I smiled happily as Amelia tightened the corset gently and tied the black ribbon, not owning a maid meant that I had to nearly do everything myself until I find a suitable replacement, the search for a replacement was a tougher than I had imagined. 

I fitted on the petticoats and the gown, which to my surprise was a gift from Alexander, the gown was made from black silk, patterns of silver vines embedded itself in the material, curling and twisting itself to make beautiful patterns. 

I loved it. 

“Charlotte this is such a beautiful dress. I wish that one day William will buy me a dress like this.” Amelia’s voice was filled with sadness, a sudden pang of guilt appeared in my heart and I regretted ever having done anything with William Harlette. 

“I am sure William is waiting for the perfect time to give you a dress, or jewelery.” Amelia giggled at my little add in, sighing a little as I leaned on her slipped on the matching shoes and diamond embedded jewelery. 

I rarely had anything as nice in my chest of drawers nor had I seen anything as nice in the boutiques in London and America, Amelia figured that the dress was from either Russia or France. I sat down at the dresser and pinned my hair back, hiding the neat curls that I made into a bun. Amelia wore a royal blue dress; a large peacock feather adorned her blonde curls and emerald jewels laid neatly across her chest and hands. 

Quickly we moved downstairs and into the black carriage, my heart was pounding murderously from nerves and excitement, I loved Alexander and it must be a miracle for him to love me too. I watched the sun go down behind the green hills of Clearwater, the magnificent beauty of the orange and purples melded together, I breathed in the sunset and basked in the love that I felt.

The carriage stopped slowly, my eyes running over the large mansion that sat before me, red silk wrapped around the white pillars, fountains, large peacocks situated themselves on the lawn and the soft hum of music floated through the wind. 

Smiling toothily at Amelia I stepped out of the carriage and walked with her to Alexander’s mansion, my hands were shaking as we gave the butler our shawls and led the pair of us to the entertainment room. My eyes widened as the doors opened up, Japanese lanterns hung from the ceiling, a whole orchestra sat themselves on the stage and Japanese geisha's and entertainers circled around the room. 

I searched for the one person whom I desperately wanted to see. Yet, he was absent from the room, instead the upper class of England laughed and conversed to one another and smiling at the additional touches that the Japanese theme made to the room. I looked over at Amelia, she shrugged and immediately went to her other friends, laughing and talking about the Japanese designs for homes. 

“A lovely dress you have on there.” Whispered William behind me, his hands lightly caressed the silk gown as he moved in front of me, bowing down he kissed my hand, innocently of course and smiled childishly at the room. 

“Alexander gave it to me as a present; he said in the letter that he had forgiven me.” I gushed; I could feel the warmth in my chest spread to my cheeks and I silently wished for a Japanese fan. 

“About that… I am not sure I want to give you up, just yet.” His voice was low enough for no one to hear but the two of us, yet they shocked me just as much. 

“We agreed, I thought you knew-“ 

“Yes I knew and it does not just simply erase the feelings that I have you Charlotte.”

“Feelings?” I hissed, “You never uttered a word about having feelings for me, you just wanted my body, nothing else –“ 

“At first yes, at first I just thought of you as a beautiful woman who laughed at the utterly ridiculous notions of society. Then unexpectedly, I started to develop feelings for you, I only dreamt of you, I only thought of you and whenever I was near you, I could feel my heart pounding hard against my chest. 

And I will be damned if I let Alexander Roux take you away from me.” 

I stood in silence, my jaw dropping to the floor and my eyes fixated on William Harlette, his eyes never left me, instead they were searching mine, perhaps searching for a sign of me conceiving feelings for him. My mind uselessly tried to fathom what William Harlette just said to me, what he was saying, what the words meant to me and to him. After almost two years of meaningless nights, afternoons and mornings together, he was finally telling me that he loved me. 

Suddenly the clinking of metal and glass broke me away from my reverie; I looked up to see Alexander standing in front of the orchestra, his eyes gazed over the crowd of upper class individuals and finally they settled on me. 

His eyes were dead. 

The End

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