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Chapter 8

I woke up smiling, I had dreamt about him. He had held me close and whispered he loved me in my ear. I laughed to myself and sat up, that is when it hit me- I remembered everything. My smile disappeared and the world seemed to get darker, Tristan was gone. Gone.

I groaned and flopped back down, what was the point of getting up? I pulled the blankets over my head, hoping I could escape into my dreams again. I just lay there, I couldn't even cry anymore.

"Miss?" My maid asked in a worried tone when she came in, I rolled over and ignored her.

"Miss, its three in the afternoon."

"Go away!" I groaned.

"But, miss, you need to get ready. You have to go to the Anderson's for tea and five."

"I'm not going!" I listened as my maid left, I sighed and hoped I would be able to get some peace.

"Deirdre!" I groaned, it was my mother.

"What?" I muttered.

"Get up this instant!"

"Mother, I'm sick!"

"I don't care, get up! You have less than two hours to get ready!" She came over and pulled the covers off me. I let out a cry and covered my eyes, the light hurt.

"Get up! Now!" I sighed and struggled out of bed.

"What happened to your face?" My mother asked angrily.


"Look!" She held up a mirror.

"Oh." I said intelligently as I looked at myself. My eyes were swollen and blood shot, my nose was red too, and I had dark circles under my eyes.

"I guess I won't be going tonight!" I said, a little too cheerfully for some who was supposed to be sick.

"Oh don't worry dear! Its nothing a little make up won't fix!" I sighed and contemplated giving myself a black eye so I didn't have to go out... But I wasn't really sure how I could do that. I laughed to myself, did I really just consider giving myself a black eye? I sighed, yes I did…I'm sure that wasn't a good sign but whatever.

So I just tried my best not think of him as my mother helped my maid with my make up, surprisingly the make up did work and the fact that my eyes were slightly blood shot was the only sign I had been crying. And even that was fading, but more amazing than that was the fact that I was actually coping better with the fact that Tristan was gone then I thought. No, that's a lie; I might be coping differently but not quite well. This was different because yes I missed him and was sad he wasn't here with me, but the main part that was messing me up was the questions swirling in my head. Yes, I felt like I knew him but not as well as I wanted to- I mean is he just playing with me? What if he finds someone else? What if he is going home and sees one of his old lovers? Is he really coming back? How long is he really going to be gone? Does he really care about me? I'm I imagining all this? Why do I think of him so much? Is he thinking of me? What if I really love him? What will I do? How will all this turn out? I was about to go crazy with all these questions flying around and crashing into each other, I just couldn't stop the endless flow of confusion I was feeling. How could he make me feel this way? I wish I just had some answers, I felt like I was going to just explode; the human mind was not made for this kind of stress. I wish I could just get some answers even if they weren't the answers I really wanted.

I just kept talking myself into calming down, I was reminding myself of everything he showed me, it wasn't as bad as I thought. He had shown me a new world and even though he was gone, it was still there for me. And yes, I might never forget him, I might not find anyone like him but I could still gain my freedom. And maybe he would come back and maybe everything will end perfectly and we'll be married but either way I can find a way to stay happy. I can make my own way in this world…

Soon I was on my way to the Anderson's with my mother, wishing I had never been born, well that's an exaggeration. But really I didn't feel like going out at all, specially not to the Anderson's- they always threw huge events so there was sure to be tons and tons of bachelors that my mother would insist on me meeting.

When we go there is was already crowded, I was thrilled because my mother would usually arrive early so that everyone who walked in would see me and I thought I could slip in unnoticed, until me mother grabbed my hand and pulled me over to the main entrance where the butler was standing.

"Announce us." She commanded.

"Mother!" I said, angry that she was being so self important and rude. It was considered really rude to make the servants announce you when you went to someone else's home- if they wanted you to be announced they would have told the bulter or done something to let you know...

"Shush," She turned to the butler, "You may announce us as Lady Tudour and her daughter Miss Deirdre Tudour." He walked a few paces in the door and hit his staff three times on the floor to get everyone's attention, and then he announced us. I wanted to shrink into the floor as my mother glared at me, waiting for me to follow her. As soon as we had gotten down the stairs I was surrounded by a throng of people; I looked around for my mother but she had disappeared already. I sighed and tried to smile as I was introduced to person after person, I wasn't paying attention to anything until I heard a voice. I stopped everything and listened, I could have it couldn't be!

It sounded exactly like him, like my Tristan! I started pushing my way in the direction I had last heard his voice, could he really be here? I stopped this was foolish, why was I getting worked up about this? How could he possibly be here? He left already, he was long gone by now. That was when I saw him, standing next to a tall man I had never seen before; but I wasn't concerned with him. All I saw was Tristan, my heart was pounding and I suddenly felt overwhelmed with joy and peace. I felt almost paralyzed, here he was! My Tristan right here in front of me, real, flesh and blood. Suddenly all the stress and worry evaporated and I felt so weightless and free, now that he was here in the same room as me, I felt like I could breath easily and that everything was going to be okay.

I made my way over to him, pausing for a moment just to watch him for a moment before he noticed me. His friend saw me first, but the surprising part was he just glanced at for less than a moment and then turned back to Tristan, I was so shocked, almost offended, no one ever just glanced over me like that. But those thoughts only occupied my mind for a few seconds before I turned to look at Tristan and all thoughts of this strange man talking to my man. I smiled to myself as I came up close to Tristan and put my hand on his arm.

"Good evening, Tristan." I said as calmly as I could manage.

"Deirdre!" He cried happily and pulled me into a tight hug.

"It's good to see you too!" I laughed, savoring the feeling of his warm, muscular arms around my waist.

"I was hoping I would see you here!" He said.

"Really? So what are you doing here? I thought you left."

"I was supposed to leave, but Kayden didn't show up 'til this afternoon."


"Yes, he was the one I told you about, the one who was going to travel with me."

"Oh," I looked over at his friend, "This is him?"

"Yes, I'm sorry I'm being rude- Deirdre this is my good friend Kayden. Kayden this is Deirdre."

"Nice to meet you." I curtsied but I couldn't help but have a twinge of dislike for him, he looked at me like I was just some piece of trash or something…if it had been anyone else I would have just laughed and walked away but this was Tristan's friend, I wanted him to like me but what could I do when he gave me a look like that.

"The pleasure's all mine," He said as he kissed my hand, I smiled politely and turned back to Tristan.

"So you're leaving…?"

"Tonight, most likely."

"Oh," I looked down, trying to hide the sadness in my eyes. Why was I surprised? By all rights he should have been a million miles away.

"Will you excuse us for a moment?" Tristan asked Kayden, taking me hand.

"Of course." Kayden smiled and Tristan led me off to one of the balconies. Holding his hand sent tingles down my back, I was surprised by how rough and calloused his hands were- that wasn't normal for a gentleman, but it definitely was attractive.

"Deirdre, is everything alright?" He asked in a concerned voice, bending down trying to look me in the eyes as I looked down at the floor.

"No!" I whispered, "How could anything be alright? You're leaving and going god knows where and you don't know when you're getting back or if you're even coming back or if you'll find some one else while you're gone. I've just met you but you already turned my world up-side-down and showed me things I never thought existed-"

"Shhh," He put his arm around me and pulled my to his chest, "It's going to be alright, I promise. Everything will be fine, you'll be so busy you will hardly know I'm gone!" He smiled down at me.

"Tristan, I'm serious."

"I know."

"But- don't you see? My life can't go back to the way it was. Not now, now I know what I'm missing now I... I didn't know my life could change so quickly. Tristan, it will never be the same."

"You'll figure out, you're a smart girl." He smiled and stroked my cheek, "And I will come back for you, I can't imagine life without you." I almost swooned when he said that, Tristan! My Tristan couldn't live without me! "Deirdre, your world isn't the only one turned up-side-down, believe me…I cant even begin to explain it."

"Tristan, I-" I stopped as he leaned down to kiss me.

"Deirdre!" I spun around to see my mother glaring, I was speechless and furious. I just stood with my mouth hanging open, gasping for words- I couldn't even decide if I was going to yell at her for ruining the moment or find some excuse, Tristan recover before I did.

"Good evening, Lady Tudour." He said pleasantly and bowed.

"Deirdre, come here this instant!" She said angrily, completely ignoring Tristan. When I didn't come immediately my mother grabbed my hand and started pulling me off.

"I'm sorry!" I mouthed to Tristan as she pulled me back into the room. He gave me a smirk and watched me leave.

My mother kept me in sight for the rest of the night, every time I thought I could escape she caught me. I even tried going off with another boy hoping she would let me go then, but she didn't. I was so angry I was ready to kill her, this would be the last night I would get to see Tristan and she wouldn't let me! I had almost kissed him! I sighed, he would leave and I wouldn't get to say a proper goodbye to him. Our eyes met across the dance floor a few times- it definitely wasn't as romantic as literature makes it appear, it was more frustrating than anything. You know, knowing the only one you want to be with is in the same room as you, breathing the same air, listening to the same music but you aren't allowed to be with them. Its torture, they're so close yet they seem farther away then they would be if they were all the way around the world.

On the way home I refused to look or talk to my mother, I knew it was childish but I didn't care. She had ruined my evening, she had ruined my kiss, and she had just been a bitch. I laughed to myself, imagining how shocked my mother would be if she heard me say that! I smiled, that was one of the new words I'd learned from Vermillion Street.

I had trouble sleeping so I just lay awake, waiting. I don't know what I waiting but I stayed awake listening and watching my dark room with wide eyes. I almost had a heart attack when I heard something hit my window. At first I just sat there frozen but when I heard the noise again I figured it wasn't anything dangerous so I crawled out of bed and looked out my window.

There was some one standing underneath my window, I sighed and rolled my eyes. Probably one of the boys from the party, every once and a while there was one romantic who would try the old 'throw pebbles at the window' trick; I opened the window anyway and leaned out.

"Who is it?" I whispered, I knew if I didn't pay attention they would probably keep throwing pebbles so I figure I would just find out who it was then send them on their way.

"Who do you think?"

"Tristan!" I gasped, was I dreaming?

"Of course, were you expecting someone else?" He joked.

"Yes, but not in a good way!" I laughed.

"I wanted to say goodbye!" He called up.

"Just a moment!" I called back and ducked inside, pulling on a robe then I snuck downstairs. It was late enough that everyone was asleep so I had no problem getting out.

As soon as I had closer the door quietly behind me I dashed out to the street where he was waiting. I didn't even try to hide my happiness; I jumped into his arms and held him as tight as I could.

"You happy to see me?" He laughed.

"Of course! I'm surprised you came!"

"You thought I would leave without saying goodbye?"

"No...I mean we kinda did already so I just figure that was it."

"Well, I didn't think that counted."

"I'm glad." I looked up at him.

"I'm going to miss this." He whispered.

"Me too." I agreed. We stared into each others eyes for a moment longer before he leaned down to kiss me.

When our lips touched I felt as if I had been shocked, but in a good way, my whole body was tingling and I could feel goose bumps covering my arms and legs. This was so different from every kiss I had had before, this blew them all away. I didn't even know you could feel this way about some one. How could something so simple as touching lips make me feel this way?

He drew back first, but I knew he didn't want it to end either. We were quiet at first, like we both were still trying to think straight. Well, at least that's how I felt; it was like when you spin around for a while and stop- the world looks like its spinning and tilting around you.

"I guess this is it." He said after a few more moments. I nodded. We were quiet again.

"Be careful!" I whispered when I managed to find my voice.

"I always am!" He winked. I smiled and kissed him again.

"Goodbye!" I whispered, giving him one last hug and kiss then I turned and ran inside before I started crying...again.

"Goodbye!" I heard him reply as I opened the door, "I'll see you soon! I promise."

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