Disclaimer: Any recognizable conversations, characters, and situations do not belong to me.
Margaret, to Henry's extreme displeasure, decided to fund Marlborough Mills with some of her money. She said that it was just a business proposition and that, in time, the money that Thornton used to run the mill would earn her a substantial amount of interest. Henry knew differently - he was no fool… They left by train to the despicable place known as Milton.
Henry was relieved when it was discovered that Mr. Thornton was not there - he hated to think that Margret could have a place in her heart for a man in trade. They left the area after Margaret had, what Henry believed to be, a disagreeable talk with Mrs. Thornton. Margaret did not speak for most of the train ride back. Whether she was morosely pondering her conversation with Mrs. Thornton or she was displeased with his company, Henry didn't know. What he did know was that the cramped seat on the train was made all the more uncomfortable by her indifferent silence.
It was not long before they stopped, having to wait for, as Henry explained, a northbound train to pass. Down to the delay they were facing every one of his problems seemed to stem from the north… Margaret wordlessly stepped outside, apathetic to his news. Henry paid her no heed as he was thinking of a way to rouse the subject of matrimony without upsetting Margaret. He shut his newspaper and glanced out the window. What he saw outside both shocked and interested him. Mr. Thornton - who had been oddly absent from Milton- was speaking with Margaret!
Henry sat up. He watched as Thornton led her to a bench. The northern mill owner had a mischievous smile playing on his lips and his eyes sparkled. Henry watched as his hand traveled off the bench and softly gripped Margaret's own hand. She faltered and did not speak for a moment - Henry thanked the lord, she didn't want him. Then she took his hand in both of hers, bringing it to her lips and kissing it. Thornton slowly turned her face to his and kissed her softly on the mouth. He looked away as she kissed him back.
Henry's heart stopped for a moment and his stomach lurched violently. His blood ran cold. Gripping his newspaper roughly, he squeezed his eyes shut. He looked out and saw Margaret stand up quickly while Thornton looked at her, confused. Henry grabbed her bag - being an astute, intelligent man he knew, oh, he knew, that she was not running back to him but away.
When she approached him, he could tell she was slightly dazed, her cheek had a crimson undertone and her eyes were not clear.
"Henry, I-" she started, as if to apologize to him. He cut her off by handing her the bag.
"Goodbye, Margaret." He turned away and shut the door on her. He refused to look at her as she stood there as if she felt there was something else that she was obligated to say. It was only a moment, however, before Margret walked back to a very baffled Thornton. Henry stole a glance at her and immediately regretted it. She was stepping into Thornton's car. He watched in silent tragedy as the car door shut and the train pulled away - snatching her from his view.
Henry was not happy. His hard work, care, and kindness amounted to this. The rest of the train ride Henry spent in deep thought. He decided, angrily, that she was not worth the trouble spent and sent his regrets to Thornton for the troublesome woman now thrust upon his hands.
A/N: Hey Peoples! So this is pretty short, and I am sorry about that. My next chapter may be slightly longer, but I make no promises. Remember, friends, review! Tell me what you think! I mean, you can even just tell me about your day! You may know about Richard Armitage's other work if you know N&S. I just finished Robin Hood. :'( Oh well. Again, review!