Damien was barely bothered by the people on the stage or the play. He was here only for the fun of it, to enjoy the secrets and the words of the peasants that must have hurt his mouse. He noticed the skip in Penny's heartbeat and he tilted his head staring at the man on the stage.
To be able to get a reaction out of Penny, he wondered who the man was. His eyes shone in mirth as he sat at the front with his hands folded and one of his legs placed over the other.
"Do you know their names?" Penny heard Damien ask next to her ear as he had leaned over, not wanting to disturb the other people who sat around them.
She turned her head like a broken watch to look into his eyes, "Why do you ask?" she knew Damien was on to what she was feeling and because of the bond, there wasn't much she could do when it came to hiding anything from him, "Kylene and Liam," she answered him, without a stutter before turning back to look at the woman on the stage and keeping her eyes away from the man.
The man was someone she looked up to when she was still working here. But that didn't stay for long. Liam was a handsome man, golden lock hairs, a smile with dimples on either side of his face when he pursed his lips or when he smiled that had many women's hearts melting. Both the actor and actress on the stage were who contributed majorly to the theater, they were the on-stage couple.
The memories took Penny back in time when a silly feud had taken place in the backstage. Penny had worked for four months and she had developed feelings for the man who acted on the stage, Liam was her ideal man. Someone who helped people right away without having to be asked for help and polite all the time.
It made her wonder when her taste had changed as Damien was the complete opposite of what she used to like in men. Maybe it was because Damien was who he was and didn't mind standing up to things he believed in, thought Penny to herself.
"Where is Kylene?!" came the voice of the owner which this theater belonged to.
"Sir, she is in her room," came the local stooge's voice while Penny was only crossing the narrow passage wanting to talk to the owner when they passed by her without waiting when she stopped readying herself to talk. With the shortage of money in the house, she needed the advance payment from the owner.
Penny sighed softly.
Now she would have to wait until the play was done and wouldn't find the opportunity to talk to the owner about her payment. She turned sharply around when her head hit a man's chest. Quickly moving two steps back, she apologized with her head bowed.
"I apologize for not seeing where I was going," when she raised her head, she caught sight of a man who was handsome in sight.
"That's alright. I should have been careful myself," the man smiled at her. Their start had been short but Penny often found herself looking at him, her eyes searching around to only stop when she spotted him in the room. And this was noticed by the man, Liam. In some days, their interaction had broadened and the other girls didn't like that he spent most of his words with a girl who was merely a side actress in the theater.
It was after a few weeks did the girls frame, Penny, over the dress which was torn to shreds.
Penny had pleaded that it wasn't her,
"I didn't do anything! I wasn't even here. Why-"
"That's enough. Do you think I haven't been informed of you snooping around in Kylene's room for clothes? Who told you to go there?" asked the owner, "Have you been stealing her things?"
"What?! No!" she couldn't believe she was being accused of something so ridiculous!
One of the girls who were at the same level as her when it came to giving out roles said, "I heard her village doesn't look at her or her mother favorably for what they have done. Only they can say what they did," Penny glared at the girl.
"What did you hear? Without a proof, don't go around with baseless rumors," Penny was angry as she was being questioned and called up as thief now in front of the entire staff who worked in the theater, "I have worked for months now, you cannot accuse me over something-"
"Penelope," said Kylene who had been quietly looking at the drama that was taking place in front of her, "Don't you know you shouldn't lie. To lie without shame," said the woman shaking her head.
"But I didn't do anything," Penny whispered. She had hoped at least one of them to come forth and defend her, she had made friends here at least that's what she had believed but it seemed like no one liked her.
People had been kind to her only until they wanted to be. Even the man whom she admired had turned his back as he stood quietly next to the actress Kylene without a word with his eyes cast down on the ground. It was as if he was ashamed of her. Not believing her words that she had done nothing and was innocent.
Since that day, her time in the theater had turned out to be strictly about work and she didn't converse with anyone. Penny couldn't leave or switch her work because this was the only place she could earn a high amount of money. Hence she had continued to work even after she had been accused.
Right now as Penny watched the play unfold in front of her eyes she didn't pay attention to them but was only revisiting the memories that had taken place in this theater. Both the actor and actress were still enacting their parts when the actor's eyes by mistake fell on the audience who were seated in the front to find a familiar face there.
Penny only stared at Liam expressionless while the man blinked a couple of times, almost forgetting his lines, "What have you-What have you...We need to take the carriage before the night falls over the sky…" his voice trailed as he tried to not look at Penny who was sitting and watching there.
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