Real Men Don't Blush

September 9, 1896
Penelope Sumter

“Oh Remington!” I said and waved at him as I hurried up the street to Primrose Hall.

He was standing before the front steps with Catherine Defoe. She was clearly flirting with him and while I have never been a friend of hers I would not wish the likes of Remington Drake on any of the Primrose Girls.

Remington straightened his back and turned toward me. He seemed uncertain in the distance and I privately relished the thought that I had left him off balance even if it was only for a short moment.

“Miss Sumter, it is pleasant to see you again.” He said.

Catherine looked between Remington and myself, no doubt wondering just what our relationship was.

“Why Remington there’s no need to be so formal. Any man who’s seen me as you have has no right to call me anything but Penny. How was your summer vacation?” I replied as I came to stand next to him.

Remington blushed slightly as Catherine stared at him with surprise in her eyes. He cleared his throat.

“I really must be going.” He said.

“Don’t be silly, Remington. I won‘t take up too much of your time with Miss Defoe.”

“It‘s not what you think Penny.” He said.

“Wait a minute. Are you two involved?” Catherine asked looking more than a little concerned.

“Oh certainly not. At least not anymore.“ I said.

“But you were?“ She asked.

“Only briefly and it was never serious right Remy?“ I said.

“Yes, quite correct.“ He replied.

“Just because my father rejected you doesn’t mean we can’t still be friends does it?” I asked.

“Why would your father reject him?” Catherine asked.

“Oh it was nothing really, just a misunderstanding as to Mr. Drake’s intentions. Isn’t that right Remy?”

Remington cleared his throat again and looked about as uncomfortable as I have ever seen a man. His neck was bulging out of his collar and turning redder by the minute. I enjoyed every second but it was nothing compared to the humiliation he had served upon me.

“I really must be going now.” Remington said and started to walk away.

“Don’t be a stranger.” I said with a wink.

Catherine seemed speechless as she watched him walk away. I grabbed her arm after a moment and we began walking up the steps into Primrose Hall.

“We don’t know each other well but seeing as we at least have Primrose in common I feel it only fair I warn you about him.” I said.

“Warn me? What is it?” She asked.

“Remington Drake is a bastard.”

“I think I can judge that for myself.” She replied.

“It is your choice I won’t interfere again. Maybe he won’t do the same things to you he did to me. I cannot know his heart if he has one but I will never trust him again and I don’t think you should either.”

“What did he do?” She asked.

“I cannot speak of such things, just know if my father ever happens to cross his path he’ll likely shoot him dead where he stands.”

Catherine’s mouth opened and closed but no words emerged. I could practically see her imagination going to town on the horrendous and unspeakable things a man could do to a woman. She eventually closed her mouth and looked at me with a half smile.

“I’m sorry. I didn’t know. Thank you for warning me.” She said.

“We can keep it just between us, but I’ll warn any Primrose Girl he comes near.” I said.

She nodded in complete agreement.

That was simple enough. Phase one of my plan for revenge was in motion and I had yet to even break a sweat. Within a few days there will not be a woman in Rhode Island that will speak with him and then it will be time to move on to the next phase of my revenge.

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