“Come. Eat, child, the mutton will give you strength.”
I followed her up the stairs, bolting the garden door from within as Bryn bid me. I would do it for him, not Silvanticus. Not that I meant Silvanticus ill. My irritation came from the fact he wanted me for my coastline. Bryn saw me, the woman I was.
Or did he? We had spoken four times, not even a full handful.
“My maid, you must eat to keep your health. The wedding is not far off. Lord Silvanticus petitions your brother to move the day nearer.”
“He says he has been bewitched by your beauty.”
A harsh laugh escaped. The stoic man of our first meeting couldn’t claim bewitchment. He barely moved toward me, touched me not, and spoke only of my father’s death. Not the words or manner of a lover beguiled. Bryn, his man, however, acted and uttered the part of a friend.
“He barely spoke anything beyond discussing my father’s death, hardly the words of a man in love.”
Ealdine hushed me with a flap of her hand. “He was too overcome to speak of love without losing countenance. It is a common ailment among wooing men.”
I swallowed another retort. I needed to cease such thoughts. I was betrothed to Silvanticus. Despite the fact I didn’t agree to the marriage, honor bound me to him. He paid my bride price and I, for the sake of my father’s name, would pledge my life to him.
Will she or won't she?
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