Friday, December 6, 2013
A Recipe for Punch, Chapter 24
When you Daydream
"Where do ya want me to put Master Colin's little hats?" Ethel asked as she continued to unpack the baby's things.
"Hmmm? Oh. Just on the top shelf of the wardrobe, I think." Gamilla answered. "Oh...except for the pudding hat. He can wear that for when he's papas come up after dinner tonight. Ya know how he toddles 'bout now when his papas and his auntie come up. Keeps him from boppin' his little head on things."
Gamilla winced and gripped the dresser.
"Gamilla?" Ethel turned around. "Are you feelin' all right. You don't seem yourself tonight."
"Oh, sure, honey. I'm fine. I reckon we're all just a little tired. Nothin' takes the spark out of a body like a long trip." Gamilla smiled. "You sure are doin' a fine job. I'm lucky I got you to help me."
Ethel smiled. "Maybe you oughta sit down for a bit. Want me to get Gerry? He can run your feet. I can finish up in here. You two can go in your room and rest a spell before dinner."
"Now, don't you bother Gerry, child. I'll tell you what I told him when he came up here earlier tryin' to get me to go to our room. His Grace ain't payin' us to lie down." She laughed.
"Gamilla, His Grace wants us all to be well. And, you...you're with child. You gotta get your rest."
"I'm fine, honey." Gamilla insisted. "Tell ya what, we can stand here and argue 'bout how fine I am or we can both finish up what we gotta do and then we'll both have a sit-down." She winked. "How's that sound?"
"That's a bargain." Ethel grinned. "Though I still think I oughta get Gerry."
"You leave my husband to his duties. When Lord Colinshire gets back to their room, he's gonna wanna change into his dressin' gown and get all cozy for the night. Gerard needs to get all His Lordship's comfortable things laid out for him." Gamilla nodded. "We're all gonna rest nice and sound tonight."
"Cor, don't it sound fine? A nice, warm bed." Ethel sighed. "Been an odd day."
"That it has, my lamb." Gamilla nodded.
"Is it bad that I want to go home already?" Ethel asked softly.
"No, angel, it ain't." Gamilla shook her head. "I do, too."
"Funny, when we was in Scotland, I didn't want to go home the first day. I liked it when His Grace took us there--until the bad things started. But, here...I just don't like it right off. I got a bad feelin'. Do you?"
"I do." Gamilla nodded. She inhaled and went on about her work.
"Are you sure you ain't feelin' sick? You look a little funny. Is it the baby?"
"No, honey." Gamilla shook her head.
"What's it like?"
"What's that?" Gamilla asked.
"Havin' a baby in ya?"
"It's hard to say," Gamilla chuckled. "You'll know one day. Best I can say, honey, is that all the things I done already felt, I feel--more so."
"How do ya mean, chil'?" Gamilla smiled.
"Ya know." Ethel whispered. "Like how you'd hear things and know 'bout things before they'd happen. You'd tell me and Jenny sometimes. Said you'd been that way since you was a little girl."
"Yes, those feelings, too." Gamilla replied.
"Is that what you're feeling now, Gamilla?" Ethel asked.
Gamilla paused. "Well, I can't lie to ya, honey."
"That's why ya look like you don't fell well." Ethel nodded. "You're seein' of feelin' somethin' what's worryin' ya sick."
Gamilla sighed. "Ethel, you can't tell Gerard. Not yet. No sense worryin' him until I understand it better."
"I won't, Gamilla." Ethel replied gently. "You're my dearest friend. You can trust me."
"I know I can, honey." Gamilla smiled. "You're my English rose."
"Will ya tell me what you're...seein'?" Ethel leaned in. "Is it like...dreams? Like seein' pictures in your head? Like when you daydream?"
"It's hard to say..." Gamilla shook her head. "Right now, I...when I blink my eyes, there's...there's a picture, but it's movin', and I can hear it, hear what's bein' said--like bein' there."
"What is it, Gamilla?"
"It's that Miss Blessum. That Ivy. Ya know the old woman from downstairs."
"The one what was the lady's maid to the dead duchess." Ethel nodded.
"She's somewhere dark, dim." Gamilla continued. "She's talkin' to someone."
"What's she sayin'?"
"She's sayin', 'You know the rules. I won't give you your dinner if you scratch me. You have to learn your manners. If you scratch me, no dinner for you.'"
Did you miss Chapters 1-23 of A Recipe for Punch? If so, you can read them here. Come back on Monday for Chapter 25.