Dinner Plans?

You heard more in Cal's words than Gabrielle did. Twenty-eight days ago... So there should be another full moon, tomorrow night. You hope that will give you the chance to prove to yourself that Cal is lying.

Cal breaks the momentary silence with a soft clap of his hands.

"Well darling, your brother has been waiting most patiently. He must have something very important to discuss with you. I'll go and tell Marguerite to prepare an extra place for dinner. You will join us, won't you Edward?"

He turns to you with a friendly smile, as if he were not the insane murderer that you know him to be. You return the same smile. "That's very kind of you, Cal. I would love to."

"Wonderful. Excuse me." Cal nods to you and then to Gabrielle before leaving the room and closing the massive double doors behind him.

- - - 

You are alone with your sister at last, but now things are somewhat different than you had anticipated. You no longer want to arouse her suspicion of Cal, and you don't really need to pry any information from her. But it wouldn't hurt to try convincing her to leave him.

"We've barely seen each other at all since the funeral, Gabrielle."

"I know," she replies. "I've been meaning to come and see you, but... well things have been happening so fast and I'm trying to adjust to my new life... you understand, right?"

"Of course I do. I just... Gabrielle, I know I told you this before the funeral, but I want to say it again, to be clear. When Father died, I expected you to come live with me. I still want you to. And frankly I don't think it's a good idea for you to marry Cal so soon after Father's death. You haven't known him very long, and you're only 19. You're so young... I think you should spend some time alone before committing yourself like this."

You pause to observe her reaction to your speech. You're happy to see that she isn't angry. That's a start. "I don't mean to be intrusive, I just feel the need to look after you..."

"It's okay. I understand, and I do appreciate your concern for me. But I assure you I know what I'm doing. Things are working out very nicely; I'm happy here." But her smile fades slightly when she says that last sentence.

"Edward... Do you dislike Cal?"

"No, no," you say rather quickly. "I do like him... He's a very interesting man. I'm sure he'll make a fine husband for you, Gabbie, if that's really what you want." As you close your mouth, you grind your teeth together as hard as you can manage without your face displaying your frustration. There's no turning back now, you realize. I've just given her my blessing.

Her smile is brighter than ever. "I'm glad. I don't know what I would do if you two couldn't be friends."

The End

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