The Nightingale

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
The story of two people in love, love that conquered all obstacles: even death! This is the story of sweet Shirley and her William.

Submitted: June 03, 2014

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Submitted: June 03, 2014



The Nightingale:


“He loves me, he loves me not. He loves me, he loves me not.” She said as she pulled the petals off the white daisy in her hand. She smiled wide and let out a girly giggle when her last petal ended with the words:  “he loves me”.

She couldn’t wait to see him again! The hours seemed forever and her heart seemed to ache with longing as she anxiously awaited his return. He would be returning back to her in three days’ time and she would wait for him here as she always does; in her garden. Shirley’s garden was her favourite place to be, there were all kind of flowers; lily’s, azalea’s, daffodils, freesias, daisy’s, forget-me-not’s, stargazers and marigolds. There were even pansies and every colour of roses and tulips. She would spend hours in her garden putting together bouquets of meaning. She would pick all sorts of flowers to create living messages of beauty to those she loved.

She would put a vase of red roses, yellow tulips and lily’s next to her bed. It meant she was waiting for William to return, but very few people understood, next to the vase she kept all the letters he wrote to her. The letters he always ended with the words: “forever and always yours my love, William”.

In her starry-eyed dream of the man she loved, her coughing started again. It seemed every time the coughing started she became more and more weak. “It is only three more days”, she thought.  The days seemed to pass slower as William’s return drew closer.

At last she heard the sound of a carriage outside their family cottage and she sat up with as wide a smile as ever. “Mother, he is home! He is here, open the gate quickly!” she shouted as loud as her faint voice would now allow her. After a flutter of excitement and shouting, she could hear the footsteps of a man running up the steps, she knew it was William, but it seemed like hours before he burst into her room with a heart overflowing with joy. She sat up slowly and his face turned grim his smile disappearing and his eyes saddened. “It is worse now isn’t it?” he asked.

“Don’t look at me like that please. Come here.” She stretched her arms out to him and he sat next to her holding her in his arms and afraid to let her go. She was so fragile now, her illness had taken over her entire body now and there was nothing the doctors could do to help, he loved her with all his heart and knew the pain that was about to come, but braced himself and gently took her face in his hands as he kissed her softly. “I love you Shirley. I have spoken with your father, and I have asked for your hand in marriage. Will you be my wife?” he asked.

“Yes!” she exclaimed, tears of joy flowing down her cheeks. After the doctor came by later that afternoon the family was more depressed than usual after his visits, it seemed Shirley would not make the wedding. However her mother silently went upstairs to find her own wedding dress and told her husband to send for the minister. “They will be getting wed tonight, right there in her room. William go get dressed, you make my daughter happy and I wish more than anything to see her wed before she should die.” After her words she went upstairs to turn Shirley into the most beautiful bride. She decorated her entire room with the flowers of Shirley’s choice and braided flowers into her long flowing brown curls. She powdered her face and coloured her lips a pretty shade of pink. She was beautiful! William couldn’t believe his eyes as they said their vows and he kissed her thin lips.

They spent one night in each other’s arms, William holding her close to him and stroking her hair and speaking in her ear. Whispering that he loved her over and over and praying that it would be enough to keep her alive. “When you here the nightingale sing to you my love, know that my heart will always belong to you.” He reminded her of his promise every day until she passed away a week later.


Three years had gone by and the ache in William’s heart had not subsided about losing Shirley that night, the night the nightingale sang so sweetly. He closed eyes to go to sleep and that is when he heard it, right outside his window…

The nightingale. He knew that no matter where his love may rest now, that she sent him that nightingale to remind him that her heart will always belong to him, for all eternity. 

© Copyright 2019 Hesmarie Krause. All rights reserved.

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