FourteenA Chapter by emily
If I had a hint less of strength left in me, I would have run to him. I would have leaped into his arms in front of all Alabama society. I would have cried and kissed him and promised Isaiah I would never, ever let him go again.
I had already taken half a step forward when reason surfaced, stopping me in my tracks. I had worked so hard. If I acted on my stupidly romantic impulses, it would destroy everything I had built for my daughter and myself.
Though it was not a choice of my own, I was weighted down by conflict. I stood like a rock in the middle of the room, feet planted, eyes staring.
Isaiah did not seem at all conflicted. He just looked at me with a cautious smile on his face. I was too far away to read his eyes, but there was something there. There was something passionate about his gaze.
He still felt something. I knew it.
Before I could study him long enough to make a decision, Isaiah turned to a guest and immediately adopted the camouflage of a low class servant.
I knew there was nothing I could do, at least for right now. I wanted to act so badly. I had to do something to keep myself from going after Isaiah.
I looked around. A servant carried a silver tray with flutes of champagne. I had to escape my need. I had to forget. So I took a flute and drank it as fast as I could.
The alcohol slid down my throat with a cool burning sensation. It fogged my mind for a moment, the exact effect I had hoped for. It was over too fast so I took another. The second glass was much easier to drink.
I walked mindlessly through the crowds, taking drinks from trays until I could hardly remember why I was drinking so much. My vision was clouding. My head felt warm and pleasant, but then it started to pound. If someone spoke to me, I slurred an inaudible answer. My head was spinning, making me so dizzy it became difficult even to walk in a straight line. It got harder and harder to put one foot in front of the other. I felt the ground become unsteady under me.
Just then, when I thought I would collapse, someone took my arm. I looked up with hope, but saw it was Roy. My husband looked down at me, trying to control his rage. He would try to reprimand me without losing face.
“Dear Adeline,” his forced voice pierced through my pounding head. “It would seem that you are feeling unwell.” For once, he knew exactly how I was feeling, having been more drunk than this on many occasions. “Perhaps you would like to return home in the carriage.”
I nodded and my head throbbed. I wanted to go, even if it was Roy’s suggestion.
Roy escorted me outside. When we reached the carriage, he cornered me against the door.
“If you’re going to make a fool out of me, I had better get something in return when I come home tonight,” he hissed. I knew what he meant.
I wanted to resist. He had been drinking too. I could smell it. Roy was pressing up against me, his wet lips at my neck. I was afraid I would be too disoriented to fight back.
“N-no…” I said, trying to push him off. “No!” He didn’t stop.
The horses suddenly moved and the carriage shifted so Roy almost fell to the ground. He looked angry, but he did not come after me again. He looked to the carriage driver.
“Stupid darky,” he muttered, taking a drink from a flask in his coat and stalking back towards the lights of the party.
I stepped into the carriage and leaned my swimming head against the wall. I was thankful for the darkness and silence.
I could not deal with the idea of what Roy would have done to me just now. I just had to tackle one impossible problem at a time, starting with my need for rest.
I was drifting into a hazy half sleep when the silence was broken.
“Why did you do it, Addy?”
I didn’t think he was really there. I was hardly in a rational state.
“Why did I do what?”
“Why did you marry him? Why didn’t you wait for me?”
When I heard the hurt in his voice, I knew it was really Isaiah. He was out there, driving my carriage home, just feet away from me. My head snapped up so fast I smacked it against the roof of the carriage. “Ow!” I exclaimed.
“Are you all right?” He could not see me any more than I could see him.
“No,” I said, confused. “Yes. Isaiah!” I said frantically. “Isaiah is… is it really you?”
“Of course, Addy,” Isaiah said, as quietly as possible while I could still hear.
I could not help it. I started to cry, “Oh… oh God, Isaiah. You… you came back. You really came back!”
“I promised I would.” I wished more than anything I could see Isaiah’s face. I wanted to see the look in his eyes. I wanted to hold him and tell him I never lost faith in him.
But I could not think of anything to say. My mind was still too cloudy to even take it in.
“You… you didn’t forget me?” Isaiah’s voice was hopeful but cautious.
I shook my head even though he could not see me. “I tried not to, Isaiah. I tried so hard. But you were gone so long. I did everything I could not to forget.”
“But… what about the preacher’s son?” he really thought I had married Roy to put him behind me.
“I never ever forgot you, Isaiah,” I said so quietly he may not have even heard me. “I… I thought about you every single day. I knew you would come back.” I was losing my discretion. I would never really be telling him this if I had been able to think about my answers.
Isaiah was quiet for a long minute. “You…” He began, and then stopped. “You don’t know how hard it’s been.”
“I know, Isaiah, I know.” I sniffed, hiccupping now. “I-I can’t even imagine what you went through.”
Later, when my sense of reason returned, I realized how embarrassed I should have been for being so emotional. It was pitiful, really. I wanted Isaiah to think I could be strong without him. I had tried so hard to prove I had that strength and I could not even show it to him.
The carriage came to a stop. I had not even realized we had arrived at my parent’s home. Footsteps dropped from the driver’s seat and padded across the ground towards me.
He opened the door. It was dark, almost too dark to see his face. But the moonlight was reflected in Isaiah’s black eyes.
I reached a hand up and touched his face, tracing the familiar shape of his jaw, his forehead, and his cheekbones. I ran my thumb across his lips and he closed his eyes and sighed. Isaiah extended a hand, coarse and comforting, and I took it.
“Good night, Missus McCalvin,” he said sadly.
I was not thinking. I had had too much to drink. I was letting my emotions get the best of me. Whatever the reason, I could not let Isaiah go.
So I grabbed him by the collar of his shirt, pulled him into the carriage, and kissed him.
We came down on our knees on the floor of the carriage, my gown spread out around me. I reached under his shirt, running my hands over the planes of his chest. He took hold of my waist, holding me heatedly to his body.
Isaiah pulled me out of the carriage and scooped me up into his arms. He carried me through the door. I threw my arms around his neck, not wanting to break the kiss.
We were in the darkness of the house. I kissed Isaiah sloppily, all over his face. One second we were climbing the stairs, and then suddenly I was on a bed. I broke away for air, but Isaiah’s lips were still hungry and brazen, searching fervently down my neck. I was overwhelmed. I didn’t know what I was doing. But I didn’t want to stop. I did not push his hands away when they lingered on my breasts. I let my tongue slip just inside his lips. I pressed against him until I felt warm and lightheaded.
Then I plunged into unconscious.
© 2012 emily
Added on March 16, 2009
Last Updated on March 13, 2012
AboutHello all! My name is Emily, I'm 18, I am definitely not at home in this tiny MN town, and soon I will be the most famous author my generation. I go to Barnes and Noble to see where my book will sit .. more..
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