My heart did sank as he walked back inside, I just wanted to be alone for a while but that didn’t seem possible. Antonio came into sight and saw me perched in the tree immediately. I sighed as he beckoned me. I flew down beside him and grabbed my shoes and my mask from beside the door.
“Well, Shaun didn’t believe me when I said a good even would happen to him.” He smiled at me, “an look what happened.” I sighed a long sigh as I slipped my feet back into the heels. “I thought you would come back. Shaun has been heavy hearted since you left. The whole mansion had been heavy hearted since you left.” I gave him a faint smile.
“Well, it couldn’t have been because of me, I just heard what Shaun thinks of me.” I felt a tear slip down my face as I said this. Dabbing it with my finger, I was careful not to wreck my eyes. “I’m a goody two shoes, a teacher’s pet and I run away from everything.” tears were racing down my cheeks uncontrollably. I laughed at my failing attempts to stop them.
“Shaun doesn’t think that of you, everyone here knows it. In fact, I think he loves you.” I laughed at Antonio.
“Of course he doesn’t love me!!!” I said to him. I was beginning to get angry now, I didn’t like people lying to me. Ms Brighton came in at that moment and came over quickly.
“Sir, Shaun won’t come down, he says he’s feeling terribly ill. But I think he isn’t, because he is banging his head off the wall. I laughed at this.
“What are you laughing at child???” Ms Brighton asked me. I saw Antonio wink at her.
“Maybe Tanya should go and sort him out. What do you think, Ms Brighton???” He asked her. She nodded and helped me up. I sighed and walked away.
“Fine, but don’t be surprised if he comes down with a black eye.” I shouted behind me. I could tell they were smiling. I walked up to his room, able to find it because I had taken this route so many times before. Opening the door, I heard Shaun sigh.
“Go away granddad. I’m not going down, I feel ill.” He said.
“Well maybe no one cares.” I said in the voice I had used earlier. I saw him turn around.
She was standing there, mask in hand and leaning on the door frame. She had a leg crossed over the other and a mad, red face on, like she had been crying. I smiled at her and she scowled.
“Get your ass down in the ballroom or what I said to Antonio and Ms Brighton will become true.” She said sternly.
“What was that???” I asked teasingly.
“Do you want me to show you???” She said in a sweet voice. I nodded and she came over dropping her mask along the way. I looked at Growler and he shook his head. When I turned to Tanya I got a surprise.
And a black eye.
“I said, get your ass down there and dance with someone!!!” She repeated. I smiled at her.
“Only if that person is you.”
“What, the teacher’s goody two shoes pet who runs away from everything???” she said, tears clouding her beautiful eyes.
I cringed at this and she saw and sighed. “I didn’t mean it, Tanya. honest.”
“I don’t trust honesty anymore.” I took hold of her and simply said,
“Do you trust this???” and I kissed her.
I was surprised at first and gave in to what I had wanted for weeks. I kissed him back, slipping my arms around his neck. I let his tongue through my lips, and I let it explore my mouth. My tongue licked his lips and I loved it, my knees went weak and he gripped me to him tighter so I wouldn’t fall.
I had missed him so much but I couldn’t do anything about it. I just lived in that moment. We kissed and then it became more passionate, then we were lying on the bed kissing each other and holding each other.
“We should really go back down.” I said through each kiss.
“Maybe, maybe not.” He replied. I let go and sat up, running my fingers through my hair a bit, just to make the curls seem a bit neater. He sat up and hugged me, I leaned my head on his shoulder and sighed happily. I think that’s the first time I’ve done that in quite a while.
I pulled my mask down over my face and pulled my hair out of the band. I got up and put out my hand for Shaun to take. After helping him up we let Growler out and roam about the garden for five minutes and then made our entrance together into the ball room again. I pulled up my gloves and held his hand. We still had about four hours left of dancing, chatting and cheese cubes.
“Care to dance???” Shaun asked me once we were in.
“Of course, Shaun.” I giggled, taking his hand going on the dance floor. The band was doing slow songs, probably to give their hands a brake. It was ***** they were playing, I had listened to it on You Tube before. My hand went on Shaun’s shoulder and his hand went on my waist, not that you could get to it because of all the netting but he tried.
We stepped shuffled and laughed together. I saw Antonio with a sly smile, looking our way and I gave him a grin.
“How’s your eye???” I asked him, remembering punching him earlier.
“You know, I hadn’t even thought about it really.” He replied, widening his eyes. I looked up and saw his eye. It was going to be sore in the morning.
“Sure you don’t want a cold fish or a cold slab of meat???” I asked him.
“There’s time for that tomorrow. You may have to nurse me.” He paused, thinking. “You are staying aren’t you Tanya???” I nodded and kissed him again. He pulled away, leaning his forehead to mine and smiled.
“It’s hard to stay away.”
“Good, just how I like it.” He said with a smile. The band finished the number and Shaun lifted me up and spun me round. I laughed and pulled him over to Antonio.
“Told you I would give him a black eye.” Antonio laughed and I felt my eyes widen, have I heard him laugh before??? “Come on Shaun, better go and see to that eye.” I said with an impish smile. He took my hand again and we ran to the kitchen. The cook gave us a look but I just ignored her, I was too happy too care.
I found one of the fridges and took out a fish before holding it to Shaun’s eye. I sat down beside him and held the fish. “Are you OK???” I asked him.
“I’ve been better,” he said with a smile. I smiled back and shifted in my seat. Not that it was much of a seat, we were sitting on the table. The cook was just gobsmacked.
“Out, out, I don’t want children sitting on my tables.” She said with gusto.
“I’ll thank you not to call us children, please.” Shaun said with an impish smile. She got her rolling pin and shouted at us. We dropped the fish and ran from the raging cook. We went back into the ball room and got into a dancing pose. It looked like we had never left.
We got dancing quickly and went for cheese cubes before dancing again. We danced for around an hour and then sat down. My feet were killing me in those shoes. I pulled off my gloves and looked at my hand, it was really hot. Shaun took his gloves off and he had cold hands. I don’t normally get hot though.
It was about eleven O’clock when we sat down. Still two hours until the Ball ended and it was winter. I think we were both a bit tired but the excitement hadn’t run out just yet. “Want to take the dog for a run???” Shaun asked.
We took Growler out and walked for a while and ran back. He was seriously lazy. “We need to get him fit.” I said to Shaun. He nodded in agreement. We went back in the ballroom and danced for the last half hour. Antonio stood up and made an announcement.
“We all have been here since about six O’clock and are now getting ready to leave. So let’s have one last toast to Autumn.” We all got a drink from the servants and toasted.
“TO AUTUMN.” Everyone said in unison. It had been a good night really. First you go in dressed up in your fancy outfit, sat and chatted with some women, pretending your name was Rosabell, sat and ate beside the boy you love, have him lie to you, sit crying in the garden, punch the boy you love, kiss him, dance with him, hold a fish to his eye, take the lazy dog for a walk and feel absolutely exhausted.
We walked to our room after collecting my cloak and lied on the bed, telling each other what happened while I was away. He seemed fascinated by Adam trying to seduce me and worried about me beating the devil. I went to the bathroom and started to get changed into my pyjamas, legging and a grey vest. I felt hands on my shoulders and turned my head to be met by a kiss.
I turned round completely and kissed him passionatly. He seemed to like this and lifted me up. My legs wrapped around his waist and he dropped me onto the bed before shooing the dog into the bathroom and closing the door.
I smiled and waited.