Disclaimer: I do not own this in any shape or form ... well the words I 'own' but the characters, settings are someone else's sand box.

Author's Note: I wrote this sometime last year.

This is written from Bertha's perspective. Why? Because no one know what is truly like to be mad. To be honest I don't believe a mad person actually thinks they are mad – they will justify what they do, what they say, and believe they are right. In this piece I want to write from a mad woman's perspective but at the same time make you believe one hundred percent in what she sees and claims. After all Bertha is a real character who just like Jane Eyre or Edward Rochester has her own mind no matter how 'twisted' it looks to everyone on the outside of it and has a right to have her story told.

This particular piece is written just before and in the start of when Edward Rochester takes Jane Eyre to meet his 'wife' in Chapter XXVI, page 338.

The Mad Woman

Or:

How Bertha (nee Mason) Rochester sees the world.

Once there was sun.

Everywhere.

There was so much light and warmth. Happiness was abundant, it was everywhere: in the air, in the ground, in the sky, in the clouds swirling above and in them, all of them. Once there was all that and more – so much more. But that flickered away like the embers of a dying fire.

That flickered away when he came: tall, proud and charming. The Devil was he but how to that back then? When his spells clouded my vision? I knew not that he was my jailor, my Satan, my fallen angel – for he was an angel but a devil at the same time; for he was my jailor and lover. I thought of him as my light-bringer back then.

He laughed, he talked, he held me, loved me. Angel he was: generous, honest light and happy. His eyes were on me, just me. He likened me to the goddesses of old, he charmed me. He made me happy, so happy. He even charmed my family, tricking them as the Devil does, into allowing him to take me to Hell, away from them.

Across to the cold sea we went, leaving the warmth, leaving happiness. Everything darkened, everything cooled and everything was gone. Swept away, locked away as I was soon to be. His charms and glamours failed, revealing his nature. He tried to poison me, trick me, kill me – but I beat him every time.

Well, almost from then he shut me in darkness, shut me away and that is when they started to come, when they started to watch from everywhere.

Everywhere.

They are everywhere, around me, they won't go, won't leave; everywhere, everywhere, everywhere. Never leaving me, letting me be free; just there flickering embers of forgotten shadows trying to get me – oh yes they try, try and reach me they do, those shadows that don't leave that remain forever there, haunting me.

Everywhere.

They appear in my dreams, twisted, mad – reaching for me with cold fingers – flickering in and out of the corner of my eye. I think they're gone, think they have left but they return, always return. I just want out, out of this darkness, out of this eternal night he locked me in. Out of this nightmare he placed me in. What have I done to deserve this? What was my sin that caused this?

I said my graces, prayed to the Lord above, went to church – I was faithful, I was good; how could my Lord, my Father forsake me to this? How could he leave me to this madness of black and red wisps of flames that dance before me?

Everywhere.

I sit on the ground, lean against the wall and cry – please save me Lord! Please send your angels, send Michael to slay the Devil, to slay my love – maybe that is my fault? That I love the Devil? Is that my sin that holds me here evermore? Oh curse him! Curse him!

The door opens with a bang. I turn my gaze to see him. The nursemaid, my saving grace, my angel of sorts (though she is a demon, no doubt, as she consorts with him) in this Hell telling him to leave and I cheer her on in silence, hoping that he listens. I stand, staring at him in the eye, howl at him to leave me, leave me to the shadows for they are kinder than he.

Devil, jailor!

As I look at him I see her. She is clothed in white, she looks pure, innocent – wait white? She is to be wed but I had ripped the veil – I ripped it. She can't be marrying him – not him! No, NO, NO! I will not let him ensnare another; I won't let him destroy that one. For I heard them, heard my nursemaid gossip like I knew not what she said. But I knew and had tried to stop it. Yet, once again he had foils my plans!

Protect.

I race forward – my choice is clear – to protect her from him no matter where it leads me for surely it can be no worse than here.

Fin

Author's Note: Hope you enjoyed that. Penny for your thoughts ...?