Ever since that frightful day in May when my mother stole her last breath from death, Hank and I had been oddly distant.
Before the war, during the times of joy and ease, Hank and I would sit under the peaceful Willow tree talking and laughing until we could hardly sit upright. We shared all of our aspirations and fantasies until Hank knew me better than I knew myself. Hank was my brother and my very best friend.
Today Hank died.
Today I watched the life slowly ebb from my best friends eyes,
Chapter 1: Hello.
“Hank!” I yelled, “Wait for me!”
It was the second day of summer and Hank and I were rushing home for our change of clothes. You see, tonight was the barbeque at the O'Neal manor and gorgeous Miss Larissa McDeen was sure to be there.
Miss Larissa's beauty was known far and wide, as was her grace and charm. Both Hank and I caught glimpses of her earlier, arriving from the North, and that was enough reason to attend the normally dull barbeque; for us at least it was.
Oh, the grace in which she walked. Miss McDeen stole all of the coherent thoughts in my brain just by passing within my line of view. I catch Hank's befuddled expression. Thankfully I am not the only male at this barbeque with this problem.
Her luscious blonde hair cascaded down her back, and was shimmering in the warm sunset. A few unknowing gentlemen are tangled in her net of charms and are draped about her feet, ready to do her bidding.
She catches my analytical glance and clouds my brain with her dazzling smile. Slowly, I notice the distance between us is steadily dwindling. I look in panic towards Hank as I unconsciously take another step in her direction. Hank sees my frantic glance and hurries to my aid.
Just as I'm about to explain myself, the goddess herself emerges from her adoring puppies and glides over to where we are currently standing, mouths slightly agape.
Quickly regaining our composure, we tip our hats in the usual southern greeting as she returns with a delicate curtsey, hand extended for us to lightly kiss.
“Miss McDeen, I trust your journey was safe and the slaves cooperative.” Hank calmly greets.
She replies that it was so, and then turns to me and smiles her breathtaking smile.
“And who may I ask are you two fine gentlemen?”
“I'm Hank Coreal, and this is my fraternal brother, John Coreal” Hank sneaks in, saving me from a great many
“We own the plantation just down the road” I finally breathe. Although twin telepathy is a false myth, I feel as though Hank feels my unease as he continues to make a light conversation with her. Slowly following Hank as he and Miss Larissa move to a shady seat under one of the many maple trees, I notice her loyal adorers growing restless without their enchantress to calm them.
Surprised at the silky flavor steeling its way into Hanks voice, my attention snaps to the present situation.
It seems as though Hank not only has Miss Larissa's full attention, but her hand as well! Surely enough there is a gentle gloved hand lightly resting on his forearm. I feel the green one stirring his bubbling cauldron inside my gut. All warning thoughts are stopped roughly by the brick wall determination has built.
I am a good six yards from their little private party, my feathers ruffling as I strut towards them.
Suddenly, there is a crash and I fall to the floor. Enraged at my clumsy display, I quickly scramble upright, anger and humiliation scorching my throat. I am about to continue my trek over to Hank with all the dignity I can muster and leave the mess to the darkies when a small noise makes me stop dead in my tracks.
Turning towards the light cry I notice a small shape under a sheet that had fallen when I ran into the, now cleaning, darkie.
Remembering my manners, feathers smoothed, I start to remove the sheet. As soon as a face is revealed I am startled to find a stunning young woman laughing within.
As I help her up off of the ground I try to take her all in. She has light brown hair and startling blue eyes that are dancing with the laughter that is passing through her soft pink lips.
Dimpling, she thanks me for my help and retrieving her fan from the ground, briskly floats away.
Caught between my self-pride and my curiosity, I stand there rooted to the spot by my thoughts. Looking over at Hank and Larissa I see a fight with my best friend and an ache in my soul for information on this dimpling brunette. Realizing that I never caught her name I rush off towards her.