Here, still unedited, is an excerpt from the beginning of the story--
The sun shone bright the morning of the hanging as though it were a perfect day for a picnic.. When I had ridden past the public square with Lenora’s brother, Edward, the day earlier, there were already booths being hammered together by local merchants making ready to sell wares at the spectacle.
“Will you attend?” Edward asked.
“I would not like to put Lenora through such an ordeal,” I answered. I should myself have liked to see Cyrus Abercrombie receive the justice he so richly deserved, but I did not hold with turning sober occasions into celebration.
“Aye. We shall stay home as well.” I wondered if Edward might have gone if not for his wife, Meifeng. “You are quite right, ladies should not be subjected to such things. Perhaps no one should.”
Lenora’s countenance on that bright lit morn let me know I made the right decision. We stood in the garden of our little cottage and though we were far from the affair at the square, Lenora’s skin was pale as milk and I wondered if the ordeal—both the memory of what had happened and what was about to transpire-- made her ill.
“You should not trouble yourself so.” I took her by the hand and hoped she could feel the sincerity of my words.
“I wish there were some other way to bring him to justice.” She looked out over the bay. The view always brought solace to my heart and I trusted it would do the same for her. She was a daughter of the sea, the daughter of a ship builder. We held a love of the sea in common, Lenora and I.