Friday, October 16, 2015

Rowan waited until Alise had settled the children in and returned downstairs to speak to her. By the time she approaches the family table Tori has arrived and Raina is taking a seat, a plate of food in her hands.

“Hello Rowan..” Alise says hesitantly. She had noticed her speaking with Stoney and Ob and had guessed that their conversation might have something to do with the sketchbook they had found.

“Are you going to yell at me too, about the things we found with the dress?”

Rainas head snapped up at the tone in Alises voice. A little defiant and close to tears, So childlike...whats the deal with that book I wonder?

Sighing, Rowen takes a seat and reaches for Alises hand. “Alise, I would never yell at you. Your husband and family are only concerned... It isnt like you to avoid things like this...”

“I know...but...” Alises eyes fill with tears and Raina pushes her plate away and moves her chair close enough to put an arm around her shoulders.

Stoney moves towards the family table and takes a seat directly across from his wife. He reaches across the table and his wifes small hands are engulfed in his large ones. Alise can feel his thoughts, tender and caring, trying not to push, but also wondering at her refusal to look at the sketchbook.

Alise looks down, “I am sorry... its just that... its... I remember some it but I think a very little bit. The book is one of Stoney sketchbooks. He dropped it in the cemetery that night...”

Raina looks from Alise to Stoney, her eyes dark as emeralds and serious. She knew anything Alise remembered about this was going to be bad, there was no sugar coating any of it.

Taking a deep breath Alise looks around at her family. “I hid that book from my father and took it with me on the ship.. I hid it from everyone... It was the only thing I had of Stoneys...” Tears fill Alises eyes, “I would run my hands over the cover... and the pages.... Tomas, the altar boy that would help us meet... He found it in the cemetery and somehow bribed my fathers servants to have it brought to me. The priests or my father would have killed him had he been caught. And I dont know if he ...” Alises voice breaks and Stoney is on his feet and around the table. Tears flow down Alises cheeks, “Dont tell me if he was hurt because of me...”

Rowan moves over so Stoney can take a seat next to Alise.

“Bebe, he wasnt hurt, no one caught him. No one found out about my sketches...”

Alise leans into her husband as his arms go around her. “It's fine, shhh...”

“What if I dont remember the pictures? What if it means nothing to me?”

Raina gently but firmly takes Alise by the shoulders and makes her turn to face her. “I think it will be like everything else. Some things you remember and well, some you just dont. We cant change that.” Raina pushes the long golden hair away from Alises face. “And I am sure Stoney would be more than happy to tell you all about his drawings, especially if they are of you...”

“I am sorry...” Alise wipes at her eyes. “I am sure everyone is sick of my silly memory...or the lack of one....I dont mean to be such a baby...”

“You are not being a baby, far from it.. not many people could go through what you have.. Besides Chaton... I am sure there are good memories in the past. If you ever looked in the book," his eyes widen for a moment.

"Mon duei. Moi lost book." He kisses the top of Alise' silky hair. "perhaps iot is best if we look at that... alone."

The Gargoyle pales even more than his normal skin tone, then flushes crimson. He shakes his hair forward, an old habit of hiding his embarrassment.

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