Feelings Of Love

The Feelings Of Love A sudden unexpected sensation of pleasure, a burst of trepidation eased into pure poetry. Love, love, love, is a passionate thing that makes your heart sing.

Feelings of love are a natural emotion of affection stimulated by a particular quality or feature that evoke a warm sense of care or desire. A fond, compassionate attachment of the heart that brings great joy and happiness.

A sudden unexpected sensation of pleasure, a burst of trepidation eased into pure poetry. 
Love, love, love, is a passionate thing that makes our heart sing. 

This feeling of familiarity, intimacy is the key to our well-being.

A CHILD’S HEART

BY MARY HEATON VORSE

First Feelings Of Love

I suppose – I stared at him with frightened, questioning eyes.

As I looked at him, a sudden rush of excitement filled my heart; he laughed and said, “I’m nothing to be afraid of – I’m only Paul Lewis.”

When I first saw him, I was a foolish, excited little girl.

Then I was only a little girl. I ran down the stairs, dashed out of the front door and down the three shallow steps that led to our brick walk, and there I almost ran into him.  I suppose I stared at him with frightened, questioning eyes.

“Oh!” I said.

It felt as though I would die from shame at my own stupidity, for all power of speech was taken in an instant. I had no idea why no words came to me and why the blood ebbed to my heart. A rush of gladness that was almost triumph swept over me as I thought: “He is coming here to live! He is going to stay here with us!” How could I know that all at once he had unlocked my closed heart? And I, a few moments earlier, a little girl intent on play had become a woman at the sight of him? I only knew then that I was disturbed as I had never been disturbed in my life before. Something immeasurably sweet and terrifying had happened at the mere sight of him.

I have lived many years since then, and, believe it or not, there is no picture in all the gallery of memory that is so vivid to me as Paul coming up the walk. He was straight and clean and manly; round him was an atmosphere of joy and youth. Yes, the picture of Paul striding up our walk will always seem to me a picture of Youth the Conqueror—Youth with the magic power of the thing unbeaten and unhurt by life, Youth with all its loyalties and its passionate desire to spend itself.

“Who are you?” he asked next, smiling at me.

“I’m Mildred Woods,” I told him.

“Oh, how jolly!” he said. “I ‘ve got two kid sisters at home, and I didn’t know how I was going to get along without the kids.”

“I’m not a kid,” I replied with severity. “I’m in my second year at high school, and I’m over fifteen.” I drew myself up. I wished ardently that I had had on my longest dress and my highest heels and a wide, grown-up young-ladyish hat instead of being bareheaded, with sneakers on my feet.

“Why don’t you want to be a kid?” he asked me. “It’s the bulliest thing in life, I think.” All at once, I was warmly reconciled to my little girl clothes. “Anyway, just to look at you, I know we are going to be great friends, you and I, aren’t we?” This somewhat took me off my feet. I felt myself blushing. Then suddenly, the desire of my heart found words.

“I will be your friend always,” I said.

“Shake on it!” he said and put out his brown hand, and I put my tanned little paw in his. At the touch of his hand, it was as though a new and troubling wave of life had flooded my whole being. I never sealed a more solemn pact in my life or gave my word more utterly than I did with my faint little pressure on his kind hand.

“You ‘re a nice kid!” he broke out. “You know, this just makes me feel as if I were coming home to find you here. Say, have you got a dog?”

I had a dog, a mongrel Yorkshireman, sagacious, good-mannered, and bellicose. I gave vent to a shrill, piercing, boylike whistle, to which Mattie came running.

“Say, this is what I call something like!” he said. “Do you know, I almost took a room over at the Hitchcock’s? Of course, it was bigger, but I liked the view here, and the house over there was sort of formal.”

I was shaken at his words. It seemed to me as if I myself had just escaped some frightful disaster. The breathless feeling which had overwhelmed me when I first saw him again menaced my power of speech, but I managed to reply firmly:

“They have no girls and no dogs over there. Nothing but the most grown-up kind of people.” He had sat down on the front doorstep, and I had sat down beside him.

“I have luck,” he said. “You know, I ‘ve always had luck.” He took off his straw hat and laid it beside him and breathed in deeply the lilac-scented air.

That night I sat for a long time on my window seat, my whole soul flooded with a light of happiness as sweet, caressing, and all-pervasive as the shimmering country before me. My heart went out in a sort of litany of love to all live things, in a kind of child’s Magnificat. That night, as I sat there, my heart went streaming out to God, for so alike are the love of God and the love of man that who can say they are not one?

I felt that all the little voices of the night were lifting their voices to God with me. So I looked and listened until it seemed to me that my very soul had gone out of my body and that I was one with all things—one with the least of chirping things in the grass, one with the most distant star. The terrible wonder of the universe enthralled me, and yet I was it, and it was me.

Then flooding, I understood the longing man has for the immortality of the soul. That had been an abstract thing before, but now I felt that inevitably this soul of me must live forever.

When man first became aware of the feeling of love, the desire for immortality must have been born in him, for when one loves God, or when one truly loves man, eternity is none too long.

I went to bed and slept wonderfully, the marvel of the night enfolding me. I woke again and went to the window as though drawn there without any conscious effort. The night was still clear and bright with moonlight, but down in the valley, a fog had arisen as flooding and luminous as a sea, the tops of hills appearing as though they were islands. At times of flood, I could glimpse a silver streak that was the river behind the hills. And now it was as though the river had overflowed its banks and flooded the valley as it must have done in ancient days. My mind travelled back to the vast mysteries of time and out again into the immeasurable vastness of the future.

Feelings of love A sudden unexpected sensation of pleasure, a burst of trepidation eased into pure poetry. Love, love, love, is a passionate thing that makes our heart sing.

Again I slept sweetly and dreamlessly and opened my eyes to the sunlight with a vast, comforting sense of harmony with all things.

All through that night, I was not aware that the actual thought of Paul walked through my mind at any moment.

The inner light that I felt must have shone through me, for my mother kissed me tenderly and said, “How happy you seem, sweetheart!” As I went about my small household tasks before school, I felt that I wished to flood the house with song, and it was a physical pain to me that I had very little voice and could not sing. When I finally took my books and went to school, I went into the world as though I was walking into some holy church.

On my way home from school, I saw coming toward me Paul himself, and at the sight of him swinging along with his gallant walk, his head thrown back, my knees felt weak, and all of a sudden, there was not enough air in the world to breathe. My heart gave a glad throb and then stopped beating for a second. I do not think I ever saw him after this without that troubling gladness, without a lovely surprise that was so piercing that it hurt me.

A wave of shyness engulfed me, and I would have passed him with no more than the nod of a tongue-tied little girl, but he cried to me joyfully:

“Hello! Well, we met!” And then, as always after, my shyness melted in a sudden flood of delicious understanding.

“What are these posters?” he asked, pointing to a yellow poster attached to an elm tree that announced an alumni dance of the high school at the town hall. “Do you dance?”

It was the thing I did best in the world.

“I do, indeed,” I told him.

“I am going to take you to that dance if you’ll go,” he said.

“Oh,” I cried, “mother doesn’t let me go to grown-up dances!”

“She ‘ll let you go to this one.” He had the easy cock-sureness of a youth well-beloved of mothers. “I ‘ll get around her, you ‘ll see.”

I was sure he would, sure he could get around anybody, and indeed I knew by the dimpling smile about my mother’s soft mouth when she first refused him that she would not refuse.

This was the great party of my life. It had come to me unexpectedly, a sheer gift of the gods. My little heart almost burst itself open with pride when I walked onto the smooth floor of the town hall, my mother on one side of Paul and me on the other.

When we got in, they were playing the waltz “Santiago.” Paul, who, like myself, was an impassioned dancer, could hardly wait for the formality of seating my mother before he put his arm about me and swung me off into space, it seemed to me — space where there was simply rhythm and music, the joy of motion. We did not talk as we danced; we both gave ourselves up to the pleasure of it, only now and then Paul said to me things that set my heart beating. Little good-tempered appreciations of my dancing were all they were.

He sat beside me in the pause between the dances and looked about at the crowd, chatting with my mother. He embraced the whole group of young people with his friendly eyes.

Then all at once, I realized his attention was not on what he was saying and that his eyes were on a girl who had just come in and was standing near the door. He let his voice trail off and continued to stare at her, unaware of what he was doing. Then, after a moment, he turned to me and asked with an entirely different note in his voice:

“Who is that girl?”

My mother answered for me:

“That’s Rose Gibson.”

“Rose,” Paul repeated—”Rose! She looks like a rose. I’m going to meet her.”

I saw him talking to her on the opposite side of the hall. She was smiling at him and watched them as they swung out in a waltz, and my eyes followed them as they danced. I knew that she had attracted him as no one else had, and I watched them without a pang of jealousy. It seemed quite natural to me that he should have singled her out; she seemed so lovely to me. They talked and smiled into each other’s eyes as they danced. Then a great wistfulness came over me that I was not grown-up and, I felt no envy, only wistfulness.

I do not know when it was that I realized that I loved him. I know now that I loved him from the first moment I saw him, that I have never felt that terrible sweet breathlessness at the sight of any other man since then. On the contrary, the least touch made all my heart sing with joy and a kind of exquisite fear. What I felt was not a woman’s passion, for even the knowledge of passion was still years away, awaiting me. But I know that at his friendly hand-clasp, the joy of heaven descended on me sweet and enfolding, and again I know that the nearness of no other human being has so swept me out of myself, so filled my life to overflowing with the feelings of love.

My memory of the next few weeks was of sheer happiness. He was so kind, full of friendliness and was so good. So good that my mother never put the slightest bar to our intimacy, and, indeed, why should she? He was all good for me and opened so many doors to me. A true home-loving lad, and when his work was over at five, he would come rushing in to take me to walk or to play tennis, and in the evenings, we read aloud. We read “Alice,” I remember, and the “Bab Ballads,” my mother and Paul and I chuckling together like children. We read Matthew Arnold and Keats and Shelley; all sorts of poetry we read in the unselective, omnivorous fashion of the young.

We had long, serious talks, Paul thrown full length on the moss under the apple trees, and he would explain to me his theories of life and his philosophy—his sweet boy’s philosophy, full of a touching desire for all the gallant loyalties. He needed hearing his thoughts in words, and he found in me the perfect creative listener. Then in the middle of his talk, he would break off to romp with Mattie or to play stick-knife, in which game I was adept. Paul was one of those who could never be far from boyhood. I think of him now playing with his own children as delightfully and in the same warmly intimate fashion.

He played the heart out of my trembling little body, and it was never mine all the days of my life to give again.

I said that my memory of those weeks was of happiness; they seem now, as I look back on them, swimming in light. I remember, too, that I was perfect. I embraced the world in my new joy. Tried to please exacting and difficult teachers. But, by instinct, I felt that I must give to life that which love had suddenly given to me with such a radiant fullness.

There was no room in me for any small emotion; everything but happiness and goodness was crowded out. The smallest act, tiresome lessons, the routine of housework now had meaning since trying to be worthy of life.

I had discovered the meaning of life, and that was to give myself utterly. It must have been when I put that into words that I also put into words my love for Paul. The conscious thought of him was not always in my mind, but he was always and forever there, the way the sun is there on a bright day, whether you think about it or not. Then from one moment to another, it flashed into my mind:

“I love Paul!”

That was the answer to this high happiness that had come to me. I thought, “I am in love!” and at once, I blushed and trembled at the thought of it. This thing had been in my heart, and that had no name. This desire to love and serve all the world and especially to serve him was love.

I lay awake far into the night, wondering at the marvel of it. Like, a young mother may wonder over the marvel of the birth of a child. I did not then, or at any other time, want anything of Paul. All I wanted to do what I was then doing, pour out my whole nature toward him— like sunshine.

Passionately, that night I prayed to God to make him happy and to make me good. It never once occurred to me that he could love me in any other way than he did. When I went down to breakfast the next morning, it was with a shrinking modesty, as though I had gone down naked, as though they might guess the secret within my heart. I felt they must guess. It was with a sort of astonishment and a dumb wonder that I realized they had not. My heart was a garden enclosed, my secret safe within it. I would have died sooner than have said the word aloud to any human being, least of all to him.

I do not know when Paul had singled out Rose Gibson among the other girls when it came to me. It felt that my self-knowledge gave me a form of clairvoyance. I became aware there had been born in Paul’s soul the same miracle born in mine. He would lie on his back under the trees and talk to me about her in an indirect sort of fashion.

But while I felt no jealousy, this knowledge of mine was anguish for me. It was as though Paul had been translated to another planet. There was poignant suffering for me, and yet a sweetness that his soul came out shyly to mine in confidences that he scarcely knew were confidences. I think he talked to me almost as though he were talking to himself, so near was I to him. In some blind and wordless way, I realized how near I was. So near that, I felt that had I been three years older, he would have loved me. I knew this so deeply that I never put it into words. Now I was as far from him as though a whole life’s span separated us. And yet, I was near enough to him so that he could talk to me as to himself.

At first, all went well between them. Indeed, it never occurred to me that it could go any other way. At that moment, they both seemed to me so perfect. As I watched the progress of their love, the thought of self so died in me that there flowered in my soul one of those white blossoms of self-abnegation, of delight in another’s, joy even at one’s own expense, that usually find a place only in the soul of a mother who loses her dear son with joy if only his joy is complete enough.

I knew the affection Paul gave Rose was brother to my love for him; I think it had the same youth in it, for I do not believe that his heart had been touched before, and he gave it to her filled with the wine of his love to drink from as she chose.

Then one day, I saw that he was troubled, puzzled rather. He seemed to frown as a little boy does something that has hurt him but does not understand. The trouble grew in his soul, and I saw the bitter waters of doubt rising about his heart. It was not, anger at anything that had happened; he was just grieved. It was my fate that I must know everything that happened in his heart without knowing anything of the cause.

He never told me anything or let criticism of her pass his lips, but I walked along with him on his journey of disillusion, and I began to hate Rose fiercely. She seemed to be the embodiment of evil, a terrible and menacing thing. When I saw her passing the house with a group of girls, laughing and talking, I marvelled at her. My mind did not compass how she could laugh when she had hurt anything as sweet as Paul.

One night I heard the gate click, and Paul walked up the path. He did not pause on the piazza but turned and went into the orchard; I heard his footstep on the damp grass and waited for him to come in, my heart beating. It seemed an eternity, knowing he was down there in the darkness of the garden, suffering by himself, alone.

My heart aged as I waited. I waited as those do outside a sick-room where suffering is within, and at last, I went down and out into the soft velvet of the night among the twinkling fireflies.

There lying underneath an apple tree: a tiny muffled sound of a child weeping led me to him. I put my hand on him and felt his shoulder heave up and down. It shocked me inexpressibly. His grief tore my heart to shreds. He took my hand in his and clung to it, and I felt the warm rain of tears upon it.

“She won’t read my letter,” he finally whispered to me. “She won’t listen if I could only make her read my letter! Then it would be all right. But, oh, there’s just some dreadful mistake!”

I did not know then that this has been through the ages the torture-cry of those whom love has suddenly and deeply wounded. Then at that moment, flamingly, I became a woman, flamingly I desired to comfort him of his hurt. I think, there in the darkness, had I spoken somehow, maybe I could have wiped away the years that so separated us.

I was a woman, yet I was a child, and there came to me a flaming certainty of what I must do to help him. In knowing before me there was only one course and that my feet must tread the most thorny path a woman can know, and that is when she must deliver up her beloved into the unworthy hands of another. So, so quietly, I said to him:

“Give me the letter. I’ll take it to her and make her read it.” I knew I could do it. I knew for his sake; I could do anything.

His soul was drowning, and I had to save it even though for someone who seemed to me so evil. During the few moments that had elapsed, my soul had gone through a mortal conflict. My own desire, new knowledge, and a new feeling of age had struggled with the absolute necessity of helping him and giving him the thing he wished for most. I knew I could have comforted him and that my comforting would have been sweet, and perhaps in the days that followed, he might have seen the woman in the child.

Still, I took the letter, and I went to her with an exaltation that can be born only of mortal pain.

She was sitting under an electric light on the piazza, looking wonderfully pretty, with a fantastic background of black and green vines behind her. I’ve forgotten what I said to her, but the faint mockery of her first greeting changed to gravity and gravity to something almost like tenderness as I talked. She took the letter and read it. She read it gravely, and there was both triumph and sweetness in her expression—triumph, I suppose, in the depth of affection she had aroused, sweetness because its depth had suddenly touched some depth in her that had never before been stirred.

“Tell him to come to me,” she said, and I fled back through the night.

When I brought him the tidings, he looked at me with new eyes. And for a brief moment, our souls stood out naked before each other.

“Wonderful little girl!” he said and kissed me. Then instantly sped away as though he had seen a vision of everlasting joy. I was left alone in my fiery and terrible exaltation.

I lived through more emotion those weeks and that night than I did in many years that followed. For many years all other emotions seemed pale to me and without meaning. Now I had experienced the feelings of love, that terrible and devastating god, face to face. Had been through the dolorous stations of the cross to a supreme sacrifice. And had seen the possibility of possession and had thrown it from me so that my beloved might have his heart’s desire.

From that moment, Rose and he were always together. Soon the summer was at an end, and Rose went away back to the city. Then Paul had to return home suddenly.

With his departure came the terrible knowledge that I did not know where he lived. I knew his city, how he turned up his street, how his sisters looked; the room in which he lived would have seemed to be a familiar place. I could have called to his dog in a voice that the dog would have known, yet in the hurry of his departure. he had forgotten to give me his address in the hurry of his departure. The worst of it was that he sent me several posts and one sweet little letter, but all without addresses. I had seen him off, stood on the platform waving to him until the train was out of sight.

The world was full of Paul to me. Years afterwards, whenever I found myself in a crowd, my eyes searched for him.

I waited through that winter and the spring for the return of Rose. At last, in early summer, I saw her walking down the street. I joined her. We talked of this and that, but Paul’s name never came up. At last, with my heart beating so painfully that I could hardly speak the words, I said:

“Is Paul coming back?”

“Paul? Oh, to be sure,” she answered. “I’d forgotten all about him! How should I know if Paul’s coming back?”

“Aren’t you going to marry him?” I gasped.

She gave an affected little laugh.

“When you are older, my dear,” she said patronizingly. “You’ll know you don’t marry every nice boy; you have a little flirtation within summer.” Her expression changed slightly as she continued, ” He came to see me two or three times, and then because I wouldn’t do every little thing he wanted, he got angry, and I sent him away for good.”

I looked at her. As she talked, I had grown, not old, but mature. Judging her as a woman half a dozen years her senior might have, she was pretty, artificial, and cheap. Maybe I saw her as Paul might have seen her at the end of his disillusion. I had lost my Paul and gone through my fiery ordeal for this, just because I was a little girl. I had been so young a girl that all older girls seemed wonderful to me. Poor Rose! Now I knew she had not depth enough to be evil.

That sense of comedy that is worse than any tragedy assailed me. A desire for laughter arose in me and choked me.

I managed to ask her where Paul lived. I faltered at first. Then made some pale excuse of his having left some of his things in our house. But, unfortunately, she no longer knew where he lived. He had moved. She left me with all the flowers of my spirit now withered.

There seemed to me only darkness ahead. Through the loneliness and despair that followed, my dear mother walked beside me, lay in hers with my hand. She was at peace, glad that I was developing normally. She rejoiced that I wasn’t one of those girls who are boy-crazy. No, I wasn’t boy-crazy, for I had walked too young through those grave and sombre portals of supreme sacrifice. And I had felt too soon the loss and loneliness of all that is best in life to be boy-crazy.

I who had loved, how could I care for lesser loves? Love came to me then, and never again did I feel the great and overwhelming delight of life.

Not even when I married did love in its great and overwhelming fullness return to me. I know now that I was not alone in my loneliness. I know that there walked beside me other children carrying hidden burdens—some who even carried the terrible burden of shame.

When I see them walking from school, I will always wonder which are they? A child at play or a child with a woman’s heart, or has the feelings of love already burdened your fragile shoulders?

We cannot know. They will not tell us. They have no words in which to express the desires of their hearts, for they are shyer than shy birds.

As Destiny Intended

as destiny intended short story, book cover

As destiny intended, a translucent glimmer embodied the night and the stars became shrouded in uncertainty; if her fate were to become her nemesis, she would accept it rather than force the hand of luck. The doom and gloom of solitude, her circumstance never intentional; her purposive desire merely fell on delusional imps. She could not change the way she felt about any of them. Why should she even consider anything less than what destiny intended?

Anna stood for a moment in a kind of trance; six whole years, her bedroom had been her sanctuary, a shrine almost. She thought of her father, unshaven and smiling with a coffee in his hand, with a worried mischievous hint of wonder. She thought of how he struggled to build the small loft conversion above the two-bed semi on Ravenswood Lane. ‘Tis all for yuh,’ he would say, drawing the sweat from his brow with his forearm, ‘A wee palace, all of yuh own.

She knew there was something wrong with the look in his eyes. ‘If — only,’ she sighed, sitting down at the end of her bed. The argument with her mother made her question her faith in destiny. Maybe it was time for her to move out. It might be what fate intended anyway, she supposed.

After all, Isabella, her younger sister, had found fortune; kismet had shone fondly on her. Her younger sister was unaware of the constant comparison she had to endure. Her mother’s determination to make sure she too would be tied, bound and, chastised in marriage.

Paul Rose! For heavens sakes.’ She cried.

A proper little mummies boy; she moaned to herself, afraid of his own shadow. How could she even think it would be okay. Paul, bloody Rose, she repeated as the argument slowly stole her mind once again.  Admittedly she was not the prettiest of things, of which she did not need reminding. ‘O’ Isabella. Of course, Isabella was far more glamorous. She knew what she wanted in life.

Anna felt the emptiness, loneliness and missed her father’s warm, loving smile. She thought of him taking each day as it came, enjoying each blessed day even if it were raining. It momentarily gave her relief in a smile.

The minute her mother remarried, she broke her promise; things had changed; everything had changed since her father’s death. There was a sense of urgency, frustration almost, which made them feel as if they were in the way, until — Isabella, tired of the constant arguing, eloped with a man twice her age. ‘O’ how she remembered that day, ‘Sickly Imp,’ a nickname she had bestowed upon her stepfather, finally got told to shut it and keep his nose out of something that did not concern him.

It must have been the last time her mother comforted her in a heart-wrenching display of despair. First, mother had pulled her tight to her bosom; then they cried for hours, mourning the loss of her father, together. Then they giggled in fits of remembrance before finally making a pact, never to allow anyone or anything to come between them ever again. There was a desperate raw need in her mother that very night, one she would never forget. It made her feel wanted, needed.

as destiny intended mystery romance, cover for short story

As Destiny Intended

As for precious little Isabella, Richard Latimore, the man she eloped with, was already married. After a six-month spending spree across the country, Isabella had exhausted his finances to the point he wept in shame and admitted everything. Isabella had laughed in his face and called him every vile word she could think of before, opening the hotel door to Nick, who immediately took her in his arms and kissed her in a way to enrage Richard further. Nick Robinson was a young man she met on the night she ran away, whilst waiting for Richard at Tanner’s Palace, a cafe situated on the outskirts of town. He knew Richard very well and told her everything about the little weasel.

Isabella had no intention of returning home; she was determined to make the bastard suffer. Unlike herself, Isabella was not just beautiful; she was bright and strong-willed. And boy did he suffer the consequences of her deliberate allure of necessity, bags, jewellery and even the latest iPhone. All of this whilst taunting him into thinking that she would give herself to him freely once they were married, and at the same time tempting him into thinking she was on the absolute brink of giving herself completely, out of wedlock.

Hope! My dear Anna, is like a rope, you just need to know when to tug it.‘ Isabella had laughed.

Anna pondered on what she had meant by it. Then, in a deep diminishing sigh, she resigned herself to the fact her sister would always reap the riches of karma, no matter what she did. She was one in a million, and she was looking forward to finally seeing her again.

Now, three years after running away, Isabella was finally getting married, too, Nick. Mother could not be more excited and to have been asked to assist with the wedding preparations. It was as though Isabella could do no wrong, despite her running away and nearly causing her mother to have a heart attack, not to mention the sleepless nights that followed, month after month, without a single word.

Her mother truly believed Isabella was a victim of Mr Richard Latimore. He had subsequently hit the tabloids after committing several acts of fraud and indecent exposure. His lawyer had pleaded it was due to a mental breakdown caused by financial difficulties he had endured for several years. But, as destiny intended, Anna surmised, what else could it have been? It was not a coincidence.

‘O’ well, she sighed; theres no point in going over the past and stood up. The crux of which she was adamant was that she would most definitely not be entertaining Paul Rose.

Tis yours.

“Oh, where art thou tentative heart of whom I seek?”

A quick note by the Author:

As a writer, the greatest reward is knowing the enjoyment a reader gets from his work. However, there is always that feeling of uncertainty until he receives a review. Your comments are of great importance in helping me improve my skill and improve your enjoyment. Your comments will be much appreciated and be of great value.

Thank you for your interest, Andrew.

a worried look of concern

As Destiny Intended

 Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

Imagery

The featured image for As Destiny Intended is a collage by justanemotion.com

The photo of a boy was by Puplicdomainpictures.

Illustrations, including fancy page break, was by Annaliseart.

Short Stories Of Feelings

feelings justanemotion

Short stories of feelings can create a romantic moment filled with a sense of wonder. An intimate journey of nostalgia, empathy, and, most of all, an emotion that allows you to reflect on life’s sensitivity. It is a romance with words, tentatively creating short stories of feelings, an imaginary plot of a world where true love often runs deep.

Tis yours.

“Oh, where art thou tentative heart of whom I seek?”

“May you quench thy emotion, an allow me, to sleep.”

New Short Stories Of Feelings 

 

The embers of a lifetime by A I Moffat, short story of feeling

 

The Embers Of A Lifetime by A I Moffat published in 2021

The embers of a lifetime lay burning at my feet, memories of those I had learned to love, fading slowly before me. They had given me so much strength a reason to fight. There was nobody to come home too, to hold my flesh and bone, to make me feel alive again. Only the calm waters of the brook could awaken my nightmare, for part of me still felt unsure of whether or not; I still lay on the battlefield, staring up into the abyss. Read more

 

 

 

 

To dream, a dream, on this perfect night for things to be wishfully, just right. A mystical awe of desire of which I might aspire. Alas! Out of reach until I sleep, I’ll keep wandering down this street, with hope in my heart for fortune to strike, you never know, it just might.

“Oh, how divine maybe one day, you’ll see just give it time.” Justanemotion

 

Exclusive Short Stories of Feelings & Affection

 

short stories of feelings, romantic reflections

 

 

Short stories of feelings of the heart

 An Inconstant Heart by A I Moffat, published in 2021

Book Cover for An Inconstant Heart, romantic short story of feelings

‘Oh — Mathew,’ she responded in a fading breath, her eyes fell then rose in a sudden heartbeat, ‘you know I will.’ Her inconstant heart seemed to fluctuate with joy and trepidation. The thrill of it taking her by surprise until she looked into his adoring, child-like eyes, ‘but,’ she hesitated, ‘what about mother?’ As his gaze slowly fell in a shallow gape, she tenderly whispered, ‘You know she would never allow it.’

Instantly the boy knelt on one knee in the subtle shades before her. His dark fringe lay exposed to a streak of direct sunlight, which made the depths of his eyes sparkle mischievously. ‘I’ve been thinking — we could elope — run away together.’ Read more

A quick note by the Author:

As a writer, the greatest reward is knowing the enjoyment a reader gets from his work; there is always that feeling of uncertainty until he receives a review. Your comments are of great importance in helping me improve my skill and improve your enjoyment. Your comments will be much appreciated and be of great value.

Thank you for your interest, Andrew.

a worried look of concern

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

 

 

Photo of a boy by Puplicdomainpictures.

The Stolen Dream

the stolen dream short story

To dream, a dream, on this perfect night for things to be wishfully, just right. A mystical awe of desire of which I might aspire. Alas! Out of reach until I sleep, I’ll keep wandering down this street, with hope in my heart for fortune to strike, you never know, it just might—an unconscious request, not in jest, intuition, ambition, a sense— my quest.

“Oh, how divine maybe one day, mine, you’ll see just give it time.” Justanemotion

Introducing one of my favourite short stories, The Stolen Dream by Richard Le Gallienne. An English author and poet, which was first published in 1912. With the addition of some illustrations, and only a few changes, we hope you enjoy this short and pleasant tale.

the stolen dream short story

 

The Stolen Dream

The sun was setting and slanting long lanes of golden light through the trees, as an old man, borne down by a heavy pack, came wearily through the wood, and at last, as if worn out with the day’s travel, unshouldered his burden and threw himself down to rest at the foot of a great oak-tree. He was very old, older far he seemed than the tree under whose gnarled boughs he was resting, though that looked as if it had been growing since the beginning of the world.

 

His back was bent as with the weight of years, though really it had become so from the weight of the pack that he carried; his cheeks were furrowed like the bark of a tree, and far down upon his breast fell a beard as white as snow. But his deep-set eyes were still bright and keen, though sly and cruel, and his long nose was like the beak of a hawk. His hands were like roots strong and knotted, and his fingers ended in talon-like nails. In repose, even they seemed to be clutching something, something they loved to touch, and would never let go. His clothes were in rags and his shoes scarce held to his feet.

He seemed as abjectly poor as he was abjectly old.

Presently, when he had rested a while, he turned to his pack, and, furtively glancing with his keen eyes up and down the wood to make sure that he was alone, he drew from it a sack of leather which was evidently of great weight. Its mouth was fastened by sliding thongs, which he loosened with tremulous, eager hands.

First he took from the bag a square of some purple silk, stuff, which he spread out on the turf beside him, and then, his eyes gleaming with a wild light, he carefully poured out the contents of the bag onto the purple square, a torrent of gold and silver coins and precious stones flashing like rainbows—a king’s treasure. The setting sun flashed on the glittering heap, turning it into a dazzle of many-coloured fire. The treasure seemed to light up the wood far and near, and the gaudy summer flowers that a moment before had seemed so bright and splendid fell into shadow before its radiance.

The old man bathed his claw-like hands in the treasure with a ghoulish ecstasy and let the gold and silver pour through his fingers over and over again, streams of jewelled light gleaming and flashing in the level rays of the sun. As he did so, he murmured inarticulately to himself, gloating and gurgling with a lonely, hideous joy.

Suddenly a look of fear came over his face; he seemed to hear voices coming up the wood, and, huddling his treasure swiftly back again into the leathern bag, and the bag into the folds of his pack, he rose and sought some bushes nearby to hide himself from the sight of whosoever it was that approached. But, as he shouldered his pack, he half staggered, for the pack was of great weight, and he heaved a deep sigh.

“It grows heavier and heavier,” he muttered. “I cannot carry it much longer. I shall never be able to carry it with me to the grave.”

As he disappeared among the bushes, a young man and a young woman, with arms twined around each other, came slowly up the glade and presently sat down at the foot of the tree where the old man had been resting a moment or two before.

“Why, what is this?” presently exclaimed the young girl, picking up something bright out of the grass. It was a gold coin, which, in his haste, the old man had let slip through his fingers.

“Gold!” they both exclaimed together.

“It will buy you a new silk gown,” said the lover. “Whoever heard of such luck!” And then he sighed.

“Ah! Dear heart,” he said, “if only we had more like that! Then we could fulfil our dream.”

As the sun poured its last rays over them there at the foot of the oak, it was to be seen that they were penniless. Their clothes were old and weather-stained, and they had no shoes to their feet, but the white feet of the girl shone like ivory flowers in the grass, and her hair was a sheaf of ruddy gold. Nor was there a jewel in all the old man’s treasure as blue as her eyes. In his manly fashion, the young man was no less brave and fair to look upon.

In a little while, they turned to a poor wallet at the young man’s side. “Let us eat our supper,” they said.

There was little more than a crust or two, a few morsels of cheese, and a mouthful or two, of sour wine. Still, they were accustomed to being hungry, and the thought of the gold coin cheered their hearts. So they grew content, and after a while, they nestled close into each other’s arms and fell asleep, while slowly and softly through the woods came the light of the moon.

Now all this time the old, man had lain hidden, crouched down among the bushes, afraid almost to draw his breath, but from where he was, he could hear and see all and had overheard all that had been said. At length, after the lovers had been silent for a long time, he took courage to peer out from his hiding-place, and he saw that they were asleep. He would wait a little longer, though, till their sleep was sounder, and then he might be able perhaps to creep away unheard. So he waited on, and the moon grew brighter and brighter and flooded the woods with its strange silver. And the lovers fell deeper and deeper asleep.

“It will be safe now,” said the old man, half rising and looking out from his bushes. But this time as he looked out, he saw something, something extraordinary and beautiful.

Hovering over the sleeping lovers was a floating, flickering shape that seemed made of moonbeams, with two great shining stars for its eyes. It was the dream that came nightly to watch over the sleep of the lovers; and, as the miser gazed at it in wonder, a strange change came over his soul, and he saw that all the treasure he had hoarded so long—gathered by the cruel practices of years, and with which his back had grown bent carrying it about the world, was as dross compared with this beautiful dream of two poor lovers, to whom but one of all his gold pieces had seemed like a fortune.

“What, after all, is it to me but a weary burden my shoulders grow too old to carry,” he murmured, “and for the sake of which my life is in danger wherever I go, and to guard which I must hide away from the eyes of men?”

And the longer he gazed on the fair shining vision, the more the longing grew within him to possess it for himself.

“They shall have my treasure in exchange,” he said to himself, approaching nearer to the sleepers, treading softly lest he should awaken them. But they slept on, lost in the profound slumber of innocent youth. As he drew near, the dream shrank from him, with fear in its starry eyes; but it seemed the more beautiful to the old, man the closer he came to it and saw of what divine radiance it was made of; and, with his desire, his confidence grew greater. So, softly placing his leather bag in the flowers by the side of the sleepers, he thrust out his talon-like fingers and snatched the dream by the hand, and hurried away, dragging it after him down the wood, fearfully turning now and again to see that he was not being pursued.

But the sleepers still slept on, and by morning the miser was far away, with the captive dream by his side.

As the earliest birds chimed through the wood and the dawn glittered on the dewy flowers, the lovers awoke and kissed each other and laughed in the light of the new day.

“But what is this?” cried the girl, and her hands fell from the pretty task of coiling up the sunrise of her hair.

With a cry, they both fell upon the leather bag, lying there so mysteriously among the wood-lilies in the grass. With eager little fingers, they pulled apart the leather thongs and went half-mad with wonder and joy as they poured out the glittering treasure in the morning sun.

“What can it all mean?” they cried. “The fairies must have been here in the night.”

The treasure seemed real enough. The jewels were not merely dewdrops turned to diamonds and rubies and amethysts by the sun’s magic beams. And, nor was the gold mere gold of faerie, but coins bearing the image of the king of the land. Here were real jewels, real gold and silver. Like children, they dabbled their hands in the shining heap, tossing them up and pouring them from one hand to the other, flashing and shimmering in the morning light.

Then a fear came upon them.

“But folk will say that we have stolen them,” said the youth; “they will take them from us and cast us into prison.”

“No, I believe some God has heard our prayer,” said the girl, “and sent them down from heaven in the night. He who sent them will see that we come to no harm.”

And again, they fell to pouring them through their fingers and babbling in their delight.

“Do you remember what we said last night when we found the gold piece?” said the girl. “If only we had more of them! Surely our good angel heard us and sent them in answer.”

“It is true,” said the young man. “They were sent to fulfil our dream.”

“Our poor starved and tattered dream!” said the girl. “How splendidly we can clothe and feed it now! What a fine house we can build for it to live in! It shall eat from gold and silver plate, and it shall wear robes of wonderful silks and lawns like rainbows, and glitter with jewels, blue and yellow and ruby, jewels like fire fountains and the depths of the sea.”

As they spoke, a sudden disquietude fell over them, and they looked at each other with a new fear.

“But where is our dream?” said the girl, looking anxiously around. And they realized that their dream was nowhere to be seen.

“I seemed to miss it once in the night,” answered the young man in alarm, “but I was too sleepy to heed. Where can it be?”

“It cannot be far away,” said the girl. “Perhaps it has wandered off among the flowers.”

They were now thoroughly alarmed.

“Where can it have gone?” they both cried. And they rose and ran to and fro through the wood, calling out aloud on their dream. But no voice came back in reply, nor, though they sought high and low in covert and brake, could they find a sign of it anywhere. Their dream; was lost. Seek as they might; it was nowhere to be found.

And then they sat down by the treasure weeping, forgetting it all in this new sorrow.

“What shall we do?” they cried; “we have lost our dream.”

For a while, they sat on, inconsolable. Then a thought came to the girl.

“Someone must have stolen it from us. It would never have left us of its own accord,” said she.

And, as she spoke, her eyes fell on the forgotten treasure.

“What use are these to us now, without our dream?” she said.

“Who knows,” said the young man, “perhaps someone has stolen our dream to sell it into bondage. We must go and seek it, and maybe we can repurchase it with this gold and jewels.”

“Let us start at once,” said the girl, drying her tears at this ray of hope; and so, replacing the treasure in the bag, the young man slung it at the end of his staff, and together they set off down the wood, seeking their lost dream. Meanwhile, the old man had journeyed hastily and far, the dream following in his footsteps, sorrowing; and at length, he came to a fair meadow, and by the edge of a stream, he sat down to rest himself and called the dream to his side.

The dream shone nothing like so brightly as in the moonlit woodland, and its eyes were heavy as with weeping.

“Sing to me,” said the old man, “to cheer my tired heart.”

“I know no songs,” said the dream, sadly.

“You lie,” said the old man, “I saw the songs last night in the depths of your eyes.”

“I cannot sing them to you,” said the dream. “I can only sing them to the simple hearts I made them for, the hearts you stole me from.”

“Stole you?” said the old man, “did I not leave my treasure in exchange?”

“Your treasure will be nothing to them without me,” said the dream.

“You talk folly,” said the old man. “With my treasure, they can buy other dreams just as fair as you are. Do you think that you are the only dream in the world? There is no dream that money cannot buy.”

“But I am their own dream. They will be happy with no other,” said the dream.

“You shall sing to me, all the same,” said the old man angrily. But the dream shrank from him and covered its face.

“If I sang to you, you would not understand. Your heart is old and hard and cruel, and my songs are all of youth and love and joy.”

“Those are the songs I would hear,” said the old man.

“But I cannot sing them to you, and if I sang them, you could not hear.”

“Sing,” again cried the old man, harshly, “sing, I bid you.”

“I can never sing again,” said the dream. “I can only die.”

And for none of the old man’s threats would, the dream sing to him, but sat apart, mourning the loved ones it had lost.

So several days passed by, and every day the dream was growing less bright, a creature of tears and sighs, more and more fading away, like a withering flower. At length, it was nothing but a grey shadow, a weary shape of mist that seemed ready to dissolve and vanish at any breath of wind. No one could have known it for that radiant vision that had hovered shimmering with such a divine light over the sleep of the lovers.

At length, the old man lost patience and began to curse himself for a fool in that he had parted with so great a treasure for this worthless, whimpering thing. And he raved like a madman as he saw infancy all the gold and silver and rainbow-tinted jewels he had so foolishly thrown away.

“Take me back to them,” said the dream, “and they will give you back your treasure.”

“A likely thing,” raged the old man, “to give back a treasure like that for such a sorry phantom.”

“You will see,” said the dream.

As there was nothing else to be done, the old man took up his staff.

“Come along then,” said he, and started in the direction of the wood, and though it was some days’ journey, a glow flushed all through the grey shape of the dream at the news, and its eyes began to shine again.

And so they took their way.

Meanwhile, the two lovers had gone from village to village, and city to city, vainly asking for news of their dream. And to everyone they asked, they showed their treasure and said:

“This is all yours if you can but give us back our dream.”

Nowhere could they learn any tidings but gleaned only mockery and derision.

“You must be mad,” said some, “to seek a dream when you have all that wealth in your pack. Of what use is a dream to anyone? And what more dream do you want than gold and precious stones?”

“Ah! our dream,” said the lovers, “is worth all the gold and jewels in the world.”

Sometimes others would come, bringing their own dreams.

“Take this,” they would say, “and give us your treasure.”

But the lovers would shake their heads sadly.

“No, your dreams are not so beautiful as ours. No other dream can take its place. We can only be happy with our own dream.”

And, indeed, the dreams that were brought, to them seemed poor, pitiful, make-believe things, often ignoble, misbegotten, sordid, and cruel. To the lovers, they seemed not dreams at all but shapes of greed and selfish desire. So the days passed, bringing them neither tidings nor hope, and there came at length an evening when they turned their steps again to the woodland and sat down once more under the great oak-tree in the sunset.

“Perhaps our dream has been waiting for us here all the time,” they said.

The wood was empty and echoing, and they sat and ate their supper as before, but silently and in sorrow, and as the sunset, they fell asleep as before in each other’s arms, but with tears glittering on their eyelids.

And again, the moon came flooding the spaces of the wood, and nothing was heard but their breathing and the song of a distant nightingale.

Presently while they slept, there was a sound of stealthy footsteps coming up the wood.

It was the old man, with the dream shining by his side, and now and again running ahead of him in the eagerness of its hope. Suddenly it stopped, glowing and shimmering like the dancing of the northern lights, and placed a starry finger on its lips for silence.

“See,” it whispered, and there were the lovers, lying lost in sleep.

The old man’s wolfish eyes saw but one thing. There lay the leather bag of his treasure just as he had left it. Without a word, he snatched it up and hastened off with it down the wood, gurgling uncouthly to himself.

“Oh, my beauties!” he cried, as he sat himself down, afar off and poured out the gold and the silver and the gleaming stones into the moonlight. “Oh, my love, my life, and my delight! What other dream could I have but you!”

Meanwhile, the lovers stirred in their sleep and murmured to each other.

“I seemed to hear singing,” each said.

And, half opening their eyes, they saw their dream shining and singing above them in the moonbeams, lovelier than ever before, a shape of heavenly silver, with two stars for its eyes.

“Our dream has come back!” they cried to each other. “Dear dream, we had to lose you to know how beautiful you are!”

And with a happy sigh, they turned to sleep again, while the dream kept watch over them until dawn.

illustration of a little girl to say finish

Next short story

 

 

 

Original short story by Richard Le Gallienne 

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

You Alright

Why do British people say; "You Alright?!"

Why do British people say, “You Alright?!” 

You Alright is essentially a British term commonly used to ask someone if they are okay, which is a friendly gesture of saying hello and inquiring if you are well. However, it does have an underlying meaning of acceptance; for example, it reflects a persons willingness to accept you or allow you to continue.

The second part would imply it is seen as a question and an exclamation, making it a metaphor. Ultimately this would depend mainly on how it is expressed, regarding the circumstances.

The only way we can be sure if they are purely inquiring after your wellbeing is when they include other words, (are) for example;

“Are— you alright, Richard?”Aunt Geraldine inquired startled by his sudden need to support himself with the arm of her chair.
The Unscrupulous Proposal, short romantic story,

It was with an exhaustive slump of his shoulders and a harsh glare that he finally saw Catherine again. He looked down with an open mouth and shook his head in disbelief. Geraldine Myers lifted herself slightly in anticipation he was taking a turn for the worst, but he quickly tapped her on the shoulder and insisted he was fine.

He watched them standing there together; she seemed to laugh at almost every gesture he made. He cursed her child-like mannerism; although he did, however, concede it was a quality he found most endearing. After all, she was not yet aware of his feelings. Read more 

 

“You Alright!” 

The term can convey a liking towards a person, another a form of acceptance, which often implies; you look fine, really good or outstanding.

It is essentially an informal British greeting, and overtime has become more widely used. Another meaning of the phrase said more profoundly could imply a refusal of assistance.

Like many English phrases, it is a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not completely deducible from individual words. Still, instead by the expression or context, the phrase is used.

We often use phrases like, “Go break a leg!” More often than not, used to wish you luck, although depending on expression and context, it could mean what is said.

 

Are you alright

English Dialect Examples & Meaning

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

The Unscrupulous Proposal

The Unscrupulous Proposal, short romantic mystery story, cover

The unscrupulous proposal of Richard Myers received the disdain it so rightly deserved. The father would have none of it and insisted he would not interfere in his daughter’s private affairs. It was a relief to Catherine, who did not consider it necessary to discuss such an imperious letter. Although her mother, Mrs Ashington, questioned her relationship with an acquaintance of Lord and Lady Haxley, who had been identified as an imposter. On the grounds, the letter amounted to nothing more than blackmail, hoping it would persuade them to accept his proposal, Catherine was not prepared to discuss the matter any further.

Mr Ashington agreed and insisted that the implications of such a letter implied he should in some way be indebted to Richard Myers. When Mrs Ashington inferred they were looking at it all the wrong way and that Richard was merely trying to protect Catherine, her father became infuriated.

Nonsense!” Mr Ashington shouted, “If, he had any decency at all, he would have first discussed it with Catherine—personally.”

The matter then escalated until Mr Ashington bought his fist down, heavy on the drawing-room table, asking why Richard had not had the decency to discuss it with him first. Catherine found it all so upsetting and quickly ran to her room.

The following night they had agreed to attend a formal gathering to celebrate Richard Myers promotion. Mr Ashington decided he would take the opportunity to express his displeasure at receiving such an unscrupulous proposal.

 

The announcement of Lord and Lady Haxleys arrival was like the sound of a great wave breaking on the shore before receding in a gentle hum of disbelief.

Robert, the butler, looked horrified and continued a little perplexed, “Accompanied—by—”

With horror, Richard Myers frantically began to search for Catherine. He was in no doubt who had accompanied them. His father would attend to the Haxleys, but he would have to move fast to prevent Catherine from seeing the scoundrel.

Thomas Benton then tapped the base of his glass on the table several times.

Hear—hear!” Thomas shouted. “Hear—hear!”

His sudden authoritative burst stole the announcement of Paul Watkins, who had accompanied the Haxleys.

Good heavens!” He exclaimed, “You look as horrified as I was when I first heard of Richards promotion.”

Awkwardly Richard smiled, twisting his large frame through the small congregation.

Thomas continued to welcome the guests and congratulate Richard Myers on becoming a partner in the family’s long-established law firm.

After only a few minutes, Richard saw Catherine standing dutifully beside Mr and Mrs Ashington.

He hesitated for a moment to tidy himself up.

Richard!”

Instinctively he turned to find George Thurston, reaching for his hand.

“Congratulations, my boy.” Vigorously he shook Richards hand, who felt his entire—attire dishevel once more. “I’m sure you’ll make us all very proud, my boy.”

Thank—you,” Richard replied in a restrained grimace of discomfort, “I’ll—try, to do my best.”

 

The Unscrupulous Proposal

 

His view of Catherine diminished behind Albert, who too wished to congratulate him. After a few more pleasantries, he managed to excuse himself on a matter of urgency, only to find she had gone. His heart sank in fear of her finding the wretched fellow.

The Unscrupulous Proposal, short romantic mystery story, cover

Paul Watkins relationship with the Haxleys had allowed him the privilege to attend such occasions. Although he always remained unapproachable and seemed to prefer his own company. He had caused more than a few people to speculate that he was not of this world. On one such occasion, he did suffer and, it was Catherine who took pity on him. She led his pale, sunken image out into the cold dead of night.

It was nothing but mere superstition as far as Richard was concerned. The idea that this fellow was some unearthly creature who had somehow stolen her soul was ridiculous. Catherine had merely felt sorry for him and, it was in her nature to nurture something back to health.

“Are—you alright, Richard?”Aunt Geraldine inquired startled by his sudden need to support himself with the arm of her chair.

It was with an exhaustive slump of his shoulders and a harsh glare that he finally saw Catherine again. He looked down with an open mouth and shook his head in disbelief. Geraldine Myers lifted herself slightly in anticipation he was taking a turn for the worst, but he quickly tapped her on the shoulder and insisted he was fine.

He watched them standing there together; she seemed to laugh at almost every gesture he made. He cursed her child-like mannerism, although he did, however, concede it was a quality he found most endearing. After all, she was not yet aware of his feelings.

Richard!” His Aunt called after him as he followed them out into the night.

They strolled over the large terrace and down onto the lawn. Richard carefully avoided the full ray of light emitted by the lanterns. She then hesitated a moment; she looked up as if in awe of the soft moonlight. It was a clear perfect sky. The stars seemed to enhance its magnificence, flickering harmoniously with the romantic sound of orchestral music his father had requested. If not for Paul Watkins, he would be enjoying such a night.

What!—What!” he growled, “Are you doing now? Facing, each other like that.”

Paul was offering her his wine glass; she took it. Paul immediately moved around her, removing his dark brown cardigan. Richard watched very closely as he then proceeded to place it over her shoulders carefully.

Catherine looked so beautiful in the soft moonlight. An exchange of pleasant offerings appeared to follow. Oh, how he despised the fellow. Then Paul started to make his way back up towards the house. He felt a little unnerved at the idea of having to enter into any pleasantries with him.

Myers then turned in a squint to try and make out who it was meandering along the far side of the lawn. Harry—yes, it was, his old friend from university, he assured himself. Immediately he put up his hand and began waving, “Harry, old chap—over here.”

Harry continued slowly, with his hands clasped behind his back, and his pipe was hanging from one side of his mouth. Myers started to feel a little nervous when he realised Paul was almost upon him. Quickly he shouted again, but this time rushed down the steps, then with a sly glance over his shoulder at Paul, he rushed over to his friend.

Harry! Old chap, been looking everywhere for you.”  

Harry appeared somewhat perplexed by Richard’s, complete relief at seeing him.

“Oh, Harry, thank—God!”

“I say, is everything alright old chap?”

“Yes, actually—no, well—” Simultaneously, Richard lifted his finger then immediately bent over slightly to catch his breath. “I wasn’t sure whether—” he continued, “—or not, you’d turned up.”

“By Jove! You look in a frightful state, old chap?”

“I’m alright—just a little out of breath, that’s all.”

“I mean, anyone would think you were running for your life or something.”

Richard straightened himself up, chuckled weakly, then put out his hand, “good ter see you, it’s been a while, hasn’t it?”

Harry replied reflectively, “Well, yes. I suppose it has rather,” then, he popped his pipe back into the side of his mouth, only to withdraw it again and point it at Richard, “Now see here! Never mind all that. What the dickens! Is all this nonsense about?”

Myers glanced about them quickly, then drew close to Harry, “I think Catherine’s life is in danger. You remember Catherine, don’t you?”

“Yes, of course—go on,” he replied in a whisper spontaneously returning his pipe to the corner of his mouth.

 

 

A quick note by the Author:

As a writer, the greatest reward is knowing the enjoyment a reader gets from his work. There is always that feeling of uncertainty until he receives a review. Your comments are of great importance in helping me improve my skill and improve your enjoyment. Your comments will be much appreciated and be of great value.

Thank you for your interest, Andrew.

a worried look of concern

 

The Unscrupulous Proposal

 Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

Imagery

The featured image for The Unscrupulous Proposal of a downhearted woman was by Artsybee.

Photo of a boy and the butler Robert was by Puplicdomainpictures.

Illustrations, including fancy page break, was by Annaliseart.

 

 

The Embers Of A Lifetime

The embers of a lifetime lay burning at my feet, memories of those I had learned to love fading slowly before me. They had given me so much strength a reason to fight. Yet, there was nobody to come home to, to hold my flesh and bone, to make me feel alive again. Only the calm waters of the brook could awaken my nightmare, for part of me still felt unsure of whether or not; I still lay on the battlefield, staring up into the abyss.

A lifetime of toil, nor riches nor fame, a mere peasant boy, “Alex, was thy name.”

It all began on Dreary Lane, home of servant girls governed by a Mrs Geraldine Fanshaw. The place was born from need; farm-labourers in haste had built four timber-framed dwellings from the remains of an old barn. These hardworking farmhands later moved to Church Street into more suitable accommodation. Then came the construction of Harmony Way, and a gang of heavily built Irish labourers moved into these crudely built shacks.

Once Harmony Ways construction was complete, the new owners of these prestigious properties required domestic servants. Dreary Lane then became home to the Fanshaw girls. These were girls considered unsuitable for living in the servant quarters, many of whom were under sixteen.

At the very end, where an evergreen mass had weaved its way up through the boards and onto the old pantile roof, I was born to a young servant girl called Connie. In the very beginning, my life was in the balance. Mrs Fanshaw stood downstairs clutching a pillow, waiting.

It would not be the first time she had to protect the Fanshaw girls’ reputation.

 

 

The Embers Of A Lifetime  

Without hope, friendships slowly emerged from times long since past.

The Embers Of Lifetime expressing loss, memories and a burning emotion of the past

It was Nancy who assisted with my birth and, who kindly gave me thy name. Her orders were made very clear; as soon as I was born, she was to take me straight down to Fanshaw.  Her instructions were not to allow Connie to hold me, not even for one second; It would be better that way.

Nancy, who was now seventeen, had endured the agony of having her child taken from birth, and she was determined to try and save me. So it came as a huge surprise when a silent, little angel was born alongside me, fast asleep.

My mother lay sobbing, aware of what was to happen to me, staring at the broken window pane. Nancy put her hand softly on her shoulder, but she ignored her. It was a matter of life and death; Fanshaw was waiting. Nancy, quickly placed me in a pouch she had sewn earlier under her dress and left my little sister lying on the bed.

It’s dead! Miss — It’s bloody dead!” She screamed glancing over at Connie, then rushed down the stairs.

Fanshaw had rushed to the foot of the stairs, still clutching the pillow and looked up in horror as Nancy came bounding down towards her. Immediately Fanshaw reached out and caught her by the shoulders.  Nancy had forced tears to her eyes and began to act hysterical, repeating over and over again, ‘The bloody thing’s dead, Miss.’ It was then that Fanshaw slapped her, demanding that she calm down.

Nancy belched in her face as if she were going to be sick, then covered her mouth and pulled free to make her escape outside. She hesitated at the small green picket fence to make sure Fanshaw would not follow her; again, she began belching, pretending to be sick. Fanshaw stared at her briefly, then turned and went up the stairs. Nancy then rushed down to the brook, her heart pounding, unsure whether I was alive or dead. Once she had reached the small stream, she immediately tried to rub life into me.

It was the sweetest sound she had ever heard, and her tears became as natural as my will to live.

‘Oh, yer little beauty, you.’ She whispered holding me tight to her chest.

 

A quick note by the Author:

As a writer, the greatest reward is knowing the enjoyment a reader gets from his work; there is always that feeling of uncertainty until he receives a review. Your comments are of great importance in helping me improve my skill and improve your enjoyment. Your comments will be much appreciated and be of great value.

Thank you for your interest, Andrew.

a worried look of concern

 

The Embers Of A Lifetime

 Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

Imagery

The Embers Of A Lifetime is a collage made from two unique original images by Alexas and Olichel.

Photo of a boy by Puplicdomainpictures.

Illustrations by Annaliseart.

 

 

 

A Feeling Of Uncertainty

A feeling of Uncertainty

She turned in a smile, 'I'd better be getting back to the library, you know how mother likes to get there, early.'

'Yes —' he replied sadly. . . . .

A feeling of uncertainty made her question her decision. Was it just her mother being overprotective. She knew deep down she wanted their blessing, no matter what. It had been nearly seven years; she began to ponder since she had started working at the library. Every Saturday, her mother would always make sure she was there to walk her home, even during the winter months when the night came early, to ensure she got home safely.

In the summer months, she enjoyed the freedom of walking home alone. However, the last few months had been fraught with her mother unexpectedly turning up after work. Occasionally when she was not outside waiting, she would appear rushing out of a shop in the high street, always with a pleasant smile of relief, followed by a mumbling of coincidence which lacked conviction.

She knew full well, it was never a coincidence and that due to her coming home later than usual, her mother had become suspicious. Mathew, who was a few years younger than her, would have to walk a few steps behind, and only when they were confident she was not going to appear would they join as one. At first, Mathew thought it was exciting, but she knew he had grown frustrated by not having the chance to say goodbye to her correctly. She was beginning to doubt her mother’s irrational behaviour.

 

A Feeling Of Uncertainty

They had become more daring in their desperate desire for one another, and in the evening, she would sneak out into the garden to meet him. Mary had become increasingly concerned about her mother’s inconstant behaviour and realised the risk they were taking.

His marriage proposal had somehow made her feel complete and more comfortable within herself. She was not afraid of her feelings anymore and wanted her parents to share in her enjoyment. Mathew was kind, understanding and very patient. However, it made her think carefully about whether or not she was doing the right thing, or if there was a selfish, very selfish side to her mother, she had not realised.

A feeling of Uncertainty, part two of the short romantic story; An Inconstant Heart

– A feeling of uncertainty –

 

‘Wait up!’ Mathew called after her.

‘Oh, sorry,’ she laughed, ‘I nearly forgot about you.’

‘What! So quickly? Well, that’s just nice, that is.’ He laughed sarcastically back.

‘You know, mother says boys are free to do as they like, but girls can’t because in the end they have children an end up living a life of servitude.’

Jee’s! — Sounds like I’ve got my work cut out then?’

Instantly, Mary put her arm around him, ‘You — most certainly have,’ she chuckled, ‘What time?’

‘It’s up to you — say around five?’

‘Make it about six-thirty, just to give us time to get in the door.’

The day was glorious; everywhere they looked, there were bright colours of contentment. Couples strolled arm in arm as children ran about them. It was something she always envied, the joy of having a little family and someone to share her every step.

‘What shall I do? — ring the doorbell and introduce myself? Mathew asked, a little less confident.

‘She’s doesn’t bite, you know.’ Mary insisted, ‘I shall come out and meet you at the gate. We’ll go in together.’

‘I’m not afraid, you know. I’m just a little uncertain of what to say.’  He paused reflectively, ‘I mean, it’s not like they know me or anything.

She drew him a little closer, ‘I know you’re not scared,’ she replied in a quiet, suppressed laugh. ‘It will be fine; we’ll have to tell them we knew each other at school.’

 ‘Come on hurry up! Otherwise, she’ll get there first.’

 

If only she could be sure that once her mother had met him, everything would be fine. Although it began to cross her mind that maybe it would be better to introduce him before announcing they wanted to get married. In time she would gradually come around to the idea and realise he was not like other men, and hopefully grow fond of him.

‘Let’s make it seven o’clock instead, shall we?’ She said in the spur of the moment.

They had walked over the lush green verge and were about to get onto the shingle path when a middle-aged couple pushing a little girl in a wheelchair came down the path towards them. He held her a moment, waited until they had passed, then whispered, ‘You, don’t think we’re rushing this a bit, do you?’

‘What makes you say that?’

‘Well, it’s just you seem a little — on edge.’

It was not long before they reached the gravel track leading up to the railway crossing, where she knew Mathew would take a keen look over at the boatyard, which runs up to the railway line, on one side. His dreams of owning a yacht one day always fascinated her, considering he could not even swim. She quietly waited until they had reached the turnstile at the railway crossing, allowing him the opportunity to fantasise about becoming a sailor, before she replied.

‘You might be right; maybe I should try and talk to mother first, soften her up a bit.’

 

A quick note by the Author:

A writers, greatest reward is knowing the enjoyment a reader gets from his work. There is always a feeling of uncertainty until he receives a review. Your comments are of great importance in helping me improve my skill and improve your enjoyment. Your comments will be much appreciated and be of great value.

Thank you for your interest, Andrew.

a worried look of concern

 

An Inconstant Heart

 # A Feeling Of Uncertainty

Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

Imagery

The first image is by Lian.

Illustrations by Annaliseart.

Photo of a boy by Puplicdomainpictures.

 

 

An Inconstant Heart

Book Cover for An Inconstant Heart, romantic short story

An inconstant heart is thrown into an array of breath-taking joy and excitement, only to be quenched by a mother’s overprotective nature. A formidable twist of events slowly unfolds when she shares the news with her parents. Unsettled by her mother’s reaction, she soon realised all was not as it seemed—a short romantic story by A I Moffat, full of emotion.

 

 When a whelm of emotion causes palpitations of one’s heart. 

Together they stood under a willow tree in a glorious array of pale green; the heat of summer had caused them to seek shelter and, most of all, privacy. Mathew looked curiously at her smile, then up at her enchanting, almost bewildering gaze, he was thinking adoringly.

In a shallow subdued voice, Mary smiled at him, ‘It’s not fair that we should have to meet like this, in secret.’

With an attentive flicker, the boy replied, ‘I know.’ Then he pulled a small box from the pocket of his jeans and added, ‘That’s why I’ve bought you this.’

‘Oh, my God! — It isn’t? — Is it?

 

Book cover for An Inconstant Heart, a romantic short story by A I MoffatHe watched her sudden, almost hysterical glow of excitement, ‘If you’ll have me?’

‘Oh — Mathew,’ she responded in a fading breath, her eyes fell then rose in a sudden heartbeat, ‘you know I will.’ Her inconstant heart seemed to fluctuate with joy and trepidation. The thrill of it taking her by surprise until she looked into his adoring, child-like eyes, ‘B—b, but,’ she stuttered, ‘what about mother?’ As his gaze slowly fell in a shallow gape, she tenderly whispered, ‘You know she would never allow it.’

Instantly the boy knelt on one knee in the subtle shades before her. His dark fringe lay exposed to a streak of direct sunlight, which made the depths of his eyes sparkle mischievously. ‘I’ve been thinking — we could elope — run away together.’

Mary was a little taken aback, then the boy offered up the ring, ‘A diamond!’ she gasped, ‘I never expected a diamond.’

An Inconstant Heart

Carefully her hands reached down and cupped his open hand; then, slowly, she eased herself down on one knee. Her eyes seem to purr in awe at his delicate desire, his wanting, ‘I can’t, Mathew, it’s not fair on you.’

The silent pause of emotion bound them in the same wanting desire, magnified by the glow of the weeping willow. Until the boy announced in defeat, ‘Then, I’ll ask your mother and father if you can marry me.’

As if accepting his staunch response, her eyes lightly closed before she drew herself up, drawing him gently with her, ‘You know, she won’t hear of my getting married.’

‘I know.’ Mathew whispered, ‘I just hope she will listen and realise how much I care about you.’

‘When — when will you ask them?’

‘Why not tonight.’ He said with a look of surprise.

Mary gently folded his fingers over the small blue box, ‘Until, tonight — then.’

He seemed transfixed by her delicate commands to his proposal. It felt as though she had, in some way, decided their fate. Never before had he felt this presence of belonging; it made him feel as though they were somehow already married.

She turned in a smile, ‘I’d better be getting back to the library, you know how mother likes to get there, early.’

‘Yes —’ he replied sadly.

 

page divider for An Inconstant Heart by A I Moffat

 

 

An Inconstant Heart

Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2021

Imagery

The first image and featured image is by Stocksnap.

Illustrations by Annaliseart.

 

The Hairpin

The Hairpin turns sharply upon itself and within its clasp are tiny threads of woe, for some poor forgotten souls. A sharp turn in the same direction leads him back from whence he came; only when he can defy his natural reaction to danger and continue straight can he finally reach his darkest hour.
His father was approaching a hairpin bend when an oncoming vehicle stole his sight. He struggled to regain his vision, now frozen in darkness by the light, their journey tragically comes to an end—a young boy strapped in his seat drifts in and out of sleep. He hears his mothers fearful cry; now tormented by the light, his restless heart seeks the night.

An old-woman sits waiting, spinning a silk-like thread, for when the lake once again becomes frozen, there is a chance he will return to seek the light.

There at her side lay many hairpins straightened, and only a few that have broken.

The Hairpin

By A I Moffat

A bitter wind swept across the open fens of Lincolnshire; snow had been falling for most of the day. As night came, the vast expanse of water edged in ivory brown reeds had frozen. Heavy were the feather-like plumes which now yielded to the bitter wind.

"The

The Hairpin

On the far side of this frozen landscape was a small cottage. There an old, woman sat spinning in front of a small fire; she was content, warm, yet fearful of the sudden gusts. The windows creaked and moaned. Here she sat, chattering away some awful, dreaded tale. Then the door latch sprang suddenly from its rest.

It was his sheer image of bewilderment and fear that made her cackle when she glanced over at the door, ‘Oh, there you are, Johnathan. I was wondering what’s you’ve been doin’.’

The boy stood there very still, staring down at his feet, ‘Nothin’ — I’ve done nothing.’

‘I never said you had; now come’s over here, where’s it’s warm.’

Ever so slowly, he moved toward her, sliding one foot at time across the bare knotted boards until he stood before her.  She cast him a glance then continued spinning. He remained very still, his arms still straight and rigid in front of him. Until finally, her head rose in a sigh, ‘Over there, boy, next to the fire.’

In a gulp, he turned and shuffled over to the dwindling soft light. There he stood rigid with fear, listening to the woman’s mumbling’s fearfully until the old rickety spinning wheel fell silent. After a while, the boy half turned in agape. Instantly he swung back when he realised she was standing right behind him.

The weight of her hand fell heavy on his head, ‘I know where’s you’ve been boy, an what’s you’ve been doin’ all this time.’

His eyes closed tight just before he felt her hand fall heavily on his head. He struggled to break free at first, but then her long nails dug deep into his scalp. A sudden jolt bought his head up; his vision was a blur as a flash of light passed across his tired, weary eyes. In the distance, he could hear them, his mother insisting they should have turned.

Through night and darkness, an unfortunate soul wanders.

Weary days pass in a scorching light.

Sudden are the bursts of fury.

An endless search darkened by the light.

The old woman held him tight in her grasp, his blood now slowly seeping from her razor-sharp nails, his eyes opened wide in defiance, ‘Where is she?’

‘I told’s yer to leave them’s alone, didn’t I?’

‘Where is she?’ He cried, attempting to break free once more.

‘You fool,’ She cackled, pushing his head to one side, ‘You should never have come back.’

A poem from the story of The Hairpin by A I Moffat; Through night and darkness, a hapless soul wanders. Weary days pass in a scorching light. Sudden are the bursts of fury. An endless search, darkened by the light.

⊃ The Hairpin ⊂

She sniggered, looking him directly in the eyes, then slowly she began sucking his fresh warm blood from her fingers and hissed, ‘you’re nothin’ but a foolish little boy.’

The old, woman turned gradually with narrowed, piercing eyes and then, in a grim strain of a moan, she lowered herself down in front of the fire, lifted a narrow steel bar and began poking it vigorously. As the embers swirled about her, she pointed with a long curled finger to a small pile of logs insisting the boy gather her some wood.

She was just as he remembered; nothing had changed; everything was as it was all those years ago, even the cry of his mother. He had been trying to get back to this wretched place all his life but now found himself as he was all those years ago, a mere child, a boy.
The Hairpin, quote, 'I's — expect's your's a wondering how's it, your's not all grown up, like?' She smiled, looking over a tatty old shawl.

‘I’s — expect’s your’s a wondering how’s it, your’s not all grown up, like?’ She smiled, looking over a tatty old shawl.

The Hairpin, 'I's — expect's your's a wondering how's it, your's not all grown up, like?' She smiled, looking over her tattered old shawl.

Original short story by A I Moffat

Illustrations by justanemotion.com

Book cover illustrations by darksouls1

©All rights reserved justanemotion.com 2020