I am here. I am here. I. Am. Here.
The last time Christine-Ann Corbin wore a dress was two months ago when she turned twelve. Her parents had a small birthday party and celebrated with a few friends and neighbors. The conversation quickly turned to the unrest in Europe.
The baby had gone to sleep and the boys and Eva, her daughter, had gone to watch Manton drill with the other men in the exercise/muster the village held each month. She cherished the silence. It reminded her of the quiet of the convent—not a pleasant memory, but she did experience some beautiful moments in the years she lived there. She hurried to the kitchen table, wiped it clean, dried it, and spread out the fine linen cloth she had spent too much money on, opened a bottle of ink, got out a stylus, and began to write.
It wasn’t a noise, as such, that pulled Edgar out of his dream. It was an intuition. He sensed the intruder in his house.
I remember leading a rather ordinary life until the day I committed suicide. As I recall, that took place in late October in the year 1838. I don’t remember the actual death itself, but I know it happened because it was forty-eight Earth years before I was granted another physical body. I had never had to wait that long before. Not to mention the fact that my guardian angel, Thaddeus, had warned me many times not to make that mistake because it was one of the things the God’s frowned upon the most.
The bride brought only a small bundle from home. Wrapped in a deep blue silk, she carried medicines and a small bone whistle. The bride was from a family of witches fallen from grace in a time of altered belief. Her home was an island dripping warm green forest into a wide magic river.
Henry’s knuckles turned white as he clutched the scarred armrests, listening. The time has come, he thought. The oakwood throne suddenly seemed little more than a pile of firewood.
But the sound died in the halls.
Henry eyed the heavy old door. It looked forbidding, yet it let everyone come and go. Everyone but him, and him only.