A Silent Ocean Away: Colettes Dominion

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Tonight she had returned. Rising from the rickety chair he had perched before the window, John Ryan strutted across the small kitchen like a proud peacock.

Silent Ocean - Watercolor Seascape Painting

He massaged his inflated chest, then raked long yellow fingernails through his graying hair. It fell back over his indelible scowl. Turning away in disgust, Charmaine Ryan threw herself into preparing dinner. She sighed. Her mother was unusually late. The appointment with Joshua Harrington had begun over two hours ago, and though her father deemed the lengthening delay a favorable sign, she did not.

Charmaine struggled to gain control of her ire. These days, anything her father said brought her to anger. Perhaps she was brave because he had never raised a hand to her. Marie was less fortunate.

A Silent Ocean Away: Colette's Dominion

With mind revolting, as it always did when she pondered the union of John Ryan and Marie St. Jude, Charmaine stared absently across the humble kitchen, beyond the dilapidated walls of the three-room cottage, and past the barriers of time, hoping to perceive some understanding of nature, the twist of circumstance that had sanctified the marriage of her parents.

Jude Thaddeus Church, she knew even less about her father, a man who appeared and disappeared as the mood struck him, often leaving his wife and daughter for days at a time, which suited Charmaine just fine. The less she saw of him the better. Did he have a family aside from his wife and daughter? It was only one of many unanswered questions.

All she really knew of John Ryan was that he was an ill-bred, uneducated drunk.

He rarely worked, and then, only when he needed money for spirits, sauntering about the Richmond docks seeking odd jobs. How had such a scapegrace won the heart of her mother? Another unfathomable question.

#155 ~ A Silent Ocean Away

Marie should have entered the novitiate, taken sacred vows that would have wed her to God and His Holy Church. Instead she had left St. A single child had been born of their union. Charmaine had been christened Haley Charmaine Ryan after her paternal grandmother, a woman she had never met.

The man had perfected his penchant for sneaking up on people. Charmaine held silent as he pulled the wooden platter and knife nearer and proceeded to manicure the fat from the steaming roast. No, sir. It was pointless to accuse him of sending his wife to labor for wages he would assert his right to claim. Besides, it would benefit Marie to hold such a position, one that would grant her a life apart from her derelict husband.

Charmaine attended the St. Jude School with the other orphaned children. But what did her mother have? Up until today, nothing but the bungalow in which they lived and dared not hope for anything better to come along. But something had come. The Harrington household offered Marie a refuge of her own.

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I told you, Mr. Harrington was seeking someone younger and more impressionable, someone his wife could take under her wing. Charmaine is too young, and she has her schooling to finish.

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No, there are other options. Your money? All of it! And then, fearing how the ensuing row would ultimately end, she reined in her anger. You hear? Pin It. Favorite Saving…. Speaking of Subscribe to this thread:.

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