The Lady and the Lesbian + Audio – Chapter 1

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[This is a serialized story, being published chapter by chapter]

Chapters published till now: 2 / Total chapters: 9

The Lady and the Lesbian (Text + Audio)

 

Download Chapter 1 Audio (Mp3) for Free!

 

As I lay exhausted and aching all over, the blankets draped over me on Maria’s bed, I realised I’d never been this happy or this satisfied. Pressing the bell in the wall above my head would bring servants racing to my room to attend to my every desire. It was all so different to how I thought my life would go.

I was brought up in a tiny village, my childhood spent slaving over our smallholding, tending to father’s animals or weeding his crops, wishing all the while that there might be more to life than farming. I had little hope for the future. The girls in my village either got married and tended to their husband instead of their land, or they remained with their parents forever. I yearned for something more but had no idea how such a thing might be achieved or even what that something might be.

It all changed when I was standing next to the fire at the end of yet another exhausting day not long after turning eighteen, trying to warm my frozen mud coated fingers at the pathetic flickering flame in the grate. Rain dripped from the end of my thin dress, the fabric clinging to my skin and making me even colder.

My father coughed behind me to attract my attention. I turned in time to see him put down his tankard of ale and fold his arms across the ragged woollen jumper covering his chest. His expression scared me, it looked as if he was about to tell me something he knew would upset me.

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“Lizzie my girl,” he said, taking a deep breath before continuing. “You’re eighteen now.”

“I am aware of that father,” I replied, pushing my back towards the fire, hoping the ice in my limbs might thaw at least a little. “I thought you were not though.”

“Meaning?”

“No gift for becoming an adult, not even a mention of my birthday.”

“I was at market,” he shrugged. “Tell me Lizzie, do you have any intentions of marrying?”

“No father.”

“No boys who catch your eye? Jonathan perhaps?”

“The baker’s son? He has his interests elsewhere, in the farmyard if rumours are to be believed.”

“No one else?”

“No father.”

“I thought not.” He lapsed into silence for a moment as if trying to decide how to word what he wanted to say. “I have a new wife,” he said at last.

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I almost fell backwards into the fire. “Mother’s only been dead for six months. Did you meet her at the funeral?”

The door scraped open and a short figure in black walked in with an umbrella over her head. She shook the raindrops from it before folding it and turning to me, lifting her veil as she did so. She looked little older than me but her eyes had the icy coldness of a woman who has seen much and done much, none of it wholesome. I glanced down at her well fed body and buxom chest, so different to my own undersized and malnourished frame.

“My case is sitting in the rain,” she said bluntly. “Is it to remain there all day?”

“No of course not my love,” father said. “Lizzie, go and fetch it.”

“What? Why can she not bring it in herself?”

“Because I am a weak woman,” she said, her bulky arms betraying her lie. “Do as your father says.”

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I opened my mouth to protest but then closed it again. It wasn’t worth the fight. Walking outside into the rain, I found two large and heavy cases dumped in the mud by the driver of a carriage who was already climbing back behind his horses.

“Can you help me?” I asked, heaving at the first case. He laughed in response and whipped the horses into life, the wheels flicking up mud as he rode out of our yard. I grabbed the brass handle of the case and began dragging it through the doorway, setting it down as soon as it was over the threshold.

“It’s covered in filth you wicked child!” the woman snapped. “Have you no common sense?”

“What was I supposed to do?”

“Lift it of course. Go and get the other one at once!”

I turned and headed back outside. The second case was already gone, no doubt greedily being unpacked at that moment by one of the more unsavoury residents of our village.

I walked back inside. My father was nowhere to be seen and nor was the first case but the woman was still there, hurling a week’s worth of coal onto the fire in one heaped shovelful. “Where is the other case?”

“Gone.”

“Gone? You mean you’ve stolen it you little thief. Come here at once!” She grabbed me by the shoulder, twisting my arm painfully as she threw me towards the table, bending me over it so my chest pressed into the rough wood.

“What are you doing?” I asked.

 

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