It was the last day of their honeymoon. Their bags were packed, ready to be loaded on board. Oh, what a honeymoon it had been. Four months that felt simultaneously like no time and forever. They had dined and danced and loved their way halfway around the world, and everything had been First Class.
Jean had learned so much! Not just about the world, but also about her Lucien. Never had she seen him so rested, so excited, so happy. Never had he been so open to joy. It was almost as if he was, in many ways, free to experience the child-like joy he had been denied for so long. And she had learned to read him like a book.
After all the opulence they had experienced, Jean suggested they spend a simple day together, so they asked the concierge to have the hotel pack them a picnic and recommend a nice park nearby.
"Oh, Lucien!" It's lovely," Jean said as she took in the dappled sunlight, flowering bushes and butterflies.
After some spirited consideration, they found the perfect tree where they spread out their blanket and stretched out in the shade. They nibbled the delicious food - and at every opportunity a "delicious" ear. And neck. And mouth…
The sun low in the sky told them it was time to head back. Jean laughed as Lucien stiffly stood up.
"Why don't you walk out the kinks while I pack up?"
"Oh no! I won't have it."
"Lucien, go! I'll catch up with you in just a moment."
True to her word, Jean found Lucien just a short time later. He wasn't walking, though. He was standing by the shore of the lake at the park. The view took Jean by surprise. It seemed so familiar - the trees, the shrubs, the swans.
She went to stand beside him. He put his arm around her and drew her close, but his gaze never left the lake. Against his side she sensed an emotion she had never quite felt from him, before. A sense of being centered. A sense that he knew where he belonged. Jean turned to look at his face, and she saw it in his eyes.
"She's calling you, isn't she? Wendouree. She's calling you home."
She linked her arm through his and they began their journey back.