This week’s task we have asked to include the word “Cornflower” into our post.
When Myra received the invitation to attend the annual village ball she was in two minds.
Flattered that she would be asked, and by Sir Thomas of all people, was beyond her wildest dreams.
Sir Thomas was the most eligible of bachelors within the district and the man every girl in the village hoped would notice them and ask for their hand in marriage.
Myra worked in the fields by day. Her father managed the south field in which he grew in alternate years corn and potatoes.
Myra was not the most attractive girl by village standards. She sported freckles, was tall and thin and was forever being caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. Not that she was a naughty girl it was more she had an inquisitive mind and so her mind distracted her from her task of weeding.
So at break time she might wander off into the bush behind the south field and sit and observe the bird life and if she was lucky a few native lizards that ventured in close to the fields she worked in.
She was always being called back to work and the other farm hands referred to her a Cornflower, in no complimentary way as they regarded the vivid blue flowers that grew among the corn stalks as a pest and Myra was fast becoming one holding up the work that had to be done each day.
But today her mind went to the invitation she held in her hand.
She had never met Sir Thomas; she didn’t know how he could choose her over all the far more eligible girls in the village. But the invitation definitely had her name upon it.
Her mother was of course proud and pleased her daughter had been chosen. She began planning her daughters ball gown, she drew sketches of suitable gowns and had Myra sit by her at the fire after work so she could teach her daughter some of the rules of etiquette she would need to know to attend the ball.
Days flew by and Myra was a bundle of excitement as the big night arrived.
At 6pm a knock was heard on the front door. There stood the head coachman from Sir Thomas castle. Myra was bundled into the coach amidst the excitement of the entire family who gathered to see her off.
Sir Thomas was the perfect host. He was polite and well mannered and led Myra gracefully around the dance floor.
Many had crowded into the room, festooned with the best flowers in bloom, and in the centre of the room a huge array of cornflowers, their brilliant blue hue a telling centrepiece in the room.
In a break from dancing he asked if she liked the centre flower display and that cornflowers were his favourite blooms despite the farmers constantly complaining that they were nothing more than a weed.
After a few moments observing the display he asked her to accompany him on a walk through the castle gardens.
It was on the walk that he revealed his reason for asking Myra to the ball. He had as Lord of the Manor observed her at work and had been fascinated by her demeanour as she toiled each day.
It was her interest in nature that fascinated him. He too liked to sit and watch the bird and the forest life. He showed her a painting he had made of two people sitting in the forest watching a red robin in a nearby tree.
Myra was immediately embarrassed to notice that the figures in the painting were clearly she and Sir Thomas.
She gulped and held her hand to her mouth.
She looked at Sir Thomas. Where was all this going she asked herself?
Sir Thomas took her hand; kissed her fingers asked her if she would consider him as a possible suitor.
Myra was lost for words.
Her first thought was is he setting me up.
Her embarrassment was evident and she reminded him of the many beautiful and more eligible girls in the village.
Sir Thomas looked at her. Said he knew she was called “Cornflower” and that he said was all the more reason to ask her as he was looking for a girl with spirit and imagination and in Myra he saw just that.
Sir Thomas was about her height, he was a young man schooled in the fine things in life, Myra was a field worker. It would never work.
He sensed her apprehension and said to her, ‘Don’t say no, think on my proposal and we can take it day to day.’
Myra said nothing her mind a race with thoughts and how she felt about such a thing. Suddenly the ballroom centrepiece made a lot of sense as she considered the cornflowers a pest too having spent so many of her days pulling the things out.
As she walked back to the ballroom with Sir Thomas, her hand slipped into his. It felt right, safe and he leaned over as they reached the door and whispered in her ear, “I like your hand in mine Myra, please call me Tommy.’