"Young lord Jeremiah, a letter arrived. I set it on your bed" The butler, Duke said.
I nodded, passing by him in the long hall.
"Thank you Duke" I said, keeping my voice icy. Distance was key. Always key.
Duke almost winced, and bowed slightly, his coat tail waving in the air as he passed. He puffed his chest in the air, keeping his pristine look. He headed down thw hall and turned sharply left, to the east wing, where the saloon was. He was probably going to set up tea.
I rolled my eyes, and paused by a family portrait. It was older, and painted, very professionally.
His mother, I mean, my mother sat in a chair. His father, shoot, I meant my father, stood up behind the chair, his hands on My mothers shoulders.
In the photo I stood by mother, almost inbetween mother and father.
The boy in the photo wore a pair of black trousers, with a white shirt and a blue ascot tucked into the collar, and emblem of a tall oak tree with an olive hanging off the branch. It was our family symbol for wisdom.
I looked, differnet. Younger, childish and happy.
I sneered at my blonde hair and blue-green eyes boy in the picture. He was naive. And I was Not happy, nor naive.
I passed by the picture, my hand clawing across the bottom corner, carving another set of scratches. It was an ignorant picture.
I stood at the door to my room, removing a key from my inner pocket.
It was a regular, no difference to tell key, with a red ribbon tied throught the end, tied in a loop larg enough to hang on my wrist.
My room was big, with balcony doors that overlooked the courtyard. I smirked at myself in the mirror.
It was Five to Noon, and Miss Marcie Antoinette was almost to be home. She was a beauty with golden locks, that was almost always braided back with a sky blue ribbon.
She always wore the most teasing white dresses, and my favorite past time was to bother her when she passed by the courtyard.
She was the eldest daughter of our cook and she came from various jobs to help when it close to lunch time.
Yesterday, she was most divine, wearing a pale green dress, with her hair up, curling around her face.
But, I couldn't meet her, as I was in a last minute neeting concerning my "lack of schooling"
Psh. Education came from experience, not a school room somewhere in Paris.
I bent to look in the mirror, I straightened my white collar, pulling it down over my blue jacket.
I pulled at tufts in my hair, pushing it back into my slicked back blond- brown
hair. I stared into my emerald green eyes, staring down the mirror with my best charismatic, leering look.
I nodded, satisfied. I went to the balcony doors, holding the doors, with twitching fingers. I looked nect to me, remebering what Duke had said about a letter.
I glanced at the ticking clock on the wall, three to nine. I had enough time to open a silly letter.
It was on my pillow, unopened. I grabbed a letter opener off my nightstand and I sliced open the top of the letter quickly, glancing through the translucent glass door.
It was a peice of tan parchment, written on with precise lettering.
I know who you really are. And I know what you've done. Behave, do what you are told and maybe, maybe I'll let your secret rest.
I froze and had to read the letter over three more times.
My heart began to pound, and I felt my legs begin to shake like pudding, and I couldn't breathe.
The world seemed to be collapsing on top of my shoulders and I just wasn't strong enough.
Was this some kind of sick joke???
No one, NO ONE knew my secrets better than I did! And, what I did was self defense!! Wasn't it...?
I shook my head, it was. Of course it was. Of course it was, this was all just...a joke. Yeah...a joke.
I balled up the parchment and the envelope and threw it into the air, defiantly.
Then, something, something blue, fluttered to the ground.
It was a peice of material. A peice of fine material.
I reached forward and snatched it from the air, balling it it my hand.
A peice of paper, that was pinned to the fabric, crumpled with it.
I slowly opened my palm, and looked at the parchment, breathing carefully, almost painstakingly, read the note.
Is this enough proof for you?
I felt like crying, I was done for. I would be charged with impersonation of a noble adnd murder and I would be hung. True as True.
I slid to the floor, putting my head inbetween my my legs, breathing as deply as I could.
"Get ahold of yourself, James." I scolded myslef. I had to think, I had to figure the facts out.
1. I was not the real noble heir. My name was not Jeremiah. My name was James and I was not noble.
2. The real heir is dead. I killed him.
3. His death was an accident.
4. Whoever was blackmailing me, knew too much.
I nodded, okay, okay, Number Four I could fix. Number Four I could fix. Because two can't keep a secret, if one of them is dead.