Index > Ongoing Stories > Grizella Fulfills her Obligations and Promises; Another Visit from Miss Nott
Grizella Fulfills her Obligations and Promises; Another Visit from Miss Nott
((Takes place the day and two days after "A Very Unpleasant Night at the Elmsworth Residence". A collaboration between the players of Miriam Nott and Grizella Elmsworth.))
Grizella, after an /almost/ tearful goodbye with Earnest, had slept very little, worrying over all of the things she had to do the following day. Rising early, she had questioned the servants /herself/, as well as /personally/ supervised the searching of their quarters. It had been discovered that a scullery maid had been the culprit, accepting the bribe and allowing the harlot entry into the house. The girl had been lectured /severely/ before she had been cast out of the house, her bribe confiscated, to be donated to relieve the poor of the parish. The wages of sin, Mrs Elmsworth had said, were none, for Dorothy.
Breaking her fast with Eliza, she had informed her that Earnest and Roland had left for Goodhill, intimating that Roland had broken their agreement, but endeavoring to withhold as many of the indecent details as possible. Afterward she had retired to her chamber to write the note to Miss Nott, and the letter to Miss Miriam, the former a succinct request that she come to visit at her earliest convenience, the latter... something different.
Dear Miss Miriam,
It is with a very heavy heart that I write to inform you that the agreement between Mr Roland and yourself, between the Elmsworths and the Notts, is at an end. Mr Roland has, regretfully, taken up with another, betraying his inconstant heart and faithlessness. I know the depth of your feeling for Mr Roland, and it pains me to so inform you of his false heart, but he has broken his promise to both your family and mine, and shown himself to be entirely unworthy of your devotion. I know that, eventually, you shall recover from this despair, and urge you to spend this time in prayer, and in the comfort of the bosom your family, as well as devoting yourself to improving your accomplishments once you are again capable.
Mrs Elmsworth also pens a missive to Mrs Nott, informing her of what has happened-omitting the details, of course, and saying only that the attachment is ended.
Christy arrives the day after she received Grizella's request, dressed in a somber grey-blue gown and rather worried by the tone of the message. She knocks lightly at the door and clasps her hands nervously as she waits to be admitted.
Thorpe admits the lady, immediately leading and announcing her in to the parlor. Mrs Elmsworth smiles gently and rises, her previously unmentioned 'condition' now /quite/ obvious in her white gown with damascen embroidery. "Miss Nott, thanking you for acquiescing to my request so quickly."
Christianna's eyes widen and she opens her mouth, then realizes it might not be polite to exclaim, and simply beams. "Mrs. Elmsworth, of course. And it would seem congratulations are in order!" She can't help adding, only a hint reproachfully "You didn't tell me!"
Grizella smiles more broadly, and very genuinely. "Thank you, dear. Yes, Mr Elmsworth and I-and /all/ of the family-are very pleased. We told no-one but the family-it may be terribly backward and old-fashioned but I thought to wait until it presented itself."
"Oh, of course," Christy can't stop smiling.
She feels even worse about the news she must deliver, her smile falling slightly. She rings for tea. "Please, sit, Miss Nott."
Christianna obeys with a nod.
Grizella considers how she ought to tell her, and decides /not/ to begin at the beginning. "Mr Elmsworth has departed for Goodhill with Mr Roland."
Christianna looks faintly relieved. "I see," she says politely.
She nods in return. "Yes... I... I am afraid it is Mr Roland that is the cause of my being deprived of Mr Elmsworth." Her tone is just /slightly/ bitter.
Christy tilts her head slightly. "Did he . . . forgive me if I am too forward, was there some sort of argument?"
She sighs. "I am afraid Mr Roland acted in a manner that has /decidedly/ ended the 'agreement' between our families."
Her eyes widen. "Wh-what?"
"The attachment between Mr Roland and Miss Miriam is at an end."
Christy blinks and takes a breath, then gives a small nod and asks quietly, "May I . . . will you say in more detail, or is it . . .erm . . . private?"
The tea arrives, and Grizella is silent as she serves Miss Nott, before she again speaks. "I am afraid that sharing all of the details would be more than inappropriate, Miss Nott, but suffice it to say that Mr Roland had a... /dalliance/... which was /discovered/."
Christy pales a little, her eyes flashing. She sets the cup down again without drinking. "I . . . I see."
Grizella nods in acknowledgment. "I have informed both Mrs Nott and Miss Miriam."
"I see." Christy bites her lip, her brow furrowing anxiously. "I . . . I suppose I should return home."
Grizella shakes her head, furrowing her brow. "Of /course/ not, Miss Nott."
"What?" She blinks, surprised by the contradiction.
"Your sister is home with your family. You have been invited to stay with the Stantons-I see no reason why you must shorten your trip."
"But . . . Miri . . ."
Grizella smiles gently. "Miss Miriam shall recover with the guidance of Mr and Mrs Nott. It is much better for /all/ that you stay here."
"I-I don't understand how," Christy says a little dazedly. "W-we've always been there for each other. Surely it would be better if I was there to comfort her."
She shakes her head. "It is better for /you/ if you remain here, Miss Nott. I would encourage you to write Miss Miriam, but there is /no reason/ for you to return."
"But Miriam will miss me . . . You know we have always been close . . . It is not that I want to leave, but surely it's my duty to be there for her."
Grizella shakes her head again. "Your mother and father are more than capable of caring for her."
"But not sympathizing." Christy bites her lip and says softly, a little wistfully "Not that I can really do that either." Better no Beau than one who can not be trusted. "But we confide in each other you see."
Grizella reaches to take Miss Nott's hand. "I am sure Mrs Nott shall be a comfort to Miss Miriam. You may confide in one-another through letters-there is /no/ reason for you to suffer for something which is no fault of your own."
"Being home with my family isn't suffering," Christy says, somewhat weakly, accepting her friend's hand.
"Of course not, dear. 'Suffering' is not quite the right word... depriving you of your enjoyment of Tyrehampton, and the Stantons and the Elmsworths of your company."
"But surely my family ought to come first," She says, not sounding very sure.
"I would agree... however, your sister has no real need of you... she is at home... I am sure we /all/ want you to enjoy yourself here, Miss Nott."
"I . . ." She is clearly conflicted.
Grizella smiles, squeezing her hand. "You will stay here and enjoy the hospitality of the Stantons, and the company of Miss Hughes, and Tyrehampton."
"Very well," Christy says in a small voice, almost automatically.
She wins a brighter smile for that, and Grizella turns the conversation to happier things. "The nursery is complete, but I am /quite/ far from completing the child's wardrobe."
Christianna is distracted by this quite easily, happy to discuss Grizella's plans rather than their siblings.
|Posted 5 months ago|