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Summer Air

Summary:
It is 1854. Edward Masen is a lowly kitchen boy; Isabella is the daughter of the wealthy Lord and Lady Swan. They are not supposed to meet; they are not supposed to talk; and they are most certainly not supposed to fall desperately, passionately in love. They are not supposed to do any of these things, but they do them anyway. Against impossible, odds, jealous rivals, and rigid traditions that will stand in the way of their relationship, will Edward and Bella be together? What will happen when Jacob Black, to whom Bella is engaged, finds out about them?

Sweet, old-fashioned, romantic…
Rated teen for possible future chapters, promise I won’t go up to adult.
More info inside.


Notes:
I was reading a story that takes place in the 1800s, and this idea came to me – write my own. A few notes.
1. This story was inspired by equal parts Against All Odds, by twilightnewmooncrazy, Taylor Swift’s Love Story, and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
2. I am a Team Edward person, so sorry Jacob-people; I do portray him as a rather nasty character. My apologies.
3. This story takes place in the English countryside in the summer of 1854.
4. I suggest you listen to Love Story before or after reading this story, just to get a sense of its theme. I also recommend Against All Odds – it’s a nice story.
5. I need a banner! If anyone would like to make me one, anyone at all, send it to me – I have contact info on my profile. Thank you!
6. The story is in two POV's - Isabella's when she is writing in her diary (first person) and Edward's the other times (third person). The diary entries are in italics.

And now, the story… Dum-dada-dum! (Trumpets)


1. Chapter 1

Rating 0/5   Word Count 1196   Review this Chapter

Dear Diary,

Today I was distracted from my grudging piano lessons by the arrival of our new kitchen boy. He came in downstairs and was immediately moved into the cellar. I have always thought it rather harsh that the servants be treated this way, with hardly any belongings to call their own and rather cramped quarters, but Mother and Father will hear none of it; they insist that the servants deserve this treatment. Not that I would know firsthand; all I have learned of their life comes from hearing their complaints. It does get rather annoying at times, though if I were a servant, I think that I would spend a considerable amount of time complaining.

I did not get a chance to glimpse the kitchen boy, as I was ushered from my piano straight to the sitting room, to practice proper comportment with Governess Marie. As if I care about comportment! I would much rather be outside, riding my horse, Jasper, or wandering in the woods, counting the number of ladybugs I can spot. But no one listens to me. No one cares.

***

Edward Masen rang the doorbell to his new life.

Being a servant was not a preferable job, he knew that. And yet, if it helped his mother, he would do anything – clean the filthiest floors, the horses’ stables, anything. The cholera was wasting her away, stealing the color from her cheeks and the vibrancy from her character. He must earn money to pay for her medical care. He must.

A butler, dressed in an impeccably tailored suit and cravat, opened the door. Tall and thin as a stick, he gave the impression of being stretched out on a rack, ruining his body’s proportions. He turned his nose up at the sight of Edward, as if he smelled something bad. Edward had an excellent view of his nose hairs. “Ah yes, the new kitchen boy,” he said with distaste, in a high, wheezy voice. “Right this way. I will be showing you to your new quarters in the cellar, where you will receive an informational tour and begin your first task. Follow me.”

He led Edward through the ground floor of the mansion, a stunning display for one who had never lived in anything more than a four-room flat. Edward noted the extravagance with awe – delicate porcelain pieces set on lace doilies decorating every table surface; exquisitely carved furniture pieces that looked like they might crumble to dust at the slightest touch; plush carpets and wall hangings, most often depicting a hunting scene that must have taken years to stitch; the riches were endless.

Finally they arrived at the cellar, where Edward’s single bag – containing a tattered paperback version of Homer’s The Odyssey, several photographs, and a single change of clothes – was searched and then set down on a narrow cot smelling strongly of wet goat. He was then introduced to the rest of the staff, who muttered a quick greeting then continued about their work. Finally, the snobby butler left with a parting sniff, and he reported to the head of servants for his first task. She was a rather homely lady of about fifty, by name of Ada, and Edward’s first impression was that she was a rather shy person with minimal authority in her. And then she opened her mouth.

“Now, let’s get a few things straight here. I am in charge. You are not. I will not stand any insubordination. If I tell you to do something, you do it. Am I clear?”

“Yes, ma’m!” Edward nearly shouted in desperation.

“Good!” she barked. “Rules: You stay only in servant areas or where you are required to go. Never stray up to the second floor. No fraternizing with the female servants. Do not touch anything. Do not take breaks. Do as you are told. Got that?”

“Yes ma’m!”

“Then your first task is to clean out the fireplace. Here is a brush, here is a towel. Get to work.”

***

Edward couldn’t help but wonder exactly why cleaning the fireplace took so long when it seemed like such a menial chore. He supposed it had something to do with the way the soot always settled over the place he had just cleaned, making his work completely worthless. Whatever the reason, he was still not done three hours after he had started.

Luckily, the servants were allowed a few breaks; lunch was one. A sort of broth, pale and colorless as its taste, was served along with a hunk of bread. Edward at the meager portion eagerly; he was famished. Sitting down on a window seat in a corner of the kitchen, he looked out at the garden and contemplated his lot in life.

It was like this that he saw her.

Edward had known that the two owners of the house – who, by the way, he had yet to glimpse, let alone meet in person – had a daughter; Miss Isabella Swan. But he had never seen her, never really thought about her unduly. Now, he opened his eyes.

She was strolling down the garden path, clad in a light summer dress of pink silk, skipping every other stone. The sudden burst of sunlight highlighted her hair, giving her a fiery halo. The wind played with strands of her mahogany tresses, which fluttered across a face so angelic that Edward thought his heart would burst. Undoubtedly, she was the most beautiful woman Edward Anthony Masen had ever seen. And undoubtedly, the most unattainable.

Edward quickly looked down at his food, lest anyone spy him staring in rapture at the enchanting creature outside. His heart was racing, thumping out a ragged, irregular beat, thrilled with this just one glimpse of the gorgeous, impossible Isabella Swan.

His meal had gone cold, but he didn’t care. He had lost his appetite.

***

Dear Diary,

I wonder if, somewhere, anywhere at all, there is any justice for women. Any place where a girl can do what she wants, when she wants, how she wants it. Where she is not forced to do this, do that, comportment, etiquette, speech! Where she does not have to be shy and demure, forever overshadowed, outdone, reduced to a mere tool by men. Alas, this place is a land of my dreams. I shall never reach it.

After my lessons on comportment, I was called to dinner, only to find that the repulsive Jacob Black had visited yet again! I find him a snobbish, self-centered, cocky fool, and have absolutely no wish to marry him, and yet my parents are encouraging our union, unable to see the weasel behind the charming attitude and money so great it overflows.

Every time he visits, he leaves me a bouquet of bloodred roses. I throw them out my bedroom window when my parents aren’t looking.

Heaven help me that I do not end up married to Jacob Black.