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Thoughts of the Markgraf

Delphinia went to her room for the rest of the morning. Her journal lay open on her desk, its gold-lined pages unmarked as she contemplated the autumn-hued courtyard garden.

The questions she wanted to ask, she could never voice. What do you feel for me? What do you mean by this? Passive as water directed by an unseen current she must submit to another guiding force. But the answers to such questions would serve to direct circumstances in her life which could still be changed.

Delphinia bowed her head with confusion over her pink satin-covered book. If Gauvain had no wish to change his present plan to marry Adelia, would she wish to change hers anyway?

No. She didn't want to spend her life alone. She had spent too much of it alone already. Christoph was a high-spirited companion. If she could not offer him the same feelings as she felt for the Markgraf, would it be wrong to marry him? Would he ever feel an absence in her regard? She could not definitively decide.

A knock at the door interrupted her reverie. Delphinia rose to find Christoph at the other side. His carefree looks rankled her, so at odds with her own pained contemplation.

"What are you doing in here alone? We were discussing the possibility of a riding party this morning, but there's no fun in it without Delphinia."

She glanced away uneasily. Christoph had never assisted her onto a horse, only her family's footman. It would be difficult to hide her disability from him.

"May my nurse accompany us? I feel unwell. I may need her assistance."

Christoph's gaze was more penetrating than she had expected. There was a question in it. "But of course, my dear."

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