Ebooka przeczytasz w aplikacjach Legimi na:
Odsłuch ebooka (TTS) dostępny w abonamencie „ebooki+audiobooki bez limitu” w aplikacji Legimi na:
© Copyright 2017, Veronica Sloan, All Rights Reserved
NOTICE: This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your favorite ebook retailer and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.
Disclaimer: This story contains explicit content, including graphic descriptions of sexual intercourse. It is intended for adults only. All characters depicted are over 18-years-old. This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events, is purely coincidental.
Cover created by Veronica Sloan. Cover Photo © Ospictures & Kornilovdream.
* * *
If this was a detective story, it would be over rather quickly. The mystery of the Carmichael marriage had persisted since the couple said their vows in the spring of 1930, but its solution was obvious. One did not require a degree in forensic science or the novel psychology of Doctor Sigmund Freud to understand why the Carmichaels were unhappy. The two were a terrible match.
The only eyes blind to this obvious fact belonged to Mr. Carmichael himself. It took three years, several broken vases, a small fire in the sitting room, and finally the destruction of his Rolls-Royce Phantom II cabriolet, before he was willing to seek help.
Help, that is, for his batty wife. It was Minerva that was defective, not he, and he was the decider of the household, not she. This, to the man's most rational mind, was the source of their unhappiness. He believed the woman was confused. She did not comprehend that their life was totally without fault, that he, and in effect she, had achieved the American dream. This had earned Mr. Hubert Carmichael the sum of its lucrative rewards, and at the very least his wife's obedience.
Unfortunately, Minerva Carmichael was as obedient as a feral cat.
Hubert didn't understand his wife at all. She had seemed so vibrant before they wed, lithe and winsome as a dancing ray of sun. At the time, he feared she was too vibrant. At 43-years-old, Hubert prided himself on his disciplined conservatism. It would not do to have his 20-year-old bride galavanting about town like a rambunctious princess. Still, her family was of good stock and she was a comely creature. The union made sense for both their houses. It boosted his reputation from a self-made millionaire to one of the true elite, and it rejuvenated the fading wealth of her aristocratic roots. Love would come in time, and in time he expected her to cease her inquisitions about "her place" in life's grand scheme.
"You are my wife," he would answer.
"And?" she would reply.
"And does the Lord not say that you shall honor thy husband?"
"When did the Lord say this to you?" she demanded. "Can we send him a telegram and invite him to tea? I have words for him as well."
Hubert Carmichael was not an overly religious man (his god was printed in the United States mint), but this sounded like the sort of blasphemy that would get them tossed out of the finer social clubs. He reminded Minerva, frequently, that she must keep her forked tongue locked behind her teeth. "When you say such things," he told her, "it is as if the devil is inside you."
"There is no devil," she countered, "just my deep dissatisfaction."
Perhaps it would behoove him to return to church, Hubert thought. How else might he exorcise his wife's opinions?
The answer eluded the man for three long years. Now he was 46, Mrs. Carmichael was 23, and he was almost certain she was insane. Fortunately, her insanity had not dimmed her great beauty. Yes, from time to time her large green eyes would widen with violent intent and her slender fingers would sharpen into talons, but her skin was still as pale as a Madonna lily and her lips, though small, were as succulent as strawberries. It was this great beauty, and her intense dedication to improving it, that drove Hubert to indulge her madness. He might have done so indefinitely, had she but left her hair alone.
It was when he came upon her, the silver scissors in her trembling hand, that he knew there was something dreadfully wrong with his dreadful wife. Minerva's hair was woven by the angels themselves, as lustrous and as curly as ribbons on a Christmas package. When they married, it reached her lower back in a golden cascade. When he returned home that fateful Friday afternoon, it barely curled past her earlobes.
Hubert could ignore the shattered vases, he could replace the rug in the sitting room, but this insult would not go unpunished. He packed Minerva in the Phantom II and ordered her to sit still until they arrived at her father's house. The old man would see what she had done and together they would devise a suitable prescription for her ill temper. It was shortly afterwards, blinking awake from his concussion and answering questions from the constables, that Hubert reconsidered his plan.
Obviously, his wife's illness was more extreme than he knew. Much more obviously, he needed to keep it a secret. If it got out that Hubert Carmichael, of Carmichael Powders and Liniments, was having trouble at home, what would the shareholders think? He was one of the few men in New Hampshire untouched by the market's meteoric crash (Americans were in perpetual need of powders and liniments) and he refused to let this personal humiliation bleed into his public life. He grew his fortune through sheer will, and by sheer will he would pull his insane wife back from the brink.