The cramped room did no favours to Bonnie or Meliza, as the two sat in silence after Bonnie ushered Martainn Tiernan away. She’d told him that her daughter was unwell, and unable to see receive him at this time. The old man and nodded gruffly and insisted on treating her himself, to which Bonnie had lied that she was simply enduring her cycle, and no treatment was needed. Meliza had stopped crying, and seemed to have forgotten her previous cause to be upset. She sat with her hands clasped together in anxiety, muttering about what she was going to say to her father.
“He’ll disown me,” she said. “Or worse he’ll take me back home and lock me up; I’ll never see the sun again.”
Bonnie remained silent, she didn’t even have the slightest idea of how to handle the situation. Like before, there was a knock at the door. Meliza was shaking her head at Bonnie; the knock was not her father’s knock.
A voice called through the door, “Liza? It’s me, Tomi.”
Meliza’s eyes widened and she opened her mouth to respond before quickly closing it again, she leaned toward Bonnie. “Let him in!”
Bonnie moved silently to open the door; she had little time to step aside as the man on the other side burst through. The man wasn’t very tall, and had pale, ghostly skin. His dark hair was like a mop over his forehead, and his chin was covered in black scruff.
“Liza!” He said, coming to a halt in front of Meliza.
Quietly, Bonnie closed the door. She turned back around to see Meliza had stood up, and was in the arms of her guest. Her chin was buried into his shoulder, and she was shaking her head back and forth.
“Tomi! What are you doing here?” She whispered into his neck.
“I’m here for you! I asked your father – he’s given permission for us to marry.” Tomi pulled away to look Meliza in the eyes. “Don’t you remember the plan? You were going to court until I finished my apprenticeship – so your father has no reason to say no to us being married.”
Meliza stared up at him, her lip quivering. Feeling like she was needed, Bonnie stepped forward.
“Mistress Meliza,” she said gently. “Lady Rosina is expecting you.”
Meliza stared at her for a moment, and then nodded knowingly. “Yes, Rosina.”
“Rosina?” Tomi looked sceptical.
“My friend, I promised to visit her today.”
“Oh.” Tomi took a few steps back, “I’ll come for you later then.”
Bonnie quickly followed up behind him, absently following him to the doorway. Once he was gone, she turned back to Meliza and tried to smile. But the frail girl had already turned away, fresh tears pouring down her cheeks.