The Pleasure of Being Naughty
Pleased at the vision in the mirror before her, Taal stared. She was not one to brag normally, but tonight, she had to admit the image staring back at her looked lovely.
With a smile, she relished the curves of her body. A body she often thought too curvy and attempted to conceal with everyday clothes. Tonight, she wondered why? Perhaps she’d never thought of herself as beautiful. At first blush, men weren’t falling at her feet or attempting to court her. In fact, they barely approached or spoke with her at all.
But not this evening. She knew it would be different because she felt different, in a sensual way of sorts. From the midnight colored, floor-length dress to the victorian, laced-up boots, she realized she was beautiful.
Puckering crimson lips, she practiced innocent flirtations, and hazel eyes glimmered with the flicker of the lit candles on the birch dresser. The jeweled tiara almost looked like a crown atop the scarlet of her half swept updo. The plumpness of her breasts edged over the bodice of her silk, black gown; small diamond-like beads crossed the bodice, attracting the eye to her cleavage, and her waist looked trim and confined within a concealed, tight corset.
She pulled at the satin evening gloves so they reached her elbows and placed an ebony-colored wrap above her shoulders to screen her body. Her father would never approve of her wearing the revealing gown and perhaps would retract from allowing her to arrive at the feast alone, as he agreed.
“M’Lady, your father expects you downstairs.” The servant girl curtsied lowering her eyes, then left the room as quickly as she entered.
“Thank you, Martha,” she replied at the space the girl no longer occupied. “I’ll be right ... there—”
Her father, an overprotective mass of a man, never allowed his daughter to travel alone, let alone assist lavish parties at dusk. But tonight he’d promised his wife he would restrain from scaring away any young men who showed interest in his daughter.
Downstairs, Alice shook a finger at her spouse in anger. “She will forever live here, dear husband. A spinster! You’ve run away every single one of her prospects to the point our daughter thinks of herself as unattractive! Is this what you want? To live your elder years without grandchildren?”
He scrunched his face and shook his head. “She’s too good for any of those lads, Alice.”
“She needs to fall in love—find herself a husband, Louie. ”
“Do not make me retract my word, Alice,” he responded tight-lipped. “I’m allowing her to go because I too can see how I have marginalized her, but this, in no way can be confused with me allowing a simpleton court her. Furthermore—”
A creak stopped his word, and behind the twelve-foot door, Taal emerged. She’d heard enough to understand why at twenty-eight she was not involved with a handsome lad.
“Mother, Father ... good evening.”
She curtsied and lowered her head, but not her eyes. They penetrated her father’s pupils, and a thousand thoughts of retaliation crossed her mind.
Perhaps a roll in the hay with Devon would be nice. She smirked.
Louie choked and coughed. “Daughter?! Have you been there long?”
“No.” A sweet smile formed on her lips. “I have but only descended the stairs.”
A sigh of relief escaped him. “You look like a princess, my beloved Daughter!”
Her mother hurried to her side. “My sumptuous Daughter! You are but a vision. The most beautiful of all.”
She blushed. “Thank you.”
“You are missing the most important finishing touches ... Your great-grandmother’s heirloom jewels!”
Taal gave a few small skips of excitement. “Great-grandmother’s jewels?!”
“Yes! Diamonds as clear as a mountain’s spring!” Alice rushed to get them while Louie gave clear instructions for his daughter to follow and what he expected her to do.
“Taal, my precious child. You will arrive by carriage. Devon shall drive you, as usual.”
“Yes, Father,” she voiced, but her mind went elsewhere. Somewhere where the delicious-looking carriage driver kissed her behind tall grasses.
Devon was a dapper lad. Muscled and handsome. His green eyes could pierce your heart like Cupid’s arrow. While on her way to town, church, or her friend’s estate, she usually fancied alluring thoughts of him. Thoughts of naked bodies and entangled limbs.
A sigh escaped her. At the time she thought the reality of those visions, were impossibilities. Today, she understood why men had fled her sight.
Perhaps—he would no longer.
“You best watch yourself and not drink. Be mindful of strangers and be back no later than thirty minutes past midnight. Devon will stay, and when you’re willing, he’ll bring you home.”
“Daughter!” In her hands, Alice held a gorgeous gold and diamond necklace, matching earrings, a bracelet, a couple of rings, and a brooch.
She helped her daughter to them and stood unbelieving the sight of her. Her hands covered her open mouth in awe.
“One last thing before you go, Taal. Come!”
Taal followed her mother to her chambers. Full of charm and glamour, the room was decorated in rich, vivid colors, and traditional Indian art. As a child, her mother and father visited for business and fell in love with the country. That’s where her name came from. Taal. It meant rhythm ... cadence.
“Since this is your first, and hopefully not last evening to enjoy at will, I want you and me to toast with champagne.” She handed Taal a half-full crystal goblet.
“Mother!” She laughed, “What would Father say?”
They chimed glasses and laughed.
“Let him say, Daughter! Let him.”
Not accustomed to drinking, the fruity flavors sizzled on Taal’s tongue and tickled her belly. The perfect start to an unsuspecting night. Her mother pushed her out the door before her husband noticed she’d had a drink and handed Taal a purse with a few silver pieces and waved goodbye.
Feelings of lust stroked Taal when her honey eyes fell upon dashing Devon. He opens the door yet, he doesn’t mind her. His eyes barely shifting to look upon her. Her heart sinks understanding his indifference. Perhaps her father threatened to castrate him if he were to touch her and Taal thinks it best to look for a gentleman once she arrived at the gathering.
With a heart full of hope she sat tall welcoming the cool late Spring breeze as the moon rays cast on her cheeks.