Interlude

Screenshot-256It was at times like these when Millerna Landgraab truly hated being observant.

Because, no matter how much she kept telling herself she was only seeing things because she was too emotionally attached, she just couldn’t deny the evidence.

Screenshot-254So she kept looking for something – anything – that would tell her she was wrong about this. She kept looking for something that would completely reverse everything that she had been trying to hide from.

Screenshot-232“Are you enjoying yourself, Vaughn?”

And Millerna hated herself for asking because she knew that she wouldn’t find anything, that what he’ll say will only further cement the conclusion that she’d come up with and subsequently pushed away, time and again.

Screenshot-259“Of course,” His gaze is intense, dark and tempting. It’s enough to send shivers down Millerna’s spine. “I’ve had the pleasure of watching you.”

It felt like an eternity since she had last seen him in such a way; his eyes, their depth, their unwavering heat. They made her feel breathless. Weak.

Screenshot-231She let her eyes drift across the crowded room. “You’re very grand, Vaughn. So handsome. Looking at you tonight I could not help but remember how things used to be.”

Vaughn’s fluid shrug was relaxed. “They used to be better.”

Screenshot-230Even though he is purposefully vague, Millerna can’t help but grasp onto that small bit of hope

But it’s not enough to really convince herself; because while the debutantes of the season were still lost in their fantasies and daydreams, wondering if they had a chance, Millerna knew the truth.

Screenshot-237And she hated how Vaughn’s eyes absently drift back to the governess stood in the corner; who, so plain and ordinary, Millerna would have ever noticed had his eyes not shone their light on her.

Screenshot-244And how they brighten suddenly! As if that were where they always longed to be.

Why, looking at them, one would think that the unremarkable, languid, pale creature were the only spot of colour left in the world!

Screenshot-260Distantly, Millerna began to wonder if maybe she wasn’t a little jealous of the woman’s looks. It was a ridiculous idea, but so probable it drove home to Millerna just how badly things had spun off their axis. Conventionally, she knew she was far, far prettier than this woman could ever be.

Truly, none of it made any sense when she thought about it.

Screenshot-239Her gaze drifts down to his lips, watches them thin and draw up slightly at the corners as he continues to regard the governess.

Millerna can’t help but wonder if Vaughn knows he’s almost smiling.

Screenshot-258She can’t help but glance at Vaughn at every ball; futilely hoping that he’d lift his eyes and meet her own, that in that one moment he’ll see in her eyes all the things she couldn’t say, understand that he was worth so much more…

Of course, he never did.

Screenshot-164The thing is, Millerna knows it’s a fool’s hope. All she can really do is watch, watch from afar and hope that that strange, dark look in his eyes will disappear; disappear and fizzle out as it had with so many other women countless times before.

Screenshot-205It was at times like these when Millerna Landgraab truly hated being observant. She hated it because she could see the small, yet unmistakable swelling around the young woman’s abdomen, she hated that she knew what it meant.

Screenshot-197The governess’ presence had become an irritating and familiar itch to Millerna over the past several days, but she found that it had become easier to ignore the barb of it with time.

It hadn’t been until that morning that the situation had truly reached breaking point.

 

Screenshot-126“So, Miss Murphy is to reside here as our guest?”

Verity, the oldest of Landgraab siblings, had always been more prone to take on the maternal role with her siblings, but none more so than Charles – the youngest and only male. She took his announcement with the same doting acceptance as usual.

Screenshot-196Charles turned his attention to his less receptive sibling.

“Perhaps playing the hostess may even be to our benefit. It has not escaped notice that we have been almost entirely absent from this season’s balls and functions. Countess Afonsine seemed quite put out that you did not attend her end of season ball, Eries.”

Screenshot-141“I know you are fond of the Afonsine’s, Charles,” Eries returned, “But I find the French entirely too vivacious for my taste. I am quite cured of seeking pleasure in their company – a sensible woman ought to find sufficient company in herself.”

Screenshot-60“Really! Between the three of you, I fear the Landgraabs are getting the reputation of being a rather unsociable lot! And Millerna! I don’t understand why you’re being so awfully difficult regarding the situation at hand.”

Screenshot-191I am entitled to an opinion, am I not?” Millerna interrupted sharply. “Even if it is only within the confines of this house; which, as far as I am aware, is not yet a boarding house for servants.”

As soon as the words left her mouth, Millerna knew she was being petty and childish by flinging it out like that, but the need to lash out at something was stronger.

Screenshot-133Verity regarded her distastefully. “She is a human being, Millerna. Be more charitable: there are worse women than she is yet, and many you affiliate with on a daily basis.”

“I absolutely do not care!” Millerna retorted. “She has no claim on my charity.”

Screenshot-188“Really, you’ve always treated him as if he were still in swaddling!

Tell me, why must we protect her, Charles? Because that is what you’re really asking us to do here. What is she to you that you would ask us to risk our good name and reputation, all for the sake of a loose woman?!”

Screenshot-145Charles’ brow crinkled in confusion and it almost made Millerna’s mouth twitch into a smile. The power of the situation rushed to her brain, sparking off ideas and a dark, amused pleasure that Charles didn’t know.

Screenshot-61It didn’t take much longer than a heartbeat for Verity to register the meaning behind those words; she knew more than enough about how the world worked.

Screenshot-160Charles had always been pampered just because he had the happy accident of being born male. Well, she had had enough of this tiresome arrangement.

“I’m going to tell you the truth, Charles. You’re old enough to hear it and I believe you’re finally strong enough: I had hoped that, after the last time, you would realise that this… affection for the underclass brings only pain and despair, for all involved!”

Screenshot-177“Oh, do not look at me so, Charles.

It is not I who will break your heart. If you continue down this path, you will break it again; and in breaking it, you will break our’s!”

Screenshot-153“Miss Murphy’s residence is a temporary circumstance. How utterly ridiculous— it’s a wonder anyone would—- for you to even think that I intended to…”

He paused, his voice trailing off into silence. Low and oddly troubled, it seemed on the verge of something so peculiar that Millerna waited, silent and unmoving.

Screenshot-194Both Eries and Verity stood then, quite literally flocking to their brother’s defence as they gathered around him.

“Millerna, Charles is Count Landgraab and you will respect his wishes. His views may be liberal, but as I recall it if not for those views you would have remained estranged from us.”

 

Screenshot-158Millerna snapped, finally losing the tenuous grasp on her temper.
“To father, my profession as a physician was only improper because I am not a man!”

Screenshot-157Millerna stared at Charles stubbornly for a few moments, waiting for him to back down because Charles always backed off, either in mild laughter or angry silence. Instead, his face remained shuttered into an expression of scowling thoughtfulness.

“I have made my intentions known, Millerna.” He said eventually, “And have nothing else to say.”

Screenshot-176Pausing and hating the ice that skittered through her middle Millerna couldn’t understand this. Charles wasn’t supposed to stare at her calmly, to wait there without reaction, he wasn’t supposed to look so… so

“The three of you are birds of a feather. The Devil can take you all!”

Screenshot-199Millerna stared down at the prostrate woman. The resentment felt like flies in her body; buzzing and crawling.

All I’ve ever wanted is what she has.

Screenshot-207Millerna can’t name this sudden, horrid urge to do something, anything, whatever she could to get rid of this itchy, uncomfortable feeling. An unidentifiable anger darkened her vision; she wanted to hurt something, break something.

Screenshot-212People felt with their hearts: and since this woman was destroying what was left of her’s, Millerna had not the power to feel for her. Why, Charles had an awfully perverted taste to esteem her so dearly.

Would that she could be blotted out of creation, and out of her memory!

Screenshot-221Why should she get everything she wanted? Everything Millerna had worked for? Why, when it was Millerna who had gone to Vaughn, despite it all?

When it was she who, like a fool,  had laid herself bare and given him her very heart!

screenshot-258_zpsjibmqzt8— and in return?

Vaughn had taken it and pinched it to death; and then flung it back to her.

screenshot-226_zpsbo53vtqwShe squeezed her eyes shut, but even when she did she still saw them together so clearly.

The absolute worst thing about going back over all the memories is how fervently she wished she could manipulate them, change how she remembers them, so that it’s anyone but… him.

Screenshot-211Truly, Millerna hated being observant, but more than that, from the very centre of her being, Millerna Landgraab loathed Estellise Murphy.

A/N: A belated Merry X-mas (and a futuristic Happy New Year)!

I know I’ve been away for ages (I won’t bore you with excuses), anyways, I just knew I had to release something before 2014, so I hope this suffices… for now. Please don’t kill me, Chp. 31 is in progress! 

^_^

❤ ❤ ❤  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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11 responses to “Interlude

  • parabee27

    Well, hopefully you heard my last comment on chapter 30! I CAN’T wait for another chapter! *cries* (oT^To) Can’t wait at all! 😀 Good thing it’s coming… Soon! Hehehe
    But… this is so embarrassing! Forgive me if I’m wrong, but are you the simmer I read about who moved to… Hong Kong? Because ermagerd your in China, and you’re very close to my hometown! Eek! And like I said forgive me if I’m mistaken… .-.

    • Becki

      I’ll try my best! *Slowest writer in the world* As to your question, yes, yes I am the one who moved to the lovely Fragrant Harbour (and yes, my Cantonese is terrible, but progressing).

      I’m actually missing it right now, as I flew home to the UK for the holidays/New Year and it is so goddamn COLD! My Octopus card is enjoying not being abused on a daily basis, though ^^

      Ohhh? Maybe I know your hometown???

  • LilyParker

    YAY! An update! As soon as I saw the photo of Vaughn looking at Estelle, I got all excited and said, “Hel-lo!” I absolutely LOVE that shot — Millerna watching Vaughn watching Estelle. Just perfect. And then Vaughn has the sweetest eyes in the next shot. You made me say, “aww….”

    Man, Millerna is a stone cold bitch in this chapter! I didn’t think she had it in her. It was nice to see the other Landgraab sisters. Poor Charles. I felt bad for him. He wants Estelle, too, but I know he wants even more for her to be happy. He’s a sweetie.

    An early Happy New Year to you, too!

    • Becki

      Yep – love triangles! Love triangles everywhere!

      To be honest, I really needed this chapter to build to chp. 31 so I’m quite pleased with it really. I tried to make Millerna at least a little sympathetic, but it’s difficult with just one post to do it in! That aside, every story needs a good stone cold bitch at some point 😛

      Arggh. Charles. So hard to write. Why did I decide to make him an introvert, again? At least YOU got it, Lily.

      Thanking you ^^ Have a good ‘un!

  • deverouxxx

    Hi! Read through all of this story in like 3 days, as well as the Curse of the Red Thread story. Will get to your legacy eventually, haha.

    The way you write is captivating, and your plot lines are truly entertaining. I’ve had a lot of fun reading. So keep at it! XD

    Also, holy ridiculously creepy shot of Millerna staring evilly! I fear for Estelle’s life… It’s beautiful.

    • Becki

      I’m not surprised it took 3 days ~ Suitor is much longer than I had originally planned!!! I’m so happy to hear you’ve read Cursed too, as I know it’s quite different! I hope you like my legacy as much ^^

      Thank you so much for the compliments! It’s really encouraging to hear these sort of things, as I’m a complete novice-writer, and I just do it for fun in my spare time! I hope I can keep you as entertained with future instalments!

  • vampireXheart

    the sixth photo from the bottom of Millerna, it’s so beautifully creepy. Like that is the face of someone who wants to eat your soul. But on a serious note, I am so in awe of your scene setting, and photo taking. The clothes, the patterns, the angles, the expressions, all of it, and then the writing.

    And Charles, he so quiet, and sweet, but his heart is so big. I hope he doesn’t get trampled on to greatly, least of all by his sister. And Millerna, there’s a reason to feel some sympathy for her, I’m not sure that she honestly loves Vaughn, as much as she just wants him, the idea, to have him submit what he is to her. I sorta maybe sense that Charles has feelings for Estelle, but would do what it took for her to be happy. But Millerna just wants to win.

    Great chapter 🙂 Can’t wait for the next one.

    • Becki

      Hey, thanks for the feedback/compliments (as usual ;P). I’m glad this little bridge-chapter was somewhat satisfying, I know the lack of progress must be annoying!

      Millerna and Charles ~ what a mess! She does care for him, but as an intelligent woman it’s pretty frustrating when her baby brother forces an unpleasant task on her and there’s absolutely nothing she can do about it – simply because he’s a man! Or, at least, that’s where I was coming from.

      31 won’t be too much longer now… just stuck on one particular segment!

  • marsar2

    Wow, that Millerna is quite… something! I can’t completely hate her, though.

    And Charles… ❤ ❤ ❤ I love him more and more each update. He's so sweet, and it's very sad to see him so taken with Estelle, knowing she's in love with his best friend… I just want to hug him :'-(.

    Happy (and belated) New Year to you too! 😀

    • Becki

      “Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned”, right? I thought Millerna deserved a bit in the story after her ‘confession’. Can you believe she was actually introduced in chp. 5 and it’s taken me THIS LONG to give her a significant part?! Terrible!

      Hey ~ there’s a lot of Charles love going around these days; I guess he really is the perfect gentleman ^^

      Thanks! I hope you had a nice New Year, too!

  • Vinna

    Augh Millerna is going to be a problem it seems! I really hope she doesnt do anything stupid! 😮
    Great chapter!

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