Chapter title credit to Sakura Kinomoto. The same title is used for Tomoyo's novel.
Earl played the keys and hummed along with the soulful music.
But his movement was plain mechanical. His mind was on something else.
It seemed just like a minute ago. The smiles, the voice, the touch. He missed those dearly.
His eyes lit up. "Tamara?"
She wasn't there.
His heart wrenched.
"Damn it!!" He banged his fist on the keys angrily.
The noise resounded all over the huge, lonely mansion grieving for the loss of its mistress.
"His behavior is starting to concern me deeply," remarked Rosemary as she petted Spirit, her feline.
"Confidentially, Mistress, I know the young master is disturbing, but from what I've just seen, he's starting to get freaky as well." Nadine smoothed her hair. "Only Mistress Tamara managed to pummel her way into his thick skull and pull his sanity back together."
The girl laughed, but then turned serious. "When will she come back?"
The maid sighed. "I don't think she would ever do. It's really hard to tolerate your brother's obnoxious attitude."
"I want her back." Rosemary looked out of the window wistfully. It would be wonderful to see her again. Tamara was like a small lamp that filled the big icy mansion with her light and warmth of kindness. "We need her."
"Yes, we do. Especially the young master, only he's too proud to admit that."
"I know." Rosemary looked upstairs. "Maybe you should try to talk some sense into my brother, Nadine."
"He wouldn't listen to me," whined the maid, but then her eyes lit up. "I know!" She quickly whispered furiouslyinstructions to Rosemary's ears as the girl nodded obediently.
They paused when they both heard the doorbell ring.
Nadine smiled. "I'll get the door. You go up to Master Earl and deliver your script."
The lass saluted. "Aye, aye, Captain!"
Earl chugged down straight from the bottle of wine and then wiped the corners of his mouth with the sleeve of his crumpled shirt. The hot liquid streamed down his throat, but it wasn't enough to make him forget about the only woman he truly loved..silently.
The door opened. "Hey!" Rosemary came into his room, looking at him with half-disdain and half-sympathy. "Are you holding it together, or shall I call the aviation officer of London to cancel all flights bound for Japan to be cancelled under the imperial orders of Your Majesty?"
He rolled his eyes. "Hah! You speak just like Tamara before. She was a bad choice for your babysitter."
She drew towards him. "You love her, don't you?"
"Give me a break. I am a man of taste. I go for women who have a touch of class, an air of elegance and an aura of sophistication. She is none of those."
"And that should be considered a compliment."
"That she is none of those. Because in fact, she's far greater than those things you mentioned." Her eyes softened. "And she loved you."
A flicker of pain crossed his eyes. "Past tense," he muttered. He turned back to his almost-empty wine bottle. "She's gone anyway. Never to come back."
"And you won't do anything about it?"
"Even if it's your lifetime happiness that is at stake here?" pressed his sister.
Something twinkled at the corner of his eye. A teardrop.
Rosemary gasped. It was the first time that she saw her big brother- the person she looks up to for his calmness and collected unemotional ways- in his moment of weakness.
He was crying.
"I don't care if I'm not happy. Even if I do try to keep her, I realized that she loves Christian more. He is her happiness. I would rather see her happy than miserable with me," he craoked.
"Are you going to make her miserable?"
"She could have fallen out of love with me because of my mistakes." He wiped his tears quietly. "Please stop asking me these questions. Can't you see that I'm trying to be strong?"
Her eyes shook.
"I'm trying to pretend that this doesn't affect me. I..I might just believe my lies.." His voice broke.
"You're a terrible liar," she said softly.
"Don't cry, Big Brother," she pleaded. "I hate to see you like this, suffering."
He smiled weakly. "I deserve this. I deserve this..for making Tamara suffer so much before."
"Big brother.." Rosemary burst into tears.
"I love her very much..Lord knows how much..only I realized it too late." He hugged his sister tightly. "I lost my life..because when she left, she took my heart along with her," he confessed.
"Me too," said a voice.
Both Earl and Rosemary perked up.
Tamara was standing in the doorway, eyes misty. Nadine was standing behind her, smiling joyfully.
"I was about to leave London, but realized I left my heart with you. If ever I leave, I will die," she whispered.
Rosemary happily wiped her tears away. "Tamara!!"
Nadine pulled the girl away gently. "We'll talk to her later, Rosemary. Your brother and Mistress still have a lot to talk about."
The two were left alone.
"You came back," he whispered happily.
"I came back because I love you."
"I'm glad you still do.."
"..and will always do." Tamara rushed to his arms.
"He has his own life..own family..own love. Just like me," she replied.
"Y-You have no idea how much you made me happy.." he whispered gruffly to his ears.
"Likewise.." She rubbed her tummy. "Me and our baby."
"Oh my god.." His face was a mixture of surprise and joy. "I-I'm going to be.. a father!!!!" He twirled her around. "Heavens, I have never felt this blessed in my life!" He bent close to her face. "Tamara, complete my happiness. Marry me again..in a church wedding. Allow me to say my eternal vow to love you in front of the altar."
She laughed tearfully, wiping her beloved's own tears too. "Yes, with all the love within me, I say."
er, mushy, isn't it? Hey, it's a romance novel anyway.^^
Thanks for reading Zephyr Romances!