Scrupled Affection

I've only written a few chapters so far so I'm not quite sure where I'm heading with the storyline so any suggestions would be appreciated.

The basic outline is there are the two families, the Hawkley's and the Walter's, who are both at the top of society in their area. It is based around the two main characters Luciana of the Hawkley family, and Jasper of the Walter's. Prior to the story the families eldest children were due to be married but a 'mysterious' accident happened in which they both died. Now the Hawkley's and the Walter's are enemies because they belive the other family caused the accident becasue Benjamin was having an affair.
I am thinking that Jasper and Luciana are going to fall in love and have a sort of Romeo and Juliet love story, but also use a subplot of finding out about the accident.

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1. Chapter One

 

 

She was sweltering, burning, cursing the suns name. It was hot. Too hot. The grass around her was lush, and the flowers were ripe with layers of vibrant colour. Tiny souls of birds filled the air with song, it was the music of love. Love. What is this creature so many speak of? She thought. Is it venomous or beautiful? Beautiful , she hoped. Of course, she could never be certain, not in the future she sees at the moment anyway. Love, a hopeless war with too many battles taking place at any one time. Luciana longed for the feeling however, she wanted to see it, feel it, believe it to be true. But how could she when no man who had taken her hand so far had brought a smile to her face, warmed her heart or made her feel special in the way she desired. Curse it! She screamed the words in her baffled head. The words , they tumbled, ran in fact, shaking, sweating, but not from the heat, from the moment, from the...

 “Luciana! Would you kindly refrain yourself from gazing, tis  an awful habit for one to develop.” Beth, her mother, was just as confused as Luciana herself, clearly a gold digger, but enough of a lady to be Charles Hawkley’s wife. At the time he was the most eligible bachelor in town, his heart stolen by young Beth. Charles was arrogant and impatient but always was his family his top priority, his daughters, Luciana and Elise; he only wanted the absolute best for his petite sweethearts, which was the exact reason he was sending young Elise off to marry, Andrew O’Ryan, son to the duke of Cambridge. Of course, not even he was up to Luciana’s standards.

 But twas not standards Luciana was after, it was love. She believed marriage was a way to bond two people who wanted to be together in every way possible, physically, mentally, and any other way they could. Elise was going to regret the decisions she had made, she did not love Andrew. Yes, he was a gentleman, both by society and morally, but he was not a lover suitable for her younger sister; she would simply be a trophy for him to attach to his belt. He will walk around and show her off, like a gold medal. There was no doubt in Luciana’s mind that Elise would enjoy his company for a year, maybe two, but she knew that she could not live her life being a show piece.

  “Sir, Mr Wicket is here to see you, he says you have been waiting upon his arrival.”

“Yes, indeed, thankyou James, you may go.” James left the courtyard, trudging back to the dwelling, in which the Hawkley family lived. The house was made of stone, cold, hard, grey stone. It tiered above the treetops and looked out onto the majestic waters of Cotswold Lake. The courtyard was paved with slabs; it was home to many flower boxes containing all sorts of beautiful plants, peonies and roses, daisies and violets. Beyond the courtyard were the gardens. There were many gardens, vegetable gardens, apple orchids, ones containing row after row of scenic shrubbery. Luciana gazed into the picturesque sky that fell behind the woodland as her father rose from his seat at the other side of the table.

“Beth, Luciana, Elise, I have some news of upmost importance.” The family turned to stare at his suddenly brightened face. “Mr Wicket, has brought along with him his son, Edward, they have come to stay with us for a short while. Luciana?” She knew exactly what he wanted, a marriage proposal, and a yes to it. But how could she suddenly fall in love with a man she had just met?

“Yes father?”

“Take some time to meet Edward. He is such fine gentlemen I have heard.” Luciana laughed in her head; how her father could think she would just magically and instantly want to marry she did not know.

“Father, of course I will talk to him, and get to know him, but you know my thoughts on marriage. I refuse to marry if I am not in love, tis something I feel very passionately about.”

Elise sniggered. “Tis a shock you feel passionately about anything.” Beth gave her a long hard stare. Elise was only fourteen, passion to her was just a word, and not an emotion, like it was to Luciana.

“Luciana, you must learn to love those who are right for you. Your sister for example, choosing a life that is a good one to live, to bring children up in. Why can’t you just understand?” But the thing was, Luciana did understand, loud and clear. Except, understanding it, did not mean choosing it, surely she wanted to please her father? The only man who had been there all her life?

“Oh father, when are you going to give this up? You have a true understanding of my wishes, please; stand in my shoes for a day?” Beth’s hand found its way to Charles arm. She caressed the skin in her soft palms, their eyes met, for a short while, but long enough for her to tell him to give it up.

“Luciana, I do not, at all, want to push you into something you do not feel comfortable about, but, oh, never mind.” He once again took his place at the table and bought his teacup up to his lips to take a sip.

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