A/N: Hello there! Firstly, thank you for taking the time to read my extremely rushed drabble! This isn't exactly thought out like the usual stuff I write, it just kind of popped into my mind and within a couple of minutes I had written this! This is the first thing I've posted on here in the long time since I deleted everything I had written. Once again, sorry if it isn't of good quality, it's just a bit of fluff because I adore William!
Title: Casual Encounter
Synopsis: William has a chance encounter with an angelic farmer's daughter.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything to do with Downton Abbey, if I did I'd be a very happy girl right now! I only claim my own character and this little plot. (If you can even call it that!)
'She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.'
- 'She Walks in Beauty' by George Gordon (Lord) Byron.
It's early in the morning when he first sets eyes on her. She's been waiting at the door for a while, no-one else was up to have heard her knocking. Daisy usually tends to these matters, but Daisy isn't there and he knows he's up quite early. William looks at the door for a moment, he doesn't exactly know what to do, he doesn't possibly know who it could be; but he gets up anyway, pushing his chair back under the wooden table like he always does.
He places his hand on the handle and stares out through the frosted glass. It's too dark to make anything out. He opens it though, preparing words in his head; "Hello there, how may I help?" "Hello, I'm William. How can I be of service?"
It's a girl, well, a young woman. She smiles as he opens the door, her blood-shot, tired, blue eyes meet his. ".. Hello.." He suddenly feels quite warm and stuffy, butterflies start to overwhelm his stomach. It's the feeling he usually associates with being around Daisy.
He starts worrying. He doesn't know what to say. Hello? The light from the room has made her visible, he notices that she's wearing a long brown jacket and brown trousers tucked into navy or black wellingtons. This just confuses him further. "Hello." He finally says after a brief moment of awkward silence. He's certain that she thinks he's odd or rude, or probably both. William mentally kicks himself for being stupid and careless, once again.
He looks down at his clean, shiny and spotless work shoes, he scrubs them every evening without fail. He proudly smiles whenever Carson praises him. He can't bear to look at her, she will probably laugh in his face. He can't deal with that sort of humiliation. "Is Daisy in?" This surprises him. Her tone isn't mean like he expected and she doesn't mock him. In fact her voice is light and child-like. He looks up at her once again.
"She is not here at the moment. May I be of service?" His reply is so quick and so reharsed she's probably bound to think he's rude or simple. He notices that she's blushing; he's glad that her auburn hair isn't there to cover her tinted pink face. She's one of the prettiest girls he's ever seen.
She lifts up a basket that he didn't notice was beside her. It suddenly clicks in William's head. "Here are the eggs yer' ordered." She's a farmer's daughter. Of course she is, it all makes sense. The trousers, the wellingtons, the basket of eggs...
He reaches out for the basket, he doesn't actually bother to go and check to see if an order of eggs is due first, he trusts her already. Their hands brush as he takes the basket, he notices she's blushing more now and he assumes he probably is too.
".. Th-Thanks." He's such a fool.
She smiles at him, his heart starts to beat faster, and faster. He must be dreaming, it's too early in the morning for a beautiful girl to be smiling at him. A girl has never smiled at him in the same way, well only out of sympathy. "It's no bother." She says. He places the basket on the floor beside the door. He knows that it's probably the end of the conversation, the end of their casual encounter. But to his surprise she adds, "I'll be here with some more eggs tomorrow morning." There's something other then kindness in her tone, but what is it? Is it an invitation? He's sure his heart will beat out of his chest any moment. Does she want him to be there tomorrow morning? He hopes with all his heart it is an invitation.
He doesn't know why but he suddenly asks, "Will you be here at the same time, tomorrow that is?"
She laughs and looks down at the floor and then back up at him. Her auburn hair is tied back but if it was down she'd be playing with it. "Yes." It's a simple word, but it means so much to William. She looks like and angel and sounds like angel. He wants nothing more then to tell her that he used to work on a farm too, that they have so much in common if she just gives him a chance. He wants to get to know her. But would she ever want to get to know him? A second-footman? His stomach drops.
She turns her head and looks out into the darkness. "I best be off then." She turns to look at him. "It's been nice seein' yer, and tell Daisy I've been." She's being truthful.
She smiles and him one last time and walks away. Something inside him snaps and he calls out after her, with one leg out into the darkness. It's now or never. "It's been nice seeing you too!"
He can't see her but he thinks he can hear her walking, but to his surprise she isn't walking away but back towards him. She had taken her hair out of it's bun and he notices how perfectly it curls around her sweet, angelic face. She holds out her hand and says, "I'm Allie."
He doesn't even have to think about it, he reaches out and takes her hand. It's cold and delicate, his hand envelopes hers. "I'm William." He says smiling, and she smiles back at him too.