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Torn Curtain Part 59

Part 59: Torn Curtain

Marianne could not understand a single word her cousin was trying to say. This moment had taken her by such surprise. She had never known Margaret to become hysterical. However, after everything that came before, Marianne understood that her cousin had great cause to let her emotions get the better of her. Grateful that her Andrew was there to help her to restrain Margaret, she continued to try comforting her cousin as the flames continued to engulf the Turner household.

“Please, release me,” Margaret said through hysterical sobs. “Lieutenant, his pockets!”


“Lieutenant Gillette,” Margaret said, once again addressing Andrew, “Lieutenant Groves is inside the house, and his pockets are filled with tiny explosives.”

Marianne watched as her beloved’s mouth gaped open for a moment and his eyes grew wide.

Then, in tones much higher than she’d ever heard him speak before, he screamed, “Quincy!”

“Sir?” Mr. Quincy responded from where he stood.

“Please escort the women back into the house of the Commodore,” her Andrew barked at the young man. “I shall go in after Lieutenant Groves.”

Fear used its icy fingers to take hold of Marianne’s heart. Instinctively, she grabbed hold of Andrew’s sleeve and held on as tightly as she could. She opened her mouth to beg him not to enter the burning house, but before she could speak, a woman’s scream sounded from one of the windows above them.

Marianne watched as the draperies in the window separated and Elizabeth Turner appeared.


Marianne turned toward the sound of the voice and found Commodore Norrington running from his garden, over the short hedge that separated the two gardens and continued running until he was directly beneath the window. She watched as he extended his arms, indicating that he wanted Elizabeth to jump. A moment later, Mr. Quincy moved past her and was soon at the side of the Commodore, also extending his arms and calling out to his cousin, pleading with her to jump.

As she watched Elizabeth grab hold of the draperies and lift one leg over the window sill, Marianne could not refrain from a sharp intake of breath. In moments, Elizabeth’s other leg moved over the window sill, but, as Marianne continued to watch, she saw that Elizabeth seemed unable to make her hands release the draperies.

“Oh, for heaven’s sake, Mrs. Turner,” she heard Andrew shout, “Jump!”

Suddenly, Marianne heard a loud tearing sound. With her mouth gaping open, she watched as Elizabeth fell into Commodore Norrington’s arms--- the torn curtain still in her hands.

Author's Note:

Uploaded right now especially for ssdisney. (Life was, apparently, listening.)


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 28th, 2007 09:08 am (UTC)
*pumps fist*
Score--String: 1, Life: 0
I'm so glad this could be updated tonight! It's making me squirm in my seat, all of the excitement!

I'm curious though: how exactly did the Turner house set to fire?
(Perhaps you're just anxious to finish this? With or without the jump in time between events, your story-telling abilities are still superb.)

Aha! Now we know why it's called Torn Curtain! Though...be it a symbol of Elizabeth leaving the Turner household for a life with James, while taking a little of her old married life with her, or am I definitely reading into things too much, and it just sounded cool?

I'm such a dweeb, and I'm sorry for the comments becoming increasingly longer -_-;;

Last bit, I swear: Oh my God, Groves had better live D:

A'right. I'm done :)
Jul. 29th, 2007 02:33 am (UTC)
Re: *pumps fist*
Wow, er....I just realized I called myself "String"...
Explanation: on ff.net, I'm stringofpearls, so...I s'pose I've adopted String as an all-around interweb-nickname?
Jul. 29th, 2007 04:33 am (UTC)
Re: *pumps fist*
Don't worry about the length. I love long comments.

I don't think I'll write the scene or even much exposition regarding how the house has been set aflame. So, I'll answer you here-- a lamp was accidentally-on-purpose knocked to the ground during the fight between the two men. (Groves *had* to storm into the house to challenge Will. He called Margaret a stupid girl who would remain a spinster because she insisted on keeping company with the Navy's resident pimp/dead-beat-dad/defiler-of-virgins.)

I like that interpretation of yours...

And gmail just notified me that you sent another comment. I think you already know if Groves lives or dies.

Thanks again! (Your comment cheered me considerably.)
Jul. 29th, 2007 04:41 am (UTC)
Re: *pumps fist*
I'm so glad to know that my comment cheered you, rather than annoy me, as I feared it would.

Oooooh, so that's what happened. I figured it must have been due to a fight of some sort.
What a horrible thing for Will to say! This plan he has had better be damn good one if he's going to go around spewing horrid lies at poor young ladies.
(No anger towards you; just Will in general.)

Indeed, you like it? The "..." leads me to wonder how close I am in my assessment...

Yay, Groves lives! Vive le Groves :D
He's too pretty to die.
Jul. 28th, 2007 02:31 pm (UTC)
Oooh, tension! This was great!
Jul. 29th, 2007 03:48 am (UTC)
Thank you very much!

You know, while I've had *this* particular ending to this action sequence in my head for over two years, I was still tempted to cross into Elizabash territory. It's probably a sign that I need to finish this thing and let it go. (And I'm glad that I let her get out of the situation with her life and no real injuries--- she was a much nicer version of Elizabeth compared to other renderings. The muse deserved it for sticking with me so long.)


Thanks again!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )