Before there was the novel, there were the stories...

by Nan Hawthorne, who also writes under Christopher Hawthorne Moss, Books and Stories b ChristopherHawthorne Moss at

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Old Stories: The Tapestry

osephine yawned, and stretched her arms. She felt like flopping on her back onto the bed, but it was late afternoon and she always looked forward to the evening meal, just to be with Lawrence. She'd stayed up quite late waiting for him last night, and they had not slept late this morning. She did not know why he'd be up so late, but she did not question he had governmental work.

Jo's waiting-maids went to and fro preparing the clothes she would wear that evening. They were setting out a light yellow gown, one with had taken the King's fancy. It was truly beautiful and enhanced her fair beauty. She seemed to glow in it and it made her cheeks seen even pinker than they were. In which Lawrence took great delight. But he had remarked mostly on how the yellow of the gown made her eyes so blue that they could not but be mistaken for heavenly. As she thought of his complements, she smiled, even giggled. She was in ecstasy that his favors were so great for her, even though her pregnancy was becoming quite great. Rather than fawning over her less, he did so more often, doting on her and carrying on almost embarrassingly. Her child had begin to kick occasionally, and its father found hat fascinating . He was overwhelmed with pride, constantly making wagers as to whether the child was a boy or a girl. Although he tried not to show a preference around Jo, it was obvious he'd decided on a son. He joked with Shannon and Sean, insisting his sons were far more valorous, the latter two conceding for lack of rank.

Jo's heart swelled as she thought of Lawrence and she closed her eyes, sighing. Her maids had her nearly clothed, but for the dressing of her hair. She looked anxiously at the door which lead to the privy stairway to Lawrence's room. He always came to her, now that the many steps had begun to be to tiring for an expectant mother. But he was rather late. He'd seemed a little absent-minded lately. Maybe he had gotten absorbed in some problem of court and had forgotten. In any case, she would not worry.

Heather O'Neill, whom she had asked to be her waiting-lady, had finished brushing out her hair Heather adored the Queen, though she was aware of her husband's over devotion to Jo. As she began to arrange the long, silken strands of gold thread, she reached into a jeweled casket for the pretty strip of cloth to drape in it. An annoyed look came over her face, as she failed to find it.

"Oh dear!" she said, "Where could it have gone to?"

Josephine turned in her chair." I don't know …no, wait…: a funny smile crossed her lips. "I'll wager the King has it! He is always sneaking off with some keepsake or another. I can imagine it is tied around some sconce, or on his table…" She giggled right along with her women, and rose to go up the stairs to her husband's room. Heather protested, but Jo smiled, shook her head, and opened the door. She went slowly but lightly up the stairs and opened his door.Jo saw Lawrence perched on a large stool, surveying the goings on of two women, who seemed to be preparing a great tapestry. When he heard her enter, he looked at her with a smile, but it suddenly faded into a confused look, and he held up his arms towards her. "No! Oh, Jo! don't come in now!" Then he gave a funny, defeated sigh, and smiled again. "Oh, well, ye might as well have it. I meant to surprise ye with it later, but now ye have seen it. My ladies, have the servants put the tapestry up on her grace's wall. We'll be down straight away."

Jo had not seen enough of it to know what the big deal was but when were back down to her room she clapped her hands together with pleasure. It was a long tapestry with seven different scenes from the history of their romance, from the meeting to now. It was not yet finished.

"It is not finished because our love is not finished," said Lawrence. "There is much more to come." And he smiled.

I don't really know where this story is supposed to go. It seems to be one of those mood pieces I occasionally liked to do.

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About the author

Nan Hawthorne now writes under the name Christopher Hawthorne Moss. You can contact Christopher at .