So this is a very short one shot which looks at what Robbie may have been thinking after he realises he gave Briony the wrong letter.

It's inspired by the movie rather than the book; messing with such an amazing book would seem rude! :-)


The word is long, drawn out by an agony of sudden comprehension. The oppressive heat of the day has barely lessened as evening draws in, and now to me it seems inescapable, unbearable. A trickle of sweat coils its way down my back, and a small, detached part of my brain sends a mental apology to my mother. I know how hard she has worked today so that I can look my best this evening.

For her.

For Cee

"Christ!" The word is expelled from my mouth almost involuntarily and I find myself turning in agitated circles on the spot. My heart is pounding in my ears and my legs seem to lose the ability to hold me up. I fight the impulse to be sick on my carefully polished dress shoes (my only pair so please God don't let me vomit ) and shakily make my way to the wall, where I lean against the cool stones gratefully.

"Oh Christ!"

I run my hand distractedly through my hair (so much for looking my best). How could I have sent her the wrong letter?

Sitting at that desk, still slightly damp from my bath, I had struggled to find the right words; how could I, Robbie, the housekeeper's son whom she had steadfastly chosen to ignore at Cambridge, tell a woman such as Cecilia that I was in love with her? She must know surely that I hadn't meant to laugh when the handle of the vase had broken off in her hand? That watching her emerge from that ridiculous fountain, dripping wet and indignant, was the most sensual experience of my life?

It was the recollection of this moment which led to me typing those fanciful, profane words. Even now, panic stricken and slightly nauseous, I feel myself harden as I think of her; so beautiful, so determined, so bloody-minded.

And so blind.

She'll know pretty soon though. I check my watch anxiously and look up to the house, shielding my eyes against the sun. Briony must have found her by now. I imagine her reading those words, those filthy words, and even though I'm still shaking and it's still touch and go for my shoes, I find that there's a part of me that wanted to send the wrong letter.

Slowly, I break into a smile.

I'm not sure how well this works as a first person fic. I missed not being able to describe him (particularly as played by James McAvoy!)