Chapter Five - This Feeling-
It’s Fall. There’s a crispness to the air, as Winter’s impending breath draws nearer. The first annual Fall ball of the season has arrived. Charella's stepmother and stepsisters have already made their way to the castle.
Charella finds herself readying to meet with Augusto. She pulls at her tattered dress and smooths her hair. Normally she isn't so concerned with her appearance, but for some reason tonight feels different. She’s determined to see him at least for a couple minutes, yet she hopes for longer.
She makes her way to the woods, overturning leaves as she walks.
“Augusto?” she calls as she nears the log. But there is no answer. She continues walking, still hopeful he is there.
“Augusto?” she calls again. Still no answer. She sighs loudly, but continues walking until she reaches the log.
There in the leaves, sitting in silence is Augusto.
“Augusto? Why didn’t you answer me?” Charella asks just a slight bit annoyed.
He still doesn't answer.
She walks over to him and stands in front of him, then she sees his tears.
Charella’s breath is caught in her throat.
“August?” she asks concerned. “What’s the matter?” she asks pulling him up from the ground and into a hug.
Augusto wraps his arms around her as well, and then kisses her cheek. Charella pulls away caught by surprise.
“I'm sorry Charella, I didn't mean to startle you, I’m sorry I didn't answer when you called, I've been beside myself, when my Father died, there was a debt that was to be paid on his behalf and since he can no longer pay it, my mother looked into another way…” he trails.
“Okay, so what was the other way..” Charella encourages him further.
Augusto wipes away another tear. “She has arranged a marriage for me.” he blurts out. Charella stares in stunned silence.
“She has arranged for me to marry a rich girl who will solve all our problems.. ” he continues finally, as another tear escapes.
“And so, what’s the matter with that?” Charella asks her heart fluttering in her chest.
“Charella! Everything! Everything is wrong with that!” Augusto exclaims angerly, causing Charella to jump back.
These past few months, something has been growing inside Charella. Whenever she thinks about Augusto, her heart skips a beat, her palms get sweaty, she gets really happy and her heart feels like it might burst. She hates to admit it, but she’s fallen for him.
She comes closer to him, and reaches for his hand.
“Why is everything wrong with it Augusto?’ Charella asks holding her breath.
Augusto looks up at her, the moonlight shining radiantly on his face.
“Because I love you Charella.” he says as another tear falls.
They stay looking into each other’s eyes for several moments. Not sure what to do.
“I love you too Augusto.” Charella finally says breaking the silence.
Then Augusto reaches for her, he kisses her hard on the lips. “Dearest, I don’t want to be without you, but in a years’ time I will be married.” he says pulling away. “I am being sent to another kingdom to marry my bride..I fear I may never see you again..” he says as another tear falls.
Charella is still caught up in the moment, she shakes her head and pulls him into a hug.
“I wish there was more I could do..” she says as she feels her heart breaking. Time is running out, by now, Charella can tell when the moon has almost reached its peak point.
“Augusto, please come see me again before you go?” Charella asks kissing him.
“I will do what I can. It’s a whole 3 months from now Char. But I will try my best.” Augusto promises.
Charella runs the past 6 months through her head. She remembers their conversations. She thinks about what it might be like without him. The thought makes her heart hurt, it makes her sick, it makes her sad. She pulls him to her once again. Determined that he know how she truly feels . . .