The Heart Broken Noble Woman by serena myles

In my youth I loved a man. He was tall and handsome and ignited a fire in me that I never knew existed. My father however, didn’t accept the match, my lover was a farmer’s son and I was the daughter of an Earl. He was below my rank for marriage and my father forbade me from ever seeing him again.
The Heart Broken Noble Woman
The Heart Broken Noble Woman by serena myles
But I was rebellious and I went against my father’s command and met my lover in secret. My Jonathan. We would spend days lying in the summer grass watching the clouds floating past. Sometimes we would play in the river and I would take my gown off and swim in my under garments, something a lady should never do in public, even in the presence of her husband. He would send me roses and I would lie to my father and tell him that I picked them from the garden. My maid Anna would deliver messages between us trying our hardest to keep it a secret from my father. Then I decided to give myself completely to Jonathan. I remember that night like it happened only hours ago, we lay with each other beneath the stars and he showed me what it really was to be a woman. I had lain in his arms that night and dreamed of a future that was never to be. In the dusk of the morning light had gone to my father’s chamber after returning from my night with Jonathan and told my father what I had done and that he had no option but to allow my marriage with Jonathan. My father was a proud man and would never let the family be shamed. He agreed to the marriage, but not without adding in his own secret punishment. My dowry would not be paid and Jonathan and I would be sent to the small cottage my father owned in Scotland, away from society. As soon as I had bathed and dressed I told Anna my news, she was shocked at the measure I had taken to secure my love but I reassured her that it had been worth it. Then I had hurried to the edge of town where Jonathan’s father’s farm was. I saw him in the fields tending to the land. I waved and jumped ecstatically until he seen my presence and began making his way over to me. We had kept our love a secret from his family also knowing they would warn him against loving a noble woman. Throwing my arms around him I kissed him harshly. “I have news for you.” I laughed. Jonathan took my arms from around his neck and smiled at me. “What news my love?” I bit my lip knowing that we could finally be together, that nothing was going to come between us anymore. No father, no title. “My father has given his consent for us to marry.” Jonathan grabbed my waist and began spinning me around in circles as he laughed joyfully. “What made him change his mind?” He asked when he finally set me back on my feet. “I told him that I had given myself to you.” My smile fell from my face as I seen Jonathan’s become laced with anger. “What is the matter?” “What possessed you to tell your father that?!” “Jonathan can you not see it was the only way that he would agree to our marriage.” I explained in panic. “He could have me sent to the tower for this.” Jonathan began to turn and walk away from me. I rushed and stood in front of him taking his hands in mine. “No my love. He would never shame the family by letting society know what we have done. He is allowing us to marry to protect my family’s reputation.” He seemed to calm then. “He was not mad? He did not punish you?” I relaxed seeing Jonathan become happy again. Shaking my head I answered him. “No. He said he will not pay my dowry and we will have to live in Scotland. But what does it matter as long as we have each other?” I kissed him lightly but he didn’t respond. “How are we suppose to live in Scotland with no dowry?” I hadn’t thought of anything like that yet. All I knew was right now we could get married and be happy forever. “Let’s not worry about that now. My father has given his blessing, we can tell your parents now. Jonathan we don’t have to hide anymore.” “No. Let’s not tell my parents yet. I think it would be unfair to them to just announce it. Allow me to speak to them tonight and tomorrow we can announce or engagement.” I had agreed and reluctantly gone home. My mother refused to even look at me and my father had gone into town. Anna was my only source of conversation. “You’re lucky your father didn’t disown you and throw you on the streets.” Anna gasped as she pleated my hair. “My father would never risk his reputation. He cares about it more than his family.” I giggled. “My Lady it is not something to laugh about. Your father is a high standing man in this society and what you did could ruin him. I think you should consider yourself privileged to have him as your father.” “He said he will send for me tomorrow.” Anna was confused at this. “Who is going to send for you My Lady?” “Jonathan.” I sighed frustrated she wasn’t paying attention. “We are going to announce our engagement to his family tomorrow after he has spoken to them tonight.” “I have a very bad feeling about this My Lady and you know when I have a bad feeling about something it tends to be right.” I’d had enough now. Anna was dampening my good spirit at being engaged, dismissing her harshly I went to bed, hoping tomorrow would come quickly. The next morning I had waited patiently for Jonathan when Anna had come quickly into the bedroom with a sad face. “My Lady, a letter has arrived for you from Jonathan.” I took it quickly and opened it. Dearest Mary I have been unable to speak to my parents about our engagement due to my father taking ill during the night. The doctor has visited him twice and believes he has come down with a fever. He is going to call on him again in the next few days and has ordered he rests. I worry it would delay his recovery if we were to give him such news now. Please give me more time before we announce ourselves. It would be unsafe for you to visit me at this moment in time encase what my father has is more dangerous than we believe. I will call on you after the doctor has visited my father again. Jonathan. I frowned at the letter. It was so different from Jonathan’s other letters he had sent me, so impersonal. Normally he would address me as his love and always signed with ‘yours forever’. I suppose with his poor father taking unwell he would have been worrying. I hope he recovers quickly I can’t bear to wait days to tell the world that Jonathan is mine. Responding to Jonathan in another letter I gave it too Anna and begged her to deliver it as fast as possible. It had been two days and there was no letter from Jonathan. I had kept to my room, refusing to suffer the looks or comments my parents gave me when I was in their presence. Then on the third day Anna came rushing into my room with a look of horror upon her face. “Anna!” I rushed over to her as she gasped from breath. “What on earth is the matter?” “My Lady.” Anna gasped as she held onto my arms. I remember my body freezing and starring into her empty eyes and I knew straight away who the cause for her state was. “Jonathan.” Anna nodded. “What has happened to Jonathan?! Is it his father?! Has his father died!?” Oh, my poor Jonathan. Anna began to weep. “No My Lady it is far worse.” “Anna! Would you just tell me instead of having me in hysterics?” I commanded. Anna seemed to regain control of herself again as she straightened up and took a deep breath before telling me the news that would end my world. “Jonathan My Lady, has betrayed you.” Betrayed? “Anna what are you gossiping about?” “It was announced just this morning that Jonathan and Emily Burnett wed yesterday afternoon.” I fell to the floor as Anna’s words kept repeating over and over in my mind. This couldn’t be true. Jonathan would never do this to me. Marry Emily Burnett the blacksmiths daughter. “Anna this has to be incorrect, you must have heard wrong.” Anna knelt down beside me. “Oh I wish that were true My Lady but after I heard the news I went to the blacksmiths to ask John, Emily’s father, but there they both were. Emily and Jonathan with her father proposing a toast to them for a long marriage with healthy children.” “Enough Anna!” I screamed at her as I rose from the floor and sat on the bed. I tried to hold in the sobs that wanted to break my chest. I had been fooled by my Jonathan. Had learned to love him and cherish him, and he had cared none for me. I should be happy that he was gone from my life that I had been saved from spending a lifetime of an empty marriage with him. But whether Jonathan was with me or not he had destroyed the rest of the life I should have lived for he had ruined me. No man would want to marry a woman who had already been touched by another. “What shall we tell your father?” Anna whispered as she came to sit beside me. I sighed. “If you already know it shall not be long before my father hears the news.” I sat up until early in the morning not able to sleep. How could someone’s life change so drastically in such a short space of time? Just last night I had lain in bed dreaming of the day Jonathan could share it with me, and how it was not to far away. I had to know why he had chosen a mere blacksmiths daughter over the daughter of an Earl. I quickly dressed myself in a light blue dress that I wore when I was going to be going through the countryside. I cared not whether it got dirty. I made my way through the fields that I had travelled through so many times on my way to meet Jonathan in secret. Now the journey burdened me with a heavy heart. Upon reaching the small farm cottage I heard Wilbert, Jonathan’s father shouting at their sheep dog. He wasn’t unwell at all! Looking around the side of the cottage I saw the old man as fit as ever chasing after some sheep trying to round them in. “Mary.” I turned at the shocked voice to find Jonathan standing behind me holding a pail of cow’s milk. “Jonathan.” How I ignored the urge to go and hit him I would never know. “Mary. Surely you must have heard.” He whispered. Most likely to keep from waking his new wife. “I have.” He moved closer to me and against my will my heart beat became faster. “Then why are you here?” Everything I had felt in the last couple of hours since I had found out of his betrayal resurfaced. Suddenly I was trying to stop myself from attacking him. “I want to know why.” I spat at him in a way I never thought a lady could. Jonathan sighed and ran a hand through his dark hair, something that used to make my stomach dance with butterflies now just made it turn with sickness. “There is no easy way to say this.” “Then just say it.” I had had enough of his fooling me. “My family aren’t wealthy. We work all year and barely keep the farm running. I had to find a way to get my family more money.” I felt hot tears decorate my cheeks and prayed that he did not see them. “So it was my dowry you wanted?” I stated more than asked. Jonathan nodded. “Then your father took it away and planned to send us to Scotland.” I pushed him as hard as I could. I heard the pail hit the ground and the milk splash from it as I ran back home. I found father waiting for me when I got home. He had heard of the news and it was obvious from my appearance I had also. He told me he couldn’t have me remain at the house anymore, people would soon ask why I wasn’t married and he couldn’t marry me as I had already been bedded by another man. So the only option that was left was for me to announce that I wanted to become and nun and devote myself to God. I was sent away within the week with Anna. Now I have lived at this convent for forty years. My dear friend Anna was made to share my punishment although; she did nothing to deserve it. After being at the convent for a short period of time I became aware that I was with child. A son was born in a cold winter month and he was sent away to live with my father. My father using the story that he had adopted the boy since my mother had never given him any sons. He would be a man now. I never got to know my son, or call him by his name. I do not even know what my parents decided to name him. I wondered if Jonathan had ever seen him? My family never came and visited me. They are dead now and my son will be Lord of the Estate with a wife and child of his own now. I am the forgotten noble woman who fell in love and had her heart broken. Nothing more. Nothing less.

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