Her Seventh Letter to Kate

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Dearest Kate,

My new address will be The Haverly, Kingstowne, under the care of Mrs. Brougham. If you have not done this already, tell Everett that he is very lucky and that he had better bend to your every whim.

I am afraid that, after embarrassing myself, I recklessly made my application to serve as a District Officer for the Crown, and even wrote my name as G. C. Walker. I know they are even more for equality there than here, but the instinct to make myself as formidable as possible on paper took free rein. The short of it is that a wire arrived two days ago to congratulate me, and another came yesterday to ask if I might hasten my arrival; thus I will be on the airship mere hours after writing this letter.

I am very close to tears knowing that my letters to you and to my father will not reach their destinations before I am set upon my journey. And the lilacs are only just beginning to bloom.

It is clear that some part of my credentials was desirable (a still-rational remnant of my brain wonders which part), and that they were in some rush. The Mr. Ingleham who wired me made no unnecessary remarks and all that I know about Kingstowne is from my geography classes.

Irene calls me crazy and mother is in nearly as bad a state as I, for while she thinks that the pay is extraordinarily good and the position itself is one of distinction, she is appalled by my travelling alone and living alone so far away. It is all I can do to conceal my misgivings in front of her, lest I worry her even more.

Need I mention that Owen cares not a jot, and already has plans for making my bedroom into a carpenter’s shop?

When it comes to my father, Kate, you will know what he thinks long before I. His last letter spoke only of his work and my news will be a bolt from the blue. Who knows when he will attend to his mail – please go visit him for me.

I’m so muddled that I haven’t told you the worst part. Last night was cards and dancing, and I stopped by to give my goodbyes, because in all this mess I had only spoken to Alexandra. While I can safely say that I astonished the company with my announcement I could not enjoy the spectacle. I haven’t made much of my time, have I? I explained where I was going, and there were expostulations on all sides.

The boys thought me very strange, and abrupt, but these sentiments were mixed in with a far greater degree of regret and goodwill than I had expected. They have been dearer to me than I realized. Then I turned to Edward and asked where he thought to situate himself in New Britain.

“Who knows – maybe Cartaeser, as I’d like to meet Rosenfield. But I’m not in any rush to make plans. Here’s hoping yours is decent country.”

And he wandered away to pour himself a glass of scotch, where Alexandra managed to get a dance from him. Edward hardly dances, Kate. When he did then he stood tall and distinguished, and made laughing conversation, so I left.

I am ashamed to admit that, having vanished without saying what I wished to say, I wrote him a letter when I got home, full of everything my cowardice had quelled. But what is the use? I sealed it and shut it in my dresser drawer.

Ironically, I have removed myself from Edward when that was precisely what I feared. He was not one of those who asked for my new address.

Packing my last trunk, I am telling myself that I don’t care anymore. Perhaps this will be for the best. I am going to a new place and there I can pretend to be someone whom I like better than myself. If I think of him I shall cry, so I shan’t think of him.

Doubtless there will be many distractions in a half empty land with bizarre physics and colonial customs, and if not for the fact that I am engaged to work, this might resemble the make-believe adventures of our childhood. I am going into a wilderness, and so I will be wild once again.


Yours always,


7 thoughts on “Her Seventh Letter to Kate

    1. Haha for some reason “expostulations” makes me think of frazzled 19th century scientists, but sadly I couldn’t fit one into the plot here without messing things up 😛


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