Deep Sleep Dreaming
By Erin Griffin
Disclaimer: the characters belong to the literary genius, Sarah Waters, not me.
Author's Note: I read the book, and I just saw the movie. This deserved a little drabble. Hope you enjoy. The title was taken from an Evanescence song for lack of something better to call it.
There should have been no hesitation. When she came back into my life, I should have sent her away Told her I was happy, and asked her to leave. But I didn't. A small part of me was still Nancy Astly, the oyster girl back in Whitstable who was taken by the woman in the music halls. For a moment, she was the woman I loved- No, the woman Nan King loved. I have since then taken back my name. I am Nancy Astley. That is the name Florence, my dear, beautiful Florence, whispers I love you to before blowing out the lamps and lanterns and curling into my body for warmth, warmth only I could give her.
Not Lillian. she brings me warmth. A kind of warmth that she'd never take away for the price of a few bookings in large London dance halls. No no, my heart would never be broken in the hands of this woman. Kitty Butler wanted her oyster cake and the ability to eat it too. She wanted her marriage of convenience while she romped between the sheets with me, and I realized that it wasn't what I wanted. I didn't want to be careful. I wanted to let the world know I was in love. She was ashamed of me. She wasn't a tom, but I was. I am. Florence is. My heart beats now for Florence as it once had for Kitty. Dull now is the ache in my chest when I think of the time I was Nan King, but I do not miss it. Not when I can look into the eyes of someone who loves me every morning and lay in the arms that caress me at night. If I could have this and never sing another note, I would definitely give it all up. In a way, I have given up the dream of living the big time in the dance halls and various theaters. It wasn't really my dream, it was Kitty's. My dream was to be with her wherever she decided to go. That dream has gone as well. Now, I don't dream. Not in the sense of planning my future to be a certain way. I live my life of rallies and politics and changing the world for the better, day by day, hour by hour. As long as I fall asleep with her- my Flo- everynight, I can make that my dream, a dream I'd never want to wake up from.