Epilogue to Maurice
"Maurice, would you be so kind to bring in the last bundle of wood?"
The afternoon air was growing colder and fog was beginning to set on the woodland as Maurice chopped wood by the cabin. "Sure thing, I'll only be a moment!" Maurice cried to the man inside the cabin who was waiting for him. Maurice tidied up his work, and walked weightlessly to cabin with the fresh wood. He stepped inside and told Alec, "I aspect we will need more as days grow colder. It is nearly winter now…"
The days following Maurice and Alec's reunion at the boathouse, they planned and set a course for work and a home far outside London. After much difficulty, Maurice chucked his job as a stockbroker and before, Alec's career in the Argentine. A job in the woodland, or any job outside London, would suit them. Alec was familiar enough with hard labor that he could easily manage. Maurice wasn't, he was a gentlemen. A gentlemen didn't go from the stock market to hard labor in a matter of days. However, Maurice accepted his new title that society put before him. He would accept anything for Alec, and Alec for him. Two years past, and Maurice was a different man. He no longer looked like the average English gentlemen, but a gamekeeper, a factory worker, someone who worked with the Earth. Him and Alec were closer than they had ever been. During this time, they shared a little cabin close to where they worked. Most of the men who they worked with shared cabins. Maurice and Alec were deeply grateful for this.
"That's right, nearly winter now…" Alec said with a hint of glee in his voice.
Alec helped Maurice with the wood and placed it in the small fireplace. Maurice smiled to himself and carefully shut the old oak wood door to the cabin. He walked over to the only window, near the desk, and gazed at the vast woodland that surrounded their home. Maurice closed his eyes and took a deep breath. "This is were our hearts lie," he thought to himself. He heard Alec shifting the charcoal and the cracks the wood made in the fire. Alec glanced at his lover and longed to embrace him after a hard day's work. It was warm in the cabin now, and Alec walked over to Maurice and slipped his hand in his. They both felt the familiar warmth flow through their hearts and minds. Alec snuggled a little closer to Maurice and they both stared and the small reflection their two faces made in the glass.
Some time passed, and darkness had fallen on the woodland. The two men had only taken off their shoes and coats and were laying down, in each other's arms, on the rug by the fire. They gazed at each other, with the soft light of fire clinging to their features.
" We have come so far, Alec." Maurice said as he stroked the side of Alec's delicate face. Alec only smiled and nodded, yet understood, and held Maurice's other hand in this own.
"I never imagined it could be you me like this. And you, I still remember you callin' to me. Glad I came, for we would never be here," Alec said with warmth.
Maurice shifted so his cheek was on the soft cloth of Alec's chest and his left arm hugging his shoulder. "Maybe so…but I think we would have crossed each other's paths eventually. I could sense something when I saw you at Penge. I will always remember your eyes, for they set my heart free. At first I thought It was another curse…but now I know it is a blessing."
Maurice smiled and shifted his head so he could see his beloved. They were so close that Alec could see the tiny freckles on Maurice's nose. Alec's eyelashes fluttered and together they leaned in for a kiss. Maurice and Alec glided their lips together in perfect harmony. Maurice stroked his strong fingers through Alec's curls and Alec ran his hands down Maurice's back, like flowing water. The warmth of the cabin, the isolation in the woods and with English society behind them, all was well.