Frustrated with her husband Lady Northam snatched the sheet music back out of his hands and did her best to hide her annoyance and frustration with the help. Seething with inner turmoil she darted a cold glance at Mary Holly @atomicnut…tearing a piece of bread off of the end of the loaf she had been cutting with her finely gloved hand… "you can keep your woodland berries. This should suffice to hold me over…I know how to eat with more than a silver spoon” the words laced with sarcasm to denote that she was well aware of how she was often viewed.
Cora already knew she was caught between worlds upon marrying Lord Northam but their demeaning glances reminded her of where she once was. She was well aware of what her life was like before her father made his wealth…that’s what made her so difficult to marry off. She knew she didn’t fit in with those born of their titles. She also knew that nobody looked beyond her newer wealth and privilege. With rank came privilege and with privilege came…expectations.
During her childhood there were no expectations of Cora other than to get an education so that she could have a respectable future. She remembered life before servants and maids and how she yearned to be like the wealthy…but as much as they looked down their noses at those lower than them…it wasn’t love and adoration that they were met back with. The rich thought the poor lowly and dirty and the poor thought of the rich as pompous and arrogant.
However, she knew what it was like albeit briefly to taste that sweet in between of freedom - the laissez faire of being neither under scrutiny by a title or by lack of finances. The period of time between neither being under House Prideaux or Lord Northam during finishing school/college was fresh in Cora’s mind. Her unwillingness to settle into her “proper” place coupled with being the main heir to her father’s fortune would be what landed her here at the Northam Estate in the first place…being stared at with a mixture of loathing and envy by people she barely knew. And what little they do know of her is that of “Lady Northam”…not the girl formally known as Cora. She was after all Lady Northam now… merely yet another possession belonging to the Northam Estate…like all of the other antiques and fineries that have come here for their funerary she thought.
Cora gritted through her teeth trying to stifle her emotions as she shot back at Lord Northam @Themerlinhawk without so much as looking at him as she crossed to leave the kitchen “Whatever you desire dear Husband. After all isn’t that what you married me for? To be able to buy whatever your heart desires? I’ll be up in my room.” With that Lady Northam exited the kitchen holding her head as high as she could muster.
Lady Northam trapsed back up to her room clenching her skirts tight in her fists huffing all the while under her breath “What piano?! What does he mean what piano? Who owns a house and doesn’t even know what’s in it?? And all of these women?! Showing their legs even! The Queen mother would be fit to be tied! I bet he just loves having a house full of women under his command. The kind of women who end up bearing poor titleless bastards and die scullery maids!” She reached her bedroom not caring that she slammed the door behind her “What piano?! The nerve! I didn’t keep myself up all night!”
She threw herself on to the bed and screamed into her pillow like a child throwing a temper tantrum when they didn’t get what they wanted before her anger gave way to frustration and tears. Cora wanted so badly to go back to the safety and freedom of her old life. She enjoyed all of the attention and gifts she was lavished with by various suitors trying to win her affection. She enjoyed being able to come and go as she pleased and most of all she enjoyed having no serious expectations placed upon her. She knew what being admired, adored and even loved was and knew Lady Northam was none of those things in this house.
Cora knew that her words had been a bit barbed toward her husband…that she was as guilty as he was for choosing to marry to preserve money and status over love first but she refused to accept that they were both prisoners of the same design. All that Cora could see were the expectations that came with being “Lady Northam” and how unsure she was that she could live up to them and be a decent wife and eventually mother like was expected. She was rather overwhelmed at the thought of having children with someone who she barely knew. In Cora’s mind her womb and future heirs held more value to others than she did and she had no idea what to do with that.
Cora did her very best to try to push her feelings down and compose and straighten herself out of fear Lord Northam could come barging through the door at any moment. She knew she was in no position to feel sorry for herself when so many others would give anything to trade her places, but Cora couldn’t help but feel very much a prisoner held captive by this house and her “expectations”.
The haunting piano and strange melody that Lord Northam didn't even know existed crawling constantly in her mind...Lady Northam went to her closet and took out her violin. She delicately took off her gloves and began rosining her bow. She then cradled the violin into her neck and began to lose herself to its strings...strumming the notes off the sheet music that had been left for her.