Margaret does not speak on the way home. She is numb.

This is the end, then. Baptiste no longer loves her. Perhaps he loved her once, but if so, his love was not strong enough to survive his father’s disapproval.

She is more constant than he.

She lets Jane make her a soothing infusion of lavender and chamomile and put her to bed. Jane has been a good friend to her, and deserves to feel as though she has done what she can.

Paul – well, Paul will not understand at first, but he is a bright boy, with a future ahead of him. He does not need the burden of a spinster sister who has been crippled by despair.

He will be fine without her.

Their father died in the war, but Margaret still has his dagger, put away in a drawer with the keepsakes that belonged to her mother. It will be sharp enough.

Please don’t do this.

I must. The poem demands my death, and now that Baptiste is lost, I can no longer fight it.

You are right. I deserve better than this.

[The more I think about this, the angrier I am with Baptiste. Take me back!]

[Take me back to the start]


Michel-Ange – Auteuil fleur9left Jasmin fleur9right Ranelagh

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