Wednesday, April 9, 2014

A Recipe for Punch, Chapter 89

Chapter 89

"There now,"  Robert smiled as he watched Gerard prop up Gamilla in their bed.  "You just need to rest for awhile, and I think..."

"Your Lordship!"  Gamilla shrieked, bolting upright.

"What is it, 'Milla?"  Gerard grabbed his wife's hand.  "Is it the baby?"

"It's Miss Lennie."  Gamilla rasped, panting.  "She's hurt!"

"Gamilla..."  Robert began.

"Where?"  Gerard asked, fully believing his wife's second sight.  Robert believed, too, however, the remains of his scientific training never fully allowed him to accept such things without question.

"She's under the ground."  Gamilla answered.

"Like Miss Morgana and Georgie and William?"  Gerard asked.

"Yes, but..."  Gamilla shook her head.

"Is she with them?"  Gerard asked.

"No."  Gamilla replied.  "She's in a place with dead folk.  She's...she's in..."

Suddenly from the next room, Robert heard Punch call out wildly.  "Chum?"

"Stay here, Gerard.  Stay with your wife."  Robert nodded as he exited to the nursery.  Charles--who had returned there after helping carry Gamilla to the nursery bedroom--closed the door behind him.

Punch stood next to Charles in front of Maudie and Ethel--both out of breath, upset, and clearly frightened.

"Lennie is in the crypt with Violet."  Punch said as calmly as he could.  "And, it seems, so is Jackson."

"Your Grace, we...we was only tryin' to help."  Ethel said quickly.

"There's no time for that now."  Punch said a little more angrily than he'd intended.  He tried to soften his tone a bit.  "I know...I know...but, we must now all stay together as often as we can.  We're safer when...when we're unified, we are.  Ethel, you stay here with Colin.  Gamilla's not feelin' well.  Charles, would you come with me and Lord Colinshire at once?"

Charles nodded.  

"Ethel, you're in charge for now--in here.  Lock the door behind us and listen for Toby to let ya know if anyone's comin'."

"Yes, Your Grace."

"And, mention to Gerard where we went, if ya would."  Punch added.  "Tell 'im I want him to stay here to keep an eye on Colin and the women."

"I will."

"Where shall I go, Your Grace?"  Maudie asked quietly.

Punch's eyes flashed.  

"Stay in here, Maude."    Robert spoke up.

Maude nodded her answer, blushing.

Robert took Punch by the arm as they hurried out, followed by Charles.  "It's the oddest thing, Gamilla just now said that Lennie was endangered below the ground."

"If my sister is harmed in anyway,"  Punch growled.  "I will...I will..." He pressed his palms together as they rushed.

Suddenly, Punch stopped, causing Robert and Charles to stumble into him.  He wandered over to one of the low, consoles which lined the long walls of the passage.  

"Terribly sorry, Your Grace."

"No, no."  Punch shook his head.  "It's my fault."

"Why ever did you stop, dear Punch?"  Robert asked.

"For this."  Punch reached for a large figural bronze candlestick.  "If Lennie is harmed in any way, I shall tenderize Jackson's old flesh until he is as supple as a new lamb."

Did you miss Chapters 1-88 of A Recipe for Punch?  If so, you can read them here.  Come back tomorrow for Chapter 90.

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