A Son of Aran

A Son of Aran by Martin Gormally Read Free Book Online

Book: A Son of Aran by Martin Gormally Read Free Book Online
Authors: Martin Gormally
lovingly, throwing his arms around her neck, and smothering her with kisses.
    â€˜Good work,’ he exclaimed, ‘now we can be together without interruption. Two days from now we’ll arrive at my villa near Salamanca where I’ll show you the apple groves and the olives. A little cognac to celebrate!’ Emptying his glass in one gulp he asked,
    â€˜The girl—did you put her in her cabin?’
    â€˜Carlos dear, I have something to tell you,’ Saureen answered. ‘When I went to collect her at our home in Sickeen, she wasn’t there. I can’t for the life of me know where she has gone. It’s most unlike her not to be at home at this time of the evening. Her books are not there either, which leads me to think she may not have returned from school. I’ll go back again and see if I can find her. Can you delay the ship’s departure for an hour while I go and search.’
    â€˜All right,’ he said, ‘one hour, but remember not a minute longer.
    â€™ The captain informed the crew of a delay in departure. Saureen disembarked. At the end of an hour she returned.
    â€˜I didn’t find her,’ she announced, ‘but I found this note on the table.’
    Saureen, deceitful woman, unfaithful wife,
    I never thought I’d be writing these words. At last I have proof of your infidelity. I know of your plans to leave me and to take Eileen with you. By the time you read this note, she and I will be far away. Don’t try to find us. I never want to see you again. Your seducer can have you but he cannot have Eileen—I will see to that. If you had been honest with me at the time of Eileen’s birth, I would have forgiven you for being pregnant before we married. I loved you enough to accept your predicament, and I would have married you just the same. You deceived me then, you lied to me repeatedly ever since, and now you have plotted to deceive me once again. That I cannot forgive.
    On hearing the outcome the captain flew into a vile rage. Crew members jumped to their tasks as his screaming was heard all over the ship. People on the dockside stood still to listen: ‘Stop, stop, I have heard enough. I see now how you and your husband have conspired to trick me. It is not you I want but our daughter. If I need a concubine I can find a dozen of your type in any port of call. I want my natural offspring who will bear children of my family line and make me a proud grandfather in my old age. Get off this ship. Go back to your brothel and find another sucker to bleed.’
    â€˜Please, Carlos, take me with you.’ Saureen pleaded. ‘I haven’t tried to deceive you. I have no husband now. I love you and you have told me that you love me too. I will make up to you for your loss. I will give you other children. I can have no life in this town after what we have done, please don’t leave me behind.’
    â€˜Put this woman ashore and take the ship out of harbour,’ the captain shouted angrily to the mate.
    Crying bitterly, with all eyes centred on her, Saureen disembarked. The gangplank was raised, the Sansander pulled away from the wharf. Weeping uncontrollably, she watched the ship as it headed for the open sea. There was no last minute gesture from the bridge where Carlos stood defiantly erect and stone-faced. In a mixture of shock and deep despair she turned to the nearest tavern to get a stiff drink and collect her thoughts.
    â€˜What am I going to do now that my life has been torn asunder on all fronts? News of being deserted by both my husband and my lover has already spread like wild fire. I can no longer face those who previously hosted me. I will be an outcast in my native town. Where is Peadar now? Has he left Galway? If so, where can he and Eileen have gone?’
    She had many questions but no answers. Knowing Peadar’s affection for Aran, she reckoned he might go there. But had he not said in his note to her that

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