Mr. Pendlebury Levels With Antonia

“Antonia, we need to talk,”

Mr. Pendlebury’s quiet but urgent voice startled her and she looked at him as he stood there in the doorway. “Yes, Father?”

“May I come in?”

“Yes, of course. Have a seat.”

“No, thanks. I’ll remain standing.”

“Did you go out?”

“Yes. I went to the cemetery.”

“Oh. I haven’t been there for weeks. Maybe when the weather is better, I’ll go and put fresh flowers on Mother’s and Karson’s graves.”

“Antonia, I spoke to Laird and he told me everything.”

“Everything?”

“Yes. He told me what happened on the night when Karson and you announced your engagement and the night of the tragic accident. He also told me with what really transpired between you and him when you stopped by his flat. I was shocked, Antonia. I never thought you were capable of such things.” 

“I–I spoke in anger, Father. I was upset and-and so I said things I shouldn’t have.”

“How could you hate Karson?”

“I didn’t want to hate him but I couldn’t help it. He was the reason why Laird and I couldn’t be together. If Karson hadn’t fallen in love with me and if you hadn’t talked Mother into throwing us together, Laird and I would have gotten engaged instead and be married with children now.”

“Antonia, Laird was not romantically interested in you.”

“That could have changed. In time, he could have developed feelings for me.”

“How long were you prepared to wait for something that wasn’t likely happen?”

“How do you know that it wouldn’t have happened?”

“Antonia, Laird never saw you as anything more than a sister.”

“He would have if it weren’t for Karson and you and Martina.”

“Laird has made it painfully clear to you and to me that you and he would never be more than brother and sister.”

“You’re wrong, Father. I–I had a dream last night about him and in it we were making love.”

Mr. Pendlebury’s face turned pale. “Antonia, it was a dream borne out of fantasy–“

“Dreams can come true, can’t they? What if that one does?”

“Antonia, listen to me, you have to get over this obsession you have with Laird–“

“It isn’t an obsession. What I feel for Laird is love. I’ve loved him since I was fifteen. I’ve known and loved him much longer than Martina who took him away from me.”

“He was never yours to take. Why can’t you accept that you can’t have the relationship you want with him? You need to forget about the dream you had and any hopes you have of it coming true. You need to move on with your life, Antonia. You need to stop blaming Karson, Martina and me for not getting what you want. We don’t always get what we want in life. Your mother wanted to have another child–a daughter but she couldn’t conceive. It was a hard blow for her but she had to accept it.”

“No, Father. I won’t accept that Laird and I will never be together.”

“Antonia, it breaks my heart to say this but I must if it will help to bring you to your senses. The way you feel about Karson and Martina is the same way Laird feels about you and that’s why he wants nothing more to do with you. That’s why we didn’t see him and Martina for Christmas.”

Antonia’s face was ashen and she shook her head. “No, that’s not true. Laird doesn’t hate me.”

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is image_162028129_portfolio_5204.jpg

Mr. Pendlebury’s voice broke as he insisted, “I saw it on his face when he spoke about you.”

“No,” she moaned. “He doesn’t hate me. He can’t. In the dream, I saw his face and there wasn’t any hate, only desire, the same desire I was feeling.”

“Antonia, forget about that dream and accept reality.”

“No. I don’t want to hear anymore. Laird doesn’t hate me. The man making love to me in the dream didn’t hate. He wanted me as much as I wanted him. You’re wrong. He doesn’t hate me and one day, he will realize that he and I belong together and–and he’ll divorce Martina. Then, he and I can be together like we were always meant to be.”

Mr. Pendlebury grabbed her by the shoulders and shook her. “Stop this foolishness!” he cried in a voice filled with anguish. “Stop this foolish talk right now and face facts. Laird will never leave Martina for you. He loves her. She is his life. They’re like two halves of one soul. Only death could separate them.”

“No!” she struggled to break free but his grip was too firm. Her face was drenched with tears.

“Listen to me, Antonia. Laird called me yesterday and told me he and Martina are going to have a baby.”

Antonia shook her head. “No, it isn’t true. You’re lying.”

“I’m not lying. Laird and Martina are going to have a baby. When he told me the news, he sounded very happy. If you truly love him, Antonia, you would want him to be happy even if it meant him being happy with another woman.”

It was too much for Antonia. She went limp. Mr. Pendlebury picked her up and carried her over to the bed. He gently laid her down and then, called 999.

Source: Academic

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.