I moved amongst the flowers, the garden paths guiding me this way and that in such a wandering way which allowed my thoughts to wander along with it. It all revolved around the grandiose structure of the mannor house with its striking facade. Only if I could paint or draw, it would make a spectacular watercolor. Perhaps I would try to get Laura to make a brief sketch of it. It would probably be hard to convince her though, she would only take her time to draw things related with dogs....
"Izz!" I looked abruptly up, nearly jumping as my cousin came up beside me. "Jeez, you're easy to give a fright. C'mon, let's go in."
Smiling mildly, I allowed Laura to tug me back through the garden pathways, around the little fish pond I had taken a moment to explore earlier, and up the front steps to the opposing, impressive front door.
It didn't take a while for our curiousity guided the two of us in different directions. My footsteps pounded against the wooden floors, worn and creaking, yet appearing to look freshly polished. I strolled up the sweeping staircase, walking down the halls and glancing into the bedrooms, unoccupied.
I entered the final one, which appeared to be the master, with the large poster bed and its dusty velvet drapes. I came before the long dressing mirror, chipped and scarred with age.
Then, I felt a little dizzy, like the room was moving beneath my feet. I caught myself on the dresser within my arm's reach, trying to steady myself.
Was it me or was there beautiful music? It was wafting up the staircase and through the door, light laughter and chatter seeming to mix in.
"Miss. Haynes. Miss. Haynes,"
I leapt out of my skin, spinning around and nearly tripping over....I paused, gasping as I ran my fingers over smooth pink satin.
"Miss Haynes, oh sorry to frighten you, Miss Haynes," a small, squat man scuttled over, wearing some sort of old-fashioned suit. He looked like some sort of butler. "But, beg you pardon, Madam, what are you doing up here?"
"I'm sorry, but....," I blinked several times, confused. "What...who are you?"
"Oh, do not be silly, Miss. Haynes," chuckled the man. He paused, seeing my expression still remained. "Are you alright? Perhaps some fresh air? Water?"
"Umm...perhaps," I swallowed, feeling at myself. I took a moment to turn around, looking to the reflection of myself in the mirror. I jumped again, nearly tumbling on top of the little man behind me.
"Oh, Miss. Haynes. Goodness me!"
I shook my head, still looking at myself in the mirror. "I'm sorry," I muttered mildly. My hair feel in smooth wrinkles around my shoulders, barren with the low, sweeping neckline of my gown. Delicate pearls were set upon my neck, and the edges of my gown was fragile lace. "How odd," I whispered.
This is a dream. I must be dreaming.
"Come Miss. Haynes, you are really acting unusual. Let us get you fixed up so that you rejoin the party," he took me by the arm.