”I want everyone to be of good conduct. Any error, you wouldn want to know what l will do to you. Okay!? ”

”Yes, my Lady! ” We all chorused.

After the food has been cooked, we proceeded to set out the food on the dining furniture when we heard noises from near hinting at the arrival of the master. We hastened our work, as we don want to anger Lady Quinn if anything is not in place. We, the kitchen maids arranged ourselves in a single line as we have previously planned. The wait was not long as the huge mahogany door opened to reveal a drop dead gorgeous, elegant, lean but muscular man. My mouth dropped open on its own ordeal on seeing the captivating man but l was quick to close it back. l don want Lady Quinns punishment now. Do l? immediately the Lord entered further, we all chorused

”Welcome home Lord Quinn! ” as we have earlier practiced. Lady Quinn showed up from the stairs and raced to envelope her husband in a tight hug. We all stood there, watching as they showed off affection. Lady Quinn guided her husband to the dining and made him sit at the far head of the long table while she settled beside him. We sprang into action as we served the couple the appetizer we prepared which consisted of fried pickles with spicy mayonnaise and baked buffalo chicken wings. l was to serve the drinks so l endeavoured to avoid mistakes as much as l can. The minister wasn even paying us attention as he simply chewed away on his food with Lady Quinn petting him now and then. She was becoming overbearing l thought. The meal finished as soon as it started and we are left with the left overs to ourselves. Maybe being brought here as maid is not really a bad thing because here, l eat the food l never dreamt of ever having a taste of in my life. We all chattered away as we munched our food happily in the maids quarters.

”Why was Lady Quinn acting all lovey Dovey with the Lord? As if we don know how much the Lord despises her ” Flora blurted out all of a sudden, gaining everyones attention.

”Flora! How could you say such a thing in this merry atmosphere? You are such a kill joy ” Grace interjected, scoffing at Flora while the later rolled her eyes.

”What is the need to pretend? Are we not aware of how Lady Quinn forced herself on Lord Quinn? Before she came, this mansion was at its best but ever since she brought her proud legs inside, she ruined everything with her bossy attitude. Such a spoilt brat she is! ” Penny added as she munched fiercely, inflicting her frustration on the poor chicken.

”They don even sleep in the same room. ” Danielle chirped in

”What!? ”_____ ”How did you know? ”____ ”How sure are you? ” Lots of maids replied simultaneously as they stared wide eyed at Danielle

”How else did you think l know? l am in charge of Lady Quinns room! ” Danielle replied, now lowering her voice before she continued ”l don think Lord Quinn has their marriage consummated! ” This made eyes become wider as we all tried hard to digest the information. l suddenly felt pity for the Lady as l can imagine myself having a husband that doesn love me

”Will you all eat your food silently and resume your work immediately ” The head maid announced, earning grunts and mumbles from the maids who had been enjoying their gossip.

The alarm that wakes all maids rang loudly, almost deafening my ears. l used my hands to cover my ears in an attempt to reduce the effect of the alarm but it was futile. Eventually, l forced myself up immediately missing the feel and warmth of the bed. Each room in the maids quarters is shared by two maids and l share my room with a maid named Danielle. l looked over to her side only to discover that she is not on her bed. l made my way to the tiny bath to freshen up. After successfully cleaning myself to my satisfaction, l came into the room to dress up for the day and that was when l noticed Danielle who is now back on the bed, cuddled up like a baby. Didn she hear the alarm go? Does she wish to be punished by the head maid or Lady Quinn?

”Danielle ” l called but there was no response. ”Danielle! ” l repeated only to be replied with a grunt followed by silent sobs. l darted to her as fear engulfed me. What could be wrong with her?

l moved tiredly up the flairs of stairs breathing heavily with every step l took. Danielle had fallen ill so l am obliged to fill in for her and do her duties in addition to mine. l was helpless. Doing my own duty is enough headache but now, l have to do two peoples work! Now, l am on my way to Lady Quinns room to clean up. The fear l am feeling deep down is unbearable. What if l end up making a mistake and she punishes me? What if she asks why l am here instead of Danielle? So many thoughts raced through my mind as l got nearer to her room. l have never been to this part of the mansion but Danielle has described how l will locate her room to me. l slowed my pace as the door to her room stood inches away from me. l breathed heavily while bracing myself for what is to come. Slowly, l got to her door and knocked softly. There was no response even after knocking a few number of times so l opened the door. l took my cleaning tools inside and checked for any sign of Lady Quinn but thankfully, she is not in. l began cleaning immediately as l won want her to meet me in her room. Hell, the room was is such a mess that l wonder if she is really a female. l arranged her untidy bed with pillows thrown all over the place. l swept and cleaned her room with scenting soap before proceeding to the bath where l almost throw up at the disgusting state it is. l mentally praised Daniella since this is what she does everyday for goodness sake! l did her laundry and moved to the next room after making sure that everything is clean. The next room is Lord Quinns room. When he was away, Danielle cleans only Lady Quinns room but now that he is back, she has to clean his room too. l knocked gently in his door and there was no reply. Happy that he is not around too, l opened the door and stepped in. His room is huge and beautiful. Everything in the room is coloured grey, giving off the matured but dull aura. The room ia nothing like Lady Quinns as it is well arranged. l practically had nothing to do in the room but l decided to just sweep and clean. l was almost done with the cleaning when a door l never noticed in the room burst open. l ceased my action as l became rigid. The door had blended with the wall of the room since it is also painted in grey so l did not notice it. My breath caught in my throat at the sight of the intruder. It was Lord Quinn. l began to panic as l lowered my head in fear

”My Lord, l am sorry. l knocked but there was no reply so l concluded that you are not in… ” l rushed out while keeping my head down. There was silence after my shutter and l was almost lured to look up. My exasperation grew when the silence prolonged.

”Continue ” He said after what seems like forever

”Ohh..okay..My Lord ” l said as l released a breath l never knew l was holding. l quickened my pace and l am finally done. l packed the cleaning materials and made for the door. Lord Quinn was sitting on the couch the whole time, staring at some sheets and books. l reached for the doors handle and was about to open it when l heard his voice again. The deep, cold, manly voice that commands respect

”I have never seen you ”

He has never seen me? Was l not there to welcome him when he came back from his trip? l was even the one that served him drinks. l scoffed silently at him

”l just got here my Lord ”

”Okay ” He said curtly and l took it as a signal that our small conversation has ended and made for the door once again. However, he spoke again

” What is your name? ”

What? Why will he ask of my name? l raised my head for the first time since he came into the room. He is still looking at the scripts before him so l used the opportunity to check him out. He is wrapped in a bath robe and his hair is still wet from the shower. l wanted to touch it…Hell! what am l thinking?

”Vanessa___Vanessa Hope ” l replied and he finally looked up

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