I've read 5 books this summer, all were romance.
I was consumed by the thought of an inseparable love, like theirs, yet I remained in my room, so addicted to the novels that Mary, the housemaid, needed to pull me from my bed.
And nearly as soon as I had thought that I heard Mary's footsteps coming down the hall. Her knock was so soft I was startled when she walked in.
"Theodosia Savannah Rue Gray, this is the third time this week! If this happens again, Mr. Gray may drop dead!" she was stern, but I wasn't concerned.
Mary left back to the kitchen, and I picked up "Pride and Prejudice" and continued to fall into the story of Elizabeth and Darcy's complicated love.
They spun on the dance floor, hiding how they feel under their costumes. I close the novel and lay back into my pillows and shut my eyes.
I can see myself with Darcy's hands comfortably resting on my waist, swaying so gently.
"Theodosia!" My father's voice thundered from the hall. It made me abruptly awaken from my daydream. I picked up the book and kissed it's cover and threw it into my bed.
I flew down the stairs, bracing myself to be lectured, like I always am. Before he even saw my face, father began to talk. His voice was so stern, and it sounded hoarse.
"You were never raised to be irresponsible, to run late, and to avoid doing your work!
I don't know what you are doing in that room of yours, but you are still expected to attend supper with your family ON time!" His eyes glared.
I stuttered into an apology and sat down at my seat. Charlie, my older brother, was fully invested in his journal entry for the upcoming news paper.
He was always busy in his notepad,scribbling furiously.
"Nice of you to join us," Charlie hardly looked up from his writing. Mary then came from the kitchen carrying a large pot of stew.
The juices splashed the edges and trickled over, every so slightly.
"I am late, but at least I have all my work done, when I see that you are clearly behind!" I smirked. Charlie and I always had a playful argument between us, that's what made us close.
"I am not behind! I am ahead! I am finishing next week's' article on Jay's population, and how it is growing so rapidly.
" Charlie was still being given the unwanted and least important stories to write about, but he was clueless. Me and father thought he was just happy to have something to do that had purpose.
I ate my stew as fast as I could, and requested dismissal, but father told me to be patient, he had news. I sat at the table, awkwardly listening to Charlie's loud slurping.
And after what seemed like forever, father pushed himself back and released a long sign. Me and Charlie looked at each other nervously. Father had never given us good news.
The last time he did this, he told us that our mother was sick. I started to itch my arms, and when I looked down, red bumps had spread all the way to my shoulders.
"You both know that the United States is at war. And there is a large need for soldiers in the South. As a military official, it is my duty to go and fight for my people.
" I was itching like I had poison ivy. I was so focused on the bumps that I wasn't paying attention to anything Father was saying.
"And that's why I am leaving Tuesday morning." And that's when I fainted. I can't remember anything that happened for a while following. I woke up to Mary dabbing a cold rag on my forehead.
"Theodosia, Theodosia? Wake up, you're alright!" My eyes felt heavy, and my arms still itched. "You passed out, your father is getting a doctor.
Lay here, and I'll fetch some water for you to drink. My eyes fell closed again, and I dreamed. I dreamt that Mr. Darcy was laying by my side, holding my hand.
He was whispering something into my ear, but it was too faint for me to hear.
Charlie says I woke up 2 days later. The doctors never figured out what happened. But none of that mattered, because when my eyes finally opened, my father had gone.