She must have partly understood, for she answered with a trace of a smile lifted at the left-hand corner of her mouth. Her soft, deep blue eyes glittered brightly as she blinked at me, seeming to be absolutely clueless of my last remark. My eyebrows raised as I returned with a polite smile and repeated myself as I formally sat my hands on my lap and glanced back.
“Would you be kind enough to walk me home?”
Realization dominated Miss Carte’s face as she reacted with a grin and nod.
Standing up from the warm armchair I rested on, I reached my hand out towards her, expecting the placement of hers on mine.
“Such gentleman,” she smiled, as I walked her out of the manor and into the bright and colorful English countryside. A vast lake which reflected the brilliant hue of the blue sky lay in front of us, close enough to almost touch the set of stairs we descended. A grove of fall oak trees crowded behind the white manor, its orange leaves rested upon the roof. The cool green grass swayed gently with the chilly breeze as we continued to walk towards the stone bridge that sat upon the inland body of water which formed gently into a narrow river. The water was still and frogs croaked, making the tranquil landscape much more breathtaking than what it already was.
Our hands never parted as we proceeded to stroll through the beautiful woods. It was when our progression through the woods was a bit more than halfway when she finally spoke.
“You see, Edward,” the lady paused, sadly looking up at me. “I think you’re a very sweet guy. I do. But I—“
I squeezed her hand tighter and faced her, inching myself closer to her. She stopped talking and stared into my eyes as I leaned my face closer just a little, saying, “Miss Carte. Will all due respect, I think there are some facts you have not yet considered.” I caressed her cheek with my free hand, leaning in even closer. “I love you, with all my heart. And every single time you try to tell me something like this, it aches knowing that you are likely to not want me as much as I do. My love for you is powerful, and you should understand that...” I felt my smile fade as we stood close to each other wordlessly for a few moments.
Suddenly, my lips were planted with a soft kiss. She paused and pulled away, looking at the ground and then up at me in curiosity. I then pulled her towards me and brushed my lips on hers, her arms wrapped around my neck and mine around her waist. We kissed in the warm sun of a clearing, dominated by a single pine tree, and enjoyed ourselves to the utmost with the exchange of passionate kisses. I held her fondly, closely, in a loving embrace as we eventually sat down, our backs against the thick bark of a high oak tree.
I watched an eagle poise in the sky as Miss Carte’s head rested on my shoulder, her eyes closed and breathing slow.