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The Legend of Lady Hyacinth
The Legend of a Newburg lass begins with the birth of a magnificent young lady named Hyacinth Bickerdike. The fantastic event of her birth occurred on January 1, 1700. She took her first breath of air right as the clock sang twelve times to welcome the new century.
Hyacinth was a spectacle, she was. She was born with beautiful blond hair so blond it shone nearly silver in the sun and glowed white in the shadows. Her eyes were generally called hazel, but they changed colors according to the people she was around and the weather outside. Her eyes were dark blue when it rained and bright blue when the sun was shining. They were a terrible brown when she was around someone who made her uncomfortable. She needn’t say a word to get her point across.
Even as she grew, she never changed. She had the most distinct appearance and the most entrancing voice of anyone who ever existed in these parts. When she came of age, the men who weren’t afraid of her flawless beauty were obsessed with it. The damsel never married. She was too smart and too particular to fall for the games and stunts of her suitors.
She adopted two boys, teen brothers who couldn’t even be separated by death. No, in fact, they died they very same day in the very same manner, only spending 3 years with their new mother. The most tragic of accidents befell them, accompanied by the Spanish Flu. The boys were sick and the innocent Hyacinth went into town to get them salve for their rashes and lozenges to soothe their tired throats.
When she returned home, her house was ablaze and her boys were inside, too weak to escape. The firemen said an oil lamp had been dropped by the oldest of the two boys as he was coming down the stairs. The poor lad had fallen trying to pick it up and broke his arm. Lying there, he was defenseless against the fire just two feet away from him. His brother was asleep in the parlor and never suspected a thing. Hyacinth liked to think that they both died knowing how much their mom loved them.
Husbandless and childless, Hyacinth still lived a full life. Instead of mourning her losses, she thanked God for taking their hands sooner rather than later so they didn’t have to suffer the influenza any longer, or worse, die from it. Hyacinth became a woman of the church by singing in the chorale and occasionally speaking at weddings and funerals. She was very well respected by the people of Newburg.
The day finally came that Hyacinth met her end. She died peacefully in the arms of the man everyone said she should have married. She lived to the age of 100, taking her last breath of air right as the clock sang twelve times to welcome the new century.
Thus ends the story of Hyacinth herself, but not the end of her legend. Her legend lives on each century with another outstanding lass born in her image.
The year 1800 saw the birth of Rose Burlend. She possessed the same shining hair and expressive eyes. She never married for the same reason as Hyacinth, however she did adopt two teen brothers just alike. Unlike Hyacinth, Rose died with her sons in a fire at the factory. Their tombstones bore the same inscription: We died with the love of God and each other in our hearts.
The year 1900 saw the birth of Azalea Foiles. With the hair and eyes of the ladies before her, her beauty was even more stunning. A lifelong single woman, she too adopted two teen brothers. Her boys lived beyond her death, which was by means of a fire, just like Rose. She died in her home along with the best friend of her youngest boy.
The year 2000 saw the birth of Violet Irving. Her hair just as white and her eyes just as honest, she is now a young woman with many suitors, none of whom she sees herself marrying. She plans to study philosophy of life and death. She has not yet followed the same path as the lovely ladies before her, but it is almost inevitable that she should.
The Legend of Lady Hyacinth lives on, and so does she.