Delilah Blue and the Faulty Timepiece
“Well I declare it’s just the prettiest thing evah! Just look at it Mama, it sparkles! The flowers are so pretty, I think it’s the prettiest little old watch I’ve ever seen!” As usual, Delilah Blue was exaggerating. It was her way of talking, trying to get everyone’s attention. She was a true Southern belle in every way. Her corsets were unbreathably tight, her bosoms pushed up and delicately rouged, her long dark hair expertly curled and the bright blue eyes always wide open. That is unless she was fluttering her long lashes at her beau of the day.
The timepiece was a delicate vision of loveliness, but its worth was only in its beauty as an adornment. Her current suitor found it in a shop of questionable repute. However, it did sparkle, and the blue flowers did match Delilah’s eyes. Those eyes were one of the reasons he was enamored of Delilah. He seemed to fall into those blue eyes as if they were a beautiful warm lake. That was the best of her beauty, he thought, as he laid down his money for the watch.
Delilah loved the young men’s attention and selfishly thought that encouraging competitiveness among them would be to her benefit. And of course it was. Gifts were given at every visit, from a small bunch of violets to an elaborate hair comb. The gifts had to be rather general in those days, nothing too personal or it was considered an insult to her integrity.
The shopkeeper offered to set the watch to the correct time of day and the young man watched as he wrapped it carefully. After he presented it to Delilah, they were allowed a walk in the evening air. Her home’s gardens were quite large and offered a small bit of privacy. The young man took advantage of that and offered his arm to Delilah. She let him and they strolled around the flowers and trees till the sun set.
The next day Delilah selected the timepiece to wear with her deeply cut blue gown that matched her eyes perfectly. After the evening she spent, she was more interested in her suitor than she first thought. She wanted to entice him further, so dressed to please him, as his longing stares into her eyes were not missed. They were to meet for tea in town at four.
The driver helped her out of the carriage and went down the street to wait. Delilah entered the tea room and waited patiently. After a half hour he still did not arrive. She asked a boy outside to fetch her driver.
The young man arrived two hours later which he had planned with Delilah the evening before. He waited for an hour, but she never came. He was heartbroken. Perhaps he was too forward the night before. He did kiss her slightly on the cheek, but surely she wouldn’t have agreed to meet him if she wasn’t pleased.
Delilah huffed into her home, rudely shutting her bedroom door. She took the timepiece off and threw it down. She was embarrassed to sit alone in the tea room waiting. She was angry to think she let him kiss her and then be abandoned? She was mortified.
After a while, Delilah’s mother came in to see what was wrong. After explaining, her mother picked up the watch, looked at it and smiled. Your timepiece is incorrect, my dear. It is set two hours early. You were too early for your meeting. I’m sure he was there at four, not two, when you arrived.
There was a knock on the door. The young man had come to see if Delilah was all right. He wanted to know if she would still see him, even after she missed the meeting. Delilah put on her best charming self and greeted him with a smile. “I’m so sorry, it was all a mistake. The timepiece was set to the wrong time…….”