Life Without Life

Chapter 16:

After Katherine leaves the castle, the Baron has a brief talk with his son. He explains to him that it is imperious that he be married to Josette within the next two days. Matthew argues that it isn't right and he refuses to marry her.

"Matthew, what will it take to get through to you? You know the laws of this land: a Baron's son must marry another Baron's daughter. And you know how important this is to me as well as the rest of this manor."

"I am truly sorry, Father, but I cannot marry Josette," he says flatly.

"Well, once you make a statement like that, I must insist on asking you to explain yourself."

"Well for one," he starts but then realizes that all that he had before is gone. he has no choice but to marry Josette or face the consequences if he tries to leave the manor. "Nevermind, Father. I guess there are no reasons."

"Does this mean you are willing to go through with this marriage?" the Baron asks hopefully.

Before Matthew could answer his father, a guard barges into the chamber. He is out of breath but is able to speak three words, "Josette- - - is- - - gone."

"What?!" bellows the Baron. "What do you mean Josette is gone? Well, speak up boy!"

Catching his breath, the guard says, "She is gone, milord. Out towards the Western Mountains." Before the Baron can speak, he adds, "With that Blacksmith's boy."

"So, Katherine speaks the truth! I should not have been so hard on her or you, Matthew." He turns towards his guard and orders, "Have your men go into the Western Mountains and search for Josette. I do not care what you do with the boy, but bring Josette back to me!"

"Aye, milord." He bows and leaves the chamber.

"Matthew, we may have to postpone this little engagement but when we find her, you will be wed at once!"


chapter 17