Eric had awoken in a good mood. He thought nothing of Corinne’s absence (believing her to have moved into his much more comfortable bed during the night) until he saw her note. He wasn’t an unintelligent man and he instantly realised that Corinne thought she might be in love with Lord Dachshund. This thought confused him though he would never doubt a thing that Corinne told him herself and he could only hope that she was either mistaken or that Lord Richard’s character would improve so that she did not become miserable again.
Eric sighed to himself as he remembered Corinne’s unusual behaviour and wished that she had merely told him how she had been feeling rather than worried him so. He wouldn’t have become angry with her: no act of Corinne’s could ever anger him. Eric would have attempted to understand her because he loved her too much to react in any other manner, which would possibly upset her.
Eric glanced out of the window of his cottage. No sign of Whisper. Good. Whisper was a special horse. If anything had befallen Corinne, she would have returned as fast as she could to Eric and behave anxiously to inform him of the incident. Eric performed a spell to verify that Whisper had not died and upon finding that she was safe, sighed once more and proceeded to dress and eat breakfast. He accepted that there was nothing he could do, that Corinne had the right to make her own decisions and waited for her return to tell him whom she had chosen to live with: Lord Dachshund or him.
It may have been selfish of Eric - especially as Corinne’s feelings were at stake - but he secretly hoped that Lord Richard’s manner would not change at all so that Corinne could be his. He justified this selfishness by reminding himself of all the great and terrible feats that he would happily perform for Corinne’s wellbeing and happiness to ensue.
But as time wore on, Eric lapsed into a long period of thoughtlessness which grew so incredibly tedious that he moved to sit on his bed where he thought of Corinne and read the novels which he had given her to suppress her own boredom. The result was that, at the same time, Eric delighted in memories of his relationship with Corinne and evaded disheartening thoughts of her choosing Lord Dachshund as the man with whom she wanted to spend the remainder of her life. The passing time was also affected as it started to cease to have a negative impact upon him. Eric found himself completely immersed in this unreal, novel world of fantasy combined with beautiful recollections. It would almost have been kinder for him to have lost himself there than to have awoken to discover a miserable future awaiting him...