[in which the author reads a situation entirely different to the one Mister Charles Dickens wished to convey]
She traced the lines of the other girl’s pale face, the timid reflection of that girl she had first witnessed in the arms of her own loving father not more than eight or nine years past. To look at her now, Meg reflected with the merest tremble of her heart, was to know little of the ardour that had fallen upon them as surely as her own father had fallen from the tower of the old church those many years ago.
Though holly now hung over the bed they shared, she had instead prayed for mistletoe.
An uncomfortable familiarity had been borne of the failure of Meg’s wedding day. Though it was the man who once she had intended to take as her groom that had reunited her with poor, child-like Lilian, Meg could not help but resent the intimacy to which Richard inferred, by his lack of words, to having known with her.
To think that sovereigns had bartered passage where, for many years, Meg’s chaste kisses could not, filled her with a sort of trembling sorrow.
She made tiny sounds between her petite lips, shaping experimental words in address to the slumbering cherub on the pillow before her, dirty blonde hair plastered by sweat and grime to the pale skin of her face.
Her hands gently pulled back from that sleeping face, convulsing like victims of the same malignancy that afflicted their weeping owner.
In that dirty room where no fire burnt and even the yellow light of the candle waned, Meg Veck whispered the silent platitudes of a genuine and oft betrayed love.