The Queen and I

Helena is one of Queen Elizabeth I's servants . She has a completely ordinary life, a simple girl working hard and earning her keep for her endlessly long family back at home. Everything has a routine for her and is completely orderly, just how she likes it but when she is accused of a life threatening crime, here whole world turns upside down.

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9. Chapter 9

The city was bustling with night life. The jolly laughter emitting from the pub, huddled women at the side of the street claiming they can tell your future for "one penny only!", drunkards stumbling down narrow passages..... I already loved it although I felt a bit frightened at the thought of strange men and women lurking these streets so I certainly wasn't about to stray from Cole. Wondering aloud, I said "What play are we going to see tonight?"

"Romeo and Juliet, naturally." He gave me my favorite smile of his, the one that makes his eyes crinkle and dimples show. I felt a rush of warmth course through me even though I felt so out of place, walking beside him in these somewhat ridiculous clothes. I was nearly tripping on the heavy fabric each time I stepped and a part of me longed to be in my worn out uniform in which I have memorized every crease and stain. I still felt like I was in one of those fairy tales my mother used to whisper to me every night, before she tucked me in but when I felt Cole's hand grasping mine, I had never felt so real, alive, true.... Finally we approached the Globe Theater. Its large, towering walls seemed to be beckoning us to come in and enjoy its glory, like a mothers arms, welcoming you back after a long day of toil. It had a creamy white color encircling it and the chocolaty wood almost gave it a cottage like feel, as if it was home. Walking inside was even better, for my eyes were having a feast! I felt half enclosed and half outside as we were standing in the middle of a huge dome with no roof where we could just gaze up at the millions of dazzling lights, winking down on the stage. Cole guided me up the steps where we got actual seats, instead of standing like the general public do. As we passed, a woman with a lilac dress bunted with golden flowers, she gave me a little smile and instantly I felt the need to bow my head to show I was not as important as her but I remembered that tonight, I would fit in with all of these classy citizens. I gave a small nod back to her, feeling giddy with excitement. Taking our seats, I could tell Cole was just as pleased as me to be here. He leaned back his head and looked up at the night sky. "This is just incredible..." I said quietly, not wanting to disturb his peace. "I couldn't be happier than I am now, Miss. Cortin." He winked cheekily at me but I didn't even have time to blush before a booming voice drifted up from the stage. Intoxicated with bliss, I leaned forward as far as I could. The man on the stage was dressed in a deep violet skirt and a crimson doublet. These colors I knew showed that he was rich in money, well at least he was acting to be. 

"Two households, both alike in dignity,

In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,

From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,

Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.

From forth the fatal loins of these two foes

A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life;

Whose misadventured piteous overthrows

Do with their death bury their parents' strife.

The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,

And the continuance of their parents' rage,

Which, but their children's end, nought could remove,

Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage;

The which if you with patient ears attend,

What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend." 

The introducer ends his speech and at this point, my heart is nearly bursting out of my chest in  eagerness for the play to begin. In the corner of my eye, I see Cole chuckling at me. I know I must appear to look like a child, but I didn't care. All of todays hardships were washed away, distant memories floating in the air. For in this moment of anticipation, I forgot everything but the stage in front of me and the hand who belonged to a man I was falling dangerously in love with.

                                                                       *********************

"A glooming peace this morning with it brings;

The sun, for sorrow, will not show his head:

Go hence, to have more talk of these sad things;

Some shall be pardon'd, and some punished:

For never was a story of more woe

Than this of Juliet and her Romeo."

Tears were streaming down my face and the second the cast took their bows, I could've sworn I was the first one in the whole theater that jumped up and clapped like there was no tomorrow. Laughing and crying at the same time, I managed to babble out to Cole about how incredible the play was. "I have never seen anything like it, for he is a genius!" I cried. 

"I do agree with that, Miss. Cortin. I have always loved literature and plays and I swear I have read the whole royal library and have never found anything written quite as well as what we have just witnessed." 

"Did you cry?" I wondered aloud. He shifted uncomfortably and I poked him playfully in the ribs. He responded with a muffled "Maybe" before I threw back my head in laughter. Walking out to the streets, Cole pulled me into a tight embrace. "This might've been the best the best night of my life, thanks to you." He whispered in my ear. "Might've?" I questioned.

"I mean...well, it didn't mean to come out like that..." He stammered. Giggling quietly, I threw my arms back around him and I heard a large sigh heave out from his chest. His lips began to search for mine until finally we found each others. He smelled like pine wood and nature mixed with warm honey. It was the oddest combination of scents ever yet it was my favorite in the whole world. Standing in a tight corner of one of the bustling streets of London may not seem very romantic to a regular passerby but to me, it was the most lovely experience ever. Eventually, we broke apart. Heading back to the carriages, I took one last fleeting glance at the Globe, wanting to preserve this picture perfect scene in my mind for ever. For I knew that my fairy tale was almost over and, most likely, I would never experience pleasure like this again.

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