The Beginning Of His Life
Based on the Juliet Binoche film.
Hareton couldn't sleep. He turned and threw his covers off. He was alternately hot and then cold, and he was dead tired. So why could he not sleep? He shook his head in frustration. He knew why he could not sleep. It was her. His cousin. Catherine Linton. She was the most beautiful thing he'd ever seen in his life and also the most annoying.
As he saw the turn his thoughts were taking he got up, giving up all pretense of sleep and made his way downstairs. The door to the room was slightly open and he could hear voices, he stopped, listening, amazed. How was it possible that Heathcliff was speaking his very heart? How could he know how he felt about Cathy?
Dearest Cathy, he heard. She the dearest thing in the world to me although he knew she would never even look at him. But why would she look at him? He was coarse and dirty and couldn't even read his own name.
Why have you not come back to me?
Every day I wait for you
My one waking thought has been of you
My life didn't begin until I saw your face
All those words were true. They were his very words, his real feelings. Words that he could never tell her, certainly because he couldn't speak like that, words that he knew he had no right to say to her. He could see how it was, everyone knew that she wasn't for him, even now Linton was penning those words, Hareton's own feelings to her. His heart broke when he heard Heathcliff say, 'now sign it, Linton.'
She was too good for him. He knew that he should just let it go and forget about her. He'd heard the talk and knew that she was to marry Linton whether she wanted to or not.
But since when had his heart even listened to what it should. Since when could he control his feelings, especially feelings like these that he thought he'd never have?
"I don't know how you can bear to leave her."
Hareton looked at Heathcliff. He still couldn't understand how Heathcliff could know his heart so well. He was a cold man, a hard man and he wasn't a good man but somehow when he spoke about Cathy he managed to convey everything that Hareton felt but could not say.
Hareton made his way back to Cathy. Truly, he wondered to himself how he had been able to survive all those years without her. She was like the very air he needed to survive. Even when she had been harsh and laughed at him, he had needed her but now, now when she took his hand in his, when she laughed with him and kissed him, he knew that without her there could be no life at all.
Hareton reached out and kissed Cathy's forehead and she leaned in and put her arms around him. He was alive and his life had really began.