Diary Entry, Christmas Morning, 1878
Much ado about Reginald. I know he is handsome and smart, not to mention immensely wealthy due to his crafting of intricate watches and toys, but my heart belongs to Humbert. My family would be scandalized if they knew my wild and free Humbert visited me nightly in my bedchambers.
Reginald, sweet thing that he is, sent a beautiful gift for the first day of Christmas. I do believe he has outdone himself. It is a mechanical partridge sitting in a copper pear tree. Each feather is hand-crafted and unique, and if I but touch the head, the eyes sparkle and the most astounding music wafts from the beak while it dances in tune. He is so clever! If only Humbert had Reginald’s brilliance, I would swoon and run away with him on the morrow.
Diary Entry, Christmas Noon, 1878
Reginald’s brilliance knows no bounds. When the great clock struck noon, the partridge coo’d twelve times! I’ve noticed the head always turns to look at me no matter where I am in my chambers. I have no idea how this is done, but the magic makes my heart beat faster.
I checked by the scullery door, and Humbert left a new love letter in the crack by the chimney. He is so darling! I cannot wait to have him hold me in his manly arms tonight.
Diary Entry, Christmas Dinner, 1878
Poor Reginald, he cannot attend dinner, having been commanded by the Queen to go to the palace again. My father is rightfully not pleased, but he respects Reginald’s sense of duty.
Diary Entry, Christmas Evening, 1878
I almost had the vapors after dinner. The thought of Humbert in my bed tonight has me all atwitter. I have decided that tonight I shall give myself to him, and tomorrow we shall run away to the city together.
Diary Entry, Christmas, Half past 11, 1878
My Lord! I don’t know where to begin! Humbert was at my window as promised, and as we lay together for the first time as husband and wife would, he was attacked by an invisible assailant. Three copper leaves from the pear tree were driven into his heart as he mounted me. The constables are speaking to Father. Blood is everywhere! The assailant must be a thief, for now my poor little mechanical partridge has gone missing.
Diary Entry, Christmas Midnight, 1878
My life is at an end. Reginald has sent word that he is releasing me from my engagement via courier. Father is furious, for he now knows why Humbert was secretly with me these past months.