She couldn’t sleep, she’d tossed and turned all night and hadn’t managed to settle, even sleeping in Christopher’s bed hadn’t helped. She laughed at the foolishness of it, she’d slept in his bed so she didn’t feel so alone, wanting to feel closer to a man she barely knew, the most ridiculous thing being that he himself had never even slept in it.
Resigning herself to the idea of a sleepless night, she climbed from the bed pulling her robe around her, since she was awake she might as well do some work for their was plenty to be done. Orrick or her Mother usually helped her run the estate but with her uncle dead, everyone was too busy and paperwork that could no longer be ignored had been piling up.
Heading into the study she lit the candle on her desk, on Christopher’s desk she corrected, before heading to the windows. It was still dark but did that mean it was very late or just very early and did it really matter anyway? She’d just do a few, then she’d go back to bed for a while before breakfast.
Sifting though the piles of documents she looked for something simple enough she could manage alone. Dismissing an income report due to it’s complexity and an household expense sheet for it’s tedium her hand settled on a plain white envelope. It had arrived the day before for Christopher, with no seal it seemed on the face of things, to be a personal letter of some kind.
She was used by now to opening his mail, even the personal letters had to be read and addressed, Orrick often joked that Christopher’s friends an family wound suddenly wonder why his pen-manship had so degraded when he finally started to reply to his letters himself.
He said Christopher’s letters often looked as though a spider had hopped though ink before crawling across the page, while Meagan he thought wrote beautifully for a woman. She’d never given it much thought before other than to think Orrick lucky her mother had seen fit to teach her to write at all, as many of her school friends had not been taught.
Turning the letter over in her hand one last time, she opened it and began to read. These letters where often from old school friends or occasionally his mother, mostly boring but occasionally interesting giving her an interesting perspective on her husband, especially when school friends recounted tails from university. If anything could be said from the letters any idea’s she may have had that her husband was like her going to his marriage bed a virgin where well and truly dead, not that she’d been surprised of course, with his advanced age and all.
This letter though was different; it recounted tales in far more descriptive terms, more personal terms… far far more personal terms, clearly written from one lover to another. As she read her heart sank, it was like a crushing blow.
Describing an encounter Christopher had had with the woman last summer, it wasn’t especially graphic but detailed enough to know what ever they had, it had been a repeat occurrence and to open Maegan’s eye’s somewhat to the true nature of love making.
Her hands shook as the read Last Summer?! She came to Christopher last summer was it then? Was he with her while Maegan stayed with him at Vaux Manor?
Reading on it just got worse.. a baby had been born just before Christmas a ‘blessing’ the woman described, Christopher it seemed was the father?
Was that who he was with now?
No don’t be stupid Maegan she scolded herself, why would the woman be writing him, if he was with her?
Reaching the bottom of the letter she let out a long hard sigh, stifling back the tears the woman had asked to meet him. She’d said it was important and even though she seemed aware he was married. She had eluded to wanting to resume their relationship.
She hadn’t said where or when, nor had she left a name, merely signing the letter JH.