Trial and Error

Trial and Error

By Emma Daly

It was, it was it was late in noon and, I- I walked into the house, The House of Livingstons, the gloomy one on the outskirts of town, only it wasn’t gloomy that night. No, no, it was unnaturally, compelled into it’s being of color, just for me.  It was bright with candles and shiny red curtains and rosy red flowers and the leaves on the floor of the changing seasons and smiling servants, and oh the servants. They had smiles of those who didn’t know how to frown. Unusual smiles. They took my coat and said good evening and took my horse and instead of running I followed them in. I followed them in! A scene so naturally dark should never have been forced into that livelihood. What a stupid thing I could’ve done, but it’s what I did here.

Never did I enter it’s walls before, but I- I knew it was, it, it was something. Something certainly. Something off. Something that stirred ones guts into feelings never felt or wanted. Something. Not just a room, but something. I was told it’d be dull, but no. No it wasn’t. It was bright with the candles and the chandelier and the the tables decked with dishes of gold and the now sickening color of crimson- The room, the room I mean.

Guests lined the scene, characters all of the same shade. The same, same aura. Like that of those servants in the front. The kindness dripped from them like a pitcher into a glass. They shook my hand and knew my name and knew my living. Livingston- Lord Livingston- introduced my being to them earlier, and he, he told them soooo much about me. They treated me as a brother. No no no, kinder, kinder than that. Why didn’t I leave? WHY NOT? Oh well, I guess I didn’t leave here.

Abigail was the lady of the house. Abigail Livingston. What a horrible case of that spirit. Crippled. Arms twisted like branches intertwined with each other. Head to her side like crow’s head cocks when it sees something it desires. A wickedly silent being, one who can talk to you through her eyes, only actually talking when necessary.

We sat, yes, they offered wine, I said no, all was good, good. Not in this one. They were, they were slowly growing frustrated with me. I could see it in their grins. They didn’t offer the food, I simply took, bit rude but especially now I don’t mind. They insisted wine, I decined, still they poured it, but I DID NOT drink it. No, not this time. I looked at it’s red hue, the tint it gave to my glass, but I took no sip. I DID NOT DRINK FROM THAT UNHOLY GLASS. No, I ate. I ate. Yes. I decided to, to stay for dinner.

Our meal finished, but we stayed for, for chatting. YES! Yes yes, we did. I did. We chatted of town news and worldly news and of our families and our trades- not once did the lady of the house join in our conversations. She sat, servant at hand, at her seat at the end of the table.

Little, at the time, did I notice the wine the house was serving. It, it was a prestigious white wine, wine that had a scent of purity and held one peg higher among it’s likenesses. It was not in likeness to the the wine in my hand, with its its blood color and, and smell of death. Little, little did I notice at all. The, the fool I was. The fool who still talked among them like friends.

Then I took my pardon. I- 1 tried to take my pardon. I got up to leave and then there was a stern hand on my shoulder. I told them, I told them I was making my leave, the night was through.Yes, yes this was the right thing to do. WHAT ELSE WAS THERE? Nothing. I did everything right.

I shook his hand off and went  to bid Lady Livingston and her husband a goodnight. It was only formal, it was what you do. What you do when you leave a party you were so graciously invited to unprecedented. You thank them. I didn’t have to to, I didn’t have to. I did.

I shook the sir’s hand, it, it lingered in mine but still I moved on. I didn’t notice that at this time the room volume decreased and, and eyes were on me. I didn’t. IT WAS JUST A PARTY. THAT WAS ALL.

And then I moved on to The Lady. I told her I was on my way she smile she usually does in reply, but then, then she said it. “Thank you.” It was so strange is in, so, so sincerer, which confused me even further. I went to question her but was interrupted by the men behind me, and the the servant beside her.

They, they grabbed me with gratitude on their faces and laughter on their tongues that, that still echoes in my head. They, they knew what they were doing! They were proud of it! I shook them off and I ran down the hall, which wasn’t red, but a yellow. Bright yellow, which I hadn’t noticed before, coated the walls. I- I remember that. I ran and ran and ran until I became lost but I found my way to the door and then I was fr-

No. No not at all. The servants in the front would have gotten me. They would have, I’m sure of it. NO. I- I must find a way to end this story with both my arms and my freedom. Yes, I must. I must escape. Yes. Yes. Oh, what could I have done?… Perhaps, perhaps if I don’t give them my coat this time. YES! THAT’S IT! Maybe my coat will be my savior. It’s worth a shot. Yes, I must try again…

It was late in the noon, and I- I walked into the house, the House of Livingstons…