Yet another AIW story from me. These ideas just won't stop coming! Anyway, this story is set thirteen years after Alice returns back to her own world, and what happened during those thirteen years will be explained in the first few paragraphs.
And before you start judging me and rolling your eyes at this story, I did some research into Victorian society, and having a child out of wedlock was the biggest scandal there could be. So the reaction they all have may be an over reaction now, but back then, almost everyone would react in that way. It was similar in Oliver Twist; they would normally get sent to the workhouse, and sometimes, mothers used to kill their own babies to hide what they've done. So the situation at the beginning was the most realistic that I could get it.
I hope you all like it!
Disclaimer: I only own Tabitha, and the rest belong to...other people who you should all know by now.
Alice had never meant for it to happen, but sometimes, things were just out of her control. That one night with him had led to something much bigger; something that had changed Alice's life forever. And by the time she realized it, Alice was too far away from the rabbit hole to go back down it.
She first realized that she was pregnant with his child when she threw up over the side of the China Trading Company ship for the tenth time in a row. Lord Ascot had asked her what the matter was, and Alice had lied to him, saying that she was just feeling seasick. This excuse only worked for so long, as her master's suspicions grew in unison with Alice's belly. And of course, she could keep the secret no longer when she went into labour.
"But who is the father?" Lord Ascot had demanded.
"I...I don't know," Alice had lied.
Tabitha was born five hours later, and the ship had to turn back to England. Alice sent a letter ahead, explaining the truth of what had happened (apart from who the father was), and received the welcome that she had expected. Her poor mother had died of shame, Lady Ascot demanded for her and the child to be sent to the workhouse, and only Margaret was waiting for her at the docks, although Alice could see that her sister was very awkward about the situation.
"I cannot understand why, Alice," was all she had said on the matter, a disappointed look clearly painted on her face.
The secret seeped out (no thanks to the Chattaway sisters), and soon, high society itself was looking down upon Alice and her daughter. Lord Ascot had to dismiss her from the company in the end, due to too much pressure being placed on him by his business partners, but he promised Alice that he would still extend to China as a form of forgiveness. She was thrown out of her home in London, and was even turned away by the Manchesters; she knew that this was Lowell's doing and not her sister's, for when Alice finally found a place to live outside of London, Margate sent her money to survive on, and paid her the occasional visit with her son, Robert.
Alice became an author. She published her story Alice's Adventures In Wonderland under the pen name Lewis Carroll, and the book's success kept her and her daughter living under a roof until Tabitha was thirteen. That was when everything changed.
"It certainly is a strange book," Margaret commented, when she and Robert came for a visit. "I remember reading it to Robert when he was six; he asked me why anyone would write such nonsense."
"It is supposed to make absolutely no sense," Alice explained.
She had not been able to see her sister for some time, and was happy that she and Robert had found the chance to visit. But they still wrote to one another, so it wasn't like there was no contact at all.
"I guess young children seem to like it, though," Margaret realized. "Otherwise you would not have the money to keep you and Tabitha alive."
"But we would not have stayed out of poverty if it wasn't for you, Meg," Alice told her sister with a smile.
Outside, the two thirteen-year-olds, Robert and Tabitha, were sitting on the grass in the sunshine. Robert looked like any normal boy would, but Tabitha was far from ordinary. Her hair was shinning blonde like her mother's, and her eyes were bright green which had been known to change colour, depending on her emotions.
"And then, the March Hare balanced a teapot on his head," Tabitha finished the story which she had made up. "Of course, I intend to do a sequel, where I make hats with the Mad Hatter."
For a girl her age, Tabitha had an over active imagination, and loved to make up stories which featured her mother's characters. It was what she spent most of her days doing, whenever her mother wasn't home schooling her. Robert gave her a snobbish look.
"I don't know why you spend your time making up these silly stories," he commented, getting to his feet. "My father says that day-dreaming is a waste of time."
"They ain't silly, and they ain't a waste of time!" Tabitha snapped, rising up in front of him.
"Just the sort of thing a bastard would say," he observed. "That's what my father says you are: a bastard."
But he immediately regretted saying it when he saw Tabitha's eyes turn red with anger. Some sort of anger instinct took over her, and she began to scream and shout at him in a language he had never heard of before.
"You guddler's scuttish pilgar lickering shukem juggling slunking ur-pals bar lom muck egg brimni!"
She pushed him over with all her might and leapt on top of him, and a fight broke out. Alice and Margaret heard from inside the house and hurried outside, and when they saw the two children fighting, they immediately ran to break it up.
"Hey! Stop it!" the two sisters cried, dragging their child from the other.
"She pushed me over!" Robert yelled.
"Well he called me a bastard!" Tabitha yelled.
"Robert, you do not call your cousin a bastard!" Margaret scolded her son.
"But Father said-"
"I do not care what your father says, you should not call her that!"
"And you shouldn't push your cousin, Tabby," Alice told her daughter.
"He had it coming," Tabitha replied flatly.
Alice rolled her eyes and turned to her sister.
"I'm sorry," she apologized.
"Don't be," Margaret assured her. "I shall have a word with both Robert and Lowell tonight. Hopefully it will not happen again."
They left soon after Margaret had gotten her son cleaned up a bit, and once they had, Alice immediately turned to Tabitha.
"Tabby, what were you thinking?" she began. "I thought I told you that you need to learn how to control your anger?"
"I'm sorry, I can't help it, all right!" Tabitha cried. "The anger seems to take over me, make me swear in another language before it explodes out. I would stop it if I could, but I can't!"
Alice sighed and turned away. Tabitha was too much like her father, and she knew it.
"And besides, it doesn't help that everyone I ever meet thinks low of me," Tabitha continued. "Why does my life have to be this way? Why are we here if we are frowned down upon by everyone?"
"Tabby, please," Alice told her daughter, unable to take any more of the questions she was throwing at her. "Believe me, if I had known that I was pregnant with you, I would have stayed with your father."
She left the room with a slam of the door, leaving Tabitha standing alone and confused. If she remembered anything about her father, is what that her mother had always told everyone that she didn't know who he was. Which made it all the more confusing.
"Believe me, if I had known that I was pregnant with you, I would have stayed with your father."
Did that mean that everything her mother had told her was all...a lie?
I know that it's slow now, but don't worry, things will speed up in the next chapter!