Of Tunnels and Lights

The options that lay before Kitty were two; marry Sir Goodenough or engage herself in the employ of the Lady Connelly.  Two most undesirable options as she could ever have imagined her life to present itself with.  On the one hand, Sir Goodenough was nothing more than his name suggested.  Gray and thrice her senior his only pleasures in life were his three hunting bitches which never seemed to cease from giving him little pleasures that he must relate to all who were generous enough to listen.  He was prosperous though, and were Kitty not to be sickened by boredom into an early grave, she would surely be comfortably situated for the rest of her life if she were to accept his offer.  Yet imagining her future settled at Goodenough Lodge gave such a rush of palpitations in her chest that Kitty couldn’t bear dwell on the prospect much longer.

The alternative was even worse however, for while she would be mistress of her own house should she become Lady Goodenough, what had she to hope for in the station of governess for Lady Connelly’s three daughters?  At the Conellys she would be overlooked by the family and classed as mere help, while deemed too high and snobbish by the servants.  Kitty would be as lonely and friendless as at the prospect of marrying the knighted grandfather.

As she dwelt on her unhappy future a servant came in, a frown set upon her features, evidently affronted at being forced to be civil to the temporary house guest.  The servant bowed – if the stiff ducking at the knees could be considered as such – and trusted a missive in Kitty’s hand.  The servant hurried away before catching the changed countenance that the contents of the letter presented to their reader.

Kitty beamed exalted.  She did not exhaust all her options after all.  Her manuscript had been accepted.  Catherine Stonebridge was now a writer and the command of her future had suddenly become her own.


Artist: Mary Cassatt
Gallery: Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

Every time I see the prompts offered by Trifecta on Mondays, my mind instantly draws a blank.  It turns into a deep black hole where no ideas venture and I ascertain myself that it will be this week were I shall be defeated and fail to come up with a story.  Eventually though (so far at least) after much thought an idea does come.  And so this week I again present to your critique this snippet from my imagination and I sincerely hope that you enjoy it.  The challenge was to create a story using the word EXHAUST:  to consider or discuss (a subject) thoroughly or completely /  to try out the whole number of <exhausted all the possibilities>

37 comments on “Of Tunnels and Lights

  1. joetwo says:

    Good to get a way out with writing!

  2. Brian Benoit says:

    I guess her writing was Goodenough for the publisher (chuckle chuckle chuckle). I liked the easy tone of the piece – very believable for the period. The bit with the servant even gave me flashbacks of Downton Abbey, and I didn’t mind that a bit. Nice work!

  3. kz says:

    i certainly enjoyed this! love the Austen feel in the piece! very well done 🙂

    • Sandra says:

      I have wanted to write a piece like this for some time; I just love the kind of English used in times gone by. So I am glad you enjoyed it; with you being a fellow Austen fan and all.

  4. Draug419 says:

    Oh I’m glad she found another option (:

  5. Perfect ending. Love your choice in names.

  6. Sandra says:

    Very Jane Austen… very convincing.

  7. Annabelle says:

    The bit about the unceasing delights presented by the dogs that Goodenough was compelled to pass along made me laugh; great period language.

  8. Lumdog says:

    Great story and interesting characters. I too loved the writing style. Having attempted different voices, I can appreciate the hard work.

  9. deanabo says:

    This is brilliant writing.

  10. You’d never know you struggle with the prompts.

    Concrit: I think you mean “thrice” not “trice.” No?

  11. jannatwrites says:

    What a lucky break for her. Neither of her other options sounded appealing!

  12. kymminbarcelona says:

    Fun with names! The other options seemed so constricting. Nice work.

  13. atrm61 says:

    So glad she did not have to choose any of the two options & instead she was rewarded with a much more exciting option:-)Loved this beautiful piece-it felt like a page from a classic.

  14. atrm61 says:

    oh,yes what you wrote at the end about how it feels when you see the prompts-I too feel the same-only I have yet to come up with such gems as these:-)

    • Sandra says:

      I love your stories! I keep thinking of the one with the fairies in the cave when the prompt was ‘mouth.’ I had had a similar idea but couldn’t make it justice so I just scrapped it, you on the other hand, nailed it!

      • atrm61 says:

        Am glad you like them-I am surprised that I am able to do this kind of thing & that “cave” story has appealed to so many-a few wanted me to take it further-am stumped cos I thought it was silly & childish,lol!Your encouraging words & the vote of confidence is like ambrosia(now don’t ask how I know what Ambrosia tastes like please);-)Thanks a ton-am off to bed now-at the crack of dawn,lol!

  15. Suzanne says:

    This is so wonderfully written! Love the language and I was so happy that a third option opened for Kitty. Great job!

  16. Kitty says:

    As a budding writer named Kitty I found your story very uplifting. 🙂

  17. The servant bowed – if the stiff ducking at the knees could be considered as such

    My favourite line.
    Take me back ye olden days – love this style.

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