Becoming Sophia (95)

I could feel Gerard’s hungry eyes on my backside, but there was nothing I could do about it and he was saving my life, so I suppose it was some kind of payment well deserved.

When I turned around, Gerard was picking up my mother’s wedding dress and stuffing it into a sack. “Do you want this?” He asked gruffly. I nodded at first, but then, realizing how irreparable the damage was and how easy it would be to identify me if it was found in my hands…I shook my head no and Gerard tossed it into the barrel behind him which he then lit on fire. It broke my heart to see my mother’s dress burning and I looked away.

“The Prince bade me give you this,” Gerard said quietly, dropping several gold pieces into my hand. Looking down only at the coins, as if somewhat embarrassed, he said, “and there’s a couple more in there for the show.” I was appalled, but thanked him anyway before turning away, walking towards the throng of hysterical people chanting for my blood and losing myself among them.

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