explained so much, but at the same time it made her feel empty. “What does this mean?” her voice barley being heard over the racket of the courtiers.

Francis tried to break eye contact, but her look was simply to strong for him. “It means that I can no longer acknowledge you as my daughter. By law, I have to strip you of your title. If you were still sixteen I could adopt you and you would regain your title, but now it is too late. Nevertheless I do wish that you will stay in the palace.”

Danielle took a look at her ‘family.’ They meant everything to her, and yet she did not believe that she would be able to stay with them any longer. She gave a simple nod and casually walked out of the room.

The Sum of All Fears

just got back from a pre-screening, tho full-print, about a half an hour ago. u know how Spider-man and AOTC are blockbusters? and u know how Harry Potter and LOTR are too, but are more….”grounded”? Sum of all Fears combines all of that into what i would consider, until Minority Report comes out, the BEST summer movie out in a while.

Ben Affleck is…incredible. everything works in this film…except for consistencies, but these are only relatable to the other movies and the book so they really can’t be counted. u could really see Affleck embody Ryan…the snide comments, kick-ass attitude, all the while romancing an incredible love interest (which was sadly explored, then dropped, then picked up again).

great, great movie…and fantastic to see John Clark in the movie (big fan of the books, and always enjoyed the movies). just one hell of a time at the theatre. how’s that for a highly critical review? 😉

Standarized Test=Evil

I had to take the ACT this morning. I was not happy. I had to get up so much earlier then i wanted to to take a test that does not really test my knowledge. Does anyone else think that tests like the ACT only test your knowledge of taking test? I am thinking aobut using that for a collage entry essay next year….

To Have and To Hold Chapter 22

Chapter 22

“Danielle, wait.”

Danielle turned around and stopped. It was Jean Claude.

“May I walk with you?”

“Right now, Jean Claude, I would like to be myself.”

“Is something wrong? I am a good listener, you know.”

Danielle looked at him. “There is nothing wrong at all, Jean Claude. I am a little confused.”

“It’s about Monique and Henry, isn’t it?”

How did he know? Danielle thought, watching his eyes. Did I give that much away?

“My step-sister thinks that everyone is interested in every thing she does. “

“Yes, well.” Danielle was still watching him. He wasn’t leaving her alone, not even for a second. Maybe if she gave into him he would quit following her.

“Perhaps there is a little something that you can do for me, after all,” she answered, smiling. “Come,” she said, taking his hand, “let’s go for a little walk.”

She watched out of the corner of her eye as she heard laughter coming from inside the ruined church. She didn’t have to turn around.

“Come on, Jean-Claude, I want you to see something.” And she took his hand and pulled him away.

Henry and Monique were laughing as they walked through the doorway, but Henry’s smile soon turned to concern when he watched Danielle pulling Jean-Claude up to the top of the hill.

“Danielle,” he called out, “wait for me, where are you going?” When she didn’t stop, Henry started chasing her up the hill.

“Wait, Henry, where are you going? I thought that we…”

“Stay,” Monique said, putting his arms around him waist.

“I cannot,” Henry said, “maybe some other time, Monique, but I have something that I must do.”

And with that, Henry ran after her, hoping that it was not too late.
.

To Have and To Hold Chapters 20 – 21

Chapter 20

Danielle’s tutor, Mademoiselle Juliet le Monde, had arrived right on schedule. The only problem was that Danielle had fallen asleep. She hadn’t realized how exhausted she had become.

“Lady Danielle, if you do not mind, we have a few subjects to touch on, so I would appreciate it if you could give me your undivided attention.”

Danielle could hardly move. She lifted one eyelid, then the other.

“Yes Mademoiselle,” she said, trying to stand up.

Danielle had never gone through such torture, especially when it came to what she termed as “royalty lessons.”

Mademoiselle le Monde made her balance books on her head for perfect posture, taught her how to walk and talk and to enunciate those words clearly.

Danielle dropped the books, couldn’t follow all the dainty steps and didn’t want to bother with speaking correctly.

After the first four hours were over, she was never so happy to see the outside world.

Meanwhile, at the castle, Henry, Francois and Laurent were doing the same thing, namely falling asleep.

Not only that, but Hector was having the devil of a time keeping all three of them awake.

He had to think up something quick, so he came up with a learning game, which the boys found interesting.

Finally, Henry thought, perking up a little, an interesting tutor. Someone I can get excited about.

But Henry was still looking forward to leaving and meeting with Danielle at their usual place.

He ran from the castle forgetting the journal that they were supposed to read. He was unaware that Danielle had two unwanted guests with her.

Danielle was so happy that she had almost forgotten about the promise to her father. She decided that she didn’t want to remember and let it go at that. As she ran from the house, she discovered that Monique and Jean Claude were standing outside waiting for her.

Well, she thought, so much for trying to escape.

“Come on, you two, let’s go. I don’t want to be late.”

She tried to talk to, but everything she tried to say fell on deaf ears. No one would respond to her.

All except for Jean Claude who had a funny smile on his handsome face. He kept staring at her as they walked.

Danielle was unprepared for what was about to happen next.

Chapter 21

Henry waited impatiently for Danielle to come. He wasn’t sure of these feelings he had for her. They were new to him. They had met when she was two and he was four. Back then, he felt as if he were a big brother to her, watching over her and playing with her. As they grew, they became fast friends, Henry surprised at how quick Danielle.

He hadn’t noticed when his feeling switched from friendship to something a little more involved.

Now all he wanted was to be with her and he could not stop thinking about her.

“Henry.”

He heard her voice and turned around to face the ruined entrance, a large grin covered his face.

The smile faded when he saw she had company.

“These are my cousins, Henry,” Danielle said, introducing them. “You remember Monique and this is…”

Henry’s eyes grew wide. “Monique? Is that you?”

“Yes, Henry, it is. “

Danielle looked at Henry and found that he was staring at her cousin. Alright, she thought, maybe Monique was a year older than she was, but she thought that Henry liked her. She didn’t know how to react.

“You look a little different than you did the last time I saw you.”

“I was only eight three years ago, Henry, the last time you saw me. I will be your age in six months.”

Henry smiled. “Well, maybe we can get to know each other again, that is if Danielle doesn’t mind.”

He looked at her and discovered she was staring right back at him a little confused.

“Well,” he said, “we are all together and we should get to know each other. All of us.” He turned to Jean Claude. “And that includes you whoever you are.”

Before he or Danielle could answer, Monique piped up. “This is my stepbrother, Jean Claude, Henry,” she said, walking toward him. “But he isn’t as intelligent and witty as you.”

Henry blushed and moved closer.
Danielle was watching Monique and Henry rediscover each other. He was talking a mile and minute and she was responding. Well, she had enough of this. She turned on her heel and walked out the ruined door, Henry not even noticing.

Someone else had though. He grinned and followed her out.

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