This weeks prompt at Sunday Scribblings is The Good Old Days
A stately red brick pile stood magnificently amid a brick walled garden. Log fires crackled and blazed, and tables groaned with food and sparkling crystal decanters of ruby wine. Maids and servants fetched and carried. Butlers moved silently and discreetly about their business .Soon it would be time for the winter ball, when every room in the house would echoe with the sound of laughter and merry music.
Each morning the footmen prepared a coach and four for the master of the house in readiness for his daily trip to his factory. He would walk between the clanging and crashing machines, a handkerchief to his face, and his loyal workers would stop for a second as he passed and tug a forelock of hair.
The days were good back then.
The winter wind whistled through cracks in the crumbling walls and broken windows. Five scruffy urchins played in the dust on the floor as their mother, large with child, struggled with what little food she had with which to feed her family. Hopefully her husband would catch enough rats today to earn a shilling to buy some more food tomorrow.
Last week one of their children died. They couldn’t afford a doctor or his medicine. She was buried in a tiny pauper’s gravemarked with a small cross of twigs.
Soon their eldest son would be six years old and strong enough to climb inside and sweep the chimneys of the big house on the hill.
The days were dark back then.