The Story of The Rose: the White Rose (the Blossoming White Rose under the Oak Tree)
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This ROV fan-fiction project name is “The Story of The Rose”. There are 3 parts in this story, the first part is “Red Rose”, the second part is “Blue Rose” and the third part is “White Rose”. “The Story of The Rose” starts from episode 28 of anime version and the whole story basically on anime version but there are some things very different from the original. So, please try the new version of ROV and welcome for any feedbacks, recommendations and suggestions.
Disclaimer: None of the characters belong to me, neither most of the story line. They are belonging to Ryoko Ikeda. I am just adding some more imagination.
Note: I am wondering if there are many ideas in this story would be similar to other RoV fanfics have been posted before. However, I would like to explain that those all my own conceptions. Please do ensure that there is no intention to transgression on other authors’ works at all.
“Thank you, Victor.” Oscar said these words over and over again while she was holding Gerodere in her arms. He could not say anything. He embraced her as tight as he could… All Gerodere wished now was for time to stop; if time did not move then he could hold her in his arms forever…
After a long while, finally, Gerodere had to control himself and he released Oscar. He vaulted up his horse and then smiled down at her.
GERODERE: See you in the evening, Oscar.
He said before he left the mansion. Oscar never averted her eyes on his movements: Gerodere riding horse and waving his hand at her. He slowly vanished in the misty morning. When he was out of her sight, Oscar ran to her room, took the French Guards Commander Uniform, and dressed up as fast as she could. She ran to the stables and took her horse. While she was mounting the horse, she heard the maid asking where she was going. Oscar did not answer. She just gave her a smile, and then galloped the horse out of the mansion.
The sun had already risen upon the sky when Oscar reached the barracks. However, it was very quiet and she met nobody there. She felt her heart stop beating as she realized that French Guards Company B would be in Paris by the order from headquarters. Oscar rode her horse towards Paris quickly. She needed to meet her men and of course, especially, Andre. She could not let him join the army while he was almost blind…
Somehow, Gerodere’s words came back to Oscar’s mind. The question he had asked her months ago, which she had not answered: “Oscar. Can you tell me the meaning of the word FRIEND? Of course, I mean YOUR definition.”
And now she was thinking about it. Her friend, a friend like Andre whom she had always relied on; whom she had always kept her eyes on; whom she needed to be beside her always; and whom she wanted to share either pleasure or suffering… So she could not find the difference between the words “friendship” and “love” in her mind…
Paris was now a battlefield. The army had started firing at people. The citizens were armed but not organized; they were no match as they fought head-on with the overwhelming gun power of the army. The Tuileries Square had become a pool of blood now. Oscar headed there and saw many people were shot, many people running away... But her men, the French Guards Company B were fighting with the army; and she could see Andre was standing near Alain; without any apparent reason, Oscar saw Andre’s face was glowing while he was holding the rifle, fighting with the other soldiers. She then made up her decision without a second thought; she will join the Revolution now.
The Company B seemed so glad to meet their commander. Bernard and Rosalie were in the square as well; they were please to see Oscar also. Since they were in a serious situation, they had not chanced to greet each other. Oscar told Bernard that she and the French Guards would try to make the army back away from the square. Meanwhile, he was to build a barricade in this square.
The army and citizens fought everywhere and violence escalated. And the headquarters’ orders to subdue the French Guardsmen were relayed to all the regiments. There were soldiers wherever Oscar and Company B went. Less than half of the French Guards Company B had survived. Now, they were very tired. Finally, they reached the river Seine; Alain had noticed there were not army soldiers around here. Then Oscar and her men settled down under the bridge.
Andre wanted to talk to Oscar since she appeared at the Tuileries Square, but he did not have a chance that time. As soon as they got off their horses, Andre opened his lips and said: “What are you thinking, Oscar? You shouldn’t be here.”
OSCAR: Why shouldn’t I? I am your commander; I have to stay with my men. How about you? You are the one who shouldn’t be here, Andre… I know everything… about your eyes…
ANDRE: Please don’t mention anything about my eyes. You were made to resign by Monsieur Gerodere, you aren’t my commander anymore. Go back home. You’ll be safe over there… He… He is waiting for you, I’m sure.
Andre managed to walk away after he finished saying this. However, Oscar grabbed his hand and called to him tenderly. This made him stop and look at her.
OSCAR: Even though I’m not your commander now, I have always been your friend, Andre… You know…or… maybe more than that…
OSCAR: I am here with you now… Tell me, Andre, do you really want me to turn back and walk away from you right now?
Andre wanted to force himself to nod, but somehow, he could not manage it. His hand was held by the woman he had loved throughout his life; he wished she would never release her hold on him forever… Oscar looked into Andre’s eye, and she held his hand even more tightly while she said: “I love you…Andre, with all my heart… I love---”
Oscar had not yet finished her words but Andre had drawn her close to him and put his arms around her. He embraced her very tightly as though he was afraid she would slip away. The tears came from a single, beautiful green eye… Oscar touched his face gently and wiped his tears away. Andre’s embrace was the only thing Oscar had wished for such a long time. She felt so loved, so safe and warm. Finally, Oscar could not hold against her tears anymore; she was crying in Andre’s chest while holding him in her arms…
ANDRE: I had tried to keep my distance from you because I’m afraid… I’ll lose all control if I hold you in my arms again. I’m afraid… I can’t let you go no matter what happens…
OSCAR: I will not go anywhere, Andre. For the rest of my life, I will always stand by your side.
No one had witnessed the bond between them. Every minute, every moment, every memory came back to their minds. For more than 20 years, they had shared everything together; happiness, laughter, pain or tears. Both smiled at each other. Then they shared a sweet kiss and a warm embrace…
The voice of Alain brought them back to reality. He cleared his throat before saying: “Well, you two aren’t the only ones here. Don’t forget us. We were green with envy just now.” Oscar and Andre smiled shyly while everybody was laughing at Alain’s words.
ALAIN: Congratulations, both of you. Finally, you can declare your true feelings, for each other.
OSCAR: Thank you, Alain.
ALAIN: Anyway, do you have a plan? What should we do now, Commander? The army will find us sooner or later.
OSCAR: We should get back to the Tuileries Square somehow. We can’t fight with so few members. There is no other way but to join Bernard.
ALAIN: That depends on whether we can get to the square. The army is patrolling all along the way. However, we’ll go then. It is a decision.
Oscar’s eyes followed Andre’s back while he walked towards his horse. Without any reason, she saw big white wings spread out from his back, as though he was ready to fly. “Andre!” Oscar called to him and instantly snatched at his arm.
Andre stopped and looked at Oscar. Her eyes never left him. Her hand held his very tightly. Andre said nothing. He lifted another free hand, caressing Oscar’s silky hair delicately as he gave her a tender smile. Just then the smile vanished from his face as he spotted a soldier standing at another corner of the bridge, pointing his gun towards the woman beside him. That soldier raised his gun and fired without hesitating.
The sound of gunfire was loud, coming the same instant everybody heard a word escape from Andre’s lips: “NO!” And at that instant, everybody saw Andre roughly bending himself to shield Oscar’s body completely. Everyone stared, seemingly transfixed, as the blood blossom and spread from his chest to stain his uniform as he slowly fell down…
Oscar had been paralyzed as she saw Andre shot. A flashback of the incident years ago came back in her mind. The water had become red after Andre had fallen into the river… And at this moment, the ground bore his blood as he fell down… The thought of losing him again made her heart stop; made her blood turn to ice…
OSCAR: Andre! Andre! ANDRE!
The sun was setting and the blue sky was turning to a burnished red when Oscar and her men reached the Tuileries Square. Bernard and the people were waiting for them. Oscar had only remembered Alain shooting that soldier who shot André and after that everything had been a chaotic jumble in her mind. She had not remembered how she had managed to bring Andre back to the square. She could not remember how many soldiers she had to fight with while she had tried to rescue her Andre…
Andre was lying on a small, hard and old bed that Bernard had managed to procure. Oscar was beside him. Seeing his pale face, hearing his slow, shallow breathing, Oscar could feel pain spread through her veins. Tears ran down her cheeks… even though the doctors found that the bullet had passed straight through his heart. There was nothing they could do for him. Nevertheless, for Oscar, she loved to make believe that there was a tomorrow for them…
Andre felt neither hurt nor pain, but mercy. He smiled as he finally understood the reason why he was not rendered totally blind… God had given him a chance to see his Oscar nowadays… God had given him a chance to protect the one he loved as he had sworn to do throughout his life… And God kindly enough had given him a chance to wipe off his beloved’s tears now…
Andre lifted his trembling hand to Oscar’s beautiful face. He felt a strange cold; she was in front of him, but why couldn’t his hand reach her… Suddenly the coldness had gone and the warmth was replaced as Oscar held his hand.
ANDRE: What’s wrong, Oscar? Why do you cry?
OSCAR: Andre, if you don’t mind a woman like me… Please marry me… After this battle is over, take me to a small church somewhere in the countryside, and marry me… And promise in front of God that I am your wife.
ANDRE: Oscar… you know, I love you… everything you are. I love you with all my heart and soul. I love you no matter what happens between us, I will never stop loving you… Of course, I’ll do that, Oscar. I will marry you… But Oscar, why are you crying? Am I… dying now?
OSCAR: What are you saying, Andre!?
ANDRE: I’ll be fine… I am immortal. Remember… the explosive didn’t kill me… This time as well, the bullet won’t either…
OSCAR: That’s right…
ANDRE: Please don’t cry, Oscar. I won’t leave you. I won’t let you alone… I swear… I won’t die…
There were so many things Andre wanted to say to Oscar; his dreams, his hopes, his love for her. But he was exhausted; not a word could come out his lips. However, he wanted to console her, comfort her… “Smile, just give Oscar a smile… and she will know I will be fine…” he told himself.
And when Andre smiled, he saw Oscar smile back. She was so beautiful, so lovely and so pure. She pressed a white rose into his hand. He had never seen her with so much pleasure as now. Andre was happy now; finally he could dry Oscar’s tears… Finally, he could make her smile. Just then a teardrop came from his eye…
OSCAR: When we were in Arras, we saw a sunrise together. Let’s see that sunrise again, Andre. That beautiful sunshine… together… Feeling the blessing of being born to meet each other, and to live together…
Oscar paused and waited for Andre’s reply, but he made no response. His eyes were opened wide, but he was not seeing her. A slight smile was on his face, but it was not for her. His hand was still warm, but it did not squeeze her hand… Oscar trembled as she realized that Andre was breathing no more… She had lost him forever…
OSCAR: Andre! Andre! Are you leaving me behind!? NO! ANDRE!
She had lost him once… now she had lost him twice… She wanted nothing and nobody but Andre to share the rest of her life with… How could she endure life without him? Oscar felt as though her heart had just been torn into pieces. She fell down on her knees, her tears seeming to flow without end…
Andre’s body was placed in a small church near the square along with the bodies of the company men and citizens who died in the battle during the day.
Oscar sat in front of the church without making any movement, as though she had turned to marble. Alain looked at her in silence. He wanted to sit near and comfort her. However, he could not do it now, since Bernard needed to consult with the French Guards about his plan for tomorrow, July fourteenth. Oscar had sunk into a deep depression; she was unable to do anything just now. He would have to meet Bernard as his commander’s representative.
The rain was pouring. Alain knew Oscar was still sitting in front of the church. He realized that she had looked pale and had been frequently coughing recently. The rain was not good for her health. After the talk with Bernard had come to an end, he took a raincoat and went back to the church. He found nobody there.
Oscar walked in the rain without any destination in mind. Everywhere in Paris, she was reminded of Andre. Every road she used to ride with him; the road to Jarjeyes’ mansion, Versailles, the barracks, the bars… Every path the two of them used to go together… Oscar stopped at the bridge across the river Seine as she realized that this was the place where Andre was shot hours earlier. Just then she felt her body trembling. She suddenly lost all energy. She let herself kneel on the ground as she could not stand anymore… Her eyes gazed on the floor; it was wet and clean. Rain had washed away everything; no blood remained as if this place had never borne any fighting before. But the sound of gunfire and the image of Andre bloody would never fade away from her heart…
OSCAR: You never asked the reason why… You said you didn’t mind even though I married Victor. You said you couldn’t release me…Why don’t you keep your words? Why do you leave me alone? The rest of my life, I want nothing but you…Don’t leave me like this. Please come back to me, Andre…
The chilly rain was poisoning her health; Oscar coughed very hard. She did not care anymore. How could she possibly be alive any longer while she was dying inside?
For a desperate moment, Oscar’s heart lit up as she felt warm and found a raincoat on her shoulders. “Andre!” She cried, turning back and throwing herself to the man in front of her. She embraced him very tightly.
OSCAR: Andre! Andre! Finally, you come back! I know you won’t leave me… I just know that…
Unfortunately, this man was Alain, not her Andre… He stood still, his body tense when Oscar leant herself against him. Somehow, he closed his eyes; put his arms around her. “Look at me carefully, Oscar. I’m Alain,” he managed to say lightly and tenderly… Then he felt her entire form go rigid. The next second she held him even more tightly; her head leant against his chest. He heard her sob… Alain said nothing; he stroked her hair softly, carefully and quietly…
As dawn drew near, the rain stopped. And July 14th, the monumental day in the history of the French Revolution was about to begin. Some citizens raided the armory of invalids. Taking 36,000 guns and 12 cannons, they headed to Bastille.
Oscar opened her eyes slowly and found a familiar face in front of her. Andre was here! She could not help but smile; seeing her love’s face before everything else was so wonderful… She touched his face gently, wanting to make sure that it was not only her imagination.
Her hand could touch him; his face was so warm. He was breathing, he was alive! “Andre…” Oscar said softly. Soon he took her hand in his and called her name. As soon as his voice reached her ears; Andre’s face disappeared and Alain’s replaced it. The smile vanished from her beautiful face as well… She looked around and realized that she was on a small bed in a tiny room. She looked again searchingly but Andre was not there. Only Alain was sitting on the edge of the bed beside her.
ALAIN: Remember what was happening last night? After we met at the bridge, a group of soldiers found us. They tried to catch us, luckily, we escaped. Then you fell to coughing terribly and finally lost consciousness... so I took you here.
OSCAR: Where am I now?
ALAIN: In my place… Well, anyway, how are you doing now?
Silence… no word came from Oscar’s lips. She did not want to have Alain worried. However, she could not say she was fine or all right. How could she be fine when she was in the depths of despair right now?
Seeing that Oscar was keeping silent, Alain sighed before saying: “Nothing might be comparable to your deep grief, but you’re not the only one whose heart is bleeding. And life goes on…” He paused, then squeezed her hand.
ALAIN: Bernard told me yesterday. Some saw a large amount of gunpowder and cannonballs carried into the Bastille. And they changed the direction of their cannons toward Paris. So now all people are heading to the Bastille Prison. They will make an attack!
ALAIN: Everyone is heading toward Bastille. But your French Guardsmen are still in the square, waiting in the square, believing you’ll return! Commander, we are waiting for you to come back. To fight with you!
For a second, Oscar felt as though Andre was talking to her. Nevertheless, she reminded herself of the truth that she had lost him now and forever…
Alain waited for her reply. She lifted her face, looked at him and said simply: “Right… I shouldn’t keep everyone waiting.” Alain nodded quietly, still holding her hand. A few seconds later, Oscar placed her other hand on top of his?.
OSCAR: Your hand is so warm… Really like… his hand…
Just then Alain noticed her hands were trembling, and tears started from her beautiful blue eyes. Seeing her cry, his heart tightened despondently…
OSCAR: Alain, just once more… This is the last. Can I cry…?
He nodded and gently pulled her towards him. She hid her face on his chest. Alain wrapped his arms around her and said softly: “Go ahead. Cry all you can.”
The battle had begun in the afternoon. The people were able to acquire 12 cannons but nobody knew how to use them. The Bastille, while only having Marquise de Launay and 114 of his soldiers, had its solid walls for protection and the soldiers’ knowledge of operating the cannons gave them power. More than a hundred people were killed outside in no time. The crowd was hopeless. However, the arrival of Oscar and Company B brought back their faith.
OSCAR: Sorry, I’m late. We’ll handle the cannons.
Oscar ordered her men to fall into position and the first cannonball was fired toward Bastille, followed by several precise shootings. Soon, it was clear that the Bastille was shaken and would fall. Marquise de Launay realized that it was all due to the capable commander giving orders below. He told his soldiers to aim their rifles at Oscar and fire at her.
Oscar started as the first bullet entered her body. She fell down when several more shots rang out). Blood slowly seeped out from her slender frame. It was strange, she felt nothing; neither hurt nor pain. Everything around her faded into white…Oscar wondered if Andre felt the same way when he was shot. “Andre…” she said softly as she lay on the ground, eyes wide open…
Commander! Oscar! Hang on! Can you hear me!? Oscar!
OSCAR: Don’t yell, Alain… I can hear you.
She answered in a soft, light voice: devoid of her usual power and energy. Alain turned to the people and said loudly: “What are you all doing? Lend me your hands! Move her to a safer place!” The soldiers in the Bastille were still firing at her. A small group of men carried Oscar away from the Bastille. Bernard led them to a small alley. Rosalie was there. She was so frightened when she saw the blood on Oscar. Oscar told Alain to put her down.
OSCAR: Put me down, Alain… Please, I beg you… I’m really tired… Five minutes is enough, I want to rest in peace…
The doctor measured her pulse, then shook his head when Bernard asked about her situation. Rosalie wiped the blood away from Oscar’s face. She could not fight against her tears anymore. “Lady Oscar…” She sobbed quietly…
Why? I can’t hear the firing of our cannons. Fire, keep firing… Seize the
Bastille. Fire, Alain, fire. What are you doing!?
ALAIN: Ex-French Guards! Get back to your positions!
Alain saluted Oscar before he left. The tears started from his eyes, as he knew this was the last time for them to see each other. He would be never again see this beautiful, brave and gorgeous woman alive… He got back to the Bastille and led the fighting as her deputy.
Can you hear it, Oscar? The voice of the people making a charge!
But Oscar could not hear anything anymore. Her eyes were half open with a far-away look… She was back in the past; those beautiful and painful days when she and Andre were together… Everyday she spent with Andre was a treasure. Nothing as valuable as this memory… She was pleased as she saw Andre in front of her. He was smiling tenderly. Finally he had kept his words, now and forever he would never leave her lonely…
Rosalie called to Oscar as she saw her eyes close: with a finality that was terrifying. She was lying still, not moving. “No!” Rosalie shouted; she could not believe this was really happening. She would not see her Lady Oscar anymore…
An hour later, the Bastille Prison surrendered with a white flag. And Alain walked back to the small alley again. He saw Rosalie holding Oscar’s pale hand and began crying so hard. Bernard was sitting beside his wife, trying to console her. Alain lifted the lifeless Oscar in silence.
ROSALIE: What are you doing…?
ALAIN: Andre is in the church… I’m sure; she wants to go back to him…
Rosalie could not help but cry as she watched Alain take Oscar away from her. She kept watching them until they disappeared from her sight. In the mist of her tears, she bade Oscar farewell silently…
The Light and Shadow had become one again, and never will they part for eternity…
Madame Jarjeyes sat on a large reclining chair in Oscar’s room. Her mind had drifted off, until the maid came in and told her that Gerodere had arrived in front of the Jarjeyes’ mansion now. It was almost a month after July 14th; Gerodere did not step into the mansion. And Madame Jarjeyes totally understood him.
On July 13th, her heart had almost stopped beating when she learned that her daughter had joined the Revolution. And the real disaster had struck in the evening of the next day, when the messenger had come to the mansion. Later Rosalie had appeared in front of the main door with moisture in her blue eyes. She had told General Jarjeyes that Oscar’s and Andre’s bodies were in the small church near the Tuileries Square…
Although Oscar was Jarjeyes’ heir, she was Gerodere’s wife also. Thus, the General thought he should inform Gerodere that he wanted to bury her in his family grave in Arras. Gerodere had sent short message with the reply; “A favor for my Oscar, she will be at peace and will be pleased if she sleeps in Jarjeyes’ repository with her lifelong friend.”
Madame Jarjeyes had felt sympathy toward Gerodere whenever she thought about him. Who would understand his feelings while he was writing that message? Even though it hurt his pride, he had permitted Andre to stay with Oscar. Because this was the last thing he could do for her. Had Oscar realized how wonderful Gerodere was, how much this man loved her?
Madame Jarjeyes got up and walk out of Oscar’s room. She met Gerodere outside.
MME JARJEYES: It had been a while since we last met. How are you, Victor?
GERODERE: Thank you, Madame Jarjeyes. I apologize for my absence.
MME JARJEYES: Oh, you don’t have to apologize. I understand you have been so busy nowadays. Well, I’m glad that you have some free time to come over.
GERODERE: How is Nanny? I heard her health wasn’t that good. I have some tonic for her.
MME JARJEYES: Oh, you’re so kind. Thank you very much. Nanny hasn’t been good for a month, since Andre…
Just then, Madame Jarjeyes realized she should not bring this matter up with Gerodere. So she asked about his family instead.
Time heals all wounds. As time passed by everyone in Jarjeyes’ mansion accepted the death of Oscar and Andre. The tears had gone; only the memory and sorrow remained…
Gerodere looked around Oscar’s room. Everything had stayed the same only the owner was not there anymore. A flashback of the first time he had entered this room came to his mind…
On that day, he was riding to the grove. Accidentally, he found Oscar was lying unconscious on the river bank. There were four or five men around her, some were serious injured and some dead. He had taken her back to the Jarjeyes mansion. He had felt the sharp pain when he heard her calling only to her lifelong-friend, and his heart had ached when he saw her crying…
After suggestion: he had examined her in the mansion, Doctor Lassonne had asked everybody to leave Oscar, she needed to rest. Doctor Lassonne had remained behind while everyone left her room. Gerodere walked along the corridor and realized that he forgot a sword in her room. However, he stopped in front of the door immediately as he heard Doctor Lassonne’s words.
LASSONNE: Lady Oscar, you need to take good care of yourself, since you have been pregnant for two months.
LASSONNE: Please believe me…
Silence… everything in the room had been silent. Gerodere had been paralyzed. He had stood still, unable to make any movement.
After a moment, Doctor Lassonne had broken the silence by saying: “You should tell Count Fersen.”
LASSONNE: Lady Oscar?
OSCAR: Doctor Lassonne, please don’t tell anyone, especially Fersen!
LASSONNE: Lady Oscar?
OSCAR: Please, I beg you.
Doctor Lassonne could not help but nod. He had reiterated to Oscar about resting and nourishment before finally taking his leave.
OSCAR: Thank you Doctor Lassonne. I’d just like to let you know, I won’t marry Count Fersen.
He had given her an interrogating look. However, Oscar had said nothing. Gerodere had gone and hid himself at the corner of corridor automatically when Doctor Lassonne had made his way out the room. Oscar had cried out suddenly when she was alone. Gerodere had bit his lips, his hands clenched. He had looked at her door in silence.
Day by day, Oscar’s injury had healed; however she was not ready to face anything. She had been keeping herself in the room. Gerodere had visited her everyday. As usual, he had come to Jarjayes’ mansion after working. Although she had told him that she was fine and he had not necessarily to worry about her. As for that day, he had entered her room after visiting General Jarjeyes.
Oscar had been serene while they were talking. Nevertheless, her manner had changed to furious immediately as he had told her that he asked General Jarjeyes’ permission about his daughter.
I told him that I would like to marry his daughter. I would like to marry you,
OSCAR: What!? What kind of joke are you talking about!?
Gerodere had looked at her. He moved close to her and took her hand. “I am serious, Oscar. I am not kidding! I was frightened when I saw you unconscious. I had heartache when I saw you crying on that day. And I realized that I love you!”
She was stunned by his words. She had not even thought about special feelings for him. How could he dare saying that to her? Oscar tried to pull her hand from him, but Gerodere held hers tightly, and he still kept saying: “It isn’t time to propose you yet. I know you are in a really difficult situation. I would love to share all of your pain and suffering…”
OSCAR: Stop being delirious! You must be out of your mind. I need a rest now, and you need it too!
OSCAR: Hey! I want to rest now, don’t you hear me!? Goodbye!
He had known she would act like this. For Oscar, it was irritation that he proposed her; and it was unreasonable if she would accept him. However, Gerodere needed her to know he really wanted to marry her, he was sincere. He loved her and he could do everything just for her…
GERODERE: I don’t know, what’s happen between you and Fersen. But what are you going to do if you don’t marry him?
Oscar had turned to him sharply. Her eyes were sparkling as she had asked: “What the hell are you talking about!?” Gerodere had taken a deep breath and finally said: “I was here on that day, Oscar. I didn’t intent to but I have heard Doctor Lassonne’s every word…”
Oscar had felt something struck in her head. She managed to say: “Gerodere, you have known…”
Gerodere had given her a tender smile and nodded his head.
OSCAR: No! Gerodere, it isn’t your responsibility. I know you just have pity on me, but don’t worry, I can handle it!
GERODERE: It isn’t about responsibility or compassion. The only one reason I do it because I love you, Oscar.
She had looked straight into his eyes. And she had seen the sincerity in him. Somehow the look that Gerodere had given her right now was just like to the one of another man. Andre had always looked at her this way and she had tried to deny it. It was too late to admit it now…Oscar bit her lips, trying to fight against the tears.
OSCAR: No, Gerodere. Don’t harm yourself. Believe me; if I'll be your wife, you won’t stand seeing me bear the child of someone else. You won’t endure the gossip about the child who looks absolutely different from you.
GERODERE: I can’t stand seeing you face all the problems alone, Oscar. I know there is nothing to insure my words, but time will prove it. I don’t ask you to love me. I am asking you to give me a chance. Please, Oscar, give a chance to me, yourself or even your child…
In a moment of cheerlessness, commotion and depression everybody needed someone to hold. Oscar was a human being, and the one she needed had gone. And now Gerodere was here; he was offering his hand…
Oscar now had kept lowering her face, and said nothing. Some time after, she had opened her lips and said some words; Gerodere had felt his heart lift as he had heard those words. She had said with light and soft voice: “If you marry me, you will regret someday…”
GERODERE: I will regret, if I don’t marry you, Oscar.
He had kissed her hand and said: “With all my heart, I promise you, I will always love you.”
Gerodere sat on the edge of the couch, and looked around the room. Although the time had passed by, he still remembered every moment he had with Oscar as if it just happened yesterday. Warm breeze touched his face while he was thinking of his wedding day…
There were many suspicions among all nobles in Versailles, because they had known that Oscar would marry Fersen. Now Gerodere had replaced him. Nevertheless, the wedding between them was arranged immediately. Their wedding had been very grand and sumptuous, that had been the best event of the year.
Everybody (especially the groom) was stunned when they had seen the bride. Gerodere had almost forgotten to take a breath; Oscar in white gown had been really graceful. She had been more beautiful than every noble woman in Versailles.
Even though Oscar had looked calm, Gerodere had known there was no peace inside her mind. She had not given any respond when he had held the ring. Therefore, he had taken her hand and never released hers. The moment he had put the ring on her finger; he had known she had hesitated and needed to run away. Gerodere had squeezed her hand. He had given her a tender smile and nodded his head.
The wedding ceremony had continued… The Cardinal had blessed the wedded pair, and the couple had signed the marriage certificate at last. Gerodere had signed the paper delightfully, whereas Oscar had to manage herself holding a pen. She had bit her lips and signed the paper with difficulty. The wedding had ended up with the bride had losing consciousness suddenly after finished signing the paper…
Oscar had opened the eyes and found herself had lying on grand couch. She had looked around and met nobody but Gerodere. He had been sitting on the edge of the bed; he had not averted his tender eyes from her.
OSCAR: Gerodere, where am I?
GERODERE: You are in my mansion and this is your room. You might be very tired; you fainted after the wedding ceremony. So I took you here. How are you now, by the way?
OSCAR: I’m okay, thanks.
GERODERE: And may I ask you a favor?
Her eyebrows had lifted up and given him an interrogative look. Gerodere had said softly: “Can you call me by name, Victor, instead of Gerodere?” And he had smiled as finally Oscar had nodded her head. He had gotten closer to her and bent his face to kiss her. Just then she had budged herself away from him automatically.
An uncomfortable moment had been risen gradually. Somehow Gerodere had managed to smile and say: “You look so very beautiful in this gown. But I bet you want to take it off as soon as possible. Well, I’ll call the maids to help you.” He had grinned before stepping out the room.
GERODERE: Don’t worry, Oscar. I won’t touch you unless you want me to.
Gerodere gently stroked the ring on his finger; he never took if off. He was still thinking thinking about the past. Oscar had changed the clothes and removed the wedding ring as well. She had never worn it again. She had said simply that she had not been keen wearing jewelry.
Although the marriage had not taken a rule as general couple, their married lives had continued smoothly. Gerodere had cared Oscar everything and she had been kind toward him. At least, it had been a good sign; perhaps their relationship would have developed in future. Nevertheless, a regrettable incident had happened and had frozen their affinity.
Gerodere had taken Oscar to visit his family’s properties in Champagne. He had been pleased as he had noticed Oscar’s refreshing while they had been staying in the country-side.
After two weeks in Champagne, they had returned to Versailles. The carriage had been passed Paris on the way back. Oscar had looked at roadside, then they had discussion about the commoner’s life. Suddenly, she had told the coachman to stop the carriage. She had left the carriage and headed quickly to a narrow road. She had run as fast as she could as though she had forgotten about her pregnancy. And Gerodere had followed her hurriedly.
Now Oscar had stood in the middle of the nasty alley. She had turned around over again looking for something. Gerodere had seen a group of people at the corner of that alley. They had been very dirty, pale and indigent. They had stared at them unfriendly, yet only animosity had been set in their eyes. Gerodere had felt suddenly uncomfortable.
GERODERE: What’s going on, Oscar?
GERODERE: What are you talking about?
OSCAR: I’ve seen Andre.
Gerodere had lifted his brows as her words reached his ears. Oscar had frowned when he had given her an odd look.
OSCAR: I did see him! He was walking on the main street and headed to this way!
GERODERE: He isn’t alive. You already know this fact.
OSCAR: The fact is no one has seen his dead body! Why didn’t I think about it before?
GERODERE: But no one has seen him after that day, nowadays. And you didn’t either. If he is still alive why hasn’t he gotten back to the Jarjeyes’ mansion? And what is he doing here? I’m sorry to say it is only your imagination, Oscar.
He had said it softly and looked at Oscar carefully. She had bit her lips while listening to him. However, when Gerodere had stopped talking, she had pointed at the corner of the alley and said simply: “I’ll try that way.”
Gerodere had grabbed her wrist immediately and raised the voice.
GERODERE: No Oscar! You can’t go that way! Don’t you see those people? Don’t you notice the abhorrence in their eyes? Those commoners hate all the nobles, they can harm us anytime! You had the experience months ago. Why are you so s--.
OSCAR: What are you going to say, Victor? You want to say why I am so stubborn or why am I so stupid?
GERODERE: I’m sorry, Oscar. I didn’t mean that.
OSCAR: I know you are concerned about me and I really appreciate it. But human beings are stubborn, unreasoning and insane sometimes. I don’t care about the risk right now. I probably won’t find anything, but it’d better than go back home now. So, let me go, Victor. You just wait for me in the carriage, okay?
He had looked straight into her eyes. He had held her hand tightly before saying: “Where ever you’ll go, I’ll accompany you.”
And then they had walked along the alleyway. As Gerodere had expected, they had been obstructed by the commoners. However, at least Oscar had reached her target; she had seen ruined houses, dirty street and penniless people, but not Andre. When those commoners had approached them, Gerodere had held his gun and fired several random shots that made them stop moving. He had taken Oscar away from that place hastily as the people wanted to catch them. Those commoners threw wooden sticks, rocks and garbage toward them.
“Ouch!” Oscar had exclaimed and fell down as she had been hit by a thick wooden stick!
OSCAR: I’m okay. Let’s go out of here!
Although Oscar was feeling pain, she had managed to run. Gerodere had helped her. Actually, he had wanted to carry her but she had refused. She had realized if he had done it, they would have moved quite slowly.
And finally, they had reached the carriage safely. Notwithstanding, Oscar had felt not good and had had a pale face. When they had arrived at Gerodere’s mansion, she had climbed the stairs making her way to her private room as fast as possible. Suddenly, she had lost control and had been unable to stand anymore. Oscar had fallen off the stairs down to the floor and had been lost consciousness. Everybody, especially Gerodere had been frightened as they had seen the incident.
A young maid had wiped Oscar’s face. She had opened the eyes as she had felt a soft and warm fabric touching her skin. Gerodere had stood near the grand bed and Doctor Lassonne had been beside him. He had simply told the maid to leave the room when Oscar had regained consciousness.
OSCAR: My child!
LASSONNE: Lady Oscar, you are safe now.
OSCAR: My child! Doctor, what about my child!?
Silence, neither Gerodere nor Doctor Lassonne had said even a word. By judging from their manner, Oscar had suddenly known the answer. Nevertheless, she had wished the terrible thing would have not happened.
Oscar’s reaction had taken Gerodere by surprise; she had been quiet after Doctor Lassonne had told that she had miscarried. If she had screamed, wept or cried, he would have been less worried about her. Yet Oscar had been unusually calm…
And she had maintained her usual life as though nothing had happened. Everyday, she had read many books in the morning, practiced fencing by herself, gone out for riding and come back the mansion after sunset. Although she had been able to eat, talk and smile, Gerodere had known she had forced herself to be normal. Since Oscar had talked to him after they had finished dinner. She had tried to make conversation with him thorough the night. She had never behaved like this before. Usually she always avoided him during the night time.
Apart of this, she had started a strange habit. She had always said she had seen Andre. He had been looking at her outside the mansion. She had tried to catch him, but in fact Andre had passed away. This had been annoyed Gerodere so much as he had believed Andre was not alive anymore. And he had never seen anyone standing outside his mansion.
Gerodere eased the back against the soft bed and looked at the sky outside the big window. The sky was so bright now, however he saw it was gray. Perhaps, it was not the sky but his heart. Memories of the past days gradually came back to his mind and seemed never let go. Oscar’s face never faded away from his soul…
Oscar had not fall asleep after the miscarriage. She had talked to him every night just because she had simply needed a friend. He had tried to please her; somehow being sleepless had not been good for the health. Therefore he thought about taking her to another place. Changing the environment probably could heal her feeling. Oscar had seemed so interested the first time he had told her. But she had been irate when he had mentioned about Arras.
GERODERE: General Jarjeyes told me about the properties in Arras that you loved so much when you were a child. Would you like to visit there?
OSCAR: What!? Arras!?
GERODERE: You didn't go there for many years, did you? I think you’d like to visit there…
OSCAR: No, I don’t want to go to Arras! Everything has changed now, only the memories of Arras it’s what I want to keep it forever!
GERODERE: Your father just visited there last month. He said everything was was like before.
OSCAR: No! I said NO.
GERODERE: What’s wrong, Oscar?
Oscar had bit her lips and walked away from him suddenly. One… two… and three days, she had kept herself in her private room. Gerodere had stepped inside and found she had been lying on the bed with teary and vague eyes. She had not realized that he had sat beside her. He had touched her hair gently and said with soft voice: “Oscar, please don’t do this. Look at me and tell me what’s wrong. I’m always beside you. I’m here for you.”
As those words had reached her ears, Oscar had stared at the man in front of her. Because of the dim light of the night or her blurred eyes she believed to see her lifelong-friend. He had been there sitting beside her, caressing her hair and talking to her. She had darted into his arms immediately.
OSCAR: You, finally you are here.
Gerodere was stunned as Oscar had embraced him tightly. He had heard her whispering some word but unable to catch it. She had touched his face delicately. He had looked at her smiling face and for a second he had felt as if she had been looking someone else. And that thought had frozen him. However, everything had turned to blank and Gerodere had thought nothing when Oscar had bent her face and pressed his lips with hers.
OSCAR: Do you still love me?
He had nodded quietly. Her soft hand had caressed his cheeks before moving to his lips. And eventually, she had whispered: “Then, hold me, kiss me and love me.” With that Gerodere had been unable to fight against his great desire anymore…
The Morning light had replaced the dark. Gerodere had slowly opened his eyes when the sun had thrown its light upon his face. He had smiled as the remembrance of last night incident had come to his mind. The warmth of her embrace, the softness of her skin had remained still. He had turned his head aside and found out himself lying alone on the big couch. Somehow, he had recognized the way she had gazed at him; and it had chilled him again. Whom Oscar had really thought of while they had been holding each other?
Oscar had held hot chocolate in her hand while Gerodere had been entering the living room. He had gotten close and sat beside her. He had looked at her carefully; her face did not express anything. He had wondered what she had thought under the apathetic face. Gerodere had not averted his eyes from her for several minutes. Finally, Oscar had turned her face and met his gaze.
OSCAR: Is there something on my face?
Gerodere had shaken his head then Oscar had kept asking: “Do you want some hot chocolate?” And he had shaken the head again.
GERODERE: You are so beautiful, Oscar.
Oscar had sipped at her drink, and pretended not to hear him. He had smiled and bent to kiss her cheek. Just then she had pushed him roughly; and the chocolate in her hand had been spilled on his shirt.
Both were speechless for a second. And the uncomfortable moment had occurred between them again. Anyhow, Oscar had managed to say: “I’m sorry, Victor. Your shirt is soiled; you’d better change it to a new one.”
Gerodere had known that she had tried to avoid him. Thus he had snatched her wrist before she had gotten up from the sofa. Oscar’s eyes had opened widen as he had held her very firmly.
OSCAR: Can you release me, Victor?
GERODERE: Do I disgust you?
Oscar had not answered him. Instead, she had struggled trying to free herself from his hand and that had made Gerodere losing his calm. He had pulled her closer and pressed her lips with his violently. She had hit him as hard as she could, however he had not released her. She had screamed when his lips had pressed to her throat and his hands had caressed her body.
GERODERE: What’s wrong, Oscar? Just think about last night. You were delighted in my arms, weren’t you?
OSCAR: Stop it! Victor!
GERODERE: No! Look at me, Oscar! You’re my wife now! You ought to think of me not of someone else! Tell me who did you thought about last night when you held me!? Was he —?
Gerodere had stopped saying abruptly as he had realized what he had just said. Oscar had been numb by his words. He had regained his consciousness as soon as he had seen frozen Oscar. She had not struggled anymore. He had seen only distress in those beautiful blue eyes. He had wanted to punish himself now for his roughness.
GERODERE: Oscar, please forgive me… I didn’t mean to…
She had remained silent for a while. And finally, she had leaned her sad eyes on his face and said with soft tone; “Now, do you believe me, Victor?”
GERODERE: What are you talking about?
OSCAR: Are you regretting?
By now he had figured out what she had been talking about. Oscar had told him on the day he had made his proposal that he would have regretted if he had married her. And he had ensured he would have never felt that way…
Gerodere had reached his hand towards her beautiful face. She had not moved nor budged away from him. However, she had been startled as he had touched her hair. He had been guilty for his recklessness. He had caused her fear, frighten, and pain...
GERODERE: To be honest, Oscar; our marriage is my pleasure. Having you as my wife is the greatest thing I ever had. I will never regret loving you, my dear Oscar.
Gerodere had been anxious after that horrible event. He had given Oscar a scare; she might have left him. Anyhow, she had never mentioned it. Probably, it had been a mercy on him; or probably she had returned his love. And it had comforted Gerodere somehow; because of her kindness, therefore as much as he had gratified her, Oscar had been unable to abandon him. So he had decided not to obstruct her when she wanted to join the military; as French Guards Commander.
After Oscar resumed working, her gesture had turned to normal. She had stopped talking about the mirage of Andre at all. And Gerodere had known the truth later that Andre had been alive and had been a member of French Guards…
Some time later, Gerodere had noticed Oscar always had laid her eyes on Andre. He had realized that it had been exactly the same way she had looked at him on one unforgettable night. He had been ANDRE whom she had been thinking of when they had spent the night together!
He had been frozen by this fact. And he had doubts about the real reason of the breaking off between Oscar and Fersen. Had it been because of Fersen or Oscar herself?
An anxiety had been rising after the apparition of Andre; Gerodere had seen the sign that Oscar could leave him. If it had happened, what could he do? Should he have let her go? While deep inside he had been unable to admit it. He had said he had not asked for her love while deep inside he had really wished she would have loved him. Should he have leashed her? While it had been in vain; her heart had belonged to someone else. And he had known even his thousand tears had been unable to restrain her…
Notwithstanding, a man has his own pride and stubborn; Gerodere had been just a man as well. He had still continued his great hope. And it had seemed coming true when Oscar had wrapped her arms around him on July 13th.
In the morning of that day, before he had left the mansion, he had asked her a question: “Have you ever loved me? Have you ever thought about it, at least just one fourth second?” Oscar had not answered him yet, and somehow he had not wanted to know the answer. Anyhow, what happened next had made Gerodere almost stop breathing; she had held him in her gentle arms…
This had been the first time that she had embraced him really. And this had been exactly the first time that she had not refused or resisted him as he had put his arms around her. “Thank you, Victor. Thank you” Oscar had said these words over again while she had been holding him in her arms…
Gerodere had thought finally she had taken him into her heart. Why had he believed that she would have waited for him in the mansion? Had it been destiny, so that he had not realized that it had been the sign of Oscar’s farewell?
And as if it had been fate, he had tried to find her every place in Paris after hearing that she had joined the Revolution, but had not met her... Gerodere had felt nothing but grieved when he had gotten back to the mansion. Over there, a white letter had been laid on the table in his private room. It had been written by Oscar and it had been only one line:
May I ask a favor? Please tell my father ‘Thank you very much for your love and mercy on a daughter like me.’
The large oak tree deepened its roots and spread its branches in Jarjayes’ garden. Long time ago, two children had climbed its branches. Once these children had fenced, played and slept under its shadow. Gerodere looked at the oak tree silently. A flashback of a conversation he had with Nanny one night came to his mind.
Since Oscar had began working with French Guards, she had gotten back Jarjeyes’ mansion often than Gerodere’s mansion. Therefore Gerodere had always stayed at Jarjeyes’ mansion also.
One night he had brought a cup of hot chocolate to Oscar, but she had thought he had been Andre. That had made him sleepless that night. Fortunately, he had met Nanny downstairs; she had hardly fallen asleep as well. She was worried about his grandson.
Then he had told her that he had wanted to hear about Oscar’s childhood. Nanny had been surprised as she had heard him. Nevertheless, she had told him the stories. Meanwhile, Nanny had been happy while she had been talking about memories . When Oscar had been born, the first time when she had met Andre, the days that kids had spent time together.
And Nanny had narrated about the little story about the oak tree. When Oscar was seven n and Andre was eight years old, they loved to play as pirates. One night in a beautiful summer time, the two children buried their treasures under the oak tree; Nanny saw them by chance. The kids believed that no one was aware of this matter. They were so proud of their secret, thus Nanny just pretended not to know about the trifle…
Gerodere felt sharp pain inside his heart with the fact that Oscar and Andre had a lifelong alliance. No one intervene the bond between them. He stared at that big oak tree for a long while.
“May I share the memories of your childhood, Oscar?” He thought, and then dug down into the soil under the tree. The old iron box and its key were settled there. Gerodere gazed that box for a moment before took a key and managed to open it. Somehow, the lock was dead and the key was unable to use. He stopped his action. As though it was a sign, perhaps Oscar did not want him to see inside that box.
GERODERE: Is it your answer, Oscar? This is yours and Andre’s treasure. It was time and memory of you both. So you don’t want to share it with anyone else?
How could he always make a fool of himself that she could possibly accept him?
GERODERE: Have you ever known how much it hurts when you have everything and nothing in the same time, Oscar? I want nothing but your love, and you never gave it to me… How cruel you are…
General Jarjeyes sat quietly on reclining chair near the windows in his room. He kept his eyes on the big oak tree. Memories of the two children in the past days came to his mind…
Oscar and Andre had used to play around this tree. Their smiles had been bright and those smiles had seemed to stay forever. On those days, General Jarjeyes had never thought about the life without them…
His mind would drift off unless Gerodere had not stopped strolling at the oak tree. He saw him stood still and staring at the tree for long time, before he finally knelt down and dug the soil under the tree. A moment later, Gerodere stood up and held a small iron box in his hands. His gesture seemed as he was trying to open that box and ceased doing it somehow. At last, he put the iron box in the same place and buried it.
While Gerodere was burying the treasure box, General Jarjeyes noticed teardrops coming out from Gerodere’s green eyes…
------- THE END -------
pubblicazione sul sito Little Corner del dicembre 2009
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