December 19, 1896
Margaret Spooner

“Look. It’s snowing.” I said.

Edgar rolled his eyes. I could have slapped him it made me so angry.

“We should be in my apartment in front of the fireplace.” He said.

“I am right where I belong. You didn’t have to come with me.”

“I couldn’t very well let you go alone.”

“I’ve traveled home alone many times before.”

“I would never have allowed it.”

“You would never have stopped it.”

“I beg your pardon.”

“As you should. These journeys home are not frivolous desires. Christmas is about family and I will not spend such a day apart from my family so long as there is breath still in me.”

“When we are married, I will be your family. Will you be as devoted to me as you are to your mother and father?” Edgar asked.

“Who says my devotion is to my parents?”

“You are avoiding my question.”

“No, I am questioning the premise of it.”

“Then tell me simply, will you be devoted to me as a wife should be to her husband?”

“In my own way.”

“What does that mean?”

“It means that my devotion may not always be as you expect it to be.”

“I see.”

“I doubt you do. Will you be devoted to me?”

“Need you even ask?”

“You asked it of me, I think the question returned is only fair.”

“I am here.”

“And that is your answer?”

“If I were not devoted to you, I would not be here, nor for that matter, would you.”

The train whistle blew. The station was just up ahead and I was almost home. I was happy, but Edgar was not. To think of it, I do not believe Edgar has been happy in some months now. I wonder if it is because his parents are so far away in Spain or if it is because of something else, perhaps me.

I believe I am not what Edgar wants me to be, but I do not think it is I who have changed. He should have known I am not the kind of girl who dreams of a fancy wedding and a six bedroom home filled with crying babies. I am not even certain I want a child at all. Edgar and I may not be as compatible as I once thought we were.

When Edgar asked me to marry him, I expected the engagement to be fun and exciting. All these months later, I have now learned the reason this period of betrothal shares its name with a military term for battle. Even the illusory moments of peace are merely strategic pauses in an ongoing conflict. In the end, will we find peace in compromises or will our two lives be so incompatible that the war never ends?

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