Arabella and Edgar stepped away from the house, Arabella's heart beating as fast as she thought possible.
"Where are we going?" She asked, looking at Edgar with eager eyes.
"The creek," he answered, then smirked. "Not as exciting as last night's hanging, but it'll do."
Arabella's heart beat louder now; even hearing about the events of the past night delighted her.
"Is that alright with you?" Edgar continued after he got no answer.
"Of course!" Arabella quickly replied.
"As long as we're together." Although Edgar didn't make eye contact with Arabella this time, she could see his cheeks reddening.
"Right." Arabella tried to keep the conversation alive, but as it died down, she noticed it wasn't as awkward as she thought it would be. They walked together in silence until they reached the far end of the creek. Edgar, having held Arabella's hand the whole journey (much to her excitement), led her to a few rocks to sit on. There they parted as Edgar picked up a smooth stone and skipped it.
"So," he said after a pause. "What did you think of last night?"
"It was...it was different." Arabella considered. "But it was the most fun I've ever had."
"Fun is a sin," Edgar smiled at Arabella, skipping one last stone. "Don't you know?"
"Oops." Arabella said tauntingly, raising an eyebrow. "I didn't know. How silly of me."
"You know," Edgar said, continuing the joke. "Sin isn't as bad as everyone says."
"Oh?" Arabella laughed. "I guess you're experienced in the art?"
"How'd you know?" Edgar sat down on the rock, quite close to Arabella.
"Just a hunch," Arabella looked at Edgar, her eyes wide now. Never had a boy sat so close, and it was strange. Although Arabella did have her 'tricks,' boys would only admire her from afar.
"It's a very good one, I suppose." Edgar brought his face closer to Arabella's, and her limbs suddenly started to shake.
He finally brought his lips onto hers, and Arabella completely froze. She was only seventeen, sheltered under the Puritan society. Nothing had ever felt so wrong yet so delightful.
Arabella heard footsteps nearby, and quickly stood up. She rested her hand on a nearby tree as she stepped away from the creek, looking to see who it was. Edgar stepped up behind her, a hand on her waist.
"What is it?" He asked.
"I heard someone," Arabella whispered. She squinted as she tried to see the emerging figure. It was Mercy, toddling closer and closer. "Mercy!"
"Belly!" Mercy cooed, holding her arms out. Arabella laughed at the nickname her little sister had come up with, picking her up. "I got lost. But I has Dolly!" Mercy held up her doll as though in triumph.
"Good thing you were found!" Arabella turned back to Edgar. "I'm sorry. We'd better head back to the house."
Edgar and Arabella followed the path until they came upon the Clark household. It took only a few minutes, so Priscilla wouldn't have noticed Mercy's absence.
"Priscilla!" She called, leading Mercy to her. "Mercy's back. She wandered from the house and we found her."
"Oh, thank you." When Priscilla stood up and turned to receive the running Mercy, her cheeks were unusually red. Arabella smirked; something must have happened while she was gone. Arabella made a mental note to ask Priscilla about it later, but for now turned back to Edgar.
"I had fun," she smiled, her chest swelling with excitement.
"I did, too." Edgar held both of Arabella's hands, and whisked her around in a quick dance. He ended it with a quick kiss and said nothing else as he left. Arabella stumbled for a second, finally turning.
Priscilla stood motionless, her eyes wide.