A/N: Sorry, but it's not Vicky Angel. I read "Sapphire Battersea" only weeks ago, and the one scene that stuck in my head was the one when Jem was calling after Hetty/Sapphire and she didn't recognize him. I decided to make a little change to the story so that Hetty was able to speak to him again, and they re-established their bond as childhood sweethearts. After all, from Jem's letters later in the book, he seemed to think of her as his one and only...
Review, please. And by the way, this is from Jem's POV.
I got to the gates of the Foundling Hospital in good time. It was the 14th of May, and my one-time sister and childhood sweetheart, Hetty Feather, was due to go into service today. I longed to see her again. Although I had not seen her since she was a little girl of five, I still cared as deeply about her as I did back then.
I wondered what she'd be like. Was her hair still as bright red as it had been when she was little? Was she still very small? She would be fourteen now. I couldn't imagine her.
At that moment, a girl in a plain grey dress with plaited hair walked past me with a large woman. She didn't even look at me, but I stared at her. She must have been fourteen, as she was dressed like a lady, but she was very small. I wouldn't have recognized her if not for her hair. My heart began to beat faster.
"Come along, Hetty Feather!" the woman was staying. "The hansom cab man will be charging us a fortune as it is!"
The red hair of the girl was unmistakable. Even if I hadn't heard her name, I would've known. It was Hetty, my Hetty.
I called out to her, and the fourteen-year-old Hetty glanced back. Her face was confused.
"Hetty!" I cried. "It's me! It's Jem!"
Hetty stared for a moment, then she ran forward. She was still as fast as she was back when she was little. She stopped a foot away from me.
"Jem?" she whispered. "Is it really you?"
"Of course it is." I answered. "I've missed you so."
Hetty looked at me again for a moment, then flung her arms around me. "I've missed you too. You look so...different, but I suppose it has been years. I thought..."
"What?" I asked. She pulled away, straightening her dress.
"Eliza said..." she muttered. I remembered Eliza, our last little sister. Mother did not foster any other children after Eliza, as it hurt too much to give them back, and she wasn't up to it anyway, having the rheumatics. I had missed Hetty so much when she had to go back to the Hospital that I filled the time by substituting Eliza as the little sister. I knew it was a silly thing to do, but I honestly couldn't stop. She was a very sweet child, and I loved her dearly, but she wasn't Hetty. I still played some of the same games I'd played with Hetty. But still, I never thought seriously of her as a potential sweetheart.
"It was just a game with Eliza." I said desperately. "I didn't mean for her to take it so seriously. Please, Hetty, it's you I care about."
Hetty looked straight into my eyes. I'd forgotten how piercing her gaze could be and the deep blue her eyes were. Then she wrapped her arms around my neck. I kissed her cheek quickly.
The woman was calling after her. She sighed dramatically. "I must go." she said. "I cannot give up this position, since it has been so hard to get it."
"Will you write to me?" I asked.
"Of course I will! If you write to me." Hetty answered.
I smiled at her, although I knew how miserable and lonely I would be without her. "Good luck. I will see you again, I promise. We will be together someday, I swear. In three years, I will be able to work on my own, and then..." I trailed off.
"And then we could possibly marry?" Hetty prompted.
"Yes, of course!" I said. "I love you, Hetty Feather."
"I love you too, Jem." she answered. And then she ran back to the hansom cab, her red plaits flying.
I watched her leave, my heart breaking. However, I knew it would heal when I saw her again.
Hetty, my true sweetheart and my only love...
So review, please! It won't take long.