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The Woman in the Attic

by Miss Ruiz 9 months ago in Horror
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Letters from Bertha Mason (Jane Eyre)

The Woman in the Attic
Photo by Alessio Fiorentino on Unsplash

Dear Richard,

I am so filled with joy! I am finally a married woman. I am a wife! There is so much to look forward to. One day we will be a more prominent family, and I will raise children with Edward. He will make a good father. I think I will be delighted here with Edward. He dresses me in the finest clothes and jewelry. He says that a Rochester should be seen in the best clothes. The house is lovely, albeit cold. It is not what I am used to, but the land holds a certain beauty. The soil keeps secrets from thousands of years and generations of Rochester. Now, I will be remembered in the echoes of the property as Mrs. Bertha Rochester. How Exciting! A new start and a new life, what a joy to have. Come and visit sometime. I would love to show you around and share parts of my new life. Please let me know how life is like back at home.

Your sister,

Bertha Rochester

Dear Richard,

He treats me well still, but I think he is starting to pull away from me. He does not talk to me as much as he used to. He says he is busy taking care of the Rochester affairs, but he does not tell me what those are. He goes out to town often or invites men over often, only to lock himself in the library for business. He often goes into town, not coming home until morning in the same clothes and reeking of cheap alcohol. Sometimes he allows me to sit in the same room as him and do my needlework quietly. Then, his face will turn, and he will demand that I leave. He says that my embroidery is too loud and that he cannot concentrate. I think he wants an excuse for me to leave. He will sometimes apologize. I hope that he will go back to being friendly, or at least more likable than he is now. Maybe I can come to visit home soon.

Your sister,

Bertha Rochester

Dear Richard,

Edward has departed to London abruptly and did not even tell me. I woke up to an empty bed, and one of the servants told me he had left a few hours earlier. Edward did not even leave a note for me. The servants are cordial, but they typically stay away from me. All I have to do are needlework and the piano to keep me busy throughout the day. My piano playing is getting better, but my only audience is the ghosts that haunt these halls. I am sure the servants can hear me, but I only ever see them when they summon me for meals to eat by myself. I am lonesome and hope when Edward gets back from whatever escapade he is on, he can help me find a friend or two in this area. Maybe that will keep me out of his hair. I am sorry to complain to you. I have nowhere else to turn. Please respond quickly. I am longing for my family.

Your sister,

Bertha Rochester

Dear Richard,

Edward has been gone for nearly a month. He does not respond to my letters, only sends letters to the servants on updates on household affairs or shipments. There is no word on when he will be back. He has abandoned me. I am his wife, and he treats me like I am but a spec of dust on his shoe. I am not worthy of his attention anymore. I am a nuisance to him, something to be kept alive and nothing more. I have been abandoned by you as well. Why do you not answer my letters? Am I to just be passed around from man to man until I die? Please respond.

Your sister,

Bertha Rochester

Dear Richard,

Please help! My marriage to Edward is despicable. I have attempted to become a suitable wife. I have taken up embroidery and piano to appease him, but he complains my playing is dreadful. He is cold and alienates me in my own home. It is as if I am an intruder in this household instead of his wife. I have pleaded with him to treat me as an equal, or at the very least treat me as a human being. Still, I am ignored and left to my own devices, yet I have nothing here besides him. He is the only thing tying me to this cold countryside, but I am utterly alone without him. Edward does not understand why I would possibly have a hard time making myself at home in a land I have never been. The whole place is dreary and stormy. His personality matches the weather. Visit, please. I imagine a friendly face may help my sadness, even if it is only for a short while. I am sorry for my rudeness in my last letter.

Your sister,

Bertha Rochester

Dear Richard,

I fear my last letter may never have been sent. I asked Edward if he could have a servant send it, but I worry I am being sabotaged since you have not come. Richard, please tell me you will not be ignoring my letters. Edward is worse now. Since he has come back, he refuses to be in the same room as me. He takes his meals in his study. Edward locks himself inside, only letting a servant in. I have begged and begged outside of his door, but he will not let me in. How am I supposed to be his wife? I feel invisible and disregarded. I have attempted to make small talk with the servants, but they are hesitant. I make them uncomfortable. I can see it in their eyes, or lack of seeing it as they refuse to make eye contact with me.

I am begging you; please retrieve me. I pray that you receive this letter.

Your sister,

Bertha Mason

Dear Richard,

I know you will never see this letter or hear from me again. I was tricked into this cold, damp room. There is no light, not even in the daytime. A woman I do not know comes in to light the fireplace every once in a while. She cooks the meals in the room, puts out the fireplace, and leaves me alone in the dark again. I have pleaded with her to let me out. She merely shakes her head and calls me “dear.” She has such pity in her voice, but she will not help me. What kind of husband locks his wife away, and what type of woman helps him? Maybe she is his new love? Someone going after his money? I do not know what role I play in this, but I hope there is a reason behind my imprisonment. I will continue to write so one day you will read my letters. One day I will be found.

Your sister,

Bertha Mason

Dear Richard,

I have begun to lose track of the days since Edward has locked me away. He is cold, bringing me to a place I have never known and expecting me to adapt. I showed the slightest bit of anger, and the man shoved me into the attic. He expects too much of me after ripping me away from my family. It is not as if I wanted this. I knew as a woman I would have to surrender and become a wife, but I vowed I would not make it easy. Maybe I should have. Richard, I wish I knew that this letter would reach you, but I no longer believe you will hear from me. I will slowly fade from everyone’s minds. I am no longer the Mason family problem. I am Edward’s, and he does not want me.

Your sister,

Bertha Mason

Richard,

My health is failing. I have not seen the sun in so long. I do not think my body would be able to handle the world outside this room. The woman comes back to feed me and clean up after me and then leaves again. I heard Edward call her Grace Poole. My jailer is Grace Poole. The warden is Edward Rochester. These people are cruel villains. They watch me lose myself. I’ll kill him.

-BM

Richard,

I am running out of the paper I found. I am unsure if these letters are legible in the dark. I see Poole has keys. I will attack and take them. It is my only hope. I will kill Edward and escape.

-BM

Richard,

I was caught. I do not recognize myself. I hope I die. I hope I take him with me.

-BM

Horror

About the author

Miss Ruiz

Hello! I am one semester away from graduating with my English BA. I work as an informal STEM Educator and Writing Tutor. I like to write and get my thoughts out in my essays and short stories. Stay tuned :)

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