Chapter Ten – continued
“I didn’t know,” Muriel whimpered. “I didn’t know.”
“You must write immediately,” Abigail said, pushing force into her voice, making her sound more authoritative than she felt. But she knew the royal family, how they operated. She knew what to do to repair the relationship before it was too late and there was no way to see Madeline married off to Adrian. “Invite the Prince and Princess to Olidan Manor. If they accept, you are halfway to being forgiven and can then beg them for the rest.”
From where she huddled on the floor, Muriel nodded, her eyes focused on a spot just in front of the skirt of Abigail’s gown. “Yes,” she said softly. “Yes, I will do that. I must. Madeline must marry the Duke. I must make sure we are in the Prince and Princess’s good graces.”
Abigail caught Camille’s arm just as her sister was opening her mouth, fury on her face. She shook her head and Camille angrily snapped her mouth shut, glaring at Abigail before whirling out of Abigail’s grasp and stalking up the stairs.
Swallowing hard, Abigail reached down to help Muriel up. “Come, Stepmother,” Abigail said softly. “I will help you.”
She would probably regret this, drawing Muriel’s attention to herself, but it couldn’t be helped. Even with two sisters now instead of one, soothing ruffled feathers was still Abigail’s duty.
“My sweet Abigail,” Genevieve used to murmur. “You may be quiet, you may shy from society, but your eyes see the soul. Your eyes see a way to peace.”
Abigail still had no idea what her mother had meant, but her father had taken it to mean Abigail would be just as accomplished a negotiator and ambassador as he was one day, if only she would speak more.
Abigail grimaced as she guided Muriel into the parlor and over to the small writing desk. It was mostly used only by Lawrence when he was home, but Abigail didn’t think he would mind if his new wife used it. After all, he’d be just as intent as Abigail at repairing fractured relationships. Of course, their reasons would be different, but her father didn’t need to know.
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