Casanova Redux Ch. 18byvelvetpie©
It was over. Jenny came by and we made love but somehow, it wasn't the same and we both knew. I'd always enjoy making love with her but as friends, not as long-term lovers. Over the next few weeks, I met Jenny whenever I could and I loved her hard. Passion had given way to desperation and Jenny was the first to notice. One day, she told me that we needed to stop until I'd sorted out my feelings. I knew that I loved her but the hole left by Withers was so deep that I could barely function.
I saw him every day but I ceased my usual evening visit to the forge. I didn't want to go anywhere near him. He looked at me with sad eyes and the realization that our lives would never be the same. I resigned myself to the fact that it was time for me to leave. My life would begin anew somewhere else, without the stigma of the imprisonment and maybe, finally, I could forget him ...
* * * * *
The knock at the door woke Cassia from her nap and she sat up, rubbing her eyes sleepily. "Come in."
Cook and her mother, Laurie Marie, came in, bright smiles on their faces and a large envelope in Laurie Marie's hands. "This is for you."
Cassia took the envelope from her mother and looked it over, looking at Laurie Marie and Cook before breaking the fragrant rose seal wax and tugging the single sheet of pressed paper out.
I know that we have been through a lot and I wanted to apologize to you for not being man enough to deal with what happened. Before anything else happens between us, IF anything happens between us, I want to be honest with you and tell you what's in my heart.
I'm in love with you. I've been in love with you since Laurie Marie gave birth to you almost nineteen years ago. When Arthur and Laurie Marie, Cook and I volunteered to spend time with you and we both grew very attached to you. But as you've grown, so have the feelings that I have had for you. I watched you climb trees with the interest of an uncle and before my eyes your arms grew longer, your legs grew more shapely and you grew breasts.
Not only that, you became a young lady, your tomboyishness was replaced with elegant manners and a mischievous wink that never failed to set my heart pounding. I was happy to see that you never took a liking to any of the local boys because I was always dreaming that one day, you'd be mine. And when you asked me to be your first ... you can't even imagine what I felt. Pride, honor ... all the things a father would feel except I would be your lover instead.
Then when we got kidnapped ... Cassia, I could never be more proud of you. It made me sick to see those men abuse you but you handled it so well. If I would have been born a woman, I would have been dead but not you. You handled yourself brilliantly. Seeing you do so well made me upset because I should have been taking care of you. When you wanted to talk, I couldn't do anything but think of how I failed you.
Cassia, you mean so much to me. I know that you just wanted me to be the man you shared your virginity with but my feelings won't allow me to believe it. In my mind, you were still my little Cassia although when I went to bed, I kept a sprig of lilac by my bed to remind me of you.
I don't know what you're feeling toward me. I haven't given you a chance to speak to me because I'm afraid that you might say that you don't want me any more. I'm taking the coward's way out in hopes that you'll forgive me. I still want to be your first but I would really like for you to be my girl, that we would share our lives together and have children. I will understand if you decide not to be with me. I haven't acted like someone who knows how fine a diamond he holds in his hand; I've acted like a complete and total idiot.
Let Laurie Marie or Cook know what you want. I would like to be your friend no matter what you decide.
I love you,