“I think I shall tell Theodore.”
“But what happens if the King says no? I’d rather wait and tell him when they both return.”
If they do. Yes, you are sensible. We will wait, for now I think he will be expecting your company.”
“Of course, it will be my pleasure.”
Bonnie knocked. “I have returned.”
“Oh, do tell me. Is there any news on my Father?”
“We shall all have to wait and see.”
“Ah, that does not sound so promising.”
“Only time will tell. Ha! Aggie looks so funny, she is perched upon the window sill on the other side of the sash window staring at us. No doubt she has been up to no good.”
“Well, so far she has not brought in any little gifts.”
“She is not much of a killer cat, fortunately. I have heard that some cats can be little murderers!”
“I am glad that she is not like that. I do not fancy having a half chewed, dead mouse dropped upon the counter pane.”
As he smiled, another crack appeared in his dry lips.
“You need more balm.”
“Thank you. Mmm, lovely.”
“Shall I read a little something to you?”
“Yes, that would be pleasant.”
“How about…” Bonnie paused. “Pilgrim’s progress, I saw that upon the bookshelf the other day.”
“The Christian classic? Hmm, no thank you.”
“Oh, it used to be one of my favourites.”
“It is one of the very few books that I cannot stand.”

Theodore gasped, his chest tightening.
“What is it?”
“Just a little ache in my chest.”
“How are your limbs?”
“The same, do not read from a book.” He whispered.
“I’d love to know more about you, your Grace.”
“Me? Oh, well ask away.”
“Umm, what was your favourite thing to do as a child?”
“Ah, now there were so many things. I was a bit of a dreamer, much to the dismay of my parents, I had a habit of not paying attention in my lessons as I should have done.”
“It is pleasant to day dream.”
“Yes. What else did I like to do, hmm oh, I would often swim in the river something else which did not impress my parents, I used to be quite a decent swimmer actually. Can you swim? Oh yes, your ice skating story, of course you can.”
Bonnie smiled at the thought of him having remembered.
“Archery was fun and so was .. oh I can row a rowing boat but I haven’t done that since last year and that was with a disagreeable person.”
“Ah, you needn’t go on.”
“No I shall! It is a highly amusing tale. Jane decided that it was her heart’s desire to go on a picnic, I decided to be a little more adventurous, so I took a rowing boat out and we rowed across the wind pond in the castle grounds. Have you seen it?”
“Hmm, I am not sure.”
“I think you would have remembered it if you had. Anyhow, Jane was not at all happy. I think she was scared as she was not much accustomed to boats and she decided to stand.”
“She did not!”
“She did and you can imagine what happened.”
“She fell in?”
“Worse than that, she caused the whole rowing boat to capsize. She had failed to tell me that she could not swim and I had to rescue us both.”
“Heavens! What happened next?”
“She panicked a little and cursed, I told her to try to float on her back, but she would not listen, Jane being Jane. We managed to get out of the water and then um.. she would not speak to me for the rest of the day and marched home in a wild fury, still dripping wet.”
“But you saved her!”
“I suppose so.”
“No you did and she responded in such a way?”
“And you saved me Bonnie, you rescued me from becoming bitter and selfish like her and for that I will be eternally grateful.”
“Were you ill? After the incident I mean.”
“I got a chest cold, but it was not so bad. She refused to come and see me in case she should catch it.”
“How selfish! How do people become like that?”
“Speaking from experience; when a person is deeply unhappy, then sometimes they think it acceptable to take their frustrations out on other people. It is wrong, but it happens. I do not think that Jane will ever grow up. Oh perhaps I have been too hard on the girl, but I can only think bitter thoughts. Believe me when I say that it would have to take something very serious to have happened for me to forgive her, I doubt that to be the case.”
“Probably not, perhaps time will tell. Might I ask another question?”
“Yes if you must.”
“I see that you tire, so I shall go soon, but; who did you contract the initial Scarlet Fever from?”
“I do not think that I will ever know. I can only hope that the person has recovered. It could have been anyone, a party guest perhaps. It must have been in my system for some time, weeks I think and there it lay dormant, slowly destroying my heart.”
“Have some more water.”
“Thank you Nurse McGrath.”
“Ha! I could never be a nurse.”
“That is what you are doing now, is it not? Nursing me.”
“In a way yes, but I would never be brave enough to nurse large quantities of people.”
“Yes, one person is probably difficult enough.”
“Indeed. No, I am simply pulling your leg. You are not so bad.”
“How very kind of you to say Bonita.”
“It is my pleasure. Now then, I was going to read to you, but like you, I am becoming increasingly tired, you have dark circles around your eyes and that is the fifth time you have yawned in two minutes!”
“You were counting?”
“I was, I will wake you when Mr Howard and you Father returns. Hopefully it should not be too long until they do.”

©Sophie Bowns 2011-2014

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9 thoughts on “Theodore- Chapter 41

  1. Hi Sophie. I see you’re writing a novel and posting on line. 🙂 Very nice way for people to follow along. Visiting you from UBC. Hope your weekend is lovely and you have lots of time for writing. 🙂

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