He had kissed her, she thought to herself eyes closed. Even though his lips weren't on hers now she could still feel the passion with which he had kissed her.
It felt like she was dreaming, maybe she was; Lord Alexander wouldn't have behaved that way let alone kiss her. He proved her wrong when she felt his finger caress her neck and she opened her eyes to meet his that were intently watching her.
With a gentle smile Lord Alexander moved aside to give her space and walked up to his drawer.
With her heart beating loudly from the kiss and not knowing what to do, Katie rose from the bed awkwardly.
At first when he had placed his lips on her she thought he had mistaken her for Lady Caroline but it didn't seem like that was the case. Her first intimate kiss was stolen by him.Why did Lord Alexander kiss her?
Unlike the time on the bed, Katie sensed that Lord Alexander had returned back to his usual calm and composed state.
"This came for you at noon," she heard Lord Alexander speak with his hand holding out an envelope, "It's from Annabelle Bingley."
"Ah, thank you," she said softly taking it from him.
"Was she the one you met up with recently?" he asked, and saw her nod.
He looked at her kindly but there was something else that lingered behind those bewitching red eyes. As if, if she wasn't careful enough, she would fall into a spell that would be irrecoverable. They stared for mere seconds before Katie lowered her eyes.
Just this afternoon she had decided to let go of her feelings for this man and she tried enjoying her time with Mr. Travers in the theater but here she was not only back to square one but also to realize that she was in love with him.
Nervously she spoke,
"Um, I must go. Mr. Travers requested a glass of water to his room."
"Did he now. You don't have to worry about it," said Lord Alexander, "I'll have Martin do it," and Katie was quick to shake her head.
"Oh no. Actually Mr. Travers said he wanted me to get it. Good night," she bowed her head and turned walking towards the door with a heavy heart.
She had to run away when she still could before she turned to one of those jealous maids in the mansion. Now that she had bitten the forbidden apple there was no doubt that she would one day turn out to be just like those maids and she didn't want to be like that.
When her hand touched the handle of the door, ready to open it she felt a dull thud above her head.
Startled she looked up to see a hand preventing the door from being opened. She turned to face him to see him smile down at her.
"Katherine do you remember what I said when I hired you?" he questioned her.
"That I get to stay here for free if I work here in the mansion to cook, clean and garden," she said.
She tried remembering what he said but she couldn't remember anything in particular, "Oh yes, to groom Areo and feed him."
"And..." he asked stepping closer to her.
"That you will assist me when I require you to," he said bringing back his words in her mind but she didn't understand where he was going with it, "But I don't remember asking you to heed to any of the requests from the guests. Have Elliot or Sylvia given you errands until now?" he had picked up the long strand of her hair that was lying on her shoulder while speaking.
"No," she replied aware of his hand entwining with the strands of her hair, "But Lord Alexander, I am sure Mr. Travers didn't have any ill intentions."
"I wonder what he must have called you for. Perhaps he must want to play cards now."
"Cards?" she asked confused not getting his sarcasm. "But he said he wanted to talk."
The smile on his lips disappeared but he chuckled - a dry, empty laugh.
"You are wrong Lord Alexander, Mr. Travers isn't like that," she objected and saw his eyes narrow.
"My...haven't you got to know everything about him in a few hours," he asked her in a mocking tone and she felt herself gulp, "Or is it that you want him."
"What?" she whispered in shock wondering how did things turn out this way.
"Just because a man is nice upfront doesn't mean he has good intentions. You have already experienced it once, do you want it to repeat? He must have enchanted you with his pretty words for you to defend him and not believe what I say."
"It isn't like that! I do believe you but I think you misunderstood Mr. Travers," she fretted.
She didn't understand why Lord Alexander had a bad notion about him when he had done nothing wrong. And he had no right to excuse him when his record in such affairs weren't clean.
She shouldn't have been upset when he had picked Lady Caroline without a thought to accompany him for the theater. Was there even a meaning to the kiss they shared? It seemed that he had nothing to talk about it, like it hardly mattered to him.
"Even if I did go to his bed it shouldn't bother you Milord, after all I am a maid," the words flew out of her mouth. She had only meant to provoke him to see his reaction but she realized she shouldn't have. It was too late to take it back, "I-"
She felt the hair he had been playing with being tugged, causing an ache at the back of her neck leading her to raise her head to face him, eye to eye.
There was no hint of playfulness on his face and his eyes seethed at her before his lips curved. A smile that didn't reach his eyes which was frightening.
"You're right. I shouldn't concern myself with a maid like yourself," his words sent a pang to her chest and he stepped back.
"Leave, I have no task for you for the night," the Lord said turning his back at her.
Katie bit her lip seeing that Lord Alexander wasn't joking but was serious when he asked her to leave him room. The door opened and there was a click sound as the door closed again.
Stepping out of Alexander's room with the letter in her hand, she got into her room and locked it. Taking the envelope she put it in her drawer to read it later.
He had kissed her senselessly and hen asked her to leave his room because she disagreed and sided with Quill. 'Was siding with Mr. Travers that bad in my Lord's eyes?' she thought to herself. Remembering that she had to get water for Mr. Travers, she changed and went down to the kitchen relieved to see Corey and Matilda there.
"Greetings to the lady," Corey said bowing his head dramatically, "How was Cinderella's night?"
"It was good," Katie replied with a smile and then asked him, "Corey, could you take a glass of water to Mr Traver's room?"
"Sure," he said taking up her request without a question.
"Thank you so much," she thanked him.
Going back to her room she got into bed, tired with the day's events, but she couldn't fall asleep. By the time she fell asleep and opened her eyes again, it felt like only an hour had passed when the morning arrived.
She woke up groggily, managing to get ready for the day with her eyes still half-closed. In actuality she had slept only for three hours. Getting down the stairs as she headed to get Lord Alexander's tea she heard Elliot's and Sylvia's voices from the main entrance.
"Princess Katie!" Elliot exclaimed and gave her a brief hug, "How has Valeria been without me?"
"Boring," she said aloud, 'and a little lonely', echoed in her mind.
"I'm here now so life is going to be full of colors," he grinned, "Home sweet home!"
"Sir Elliot, we have guests so if you could lower your voice," Martin said before Elliot could raise a havoc this early in the morning, making Katie smile.
"Good morning, Martin!" Elliot greeted louder than he did.
"Morning Sir Elliot," Martin sighed and went to guide the servants to pick their luggage from the carriage.
"Who do we have?" Sylvia asked Katie as Elliot walked up the stairs to meet Alexander.
"Lady Caroline and her brother," she answered promptly and saw Sylvia frown, "Is everything alright?"
"Hm? Of course," Sylvia smiled patting Katie's head, "I guess we'll be having breakfast together then."
Like Sylvia said, Lady Caroline, her brother Quill, Elliot, Sylvia and Lord Alexander sat down to have breakfast together. It seemed that Lady Caroline was staying here for two more days as her father would then come to receive her due to which Quill had extended his time here as well.
Her eyes would sometimes wander to Lord Alexander but not once did their eyes meet. When she had gone to serve him, he had dismissed her with his hand talking nonchalantly with Elliot.
Fortunately Quill hadn't asked why she wasn't the one to bring him water. As though the matter was forgotten he spoke to her normally when they passed each other but every time they happened to exchange words Alexander would be there.
When she had brought his tea in his room he had ignored her presence like she wasn't there. She was so used to seeing him smile at her, greet her good morning, that this change was something she was finding hard to digest. She had tried apologizing but he had dismissed her right away.
She did dig her own grave.
'Even if I did go to his bed it shouldn't bother you Milord after all I am a maid'.
Katie saw him smile at Lady Caroline over something she said. She hadn't realized how attached she had become to him and now that she realized it, she felt the ache in her chest.
The next morning as she ate her breakfast she opened the letter her friend Annabelle had written with the date it was supposed to be opened on. Wondering why she had specified the date, she opened the letter to realize it was the date she was born on.
Happy Birthday Katherine!
I pray that all your dreams and wishes come true.
PS: Donovan will be visiting Valeria in less than two weeks. I will send you a letter again to give the exact date.
Below was an address, which she supposed was Annabelle's.
"It's your birthday?" Dorthy asked peeking in and Katie folded the paper to place it in the pocket of her dress.
"Peeking is a bad habit."
"But it's your birthday! Happy birthday!" Dorthy hugged her as she wished.
"Why are you shushing me for?" Dorthy asked with a frown, "MATI, COR-mngh-" Katie covered her mouth.
"Because you are too loud in the morning. Thank you," she thanked her.
"What's the matter?" Matilda asked coming in with Corey, Fay and Cynthia not far behind. Dorthy not unable to contain the news told them and she found herself thanking them.
"Why didn't you tell us? We could have planned something," Corey asked.
"I forgot it myself. Time just flew by and I never noticed. If I knew I would have taken the day off," she laughed scratching her neck.
"Why not ask Martin?" Fay asked.
"May be I'll do that. Off you go now, before we get late."
That morning she dragged her feet into the dining room to serve breakfast.