Two weeks and a day after Alice received the last letter from Jacob, he arrived at the train station. She could hardly contain her excitement as she embraced him. She smiled and said, “you must tell me all about your adventure, but not before we have some time together.”
The next morning, Alice told Jacob about Georgia. “She reminds me so much of Grace,” she said, “but her father has plans for her.” Jacob queried, “what do you mean? What kind of plans?”
Alice said, “Georgia carries a torch for a young gentleman, whom her father thinks is not suitable. He wants her to marry a wealthy man. It’s just so sad, because I believe that she will bend to her father’s wishes.”
A month later, Alice and Jacob went to Tierney’s and saw Georgia sitting at a table with a middle-aged man. In a low voice, Alice said, “that must be her father. He’s a lawyer in town. Do you recognize him?” Jacob said he didn’t. Alice said, “I’d like you to meet Georgia.”
They walked over to the table, the gentleman stood up and a surprised Georgia said, “hello Alice. This handsome young man must be your Jacob.”
Jacob extended his hand and said how happy he was to make her acquaintance and followed it with, “I’ve heard such lovely things about you.”
Then Georgia said, “please allow me to introduce you to my fiancé, Mr. Horace Spellman. He’s the president of the B & O railroad.”
Alice had to hide her disappointment as well as her anger as she allowed him to kiss her hand.
Horace looked at Jacob and said, “I understand you travel quite a bit on my train, young man. We must see about getting you a discount.”
Georgia could see the displeasure on Alice’s face and said, “Alice. I would like to extend an invitation to you and Jacob. Mr. Spellman and I are getting married in two weeks and I would like very much for you to attend.”
Alice quickly said, “I need to powder my nose. Georgia, would you like to accompany me?” Georgia, as if in servitude, asked Horace if he minded, which angered Alice. As soon as they got out of earshot, Alice said, “what are you thinking? I know you don’t love that man, not to mention that he’s old enough to be your father!”
Georgia said, “my father arranged the wedding. In return for a lavish life-style, plenty of money, financial help for his failing practice and the promise of a male heir, he gave Mr. Spellman my hand in marriage.”
Alice forcefully said, “I beg you. Don’t throw your life away. Wouldn’t you rather be with someone you love instead of being some old man’s drudge, catering to his wishes and being nothing more than a silent, pretty face and a brood mare? And what if you don’t produce a male?”
Alice calmed down and said, “we only have one life, Georgia, and we mustn’t waste one minute of it doing the wrong thing.”
One week later, Alice and Jacob were at Tierney’s, and gossip was abundant. Georgia had defied her father, left town and married William.
The server smiled and handed Alice a note when she brought their hot chocolate and Bonbons. It was from Georgia.
Thank you so much for
opening my eyes and giving
me the courage to follow my
I will write when we get settled.
Your eternally grateful friend,
Alice smiled and hoped to someday see her friend again. Before the smile left her face, Jacob said, “darling, I have to tell you something”
To be continued_________