Chapter 3: Convers in Conversation
“Ah, hello young man.” He never said my name when I spoke to him. For he never asked.
“Hello, Master Jim.”
“Now what have we been up to today? Exploring the mansion? Hmmmmm? I haven’t seen you all morning.”
“Yes, I was. This estate of yours is a maze. I thought it would be a good idea to learn my way around.”
“And have you?”
“No, not quite.”
“Come, sit with me. Let us enjoy each other’s company. What do you say?” As he motioned me to come and sit by him.
“I will enjoy that very much.”
We talked about the nearby villages, to Master Jim’s fascination with knowledge and education. He told me these novels came with the mansion when he inherited from his father when he was of the age of twenty-one.
“I almost forgot.” He mentioned with a grin on his soothing face. He reached to his left to open a drawer that had been camouflaged within his desk. I glanced to noticed that the drawer consisted of unique obscured flyers and little leather bound notebooks. On top of these items laid a necklace, which consisted of a small, silver charm. And a thick silver chain had been connected to the upper part of the necklace. The chain spread throughout the drawer. Master Jim picked the chain up letting the charm swing back and forth in the air. “Open your hand, son.” I slowly followed his commandment. He placed the necklace onto the center of my little palm. The chain touched my skin with a cold touch. The silver charm was a shape of a shield with an engraved scarlet bird. The silver chain was blemished less. It was perfect, “The bird is a phoenix, it is my father’s crest. I want you to have it.”
“I cannot take this from you. It is a family heirloom; you should keep it.” I protested.
“It is a gift, take it. I think you will enjoy it more than I have. My father was a mysterious man, that Phoenix most likely means more than I can figure out. Maybe you can understand the meaning of it more than I could have.” And he smiled, as a father smiles to his son.
“I am much apologue. I will wear it always, thank you, Master Jim.”
“Here, put it on.” And I placed the charm necklace crest over my head and onto my neck. I couldn’t stop holding and looking at my new gift.
I asked Master Jim out of the innocence of a young teen, “How did your father pass?”
He started to chuckle, ” He never passed away that I know of, or I would have heard of his death. He had disappeared the day before I turned twenty-one. He packed up all his belongings and left nothing behind. Except for a small letter on a piece of parchment. It stated that he would come back one day, he never mentioned when.“, replied Master Jim.
“Master Jim do you have any siblings?”
” No, I never personally had any relatives that lived in the mansion with my Father and me. Not even Ms. Doris. I had to appoint her as the primary housekeeper, after the disappearance of my Father.” Before I go anymore further in the story, Ms. Doris was the only person that Master Jim respected as a family.
“How is it that your Father left you, in solitude?”
“Well...“, started Master Jim.
Ms. Doris, my nurse, busted into Master Jim’s study, ” Master Jim and Young Master supper is ready.”
“Thank you, Ms. Doris. I am terribly sorry, but this story must continue another time. Now we must eat our meal.” He stated.
I remember the dining room was an extravagant room. In the middle of the dining room had a long oval table, with black carved chairs. A golden candelabra was amid the dining table. Respectfully, six people could have fit comfortably in it. But for tonight only three will sit around for a meal. Above our heads was hanging a crystal chandelier. The walls had a feeling of adventure. Not only had there been paintings of people from all periods but also many ruined landscape portraits. In these portraits, you could have gotten lost while you are eating your meal. The pictures brought you to an age of adventure and exploration. The pictures hid the pale, yellow paint placed on the walls. Long windows inhabited one of the four walls. They brought fresh light into the room. Making it more adventurous. The floor had a red embroidered carpet that rested underneath the table. Hiding the wooden floors that had been underneath. Opposite to the windows, there were two swinging cherry chestnut doors, with brass hinges. One leading to the average size kitchen. The other resulted in the parlor.
At the end of most of our meals, we went to the drawing room to enjoy the rest of the night together. After spending some quality time together, we headed off to bed. In the parlor, there were two couches. That had dark blue cushions. Their frames were made from a wood substance as well. A small piano was in the furthest corner of the parlor. A small table laid in the middle of the room; that had a game of unfinished chess. Maroon curtains hung on the two existing windows that occupied the room. A large fireplace stood opposite to the curtains. When the fire was blazing, it brought great warmth in the chamber. Layers upon layers of great novels suffocated the walls themselves. It was a place of studies and education.
This room then led out to the grand marble staircase that led to the North and South side of the mansion. Plus, to the bedrooms above.
When dinner was about to be served, there was a place for Mr. Jim, a seat for Ms. Doris and a place setting for me. While Master Jim and I waited for Ms. Doris to bring out supper, I started to converse in conversation.
“Sir?” I asked.
“Yes.” answered he.
“I have been hanging one’s hat at your humble abode for some time now. You have conversed with me about your history. Although, I have noticed that you have not asked once about my life. Nor have you asked what my name is. Why is that, Sir?”
" I did not partake in the role of an investigator for two reasons. Firstly, I did not think it was the right time. You would have freely given your history to me when you sought it was the right time. Secondly, to contradict what I have stated, we had already met in the past. We were very close at a point in our lives. Now, we have changed so much; we do not even recognize each other.”
“We knew each other well?”
" Before I give you an answer to your question, I would like to ask another. Do you remember anything from your past?”
I bowed my head in shame and stated, ” Unfortunately not, sir, I only know my name.”
“What is your name young man?” He tested.
" Andrew River.”
“Andrew River,” as he repeated my name the whole mansion shuttered. He continued, “Well, Master River if you will please follow me, I would like to show you something.”
He got up from the dining table, and I followed him. We escaped the dining room into the parlor and out. To the grand staircase. We headed up to the north side of his mansion. Where everything seemed ancient, including the air. Hanging on the walls were paintings of the bygone path of travel, stories of unknown battles, and citizens from that day. All of them were connecting somehow or some way.Down the passageway, I noticed at the end of the corridor a door with markings had been located. At first, I could hardly see the engravings; then when we walked closer to the door, the carvings were more complex than I ever thought. Dust encased the door and the golden doorknob. The entire hallway was spotless, not even dust bunnies. But this door was filthy. It seemed the dust that was on the door had been a first barrier to block whatever was hiding on the other side. The second barrier was the door. When we were a couple of inches from this mysterious door, Master Jim stopped in his tracks. We waited there for a couple of seconds; I thought he would have opened the door, but for the moment he did not. I looked over at him, confused on why we were standing here. Master Jim had a small, respectful grin upon his face. Finally, at last, Master Jim Hensworth stretch forth his hand to the dusty, golden doorknob, twisted it, and opened the creaky door