Miranda, The Tempest

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
A woman finds a the soul survivor of a ship wreck and begins to fall in love with him.

Submitted: January 20, 2009

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Submitted: January 20, 2009

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I stumbled across the wet rocks, appreciating the harsh wind and tangible salty air that roared through the strong fjords.The crash of the tempestual waves that beat into the cliffs like the thoughts that rattled within the too small cage of my head, angry and fierce.The tide of hurricanes had made me prisoner in a stuffy house, too full of young tyrants set on destroying my peace.The girls pretty and dumb, the men ugly and proud.I carefully slipped a foot to a step, lowering myself closer to the water level and a good view of the ocean that seemed to beckon to me, asking me why I hadn’t visited so long.I hurried myself along, eager to see my good friend.Here I could be true to myself, be passionate.I jumped down the last shelf, shaking off the frustrations of the past week.I kept my eyes on the ground before my feet to keep from falling, following an invisible path to my favorite spot on this beach, a large rock that had a view of the landscape beyond this plot of earth.I reached the foaming water, in which I noticed a beam of broken wood and frayed ropes interrupting its flow.Curious as to the alien objects origin I looked up to see a large majestic ship in my harbor.A strong gust of wind swept my wild red hair into my face.I brushed it aside, squinting, wondering at the fantastic picture before me.A large wave jumped over the tall boat, flooding it with green water.The sails and masts were torn and loose, the storm having had its way with this creature.Aghast, I wondered about its crew.I slowly moved farther down, my gaze flickering to the ship.More evidence of the battle lost littered the waters, but nothing of real value.My foot slipped into a puddle, stopping my advance.This arrest from the scene brought my eyes back to me, catching sight of a bright red cloth, caught between two rocks.Liking its striking appearance I moved to claim it.I tugged at it, finding it stuck fast.Wondering what it was held to I peeked over the rocks and gasped.I quickly crawled over the rocks to the soul treasure of the wreck.I pulled his head up out of the water, finding a pulse and breathe still in his body.A survivor of the grounded ship.I studied his face, a ruggedly handsome, grave face, its complexion darker than most people that lived on this island.I felt my heart flutter, a feeling new to me as I lightly touched his warm face.He moved at my touch, his eyelids flickering and a groan escaping his lips.This expression of pain brought me to reality.Blood flowed unhindered from a gash in his head, staining his face.I pursed my lips, getting a grip on my feelings.I moved his arm around my shoulders, hoisting him up with a grunt.The unmerciful waves made this a struggling task, having to drag his weight along.Falling once, I continued, ignoring the pain in my ankle.I got around the rocks that this mysterious man had been tangled in and dropped both of us on the cold rocky shore.I was out of breath noting, with shame, how out of shape I had become.Straightening I focused on the man.I mopped his face with my sleeve, gently wiping the blood off. My eyes ran over him, seeing a growing dark stain on his white shirt.Forgetting the little scratch on his face I probed his side finding a large sliver wedged deep into his skin.I pulled his shirt back to free my view and began tickling the obstruction.His tight grip and sudden movement startled me.A grimace clouded his appearance before a cough shook his body, blood and water spurting out of his mouth.He let go of my wrist to wipe his mouth and I wasted no time in pulling out the projection.He uttered several harsh words, jerking with surprise and pain.I quickly staunched the flow of blood.My hair persisted in sticking to my face and I was forced to push it back.
“There’s a place up there, maybe a mile or two.Do you think you can get there?” I pointed up the cliffs.He placed his hand over mine; taking over the job of stopping the blood and standing up I pulled him onto his feet.He fell on to me, leaving me to carry the majority of his weight.Going across the rocky beach and up the stairs to the top of the cliff was slow and rough.I dragged him along by sheer force of will and when we reached the top he stopped me.I dropped to my knees next to him, both of us breathing hard.
“Not too much farther”, I indicated to the large house just within reach. “I’ll have a surgeon called and warm clothes for you.”I started to fuss over his dirty clothes, blushing at my impulsive action.
“What’s your name?” I stood up, ready to continue.He lurched to his feet and we unsteadily moved forward.
“Fausto Madeira III”, He answered between intakes of breath.Silence followed as we stumbled forth.But the silence on the outside was turmoil on my inside.Everything about Fausto drew me in and it alarmed me.I chanced a glance at his face.His dark hair was wet and dripping with salt water, his physiognomy hunched with pain.
“What happened?” I broke the silence.His lips puckered as he took a breath.
“The storm… caught us off guard… and we ran aground.” His thick accent and ragged breathing made him hard to understand.We were approaching the tall hedge that created a barrio around the civilized house.A few steps from the gate he stopped and looked at the house for a minute.
“What is this place?” He asked, his voice a quiet whisper as if he were talking to himself.
“This is my home, Leas,” I answered.He turned and scrutinized my face.
“And who are you?”
“Miranda Fairholm.” I pulled forward, flicking the latch to open the iron wrought gate which swung upon to show the secure world inside.He nodded and mumbled my name.Electricity shot through me upon hearing my name from his lips, as if he had power over me by just saying my name.My face grew hot as I began an inward war to understand this new feeling.I brought Fausto into the kitchen where Mrs. Robinson was kneading dough for bread.I got him into a chair by the large fire to regain his breath.Mrs. Robinson was thoroughly shocked to see me drenched and dirty and carrying a bleeding man into the house.I ordered her to have someone call the surgeon while she helped me get Fausto into a bed.We moved him to an empty room setting in a comfy chair to keep the bed from being soiled by his clothes.I fetched a fire while Mrs. Robinson found clothes and alerted the household of the new comer.The guests became excited and buzzed about with questions. I stayed by Fausto’s side, supervising him and the activities around him.As he fell into a comfortable sleep, my parents pulled me aside; they wanted an explanation.
“His ship wrecked on the shore and he is seriously injured.” I told them.My mother wanted some more details such as his name and origin.She ruffled her feathers about my ruined dress and stressing over who she could afford to loss to keeping an eye on Fausto.I assured her I would be watching over him, our servants could continue waiting on our company.We argued heatedly but I refused to lose, and after a half hour I carved out an agreement.Having won, I smugly returned to Fausto, watching him sleep peacefully.The next few weeks went by quickly. I spent every minute I could with him.I found him a joy to be around, more handsome with each day, his wit and charm adding color to his resume.I found myself in love with him.Each day found me happier and more content in his presence, forgetting what it was like before, without him.Now, being without him frightened me. As love blossomed within me so did fear.And while I wasn’t sure if he reciprocated my feelings or not, I didn’t care, as long as he was alive.But his health was declining; his wound refused to heal and was becoming infected.I wished my alleviated mood would flood to him and help him fight off this illness.Despite worsening health, his spirits did seemed to soar.One night I stayed up late with him, sleep having evaded him and me.I sat beside his bed, reading a book out loud when he stopped me.
“Miranda, what would you say should I ask for your hand in marriage?” I froze, feeling incredulous.I put the book down, searching his face.
“I truly love you and would want you by my side.” He opened his arms, his wish to hold me irresistible.But I paused, still stunned, waiting for my heart to restart itself and voice to come back.
“I would be as happy as anyone could ever wish to be,” I told him, putting my hand in his, drawing into his embrace. His skin was cold and clammy, but his expression was so warm and full of life.His lips pressed against mine, lingering there.A shiver interrupted and shook his body like leaves in a breeze.
“You are cold,” I stated, moving to find a blanket and stoke the fire.
“No, stay here,” He pulled me back, kissing me again.He held me there as the fire died out, leaving us in the darkness of the last minutes before sunrise.We whispered tender thoughts to each other till sleep found us.
The morning shown and found him gone.He must have known the end was coming.I waited for the tears to come but a dark emptiness consumed me.Under his pillow I found two letters he had written before he had died, one addressed to me, the other to his family.I avoided his note till I managed to get out of the house, returning to the storm swept beach to be alone.I made my way to my rock, stopping to notice the corpse of the ship that had brought Fausto to me.


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