A Different Shade of Historical Romance

A Different Shade of Romantic History...

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Guy What Takes His Time
Christina Aguilera (Burlesque OST)
0:00/2:44

A Slow Time to Love...

Blurb; 

All Maddy wanted was to be a vet , but for the fact that she was half colored limited her entire existence.
She knew she could do the job better than most of the pompous ranch owners, and when wealthy Irish ranch owner Remyton O'Shey gave her the job, it was the happiest moment in her life.

When she delivered his prize winning mare's colt without a hitch, and he instinctively kissed her something in Maddy leaped to life; and it centered completely on him...

Excerpt: 

Chapter One...

Corpus Christie Texas 1869…



I looked up at the man frowning. 

He had no clue obviously about horses, and should probably just stick to cows.

          “I think she’s in labor.” I stated, and he looked at me frowning.

          “Why don’t you go and do some women’s work. I heard tell your kind was good at that.” He replied grinning, and I bit my lip.

   I bit it so hard, I could suddenly taste the blood. 

I was free now by all standards, but it didn’t mean I had a say.

   The proclamation did not name the slave-holding border states of Kentucky, Missouri, Maryland, or Delaware; which had never declared a secession, and so it did not free any slaves there. 

   Did this really mean we were free than? 

And what about those coloreds who were in those states? 

    I could read from and early age because of Cynthia, she’d made Big Daddy free me and my family before this proclamation ever came into being, so sometimes I often forgot what it was like for the rest of my people. Not to mention I was half white and part Indian.

       Near the end of the war, abolitionists were concerned, while the Proclamation had freed most slaves as a war measure, it had not made slavery illegal. Several former slave states had already passed legislation prohibiting slavery; however, in a few states, slavery continued to be legal, and to exist, until December 18, 1865, when the Thirteenth Amendment was enacted.

This was great for colored people, but most forgot about them after this was done.

What would colored people do now that they were free?

I knew people like Moses continued to work for Big Daddy, because although he was free now, he had to eat to survive!

I sighed as I looked up at the man again.

   Coloreds might not have to be beholden to whites now, but if they wanted to remain breathing, they had better watch their mouths. I looked over at Remy, he frowned as well, then shoved Mr. Higgins out of the way.

          “The girl is tellin ye the blasted truth stpis tú leathcheann! I can see the head of the colt ye fricken idiot. Jeremiah, who the bloody hell sent for this dim-wit?” He'd yelled stupid idiot, and Jeremiah appeared out of nowhere.

   Since I'd been around Mr. Remyton nearly every hour of the day for the last five years, I was almost fluent in his language.

          “Don’t know boss, but I tried to tell Mr. Mosley she be in labor.” He stated as he looked at both white men from town.

    Remyton O’Shey, 2nd Viscount of Summerland, was not one to be trifled with. He was a hot blooded Irishman, and if you messed him about, he’d do you some real harm.

But the ladies loved him.

Sable shoulder length hair and eyes which looked as if they were the very worst of an electrical storm.

   At least that’s what I’d heard the women down on Mr. Jakeson’s homestead say.

And the way he spoke when he wasn’t all mad, and was just relaxing sometimes, made a tiny shiver go down my spine.

    I sighed, moved away from the horse, then turned for the opening of the stables. He was one handsome man. He was about to be hitched to my misses, and I was so happy for her, but this was the issue. It was like she practically breathed my cousin’s name, and boy did she moan it.

I thought laughing.

I’d caught them in the barn one night while I was out by myself tending to the cows. I grinned shaking my head as I reached for the stall door.

   The problem was she was to be married to Mr. Remyton, but having a scandalous affair with my half-white, half-Lakota cousin.

I sighed as I looked over at him one last time.

I thought her honestly crazy, but then women fell all over my cousin too, so I guess he was the same. It was yucky for me because he was, my cousin.

          “Jeremiah send for Josiah. Maddy, stay I need ye.” He stated, and I turned to look at him surprised.

          “Oh, okay. What is it you won’t me to do sir?” I asked, and he grinned as he nodded to the horse.

I'd always wanted to do this, and were I not part colored, I might have thought about being a vet; however that was just notions which weren’t possible for coloreds, no matter if your father was white.

I threw my long plats over my shoulders, then bent next to him grinning.

          “Now look, ye see the head?” He asked, and I nodded as the mother moaned.

          “He’s a bit turned, so we’ll have to help him from the womb. Tis a good thing ye were here Maddy.” He replied with a frown looking up at the man Mosley.

   He took my hands, then guided them towards the horse, and I gasped as he slipped them inside with his own.

          “Feel that?” He questioned and I nodded.

I could feel the cord wrapped around the neck of the colt, and looked up at him horrified.

          “Yes, and if we don’t remove it, the colt will strangle himself.” He hissed. “Okay. I’m gonna move back and let ye do it. Yer hands are a lot smaller than mine. “He stated, and I nodded wide eyed.

   This was what I wanted right?

I asked myself, then squared my shoulders.

I could do this!

I moved my hands a bit further up, and the horse whimpered.

          “Slowly Maddy, ye can do it.” He whispered next to me, and I nodded.

I could feel the cord, but the colt wasn't helping one bit by squirming. I gently moved it back, and the mother moaned again. I knew I had to hurry, or we'd lose them both; but I had to be careful too.

   I released the cord and a huge gush of fluid came forth, the colts full head, his shoulders, and finally the rest of his body.

          “Ye did it Maddy!” He cried, grabbed me by the shoulders and kissed me soundly on the lips.

I looked into his eyes shocked, and could feel my cheeks flame.

He composed himself, then looked at the colt.

          “That babe wus worth a lot. If we'd have lost the babe, Garret wud have reneged on his bid for the mother. He willna take the colt alone.” He said getting to his feet with a slight smile in my direction.

I took the cloth Jeremiah handed me, then got to my feet as well.

          “Well sir, if there's nothin else?” I asked, he grinned and shook his head.

I handed the cloth to Jeremiah, then headed out of the stall. I looked back one last time, and was surprised to see he was looking my way. I waved, he grinned again and I walked out of the stall.

   I sighed as I walked towards big the house. My that was strange.

He’d actually kissed me.

I sighed again as I told myself not to read anything into it. He was just excited I'd delivered the colt. Not to mention he was already practically hitched to Cynthia.

                                                                                                                ***

My mistress was 19 years old, but I swear she acted like a child. I was 4 years her senior, yet she was a baby compared to me. Think it had anything to do with the fact that not only was Big Daddy the richest man in Texas besides Mr. Remyton, but his daughter was beautiful beyond compare. Men just fell at her feet, but she took no stock in it.

     I knew she didn’t love Mr. Remyton, he was just the most eligible and handsomest bachelor around; and that’s why she wanted him. She’d said if nothing else to keep him from Samantha Pinkerton. Yes, she was related to those Pinkerton’s, I think he was her grandfather or something. But they had money, and which was all that mattered.

   Cindy and Sammy hated each other from first sight, and I remembered plenty of times I was caught up in the middle of it. My mother worked for Big Daddy, and my father worked for Mr. P.

   Josiah Carrington wasn’t my birth father I knew, but he loved me like I was his one and only child. After my birth, my mother couldn’t carry another child to term, so I was all they ever had.

But he was my daddy regardless, I thought as I saw him approaching the stables out the window.

I suddenly remembered Mr. Remyton telling Jeremiah send for him. My daddy was the best horse man around these parts, of course besides He-Wonjetah from the Lakota tribe.

         “What are you up to Cindy?” I asked as she linked her arm with mine and started towards the kitchen. My mother looked up as we came in and smiled.

         “Where you been baby?” She asked as she kissed my cheek, then drew the back of her hand across her forehead to smooth back the wayward strands of hair. You could never tell it, but my mother’s hair was to her butt, but she kept it up.

My mother's half-Lakota.

That was a story,

         “I helped deliver the colt ma.” I grinned, and Cynthia made a face.

         “God, I will never understand you Maddy. Why the hell you wanna spend time with those smelly old horses I’ll never know.” She wailed, and I just shook my head smiling.

Cynthia Grant was the…most spoiled woman I had ever known. But I loved her anyway, because although she was spoiled, she was generous to a fault.

         “Come on, we’ll see you later Nina.” She told my mother and dragged me off.

         “Where are we going?” I cried exasperated.

         “To the creek.” She grinned, and I just rolled my eyes. She knew my cousin Akicita would be there with his horses.

         “No, if your father finds out he is gonna skin my cousin alive. No Cindy, that’s not fair!”

         “Then I won’t say anything to him. We’ll just swim in the creek."

  She returned.

          “Fine, but I mean it. My cousin is Lakota, and the whites don’t like him anyway. You’ll only make it worse if they find out what you’re doing Cindy. Have you two had relations?” I scolded and she gasped.

         “No, how could you think that Maddy?” She yelled, but I noticed the blush in her cheeks.

Shit!

They had.

What the hell would my cousin do if she got pregnant.

          “I swear you two need to stay away from each other Cindy.”

          “But I can’t I love him!” She wailed, and I looked at her shocked.

         “You what?” I cried as we neared the creek. “But you can’t, it’s not proper and you know your father will never allow it. Not to mention, what about Mr. Remyton?” I shouted, and she looked as if she were about to cry.

         “He doesn’t love me, and I don’t love him! This is a business deal for Daddy Maddy.” She whined, and I frowned as I saw my cousin.

     I walked straight up to him, jumped up and smacked him in the back of the head. He frowned down on me, and then shoved me as his blue eyes changed to a dark blue. He could have shoved me to the ground from his height, but I could tell he’d restrained himself. But it didn’t matter his father was white, he was still Lakota.

         “What the hell is wrong with you Chikala?” He cried.

Chikala was native for small or little. I was barely 5’1, and most people thought I was still a child.

         “What are you doing? Do you wanna get killed?” I yelled at him, and his eyes immediately went to Cynthia.

         “No, but I love her.” He wailed too, and I realized he did.

I instantly thought for 2 years my senior; he didn’t always act so smart.

         “You know this can never be.” I wailed myself, and she went to him.

         “Okay, but can we at least have this week? I’ve already told him daddy plans on marrying me off to Remyton. Just the week Maddy, I promise.” I sighed as I looked at the both of them.

   Shit, why did I have to be in the middle of everything?

I nodded, they both hugged me, then ran off towards the other side of the creek.

         “But you had better be back here in two hours Cindy, or yo daddy is gonna have the cavalry lookin for you!” I yelled after her, she nodded and waved.

I sighed again as I sat down on the bank.

Why did I always have to be the middleperson?

   I knew Cynthia didn’t love Mr. Remyton, but it wasn’t my place to say.

And from the looks he received from the rest of the women around here, I was sure he didn’t love her either.

   I looked down at my hands, then noticed the blood. I made a face, then commenced to strip off my clothes. I left the chemise on though, just encase.

I jumped into the cool water, and sighed.

It was a blistering night, and the water felt so good to my heated skin.

   I floated on my back, and as I looked up at the moon something caught my eye in my peripheral.

          “Shit!” I cried as I saw him on the bank smoking.

I ducked under the water, but I could hear his laughter.

          “Ye may as well come out, ye've been caught.” He stated, then turned his back to put out the cigarillo.     “What are ye doin out here by yerself anyway?” He asked, and I slowly got out of the water.

         “Ah had assumed tha' I wud be alone?” I mocked and he turned laughing.

    We both gasped, he stared at me for a complete 40 seconds or so with open mouth and wide eyes, then quickly turned his back again. The chemise was stuck to me like a glove, and you could clearly see my breast through the material.

   Although I was tiny in stature, I had the body of a full grown woman, and rather large breasts too thanks to my top heavy mamma.

         “Keep your back turned.” I commanded as I reached for my britches.

         “An aw' this time Ah thought ye were a child Maddy.” He chuckled, and I frowned.

         “People seem to forget I’m almost 24 years old. What did you want anyway?” I muttered as I put my britches on, then my shirt.  

         “I’m decent.” I stated, and he turned.

         “Nothin, I wus just enjoyin the moonlight when I saw a sprite gealach.” He said grinning and I rolled my eyes frowning.

         “A what?” I asked as I sat down to put my boots back on.

That was one word I didn't know.

         “Moon sprite.” He replied grinning as I looked up at him from my boots.

         “Oh, and how’s the colt?”

         “He’s doin good thanks to ye.”

         “So old man Garret is still gonna buy him?” I inquired as I got to my feet, and he nodded.

He kept looking at me strange.

         “What?” I yelled, and he shook his head grinning.

        “Nothin.” He replied, then looked up frowning as Cynthia came through the woods smiling.

When she saw him, the smile turned into a horrified expression as my cousin skidded to a stop behind her.

Shit!

   What would he do?

He looked at the both of them, frowned, then looked down on me with a slight grin.

          “I shall see ye later? Cynthia.” He said in her direction, grinned down on me again, then walked off.

          “Oh, my god! What do you think he’ll do?” My cousin cried.

         “Hell if I know. You two would pick this exact moment to come from your tryst.” I yelled at them, but Cynthia was looking at me strange.

She looked to where he walked off to, then grinned.

         “Why are you grinning? This is gonna end badly Cindy. And Akicita, what will become of you if he decides to let it slip you two were in the woods together?” I cried, he frowned, but Cynthia’s grin only got wider.

         “He won’t do that, I can promise you.” She stated.

         “And why is that Cin…dy?” I snapped, and she laughed.

         “He won’t, just believe me.” She said, kissed Akicita, then dragged me towards the house.

I frowned as my cousin grinned, then waved and ran for the woods.

         “What do you think of Remyton?” She suddenly asked, and I was surprised.

         “What do you mean?” I returned, then felt the blush creep into my cheeks.

My brain instantly went to the kiss.

           “Really?”

           “Really what?”

           “So you think him handsome?” She returned laughing.

          “I never said anything of the sort.” I stated, and she laughed even more.

Cynthia watched the emotions play on Maddy's face.

Yes Maddy was in love with him, that much she could see.

She suddenly hatched a plan.

Cynthia knew Maddy would never willingly say anything remotely close to being in love with him, because he was white and she was part colored.

   Even with the slave proclamation that type of thing still wasn’t done. But then, Remyton did whatever the hell he wanted, and everybody else be damned. Moreover, Cynthia guessed with as much money as he had, he was entitled to.

   She sighed as they walked into the house.

She and he were to be married next week, and Cynthia knew she had to find some way to make sure it didn’t happen.

If she had to give up Akicita she would just die.

Daddy tolerated a lot from her, she being his only child and all, but she wasn’t sure if he would this. It was the very reason why she’d tried her best to get pregnant. If she was, then he would have to let her. The shame of an unwed pregnant daughter trumped her marrying a half-Indian.

She grinned.

She new exactly what to do.

            “So, I asked daddy if you could come to the mixer tonight, and he said it was fine just as long as you stayed with me.”

            “And why would you ask Big Daddy that?” I muttered, and she grinned.

           “Because, if you don’t I won’t have any fun Maddy. I hate these people. But Big Daddy is making me go.”

           “So you figured if you were miserable, then you might as well make me too?” I said snippily, and she started laughing.

           “Well…why the hell not?” She laughed as she dragged me up the stairs. “Now I had Debbie pick out four different dresses I think will look very nice on you.” She said as she pulled me towards the bed and I saw the four dresses.

           “No way. I am not wearing one of those things!” I yelled frowning, and she frowned back.

          “Yes you will Maddy, and I mean it. If you don’t Big Daddy won’t let you come, and you are coming.” She hissed, and I sighed.

Anytime she got that look, it was useless to argue with her.

   An hour later I was dressed in the…most expensive dress I had ever worn in my entire life.

As I looked at myself in the mirror, it was as if another person was staring back at me.

Virginia had piled my hair on top of my head, then left tiny tendrils of hair around my face. I wasn’t liking the shadow stuff, or the black gunk she’d put on my lashes, but the gold lip balm I did.

           “See, now you look like a woman, not a fricken child.” She snapped, and I frowned at her.

Virginia had pretty much done the same with Cynthia’s hair, but the gold ringlets around her face sparkled. Cynthia knew she was beautiful, but what I liked was the fact that she wasn’t mean about it. And she treated me as if I was her equal, not like an ex-slave.

           “Come on, I can hear the music.”

           “But I can’t Cindy. I am not white, no matter how much you ignore that.” I moaned and she smiled.

           “Fuck em, I don’t care what they think.” She stated grinning, and I gasped.

I had never heard her use language like that in my entire life!

 We both started laughing as she pulled me from the room with her.


                                                                                                                ***

   As we walked into the huge ballroom, I gasped.

I'd heard about the dances before, however, I'd never seen one up close.

The room was amazing.

            “Come on, I see that cow Samantha.” She hissed,then jerked me in that direction.

            “Well hello Samantha.” She purred, and I rolled my eyes.

Samantha looked her up and down, then me, and started laughing.

            “I see you brought your pet with you tonight. Does she bark and do tricks too?” She replied, and I caught Cynthia’s arm.

I could tell she was about to box her ears.

           “And don’t you look just fetching in last years fashions. I actually had that dress last year, but it’s so outdated I gave it to one of the yard girls.” Cynthia said dripping with syrup, and I coughed to keep from laughing at the expression on Samantha’s face as the women standing next to her looked her up and down, then looked away with disdain.

           “You’ll pay for that bitch.” She hissed at Cynthia and she laughed.

          “Really, I’ll be waiting.” Cynthia hissed back, then took my hand and moved us along to the rest of the people in the room.

                                                                                                             ***


    After about an hour I was sick of the looks, and the whispers; so I walked onto the balcony.

I picked up a glass of champagne as Moses passed me, and he grinned.

Lawd knew I needed it.

    I looked over the expanse of the front yard and sighed.

This was a big gol-darn house.

Why on earth would two people need to live in a house this big?

Cynthia’s mother died when she was about five, and Big Daddy chose to never remarry. He had women all over town too vying for his hand, but he was what we’d call a playboy, and he liked that.

   I noticed it was a full moon tonight, then laughed to myself as I remembered some of the old slaves saying it was for Callin Spirits.

   I always wondered what spirits they’d meant, but every time I asked; they would only say I’d find out some day, then shake their heads laughing.

           “Well don’t ye look fetchin? I almost didna recognize ye.” He said, and I turned.

   My breath caught, then I downed the rest of the champagne.

My god this man was beautiful.

He was dressed in the latest fashion of course, but he'd untied the tie, unbuttoned a couple of the buttons on the vest; so it gave him an almost unkempt look, even though he was dressed to the nines.

However, it looked well on him.

           “And why wud ye need to do tha anyway?” I replied mocking him, then turned back towards the yard and the moon as I heard his laughter.

   He made me nervous.

I might be a virgin, but I knew what happened between a man and a woman.

It was amazing I was still a virgin in the first place, and knew it only had to do with Big Daddy threatening each and every man on his stead with death if they ever touched me.

           “No reason, I wus just surprised to see ye from across the room. I don’t believe I’ve seen ye in anything but britches. I must say I knew ye were beautiful before, but had I known…well never mind.” He replied softly clearing his throat.  

     “Wud ye care to dance?” He asked, I looked at him with both wide eyes and open mouth, then shook my head violently; which caused a couple of the pins to escape.

     “Why is that? Ye don’t like me?” He inquired grinning, and I frowned.

     “It has nothin to do with that. I’m colored and you’re white. White folks, especially men don’t ask colored women to dance. Why it’s not proper.” I cried.

     “I care naught for proper.” He stated, that damn grin back.

     “I know, that’s quite evident. But I do.” I stated frowning.

     “Then give us a turn here, and no one will be the wiser?” He countered smiling, and I looked up at him.

     “You’re serious?” I whispered wide eyed looking around, he nodded, then pulled me to him.

     “There's no one out here, they willna ever know.” He replied winking.

I made the mistake of looking up at him, and was completely mesmerized by his beautiful grey eyes.

He looked down on me smiling.

   As he spun me out, I realized he was a very good dancer.

It probably came from years of breeding, because you could just tell he was an aristocrat; regardless of the fact that he liked being a rancher. I tripped over his feet, he caught me, and as I looked up again he was smiling.

   When the music ended I made to leave the circle of his arms, and he shook his head.

Before I realized it, he bent to kissed me again.

I was at a complete loss as he cradled my head, then deepened the kiss. I felt it down to the tips of my toes, and the moan left me before I realized it. He deepened the kiss again, then lifted me slightly pulling me into his body.

     “Hey Rem?” Someone shouted, and we broke apart.

I gasped, looked at my trembling hands as I lifted them to my lips, then noticed he was panting as well. He gave me a strange look, then that damn grin slowly spread across his features.

As I tried to catch my breath, I saw Riley standing in the doorway grinning as well.

     “Yea.” Remyton replied taking a deep breath, then looked to where Riley was standing as he ran his fingers through his hair.

     “Garret is here, and he’s asking bout the colt.” Riley said, still grinning.

     “Okay, give me just a sec.” remyton replied looking at me.

Riley nodded, looked at me too, then walked into the house grinning.

I made a b-line for the door, but he caught my arm.

     “Wait, don’t go.” He said, I looked up at him shocked, jerked my arm from him and hurried into the house and out the front door.

I heard Cynthia calling my name, but I had to get out.