Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A Recipe for Punch, Chapter 62

Chapter 62

"Auntie!"  Punch rushed into the Vermillion Suite to find Morgana in her bed, the bedclothes pulled over her head.

Lennie and Robert followed Punch into the room.

"She was here."  Lennie shook her head.  "I can smell her."

Robert nodded.  "The same odor from the pantry."

"Auntie Morgana,"  Punch began, "It is I, Mr. Punch.  You are safe.  Lennie and Robert are with me.  Mother's gone now."

"I...I...know."  Morgana answered shakily, she slowly lowered the blankets.

Lennie went to sit beside the woman.  "Oh, my dear.  You've spoiled your lovely hair.  Did she harm you?"

"No."  Morgana answered softly.  "How...how...did you know she was here?"

"She appeared to me as well."  Lennie replied.  "Imagine.  My introduction to my mother.  And yours to your sister."

"She is most unpleasant."  Morgana whispered.

"So death has not mellowed the Duchess of Fallbridge?"  Robert muttered.

"Chum,"  Punch looked up.  "What are we gonna do?  We can't very well stay here.  Not with Colin and not with Gamilla bein'...with child.  I won't have them 'ere with a spirit roamin' the halls and..."

"I completely agree."  Robert nodded.  "However, there is one detail to prevent our immediate return to London."

"Which is?"  Punch asked.

"Matthew."  Lennie sighed.  "If he isn't already in Yorkshire, he's quite near by now.  We can't simply leave just as he's arriving."

"Nor can we welcome 'im into this house of utter madness!"  Punch exclaimed.  "We shall 'ave to tell him that we can't stay, that we'll all 'ave to go somewhere else, and, then return home."

"How shall we explain that, brother dear?"  Lennie asked.

"We'll tell him the truth."  Punch replied.  His shoulders sagged.  "Oh... I s'pose that might not be for the best, given Matthew's...sensibilities."

"May...may I say something?"  Morgana asked.

"Of course, Auntie."  Punch nodded.

"I see why you'd wish to take your son away from here."  She began.  "Still, would it be right to simply leave this phantom to roam free in the house?  Mustn't we rid the earth of her?"

Punch was silent.

"I think the young Governess would be able to do so."  Morgana continued.

"Such a risk,"  Robert shook his head.

"Auntie Morgana is correct.  It's similarly risky to leave such a dark creature with such freedom."  Lennie interjected.  "Especially when aided by ones such as Jackson and Miss Blessum."

"Coo!"  Punch's eyes widened.  "Miss Blessum is still locked in Auntie's old cell!"

"She'll keep."  Robert winked.

"We must decide what we should do, dear Punch."  Robert put his arm around his companion's shoulders.

"Well..."  Punch began.

Before he could continue, Gregory appeared in the doorway of the Vermillion Suite.

"Your Grace,"  He smirked.  "The Earl of Cleaversworth's party is just arriving."

Did you miss Chapters 1-61 of A Recipe for Punch?  If so, you can read them here.  Come back tomorrow for Chapter 63.  

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