Author: rhapsodybree PM
A one shot for Colonel and Marianne Brandon set in the not too far future after S&S ends.Rated: Fiction K - English - Romance/Family - Words: 736 - Reviews: 10 - Favs: 25 - Published: 03-24-10 - Status: Complete - id: 5839553
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I own nothing, except my own creations.
The moon was high up in the sky when, in the nursery two floors above the ballroom at the Jennings residence, Nancy Barnes was at her wits' end.
Ophelia Brandon would not sleep.
Even the, dare she say it, loathsome grandchild of Mrs Jennings – that one Thomas Palmer Junior – after his regular tantrum, but of course, was now asleep.
(Young Tommy was the only grandchild present as Lady Middleton had left her precocious four behind with a nanny of their own. Nancy had not been impressed when apprised of this situation.)
She spared a sorrowful look to the two towheaded children on the far side of the room. The twin boys of Mrs Ferrars were so calm in comparison, Ned and Dash sleeping soundly in their bed.
Not so for their crying cousin who looked to be finding a second wind. In all her years looking after children, Nancy was certain that she had never met such a stubborn child.
It went against her pride to do so, but when considering one's desire to have a peaceful evening, and the fear that the cries of this child before her might awaken her other charges, she sent a servant to do her bidding.
Perhaps Mrs Brandon could soothe the child.
It was with much surprise the nurse recognised the new arrival in the nursery shortly after. It was not the pretty mistress that came, but instead the beauty's husband.
If she was honest with herself, she knew that she was beyond the point of caring who walked through that door, as the minute the man did so, the little girl thankfully ceased her noise. But it was just a mere second before her tears started up once again when she sighted her father.
Nancy inwardly lamented the useless influence of yet another father.
Colonel Brandon appeared to have other plans in mind though as he marched across the floor with strides that spoke of intent.
The crying child was picked up without ceremony and clasped in her father's arms. Her distraught 'Papa' as she fought to be free had no effect on the colonel as he tucked her against his body, holding her firmly.
Cradled like a babe, Brandon patted her padded bottom as he bounced lightly on his feet. Lia's screams became cries, then whimpers before finally they stopped. Her eyelashes came together as at last she slept.
Colonel Brandon held his daughter in his arms for a moment longer, just to make sure she was sound asleep before he shifted.
Nancy made to take the baby, it was her duty after all, but Brandon shook his head, moving his eldest child to rest against his shoulder. He crossed the room and with a free hand, pulled back the sheets on his daughter's allocated bed.
Placing them just right, he eased her onto the bed.
Ophelia made one last grab for her father as her head reached the pillow. He clasped her hand, leaned down and pressed it to his lips. Placing the fist under the sheets, he brushed her smooth hair, brushing a kiss against her forehead. 'Sleep tight sweetheart.'
Brandon bowed his head to Nancy Barnes, who was unable to find words with which to address the solider, and left the room.
He entered the parlour room where the men had now joined the women. It was an intimate gathering, such a welcome change to the fanfare of the evening before.
He smiled softly as his beloved wife turned her face to his. His Marianne, belly swelling with child once again, her face aglow, reached out her hand to him over the back of the couch.
He clasped it, squeezing gently. 'She is fine love.'
He took a seat next to her then, crossing one leg over the other, one arm propped up on an arm of their shared loveseat as he drew Ferrars into a conversation.
When he felt her hand brush his thigh some not long after, he spared a glance to his wife.
She sat, her face animated in talk with her sisters: Elinor as graceful as ever and the youngest Dashwood still maintaining a pleasant exuberance that was tempered by social norms when expected.
He conspicuously brushed his fingers over hers, sending up a silent prayer of thanks for the day the Dashwoods had entered his life.