Author's note:

"Nothing in the Universe happens just once. Infinity goes in both directions. There is no unique event, no singular moment."
Temperance Brennan,
The skull in the desert, season one.

I was watching this episode sometime ago and that sentence stuck with me. It was just so rational an explanation for something that has been in my mind for so long. I'm not entirely sure if I believe in reincarnation. But I've always been curious, especially about déjà vu. I don't like The Matrix approach. But the more I think about this issue, the more it seems to me that it would be a great waste of soul if we only had one shot at life. That we cannot possibly learn everything we need in one life time and that, sometimes, we deserve a second chance (or as many as are needed) Or that, sometimes, an emotion, a love is so great that one life time is not enough and it transcends what we perceive as the laws of chronology. Maybe this can explain the connections we feel with certain people.

This fiction is going to be somewhat long, but the good news is that the story is nearly ready.

For ease, I've kept the names and some physical characteristics. It is just a little fictional freedom.

Please do leave your comments. They are very, very important and very much appreciated.

Jane

England – 1588

"Love knows not of rank or river bank!"

William Shakespeare

Chapter 1- The threshold of unhappiness

Lord Seeley Booth rode his horse back into the stables. With a click of his tongue, the animal moved forward. Jupiter was a good horse- gifted with intelligence that Lord Booth liked to think of as almost human. And it moved with his rider as if they were one body. Jupiter trotted into the stables with its head lowered in an expression that mirrored that of Lord Booth's. It was never a happy moment to walk back into the manor. And, sure enough, as soon as he passed the threshold, Lord Booth received wife's summons from his major-domo his. He walked into the drawing room still in his ridding attire. Lady Rebecca's eyes had a way of expressing her displeasure in such an unmistakeable way that she hardly ever needed words. And yet, she did not shy away from a few well chose ones.

"Our guests have left us this morning. I had expected you to be here. There are still duties you should perform- despite your age, dear husband" and she seemed, despite the quiet tone, to be spitting venom. "I was forced to make your excuses and, with God as my witness, I do not intend to compromise my soul just to safeguard your reputation."

Lord Booth sighed. There was little use in arguing any point. After 30 years of an arranged, suitable marriage, he had come to understand his wife's moods and responses. She would interpret his silence as she pleased and then just proceed with a few more well aimed blows.

Theirs was not a marriage of love or even affection. All in all, he found it more productive to just ride out the storm- and then carry on in his usual way- at least in what was important to him. He'd learned to compromise in the rest.

When he finally managed to escape her domains, he walked, head lowered in exhaustion, towards his own rooms. He could feel the weight of his 55 years more heavily after each battle with Rebecca. He felt more than old- he felt ancient- and longing for a rest from life.

The corridors of the manor were dark from the patina of time and the oak panelling and they impressed on him the weight he had inherited along with those walls- the duty towards his land, his tenants, his Queen, his title- an overbearing responsibility he had never wanted and that would die with him has he had sired no heirs. Rebecca, he knew, blamed him for the fact and could not- would not- forgive him for that shortcoming.

He had longed for a child- not an heir. A child to share warmth and love with. Someone to show the sky at night and the animals in the woods during the day. A boy or a girl to squander affection on, to read to in the evening. A child to fill that silent house with light and laughter.

It was a sound so crystalline, so pure, he stopped to enjoy the hallucination, eyes closed his stance weary. He felt a flurry of movement and opened his eyes. In front of him stood two girls in the maids black uniforms, wearing a shocked and horrified look in their faces. They looked at each other and then back at him fumbling for an apology that would not materialize.

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