|The Last Dance
Author: Naheniel PM
Young Elaine Carter went missing. A century later a descendant asks the team to find out, why she was so far away from her family, and how a girl, being barely adult, could simply drop dead dancing. Meanwhile Lilly and Scotty have to deal with a row.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Crime/Hurt/Comfort - Lilly R. & Scotty V. - Chapters: 2 - Words: 2,735 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 4 - Follows: 5 - Published: 08-09-09 - id: 5285705
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
AN/: This is the revamped version of the story. The case, as you can see here, remains the same, however I constantly had the feeling that I had done a terrible mistake with the relationship between the characters.
I would be very pleased if I could get comments on this, good or bad. Also I apologize for this taking so long, I hope I will be able to rewrite the rest soon.
Those who have reviewed the first version: I have saved your reviews before taking the story down. They are not lost.
Changes in the prologue are only very little ones.
It was a small but prospering town in the summer of 1881. The newly opened hotel 'Spring Park' was quiet, because the ball wasn't starting until a few hours later. Most of the guests were either occupied with their business in the growing town, or enjoying the wonderful afternoon by taking a walk in the sun. As a result, the young woman, who had just arrived in the post-carriage, entered the hotel almost unnoticed.
Later, people would say that the girl was maybe eighteen or nineteen years old, and that she had long reddish auburn hair with green eyes that were unusually beautiful. But at that moment the only person who saw the pale girl in her dark green travelling dress was the hotelier, who was standing behind a counter in the entrance hall.
"Good afternoon and welcome to our hotel, Miss. How may I be of assistance?" the young man, who had just glanced up from the account books, asked with a smile and a friendly tone to his voice. He seemed to be a bit nervous and inexperienced but he tried to hide this since he knew his father, who owned the hotel, would check on him occasionally.
"Are there any free rooms? I would like to stay here for tonight," answered the young woman with a winning smile. She was watching the slightly erratic young man who was no older than herself, he would ask her why she was travelling alone, but she knew she would be able to deceive him. And indeed, as she had guessed, before he asked for her name to write it into the guest-list, the hotelier looked at her in a friendly, inquisitive way.
"May I ask why such a young lady is travelling alone? It is quite uncommon, if you allow me to say this." he then enquired, still in an amicable voice. The young woman answered swiftly and without hesitation.
"Of course you may. I am visiting my grandmother for the first time since my marriage and unfortunately my family could not leave their shop unattended. My name is Lorraine Barclay, by the way," she said, accompanied with her attractive and sweet smile. She fumbled with a golden ring on her finger
The young man nodded offering his congratulations with a small glance at the floral engravings on the ring and wrote her name on the guest-list, before he gave her a key and called for one of the hotel's servants.
"Here you are, Mrs Barclay. Jimmy will take your baggage upstairs to your room. Do you wish to have dinner here? It will be in the ballroom seeing as there's a dance tonight." The hotelier chattered with Lorraine until the servant arrived. She nodded with a pleasant smile and answered in a soft voice.
"I will attend the ball and have dinner there, thank you." After that, she turned to the boy who looked about fourteen years old and handed him her big suitcase, following the servant upstairs when he started to move.
For the remainder of the afternoon, the young woman stayed in her room, which was small but comfortable, until it was time for the ball to begin. At about seven o'clock Lorraine proceeded downstairs, now wearing a cream-coloured gown.
Lorraine then entered the ballroom, the light sparkling off on the green filigree flowers on her dress. As a small dinner was to be served before the dance, Lorraine had a glance on the seating plan, which she found near the entrance and headed to her table. The young woman was seated with an elderly couple and their youthful daughter, for she was the only woman that was not here with a guardian or a husband. Although she did not know the family she shared a table with, Lorraine was naturally friendly, so she began talking with the girl that was only a few years her junior.
After the light summer meal, the dining tables were removed by the servants, save for some smaller tables which remained for the guests who wanted to have a drink or a rest between dancing. Once the tables were removed, the ballroom seemed to be much larger, especially the area in the middle which had been completely cleared. In one of the corners, there was a balcony for the musicians who began to take their seats and tune their instruments. The walls were decorated with the flowers of the summer, but also with foulard that was draped over the windowsills.
During the rearrangement of the ballroom, Lorraine left for a moment to refresh herself in her room. She needed only a few minutes before she came back and as she returned, Lorraine was starting to catch the attention of the local young men who were entering the hotel with their families.
As Lorraine was a very beautiful young woman; many later said she had been the beauty of the evening. Many men offered to dance with her even before the dance had officially started and she had earned many admiring looks just from coming down the stairs. After the redecoration had finished, the ballroom became more crowded, for not only guests of the house were welcome to attend the ball, several carefully chosen regional families had been invited too.
When she got back to the ballroom, the first dance about was to begin. Before she could think about whether she wanted to participate or not, a young man approached and asked her to accompany him in the dance. Since the music was about to begin, the young woman nodded slightly and bowed her head, allowing the young man to lead her to the dance floor. After the melodies of the opening dance began to sound through the hall,to Lorraine it was as if the whole evening went by in a rush of dancing, chatting, and reacting to many compliments she received throughout the evening.
At the end of the evening, the young woman had danced with so many partners that she couldn't even recall all of their names. Just then, when she accepted one last drink before retiring for the evening, a young man, maybe twenty-five years of age, approached her and introduced himself as Adam Shepherd. He asked her then for the last dance, and as Lorraine found him genial and handsome, she agreed. Together they returned to the dance floor in time for the opening steps of the final dance.
Just like before, Lorraine was admired for her grace and beauty, with many people watching her and her handsome new partner.
However, as the music stopped, Adam and the other guests in the ballroom saw that all the grace and beauty had vanished from Lorraine, leaving behind in its wake a dead body of a young girl, looking as if she was only asleep...