Horatio and Maria: The True Story
An Epic
by Jackie Pena

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Part 4

20b

Archie became white as a ghost, it was though all the
blood was drained from his face. Bridget's eyes
widened.

"Archie darling, what is the matter?"

He did not answer her.

Bridget's concern was growing and before she knew it,
Archie fell to the ground, his body shaking violently.

"ARCHIE!" Bridget yelled. She fell to her knees trying
to help him in some way.

The stable hand heard her cries and ran over to see if
could offer any aid.

"Oh dear God, please help me David!"Bridget
frantically pleaded. "Take him to the main house into
one of the guests rooms."

"Yes, Miss, right away."

David picked up an unconscious Archie and took him to
the manor as Bridget has instructed him, he then took
off his jacket and shoes. "Should I have a Doctor send
for Miss?"

"He won't be able to do anything. Mr. Kennedy just
needs to rest." Bridget thanked him before dismissing
him.

Bridget tucked him in bed. One of the servants came in
with fresh water and clean rags.

"Here you are Miss Bridget. Do you need anything
else?"

"Can you bring my embroidery? I may be here for quite
awhile."

"Yes Miss Bridget?"

"Thank you Gertrude. I don't know what I would do
without you or Mrs. Lloyd."

The maid brought Bridget's embroidery, and lit candles
all throughout the room and was instructed Archie not
be disturbed.

Bridget began to take care of Archie right away with
cool compresses on his forehead. She then pulled a
chair to the side of the bed and sat down to do her
embroidery and wait to Archie to wake.

Every little stir he made, she would jump to her feet
and make sure he was all right. He was talking in his
unconscious state but she was not able to make out
what he was saying.

Horatio was informed when he arrived from work and
even though Bridget left instructions about not being
disturbed, he was concerned and wanted to know if
Archie was awake yet and all right. He was relieved to
see that his friend was resting and went to Maria's
room to have a quiet dinner with her.

Mrs. Lloyd entered the room with a kettle full of
vegetable soup and hung it near the fireplace. Bridget
told her to take the rest of the evening off and when
Mrs. Lloyd left the room, Bridget locked the door.

Bridget continued to stitch away nearly pricking
herself when she heard Arching panting and talking in
his sleep again but this time she could understand his
words. "Simpson, please don't, it hurts, please, NO!"
Archie sat straight up painting drenched in a cold
sweat. Bridget immediately rushed to his side and
wiped his brow with a damp cloth. "It's all right
sweetheart. You had a bad dream." Bridget said as she
stroked his sweat dampened hair. Archie looked around
the room, not quite sure where he was or what had
happened. "Where am I? How did I get here."

"You had a fit." Bridget answered.

Archie was mortified. "I...I had a...fit?"

"Yes. We were walking past the stables. You turned
pale and then fell to the ground. I was so frightened
and you've been unconscious since it happened this
afternoon."

"Oh God, Bridget, you must think I'm a freak!" He
turned away from her and curled up into a ball."

"No! I would never think that of you!" She ran her
fingers though his hair. "I have always known about
your fits. They don't matter to me, you know that. You
know that I love you-just the way you are. They're not
important to me-so long as you're all right."

He looked into her eyes and sat up. "You've known
about them?"

"Yes. When we were children, your brother Richard and
his friend Charles, decided to tease you by calling
you names, I was yelling at him to stop but at that
point you had become so upset you collapsed on the
ground and had a fit. Charles thought it was amusing
and began to laugh and point. I got very angry. I
don't know what came over me, but I forgot my manners,
and approached him and gave him a big shove. Well, he
landed in a huge puddle of mud and when he got up, I
punched him in the nose. I then picked up a rock and
threw it at Richard nearly missing him because he ran,
the little coward."

Archie became wide eyed. "You hit him? I never knew!"
He chuckled. "That Charles was always a bastard and
Richard ran, typical of him. Forgive my language,
darling."

"No worries, my love, but it's true. He told everyone
he ran into a tree. I guess he really did not want
anyone to know that he was beaten up by an eight hear
old little girl when he was all of eleven years."

They both had a laugh. "You were quite the hellion my
love." Archie said.

"I believe I still am!" They laughed again.

"Mrs. Lloyd mad a kettle of soup for us."

"Sounds delicious, I'm famished." Archie said.

"Good. I'll heat it up." Bridget said while pouring
him a cup of water.

Bridget put the kettle closer to the fire and set the
small table.

The hot soup felt good in their stomachs. "Would your
like more?" Bridget asked.

"No, thank you." Archie said. "I can't eat another
bite."

They both got up and sat on the couch. Archie took
Bridget's hand and kissed it. "Darling, who was that
man at the stables?"

"Oh, that was David, Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd's nephew. He
helped me bring you up here. Whenever he is in town,
he comes her to work in the stables for a few days. He
is a very good worker and everyone likes him. Why do
you ask?"

"I thought he was someone else."

"Oh, who?"

"I'd rather not talk about it."

"Darling I want you to know you can tell me anything.
Not only are you my betrothed, but you are my best
friend as well."

"Maria is your best friend."

"Archie you know what I mean."

"Bridget, I don't want to talk about it."

"Archie..."

"I SAID NO!" Archie clenched his jaw in anger.

Bridget was shocked at his behavior. "Archie, I didn't
mean to upset you, it was only out of concern, that is
all. Maybe I should go."

Bridget was about to turn around and face the door
when Archie stopped her. "Forgive me my love. I didn't
mean to shout at you. I know you meant well." He
caressed her angelic face when she came back to him.

She was rubbing her arms. "Are you cold?" Archie went
over to the fireplace and placed more logs into the
fire. Then he took Bridge by the hand and led her back
over to the couch.

He looked at her. "You are right, there are to be no
secrets between us. What I am about to tell you is
going to be very difficult. It is something from my
past that I am ashamed of and I don't know how you are
going to react."

She gave him a puzzling look." Please tell me, Archie.
No matter what it is, I love you. You know that."

He took a deep breath. Bridget gently rubbed his back
to help him relax and looked into his blue eyes.

He gently held both of her dainty hands in his larger
ones and paused for a moment before speaking. "When I
joined the Justinian, I was only two and ten years.
There was a midshipman aboard by the name of Jack
Simpson. He was one of the most evil men I had met in
my life. Everyone was afraid of him. First it started
with the beatings. Then it became worse."

"Lord, how terrible! How could someone be so cruel! I
don't understand."

"Then he began to abuse me in another way. The first
time he attacked me was in a supply room."

"Attacked you? How?"

Archie lowered his head and Bridget cupped his face
into her hands and raised it look into his eyes. They
were filled with tears. "It's all right Archie."

Looking into his face, Bridget figured out what
happened to him. She embraced him and placed his head
on her bosom as he began to weep. Shhh darling." She
said while stroking his hair.

"He raped me numerous times. I could barely walk
afterward. He called me his little blond tart and made
me feel like I was not worth anything. He made me do
unspeakable things to him and if I did not do them, I
would pay severely. He is the reason why I spent three
years of my life in that Spanish prison. He is the one
who cut the rope from the rowboat."

Tears ran down Bridget's face. "What ever became of
that filthy monster?"

"He is dead. He tried to kill Horatio in a duel.
Admiral Pellew shot him dead when he tried to shoot
Horatio in the back."

"Good riddance. I hope he is burning in hell. Oh,
Archie I don't know what to say! My poor darling!" She
began to weep and covered his face with kisses.

"David Lloyd reminded me of Jack Simpson. He is the
exact image of him. Uncanny if you ask me."

"But David is nothing like him. He is a very nice man,
believe me. The Lloyd's practically raised him."

"Do you still want me Bridget?" Are you not repulsed?"
He barely whispered the question, afraid of the
answer.

"Of course I do! I am not at all repulsed! The things
that happened to you were not your fault. I love you
Archie with all my heart."

They embraced and their lips met for a passionate
kiss. They both lay on the sofa. Her hands trailed up
and down his back while his trailed to her waist and
up and down her bosom to touch her firm, round
breasts. Archie's mouth traveled to the nape of her
neck. Bridget was breathing hard. He suddenly pulled
away from her and sat up.

"Forgive me. I shouldn't be kissing or touching you in
that manner."

"Don't apologize. It felt wonderful to me." She said.

"But darling..."

"Don't you want me?" She asked.

"Very much so. I have dreams about it."

Bridget rose to her feet and walked over to the bed.
"Well, then let's make your dreams come true."

"Bridget, you don't know what you're saying."

"Yes I do Archie, I want you as badly as you want me."

"My love, once we do this, there is no turning back if
you know what I mean."

"I know, but we are to be married anyway."

"Bridget are you sure you want to do this?"

"Yes, I am. I have never been so sure in my life. We
have known each other all our lives. We are soul
mates, Archie don't you feel it?"

"Of course I do. You make me feel complete."

Bridget held her hand out to him. "Make love to me
Archie." He took her hand in his and looked into her
emerald colored eyes and cupped her face with his
hands for a passionate kiss.

Archie helped Bridget to take off her dress. She
pulled his shirt over his head and admired his
muscular chest. Next he assisted Bridget with her
underthings until she stood naked in front of him and
removed the combs that held her red tresses in a bun.
Her body reminded him of Venus, the goddess of love.
"My God, you're beautiful."

She kissed him while unbuttoning his trousers and he
took them off. "I've never seen a naked man before."
She blushed.

"I hope you're not at all disappointed."

"Not at all."

She splayed her hands across his muscular chest and
ran her hands across his pectorals, his stomach and
then to his bottom. Their lips met and tongues swirled
in their mouths. Archie ran his hands down to
Bridget's full, firm breasts.

"Oh Archie, this feels wonderful."

"I second that." He said.

His kisses trailed to her earlobe and Bridget felt his
hot breath which made her vibrate all over. He found
the nape of her slender neck. She smelled wonderful as
always.

He swooped her in his strong arms and carried her over
to the bed and gently lay her down, joining her while
they continued to explore each others bodies.

Archie was nervous. He knew Bridget has never been
with a man and he didn't want her to be afraid of him.
"Darling, a woman experiences some pain her first
time, but only for a moment." He said.

She smiled at him. "I trust you."

He was a gentle as he could be. Bridget held on to
him. Not because of the pain, that was in the past,
but because she was enjoying the closeness of being
with the man she loved. Her soulmate. Tonight they
became as one.

Their lovemaking continued until they reached climax
together. He collapsed in her arms and gave her light
kisses on her cheek.

He rolled off her pulled her sweat glistened body next
to his and put his strong protective arms around her
and nuzzled in her hair while she nuzzled his chest.

"I'm sorry for hurting you my love. I wish it could
have me and not you." He said.

"It could not be avoided my love. Besides, it didn't
last long and then it became the most enjoyable thing
I have ever experienced." She said.

He smiled. "Yes indeed."

"Archie, how many women have you been with before me?"

Archie looked down on her with his brow knitted. "Oh
dozens and dozens!" He laughed lightly and he said
that so she would know he was joking.

She poked him in the ribcage.

"Ow! I was only kidding redhead! If you must know, I
have been with well uh...experienced women but only
twice."

"Experienced?" Bridget asked with a knitted brow, but
quickly figured it out. "Oh those of women. Brothel
women." She said.

"Yes." He timidly said. "The first time I was forced
into it by Clayton, may God rest his soul. He said it
was time I was made a man, and to be honest, I was
frightened. It was very awkward and the woman was
twice my age. The second I was on leave, and it was my
birthday, and my brother Robert decided to treat me
for my special day, and dragged me to a place called
Miss Molly's. I had too much to drink earlier, and I
became sick in her bed afterward. She was not amused."

Bridget covered her mouth to giggle. "Oh dear, I bet
she was not!"

"But the only one I ever made love to, was you." He
said and kissed her on the forehead.

Bridget snuggled up to him more. "Are you cold?" He
asked.

"Yes a little."

Archie got out of bed a put more logs into the fire,
then climbed back into bed, pulling the covers up to
them. "Better?"

"Yes, thank you. I wish we could stay forever in each
others arms." Bridget said while playing with Archie's
chest hairs.

Archie nuzzled in her hair. "Mmm yes, I agree my sweet
little redhead."

They both held on to each other without saying
anything else. Sleep conquered them both.

 

To be continued.....